Thursday, August 23, 2007

Hooray, an FO...if only a small one.I'm practically squeeing at the adorableness of it, although I find it hard to believe that the matching booties (I had a ton of the white yarn left over after making the sweater edging) could actually fit on anyone's feet!I particularly like the knitted edging, which has a crochet look to it without having to bring out the dreaded hook:There was only one ribbon in the entire craft store that matched the yarn...all of the whites were either too bright white or too cream (the white yarn I used is just the slightest bit of off-white), and as for the blue ribbon...well, I'm sure you all have had experience trying to match blues. Not easy! Luckily, I do like the style of the only ribbon that matched:

Pattern Notes
"Ballerina Wrap" and "Mary Janes" from The Little Sublime Handknit Book
Yarn: RYC Cashsoft Baby DK in colors 800 "Snowman" and 805 "Cloud"
Knit on 4 mm/US 6 needles

All of the patterns in this booklet are clearly written with the beginning knitter in mind, as the directions write out every...single..step...sometimes tediously so, when you are used to more loosely-written patterns. In some ways I found this bad, because I would start questioning whether I was doing something the right way (expecting more hand-holding, I guess). Overall though, the patterns were both fine and I didn't really have any serious troubles with them.

The yarn is a nice yarn, although as I mentioned in a previous post it is rather pricey for being 33% acrylic (oops, I mean microfiber). It is very soft, almost to the point of making me wonder whether it's going to get all pilly with wear. Well, I guess this isn't the kind of thing that a baby would wear every day anyway, so hopefully it will hold up well for my friend (due in less than a month!)

In celebration of Friday (woo hoo!), here is a cool photo of this giant rock that G and I climbed to last weekend. It was kind of surreal!


Sunday, August 19, 2007

Where the heck have I been the last three weeks? Just too busy with other stuff (and apologies for not keeping up with my blog reading/commenting as well). Here is a synopsis of what's been going on:

August 1: I post on my blog, intending to post again early the following week.
August 4-6: Annual girl's weekend camping trip to Sebago Lake.
August 6-7: Horribly busy at work; work late and collapse into relaxation mode at home.
August 8: Spend night doing laundry and drinking wine with a friend who is going through a emotionally trying period.
August 9: Intended to blog before leaving for our vacation. Wait for three hours for neighbor/alleged cat-sitter to show up so I can show her around house. She never shows up and then hides when I go knocking on her door. Finally give up and make dinner and go to bed.
August 10: Find a friend who agrees to take the cat while we're on vacation. Bowling league night. Get home at 10 PM and start packing for...
August 11-15: Vacation in Cape Cod! Woo hoo!
August 16-17: Crazy days catching up on work. Friday is bowling night again.
August 18: Drove down to the "big city" to get my haircut and do some shopping. End up watching a movie instead of blogging.

So after all that, here I am, finally! And still with not much knitting to show, unfortunately. As you will see, I've been stuck in SWATCHING HELL (said in a dramatic voice) for the last two weeks!

Shortly after my last post, my fears about the Classic Elite Waterlily were confirmed--the pattern called for DK weight yarn and the yarn shop owner steered me towards worsted weight instead! Talk about frustrating! I really wish I had just looked at the gauge myself, I wouldn't have made that mistake. Now I'm not sure what I will do with the yarn, which I still love. I'm toying with the idea of designing something myself, although I didn't really buy any extra yarn to make swatches with, so we'll see.

After that fiasco, I decided to instead start a lace project (with thanks to Jeanne for the yarn gift...more on that in a future post). I started swatching but soon discovered that none of the needles I own were going to work (not pointy enough). I ordered some better needles which showed up quickly but still not enough time to get a swatch finished and blocked before vacation.

Well, I knew that I had to bring something with me to knit on our trip (and not the baby wrap and booties I was working on. I really didn't want to spend my vacation doing finishing work, yuck!). Finally I decided that I would use some purple Rowan Handknit Cotton and make Arial, a lacy pullover from White Lies Designs. Once again, trouble struck when I discovered that even though Handknit Cotton is a DK weight yarn, it is a slightly heavier DK than what was used in the pattern. I swatched and swatched but couldn't make the proper gauge and hand. This was especially sad because I so wanted to make Arial in the purple color.

Lacking other options and in a desperate bid to have some project, any project to take on vacation, I finally settled on using the Handknit Cotton to make Nerissa from Rowan 41. Finally, so far so good (although I would have preferred making it in a different color):The color in this photo is completely off, it is really a medium heather-y purple.

Hopefully I can get back into my lace project shortly and not have to SWATCH anything for a long, long time!

I guess I should shut up now, and post a few pictures from Cape Cod, which I totally fell in love with. Here is a photo of this awesome, deserted beach where we saw a ton of seals in the water. They kept popping their heads up and looking at us!Another really nice beach, but no one was swimming due to reports of a shark in the area:We were cracking up because there were two news teams there filming reports for the local news on the "shark scare"...must've been a really slow news day.
And in honor of Project Spectrum, a shot of a pretty purple hydrangea which grow everywhere on the cape!More photos on Flickr!

Nothing left to do now but eat our salt-water taffy and wish we were back at the beach!

Labels: ,

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

I'm a day late, but I wanted to wrap up the red/metallic/black portion of Project Spectrum with another dorky mosaic of the photos I took for this color scheme:Go to Flickr for larger views.

I have to say last month's color triad was not my fave. I wear a lot of red and black but somehow just wasn't all that inspired to knit much in those colors.

I'm much more enthusiastic about the next two months, with a focus on orange, brown, and purple! Purple is probably my absolutely favorite color, and I have a deep appreciation for brown as well. I've never been a huge orange person, but I'm hoping to use the following yarn for my next project:This is one of those difficult-to-photograph yarns. It looks rather red in this picture but I would really describe it as a deep terra-cotta or orange-y rust color. It actually has subtle variation to it. This was the Classic Elite Waterlily yarn that my aunt bought me for my birthday last year, and I hope it works well for the intended sweater pattern. I'm a little concerned that the yarn shop owner led me astray in saying that this was a good substitute for Filatura Di Crosa Zara. The recommended needle size is 2 or 3 sizes different (!), but all I can do is try swatching and hope for the best!

In a serendipitous turn of events (given this month's PS colors), I saw the following parked along the road on my walk home from work:Purple! Sparkly! I'm not a motorcycle person but if I were, I would totally want this one!