I finished these a few weeks ago, just in time for fall. They are so comfortable – feels like nothing on my feet, except warm. The yarn came from Three Fates Yarns, a friend of mine who does hand-dying.
Archive for the ‘Projects’ Category
It’s pretty fun having a professional knitwear designer in my circle of local knitting friends. Janel Laidman was working on a lovely garter-stitch lace-edged shawlette at our Monday night meetings for a few weeks in a row. I had been wanting to knit a lace shawl from one of the skeins of sock yarn in my stash, and I’d been perusing Ravelry trying to pick just the right one. But, when I saw Janel’s finished project, I decided I wanted to knit it. Something about seeing it in person… and it’s beautiful. The earthquake / tsunami in Japan had just occurred, so as she was publishing it Janel decided to offer it as a benefit to disaster relief. All those factors converged and I bought the pattern, picked the skein of blue wool/tencel I had from a few years ago at Black Sheep, and cast on. In one month, I was finished! It was a delightful project and a great spring neck-warmer during the remaining cool days.
Last June, I was at my Monday night knitting group. We were all excited and buzzing about Black Sheep Gathering coming up that weekend. Some were signed up for classes, some were looking forward to shopping the market for unique yarn and fiber, and some were hoping to catch a glimpse of alpacas.
But, one friend had a different source of excitement. ETW, who has impeccable taste and also likes to keep an eye out for good deals, had found some 100% silk yarn on deep discount at Ben Franklin. I was intrigued. At $17 a ball, I wouldn’t consider buying pure silk. But $4 a ball? Now we’re talking.
That Friday I spent the afternoon at Black Sheep, and purchased quite a bit of yarn. Later that evening, BN and I happened to be out, I think we were going to a movie at the dollar-fifties, near Ben Franklin. It was a now-or-never kind of thing, I wanted to get some of that silk. I picked out a pewter gray.
Last fall, I needed a new purse-sized project that was simple and compact enough to carry around and work on anywhere. I was originally going to knit a lace-patterned mobius, but when I swatched the lace pattern it didn’t do the gray nubbly yarn any favors. So I switched to a simple linen stitch and cast on for a super-minimal rectangle scarf. Some people say linen stitch makes them crazy with boredom, but I found it quite meditative.
And I LOVE the finished scarf. It is so soft, warm, not a hint of itch (even with very soft superwash merino, I find my neck can tell it’s there). The neutral color goes with everything. Mmmm, luscious. And to think it only cost 12 dollars!
Well, hello 2011! The holiday dust is still settling this week, since we only got back from California last weekend. But here we are, a new year. I wonder what the future holds.
BN is no longer a teacher, so we didn’t have to organize our vacation around the academic schedule. I had done hardly any work until the week after Thanksgiving, so I was willing and in fact eager to continue to work through the holidays. BN found me a MacBook Pro on Craigslist, and I was able to stay on top of my current projects while we were visiting our families in San Jose for a little more than 3 weeks. That worked out nicely – I had enough to do that it felt gratifying, but not so much that I had to neglect family time. On Monday, the first day back at my desk, the laptop died. It no longer starts up, except a few times randomly, and soon runs into trouble with monitor flickering and things seizing up. Oh, dear. Luckily we were able to connect it up to our old computer and get the files off of the hard disk.
It seems that iPhoto changed how they do things, so we couldn’t figure out how to get the photos that we took during the trip. We’re working on it… In the meantime, here are some borrowed from my Dad.
I was so happy to get some quality time with my two little nephews. They are growing so fast!
My dad drew my name for this year. He gave me a lovely ceramic bowl, two skeins of Mini Mochi, and a ticket to visit my sister in Houston after her baby is born. What a wonderful gift!
Our visit included some crafty endeavors, too – HN and I made glycerin soap. You should try this – we worked from a kit and simply melted the soap in the microwave, tinted it, and poured it in molds. We then cut chunks and shapes, put them back in the molds, and poured more soap in. Fun, fun, fun!
In my freelancing work, I’ve been between projects this month. I often try to utilize “down time” by updating my portfolio. I’ve added 5 new projects this time around, 3 in User Interface and 2 in Web Sites.
My friend J had her baby girl, ETI, on my 6th wedding anniversary – July 10, 2010. I knit her this sweet, simple little cardigan. I finished the knitting in 10 days, it was a breeze. Then life happened, and I didn’t get the finishing done and the buttons sewn on until weeks later – but finally got it mailed off in the midst of packing up to move.
I used Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece, my favorite yarn of all time. (I have made so many projects with this yarn that I have enough remnants to make several more projects – I’m in progress on a granny square bag.) Sadly they no longer carry this yarn at my LYS, so I snapped up some clearance sale skeins for this little sweater.
After having such a good experience with my fine-gauge Ribbon Lace Scarf, carrying it in my purse and working on it here and there, I wanted another small, uncomplicated project to tote around. These socks worked perfectly.
I based these socks on the “Upstream” sock architecture from Cat Bordhi’s New Pathways for Sock Knitters. The yarn is lachesis sock, hand-dyed by Three Fates Yarns (a friend in Salem.) It’s listed as 100% merino, but I could swear it has bamboo in it. It’s silky-smooth and very soft. I finished these during our trip to Lassen and they kept my feet cozy in the evenings.
My friend JI gave me a purse some years ago, brown faux suede with embroidered flowers. It was one of my favorite purses ever and I’ve been meaning to try creating a pattern from it for a simple lined cotton version.
I had to carefully think through the order of sewing the seams – it’s necessary to leave the seam at the top of the handle for last, because joining the lining along both long curved edges of the strap would leave no way to turn the project inside out if the straps were already joined. Luckily this occurred to me before I actually tried it, and after confirming the topological nuances with my husband, I successfully joined the purse to the lining, turning it through an opening in the bottom of the lining.
I also added a pocket to the inside, and a magnetic snap.
Pretty good for a couple of evenings’ work! I love sewing, I really do – but knitting is so much easier to just pick up and work on. I need to keep in mind that sewing projects go faster. I have a nice little sewing corner now that our spare bedroom is cleared out, so I’m going to try to do more sewing this summer.
I bought this yarn at Black Sheep Gathering last summer, assuming I’d use it for socks. My friend A from my knit group had a skein that she was using for a lace project and she mused aloud how glad she was to not be knitting socks with it. That gave me the idea to look for a lace project to use for my skein. The colors are too pretty to hide inside shoes anyway – a mix of greens from yellowy spring to bluey turquoise, accented with bits of coppery brown. I never got bored of knitting this. The pattern is just complex enough to hold my interest but not require too much concentration. This was my on-the-go project, I just kept it in my purse and worked on it in spare moments as I was out and about. The finished scarf is lovely, and very soft around my neck (usually even the softest merino gives me slight itch. Maybe the key here is that it’s superwash…)