Thursday, October 26, 2006

Crafts Update

I'm supposed to be taking a break from real knitting, but here's what's doing:

Ito Maki Pincushions

Ito Maki Pincuchion - Tuna Roll Prototype

Here's a first look at the Ito Maki Pincushion that I'm designing. I used one of those English-Japanese dictionaries to find the Japanese Word for yarn and "Ito" came up, so my appologies if it is in fact the wrong word. This is the Tuna Roll version. I have a vegetable roll with brown rice on the needles right now and I'm also planning a Salmon Roll and California Roll version as well. It's knit using Carron Simply Soft acrylic yarn.

Quick and Dirty Stich and Row Markers

Quick and Dirty Stitch and Row Markers

I broke out the pliers and beads the other day to make myself some row and stitch markers. Usually, I just use cut up straws (an idea I got from DIY Network's Knitty Gritty), but my last black straw is almost gone and I like to have a couple of different colors to mark the begining and midway-point on my knitting. I also hate using a straw segment to mark a row and then have to cut it when I'm finished.

I didn't have any head pins, so I just made little spirals to hold the beads in place. I really like the way the row markers came out - it's a long piece of wire bent in half and then formed into to the hook with the ends of the wire bent into spirals. I flirted with making ones that looked more like fish-hooks, but I was afraid the wire would snag my yarn. It was alot of fun making them and my friend K gave me some really pretty beads to make some more.

I'm really itching to start a big project. I have some yarn that I recycled from a Good Will sweater that is destined to become a raglan sweater for Michael, but I really don't like the color so I'm going to overdye it. the problem is that it's about two pounds of worsted-weight yarn and I don't have a pot big enough to fit it all in. next weekend I'm going to pick up a cheap corn pot or the like so I can dye it all in one go and be assured that the colors will match.

Since the cold weather has already set in, I also have to get some knitting done for myself. I have one of a pair of fingerless gloves done so I have to get cracking on its mate. I also have a poncho half-done for myself that has to get dug out from the in-progress no-man's land so I can keep warm without resorting to wearing two sweaters and a cardigan everytime I go out.

On a non-knitting front, I'm felting a piece of wool in my washer right now to make Michael a winter coat/poncho. I have a nice piece of navy micro-fleece that I'm going to use for the outer layer and sandwich the wool in between that and a lining fabric (most likely muslin). I'm planning on knitting a neckband and cufs for it as well. The reason the wool isn't going to be on the outside is that it's magenta and I think I'd be really hard presseed to make that mannish in any way.

Cross-Posted on Knitty Keen

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Grumble, grumble, grumble...

I've tried to graft the crotch of the longies I'm working on 4 times today and it keeps coming out wrong - a nice line of purls in the middle. I even tried grafting it with the wrong sides together and I still got a nice line of purls.

I just checked Knitting Help.

I had the instructions written backwards.

This is the kind of day I'm having.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Take a look....

After many hours and much gnashing of teeth, I finally finished the skin for Knitty Keen and got something that I'm pretty happy with. Now I just have to get knitting.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Look Ma - No Holes! (and other knitting)

Here are pics of my ultra-cool socks!

Infant Sock

The Sock itself

Infant Sock Detail

Heel detail - note the conspicuous absence of gaping holes

Infant Sock Detail

The other side - still no holes!

I'm hoping to get some time in this weekend to actually write up a pattern, but realistically it probably won't get done until after the show.

Here's what else is on the needles (or off in some cases):

Brown Striped Snazzy Pants Longies, Newborn

Brown Striped Snazzy Pants Longies, Newborn
These are almost done - I just have to finish weaving in the ends. I'm very happy with the way they came out.

Blue Striped Snazzy Pants Step-Ins, Medium

Blue Striped Snazzy Pants Step-Ins, Medium
All that remains is to sew the elastic together. We tried them on Z this afternoon and they look like they are a great fit - very trim.

Brown Striped Snazzy Pants Longies, Small

Brown Striped Snazzy Pants Longies, Small
Yes, more stripes. This time I'm being smarter about it and stopping to weave my ends in every so often.

Green Cabled Snazzy Pants Snoozin' Sacque, 0-6 Months

Green Cabled Snazzy Pants Snoozin' Sacque, 0-6 Months
This has a few firsts for me - my first real time cabling and the first time I'm using Lamb's Pride yarn. I really like the yarn. It's a single (one ply) made of 85% wool and 15% mohair, very soft and has a nice sheen to it. I've been wanting to do some fancy stitch work and since the sacque pattern has no short-rows in it, it was the perfect chance to try out cables. I still haven't decided how I'll end it - draw string, ribbing, or actual buttons. If you have an opinion, please let me know.

cross-posted on Knitty Keen

Friday, October 06, 2006

Socks and Latkes

I took a little break from soaker knitting and the horror that is stripes to knit up a quick baby sock. I tried out the figure eight cast-on and it worked beautifully this time around. I cast-on on my size 1's, knit for a round than transfered to my size 2's. For the first increase, I used a knit-front-and-back rather than my normal make-one increase because I thought it would work better. I do like the ease of doing a figure-eight cast-on, none of the mess of doing a provisional and then having to pick up and decrease for a few rounds to close the holes at the edges. I don't like the little bump created at both ends of the cast-on. I have to double check the directions to make sure I'm doing it correctly or if that is just a trade off.

Aside from the cast-on, my stellar moment came after the short-row heel -- no holes!!! I dread doing a short-row heel because I always end up with a gaping hole on one side no matter how hard I try, but I really like the way a short-row heel looks on the finished product. I finally figured out the right way to pick up and drecrease so I can close the hole up neatly on both sides. There would be pictures but the batteries only lasted long enough to take the pictures, not transfer them to the computer. Once I do a bit more work on them, I'll be posting the pattern on Knitty Keen as a free download.

It was a yucky, cold, rainy day today so I decided it was worth sacrificing my knuckles (and they were sacrificed) to make latkes. John picked up some potatoes, sour cream, and I must say sub-par apple butter (why, oh why do you have to put not only corn syrup, but high fructose corn syrup as well, in apple butter?) on his way home from work tonight. Thankfully, they were probably the best ones I have ever made. I think I could have achieved perfection if I took the extra step to grate an onion in it as well. It was really cute watching Michael march around the livingroom chanting, "Latkes!" while I was making them.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Let the knitting begin....

I have less than three weeks to do quite a bit of knitting and designing - not to mention all of the other stuff I try to avoid on a regular basis. Here's what's on (and off) the needles...

Red Snazzy Pants

This is an infant/small sized soaker that I have named Snazzy Pants. The style is "step-ins" and I think it's a keeper. It's knit with hand-dyed fisherman's wool and there is a bit of stranding at the waist to creat the crenelations.

Blue Stripe Snazzy Pants

This is a blue/green/orange striped Snazzy Pants step-in soaker in size medium that I am knitting for my firend K's son Z. All of my measurements look good on paper, now I have to see if they actually fit a child - good to know since I plan on selling them in a few weeks. It's knit from hand-dyed fisherman's wool and has a new trick I'm working on - built in elastic just below the ribbing. I created a casing by double knitting for a few rounds and I'll weave in some 3/8" elastic.

Brown Stripe Snazzy Pants

This is a size newborn/preemie striped Snazzy Pants soaker with the built-in elastic, I'm not sure it it will be longies or the step-in style. It's knit from Cascade 220 which I can give or take - it's not as heavy as the fisherman's and not as soft to my hands. I'm hoping that washing and lanolising will cure that.

Yes, I am insane for doing all of those stripes. I started the blue ones on Monday and I started the brown ones this afternoon. I'm back on the wagon again (4 days - woohoo!) and I need to keep my hands busy.

A more verbose post to come soon....

cross posted on Knitty Keen

Sunday, October 01, 2006

The deed has been done

I just e-mailed my submission for Knitty. Wish me luck!

Cross-posted on Knitty Keen