Sunday, October 24, 2010
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
This last Sunday, on the 22nd to be precise, I happened to look out the window at the trees that sit just outside our fence in front of the lake and noticed that some of the leaves are already starting to turn, then breathed a small sigh of relief.
Monday, August 9, 2010
Monday, July 19, 2010
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Friday, April 16, 2010
Well, I haven't been doing a whole lot of either lately.
It happens, that fallow time that all creative people reach every now and then when inspiration and motivation waver and there just doesn't seem to be the energy and spark there to start something new.
Or finish up something old.
I have a hat that I need to finish. A Christmas gift (yes, from last Christmas) that I need to finish and send on it's way. All I have to do is sew up the seam.
Meh. Just don't feel like it it.
I have various other projects that I've been mulling over starting...
Lately, I've just been being. As much as I can. I've been cutting my hair and painting my nails and playing with my son and taking little mini-vacations to see family and friends.
It's kind of nice.
Monday, March 15, 2010
So a friend of mine sent me an invitation to her little girl's 1st birthday party one day. It was sent a good 3 weeks before the actual party which should give me plenty of time, even with a rather rambunctious 2 year old on my hands, to make a simple baby sweater. Right? Suuuuure.....
Well let me just tell you right now, that's not how it happened. And the thing is, I still can't really explain why. I was so sure this would be a quick and easy project. So Sure. I read up about it on Ravelry, and almost universally the word on the street was that this baby could be worked up in a matter of days. Certainly 3 weeks should be plenty of time.
And how long did it actually take me? Well, I lost count, but I'd say it was a little over a month. Now there were some factors contributing to this.
1. Out of town husband for 2 weeks which means no one to relieve me and give me some knitting time.
2. Never really have knitted a baby sweater before. But how hard can it be? It's just a small sweater for God's sake.
3. Had to start over once because it was turning out way bigger than I expected according to what I thought was a "good enough" gauge estimation.
Still this was supposed to be easy, and it was NOT.
The pattern is from the book Last Minute Knitted Gifts, (yet another reason why I thought it wouldn't take too long), but it's also available for free on-line. Maybe someone else will have better luck with it. Though I should say that it did turn out just as cute as it was supposed to turn out, it was just way more trouble than I wanted it to be.
I used Lion Brand Cotton Ease, which is a good substitute yarn, but it's a bit thicker than the recommended yarn. It's also a little harder to work with than wool would have been. The sleeves, which were done in the round, then attached to the body ended up being a bit of a stretch, also there were huge gaps to be sewn up under the arms aside from the kitchener attachment method in the pattern (which by the way, I totally ignored and did a three needle bind off instead). In retrospect, if I ever attempt this pattern again, I think I'll just go ahead and do the sleeves back and forth and seam them up the inside of the arm. Which will be just as much trouble as all the kitchener and sewing up gaps nonsense ended up being when I followed the pattern as written.
I also omitted putting buttons or beads on because I didn't feel like doing button holes by the time I got to that section and I didn't have any beads that would fit through the seed stitch without being too small or too big.
All I can say is... thank God, it's over.
Just in time for the warm weather.
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Two years ago today I had a teensy baby boy and my knit/crochet life changed forever!
I can't believe it has been two years!
I can't believe it has been two years and I've made so few things for my own kid! Bad needlecrafter Mommy! Well all I can say is that during this two years almost every person I have ever met had a baby and I felt compelled to knit or crochet something for almost all of them.
(We wont mention the things I started and still haven't finished.)
Today is about Ian.
Happy Birthday, sweet boy.
Mommy promises to knit you some more stuff.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
I guess the point I'm making is that it's all pretty relative. And the other point I'm making is that I did not have one decent hat to see me through. I've said before that I don't have such good luck with the hats. I just have a hard time making one that fits my tiny pinhead and looks good and doesn't itch my forehead like the dickens. And after a few misguided and ridiculous attempts in my early knitting career, I finally pretty much gave up on hats altogether. I did manage to make one, just one, that I actually like and wear somewhat regularly, but it's cotton and it's only good for regular Houston winters. I've blogged about it here. But mostly, I just go without because hell, we live in Houston. I mean no one ever really needs a hat in Houston, right? Wrong.
I needed a hat.
The boy needed a hat.
A warm hat.
Voila! A warm hat!
The pattern is Simple Pleasures by Purlsoho and it is aptly named. It was an extremely simple and pleasurable knit, well, except for the 6 inches of ribbing. I'm not particularly fond of ribbing, but let me tell you, it is worth it because once you fold that double strand of ribbed knitted wool and it covers your ears, it is wonderfully, blissfully warm! I used Koigu instead of whatever the pattern calls for because that's what I had already in my stash. For the fuzzy part I used Anny Blatt's Fine Kid instead of Kidsilk Haze because, once again, that is what I had in my stash. Both yarns worked beautifully as substitutes. And the Kid mixed with the Koigu makes a beautiful and also very warm material. I would love to have an entire sweater out of that stuff.
The coolest thing about the pattern, in my opinion, is that it can be knit entirely on one size 6, 16" circular needle. Yes, my friends, one needle, no double points! Yes, the last couple of rows are a little tight, but as the pattern says, it can be done and I did it! Technically speaking, I was supposed to change to a bigger needle once I finished the ribbing, but I didn't because I didn't have a bigger 16" circular needle and I was not going to brave the frigid cold to go buy one. Nevertheless, it all worked out wonderfully in the end. I used a size 6 instead of the size 8 and 9 that the pattern calls for because, as I said, that's what I had, but also I have a strangely small head and I hate a too big hat. That sucker needs to be snug to keep out all the cold and wind. And the 2 by 2 rib has plenty of stretch.
The end result is pretty cute, too! If I do say so myself.
The boy also got an emergency hat:
Simple Hat by Debbie Bliss. The pattern can be found in her book, Baby Knits for Beginners. (From which I long ago checked out of the library and photocopied the patterns I liked.) This is the second one of these hats I've made for the boy. The first one fit him from the time he was tiny and actually still fits, but only stretched to it's limits and the yarn I used wasn't that warm. So I made him the next one using some stashed Lion Brand Wool Ease that I happened to have and I upped the needle size from a 4 to a 6 which made it perfect for his toddler head. I also left off the little nubby end this time. He's a toddler now. He should have the dignity of a nubless hat.
Though I don't use Wool Ease anymore because it pills too badly and starts looking like something your grandmother might drag out of the attic to show you how cute and tiny you once were after about 2 washes, I really like the way this hat turned out. The variegated navy/forest mixed with the solid blue looks much better than I thought it would. Though honestly I didn't really care. I just wanted to use up some stashed yarn and have a warm hat for the boy.
He actually likes and wears his hat which is more than I hoped for!