crafts · knitting

Shawls in July

While I am waiting for the Woolie silk I ordered for my capelet to arrive (UPS takes at least a week to send things here… and then they won’t leave packages or ring the bell…) I decided to start another shawl.  I present…

The Perfect Pie shawl by Veronique Avery (oh, how I love her designs!) from Weekend Knitting.  The yarn is Elann Pure Alpaca in Jasper, which is a most beautiful and hard to describe color (kind of a dark spruce with heathered blue bits?), and a very soft and lovely yarn.  I spent most of yesterday afternoon before work swatching, because you know what?  There is a big fat error in this pattern, and no published errata that I can find.  I’m going to post the fix here, because I had a terrible time trying to find info about it.  The pattern specifically tells you not to twist the stitches when doing the M1 increases.  This is incorrect.  You should pick up the stich from front to back and then twist it by knitting it through the back loop.  This results in the pretty lacey triangles in the photo; otherwise you get some sort of round lacey look, which I wasn’t liking.  I wouldn’t be mad about it if the pattern didn’t specifically say not to twist the stitches, which is completely the opposite of what you should do!

It’s a lovely pattern though… I can’t wait to finish it and have a lovely fluffy shawl to wear!  Um… in July.  Yeah.  I’m just not ready for warm sweater knitting yet, and I am awaiting the pattern for Agnes (yes, even though it’s almost the same as those others… I am weird.)  My swatch opened up to the right size with blocking, so I’m confident that my shawl will too!  I would recommend this pattern for people who (like me) don’t care for super duper complicated lace, or for knitting with laceweight.  I had the pattern memorized in 5 minutes.

I will have to find a lightweight yarn that at least kind of matches to do the edging… I anticipate this will not be fun, but I’d better get started!  It took me about 2 hours to do the half pie wedge above, so this isn’t going to take forever.

Meanwhile, the Montego Bay scarf marches on… and on… and on.  I’m at two feet now (1 foot of which was added in the past 2 days) and I’m really getting bored with K2togs.  The problem is that I can’t zone out while doing them, and I don’t like staring at the scarf when it’s really only a 2 row repeat (shifted over a bit on the next row.)   I will persevere though, because I really love the colors and I want to wear it… someday.  When it finally decides to get finished.

crafts · knitting · patterns

Still pondering…

Every once in awhile, even though I have 90 bajillion knits in my queue, I’ll find a new pattern that strikes me so much that I must start it immediately!  This is the case with the Lake of the Woods Capelet, by Ilga Leja.

(on the left) OK, so I can’t start it right away (I have to wait for my yarn and pattern to arrive – I am even using the recommended color!) but isn’t it lovely?   I actually like many of her designs, and I also ordered the pattern for the shawl on the right at the same time.  The patterns are lacy but still contemporary, which I love.  I am not really interested in floral or leafy lace patterns.

I also saw a gorgeous completed Agnes, from Rowan 35 here,  and realized I had enough Cotton Glace (in Ivy)to make one!  I was looking through my Rowan patterns then, and noticed something funny.

 

Agnes is on the left, and on the right is Joy from Vintage Knits.  Different materials, sleeve lengths, and stitch patterns, but essentially the same sweater.  The beaded sweater from “Romantic Knits” is also the same, with the addition of a bow around the waist.  It’s funny because all 3 of these were on my list at one time, and it never occurred to me that they were practically the same!   Having said that… I’m keeping these two on my list.  I love this style, and I think the different materials make a huge difference.  And I’ve never knit with beads (Agnes has French knots instead.) But Agnes will be first, because I’m not ready for tweediness yet this summer.

I picked up Lace style a few weeks ago.  And while I maintain that at least half the patterns in the book are kind of crazy, and the sizing isn’t great, I could not longer resist the allure of the retro shrug, which I will eventually make (perhaps soon!) with some cashmerino.  I also like the Katherine Hepburn  cardigan and the Shetland Shawl turned vest (although I’m not sure I could actually pull off the vest without looking like some kind of demented Heidi)

I read a review online that complained about the styling in Lace Style, and I can’t argue.  I really don’t like that orange shrug with the pink dress, but it is certainly not the worst offender in the book.  There is no comparison with the Rowan (well, at least with Vintage Knits and Romantic Style, both of which make me want to knit every single piece in the book.)

My LYS has their Summer sale this Saturday (on my birthday!  Must be fate!) so I’m trying to plan what I’d like to buy.  The Ilga Leja kit was my gift to myself.

crafts · Crochet · knitting · patterns

Newness

Things are still picking up speed around here!  We finally sold my car, and so this weekend we went and bought my first grown-up car!  It’s an 03 Volvo S60, and I love it so much.

I also got all my invites sent out, so I’ve now worked up a prototype program for the wedding, and now that I’ve finally chosen all the music we can get started on them!

As for knitting, I’m debating what to start next.  Yesterday I cast on for “Cozy” from Knitty using Silky Wool, but I decided I didn’t like the lace pattern so I ripped it.  Here’s the color I have (I have about 1000 yards.)

Silky wool is a strange yarn to me.  I made my “Not-so-shrunken” cardigan from it, and while I do love that sweater I’m not convinced that Silky Wool is great for sweaters in general.  I do like the “Deceptively simple stole” from the Spring 07 Interweave crochet… I’m strongly considering starting it, and getting a few balls of a contrasting gray or black to go with the lavender.  I would leave out the beads (I don’t get beaded knitting, it seems like a lot of trouble!)  Isn’t it pretty?  It will work up fast too, in the open weave crochet pattern.  I don’t want another knitted scarf/shawl to work on, as the Montego Bay scarf is taking sooo long (all those K2Togs… they take forever with sea silk!)

I want a new sweater project too, but I think I’ve entered the part of the season where I start questioning the wisdom of making more short sleeved sweaters.  I’m cold natured, and I don’t wear short sleeves past August ever.  I was going to make the Two-over-two vest from the current Knitscene, but I would need a different yarn than the cascade pima tencel I was planning…

I am so indecisive!

crafts · finished objects · knitting

FO: Camisa

Pattern: Camisa, from KnitScene Fall 2006, designed by Kat Coyle

Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in Candy Apple, less than 3 skeins for the x-small size

Needles: US 6 and a size F Crochet hook

Notes and mods: I followed the pattern for the 32.5″ size nearly exactly, with the only change being fewer repeats on the basketweave section to compensate for my row gauge.   Blocking made all the difference here – preblocking it was all weird and lumpy, with the basketweave pattern actually standing out from my body.  I blocked it a bit longer, and now it fits perfectly!  I love the sleeves, which are kind of like tiny wings on me, and this sweater adds curves where I don’t actually have them… it’s very nice!  I don’t usually knit with red, because it’s hard for me to find the correct shade not to clash with my hair, but this red is very nice, and I actually have another red sweater planned soon.  I had issues with the crochet edging.  I don’t care for crochet edgings as a rule, and it took  me forever to get the slip stitch to behave (to be fair, I needed a smaller hook but couldn’t find one, so I made do.)

This sweater took longer than it should have, but I’m just glad to finish anything with all the craziness going on right now!  I’m not sure what I’ll make next… I may swatch for awhile this afternoon between services.

crafts · knitting · Life · wedding

Busy life!

I hope everyone had a great 4th of July! We had my friends Althea and Jason over for grilled chicken and veggie couscous, and then we went to see “Sicko” at the local indie theater. I don’t trumpet my political opinions on this blog, but I do recommend seeing this film. I thought it was excellent and very moving. It especially touched me, as up until this past year I had been without insurance for 6 years (the joys of self-employment!)

Enough of that though, and onto knitting! Last night I finished the back of Camisa.

I’m following the directions for the smallest size, so here’s hoping it fits! Hopefully the front will go faster, since I’m no longer stuck in wedding invitation hell. Yes, they have all been sent out as of Tuesday! Now, of course, I have to make programs and place cards, but those won’t be nearly as bad as trying to remember to put all those enclosures in the invites!

I do have a few photos of our shower on Sunday. Here’s Marc with his favorite present:

Hanging around with friends (the weather was so nice!)

And our cake!

And the cats were not forgotten! Jason bought them a kitty tent to call their own.

Sorry there isn’t a cat actually in the tent, they can be so difficult when they want to!

cooking · knitting · Life · wedding

Big news!

Things are so hectic here right now.  My aunt Debby and my friend Althea threw me a shower this weekend.  It was so lovely to see everyone together (my Dad even came to meet Marc’s parents for the first time – it was a coed shower.)  We are so, so lucky to have such wonderful friends and family, and I’m really touched by how happy everyone seems to be for us.  Althea bought Marc these:

Yes… LEGO shaped fruit snacks.  I know I’ve mentioned Marc’s LEGO hobby, but I’d like to point out the LEGO contributions to our upcoming wedding.

On the left: our wedding cake topper (although we are having cupcakes… same difference!) On the right is the groom’s cake topper.  The little guy looks so scared!

And the church in legos, a work in progress:

He built the church his sister was married in for her wedding, and it was a big hit.

And my big news is that I’ve been promoted at work and am now the director of the entire music program!  It’s really very exciting, and while it is a lot more work I am looking forward to building my own program.

We’ve also just sold my car (*sniff* farewell green bug!) and are looking for a new car.  Marc has a Volvo now, so we’re hoping to find a nice used Volvo and make it our only car later on, since Marc doesn’t really drive. So… many things going on now, but very little knitting!

I am planning some yarn purchases, as the knit nook is having their summer sale on my birthday in a few weeks.  Marc is going to buy me the yarn for the Vintage Pink Cardigan as my present, since I could not bring myself to buy the Blue Sky Alpaca silk myself.