Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Long lost work in progress

This design is in Rowan's The Kasbah Collection. The colors mixed with a simple crochet detailing caught my attention and made me want to knit it.

Easy enough! It was cast-on...um, so long ago that the date escapes me. The body and sleeves were easily finished and Stitcher Bomb aka Sharon helped put the first rows of purple crochet on the neckline. We ran out of time and I was confident that it could be finished with my mad crochet skills.

So, the top languished until selling some extra yarn on Ravelry and remembering that there was a WIP around here somewhere. Turns out the crochet wizards blessed me one day this weekend and the neckline was finished.

Some boring details:

The neckline as written was too floppy and I tightened it up by skipping every 3rd space on the raffia color row. On the final row, I eliminated one of the chains (same for the sleeve edging). The length of this was extremely short and I added by taking off the final border, picking up stitches, and knitting until it looked good.

Turns out this is one of my favorite tops now and it has escaped the WIP status!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Finished shawl - the photos

The proper way to photograph shawls in a way that captures their true beauty always escapes me!

See it on Ravelry

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I just couldn't wait

The Alka shawl is blocking, but I had to share. This pattern is from Myrna Stahman's book.

Confession, the book was daunting at first. It became less intimidating once it was quiet around the house and I could actually make notes. There are suggestions in the book about this particular shawl design and changes to be made allowing for bulkier yarn.
The yarn is one of the Sonoma colorways from the Hope Blanket.
This shawl is a sample for Briar Rose. If you catch them at a show this season, check it out. The colors are always so much more beautiful in person. I will put up more photos after it dries.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Spinning and the art of macaroni

I've been experimenting with my spinning. The red and tan roving is a mill end and is my first attempt at spinning thick and thin.

Something told me to spin and ply a little to see how it goes and when the fiber was wet it smelled very, very bad. When dry, it smelled fine. Coby had a tip that worked like a dream.

Run VERY !HOT! water and put some Dawn dish soap in then soak the fiber for 5 min. It is important not to move the fiber much to avoid felting. After the soak, run VERY !HOT! clear water and soak for another 5 min. Finally, spin the water out in your washing machine. There was just a tiny bit of fiber here and it squished out between towels.

The fiber smelled fine afterward.

In the meantime, the desire to spin finer weight yarn had arrived. This is angora, merino, and silk from Susan's Spinning Bunny. Originally 2 ounces, nearly half is spun up. We'll see how it goes once the ply has been finished.

A couple of projects made with Briar Rose are around here, too. A Myrna Stahman shawl is on the needles made with Sonoma. Guess is that it is about 75% complete. With increases every odd row, it is difficult to estimate. The rows are nearing 300 stitches and it is apparent that the progress will slow by the sheer volume of stitches.

Finally, this hat and mitten pattern will be carried by Briar Rose. Christy Roosien wrote the hat and a matching scarf pattern that is incredibly adorable. It is knit with 2 strands of Fourth of July on large needles. Guess what everyone is getting for Christmas this year?

One more thing to share. Mother's Day was low-key and that is fine with me. Sunday night, Bugg's boyfriend dropped by with a present.

My very own macaroni necklace! Let me tell, you, the designs have gotten cooler than when they were in Kindergarten - waves!

The kids laugh now, but still think it was pretty cool that I actually wore the jewelry made from food to work (at a bank) when they were little. Just to stick with tradition, I wore this necklace to Bugg's tennis match Monday. The boyfriend smirked a little, but he must have been so proud.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Coming to a show near you

Remember that blanket?

Wanted to let you know that it will be with Chris during the following shows:

Great Lakes Fiber Festival
May 24 & 25th 2008 Wooster, Ohio


NEW!! - Knitters Connection
"Knitters Market"
June 12, 13 and 14, 2008 Columbus, Ohio

Be sure to stop by and see Chris at the Briar Rose booth if you attend either festival.

Donations will be accepted at both shows (and online) until June 21st when we will draw a name and mail the blanket to one lucky donor.

Good luck!

Monday, May 05, 2008

What I finished this weekend - 5/04/2008

Interweave Knits published the Montego Bay by Amy Singer in the Summer 2007 issue. From the moment I layed eyes on it, I knew it would eventually fly off of my needles. Fast forward one year and here it is - finished!

It knit up quickly and the Handmaiden Sea Silk was a dream. This is the first time I've knit with it and (other than the silk smell) it was a lovely yarn. The colorway is Vintage and was acquired from Ebay last year.

Details on Ravelry.

Completion of this means there are 3 wip's floating around here. All concentration is on the Grasshopper socks that my kids are already fighting over.

The pattern is Stansfield #11 from More Sensational Socks and has been accommodating in the 'no pool' department. Of course, the heel area shows what could have happened with a different stitch pattern and it is unpleasing to my eye.
This is being knit from my lovely birthday yarn from Lisa.
The other two wips?
One is a Feather and Fan Shawl that reminds me of Charleston, SC every time I look at it. I haven't knit a stitch in quite awhile and it is, technically, a zzzzz. The pattern is fine, results desirable...knitting just needs to happen~maybe after graduation.
Second is Sunshine knit in Summer Tweed. All finished except for the last area of crochet around the neck. I stink at crochet and my friend Sharon usually helps, but we haven't been able to see each other in awhile. Perhaps I will take a stab at it pretty soon.
Graduation planning is taking a lot out of me and it will be emotional to see her walk across that stage. Tears were forming Sunday at church as we celebrated the seniors who will soon graduate.
....where are those Kleenex?
One more note: The IW Summer 2007 was a great issue. I've completed 3 of the designs and have plans for 2 more.