Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Saying Hello

Something I really like: when people say "hello". Or "good morning." Or acknowledge you in some kind way. Jamie and I were out for a walk this morning to the post office and drugstore. It was a lovely morning, cool and bright, and others were out walking, too. I love that in our town, you can make eye contact with someone, say "hello" and get a smile or a "hello" in return. In my case, two folks said "good morning" to me first, and I answered. I'll admit, that's actually usually what happens. Mine is not an outgoing personality. Friendly, yes, extroverted, no. I leave that to Andrew. But still, it's a really great feeling to have that momentary connection. I understand that this is not the case everywhere, which makes me even more grateful.

Monday, March 29, 2010

At loose ends

Nana's anklets
The anklets are done! Finally!

I gave them to my grandmother yesterday, and she liked them very much, although she felt she had to give me a hard time about not getting them at Christmastime.

They were finished Wednesday, five days ago, and I haven't been knitting since then. Not because I didn't want to, but because I wasn't sure what to do. I mean, I really want to get started on my Cardigan for Arwen, but I'm not certain how I feel about the construction that the pattern calls for. Basically, you knit a square for the back. Then each of the fronts are knit from the bottom up, with the sleeve stitches cast on as part of and extending from the front, then bound off after the entire sleeve is knit horizontally, then half the hood is knit. All in one continuous piece for each front. The way I made Rose's version was much simpler (to me): bottom up seamless yoke construction with the hood growing organically out of the neck. The only problem with doing it that way is that the cabled cuffs can't be knit in line with the sleeve. I left the cuffs out of Rose's sweater -- they would have gone up to her elbow in the gauge her sweater was in. I guess I will knit the cuff, then pick up stitches for the sleeve from the side of the cable. I was also toying with the idea of a drop-shoulder construction.

So while I was playing around with ideas for an alternate construction for my sweater, I started playing around with the blog design. I don't think I like it as much as my old design, but I'm going to keep trying some other things. Then I thought I might like a quick little project to tide me over in the meantime. I have a handful of hats in my queue, and thought one of those might be nice. But I didn't have anything in my stash that would work with any of them, so I tabled that idea and wound this up.
Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn
Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Merino in colorway "Water." I think just a pair of plain socks to show off all the colors. For me. Then maybe I'll be ready for the sweater.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Baby cardi

Audrey Hoodie from Vintage Baby Knits
It's the Audrey Hoodie from Vintage Baby Knits. What a fun little project. Machine washable and dryable, too, for the new mom's convenience. I found the button in my button box. This is the exact shade of red/dark pink I had envisioned, and I can't tell you how excited I was to find it, and that it actually fits through the stitches. Most of the sweater is knit, but the scalloped border is crochet. I just put the button between the double crochet - chain 1 - double crochet that makes up the center of the scallop instead of creating a buttonhole. I love having a button box.

I got about an inch of my Nana's second sock done this morning. I am going to knit nothing else until this pair of socks is done! Hmph!

Tonight my church music department is celebrating the eve of St. Patrick's day with a prelude of traditional Irish music and a Mass. We've practiced well and I'm getting excited about it. I was hoping to record some of it, but now I'm thinking that's something I should have delegated. We'll see how busy I get, getting ready. If I remember to push "record," then it'll happen.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Monogamy and guilt

It was really amazing to me to discover that if I only work on one project, I can actually finish it in a timely manner. I mean, granted, Rose's hoodie was a 28" finished chest in bulky yarn on large needles, but I would never have expected to be done with it in 10 days. My usual habit is to have 3 or 4 projects going at the same time, so if I get bored with one I have some alternatives. But it was so rewarding to be monogamous to one sweater that I think I may have to do it more often.
Audrey hooded cardi in progress
Since I finished Rose's cardi I've resumed work on this, the Audrey Hoodie from Vintage Baby Knits. It's for my cousin's baby, and the shower is next Saturday. I'm going to only knit this until its done, and I'm sure it'll be ready by then.

Then. I've been feeling very guilty about how long it's taken me to get through these.
I really don't know what my problem is with these. I just haven't wanted to knit them. But they're for my Grandmother. I wanted her to have them for Christmas, then when they weren't done I wanted her to have them by the end of winter. Now they're still not done, and she might have them for Mother's Day. I hope. I feel so bad about this. Must be monogamous to the socks after the baby hoodie is done.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Knitting Olympics: Results

A Cardigan for Rose
Arwen-inspired kid's cardi 1
Arwen-inspired kid's cardi 5
Arwen-inspired kid's cardi 2
Arwen-inspired kid's cardi 4
I started this during the opening ceremonies on February 12, then ended up unraveling a week's worth of work and starting over again on February 20. I'm really glad I just bit the bullet and re-started it in the smaller size on larger needles, not only because I then had just enough yarn to finish it, but also because the resulting fabric was much more wearable, with a much better feel and drape.

I finished the knitting and grafted the hood and underarms and wove in all the ends on March 3. I had to go out and buy a single wooden toggle and knit an i-cord loop to fasten the cardigan at the neck and I finally did that on Saturday the 6th.

So yeah, if I had started out at the beginning of the Olympics with the needles and size I ended up with, I would have certainly had this thing done by the closing and had my medal. Lesson learned: swatching is good.

Now I really can't wait to start one for myself!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Knitting Olympic Update: Closing Ceremony

Rose's cardi at the Closing Ceremony
This is how far I was last night when I decided to take a break for the sake of my right hand. The entire body and eight rows of the hood. I'm pretty proud that I made it that far by last night, I have to say, considering I had to completely start over a week ago.

I'm so geeked by how this project is turning out. I've had to do some major mathematical thinking on this one, and it's been quite a challenge, but it all seems to be working out. And it's really getting me excited to start an Arwen for myself.

So, no Knitting Olympic medal, but I'm still happy with my hard work. Next post: finished sweater!