Saturday, November 16, 2013

Another photo dump for swap stuff

This was my first Odd Ducks Swap on Ravelry.  The theme was things starting with "W."

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Hat time!

I finished the hat I was test knitting, and the pattern is now available - Cedar Shakes hat by Kate Boswick.  I finagled Ryan into taking some pictures with his good camera while I was at work on Sunday.

I'm not an expert on slouchy hat style, but it seems like it came out a little over-long, but Silas isn't complaining, and he got many a compliment on its debut at church.

I really can't express the fullness of the joy I find in dressing my son up like a little hipster.

He just needs some headphones and a little Starbucks cup, don't you think?

The pattern is absolutely mindless knitting - I memorized the repeat after executing it once and it was great TV knitting.  My appreciation for fingering weight projects continues to grow - I really like how it turned out in this yarn, and the self-striping worked really well with the stitch pattern.

I need more sock yarn!

Speaking of socks - I can finally show off my swap projects!  My letter was 'F,' and my swap partner loves shawls, so I was originally going to make her a fichu, or at least I was going to make a shawl pattern that started with F (Frederica, in fact), and call it a fichu, because really - close enough.  But then my partner said, "Please don't send me any shawls, I am making enough of my own," or something to that effect, so I had to reevaluate my choices.  I decided on fingerless gloves, and I had elaborate fair-isle plans with finches and the word 'flight' and so on, when someone asked the group, "What would you really like to receive?" and my partner said, "Socks, but you don't have to!"

Sure, I don't HAVE to . . .

Challenge accepted.

I waffled over many a sock pattern, and had many a false start, before I finally found the February Lady socks, which had the advantage of being the only pattern designed for the kind of tiny feet my partner ostensibly has, based on the measurements she provided.  I don't have small feet, not remotely, and it is difficult for me to scale down my expectations of how big a sock is.  My first attempt was much too tiny, so I ripped back, used larger needles, and I'm praying that they fit.  It is very challenging, not being able to try a sock in progress against the foot in question.  I knit three socks, and finally ended with a matching pair (after ripping back the toe on the second one to make it bigger . . .).

I dyed the yarn myself with Kool-Aid and a crockpot, and I took lots of pictures of that progress and detailed notes of the colors I used, and then Ryan threw my notes away.  In his defense, I wrote them in marker on an old church bulletin, so it probably didn't look very important.  The point is, I have no idea if I'm going to post the pictures now because I can't remember what I was going to say about them.

After I had gotten all my swap stuff together and cast a critical eye over it, I knew it needed something more.  I had been pushing "Ice Queen" up and down my queue for a while, uncertain if I could make it suit my needs, but I finally struck on the inspiration and the right color of yarn that I needed.

I had originally wanted to make it flame-orange with the same mix of red, orange, and yellow beads, for a fiery effect, but alas, there was no orange kidsilk haze to be had.  There was fuschia, but it left me cold.  My swap partner's winter jacket is cherry red, and while fuschia and cherry red probably look fine together, it wouldn't work with the beads.  Cherries, cherries, cherries.  Green stem?

Please excuse my terrible photography skills - I was using my phone.  I really liked the idea of the flame-colored mix of beads on the green, like a forest fire, but the end result was a bit more Christmas-y than I might have preferred.  Festive, though!  I'm not a cowl person myself, but I have to admit that this one was so light and easy to wear and pretty that I might make one for myself . . .  I'll have to get more yarn, though.  The pattern is supposed to take exactly one ball of Rowan's Kidsilk Haze, but I went up a needle size (because it was all I could find), and one ball was exactly enough to leave me screaming with frustration when it ended half a row before the bind-off.  I had to buy a whole 'nother ball of yarn just to finish that row, bind off, and and pick up the provisional cast-on and bind it off, too.  Another entire ball, just for two and half rows.  I don't know what I'm going to do with the rest of it, but obviously it won't be enough for another cowl.  It's such a gorgeous shade of green, I'm eager to use it.

Anyway, that about catches me up.  On my needles right now are the Changement shawlette for the mystery KAL the designer is hosting, and a hat for my mom for Chanukah (coming up way too fast this year, btw).  It's entrelac, a new technique for me.  Can't wait.

One last baby shot to carry you out!

I love autumn, don't you?