Thursday, April 26, 2007

What do you think?

How do you like the color combos and the pattern?

I'm thinking if this is going to be such a large blanket, I should add some other colors in. Maybe a muted lavender and a coral? Just to spice it up? Or, a chocolate brown (thanks Cara!) and some greys and a tomato-y red?

I may have to bring these squares over to Purl and play around with their stash.

And, check out my miserable attempt at customizing my title bar. Ha! I just threw a pic of what I'd like there, so it's just awful.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The start of a Granny Square Blanket

I've been intrigued by all the interest in the "Babette Blanket" that was publishsed in the Spring 2006 issue of Interweave Crochet. It definitely looked like fun to plan out and make, but I know I would personally want something simpler looking. Not that granny squares have a simple look to them... I guess symmetrical is a better word to describe what I'd want in a blanket. I'm planning on covering my king-size bed with it. So I stopped by Purl in Soho to take a look at their fingering weight yarns. I was tempted by Koigu, but not the price. And my eye finally landed on a pretty warm yellow from Hand Jive - perfect for Spring, not that the price was much better. I threw in some other colors and played around with how bright I could personally go and came up with the five colors below. I had some GGH Soft Kid yarn in a sage I thought would work well, but as you can see in my test square, the brightness of the other colors makes the sage look a bit dirty. I wanted to possibly try different textures, but I don't think this is the right color. Still thinking on it... may stick with one texture. I do love the granny square pattern I found in a book a friend had - 200 crochet blocks, or something like that. (If you know what I'm talking about it's #35 - Tricolor Square). Fun and easy to make, and I think it's floral without being too girly.

I'm still, slowly, working on the sleeves to my Swing Jacket.

And, I'm trying to get my own Blog Title into this darn template, but can't seem to find clear instructions. If anyone has a quick hint as to how to do this, I'd be forever in your debt.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Granny Squares!

It's the little things in life, isn't it? I started making granny squares this weekend, and found myself devouring remnants of leftover yarn with every little square I made. The always fantastic Purl Bee planted the Granny Square bug in my ear. It's a great way to practice crocheting, and I'm finally starting to feel comfortable with it. Here's a close-up of my favorite - taken from the Spring 2007 issue of Interweave's Crochet.

I feel a blanket coming on...

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Phildar Swing Jacket update

Finally, I'm making some headway with the swing jacket. I finished the front left last night and am moving onto the sleeves today. I'm going to do both at the same time, which I've never tried before. But since the majority talk about how much faster it is or seems, I've got to give it a try. I'll try anything at this point. I'm excited for the jacket, but it's just taking forever. I was hoping to be wearing it by now.

Please let me know what you think! Any constructive criticism, suggestions and comments... hints, tips :)

More pics on my Flickr site!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Voila! Le' Slouch!

Thanks to Wendy at Knit and Tonic, I have finally knit up a cute little cap I can wear... in public. I've tried crocheting one (see below for pathetic excuse for a hat). I've tried a different beret pattern which turned out much too small so it looked like a brain-sucking mollusk, and another felting disaster that came out looking like a plain old mistake. Since I usually wear my unruly hair up, I'm happy the cap can cover my haphazard bun-knots.

And after many attempts of trying to photograph it on my own head, then my dog's head, I decided to let my dress form model it. Much to my chagrin she does a better job than me.

Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted in Aslan. Less than one skein used.

I've also made some progress on my Phildar Swing Jacket. Just about done with that front left side. I'll be moving to the sleeves next. Hopefully I'll have something picture worthy soon!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Queen of Cups Socks

I just love the name of these socks from I finally finished them as I kept getting distracted, and they're kinda cute. I like 'em. I don't wear socks though, but I'm putting these babies on. And I tried taking photos of them on the foot, but they just looked better on their own. You can see the pattern more clearly.

Here's a close-up... you can tell the sock on the left is the second one I did. I made a lot of mistakes in the pattern on the first sock. I think I'm going to learn my lesson, for once, and practice the pattern before jumping right into the project next time.

And last night in crochet class, we started to incorporate beads into our work. Oh the possibilities! So I came home and started a very simple cord/necklace thingy just for the exercise of it. I'm still an awful crocheter. It's terribly embarrassing.

I'm using a 1.8mm crochet hook and size 10 crochet thread with some glass seed beads I found. At least I can put these beads to good use now instead of randomly throwing them onto socks.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Mug Cozy: 1st Project Spectrum project

I've been a long-time admirer of the tea cozy. I don't own a teapot, and I don't especially like tea. But, for someone to think of knitting a teapot a sweater to keep it warm? I love it. Anything that brings life to an otherwise lifeless object, I applaud. And, it's practical too.

So, my ode to tea cozies - my Mug Cozy. A specially crocheted sweater for Mr. Piggy to keep my morning coffee warm, of course.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Project Spectrum 2.0

Thanks to Lollygirl, Project Spectrum is enjoying much success in its second year. For April/May, the colors are green, yellow and pink. As I looked at the list of the three colors, I mentally made a note that I probably have a lot more green and yellow (one of my favorite colors) than pink hanging around in my ever growing yarn stash. But as I sifted through my stash, the only color that peppered my sea of neutrals was pink. As I pondered this, I looked down at my Mr. Piggy coffee mug to find myself holding, well... a pink mug. Well, I figured I'd have to consult him as to what I would do with my little bit of pink yarn.

I placed him in front of the pile and he quickly started with the little ball of pure wool in fuchsia.

"Hmm, since you're the only knitter I know of that just randomly buys one ball here, and one ball there, we'll have to think of something small." After a bit of a pause, and chin-rubbing, "I've got it! Felt some flowers with it!"

He quickly moved onto the rest of the pile.

"Obviously," he said, "you'll have to do a fun pair of socks with those self-stripping Lorna's Laces. Nothing too fancy as it will just get lost with the stripping."

"And, that random skein of Malabrigo, which I would barely consider pink," he added with a little arrogance, "try crocheting another hat."

Lastly, he motioned to my one skein of Lorna's Laces Chunky Swirl and looked at me pointedly even accusingly, "I guess it's never crossed your mind to knit up a Mr. Piggy Cozy, has it? Didn't think so."

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Up's & Down's

Every weekend has its up's and down's. Mine happened to start with a down. I had to toss away the latter half of my yarn from Bolivia. A tangled mess it was. Merrily knitting my second Queen of Cups sock, I realized that I was almost at the end of my working yarn. How could that be - I had half a ball left the last time I looked down. When I reached down to join in the rest of the ball I realized that the remainder was wound as 3-stranded yarn. Huh. Simple, I thought. I'll just separate the three strands. I don't recommend this course of action. After more than 30 minutes of separating about a yard of the 3-stranded ball into 3 separate strands, I gave up. Luckily I was brought back two balls of yarn from Bolivia and dug the other ball out. If anyone has any brilliant solutions to the strand separation (other than gorging themselves with cupcake out of self pity), please let me know.

I couldn't help the indulgence of this finger-licking delight as it soothed away my ruffled feathers with its chocolate-y goodness.

Not letting yet another yarn debacle get me down, I decided to start the baby bolero from One Skein, as a good friend just had a baby girl. I had the yarn in my stash, and I thought it a cute design. This was the first piece I had to "finish". Sew up the shoulder seams, sew sleeves into armholes and sew up the sleeves. Well, I'm glad my first foray into finishing was on this tiny little piece, because... let's just say I knit and not sew for a reason. Turned out ok, but as I appreciated EZ's designs before, now I REALLY appreciate her minimal to no finishing designs. Genius. Why did I ever stray from her Surprise Jacket, or February Sweater? In any case, an up to my weekend:

I threw my sheep measuring tape into the picture to show just how teeny tiny the cute little bolero is! Teeny-tiny!!! And here is a detail of the cute little eyelet on the back. Just too adorable.

The only change I made to the eyelet pattern was I made a center double decrease instead of the K3tog they have listed. I used the sl2, k1, pass the slipped stitches over. That was the only change I felt confident enough to make.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Branching Out

As I played around with my new Flickr account this past week, I took a trip down memory lane. I browsed through some old projects, beaming with pride about how far I had come. How far I had come knitting-wise, that is. I stopped on this beautiful peacock blue number. "WHAT is that?" I asked myself. I had completely forgotten about the Branching Out scarf I had started months ago with some gorgeous Tilli Tomas silk. "WHERE the heck is that?" I was starting to harass myself.

I just completed it, embarrassed to even admit I forgot about such beautiful yarn I remember scouring for on eBay. It's going to be a birthday present for a dear friend of mine. A friend that gave me the lead on my current job. A friend that trained, long LONG hours, with me for the NYC Marathon. A friend who is always up for some greasy Chinese food. I can't wait to give it to her. A friend that would brag that it was handmade.

This was all good timing too as I had to frog my Print O' The Wave Stole. I'm using some fuzzy hairy laceweight yarn, that's also variegated in color. It just didn't look good at all. I'll have to find something proper for the pattern. I just don't know what to do with that yarn.

And I did finish that crochet homework. I crocheted a hat. And I sewed my crocheted flower onto the side of it. The main point of the assignment was NOT TO RIP OUT AND START OVER - which is so easy to do while crocheting. Anyway, it's a little odd looking. First, because I used chunky yarn as I wanted to do it quickly. Secondly, because I used cream and then black colored yarn. Not that cute. Next, it's very square shaped. And then finally, I'm a sh*tty crocheter people. It's ok. I've admitted it to myself. At least I can only go up from here, right?

Of course, an entry wouldn't be complete without Little Miss Monster Peanutbutterpumpkinface