Saturday, December 06, 2008

Iceland from Rowan

I like this sweater. It was fairly easy to knit up. And the pattern made it fun to knit.

The silhouette is definitely not the most flattering. I can't decide if I should wear it lower down around my hip/butt area, or pull it up to sort of cinch in a little.

I added the turtleneck onto the sweater so I didn't have to worry too much about what to wear underneath it. It adds a little much needed structure to the top too. Otherwise, I'd be channeling Flashdance with that wide neck. Not sexy - at least not in 2008.

If I had to do it again? I'd probably just knit the bottom waistband in the round and forgo the buttons. They don't necessarily bother me, but I don't think they add much to the whole thing. The leaf pattern gives it enough pizzazz.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Liberty Charm for DQS5

I joined my first swap - Doll Quilt Swap 5 - and was so excited to make something special.

Just as I started to get going with ideas, I also got my very first handknitting freelance job. As all you crafters out there know, you can't do much else while crafting. I can't even get the audiobook thing down.

When my fingers needed the rest, I worked on my doll quilt bit by bit. And last night, the night before the due date, I finally finished this little quilt.

I love the result, and I hope my swap partner does too.

I used some Liberty fabrics and used a solid red to bind and back. I like the simple but colorful result.

As much as I love this little guy, I felt opening a package of just this doll quilt might be disappointing, so I'm including a bundle of scrap fabric from the French General, one of my favorite stores in LA. I hope my swap partner likes the little fabrics. I can't wait to see what she does with them!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cabled Cowl

I love everything about this project.

The pattern.

The designer.

The yarn.

The color.

So why do I keep getting distracted?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

WHAT in the...

Wow. Do I have a lot of practice ahead of me, or what?

What the heck kind of knitting is this?! It looks like I used my fingers and teeth.

Good googamooga... this fancy fair isle knitting is real tricky.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Fairest Isle Of Them All

I've never attempted this technique of colorwork - fair isle. Was I intimidated? Maybe a little. I love the fun and quirky yet classic and countryside effect of this technique. But, every time I found a pattern I liked it was overwhelming. I would need a magnifying glass, and one of those chart readers just to be able to get through the chart. And usually many many more than just two colors would be used throughout the entire project. I always said, "Someday."

Well, someday arrived. When my crafty friend suggested we take a class at The Point in NYC, I couldn't resist. Our goal was to knit this hat in order to get used to working with a chart and handling two strands of yarn at once.

Much to my surprise, I felt like I got the drift of this technique fairly easily. I think there were three things working to my advantage.

1) I used to knit english style, but switched over to continental. So when holding one strand in each hand was not a problem. I knew which direction to wrap the yarn and could switch between left and right, and the two colors quite comfortably.

2) Loving cables has taught me to read charts efficiently as well. You start to pick up little patterns within the chart and use those to your advantage.

3) After putting in miles and miles of knitting, you start to knit without looking. Since this hat was knit in the round, I only had to deal with knitting and no purling. I could keep my eyes on the chart and keep knitting without having to pause and make note of where I was every time my eye had to move between the chart and the knitting.

Definitely not my style, but I do feel like I got the hang of working with two different yarns in the round by the time this hat was done. We started this hat in class, and I was able to finish it when I got home. A great idea for a holiday present, I might add!

The provisional cast-on was a really nice touch on a hat like this, too.

My only advice: knit LOOSELY. I tend to knit rather tightly, which did not jive with this technique. You'll notice towards the bottom of my hat that the white stitches looked sucked into the brown stitches. That's too tight. Way too tight. I really loosened up towards the top and you can see the stitches look more even.

I'm ready to tackle my second fair isle project now! Maybe another baby gift? A hat, perhaps? Oh, the possibilities! That is definitely my favorite aspect of learning a new technique. I feel like another door has opened with the possibility of a gazillion knitting projects behind it! Just waiting for me!

Monday, November 10, 2008

It's the little things

It was hard coming back from vacation. Parrot Cay exceeded our wildest dreams. This private island near Providenciales in Turks & Caicos was heavenly.

You could see all the beautiful shades of blue as we flew closer and closer to the islands. Sandy, who showed us around the resort when we landed simply asked, "Oh... well, what color is the water where you come from?" I was a little embarrassed trying to find some "J. Crew"-type word for sh*t brown.

So, I made the conscious decision not to bring any knitting to Parrot Cay. I didn't want any pressure to do anything.

After not knitting for almost a week, I came home and decided to start with little projects. The first thing I had to start on was a doll quilt for DQS 5. I have to send it out by December 1st. So, not to spoil the surprise, here's a sneak peek at the little charmer.

Is that Liberty fabric you spy? I say nothing.

Then, last Saturday was my little puglet's 7th birthday. I can't believe how fast time has flown by. I can still remember her first day at home with us. Her big head with her even bigger eyes on her tiny little body. She was 3.3 pounds. Now, she's 20+. My little cutie.

For the upcoming winter, we bought her a cute little Wagwear quilted coat. It's getting fleece put into the lining, so we don't have it yet. Pictures will definitely come. It's adorable. But, I had to give her something she'd actually appreciate. Being the little nudist that she is, the quilted coat is more of a torture device than anything else.

So, I baked her some oat-rolled peanut butter treats. She definitely enjoyed them. She swallowed them whole, so actually, I can only guess that she enjoyed them.

Finally, I have a baby shower next Friday. Yes, another baby shower. Thankfully, it's for a great friend, so I wanted to make something special. A keepsake. So I thought I'd try the Blue Sky Alpacas's Baby Bobbi Bear.

I decided to use Cascade 220 Superwash because I wanted to use white yarn. The thought that this little baby may not even know polar bears to exist on this earth disturbs me. So, I made him a polar bear. At least he'll have that.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Autumn Beret

Thanks to Ravelry there is a cornucopia of free patterns all on a single site. It's like hitting the jackpot everytime I browse through them.

I came across this pattern for a Spring Beret. Knit in cottor, it does make a wonderful springtime accessory.

But, I needed to make something for my dearest friend's birthday and it's on November 4th. Not springtime.

Here it is in Malabrigo's worsted wool. It took less than one skein, and I even threw in an extra repeat of the 8-row pattern to make it floppier.

I still think it cold be floppier and roomier. (I admit. I do have a rather bulbous head.)

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Kicked me in the ass (and still kicking)


I do like this pattern - Bacchus Socks from IK Fall 2008. And, I do like the way this ONE sock has turned out.

But lemme tell ya... if this sock up and threw itself out the window of my apartment, I wouldn't run downstairs to see if it made it. I'd draw the curtains, and turn off my lights like I did when that vase accidentally fell off of my window ledge and shattered all over the sidewalk. But, that's a whole other story. (No one was hurt.)

With this particular design, I discovered quite a few things. First, the Turkish cast-on. Achieved, but not without a lot of cursing. The Interweave Knits instructions were lacking, shall we say. So I turned to EZ and Meg. They tipped me off to the two circular needle way of doing it.

Did I have two circular needles in a size 1? Of course not. So the cursing continued.

My second discovery: no matter how much you pay for dpn's, they can break. Please see previous post.

Thirdly, the smaller the stitches, the harder to pick up dropped one's. Just sayin'.

Finally, the invisible cast-off. The annoyance built up inside of me since the instructions were for either 1x1 rib, or 2x2 rib. This pattern has a 2x1 rib. I know I know... easy enough to translate. But I just wanted to read instructions and follow them. Is that so wrong?

Again, EZ to the rescue! I did her sewn bind-off... purl through two, knit through first, pull off that stitch. Easy enough. The result... eh. It definitely isn't an invisible cast-off. But that's what happens when you take shortcuts.

I am not amused.

The punchline. Wait for it... wait for it...

The sock doesn't fit me.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


I was more than happy to splurge on a set of Lantern Moon Sox Stix. I already had one set, and really enjoyed using them.

So, on my very first go with my brand new Size 0 set I broke a needle. (Rosewood, btw.)

Like... seriously... WTF?! W. T. F.

I'm pissed. And oh so annoyed.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Men's Alpaca Scarf

Inspired from Last-Minute Knitted Gifts' Men's Cashmere Scarf. I didn't have cashmere on hand, but I had some nice rich gray alpaca.

I know I know, gray is so boring. But, I'd rather my recipient wear this scarf than admire the color as the scarf hangs on the back of a door.

Very easy, very quick and it only took two skeins of Misti's Baby Alpaca Chunky.

The edges do curl (argh), but some wet blocking took care of that.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Rainbow Sprinkles

I've been digging through books and sifting through trying to find quick yet impressive holiday gifts to make.

I stumbled across Elizabeth Zimmermann's Spiral Hat, also better known as the Snail Hat or Dairy Queen Hat. Personally being a huge fan of Dairy Queen, I looked at the "vanilla" colored hat in The Opinionated Knitter and remembered how I had always been such a sucker for anything with rainbow sprinkles on it.

I pulled out some Sheep Shop Yarn that was rainbowy, and got started.

A quick knit, but I'm not sure who this could go to. I think it's such a cool design, but wearable?

Be honest - do you think it's too goofy?

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

One for you; one for me

After making Shady a seed stitch scarf, I had to make one for myself. I loved the feel of the baby alpaca, and the look of the seed stitch.

I added fringe along one side of the scarf making it more blanket-y. I planned on doing both sides, but it looked a little crazy.

Used Misti Alpaca Chunky vs. Cascade's Baby Alpaca Chunky this time. Can't say that I notice a difference. Both super super soft and lovely to work with.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Thanks to 1/4 of an inch I found this kneat-o site!

MixwitMixwit make a mixtapeMixwit mixtapes

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Let the giftmaking continue

It's that time of the year again. Let the holiday giftmaking commence. Now that I've gotten most of the baby gifts out of the way, I can turn all my attention to the holiday gifts.

I was flipping through some books at Barnes & Noble and came home with Knitting New Mittens & Gloves. I fell in love with the Jack in the Box Mittens pattern. Being an ex-smoker, I never ever was able to wear mittens. Now that I've quit, wearing mittens among other things, is something I couldn't wait to do.

But living in the city makes it very hard to not have your fingers at the ready. Whipping out your Metrocard, turning down the volume on your iPod to hear what the subway conductor is announcing, shoving your change into your wallet as quickly as possible before the fifty thousand grumpy people behind you at the coffee shop stampede you to place their order. And most importantly, being able to quickly whip out your knitting to get some rows done on the train.

So these mittens have some cabling which I love, and it has the most necessary flip top. I have found the most perfect gift for all my city-dwelling friends.

I used Malabrigo's worsted weight wool in "Paris Night" - isn't that the most perfect name for this color? Knitty City was well-stocked enough to have a ton of Malabrigo. One skein for one pair - perfect gift!

Monday, September 22, 2008

As Prepared As I'll Ever Be

Maybe I didn't think far enough ahead when I picked out this yarn for this sweater design. I think, that quite possibly, this sweater may be too warm to ever wear. As soon as I put my head through the split turtleneck, I could feel the cashmere start to envelop me, and I started to break out into a sweat. Now, don't get me wrong - I don't regret a single minute I spent hanging out with and knitting up this scrumptuous cashmere. I loved it. My fingers will never be the same. But, it is quite possible that this sweater stays on the dressform. No joke. It's beyond thermal.

But, I fell in love with this yarn while working at Knitty City. It took 14 balls of Jade Sapphire's 8-ply Cashmere to complete this sweater in size small. (Thank Gawd for the employee discount.) The color is Latte, and aside from my addiction to coffee, I simply love the warm peaches and beiges that come with this winter white yarn. I very highly recommend this yarn, not that I need to tell you, but seriously... think twice about making an entire sweater out of it.

It is a beautiful design from Vogue Knitting's Fall 2006 issue. This design belongs to one of the best spreads Vogue Knitting has ever compiled. I want to make every single sweater from this very sophisticated gray collection of designs. I've started with this design, and tried a different neutral.

I have to admit, the sweater is not the most flattering. It's a chunky cable design, and the pieces of the sweater were not shaped, so the shoulders/upper arm area ends up being very boxy. But let me assure you; once that thermostat hits 10 below, I'll be wearing it.

But, I won't look like the gorgeous model in the magazine, that's for sure. I'll be all sweaty.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Friendly Placemats

I had promised my mother-in-law new placemats for her Fire Island home. I promised her these placemats last summer. I'm a little embarrassed it has taken me this long.

I followed Amy Butler's In Stitches book and boy are they easy! It was perfect. I bought the fabric yesterday and finished 8 placemats today.

I skipped the part of inserting Timtex between the layers. I knew my mother-in-law would want to be able to fold them up and stuff them into drawers.

It worked out perfectly since I bought some heavy duty home decor weight fabric. (Heather Ross's line for Kokka Fabrics from The City Quilter to be exact.) I don't know if she'll find them too cute, but I adore this fabric. Foxes, bunnies and frogs dancing around. What could be sweeter than that?

I just love them, and I bought some extra fabric to play around with. I'm thinking... maybe... a cute tote for Farmers' Market groceries.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Shady's Seedy Scarf

My dearest friend, Shady (aka Shadyshadykins or Sir Shady or The Shade) just celebrated the big 3-3. We both take pride, not only in being practical Virgos, but in covering ourselves with neutrals thinking anything between dove grey and camel is too gauche. We take that same approach with our clothing.

So when I want to make him something, it's pretty easy to decide on colors. And while it may be miles of Boring to knit, I know he'll love the simple textured look of the seed stitch.

Monday, August 25, 2008


OK, I think this is the last baby gift for awhile.

For The Migglesworth's dear friend's new baby boy.

Second project from Amy Butler's Little Stitches for Little Ones.
Fabric by Joel Dewberry from

Very easy! Very fun!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

And they just keep coming...

It was like a beacon of light.

As soon as I approached the Crafts/Hobbies section of Barnes & Noble, it caught my eye. Amy Butler's Little Stitches for Little Ones. I had no idea it was coming out, so it was such a pleasant surprise.

To all publishers out there: all books should be in this form. Spiral-bound, hard cover, pocket for patterns. The spiral-bound is so key, no? I like my book to lay flat and open to the page while my hands are busy making whatever it is I'm looking at. It's such a no-brainer to me.

I digress.

In one week I had learned that three friends all had baby boys. In addition to that, two friends are pregnant with two boys. I've knit the sweater... I've made the baby quilt... I've crocheted the baby blanket... I needed something different. So this book was more than just a pleasant surprise, it was exactly what I needed.

Here's my first completed project from the book:

Kimono-Style PJs
Size 3-6 month
Fabric by Denyse Schmidt from


Friday, August 15, 2008

Sweet Dreams Sailboat Quilt

For a dear friend's newborn baby boy, Zachary.

She's also making the big move out of the metropolitan area, up the Hudson. I think it'll be a perfect fit for their new home.

From Last-Minute Patchwork + Quilted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson.

I think this may be my favorite baby gift so far.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Ask, and you shall receive.

Mom wants pillowcases? Mom gets pillowcases.

She loved this Moda fabric, especially that confederate blue.

Four 14" x 14" pillowcases.

Monday, August 04, 2008

A Nervous Twitch

One of my favorite gals in the knitting world is Phyllis. She works for Coats & Clark and helps out Pearl at Knitty City with the website, marketing and events (etc etc etc). One relatively quiet Sunday afternoon, a few of us were sitting at the back table at Knitty City gabbing away about yarn, hideous knitting patterns, our favorite customers and other yarn industry gossip while furiously knitting on whatever projects we were working on.

We didn't notice, but a few young ladies had started to gather round the table. Murmuring caught my attention and when I looked up, one said, "Whoa... I can't believe how fast y'all knit!" Without hesitation, Phyllis simply said, "Dear, I've been knitting for so long it's like a nervous twitch."

She was so right.

A good friend, who's pregnant, cleaned out her apartment and decided to unload some unwanted yarn on me. Little did she know it would come back to her in the form of a crocheted baby blanket. Not terribly exciting, but it's a gigantic granny square with some scalloped edges. I couldn't help but remember Phyllis's words while I crocheted this blanket. It was pretty much just double crochet's over and over and over... I think I blinked maybe twice crocheting the whole thing. And I definitely felt like I had some sort of tick.

I hope she likes it. She liked the yarn enough to buy 7 skeins of it, right?

I also started knitting a sweater I've been wanting to knit for the longest time. The Cabled Tunic from Vogue Knitting's Fall 2006 issue. I've got the back finished, and have started on the front. I decided to indulge and am using Jade Sapphire's 8-ply Cashmere.

I can't wait to finish this up!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

And another...

You'd think I'd have the pattern memorized by now.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Flower Coaster

When I started knitting two years ago, I never thought I would have gotten into patchwork and quilting. And since I started patchwork and quilting, I never would have guessed that I would enjoy hand-work more than machine-work. We're always surprising ourselves, and I guess that's why we try new things. At least that's why I do.

I had fallen in love with the "grandmother's flower garden" motif long before I had any good idea of what patchwork or piecing was all about. When I looked into making a quilt with that motif last year, I balked at the idea of doing it by hand, let alone with all those little papers. Papers? What the heck kind of crazy prairie boredom was this?

So now that I've discovered hand-work to be more gratifying, I had to give this stash-busting technique a try. I bought some pre-cut papers from Paper Pieces and the cutest little japanese book with adorable illustrations and pictures to get started.

Yes, it's time-consuming for the novice. And yes, it took an afternoon for me to finish one teensy coaster. But, sometimes... it's about the journey and not the result.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

One UFO Down!

I can't remember when I started this quilt. It must have been last winter '07. It has been adorning the back of my chair since I started it all those months ago. It's been a great cushion, patiently waiting for my attention to return.

You may remember the pity party I threw for myself when I had to baste this super sized quilt. I have vowed never to make a quilt this size ever again... unless I use some quilting service. I'm happy with the result on the top. The back? Not so much. There are quite a few tucks and folds since I wasn't able to get it completely flat to baste.

(more pictures to come on Flickr. i just have to find a way to photograph the whole thing.)

It covers my king-sized bed from side to side and almost from top to bottom. It fits perfectly below the pillows. Of course, once I finished it I decided to give it away. I find more comfort knowing things I've made are sprinkled about, instead of piling up in my apartment.

My mom is visiting and wanted it. I was surprised as she usually likes brighter bolder colors. Since she recently beat ovarian cancer, I figured it was only appropriate. Something to mark the start of a new chapter in her life.

I'm so relieved this quilt is finit-o! Now I have to find a proper cushion for my chair.

Update: More pics of entire quilt.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Getting Back in the Game

I just haven't been feeling very crafty lately. But, I think my latest project put a little crafty back in me.

I had to make a little something for The Migglesworth's friend's new baby boy. I had done two quilts in a row, so I figured it would have to be a little knitwear this time.

What better than a Baby Surprise Sweater. I haven't knit a good old-fashioned Zimmermann project in awhile. Getting back to the basics was just what I needed.

I feel invigorated again and infused with ideas. And best of all, I'm looking at (with great disgust) all of my UFO's and wanting to finish them up and move on with a clean slate!

So, here's the Baby Surprise Sweater for a little Champion. Jack Champion to be specific. Isn't that the best name ever?

Notice the quilt it's on? Oh yes, I'm still not done with that quilt I started MONTHS ago. That's my first UFO to slay.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

New kicks: Don't hate

I wasn't going to let something like jury duty get me down.

On this glorious day, during our lunch break, I strolled into Soho and stopped into Opening Ceremony - a boutique that is generally too cool for school. I started to get bored flipping through racks of clothing made for people who have nothing better to do than, well... shop in Soho during the weekday.

But wait! What was this? In the sea of black micropolyblendedviscosecyanide pleated high-waisted short shorts, I spied some floral print as I rounded the first display. Liberty of London? As I got closer I realized they were Nike's!

Of course, I had to buy them.

I haven't worn high-top sneakers since the 8th grade when those velcro Reebok's were the sh**. I'm sure I'll look dumb as heck walking around in these, but I don't care! I love them! So what do the kids do these days? Tie or untie? I should go all the way and dig out my E.G. socks and peg the legs of my jeans.

I can't wait to brighten up that dreary jury duty waiting room tomorrow with these guys.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

New toys

It's been more than a year since I got the Canon Rebel Xti. It was a vast improvement over the point & shoot that I had. Well, I finally invested in some proper lenses. I wanted a lens I could walk around with and take candid pictures of people and things on the city streets. After doing what felt like 100 hours of research, I decided on the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L. It is a great lens, and now I just have to learn how to use it. And, don't let anyone tell you different - it is HEAVY. I mean HEAVY, no joke. And for a walking around lens, it'll be quite the workout. But, I'm prepared! I can't wait to get some nice springtime shots!

The other lens I bought is the Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 macro. I'm excited to take some close-ups and also have an alternative if I don't feel like lugging the heavy one around. I was told this is a decent lens as an all-around basic use kind of lens, but since there's no zoom, there would be some limitations. Here's some pics from this new lens:

I like how this picture turned out, but I really have to work on my hand shake. So, I should definitely look into mono/tripods. The lens was about 2.5 inches away from the earring.

Then I played around with using this as a basic lens. I think it looks great! And, I was able to catch Brigitte showing off her pink belly in the awful lighting of my apartment. Fun!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Oh yes, another baby quilt

Sometimes I feel like my friends are single-handedly keeping this planet populated. Migglesworth's old old friend had a baby boy, born May 5th, and he'll be receiving this one. I had been working on the other baby quilt, so I had to whip this one up snappy-quick.

I had been tempted for a long while to try the reversible quilt technique. And tempted only because I wouldn't have to wrestle a monster through my sewing machine to quilt it. I loved the idea that I could work on each individual square, and then put it together. It is the answer to anyone's problems if they're dealing with very little workspace.

After flipping through Sharon Pederson's book and looking at my fabric stash, I decided I liked the idea of a quilt not having a back, but I wasn't really a fan of making "two quilts in one". I think quilts, if used properly, are in fact actually being used. So, more likely than not you would see this underside, and that would be an eyesore.

I had so much fun making this quilt. I cut out all the batting squares. Cut out all of my half-triangles. Sewed half-triangles onto batting squares, and then... CHAIN-QUILTED. So, not only could I quilt manageable sized squares, but I could run them through assembly line style. Oh, I was quickly becoming a convert.

And then I had to put them all together with these strips. The strips being the connectors of all these quilted blocks. That was easy enough.

It's definitely not one of the neatest looking quilts I've made. I didn't line up some of the strips, and when machine attaching the final part of the strips, you have to be careful as to what it will look like on the other side. Mine not look so good. Well, I guess mine does have a front and back then. Oh well.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Year of the Rat Quilt

I'm not a huge fan of "rat". The chinese zodiac is riddled with serious translations of animals: boar vs. pig, ox vs. cow, hare vs. rabbit. Why the long face, chinese zodiac? Why so serious?

Who am to change tradition, so I'll stick with Year of the Rat. Here's the Year of the Rat quilt for my friend who's due with her second any moment now. (It is the year of the rat, right?)

This is my first quilt where I actually felt like I was being creative as opposed to some geometrical human calculator and a human guide for my sewing machine. I drew out the mice, um rats, and created the little appliques. I used fusible web, and then satin stitched around the edges. This was my first go at applique, so I wanted to go the easy route. The satin stitching took some getting used to, and boy does it take a lot of thread, but I liked the result.

I embroidered the tails and eyes, and thought better of including whiskers, and feet as I felt I wanted more of the idea of rat, than rats all over the quilt.

And then, the quilting. I started machine quilting on the rat blocks. (Oh God, I can't say it anymore. I'm switching over to mouse/mice.) Uh-hum, so I started machine quilting on the mouse blocks. I tried echo quilting on the first one, and then squiggly lines on the second block. They looked awful. The echo quilting made it look like a "kaboom! supermouse coming through!" The squiggly lines just seemed messy. So, I picked out the quilting - which I don't recommend - and hand quilted the four mouse blocks.

Finally, machine quilted the rest of the blocks in the same style as those fun coasters.

I love this quilt. I really wanted something muted and simple, but not boring.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Lemonade socks

Months ago I had started a half circle cardigan. When I was about to start the finishing process, I realized, after some soul-searching, that I didn't like it. Aside from me not really wanting to do the finishing, and if you'll just ignore the other part of me not really knowing how to do part of the finishing, I just didn't like the sweater. I knew I would never wear it. It was all 2x2 ribbing, so it was going to CLING... if you know what I mean. And, it turned out a little small. Small and clingy, in this very sort of muted variegated way was going to make me look a little crazy.

So after staring at this pile of knitting for months, I decided to do the painful and totally frog it. About 9 skeins of frogging. It was just too annoying to look at everyday. Such a reminder of wasted time. (Although, this was the project that had turned me from an english knitter to a continental knitter.)

The yarn really is so much fun and it's such a unique colorway that I had to knit it up into something. So, here they are. A pair of socks. Sometimes sock yarn should really just be for socks. They're much cuter on my feet than CLINGING to my torso.

So, there's my version of turning lemons into lemonade.

Ripple Weave Sock pattern from Vogue Knitting Fall 2006
Yarn from ShibuiKnits - Sock

I did like this pattern very much. It was easy to get into the groove of the ripple weave pattern. Not confusing, but not boring.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Fancy Tee

I don't think I've ever been able to master the concept of "business casual". It was easy to throw on a suit. And it's easy to throw on some jammies. But, business casual... casual, but not too casual. Ready for business, but not too stiff. So for the past however many years, I've been going to work looking like a waiter, pretty much.

Maybe I've found my happy medium with this fancy tee.

I used Vogue Pattern 8392, View A and Amy Butler's Nigella fabric from Purl. Aside from using a size smaller, I am definitely going to make some modifications on my next one:

    1. Longer sleeves. (Or lose some weight. I hate when the underneath part of my sleeve rides up into my armpit. It's bad enough when my pants do it.)

    2. Longer length. (Or lose some weight. It's bad enough I have to deal with my big booty. The general public shouldn't have to suffer too.)

    3. Different neck closure. Hook and eye closures are not so good when there's no tension pulling them closed. So they pop open often. I'm going to try some cute covered buttons next time. Or even on this one.

It was very easy, and very quick. I do recommend it. And I think it's cute, fun and best of all, business casual friendly.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Doing it my way

I'm finally starting to accept the fact that I'm no spring chicken. More often than not, I'm being called "ma'am" instead of "miss". I often mention movie lines or lyrics to the younger set with only blank stares in response. But, the worst is this: I get heartburn turn acid reflux when I eat foods that are too "heavy". I don't even know what that means other than bad for you. But, I do know my list of no-no's is growing.

I was devastated when I realized the carbonara at Otto set off acid reflux for weeks, only to be followed up with chocolate giving me migraines. Am I paying for past indulgences? Am I setting my 20's straight now that my body cannot take anymore abuse?

Well, I decided to do it my way. (Sorry Mario.) I found a decent carbonara recipe that used cream instead of raw egg (boo-hoo). And instead of pancetta, easily obtainable bacon was an ingredient. Hm, bacon has never given me any gastronomical problems... so, when I passed the sign stating "REALLY GOOD BACON" at the Greenmarket in Union Square yesterday, I had to indulge.

Isn't that awesome? It's like 99% fat, 1% meat. I've always told the Migglesworth that I must have been a pork bellies commodities trader in a former life. Either that, or I watched Trading Places too many times when I was younger.

And, it gave me a chance to try out my new Le Creuset stainless steel cookware. It's amazing. I highly recommend it.

I would have taken pictures of the final dish, but being a little pork belly myself, I snarfed it all down.