Saturday, April 30, 2011

V is for Vendetta

My dogs seem to have declared war on a very dangerous foe:

The tulip.

Yeah, they don't look very threatening to me either. Maybe the dogs know something we don't?

tulip carnage

I do have a couple flowers the boys don't seem to have it out for...


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

I won!

I occasionally enter for giveaways on various blogs, but I never win... at least I never have, until now! =)

I won a book!

I won a copy of The Rhino with Glue-on Shoes from the Simpler Living blog. Okay, so there weren't a ton of entries and we all got books, but still. =)

I also finished my ipad sock (finally) a couple days ago. I think maybe my knitting mojo went away. I haven't been working on much the past week or so. I think maybe I should try to crochet something and see if that gets my going again. =)

I'd like the top and bottom ribbing to fit a bit more closely. It's not a perfect fit, but it'll do... and it stays on nicely so I'm happy. I do like how the short sides fit - they stay out of the way of the Home button and the light sensor and since the fabric is so stretchy, I don't even have to take the cover off to charge it on the dock.

I still have 19g of this 50g ball of elsticized cotton left. Any suggestions?

Friday, April 22, 2011

Monday, April 18, 2011

At long last...

Proper pictures of my Salem Hooded Jacket!

But first, a better shot of the hat I finished a few days ago:

and a glimpse of the sweater. =) I do like how the color seems to swirl in the opposite direction of the textural swirl. Nice combo of yarn and pattern. I love when that works out!

Okay, you've waited long enough. I'll show you the whole sweater:

my first fully completed sweater

I love the ribbon detail:

my first fully completed sweater

And I can vouch for it's warmth! wow. So not the day to stand around outside in a wool sweater and hat!

Yarny Organization

When I was in Portland a few weeks ago, I (of course) spent some time browsing in IKEA. There isn't one even in my state, much less close by, so the only chance I get to go is when I'm traveling (for now, anyway). It's always so much fun wandering through and seeing what there is to see. I've been wanting this glass-front bookcase for ages now. I think it'll be perfect for yarn storage, keeping it visible yet safe from the critters and their floaty fur.

Ignore that high price - that's for the multi-piece setup covering the whole wall. It comes in a nice black/brown that I love. This, or something similar, would be perfect for my stash. =) I'll definitely be on the lookout for marked down pieces in this line once I move... whenever that is.

I decided which yarn I'll use for my Saroyan. After looking through my stash on Ravelry and looking through a few bins, I settled on the one I'd first thought of for this pattern.

I wound up the yarn late Saturday night and it's now in a bag with the pattern. BTW - the bag? It's from IKEA too. heh $6 for a set of two - the smaller perfect for a sock in progress and the larger easily holds these two 220yd skeins with room to spare for the WIP. The bottoms are flat so they stand up on their own and there are even pockets (and a zippered pocket inside the larger size) perfect for corralling necessary notions/ball bands. =) I discovered these in the bathroom section of the store - sold as toiletry bags - so they're even water resistant. Much nicer than the ziplocs I've been using to contain my projects in the larger knitting bag and I won't have to keep replacing them since needles won't be poking through. I'm thinking I might add a small piece of the yarn from each project to the zipper pull so I'll know at a glance which project is which... I purchased two sets of the bags and have all four project bags in my larger bag now. lol Could be fun sitting down to knit and just grabbing a mystery project to work on though, huh? =)

(I'm not loving what blogger is doing to my photos. These are just quick shots from my point&shoot, but they're nowhere near that blurry when I upload them. I'll have to start uploading to flickr and see if that helps.)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Mellow... with a pop of color

Wow. Four posts in five days!?!

Last night, I cast on for a log cabin garter stitch blanket. I debated whether to use my Lavish alpaca in these colors:

or maybe go with some of the variegated wool I have in my stash for a brighter blanket. Neither yarns are machine washable and I don't have enough of anything else in my stash that is... I refuse to go out and buy more yarn, so that's not a deciding point. =) After playing with some color layouts, I decided to go with the alpaca. Since I used just over 3 skeins of the darkest colorway already on other projects, I felt more secure limiting myself to these two choices for my block layout:

I like both, but I think I like B better. As long as I have enough yarn, I'll do some type of edging on it as well - maybe in crochet. It'll be awhile before I need to think about that though. heh

I've apparently gotten over my one-project-at-a-time thing. =)

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Let them eat (cup)cake!

Anyone want a cupcake?

It's my mother's birthday today so I whipped up a cupcake for her. Cute, isn't it? No fat, lots of fiber, much less messy than a traditional cupcake. Can't go wrong with that!

I've been looking through some of my many, many queued projects (seriously, way too many on there!) and chose one to knit one up over the past couple days.

Super simple and pretty brainless knitting - I barely had to glance at the pattern. I'll have to get a better shot on a day that's not windy and rainy... even if the name of the pattern is Hurricane. lol

I also started a sock for my iPad.

I've had this pretty, elasticized cotton in my stash from the charity knit shop in Seattle, but only one ball. Not enough for a pair of socks... but should be enough for this... I hope!

I'm planning to cast on for my own Saroyan scarf/wrap. Just deciding which yarn to use. Looking through the projects, it looks good in just about anything as long as the yarn isn't too textured. Even variegated yarns look great as long as they're not too loud. Time to dig through the bins and see what calls to me, I suppose...

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Spring has Sprung!


And with inspiration from the beautiful colors of Spring popping up all over, I'm also finding inspiration in the form of new patterns. I've been hearing commercials for Tuesday Morning for years, but had never ventured into one... until a couple weeks ago. A little disappointed upon entering and discovering what appeared to be closer to a thrift store than other discount shops I've been in, I decided I'd power through and see what was hiding in the depths of those aisles (having heard of great, yarny deals). Though I did find some nicely priced, name-brand yarn (mostly organic cottons), nothing called to me strongly enough to make it into my basket (lord knows, I don't need any more cotton, even pretty organic skeins). I did discover a pile - yes, a PILE - of craft books. I think at one time, the pile might have had some sort of order, but when I happened across it, it almost appeared someone had up-ended a couple boxes of books onto a shelf and hoped for the best. Spotting a few yarny titles, I dug...

They ranged from 60-75% off the cover price. Not bad! I picked up The Happy Hooker while in Portland (with a 50% off coupon, of course), but the others were all finds at Tuesday Morning. =) There are some really nice summery patterns in Louisa Harding's Summer Classics. Sweater Renewal has some great ideas for those thrift store finds that haven't had the most gentle care. This skirt is made with the body of a felted fairisle sweater with an added crochet waistband and hem. Funky, but I'm kinda loving it!

Hollywood Knit Style has a few cute patterns, though I'd never have purchased it anywhere near full price. The crochet references (150 Crochet Trims, Textured Crochet) will undoubtedly come in handy as I continue to build my crochet skills. Maybe pulling these out will be the motivation I need to get going on projects again... or maybe I'll go take in some more of those Spring colors!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Where have YOU been?


Oh, wait. I'm the one who's been MIA. =)

Not a whole lot of yarny progress has been made recently and no exciting news otherwise to share. I did pick up snaps and ribbon for my sweater, but haven't yet pulled it out and finished those little details so I can take proper project pics. The temps haven't been in a range to really motivate me to finish a wool sweater.

I did crochet up a couple tiny baskets out of the same odd yarn I used on one of the kitty's snakes. I just free-handed them and amazingly ended up with just a few inches left over. One more odd ball gone. =)

Handy for organizing a shallow drawer. =)

I flew out to Portland a few weeks ago and started a pair of socks on the way.

I have one sock... and a toe. *sigh* They've been stalled since I returned. Pulled them out for a pic today and managed to get a muddy spot on the light pink heel even though I chose a spot in full sun, checked for wet spots and only put the one on once I got out there. Sheesh, they're not even done yet! I got most of the stain out and will put them through the wash when #2 can join the bath. I received this ball in a grab bag. I was happily surprised with the contents of the bag - 19 balls of yarn for $25 (DBNY)... and I only gave two skeins away that I knew I'd never use (ugh, fun fur with multi-colored metallic bits?). What a deal! I decided I didn't care if the socks were mirror images of each other so I just started #2 where #1 left off to avoid yarn waste. I'm using one long circ in place of my usual dpns. MUCH easier on a plane! No worries about dropping needles or stitches falling off as the sock goes in and out of a bag. Love the socks! It's such an easy pattern to memorize, it only took one repeat and I could put the pattern away.

I did whip up a small project last Friday. Had a book stand that needed a bit of padding...

Pulled out a cheap ball of acrylic and worked up a simple cozy.

Now my new toy has a soft place to sit while I watch movies on Netflix or one of the great photography workshops online (as I did this past weekend). =)

We're still down at work so I've had way to much time to kill, but haven't been playing with yarn. The apt search in Vancouver (WA, not BC) didn't go so well so I'm still stuck in IN a bit longer. Rethinking some plans to make this all work. I did find out today that I'll definitely be working again in a couple weeks though! WOO! It's nice having some time off, but I sure do miss the paychecks!

So... what have YOU been up to?