Thursday, January 21, 2010

Busy Busy Busy

So having two kids and a full-time job makes you busy. I still knit (and weave occassionally), and now my life has calmed down a bit that I can probably start posting again. January is my "month of finishing", and I've completed a summer sweater I started (ahem) last summer, a dumpling bag (also from the summer), and a hat and cardigan for my sister-in-law's baby. Look for more info soon!

Friday, April 03, 2009


Since I've been knitting for several years now, I have quite a few knit accessories and garments that either I or my family wears out in public. Occassionally people will notice that the item is hand-knit and we will have a short conversation about it. These conversations generally fall into three categories:
1) Did you knit that? The person recognizes that the item is hand knit, and assumes I made it - and then usually follows up with (what they think is) a complement. For example, last summer I wore my Sahara sweater at our family reunion. My aunt asks if I had knit it, and then exclaimed "That sweater would have been so expensive had you bought it at a store!" assuming, of course, that I had saved oodles of money knitting myself a designer sweater. When I told her how much the wool/silk blend yarn actually cost, she gave me a confused look - why would you knit if not to save money? ;)
2) Did your (mother/grandmother/aunt) knit that for you? The asker in this situation assumes that there's some older woman that has provided the garment for you. This happens most often with Guy's crocheted baby blanket (in the previous post). These people also look confused when I say that I actually knit and crochet.

and the best type of question is...
3) Is that _____ pattern? This is the eluvise "knitter" meeting. This has only happened to me once, and was the most wonderful experience! Scott and I were visiting one of his college buddies, and I had dressed Guy in his baby surprise jacket. His wife (who is a wonderful knitter, I just always forget!) looked at him and said - "is that the baby surprise jacket?" Elated, I answered her that it was, and we then proceeded to have a conversation about what yarn I used and how difficult the pattern was. It was delightful.

Here's Guy in his BSJ. I will be knitting him another one in a larger size, hoping that it will elicit even more type 3 conversations.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Still Knitting (and crocheting, and weaving...)

I am indeed still alive - and knitting!  I've actually been pretty busy with the ole' hook and needles (though not so much with the loom...), so I have a few "catch up" posts to show off my recent work.  Unfortunately I have no photos to show of the items I made for gifts - a hat for my friend's baby girl, and a hat and blankie set for my coworker.  You'll just have to take my word that they were adorable!

Little Guy was kind enough to model this crocheted hat from Stitch 'n' Bitch's The Happy Hooker (how's that for a title?)  It's called the Seija Hat and I crocheted it out of Dark Horse Yarn's Fantasy - a 100% acrylic yarn.  It's very soft and very durable!

I love the way this hat looks on Guy - I think the braid makes him look like a little Viking.  I finished it about two weeks before he was born, so he's had plenty of chance to wear it.

I also made the matching blanket, which went very fast since it's double crochet (although weaving in the ends was no fun - if I did this again I would just carry the yarn up the side).  This has gone though the washer and dryer many times and the only wear it shows is from an unpleasant run-in with some velcro.

Next up - I'll show you some of the outfits I made for Guy!

Friday, January 02, 2009

New Year's Resolutions

I don't normally make new year's resolutions, but I thought since 2009 is shaping up to be quite the busy year,  it would be nice to write some knitting/weaving resolutions so I can make sure to make some time for myself this year.  So without further ado...

My resolutions:
1.  Make Christmas stockings for the family.  Scott's been asking for these for years, and since our family is now complete (I think!), it's probably time to get started.  If I work on this the entire year it shouldn't be overwhelming.

2.  Don't forget to weave!  My baby blankets have been sitting on the loom for quite a while now, and I have lots of techniques I'd like to I need to make sure I weave a little bit, even if it's just once a week.

3.  Use up some of my stash.  I admit my stash has grown somewhat large, so I'd like to knit and weave up a bit of what I have rather than continue buying new.

Okay, with the exception of #1 they're not very specific - but that's all I can commit to right now with the new baby and the not-so-new toddler.

Happy 2009!! 

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Kitting Out the Baby...

When I was pregnant with Lincoln I had just re-started my knitting, and so I only managed to complete a cotton sweater and a (huge!) sweater-vest for him before he arrived. Since my new little one will be arriving just in time for a cold January, I've been trying to be more prepared with a flurry of knitting projects.

So far everything on my "to do" list is *almost* done, just needing a little finishing work. I have a jacket and matching pants, a hat with matching carseat blanket, and just last night at knit night I cast off a Baby Surprise Jacket. I'm very excited about the BSJ because I'm hoping that will be the jacket my little man comes home in. With a little extra effort I'll even make some matching booties!

No fears for Lincoln - I have a pirate sweater on the needles for him, which will be deliberately big so he can hopefully get two winter's worth of wear out of it.

Whew! Off to knit some more!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Where I've Been

Have you been wondering about me? I apologize for the prolonged silence - I've been spending the past few weeks doing battle with my loom, but after several difficult weeks I have emerged victorious. It all began with the shawl I mentioned in my previous post. It is a tencel stole I purchased as a kit from the Yarn Barn in Kansas. The yarn is beautiful and the draft is relatively simple - I have to admit that the problems I encountered are all my own fault. It started right after I sleyed the reed and realized that I had chained the warp incorrectly and inadvertently created a knot...and the only way to correct it was to pull out all 453 ends, correct the chain and re-sley all 453 ends.

Problem number two ocurred when I has halfway through threading the heddles. I had (wrongly) assumed that the ends would be balanced across all four harnesses, so I moved several heddles out of the way before I started. After about 200 ends, I actually looked at the draft and realized that there were many more ends on shafts 2 and 3...and I wouldn't have enough heddles on those two shafts. Once again, I pulled out the ends and re-threaded the heddles.

I eventually did begin weaving, but not before I learned a lot of lessons. I decided to wait on posting about this until it was safely off the loom. The stole is now awaiting wet finishing, so here is a photo of it as I was actually weaving it.

No worries, I still love weaving. I've also kept up on some knitting. I've started a hat for the baby and a hat for Lincoln.

...And here is evidence that I can actually complete a project...the very first scarf I finished on the loom!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Too Fast

Remember when I said that weaving is fast? Well, I've decided that it may be too fast. Since my last post I finished warping the loom, corrected a few errant yarns, started weaving, and finished weaving. I honestly almost started crying when I finished my first few picks and saw that my design matched the design in the book! The weaving itself took about a week, and I cut the scarf off this weekend.

Now I'm lost. I'm used to knitting where not only do projects take a while to complete, but where I always have multiple projects so that when I finish one there's another one waiting on the needles. Right now I have an empty loom with no project, and there are barriers to each project I want to start. Here's the rundown:

*Project A (Tencel Stole): I have the yarn, but not enough heddles. So I need to order more heddles before I can start.
*Project B (Baby Blanket): I have the plan and enough heddles, but I need to order the yarn.
*Project X (Anything I want to make with knitting yarn): I have lots of yarn, but worsted- and Dk- weight yarns need a 8-dent reed, and I have a 12-dent reed. So I need to order the reed.

None of these items are especially cheap, but they're not prohibitively expensive, either. So I guess I just need to place an order...and give my poor loom a rest.