Saturday, January 05, 2008

OK--Happy New Year Already

I've been trying to get around to blogging (other than acknowledging the Orange Bowl sadness) but just couldn't get it together.

I need to jump-start 2008.

How about some resolutions? I've grown weary of the usual ones that fall by the wayside-- not that I won't try...

This year, with a knitting focus (not necessarily in order):

-Empty the needles. Finish the unfinished.

-Either knit up the orphan socks, or frog the first one.

-Complete the uncompleted, and put together all the pieces of things that are otherwise done.

-Be creative in using stash.

-Admit defeat. If something's not singing to me while I'm working on it, call it a day. Figure out the problem (wrong yarn? wrong project for the yarn?), and start over.

-Organize stash, needles and toys. Get rid of yarn I don't love.

That should do it.

Happy Stuff-- FO's

Mom's Rosebud Shawl

From This..
(Note about this colorway of Lion & Lamb-- The red bled. A lot. I did 4 complete washes and rinses before it stopped bleeding. I've never used this yarn before, so I can't speak to the other colorways.)

...To This: I gave myself some Blocking Wires for Christmas. They're from KnitPicks. They are a tad more pricey than they need to be, imho, but I love the heck out of them. For a blocking board, my old standby is a corrugated cardboard pattern board that I picked up years ago for about $7.00 at a fabric store. It has lines on it-- most handy, I must say-- and it works great for me. It warps a bit during blocking, but after it's folded up and stored in its handy plastic wrapper behind the piano, it works great the next time. The shawl was too long to fit on the board, and I just happened to have a long cardboard box from a shelf I just put together last week. If you look toward the fireplace, you can see where the box takes over. Handy, huh?

To This:
Now, I tried doing one of those glamour shots that Elspeth is so famous for, and it just ended up looking utterly ridiculous, so the recliner in the family room is sitting in for what would otherwise be me.

Project: Rosebud Shawl (free pattern from Briar Rose Fibers)
For: My Mom
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Lion & Lamb; Tuscany colorway; won in contest- 3 skeins
Needles: Denise 10-1/2 (from Knit Happens)
Started: November 2007
Finished: December 2007
Blocked: (see resolutions above) January 2008

Impressions-- I love knitting with the yarn-- it feels good, it has wonderful drape, and the color changes keep things interesting. The pattern is a dream. If I were to do it again, though, I'd probably make it wider by adding one or two more rosebud lines. There are 3 in the pattern as written. The tradeoff is that there wasn't enough yarn to make it this long if it were wider. I wouldn't have chosen this colorway if I were purchasing the yarn, but I like the way it turned out. I didn't notice until I took the picture, that it looks like it's trying to be plaid. Interesting.

Dad's Grey Scarf

You can see it being blocked above, next to Mom's Rosebud Shawl. How appropriate, since they've been by each others' sides for nearly 60 years. (Go Mom & Dad!!!)

I was really happy when Dad said he'd like for me to knit him a scarf. After a bit of discussion, we determined that the color couldn't be flashy (dark green would be too flashy), and he didn't want tan. As I was considering how to knit it, it occurred to me that the cables I had in mind might fall into the "too flashy" category, but I needed something that wouldn't bore me to tears while knitting .

I fondled miles of yarn at KnitHappens, zeroing in on the Rowan Cocoon-- a Merino/Mohair combo, in an acceptable shade of light charcoal grey (Rowan calls it Slate). I designed a pattern, loosely based on a mock-cable I saw in a stitch book.

Project: Dad's Grey Manly Man Scarf- my own pattern
For: My Dad
Yarn: Rowan Cocoon from KnitHappens; Slate; 2 skeins
Needles: Susan Bates circular size 9 (donated by Bates to the Hokie Healing Project and used by me to knit Hokie Squares. Thank you, Bates/Coats & Clark)
Started & Finished: December 2007
Blocked: with Mom's Rosebud Shawl January 2008
Impressions: I really liked knitting with Cocoon. It occasionally splits, but not so much that it's annoying. I was a bit worried that it would be stiff and scratchy-- it felt soft in the skein, but firmed up a bit during knitting. After washing in Eucalan, it's very nice and soft. If I were to do it again, I'd probably go up a size on the needles to improve drape, especially if I were doing something similar for a woman. I was a bit worried that it might look a little lacy.

And Finally:
Random picture of the day:This is lunch at a restaurant in Hilton Head that was used as Bubba's shrimping place in Forrest Gump. That oyster clump there had 8 oysters in it!!!

1 comment:

Jane said...

Hi Laura, your Mum's shawl looks beautiful and I like your Dad's scarf too its a lovely design. I hope they enjoy wearing them. The oyster dish looked tasty. Jane x