September 21, 2003
An Embarassment of Riches
As I mentioned in the last entry, we had a yarn swap last weekend at the Knitsmiths and boy did I make out like a bandit. It's taken me this long to even mention my haul because I can't get over the feeling that I ended up with way more than I should have. It's pretty embarassing, really.
In an attempt to assuage my guilt, I've promised myself that I'm going to be extra-special careful to put all of this great yarn to really, really good use for Christmas gifts. Well, most of it anyway. ;)
We had a yarn swap last week at the KnitSmiths, and I picked up a bunch of Bebe Lang Superwash in pretty baby colors. I decided to use it to make a Christmas sweater for Bulis, my best friend's baby girl. Well, she'll be 18 months old by Christmas... making her my best friend's toddler I suppose.
Anyway, I'm using a derivation of the Sirdar pattern that I used for Henry's sweater. I've taken out the ribbing, and have added some stitches width-wise to make up for the stretchiness that I've lost by knitting it all in stockingette.
It's going pretty well, I made a small mistake and didn't decrease enough on the armholes but I don't think it will matter. I'm planning to use the pink again for the roll-neck, and perhaps for the ribbing on the sleeve cuffs. This is my first attempt at "designing", we shall see how I fare!
Since making a strawberry hat when I found myself without anything major on the needles worked so well last time, I did it again last week. This time, blueberry! I'll likely give this one to Jason's nephew Henry.
Generic No More
After months of complaining about having a generic MT template as my design, I finally got off my behind and made some changes.
The good news? The front page now looks just like my gringa.org page, and that was no small feat.
The bad news? Pretty much everything else is broken, and I've essentially exhausted my abilities. I'll likely have to wait for Jason to help me, but he's on call this weekend.
Hang in there folks, I hope to get this fixed soon!
September 15, 2003
Exactly two weeks after bidding Francine and not-so-fond farewell, she has been recreated in the form of Lindsey. It would be an understatement to say that this pattern knits up quickly.
Remember when I off-handedly mentioned that I hoped I'd have enough yarn? The pattern calls for four-color striping, and this made it difficult to estimate the total yardage for the top since the pattern calls for at least one skein of each color regardless of whether the whole thing would be used.
I was right to be worried. I was just about finished with the back and the front (but not the neck and the armbands) when I ran out of yarn. You'll remember that I bought this yarn in June of this year in New York, so finding one last skein of Denim Silk in Chocolate from the correct dye lot was pretty much out of the question. So I broke a cardinal knitting rule -- I mixed dye lots. Since the yarn is 80% rayon, I figured that chances were pretty good that the color would be uniform even across dyelots, and it was. The only noticeable difference is that the yarn from the newest skein looks less "handled", something that I'm sure will fade with time, wear, and laundering.
So why did I stick it out with Francine? My typical answer has been to exclaim that the yarn was really expensive, therefore displaying for all the world that even though I was a teaching assistant in economics, the concepts of sunk cost and opportunity cost did not, in fact, sink in afterall. The truth is, I don't know -- I wasn't even sure that I was going to like Lindsay until after I finished it -- but I do like it, and I'm glad I stuck with it.
Well, Mango has been done for a while now. I've actually worn it twice and I love it. Alison says she's going to make Mango with sleeves, and once she has you can expect to see me doing the same. I think I'll call it Mango Abrigado!
September 10, 2003
First things first: I would like to give Gina the credit for the chemo cap idea. Her husband and Jason are doctors at the same hospital, and at one of our KnitSmiths meetings she suggested that we should make caps for the kids who have lost their hair because of chemo.
I made the first one out of Berrocco's Chinchilla, and I used this pattern from headhuggers.org, which is a site dedicated to facilitating chemo caps for cancer patients. This cap was for a seven-year-old girl, and unfortunately all of their patterns for children are crocheted. I adjusted the pattern by using smaller needles and I reducing the number of stitches that I cast on to about 3/5ths of what is called for in the pattern. It was too small to fit onto my big head, so I took that to be a good sign. Jason said it fit her well and that she loved the softness and color of it.
The second one was for a little four-year-old boy, and I made it out of Lion Brand's ridiculously soft Microspun on size 6 needles. Just ask the Knitsmiths, I cast on for this hat and ripped it out several times because I kept making it too damn big. I finally got it right at 84 stitches.
When I finished it, I thought it looked cute but a little plain. Way back when I started the Waikiki tank, I was using a pattern that called for a button closure on the halter. Since I ended up using a totally different pattern, I had this cute little button left over and it just happened to match (it has a red circular pattern that you can't see very well here). Perfect! According to Jason, it was also well received by the parents -- less so by the little guy, who was in a grumpy mood. Understandable, considering.
First Time for Everything!
For those of you who saw Alison's righteous chemo caps today and made your way over here as a result, I'm hoping to get pictures of my two attempts up tonight. I've been feeling a bit under the weather and tired, so computer time has been at an all time low in the evenings.
Speaking of computer time, this entry marks the very first time that I've ever posted from work at this job. I've only been here for a week and a day -- I'm surprised it took that long!
September 1, 2003
Size (and Color!) Matters
After being told that previous pictures didn't do justice to the sweater's size and color, I'm trying again! Remember how I started these socks because I had extra yarn? Well, turns out that I didn't have quite enough to finish the tippy-toe of the second sock (of course). I ended up buying another ball of yarn to finish it. I couldn't just let that first sock be lonely!
Anticipating this outcome, I made sure to invest in an a Berrocco book that featured a few patterns made with Francine's yarn (Denim Silk) so that I had an alternative. Then, last night at KnitSmiths I starting frogging and boy did it feel great. Alison gave me some pointers on making hanks (but not this kind of Hank!), and Sandy, Kerstin and de Yentala (!!!) cheered me on as I ripped and ripped and ripped.
Once I got home, I checked the cleaning instructions ("Handwash in cool water with mild soap (no detergent). Lay flat to dry. Or dry clean.") I busted out the Woolite and went to work. Everything went fine, and when I went to bed last night this is how it looked:
The only complaint that I have is that it is taking an eternity to dry. C'mon yarn, don' t you know I have plans for you? Fortunately, I had about a half a skein of yarn that I hadn't used it for Francine so I cast on for the new project. I just couldn't wait:
Everybody, meet Lindsay. (Obviously, I'm making a stripe-less version. If I have enough yarn. Heh.) Here's hoping that she's nicer than Francine!
*Alison, I used that expression just for you!