Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Yarn Along: The Help

I've finally picked up Pete's languishing sweater again.  How could I resist?  When I asked him what he would like for Christmas, he told me that I don't need to buy him anything because I am making him a sweater.  

Present tense.  Cue the waves of guilt.  

I'm about to finish up the second sleeve, and then I just need to merge the directions from the Baseball Jersey from Knits Men Want and Elizabeth Zimmermann's raglan/saddle shoulder sweaters to finish it up.

I've come to the end of my stash of CraftLit back episodes.  I downloaded them when I last visited my parents.  (Oh, to have boundless internet!)  I'll restock when I return to civilization around Thanksgiving.  In the meantime, I must content myself with an audiobook from the library--The Help.

New toy

This hot stencil cutter is going to take my Alabama Studio sewing to the next level.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Felting soap


In honor of the Giants sweeping the World Series, I hereby vow that I will sweep my kitchen floor. In case you're wondering, yes, the floor gets swept about as often as the series.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Research: Knitting Needles as Weapons

In the most recent episode of Raising Hope, MawMaw broke out the knitting needles in a big way.
 She began by simply fiddling with a scarf,
 but soon moved on to brandishing a knitting needle at various cats.
 Is anyone else troubled by what this could do to our reputation as knitters?
 I am beginning to fear the backlash.
Avert your eyes, TSA and PETA!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Daily bread

Me: What do you want for dinner?
Pete: I don't know.
Me: I could make tuna...
Pete: Okay
Me: Oh! And we can eat it on the fresh bread I made this morning!
Pete: ....
Me: Why aren't you excited about this? Did you hear me? I made fresh bread!
Pete: About that...I may have accidentally eaten it. As a snack.
Me: What?! The whole loaf?
Pete: No, I left you a small slice.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Yarn Along: Jekyll & Hyde

I finally finished Little Women last night.  It was just as lovely as I remembered.  Next up--Craftlit's episodes of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  I also checked the audiobook The Help out of the library, so I'm hoping to listen to that as well.  Meanwhile, I am spinning most nights on my new little spindle.  I cast  this new milo on as we were driving to Rhinebeck to prevent me from purchasing anything teal.  It is squishy and gorgeous and it lives in my purse.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


 My friend Emily knit Lucy some fabulous tube socks out of the scraps from her beekeeper's quilt.
 Keep your eye on the little naughty bird...

If I didn't know better, I'd begin to suspect that she might have been adopted.  
No daughter of mine would ever be this irreverent.

Monday, October 22, 2012

homespun dress

I knit up every scrap of pink handspun, all the while contemplating different options for the skirt.  I am considering attempting to dye cream corduroy a matching shade of pink.  
Feel free to talk some sense into me...

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Rhinebeck 2012: avec bebe

We started the day positively covered in knitwear.  Lucy wore her Jayne hat, new red milo vest, and puerperium cardigan.  Pete took his black cabled hat and orange and black striped scarf.  I decided to bring my handspun  cowl and the beautiful beret my friend Emily made.  She was visiting for the weekend and brought her Clapotis.  
...Aaaand we shed all of it before we even left the parking lot.  A warm Rhinebeck is such a waste.  There were lots of stalwart showoffs who bravely kept their knits on, but we were not among them.  Poor Lucy looked positively unloved. 

It was so much fun to gawk at the great pieces walking by.  I couldn't resist asking this woman about her fabulous crocheted vest that reminded me so much of Mrs. Weasley.

Her friend took great pleasure in informing me that it was actually purchased from Forever 21 for only $30.  I thought they were teasing.  I nearly despaired of ever knowing the pattern, but I remembered what Stephanie Pearl-McPhee said in All Wound Up about crochet.  Apparently it is impossible to manufacture crochet.  It is all handmade.  So armed with that knowledge, I searched for the pattern and found it in only a couple of minutes on Ravelry.  Behold LUL's flower power vest.
Now for the bounty.  I had been daydreaming for months about what I wanted to find at Rhinebeck.  Many of the things on my list were just experiences I wanted to have--yarn I wanted to fondle, needles I wanted to knit with, etc.  I also made a vow to myself to avoid sock yarn acquisition, as I have plenty, and all things teal, as that color is adequately represented in my stash.  But there were also things I wanted to actually come home with:
My first purchase was 2 oz of intoxicating roving from Loop.  It's called Three Ring Circus, an explosive blend of merino, corriedale, bamboo, tussah silk, angelina, and recycled sari silk.  I have coveted her bullseye bumps for a while now, but decided to hold off until next year.
Ever since Emily bought some Koigu that looked as though pop rocks had been added to the dye bath, I have searched for similar yarn.  When we came across the Creatively Dyed booth, I knew I had finally found some.  I quickly scanned the worsted and sport weight sections and started picking up anything that caught my eye.  Before I knew it, my arms were full.  Emily walked over and I said, "Em, I need your help.  Something happened..."  She laughed and we sorted through the multitude of skeins and decided on two:
Woodbrook worsted weight in the colorway Manchester

And Voodoo DK Weight in the colorway Creator.
Then came the main purchase--a Golding spindle.  I chose one with a 3" solid cocobolo whorl and a walnut shaft.  It weighs 2 oz.  I cannot believe the change that has come over my spinning in just one day.  First, this spindle is like buttah, but mostly it is because of a friendly woman who showed me how to draft as I go.  I couldn't resist spinning a little to practice it on the drive home.
My last purchase of the day was an 8 oz bag of corriedale that looked a bit dubious, but wound up being the best bargain of all.  I am smitten with the resulting singles and hope to actually ply it up to make real yarn.  Stay tuned!

Just in time...

I bound off the little red milo the day before Rhinebeck. It fits beautifully.
Though it seems like an extravagance to make baby clothes out of such luxurious yarn, I don't regret the choice.
The vest is so festive--perfect for Thanksgiving and (if I'm lucky) Christmas.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

yarn along: road trip

This little red milo has been all over the place with me this week. The merino/silk blend came along on the trip with a bunch of other yarn because of my indecisiveness while packing.

 First New Jersey, then Maryland, followed quickly by DC, then everything in reverse. I didn't get to listen to much of Little Women, but talking to my own family on the long car rides was even better. I think listening to audiobooks and podcasts is my poor substitute for those conversations when I'm on my own.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

yarn along: handspun

I'm still listening to Craftlit's Little Women and plugging away at the Infernal Sleeve of Never-Ending Doom.  But I needed something fun to break up the monotony.
I was utterly inspired by my sister Emily's recent knitting success.  After learning how to knit recently, she made dishcloths galore and a couple of scarves.  Now she has entered the realm of 3D knitting and made her first Milo out of blood, sweat, tears, and sheer tenacity.  How does it feel to be the boss of your knitting, Emma?
Our little knit-a-long was a failure, because she is going to finish her second vest before I complete the garter stitch yoke on my first, but at least our little chilluns can all match at Thanksgiving.  Lucy's milo is made out of my most recent attempt at spinning.  I got the roving at A Verb for Keeping Warm in San Francisco in 2011, before Lucy was a twinkle.  As I am nearing the end of my supply, I have to decide between finishing the vest with commercial yarn or sewing a skirt to the bodice and making it a dress.  Thoughts?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012