February 2011 Archives

Another Cowl

In the spirit of knitting out of my stash, I've been looking for projects that can be completed with relatively small amounts of yarn.  You see, I'm one of those knitters who seems to acquire a lot of trophy yarn.  Exotic yarn from other places, bright colored, novel fibers... things that it just doesn't make sense to get a lot of, but which I just can't leave behind when I find it.  Over the years I've gotten a little more judicious in my acquisitions, but I still have plenty of wonderful skeins that I'd like to be able to enjoy as a garment rather than just see in my yarn cupboard.

Cowls are wonderful projects when you have modest amounts of yarn.  I've been trolling Ravelry looking for patterns that appeal to me.  I also happily appropriate good ideas when I find them on friends' blogs.  In this case, I credit Julie with the inspiration, since her version looked cozy and it was clearly a fast knit.

20110202_AlmostBurberryCowl.jpgThe pattern is the Burberry Inspired Cowl Neck Scarf and the yarn is Colinette Prism in Jamboree.  I think this knit up in about a day.  What took me a while to get around to was the whole soaking and blocking part -- which it definitely needed given how stiff this wool-wrapped-with a cotton binder was after I knit it up.  It softened up considerably after a warm bath. 

Since we were spending a day at home watching the snow come down, I finally had some daylight time to get some pictures taken. 

20110202_AlmostCowlWorn.jpg This cowl is a contrast to the Super Cupcake in that it's a much closer fit. Good for keeping the neck warm.  In a pinch you might be able to use it in a hat-like fashion to keep your ears warm, but it's not as expansive as the Cupcake.  I likely won't be able to wear it without a turtleneck.  Even after a bath, the wool core of this yarn is not the softest stuff.  The color is great, though and it's definitely warm.  Perfect for when I need to wait for the bus in the cold.

Fun, easy pattern, good use of stash yarn, bright color in grey winter.  I call it a success!

Pretty Wooden Things

I passed my second 4th decade birthday uneventfully, but happily.  A small collection of thoughtful and lovely things joined my life.  Most supported my continuing love affairs with making coffee and making cookies.  There were a few things that I thought merited special comment on my blog.

The beautiful little bowls you see were hand-turned by my dad.  The inner one is walnut, the outer is cherry.  He created the dark edge on the cherry bowl with a burning technique.  Both have a beeswax finish, so they could easily be used for food, but I've decided to use them on my dresser where I will see them more often and where I will be able to touch them every day when I take off my jewelry.  One thing that is hard to convey in a picture is how smooth these bowls are.  Almost soft.  I hope I was able to capture some of their radiant quality in my picture.  The walnut bowl in particular has a deep, luminous glow.

The needles come from from a set of Darn Pretty 6" double points in the "Winter Sky" color pattern and were a gift from my beautiful little girl who is all about having socks knit for her.  These needles are as a much a joy to look at as they are to knit with.  In honor of the giver, I have cast on the first pair of socks employing a set of them for her.  She's quite enthusiastic about the potential for new socks and has been almost ecstatic when I've asked her to take off her sock so we can size them as we go.  Knitting with these needles has started to build in me an unholy desire to get  set of their interchangeable circulars.  Dyak Craft needles are hand turned and feel to me like the perfect spiritual complement to a beautiful hand made garment

Other than that, it is all good, but very busy.  Between a busy three year old and a job with an aggressive time table, I haven't been able to take as much advantage of the knitting mojo I have as I would like.  But I have managed to build my elliptical time back into my routine, so it's all good after I accept the reality of the limitations of a 24 hour day and the need for a reasonable amount of sleep.  

Note to My Daughter

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Someday, I hope you have a little girl just like you.  Not to get even, but so that you can listen to all the wonderful stories she tells you, insist on helping her father shovel snow, and watch her dance and sing along with the silly pop music of your time.

Little Winter Socks

This week got past me, in spite of my best intentions.  For the first time in about 10 years I found myself on a course of antibiotics to fend off a child-shared sinus infection, the project I work on needed to have a large budget revision completed and my uncle passed away.

This Sunday there was some calm on the water and I talked Ms. Z into a short photo shoot.

20110227_LittleKroyFxSoxWit.jpgProject: Simple Small Socks
Yarn: Patons Kroy FX, Color 0908
Needles: Darn Pretty DPs, 2.25 mm

For a while, it was very difficult to convince my fast moving toddler to slow down and let me take pictures.  As this toddler has started to become very much a little girl, she's been more willing to sit in front of the camera and take a few directions.

20110227_LittleKroyFxSox.jpgThese socks are pretty much the miniature version of my standard adult sock.  Toe up wedge toe (44 stitches around), short row heel, K2P2 ribbed cuff.  She asked for taller socks, so I worked to maximize the length I could get while still using only one skein of yarn.  The Patons Kroy is a slightly heavier weight sock yarn, so knitting it on 2.25 mm needles resulted in a nice, thick, warm sock for the kid.  This stuff is great for kid socks: inexpensive, easy to find (JoAnn's carries it), durable and fun colors.

She'd like to have some knee socks, so I'm going to see if I can find a couple more skeins in a different colorway.  Given her current interest in dresses and skirts I've been considering some over-the-knee socks for her as well, or some legwarmers she could wear in the winter with tights.


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