Monday, March 23, 2009

New Beginings

I've started two new projects recently. Norah Gaughan's Vintage pink cardigan in some lovely black ultra alpaca. I bought this yarn some time last year to make a Harry Potter themed sweater but decided I didn't want it in black. In my goal to knit through my stash and not buy knitty things through lent I decided to use it for this sweater. I've been wanting to make it for ages, I think I bought the magazine on my first trip to WEBS a couple of years ago. It is coming along nicely despite being knit on US3 and not getting enough attention.

The second, more tedious project is some Clessidra knee socks. I've been wanting to make these for awhile too. I don't know how I feel about them yet. They are a bit tedious but now that I have the cable charts memorized I'm hoping they go faster. I wanted these for Easter but I'm not sure if that is a possibility. My knitting time just seems to be getting shorter and shorter.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Random Acts of Turkey

You know when a turkey crashes into and shatters your bedroom window at 2am, it isn't going to be a good day. Glass all over the deck. He was huge, and though he was bleeding he hopefully survived after taking off.

But for every negative we must look for a positive. It was only the outer storm windows that broke and my flowers opened today. That makes me happy.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Random Dye Job

I can be quite random sometimes. Sometime during the day yesterday I decided I had to dye this skein of yarn that had been in my stash for quite some time. I had to do it that night and it had to be done with Kool-Aid.

I spent a couple of minutes after work looking up a recipe for the color I liked and I was off! I'll spare you the rant about how ridiculous it is that Big Y had no Kool-Aid brand items in the aisle labeled Kool-Aid... After a quick trip to the always delightful Stop and Shop I had some fruity drink packets in flavors similar to what I was looking for. I can honestly say I've never bought 20 packets before, come to think of it I don't remember the last time I had Kool-Aid. I was so ready to jump in I forgot to unpack my lunch bag or put my Cancer Society daffodils in water right away (as an aside this is a great way to donate and get some beautiful flowers).

I soaked the light blue Cashwool, a 100% wool cobweb yarn in the sink for maybe a half hour or so. I really wasn't feeling this color. I want to knit both the Fountain Pen Shawl and the Sweet Lily shawl from the most recent IK with yarn I currently own and didn't want to buy more yarn just because of the color issue.

So into the pot went 17 packets of Black Cherry and 4 of Iced Blue Raspberry lemonade. I wanted a deep color and this site suggested around 5 packets per ounce of yarn. I wanted the dark plum but they didn't have the right flavors at the store. Since I had to do it that night I subbed. This is what it looked like when I started and yes, that is my dinner cooking alongside it. Don't judge.

I simmered it for awhile and the dye did actually exhaust. It was really neat to see.

After cooling I rinsed it but there was really no bleeding of color and hung it to dry in the basement. I'm happy with the color even if it isn't as purple as I would have liked.

This was surprisingly fun and super super easy. The house smelled really nice too. I perhaps should have tied the skein better as I'm sure it is going to be a bitch to untangle but I'll burn that bridge when I come to it. The only issue now is the yarn amount. I have 1350 yards in this skein. I would like to use it doubled so figure 675. The sweet lily shawl calls for 875 on US8 needles. I want a smaller shawl and was thinking of going down a few needle sizes to maybe a 4 or 5. I'm 33% short which is a scary difference. I could not double it or I can knit a bit on the smaller needles and see how I'm doing, maybe re-adjust some numbers. Hmm, I'm stumped on this one, maybe I should make sure I can untangle it first...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

FO: Andy's Vest

I'm wiped out today so I'm using that as an excuse to blog and not exercise. We finally snapped a quick photo of my husband in his vest the other day.

Yarn: Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool less than 4 skeins
Needles: US 4 and US 2

Is that not the sexiest torso you've ever seen? This was a fairly straight forward knit. My husband chose the Silky wool in a really nice green-brown color when we made our annual trip to WEBS over Thanksgiving and we decided the 3 x 1 ribbing worked the best. From there I used the Handy Book of Sweater Patterns by Ann Budd as a starting point but bound off a few more stitches for the armholes. The V-neck and armhole ribbing is 1 x 1 done with US2 needles. I worked the vest in two pieces and seamed them up at the end. Overall we are both pleased with the results. I think I may have bound off a few too many stitches for the armholes and it could be a bit longer but he thinks it works, which I guess is what really matters. The drape of the Silky wool is really nice but I'm not sure I'd use it again. Now my husband can look sharp and be warm at work. I would like to come up with another hand knit for him, he's pretty much my size so the sweater knitting would take about the same time.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

For my sister

One down, one I hope finished tonight. Soon you will know the loveliness that is Rowan 4-ply soft. Big presentation tomorrow so I'm off to do yoga and knit to relax, let's hope it works!

P.S. I'll try to pick off the dog hair but you know the little lady :)