Tuesday, October 25, 2005  

Must Update More Often!!!

Again, way too many pictures ahead - perhaps if I managed to update more often than once a week, this wouldn't happen!

But at least I actually have something to show for my long blog-absence - the FO Parade!

First up - Pines II, the Debbie Bliss hooded cardigan that USED to look like this:

NOW looks like this:

To recap, the old version had a hood and set-in sleeves. Which, in the bulky-ish cotton yarn, made me look rather like a football player who had neglected to remove his pads. Therefore, realizing that I was never going to wear it as-was, I ripped out the hood, un-did all the seams, and ripped everything back to the beginning of the armhole shaping. Then I re-knit using raglan sleeves. This, in turn, changed the neckline enough so that the hood no longer really worked with the new shaping, so it became a wide cabled collar. The verdict? I LOVE IT. I wish, in hindsight, that I would have added another 1/2 inch or so before starting the raglans so the sleeves would be a bit longer, but overall, very pleased.

And next in the parade - Brownie. I'm actually wearing her again as I type this, considering that the temp is only 42 this morning!

I can't even describe how much I love this sweater. The pattern is the Drop Stitch Cardigan from the fall 2005 Interweave (i think), and the yarn is Karabella Margrite Bulky in Brownie. I used exactly 10 balls for the smallest size. In contrast with Pines II, I could have made the sleeves a teeny bit shorter. And I still have to shove it in the dryer for a bit to make it shrink back to the proper shape, which is a bit disturbing since it is cashmere/merino. But I still love this sweater - S calls it the "teddy bear sweater," and the name fits - it's warm, and snuggly, and perfect for rainy, cold fall days.

And to round out the cardigan group, Mariah is FINALLY finished!

I made this out of Calmer, and cut out the hood, replacing it with a sewn-on cabled collar. I love this sweater too - although knitting it was a b*tch (not helped by my inability to knit two fronts the same length.) I love working with Calmer - but PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD DO NOT TRY COMPLEX CABLES WITH IT!!! See, Calmer stretches. A lot. Which is fine when doing simple k/p stitch patterns. When doing large cables, such as, hypothetically, Mariah's sleeves, you'll have to pull the yarn so tightly to keep the cables from gaping all over the place that you'll slice into your finger and have to resort to band-aids. But now that it's done, I'm happy. :) It was a great pattern - very well-written and easy to follow, and I would have loved knitting it if I had picked a better yarn. Oh well - live and learn, right?

In the "mistake" vein, I took this sweater:

and turned it into this pillow:

I cut out the zipper, and sliced across the sweater at the armpits, sewed it all back up, and stuffed it with filling. Why did I destroy my first attempt at aran design? Simply put - I had no idea what I was doing, so I made it out of cotton. It seriously weighed about 5 pounds, and the measurements were slightly off because the cotton didn't exactly shrink as I expected. So I loved the design, but hated the shaping and actually wearing the thing. So remember that yummy Cormo that I wound on my new swift? I'll be re-making this sweater using the Cormo and MUCH better shaping. I plan on getting it finished by August, in time to take it on my trip to IRELAND. :) (assuming all goes as planned and I book the trip in December!)

I still have to take a picture of Trinity, but she was in the laundry hamper during the photo shoot, and I haven't had a chance to get a good picture.

But don't worry, there are plenty more pictures -

Remember my dad's vest? I'm slowly (emphasis on slowly) finishing this up - I still have to do the armbands, block it, and clean up all the ends and the steeks. But don't worry - I have help. See?

And see how well she's doing? I've finished the neckband!

I've also been working on a simple top-down striped raglan - I made a felted bag (to be felted) out of these 2 colors of cascade 220, and I really liked the combo - so a sweater was born! This is exactly what I need right now - completely mindless knitting that's not a scarf or socks. :) I'm going to throw in some waist shaping, and maybe a little hidden pocket to hold my metro card or something. We'll see how creative I feel!!

And as if I didn't have enough yarn in my stash, Cindy and Kristine brought me back some amazing yarn from London - that's cashmere sock yarn and some fabulous silk! I'm still in the "petting" stage, so I haven't decided what it wants to be when it grows up - but I'm thinking that the cashmere is so yummy that it might want to be a lacy scarf. The silk just wants to sit there and look pretty until I get some inspiration - any ideas for approximately 360 yards of beautiful silk?

And FINALLY (yes, I'm finally reaching the end!), here's a couple of animal photos from this weekend -

Cricket, the black kitty, helped me decorate for Halloween by sitting around. She likes the addition of the pumpkins, though....

And proof that Sunday Morning Pancakes make EVERYONE happy - here's Abby and Cricket relaxing in their sunny spot.


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ireland cardigan

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Alpine Lace
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