Tuesday, November 29, 2005  

Choir Concert

For any in the DC area-

The Friday Morning Music Club Choir (of which I am a member) is performing this Saturday - and it's FREE!

Missa Solemnis in B-flat (“Harmoniemesse”)
Te Deum
Salve Regina

Saturday December 3, 2005


First Baptist Church

Sixteenth & O Streets, N.W.

, D.C.
(near Dupont Circle Metro)


Friday, November 25, 2005  

So there is a catch to this law school thing!

Oh yeah, FINALS. I knew there was a catch to the whole "no grades until the final exam" system! Well, at least there's a whole lot less pressure this time around - your first year grades really are the most important.

But enough about the crappiness that are exams. Let's talk about yarn purchases! ;)

Since I won't be able to get back to the Happy Place until after finals, I decided to make the most of my last visit there. Kinda like a last meal, right? So first I purchased some really yummy koigu (in two colors) for some socks. Since I only have enough sock yarn to make 2,667,432 pairs of socks already. But they were so pretty! And I also bought a set of addi turbo's so I could keep doing socks on two circulars - I'm still not sure if I like it better than my dpn's, but S is going to do his on two circs, so I thought it would be good to have a "demonstration" pair available so I could show him how to do things.

And then, right before I left to go home, 13 balls of Debbie Bliss cashmerino chunky fell into my bag at the exact same moment that my credit card flew into the machine. It was such a crazy coincidence, I tell you!

I wouldn't have chosen this color except that every member of the committe thought this was the color I should go with. So there it is - and they are (as always) right. I love this color, and have NOTHING like it in my closet!

What is it going to be when it grows up (probably in the next few days if I can get time to finish the seams)?

The Debbie Bliss Bolero Jacket from Simply Soft! I got to try on the shop sample and I loved it.

I'll need to find a cute pin to close it up, but it's such a comfy and cozy sweater that doesn't make me look like I'm wearing a sweatshirt.

Speaking of comfy sweaters, I also finished the Twelve Minute Sweater!

Twelve-Minute Sweater
Pattern: Cropped Sweater (?) from the Ella Rae book
Yarn: Magallanes (as called for) - 5 skeins (I barely dipped into the sixth, but I made the sleeves a bit too long, so I would have been able to do it in 5 even with the long sleeves!)
Notes: Everything about this pattern was great to follow with 2 exceptions - (1) the sleeve cap shaping was totally f'ed up. So I re-wrote it - since the gauge is so bit (seriously like 2 rows per inch), it only took a few minutes to re-knit the sleeve caps, and I had used a row counter throughout so I knew how many rows high they needed to be. (2) In hindsight, I think 5 buttons would have worked better than the 4 called for - but I think it'll be fine. Certainly good enough so that I don't need to rip out the button band, buy more buttons, and re-do!

I really loved knitting this sweater, and think I'll actually get quite a bit of use out of it once it comes back from being a shop sample. The yarn softened up a LOT after a rinse with eucalan, and I spit-sliced throughout so there wasn't that much finishing to do.

And finally, what two tired little ones look like after a post-turkey run through the neighborhood - ok, two tired little ones and one tired big one! Too bad she wasn't big enough to take Abby by herself - they sure are fast! :)


Tuesday, November 15, 2005  

Winter Camping

Seriously, being so bad about posting has its advantages. See? Another FO! If you had actually watched the progress, this wouldn’t be exciting – but since I was a huge slacker and didn’t post for over a week, it’s like I pulled an FO from thin air. :)

Koigu Socks

Pattern: based very loosely on Nancy Bush’s “gentleman’s socks” from Knitting Vintage Socks. As always, I used my own # of stitches (60), made the leg much shorter, and knit them toe-up with short-row heels and toes.

Yarn: Koigu KPPPM, just over 1 skein. Words cannot express how wonderful this yarn is to work with. I predict a bit of a spending spree tomorrow night when I visit the shop.

Notes: Nothing really – basic sock pattern, great yarn, interesting stitch pattern. I would definitely knit these again.

Speaking of knitting things again, I started my next sock project during the Redskins game on Sunday (we will not speak of the game.) I thought long and hard about what this yarn wanted to be – it’s Rowan CashSoft 4-Ply. SO SOFT. I know these socks won’t wear that well, but DAMN will they be comfy! No matter what I came up with in my head, I kept coming back to the Laila’s Socks from Folk Knitting in Estonia – so I started on a modified pair. I’m loving them!

But enough with the knitting. Well, almost. This past weekend, before I completely surrender to studying, writing a first draft of my article, and taking on pet-sitting duties for the holidays, S and I grabbed the gear, loaded up the truck, and set out for Shenendoah National Park for a weekend camping trip. What gear did I make sure to grab?

Of course, given that this is one of the warmest Novembers ever, we picked the coldest night of the year - temps in the low to mid 20's - so it was far too cold to expose my fingers in order to knit. Oh well - at least I was prepared!

Speaking of "prepared" - here I am demonstrating proper camping form -

handknit hat? check.
warm sweatshirt over long underwear? check.
gloves and fingerless mitts? check.
doggie? check.

But it wasn't all drinking cold beer as the temperatures plunged. We saw the last bits of fall color, and Abby did her best mountain dog impression -

and once the temperatures fell, she modeled her new coat. She wasn't a really big fan, but seemed happier to have it on once the sun went down.

But it was a good thing we only stayed one night - it was so exciting to go on what was, essentially, a 24 hour puppy walk that this is what happened when she got home:

Cricket, on the other hand, thought we were all crazy. In fact, she decided to hide under the bed until we stopped talking about "camping." I mean, really - nice warm bed with nice fluffy comforters, or a sleeping bag in the woods?


Monday, November 07, 2005  

In Denial

I'm rapidly getting to the point in the semester when the amount of work I should be doing increases exponentially. I am still firmly in denial, however, and continue to say things like "I'll study over Thanksgiving." I'm going to be VERY unhappy in a couple of weeks, but it'll be entirely my own fault, so in the meantime, I'm going to knit.

So, once again (ah, the advantages of updating so rarely) I have FOs to show off - but the most exciting one isn't even mine!!!

Presenting S's mittens:

First knitted project - in the round on DPNs, with increases, decreases, ribbing, and even an impromptu color-change when we ran out of the brown! These look GREAT, and my help was minimal - demonstrations, explanations, the occasional fix-a-mistake, and things like picking up stitches for the thumb. But at least 99% of it was S - what a great first project! He's thinking of moving on to socks next...

But not to be outdone, I finished some mittens too - I just left off the tops. These are destined for Grandma, since she complains that her hands get a bit chilly when she's reading or watching TV or whatever... so hopefully these'll fit and keep her toasty. They're a variation on the fingerless mitts I made myself last year.

Grandma's Fingerless Mitts

my own
Yarn: artyarns supermerino, color 109
Notes: these will always be the "supreme court" mittens in my mind - I knit most of the first mitten listening to Justice Ginsberg speak on the legacy of the Rehnquist court, and I finished the second while listening to a panel speak about the Alito nomination. Other than that? A really basic pattern and a really quick knit. :)

But I'll see your mittens, and raise you a sweater!!!

Green Stripey Sweater

Pattern: my own, using the top-down raglan generator (stripe pattern from Knitty's felted messenger bag!)
cascade 220, 5 skeins total because of the striping, but with plenty leftover of each color!
Notes: I LOVED making this sweater, even though I had to rip out the body once (waist shaping miscalculation) and rip out the almost-finished sleeve once (sleeve decrease miscalculation). Since this was my first top-down experience, I didn't make many mods to the pattern - but for my next effort, I'm definitely adding in a scoop neck so the front doesn't ride up. Oh, and thank goodness that Cascade 220 felts, because with all those stripes and the multiple rips, I spit spliced plenty!

And how much did I love making this sweater? Enough so that I (almost) immediately cast on for another version:

As you can see, I did neck shaping on this one. I used provisional cast-ons for all the neck edges since I'm not sure what type of neckline I want at this point, and, as the Irregulars know, I'm NOT a fan of "pick up and knit." I figure once the sweater is more "established," I'll bring it to the committee and get suggestions for the neckline. The yarn is the AMAZING brook's farm Four Play from MDS&W...

I have an idea for the overall design of the sweater, but I need to see if it'll play out as I imagine. But I'm VERY excited to be finally knitting something out of my MDS&W yarn - I was seriously facing attending next year's festival without having knit ANY of my yarn from last year's shopping spree.

Not, of course, that having more projects in stash than I can possibly knit in the next, oh, few YEARS stopped me from buying something new - but it honestly wasn't my fault. I was working at the shop when the books came in from the publishers - I figured it was fate, so I bought mine before we even bothered to put a price sticker on it.

But a new sock knitting book means a new pair of socks on the needles, right?

Sorry for the blurry pic - that's some Koigu KPPPM, size 1 needles, and a very modified "gentleman's sock" from Knitting Vintage Socks. These will be for me, because I'm essentially done with my holiday knitting - I decided what I wanted to knit for various people, knit the projects, and refuse to feel guilty for cutting the gift-knitting off, and knitting for myself. Although I do still have to finish Dad's vest and felt a messenger bag... but hey, it's only November, right?

But speaking of new projects (COUGH COUGH), I have to bust Holly -

first, she was just going to wind the Koigu KPPPM into a ball.

then, she was just going to admire how pretty it was.

then, she was just going to "check" and see if she had any free size 7 needles.

then, she was just going to "check" and see if she remembered the pattern for Clapotis.

"Oops! Did I just cast on?"

Don't worry, Holly - Abby's right with you. Although she may not knit, she is totally in favor of exploring and trying new things...


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ireland cardigan

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Alpine Lace
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