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July 31, 2007

Show and Tell

Good mail seems to come in clumps around here. I'll go for weeks with nothing more interesting than a bank statement and then I'll hit a happy patch and something nice comes almost every day. Lately things have been pretty terrific in the mail department...

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Hello. I totally rock.

Circular needle case from Dan of Spin | Knit. I won his blogiversary contest and I'm not ashamed to say that I totally played to win. You're kinda jealous, aren't you? Maybe he'll make some and put them in his shop if you ask nicely enough.


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Sample-sized Soak packets from Chris in three promising-sounding scents (citrus, aquae, and a scent for celebration). I plan on doing a very faux-scientific review of these when I get a chance. Maybe next week? Everybody loves a good product test.


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Rowanspun Aran, for the next big sweater project...which I'm already six inches into. Any guesses? Clues: it's for me, and it's cabled (what a shocker)!

July 18, 2007

Goings on

Wow! It's kind of hard to come down from that Demi post, but I guess it's time to move on. Thanks much for all the thoughtful comments; I'm all pink and blushy here.

Getting back to the slightly more mundane...here's the latest Plain Old Sock project I've been carrying around with me:

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This is Luna Park, color 203* and you're looking at sock number two. I haven't posted about this project yet because, well, let's just say that I'm a bit underwhelmed. The colors aren't quite as charming knitted up as they were in ball-form, and the yarn is annoyingly unbalanced which means both socks have a bit of a twist to them. Also, for merino it feels an awful lot like regular old sock yarn. Nothing special folks. Move along.

In other project news, I finished the first half of Hanami, picked out the provisional cast-on and started knitting the second half. Everything was looking lovely...I got a few inches in before I noticed that I was getting some nasty pooling. What gives? Needless to say, Hanami is in time-out for a while.

Fortunately, I have (relatively) new yarn to console me:

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Hello. We are an impulse purchase.

Two Saturdays ago I may have spent some quality time in the sale section at Stitches and Scones in Indy, and we all know I'm nothing if not helpless in the face of discounted lambswool. I blame Wendie for taking me there and Jared for making a cameo as the little voice in my head who kept saying "but it's Tweeeeeeeed...**"

All right, I'm off to go knit now. More new-projecty excitingness coming soon!

*Didja see how I remembered to tell you what yarn I'm using for a change? 10 points for me!
**I'm sure he's not this whiney in real life.

July 9, 2007

Finished: Demi

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The Specs:

-Pattern: Demi, from Rowan Vintage Knits.
-Size Knitted: the smallest one.
-Yarn: Rowan Magpie Tweed Aran (discontinued).
-Skeins: 6 skeins (540g, really) of shade 778.
-Needles: size 8 bamboo, (sizes 6 and 7 when called for).
-Buttons: La Mode style 43254.
-Start to finish: November 9, 2005 – July 5, 2007.
-For: Me!

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The Pattern: I love this pattern. I love these cables with all the pretty twisted stitches. I love the bobbles. Love, love, love. The charts were a little tricky in the beginning (there's a lot going on there) but once the pattern was established and I could see what was going on it was smooth sailing.

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The Fit: The only real issue I have with this pattern is with the fit of the sleeves. May I present Exhibit A:the pattern photo. As you can see, this pattern was meant to be a bit on the roomy side. Schlumpy-comfy with wideish sleeves and all that.

I made the size suggested for persons of my bustitude (3 to 4 inches ease). My body gauge was spot-on. I knitted, I blocked to measurements, I seamed the thing up and lo and behold...I have a sweater with very snug sleeves. Originally it was a sweater with very snug sleeves and a boxy unflattering body, but thanks to the miracle which is a blocking board, a whole whack of pins and a steam iron, I stretched and steamed the whole thing a few inches longer and now the body is a lot more fitted. This isn’t a bad thing…just different than I was expecting.

The way I see it, there are a few options: a) my biceps are magnificent, b) my gauge was off when I knitted the sleeves, c) the pattern could use a little tweaking, or d) all of the above. Hard to know since the sleeve schematic doesn’t include width measurements.

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Mods: Being a tallish person, I knitted a couple extra inches in the sleeves. Another half inch wouldn’t have hurt, but whatever.

Why did it take you so long to knit this? I don’t know.

How’s the Magpie working out? ? It’s a little itchy, actually. I think the solution is to buy a nice wool wash, but I hate the idea of ordering one since I’m Really Picky about smells. Are there any good neutral smelling ones out there?

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Why do you look so cranky? You should see the other photos. In my defense I’ll argue that getting into the zone and channeling my inner model was situationally appropriate. Because seriously people, when it’s 90 degrees out and you’re frolicking in the shallows of a public stream wearing a wool sweater…I think that looking committed to the project at hand is imperative.

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Final Verdict: Love it! I’m particularly pleased with the buttons.

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Hello. We look like cherry lifesavers.

July 6, 2007

Anatomy of a fuzzy purple post

Part I: Salutation and a Lame Excuse

Ahoy there, knitterly people! I know things on the blog have been about as exciting as watching ice cream melt on the sidewalk, so you guys all get ten points for hanging around. The knitting has been chugging along at a leisurely summerish pace (slowly, and without deadlines) and, well, you know how it goes.


Part II: Attempt at Distraction and Pacification with Pretty Yarn

Find here a picture of my lovely new angora to ease the shock of reentry:

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Souvenir yarn from Paris, courtesy of the Parents du Thunk.


Part III: The Knitting Bit

Ok, down to business. The Modified Hanami is progressing nicely...I'm nearing the end of the first half. Here's what things look like currently:

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Hello there. I am warm and fuzzy.

A slight aside: it suddenly occurs to me that this is the second year running that I find myself knitting a shawl out of kid mohair in July. Could it be a subconscious rebellion against over-air conditioned workplaces, or perhaps just a coincidence?


Part IV: Tardy Finishing Disguised with Positive Spin

I bought buttons and sewed them onto Demi yesterday! Stay tuned for FO shots. Finally.