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November 30, 2010

And so it begins...

For the last week or so I've been hitting the Christmas knitting fairly seriously. I think my goals are pretty reasonable, especially since, given enough time, I would knit something for everyone I know (incidentally, I did come pretty close that year I made the korknisse ornaments*). This year I am dutifully following my holiday instructions to Not Stress Myself Out. Which means I've made a spreadsheet to keep everything straight. Because I just can't help myself.

Here's a little peek at one of the projects on the needles:

I may look like a mitten, but I am really a glove**

This is my second pair of Snorri Gloves. You last saw the first (now finished) pair here. Pictures soonish! We've already done the photoshoot and, as we all know, Thunk is an excellent model.

*which make an awesome little holiday craft, if you haven't already made some. seriously...they take about a half hour a piece.

**I know this picture is a little fuzzy, but there's nothing I can do about it now because there is NO LIGHT ANYMORE! I miss the sun. Boo.

November 15, 2010

FOs: Grape Fizz & Lemongrass Plain Old Socks

If you've looked over in the sidebar lately you'll notice that I've gotten a bit behind showing off some finished knits. There's even a particularly fabulous pair of finished mittens that hasn't even seen the light of day yet! I know. Shameful.

who's got toes?*

While it is tempting to declare this "FO Week" and get everything caught up, I know that as soon as I make any sort of declaration I'll get completely wrapped up in something else and wander off. You know, like last week when I promised to blog some WIPs and then got very involved in practicing my cello and watching reruns of Bones {cough}. So we'll see.

For now I'm going to kill two birds with one stone and get a couple of pairs of Plain Old Socks off my chest. Nothing fancy here, just a couple pairs of my standard-issue toe-ups to send off to the SILs for Christmas.

Captain Whitelegs strikes again.

Grape Fizzies:
Pattern: my toe-up version of Priscilla's Dream Socks by Priscilla Gibson-Roberts
Yarn: Trekking XXL, Color 109 (it reminds me of grape soda.)
Needles: size 1 dpns
Start to finish: October 2009 - September 2010 (the majority of this time was spent waiting for me to do the final tubular bindoff on the second sock.)
For: My SIL Kasey, who claimed them when I was knitting them at her house in Oregon last December.

send spray-tan

Lemongrass Plain Old Socks:
Pattern: my toe-up version of Priscilla's Dream Socks by Priscilla Gibson-Roberts
Yarn: Socks that Rock Lightweight, Color: Lemongrass.
Needles: size 1, and 1.5 dpns (I switched to the larger needles halfway up the leg.)
Start to finish: February 2010 - November 2010 (I have no idea why they took this long.)
For: My SIL Anna, who claimed them when I was knitting them at her house in LA last February.

more fizz please

*the question that Thunky asks every baby he meets. (A: "YOU'VE GOT TOES!!!")

November 8, 2010

SnB Giveaway - The WINNERS!

I just love having contests. It's my chance to read what you guys have to say for a change! So much fun. Thanks to everybody who entered and commented. You guys are great!


So...it is with great pleasure (and a bit of a delay...sorry about that) that I announce the 3 winners of the Stitch 'n Bitch Superstar Knitting book giveaway! They are (in no particular order):

1) Veronique C.

2) Jill B.

3) Elns

Check your e-mail ladies!

In other news, this week I promise I will actually blog about my knitting! I've had so much newsy/giveaway stuff lately that I've fallen a bit behind in other departments. No good!

November 3, 2010

Free Pattern! Snowbird Mittens

So this afternoon I googled myself. You know...to make sure that there isn't a new cult leader/arsonist/clown who shares my name now. I didn't turn up any nepharious Elli Stubenrauchs but I did discover that Woman's Day magzine has posted my Snowbird Mitten pattern as part of a VK Mittens & Gloves promo! Which means that I get to keep playing the Free Stuff Fairy and give you the link to the pattern. Yay!

I'm getting a lot of milage out of this photo.*

I don't receive royalties for these mittens from Vogue Knitting online sales, so I definitely encourage you to save yourself the normal $5 download or magazine/book purchase and snag the pattern for free. I have no idea how long WD will keep the pattern up on their website (one week? forever?) but it's there now. What are you waiting for? Go get it!

Ravel it

p.s. have you entered the Stitch 'n Bitch Superstar Knitting giveaway yet? The contest is open until 11:59pm EST, Friday, November 5, 2010.

*photo courtesy of Vogue Knitting/Soho Publishing

November 1, 2010

Stitch 'n Bitch Superstar Knitting - Book Review & Giveaway!

**The giveaway is now over, so comments are closed! -E**

If you read my post yesterday about my contribution to Stitch 'n Bitch Superstar Knitting, you'll already know that this is one book I've been eagerly anticipating for years! My mom too...she's been asking me when it will be coming out since I first told her about it in 2007. After a year or two of asking, I think she started to think I was making it up. Well guess what? The wait is over...it's finally out!

look mom! it's totally real! (you can tell because it has a shadow)*

A little review of the book:

The book is broken down into three sections, all of which are pretty darned awesome. (If you want a peek at the Table of Contents you can find it over here.)

The first bit (and when I say "bit" I really mean "whopping 114 page chunk") covers a variety of more advanced knitting techniques. It starts simply with stripes and before you know it you've passed through slipped stitches, tubular knitting, and double knitting. There are whole chapters devoted to intarsia, stranded knitting, cables, lace, embellishments, and even a catch-all chapter with lots of other useful stuff. Like 16 pages of cast ons/cast offs. Debbie does not mess around...when there are multiple ways to do something she gives you a whacking great selection to choose from so you can find what works best for you. I approve.

TulipTop_crop.jpg NipTuck_crop.jpg
Pullovers! Tulip Top, by Laura Grutzeck - love! l adore the texture and applied i-cord bow. the colors rock too. Nip/Tuck sweater, by Lien Ngo - adorbs! fantastic pin-tuck-esque bib detail and fluttery sleeves.*

The second part of the book (46 pages or so) is all about designing sweaters. In this section Debbie walks us through four different types of sweater construction and makes the whole thing seem ridiculously straight-forward. And I'm saying this as someone who has dipped her toe into the waters of sweater design and run straight back to the mitten pool. The page addressing how to evenly space X increases (or decreases) over Y rows is worth the price of admission alone.

Crush_crop.jpg Coco_crop.jpg
Cardis! Crush shrug, by Alyssa Carlberg - a great little bolero. perfect for pairing with a high-waisted skirt. Coco cardi, by Ruthie Nussbaum - check out those sequins! so fabulous.*

The last part is the pattern section. I'll be honest...knowing that the book was delayed for a few years...I had mentally prepared myself for the pattern section to feel a little dated. So I was totally surprised by the sheer quantity of awesome. Being the selfish knitter that I am, the patterns I picked to show off in this post are the ones I want to knit for myself. Yum.

Who knows exactly why this book has taken so many years to finally make it to press...it doesn't really matter. After seeing the final product it's pretty obvious that DS took the time she needed to do a fabulous job with it. Good for her.

Saxon_crop.jpg GrettleHat_crop.jpg
Accessories! Saxon the City stockings, by Julia Frank - knit on size 8s, these chunky beauties might even keep me warm in my freezing office this winter. Gretel Tam, by Ysolda Teague - I never got around to knitting this classic. Better late than never!*

Here's the Giveaway Part!

Want to win a copy of Stitch 'n Bitch Superstar Knitting? This book is all about taking your knitting up a notch, so leave a comment on this post telling me about the most challenging thing you've ever knit...or attempted to knit. Do you have a cabled nemesis that still lurks in the bottom of your knitting basket? Did you conquer a fantastically complex lace shawl? Maybe you've just finished your first scarf and it just about killed you. I can't wait to hear about it! Everyone is welcome to enter...no worries if you've never commented here before. Three (3!) copies are up for grabs, courtesy of Debbie Stoller and Workman Publishing!

The Normal Contesty Details:
Only one entry per person, please. International entries are encouraged...Workman Publishing said they will mail internationally (thanks)! I will close the contest at 11:59pm EST, Friday, November 5, 2010. The winning entries will be chosen using a random number generator. Good luck!

Ok, one more fun fact about this book...
My Aunt Nancy calls it "Stitch 'n Hmm" because she doesn't use bad language. So cute. Cracks me up every time I think about it.

*all photos courtesy of Debbie Stoller/Workman Publishing

**The giveaway is now over, so comments are closed! -E**