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June 5, 2006

Finished: Baby Placket-Neck Pullover

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The Specs:
Pattern: Child's Placket-Neck Pullover from "Last Minute Knitted Gifts", by Joelle Hoverson. Errata here.
Yarn: Handwork Cora
Skeins: a little over two balls in Caribbean Sand
Needles: Size 7 circs
Start to finish: May 24 - June 3
For: the spawn of Stephanie

The (lack of) details:
You may have noticed that I chose not to embellish. When it came down to it I realized that, given the amount of time I had to work with, I had a far greater chance of making the sweater look royally weird than knitting something wickedly cool. So I've tucked all your fabulous ideas away in my brain for the next time I find myself confronted with a baby sweater. Remind me to ask you guys for advice next time I need a Halloween costume.

Buttons:
The buttons are vintage navy ceramic from the thrift store. What you can't tell from the picture is that the circles on them are just the tiniest bit glittery. Every boy needs a little sparkle, right?

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Mods:
The only thing I changed was to add buttonholes. The original pattern calls for beads as buttons and you're just supposed to push them through the seed stitch band. I thought this was a little cheesy, so I added a couple as I went. I ended up leaving off the third button since I got to the end of the sweater a little sooner than I had anticipated, but I think it looks ok. If anyone asks, it's deliberate, ok?

Notes:
A lovely fast pattern to knit, though it is not, as the book claims, a four-to-six hour project (unless you happen to be a crazy-fast knitter). Still, it's five bazillion times faster to knit than Trellis.

Final Verdict: It’s a winner! The mummy brigade at the shower gave it the thumbs up.

June 1, 2006

Progress (of sorts)

I seem to have two modes: the Elli that knits and the Elli that gets things done. Guess which one of my alter egos has been around for the past week? Yup. I've been getting tons accomplished (we're talking washing the windows AND vacuuming behind the couch people). However, you'll be happy to hear that last night I hopped back on the knitting train and blasted through the yoke on the baby sweater. I was feeling pretty pleased with myself until I took a look at the placement of the button band.

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Lighting brought to you courtesy of my window-free office

Looks like I'll be ripping that out and trying again. And in case anyone is wondering, I'm still undecided on embellishment. There were tons of great suggestions (thanks to all of you who weighed in!); I just haven’t made up my mind yet.

In other news: I got my flowers in over the weekend. I've lived in this apartment for a few years now, and I’ve finally figured out that anything requiring much water won’t work since it gets hotter than the Sahara out front in the summertime. So this year it’s all full-sun, draught-resistant, idiot-proof plantings for me! I already love not having to haul water outside every day.

Nasturtiums for the flowerbox (Empress of India...these will be red if they ever get around to blooming). I love how the leaves look like little lily pads, or alien antennae:
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Portulaca (moss rose) for the wine crates. I’m loving the old lady colors, especially the poppy orange. Also pictured, my morning glories (in the ground, which I’m hoping will equal self-watering) and you can just see the geraniums, basil and rosemary off to the left.

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Yay plants! In yet other news: I got some excellent thrifting in over the weekend. More on that later...

May 25, 2006

Ack! Baby Shower!

A couple of days ago I realized that my friend's baby shower is coming right up (June 2) thus vaulting me into Emergency Gift Knitting Mode. Here's what I've got so far:

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It's the Child's Placket-Neck Pullover from the most aptly named Last Minute Knitted Gifts. Recognize the yarn? Yup, it's a stashbuster! I had four balls of the Handwork Cora left over from my Apricot Jacket.

I made pretty good progress on it last night, but now I’m starting to regret picking such a plain pattern. Does anybody out there have any ideas for baby-boy-appropriate embellishments? I absolutely refuse to make it sports-themed, but I'm open to other suggestions. Maybe something with fish? The mum-to-be is a biologist. Any ideas (fishy or otherwise) would be greatly appreciated!