July 17, 2009

Mid-July Update

Summer is in full swing here at Chez Elliphantom. The morning glories are large and in charge and my summertime pets, the praying mantises, are hanging around and making me happy. There's a new laptop in residence, which pleases me no end (I started this post from the exotic location also known as "outside"). Not much earth-shattering on the knitting front...just lots of bite-sized projects for my short attention span.

hallo! I'm scarftastic!

You've probably already forgotten about this scarf (last seen in April), but I took somebody's advice and checked out the Daisy stitch. It looked pretty awesome on the right side...just the thing to break up the color patterns in the hand-dyed sock yarn...but I wasn't particularly smitten with the wrong side. Sortof unremarkably reverse-stockinetty. So I changed the stitch a bit and got something that pleases me more. It still looks about the same from the front. I didn't get a picture of the back. Oopsie!

I glove you

In other knitting news, I pulled my Rainy Day Fingerless Gloves out the other day and knocked out most of the second glove. Why don't I do more large-gauge colorwork? It knits up so quickly! I should do something to remedy that.

The most exciting news in these parts is that, in few weeks, I'm packing my suitcase and heading off to the Sock Summit in Portland! I'm registered for classes with Nancy Bush, Chrissy Gardiner, Meg Swansen, and Barbara Walker, and a lecture with Priscilla Gibson-Roberts. I have to pinch myself every time I look at that list!

A couple other project photos from earlier in the summer that never made it to the blog:

Rae's plain old socks. Now finished, but not photographed.

The Snickets. Oh the loveliness...

January 12, 2009

Finished: The Bethie Scarf

by now you should recognize my mum, yes?

The Specs:
Pattern: An Elliphantom original
Yarn: about 70g of hand-dyed, recycled cashmere {details here}
Needles: Size 7
Start to finish: Sometime in November - sometime in December, 2008 (I memory for detail is breathtaking, right?)
For: My favorite matriarch, for Christmas

This autumn Mum hinted that she might need a scarf (not too long) for Christmas and mentioned the word "stripes." I don't really think of my mum as a stripe wearer...she's more of subtle elegance-y sort of person. So I thought I'd compromise and do a more refined version of the standard-issue striped scarf.

The pattern itself is a four row slip-stitch pattern. Originally I intended the front to be the back (it's less stripey and more garter-nubby), but everybody else in the universe likes the back side best. And who am I to argue with the rest of the universe?

front or back? you be the judge

The working name for this scarf was the "mummy scarf" but since, out of context, it can evoke images of dingy old strips of linen...I rechristened it "Bethie" after my mum. Nobody has called her that since she was little, but I think it's cute (and truth be told, if I weren't her daughter I would totally try to get away with calling her that).

choosy moms choose cashmere

Mum gave me a little review of the scarf last night when I spoke with her on the phone. She says it looks great with her extensive collection of white and off-white turtleneck sweaters, and that it keeps the chill off nicely while walking in the Pacific Northwest mists. So I think we can safely say...

Final Verdict: We have a winner. Woo with a side of hoo!

October 22, 2007

Sammamish blog-down

I've been back from Washington for almost a week now, but it's never too late to share a few pics. All told I got to see my two lovely sisters, the wee nephewling, my parents, and my cousins Jessica and Liz. So there was much fun and maybe a little less knitting than expected. The knitterly upside is that the cool, drizzly weather meant that we could break out the handknits. See if you can spot them all!

child_prodigy.jpg couslings.JPG
Krick learns a thing or two from Elliot, child prodigy; couslings!

corn.JPG E_pumpkin.jpg
Pop and E. brave the corn maze; drooly baby punkin goodness.

Mum, a crisp chardonnay, Baby E., yours truly, and Sam the dog.

E_street.JPG jessi_knits.jpg
Elliot street; Monster Jessi Knits!

mushroom.JPG rainy_seesters.jpg
An excellent mushroom; a familial handknit extravaganza.

Knits featured in this post: knucks (still waiting on a FO report), the as yet unblogged twiggy bobble hat (hmmm...Spun Mag seems to have let their domain expire. I'll leave the link though, in case it comes back. Who can fathom the mysteries of the internets?), the garter stripe scarf, the mossy baby sweater, and Kricket's Luna Park Socks. Oh fine, you can't see the socks in any of the pictures...but I swear Krick was wearing them. And while we're at it, I got to break in my plain old socks as well.

For those curious among you, the couslings and I did squeeze in a trip to Cultured Purls (right after the trip to the salmon hatchery) in Issaqua. Souvenir yarn and needles were dutifully purchased.

January 7, 2007

Finished: Two Branching Out Scarves

Back from Christmas now! Lots to blog about, but I think I'll start off with a Christmas gift that I didn't have time to blog about before I left...

mummy, in scarf, with stockings

The Specs:
-Pattern: Branching Out, by Susan Pierce Lawrence (from Knitty).
-Yarn: Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool; one skein for each scarf.
-Color: Charcoal grey (color 19).
-Needles: Size 7 birch.
-Start to finish: December 10 – December 29.
-For: One for my mum and one for Thunk’s Grandma Betty.

Notes: This was one of those presents that works out just right. I started by buying two skeins of the Silky Wool to knit my Mum a nice Christmas scarf. When I got home I poked around a bit online and chose the Branching Out pattern before I realized I’d bought the yarn the pattern calls for. How often does that happen?

I had such a nice time knitting the first one (which only took one skein) that I just went ahead and knit another one for Grandma Betty.


The Yarn: This stuff is great. It has an interesting, slightly nubbly texture but it’s still nice and soft. Plus it’s a bit tweedy (yay!).

The Pattern: You know if I find a lace pattern easy you can knit it too. In fact, I had such a nice time with it that I’m thinking of going back and having another go with the Flowerbasket Shawl (the “easy” lace pattern that kicked my tookus and rendered me lace-meek). I’ll let you know how that goes.

Mods: The only thing I changed was to leave off row 10 of the last repeat so that the ends match up a little more nicely.

Final Verdict: Two gifts + one contented knitter = lotsa winners!

[Bonus shot: Mummy works it for the camera.]

December 14, 2006

Creeping up on Christmas

Thanks for all the very nice comments on Beau, everybody! You do realize that Thunk is going to be nearly impossible to live with now, right? If he leaves me to run off to New York and start his modeling career it will be All Your Fault. I’m just saying.

In other news, I’ve still got a few smaller projects to finish up before I take off for Christmas...and exactly one week in which to finish them. So here’s what I’ve got going:

Korknisse, the advanced guard

hello. we are a boy band.

There are actually more of them now…I took the picture last Sunday. I still need to add little eyes and things…maybe some spangles. The goal is to have the whole army ready by Saturday.

Branching Out


This will be Mum’s Christmas scarf. I started it on Sunday and I’m currently about a third of the way done. The yarn is Elizabeth Lavold Silky Wool. Nice stuff. Good pattern. I am pleased.

Heirloom bag:

Sorry, no picture of this one. But I'm finished with all the knitting and just have to figure out how to line the danged thing. And here you thought it was a permanent fixture on the WIP list. How wrong you were...

And in the finished category we have...
Etched Glasses for Rosser


Nearly impossible to photograph, but you get the idea. These are for the other BIL. In case you can’t tell what the pictures are supposed to be, they are: the Greek flag, the four suits, his initials, the Parthenon, a skull and crossed hockey sticks, and a cricket.

They were a lot of fun to make…who doesn’t like playing around with acid and an exacto knife? The hardest part was deciding what to put on them. Instructions for making your very own can be found here.

That's it for now! Back to work with me...

October 22, 2006

Finished: Chunky Scarf


Secret Project revealed! This is a very easy scarf I whipped up as a gift for the little sis for Christmas. I figure she got River last time, so this time around it's something a little more basic.

The Specs:

Pattern: Garter stitch. You know that one, right?
Yarn: About 250g of mystery super-chunky alpaca, acquired when Ms. Aura was destashing a while back.
Needles: Size 35s. Ack! The bigness!
Start to Finish: October 14 – October 15.
For: Kricket.


I just cast on 78 sts, knit 7 rows, bound off loosely, and threw on some fringe. Easy-peasy! The hardest part was jamming all those stitches onto the needles. That and freezing my tooshie off while Thunk took pictures.

Timewise, this took about as long as a dishcloth to make...just a few hours. Like I mentioned before, I don't have a clue what kind of yarn this is, but I did knit a similar one for Rae in Cascade Magnum a couple years back if you're looking around for something appropriately chunky (I dubbed that one the macaroni scarf, for very good reason). You could even rustle up some white Magnum and turn this into an adventure in hand-dying.

I see a scarf in someone's future...

Final verdict: Wrap it up and put it under the tree!

February 13, 2006

Finished: Garter Stripe Scarf


The Specs:
-Pattern: An Elliphantom Original
-Yarn: Plymouth Yarn's Baby Alpaca Brush
-Skeins: 1 skein each of 2 colors
-Needles: size 9 Lantern Moons
-Start to finish: January 30 - February 12
-For: Me!

Notes: Lovely mindless knitting. I knitted quite a bit of this on Saturday Night when Wendie was over. The rest was knitted while avoiding other knits, watching the Olympics, and at stoplights. Knitted with yarn from the stash.

The Yarn: I love the Baby Alpaca Brush. It's soft. It comes in lovely colors. My only complaint is that I used two (supposedly) 50g balls to knit the scarf and the resulting scarf is 88g. I had 4g of orange left over at the end, which brings the total yarn weight up to 92 grams, but where are the other 8 grams? I love my scale, but sometimes it causes me heartache (the kind of heartache you get when you're afraid that a yarn company you trust is secretly trying to rip you off).

The Pattern: CO 20 sts with yarn A, knit one row *Knit two rows with yarn B, Knit two rows with yarn A* repeat until you run out of yarn, cast off on the second row of a color so that the stripe is the same thickness as the others.) Easy Peasy. I think y'all could have figured that out.

Final Verdict: La-la-love it!

January 31, 2006

Old Dogs

So you may be wondering how the Fair Isle training is going. Well...over the weekend I sat down with my Fair Isle swatch and taught myself the Continental method and the English method. Then I taught myself how to combine the two. Then I futzed around a bit and figured out a way to hold both yarns in my right hand at once so that I can knit the way I usually do. Guess which method won out? You got it. The Elliphantom Special.

While this means that I'll have to take an automatic deduction from the technical judges, I know that this is a good move because it's going to make me like knitting Fair Isle, which is really the point of this whole exercise. Besides, I have no business getting squeemy about using the wrong technique now, as it's never really bothered me in the past. La, la, la, knitting rebel, la, la...

In celebration of my newly liberated knitterly self, I started a new project. Sometimes you just need a little Garter Stitch to take the edge off. Besides, my life currently lacks cute accessories.


This will be a completely mindless, purely tactile knitting experience. What could be nicer than knitting with lovely soft yarn on my new Lantern Moon needles? Yum.