Monday, November 27, 2006

New Stitches

Stitches of a different kind that is. In honor of all of our deployed and soon to be deployed soldiers I made up some service flags. I will put them on consignment in our local craft and souvenir shop. For all of those of you who don't know (some of them are actually military wives and they don't know) the flag is supposed to be displayed in times of war by households with an immediate family member in the service. Each star represents an enlisted family member.

Cutting an sewing the pieces was a snap, it was the star that gave me a headache. I tried any kind of applique and nothing worked for me. The bulk of the seam allowance on that tight of a point just didn't want to be sewn. So I decided to cheat. I reinforced the fabric with stuff to make it stop fraying and cut out the star, underlayed it with iron on and slapped it in the center. Looks good, doesn't it? I'm kinda proud of myself. Now I just want to see what people think in the shop and if they sell. I hope so. After all, there are enough of our boys down there.

Next sewing project might be a rag quilt, another fun and fast project. To be continued .....

Monday, November 20, 2006

Another baby set

Here is another baby set done for my next neighbor. I guess I was faster than her, because she is still walking and walking. Our hospital is a little to overcrowded with pregnant women at the moment to admit her and speed things up a little. Since dad requested no girly pompoms and tassels I honored that wish and just worked in a couple of braids to make the hat a little more fitting. The earflaps were also a request. Seems to be pretty popular and it's a good way to keep those ears warm and save from drafts. The blanket was made on my knitting machine. Since I already bragged about it before I didn't want to show it off again, but it sure looks good as a set.

Friday, November 17, 2006

My contribution to Lacevember

It's not like everybody was just hanging around waiting to see what my contribution to Lacevember is, but here it is anyway. I finally got around to casting on and passing the first repeat of Cheryl Oberles Kimono Shawl. How do you like it so far? I have the be honest, the border with it's plain garder stitch is a little bland. I wish it was something a little more challenging, but I guess that's ok. The rest of the pattern makes up for it.

I first saw the shawl in Eunny's blog and loved the way it turned out. That's why I bought the book and found more interesting things in it, but always went back to this one. So there it is, my project for this knitalong made from red (recy) cashmere on 3 mm needles.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Some of my Quilts

So since I went through the closet for the fabric, I figured I show you why I have all this fabric and how I got so many scraps. Here are some of my master pieces. At least these are some of the ones I still have at home. I lost track on how many I made since I started quilting, but I know I gave away a whole bunch of them as presents for weddings or birthdays or to my MIL and so on. A lot of them were baby quilts too. I know this is supposed to be a knitting blog and I'm afraid I'll have to change the name of it, but like I said before, as long as it's made with needles and thread, no matter what kind, I'm there. Did I mention that my aunt used to sew and my mom's uncle was a tailor? I guess it's in the blood somehow. Oh, and I just got the new KnitPicks catalog in the mail and already found something I can do again. I love the catalogs, if not to buy, then at least for inspiration.

Wanna know what I did today?

How do you guys like the mess I made today? Yes, I did this on purpose! I destashed my closet and pulled all the fabric I brought with me and stored in moving boxes to see what I had. I was volunteering at out local souvenir store and figured I have to find something I can do to sell over there. The store is run by our officer's wives (I'm not one of them and we won't hold that against them) and they sell anything to do with the 3rd ID, Army, Americana or anything handmade. So I figured that's exactly where I belong. Unfortunately it doesn't pay, but I'm surrounded by nice things and get to meet new people.

Anyway, to get back to the subject. I finally pulled out the fabric and kept out the solids, the baby, the christmas, and fall fabrics. The plan for those is rag quilts, since we are going to have all those new babies, christmas stockings, pin cushions, coasters, service flags and anything else that I can manage. I was even thinking of recycling my husbands old BDUs, DCUs and Chocolate Chip DCUs to make baby bips. Good idea? If any of you has any suggestions, I'm glad for any kind of input.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Gloves are done

Here are my finished gloves. I desided to do half fingers. Like this my hands won't be so cold and I can still pick up things. I absolutely love the braid in it. I wish it would have come out a little better on the picture, but unfortunately I can't snap a picture of both of my hands myself.

Both gloves weigh 56 gr and I used 3 mm needles. I guess with a little shorter cuffs one pack of yarn would have been enough. I'm surprised how fast they went. The braid makes them look fancy and the ribbing makes them snug but not tight at all. They are going to be my favorites, well, ok, between those, some store bought ones and some made of rabbit fur there is not much to choose from, I guess.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Fingers or no fingers?

Ok, I need some help here. I started on a pair of wristwarmers/fingerless mittens to keep me warm when I'm out walking my dog. The original pattern calls for a cast of about 4 inches past the thumb, but I'm debating wether I should make it cut off fingers instead? What do you think. I really love the pattern and the braid went really quick. I just started this one yesterday and I'm this far now. I guess I'll be forced to take a break to wait for your suggestions or make up my mind myself. I still appriciate your input. I had three balls of this yarn and I haven't even finished one whole skein, so I guess I might even get to knit a matching hat. The pattern is from a german knitting blog, but she also has the instructions in english, so go visit Petra and check it out.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Lacevember Questions

The knitting questions, or the usual suspects

How long have you been knitting? Since 3rd grade maybe and that is ..... let me calculate...... too long ago.
How did you learn to knit? In elementary school. Everybody, even the boys, learned how to knit.
Favorite thing about knitting? You create something useful, something you can wear and that keeps you warm from a strand of yarn. It's amazing if you think about it.
How long have you been knitting lace? Not that long. I've been on a sock trip for a while.
Favorite thing about knitting lace. It looks so delicate and fragile and still, it keeps you warm on chilly evenings or to say the least, it looks gorgeous.

The yarn questions, or flash your stash

Favorite lace yarn? Anything very thin.
variegated or solids for shawls? Depends on the pattern, I guess.
Favorite lace color? What ever is available and makes the pattern stand out the best.

Technique, or show us your skillz

Circs or straights? Socks - straights, big things - circulars.
Favorite lace knitting trick? Are there any? Please tell me!
Lifelines? Gotta check constantly, before you go wrong.
If so with what? Check with the picture and the line below.
Fancy blocking wires, or just sewing pins stuck in your carpet? Carpet and lots of pins.
Pattern, or can you follow directions? I prefer patterns, when all the bugs are worked out.
shawls or lacey items? Either or.
triangle, rectangle, or circular shawls? So far, rectangle and willing to experiment.
Charts or printed instructions? Charts.
Favorite lace you've knit? So far only the Print o' the wave
Favorite lace you want to knit?Kimono Shawl by Cheryl Oberle

Just Fun, yup that's right, just for fun

Favorite jelly belly flavor? Lemon, I guess or better yet a whole mixed hand full.
Tell me everything you know about Eric the Red..... Let me guess, a dead guy?
Coke, classic or with lime? Either, but I prefer water. It has less sugar and calories.
Holiday carols, sing along, or wish they would be banned from all public airwaves? They are nice for the first days, but get annoying on christmas eve, when there is nothing else to listen to.
What is the definition of irony? There is no such thing, because we are all way to nice. Right?
How many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie roll pop? Not that many, because I love tootsie rolls, but the world may never know.
Why is my cat always puking in front of my son's bedroom door? I don't have a cat, so it must be the dog after she ate another one of my son's socks.
What is your superhero power? I have eye in the back of my head and my kids know it.
If the laundry is 9 foot by 11 foot (just dreaming, that's a big laundry room), and the walls are 8 feet tall, and you are going to tile the entire room in tiles that are 3 inches by 5 inches, what color should those tiles be?Do we really want to tile the laundry? Lets paint it instead.
What's for dinner tonight? Whatever is fast and available.
What is clogging my children's bathtub drain? It's not the hair, so it must be the stuff the construction workers left behind.

New obsessions

Ok, first of all I wanted to update you on the baby blanket. It's finished and end up looking like this. The edges are rolling in a little, but I don't think that's something that a little steam and an damp cloth can't fix. Should I give it to her now, or wait until she actually has the baby?

Another thing I started on yesterday was mini socks. Did you see the nice stitchmarkers I got from Anja the other day? Did you also see the little keychain sock? Well, I desided to give it a try and it's really fast, uses up little leftover balls of yarn and therefore is very rewarding. These are going to be little stocking stuffers for my family on christmas. It's nice to stick some change in there you might need for a shopping card or something like that. Nowadays everybody has a cell phone so there goes the idea with keeping change to make a phone call in there. As you can tell I have lots more little leftover balls of yarn and I'm all for using up the last of everything. I hate wasting things and my husband calls me a packrat for all the things I keep, just in case I need them sometime down the road.

Here is a not so nice picture of what my adopted daughter aka "The DOG" did to one of our socks the other day, when my kids just left them laying around instead of putting them in the laundry, where they should go. They were worn ones so they must have had a especially yummy smell to them. No wonder, after the were stuck in sneakers all day.

Also I signed up for another Knitalong. I swear, if I get started on something I just keep going, and going, and going, ........ like the Energizer Bunny :)

Sorry, but I'm feeling a little funny today. I also have company today. My older son stayed home from school today, he wasn't feeling well and I'm used to having the mornings to myself, undisturbed and uninterupted. Grrr. Especially if he is watching TV the whole time and then tried to take over MY computer. This is MY timeslot and nobody better touch those keys!!!!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Guess what I just made?

When it works, I really love that knitting machine of mine. After dragging on with those mittens for a couple of days I needed some instant gratification, so I decided to get acquainted with my knitting machine again. After trying a lace pattern a few times and not getting the desired results, I decided to give fair isles a try and guess what, it was a lot faster than the lace. Look what I can do:

It is so nice being able to do this so fast and especially so even without having to worry about the tension. This blanket is 180 stitches wide and 330 rows long. I still have to put the border around it and make it look nice and then I can give it to my neighbor. I also like it that the strings in the back are short enough that I don't have to worry about little fingers or anything else getting snagged in it and pulling on it. Wow, now if I can only figure out how to make Christmas stockings like this, I'll be set. Karin, any suggestions?

Snowflake hat and mittens

I have my snowflake set done. I tried to use up the rest of Catherine's Crystals and Caves yarn, but after a pair of socks and all of this I still have some more yards left over. Talking about awesome yardage on that pack. Now I gotta figure out what to do with the rest of it. Maybe some keychains? Anja gave me that idea. She sells them or adds them as a thank you gift, if you order anything from her etsy store.

I guess now I can get back to knitting that baby blanket for my neighbor on the machine. She is almost due and I don't want to be late, if the baby should be in a hurry. I guess I'll do it just like the baby blues blanket, just in a darker blue color, like she requested. I'll keep you updated on it, as soon as it's done. Hopefully this time it's go a bit faster and with less cursing and threats to the machine.

Friday, November 03, 2006

I love surprises like this

Look at the goodies I found in the mail today! Thank you soooo much Anja. I didn't expect that. Well, I knew she was going to send me something, but I didn't think she'd send me half of what she made. I don't even know which ones of the stitchmarkers I like the best and the keychain is just too cute. I love it. This shows once more that knitters are very generous people. Maybe Anja will sell those soon on her etsy shop? I guess we'll have to check and see.

I also have the hat finished and it's too small for me or either of my kids. That means it's definitely a toddler size and now I'm working on the matching mittens. I'm sure Catherine likes what I've done with her yarn. I'll show you more pictures, when the whole set is done, which shouldn't take that long. I might just have to make those mittens with thumbs, since they are for kids, not for newborns. My little son absolutely loves the last set of mittens I made him so much, that they had to be in the wash all the time. They just got wet so quick, but here in Georgia there shouldn't be much snow to mess with. I can't believe it, but in Germany they already had their first snow. Sniff. I guess I DO miss it already. Enough of this, gotta drown my home sickness with knitting. Later....

Enjoy the wave

Well, here it is. Those are the pictures I got to shoot right now. My bathrooms aren't the kind to show off, so there goes the mirror shot. I also didn't have a photographer handy or a model, so the tree had to be the victim. The blocking didn't make mine turn out as nice as Keri's stole, but it sure stretched it about a foot longer. Maybe it's the mohair? I can't really tell, but I'm happy with it. I especially like the shadow shot. Now I just have to find a reason as well as the outfit to go with this one.

I also have a sneak peak for you on the other thing I started as soon as I was done with the stole. I have to admit it, I'm an addict. I ran around the house trying to do something with my hands. It was only a few hours before going to bed, but I couldn't just sit around with my hands in my lap. That's just not going to happen. So I picked up the rest of the yarn I got from Catherine and added some white to it and started on a hat with fair isle pattern. I used US size 0 needles (2mm) and the yarn turn out so great on that. The needles are just soooo short (5 inches) that I had to watch out that my stitches wouldn't slip off all the time. I casted on 144 stitches and as of right now I have no idea who this is going to fit. Well, once I get it done we'll see. I'll have enough left to make some mittens, maybe even big enough for me? It got kinda cold this morning, when I walked my dog.

I just love the way the color changes within the pattern and the white still stands out. I hope Marina is not too critical about my knitting. I'm only starting on this technique and I hope the right tension comes with practice.

Well, that should be it for today. The addict need to get another dose of knitting. Keep those needles clicking.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

It is done - finally!!!

I don't think I have to tell you any more? I finally finished the Print O'The Wave Stole. Wow, that was ONE big stole, I tell you. I don't know right now how long it took me, nor did I bother figuring out the stitch count. You can get all that from Keri's blog, she has hers done already and hopefully soon you'll get to see Erica's stole too and then we can all be proud of it. I have yet to enjoy the magic transformation of blocking everybody is always talking about. I just pulled the wet thing out of the water to roll it up in some towels, so there is nothing magical about it yet. I didn't think you wanted to see a rolled up towel, so there is no picture of it yet. Sorry. I'm still trying to figure out where to put the darn thing up to dry, without having my carpet wet for the next couple of days. I also have no idea how long this takes. The stole I made for my MIL I just sent it off without even thinking the word "block". I hope she'll forgive me.

I gotta leave you now awaiting the first pictures of the stole. Don't bite your finger nails too short in the meantime. I'll snap a picture as soon as the stole is presentable.

Halloween Fun

Happy Halloween everybody. I wanted to update you on how our halloween went yesterday. It was all pretty short and sweet. My two boys dressed up as a Ninja and a Vampire and they went out with my husband to collect the candy, while I was guarding the house handing out candy to anybody who dared to come close. It's not that I totally went all out and decorated or something, I just wanted to see how brave the kids are in our neighborhood. Well, as you can see on the picture (I'm the fuzzy one) they had to be brave. I put on my husbands gilly suit and sat on my doorstep. At first I wanted them to come to the door and I was going to jump out on them, but there were too many little ones and I didn't want them to go home with nightmares, so I just did it this way. I was called anything from swamp monster to yedi, to talking bush. It was hot under all that burlap, you wouldn't believe it.

We ended up wit about as much candy as we handed out and I had to sweep up my house today and get rid of all the fuzzies I lost in the process last night. Well, I just had a bad hair day, I guess. I should really consider changing my hair dresser. Don't you think?