Sunday, December 16, 2007

Like old friends

You know how there are certain people in your life that you are really close to, but you don't actually talk to very often. Then, when you talk to or see them, you stumble for a moment. You know that you have a million things to talk about.... a million things have happened since you last spoke, yet for some reason you can't think of what to say or where to start. Well, it's been almost three months since my last posting and this blog is beginning to feel like that kind of friend. There has been knitting, there are finished works, and lots going on here on the home front, but I almost don't know where to start.

On knitting:

So, for the knitting, I'll start with a small project that was completed in November and has already seen a lot of use. Of course, it's the insanely popular Koolhaas pattern.

Pattern: Koolhaas (from Holiday IK 2007)
Yarn: DB Baby cashmerino, 1 ball brown and just a bit of pink
Adjustments: I adjusted the pattern by changing the gauge, so that I could provide Little Girl with her winter hat. The yarn is DB Baby Cashmerino and I had to use US 4s to get it to the right gauge, although I will quickly mention that if you would like to try this adjustment for your favorite toddler, I had really loose gauge and Little Girl's head is a bit on the small side, so you might wind up with a baby sized hat.

Oh, and the big plus besides it looking on adorable on her is that it actually matches two of her three winter coats. She's already received a ton of compliments on it and I have to admit that I'm not sad she has learned to say, "Mommy made it." Of course, that has elicited the dreaded "you should make those for money" conversation a few times, but that's okay. Oh, and I almost forgot... I got the yarn on sale, so the total cost for the hat was under $5, which makes it not only cuter than anything I've seen at all the kids stores, but also cheaper (not counting labor).

On the pregnancy:

I'm now just past 20 weeks, so I'm more than halfway done. This pregnancy is by far the hardest thing I've done in my life. The first three months, I was truly brutally sick all day every day and since then I've still had a few spells that were really rough. Some of the sadder phrases picked up by Little Girl include, "Mommy so sick," "Mommy need a vitamin," (vitamin being her word for all medication), and "Mommy throw up." She's also become much better about entertaining herself, though, so it's not all bad.

Now, that that's out of the way, the happy news is that we've had the sonogram and we now know that we're expecting boy! I guess I'm going to have to go through all my baby knitting books and familiarize myself with the cute little boy knits out there!

There's been much more going on, but I'll have to save it for another day.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Quick installment of knitting, baby

So, last I blogged, I proclaimed that the blogging slump was over. That was more than a month ago. Well, about two seconds after I posted, I found out that I was pregnant with baby #2! Then, morning sickness set in with a vengeance. For me, it lasts all day every day. I hate to complain about it because I am ecstatic to be pregnant, but it is so insanely difficult. Especially this time because I still have to take care of Baby Girl too (I really need to think of a new moniker for her). Anyway, as a result, I haven't done any knitting in about the past month or so (sniff sniff).

I'm not sure how frequently I'll be able to post, but I have to admit that I miss blogging and reading blogs so much! I'm going to try to keep it up, but we'll see. I'm at 9 weeks right now (and we got to see the New One today for the first time!), so I'm guessing that I have anywhere from 3 to 5 more sick weeks left.

Okay, I'm losing steam here, but I have to show off at least one old knitting project that was completed pre-pregnancy. It's Juno from Rowan 40. I'm really happy with how it come out. I modified the neckline a la Coloursknits. The collar was kinda tricky to get attached properly and it rolls a bit. Oh, and I'm so pleased that almost all the knits I've done for myself are cardigans... that means I'll be able to wear them at least for a little while into the pregnancy!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Dude, where's my blog?

I can't believe that it's been so long since I posted. No good reason either. Huh.

Anyway, for as long as my Baby Girl has been alive, she's been a momma's girl. Big time. It only made sense that she was that way. I stay at home with her and all. Recently, though, that's begun to change.

Not so long ago, when I would try to sleep in on Saturdays, Baby Girl wouldn't let me. She would play with her dad for a little while, but would soon enough come looking for me. As of a few weeks ago, though, she has developed a new routine. She wakes up, I go get her and bring her to my bed to snuggle (the Husband is already up... he's an early riser... as opposed to me... I swear it takes a good hour for me to wake up), then she asks, "Where's Dada?"

"On the couch," I reply.

She exclaims, "Dada time!" and leaves me to sleep. Of course, I'm a more than a little relieved that I'm allowed a day to sleep in, but at the same time it's definitely bittersweet.

Then, last weekend, things changed even more in the Husband's favor. I fear my Baby Girl is turning into a true Daddy's girl... she has now found a love that she can only share with him. Football. I'm trying to look at the bright side. Watching games with her present could actually make the sport entertaining for me as well. I do love the way she screams at the players to "throw it" -- the ball -- and laughs when they "falled down!" Plus, it could provide some hardcore knitting time, right?

Anyway, sometime last month or so, I finished this lovely baby sweater.

Pattern: EZ's Surplice Baby Jacket from Vogue Knitting, Spring/Summer 2007

Yarn: Rowan Wool Cotton -- 2 balls of the lavender and the leftovers (if you can call them that!) from a sweater I haven't finished yet.

Comments: I made it with my step-brother's new daughter in mind, but now I'm rethinking it. I used Rowan Wool Cotton, which is handwash only. I don't suppose anyone has had any experience washing this yarn in a machine? If I decide not to send it off, it will work out nicely because it will fit Baby Girl. For buttons, I attached two sets of two buttons (to be like the ones you get with French cuff shirts). It seems like I saw this on someone else's blog, but I can't remember whose.

The nice thing about not blogging for two months? You have tons of FOs to show off! What's coming soon? A finished Juno, a pair of Charades, and okay, maybe not tons of FOs, but a couple is still pretty good.

Friday, June 15, 2007

I'm not a Shawl Person

Really, I'm not. I've never once worn one. I love the way they look, but until a couple weeks ago, I truly thought that there was no way I would make one for myself.

Of course, I was tempted once before. When I was knitting Birch. I had intended (and eventually did) to give Birch to my grandmother who taught me to knit. A couple times, though, as I was knitting I thought, "Well, maybe I should keep it for myself. I didn't tell her or anyone else that I was going to gift it, so what's the harm?" In the end, though, it turned out that I'm allergic to mohair, which occurred to me as a possibility while I was knitting and became undeniable during the blocking. So, I just pretended that nothing had happened. I'm not a shawl person.

Then came Victorian Lace Today... and all the beautiful scarves and shawls other people were making. Well, I thought, I can't justify buying the book, but it wouldn't hurt to just borrow it from the library. So, I did. I flipped through the pages and although many of the pieces are spectacular, I was only tempted by one.

Two weeks later, I now have myself a finished Curved Shawl, worked in silk, so I can't possibly find a reason to give it away. I still don't really consider myself a shawl person... and I think it's pretty unlikely that I'll wear my new shawl like this, ---->

<---- but this is a definite possibility.

Pattern: A Curved Shawl with Diamond Edging from Victorian Lace Today.

Yarn: Alchemy Silk Purse in Teal Tide. About 2.5 skeins.

Adjustments: The patterned called for:

  • US 3 needles
  • Super fine weight yarn
  • 42 4-row repeats
I did:
  • US 7 needles
  • Fine weight yarn
  • 25 4-row repeats
Their final measurements: 21"x62"

My final measurements: 20"x60"

Comments: This was really the perfect project. Fun to knit and a happy outcome too! I loved stretching it out as I went to see those cute circles!

In other knitty bloggy news, the publication of my last pattern in Knitty also helped me to reconnect with an old friend. Hannah and I hadn't talked to each other since college, but when she saw my pattern, she recognized me! What's weird is that neither one of us knitted in college. Small world!

Monday, June 11, 2007

More Knitting for the Baby

Well, I was going to post today about my just finished Curved Shawl (aka A Curved Shawl with Diamond Edging from Victorian Lace Today), but something else came up... my second Knitty-published pattern went live!

Anyway, grow with me is definitely one of my favorite things that I've ever made for Baby Girl. It's already become a staple in her wardrobe and been through the washer and dryer quite a few times. It's nice to have something handmade that I can put on her and not worry too much about stains and such. Plus, she's clearly adorable in it.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Baby Girl, You are Famous

I know it's kind of a silly pattern, but if there's one thing I've learned since becoming a parent, it's that I'm willing to do any number of silly things to amuse my daughter.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

7 things and an almost sweater

A while back, Anna over at the Yarn Mansion tagged me for the 7 random things meme, so here goes:

1. I have a minor phobia of making (and to a certain extent answering) phone calls.

2. When I was a kid, this fear was so intense that I would pay my brother to make phone calls for me (this quickly ended when his voice changed).

3. To combat this fear, I worked three summers during college answering phones at a hotel reservations call center.

4. When I worked at the call center, I would talk so fast that people often wouldn't understand what I was saying. My callers would regularly call me "Violet." For the longest time, I couldn't figure out why. Then, I realized that the dialogue I was required to follow had me say, "My name is Laura. What city and state...." If you say "Laura. What," fast enough, it sounds like "Violet."

5. I'm from the South, but I usually don't have a Southern accent.

6. My Southern accent can come out in certain situations, but I can't do it at will. Sometimes I try, but it never works.

7. I've never gotten a speeding ticket or even been pulled over. I don't drive slow. I just always make sure there's someone else going faster than me. (Mom, I know you read this, I really don't drive too fast, I promise.)

I'm pretty sure that I'm the last person in blogland to do this one, so I'll skip the tagging.

Now, back to the knitting. Look! An almost finished sweater! This is #13 from Phildar Printemps 2007.

Sometimes I feel like I'm not supposed to like garter stitch, but the truth is that I do like it. A lot. Not just because it's super-easy either! It can be hard to find the right pattern for it, though. Baby patterns (like the surprise jacket) are obvious choices. Grown-up patterns w/ garter stitch are a little harder to pull off. Sarah's Rorschach definitely works.... and I think this cardigan pulls it off too.

Here's the detail on this sweater that I think makes the garter stitch work:

Those ribbed thingies were knit separately for both the front and the back. I'm not so sure that I executed them beautifully, but I like the effect anyway. On the downside, they did bring the total number of pieces to be seemed to nine (would have be twelve if I hadn't picked up the button and neck bands!). Now I just need to do the pockets and epaulets. Of course, I'm in no hurry to get those done since it's now super hot summer weather...

Thursday, May 17, 2007

I knew there was a reason I learned to crochet...

I'm still slowly working on my argyles, but last night I needed a break Especially from Drunken Argyle. Long rows. Size 2 needles. Black yarn. Yeah, I definitely needed a break.

A while back, the lovely Aimee sent me Phildar's Layette No 465 and some Lion bars (oh my gosh, have you ever had a Lion bar? they are only the best candy bars of all time. it's like they took a kit kat and said, 'you know what? we could do so much more with this. caramel, rice crispies, more chocolate.... now that's a candy bar!') in an exchange. I still haven't gotten to knitting anything from it, but there was also a picture of a crochet headband. I don't read French crochet patterns and it looked simple enough, so I just winged it.

I think they came out pretty cute. Definitely a fun way to use up leftovers. So far, I've made about half a dozen. I think they'll be fun gifts for people who would appreciate a handmade gift, but wouldn't appropriately appreciate the amount of time that goes into knitting a sweater (even a baby size sweater... you know people like this too, right?).

Should you be inclined to make one (or a few) yourself, here's the flower pattern I did (beware, i don't remember the last time i looked at a crochet pattern, so i hope i'm using the appropriate abbreviations and lingo):

Ch 7.
Join with a sl st to the first st in your chain, to form a ring.
(Ch 2, dc, tr, dc, sl st) repeat 5 times around.
Weave in one end and use the other to create a bar across the center of the flower to loop the chain tie through.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007


When I was a kid, my dad used to take my brother and me on long hikes through the woods and cow fields near our home. We called it the Cow Hike. What was strange about the Cow Hike was that every single time we went, we would somehow get separated from my father. What was even stranger, though, was that we would often see him behind trees and such. We would call out to him, but somehow he never would hear us. So, we would be forced to find our way home on our own.

When I was a teenager, I was thinking back on the Cow Hike and it hit me. My dad was testing us. He was hiding on purpose to see if we could find our way home without him. I asked him about it, and he confirmed my suspicions. I was so shocked. It seemed so sadistic.

Now, though, when I think about what he did and those long hikes, I find myself laughing and even to a certain extent grateful. The Cow Hike was a great bonding experience for my brother and me. Plus, we really learned our way around those woods and fields.

When I was a kid I used to do a fair amount of knitting. Mostly stuffed animals for friends' kids. The first big project that I made to keep for myself was this afghan. It's all acrylic. Probably mostly Red Heart. Every skein was purchased from W@l-Mart. When, I was working on it, I was so pleased with myself. It was so much fun picking out different patterns and colors for every square.

When I got back into knitting a couple years ago, I looked at this afghan... and I was kind of horrified. The finishing was so bad. There were so many mistakes. It's acrylic....

Now, though, I'm happy again with this afghan. I realize that I learned a lot from making it. Plus, it's completely functional and machine washable.

So, anyway. Thank you to everyone who responded to my post on my mother in law. Your kind words really meant a lot. Oh, and the yarn will soon be in a new home with Sue in Australia!

Now, on to current projects. For some reason, I've got argyle vests on the brain. I'm working on Drunken Argyle for the Husband. Except I plan on making the front and the back the same (obviously like the back pattern). And for Baby Girl, the Argyle Vest from Debbie Bliss' Special Knits.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

A few months back, I noticed that this beautiful bamboo yarn was on sale at pureknits. I had no idea what I would use it for, but I'm a huge sucker for a sale, so I bought one skein anyway.

When I was trying to decide what the beautiful bamboo yarn wanted to be, I took a look again at the yarn's description and this line stuck out to me: "its sheen reminds us of silk." Silk.... huh, they make most ties out of silk, don't they? Before I knew it I cast on and plowed through a moss stitch tie for the husband. I was so pleased with myself. And why wouldn't I be... first of all, moss stitch is a huge pain. Second, I hate rows with a small number of stitches... and this thing clearly had miles of those rows. Third, despite my loathing of those two aspects, I was loving knitting this tie because of the yarn and because of the beautiful result.

I added a single crochet border and happily presented it to the Husband, insisting that he try it on immediately. Well, when he tied it on, it stretched by nearly two feet. Oops. Ha ha. Okay. No problem. I took out the border and then ripped back to an appropriate length.

Unfortunately, it's still not working, though, because it turns out that the bamboo is just too limp to function properly as a tie. Which really makes me wonder about some of the patterns I've seen that require bamboo yarn.... like camisoles and socks. Would that really work?

Anyway, I really want to find a way to save this tie. The best idea I can come up with is backing it with fabric to make it sturdier... any other ideas?

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

.... and a blog contest

A few years ago, the Husband and I spent a year living in France. We were recent college graduates and so so foolish... foolish because we chose to go abroad even though we knew that my mother-in-law had breast cancer. I don't think we ever thought about what we were doing as selfish... and we certainly had no way to know what would happen... but this time of year (near the anniversary of her death and Mother's Day) always makes me remorseful. Two weeks before our stay in France was to end, we got the call that she had passed away. The Husband never got to say goodbye. His mother was truly one of the most giving people I've ever known. She not only never asked us to stay, but even encouraged us to go abroad that year. She truly cared more about her sons and their happiness than herself.

In her honor, the Husband, Baby Girl and I will be running (the Husband)/walking (BG & I) in the Komen National Race for the Cure. If you are so inclined, please sponsor me.

Okay, I also wanted to hold my first blog contest in her honor. You do not have to donate to the Race for the Cure. You just have to leave me a comment on this blog entry. I'll give you until Mother's Day - May 13th at 8 pm EST. The prize? One skein of Henry's Attic Andromeda Silk & Merino (50/50 wool silk) dyed by Theresa at LTK. (I used this yarn to knit My So-Called Scarf.)

Knitting content soon...

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Family Heirlooms and Such

This past weekend our little family went to visit our kin in Tennessee (what Southern accent? no, not me). As is often the case when I visit my mother, she took the opportunity to unload a car's worth of stuff on me (totally justified, since it was my stuff anyway). Along with the college books and old shoes I also brought home something a little more exciting. In this bag lies the oldest ufo (unfinished object) to reside in the babyknits household.

It's a bag of 23.5 squares that were knit by my great grandmother and were intended to be a bedspread at some point. She also included the instructions for the squares, so theoretically, I could finish off this bedspread myself. Except that she was knitting them on US 00's (my mom asked, "Are those needles or pick-up sticks?"). Each square measures about 4 inches square, but there's a lot of variability in the size (gauge issues, maybe?) and there are some very visible stains on some of the squares.

So, the big question is what to do with them. I figure the best option would be to finish off the 24th square and put together what I've got for a pillow. But, is it wrong to use them? I mean they really are heirlooms at this point. But, what is knitting for, if not to be used? I really don't know what's best.

Anyway, my favorite part about this ufo of old is how she stopped. Not only did she stop knitting mid-square, she stopped mid-row. For some reason, I find this highly amusing.

I hope you all have some good advise. Oh, I should also mention that I never met this great-grandmother, as she passed away before I was born. The bedspread-to-be was passed down to my grandmother who is now past the knitting point in her life. Somehow, they ended up with my mother even though she doesn't knit, so now it's up to me and Baby Girl. We won't let you down, great-grandma!

As far as my own knitting goes, I just finished something a little less heirloom-ish. It's a washcloth for Carrie's contest. It's my own little solution to the who's doing the dishes question.

At our house, we used to always come up with little games to figure out who was going to do the dishes (pinball on the computer, trashcan basketball, that sort of thing). Of course now I'm staying at home with Baby Girl, so I'm doing them most of the time, but still I like the idea of his and hers dishcloths with the "His" and "Hers" done in shadow knitting, so you would just pick up a dishcloth and then read it to see who would be doing the washing. Uh, I only have "His" done so far, though. Maybe I should just make two of them, so it would never be her turn.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Spring Cleaning

I live a relatively messy lifestyle. I admit it. I clean (maybe not as often as I should), but I never have been so good at the organizational stuff. So, I've decided that this Spring is the time to change that. It's slow going, but I'm trying to do a little household project every other day or so and still keep up with all the necessary cleaning. The disorganization had gotten to the point that a common conversation between me and the Husband went something like this:

"Hey, do you know where super important tax document A is?"

"Well, I put it on the dresser. It was on the left side on top of Baby Talk magazine and under Time magazine."

"Yeah, I see the magazines, but super important tax document A isn't here!"

"Sorry, I guess it's lost, then."

Yeah. So, besides all the really boring filing, I've also done some (very) small projects that were fun. Here are a couple of my favorites:

I saw these embroidery hoops used as wall decor first on the Purl Bee page a while back and then a couple times in blogland. The fabric is from a dress that Baby Girl had last year. The dress was one of my favorites, but it got a stain on the front that I couldn't remove. I have this idea in the back of my mind that one day in the super distant future, I will sew a quilt out of all Baby Girl's old clothes, so I've been hoarding them all stains or no. It's nice to put one of my favorites to work in the time being.

And the other one is a small basket I put right next to the sink. I go through about a zillion washrags and dishtowels a day and it's a huge pain to have to pull more out of the linen closet every time I need a new one. Of course, once I put them all right in plain view, I realized that my one tired MDK warshrag was lonely, so I did a couple more. MDK warshrag number one is happy to have the company.... almost happy enough to forgive me for that bleach incident a couple months ago.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Saffy and other nice things

Wow. It's been a long while since I posted. No reason. Just out of the habit. Fortunately, I have been knitting, though.

I finally finished Saffy. Since I started it in November of last year, that's a pretty big accomplishment. Although, I have to admit that I like to have long term projects on the needles. What's weird is that I was working on this sweater when we were transitioning Baby Girl from co-sleeping to sleeping in the crib and now I hardly remember the times when she slept with us.

Pattern: Saffy from Rowan Denim People

Yarn: Elann Den-M-Nit in Ecru

Comments: I love this sweater so much. I was inspired by Diana's Saffy forever ago and I'm so happy to have one of my own. Definitely very wearable. LOVE the machine washable.

Anyway, as it turns out, I'm not the only one who likes this sweater. So does Baby Girl. Her expressing a like of some items of clothing is fairly new and oh so cute. When she likes something, she touches and says, "Niiiiice." Among the other items of clothing she likes are a t-shirt with sparkly butterflies and a grey hoodie. She clearly has good taste.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Baby's Got Socks

In my last post, I shared a story about Baby Girl. I have to be honest. Over the past couple weeks that's been a stock story for me. You know... one that you share with everyone that you know. Even to the point that I had to start asking, "Have I told you this already?" Anyway, the general response was laughter and encouragement.

BUT, from the knitting community, I received one extra piece of feedback. More than one person mentioned that they hoped it wasn't a handknit sock that Baby Girl threw in the toilet. "Oh no! Thank goodness it wasn't!" I replied. What I didn't share, though, was that....sigh... it couldn't have been a handknit sock because Baby Girl didn't have any! You noticed the past tense there, didn't you?

Pattern: Baby's Bootikin from Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush

Yarn: Koigu KPPPM (color 411) and Lang Jawol (color 0033).

PAUSE for a second here. I just checked Knit Happens' online store to figure out which color I used for the Koigu and they are having an incredible online sale. I had to make myself a little order before I could continue!

Comments: These may be baby socks, but they're worked on 00 needles (aka the smallest needles I've ever used) and over 60 sts. So, they weren't exactly a super quick knit even though they are baby sized.

As soon as I finished the first one, I had Baby Girl try it on and since it fit so perfectly, I had to cast on for the second one immediately. Second Sock Syndrome was not even an option. I'm not sure that she'll get a ton of wear out of them since the seasons are changing and she's growing, but I love them anyway and I'm so happy it was brought to my attention that she needed them! (They won't even be going near the bathroom, though!)

Friday, March 16, 2007


For the past few weeks, we've been slowly working on the potty issue. I hesitate to use the word "training," because I think that's more for older kids and done in a much quicker fashion. I won't bore you with all the details because it's long and boring and boring. But, I will share one of the fun stories.

The other day, Baby Girl asked for the first time to go to the potty... by saying "Potty."

"You want to go to the potty?!" I exclaimed more than asked.

"Kay." She replied.

I ran her to the bathroom. As soon as she was on the toilet, she did her thing. The necessary celebration ensued... lots of clapping and such. I decided to give her a minute to finish in case all my cheering had interrupted her. I took my eyes off her (I'm sure that everyone knows this is where the fun part of any parenting story starts). When I turned back to her, she had taken off her sock and used it to wipe herself and, of course, thrown the sock in the potty.

Sigh. Well, it's still progress. She knows when to go to the potty and that she should wipe herself.

Oh, and I finished this scarf. My So-Called Scarf. Using one skein of Henry's Attic Andromeda Silk & Merino, which I ordered eons ago from Theresa at LTK.

The yarn has been in my stash forever. I ordered it because it was pretty and on sale, but I didn't know what I wanted to do with it. Finally, about a week or so ago I decided that this would be the perfect pattern for it... and it definitely works except that I forgot that I had ordered two skeins of the stuff, so now I still have another one leftover.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Cleaning house

Today I'm expecting company. My step-mother, sister and her two little ones are coming for a visit. So, I should be cleaning. But, as I often do, I've found myself stuck on a small insignificant project instead of the home as a whole. I don't feel like doing the laundry or dusting, but what I will spend huge amounts of time doing is trying to remove the rust from this lamp the Husband and I purchased eons ago in Morocco. Unfortunately, all my hard work has had little effect. So, I'm hoping someone who reads here will have some advice. I have no idea what the metal is (it is silver in color). I've tried Brasso and didn't get very far with it. Anyone? Advice? I would really love to have this thing cleaned up.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Baby Meathead

Awww. A baby meathead. Baby hats are cute, but baby versions of adult hats are even cuter. It's like the hat had a baby.

Pattern: Larissa's Meathead pattern. This pattern is soon to be published, but Larissa is offering it for sale one last time before publication with a chunk of the proceeds going towards a friend of hers who recently lost her husband. Definitely a good cause and a good hat. Can't go wrong. Buy one yourself here. Oh, and be sure to check out the super cute Flickr group for ideas on embellishment.

Yarn: DB Cashmerino Aran. Held double using US 10 needles.

Adjustments: I just changed the size of the hat by adjusting the yarn and needle sizes so that the gauge would be 12 sts over 4" instead of the 8 sts over 4" as written in the pattern.

Comments: This hat was knit for a baby boy who is due tomorrow. I really wanted to do something exciting for the embellishment, but I couldn't come up with anything that wasn't too feminine. So, I decided that I would adorn it with the flag of Tatarstan, since that's where the baby's parents are from. Haven't heard of Tatarstan? Well, you're not alone. Even the spell check on the computer doesn't recognize it. Anyway, I'm not sure if the flag was a stroke of genius or just a dumb idea (I think I'd feel pretty silly putting a hat with a US flag on Baby Girl), but either way it's there now and I'm not changing it.

Monday, February 26, 2007

You Might Be a Bad Parent If....

If the only time you take pictures of your child is when you're forcing her to model handknits for your blog.

Pattern: The Wonderful Wallaby (Flickr group here).

Yarn: Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool kool-aid dyed with one pack of Pink Lemonade. One skein was more than enough for the 2 year old size.

Adjustments: I did the pocket in reverse stockinette.

Comments: Love this pattern. It's so simple, so effective, so easily modified, and it has a hood. Hoods are fantastic in kidswear. When going out the door, it's really nice to have one less thing to put on Baby Girl (no hat to worry about). Thankfully, I got the wallaby done while there's still some Winter left. I think I'll do another one in cotton for the summer. With short sleeves. And maybe cables like Brooke's.

<---- Shameless attempt to duplicate Julie's pretty photos.

My incredibly uneven kool-aid dying. ---->

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Phildar et Moi

Pattern: The Phildar Swing Jacket, aka Veste Pattern #16 from Automne 06/07 Tendances (by the way, is this really accurate - autumn ends before 2007 begins, right?).

Yarn: Peruvian Highland Wool from elann in Oatmeal Heather (13 skeins for the smallest size).

Adjustments: After I finished knitting and sewing everything together minus the pockets, I let this sweater sit around for a good week or two. Then, I finally realized that I was never going to want to knit pockets, but I did want to wear this sweater. So, I hit JoAnn again (which is, fortunately, close to my home) and picked up some cheapo remnants of a soft brown fabric whose composition is unknown (this may have been a gamble, but I figure I'll be hand washing the sweater anyway, so it should be okay).

Comments: First, I would like to thank the Academy... I mean... Vanessa for the KAL that pushed me to get moving on this super lovely sweater. Also, I would like to thank all the other ladies over at the KAL who provided invaluable information on such exciting issues as yarn subbing and bias binding and such.

It was just too much fun knitting this sweater. In part because of the sweater itself and in part because of all the weird memories that it brought back for me. I lived in France at two different points in my life. At neither time was I knitting, but somehow just the feel of the magazine took me back. The use of English reminded me of all the ads that would come in the mail for Carrefour (kinda like a French Wal-Mart). It's weird how just seeing the French language in print unlocked a ton of memories that I didn't realize I still had. As I was knitting I could almost hear the accordian player who lived next door to us in Dijon. He would play on the street for money, so he was practicing a lot at home.

Anyway, I would definitely highly recommend this pattern. Even with shipping the prices for Phildar magazines are really reasonable.