Sunday, July 31, 2011

Still Life with Kangaroo Body Parts


Knitting for the Missouri fair continues at a furious pace. Perhaps I should have given myself more than a week to knit a pair of kangaroos. All the body parts are done, but this left only a tiny length of yellow yarn (see picture) so no Jill head/torso can be knitted. The yarn store closed 4 minutes before I realized this. It is closed tomorrow too. The kangaroos need to go in the mail the day after that, to arrive at the fair in style on time. Oh crappers.

In other news, sorry for the sparse updates. It's been busy and hot.

One highlight was getting pretty much an entire side of the house replaced last week. Here it is before the new doors and windows went it--it looks like a dollhouse doesn't it?
Sensing a limited opportunity, Cammy espied the dupioni silk curtains while they were down, and made herself at home. She always knows the baddest/cutest thing to do!

Saturday, July 23, 2011


Holy mole it's hot! Too hot to knit, even inside. Too hot to work on the garden...things are dying out there but it's all I could do to pick some things and run back inside.

There's a theft problem in the community garden, and all the tomatoes I've left to ripen have been picked off. While I was out there a random dude came into the garden and asked if he could take the green tomatoes from the other plots! Oh, and there's a day program for mentally ill people nearby, and a certain schizophrenic person snuck in and ate all of the onions! It's so bizarre and funny it's hard to be mad about it. Anyway, with the decimation of the turnips by some sort of bug, and the thievery, there isn't too much to show from the garden.

Thankfully, these are funny-looking cucumbers, so funny-looking that no one else wanted them. Still tasty though.

The hot peppers are also less theft-prone. Here's a jalapeno. The leaves are purple on one side, green on the other--I believe they are Perilla, similar to shiso leaf. It's growing like weeds in the common herb plot, and I think I'm the only one who knows that they are edible. In Korean cuisine Perilla is a common side-dish (in marinated/preserved form), or used as a wrapper, or fried individually like tempura. (It's called kkaenip, which means sesame leaf, but actually is not at all related to sesame.) If there's still giant bushes of it when the weather cools, I'll pick the whole lot and put them up for the year.


The only knitting news: my Missouri state fair entry tags arrived!! Now I just have to send in my entries (oh, and knit one of them).

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

FO: Bootylicious Pixies; and Loopy Ewe

There are way too many preggers people these days! That I know, anyway. I'm barely keeping up with the requisite gifts. Tomorrow is a baby shower for twins (come on ladies, give this knitter a break!), a boy and a girl.

No one is getting any knitted gifts made of fingering weight yarn anymore. Also, no more blankets or dresses. No, no, it's time to batten down the hatches and break out the big ass yarn and easy-peasy little accessories patterns. Also, free patterns. And garter stitch.


Four little bootylicious booties! Aren't they cute? The pattern is Precious Booties, free from Bernat. I made mods so all the decreases and increases were on the right side, because I'm a little OCPD like that. I don't think the mods made any difference. The most important thing with baby booties is to stuff them with tissue paper so they look booty-adorable.


The pixie hats are from Small Things Bonnet, by Sweetmama. There is another option to make a rounded bonnet-type hat in this pattern. Don't bother, the pointed one is way cuter.

Is it kind of freaky to stuff tissue paper like little baby heads into knitted hats? It looks a little weird, but it really shows off the short rows.

These gifts were really made last-minute. I got the during a knit-group field trip to Loopy Ewe, less than a week before the baby shower! The yarn is Cotton Supreme, by Universal Yarn Inc. I love this yarn--it's super soft, 100% cotton, big-ass (Aran, to be exact), and machine washable and dryable. I got a skein each of Celery and Orange Creme, and have about half of each skein left. I got colors which I hoped were unisex, to let the parents decide which is girlier or boy-ier.

Our knit-group is a busy group. It took an excel sheet with equations, a big survey, and conditional formatting to sort out which day we would go. My DH upon hearing about this trip:

DH: There's an internet yarn store here? In St Louis?
Me: Yes. They're open late only once a month.
DH: There's an internet yarn store here? In St Louis? And you've never been there?
Me: Yes. They're open this Thursday
DH: There's an internet yarn store here? In St Louis? And you've never been there? How is that possible?
Me: I don't know, and they're moving away, to Colorado.
DH: There's an internet yarn store here? In St Louis? And you've never been there? How is that possible? They're moving to Colorado? Well you'd better go!

So off I went, on a white-knuckled adventure through a truly hideous thunderstorm. Here we are, a little overwhelmed by the weather and yarn-drunk.

The other purchase was some of this amazing colorway from Madelinetosh!

The other quasi-purchase was a through-another-knitter bargain of a little Namaste project bag, that she had gotten previously but didn't need. Woot woot!

Is it loserish to wear a knitting bag around the waist like a fanny pack?

Sunday, July 3, 2011

FO: Blue baby sweater


Pattern is Sock Yarn Top Down Baby Cardigan, and the name pretty much tells the story. This pattern, in addition to being free (whee!), is great for people who like sock yarn but don't like knitting socks. Yarn is Batika, from Schoeller & Stahl (part of Skacel), which I believe is not actually a sock yarn. It's 100% antibacterial polyacryl, which can go in the washer on warm, but not in the dryer. Who knew there were acrylic baby-ish yarns that can't go in the dryer? I didn't even bother to check, back when I got the yarn in Baltimore. Anyway, the long color repeats worked out really well for this pattern, and the fabric is non-itchy and has a pretty sheen.

Sadly, I ran out of yarn and got some navy blue Plymouth Yarn Dream Baby DK to finish the edging. This was in Minneapolis. It was totally not purposeful, but in the end the cardigan looks more polished with a solid color edging, and I'll definitely do it again next time. In total, I used 2 skeins of Batika and 36 of 50 grams of the Dream Baby, which comes out to 416 yards of DK weight yarn. (I modified the pattern to make both the torso and sleeves shorter, so it'll take more yarn to follow the pattern to the letter.)

Finally, for a very well traveled baby sweater, the buttohs are from gather here in Cambridge. I got 5 and made 5 buttonholes, but one of the buttons escaped before it could be attached. It's the one at the top of the neck, and I don't think it would have been used all that much anyway. That's my story and I'm sticking with it, because getting another matching button, or getting and sewing on a whole new set of buttons, is going to drag out the process to the point the recipient is going to grow out of the sweater before it even gets to him. It's a good thing four-button cardis are all the rage among babies these days.

ETA: With 33 projects on Ravelry, this is #7 for my 12 under 43 resolution for the year!