Thursday, January 18, 2007

A Weekend Full of FOs

I spent the majority of my three-day weekend with my pointy sticks and yarn. As a result, I finished four--count 'em, four--items for various and sundry people.

Last Friday evening, I started a hat for myself. I used the Le Slouch pattern by Wendy, and it only took me a few hours. It all began because I nearly froze while supervising the carpool lane on Friday afternoon. I told everyone I ran into that I was going home to knit a hat, and then I did. I used a skein of Plymouth Encore Colorspun I had in the meager stash. It was supposed to be a pair of slippers for me and then for mom in a previous life, but I think it works much better as a hat. I finished the ribbing before bed that night, and I spent Saturday working away on it while we walked around the Maritime Museum. I finished it while we walked back to the car, and I popped it on my head. It's been a huge success at school this week--some of the teachers and a bunch of the students say they want one just like it.

I was one of those children who never, ever wore a hat no matter what the weather because I thought it made me look like a nerd. It could be below freezing and snowing outside, and I would ignore my mother's pleas to wear a hat just so I wouldn't mess up my hair. Now, I enjoy ignoring my hair in favor of being warm and toasty. I should have listened all those years ago, because a hat certainly does help you stay warm. This is one instance in which you can believe the hype.

On Saturday afternoon, I started a Mason-Dixon bobbled washcloth for my friend's birthday. There's nothing like being 10 days late with the present, but I had to find just the right yarn. Turns out it was in the stash disguised as an unfinished scarf. I took the washcloth along with me to our church dinner group that night and knit away on it while we chatted and caught up with one another. I actually finished it while we were there and wove in all the ends. The finished cloth and a jar of yummy peppermint scrub were presented to the lucky recipient on Monday at the Roo's Girl Scout meeting.

I also finished off the single Fetching glove my other friend had requested. She wanted only one, and she wanted it extra long to cover her bangle bracelets while she crochets and works the sound board at church. I took the almost finished Fetching to the Saturday dinner, she tried it one, and then I wove in all the ends. It was made from my leftover County Clare STR, and she absolutely loves it. I showed her my pair of toasty STR socks I had on, and she can't wait to wash her glove and soften it up a bit.

On Sunday night, I finished the Roo's Weasley sweater. She was at a sleepover that night since there was no school Monday, so she put it on as soon as she got home. She wore it around all day Monday and rambled on an on about how much she loves her sweater. We started calling her the unknown Weasley since Ginny was supposedly the last of Molly's brood. It was a true act of love, because I don't think I will ever duplicate stitch another giant initial on anyone's sweater ever again. That was a truly tedious and somewhat painful experience.

My weekend success has turned into nothing but frogging moments this week. I've done nothing but start and frog two different socks all week. It's all an effort to find exactly the right pattern and stitch count so that I can live with my results. I guess I could give away the socks to someone who could wear them when they don't fit me, but I am determined that these socks will be mine.

I'll post some pictures of the sweater and the hat when I get a chance. The other two FOs are already living in their new homes, and they are currently unavailable for the photo shoot.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Just a Quickie

As I suspected, returning to school last week has hampered my knitting time. I love teaching my students, but sometimes I wonder if I really need a different job--one that involves my knitting all day long with no interruptions. I'd probably get bored though.

The Roo's Weasley sweater is almost done. I need to do one more sleeve, but this won't be any trouble since it's worked from the top down and in the round. I have also started duplicate stitching her initial on the front, so I don't get tired of it later.

The pink frog has been reborn as the Meadow Flowers shawl from Knitter's Stash. I figured if I have a pattern in a book at home, I might as well use it! It's still a garter stitch shawl, but this time there are some yo's, ssk's, and k2tog's to keep things interesting. The edging pattern seems fairly easy to understand, so I should be able to complete it with little or no trouble. I think it will be just gorgeous once it's blocked. I can't wait to see the finished shawl, and since I'm having fun with it, I think I'll be done in no time.

The sock in progress seems stalled. This is primarily due to my focus on the other projects. I'm sure it will pick up once the sweater is done.

I may have a bit more knitting time this week. The DCA is traveling this week on a business trip, so I won't have much company in the evenings except for my needles and yarn.

Pictures of the WIPs are coming soon!

Monday, January 01, 2007

A Clean Slate

When I think of New Year's Day, it usually involves something of a fresh start. I now have a whole new year in which to accomplish great and grand things. Most of my great and grand ideas involve knitting this year, so to kick it off I spent my New Year's Eve frogging two shawls.
I know Scout wanted to see piles of fiber, but with this much laceweight and mohair, I had no choice but to go straight to the ball.
Here's Icarus before:Here's Icarus after:
My blue frog will be reborn as Icarus again, but it will be on the right size needles this time. I am determined to make it full the entire border this time without worrying about having enough yarn.

Here's the mohair travel shawl before:

Here it is after:

I still haven't decided what the pink frog wants to be now. I really want to try the snowdrop shawl, but I'm leery of the edging. Something about picking up 218 stitches evenly spaced on each side of the shawl absolutely frightens me. I'll let you know if I find anything that piques my fancy!

Happy New Year! May God abundantly bless you all!