Thursday, February 25, 2010

Weaving Is Not My Thing

In general, I try to avoid weaving.  It is simply not my strength.  I have no patience for it at all.  

The photo is evidence enough that I speak not about weaving on a loom.  Oh, no.  Nothing so eloquent as that.  Plain old weaving in of ends.  This is about as messy as I ever get simply because I generally avoid color changes in quick succession.  

I finally remembered, on mitered block five of five, that weaving in ends as one is knitting along is a perfectly acceptable activity.
Oh, well.  At least the back of the Spring Fling is almost ready for the mesh portion to begin.  I'll pick up eighty little stitches and be ready to move this baby along.   But for now, this sloppy back side is wiggling it's many little tails at me. 

Monday, February 22, 2010

UnTwisted Spring Fling AKA - not quite an Olympic endeavor

Having cast on seventy-two hours too late, my current endeavor is not part of any official or unofficial knitting Olympic event.  Alas, sometimes life gets in the way of life.   The original pattern, which is listed as Spring Fling,  is from Twisted Sisters and uses both Handpaint and Daktari. 

I was busy searching the stash for yarns when daughter & her man arrived for a visit.  This is the same man that yours truly forced to sit still and hold a needle of knitting whilst I frogged back to a predetermined row.  That might not seem such a bad thing, except that at the time we were sitting in a waiting public...where other males saw him holding said knitting public...holding knitting.  It was a beautiful moment that turned our relationship from "daughter's date" to "daughter and her man".    

But I digress away from the yarn.  So, there I am in the stash closet when said man arrives and inquires about the frantic mumblings.  

"Trying to find something to match with this"  This is Louisa Harding Cinnabar #4 - green, flax, brown.
"You should put that"  That being one skein of blue sock yarn that might be a gift for my man"

"No.  Not that."
"Why not?  It goes."
"Because I am saving that for something else.  Don't want to waste a whole project for just a little bit of yarn."
"How much is a little bit? What is wrong with that black over there?"
"Wrong kind.  Need something thinner"

"This"  Finally!  This being clearance cheap green that claims to have some remainder of what was once bamboo and thus qualifies as "green" in both color and form.
"AH.  Yep.  That will do.   Now to find something that pops!"
"That stuff balled up over there is perfect"  Oh, please.  That stuff is the left over Cascade Venezia from the recently blocked Soleil.  The shade is no where to be found in all the colors wandering through the Cinnabar #4.  What is the man thinking?

"No it is not perfect!  I just made a tank with it and I am tired of looking at it."
"Yes it is perfect.  See how it contrasts?  If I were back in the printing business, I would advise any client to add in this shade with the green and not quite brown of this mixed up stuff. (Well, at least he tried to describe the Cinnabar)  It is perfect!"

Shucky darn.  

It is perfect.  

This thing rocks.  

All because of a man and his former life in printing. 

Moral:  color transcends function.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Non Olympic Shawl

That's right, this one does not count as in the knitting Olympics.  It matters not which version of challenge in which you participate, this still would not count as an accomplishment.  This shawl was begun two weeks ago as the mindless project of the moment. 

It might be called Wheat, which is the current name of the photo file.  Or, it may become Amber Waves.  As in amber waves of grain.    I just can not decide.  The dirt is there as a double ruffle at each end.  Sixty inches of dropped stitches results in long swaths of 'stalks' separated by furrows of openness.

The issue of a name is complicated as I am in the midst of crocheting small flowers that might - or might not - scatter about near the brown ruffles.  It seems that flowers might not be welcome in a field of grain whether wheat or some other food source such as rice.  

This is a better look at the construction.  This is Hempathy by Elsebeth Lavold.  The pattern can be had here or on Ravelry as the "Dummy Clap" by Anna Peck.  I cast on 53 stitches and ended up with a wonderfully wide shawl that  easily rolls in on itself to be a scarf.  The only modification I made is on the ruffle which is not specified in the pattern.

After edging the entire piece with single crochet (brown) and working a crab stitch along both lengths, the double ruffle was added to the ends.  Using two circulars so as to work in the round, I picked and knit one stitch in each single crochet front loop (needle 1) AND in each single crochet back loop (needle 2) which made is quite easy to work round and round for a ruffle.  The stitch count was sufficient that I only increased on round 2 and round 5.  I like the result.

So, two decisions remain.  To add flowers or not is decision number one.  Decision two is more difficult because these are not, I repeat, not my colors.  I don't wear amber golden hues.  Although I do wear brown because I am told it is a neutral and everyone can wear brown.  So, who gets a gift?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Magic Ball Magic Shawl Magic Knit

I am a magician.  No card tricks, no appearing bunnies (well, unless plucked over and spun and plied, etc, etc), no disappearing elephants (unless you count the gray wad that is hiding in the stash closet - don't ask, the story is way too long).  None of that type of magic.  Some days it would be nice to pull a quarter from behind my ear - this I will admit.

Nope.  None of that.  I am a knitting magician.  And, I have knitting magician friends!  Recently, many of us gathered for a day of magic.  Let me digress long enough to clue you in to the glorious fact that the day of magic was not limited to yarn, scissors and needles.  This particular day of magic has resulted in the awesomeness of the phrases "DAT's Dat! and LouBreesiana"  I am still celebrating that magical win, but I shall now return  to the yarn story from the California southland rather than the alternate story of celebration from the Louisiana southland.

 The Magic Ball gathering at Knit 'n Stitch was led by a mighty oak of creativity - Cheryl from Acorn to Oak.
The link will take you to her version of the current working version of a Magic Ball Magic Shawl.  Cheryl shared tips and tricks for getting the random magic to occur by pre-determining the final look one hopes to achieve.   Women wielding scissors and yarn creates an atmosphere filled with artistry.  The air  drips with the wonder of it all.  Inspiration sits on the shoulder and whispers sweet encouragement. 

I made this magic.

My shawl has a very fuzzy side with yarn tails proudly waving.

And it has a more refined side with just a few wisps of eyelash flirting coyly.

I love the magic.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Rae Research

Yarn is ordered for the Rae project.; Rae (as I have determined shall be the name when completed), if you read my last posting here, is a lovely dress designed of diagonal open work. Left leaning and right leaning work that creates a mighty chevron look down the front and back.

I had to send daughter off on a second photo expedition to snap side seams and shoulder seams on the mannequin wearing the spied creation.  Mostly, the figuring out of the pattern is all completed. Except for one major hurdle.;

The shoulder seams or lack there of.  What is this madness? Having not seen the actual garment and therefore forced to judge based upon this one photo, it appears that a simple ribbed hem, folded at the YO, k2tog line is required. This, I can produce. Easy enough.

But - and here is where additional research must come into play - how to get the front and back shoulder "hems" to become joined as seen in this photo.

This is not something that is in my repertoire. Books are being thoroughly thumbed through. Websites are wafting across the screen.   Friends are fleeing upon approach.    HELP!