Well, my niece just had her baby, a little girl named Evelyn Anne. I’d been working on-and-off on a sweater for her in a six-months size (approximately) and decided I’d better get it done because it seems a touch small and I’m terrible at baby sizes anyway. Because I still have a lot of Red Heart Unforgettable yarn left, I also threw in a pair of booties in my favorite go-to bootie pattern, Simple Baby Booties by Jessica Felton:
It’s all sort of crazy but she’s a cute baby and I think she could pull off such a vibrant colorway.
In other news, I’ve taken up drawing/sketching/designing again after at least six years of not really doing that at all. Mostly I’m just interested in playing around with color and pattern ideas, and getting into a mindset where I can design my own jewelry instead of picking up a little of this and a little of that from things on Pinterest. I’m not doing anything great (which is beside the point, really) but the cat sure is interested in hanging around.
This is what you do instead of feeding me?
Other than that, I’ve been making it a point to sit down at my jewelry bench every day. I’m making some rivets and also experimenting with my tube-cutting jig, which makes 45 and 60 degree cuts. Hmm. I found three old silver rings I bought in the 90s; they were always a bit too big and I used to wrap rubber bands around them to keep them on. I cut out a segment of each band and will be soldering them together again–because I can now, and why not get the practice? Otherwise, I’m tempted to just melt them down. They do appear to be solid sterling, but it is true that you never can tell if something you got at the mall or a street fair truly is, so maybe it’s best not to add that metal to any casting I’m about to do.
Cuttlefish casting tonight! I’ve got a pattern all made up, a nice simple one. Let’s hope I’m not total crap at carving, which was never my strong suit.
Well, five months, three audio books, who knows how many movies and t.v. shows and . . . it’s done. I am done with the Kayleen Pullover.
Whew! There are a few areas around the seams and such I wish could have been smoother (literally smoother–worsted weight cotton shows up lumps and bumps like nobody’s business) but overall I think it went well and looks fine. (Blocking might help, too.) It was harder than I thought this “simple” pattern would be, but challenge is good.
Just for a laugh, look how much yarn I have left. Boy, did I cut it close!
I understand it’s good to keep a bit of leftover in case of repairs in future. Maybe even wash some of it every time you wash the sweater, so it ages at the same rate. Not a bad idea.
Before I move on, I just want to share a picture of me knitting with my old kitty, Mongo. He hadn’t been in great health for a while, and his time to pass on came this week. As difficult as it could be to knit with a cat in your lap, I often made an effort to let him do it because I’m sure the warmth was good for his old bones.
He’s been a part of my life for ten years and I miss him. Maybe I’ll make a piece of tribute jewelry for him soon, I don’t know.
If you have any idea what that title means, you have obviously seamed a sweater before.
It’s not hard to do, but there are things to learn, and so I’ve procrastinated a bit on getting down to the set-in sleeves of my Kayleen pullover. Seriously, I had to search around the web and learn horizontal-to-horizontal seaming, horizontal-to-vertical, vertical-to-vertical (oh wait, that’s just good ol’ mattress stitch!) and all THAT was just for the stockinette side. The front of this sweater is reverse stockinette, so . . . ? Turns out it’s not hard to seam, but you have to pay attention to which stitches you’re picking up (and how cute: those that curve up are smiles, and those that curve down are frowns.)
So, here’s where I am today.
All those ends . . . all those ends to weave in . . .
I’m not 100% sold on how those seams look, but I do appear to be doing them very neatly and in accordance with the pictures in the pattern (note: pattern is no help in matters of seaming.) I’m a bit afraid that (1) left will not match right and (2) I’m going to run out of yarn before I can do the applied I-cord around the neck and sleeves.
Still, there’s a certain meditative concentration to this that I like, constantly focused on just where to put the needle next. I . . . think I enjoy it!
My idea of fun these days.
Well, I’ve completed the Kayleen Pullover’s front and back. Last night I pinned the shoulders together and tried it on. I’m ridiculously pleased and relieved to report that it fits, is not a shapeless sack, and is in fact flattering.
But not that flattering.
All I have left to do is make the little sleeves and knit an I cord directly around the neckline. I say this like it’s no big deal, but I know the I cord will be annoying and take forever. Let’s not think about it too hard.
Every year, a hospital in my town has a Christmas event in which decorated wreaths, trees, and even “rooms” of Christmasy things are viewed and auctioned off for charity. My knitting group has been toying with the idea of making a wreath for a couple of years now, but we always seem to just miss the deadline. This time I pushed a bit to get us to do it. We’ve even gotten the o.k. to use hand knitted/crocheted ornaments, so we’re going to have some of those as well as traditional things like big ribbons and shiny ball ornaments. I’ll talk about it more as the season progresses, but for now we’re just trying to get a few things started to make sure everything each of us is working on will coordinate in terms of colors and size (it so, so, helps that one of us is a graphic designer!)
I’ve been assigned to do a string of crochet Christmas lights. Found a few patterns on Ravelry, but none small enough, so I improvised. The plan is to make a bunch of them separately and then chain them up together later when I have a better idea of how many I’ll need and how they should be spaced.
If our plan works out, the wreath should be really cute. It’s going to feature a knitted monster, on a ladder, hanging the lights–so stay tuned.
In other news, I haven’t given up on Kayleen yet, but she is slow. This is why I can’t do knit-a-longs.
Now I need to get in gear, because I start having studio time again Monday. I spent some money at the local bead shop last week, and now I have lots of nice beads for riveted rings (if only my silver tubing would finally arrive in the mail!) I also picked out some pretty glass beads in even numbers so I can make some earrings to sell locally . . . maybe . . . hopefully . . . yeah, I really need more confidence on the business end of things.
I might do a post-a-day challenge again soon. That was a ridiculously productive time for me, and formed good habits which I immediately lost when it was over. Ha!
Still making slow progress on the Kayleen Pullover, though I’ve grown to hate the thing. It’s tedious and boring and the worsted weight cotton moves so sluggishly on size 6 needles (last time I made a sweater with this yarn, I used 10s and it was no problem.) Here’s how it looks now, though I still have an inch to go before the interesting detail stuff starts to happen.
(Little thing learned the hard way: don’t join a new yarn on the reverse stockinette side; it’ll make a lump.)
I didn’t want to get distracted by other patterns while I was working on this one, but I need a break desperately. By happy coincidence, a certain crochet pattern appeared on the front page of Ravelry, and I knew what my next stashbust had to be. It’s unusual in that it involves breaking the yarn to make fringe after every row; this is nice because (1) no ends to weave in, yay! and (2) it’ll be great for all the scraps and mini-balls I have left in NaturallyCaron.com
Naturally Country, which was one of my favorite yarns a few years ago.
Here’s what I have so far. The Vs are going to be diamonds as I progress. I like it so much I might just have to buy more yarn (a hazard of making stashbusters out of regular, non-random color patterns.)
Here’s the free pattern.
All right, I’ve had basement work done and now I’m back online. Like a lot of home repair work, the real devil was the setup beforehand and the cleaning afterward.
But now I have a new and improved sump pit, a pressure relief system, and a big old patched crack. Yay, homeownership!
So, during all the jackhammering (oh my God, the jackhammering!) I put on my ear protection, sat upstairs, and worked on my Kayleen Pullover. It’s going a bit better now,and I can tell it hasn’t grown too large, as I’d feared. I’m finding the sides a bit . . . odd, as the pattern calls for putting one knit stitch on either side of the purl front (and one purl stitch on either side of the knit back), thus creating this little ridge along the sides:
It feels like my stitches on the ridge are too large and sloppy, but either I’m getting used to looking at it, or it’s becoming less of a problem as I continue on. I suppose the pattern calls for this for a good reason, so I’ll just go with it.
Wish I could say I had some jewelry to show, but I didn’t realize how much I depend on my anvil until it was tucked away in a corner behind plastic sheeting. Perhaps I ought to invest in a little steel bench block for future use, when I need my projects to be more portable.