Sunday, June 03, 2007

Long-overdue update

So, I'm rapidly discovering that I'd rather actually be knitting than update a blog. Ah well. It's not like I have a readership to disappoint, anyway. I do like this for a tracking mechanism, though, so I can look back on what I've done. Since I last posted, I've been busy! Let's get to it.

Hey, I’m adopting a baby! Peapod Sweater: So, the VP of my department called us in for an emergency staff meeting. Staff meetings with less than 24 hours notice rarely mean anything good, however--this one was to let us know she and her husband were heading to Russia to finalize the adoption of their new son, and that she'd be out of the office for at least eight weeks on parental leave. I cranked out another Peapod with matching hat as quickly as I could so that the I could have a proper "welcome to the US" gift for the little dude when she brought him in for a visit.

Cabled Malabrigo Hat: I picked up some gorgeous green Malabrigo in PA over Christmas, and made an adorable cabled hat out of it. Donated to charity, where it will doubtless make some kid look really cute.

Yet another pair of sox: After languishing sadly at the bottom of my bag for weeks, I decided that they needed to be done already. Thanks to a verrrrrrrry long Needlework Guild Board meeting, I got most of the leg done, and a weekend with a head cold pretty much finished them off. My sister-in-law, the intended recipient, claims they fit beautifully, so no reknitting for me!

Beaded Amulet Bag: This year’s Yarnover project—bright green perle cotton, slightly deeper green beads, with a COOL millefiori bead as the charm. While restringing the beads to the perle was a total PITA, I have to say, the actual knitting process was really fun. I ended up knitting on it obsessively until it was all finished—which took all of two days, really.

Charity Alpaca Sweater with hat: I bought some local PA alpaca when I was home over Christmas, and had enough to make a warm kids’ sweater—to liven up the very neutral grey of the alpaca, I bought some muted rainbow hand-paint thick-n-thin for a stripe in the chest area. It knit up super cute—the “Ryan’s Avalanche” Sweater pattern is a winner. I had enough yarn left to improvise a hat—though I did have to call in some of my leftover Malabrigo as reinforcements.

Vintage Diamond Baby Cardigan: Louet Gems, in eggplant. Holy CRAP, this turned out cute. My only beef is that the pattern comes in precisely one size, so you can’t choose the size of baby you want to knit it for, but . . . great pattern, well written. I bought an extra skein of yarn on purpose--the pattern (Winter ’04 IK) warned that there would be little yarn left over--so I was able to improvise a matching hat and make Christine’s Booties to go with the sweater. I managed to get Chris (the dad to be) all choked up, so go me!

Requiring Finishing:
Butterfly: Ready for seaming! Yay! I joined the shoulders and knit on the collar before a full wet block. Now I just need to get my seaming mojo on, which, with the weather getting warmer, seems like it might take a while.

On the Needles:
And yet still more socks: Foot complete, heel turned, thanks to some air travel. It’s the sock I only work on on planes! Actually, it’s a pain to knit in coach, so it’s really the sock I only work on in airports and miscellaneous hotels.

Shadow Shawl: Finally started! The written description is a little confusing, but once you get it going, it makes a ton of sense. I’m using an impulse-buy skein of Schaeffer Anne (green/blue/purple), and some gorgeous aubergine linen yarn from Louet. I had it nearly 25% complete, when I had to frog back to correct a grievous error in my shadow patterning that I hadn’t noticed sooner. It’s still going to be lovely, but it’s spending some quality time in the “time-out” box right now.

Lacy Dolman Sweater: So, the first yarn I think I ever bought at Borealis was this weird, pseudo-novelty yarn from Schachenmeyer, called “Rainbow”. A white and color (lime green, for me!) cotton core is wrapped with a thin, variegated rainbow strand of rayon. It’s been discontinued since 2004 at least, but it’s kinda cool. had a great dolman sweater pattern using it—it will require a camisole underneath, or will be used as a swimsuit coverup, but it’s really neat. Being a dolman, it’s knit from sleeve to sleeve, and I’m just to the point where I’m casting on stitches for the front and back. Pictures promised, as it's not a gift. :)

Wool of the Andes Charity projects: From the “tourist yarn” collection (again), I picked up three skeins of yellow and grey WotA at some point—right now, I’m knitting the garter-stitch baby kimono from Mason-Dixon knitting, to be followed up with some toddler/children’s socks.

In the hoop:
Nothin’ much.

Obligatory Cultural References
Reading: I finished all the James Bond novels, and heartily recommend 'em if you like spy thrillers. I've moved on to Special Topics in Calamity Physics, by Marisha Pessl, which is kind of Secret History-esque, in that it deals with private school scandal, but this time with a wonderfully sympathetic protagonist at a high school, rather than Classics students in college.
Listening to: iTunes on shuffle. Right now, The Decemberists.