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Archive for January, 2009

Pattern: Dumpling Bag from Interweave Knits, Fall 2008
Yarn: Patons SWS, 2 balls.
Needle: US 13 circular and dpns
Difficulty level: easy

I started this bag back in the fall fairly soon after getting my issue of interweave in the mail. I was in the mood for starting something new, this bag looked super cute, and I had yarn for it in my stash! I had to put it away after my first night working on it because no local stores had size 13 dpns. I finally got back to it the other night and finished it. This was my first time felting and I found the whole process pretty exciting!  My roommates who were unaware of wool’s ability to felt were fairly certain I worked some sort of weird knitting magic.

The bag turned out to be a fun quick knit which was the perfect introduction to felting. I’m not as happy as I thought I would be with the finished result but I honestly can’t tell you what I’m unhappy about. If I was to make it again I think I’d adjust the handles a little bit and maybe try a different embroidery pattern on it. I saw bags that had been embroidered with embroidery floss after felting and I really enjoy that look.

Please ignore my discontent because the bag IS cute as is.  And best of all this bag strikes Interweave 2008 off my book list!

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Grapes at a local winery

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Mirror mirror on the wall

who is the fairest mitten of them all?

Pattern: Magic Mirror by Kristel Nyberg
Yarn: Classic Elite Yarns, Classic One Fifty
Needle: US 3, dpns
Difficulty level: easy-medium
Things I learned: To trust my instinct, and how to fix a cable twist by dropping the cable stitches down and reworking them back up.

When my mom called me and suggested that she would like a pair of mittens for Christmas I instantly decided that she needed cabled mittens.  This pattern was exactly what I had in mind.  It is a gorgeous and well written.  The only issue I came across was that there is a mistake in the chart key.  Both the designer and Knotions are aware of the mistake, but unfortunately as of now Knotions still hasn’t corrected the mistake on their website.

On top of loving the pattern, I love the yarn I used.  It was so very soft and the stitch deffinition really lent its self well to the cables.  All in all I’m extremly pleased with this project and would rank it as one of my favorites.  Visually the pattern was just what I wanted, the actual knitting was fun, and the yarn was a joy to work with.  It can’t get much better than that in the knitting world.

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A celebration…

…calls for cake!

I do not intend to make it a habit of putting my political stances on this blog, but today is an exception. I was thrilled with the inauguration yesterday. I loved Obama’s speech and I loved watching Bush leave. I just loved it. I watched the whole thing twice, once as it was happening, and once again later with friends. I even made the above cake to celebrate! It was my first time even icing a cake so I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out.

I used the <http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2007/06/fourth_of_july_/”>Fourth of July Cake</a> recipe from Pioneer Woman’s cooking blog. If you haven’t seen her cooking blog, you’re missing out. It rocks. I’ve made a few things from it, and everything has always turned out excellent.

For my cake I made a half recipe which was perfect to fill up my two little round cake pans. It was very yummy. I think the strawberry pieces tasted best, but the blueberry wasn’t bad. And the best part? There was barely any left when everyone went home!

An FO post tomorrow, I promise.

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Kitten Blanket

Awhile ago my mom gave me this little quilt she found at goodwill to use for the cats. I suspect my mom washed it in catnip before she gave it to me, because they think it is the coolest thing ever. They sleep in it, they make tents out of it, they wrap themselves up in it, they play in it, and they hide in it. They like it so much they drag it around from room to room. They’ve currently placed it under our kitchen table.

I can’t say I blame them; I’ve wanted to spend all my time with a blanket lately too. It has been cold here. It was cold enough that they canceled school on Friday.

I attempted to capture the blanket cuteness with a picture, but as you can see above I didn’t quite get it. I don’t see cute there. I see crafty intelligence. I see the side of Luigi that makes him smart enough and curious enough to explore pretty much anything. I see what surely created the phrase “curiosity killed the cat” because his curiosity is not tempered by a survival instinct. He will jump, climb, and slide down anything. We’ve had to rescue him from behind the water heater, twice.

So while my cat has been getting himself into trouble like always, I’ve been knitting. I should have a new finished project to show you in a day or two.

Keep warm.

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Embers and Ashes

Embers and Ashes Socks

Pattern: Just a basic sock
Yarn: Austermann Step, colorway: 43
Needles: US size 1 DPNS
For: Mom

Once upon a time in a state far away my mom selected a skein of sock yarn in the hopes that I would make her a pair of socks. I readily agreed, but once I got home I stuck the yarn in my stash and ignored it. I’ll admit it. I dragged my feet because the colors just didn’t interest me much.

Grey, white, and a little bit of muted red? Bah!

Then one day after months of avoidance I realized I had another visit with my mom coming up soon. I started plowing through with a sense of duty. I felt a little foolish, because after all that avoidance I learned I actually did enjoy the way the colors blended together. The layers of white, grey, and red reminded me of embers that are still glowing ever so slightly.

Despite my efforts I arrived for my visit without even one finished sock.  I wasn’t confident that I would get them done in time, and my mom was rightfully suspicious that I would leave her with only one sock.  I told her I wouldn’t, and by some miracle I didn’t.  I got them finished with time to spare!  The socks now live happily with the other socks in my mom’s sock drawer.

The End.

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Last year turned out to be a pretty busy year for me. The result was that I did very little knitting, and no blogging. The good news is that I’ve finally graduated and my Christmas knitting is late as ever, but almost done. This is means more time for knitting, and that what I’m working on is no longer secret! I’m really excited about getting to share my knitting again, and with this new blog, but for now I’m just going to introduce my new goal:

In 2009 I want to knit from my books.

Let me explain. I have a lot of lovely knitting books and I love each and every one of them. Despite my love, I haven’t used them very much. I have added a project from every single book to my queue, attempted a pattern from just over half of them, and finished a project from only a handful of them.

My books deserve more love. In 2009 I plan to give it to them. I have 13 books, plus a subscription to Interweave. That means 14 projects for the year in 2009. That is more than I’ve ever knit in a year before. Let’s see if I can do it! Anyone want to join me? I know I can’t be the only one who doesn’t give her books enough love. 🙂

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