Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Shawls Need To Become A Thing

I haven't seen the floor of my bedroom in days.

It's been covered in the most squishy lacey goodness.


Gaze upon the glory of this gorgeous stack of freshly blocked hand made goodness.


I kinda want to roll around of them.

Naked.

But I won't.

Because they don't belong to me.

And by that I don't mean I made them and I'm giving them away as presents.  I mean they actually don't belong to me.  They were made by the talented women in my knitting/crochet group.

I have become the designated blocker of my group.

Lets just take a moment for those who know how much I LOATHE blocking to sit and laugh.

Yes,

Life is funny.

I hate blocking with the passion of a thousand fiery suns.  It feels like laundry.  And we all know how I feel about laundry.  I was just telling The Greatest the other day that I would support being a nudist if I didn't actually have to look at random naked people.  Therein lies the tragedy of my life.  I want to wear clothes, I just don't want to be responsible for the maintenance of said clothing.

But I love my yarnies.  I love them with the passion of TWO thousand fiery suns.  So cheerfully blocking their items isn't a hardship.  It is a joy.

The only hard part is giving the items back.

They all want to live with me.

They told me so.

Good thing I have a shawl of my very own to keep me warm.


Pattern:  Ubiquitous Kate

Yarn:  Recycled cotton yarn from a Goodwill sweater

Needles:  Size 4, probably my knit picks Harmony because I like how the bare wood looked with this shade of army green.  I do match my needles to my yarn when I can.  I'm a little insane like that.

Modifications:  I didn't do the ruffle on the top edge.

Review:

Love.

That's all there is to say.

Love.


It is smooshy, and soft, and warm.

I love the subtle chevron texture.

I love the ruffle.

This was the shawl I started late at night, when I thought I had grabbed a soft grey color but it turned out to be army green in the light of day.

I could be sad about the color switch, but I actually love the color too.  (Plus I used the grey to make my Clare de Lune so it all worked out for the best.)

And in the interest of full disclosure.  I love to wear it with my jammies.


Dirty hair, no make up.  How's that for keeping it real?

But see how the ruffle twists around just so?

I need to live in a time when shawls are worn by everyone everywhere.  I *puffy heart* this project.

In other news, The Greatest tackled a project of his own the other day.

He does all the Christmas decorating.  I'm not complaining.  I love it.  He decorated ten trees.  Everything inside the house is covered with garland and lights.  The outside of the house lights up the entire block.  You can probably see our house from space.

But it wasn't enough.

He couldn't control the urge to decorate any longer.

The Christmas spirit was too strong.

He decorated the baby.


The intervention is Friday at 6:00 for those who want to help.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Same Old Same Old Post About Nothing

Ever have so much to do and feel so overwhelmed and stressed that you just say "Screw it" and watch American Horror Story while you blog?

Yeah, that never happens to me either.

I'm so behind on my blog.

We had Halloween.

There were costumes.

We had Thanksgiving.

There was pie.

We had a first birthday.

There was cake.

And here I sit, too tired to construct a coherent story to tell.

Let me distract you with the cute.






Maybe I'll try again tomorrow.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Success

It was cold(ish) again today.

The sky was the most lovely moody grey.  The children feared it would rain on them as they walked to school.  But I knew better.

It rarely rains on the surface of the sun.

While I carefully wrapped the baby in a blanket to run to Lowes (another day, another repair to the sprinkler system) I didn't need a coat.  There was a delightful chill(ish) on the breeze, but a light sweater was all you needed.

And I've got an entire shelf stacked high with light sweaters for such an occasion.  Today I wore Walpole.  And I looked fabulous.  Nevermind the fact  that I haven't washed my hair in five days.  Which might be why there isn't photographic proof of how fab I looked.  In my defense, my hair goes to the bottom of my butt and takes forever to dry.  I'm too tired to deal.  See yesterday's post about being up from 3:30 to 5:00 AM.  Repeat uneartly sleep schedule for almost a year.  And yes, that means yesterday's pictures were taken on day four of unwashed hair.  Go ahead and scroll back down to look at them.  I'll wait.

I was rocking the slicked back look wasn't I!

Just keeping it real around here.  Maybe tomorrow I'll show you my dirty sink full of dishes.  Confession:  I don't have a dirty sink full of dishes.  I make the kids wash the dishes every.single.night.  Parenting has to have a few perks right?

Anyways...the chill(ish) in the air also meant it was time to bust out the hand knit socks.  And I just so happen to have a recently knit pair just waiting for this day to come.  It took some doing but I did manage to take some pictures of my feet.  No shampoo required.


Pattern:  Easter Bunny Socks

Yarn:  "Easter Bunny" self patterning sock yarn by knitpurlgurl.etsy.com

Needles:  Size 2



Modifications:  Not really a modification, but the main yarn self stripes into bunnies.  You use coordinating yarn to knit the ribbing, heels, and toes.  I was given green and pink coordinating yarn.  I decided to stripe them for the rib, heels, and toes.  It looks better in real life than it does in photos.  I do like how my heel turn is pink on one sock, and green on the other.  In hindsight maybe I should have knit one sock with pink ribbing/heel/toe, and one with green ribbing/heel/toe.  I probably would have loved that.  I'm starting to hate hindsight.

Review:  These socks are AMAZING!


This yarn is "self patterning" so as you knit the bunnies were supposed to magically appear.  I'm not a huge fan of gauge but for this project having spot on gauge was not just important but freaking vital to the success of these socks.

Luckily for me, I had spot on gauge.

Unluckily for me, my spot on gauge was useless.

I tried and tried to knit perfect little bunnies, but the pattern kept shifting to the left, leaving the bunny ears flapping in the wind, and making the faces look slightly melted.  Not a good look.

But I could not be defeated.  After all...BUNNIES!


The pattern suggests you should tug or tighten just a little to line up those bunnies.  I tugged and tightened my heart out, and magically...BUNNIES!


Worth every moment of frustrated tugging.  In fact, once I got the rhythm of it down, those socks flew off the needles.  I finished the second sock in one day.

True Story.

The Greatest saw me casting on for it during the Queen's first nap.  And later that night he watched me put on my finished socks.

"Wow, you are a really fast knitter!"

It came as a complete revelation to him.

It is like he doesn't know me at all.

Good thing he is so darn good looking.

Otherwise there are days I could cheerfully strangle him in his sleep.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Chilly (ish)

I got up with Queen Bean the other night around 3:30.  In the darkness I fed and rocked the evil baby who tortured me by giggling and giving me kisses while she deprived me of sleep.  At 5 am I crawled back into bed and shivered under the covers.  It took me a few moments to realize what this unnatural feeling was.  I was cold.  I would have turned off the ceiling fan but in order to do that I would have had to get out of bed again.  Instead I pulled the comforter higher and shivered back to sleep.  It might finally be winter(ish) on the surface of the sun.

To celebrate the arrival of the chill(ish) in the air I wore a hand knit scarf to the grocery store today.


Cause I'm fancy.

Pattern:  Wave

Yarn:  The most delicious handspun on the face of the earth from The Escaped Goats

Needles:  Who knows.  6?   Probably 8.

Modifications:  Knit until I ran out of yarn.

Review:  I knit this yarn at least a half a dozen times, and each time I frogged the item because the pattern just wasn't good enough for the yarn.  It wasn't lacey enough.  It didn't showcase the depth of color enough  It lacked some undefinable thing that I could feel but couldn't name.  It wasn't right yet.

I flove the blue green shades in this yarn.  It feels like the sea.  And I wanted a finished object that felt like the beach.  With lacey something, reminiscent of a fishermans net.  I wanted something that made me feel like a mermaid caught in a fisherman's net.

No pressure Ravelry.

I scoured the patterns, and swatched, and knit.  But nothing felt right.

I can't explain why this pattern feels right.


But it does.  I love it.

I took several cheesy pictures of me in my scarf


Then I remembered my vow to only model in "Blue Steel."


Fierce.

I hope it's cold(ish) again tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

More of the Cuteness

Poor Queen Bean.

She just can't catch a break.

Someone mentioned how nice the dark blue of Sweet Pea's (still unblocked) sweater would look with Queen Beans eye.  And ever since I've been obsessed with the idea of knitting her a tiny dark blue something to wear.

For her eye.


Good thing she doesn't seem to mind my hand knits.

Pattern;  Whirligig Shrug

Yarn:  left over blue worsted weight stuff

Needles:  Size 8

Modifications:  Since I was using worsted weight yarn and larger needles than the pattern calls for I cast on for a size smaller than I normally would.  I also did a seed stitch edging around the front instead of the rolled border.

Review:


I love this pattern.  I don't know why, but I do.  I've knit it at least a dozen times over the years.  And I love it every time.


Something about it is so dainty and cute and wearable.


I think it might be the flared sleeves.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure changing the front bands to seed stitch really improved upon the original.


And I overshot the mark when I upsized the with the larger yarn/needles.  It is falling off her shoulders.  It isn't a total loss.  She'll be able to wear it next year.

But in the mean time I'm contemplating buying more deep blue yarn so she can have one to wear now.

While my budget and I argue it out, I've cast on for yet another baby sweater.


I finished all that YESTERDAY!

It might be time for an intervention.  My personal philosophy seems to be "Baby sweaters, you can't knit just one."  Queen Bean can breath a sigh of relief, this one isn't for her.

Monday, November 17, 2014

More Tiny Cuteness

So I was a busy girl yesterday.

Once the Queen Bean made it clear she would put up with my photographic shenanigans no longer I turned to my knitting.

I've recently made a sweater for Sweet Pea.  She came home from school one day and declared her favorite color was now BLUE.  And could I dye her hair blue, and could I knit her a blue sweater?

I told her I didn't have any blue hair dye, but I did have blue yarn.

So one blue sweater I knit.

All I had to do was sew in the ends, and add buttons.  She choose the cutest round yellow buttons as a contrast to the plain blue sweater.  Now I just need to block it.


Right after I pry it off her body.

And since the button tin was out I pulled out some buttons for a sweater I knit Queen Bean earlier this year.  It just needed buttons to be all done.  I'd even blocked it at some unknown time.

I really suck at follow through don't I.

Unfortunately for the Queen, once her sweater had buttons I required another photo shoot.

A cute baby's work is never done.  She shall have her revenge at 3 am.

She wasn't feeling another shoot by the tree.


But once we moved to the upstairs hallway she was all for it.


Pattern:  Carousel

Yarn:  Leftover cotton from my Dream Stripes Shawl

Needles:  No idea, maybe size 5, that's what the pattern recommends.

Modifications:  None that I recall.

Review:


This sweater is seriously cute.

I was unsure if I was going to like how the front is higher than the back.


But I think it works.

I also love the little lace detail.


I think my original plan was to knit this sweater for the three younger girls, and then the adult version for myself and Pork Chop.  But then I remembered that I am bound by the laws of the natural universe.  I only have so many hours in a day, and I would like to sleep at some point.

So one tiny 12 month size sweater will have to do for now.


I know!  Look at her standing.  I am so not ready for this.

And here's the sweater in action.


My favorite part of this is the dog photo bomb.  She knows she is not allowed upstairs.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

I Should Never Be Left Alone

It is that time of year again.

The Greatest has begun decorating for Christmas.

How can I tell?



I have my ways.

I am not allowed to participate in the annual lighting of the house.  This is The Greatest's show, and I am to stay out of the way.  If it sounds like I am complaining, believe me, I am not.  This works out well.  I get to sit and be pretty while Christmas magically appears around me.  

The flip side of that is leaving me alone to my own devices can be a very dangerous thing.  I have a Christmas tree.  I have a camera.  I have the World's Cutest Baby.

What could possibly go wrong?

At first nothing really.


She is adorable.


She is mesmerized by the tree.


She only undecorates it a little.


Sweet Pea shows her how to work the lights.


And it is good.

Then Mommy looks on Pinterest and decides the baby need to be naked.

And at first it is good.


But it turns out naked babies aren't very modest.


And some strategic cropping is required.


And some strategic light placement.


Lots of strategic light placement.

I tried to get a picture of her looking up at our 12 foot tree.


But she was over it.

She peed on the tile.

Three times.

At least it was on the tile.

On the plus side, I have spent almost an entire year trying to capture her beautiful blue eyes.  Part of her Down syndrome diagnosis includes Brushfield Spots.  And they are the most beautiful eyes in the world.  We are all jealous.  I didn't fully capture them.



But I came close.