Monday, December 21, 2009

The 80/20 Rule

Or is it 90/10? In any case, most of the gift buying, gift knitting, gift knitting, and card mailing are done. It's just that last batch that's going take awhile and may not make it on time.

The birthday twin likes his cardie! Although he said he didn't mind my posting his pic, the moment of bright sunshine through our office window combined w/flourescent lighting was not flattering to his forehead, so off it went.

It was also my sister's (aka the original Monkey) birthday, so another slouchy hat was whipped up.

Slouchy Copy Cat Hat
Dream In Color Classy in Deep Seaflower
size 7 & 9 KP circs
mod: Cast on 86 sts

A friend's husband had been deployed to Afghanistan, so I had started this for him. Thankfully he has been sent home, but he requested I finish this for his friend who is still there. It won't get there by Christmas, but still in time for the harsh winter there.

Helmet Liner - one size! - hope it fits
Knit Picks Swish Worsted in Camel Heather
size 6 & 8 KP circs
- size 6 for the face ribbing only
- decreased the corners of the face ribbing as several knitters have suggested on Ravelry

Call me a sucker. A long-time friend at work sweet-talked me into a hat. Smooth, he is.

Turn-a-Square hat
Knit Picks Swish Worsted in Delft Heather - 1 skein!
Cascade Greenland - a bit of gray
size 7 & 8 KP circs

This is the 20% (or 10% if I want to make myself feel better) that will probably not make it. However, this slowly progressing Seemingly Simple Vest is more like the bonus gift as we've got the usual items for her this year. Yarn is Cherry Tree Hill Twister (discontinued?) in a Waters potluck color. At least I'm stash-busting.

Lastly, I've got something in the holiday FAIL category. My first attempt at making this particular Knit Picks Swish Worsted colorway (Clematis Heather) into a cowl ended in frogging. Something about Ciara's Cowl pattern and this color of yarn was just not working. Or it could just be the yarn and stitch pattern combo just being super super slow for something I wanted to crank out fast.

I then tried to knit this yarn into a plain cowl and while the colorway looked so much better in stockinette stitch, I screwed up my gauge and it was too big. Again it's been frogged and the yarn has been put on holiday time out. I may need to return my Princess of Purple tiara for my problems with this particular purple yarn. There's just something about this particular shade that I am not syncing with.

Next month I hope, post-holiday relaxing knitting. AKA socks! It's been too too long.

In the meantime, wishing you all a happy holiday season!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

For the birthday twin

Finished in time before he retires by the end of the month. He'll get it next week though as I forgot to bring it in today.

(sorry for the slight blurriness - still working out my relationship w/my new camera)

pattern: Rowan 34 Morris
size: XL
yarn: Knit Picks Swish Bulky in Squirrel Heather
needles: KP nickel-plated circs in size 10 & 10.5
mods: added side pockets

I like the yarn and this classic colorway, but I'll be happy to not see it in a good long while. I was definitely burnt out by the end. Also, not too thrilled with the pockets I threw in on the fly. But then, I should've planned the pockets out better & earlier.

Birthday brother bought the yarn, picked out the pattern and the pattern size, so I hope he's happy with it. I had to fight my own aesthetic with the sizing. He wanted large & roomy, but I kept thinking "OMG, I'm making it too big." Also, it was amusing to watch a Muggle's reaction to the price of decent yarn, especially if we're going for machine-washeable.

And since I had 1 skein leftover, I figured I might as well make him a coordinating hat. The cabling on the Chunky Dean St hat pattern has a similar look to the mini-ones embedded in the big cable pattern of the cardigan.

Chunky Dean Street hat - really quick enjoyable pattern on Ravelry
size 9 & 10 KP circs
pattern size medium - did not make his hat as roomy as the cardie

So now that the big project is done, I'm off to make a few holiday gifts. First up is Monkey1's teacher's hat. She's a big Harry Potter fan and dressed up as a Hogwarts student on Halloween, so I thought that the Hermione hat in sparkly yarn would be fitting for her.

Hermione's Cable & Eyelet Hat
Lion Brand Wool Ease in White/Multi - we like the sparkle
size 7 KP circs
"adult" size

Monkey1 gets to wrap this up as soon as I fix a bad weaving job on the brim when I encountered a knot in the yarn.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

A bit of randomness

Woolgirl's Embrace the Lace November kit:

Lots of fall goodness. Pattern by Anne Hanson. I think I'll gift the cowl & fingerless mitt set after I knit it up. The yarn looks like fun to knit (camel), but very much not my color.

My yarnie b-day gift #1 from Tapmouse. Yum!

Tapmouse's handspun b-day gift 2 in need of a wash & a thwack. I think she thinks I'll learn to spin if I learn how to handle her handspun first. Slippery slope is all I'm saying.

Cute bag set from my mom for my b-day. Monkey1 already absconded w/the other little bag that had more cute animals and less piratey fashionistas.

Why yes, I just saw the movie. However, I gave my first pair above done back in Feb in KP Swish Bulky Charcoal to my sis who was in dire need of mittens and made myself a second somewhat bigger pair.

Pattern: Bella's Mittens
yarn: Sheep Shop Two (apparently the company is no more)
needles: KP size 10 circs

I like how they use these mittens in both Twilight & New Moon. Nice continuity of wardrobe. Too bad there wasn't as much knitwear in New Moon as in Twilight. Much, much better production for New Moon, though I will quibble at the makeup artist's choice of vampiric matte heavy foundation vs the excellent airbrush variety in Twilight. And WTF w/Edward's continuing lack of a good red lipstick. Then again, WTF w/the red lipstick in the first place.

Playground Mittens
Cascade 220 Superwash (need to find the ballband for the color #)
size 4-6
KP circs in size 5

Modified slightly since I wanted a little tighter gauge. Since the designer used Ann Budd's Knitter's Book of Patterns as her template, I just pulled out my copy for the modifications. I knit these up quickly over the T-day weekend and was told by Monkey2 that it wasn't what she wanted. Rolls eyes. So before the next holiday, I've been requested fingerless gloves (not mitts!) in purple.

And I swear my birthday twin's cardie is up next. It's half seamed up, but I need to knit up the pocket liners & sew on the buttons.