Friday, January 19, 2007

Back on Track

I'm always amazed how two weeks back home, combined with the inherent insanity of the holiday season, tends to get me off track. I got off track in my weight loss plan (ate too much bad food and didn't go to the gym), I got off track with my spinning, and everything just felt out of whack. After a couple of weeks back, I'm finally getting into a routine again.

Sadly, the blogging has not become routine. Most of this is the fault of New Blogger. New Blogger seduced me with its ease of use and click and drag photos (as well as the fact that it's an inevitable switch I'll have to make if I want to stay on Blogger). But New Blogger and my work computer apparently don't get along for some strange reason. At any rate, this has put blogging at a standstill for the time being.

I have finished some things, however.
First, here is a 2-ply Shetland/mohair blend, spun from a batt. It's approximately fingering weight, 400 or so yards, 4 oz. I received the batt from Lauren, in the Knitty Spin swap. Thanks, Lauren!

Next up, an unblocked Tiffany mitten, from the latest Knitty. I changed a few things about the pattern. I used ribbing at the cuffs instead of a picot edging and left out one of the repeats between the thumb and the top of the mitten (actually, a happy accident, since it fits my hand better this way). Since I took this photo, of course, I finished the second mitten and have been wearing them all week. I like them, but I think I'm ready to do a more traditional folk mitten. The yarn is Jamieson's DK, and if anyone wants the colors, I can look them up.

Finally, how could I usher in 2007 without taking up a new hobby? My mom took me to a great quilting shop (Mammaw's Thimble), and I somehow bought fabric and a quilting book. This is the center part of a lap quilt; the turquoise will be the inner border, then the dark brown the middle border, then the floral fabric (pictured next to the quilt) the outer border and binding. The backing is a lovely cream paisley fabric. I will use a wool batting and hand quilt it. The pattern is "Don't Fence Me In," from Eleanor Burns's Still Stripping After 25 Years. If all goes well, I'll be finishing the borders this weekend and quilting next weekend.

There are a lot of other projects in the queue right now. I've frogged and restarted the Handmaiden Sea Silk, and I'll be starting a Baby Surprise Jacket this weekend for a friend who is due at the end of February. I also finished a pair of baby booties for a coworker. It seems like there's too much to do and too little time right now!

Thursday, January 04, 2007


Who knits 5 pairs of socks, a We Call Them Pirates hat, a (second) sweater (in 7 days!), 2 pairs of Fuzzyfeet, a drop stitch wrap, and a French Market Bag and forgets to take photos? You guessed it. Lots of finished knitted items, no photos. C'est la vie.

The second sweater saga began about two weeks before Christmas, when I realized that Bristow was hopelessly too big. I plan to do some work to salvage it, but it wasn't something I could or would tackle that close to the deadline. I examined the stash and remembered that I had enough Cotton Ease for Sitcom Chic. On Saturday, 12/17, I began knitting. (Did I mention I also needed to finish the We Call Them Pirates hat and a pair of socks before the big day?) Well, on 12/24, it was finished. It's odd how one pattern or yarn can cause so much grief, when another goes off without a hitch. Sitcom Chic is lovely, and it was a really pleasant knit, even under a tight deadline. The Cotton Ease was nice to work with, as well, and I plan to get more at some point to make the same sweater for me. (If you didn't know, Lion Brand has come to its senses and brought back Cotton Ease in some nice colors.)

All in all, it was a good two week vacation in Tennessee. I received some very nice gifts, many of which were knitting/spinning/weaving related, and I got to spend a lot of time with family and friends.

Of course, I decided to pick up a new/old hobby. It all started with a phone call from my mom, telling me about a lovely quilting shop in Knoxville (Mammaw's Thimble) she'd discovered. Now, I've completed most of the top of a lap quilt. (Photos to come.)

And, since I'm sure you want to see something interesting from my trip, here is a photo of my sister and me on New Year's Eve.