Saturday, February 23, 2008

Hope Spring's Eternal

The yarn pictured above just came in the mail today, and Mom shot some pictures for me to share. It's the yarn for Zephyr Style's Ms. Marigold, one of of two Zephyr Style projects we are going to try to complete while I'm home on Spring Break. I'd really like to get them done so I can wear them out and about while I'm studying abroad in London! I think it's both mine and Mom's first time knitting a Zephyr Style creation, and I for one am really excited. They have so many cool projects (the Tree Jacket AND 28Thirty come to mind as projects I would REALLY like to make for next fall) and, just from glancing at the patterns for Marigold and Juliet, I like their handy tips for customizing your knits. For Ms. Marigold, we are using the Knit Picks yarn that the pattern calls for -- Elegance, a wool/alpaca blend. I'm knitting it in Daisy, which is actually the color the sweater is pictured in. Mom is using Ash, a lovely light gray.

The second sweater we are going to try to make is Juliet. We first saw the sweater made up on {six one seven}'s blog before she was {six one seven}. That was followed by discovering it also on Wendy Bernad's blog in her winning finished objects album. After seeing both of theirs knit up, we knew we had to make it. We hunted around a bit and decided on using Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Chunky in 025, a sky blue for me and Mom's knitting it in 028, a medium green.

So get excited for spring! Maybe later in the week I'll have an update on the body for my Wear Everywhere Pullover, or maybe Mom will finish off her Boy's Garter Stitch crew neck. Happy knitting!

Friday, February 22, 2008


So yesterday I went to a meeting with my academic adviser We didn't have much to talk about as far as academics go because I'm going to be in London (!!!!) next term, but somehow our talk turned to knitting, and I discovered she's a knitter too! She showed me some of her handmade scarves, and I showed her the sweater I'm working on. It was really nice to talk to another knitter but also made me miss home. That's one thing I really miss at school ... the little community of two Mom and I have based on knitting. We don't really know many knitters, but I can see the appeal in being part of a larger knitting community. Something about knitting seems to invite a special sort of communication ... knitting sort of reminds me of a religion, with converts new and old, when they find each other, being carried away with ecstatic rapture centered around fiber. While I'm at school, the only time I get to talk about knitting is on the phone during marathon phone conversations Mom and I have about ... conversations that I'm sure my roommate must roll her eyes a bit when she walks in and realizes I'm talking about knitting again. And I think that's one of the really neat things about blogging, something that makes me want to really make the effort to blog more often ... it seems to be an entry way into a larger virtual knitting community. But anyway, with that said and without further ado, here are Mom and mine's sweaters-in-progress.

It's her own design, and as you can see from the photo, she's been using tips from Jacqueline Fee's The Sweater Workshop as well as books from her Elizabeth Zimmerman collection. It's knit in Brown Sheep Naturespun sport yarn in a very stretchy garter stitch rib. It might look a bit small, but it fits my six year old brother with room to grow to in. She's now even farther along on the second sleeve, so look for a finished object post soon!

I've been working on the Wear Everywhere Pullover from the Spring 2005 Interweave Knits. I'm using the yarn the pattern calls for, allhemp3. It's my first time working with hemp, and I have to say, at first I was very frustrated. Luckily, most of my other yarn was still at home in Virginia which forced me to keep working with it. And now that I've gotten going, I'm really happy with the sweater thus far. The hemp really does soften up, even just from knitting with it. And the fancy rib pattern is pretty to look at and simple enough to memorize. It's nice to have a project that I can carry around in my backpack and get a few rounds in when I have an unexpected break during the day. Also, the lilac yarn reminds me that, though it doesn't seem like it right now, spring will come back eventually.

So there's a little taste of spring. Today, the temperature got to above 20 and the sun was shining, and looking at the flowers that someone put in my mailbox today and my lilac sweater got me ready for spring. Look for a post on the spring knitting Mom and I will be starting over my spring break in the next couple of days!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Fighting off the Cold

So, it may seem a little late to be revealing Christmas knitting, but if brookyln tweed can do it, so can I!

So, this hat and scarf set was gifted right at Christmas and has been experiencing heavy use (yay!) ever since. The scarf stitch is mistake rib à la Last Minute Knitted Gifts, knit in Blue Sky Alpaca Bulky Hand Dyes in shade 2001. The yarn was an absolute joy to work with, and the finished product is very soft, lush and warm. The hat was just sort of a generic pattern that I tinkered around with, adding a garter stitch brim, knit with Peace Fleece Worsted in Siberian Midnight. I've been knitting hats and scarves for the giftee for the past few years, and I think this year's offering may have been his favorite. It does my heart good to see him bundle up in them before we head out into the Minnesota winter ... nothing like seeing hand knits worn and appreciated!

Mom also whipped up a pair of those fingerless mitts that seem to be popping up everywhere these days.
Pattern: None really .. she just looked at a couple ones she had and made it up as she went along
Yarn: Morehouse Merino 3-Strand Yarn in Variegated Wild Rose
Needles: 2 #5 Addi Turbos

She made these to keep my sister's notoriously cold hands warm, hoping they'd be something she could wear out as well as around the house. Unfortunately, after about two weeks or so of wear, they have pilled like crazy and look nothing like the above picture. Maybe she can make another pair out of Knitting New Mittens and Gloves ... we both just looked at Grumperina's post on that book and it looks really nifty.

It's been in the negative double digits here, and I'm wishing I'd spent a little more time working on hats, scarves and mittens that weren't being gifted .. haha. In the one or two week lull before my final exams, I'm trying to cram as much knitting in as possible. In a couple days, we should have some pictures up of two sweaters in progress. Hope you're warmer than I am and getting lots of knitting done ...