Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Purple rain, purple rain

The vestiges of Tropical Storm Fay have hit Virginia, meaning we've had pretty much non-stop heavy rain since yesterday afternoon. The chill of the rain, the start of school and everyone's constant talk of the coming of fall have all forced me to come to terms with the fact that autumn is indeed on its way, meaning I have to return to Minnesota in a few short weeks. Luckily, I will at least have some hand knit goodies to keep me toasty as I long for the comforts of home. (And bonus, they coordinate with my new black North Face fleece!)

I made this hat on a whim way back at the beginning of the summer, when the days (and, incidentally, my hair) were longer, and the whole summer was spread before me. If only I could return to those days!
The pattern is the popular Foliage by Emilee Mooney from Knitty's Fall 2007 issue. I chose the worsted weight hat, and used the yarn called for (Malabrigo) in the Pearl colorway. It was very fast and fun .. only took two afternoons to make. Once I made it, I realized I didn't have a scarf that would match with it. A quick visit to the Loopy Ewe fixed that though ... I ordered some more Malabrigo in darker purple to make a coordinating scarf (so things wouldn't get too matchy-matchy). I've had the yarn sitting around for a few weeks. On Monday, I was particularly stressed and upset, so I decided I needed a new, simple project to cheer me up. So I started on a simple moss stitch scarf.

I've never done moss stitch before ... for a long time, I thought moss and seed stitch were interchangeable names for the same thing. I really like it though .. the bumps of the pattern sort of remind me of little berries which is appropriate since the colorway I'm using is called Sweet Grape.

Here's one more shot of the scarf ... you can see the stitch definition better. And I just couldn't resist including another because I'm proud of the pictures I took today while Mom was at the office. Usually, I can't get a decent picture unless I go outside (and the rain precluded that). The flash always messes things up, and I can never seem to get the right amount of light, natural or otherwise, in the photo so that I can take an indoor shot with no flash. The other day, Mom suggested we try out her bedside table lamp. I did it today, and it worked! The color is accurate, I didn't have to use flash, and no blurriness! Woohoo!

Today would be the perfect day to stay in and just knit, knit, knit, but there are errands to be run. So I'm off to face the rain. Happy knitting ... and if you're around Virgina, good luck staying dry!

Monday, August 25, 2008


We got Wollmeise! Our first 2 skeins!


Sunday, August 24, 2008

Socks and more...

My mom's 65th birthday was on August 8. So I bought her a new nightgown, made matching Pom Pom Peds and got her some new DVDs...all thing essentials for a cozy night in. Kat made a trip to New York in June for a history conference and was lucky enough to visit Purl Soho. She and and I decided we wanted to buy Hand Jive Nature's Palette to make the peds from their blog, The Purl Bee, and bought enough, we hope, to make 4 pairs all total. My mom's are blue with pink trim and Kat is making a pair in the reverse as a secret gift for now. She'll post hers later. My mom was pleased I think, and they were a quick and fun knit and I liked how they turned out. Our second set of pairs will be chocolate brown and yellow...two of my favorite colors.

I am including a few pictures of th peds as I put Kat's life at risk taking them. I had this idea to take pictures of her feet dangling...from a tree...and I am afraid she suffered minor bumps and scrapes from the ordeal of getting in and out of the tree. Sorry Kat... (to see all the injury-causing photos, visit me on Ravelry).

This morning we had lovely french toast, veggie bacon and fresh peaches from our trip to the market on Saturday. We all ate out on the deck taking advantage of one of the last carefree days of summer. Yummy.

In Ravelympics news, we are almost through with the body of our vests. We are making Dr. G's Memory Vest designed by Through the Loops. I have about 12 of the 13.5" done and Kat is right behind me. We are knitting the vest in the round up to the armholes and then flat knitting. At some point I really want to learn to steek and give that a try. Barring a miracle, I don't think we'll finish on time but we keep trying. During Ravelympics I have had work and a week of vacation and getting both of my daughters ready to start college. Ocean Eyes, their 6-year old brother, starts first grade it's been a busy couple of weeks and we've worked on our vests when time has allowed. Keep your fingers crossed...

Monday, August 18, 2008

Going for the Gold

As we're over a week into Ravelympics, it seems appropriate to give an update with some pics. These were taken late last week and sadly, our vests have not grown much since then due to a very busy weekend that included a surprise mini-vacation (how lovely is that?!)

Seeing double? That's Mom's on the left, mine on the right.

We're using Louet Riverstone, and the yarn is quite lovely. I'm pretty excited that I like it, because I bought a whole bunch in a pinkish tan color to make Lucy in the Sky.

The vests have been mostly smooth sailing except for the fact that we just haven't had that much time to devote to them. Last week, everyone was off work for some vacation at home time, and you'd think that'd be the perfect time to get lots of knitting done. But every day we were off doing something different. However, we did our best to squeeze a few hours of knitting in each day ... we even knit at a go-cart track, watching our little Ocean Eyes drive a go-cart for the first time! But as Mom observed during the week, vacation sometimes seems like the worst time possible to get knitting done. There are always so many other things you're supposed to be doing.

So hopefully this week we can make a big push and get these vests done! Keep your fingers crossed for us!

In other knit two together news, it's time for another episode of Look what the mailman brought....

First up, from the Loopy Ewe:

Four skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Mineshaft, two for each of us :), and...

Two skeins of Malabrigo Worsted in Sweet Grape for a scarf. We've become total Loopy addicts ... if you haven't checked them out, you definitely should. We just love Loopy!

From the new Dizzy Blonde Studios:

One skein for each of us of Goldie and I splurged and bought Michelle as well. La included little retractable tape measures .. isn't that nice? The yarn is just gorgeous ....

And (yes, there's more) from Sunshine Yarns:

Harry Potter-inspired yarn ... we each got a skein of Luna (1st and 3rd from left) and Dobby. Once again, it's lovely yarn.

As you can see, we seriously have a problem. All of that yarn came between Thursday and Saturday. Can you tell we have similar yarn tastes? Always ordering duplicates ... and we're just waiting on the Blue Moon Fibers update so we can do even more damage!

Hope everyone's enjoying August ... can't believe it's already more than half way gone. Look for a post from Mom in the next few days!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Deadline Knitting

When I start thinking about Mom, me and deadline knitting, I realize it's not really our strong point. For instance, awhile back we posted our plans for spring break knitting -- Ms. Marigold and Juliet. I was home, I think, about ten days for spring break, getting ready for a term abroad and honestly thought that with Mom working and me running around preparing we could finish two sweaters. Now, we did finish one, Juliet. But not within the week. There were hold ups, froggings, etc. Mom finished, I think, shortly after I left, but she has since decided to rip out some of the length. And mine languished for awhile in a ziploc bag on a shelf in my hostel, then was finally finished. It's another one of those projects that slipped through the blogging cracks this spring, so here it is:

Juliet by Zephyr Style
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Chunky in 025
Needles: Addi Circulars size 10 1/2
Start/Finished: some time this spring....
Buttons: wooden from Loop in London

I really liked this sweater, except that I really don't like chunky knits so much. I think lots of times they tend to look sloppy. The yarn was very soft, but, if I recall, a bit given to splitting. But the pattern was fun, and I like the end result. I don't quite know when to wear it though. The yarn is super warm, but the sleeves are so short .... maybe wearing it over a turtleneck or something in the fall would be my best bet.

We bought some yarn to make another version in a smaller gauge (inspired by this version) which I think would be nice, and more practical for wearing in the spring/early summer. But overall, a very satisfying project.

What prompted this reflection on deadline knitting? Mom and I cast on Friday for the Ravelympics. We're both making Dr. G's Memory Vest and so far, the going has been slow. Friday was busy, so we didn't have time to do anything but cast on, and we promptly ripped our cast on out Saturday morning and re-did it using long-tail method. We're knitting the vest in the round instead of in pieces, so the rows are pretty long. This is my first time really doing any cabling, and it has really been a bit hard on my hands. Hopefully though, the pace will pick up soon, and we'll have some nice in progress shots to show you.

Speaking of pictures, I'd like to take this opportunity to say a word about ours. Mom has been doing almost all the photography, and I think she's doing quite a wonderful job. Just wanted to make sure she got credit for all the lovely photos we've been posting lately :)

Wish us luck in the Ravelympics ... hopefully we'll make it to the finish line!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Look what the mailman brought!

Look what the mailman brought could be quite a regular segment here at knit two together. We order yarn online a lot for a variety of reasons which maybe aren't worth going into at the moment. Anyway, look what we got today:

The yarn is Cascade Venezia in Turquoise and Tan/Brown. It looks really lovely .. has a bit of a a sheen and feels nice. Can't wait to cast on! We ordered this from Jimmy Beans Monday and it arrived today! We love yarn stores that ship quickly .. if you ever need to know who can get you the yarn you want to you the fastest, give us a shout.

We were planning on using it to make this, but looking for the pattern on ravelry, stumbled across the Grand Plan Capelet from the same book and may change our minds completely. Either way, we are making some sort of wrap thing that will be predominately light turquoise with the warm brown as trim, and there's a very specific reason for this. Sunday evening, my mom, sister and I were watching Sweet Home Alabama. In one scene, Reese Witherspoon wears a knit wrap in basketweave stitch that is turquoise with brown trim. We both really liked it. I wanted to try to design something similar, but Mom, in the interest of saving time, wanted to find some sort of pattern that we could use. We couldn't find a basketweave wrap, and considering neither of us really even ever make wraps or shawls, I ended up agreeing that we should just pick a different wrap pattern but use the colors we liked so much. So sometime, in the near(ish?) future, keep your eyes out for some sort of wrap ...

Alright, that's a wrap (sorry couldn't resist the pun) for our first "Look what the mailman brought." Considering we already got some beautiful sock yarn this week, and more is on the way, you'll probably be seeing more snaps of what has come in the mail soon ...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Summer Nights

One of the things I love most about being home in the summer is the evening time. Everyone's off work, there's no rush to get a certain little 6 year old in bed on time and the dinners are late and delicious (like the other night's for example -- kalamata olive hummus with pita, tabouleh and grilled butternut squash).

There's another thing to love about summer nights. Its when most of our knitting happens. Even now when my summer job has come to an end, or on the weekend, say, not that much knitting happens during the daylight hours, and it's not for lack of trying. Take today for example. Today, I had a plan. I was going to get up, finish the toe of my first Pom Pom Peds (pom pom footies are very in at our house currently), continue swatching for my Ravelympics project and do some work on the project-that-must-not-be-named. And how much of that has happened? You guessed it ... absolutely none. I was completely sidetracked by my first encounter with Twist Collective and spent the whole morning drooling over so many gorgeous patterns (and these adorable socks, too).

The same thing happens to Mom and me on the weekends. We're going to knit .. but there's that one thing we were going to look at, and suddenly, we've been on Ravelry for two hours (and ordered some yarn to boot). But no matter what, the evenings are our time to knit. We pop in a movie (or, if it's Wednesday, watch the newest episode of Project Runway!) and lately have been getting at least a few hours in before bed.

And besides, sometimes some really great stuff happens during summer days. The other day, my little brother and I made these together:

Whole wheat chocolate chip oatmeal cookies. He had a great time baking, and I had a great time helping him. I hate that I miss that sort of thing while I'm away at school. And the other bonus is that the cookies are low fat. Most of the butter is replaced with applesauce (only 2 TBSPs for the whole batch) and they're absolutely delicious. Mom and I have been trying to watch what we eat and exercise, and these are a perfect almost guiltless treat for those summer evenings when a sweet tooth hits. We used this recipe, but used whole wheat flour instead.

Lots of knitting has been going on, but I don't have any photos to show. We're getting geared up for the Ravelympics and also trying to finish up pom pom peds to be gifted. So the next post, I promise, will have some actually knitting to show off.

Until then, happy knitting (and training for the Ravelympics)!