Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween

I always love it when three things happen:

  • Halloween falls on a Saturday (much better people watching)
  • Work means not having a bride (speaks for itself)
  • There is a much awaited FO! (canya' say Valkyrie Vest?)

Definitely the treat after LOTS of tricks, Valkyrie is blocking as we speak, I am SOOOOOOO glad it is done.

Swatching is complete for Lloie's Cardigan, now the math to get the sizing figured and casting on-- hopefully this weekend.

Happy Halloween, may you have treats abundant!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Yarn is HERE!

Oh good grief I need to knit faster if I am going to avoid total temptation! I have not finished the Valkyrie Vest yet. In order to make good on my promise to myself I need to get that bad girl finished in order to begin work on Lloie's Cardigan.

And the yarn is HERE!!!!!! I was amazed by the lightning fast speed from Schoolhouse Press!!!

The body of the cardi will be the blue, it looks more royal here but it is a true rich navy. The leaves on the yoke will move from the raspberry into the rose and then the cream will be the petals around the neck. I love the colors and think it will be so pretty!! The emerald and the black will join the narrow cream band between the body and the yoke.

So, I can't wait to start. I want to GO! But in listening to my own set rules I can hear Elizabeth herself whisper in my ear............

KNIT ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Almost done--

The Valkyrie Vest is ALMOST done, I swear I've knit this thing eight times! The last bit to the shoulder, a three needle bind off (love those) and side seams to stitch up.

Life continues to be crazy and other knitting hasn't happened much. I'm not liking the lacy bit of shawlette (I think it is the yarn which is nice enough but not working for me in the shawl sense) and of course the Everyday Wrap is just sitting in the knitting bag.

I had the opportunity to actually be a guest at a wedding last Saturday night, it was such a treat. No wrangling, just enjoying---- right down to the wedding cake which was delicious! The plans were to have the Wrap finished and ready to wear and that just didn't happen. Isn't it funny that the goals we set for ourselves move us forward? Now I don't have a particular goal in mind and I'm afraid that the wrap will just age out.

Yarn has been ordered for Lloie's Cardigan, can't wait to get it! With luck the timing will be great and the vest will be finished. I refuse to even swatch for the new sweater until it is.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Crazy then Fall Down

I am telling you that life is so crazy right now I have forgotten how to swallow. My Mom used to say it was "crazy then you fall down". Pretty accurate if you ask me.

Brides are keeping me on my tip toes (which should come as no surprise to you if you get the whole bride thing anyway). Soon the thick of the season will be in the rearview mirror and I have to admit I'm ready for it.

Not a lot of knitting time, which is frustrating as the cool weather definitely wants nothing more. I have managed to put some length on the back of the Valkyrie Vest and it would be off the needles and on to the front if I could just sit down a bit with it.

It is looking good, I love the pattern----- and really enjoy the yarn a lot.

Then yesterday my eyes rolled back in my head and I apparently had the crazy part before the fall down. A friend (the wonderful Yo-el) finished a gorgeous bit of lace frothery in the form of a shawl(ette), Feather Duster. It is yummy. So to make a long story short, my car drove itself to Knitorious where I found myself standing in front of the lace weight yarn (after crusing the store of course). I purchased this really pretty skein of Cascade Yarns Alpaca Lace Paints. It runs from red into purples and saffrons. I had a ball of fuzzy purple in my hand but decided to go with something different. WELL------- I had a couple of hours while waiting for things to upload and the obligatory on the phone time to work things out. Nothing made me feel more stupid than getting this pattern set up. I am not a total moron and can follow a chart but the chart didn't seem (in my addlepated mind) to sync with the written directions. After frogging the first 7 rows five times it was time to close up shop and head out for knitting. Sanity time in my week for sure. It took Silvana and I a bit of time to figure out that the charts numbering system does not match the number of rows currently done, or that are on the written directions. A simple enough thing but blitters, it did me in. I'm still wondering if I am just too crazy right now to have the wherewithal to manage even this simple bit of lace knitting. Time will tell.

This is apparently the fall down portion of crazy. You know, when you already have 3 projects on the needles (one over my personal limit) one easy peasy, one middle range, and one to concentrate over. But-------- this sweater has called my name and next in the queue. It is Lloie's Cardigan from Schoolhouse Press, Wool Gathering. Delish. We had fun at knitting yesterday nailing down colors, I have chosen a navy background with the leaves in a rasperryish rose and a soft gray. The top petals are cream, the stripe on the border is also cream with the "surprise" color, a tiny little pop of a dot, in an emerald green. My question was black background or cream? I was afraid that the black would be boring against the navy body of the cardigan but that the cream would somehow float off and get lost. All great minds concurred and I'm pretty certain that this is the combination I'll go with. Knitting bottom up in the round, attach the sleeves, a fun yoke and steeking------- yay. But I am going to force myself to get at least the vest finished first.

Part of crazy then fall down is that you are apt to do nutty things so time will tell how plans play out.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

C'est Fini!!!!!!!!!!!

C'est Fini---------------- yesssssssssssssssssssssssssss!

At very long last the Ravenna Satchel is finished! This one lingered longer than imaginable, it had it's heartaches and pitfalls and well, boring spots.

But done it is. For the most part I love it, but it took a lot of changes-- some big and some small.

The needle felting (thanks Emily for the loan of the needle felting tools) made a world of difference, it was nasty icky without it. Sort of blobby and indistinguishable. The felting took two days and two needles. Finishing was different than the pattern specified and for a lot of reasons.

The pattern specified that the top of the felted bag use black seam binding and I really didn't like the look at all so left it all. I used purchased black suede handles and simple feet on the bottom of the bag. Those that were on the original Satchel were gorgeous but pricey and I opted out. Instead of (ick) using a long row of velcro to close the bag I inserted a center pull zipper by machine and find that it gives easy, wide access to the bag and stability. The bag was very floppy even after felting so the lining is two layers of home dec weight fabric (in a happy acid green giraffe print) with the heaviest interfacing imaginable sandwiched in between. The lining then was inserted into the satchel and I used liquid stitching to cement the lining to the top of the bag. The bottom was still very sloppyfloppy. The pattern calls for masonite and that was heavy and not a happening thing. Two layers of needlepoint canvas were not strong enough. I've chosen a double layer of foam core, wrapped with fabric cut to fit very tightly into the bottom of the bag. Hey, if it has to be replaced it has to be replaced.

The lining makes me smile------- all in all a great bag and I'm sooooooo happy to be done with it. NOTHING left in the works in progress, can you believe it. That my blitters feels better than just about anything!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Bride With Sticks----- at long last!

Back on the contract last weekend for a wedding that included a couple of hours in the car. Location was a winery in a gorgeous Germanic town that included lovely views and the feel of the 1950's, it was delightful!

The bride and groom were such a treat!!!!!! They had been high school sweethearts who drifted apart, each having a daughter. Those marriages ended and they found each other again, discovering that they were collectively the loves of their lives. Such a beautiful story, and they were so in love.

I know.................. you can tell she doesn't knit but she did pose with the Valkyrie Vest so beautifully didn't she???? Because she is so great, I'll forgive the lack of knitterly-ness.

The dress was lovely right down to that chocolate brown satin sash. And the headpiece? So vintage and gorgeous, she rocked it!

Guess what certain Tote is finished????? Umhmmmmm, I'll bring photos soon!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Knitting On

They say no rest for the weary (which I like better than no rest for the wicked)---- and as I am weary, I'd tend to agree. Madness I say, madness.

There finally WAS a bride with sticks last Saturday, I'll have photos soon, she was wonderful--- the whole event was fabulous.

And I've been puttering, er knitting, a small bit----

Lots of car time yesterday meant that the Everyday Wrap got some work done on it. Boring as can be but the yummy yarn does add a small amount of spark. I'm about halfway done, this last half is going to just slog on. I'd love to have it done to wear to a wedding I actually get to attend as a guest, a rare and lovely occurance.

The Valkyrie Vest is getting small bits done----- everyone loves this shade of green as much as I do and it is a fun knit. Shaping as well as moving on to the other cable chart happens very soon.

And lastly, I was able to wear Nimbus yesterday to an out of town soccer game. The weather was a bit chilly and this sweater was not only cute but warm as well. It looked really cute over a white tunic and jeans.

The project for the moment is to FINISH the Ravenna Satchel. It's okay, it is salvageable but it is not my favorite. The finishing has been fussy as the felted bag itself is very floppy. A double layer of lining fabric has been sandwiched with super duper interfacing which seems to work well although the heaviness of that layer means hand finishing. What remains then will be to figure out a way to make the bottom firm-- probably a covered board or piece of masonite. The last bit will be the zipper which will make it quite nice. Inserting it is going to be a nightmare. It'll have to go in by hand because of the way the floppy bag had to be constructed for firm useability. Making the zipper secure might be a nightmare.

And on it goes.................