December 25, 2007

Feather and Fan Scarf

About a full-year in the making (*LOL*), this Feather and Fan stitch scarf is finally finished and will be given to my Mom. Winnie & Caroline will probably remember me working on this a year ago when we went to Unraveled in Monrovia. I'm not sure if I'll ever attempt lacy things again. I really suck at it.

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 Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino, 2 skeins, on size 4 needles.

 [edit] my mum LOVED it! hooray!

December 21, 2007

Lunch n' Stitch

I guess I should start my first December entry with one fun and positive thing that I've done this month! I helped start a very small knitting/needle arts group at work. We meet in the new lunch room once a week for an hour to knit and chat. It's only been a few weeks and we're only getting started, but I'm getting more stuff done and I feel newly inspired again. Last week I showed my co-worker Meggie how to do a rib stitch, and this week she came with a finished scarf! At our lunch today she was putting on the finishing touches (tassels) on the said ribbed scarf. I was so proud of her. :) She was so thrilled about her progress that she is now attempting a lace pattern.

I find it so fascinating how much one's personality comes through when it comes to knitting or any type of crafting. It took me months to go from knit to purl, and YEARS before I attempted knitting in the round. Only last year did I pick up a lace pattern after having knitted for 3 years. I simply had to do the basics well (and have confidence in the way I work) before I even tried something new. Meggie just picked projects up without fear and ran with it all!

One of my 2007 resolutions wishes was to learn how to crochet. I bought myself Stitch 'N Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker (it's such a GREAT book with great stitches, patterns and cute illustrations just like the original SnB!) back in May but never cracked it open because I never had the time. :\ Not being much of a book-learner (yeah I know *some of you* who know me well are snickering), I got as far as making a chain stitch and was pretty much lost after that. But today! My friend Yvonne happened to decide to drop in on our stitching group and gave me a quick demo - and now I know how to do single crochet! Go me! *LOL* She also showed us how to crochet in circle. Now that part, I didn't quite catch on, but I'm sure once I get my tension and hook wielding down correctly, I'll be able to do that soon too. Now I feel totally inspired about needle arts again. I had been working on a lace scarf for nearly a YEAR and feeling quite dejected, but both Yvonne and Meggie were totally sweet and encouraging. Now I need to finish it so I can start a new project!

October 29, 2007

Seed Stitch Scarf

I started knitting again after putting it on hold for months. I started this scarf last Fall and put it away when the weather got warmer. I finally finished it last week! It feels so good to be making things again. And I just got the latest issue of CRAFT:zine and now I'm inspired to start holiday gifts! I was going to give it away but now I'm tempted to keep it for myself :)

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Rowan Big Wool in Ice Blue, seed stitch, sz 15 needles.

February 9, 2007

In the Round

I know, I know, they look like shishkabob skewers to the untrained eye, but these are made by Clover Japan, which means they're as good as bamboo needles get. Since I love knitting in dolly scale, the size 2s and 4s will be just perfect. I also picked up sz 4 and 8 circulars to make finer gauge hats in people size, since I tend to gravitate towards thin yarn no matter how much I've tried to do the chunky stuff.

This is my 2nd attempt at using a circular needle and finishing off with DPNs (double pointed needles). The first one came out a tad wonky, but I'm much happier with this one. I used size 10.5 circulars that GG sent me years ago (thank you glenda!). I was afraid to try them because I thought circular knitting looked too complicated and scary! And whenever I saw people knitting with DPNs, it always reminded me of some ancient Chinese torture device ;) Looking at the photo above now, I can't believe that's MY work! I'm actually sort of glad I didn't try everything right away - because when I do that, I get easily frustrated and give up too soon. I tend to do one thing for a long time until I feel comfortable/confident enough to move on to the next thing. I wanted to make sure I knew my Ks and Ps and have a handle on tension before I moved on to anything else. Ha, I guess I'm just anal that way. So it looks like it will be a cool & slightly rainy weekend for Southern California. Cool being in the 40s-60s, that is! I plan try to sit in bed with a cup of hot tea, some knitting in my lap and a kitty sleeping next to me. Sounds like a perfect weekend indeed.

February 1, 2007

New Territory!

Oops. Cold weather, what have you done?!

I've just discovered the joy of circular + DPN knitting. I know, it only took me, oh, three years to finally dive in. What can I say, I'm not very adventurous. I'm not brave enough to do socks & gloves yet - I'm only doing seamless hats for now. Okay, and there's a sale + free shipping offer at JoAnn's and my friend Lisa gave me a $25 giftcard for X'mas. I couldn't resist.

January 11, 2007

A Beanie for My Dad

Finished a hat for my Dad last night. I actually ran out of yarn half way up and stupidly tossed the label (d'oh!) so I tried to match the color without bringing my knitting (double d'oh!). It actually turned out okay with the two-tone denim blue. Hooray for happy accidents.

Really simple yet impressive pattern (I love the swirls on the crown!) from Hip to Knit: 18 Contemporary Projects for Today's Knitter by Judith L. Swartz