Monday, July 30, 2007

I did it!!!!

This morning I got a message from my college adviser that my final project was approved!!!!!!! My M.Ed. is done!!!!!!! Two years of sheer torture are complete!!!!!!! For the record, this is a Master of Education degree from the University of Washington, Bothell. My hood, when I get it, will have a purple and gold lining and a light blue velvet band, representing the field of education. This makes me want to knit something celebratory. Perhaps in light blue, with purple and gold accents? Hmmmm...I'm thinking fair isle....

Kiri Gifted

The Kiri shawl I finished over a year ago has been given to my grandmother. I made it out of Icelandic laceweight she gave me, which my uncle had sent her while he was stationed in Iceland, so it seemed fitting that she be the recipient of the shawl. She loved it.

Grandma Shawl 1

And here's the back, with Grandma doing her best snobby dress mannequin pose.

Grandma Shawl 2

My grandmother is 82 and a character. She has 64 direct, living descendants, including 24 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. When you add in all the spouses of these descendants, there are over 100 people at most family gatherings. Grandma taught me to crochet when I was six or seven years old, and has always fostered my crafting habit. Unlike most of my cousins, I grew up next door to her, so I've been fortunate enough to have maximum Grandma-exposure. Her own mother lived to be 98, so we expect to see a good deal of Grandma yet.

The Roundabout Tank continues, sadly. It's not sad because of the tank, which is great fun, but it's sad because it means our Visas for Brazil haven't come. If they had, we would be in the air right now.

Roundabout Tank 2

I'm making the second size, but I joined at 37" instead of 40", because I wanted a bit of negative ease. I'm three balls into my nine balls of Pegasus, and I'm hoping the yarn holds out until the end.

Thursday, July 26, 2007


I've succumbed to the siren song of Flickr. One of the big reasons I haven't blogged as much as I should is that uploading photos to our private server was so fiddly and time-consuming. (I know. Wah. Millions of people do it every day.) So I've switched to Flickr, which is much easier, and, quite frankly, cooler. I present to you, Pegasus:


And the much-desired appropriate edging stitches for the Roundabout Leaf Tank (The photo is flipped, lest you think I knit left-handed):

The right stitches

And finally, here's some of the Brazil stash:

Brazil Stash

Surprisingly non-blue. What you see are orange Jaeger Trinity, celery Elann Camila, three colors of Crystal Palace Panda Cotton and Panda Wool, camel silk from Colourmart, red KnitPicks CotLin, moss Misti Alpaca laceweight, and lime Lacey Lamb from Jade Sapphire.

Packed away already are a couple of cakes of Zephyr Wool-Silk, some Brown Sheep Cotton Fine, another color of Jaeger Trinity, and some sapphire blue Elann Luna. And the Pegasus, of course. I've got projects planned for about half of it already, and the rest will probably be my own designs.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Roundabout Leaf Tank

The Elann Pegasus arrived in the mail this afternoon, so I immediately swatched it to see if it would work better than the Katia Jet. It's a lovely yarn, very squashy, with a good "crunch" and incredible shine from the rayon content. It is much lighter and drapier than the Katia, so I'm pleased. I'll upload pictures as soon as my camera batteries decide they're done recharging.

Unfortunately, beautiful though the yarn is, I'm getting 20 stitches to the inch on #7 needles rather than the pattern's called-for 18. I went up to #8 needles, and got the same gauge. Since the fabric is already pretty loose on #7s, I decided to go with it, and just add two stitches to the width of the strip as it winds around and around.

Speaking of the strip, I cast on immediately after finishing my gauge calculations, and discovered a rather glaring error in the instructions. This is in addition to the errors already revealed in the errata on the knitalong blog.

You see, in the picture, the knitted strip appears to be a field of stockinette bordered by two lines of faggoting and a couple of edge stitches. The problem is that the directions listed do not produce that at all. The holes on the left side of the strip line up in classic faggoting, but the ones on the right side just make two wonky lines of holes with a zig-zag stitch in between. To make the knitted strip appear as it does in the photo of the finished garment, the pattern should read like this for both the border and the regular strip sections:

Row 1 (RS) K3, yo, ssk, k15, yo, ssk, k2.

This should make the holes line up in the correct manner. I haven't gotten any further than this in the knitting, and I probably won't do any more on it until we're headed to Brazil, but I'll keep track of any more errors I spot along the way. I really wish that the patterns in this book had been test-knit. It's such a beautiful book, and the patterns are so unique, that it seems a great shame that there are so many errors. Everywhere I go on the web, it seems, the first comment I read about the book is that it is riddled with problems.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

We are not amused

The Katia Jet came in the mail today, and I decided to swatch it before packing it away, and I am very glad that I did. The color is lovely, and the yarn is very nice, but the fabric it makes is waaaaaay too firm for the Roundabout Leaf Tank, which, to all indications, should be slinky and drapey. (By the way, here's be best one I've found on the internet so far.)

So, back to Elann the yarn goes. This time, I'm going to order their house-brand Pegasus, and hope that the rayon content provides the necessary drape.

I've decided on the color "natural," because I don't really like the pale blue offered, Tim doesn't like pink, and none of the other colors really speak to me. Hopefully, this order will work out.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Love! Love! Love!

I just checked out Norah Gaughan's Knitting Nature from the library. I am in love. I know that this book made the blog rounds some time ago, but at the time, I didn't truly realize just how wonderful the patterns in it are. Right now, I am obsessing over two, the Roundabout Leaf Tank (like everybody else) and the Shell Tank. Both will be great for Brazil.

For the Shell Tank, I already have appropriate stash yarn, Elann Sonata in Tapestry Blue

For the Roundabout Leaf Tank, I had to order some yarn, since there wasn't any aran weight summer yarn in my stash. Once again, I went with Elann (I'm so close to the $50 free yarn!) for Katia Jet, which I hope will work well for this. I know, cotton's not slinky like the Berroco Denim Silk the pattern calls for, but I'm hoping the chainette construction will help with this. My husband chose the color Aqua, and I think he made a pretty good choice:

There will, of course, be no knitting on these projects until I get to Brazil. We leave on the 30th of July! Nothing but packing and panic for the next two weeks.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

It tells you they didn't have a lot else to celebrate

Lithuania has money with people spinning on it. Awesome.

Oh, and happy Fourth of July. God bless America and our soldiers.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

The Stash for Brazil

Lookee in the sidebar--a new shop widget! I am excited. Please, buy my yarn. I don't have anywhere to put it.

What I do have is lots of cotton and linen and silk to take with me to Brazil. I have spent the last three or four months building the Brazil stash, because Claudia told me to bring my yarn with me. Apparently, most of the yarn available in Brazil is acrylic, despite the fact that many of our natural fiber yarns in the States are manufactured there.

At last count, here's what's going to Brazil with us:

Elann Camila, Sage, 7 balls
Jaeger Trinity, Dull Pink, 5 balls
Jaeger Trinity, Flamenco, 5 balls
KnitPicks CotLin, Red, 7 balls
Elann Sonata, Blue, 8 balls
Queensland Cotolino, White, 10 balls
Elann Esprit, Brazil, 6 balls
Elann Connemara, Blue, 6 balls
Colourmart Silk, Camel, 2 cones

Not to mention the lace and sock yarn. So, you can see that I will be prepared.

By the way, Rosemary mentioned that I hadn't said anything about our new blog. You can find out about our Brazil adventures at, and I've also put a permanent link in the sidebar.

I think that I will keep this blog up, just for knitting-related blogging. Now that school's out, and the masters-degree-of-death is nearly complete, I should be able to get to this more often. I hope. No promises, though, if the last six months are any indication.