Saturday, January 12, 2008

A Good Friday Night

We had a great Friday night.  Bruce & I competed in an APDT rally trial Friday night.  We got qualifying scores in 3 out of 4 runs.  He did really well -- not a peep out of him in his crate and he actually visited with some people.  Here are his ribbons:  (As I've stated before, he's secure enough in his masculinity to be proud of his pink ribbon.)


What are his ribbons posing on, you ask?  (Shush -- its my blog and if I wanted to pretend that you noticed the knitted item under the ribbons, I will. So there.)

Why its the Autumn Mystery Shawl -- FINALLY off the needles.  I bound off between runs last night.  The last skein of yarn showed up on Wednesday, but I just didn't have the time or the patience to work on the shawl until Friday night. It isn't blocked yet, nor have I woven in the ends, but I just had to share! 


I took these pictures, standing on the couch, with one foot on the edge of the coffee table (white splotch in the corner of the picture) for balance.  It takes up the entire coffee table right now.  It is going to be HUGE once its blocked.


 Look at how dense the fabric is now... anybody want to block it for me?  I've got pins and wires and a hatred of wet wool..

Monday, January 7, 2008

Dish Rag Tag Reverse Swap

Many moons ago -- as in August 2007.  I participated in Dish Rag Tag.  My team decided to do a reverse swap and we all promised to get it done in the month of October. I think maybe only one or two teammates actually managed to get theirs out in time.  (I know I didn't.)    About a week ago, I did receive my package from Rena.  The package was well worth the wait!

The contents of the box was covered with seasonal tissue paper -- it just drew out the suspense.


I removed the tissue paper to reveal this:


All the goodies in one bag...


Let's exam the items more closely, shall we? First up, the requisite dish rag... I'm so impressed that she managed to get all of my favorite colors into one dish rag -- there's purple, and green and blue!


And the same colors were in the lovely Merino 5 yarn by Crystal Palace:


And even included a suggested pattern for the yarn:


And what's a swap package without chocolate?  I love that it's SOAP!  It smells so good, I almost want to eat it.


And actual edible chocolate.  (which was eaten soon after this picture was taken).


Thanks Rena, for the awesome package!!!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Mitts, Mittens, and Hats

I realize that my posting in December and now January has been sporadic at best.  I can only blame the bizarre need I have to constantly be knitting mitts, mittens and hat.  It started innocently enough. 

I had decided to give my nieces some scarves that were already knit up (blogged here and here).  Since I had matching yarn left, I figured they should have mittens too (blogged here).  How about hats?  I made some of those too. (blogged here). 

And my brother requested a hat for Christmas: 


Drew's Hat
Pattern: Zissou Hat
Yarn:  Brooks Farm Mas-Acero

It was so easy and fast to make.  There was plenty of yarn left, I had to make another this time to fit The Husband's gigantic noggin (seriously 24").  I had him try on my brother's hat to tell me what adjustments needed to be made. made them:


For some reason this hat grew in length, so it is about an inch too long.  (Which is the exact length he asked for so go figure.)  I'm going to have find another pattern and make him a better hat.  But there was still yarn left -- what to do?  Make another hat:  Anne at Knitspot unknowingly came to my rescue with her Hot Waffles Mitts & Hat pattern.


The pattern was perfect & so easy!!!  I wondered if the mitts were just as easy... but I don't wear mitts, I wear mittens.  I had some cool Cascade 220 Quatro in a cool purple color.  These are the only pictures that exist of those mittens.  I wore them to Bruce's Rally Class and one of the ladies gave me a goodie bag for the dogs.  I gave her the mittens. 


The I realized I probably should make some for our trainer since she's been so go to us and our dogs over the years.  But they had to wait...  First, I needed to make a pair for our pet sitter.  She comes a couple of days a week and since she doesn't walk the dogs, she gives them a nice play session in the backyard.  Mittens didn't seem practical, but mitts -- those would work:


We were seeing good friends of ours for Christmas, and I had some knitted items from years ago to give them, but I also wanted some new stuff.  The Hot Waffles Hat (above) I had found a gorgeous skein of Dream in Color Fatty at Fringe with colors I knew she'd love - but what to knit with one skein of chunky yarn?  A hat of course!


Totally UnOriginal Hat
Pattern: Unoriginal Hat by the Yarn Harlot
Yarn:  Dream in Color Fatty

I hadn't forgotten the mittens for the dog trainer.  She specified mittens and not mitts, so I tried to remember how I did it the first time:


Dog Trainer's Mittens
Pattern: Hot Waffles Mitts & Hat by Anne at Knitspot
Yarn:  Cascade 220 Tweed
Modifications:   When I got to the place in the pattern where Anne starts the ribbing for the top of the mitts, I continued for roughly 2 more pattern repeats.  Then I made decreases based upon information in Anne Bud's Handy Book of Knitting Patterns.  Basically, I looked for what she did when she had the same number of stitches on the needles as I did.  I made the decreases in pattern as much as possible, however, all decreases were K2tog, regardless of the type stitches being combined.  I did the exact same thing to make the thumb.

You'd think at this point I wouldn't want to knit a hat or mittens or mitts for awhile.  You're right - sorta.  I cast on for three projects, each three times.  Each project has been frogged.   Then I remembered I had a hat and mittens that I hadn't blocked yet. (blogged here).  So, I dragged them out, gave them a wash and set them out to dry.  


They are really big on me and even big on The Husband's hands (modeled graciously by him).  Turns out that the hat was too big for me too.  So the husband tried it on:


Even too big for him???  I'm thinking of maybe felting them a little to shrink them down.  What do you guys think? 

Undaunted, I continued on the hat kick.  I saw some yarn from Keegan Lane (blogged here) and it was perfect for foliage! 


Prairie Foliage Hat
Pattern: Foliage Hat from Knitty, Fall 2007
Yarn:  Keegan Lane Lux Worsted
Model:  Lizzie

You'd think I'd be finished and ready to move on for a shawl or dishcloth or something...  Well sorta -- I did cast on for the Falling Leaves Shawl from Valley Yarns (aka Webs) but only after I had some issues getting another set of mittens started.  Anne came up with another great pattern: Zig Zag Mitts, Hat and Scarf.  I think going from 10.5 needles (for Foliage) down to US #2's was a bit of a stretch.