Monday, July 30, 2007

Stop and smell the roses

I do still blog, I swear I do! Life just got in the way for a while. I have not only enjoyed the summer (and smelled the roses), but also covered North America from Seattle to New York in the last two weeks. In knitting terms, this means one finished object and lots of time thinking about new ones, and even some swatching (no photographic evidence of this).

May I present to you, Rose:

Rose is made out of Plassard Coton-Lin, a 60/40 cotton and linen blend, about sport weight, I would say, 195 m to 50 g. I used about 8 balls, I think. The finished fabric has a nice drape to it, and feels cool to the skin, like linen fabrics usually do.

I used a 3.75 mm needle for the lace in the bottom of the body and sleeves, and 3.25 mm for the stockinette top. I didn't like how loose it looked with the bigger needle -I'm usually more a fan of a smaller, tighter gauge, than a looser one.

I used an I-cord edging for both the front and back. Or in the front I actually just took advantage of the rolling of the stockinette, but the back side is true I-cord up to where the neck curves. And the cool thing is that you can't even tell where it switches from I-cord to stockinette.

I took the measurements from one of my favorite sweaters, and it fits perfectly. Me love Rose. :)

And if I ever get to it, there might be a pattern available for Rose. At least I wrote my notes so that it would be possible.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

The other craft(s)

You know all these babies I've been talking about? Well, with each gift, there needs to be a card. So off to shopping for cardstock and paper I go... (by the way, I've calculated that I'd have to make well over a 100 cards for this hobby to pay off, assuming the average card from the store costs aout $ 2.50... oops...)

Here's two "boy-cards" and one "girl-card" (click for bigger).
Materials used: cardstock, patterned paper, plain paper, bubble stickers, glue, color pencils.

I was going to make more, but ran out of ideas and inspiration. Oh, well.

I was also going to take pictures of my jewelery, so here goes. These are all from the last 2-3 years. I combined the pictures into collages so I wouldn't have quite as many pictures in the post. Again, click for bigger. First the bracelets:

From the top left, specks: 1. a three strand bracelet with amazonite and silver, 2. a garden themed bracelet with mostly glass beads and silver charms, 3. a two strand bracelet with pearls, mother-of-pearl, citrine and gold 4. Check glass, mookaite, mother-of-pearl, silver, 5. my 4th of July -bracelet with glass beads, silver and pewter (I lost the cutest charm ever, a small stage coach with moving wheels and all -boo hoo!) This bracelet tells a story of immigration to America. The first charm is a US map, the second one Statue of Liberty (connection to early immigrants and Ellis Island), the third one was the stage coach, because that's how the settlers got across the country, especially to our neck of the woods. Fourth is a map of South Dakota, fifth is a baby, because Mr S is my American baby, and he connects me to this country more than anything else. The last one is an American flag. Where was I... ok, 6. One of my most used pieces of jewelry (I like green!) with handmade glass beads, silver, yellow jade (I think), and pearls.

My latest addition to the bracelets is this, with matching earrings:

This is one of my favorites, made with fire agate, carnelians and gold. It oddly reminds me of a plastic bracelet from my childhood. The problem with this is that I can't stop touching the smooth oval beads. :)

I've also got a bunch of earrings that I've made:

From top left: 1. amazxonite and silver, 2. rose quartz, pewter and silver, 3. handmade glass beads, gold, 4. glass beads, pewter and silver, 5. jade and silver, 6. glass and silver.

And my favorite pair of earrings:

Made with citrines, mother-of-pearl and gold. Love them!

And the only necklace I've made, that I'm also in love with:

The dark wood beads are bayong. For the crocheted beads I just used whatever wood beads from the craft store and crocheted in mouline thread over them. The cord is leather and the closure silver.

I get most of my beads from Artbeads. They have a large selection, free shipping and no minimum order. So for someone like me, who doesn't order large quantities, it's perfect. Even if I need just one thing, I can get it without worrying about shipping. I make jewelery mainly out of "necessity", that is, when I want a pair of earrings or something else to wear with an outfit. It's at a very random frequency, even though I enjoy doing it a lot.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Travel knitting

Another work trip, another chance to spend hours on end just knitting and minding my own business. :) I sort of like work trips! This time I flew to Houston for a day, which meant two travel days with a total of 14 hours of time at airports and planes. The result?

Two baby sweaters using the Elizabeth Zimmermann Baby surprise jacket -pattern, and a little felted cozy for my new phone/toy from work.

I really enjoyed the EZ pattern -this was a first for me. The Baby surprise jacket is a fun knit and a perfect way to use leftover yarns! I used up 5 balls of miscellaneous yarns in making these two sweaters. Pretty good, I would say. So the total cost for making two baby gifts was $ 3.50 for the pattern (plus shipping) and about $ 3.00 for the buttons. Not bad.

Here's the front of the first one before finishing the shoulder seams and weaving in the ends:

The back with the shoulder piece folded down to show the construction:

The back with the shoulder piece up:

The finished sweater:

This one was knitter using a dark green, a sage green and a white DK weight yarn and 3.25 mm circular needles. The fabric is maybe a little on the dense side, and the sweater is quite small (0-3 month size), so I used a 3.75 mm needle for the next one, and added a few stitches across the back and sleeves. The pink and the maroon are left over yarns from the Argyle vest, and the white is the same as in the first sweater above. Here's the sweater from the inside, spread out:

The front folded up:

The back:

The sleeve:

And finished:

And the felted phone cozy, using Paton's Soy wool:

Pattern from the "make it up as you go" collection, using 4.5 mm needles, 48 stitches around, attached I-cord edging and loops. The stripes just happened to turn out symmetrical, which made me very happy.