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Minnesota, United States

30.3.08

Seeing red, but not that cardigan!

Well, I bit the bullet and frogged back the shoulders and collar of the red cardigan. I didn't think it was worth it. Now I'm back to searching through my books for a suitable substitute for the yarn. It's gorgeous Skye Tweed by Classic Elite, which I believe they don't make anymore...too bad, so sad.
Sock Monkey and I found a pattern that will do the yarn justice. It's the Clock Vest on pages 13-19 in Folk Vests, by Cheryl Oberle. I'm now to the first row of the chart on the center back. So far, so good. A friend knitted this and it is really pretty. This will satisfy my cable lust and still have some easy knitting between motifs.
It's snowing like mad outside. I had a spring dress on yesterday. I wore the Circles and Bobbles to work today. Wow, every time I look up, th
e snowfall is really getting heavy.

25.3.08

Seeing red in the immediate future

While I wait for the skein of green (the gals at the shop ordered one for me), it looks as though I'll pick up the red cardigan for a while. I've been reading over the pattern again to wrap my brain around the construction and the mistake in the center back cable. I know it's two stitches off. This book has no charts, just written instructions, which I don't really like. Interesting sweaters, but don't pay full price for the book. I purchased a used copy years ago.
The collar on the Lopi cardigan is bound off and looks nice--I don't think I'll frog that. However, I may rework the cuffs by putting the stitches on double-points and doing a snip-snip with scissors. We'll see...

I have lots of flowers around, and I'll keep a few Easter-y things up until the weekend. There's a little cake left. It's really good. The recipe was from an old Betty Crocker cookbook I no longer have. It was called the Bonnie Butter Cake with French Silk Frosting (three layers of yellow cake frosted with chocolate!). It's got 2/3 cup butter in the cake and 2/3 cup butter in the chocolate frosting. It's Jim and Ben's favorite and Jim's always called it the Debbie Butter Cake.


23.3.08

Frohe Ostern! Happy Easter!

We have more snow. Could be worse, the snow could be black and icky. It's actually very pretty. I did wear my outfit and my long, heavy coat, so I'm stylin' today.
We're fixing the Honeybaked goodies, and then after lunch we'll take the cake over to Mom's and have dessert. Speaking of the cake--It worked! I was able to fit the front half of the sheep into the pan. There was a bit of surgery involved with the nose and ears, but it's cute and I know it'll taste good. I used my favorite butter cake recipe and made buttercream icing. A touch of food coloring for the sky, and a bit in the coconut for the grass, a few M&Ms--looks yummy.
I'm working on the collar of the cardigan and checking my skein. Looks iffy, but I'll soldier on and hope that there's enough.
Enjoy the day!

22.3.08

Easter snow

Nothing says Spring like a fresh coat of snow! I WILL wear the outfit I planned tomorrow! I may have to wear my heavy coat, though.
As you can see, the body and sleeves are now joined
. Naturally I don't like it--not the pattern, just the Lopi looks awful until it's blocked. I'll worry about that after I add the collar and bands. I'm sweating that because I'll probably have just enough of the with none to spare--I HOPE!
I'm baking a cake today to take over to Mom's tomorrow. I'll use half the lamb mold and make a sheet cake to put it on for a baaa-relief effect (PUN INTENDED!!). That's the plan, anyway.
Once I finish the cardigan, then I'll move on to the red cardigan. Then I'll start the one from Swallowtails. I've been sooo good about not buying any new yarn lately. It feels good to get projects finished that've been in the works for so long.

19.3.08

Two sleeves are better than one!

I'm finishing the second sleeve (yeaaa!). This will be a warm sweater, and using the Lite Lopi will make it not so heavy in weight. There is just enough white (I have a small checkerboard to do after this brown bit), and I have plenty of brown. I hope the green hold out for the collar and bands. I'm on the last bits of Fair Isle. From that point it's all go with GREEN!
Good news on the college front. Ben received a $1,000 Eagle Scout scholarship from the council, AND received a four-year 75% scholarship from his college! We are so proud. The latter one started out
with 800 applicants, narrowed to 400 finalists (that's when we drove over to the school last month), and then 17 received scholarships. We are very proud of him. He deserves to be recognized for his hard work.
Spring break is going nicely. Ben's getting lots of rest and I'm getting so
me spring cleaning done. My office is the victim for today! There's so much paper work with Mom's stuff. The shredder is going to get a workout today!


Happy Easter, happy spring!

10.3.08

Now it looks more like a sleeve!


The last increase was in the last row of green, the checkerboard is the last of the Fair Isle--a few rows of solid green and I can call this one done. The second one should go faster because I can tell where to start each row of color work. Right now I'm tired of looking at it, but in the photo it's quite nice. This is one of the few times that I actually liked the original colors. It looks as though I will have just enough yarn to finish, too. (Broody herr, I HOPE so!)

7.3.08

S l o w motion knitting

I swear, knitting this sleeve is like watching paint dry. The trick is to center the design while increasing at the same time. It throws off the design. In the end I know it'll be worth all the grumbling. Lite Lopi is nice yarn and I love the warmth as well as the price (not to mention the fact that it doesn't pill like some wool AND it gets better the more it's washed), however, it's not the best when working and re-working Fair Isle. *The fabric also looks terrible until it's blocked. I found some really thin spots in the yarn (all the colors) and had to splice a few times to strengthen the yarn. Slowly but surely, it's getting there!
*I made a shop sample the past year, which looked horrible until it was wet blocked. Now it's gorgeous, and I've had a couple of students make the same sweater.

5.3.08

Charts

You'd think after all the years I've been knitting I'd know how to read the flippin' chart! No wonder I kept having to frog. I didn't pay attention to the placement of the beginning of the sleeve chart. Now it works. Cripes! I can't believe I went blank on this one for SO long. The photo isn't very clear, but the line up the middle of the charts indicates the center of the sleeve and the body. There are separate markings for the sleeve and body beginning. I was looking at the increases indicated on the chart for the sleeve. No wonder the design wasn't lining up. Heaven forbid I make it EASY. It's going better, and I don't think the bits and pieces of yarn are worse for wear.

4.3.08

It's a wrap on socks!

I'm calling these done! I can weave in the ends when I'm at Mom's today. The bamboo yarn is really soft. These will be nice to wear on the trip this summer. I had to rework the heel a few times because the stitches at the ankle weren't to my liking. Snugging up the yarn between the needles is important or the stitches will be too loose and look sloppy. I eyed the Noro yarn at the shop before class yesterday, but resisted the urge to buy--me 1, sock yarn 0. That's good. Other projects are calling right now. Yes, back to the Lopi sleeves...

3.3.08

Almost another pair!

Well, I almost have another pair of socks. I've started the instep of the bamboo pair. Ugh! I just don't enjoy making socks. They're great portable projects, but BOR-ING! The short double-pointed needles are wonderful to work with, though. I particularly like my size US2/2,75mm Bryspuns. No photo, yet.
Bellfest went well. We rocked our solo! (I hope the link works--I'm fourth from the right--Stacee's hubby filmed us. She's second from the left.) There were over 30 bell choirs and we were really packed in, but was fun and the conductor was great! He made the day go quickly.