Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Shalom & In the Pink

I finished up Shalom.

I much prefer a people model for FOs, but since the intended recipient is skinny and I am, well, not, I had to use a chair instead. I added a little embroidered OM (or at least the semblance of, I hope) to cover up a mistake in the border. Mom always said, if you've made a mistake you might as well show it off in style! To tell the truth, I actually like the way it turned out.

Oh yeah, and remember how I was bemoaning my stupidity at ordering so few skeins? It turns out that skinny people don't need as much yardage - I ended up using one less skein than I had originally ordered. Which means that now I have a shitload of Knit Picks Shamrock in Connolly. Go figure!

Sunday night I started working on In the Pink using the gorgeous Blue Heron Yarn featured previously in my blog. The pattern, despite the way it looks when you print out the directions is actually very simple and easy to follow so far. In fact, it's somewhat addicting, which could be the combination of the easy-to-memorize pattern, luscious yarn, and the fact that whatever fragrance was in the yarn shop where I purchased it still permeates the yarn so with each stitch I get a whiff of deliciousness. (FYI - The shop is Knit and Pearl).

I honestly believe this gem of a pattern would be queued and knit more frequently if it was written more simply and with the addition of pictures (currently the pattern is very wordy and has nary a photo). For example, I realized that on the center circle from round 12 through 54 it could have been written simply like this instead:

Round 1: (yo, k1) 3 times, k to 2 sts before marker, k2tog. Rep to end of round
Round 2: k to 2 sts before marker, k2tog. Rep to end of round
Repeat these two rounds until you have 27 stitches between markers. Then, repeat round 1 once more (29 sts between markers).

I think that a lot of knitters are intimidated when they have to follow page after page of instruction and don't always take the time to sit down and look at what is really going on with a pattern. Also more detailed and step by step pictures of the process are very useful for visual learners (myself included).

So far I've finished the central medallion and right side (picture above shows the center medallion at about halfway done - more pictures to follow when I have good lighting).

Tonight I began working on the left side and found that Rows 5- 7 didn't make sense. A quick Ravelry search lead me to these alternate instructions by Ravelrer KnittingToday which I have copied below directly from her pattern notes:

5) K3, (YO, K1) twice, YO, PM, SSK, (K1, YO) twice 3 times, SSK, YO, K1, YO, K3
6) K3, P24, K3
7) K3, YO, K1, YO, PM, K3, Yo, K1, Yo, M, SSK, K1, (K1, YO)twice 3 times, SSK, (K1, YO)twice, K3

I'm scurrying off to try this out now - hope it works!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

New Kids & New Yarn

My sister Colleen and I went to a New Kids on the Block concert this Friday night. Colleen as a teen was the worlds biggest New Kids fan. I'm talking posters all over the wall, their entire tape collection, a binder full of clippings from every teen magazine in which they were featured, t-shirts, videos... the list goes on. So when I found out they were having a reunion tour I couldn't deny her inner 13-year-old the chance of a lifetime to see NKOTB.

Turns out, the cheap general admission seats were the ones to have at the Santa Barbara Bowl because we ended up being closer than the most expensive tickets - or as Col put it, close enough to see the sweat on their foreheads. Go ahead, squeal with delight, you know you want to.

In anticipation of the start of the show:

The No-So-New-Kids:

If you were a pre-teen around the same time I was, you may recognize this dance move:

Col, with "her" New Kid, Donny (Because all girls pick out their favorite New Kid. I wanted mine to be Jon, but since my oldest sister had already laid claim to him I had to do with second choice Danny).

Good times!

And so as to not make this post completely unrelated to knitting...

While in Santa Barbara I got the chance to stop in on LYS, Loop & Leaf and pick up some yarn. If you are ever in the Santa Barbara area I highly recommend stopping by this cute little shop. It's located in what was once a house just off of the touristy State Street. When I arrived there were groups of knitters sitting around the yard enjoying the sunshine, as well as one woman spinning yarn under a tree. If I didn't have to jet out of town I'm fairly certain that I could have spent an entire afternoon out there!

The yarns were at times pricey (I saw one skein of hand spun for over $100. Ain't no way I'm buying that!!) but the shop is very well put together with a lot of variety. I ended up picking up 3 skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted in the lovely shade of Ashburn.

I'm not sure what this will be yet (perhaps a shawl?) but I just loved the color.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Knits for Chicks

What will they think of next??

Other proposed titles: Frozen Chicken, Coats for Cocks, Chicken Knits, WTF?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Tiny Sweater and Herbs

I'm making some real progress with the Knit Knack KAL, Shalom. As I was going along with this I thought that there was no way that this could possibly fit an adult, even one as thin as the intended recipient, but those fears were quelled when my just-as-thin girl friend gave it an initial try on for me. I guess I'm just so used to thinking in large sizes!
I'm really enjoying this knit for it's simplicity, with the exception of the increases - my brain doesn't seem to be able to pay attention when I have to alternate m1, k1, m1, k2 and I've had to go back and re-do the increase rows at least once. It's really not a problem with the pattern, just my short knitting attention span. I'm contemplating doing another after I finish this one, adding in some cables on the front panels. We'll see what my knitter's ADD has to say about that when this is all said and done though.

What's that in the background, you ask? Guy's decided to go a little domestic and put in an herb garden. I think it was just another excuse for him to play with dirt. It makes him happy, so who am I to say no? Plus, the garden gnome approves.