projectmania by quasi-luddites

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Wow. Talk about a pause. But much has been done, or at least begun, in constructobotland.

socks for next winter for the Zephyr. Can we talk about the satisfaction of turning tiny heels?

oh- and I don't think I posted this. Here is a finished Jaywalker...that I'm going to frog. Sorry, ubercool pattern that looks so neat in stripy sock yarn! It is so evil to get it over my heel, and I am someone with almost a flat foot, so there's no arch in the way. I can't bear wincing when I put on something I knit, so I'm ripping it out and knitting something else. I still like the chevron though, so I'll probably try another pattern with the "v", but more stretch.

gratuitous happy baby picture, wearing knit soaker, of course. The Zephyr.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Just to warn you, I'v e been trying to post this for a week, but every time I try to load photos, they never make it. Sigh. There's nothing more boring than an almost pictureless blog, but I'm here!

Work proceeds apace on what I like to think of as the last pair of wool soakers I shall knit for the Titan. Warm weather and toilet training lurk round the corner. So here is the final pair, approaching completion. There's not enough teal for the legs, so I'll have to crib it from somewhere else. Will the final one have a drawstring or elastic? I think the latter, just to amuse myself, and have less for her to pull loose.

that's even though I have an I-cord MAKER!! Ha ha! Never (almost) again will I have to trudge through another cord- now I can make millions, millions at the turn of a crank! Amazingly, sock yarn leftovers make quite nice, spongy cords. I also tried my hand at using cotton to make a desperado plant-hanger. Not too bad.

And, though it is endlessly visually boring, work proceeds on my simple sweater- whenever I finish a piece, it all curls up on itself and looks like nothing. But just wait till I get it blocking- then you will all be impressed. I have moved on to the front now, and have done one half, and started the other half. Two sleeves, a whole lot of seams, and I'll be done!

And lastly, I give you pictures of the craft room. I rescued myself from drudgedom, and took over the best of the 3 basement rooms (and importantly, one that doesn't freeze liquids in the winter), and am feeling quite cozy there. Oh, there's stuff all over, and I've yet to build some simple counters out of some stuff we have lying around, but come on! A whole room, rather than things crammed into closets! I don't have to keep putting my sewing machine back up on a closet shelf- that alone is worth it. Oh, and I"m finally learning how to use the thing, since it was an incredibly nice hand-me-down sent by my sister right before we moved. Being very pregnant and packing with a toddler was sadly not the best time to learn about new machines. But finally I have threaded it and sewn a test line- that to me is progress. I do miss the iron heaviness of my great aunt Ruth's machine (and it's not gone), but sewing with a flashlight taped on gets old fast. And you have to pay much to even have someone look at your machine to see if it can be fixed! aargh

Monday, April 07, 2008

Quick, the babies are asleep!

It really happens. Sometimes- and here, a moment in which the girls are not only asleep, I am by myself and able to post! Unicorns are about to fly out of my nostrils as well, keep posted.

So- first, a first for me- felted balls. I bought some roving, in celebration (somehow), of my (somewhat) imminent niece or nephew. Why? to felt little balls, of course!

I also bought yarn for a secret project for this forthcoming relative, one with duly complicated pattern and thoughtful construction, or so I hope. When I've actually got something going, I'll post a little preview. I don't know if I'll ever catch up to my sister in the amazingly awesome clothing for children department, but I've got to give it a shot. I'm hoping to wow the little one with my crazed knitterly prowess, or at least a facsimile thereof. Luckily, until they are at least two, they can't actually say "no". Not much anyway.

Completed- an experimental tray that is to be felted in my washing machine. Hopefully soon, and hopefully to wonderful effect. I feel like I need to buy a lot more dishsoap for this, but am going to give it a go with my laundry detergent first. for now- the tray! Duly basted with cotton according to one book's recommendations:

Work on the sweater for Constructobot herself continues apace, and I have just finished one half of the front. It is particularly gratifying to work on when given guff by the Titan or the Zephyr- something for me, mwa hah! Will post pictures soon- it will probably continue to look woeful until I block something of it.

Oh! and much work was done on the crypt craft room- shelves half-installed. Can I express with what a-flutter I say the words "craft room"? These syllables no longer exist only in my heart and mind, but in my own non-creepy basement! pictures to follow...

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Linen stitch, I love thee!

So, in the search to protect more of the Zephyr's sweaters from mad yoke felting due to excessive drooling, I devised an itsty bib. In deciding on a stitch for this wee thing, I decided on linen stitch, since I'm pretty sure I messed it up on another project, and I wanted to practice. In making these smaller-than-gauge-swatch-bibs, I got a little example of the beauty of this dense little stitch. How cool it looks! How wildly sturdy, and attractive from both sides, I might add. It amuses me even more that I thought the back was the front, and only now see that the front does, in fact, resemble woven fabric. Ahem.

Look upon these itsy bibs! Plus, I get to use buttons, which is fun. In order to keep up with the drooling, I need to make probably 4 or even 5. The Zephyr is beatific, and currently, prolific.

Another note- I'm not one of those insta-cool peole who immediately come up with perfect nicknames. I now realize what my elder child's blog name is. It is not Constructobit, nor Parrot, but the inevitable (and what I really call her sometimes) : Titan! So the Titan and the Zephyr, my children are thus properly named. They are apt.

Another project- doesn't look like much, but it will be the first of a number of felted trays to hold my flatware. Longer explanation forthcoming, but it's mostly an experiment in machine felting. It's garter stitch on 11s.

And last, something of an inspiration for future projects. This is a recently acquired t-shirt of the Titan's , and the colors are super! Colorwork is starting to burble in my imagination, as I complete what seems an endless morass of plain projects. Nice, stranded, complex colorwork, please! This is in mind for some projects for my sister, but they are murky as of yet...

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

I bet you thought I wouldn't post, didn't you? Wrong! Both girls are asleep for this microsecond, so I type.

In progress: wool soaker and sweater.

Soaker for Parrot, one of a zillion, but hopefully getting the fit a bit better. I'm trying going from 4s to 5s to 8s, rather than 6s in the middle. I may also try varying the rate of decrease on the flaps, since they seem to flap a bit at the bottom of her butt. Can I do this without it becoming weird? Who knows.

And for me, a sweater! My first sweater for me me me! Started in a furor after Parrot refused her birthday socks (sigh), it goes apace. It is a modified version of a knitty sweater, Vanilla Spice. I'm making the cardigan into a pullover, and I want it to look sort of inside out- I'm going to put all seams poking out, and I'm doing the back in two sections too, to increase the seamage. The arms are shortrowed at the top, but I'm planning on some false seam stitch down the arm.

It is super curly, but the long piece is half of the back. The fabric itself is quite nubbly. I found it, still in skeins, at Savers or all places. I usually recycle sweaters there, but there was this one great haul of yarn, and I pounced.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Leggings done, vest almost

These have been done for a while- the Zimmerman baby leggings, with some lost rows on the top and sideways placed decreases on the ankle (don't ask me). All in all, they look a bit weird, though the ones I made for Parrot have made it through 2 winters and only now look normal. That's what you get for knitting things waaaay ahead in the fit department. Still, for a 2 month old who likes to be warm, it works fine.

ANd the birthday vest- done and redone, now having pockets put on, since the Parrot put on the vest and sadly shoved her hands into the armpits. Pockets! And, there was icord edging around the whole thing, but I did it at the wrong rate and it pulled in so as to be uncomfortable on the neck. I redid the armpits , but kind of couldn't bear to go round the whole outside again. I'm thinking of making some kind of stand up collar- in garter stitch? I've made the whole dang thing up as I went anyway, so it is only fitting

Monday, February 18, 2008

Green Vest!

Here, I post a less than flattering photo of yours truly, all in the spirit of commemoration. The green vest was indeed finished, and has indeed been worn. Wildly shortened from the original pattern, I think I like it, but have to admit that the style is a bit... matronly. If only I had inherited my mother's gamine figure, and slender chest! Ah well- I am still pleased with it.

The pattern is from Folk Vests, by Cheryl Oberle. It is the Bookworm Vest, and I am still envious of the buttons in the book. Now I'm thinking the long length in the pattern maybe wasn't so dumb, but I had to go against the idea of knitting a long tube down past my butt- how could that look good? I give you an example of what it looks like short. I think there were some gauge changes as well. The yarn was Berroco, 50% wool 50 % alpaca