Thursday, November 30, 2006

Belated Bog (aka. The Last Bog Post Ever)

So, I've had these photos for days, and I'm just now posting. I know, the shame.Pattern: Bog Jacket from Elizabeth Zimmerman's Knitting Around
Yarn: Undyed Irish aran-weight wool bought in Galway, and 1 skein Louet Gems Topaz for I-cord edging
Needles: Addi Turbos, US #8, 32"
Modifications: I did all of EZ's suggested mods except the pockets. This included: longer sleeves with short-row arm shaping, waist shaping, shoulder shaping, "phoney seams", and i-cord edging. I also installed a double-direction zipper instead of buttons b/c I thought it would be more wearable and modern that way.I am completely thrilled with how this turned out. While I was making the jacket, I was having very serious doubts. It looked like a giant mass of white wooliness, which still smelled a little sheepy, to be honest, and I was afraid the fit would be really off, since it was such a strange form of construction. It turned out to be a snug, fitted wool jacket!
The knitted-on i-cord edging really added a lot:
And though it took several hours to do, it was well-worth the effort.
What's next? I've got several Christmas presents on the needles--don't worry, I'm not going to complain endlessly about them here, but I will photograph them once it's all over so you can see what I was up to. But I will tell you that I had to learn how to do INTARSIA IN THE ROUND for one of them. Which is best avoided, if you can help it. Also working on the colorwork hat from the last post, which is almost done. And Rogue. And four pairs of socks. We like to keep it interesting over here at Casa Yarnmonster. ;)

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Happy Tofurkey Day!

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving!
So geez, people, when I told you not to forget your Tofurkeys, I didn't really expect you ALL to run out there and clear the shelves of them! We had to go back 2 days in a row before I managed to get his hands on one, and that was only after pushing through "a mob of frantic vegetarians". But get one he did, and it was quite a success.
I've been thoroughly enjoying the holiday, cramming in as much knitting as possible. Wednesday was a whole day of cozy wonderfulness at Brooklyn General, Kaitlyn's new place of employment. Have you seen it since they moved to their awesome new space?
It's so big! And lovely and inviting too. It's a few blocks off of the G or F train, but well-worth the trip. They have lots of awesome fabrics:
And Lobster Pot cashmere!And did I mention how friendly the staff is? ;)
We hung out, knit, ate, and played with Baby MJ all day while the wind howled outside--what a perfect day to have your fingers wrapped up in wool, right?
I made some progress on a new hat:This is intended to match my mittens--if I don't become overly frustrated by my tension issues and rip the whole thing out! I'm in training for my next KAL experience, Stranded: The Colorwork Challenge. Still not sure what my project for that is going to be, but I've got some ideas.
Hope everyone is enjoying their holiday weekend!

Monday, November 20, 2006

Rhinebeck Project #2

I'm not letting that Rhinebeck yarn collect any dust this year:
Pattern: none, just regular old hat pattern. I cast on 120 sts, knitted for about 6 inches, and then started doing 6 k2tog dec's evenly across sts every other row, till I had 6 left, then BO.
Yarn: Springtide Cashmere, 1.1 oz, purchased at Rhinebeck
Needles: Clover, the little plastic kind in the Japanese package, US size 3, 12"
I LUV my cashmere hat!!! I've never knitted with pure cashmere before, and now I feel like Eve after she ate that apple. It is yummy, especially this light airy stuff. And super warm, despite being very thin and fine. Well worth the $30 I paid for the yarn.
It was a quiet, pleasant weekend at Casa Yarnmonster, other than some dodgy-tummy moments on Saturday, for which I can only blame myself. Brooklyners, have you checked out the Stonehome Wine Bar in Fort Greene? This place is so cool, you can order flights of 3 different wines to give yourself a mini-tasting. There's a full menu as well, so you can easily make a night of it--it would be a perfect date venue as well. I strongly recommend it--as well as some Alka-Seltzer for the next morning, if you are afraid you might get carried away by your flight of wine. ;)
Sunday was spent in pleasant companionship with knitting friends--there was even some hand-sewing being done!
(Thanks to Jess F&P for the photo of Veronique--I forgot to take any pictures!) Food was eaten, yarn was knitted, and there was even a pie! Everyone thoroughly enjoyed Jess's delicious homemade pie. Not to be confused with this Jess, who has never made a pie in her life, and has even managed to screw up reheating one from the store.
I wish every day could be like that. But maybe, with the holiday weekend coming up, we can at least have a greater percentage of those days than usual? I hope so.
Don't forget to buy your Tofurkeys, everyone!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Domestic Bliss

First of all, I just have to say thank you to everyone for your sweet comments. They cheered me up so much, and it made me feel so much better to be reminded what awesome friends I have, in blogland and IRL. You guys all rock!
Anyway, this week is starting off a lot better, and I've been a busy Yarnmonster over here! Saturday was absolutely beautiful, and Veronique invited me along to meet several bloggers at Purl. I had never met Yahaira, Angela, Diana, or Jared before, and was very excited to do so. They were all very cool, as knitters tend to be. Nice to meet you, everyone! Also present were Jess, Sandra, and Carrie, so it was a whole day of knitbloggerly fun. We migrated to Brooklyn General too, which is so adorable and cozy in their lovely new space! If you haven't stopped by yet, make a trip over there, it's a really cute and friendly shop.
I bought some great fabric and Purl Patchwork, and rather than let it gather any dust in The Closet, I sat down and sewed it all up yesterday!Would you like a martini, dahling?
Patterns: Apron is from Amy Butler's In Stitches and Mitt is from Denyse Schmidt Quilts.
Fabric: Both are Anna Griffin for Windham Fabrics Elsie's Kitchen, purchased at Purl Patchwork.
I love both of these books--they are such beautiful and inspirational books, and the project instructions are very clear and detailed. This took up my entire Sunday, but I am a pretty hopelessly clumsy sewer. I think someone more experienced could whip them out a little faster.
BTW, sorry for the HORRENDOUS photos, the sun hasn't shone since Saturday, and my photographer is booked solid. :) You people deserve better.
But I had to show you the Bog Jacket:
All I have left is the zipper! Huzzah! It fits really well too, which was a relief, since my arm shaping was sort of a gamble. But I'm really happy with it. Better, finished photos to come, I promise.
That's all for now! And I hope you like the new look--we're transitioning to fall/winter over here at Yarnmonster.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Bogging Onward

So, I've been a pretty poor blogger for the past week, mostly due to some general unrest at home. I don't put a ton of really personal stuff on my blog, as I tend to look at my blog as a sort of "Best Of" in regards to my life and projects, and it makes me happy to write cheery posts about mittens and friends and wool. But suffice it to say, sometimes Life is not so cheery, and one is not always up to writing happily about knitting on one's blog. Thankfully, most of the time, I am, but this has just been one of those weeks, you know?
But Life Matters aside, there are important things to be discussed, namely, some progress on the Bog Jacket! The main knitting of the jacket is complete, and I have, as promised, made up a little pictorial tutorial of how the top of the thing was grafted together.
OK, so basically you're knitting this huge square, and at the point where I added waste yarn (A) I also cast on extra stitches (invisibly, on waste yarn--I messed up that invisible part, tho') so I'd have longer sleeves. This is a shot after I've finished the right side, and am about to do the left:
After I've removed the waste yarn:
All waste yarn is gone, and the live stitches are in the places where they are to be grafted together:
All done!
My grafting isn't exactly the best, but I did my best. I tried to do it without the needles like EZ recommends, but I was not dexterous enough--so I watched the video on garter stitch grafting at (LOVE that site!) and did it that way. I had to readjust afterwards, though.
So, this is quite a bit of grafting, in case you are contemplating making a bog, but it is done easily enough while watching some TV in the evening. Now all that remains is finishing the neck, doing the i-cord edging, and some end-weaving and a zipper!
I'll leave you all with a really silly dog-photo: Peru, curled up like a gigantic bean, smiling. :)