Last year I bought a sewing machine. I bought it because
A) I want to learn to sew and
B) it’s ADORABLE!
Yes, my grown behind is the proud owner of a Janome Hello Kitty sewing machine. The GREEN one, mind you. You knew I loved kitties!
When the sewing machine arrived it languished in the box. It sat in my entry way making an excellent landing spot for my purse. After about six months Mr Liu moved it out to the garage where it suffered for another six. But no more!
BabyLiu has decided to be Robin for Halloween. So the rest of the Liu’s will fill in for the other Teen Titans. Mr Liu will be Cyborg, LittleBoyLiu will be Beast Boy and I will be Raven. Little Girl (BabyLiu’s Cabbage Patch doll) will be Starfire.
BabyLiu’s costume was purchased. So was the shirt that Mr Liu’s no fun self will be wearing. LittleBoyLiu and I need modifications, though.
This is Beast Boy:
As you can see, he has on a purple and black uniform. After looking around for a long pants/sleeved one piece, I settled on a purple romper that I will sew black legs and sleeves on to. I will also cut out some grey fabric and make him a wee belt.
This is Raven:
I’m being fairly lazy here. I bought a black turtle neck and white skinny jeans. I also bought her belt off etsy. But for the life of me I cannot find a purple cloak. So I will attempt to sew one.
Riding high off the success of my successful (and on time!) completion of the Summer Mystery Shawl, I jumped right into SweaterBabe’s mystery scarf knit along. I figured what the hell. I’m going to need Christmas presents in a hot minute here anyway. In keeping with many of her knits, this one will be light and airy. I took a jump into my stash and pulled out this beauty that was even one of the recommended yarns!
Knit Picks Aloft in Tranquil. Finding a set of US9 needles was considerably more difficult. I found a single straight needle and one DPN before I put hands on the circulars pictured. And after a single row I looked for the second straight needle again. I didn’t find it, but I did lay hands on a second DPN. There are simply not enough stitches to justify all that cable.
Aloft has mohair in it. You may know that mohair is the knitting equivalent of superglue. It’s not really a fiber you can frog when you mess up. I’m certain that’s the reason any time I knit with mohair my brain looks at what should be a relatively straightforward pattern like “YO, K2 K2tog” and turns it into this:
So this got cast on a couple of times and I have a small ball of unusable fluff in my living room. But, eventually, success was mine and I completed the first clue. Since I’m using DPNs and can’t really stretch this out, I’m not at all certain what the pattern really is. It is fluffy and soft, though! 😀
From here on I knit sloooooow.
I’ve mentioned Dr. Llama’s Geek Along before with no actual geeking occurring. No more!
In preparation for this long term project that I walked into halfway to done, I created a spreadsheet (because sometimes I am organized) and went through all the available squares and determined which are on my MUST MAKE list and which are on my Probably Should Make list. Then I added the yarn colors I wanted to use to make each square. Then I looked at my stash and laughed because the only solid colors I have are in sock and lace yarns. I went online found a yarn that would work and ordered up all the colors I would need for my MUST list of squares.
I managed to hit a sale and ordered the biggest box of yarn to arrive at my door. It’s a selection of colors in Wool of the Andes which was on super cheap at the time. Then I cast on my first square.
I went a bit rebel and decided to cast on an alternate square first. The Portal Companion Cube. Why? Because like Cartman, I do what I want! Also, I think the Companion Cubes are adorable.
The knitting gods apparently didn’t appreciate my decision, though, as I had to recast this sucker twice. I’ve also got a mis-stitch right below the heart now that I’ve decided I can live with more than I can live with frogging it again. I’m hoping all the double knitting I’ve got planned for the future helps my speed because I am sloooooooooow right now. Also having two balls of yarn makes this terrible for transit knitting so I’m only working on this at home. After the Liu Children have gone to sleep. So mostly during The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. After I’ve finishing raiding other towns in The Simpsons Tapped Out. Because priorities.
The square is going to be larger than I originally believed. Based on what I don’t know since the introduction post clearly indicates that each square will be 10in x 10in. But the final blanket if one completed all 48 squares will be of a good size. I don’t think I’m going to complete all of the squares. I’m aiming for an afgan but might end up with a baby blanket. We shall see!
BabyLiu had decided that she wanted a hearts birthday. This would have been super easy if she had been born in February, but I’m not that lucky. One Sunday before her birthday, BabyLiu pulled a ball of yarn off my shelf and said “Mommy, make a heart for me. For my birthday!” I said okay, give me a minute to find a pattern.
The yarn BabyLiu had pulled off the shelf was a remnant of a ball of Sugar n Cream in Summer Splash. Since she had selected a cotton yarn well known for it’s dishcloth-ness I selected a heart shaped dishcloth. It’s a pretty simple pattern so I ran through it quickly. Until this:
That, my friends, is a yarn tail. A tail two rows from completion. After cursing the yarn gods, I took a dive in my stash to see what I could find. I was reasonably certain I had a ball of solid green that matched. But I found something even better:
A GIANT skein of the exact same color! And once again my well stocked stash pays off. The heart was completed!
BabyLiu loved it! Loved it so much so that every day that week she pulled a new ball of yarn off the shelf and asked for another heart. She would say “Make a heart for my birthday from this. Knit on the bus! Where are your sticks?” My girl apparently has a fondness for cotton yarn. I suspect this is because the mohair is above her line of sight. So I did as instructed. I knit her hearts.
At the end I had eight hearts (my sister snagged a purple one while she was visiting) and a happy girl.
Posted in Baby, FO, Holidays
A while ago the bat signal was put out to knitters, crocheters and yarn lovers of all stripes that Madeline Tosh’s Lace was being discontinued. Upon learning this I very reasonably ran to the nearest computer with internet and snagged two skeins for myself:
I was clearly not the only person to do so because these were not the first two skeins I had selected. I had a different purple and blue selected initially, but these are also beautiful so we’re all good.
While I was at WEBS, I also snagged three balls of Kauni Effekt in the EQ (aka rainbow) colorway. There were only seven skeins in stock when I made my purchase. It took all of my will to not buy all seven.
I know it doesn’t look like all three of these are the same color, but they are. One is just wound in the opposite direction. I want to make a rainbow Viajante with it, but first I have to verify I have sufficient yardage. My knitting calendar is fairly full right now, so likely this won’t happen until sometime in 2015. Hey! If I’m short maybe I can get more for Christmas!
The Geek A Long I mentioned last post is a blanket that will be double knit. That way there are two “right” sides to look at and you get to tuck the ends in between the fabric. Basically, double knitting is nothing but win. I have never done any double knitting, so I decided I needed to give it a go before I started on the real deal to prevent it from mysteriously flying across the room. Fortunately, Dr Llama has a tutorial and a quick bookmark pattern for just such a purpose. I snagged two balls of Mission Falls 1824 from the stash, one black and one white. This is a technique that doesn’t really work with similar colors.
Like most knitting techniques I’ve learned over the years, double knitting is way easier than I thought it would be (I’m looking at you sock and mittens!). It’s neat in that you have two “right” sides that are the inverse of each other.
Although showing that in a photograph on such a small item is kind of hard.
You’re going to have to believe me.
The finished product is double the thickness of your chosen yarn worked singly. This will create a nice, warm blanket. Full of geek.
Now if my Knit Picks shipment would arrive so I could get started…
And that title exhausts my knowledge of French!
The third and final clue for the Wend Knits mystery knit along came and went last week. I successfully and on time completed my shawl! Woo! Go me! In fact, I’m so pleased with myself I’m joining the SweaterBabe mystery knit along (scarf!) and Dr Llama’s blanket geek along that SOMEONE SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME ABOUT IN JANUARY!!!
Sorry about that. I’m a little emotional about it.
The final shawl blocking:
And a close up of the lace:
Isn’t it pretty? It got a really light steam blocking along the edge to keep it nice and pointy.
And here it is on my lovely model:
So you can see it’s a small shawl. A shawlette if you will. There are some short rows so it sits nicely on the shoulders without help.
This will be someone’s Christmas gift this year. Probably one of Mr Liu’s grandmothers. I’m thinking about knitting up a second one for the second grandmother. I’ll have to check the stash.
OH MY GOD IT’S ALMOST CHRISTMAS! *breathes deeply into bag*