Friday, March 20, 2009

FO: Grandma's Favorite dishcloth

Our dishcloths (machine knit, bought at local health foods store) were in terrible shape (keep getting holes in them and raveling), and I kept getting caught in the car with a sleeping baby. I've resolved to always have a dishcloth project on hand in the car. (Heck, I could keep one going in each car!) Expect to see a few dishcloths on the blog this year. (Warning: I've already finished 3 this year, and I've got 50 in my Ravelry queue!)

I finally made a Grandmother's Favorite (or Grandma's Favorite) - the classic on-the-bias, knit until it's as wide and long as you want, then start decreasing, with eyelets on the border that are knit in as you go. Mindless, as each row is the same, and wonderful to scrub with, as it's garter stitch. Beautiful in ombres and solids.

Project specs:

Yarn: Creme de la Creme, received in Dishrag Tag (the first) swap.
Needles: size 8, KnitPicks Options
Pattern: Grandmother's Favorite

It's in use, and it already has a hole in it.

Pay It Forward

Well, it's been a year and I've failed. But only barely. I actually have the things almost made, and last night DH was babysitting (for another couple - we exchange so we both get free babysitting) and I was gonna finish them up on the exact day, but I got tired and surfed the Internet instead. Yeah, should've gone to bed, because TLD was up at 11pm.

Anyway, someday soon, I'll have les secret hand-made gifts finished and send them. Hey Marie, are you out there? I need your address. You can email me - just go to the "View my complete profile" page. Trek, I've got yours. Kadiddly, I'm waiting to see when I finish to see if you've moved by then.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

FO: Birth hat for R...'s baby

My friend IRL (in real life) "R..." and her husband are expecting a baby at the end of March. She left a comment back in January when I blogged about Niecey's hat, and I knew right away I had to make one for her baby too. She is expecting a little girl, and so I just reversed the colors of Niecey's hat. I'm certainly getting my mileage out of this Baby Cashmerino yarn.

We saw them last week (and the whale too) and I got to deliver it. It was very well received. Yay! Welcome, little girl! We're ready when you are!

Project specs: Picot cast-on, 64 sts, all in 1x1 ribbing. I did matching left and right leaning decreases at 4 points around the circle. Maybe next time I'll try a different decrease strategy. It was an attempt to not interrupt the ribbing. Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino, size 5 needles (circular at first, then dpns), size 3 needles for the cast-on.

This time I could see the picots in the picot cast-on:

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Sewing FO: Christening gown, bonnet, and slip

When I was christened, I was 18 months old and wore a nice dress. But I've always dreamed of having my babies wear big long gowns with lace trimmings. I'd kept my eye out for antique gowns, and admired the lovely expensive ones at the baby boutiques.

I decided I'd make the gown. I hadn't followed a sewing pattern since I was a little girl, but I was pretty sure I could do it, and I got encouragement from a friend who also works at a fabric store. She took a look at the pattern McCall's 4865 and told me it was definitely doable. In fact, I did a dry run of the bonnet to make sure I remembered how to follow a pattern.

I made the size L, because my baby grew so fast! I did the cutting before my mom arrived 2 weeks before the christening, and sewed each day while she watched TLD. I couldn't have done it without her! I omitted the lace, and added pintucks to the bodice. (I pintucked some fabric, and then cut the pattern shape out afterward - worked great!)

Instead of the pattern's bonnet, however, I wanted a handkerchief bonnet. I scoured antique stores ("junk shops") for attractive old linen hankies. I do know how to tat, but I didn't want the pressure of having to finish tatting a hankie when I hadn't ever made one. I found a lovely linen handkerchief with a simple tatted edging, in wonderful shape, for about $12. I found instructions on the web (not the ones I linked to; I can't find the page I used anymore) and sewed it. For the ribbon ties, I used the ribbon from one of the gifts. It was pale blue and satin, and I made the ties long - I figured he'd only wear it while we were there, so strangulation wouldn't be much of a risk.

They all turned out beautifully, and the priest even announced to everyone that I'd made the gown. The gown and slip are on display at the fabric store; this spring I hope to enter them in the county fair.

Here's closeup of the bonnet (now disassembled, pressed and ready for his wedding...):

And another of the bodice of the gown:
Christening gown, closeup

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Turqoise and rust barf

Originally uploaded by knitswithasilentk
So I started working on the Little Arrowhead Shawl (pdf) for my mom, and I got through one repeat and a couple of rows before my cables started being too short. Last night I pinned it out to take a long look at it.

It still kind of looks barfy. Now I know I haven't wet it and truly blocked it, but I just don't see a definitive pattern here. And it just looks like Granny Square (i.e., not Chanel) to me. I think it's headed for the frog pond.

A closer look:


What do you think? Maybe this yarn is just doomed. My next try might be some scribble lace, and after that maybe just a mitered square pillow (thanks for the idea, Kathryn)? Or a felted purse? After all, my mom loved the colors of this yarn, but she didn't mention anything about the texture. What do you all think?