Friday, July 28, 2006

Checking In

Whoo-eee, it's been a big three weeks. Here's what's up:

1- Frogged Green Gables (yet again. Oh, how I love Calmer's frogability)
I think I need to go back to my gauge swatch and re-calculate the entire pattern: how wide *I* want the neck to be, how many increase rows *I* need, etc. The "pick a size and then increase until it fits" method has just not produced a flattering neckline.

2- Decided to make an extra row and column for the Retro Throw. With my squares coming out at 14", rather than 20". And, while it is a throw blanket and not a bed blanket, the recipients are 5'10" and 6'7". The new blankie (heh heh) will be 4x5 squares, rather than 3x4, and will have a wider edging (skinny stripes, I think). That's 8 more squares to knit (no problem), and 8 more squares to block (yuck). The extra yarn arrived this week, along with some Main Line and Shimmer:

And some size 00 needles from Knitpicks' addi turbo knock-off line. Should be nice for sock knitting.

3- Am 1/2-2/3 through a Clapotis for my mother-in-law's 60th birthday present.

I'm using Mystical Creations Silk/Merino in Dublin Bay. This is a nice yarn. It's soft, has a nice sheen, and comes in a dizzying array of colorways and semi-solids. It's about a half-step down from Lion & Lamb (which has a butterier feel and more sophisticated color transitions), but it's a little cheaper, at least by weight. It only comes in 1/2 lb increments, so the total price is not a whole lot cheaper, but you have enough to make a longer Clapotis or make a hat to match.

4- Ripped out the upper few inches of my sister's Lelah Top, and re-knitted it with short rows. Also used a purl row to turn the upper edge for the elastic casing, and made some i-cord for straps and a sash. I'll be seeing her in a week and a half (our cousin is getting married - whee!), so we're going to do a fitting then. Must remember to block it before then...

Things I'm excited about:

- the lovely yarn I bought for my one-skein SP, which I could tell you about, but then I'd have to kill you. I will say that I bought on close-out (could never have afforded it otherwise) in my first order from Webs, which is due to arrive today - whee!

- my yarn suitcase

I've actually had this for a while, but somehow didn't manage to blog it. It's nice and roomy, has lots of little pockets inside and outside, and, has a telescoping handle and wheels, like a suitcase. Was a gift from my mother-in-law.

- KnitPicks' new fall yarns
I don't think thse have been formally announced, but they show up if you do a yarn search on their site. I'm seeing a trend towards designer knock-offs (tweeds, a nice-looking alpaca boucle) and I like. I like very much. I ordered some sample balls, along with some close-out Main Line.

- Secret-ninja project for my one-skein SP
The august package is supposed to contain something you knitted from one skein of yarn. Mine will be an adaptation of a pattern by a blogger I admire. Again, I could tell you, but I'd have to kill you. I'll just have to wait until she gets it and post later.

- Design ideas
I've had quite a few ideas for patterns lately, but by the time I get the details nicely fixed in my head, I stumble across a pattern for pretty much the same thing. Cases in point:
- The Cambridge Jacket from this summer's Interweave Knits

(So similar to mine, right down to the ribbing at the shoulders!)
- The Center Cable and Rib Pullover from America Knits by Melanie Falick

(okay, I didn't have that cool a cable in mind, but I did have a ribbed t-neck with a center cable in mind, and I did want the cable to be something unexpected)

At first, this was kind of frustrating. But now that it's happened a few times, I'm going to take it as a sign that I'm on the right track, if a little behind. :)

UPDATE: 11:33pm: Knitpicks just announced their new line, and, along with it, an intriguing modular purse/project bag set. It looks like you pack a regular purse, and then it latches on to a project bag (which comes in different sizes). I am highly interested in this, but wonder:
- how does it look when it's latched on? I can't tell from the picture.
- how do the pieces themselves constructed, and how do they look? There is a photo on their web site, but it's not detailed enough for me to get a sense of the qualityl. I love the modular concept, but I don't want to spend money on a cheap-looking bag. That's one thing I love about Jordana Paige's bag; it looks actively nice.


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