Thursday, February 08, 2007

Frog Cupcakes

I frogged two projects over the weekend.

First, the official Penelope's Got Nothing on Me FUG, a truly hideous Paris Loop in Rowan Cotton Braid:

Next, a teeny little baby vest that my mom started for one of us in the late 70s / early 80s. (I didn't take a "before" photo.)

So I have Frog Cupcakes!

I have no idea what to do with the Cotton Braid. The yarn store swatch was so soft, I let it override my judgement. I can't think of anything to make out of this that wouldn't be ugly...

Apparently the baby vest was made out of the *only* nice yarn that existed at the time. It's a soft, loosely-spun 2-ply sportweight wool with green and burgundy bits. Yummy, and precisely 100g. That leaves the question: what should I do with 100g of sportweight? I'm thinking of using it as an accent with something in burgundy.

And now, my "hey, let's finish some stuff, I need something I can wear in the freakishly cold weather, OOOOH isn't Knitting Nature Awesome, wow, I love Beaverslide Drygoods" series of FOs:

Target Wave Mittens in fisherman weight:

I love the yummy springy natural wool. It's not especially soft, but just fine for mittens. (Their wool/mohair blend and McTaggart Tweeds are much softer.) I used between half and 2/3 of the skein.

Droplet Hat in wool/mohair:

I did this pattern in the round, rather than flat. If you try to do the same, cast on two fewer stitches; there are two extra allowed for seaming. I think, like my Odessa, I'll be giving this one away. I need better ear coverage.

Is it me, or do all the neat hat patterns not cover the ears? I think what I really need is one of those huge squarish hats with the enormous ear flaps. Maybe in some super-girly pattern (like snowflakes on a pink background). I'm liking this idea...

In other news, the Snowflakes and Arrows vest found a new home with my mother-in-law. Will post pics next time I see her.

I also frogged and restarted Tubey #2 in Aurora 8:

I didn't like how it was turning out with the needles I was using, so I switched to size 6s. Tubey #1 is 1/3 done, and has been percolating at the bottom of my project suitcase, but I think I'm going to frog it and start over too. I think I'll want to do that with some cable detail.

I've also been doing a little spinning with the Beaverslide roving in Thimbleberry that my SP7 gave me (on the spindle she gave me too).

I was struggling with the merino at first; it drafts very differently from the blue-faced leicester I learned on (also a gift from her). I had been using the inchworm technique (add twist, secure spindle, draft, repeat), which worked nicely with the BFL. It didn't work so well with the merino; I was getting lumps or "bald spots" (several times it was so bad that the yarn broke), and I wasn't too happy with the results. Then I got bold and tried drafting while the spindle was spinning, and it worked much better. I think the tension on the yarn (from the weight of the spindle) helped me control the draft & pinch better. Yay!

In other news, I have some new toys:

That's several pairs of Swallow brand casein dpns in sizes 3,5,6,7,8,9. I don't know if Swallow doesn't make size 4s (could be a metric conversion thing) or if the vendor just didn't carry them, but I don't use 4s very often anyway. I *love* casein, but I don't like doing small diameter tubes with my Denise set; the cables are a little too stiff, so I get laddering with either the two circs or magic loop techniques. I had bought bamboo dpns for the sleeves of my Zig Zag, but they were too slow & frictioney, so I bought a set of aluminums, and they hurt my hands after a while. So when I started Tubey, I ordered my casein dpns, and they are perfect; not too heavy, not too light, soft, flexible, pretty, and they even smell faintly nice. Yes, I smelled my knitting needles!

On the bottom are a set of freshwater pearl stitch markers from Zero. They are beautiful, REAL pearls, and the vendor will give you an extra set of rings for larger needles or for sock-size needles FOR FREE if you ask. Plus, they're CHEAP. Go buy from this lady; she's great.

The blue pouch is a leather changepurse from Florence that my sister gave me for xmas. With its neat spring closure, it's perfect for holidng my stitch markers and yarn needles (which I am constantly using). Thanks Becky!

Friday, February 02, 2007


In honor of the 2nd annual blogger's poetry reading, my very favorite poem.

Brown Penny
by William Butler Yeats

I WHISPERED, "I am too young,"
And then, "I am old enough;"
Wherefore I threw a penny
To find out if I might love.
"Go and love, go and love, young man,
If the lady be young and fair."
Ah, penny, brown penny, brown penny,
I am looped in the loops of her hair.

O love is the crooked thing,
There is nobody wise enough
To find out all that is in it,
For he would be thinking of love.

Till the stars had run away
And the shadows eaten the moon.
Ah, penny, brown penny, brown penny,
One cannot begin it too soon.