Friday, November 25, 2011

Finished Object Friday

Happy Friday.  I hope everyone had a great day.  I've already been to exercise this morning, trying to make up for the pie and cake.

I love baby knits.  Cute and fast!  Finished in just two days, here is my Whirligig Shrug.

Thanks to all of you who said you share my problem of not knowing how big babies are.  I think she will grow into it.  I have some yarn left over but not sure if it is enough for slippers.

I have big plans to work on blocking my Aran sweater today.  I am almost done with tech editing the pattern.  I should have been writing while I knitted but oh well.  With luck it will be sewn up and ready for the collar to be knitted on by Monday.  We'll see.

Head over to Tami's to see lots of great finished objects.  Perhaps its the holiday or upcoming gift giving that is inspiring lots of knitting.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Work in Progress Wednesday

Now that I am mostly past my deadline knitting, (see yesterday's post) I'm back to posting on Wednesday's.  It just didn't make sense to post when no one but me could tell the progress from week to week.  And there is a good chance I'll have finished objects for the next three weeks!  I shouldn't jinx it.

Two days ago, I started the Whirligig Shrug for our cousins baby girl who is expected in late March.  I love baby knits when you know the people involved.  Mostly because you can zoom right through them.  I should finish in a day or two.
This is in a multi-color cotton with light pinks through a maroony red and khaki color.  Machine wash and dryable and a natural fiber.  I'm making the smallest size but am a bit above gauge.  It may be a grow into garment - or not if it is a big baby.  I'm a bad judge at such things.

We've had company this last day.  My husband's aunt and uncle snow bird in the Rio Grande Valley - that is when people from cold snowy places spend the winter in warmer climates.  We are fortunate to be on the migration route and get to see them twice a year on their way down and then back up.  They are great fun and we always have a blast with them.

You know the drill.  Over at Tami's there are lots of great works in progress.  Have a great Thanksgiving for those of you in the US.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Deadline knitting and the importance of craftsmanship

I have learned that I don't like knitting for deadlines, even self-imposed ones.  I have finally finished all the pieces of my aran sweater and will start the blocking and finishing process tomorrow.  And I have finished the beaded lace scarf and blocked it last night.
I blocked it using wires along the short ends and then down the long side where the beads are.  Then I pinned it out so the center section was 5.5 inches wide and pinned each scallop.  Wires are such a great invention for this.

Now I have to finish writing the pattern and the tutorial on beads.

The great news is that I now feel free to do lots of projects at once if I so choose.  I started a baby sweater last night, Whirligig Shrug.  I have yarn for one other baby sweater as well.  The baby is the first child of my husband's cousin and his wife.  They are delightful and so excited about having a daughter.  The baby is due in late March.  Now I know that knitting for babies is another deadline driven event, but for some reason I am not stressed about it.

Another exciting thing happened yesterday, but a bit of background.  My great-great-grandfather gave his daughter a pump organ for her 16th birthday in 1906.  They lived in a (then) very remote part of West Virginia and it was quite an event to get it there.  It was handed down in the family to my aunt as the oldest granddaughter and then to me as the oldest great-grandaughter.  By the time I got it, it was no longer in working condition, though I can remember my great-grandmother playing it more than thirty years ago.  I've had it in our garage for years saying I will get it restored.  When I first got it, we tried to do the wood restoration ourself but after breaking off a carved wood curlicue, decided that wasn't a good plan.  My great-grandmother and grandmother polished it once a week with a coal-oil based polish for 90 years, turning it a dark brown, almost black.  Turns out it is actually a light oak color under all that polish.  Thanks to the internet I found a wonderful organ restorer.  There were only two I could find in the country.  This gentleman has done hundreds of organs and is the person that Antique Roadshow uses for these instruments.  He came by yesterday and loaded up my organ.  We live in Texas, he is in Atlanta.  He said it was in amazing shape on the things that are hard to fix - all the keys are in pristine condition which is very unusual.  In seven or eight months, I will have it back, fully restored to original condition.

I appreciate craftsmanship, no matter what the form.  I hope he has an apprentice so this won't be a lost art.  If you are interested in seeing some of the organs he has restored, you can see his photo gallery here. Mine looks like the fourth one down but more carving.  He does amazing work.

There are no great-great granddaughters in the family, so it will be passed down to my son one day and hopefully to his daughter.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Work in Progress Wednesday

Hey there.  Things have been very busy and I haven't been posting as much.  My in-laws are coming in today for 5 days.  Our son is in the school play starting tomorrow night.  And exams are just two weeks away.  Just a little stress in our house right now.

Knitting is progressing well.  The back of the sweater is done and I decided to do buttons on a moss stitch band which is knit in with the sides.  Left side is going well.
Lace scarf is progressing but not as fast as I would like.  Work of course is also busy.  Here is the detail, though I didn't pin it out or have it on a high contrast background.
Last night was Guild Knit.  The speaker talked about different long tail cast ons.  Doesn't sound like it would be interesting, but it was!  I'm always surprised by how much there is to learn.  I learned to cast on  left handed and also how to cast on in knit and purl!  Who knew you could do that for ribbing.

Our guild always does give aways.  Put your name in a bag and they draw 5 or so winners.  Someone has given them the prizes and they are fabulous.  I won one of the prizes last night.
This is a Lantern Moon silk project bag.  I have one in red and love it.  This is that yellow green color.  Inside was full of hand painted 100% silk.   How beautiful!
It's blues, purples, greens and yellows.  Not sure what I will do with it yet, but this just more than paid for my yearly dues!

For great inspiration head over to Tami's to see the other WIP's.