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Archive for February, 2008

FO: Big Bad Baby Blanket

I finished this up a couple of days ago but it was desperately in need of a good blocking before I could post about it. In fact, even after blocking it, I think I did a terrible job and will be re-doing that this weekend!

Big Bad Baby Blanket

Pattern: Big Bad Baby Blanket from the first Stitch N Bitch book

Yarn: Jojoland fingering weight wool bought from eBay seller jojosquare, a tiny bit less than 6 balls, held double throughout

Needle: Size 9US

Started: January 28, 2008

Finished: February 27, 2008

Size: Before blocking 28″ x 28″, after blocking 32″x 32″

I have read lots of ‘reviews’ of this pattern and I’d have to say I mostly agree with them all. It’s a B-O-R-I-N-G knit, but that makes it a perfect car/TV/no-brain-power knit! I worked on this in the car and it took me about a month to complete. I’d say that’s not too bad, considering the majority of my time in the car is spent driving rather than knitting! The yarn I used was inexpensive and not the best in the world, but also not the worst. It had a good amount of straw-like stuff in it that I just picked out as I went along. It did soften a bit after washing with Eucalan, but it’s not cashmere. 😉 I plan to make the Umbilical Cord Hat from the same book using this yarn… and I might even decide to make some matching booties or something like that. I think I have 12 balls of the yarn leftover, so I’m not exactly at risk of running out!

I couldn’t go without a car knitting project, so I cast on for the Chocolate, Vanilla, Swirl blanket using some Bernat Softee Chunky. I love how the finished product looks and think it’s a great pattern for a gender-neutral gift, but I do believe it’s more boring than the BBBB was/is. I think if I were to cast on for another, I’d spend the cash on some good yarn that doesn’t squeak so much while I knit it. It is definitely a soft acrylic yarn, though… and machine washer/dryer friendly, so perfect for those who don’t want to be concerned with special care items.

Swirl Blanket

(The colors above are pretty washed out)

Wish me luck in completing the toy for my friend’s daughter… I’ve not been diligent about knitting it because I don’t have any desire right now to sew anything together! No detail work for me. Nope, no way, no how.

I think.

Have yourselves a fine weekend and I’ll hopefully be back soon with another FO.

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FO: Seamless Hybrid

It’s done! It’s Finally Done! (insert maniacal laughter here)

After trying this sweater at much too small a gauge for my patience level, I ripped and restarted. The pattern is awesome and it creates such a flattering fit! Especially for a man, I think. The lines created by the ingenious shoulder saddle really accent a man’s arms and chest, in my opinion.

Seamless Hybrid, unblocked front
(unblocked front)

Seamless Hybrid, unblocked back
(unblocked backside)

Pattern: Seamless Hybrid

Source: Knitting Without Tears by Elizabeth Zimmermann

Yarn: Cascade Eco + wool, just barely less than 3 skeins (~1400 yards)

Needles: Sizes 8 & 10US

Started Jan 26 and Finished Feb 22, 2008. The reason it took me as long as it did can be summed up in one word: Fear. I wasn’t entirely sure I could pull off a successful sweater without any hitches and so avoided knitting on it occasionally. (Yeah, that avoidance sure is a crazy thing) I’m so glad I decided to finish it, and even more happy that the hubby is happy with his new sweater. I may get adventurous later on and shorten the sleeves… This is the second time I’ve made the hub a sweater with arms that are too long… what does that mean?

Seamless Hybrid

I opted to use the same color for the hems rather than the contrast only because I’m cheap. Honestly. I adore how the hems look when a different color is used, but I didn’t have a suitably-gauged alternate color in my stash and didn’t want to spend $18 for one hank of the Eco+ just for the hems. Perhaps I shouldn’t have been so cheap, but the hubby is happy with the end product and that’s really all that matters, right?

The only complaint I have now that the hubby has tried this on after blocking is this: The front of the sweater is ‘pouching’ out in the front, rising up a bit instead of laying flat on the body. I’m not sure why this happened and it’s not a huge big deal, but it’s kinda irritating.

Seamless Hybrid-Front

(I need to correct the little holes there in the neckline, as well)

I’m still chugging along on the Big Bad Baby Blanket and have also started a little gift knit for a friend’s daughter. With luck, I’ll have more FO posts in the coming weeks.

Oh, I almost forgot… Remember the Central Park Hoodie from last year? Well, I do… I love that sweater, but it always seemed to be falling off toward my back because of the weight of the hood, so I finally sewed a zipper in. It’s not seamstress-quality, but it’s not too bad and it certainly does the job!

Central Park Hoodie w/zipper!

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BBBB and a Bunny Buddy

I think I mentioned in an earlier post that a good childhood friend of mine is pregnant and that I plan to knit as much baby stuff as I can muster before the little one makes his/her appearance. The first thing I’ve done is one of my favorite baby knits: The Bunny Buddy. This is a free pattern from Lion Brand’s website, although you do need to register to gain access to all of their freebies.

Bunny Buddy

I used Bernat Cottontots in the Sweet Cream color on size 5 and 8 needles. I never embroider the faces on these toys because I think they’re creeeeeepy with faces. That’s just me, though. I’d say one of these buddies uses about half a ball of the yarn, so it’s definitely a cost effective toy. Not to mention the fact it’s always good to have a back up for wash day!

The next project is the Big Bad Baby Blanket (BBBB) from Stitch N Bitch. I bought oodles of the Jojoland fingering weight wool yarn from ebay and want to use as much of it as possible! I’m holding the yarn doubled on size 9 needles and at this point in the photo I’m only through the first 2 balls. I’m anticipating using 8 balls total, but we’ll see how it all works out.  This is the project I’ve been working on in the car while waiting for the kids at school, and the same one that was in the car with the hubby last weekend.

Big Bad Baby Blanket

I’m also working very sporadically on a bonnet from The Opinionated Knitter using some leftover MerMade Fingering weight wool:

EZ Bonnet

The hope is that this will match size-wise to the Baby Surprise Jacket I knit using the same wool last year. Everyone keep your fingers crossed for me, will ya?

I’m still working feverishly on the Hubby Hybrid and have both sleeves done and attached to the body of the sweater.  I don’t have any photos of my progress from last week because honestly, it still looks like a big ole blob of blue yarn.  I’ll be starting on the decreases just as soon as I sign off, and I’m hoping to make some HUGE progress on it this weekend.

Thanks to everyone who posted their support in our taking the kids with us.  It doesn’t necessarily change anything, but it’s still nice to have others backing you up!  🙂

Enjoy your weekend, hopefully an extra day long, and I’ll be back next week with more.

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I don’t have much

I’m currently working on two large projects and neither is showing a whole lot of measurable progress as far as blogging goes. The first is the second attempt at the Hubby’s Hybrid Sweater.  I’ve finished the body up to the point of joining the sleeves and am working on the first sleeve:

Hubby Hybrid v2

It’s most certainly working up faster than the original attempt! I’m getting just a tad over 4 stitches per inch on size 10US needles, which is a far cry from the 6.25 spi I had on the first try!  This time I opted to knit the hems in the same color as the sweater body rather than spend another $18 or so on a skein of the Eco+ for less than a quarter of the yarn.  What?!  I’ve already mentioned that I’m cheap frugal.

The other big project I’m working on is in the minivan with the hubby at the moment, so I have no pics to show. It’s a Big Bad Baby Blanket using some Jojoland wool I bought on Ebay a couple of weeks ago. Because I don’t have progress shots for you, I’ll instead try to woo you with my youngest son:

Snow fun

Did that work? No? Ok then.

I realized the other day that I never fulfilled a promise made several weeks back… So I give you a morsel to chew on:

Trip!

My hubby is in sales, and each year the company he works for rewards its’ top performers to a very nice trip. This year we will be headed here sometime in May. (we haven’t received all the details yet, only morsels to chew on, just as I’m giving you!!) In case you’re wondering, we WILL be bringing the kids with us. It’s honestly not an option, as we don’t have anyone both suitable and capable of watching them for 5 days, but even if we did have a nanny/grandparent/friend/neighbor/caretaker, the kids would come along. It’s not a resort that we’d normally choose as a family destination, which makes this a once-in-a-lifetime trip for us and the kids. They may be young enough that they don’t recall much or any of the vacation, but that’s what cameras and parents are for! We are also firm believers that when you have kids, they are an extension of you and should be included in travel plans. Much to the dismay of those without kids. Too bad for them. 🙂 At some point we’ll regain our pre-children freedom and will then take advantage of a different style of travel. Until then, we’ll thoroughly enjoy traveling with the kids, irritating those who hate kids, and making (mostly) fun memories!  Sorry, but this is a sore subject for me and I tend to get into some heated debate with someone every time I mention a trip with the kids…

I hope you’re all enjoying warmer weather than we are here in Chicagoland and will cross my fingers that I’m able to provide some tangible proof that I do actually knit stuff!  If the darned snow would stop falling, maybe I’d have the energy to knit.  Until then, have a great day!

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*Blush*

I can’t believe I’ve been nominated for anything, let alone the “You Make My Day” award! Both Bertha and PJ were gracious enough to nominate me for this award and I’ve gotta say I’m just floored! I thought I was just kinda typing away for myself, with no one but my family reading occasionally! 🙂 Thanks so much, you guys! (Since I’m an idiot when it comes to graphics and stuff, I don’t know how to insert the picture without stealing it from somewhere.)

Ok, here are blogs that Make My Day: (in no particular order at all)

1) I found Tiennie back when I knit my first Central Park Hoodie and haven’t looked back since! She is awe inspiring and such a great spirit among the knitting blogosphere, to say the least. She always produces the most beautiful knitted items, well written blog posts, and jaw-dropping photos of everything she creates! I love reading you and greatly anticipate every blog update, Tiennie!

2) Bertha, of course! As she mentioned, I destashed some yarn (ironically enough, from the first CPH I knit, where I ‘met’ Tiennie!) and adore her blog. June is the cutest baby I’ve ever seen (aside from my own, of course) and I agree with Grumperina that she’s gotta be the happiest kid I’ve ever laid eyes on!

3) PJ, who is knitting some really cool cabley goodness over there in Romania!

4) Fricknits, who is so courageously battling such a common but unspoken mommy battle. I wish I had even half the strength you have. Can’t wait to have you back!

5) Cara. Need I say more? I love reading honest, outspoken, gory-detail-laden posts. I have thoroughly enjoyed following along with your pregnancy ordeals and can’t wait to ‘meet’ your newest addition in March!

6) Julie, who has recently become so darned busy that she’s not sharing anywhere near enough of her talent on her blog! 🙂

7) Anny. When I grow up, I want to be you, Anny. Really and truly.

8) Mandy… I first found her in my search for the tomten where I located some killer-cute photos of Maggie wearing one made by her talented mommy. I’ve been hooked since!

9) Kelley. OMG Did you see the veil she knit for her own wedding? Or the Monteverde Scarf she designed? She’s an excellent knitter and has helped my several times when I’ve asked questions of her, a complete stranger to me publicly! Thanks, Kelley!

10) Gleek. I completely enjoy reading all about a first-time mommy and how life has and is changing! I hope you’ve found the right pediatrician by now and that the peanut is happier than a few days ago!

11) Jen, who lives just north of the border from me, but will soon be moving to a place I’ve always wanted to visit. (wink wink hint hint) She’s an excellent knitter, writer, and such an advocate for her kiddos. Just reading her blog brings me back to reality and to what really matters–family! Good luck on the big move, Jen!

There are so many other blogs I read religiously, but I’m not the best at making comments religiously. Sorry. I love that there are so many knitty bloggers out there and that they’re all great to each other! 🙂 Thanks for welcoming me into the fold!

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Snow Day!

I’d love to say I’m sitting around knitting and enjoying the snow day, but instead I’m watching the kiddos play in the snow and enjoying the snow day!  🙂

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I hope you’re having as much fun as we are!  I’ll be back in a day or two for a regular, knitting-related post!

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