Saturday, February 28, 2009

American Beauty B2



I have been tagged, but it is late enough here that I will have to link to blogs tomorrow - so watch for it!!

American Beauty Chart B2 was posted last night,in time for Happy Hour in New York...I am not in NY but Andrea is! You should check out her WELL blocked photos. This is a really fun knit, if you haven't started it yet you should. :)

~M

Monday, February 23, 2009

American Beauty Part B





Mystic Star was complete so I had to catch up with Andrea at Bad Cat Designs.

American Beauty is trucking right along!

~M

Modelled Shot



The Drama Queen obliged and after I got home from work we took a couple of pictures of the roughly blocked Mystic Star.

Right now my shawl is 44 inches across (122 cm for those of you that are metric). I am sure that I can get a little more width out of her if I block the shawl out properly (and more evenly than I did the first time) but there are other knits to do and I will wait to soak Mystic Star again until the weekend.

~M

Sunday, February 22, 2009

How I spent my weekend.....by Mary




Each time I knit one I forget that the last section of a Pi style shawl is a TON bigger than the section before it. I never really notice how doubling your stitches and rows adds up until we are into the several hundreds of stitches. But she is finished now!

Mystic Star by Anna Dalvi of KnitandKnag I am calling it a "between the elements" shawl. :)

Yarntopia Treasures Tencel Laceweight in Sapphires

Size 1 US needles.

I will get back to you with the finished sizing on this, having blocked her our once I can see that we have some more stretch in there and she will be blocked again to get every last inch of spread I can.

I know that mine will not be as large as Anna's shawl. I knit mine on needles that were about three sizes smaller than called for in the pattern. I prefer the denser fabric between the "holes" that create the lace patterns.

The dollar may be low but the Great British Pound is lower - great time to check out what Richard has on display at Colourmart! I got some DK wool/silk blend, some silk and some merino lace weight....and some sock yarn (not from colourmart)just to keep the stash healthy. :)

~M

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

47 Bajillion Kazillioin


Middle of the week, right??? There should be a picture up there ^ showing how my Mystic Star circular shawl turned out.

Do you see it?

No, neither do I....I still have about 42 million stitches to go.*

The semicircular one in the red cashmere hit a snag, literally, I hooked it on my bracelet and ripped a hole in it. :( I am going to keep the pattern and the yarn on the back burner for a while, I seem to have overbooked myself again!

Mystic Roses is going to be the next "between the elements" knit from Anna of KnitandKnag. I know you will be shocked to hear that I have joined up already. :) Go on, give it a click and sign up too!

~M
*not really quite that many, I think that really I have something on the order of 40,000 stitches left to go.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Answers and Questions

There were some questions in the comments (and via email) that deserve an answer.

1) American Beauty - that gorgeous lavender is Colourmart 2/28 silk (currently out of stock )and knitted on US size 00 needles. I am using size 11 beads from The Drama Queen's bead stash and NO the size 12 crochet hook did not work. For this chart I did the old dental floss trick, and I have a size 14 hook on order. :)

2) The Hemlock Ring Blanket was knit on size 9(US) and 10(US) needles, I went up a size once I hit the feather and fan pattern. The yarn for this one is also from Colourmart. It was a 2/30 cashmere/wool blend that I had wound as a 8/30...the closest I see on their site right now is a 2/28 or a 2/36. They have a camel yarn that is the same NM as what I used - but it isn't what I worked with. I ran out of yarn using one cone (600 yards) well before I would have preferred to stop, so if you are interested in making this I would suggest getting the second cone. :)

3) The snow has finally gone, it was getting to look pretty nasty with road dirt and salt all mixed in.

Now my question to you.......does super-wash merino block well? I went with an acrylic for the baby shawl (that's a blanket you don't want to see dragged on the floor) because I know I can "kill" the acrylic to block it and then it will stay that way forever - even through machine washing. If a super-wash would do the same thing I would just as soon use a "real" fiber. :)

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

~M

Saturday, February 14, 2009

American Beauty



Andrea of Bad Cat Designs gave me the best Valentines Present of all, the first charts to a new design.

American Beauty....what do you think?

~M

Thursday, February 12, 2009

And one got away




There is a picture missing...the black socks jumped on the feet of their new owner before I was able to snap pics! Another finished object for the year, you gotta love lunch time knits that are small. :)

Mystic Star is starting to get bigger, but I suspect I will be adding additional sections if I want to make it into anything other than a medium size doily, I will see on Monday when the next clue comes out. I finished the blue circular clue this evening and have started on my red semicircle. I hope to get that one done before American Beauty starts this weekend.

One Hemlock blanket down, maybe a couple more to go. My yarn did not go as far as I would have liked it to, still a decent lap blanket and I have different cashmere to do more blankets. All in all I can't complain about it too much, the cashmere was very reasonably priced.

As I am sure you can tell I enjoy working in fine yarn (in both senses of the word)...one of my Yahoo knitting groups blew up with messages this week about if "fine" or luxury yarn always means expensive and if "cheap" yarn is worth the trouble to knit with.

The truth of the matter for me is that I am something of a yarn snob. I enjoy working with silk, cashmere, fine merino wool more than I do acrylic...but both types of yarn have their uses and there are some fantastic inexpensive yarns out there - including the so called luxury yarns! Colourmart has separated me from many of my dollars, but when I add up costs to make a Hemlock Ring Blanket out of acrylic would cost me just as much as using cashmere. Surely the "luxury" yarn wins out.

That said, I got some nice acrylic to make a baby blanket with. :)

~m

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Swatching on Saturday




The Hemlock Ring has grown as big around as I wanted it to get....but Houston, I think we have a problem I still have most (nearly all ) of the bind off to do and look at that cone of yarn! I have another cone, but I had wanted to make another blanket out of that as well....we might be moving onto a two tone blanket.

Andrea, of BadCat Designs
is asking the question "Do you believe in swatching?" Check out the chart for the swatch of American Beauty. Nothing to join, just follow along on her blog.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend - I still have more swatching to do, not sure yet if either of those ones above is the RIGHT one. But, yes, I do believe in swatching! :)

~M

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

There are days when it just doesn't pay to get out of bed




The second clue for Mystic Star came out on Monday, I know that soon the number of stitches is going to make knitting two of these a serious undertaking, but so far so good and they got done lickety split. :)

Until it came time to deal with the photos.....computer boots up, then crashes...boots up and jams up.....tries to boot and can't find an operating system.
After consultation with my "techie" (Ok in real life he is the ex, but he knows more about computers than I do) it is decided that I should take the drives out of my comp tower and try them in one that still has a motherboard, but no hard-drive. Sounds simple, and it really was it just didn't work!

Two days later and I am working from an 11 year old computer that has been loaned to me to use until my NEW one comes later this month. Talk about 2009 shaping up to be an expensive year, tires, computer...do I dare ask? No I don't dare ask, I just say that some days I should just stay in bed. :)

Take a look at the yarns BadCat Designs is suggesting for the Valentine Knit Along - American Beauty. I am in serious love.

~M

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Happy Feb!

The first month of 2009 is over, and I did get a lot of knitting done. :) If my needles had been a touch faster on my lunch breaks there would be another pair of socks to show you, I am on the boring rounds of the foot, but I am well on the way to the first FO of Feb.

Andrea of BadCat Designs will be celebrating her birthday month with a knit along. Her shawl will be in a rose yarn from Colourmart. It is a pity that I started knitting straight off the cone of red I bought last month, although the cobweb is a little finer than her design is calling for.

I have another hemlock on the needles this time in a "butterscotch" cashmere. I didn't take pics yet but it should be finished up this week. Snow and some computer issues prevented me from finishing it yesterday, my plan of knitting a Christmas gift a month is already behind!

Yet again my snow shovel is calling me.

~M