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Thursday, September 27, 2007

More Sushine-y progress

I recently had 8 hours of uninterrupted car knitting time and I got quite a bit done on the Sunshine Tank. I finished one side completely and am halfway finished with the other side, about ready to start on the lacey bits. The tank takes two skeins and one skein is enough to complete one side. I've noticed that one skein I have is slightly darker than the other which I'm thrilled with because it means I can wear it as it fits my mood (the two pieces - front and back - are identical).

Cross posted on: Oneplanetknitters KAL.

Friday, September 21, 2007

A knit for me

I'm a little bit tired after my 2 month marathon knitting/designing/pattern writing session. So the other day, I settled down to cast on for my first garment that I didn't design in close to a year. It's the Sunshine Tank by Neoknits, a great feminine camisole made out of Yarn Botanika's Radiance yarn. Although I'm not usually a pink or purple person, I really like the Bloom colorway I'm using which is both pink and purple. My friend Hickory would be so proud of me. :) Here's a rather boring progress shot:

I've actually gotten much further since I took this picture. I'm done with the back and have started the front.

Radiance is a tencel/merino blend and it has a subtle sheen reminiscent of silk and is incredibly soft and drapey once washed. I think this camisole will be very comfortable. And it's has just the right mixture of plain, meditative knitting (in the body) and something a little different and interesting (in the lace bodice). The lace itself is an easily memorized pattern and has flattering vertical lines as well as a zig zag wave that radiates playfully across the bustline. I can't wait to be finished with this and wear it!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Breakfast when the cat's away

My husband is the cat of course. And he's off to NYC to interview for a job so that at least one of us can be gainfully employed. I dropped him off at the train station at 6:30 this morning and stopped by the 24 hour Dunkin Donuts/Baskin Robbins (the latter is more useful for me) for some breakfast. Usually when he's home, we eat very healthily. Breakfast might be toast with peanut butter (gotta love those Omega3s) or yogurt, fruit, and granola bars. When he's away though, I break out the donuts (an apple crawler, because a glazed donut just wasn't going to do it today, is pictured below) and black coffee.

I pulled an all-nighter last night frantically trying to finish up a couple of late late projects. Ends are all woven in now on both projects and buttons remain to be purchased for the second. I've already polished off the donut and hope I don't accidentally spill coffee on my late night work.

As a designer, I'm doing things I've never done as a knitter. I'm particularly proud of something I've learned in the past few days - the tubular cast on and the tubular bind off (also known as the sewn bind off). It makes for a very neat, elastic edge in ribbing. And it's so pretty :) Here's a peek at the project I used it for:

Jodi gives a really great tutorial for the bind off on her blog. It's a pain at first, but you really get into the rhythm of it after a while. Still, it's much slower than a traditional bind off, but the final product is really really nice. I used it because my design has a very deep scoop neck that would have been too floppy if bound off in the customary way.

Sorry for the lack of coherence. I don't weather all-nighters like I used to. I'm getting old!

Edited to add: Oh, and the yarn I was working with for one of the projects is so delicate that it was felting like a motherf****r while I was working with it. Picture me on my sofa at 4 a.m., X-files playing in the background, trying desperately not to handle my knitting too much while I was picking up and knitting a border. I tried doing it with gloves, I tried doing it with Kleenex cushioning either side of the work area, but finally gave up and just attempted to keep my hands very very dry.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

One Planet Knitters Knitalong

The deadline knitting should be winding down soon for me. After that, I have one more project to do, but nothing lined up beyond that. It's a little strange. On the one hand, I really need to get my butt in gear and look for a day job. On the other hand, I'm feeling very ambivalent about not having knitting work in the queue. It seems like knitting for hire comes in spurts and starts - there are times when there's nothing to do and times when there's more than you can handle. And I must admit, having my hands busy with knitting helped distract me from the distressing reality of unemployment.

So the scorecard is...I'm finishing up 2 projects for a magazine. The instructions for the 3rd project I have in Yahaira's Pure Knits book are turned in and my wonderful sample knitter is finishing up the knitting for it.

Meanwhile, I'm staring at some lovely Radiance from One Planet Yarn and Fiber. It'll become the Sunshine Tank, Melissa's really pretty camisole pattern. I'm so excited. This will be the first thing I've made for myself (other than the stray glove or three) in a long time. One of the biggest ironies about my obsession with knitting is that I really hate wearing sweaters. But this camisole is exactly the type of knitted garment I would wear - made out of a fine weight yarn, not too fussy, with great little details. The Radiance is really gorgeous too - soft, with a slight sheen, and in great saturated colors. I'm usually not a purple person, but I fell in love with this colorway (Bloom):

One Planet has set up a great knitalong space where people can post and share projects carried by the shop. Many of their designers will also frequent the KAL as it gets underway, so it's a great place to get help and feedback too.