hemlock blob, boh, buttons.

A podcast, an episode of Project Runway, and two mugs of coffee later, I present to you my hemlock ring, in blob form, and I love it. Now, where am I going to block this thing?

Boh has no idea.

Yesterday afternoon,  I quickly added a fourth (red) button to my Shalom, and then swapped out the less matchy orange button (second from the top) in order to make this wearable, and quick. See, yesterday was cold and rainy, and, let’s face it, rather unproductive. A coffee shop work plan took shape, and I decided that I needed to be able to wear Shalom. I think I will eventually swap out the orange buttons for red ones, but this worked wonderfully for yesterday’s coffee shop work date (followed by a french-fries-with-delicious-dipping-sauces-reward-for-reading date). Here are a few more Shalom pictures! (Tough to take good photos in artificial light. The blurry ones are my favorites.)

Back to the pile of reading!

Advertisements

half-calf.

I crack myself up. And yes, my coffee is fully caffeinated this morning (and every morning). More pictures of legwarmer numero uno? Why, of course!

I have not yet mastered the art of photographing my own legs. Clearly. I bound off very loosely, and I’m thinking that when I block these, I’ll tug a bit to get the ribbing a tad more snug. Otherwise, I’m thrilled with the length, the shaping, and the stripes! I’ll post my cast on/increase numbers when I finish numero dos.

After a very productive lunch date (and delicious sushi), a grad-student friend and I wandered over to a little antique shop downtown. Not only did I score a sweet, ruffly, polyester shirt in this adorable red print, but I also found these pins, which I intend to use to secure the many shawls I am going to knit this summer and beyond. Aren’t they gorgeous?

Also, this excursion solved a lingering dilemma. Remember my shalom button problem? (You know, four button-holes, three buttons, only two of which match each other?) Check out these glittery big red buttons. I’m planning to sew these onto shalom this afternoon, and send those orange buttons back to the jar. Hooray!

Happy Friday, folks! Hope your weekend is filled with sunshine and knitting.

Oh, and popcorn, popped on the stove. Definitely popcorn.

FO: shalom.

Boh is anxious about button selection.

And here’s what I settled on. (Boh’s anxiety was completely valid, by the way. Turns out I made four buttonholes. Didn’t realize that until I sewed on three buttons and tried on the sweater. I’m not sure yet if I’ll move the top button down, leave it as is, buy another funky orange button, or swap the buttons entirely. Thoughts?)

Here’s a full length shot, even though the brilliance of the sunshine puts me (and shalom) in shadow.

Have I told you lately that I love this sweater? School and life got in the way of me finishing this earlier in the spring. Despite the fact that it took me a few months to knit, this is actually a super quick, super rewarding knit.

Yarn:  2.75 skeins of Cascade 220

Mods: I followed the pattern, but I used worsted weight yarn and size 7 needles (thanks to all the shalom knitters on ravelry for their detailed notes). To account for my smaller gauge, I added a repeat of the twisted rib yoke section, and then pretty much knit until it seemed to hit me at the right spot. Oh — and I added a fourth buttonhole, even though there is not currently a button to pair it with.

Even though all of my decisions about sizing occurred totally on the fly, this might be my best fitting sweater to date. Go figure. The weather around here is spring-y, and not too hot, so I should have lots of opportunity to wear my shalom this week!

FO: garter yoke cardigan.

At long last, I sewed the buttons onto my garter yoke cardigan. I tried it on after the first four, just to make sure I liked the look of these buttons (which may or may not have cost me more than the Cascade 220 part of the sweater). I decided to do this late last night, so the pictures are less than awesome, thanks to the overhead lights in my apartment, but I think you’ll still get the idea.

I love this, and I’m especially glad that I knit this alongside Mick and Laura! I decided not to block my GYC, at least not yet, mostly because I am anxious that it will grow, and I don’t want it to get wider or longer. (Also, I’m lazy.) I’ll block it eventually… I’m still working on sizing sweaters, and I think I need to trust the idea of negative ease just a bit more, as I tend to knit my sweaters a little too big. That said, I’m very happy with this sweater, and I expect it will get quite a bit of wear!

Details:

Garter Yoke Cardigan, size 38, with a handspun yoke (out of 144 yards of Hello Yarn romney in Alpine) and a Cascade 220 body (814 yards).

I knit the yoke and sleeves on size 6 needles and knit the body on 7s, and I shortened the sleeves to 3/4 length.

Here’s an outtake — despite the blurriness and awkward angle, I like this one:

Hooray!

sweet sweater ISO right buttons to share…

…early morning cups of coffee,  stretches of reading and writing, long walks in the woods. Must be cute and functional, should be comfortable with handspun and commercial yarn, and available for the life of the sweater. Casual closures need not apply.

I’m heading to one of the local knitting shops today to pick up some test-knitting (I’ll ask if I can blog about it), so I really wanted to finish the second sleeve on my garter yoke cardigan in order to look for buttons! (Serious inquiries only, of course.) I do have more of the matte grey buttons that I used for my bracken vest, and I think those might be a good option, but I want to see what else is out there before I commit.

In tidying up my yarn corner (also known as the explosion of knitting projects near the base of the couch), I realized that I have more than 3 skeins of cascade 220 leftover from knitting this project, which means this was a super affordable sweater: just over 3.5 skeins of cascade 220, plus part of a skein of handspun for the yoke! I bet I have enough to make another. (Whoa there, rooster.)

bracken: blocking/before buttons.

bracken blocking

I gave bracken a nice soak and then tried to get a bit more length out of it as it lay drying on these awesome blocking squares. (These are from Knitpicks, and seriously, they cut drying time in half.)

bracken almost1

bracken almost 2

bracken almost 3

Blocking = magic. Everything relaxed and totally evened out, and I think the length is absolutely perfect. I think Boh agreed, because he kept trying to get in the picture.

boh with bracken

Now I just need to sew on the buttons! (Well, first I need to find some appropriate thread.)

bracken grey buttons

I was looking through my button jars for a set of dark brown buttons, but the ones I have are a bit shiny, so I think I’m going to go with the grey matte buttons on the left.

If only I could make such satisfying progress on my writing projects…

outnumbered.

bohandcoltrane1

Yesterday, two dogs lounged and played in my house while I read and spun. Boh’s friend Coltrane came over after they met up at the dog park so that Coltrane wouldn’t be lonely, as his owner had to attend a day-long event.

bohandcoltrane2

plyed norwegian

While they snored, I spun the second bobbin of norwegian top singles, and then plied them together.

plyed norweg prewash

Here’s what it looked like right before I set the twist.

bohcoltrane5

We took a couple of short walks through my neighborhood yesterday, and I learned that it is tough to walk two dogs who don’t normally walk together at the same time! T., one of Coltrane’s owners, came over for dinner, and the dogs continued to lounge. After beet and carrot latkes and more homemade chocolate pudding, we dumped out a jar or two of buttons onto the kitchen table. T. needed buttons for some baby bibs, and I needed to pick out buttons for my handspun baby belle.

babybellebuttons1

babybellebuttons2

These buttons are a pinkish red, and I love how they stand out against the pastel shades of the handspun. What do you use to sew your buttons on? I’ve only ever used thinner yarn and a darning needle (seems I always pick buttons with pretty fat holes), but T. reminded me that when you buy a sweater, the buttons are sewn on with thread! (Which makes sense. It also means I need to acquire more than a travel button repair kit from a random hotel stay if I intend to keep sewing small buttons onto my knitting.)

bohgoodsport

This guy is such a good sport. We’re going to ease into Sunday with a little bit of knitting and a morning walk. Then, back to work!