Tuesday, January 30, 2007

First sweater of the new year!

I finally finished my baby sweater project for Andy's co-worker. I started this the day after Christmas using my great Knit Pick Interchangeable needles. These needles are lovely and I had no problem with my order. A friend told me her needles did not fit her cables and she had to send them back.

Luckily, nothing wrong with my set. I love their nice sharp pointy tips! It was a real pain to go back to my dull wooden DPNs to do the sleeves.

Now, if I could only make my Violet's Pink Ribbon sock go as quickly. It's a nice pattern but hard to remember where I am. Rounds go so slowly that a picture this week would look just like last week. You'll just have to imagine it.

I am dying to start a new sweater project but I also need to finish my blue/green Interlocking Balloons scarf this month as well as a cool little red bag I started some time ago. Must . . . finish . . . projects . . . aughh!

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Goofing off in the snowy North

Two of my daughters have dances this evening and I should have been working on getting them out the door but this is what has been distracting me instead.

It is just a lovely, sunny but cold day here in Minnesota and once I got upstairs in my cozy office/spare bedroom, I couldn't help just goofing off. Checking out vacations at Walt Disney World and Colonial Williamsburg (our school has an odd week-long break in February), looking at pictures of David Beckham dressed as Prince Charming (with my teenaged Disney daughter), setting things up for Girl Scout Cookie Sales (I'm a cookie mom - want some cookies!?), etc., etc., etc. Cozy and warm and with a high speed Internet connection - what more could you want?

I did collect seven things this week. I thought this would be a difficult week but once I started thinking about who needs what to keep warm and cozy, things were begging to go to good causes. I found many more than seven items.

The blue jacket was Youngest Child's coat last winter and he just can't squeeze in it anymore. It was a great Hanna Anderson jacket - enjoy it, Baby Karl! The green coat was a leftover from Oldest Daughter's closet - she just doesn't wear as much Army surplus anymore. Thank Goodness! Cozy blue robe - out grown. Green gloves - outgrown. Six sweaters - not outgrown in the physical sense but definitely in the style sense. I just don't wear short sleeved sweaters anymore.

Well, Time to leave the nest and deliver girls to their pals houses. One is going to an Oldies Dance and - she's wearing 1980's clothing. Hmm - I used to have a lot of that! The other is going to a Father/Daughter dance - without her dad. He's out of town for the weekend and she's horning in on someone else's Dad Date. Me? I think a good dose of "Torchwood" is in order!

Monday, January 22, 2007

Look what came in the mail today!

I got a great gift certificate for Christmas from my lovely sister-in-law, Kim. She heard me talk about Handmaiden Sea Silk yarn and found a store that carried it.

Well, who could resist such a lovely treat? I bought two skeins of Sea Silk in the Woodland colorway. This yarn is 70% silk and 30% Seacell (a cellulose type fiber from seaweed!) and it feels luscious. Very smooth but not slippery. I searched for patterns that would work and I think I'll make the Flower Basket shawl from Interweave Knits. To round out the order, I also bought Colorsong Yarn's Socks Your Way Merino Skein from Fleece Artist in a gorgeous springy Green Pastures. With 480m/524.9yds. of sock weight merino yarn, I should be able to make a generous pair of socks. And the great thing about this yarn? It all fits into Wendy's Woolen Curtain - the Knit Your Stash 2007 program. The Sea Silk is a gift AND the sock yarn is exempt.

So far, I have only good things to say about Colorsong Yarn. Their online store was easy to use, the colors seemed true, and when there was a minor mistake on my order, they called in person to tell me that they were correcting it. Good job, guys!

Oh, and Wendy isn't being too fussy about her challenge anyway. Change to fit your own situation, she says. Sock yarn doesn't count, she says. Hmm, I think she will end up with more yarn thatn she started with!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

I see the New Year and I want to paint it - grey

Black is what I was working on - but this darn camera. Actually, everything looks slightly chocolate brown which would fit right in with my evening of wine-ing and dining with old friends including a great chocolate martini. So, no knitting today or tonight but plenty of fun nevertheless. I have to go to bed RIGHT NOW, I really mean it.

Oh, and the Saturday Seven? A great black Forrester consulting bag, some pants, shirts, two poorly chosen skirts from some of my daughters, some really "hand-me-down" black stonewashed toddler jeans (when were these in fashion?) and a belt. Which might not actually be black but navy blue. I couldn't tell.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

The story of something missing

As I sit here working, my husband and Youngest Child are reading "I Spy Mystery" by Jean Marzollo with photographs by Walter Wick. It is a lovely book of picture riddles. DearHusband made that title up as the subtitle for the page they are working on. Strangely enough, it applies to what I am working on.

What's missing is COLOR! Something is definitely up with my digital camera as every picture in the last few days has had its color sucked out. A Color Vampire is out to get my knitting. Now, I know that my BC socks are a lovely pink/white/purple. I know my baby sweater is deep denim blue. Alas, that is not so, according to these pictures.

I've been having a hard time with the pattern for these socks but I think I've got it beat. I finally figured out how to use Annie Modesitt's "No Cable Needle" cabling on the pattern. That's really sped things up. As for the rest of the sock, I might be messing up the gauge but I'm willing to let it go a bit.

As for the blue sweater, it's got a while to go. This is the Tedious Path of Knitting. Round and round and round. If I could only add this to my workout as exercise!

I think I've got a head start on planning for the new year - I just picked up The Green Mountain Spinnery Knitting Book: Contemporary and Classic Patterns by Margaret Klein Wilson. I've been checking it out for awhile and just couldn't resist any more. I think I'm just a traditional kind of girl knitter at heart. I would like a little more color, however!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

One more reason why I love that guy . . .

I've been after my husband to clean out his closet for some time. He is a very stylish fellow and likes to pick out his own clothes. Unfortunately, he doesn't like to get rid of his clothes! I've given up trying to get things into his dresser drawers because there just isn't any room. So, this week when he said, "Let's get this cleaned out," I thought we would be sorting this for days. In one afternoon, he turned this . . .

into this.

As always, he both surprised and delighted me. And gave me a really easy Saturday Seven. 21 items to be sure! Happy Saturday, dear!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

To Sock or not to sock or "Let's pretend it's Wednesday!"

I've tried to publish this post at least three times this week with nothing but failure. I'm not sure if Blogger is failing me or I'm just picking a busy time but - there has been knitting going on this week at Chez Daisy. I've been indulging my not-so-secret addition to watching "Torchwood" over the Internet and finally getting to view the extended versions of "The Two Towers" and "The Fellowship of the Ring." My teenagers have what's called "Project Week" so they are working on various projects at home. Now, If I could only get them to stop raiding the refrigerator and losing the television remotes!

For the "Torchwood" viewing, I have to knit very simple work so I can manage to download the next episode, watch the current episode and not drop my laptop all at the same time. I've been working on Cottage Creation's "Lillie's Little Sweater" - very easy and pleasant. My only problem so far was forgetting to keep the button band done in garter stitch. I think I'll need to block the band pretty firmly in order to make up for where I had to frog it out and restitch it.

After winding up my "Violet's Pink Ribbon" into a ball, I've been having second thoughts about making a shawl. It's just very - pink. A lovely, spring-like pink. So, I read about Lisa Lloyd's free "Pink Ribbons Breast Cancer Awareness" pattern for socks and decided to give it a try. After I tried unsuccessfully to start a toe up sock about three times! I think my problem is trying to teach myself a technique and produce it at the same time. No go. Here is the VPR on the swift and ball winder as well as in the sock pattern.

Neither picture has the correct color depth but they do give you a taste of the pastel palette. Now, on to "The Return of the King - extended edition!"

Saturday, January 06, 2007

New projects, old projects and time to move on.

I've been trying to plan out my year in knitting all week and having very little success. I want to make some socks (I've got to get started on those two miles of sock yarn!), I want to make a sweater for my middle daughter and I want to make some shawls. However, I also need to finish my DH's Aran Sweater, I've started a baby sweater for one of my husband's coworker's son and I need to do something with all that Yorkshire Tweed.

How to combine all these projects in one timeline? I think I am going to start with my Lisa Souza yarns first, just because I love the feel of this yarn and can't wait to use it.

Like a lot of people, I've purchased Lisa Souza's Violet's Pink Ribbon sock yarn and, while I love the yarn, I am not a pink person. I wear a lot of black. Who doesn't - it's slimming and it goes with everything! I may also be revealing my age but I like to make my shoes, belt and purse match. And that is almost always - black. Now, I do occasionally break out into colorful socks but usually blue or green or red but - not pink. So, I think that the best way to incorporate pink into my wardrobe is to knit a shawl - very likely the Flower Basket Shawl by Evelyn A. Clark from Interweave Knits Fall 2004 Issue. The pink and cream is spring-ish so maybe something for wearing to the Opera this spring. I am definitely going to use the L&V colorway for socks for me, however. Wendy's Generic Toe-up socks fromWendy Knits! looks good to me. I've always wanted to knit toe up socks and this one looks easy.

As for the Saturday Seven, it was a small but significant pile. I've been mining my items and the rooms I work in for most of the items I've given away in the past. Now, I'm moving into my children's rooms. Youngest Child provided this week's pile. He is growing so quickly and changing interests so often that this was an easy clip. Clothing and three baby toys. While we loved Eric Carle's "The Very Hungry Caterpillar", Youngest spends most of his time humming the Star Wars/Darth Vadar theme. Time to move on.