Archive for August, 2008

The Celtic Tote is Done!

Well, I finished it!  I thought I finished in time for the Ravelympics, but I think I got confused.  I was watching the closing games as I finished getting it together, but I think there was something about midnight in China that I missed.  So, no prize, but it’s done!!

The pattern was fun.  The embroidery outline was killer!  It probably took me just as long to do the edging as it did to knit the darn thing.  I then proceeded to overfelt it slightly, but I still like the finished product.

You might notice that the handles are not knitted the way the pattern requests.  I don’t like the feel of wool and it can make me red and blotchy, so I opted to buy some premade ones.  No animals were harmed in the making of this tote, but this bag did lose its handles ($7 at WalMart) for my carrying enjoyment.

Things have been busy during the making of this bag (preseason game at the Dome to see the Vikings play the Steelers, yardwork, obsession with Scramble on Facebook, planning a fall vacation, etc) but it is done.  I may end up lining it, but a FO within 2 weeks is really good for me!


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Yes, I joined on the bandwagon for this one.  I don’t do well knitting under pressure, but really enjoy participating in things.  So I am attempting to finish the Celtic Tote by the time the torch is out.  I am off to a good start.  The back side is complete and the front side is well under way.  Don’t mind my grade school photography skills.  I don’t do well under normal circumstances and photgraphing black was beyond my skill level.

And I will say that it has kept me actively following the Olympics.  I usually prefer the winter games and just catch snippets of the summer games.  But I have discovered I truly love to watch swimming.  It might be because I would love to be a better swimmer (read: do something beyond the dog paddle) or just because the race is long enough for me to get engaged without being so long it loses my attention.  I have always loved to watch women’s gymnastics (again I wanted to do that so badly when I was a kid), but find the whole scoring thing confusing and way to subjective.  And then there is sand volleyball!  That is awesome!  I played volleyball in high school and sand volleyball on a coed team for many years, and let me tell you we didn’t look anything like these teams, but it is something I can relate to.

So in my quest to finish my project before the end of the Olympics I have discovered that the knitting will probably not be the problem.  It will be the finishing.  I have a little bit of trouble staying focused on the putzy details!!

BTW, the badly worn deck that is the background of most of my pictures got powerwashed today!  It still looks like a speckled mess, but hopefully it will be stained next week and be ever so beautiful!

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Instead of seeing Fields of Dreams as I was driving down to Iowa I saw fields of these (not a bad photo since I took it out of my side window as I was driving down I-35)

Growing up in western Iowa the big state rivalry was Nebtraska and Iowa.

Why does all of the corn in Iowa lean to the West…..Nebraska sucks.

You get the idea.

Since I have lived in MN, I realize that Minnesota feels about Iowa the way my part of Iowa felt about Nebraska.  When asked where I grew up, I know that I will start hearing the Iowa jokes.  Upon first moving up here my parents and I were visiting a local church and had met the minister prior to the service.  Yep, he then cracked an Iowa joke from the pulpit.  I never went back (though that had more to do with other parts of the service…healing people with a touch….that were a little out of my comfort zone).

So when asked what I did for the weekend I am leery of admitting I went to the Iowa State Fair.  The competitive spirit is immediately kindled.

“Is it as fun as the MN State Fair?”  “Is it as big as the MN State Fair?”  “Is the food as good as the MN State Fair?”

Honestly, makes me laugh!  For me personally I love the Iowa State Fair and do prefer it over the MN State Fair.  It is more agriculturally based and has a different feel than the MN State Fair (hard to put into words.  maybe more rural rather than urban?).  I also have personal connections at the Iowa State Fair.  My college roommate’s family is actively involved. 

They camp (her family, her sister’s family, and her parents) all 10 days at the campgrounds and enter all kinds of entries in the competitions.  A large part of my visit at the Fair is spent visiting the different buildings to see if I can find their entries and see what ribbons they won.  I then follow up through the remainder of the Fair keeping up with what the family ribbon count is.  My college roommate’s youngest boy got 3 blue ribbons and 2 rosettes this year.  He thinks he is pretty cool (as do I), and that slew of ribbons is not too bad for a 5 year old!  Her parents met at the Fair and have a sincere love for the activities and traditions they have established for their family.  I keep threatening to enter my own entries to “give them some competition”.  And maybe next year I will actually stay organized and send in my entry requests.  But I am kind of afraid the competition in the knitting category might be a little stiff for me. 

I got so busy looking at everything, picking up free stuff (lots of reusable grocery bags this year), and eating that I didn’t take one picture at the Fair.  But trust me the weather was gorgeous, the people were friendly, and I went home bone-weary….another successful year at the Fair!

Since I don’t have any other visual aids in this post, I will post the pictures of my Pie Wedge Shawl that I finally got around to taking.  i don’t think it came out too bad if I do say so myself!!

And this one kind of looks like I’m trying to fly

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Several blogs I read pointed me to the Twist Collective Premiere Issue.  I really like having another online publication to peruse in my down time.  And it has given me another alternative for this.

Will it be the Central Park Hoodie or Bonnie?????  I have admired the Central Park Hoodie for quite a while, but I can’t seem to get the asymmetrical pattern of Bonnie out of my head……

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Project Review

Where to start?  It has been a while since the last post and there’s been a bit going on.  In addition to the LYS closing in my last post, there is another one leaving the Twin Cities.  This one has always been cozier and the staff has been extremely friendly, and I will miss it.  I found out about it last weekend, which was about 2 weeks into their closing sale.  So selection was very limited, but the Yarn Cafe still came through with some treasures for me!

When I saw Saffron Cables in IK I knew I wanted to make it.  But, seriously, it is huge and takes a ton of yarn!  Well at a little over $2/hank and the 40″ circulars that I need to make it on ringing up at $2.50, it became extremely affordable and isn’t that yellow gorgeous?  It will go beautifully with the new colors I am working into my bedroom.

I don’t think of myself as a greedy person.  But when it comes to yarn my self control is a bit lacking.  In addition to the wool for the blanket I also picked this up for a sweater.

My original intent for this was the sweater in the latest Vogue Knitting that I had previewed on Ravelry.  The cabling on the back of the sweater is beautiful.  For some reason I had it in my mind that it was a cardigan.  So when I got my issue of the magazine this week and ripped it open to find the pattern, I was disappointed when I saw the front, I was not as in love with it.  So now I am thinking I may do the Central Park Hoodie instead.  I have drooled over it many times on Ravelry and really had my heart set on this yarn being a cabled hoodie.  But since casting on for this is taking a backseat to all of my other projects right now, I have some time to think about it.

 But before you think that all I do is plan projects…..I do actually finish things once in a while!

Cinxia is officially done!!  (OK, I am going to add a button to it, but the knitting and blocking, etc is done!!)  Since this picture I have tacked the cuffs up so they are even, are a smidge shorter than shown, and won’t uncuff on me.  When I started this I didn’t realize from the pictures online that the decreases were going to create this textural striping effect on the yolk. 

I must say I really do like it!  I am debating on whether I should sew some kind of ribbon along the front inside edge of the opening.  The darn stockinette wants to curl even after blocking.  I thought a little polka dot ribbon would give it some support and be an interesting detail if it flips open.

The Mirasol T’ika yarn was really nice to work with.  It’s 100% cotton, but it has a nice sheen that works well to show off the reverse stockinette stitch pattern.  I used 13 hanks of yarn (which included my frantic run for 1 extra to finish the collar), which is only 1 more than the pattern prescribed.  And I am assuming that is due to the fact that I lengthened it a couple of inches in the body and the sleeves.  Since it is Pima Cotton it is really soft and I plan to get a lot of good out of it.

Finally a finished project!  Now if the humidity would just drop so I can wear it!

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