Monday, September 29

Happy birthday to me!

DD#2, who doesn't get any play on this blog any more, sent me a birthday present from Denmark. And if my birthday hadn't been on a Sunday, I might have got it right on time. I don't know where she gets that!

Black licorice. She went to a movie and I asked her if they served popcorn. She could smell it but didn't see it. The black licorice made an impression on her, though, because she is so repulsed by it. I likes it a lot.

Yarn: Duo, 540m. 2 skeins. Wow. A berry purple and a grape purple. I took about 20 pictures that were only variations of dark. I also got a mystery hank (no label) that I have asked about. Very exciting!

Also two brochures of Danish knitting projects. Not the patterns but I bet I could figure them out. Babies, children, adult men and women. Love it, love it, love it.

Wednesday, September 10

Fast forward to September

Not necessarily in that order.

Monkey, aka Princess Mononoke, is lucky #7. DD#1 rescued her from the middle of 61st St. Good thing the price of gas is too high for most and the volume of traffic has dropped to almost nothing! We were eating dinner one night, with the windows open, when we all tuned in to a high-pitched mew. I denied the possible existence of a kitten in distress and proclaimed it a seagull. The others recognized the sound and DD#1 took an agonizingly long time to run down the little hall, out the 3 doors to the sidewalk and across the street. It was a tiny kitten too small to have dropped off the curb and walked to the middle of the street. We don't know how she happened to be in the middle of the street. But then she was named and won a place in our clowder. Her Bengal heritage is evident in her high energy. Hopefully we won't have to get a cat wheel.

On June 18, I bought Elsbeth Lavold wooly silk (silky wool?) to make a sweater. I was in an air-conditioned meeting, remembering I would be in another air-conditioned meeting for 2 weeks, when I decided what I really needed was a suitable sweater. I knew I did not want to knit in cotton again. My Yarn Harlot shell stretched. Maybe I made a size too big. So disappointing. At any rate, I took the project with me on the car ride to Pittsburgh to pick up DD#2 and her assorted boxes, suitcases, and bags. She sublet an apt for the summer in Chicago. She's now in Denmark for the semester so all that stuff in in the basement. I did a good amount of the sweater in the 10+ or so hours I had free to knit. The sweater is not perfect; maybe should have used smaller needles and adjusted the numbers rather than move up to match the gauge. The yarn is close to perfect though. I bought more in a deep blue and I'll make another sweater, using a more suitable pattern. I didn't meet my self-imposed deadline of 7/22 because

I then remembered I had signed up for the Vintage Handbag exhibit at the Midwest Fiber and Folk Art Festival. All stop to make the handbag. For the $5 exhibit fee, I got a copy of the vintage crochet Coats and Clark handbag pattern. Above is what I submitted, although it was intended to be my prototype - work the project according to the instructions because what I had really envisioned was a knitted beaded number, suitable for the prom. Knitting with beads is not the same as knitting with yarn. This is crochet with the starburst(ish) sewn on afterwards. Flashback to my 4-H days. I intended to line the bag according to instructions and find magnetic closures. Instead, it's sewed shut at the square beads and I stuffed it with paper from the shredder. Maybe if I actually use it I will put the finishing touches on. Carol Cassidy-Fayer, whom I have never met, is working on details to put the exhibit on the road. I hope it moves closer to Hyde Park than the 60 miles distance to Crystal Lake.

In between these projects, and the Tree of Life afghan, and a friend's health crisis, and taking the 2-wk session at the end of July, I also committed (to myself, but that's binding as well), to a shawl for the Afghans 4 Afghans summer project. Kay Gardiner, God bless her, posted the project on Mason-Dixon Knitting. 500 rectangle shawls for new mothers at a hospital somewhere in Afghanistan - doesn't matter - new mothers! The project description suggested frogging an abandoned project - eureka! I have grey Lopi Lite in surplus from the days I thought you calculated yarn by the weight instead of yardage. I got about 2X the amount needed for the sweater I made. Too much that turned out to be an uninspiring color, too wooly, and not suitable for anything else. I worry the yarn is too scratchy for anyone to wear next to one's face, but I am convinced it will find a perfect match. The sweater I made from the wool is windproof. Feathers and fan pattern, kept knitting to about 77" long, knitted across the width, instead of along the length as in the suggested pattern. After getting it wet to block, the yarn softened so it will probably only get softer. My friend Julie also made a shawl (much prettier and better yarn) and is cited on the KAL: (Keep going until you see "Woolgathering.")

On the needles:
another crazy charity project from Mason-Dixon: hats for Innocence smoothie. A UK group, Age Concern, receives 50p for every tiny little hat sent to them. Their goal is L500,000 this year. I'm thinking a good Midwestern sunbonnet.

socks a la Cat Bordhi. For the free and easy knitter, she has a new recipe for knit as you go socks with many variation. New Pathways for Sock Knitters is magical. Stitches Midwest 2008.

Pinwheel sweater for DD#1. When a loved one turns to me and says, sheepishly, that she really wants a sweater like one I knitted before, I have to jump in the car and buy the yarn. Not the most expensive project but it sure shocked DD#1 at how much yarn can cost.

And so much more -

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