Monday, February 28, 2011

FO: Entrelac Hat

 I signed up to donate an item to our ward's silent auction to fund the summer camp for the young women at church. Fraught with uncertainty of what to make, I went to the yarn store last week and found some Noro Silver Thaw on clearance and bought a skein. I searched Ravelry for ideas until deciding that Noro was made for entrelac. I had never done an entrelac project before, but I was up for the challenge.

The first time I made it, I wasn't happy with the lack of slouch in this slouchy hat, so I frogged it back to the ribbing and started over. I like it now.

Pattern: Entrelac Tam
Yarn: Noro Silver Thaw (discontinued)

I really liked the entrelac technique, which is why I didn't mind frogging the whole thing to do it again! I have some extra yarn from that skein and I think this hat is asking for a pair of matching wristwarmers. I don't like any of the designs on Ravelry, so that's going to be of my own design. Look for that next week (I hope!)

The worst part of this project was that the yarn had breaks in it and new yarn was knotted into it at random intervals that caused sharp changes in color instead of the nice gradual change you expect from Noro. Luckily the entrelac hides that (mostly).
Pardon the pictures. I was taking them myself while wearing a baby.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Creative Commons Vs. Money

Last December I got an email from someone wanting me to write down one of my old patterns. She even offered to pay for it once I got it written up.

Now, since the very beginning of this blog, I have been a defender of free patterns. But when I look over at Ravelry and all the patterns for sale and all the subsequent sales, it's very tempting to say, "Ooohhh. Money! For knitting!" And so I have an inner battle.

I love Creative Commons. Really. A lot. My inner socialist-free-love-hippie self is all, "Free! Share the knitting love! Everyone should be able to use patterns and knit everything!" There are lots of flowers and rainbows and an elusive unicorn or two.

But then I know the argument on the other side: designers put a lot of work in their patterns. They deserve pay and giving away free patterns devalues their hard work.

What do you think? I'm writing up that requested pattern this week along with designing another and hopefully putting it up next week. I'm leaning towards "free" to appease my inner hippie and because dealing with starting a business and keeping track of income is intimidating. Anyone BTDT?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Stitches West

I didn't really hear about Stitches West in time to set up official carpools with knitters and through some bad luck, I had to make the choice yesterday: go to Stitches West alone or stay at home and spend time with my family. I was feeling really ambivalent about going, but McKay said, "You know if you don't go, you'll regret it!" So Isaac and I trekked down to Santa Clara yesterday afternoon. It was rainy and dreary, so all the colors were a fun site.

This was the scene when I first got there. Please excuse the cell phone camera.

One of the first things I did was find my LYS's booth. Here is proof I was there. This is the only picture with me in it and you only get half my face!

I started wandering around and was surprised to run into Allison Sarnoff and Jemma of The Knit Princess! I follow them in my RSS reader and I bought their first 2 books which also come with patterns in them! And the books were signed by Allison. Yay! The power of yarn does compel me.

And the booth right next to them? Handknit Heroes. I bought a subscription and got some patterns. I'm definitely going to make Margaret a superhero mask.

I also recognized a lot of booths by brand name: Malabrigo, CocoKnits (the church slipper pattern was theirs), KnitWhits (this hat from 4 years ago was their pattern), for example. There were also some local yarn stores: Imagiknit, A Verb to Keep Warm. And some local knitting guilds.

Here's KnitWits' booth.

In my wandering, I saw someone in a pretty dress and thought, "Oh, I want a pretty dress." So I went to the booth to see why they were all fancied up. And the booth was the Sanguine Gryphon! I read their blog and love their patterns. Here're the fancy dresses:

And I bought the pattern for the parasol pictured here:

So in all it was fun. I went hoping to get some blocking pins (which I did!) and a purse handle for my first felted bag (which I didn't). My greatest disappointment of the day was that I didn't make it in time for the Ravelry event! Oh well.

I didn't buy any yarn at all, though. I need to go on a yarn diet after that last LYS trip.

One of the best parts of yesterday was coming home and finding that instead of working on his thesis (must finish this semester or else!), McKay cleaned the whole house. Dishes done, rooms vacuumed, everything. Yay!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Rainbow Yarn!

I used my new swift and wound up this ball for my first lace shawl! In hindsight, I should have made this 2-3 balls. This was also my first time using lace-weight yarn and I was too rough and the yarn snapped twice in the winding process.

 But it's pretty!

FO: Photo Prop

Pattern: Baby Egg/Cocoon Pattern
Yarn: Lana Grossa Fancy in green

The bear isn't the best model for this, I'm sorry. This is actually the second one I've made. I made one last December as a Christmas gift for my sister-in-law. This one is for Carol. Carol has watched Margaret for me a few times and did our pictures last fall. She deserves a little gift!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

FO: Gnomes

Over halfway through the month and I haven't posted anything here! I'm still a knitter, I promise! In fact I just bought the yarn for my first lace shawl ($42.99/skein was a little overwhelming, but this is going to be a gorgeous shawl). And I think I might head over to Stitches West this weekend!

Pattern: Bev's Top Down Gnome
Yarn: Some acrylic I had around

Last year when I was in a Waldorf mood, I added these to my Ravelry queue.  I made these this February thanks to the random number generator!

I did these in the round instead of flat.

I took the pictures with my phone, so they aren't the best. Maybe I'll get some better ones later.

Now I have a huge list of things to knit. Look forward to those new projects this spring and summer!