24 June 2007

Catch up

Bad blogger, I am. I meant to update so many times last week and never got around to it. I was chained to my desk at work, trying to get an issue into production. Almost 350 pages later, my grey matter was scrambled and I haven't been able to think of writing anything until today. I promise to be better about posting from now on. Break's over.

Well, now that the last round of Secret Pal is over, I can post the pictures of the things that I made for my downstream SP javede. First up is a pair of fingerless gloves.


Pattern: Fetching from my beloved Knitty.com.
Yarn: Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed. I think the color number 124, though I can't be sure because I don't have the ball band anymore. I bought 2 skeins and ended up only using 1, so I sent javede the extra skein to do with it what she wanted.
Needles: Inox aluminum double-points, size 7.
Modifications: none
Notes: I originally started these in a purple/black/tan Patons SWS. I love this yarn, but the color repeats were too long for this project. By the time I was halfway through the first glove, the color had only changed once, from tan to black. I was afraid that the purple wouldn't show up at all, and that was the color that caught my eye when I bought the yarn. Overall, these were a pretty easy knit. They took me a couple of weeks to finish, but only because I was doing other things at the same time. I kind of want a pair for myself. I'd have to modify the pattern a bit, though, and make the cuff longer, and extend the finger part by about an inch.

The other thing that I made for javede was a knitted bracelet.

Bracelet clasp

I love beads. I love the idea of knitting jewelry. I searched on the web and found a pattern for a knitted bracelet from 2nd Nature Designs. It was a very easy knit.
Pattern: Bead-Knit Bracelet by 2nd Nature Designs
Materials: Perl Cotton embroidery floss from DMC, seed beads, and clasp
Modifications: The pattern calls for a big button for closure, but I liked the look of a toggle clasp better. Also, the edge was a bit unfinished looking, so I crotched a single chain around the whole thing.
Notes: I had a false start on this because the first bunch of beads I bought were too small and I couldn't get them threaded. The ones I settled on are size 10, I think. The pattern calls for size 8 (what I bought first was size 6), but Michael's didn't have any good colors in size 8.

I have also finished a pair of socks over the last month.

Mom's socks

These are the ones I made for mom. I finished them a couple of weeks ago. I'm really pleased with the way they turned out, especially since the yarn had already had one life. It managed to hang on for a whole new life.
Pattern: Broadripple from my beloved Knitty.com
Yarn: Opal Brazil in a color that has a number, but not a name, and I don't think it is available anymore, so I'm not going to dig out the ball band to find out what the number is.
Needles: Addi Turbo in size 2
Modifications: I worked these toe-up with the Magic Cast-on instead of cuff-down. This meant that the ripples were pointing in the opposite direction from the pattern, but only someone who has made the pattern before would notice. Because I needed to cast-on 64 stitches, I added 2 stitches at the beginning and end of every pattern repeat, making the pattern repeats 16 stitches. Also, instead of a heel flap, I decided to try a short-row heel.

Mom's short row heel

This is the first time I've tried this method. I don't like that the wrapped stitches look at bit messy, but I'm not sure there is a good way to avoid that. I've read of many others with the same complaint. Otherwise, I liked working it. I'm using the same heel on some other socks I'm working on right now.

One thing that I did differently with these socks that I've never attempted before was to make them identical with regards to the striping. Before, I've just let the stripes fall where they may. This time, I tried to start the second sock at the same point in the color repeats as the first sock. It turned out pretty nicely. They are a wee different, but it's only noticeable in the heel.

One the other projects front, I am still working on the charity knitting, as well as a new pair of socks that I hope to have finished and blogged by the end of the week. I decided to rip out the sleeveless cardigan I was working on for myself. The design was not coming out at all like I wanted, so instead of staring at the partially finished carcass, I frogged the whole thing and put the yarn away in a box. I have another idea what to do with that yarn. Also, I haven't done much on the sweater vest. Intarsia didn't work, so I tried mosaic knitting. That didn't work either, so now I'm on to fair isle, which may not work either because I'm not working it in the round. The purl rows kinda suck. We'll see. I may have to come up with some other color design. Thankfully, Christmas is far off, so I don't have to worry about it for a while. The only other thing I'm working on is a gift for a family member that I don't want to blog about until later. It's a big-un, so I'll be working on it for a while.

That's all for now.

11 June 2007

Stitch 'N Pitch day at the Royals

Saturday was World Wide Knit in Public Day, but I didn’t get to knit in public because Shane and I worked in the yard all day. Instead, I did my knitterly duty at the Stitch ‘N Pitch event at Kauffman Stadium, home of the KC Royals. The event was sponsored by TNNA (The National Needlearts Association). I somehow convinced Wendy, Pete, and Shane to go with me. We had Brady with us too. I bought the tickets online from the event coordinator, who told me to pick them up at the Will Call window. It was my understanding that we’d get some swag with the tickets, so when the woman at the window gave me the envelope with our tickets, and nothing else, I bitched. The woman looked like she didn’t know what I was talking about, but they gave me a Royals bag anyway. It’s one of those drawstring bags that can be worn as a backpack. I was a bit disappointed, but figured beggars can’t be choosers.

Once we made it up to the section we were going to be sitting, there was a guy there handing out Stitch ‘N Pitch tote bags full of stuff.
S 'n P gift bag
I was right that we were supposed to get some swag, it just never occurred to me that they’d be giving it away near the seats. So I got a Royals bag I wasn’t supposed to get because I complained. Hee hee.

Our seats were in the 3rd base outfield. Here’s the view of the diamond from our seats…
S 'n P1

And the outfield…
Kauffman Stadium is pretty nice. They have a jumbotron as well as the big crown where the stats are displayed, and water fountains, and fireworks.

The day started out cloudy and with a few sprinkles. It wasn’t too hot out at first. Because the sun wasn’t out, none of us put on sun screen (I know, one can burn even through clouds), which proved to be a bad idea later when the sun came out and we were all already a little pink. Duh.
My family S 'n P

Wendy knitting
Wendy brought her knitting, a scarf.

My knitting
I brought my knitting, some charity stuff that I’ll post about later.

S 'n P knitters2
S 'n P knitters
There were other knitters a few rows in front of us.

We made it to the 6th inning before we’d all melted in the heat. Not too bad considering I didn’t watch the game at all. I heard later that the Royals won (they were playing the Phillies, by the way).

04 June 2007


I’ve taken a bit of a hiatus, but I’m back now. I had some business travel, then catching up at work after the business travel, then I was sick, and then just lazy.

The trip to Austin went okay. I traveled with T, E, and W, all fellow managing editors at AP. We all got along pretty well, though W spent less time around the other 3 of us, I think mostly because she needed a break. Can’t blame her there. It’s hard to travel with coworkers who you don’t know very well.

The CSE meeting was in the Hilton Austin. Here’s my hotel room…
Austin hotel room

And here’s the view from my room…
view from my room

Not sure why, but just about everyone else from AP was put on the 12th floor and I was on the 18th. Maybe I smell or something.

I attended a short course on publication management on Saturday, 5/19, and then various sessions Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. Overall, I learned some stuff. It’s interesting to be in a room full of people who do the same thing for a living that you do. Usually, I have to go into a long explanation of what I do before people get an inkling, but at CSE, I didn’t have to do that.

When we arrived on Friday afternoon, we ran into Anna, M, and A at the hotel. We ended up eating dinner with A at a restaurant that was way more expensive than it should have been (glad A paid so that it has to go on her expense report and not mine). After dinner, a bunch of us gathered (Anna, M, and some AP clients and vendors) to go on what is called the Duck Tour.

Duck tour
Yep, that’s the vehicle we drove around in. We even had little quacker whistles to blow at unsuspecting passers-by.

Duck Tour
That’s me fourth from the left.

The tour drove us around Austin where we saw a lot of historic buildings. I managed to get a picture of the capital and the governor’s mansion (which is really close to the street, which I thought was very trusting of him, the Governor).
Austin capital
Austin governor's mansion

I thought the stars on the fence around the governor’s mansion were cool.

Then after the tour of downtown Austin, we headed to a lake, the name of which escapes me. We drove directly into the lake, and, voila, the “bus” turned into a boat. It was too dark by then to take many pictures but here’s a blurry one.
Duck Tour on the lake

Once we had tooled around the lake for a while, we drove right out of the water and back onto the streets of Austin. It was a pretty cool tour, despite all the bad duck puns that the driver made during the whole trip.

The bummer about the trip (aside from the constant pressure from the higher-ups to “mingle” with other attendees) was that I didn’t make it over to Hill Country Weavers. I had a couple of opportunities, but my first chance I was dog tired from traveling, and my second chance, it was raining (I had intended to walk there, as taking a cab 2 miles seemed excessive). Oh, well, maybe next time.