Thursday, April 30, 2009

Yarn on Thursday - Circular WHAT?

So, my friend Deb just got a Circular Crochet Hook. Two crochet hooks, held together with a cord, just like circular knitting needles. I'd never seen such a thing before!

Looks like it's a quick way to do multi-color work & Tunisian crochet - there's a really good tutorial here at If you like video tutorials instead, here's one (fast forward about 30 seconds in to the start):

Also, here's a tutorial on using one of these double-ended critters: Basic Cro-Hook Tutorial. There's also something called Portugese Knitting... which is actually done with two tiny crochet hooks!!

How cool is that??

Anita (tygger428) has a double-ended afghan she's working on, which gives a good look at the hook actually running from one end of its project to the other here [Ravelry link, sorry]. Also on Ravelry, the Crochet Liberation Front Headquarters is running a discussion on the mysterious Circular Crochet Hook, and what can be done with same.

Best thing I've found made using one? Becky's absolutely amazing Hogwart's House Shields Afghan:

I mean WOW. Almost makes me want to make one! And there are lots of patterns that can use this little double-ended circular wonder. Yahoo! Answers has the best links for patterns, here, but I haven't even gone out on Ravelry to look yet, and I bet there are some there. (Runs off to check... I may have to investigate getting one of these Circular Crochet Hooks for myself!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Deconstruction and Not

Okay, tomorrow is the end of April. I have two projects that I could "finish" before the end of April, which would bring my average Finished Object per Month ratio up by a whole bunch. One of them is my Fan & Feather Easter Scarf, which (1) I didn't finish by Easter and (2) could be half again as wide and still be a decent length, and thus much prettier. If you think I frogged it, you're correct!




The second is a little Partridge in a Pear Tree canvas/ornament I found in the $5 bin at Needlewoman East just after Christmas. (PS, check out their site! It's New!! The Shore Bird Studio trunk show is coming through in May - I'm going to have to check that out!) Tuesday night, realizing The End Was In Sight (ie, I've only got the never-ending Continental stitch of the background to finish up), I pulled the little baby out, Determined To Finish It. Here it is early Tuesday evening:

... and here it Wednesday after lunch, since I finally gave up and realized that if I was going to finish it, I'd have to carry it around all day and stitch at my desk a lot:

What's that? You noticed that it's finished? Yep, it is. And no, I don't seem to sleep any more, it's all about the Finishing Spree!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Fairy Tale Socks... and Matching Mitts!

I *did* get my Fairy Tale Sock Club #2 Third Sock Kit in the mail on Thursday night. (I now have a Peacock of my Own. That's all I'm sayin'.) Rather than dive right into it, though, I decided that I'd finish my Second Sock Kit first. Since I was home sick most of Friday, by Friday evening, I was up to here:

and by Saturday afternoon, they were done!

I'm warning you RIGHT NOW that this is lots of photos of these things, because I love them so...!




to Side

... and Back!

Now, I love, love, LOVE this pattern. And, since I have freakishly small feet *and* knit loosely, I had a lot of yarn left over. So, my sleep pattern being completely mucked up, I stayed up until 2:30 Sunday morning knitting this:

Sunday, I got roughly halfway on the second one, but by the end of Monday (well, by the end of Leno), they were done.



The So, socks *and* mitts for the price of one little kit - pretty darned cool!!

Okay, now I'm just showing off.

This is far and away my favorite of the Fairy Tale Sock Club patterns thus far, but you could probably tell that...!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Basics, Basics, Basics Lesson #2 shipped out...

Got my blocked swatches for Basics, Basics, Basics Lesson #2 unpinned and finished up and tagged last Wednesday night, and got them in their sleeves so I could fill out my answers to the related questions Thursday at work. I also needed to check the videos for M1-R and M1-L increases, and redo a small swatch of that (swatch 4 for Lesson #1) just to make sure I "got it". Here they are, in case anyone is thinking that it's Really Hard Stuff in this course... bits are tricky, if it's not what you're used to (I'm doing the "correct" cast-on now, for example, but I still don't like it as much as the cast-on I evidently made up on my own), but really - it's not bad at all.





Looking forward to getting these back from Andra, and hopefully I got it all right this time...!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Finished Socks - FTSC-II #2, "The Fisherman and His Wife"

Yesterday morning, I finished my Fairy Tale Sock Club I #2 socks - "The Fisherman and His Wife". This involved finishing the socks, then knitting a small fish:

six rows in, and I wasn't sure I was gonna get
a fish-looking thing out of this

Stuffing the fish with yarn left over
from the Sort-of Star Tam

The resulting fish - looking like a fish!!

Then I needed to crochet a net to catch my little fishy in:

Fishnet Jumble


And a mere 8 hours later, a dry net!

I let the fish swim around for a while...

... and then it was time to net her up. I really like these (and note that I finally caved and got a pair of sock blockers, even if I did forget to adjust them before taking this photo))!!

When I left the house this morning, my FTSC-II-#3 package had not yet arrived, so, as I finished these, I'm allowed to start the new socks when they get here. I have now finished All Three of the FTSC-I socks, and I love them all! Yaaaay!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

To make up for all the short posts this week...

Standard with YoT posts, the images come from the designers in question; click the associated links for more designs and information.

So, last week, I found this amazing knit halter in the Ralph Lauren window nearby.

Love at first sight!

And I've found fashion-forward knitwear before:

Sonia Rykiel's Fall/Winter collection had this little gem, whic I adore...

This Rodarte cardigan went for a mere $2,760, but I liked the look of it. Fuzzy and shiny!

And Jeremy Scott came to my attention during the last cycle of America's Next Top Model, when he previewed some of his Opulence collection:

But what else is out there? There's so much that we can do with yarn - and there's a lot we probably never imagined (with the exeption of haute-couture designers reading this, of which I believe there are exactly zero). For example, Charlotte Pigg, sometimes associated with Julia Sissons (see below), won a visionary knitwear award for her work:

Isabel Berglund is an icon, really. Find all the photos of her stuff that you can, and just enjoy looking at it all!

Juliana Sissons has a fun vibe to her pieces. Check the link to view more examples. This is my favorite:

Louise Goldin designs "luxury knitwear" (the hooded capelet on the left is my favorite):

Denise's "The Swelle Life" blog (which is fun even without the knitting references) has some really cool stuff on it. For example, click through on these two links: Cynthia F. - Metamorphasis Knits and Cynthia F. - The White Project

Sandra Backlund is billed as an Emerging Artist in the article behind the link. I just love this piece of hers!

Jemma Sykes is designed this for Butcher Coture. This is "the Elizabeth", a wedding dress:

Shannon Galati colaborated with textile designer Ya-Ling Hou on this collection:

But... I couldn't really see myself wearing a lot (if not most) of the stuff above. I'd like to, but I don't know if it would actually look good (I mean, the Sonia Rykiel dress up there? I WISH!!). I think I could probably get away with this little gem by Simone Shailes:

And then, there's the stuff I'd *actually* wear... like the Rabbit Sweater.

So, go ye forth and find your own favorite fashion-forward knitwear designers. I really like most of 'em - but I think for this year, Sonia & Ralph win for me!