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Sunday, December 24, 2006

Thoughts for 12/24/06

Merry Christmas everyone!!!


Patterns coming down the pike for 2007 ...

- At least two more Geometric Lace cloths. I've already posted the Triangles Cloth and Squares Cloth. The cloths are ok individually, but make great "sets" when you mix & match them. While knitting these, I've discovered that I have a lot of green yarn in various shades, you'll see this in the photos of my Geometric Lace cloths. I know I have at least three shades of solid green yarn, and at least 2 different shades of variegated green yarn. I might have other greens in my box of cotton yarn, I just haven't dived in to see what else is in there.

- A few easy peasy knit/purl type cloths. I figure you guys must be sick of the "holey" types. You won't see any "picture" cloths from me, I'm just not skilled enough to create those. I was thinking about making a cloth with my inlaws' surname (a Chinese character), but could not figure out how to chart it using Photoshop. I'm just computer challenged. I can have a picture and a grid (or graph paper), but I can't slap one on top of the other in Photoshop. :-(

- Ariel Cable Scarf and Miranda Cable Scarf. These are follow ups to my Persephone Cable Scarf.

- Two Lace Scarves, currently unnamed.

- A few more hats for the Cap Karma Chemo Cap Project. :-)

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Other things planned for 2007... include a hat & scarf for Mom. I guess she's bored with the hat I made her last year. She's seen some of the hats I've made, and chose the Asherton Hat. Darn it. As much as I like the Asherton Hat, I had hoped she would choose the 3AM Cable Hat because it is a much quicker knit for me. I told her that her hat would have to wait until after I knit another hat for M, cuz she needs a second hat to wear while her first winter hat is being washed. Mom is funny though... she's actually bought knit & crochet hats. I look at the knit ones and tell her I could have made something like that for her. As for the crochet hat, well, I'm sure I could make one like it if I put my mind to it.

I also need to knit mitts for M, whose hands get cold during our walks. You can see my progress in this picture. This is my first attempt at knitting mittens, and I am using a pattern from The Irish Ewe. If I can pull this off, I wonder how much of a leap it is to go from mittens to socks. I'd like to try socks too.


I plan on knitting CBM's Twisted Rope Cable Scarf. I probably won't do the seaman style center ribbing, and will just knit from one end to the other. The whole Provisional Cast On seems a bit too advanced for me. I have this fear of knitting half the scarf, then undoing the Provisional Cast On, goofing big time and losing stitches as I try to pick them up to knit the other half of the scarf.

Challenges for 2007 .... knitting for people who are "machine wash". What do I have in my stash that would work? It seems like there are more "hand wash lay flat to dry" yarns out there than "machine wash". Why does it seem like most of the people I know are "machine wash" people? Need to find more superwash wool.

I would like to learn how to take better photographs of my knitting. Not sure where to start. I look at other knitting blogs where the pics just blow me away. Are they tweaked with Neat Image followed by Photoshop? I could never figure out how to tweak the color cast, levels, color balance, hue/saturation, fill flash, local contrast, purple fringing, USM, etc. And what the heck is bicubic vs bicubic sharper? The only thing I can do is resize or crop a picture...

I wonder if part of my problem with taking photos is using the LCD on my digital camera. Our current camera has no viewfinder. Perhaps I hold the camera more steady when using the viewfinder? DH tells me that it is because my target (viz. M) is always moving. But that doesn't explain why my pics of stationary objects (viz. knitting) turn out so poorly.

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M had a fun time at the inlaws today. Here are some pics...

My MIL made the cross stitch stocking. I dabbled in cross stitch back when I was in college, but the hobby didn't stick with me. I much prefer knitting, it's easier on the eyes...


Here's M opening one of her presents. She is enjoying Christmas this year more than last year. She didn't know what to do with the presents last year (when she was 9 mos old). This year she knows that there's stuff inside that you can pull out. :-)


One of those rare moments when we managed to take a focused picture of her. That girl doesn't stay still for long!


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We had 3 little tremblers recently (Wed, Fri, & Sat) in the 3.5/3.7 magnitude range near Berkeley, CA. Being a native San Franciscan, you'd think that I would be used to earthquakes ... you know, just sit back and enjoy the ride. lol. But earthquakes still scare me. I vaguely recall feeling my very first earthquake as a kid and telling my mom that we had to move immediately. Of course as a kid you don't really understand that you can't easily pick up and move. We had a plan a while back to keep Emergency Kits in 3 different locations around the house (backups just in case one gets destroyed). We still haven't gotten around to it. Now after what happened to the guy in Oregon (the James Kim tragedy), I'm thinking I should throw an Emergency Kit into the boot ... surely I can carve out a small corner for that, somewhere behind all the other stuff (extra baby clothes, diapers/wipes, jackets/vests, shopping cart seat cover, etc...).

Still can't believe 2007 is just a week away. There are only two things I need to do next week. Celebrate Mom's bday, and wish Eric a happy bday. Eric is a cool guy. If you're in the San Francisco Bay Area and need computer support, he's the guy to call. I consider him one of the few people I would trust to work on my computer. We'll probably go visit the inlaws next weekend too, because my MIL will be leaving for Taiwan the following week ... if we don't see them next weekend, then it'll be another month before we see them ... and that may be a bit too long for them to wait to see their one and only granddaughter...

Oniochalasia is one of my favorite words. I do much of my buying online these days, it's just so much easier than dragging a toddler around various stores. M doesn't really like shopping. She gets fussy when I stop to look at anything. This will probably change in a few years? Actually it depends on the store. It can be difficult to get her to leave the Disney Store or Babies/Toys-R-Us quietly. I have an itch to buy more yarn -- yes, I realize I already suffer from SABLE (stash accumulation beyond life expectancy) --, some knitting books, and tea.

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Adding one more item to my 2007 Knitting Resolutions:

-- Weave those ends in!
I am not very good at weaving in ends immediately after finishing something. It usually sits around for weeks (ok, even months) before I get around to it. I am going to try to weave those ends in right away.

-- Learn something new
I want to learn at least one new thing ... either a new technique, or knitting something I haven't knit before. I'm thinking of knitting fingerless mitts or socks. Other than hats, everything else I make are simple squares & rectangles. It would be an interesting challenge to knit something with a bit more shaping involved.

-- Get an early start on Christmas gifts
Yes, I am not going to wait until the last minute. Yeah, this one will be a great challenge.

-- Get an early start on Cap Karma chemo caps
This one is a little easier. I don't know why, but I find doing the charity knitting easier than knitting for people I know. Why is that?

-- Get comfortable with Chart reading
I kinda get how to read charts, but the whole WS rows is just mind boggling to work. RS rows are easy, you knit what you see. WS rows are different.... if the chart says "knit", then you purl the stitch; if the chart says "purl", then you knit the stitch. That's just the simplest instruction. It can get tricky with more complicated/funky instructions on the WS rows. It's just not very intuitive for me. I know this is partly why I gave up on the Flower Basket Shawl for Mom, and the Matthew Scarf for Karen. As an active member in the GLBT community, I thought Karen would appreciate that scarf. And I was thinking about knitting the Matt Scarf for her partner Vicki. Anyways, I fiddled with the Matthew Scarf and gave up. The pattern was just too advanced for me, and I wasn't experienced enough to work the chart. My other problem with chart reading is losing my place across the row. I can block off the rows above/below with post-it notes, but I still lose my place as I knit. I'd read a few instructions, look down at my knitting to execute it, then look back at the chart and can't figure out where I left off. What I really need is 3 hands ... 2 hands for knitting, and a 3rd hand to act as a pointer to keep track of where I am on the chart row. Maybe I should just try the Matt Scarf, whose chart looks a bit simpler...



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3 stitch(es):

Windyridge said...

I'm excatly the same with weaving in ends. I hate doing that....... and sewing up seams which is why I always knit in the round when possible.

Holly Burnham said...

I loved your pattern for the squares dish cloth so much I just posted it on my site and asked my members to come and see it....I hope you have lots of water in the kettle because they are veracious tea drinkers....

Vamanta said...

Such lovely stuff, Marie!

BTW, you've been tagged!
http://vamantaknits.blogspot.com/