Wednesday, November 14, 2007

a sweater and a schoolhouse

Hey! I missed my two-year blogiversary at the beginning of the month. Oh well, that shows you how much I'm into blogging these days. Bleh. I'm turning into one of those people who irk me...the once-a-week posters. Yikes!

Thing is, not too much has been going on. Daughter is at an age where she can do so much, but she wants me with her. She has so few playmates that I have to fill in and color/play blocks/eat pretend food/etc. and that barely leaves me time to cook and clean and do a few things for myself. Also, I really don't want to talk much about Daughter anymore, because she is getting older and deserves privacy. I personally don't agree with sharing every aspect of a child's life on the world wide web. I mean, think about that. I don't really want anyone with a computer and an internet connection reading about my child and her bowel habits and whatnot. Though I will brag for a moment that Daughter can write most of the alphabet. And no, we did not make her start writing letters, she tried on her own and then asked us to show her. Good heavens, I love that child. I'm so glad she loves to learn new things!

And I could tell you how I almost had a throwdown with one of the moms at Daughter's playgroup this morning over the appropriateness of video games for toddlers (her: they're cool! me: you're high!) but you don't need to read me being all opinionated yet again.

Moving on, I have been making some stuff:

Sweater for Daughter. Because I still haven't found a good worsted-weight cardigan pattern that has lots of cables in a 2-3 year size, I was forced to semi-design one.

This is the Knitting Pure and Simple neckdown cardigan in a 2-4 year size. I modified the heck out of it, though. First, I knit it down a needle size. I can't do worsted weight on size 9 looks like crap. This is using size 8 needles and I am happy.

Next, I chose 3 cables from a book o' knitting patterns. The front, seen above, sports a simple 6-row cable twist going in opposite directions.

The back is kind of yucky. I asked Hubs to choose a cable and he chose this. It's ok, but I miscalculated its width and ended up with it sort of kissing the rest of the sweater body. It would look a lot better if there were stitches separating it from the body. Woops. That's why I tried this little experiment using Wool-Ease I got on clearance for $1.19 a skein.

I chose a third cable to go down the middle of the sleeve. I like this - it reminds me of pretzels. Mmmm.....pretzels. I shoved my sleeve press inside so the cables would open up for the photo, which is why it looks funky at the bottom.

The other mod I tend to do with these KP&S patterns is to change the ribbing to seed stitch. I just like the look and I prefer the edgings hang straight rather than pull in.

Now I have only 2 projects on needles. WEIRD. There's a shawl and a pair of socks. Everything else has been finished or ripped. I've finally reached a place in my knitting where I give myself permission to rip something if it's boring me to tears. I used to try forcing myself to finish stuff that I was hating, and it made me unhappy. Life's too short. Knitting is supposed to be fun.

In the vacuum left by the lack of knitting projects, I've rediscovered my yen for piecing quilts. We desperately need a new bedcover of some sort. Right now we are sleeping under a $25 clearance WalMart comforter that I picked up in an emergency 2 years ago, after our much nicer comforter was stolen from the laundromat. (That was annoying, though I quickly decided that someone wouldn't likely steal a comforter for fun - whoever took it must have needed a warm blanket.) Anyway, it's ugly and plain and some of the stitching has started popping out from use and repeated washings. So I'm going to try to make a new quilt. I say I'll try because I'm awfully good at starting things with good intentions. Finishing, though...not my forte. But I will try, and the pattern I want to do is this one:

I desperately love schoolhouse quilts. This is such a classic block, made all old-school with templates and everything. I can't believe how many of these were made in the old days, because the bias seams are enough to make you nuts, but I made this block today in about an hour (by machine) and it's not too bad if you take your time.

The quilt I want to make has lots of schoolhouses and they are interspersed with birds made from the drunkard's path pattern. Those almost have to be pieced by hand because of the curved seams, which might make good TV-watching work. I'll try one and see how it goes...if it's terrible I'll eliminate the birds and just make the schools. If I can get the whole top done I hope to have it professionally machine quilted. That's expensive, but I have a friend who does it and I'm hoping she'll give me a discount!

We're going away for Thanksgiving this year. Crazy! We never go anywhere! But little sis is hosting, so away we will go. I don't know how much I'll be around between now and then...I might use this as a break to get over my blogging ennui. I'll see how it goes.


Karen said...

Mmmmyeah. I love the sweater and don't see the mistakes. It's gorgeous!

Can't wait to watch your quilt progress!!!

HangerMom said...

I hear you on the once a week posting. I always hated that, and now I'm doing it. And the best I can come up with once a week is the bowel stuff. (Okay, I don't do it that often... but I know it's there).

I love the quilt pattern. Lovely and classic.