American Wool Series

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

WIP: Cameron Hoodie

 My focus this week is all over the place. I want to cast on about five more projects tonight, just because, and study and do homework and cook dinner and and and. Do you ever feel that way?

Last weekend I cast on the Cameron Hoodie by Bobbi IntVeld. The pattern is part of the charming Blue Sky Alpacas pattern line that folds up into small envelopes that are vintage inspired and great for throwing in a knitting bag. I'm working on the hood! This will be a great layering piece for Little A for our temperate Seattle climate. She certainly likes the two colors of pink! 

In the past two weeks I've read two books: Bamboo People by Mitali Perkins and What the Moon Saw by Laura Resau. Both books are for an ESL education class that requires multicultural literature reviews. The first book is about child soldiers in Burma and is told from the point of view of two 15 year old boys fighting on different sides of the civil war. The second book is a coming of age story about a young Mexican-American girl who goes to rural Oaxaca to visit her Mexican grandparents whom she has never met. Both books deal with complex personal, social, and cultural issues quite well and I think readers of many different age groups can find meaning within their pages. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

FO: Sproutlette Dress

Sorry the blog has been a little light on knitting content lately. I'm spending most of my time in the evenings studying for a teaching credential test, a linguistics exam, and working on homework assignments. Some of the time I can read and knit at the same time, but when it comes down to geometry or writing papers I have to set down the needles and pull out my pen or pencil.
Sproutlette dress
A co-worker of mine is having a little girl really soon so I wanted to give her something extra special.
The keyhole neck in the back still needs a button.
Pattern: Sproutlette Dress by Tanis Lavalee
Yarn: Hazel Knits Artisan Sock in Land of Sweets (Dec. 2012 Club Color)
Needles: US #3 Addi Turbo
Mods: None. Inspiration to cast this on came directly from seeing this example. There's something about seeing somebody else knit an item from my queue that makes me want to cast on right away. I'm thinking a matching pair of Saartje booties are in order.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Music Monday

The Ramones cover of "Needles and Pins" from the 1978 album, Road to Ruin.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Music Monday

"Girlfriend in a Coma" by The Smiths. Released in 1987 as a single and then on the band's last studio album Strangeways, Here We Come.
This is my absolute favorite Smiths song. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

In Praise of WIPs

I don't know about you but I feel as if Summer is flying by. I'm feeling the passage of time acutely as I'm two weeks away from the first of two teaching credential tests, working on studying for two midterms, and marking off items on my grad school application (not quickly enough!). 

How does this all relate to my knitting? Stress. Stress and startitis are friends. They have nights out, drink bottles of wine in one sitting, and text each other relentlessly. Most of the time stress and startitis include their buddy, procrastination, in their shenanigans. See?

My Green Gables (aka Traveler's Socks) had practically no knitting love until I realized that my West-B is in two weeks. Blammo! Just about to start the heel flap on the first sock as of this morning.

And these? Not really even a thing until my mid-terms loomed on the horizon. My first ever afterthought heel socks in some Knit Picks Felici. The color is called Fizz. I marked the heel with some scrap yarn and am cruising through the foot.

This might be construed as complaining about how my WIPs multiply with the number of ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY tasks listed on my calendar. It is - a little. But it's also a marker of taking time out to relax, to enjoy knitting, to play with yarn a teeny bit while I ponder the problems of phonology, the IPA, and teaching minority language children. Controlled bursts of creativity that help me buckle down and get work done. WIPs are good. I just wonder how many there will be by the time October rolls around.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Music Monday

"All the Young Dudes" originally released in 1972 by Mott the Hoople. David Bowie wrote and produced the song and subsequently released his own studio recording.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

FOs: Double Bump Dish Cloths

Yarn: Hella old kitchen cotton
Needles: US #7 Addi Turbo
Mods: None. A full set of seven dish cloths for my Mother In-Law in California. These are going into the gift box that I'm starting for Christmas gifts this year. I used up all of the crazy green and blue cotton but still have 20 grams of natural cotton left over. I have a sneaking suspicion that there is another ball of the natural cotton lurking around here somewhere but I can't seem to find it. These make excellent social knitting projects and are super quick! Each dish cloth took just about two hours to complete.

I'm knitting a lot and studying a lot and homeworking a lot (is that a word? it should be) and I have a very busy six weeks ahead of me. School. A teaching credential test. Two weddings. A graduate school application to complete. Before I know it October will be here and so will my sister and my mom and then my best friend. Basically it's already November on my timeline and I'll finally be able to rest....until Thanksgiving. And Christmas. And Little A's 5th (!!!) birthday. Holy cow! Where is the year going?

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Music Monday

"You Ain't Woman Enough (To Take My Man)" from the 1966 album of the same name. I have to say, I love Loretta Lynn's hair and the color of her dress in this video.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

FO: Imma What? Socks

Pattern: Improvised Vanilla outta my noggin
Yarn: Rainy Days Wooly Dogs Gothsocks Asphodel in Imma Bitch
Needle: US #1 (2.25 mm) Hiya Hiya Sharp
Mods: Well, it's my own pattern out of my brain so there's that. I paid special attention to where my stripes fell when casting on, starting the heel flap, turning the heel, and beginning the gusset. Short row heels don't hug my feet like heel flap and gusset socks so I knew I wanted my usual top-down sock construction. I ended up with: 3 1/2 stripes for ribbing, 12 stripes for the leg, 3 stripes for the heel flap, a chunk of red for the heel (Louis Quatorze heels, no?), 16 stripes for the gusset/foot, and 3-ish stripes for the toe.

They're lovely socks.  Yarn hoarding may be something I do when something is too "special" to be used; Gothsocks is notoriously difficult to purchase except in person (and sometimes there's a scrum) so I'm happy to say that the socks are better than saving, *ahem* hoarding, the yarn in my cedar chest.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

FO(s): Double Bump Dishcloths

Pattern: Double Bump Dishcloth(free) by Missy Angus
Yarn: Lily Sugar'n Cream Solids & Denim in Natural
Needles: US #7 Addi Turbos
Mods: None. 

I'm getting a jump start on Christmas gifts by making a set of dish cloths for my MIL in California. The first three are this natural color and the next three will be out of a crazy variegated blue-yellow-green cotton. Each cloth weighs 30 grams and I can get three out of each ball - I think I have the extra large balls since the regular ball only weighs 70 grams. I may work up a ballband dishcloth in the leftovers from each ball for a set of seven.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Music Monday

"When you Were Mine" from Cyndi Lauper's 1984 release, She's So Unusual.
Fun fact, when I was four years old I dressed as Cyndi Lauper for Halloween. Yep, I've always been oddly obsessed with music and weird hair colors.