Tuesday, July 22, 2008

More Finished Objects

Can you believe that I will have posted 3 times in July. That must be a new record since I didn't even post once in June. And I have more crafty things that I have finished to share with you.

First up is Roam. Yes, it is finally finished. I started this in September last year after my wonderful husband bought me yarn for our anniversary. I am not sure why it took so long to finish since I absolutely love it. It is warm, squishy, has a hood, zips up. The only thing I can think of is that it is a big project with a stitch pattern other than stockinette or garter. I tend to get bored easily so I would put it down and not work on it for months at a time.

Pattern: Roam by Laura Chau found on knitty.com
Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca. I used 7 skeins because I made both the body and the sleeves shorter than what the pattern calls for.
Needles: Size 4mm
Pattern Stitch: Garter Slip Stitch V

Onto some charity stuff. I've been knitting hats for the Assistance League of the Eastside. I thought I had written about this wonderful group but I don't see anything in my quick scroll through the blog.
One of the projects this group has is to partner with Fred Meyer and provide a hat or scarf to over 2,100 school kids in October. Fred Meyer provides new school clothing and when the kids are done shopping they can pick out a hand knit scarf or hat for themselves. And it helps kids that are close to where I live. You can find out more about Operation School Bell from the website.

This hat is the 3am Cable Hat by Smariek. Knit with Patons Astra acrylic yarn. I have a few more hats to show you but they aren't photographed yet. You will just have to wait until next time!

And lastly, I've been doing some sewing. I have almost used up a huge wedding dress that was given to me to use for Heavenly Angels In Need.
It seems that the fabric from this dress is never ending --- not that that is a bad thing, it's just that I get bored and want to move on to another dress that I have which has more beading and lacy trims.

There are actually 5 boys romper outfits but one wasn't finished for the picture. It is the same as the larger two that are pictures. The pattern is from Newborns In Need Patterns Set #3. I love this pattern since it is easy to put together and looks so "boyish". I find it hard to find less frilly outfits for the boys. The smaller outfit will fit a 2-3lb preemie and the larger ones are newborn size.

The 5 dresses and bonnets are also made from the same wedding dress. I used all the fancy beading and lace on these gowns and saved the plain fabric for the boys outfits.

The two gowns on the right are made from the Angel Gown pattern found on Newborns In Need website and the three on the left are made from a pattern found on the Threads Of Love website. I chose not to add the sleeves and just use bias tape to finish the sleeve seams. Some of the hospitals and photographers that use these gowns have asked us to make the gowns sleeveless or with larger arm holes so that the babies are easier to dress.

Note about Heavenly Angels In Need Website: Currently the website is down while it is being redesigned. Please check back in a few days to see the new and improved site!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

F is for Family and Finished Objects

Yes, finally some knitting (and a bit of sewing) pictures and talk. It's been a while....

But first, family. After we returned from Japan my sister had organized a family reunion on my Dad's side. It was only 5 days after our long flight and amazing vacation that I drove 7 hours to the Okanagan in BC, Canada to visit with family that I hadn't seen in ages. Karen (my sister) put together this awesome poster (actually 3 posters) with our family tree and pictures of everyone starting with my grandparents. It was so cool and totally awesome to see. This is the first poster with my grandparents and then some family pictures. I am in the one on the top left, second from the left in the back, though it is very hard to see --- do you like my permed hair LOL! Thank you so much for all you did, Karen!! We had an awesome time.

And while in Penticton, we went to the Grist Mill which is in Keremeos. It was very hot and humid and the mill wasn't open when we went. But we did walk around and see the water wheel and inside where the flour would be ground. If you go to the website and scroll down to the picture with the people standing in front of the mill, my Dad is the one on the left and I am standing on the far right. How cool to find that we are actually in the picture! Oh and there was a lama farm next to the mill with some very friendly lamas. Isn't he cute ...

Onto the knitting stuff. First up is a raglan sweater with stranded colour work around the yoke. I have this sweatshirt that I just love because it is extra big and cozy and I wanted a knit sweater like that. I know it isn't the most flattering but, for me, I will take comfortable over fitted.

The pattern is mostly the 97-24 Drops Design knit with Tahki Donegal Tweed (teal)and Chester Farms Pride of the Flock (natural) wool yarn on size 4.5mm needles. I changed the pattern by not doing the stranded work in the body and added a cabled rib on all the cuffs and neck. I am not really happy with the cast off on the neck and I may undo it and try making a facing for it instead. In any case, I consider it finished.

Next is my handsome devil socks from six sox knitalong. These turned out great and they are sooo comfy on my feet. Now it just needs to get colder so I can actually wear them. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not wishing this wonderful sunny, warm weather away --- I love the heat, not the cold!!

Knit with Elann Sock It to Me 4 Ply and Plymouth Yarn Sockotta Sock Yarn on 2 size 2.5mm circular needles. Love this pattern and may use it for some mittens. It is not stranded but a slip stitch pattern so you only use one colour at a time. Makes it much easier but looks like it was very complicated.

No sewing pictures this time ... they will have to wait until next post along with some other charity knitting I've been doing. Guess I took the "balance" thing to heart and actually made some things for me. But I have been working, really I have ....

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

J for June and Japan

Wow!! I can't believe that I didn't even post one time in June. Where in the world did the time go. I mean, I know I was busy traveling and doing "end of school" stuff with my kids, but really ..... There's been so much happening that I don't even really know where to start.

We went to Japan. My DH needed to go for work so we extended the time he was there and my kids and I went with him. We had never been before and it was a real adventure. Not many people spoke English, there were lots and lots of people in Tokyo and during the week we were the only "foreigners" on the trains. We definitely stuck out!!

Of course I had to do some craft shopping. There was an amazing store called Yuzawaya in Tokyo with many different buildings and many floors in each building. A crafters paradise!! I found some fabric, though they were only in small pieces, some yarn called Diaexceed (silk, mohair blend), and a Let's Knit Series Summer 2008 knitting pattern book.

When my DH was working my girls and I went to the Imperial Palace's East Garden. All the iris' were in bloom and it was so pretty and peaceful. An oasis in a very busy and crowded city!

And we got to experience the "Japanese Toilet". Hmmm ... I don't think my kids were to impressed that they needed to squat --- make sure your clothes are out of the way too!! LOL!!

We then went to Kyoto for a few days. We took the "bullet train" Nozomi. It went really fast and was expetionally comfortable compared to the airplane we took over there! We explored a few temples and did a lot of walking.

When we had checked the weather forcast before we went it was supposed to be cloudy and rainy the whole time we were there so I didn't bring any sunscreen. Luckily for us the weather was the complete opposite, but it was a challenge to find sunscreen there. Nothing is in english .... so you really didn't know what you were getting!! We did finally find some though so I didn't burn to a crisp.

We had a really good time and I would go back to explore more of the countryside and smaller villages!

I have some FOs (finished objects) to show you but I will do that next time! Hopefully in the next week or so :)