Sunday, December 28, 2008

Is it wrong to base fashion choices on crazy old ladies?

I watched this very strange japanese movie yesterday.  The little old sisters, on the left, went out every day looking for cool junk in people's trash, and they'd both wear matching capes with fur collars and pompoms on the ties (which unfortunately you really can't see in the picture - that totally made the look!)  I really really want a cape with a fur collar and pompoms now.  Well, not really fur, but I'm thinking maybe a short dense eyelash or maybe, oh yes, perhaps even better, a really loopy boucle, like my single skein of Drops Puddel, which will never be enough, I'm sure.   Why are old ladies so darn cute?

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Post Christmas report

There's something relaxing about the post-holiday time - no more rushing around or trying to remember things you're sure you've forgotten to do.  The pressure is off and you can just sit on the couch watching the first season of Pushing Daisies, for example, without feeling guilty.  Which I highly recommend, by the way.  

Christmas gifts went over well - my mother LOVED her sweater and it fit her sooo well!  I was really afraid it'd be too big on her, but it was just perfect.  I can't believe I forgot my camera - I wanted to take a picture of her with it on,  and the button in place.  The socks that I started for my father last Tuesday were nearly finished by the time I left their house (I just knit until Christmas morning then put them  in a gift bag, needles and all, and said "look!  it's an unfinished pair of socks for you!) They probably would have been totally finished if I hadn't gotten carried away with the foot and done an extra inch and a half, while chatting, before realizing that I should have been decreasing for the toe.  I ripped back and finished up at home last night.  As I suspected, they were a little loose on him - not as much as I feared, but we talked about what he liked, and I think next time I'll make something that's ribbed all the way down and maybe across the top of  the foot too, so it's more fitted.   My mom also really liked the placemats, despite the weird coloration - which totally could have been fixed had I read cosymakes's comment before Christmas - that would have been perfect!  oh well.  My mother isn't too difficult to please!  

My sister-in-law's birthday is coming up next month and since she's been threatening to steal my newest mittens (the ones made with the Hand Me Downs handspun - who can blame her!?) I decided to make her a pair of mittens and a matching hat. 
 Sure, I could have used something from the stash, but of course, I didn't!  I got some Crystal Palace Taos, which I've always liked the look of, and because it's a two ply with each ply a different color, it kind of reminded me of the handspun that I used on mine.  I really like the way it knits up! 
 I only got two balls, so I'm striping in some of the leftover off-white Cascade 220 from my mom's sweater, and I'll do the same on the hat.  I think it'll stretch the Taos so that it'll be a perfect amount.  

Oooh - I also splurged on a little post-Christmas gift for myself! 
 A Namaste knitting bag!  It's the Zuma, in my new favorite peacock blue color!  and it's not leather!  Unfortunately, when I saw the pictures on the website, I thought that the interior of the bag was divided into sections by a mesh part, which was where you'd keep your knitting projects - but it's not.  Oh, for anyone who doesn't know, Namaste is a line of bags that are designed to be snappy enough to carry as a purse, but also very functional as a knitting bag (and big enough to hold both!) 
 That mesh part that I saw in the pictures is actually their Oh Snap! mesh bags - shown doing their thing, holding a project inside the bag.  duh.  Well, needless to say, I had to order the mesh bags too. I justified it by telling myself that this will easily allow me to fulfill my plan of always having a pair of socks on the needles this year!  And honestly there are a lot of times that I get stuck somewhere and wish I had my knitting with me - now I always will!  She's a beaut!  

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and I also hope you all ate far less candy than I did!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A not incredibly crafty Christmas

Originally the BF and I agreed that we wouldn't buy each other anything for Christmas this year, but instead make stuff.  I requested a gold spray painted macaroni covered pencil holder like everyone made for their parents in gradeschool.  Seriously, is there anyone out there who didn't make one of those?  Anyway, after a while of not being able to think of a single thing to make him, I asked if he was struggling as much as I was - he said yes, so we tossed that plan and just shopped.  I'd like to think we're both pretty creative people, but when under pressure, we produced nothing.  sheesh.  But I did do a little bit of handmade gifting - there's the aforementioned sweater for my mom, which is now blocked, dried, and wrapped.  Oh, and I found these little labels at JoAnn's that say "Handmade with Love" which I sewed on - so cute!  I also made these mittens for my friend at work, HelenI used SWS in the natural earth colorway, because she's into neutrals, then I embroidered on some snowflakes - because snowflakes will never be out of season when you're wearing mittens!  I also wove two placemats for my mother, which only seemed appropriate since she bought me the loom for Christmas!  I'm still not sure that I'm loving them - I don't really like how I did the warp colors in two blocks like that.  I wish I'd had the forethought to stripe them or something, but I did go back and buy more of the warp yarn so that I could make more in the same colors, but with different patterns, so they'd mix and match with the original set.  I used some brown Lion Cotton and Lion Incredible ribbon yarn as the weft, and I really like how it came out, colorwise! Ok, off to do more wrapping!  Have a great holiday everyone!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Christmas is exhausting!

Well, I guess it's not necessarily Christmas that's exhausting, it's the cookie baking.  I don't know why making 4 different batches of cookies took so long, but it sure did.  Now my kitchen is trashed and I don't feel like cleaning it up - hell, I haven't even taken my apron off  (but that's 'cause I kinda like it!)  Not that I'm complaining!  There's not much better than spending a saturday baking cookies, listening to your Willie Nelson and Family double album, and not worrying about the fact that you haven't gotten anything else done!  

We put the tree up a couple weekends ago,
 and I forgot to post pictures of the little tree topper the fella and I made together!  Since we got this snazzy red tree, we've never really had a topper for it so he said he could probably make something cool out of felt and he asked me what I wanted and I said a bird.  He cut out all the pieces and I figured some Elmer's glue would hold it together just fine, but it didn't.  He got frustrated and gave up because all the pieces kept falling apart, so I sewed it together with some space dyed embroidery floss and it turned out just great. 
Unfortunately the picture did not turn out so great - it's hard to take pictures when every day is cloudy!  Oh, and speaking of handmade decorations - I've been taking my good old natured time finished my felted ornaments, but I do have one finished, I think.  This is the one that everyone made fun of as I was crocheting it.  It really was pretty bad.   After felting it was still pretty weird, and oddly phalic, but I think with some tough shaping and stitching, and the all-important addition of sequins, it turned out pretty well!  
it's hardly even recognizable - I had to push the long pokey end in, and turn it upside down, to mitigate the penis-y look of it.  My to-do list for this evening does include working on the others, but I also want to warp my loom to start working on a couple placemats for my mama!  

Ooh, in other knitting news - I need to decide what to cast on for next!  I did start on my Selbu Modern, but I need something less chart-y for knit nights - I have other hats I want to do (Fresco Herringbone,  Bobbled Tam, Side Slip Cloche, and Sideways Grande Cloche, to name a few) but I'm also pretty excited about Amelia - the cardigan from the new Knitty!  At first I didn't care for it - but I think that was because I didn't like the way the model was wearing her hat.  I get caught up on stupid stuff, what can I say?  And I didn't like the stuff about a "peplum" in the description.  Then I looked at it and realized that it has lots of the same elements of my favorite store bought cardigan - the shaping gives you curves even if you're wearing something loose-y under it, and even though it's knit in worsted weight, it doesn't look as bulky as I'd expect.  I think I pretty much love it now!  I have some red wool that I think just might be perfect!  I really wasn't planning to cast on for another sweater, but it is sweater weather, so why not?  I don't know - I'll sleep on it and figure something out before knit night tomorrow!