29 April 2010

WIP Wednesday (Thursday edition): The stole has a name

Henceforth the stole will be called Aphros. And for those of you not winding up your Spring Semester of Ancient Greek today, aphros means "sea foam" in Greek. I kept thinking about the notion of Aphrodite (the goddess who arose from the foam of the sea), but this stole isn't really about a goddess, even if you feel like one wrapped up in it. More about the tracks left in the sand by those little waves near the shore and the delicate, trailing seaweed; the beauty found at the water's edge, if you will.

Right now the stole is blocking with only one edge knitted on. I wanted to make sure I liked the edging (I do!) before knitting on the second. The Seafoam pattern is so lovely I was tempted to make the stole just one giant seafoam swatch, but the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to include something a little lacier at the short edges, to have something more than just a rectangle. There's nothing wrong with those purely rectangular stoles, just this isn't one of them.

As you will see when I release the pattern, the body stitch is amazingly simple, so this will be a perfect summer travel project (in July a little pile of lace in your lap is bearable, a sweater's worth of wool is not). And the lace edging, while more complex, is something you can do if you know how to increase (and at the end of the body of this stole you will be a yarnover champ), decrease (you know you can k2tog!), and cast off (just for a few stitches every eight rows).

Here are a few blocking shots of what I have now. Hopefully, I'll have time to write up the pattern and get the edging done on the other end in the next few days, so that when Nick returns from his shmancy conference we can get some good snaps.
Aphros blocking (note the action figures supervising)

Aphros edging - sorry for the blurry shot
Aphros body

21 April 2010

WIP Wednesday: Seafoam stole (in search of better name)

Until now I've preferred blogging finished projects and not covering things so much in process; however, this one is taking a long time. It's a stole shape in the brilliant (and brilliantly simple) Seafoam pattern. Though much further along than in these snaps, it's pretty much the same thing. I'm working with Madeline Tosh's Superwash Merino Lace yarn (Kelp colorway from Knitty City). I have a swatch all done up in this pattern with an edging that I like, so I know exactly where I'm going; I'm just not sure I've gotten there yet (as far as knitting the body goes), though I think I'm close. And then this lovely is going to need a name...

Perhaps I'll block it "as is" before heading up to Boston for the weekend and assess upon return.

But that would mean getting something else on the needles... While Miss Charlotte and her lovely sister Henrietta deserve some knitterly gifties for hosting me and Isobel this weekend, I've run out of time for working anything up before the weekend (Isobel and I are going to the Bronx Zoo with her classroom tomorrow - lions will make an appearance here, or at the very least on my Flickr, soon), though I am pretty sure I know what I'm going to work up for them (hmm, what pattern have I created that's perfect for little ones?).

Well, as you know knitters spend more time making yarn decisions than clothing ones when packing for a trip. I'll let you know what I decide to pack tomorrow night. And maybe I'll see you at Gore Place Saturday?

16 April 2010

Pattern: On the High Seas

This year for my sister's birthday I bought some yarn that seemed very her (Malabrigo Sock in Lettuce) and gave her the option of either receiving the yarn and some pattern options or having me knit something out of it for her. Since she was busy making the world a better place in Afghanistan, she opted for my doing the "work". Thus, the first iteration of On the High Seas came to be.
I just thought this last picture was funny - clearly the shy shawlette is trying to evade being photographed

I had a hard time sending it overseas and so worked up my own in Laughing Rat's beautiful sock yarn in the Pacific colorway [link to the skein I bought in case you want to special order one from Jennifer], perfecting the pattern numbers and working on the chart. Now, I'm ready to share it with you.

On the High Seas

Sometimes it’s a little chilly at the helm of your ship. Or perhaps you want to drape a little something across your shoulders (for modesty?) to greet that boarding party. A shawlette is just the thing. This one uses your favorite sock yarn and the beautiful Crest of the Wave lace pattern, which has enough “lace action” to keep you interested without being so complex that you can’t keep an eye on the horizon. Pattern includes chart and written-out instructions for lace.

The pattern is available here on Ravelry or you can purchase it directly using the button below.

15 April 2010

Piece of Emancipation History

Be sure to check out the beautiful silk shawl given to Harriet Tubman by Queen Victoria and now residing with the Smithsonian. There's a little talk of reverse engineering a pattern on the Laceknitters list. I wonder if there are any photographs of it being worn. [link]

10 April 2010

Free Pattern Friday: Kiddie Cadet

Now that Spring has sprung and we are into the baseball season, consider making a Kiddie Cadet for your kiddo. I particularly love this one that looks like a baseball. Knit in worsted-weight yarn and sized for baby, toddler, and child, surely there's a small fry in your life in need of a new hat for spring. [Ravelry | Blog | PDF] And the designer Alice Schnebly also has an adult version called Hawkeye available for $5. [Ravelry | Blog]

And I know it's Saturday, so your free pattern is a day late, but we've been running full-tilt this week chez Purly. I've been working on some graphic design projects, knitting up a new pattern, figuring out how I want to knit another new pattern (charts are my friend), digging out the summer clothes for the recent heat wave, battling the evil pollen of NYC without retreating to a sealed room with an air purifier, and all the usual parenting/housework stuff. Whew! I didn't realize how much I'd been up to until I wrote that.
And here's a sneak peek at my next pattern. This was an in-progress shot. The item is now finished and blocked, pattern written and charted, but the original was knit for my sister (the one in the photo is for me). Once it arrives in Germany, I'll share the whole thing with you. Suffice it to say it's my new favorite knit. The yarn is fingering-weight from Laughing Rat Studio in the colorway Pacific that has been marinating in the stash since summer 2007. I'd say it had aged "just right".

02 April 2010

Free Pattern Friday: Eierbaretjes (Egg Tams)

I wanted to find a pattern for an egg cozy for this Friday's pattern because it was the first thing I learned to knit long ago. My maternal grandmother taught me to knit with bright yellow acrylic yarn. I can still see her front porch where I seem to remember my knitting lesson taking place and the tulip tree blooming in the yard. It was a little garter-stitch pocket (I imagine she sewed up the seams) that could hold a hard-boiled egg, decoratively, and somehow looking like a little chicken.

Sadly, for me, knitting didn't take back then, and it wasn't until after my grandmother was gone that I took up a pair of needles again. But now I can't put them down!

And you should pick yours up to make at least one of these adorable egg tams, pattern courtesy of José Gralike. Come on, berets for your boiled eggs! Could anything be more wonderful? Well, I love them anyway. [Ravelry link | Blog link | PDF link]

Happy Easter for those of you celebrating that one. Blessed Passover for those of you celebrating that one. And, yay, Spring for everyone in the Northern Hemisphere!