Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Psychedelic Squares baby blanket

With just 12 hours to spare before the baby shower I finished the baby psychedelic squares blanket. It was a big hit at the shower- since the Mama and Papa to be live in upstate NY they both agreed that this afghan will get lots of love and use! Mission accomplished!

I hand stitched the knitted portion to the cotton backing after very carefully measuring and pinning all around. The stockinette still wanted to roll even after being blocked and stitched to the backing. I think the front and back look really cute together.

Of course, I just had to have the satin lining around the edges. After all, the best blankies have that oh so smooth satin to nuzzle against when almost asleep. It also solved the rolling stockinette issue. This was my first attempt at mitered corners and they were much easier than I thought they would be. The satin border was a bit tricky- especially with my inability to sew a straight line. Each side had to be ripped and resewn at least once (did I mention that my darling daughter managed to break my seam ripper the day before? Unpicking seams by hand is no fun). The satin also seemed to catch on any rough edge of fingernail no matter how minuscule. My sewing machine, of course, gave me it's own problems with all the broken threads and running out of bobbin thread and all, but it got the job done.

I am very pleased with the finished result. I think it looks fabulous, the yarn was great to work with (it did go through the washer and dryer twice and got softer but did not pill or shrink) and the parents loved it. That being said, I really do not see myself attempting this one again. I think it took as long to do the finishing (seaming, backing, edging) as it did to knit the squares....at least it felt like it.

Pattern: Psychedelic Squares Afghan 16 large squares completed.

Yarn: KnitPicks Swish Superwash 2 skeins of each color (baby blue, deep ocean, dublin, aloe)

Size US 8 needles

Finished size 30" X 30"

Friday, July 20, 2007

So close!

All the knitting is complete for the mitered baby blanket. The squares are all seamed together. Let me tell you it took hooouuuurrrrrrrrrrrrrrs. I love mattress stitch but I had a time getting all the stripes to match just so. I may have said some very naughty words a time or ten... Then came the sewing of the large squares together. More cursing occurred and it drove me to drink. All it took was a few vodka tonics and I was finished!

All the ends have been woven in. Yes, I weave in the ends even though I am backing it. I always stress about my hand knit gifts coming apart. It survived a trip through the washer and is now in the dryer.
The cotton backing has even been washed and dried and is ready for some action!
I just had to have this print when I saw it.
As soon as the knit portion is out of the dryer I have to attach the lining and sew on the satin border. I imagine that will take up a huge chunk of my day. So far it looks as if this may get finished right on time.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

pardon the absence

I've been slummin' with Knit's easy sister-Crochet. Why crochet? Well, after trying to mattress stitch my mitered squares, I realized that I would not enjoy stitching so many squares together and neither baby blanket project would ever be finished. Also, there was way too much worry and tears knitted into those blankies. And then this star shaped afghan called to me from craftster.

"mmmmaaaaaaake meeeeeeee"
but I can't follow crochet instructions
"that's why you have internet"
but I have already started these others
"look at me. no picking up stitches or binding off. I'm fast and easy. you know you want to."
yes. come to me crochet.

It took a few rounds and a couple (or six) start overs before I realized that all this time (since I learned when I was 11) what I thought was the first stitch is actually the second stitch. Armed with this all important tidbit of crochet know-how I was 'cookin' with gas' as my Grandma would say! I love this pattern. I am frogging the four squares I knit for the babette log cabin babies as I crochet- I still plan on using most of the colors (there were a few that just won't do. This is so fast and easy! There is joy crocheted into this baby's blanket! My pregnant friend's condition has been totally cured thanks to her operation and she is on her way home! WOO-HOO! I hope she likes the blankets as much as I do. Here is three days worth of crochet. love.

I have only been allowing myself to knit mitered squares for the baby blanket on the sidebar (are you laughing as hard as I am at 48!! mitered squares). After mattress stitching the first 4 square group I made the executive decision that this blanket will have 4 large squares (16 mitered squares- not quite as an insane goal) and a border picked up around the edges until I run out of yarn. I have two squares left to knit. Then blocking/sewing together. Then blocking/picking up stitches and knitting border. then blocking once more-you know for fun. After seaming the first two squares without blocking and seaming the third square after blocking-I highly suggest blocking. It just makes life so.much.easier.

The baby shower is this Saturday.

If I can just put down that damn crochet hook maybe I will finish.

Did I forget to mention I also plan on lining the back of the blanket so the wrong side is pretty?

Have a lovely week!

Monday, July 09, 2007


I just talked to my pregnant friend (mentioned here and here and here if you are interested in the back story) and she was able to have the fetoscopic laser photo coagulation performed to separate the twins blood supply. She is not out of the woods so to speak, but this is very, very good news and she is so relieved. So far everything looks good and the twins seem to be fine. She has named the little ones Michah and Robert. Also she honored me in the most sincere way possible by asking me to be their Godmother! These kiddos are going to be smothered in knitted goodness. Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers- apparently God has been listening.

I have also been overwhelmed by the response from fellow Craftsters to Lemonade. I feel so much better about not getting selected to be published. The sting of denial is gone. I know I will try again to be published but will submit to Knitty next time as I kinda felt misled by Magknits. I say misled because I actually received an email from the Magknits editor stating that my pattern would be included in the July issue... fuck it- their loss...

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Big Thanks!

I just wanted to thank each and every one of you that offered such encouraging words about my design. One thing I hate about blogger is that there is no email link to the people that leave comments so I can't personally thank y'all. Just know each and every comment really means a lot to me and I feel so much better. As for publishing the pattern myself, I just may offer it for free, but since it was denied, I can't get it out of my head that there is something terribly wrong with it.

Also, thanks for the compliments on my lace nightie mods. Y'all are really too sweet!

Monday, July 02, 2007

can I cry over spilled Lemonade?

So way back a few months ago I submitted a design to be published in MagKnits. I was under the impression that the design would be published in the July issue, but I was sadly mistaken. The only thing I can figure is that my pattern writing skills are not what they should be. I really am disappointed. I personally liked my design (I bet that is what all the denied designers say), but understand that is the way things go.... will I try again? Perhaps, but I am not exactly know for working really hard at things I am not initally sucessful. Anyway, here are a few pics of Lemonade, modeled by The Girl Wonder (we are the same size).

Pattern: Lemonade (my own)

Yarn: Filatura di Crosa Elena (100% mercerized Mako Egyptian Cotton; 99yds [90 m]/50g) 9 balls. This yarn is discontinued.

Needles:US E/4 crochet hook for provisional cast on.
US 3 needles
US 3 circular 32inch