Friday, July 29, 2005

"Marble" Magnets

I seem to be late to join the craze - I've been seeing those glass "marble" or dome magnets all over, thinking to myself..."how lovely - I bet I could make those." And sure enough, they aren't hard to make at all.

These are made with 1" and 3/4" acrylic cabochons and custom images - they all happen to be desert flora from hikes I've taken! Sorry for the blurry shot - the darn things don't photograph well - seems my camera likes to focus on the reflections on the tops of the domes instead of the bottom image...I'm sure it also has to do with the index of refraction of the domes themselves...but I'll keep my mouth shut and not get too nerdy.

If you're interested, I'm more than happy to trade or sell them...Though if you have a specific flower in mind, I'll have to see if I have it available. Given enough time, I might be able to upload all the images I have available.

And if you are interested in making your own, I highly recommend Not Martha's site for details.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Branched Out

Pattern: Branching Out from Knitty

Yarn: Lace or Cobweb weight lambswool angora blend - reclaimed from a sweatervest that had been sitting and languishing in my closet for ages...

Needle Size: US4

Finished size: Approximately 6 1/2 x 60 inches

Comments: This was my first lace knit with an actual lace weight yarn - and I have to say I was quite pleased with the results. Sadly I did have the yarn break once or twice in the process - but I was able to fix that problem (along with joining new balls) by simply felting a small bit of the ends together (about an inch and a half or so). Because the yarn I used was so much lighter in weight than the yarn that was called for in the pattern, I decided to double the pattern repeat to get a wider scarf. I have a feeling I'm going to have to invest in blocking wires soon if I carry on with my lace knitting obsession, as keeping the edges of the scarf straight while blocking proved to be quite a pain - not to mention all that crawling around on the floor repinning!

As for the pattern, I found it clear and easy to follow - I knit straight from the chart and it took me approximately 40 pattern repeats to complete (that would be a total of 410 rows - 10 for each pattern repeat and 10 for the 5 garter rows on either end!). It did take a while for me to memorize the pattern, but a quick glance at the chart usually took care of any memory lapses.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Trellised Scarf

Pattern: based on the pattern repeat of the Lucinda Pullover from SouthWest Trading Co. (available with yarn purchase at your local yarn store)

Yarn: SWTC's Karaoke in Forest

Needles: US8

Comments: This is an excellent and easy knit - it looks a lot more complex than it actually is and I actually used it as my "mindless" knitting project while watching TV or talking on the phone. Because it's an adaptation from another designer's work, I will not be posting instructions here. The little pointy bits on the end are remnant artifacts from blocking (I did block this scarf to ensure that the garter edge would lay flat) - and are due to the fact that I do not own blocking wires. I personally think that the open/lacework is unobtrusive enough to work on a scarf for a man or woman - but some may disagree.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Better than a Pink Pinafore!

Pattern: Anouk, from Knitty

Yarn Used: Lion Brand Microspun in Lime and Mango with Purple pockets and Buttercup and Mango flowers.

Knit on: US6 needles

Comments: A fast an easy knit, especially when you knit both the front and back at the same time! Instead of seaming on the side tabs, I opted to pick up stitches to attach them and I went with the two-button hole option. The pockets were my first foray into intarsia knitting, and I have to say I liked it fairly well, though even though I can knit with both hands (hooray!) I didn't apply that skill here - I was too paranoid about making sure I twisted my yarns on each color change - something that I cannot figure out how to do while knitting double fisted. If I had it to do again, I'd make sure to leave my floats a bit longer - as they don't allow for much stretch the way they are now - and I'd think about a different method for seaming the pockets - in this case I opted for blanket stitch in contrasting colors, which worked alright, but after playing with the fabric a bit, the stitches are no longer as neat and tidy as they were when first completed. Overall I'm very pleased with how this turned out and I sure hope the parents to be are too.