Friday, August 26, 2011

More Mittens

More knitting for my cousin's children. 
This is the last pair of mittens, my cousin is next and his knitted item will be top secret.

The yarn is from the now defunct Dye Dreams. The colors are so rich and the yarn is a perfect combination of wool, soft fluff and luxury. The pattern and yarn came from a Dye Dreams mitten club kit, by Beth Brown Reinsel, but I was having a hard time with the morning glory design. It was just not doing it for me for some reason, so I tweaked it, and this is the result.
I wasn't sure about these at all, but as I progressed and the mitten grew I liked them even more. I was on a tight deadline, but I missed it anyhow because of all my fiddling and making changes.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Kimono from the Weekend

So this is what I chose to wear. 
I forgot my camera Friday and Saturday, so the photos are from my phone and not so great.

The black kimono is pretty formal and the fabric is very fine, and sheer. 
It was part of the box of kimono I received a few months ago, as was the obi. 
The fabric is called sharo and is very soft with an amazing drape, but still looks quite crisp. 
I wore this on Friday night, with a cream colored embroidered summer obi that also came from the same box.
In the dressing room
Saturday I wore the leaf patterned kimono and blue obi, we got rained out that night, but it takes us so long to get ready with the makeup and costumes, we had to get ready just in case. We were all dressed and made up, and it was raining pretty hard. We had to cancel. Last time some of the dancers got stuck on the stage during a storm and when we walked back to the dressing room the kimono got water stained, and ruined.

In the dressing room, with Fujima Ikunojo dressed and ready.

Sunday I wore the willow pattern and brought a yellow/gold obi that was a gift from Sensei.

I saw a young couple that wore kimono to the festival, the guy had a ponytail and wore a black kimono and leggings and zori. He had a very definite style, very contemporary and unique. It's good to see the interpretation of tradition with a personal style.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My Friend T. and the Need for FIRE!

Hat#1 in Colinette Cadenza, Fire colorway

"T. received a second beautifully and intricately knitted hat from Joan (president of the Chicago knitwits association).  T.’s first one – her favorite amongst all the many knitted hats she received – was swallowed up by the laundry monster, with no trace of remains.  She was too embarrassed to ask for another.  I was not.  She wears it like hair."
This is from T's blog which has chronicled her life since her shocking diagnosis of Acute Myeloid Leukemia, and subsequent treatments and illnesses. She is an amazing woman, and I think so very highly of her, so I knit her a little hat. I hadn't seen a photo in a while, and I wasn't sure if she was still wearing hats (perhaps they were too hot, or uncomfortable). I know her family was completely overwhelmed - her husband and family have been beyond amazing. Recently there was a mention of her baldness and so I sent another hat - and then found out about the first hat I sent!
T. is going through another traumatic process now, and will be on dialysis for life. I would knit the world for her if she asked, and I really wish I could knit her some new kidneys that function without flaw. 
What I can do is knit her a new hat to replace the old one, and knit in all the good thought and hopes that were in the last one, and that I will do gladly.

Anyone know a source for Colinette Cadenza in Fire?

Monday, August 15, 2011

New Kimono

I got some new summer (unlined) kimono. They are the machine washable variety, and that makes it very convenient to deal with them and wash them, but the big drawback is that those suckers are hot! Washing kimono is a huge ordeal. Traditionally the kimono are cut apart along the seams and washed in strips of fabric stretched on bamboo sticks. The fabric is very delicate and is easily stained. The advent of the machine washable kimono makes wearing a kimono much more accessible and inexpensive.
Here are the new kimono. These are fresh out of the washer, pardon, they are a bit wrinkled.
The first one features a pine needle and leaf pattern, in a blue color on white.

The second one has a stylized weeping willow, black on white.

I wanted to determine my obi options since I will be wearing these very soon. We have a 3 day event coming up and I will be helping and announcing for the dance group for all 3 days.

Blue obi from Sensei, with printed obi age, and striped obi jime.

Blue obi from Sensei, with pink shibori obi age, and patterned woven obi jime.
Close up of the shibori and detail of the obi jime.
Blue obi from Sensei, with chartreuse shibori obi age, and summer obi jime.
Close up of the shibori and detail of the obi jime.
Blue obi from Sensei, with chartreuse shibori obi age, and chartreuse and white obi jime. A little too matching for my taste.
Blue obi from Sensei, with pink shibori obi age, and striped obi jime.

I usually bring a few options with me, and then sometimes everything changes anyhow. Color contrast and unexpected color combinations and not totally matched add sophistication to kimono. For your knitters out there, that's why Noro adds in what are considered some weird colors to their skeins.

If I remember I'll get photos of me when I am dressed in the kimono.

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Norwegian Sweater

No, I have not knit a sweater in a while.

 Yes, I am knitting my first full size Norwegian sweater, but even them I am cheating since it is for my son. It has not been too challenging so far, I have done colorwork before, and I must say I quite like it.

So far the only thing that has me a bit concerned is gauge. But my son is still growing and I have a feeling that he will be bigger than me at some point so assuming I don’t run out of yarn, I will just keep going and at some point it will fit him – for a while until he outgrows it.

Hmmm. Maybe I should knit it to fit me instead? heh, heh...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Quincy Hat

I fell in love with this Jared Flood design the first time I saw it. My friend M. made it and I tried it on and knew I had to make one. I had a bunch of Lamb's Pride Bulky leftover from a Fairly Easy and nearly finished Fair Isle, and I really wanted to use some of that. 
I wasn't sure about making it striped - even though I do love stripes.
I was at a Windy City Knitting Guild meeting, and our resident "Knit Doctor" Judy Chan was showing some fabulous garter stitch jacket she made and noted that on one side the garter stitch colors striped, but then if you looked at the reverse they were dots of color.

My models were at camp so I had to do a self portait.
Hey, there's a hole there! I hadn't noticed that before! I'll have to fix before winter.
I think it's a bit big. Some of us are a bit fuzzy on the concept of gauge, and swatch sometimes.

Hat origami!

See how the garter stripes and then looks like dots? That is where I added a knit row so that I didn't have it happen on the outside of the hat, and I think it actually worked.
The Quincy hat has a twist in the crown, and hat would pose a problem for garter stripes. Then I realized I could throw in an extra knit row in the twist - halfway - and the stripes would be consistent. Ta daa!
Now I'm not sure how much I like the hat, but it's mine, and I'm happy, I actually made a hat for me!
This has been finished for a while, but I never got around to photographing it and then blogging until now.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Snapdragon Mittens

Made a while ago (but never blogged about) for my cousin's daughter who likes purple. Ysolda Teague's fabulous and gorgeous Snapdragon flip top mitt pattern, converted to plain mittens. I think they are even the same size this time!

Lovely Stonehedge Shepherd's Wool - very soft and a joy to knit with! Sorry they are kind of bent in the photo, they were washed and blocked but had been packed away for a while.