Sunday, December 28, 2008

Seedy Stockinette Baby Blanket

My friend is having a baby, so I made a hat, booties, and wanted to make a simple blanket. I didn't find any pattern that I liked, so I created this one:

Seedy Stockinette Baby Blanket

Finished Size: About 36" wide and 40" long

Yarn: Red Heart Super Saver, 7 oz Soft White, 7 oz Light Blue, 7 oz Dark Blue

Needles: Size 6 (4mm). Adjust needle size if necessary to obtain the correct gauge.

Gauge: 18 sts and 24 rows = 4" (10 cm) in St st

Skill Level: Easy

Cast on 130 stitches.

Rows 1-14, Soft White, seed stitch.

Rows 15-28, Do 10 stitches in Soft White in Seed Stitch. On stitch 11, switch to Dark Blue, work in stockinette stitch until last 10 stitches. Switch back to Soft White, work in seed stitch until end.

Rows 29-42, Soft White. Work first ten stitches in seed stitch, work in stockinette until last 10 stitches. Work last 10 stitches in seed stitch.

Rows 42-56, Do 10 stitches in Soft White in Seed Stitch. On stitch 11, switch to Light Blue, work in stockinette stitch until last 10 stitches. Switch back to Soft White, work in seed stitch until end.

Rows 57-70, Soft White. Work first ten stitches in seed stitch, work in stockinette until last 10 stitches. Work last 10 stitches in seed stitch.

Repeat Rows 15-70 until blanket reaches about 38" or desired length. End with 14 rows of seed stitch in soft white.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Knitting for the Office Christmas Party

I finished my knitting for the Office Christmas Luncheon. I put the scarves in these absolutely adorable bags. I fluffed them all with tissue paper. I gave them to their recipients. Only one person even opened hers, although I will say, she loved hers. I was very happy with the way they all came out, and I hope that when the other four people open theirs that they like them. I may be joining the "Selfish Knitters Group" on Ravelry. I really worked hard on the scarves, and it was a little disappointing that no one even cared to see what I gave them. A big part of giving gifts, for me, is the joy in seeing someone open the gift, the joy in knowing that they appreciate the gift and will use it. I'm trying not to feel too snubbed with my gifts...

These are the scarves that I made:

For JC:

For DA:

For MLB:
For DJV:
For TB:
And these are the bags for them:

Saturday, December 20, 2008

friday freaky fun fact & foto

Yesterday, Velma tagged me in her friday freaky fun fact & foto post. This is the first time anyone has done anything like this, so I hope I do it correctly! And I suppose mine is really a saturday freaky fun fact & foto, as it were...

Okay. the freaky fun fact: Prior to digital, you could really tell the difference between professional photographers and lay photographers, generally speaking. I find now that far many more people will get really good digital cameras. But before that, if you had really good equipment, people assumed you were a professional. So one time, I went to this balloon festival, and because I had great equipment, I simply walked around the little orange fencing and into the press tent and started changing my film. I was chatting with photographers from the local paper and USA today and the NY Times and Time/Life. No one asked me for my press pass or asked what I was doing there or where I worked. Granted, you couldn't do this now (and in a post 9/11 world, I am glad that you really can no longer do this) but these are some of the shots I got that morning at 6 am before the launch:

And now for the tagging. I tag:
Jane (if she is feeling better!)
Marie (if she can tear herself away from the oven!)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Naming the Animals

Naming the Animals

by Anthony Hecht

Having commanded Adam to bestow
Names upon all the creatures, God withdrew
To empyrean palaces of blue
That warm and windless morning long ago,
And seemed to take no notice of the vexed
Look on the young man's face as he took thought
Of all the miracles the Lord had wrought
Now to be labeled, dubbed, yclept, indexed.

Before an addled mind and puddle brow,
The feathered nation and the finny prey
Passed by; there went biped and quadruped.
Adam looked forth with bottomless dismay
Into the tragic eyes of his first cow,
And shyly ventured, "Thou shalt be called 'Fred.'"

"Naming the Animals" by Anthony Hecht, from Collected Later Poems. © Alfred A Knopf, 2003.

And lest anyone get all copyright crazy, I would submit that I rely upon the fair use doctrine for the printing of this poem here rather than the mere linking to it on the Writer's Almanac web page which did obtain it with permission. The fair use doctrine consists of an inquiry into four questions: (1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes; (2) the nature of the copyrighted work; (3) amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and (4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work. As for (1), the use is merely personal, not commercial at all. I derive no income from this blog, and it is being used to educate and illustrate the source of my title; (2) because the poem has previously been published, the author has been able to derive pleasure, notoriety and income from the publication of the poem, and therefore, the nature of the work lends itself to the fair use doctrine; (3) although a complete poem, the fourteen lines of text represent but one page of a 250+ page book and one of countless entries on the Writer's Almanac page, which includes an RSS feed of daily poetry, and (4) not enough people read my blog that it could ever be interpreted to have a negative effect upon the potential market or value of the copyrighted work. If anything, maybe one person might decide to check out the rest of Mr. Hecht's poems, which I encourage greatly.

(If I had the ability to footnote, the above would be footnoted)

And now on to the regular part of the post:

Somehow, I have no problem naming my blog posts. The names frequently present themselves, or are simple, descriptive names. Projects, on the other hand, give me all kinds of trouble when I am attempting to name them. All too often, I wind up just naming them whatever the person named the original pattern. I am attempting to be better about this, but I rarely am able to break away from the original pattern titles. Often, as I am moving through life, I come up with things that I think would make good titles for short stories or songs or would make good band names. I think I may have to start using some of them for my pattern titles. They would be random, but it may just work.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Lesson Learned

There are certain patterns I can do while I am on the phone, and certain patterns I cannot. I know this. I have experienced this before. You would think that I would be able to internalize this and remember it. You would think that I would know that a pattern like this cannot be done while I am on the phone.
You would be wrong. I attempted to knit this while on the phone with my brother. I had to tink back 10 rows because I did something very very wrong. Lesson learned. I promise.

Until the next time...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Living Up to Expectations -- the followup

I received the loveliest thank you note from my friend for the blanket I made her for her wedding.

She writes:

"OMG! We love the blanket! We opened it up in the car on the way home and E kept reaching over and burying his hands in it -- it is so soft and warm and cozy." She went on to tell me how decorating sort of intimidates her, and so she hadn't picked colors but that she loved the color of the blanket, so it will be an accent in the house.

Yay! Success!

And on an unrelated note, I started the scarf I want to make for one of the women at work, but I don't know if I like it. And I was going to post a picture of it on Ravelry, and ask opinions, but i can't seem to take a picture of it that actually looks anything like what it looks like in real life... I might try to get some in-person opinions tomorrow.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Hauling Yarn, or How I Lost Respect for the F150

I have always been a fan of various Ford vehicles. For almost as long as I can remember, my dream car has been the Mustang convertible and if I were to get a truck, I have always said that I would get a Ford F150. But now I'm not so sure.

The most recent Ford ad lauds steps that lead in and out of the cargo space. The voice over implies that it is a big deal for anyone who has real cargo. The voice says, "unless all you're carrying is yarn, it's a no brainer." Oh really? And what if you are carrying yarn? Do you not deserve the steps? Is yarn not worthy of being carried in the F150? Why? Is it not manly enough? What's heavier, a pound of yarn or a pound of cement?

I hope the Madison Avenue geniuses who created this ad never ask the knitters in their lives for hand-knit watchcaps. A big thumbs-down to Ford, and to their ad agency for continuing and promoting negative gender stereotypes.

One of the things that I love about modern knitting is that knitters defy gender stereotypes. Ian Johnson is a hero of mine because he combines crafting and football, two things I adore: