Wednesday, May 29, 2013

It's Getting Warm

Outfits 7-9:

blouse: Banana Republic; jeans: Gap; shoes: eBay

I didn't actually wear these heels, but they are in the remix. We only went to Walmart, so I wore my Merona penny loafers, but these heels are cute too! I'll try to wear them this week, but I have a hard time finding the appropriate moments for heels in summer....

top: Banana Republic; shorts: Banana Republic; shoes: none!

Effortless but cute enough for a day in, eh? If I had places to go I'd accessorize more, but it's just been hot and humid days on the couch around here. There are errands to be run soon enough. :)

top: Banana Republic; shorts: Banana Republic; no shoes!

This one was definitely an "it's too hot to try anything fancy" outfit. I don't think that'll be a trend (though it is May in Iowa) because of the recent and on-going stormy weather. I'll try to spice things up for Friday's post. :)

My World, The Couch

Here is a picture of my butt imprint on the couch and the back of a sweater that's kept me there for days on end. I think tonight will be the last night knitting on it. I'm blocking the fronts (I suppose that would have been a better picture...) and hope to put it all together tomorrow so I can model it for you Friday! Woohoo!

In other news, are the gnats insane where you live? There is a swarm that has been buzzing around our screen door, popping inside and out, for two days! Crazy bugs. And I've spent the day watching this little guy try to charm the ladies around our bird feed bell out on the deck. Watching the pretty birds outside is going to be a favorite pass-time this summer. :)

I'll get my outfits up in a bit! For more WIP Wednesday posts, check Tami's Amis!

Friday, May 24, 2013


I've been totally lazy today, so I'm going to post my FO and outfits in the same post. :)

My FO is a chemo cap for my Slytherin nest-mate's step-mom. She posted on Mother's Day that her step-mom had just cut off all her hair after beginning cancer treatment, which made me think of my mom, who once also had cancer. She wore wigs and scarves. If I had been old enough and known how to knit, I would have knit her chemo caps, so I thought I'd send my nest-mate's step-mom chemo caps I couldn't make for my mom. I think my mom would be happy to see me do it (and help!) if she were still here. :)

I made two, the second with a different pattern, but it was really small, so I think it will stay here and be a baby hat. I made both out of Sublime Baby Cashmere Merino Silk DK and they are heavenly! Perfect for hairless heads. I hope this one isn't too small. It fit John's head, which I figure is pretty average (mine's giant). The pattern is Lace-Edged Women's Hat, which my friend was knitting for her mom last week and I decided to copy her because it was so pretty. :) The one now designated a baby hat is similar pattern: Race for Life 2009 Chemo Cap. Make the bigger size for an adult!

My outfits have been lack-luster, but I'm not in my pjs or a t-shirt and shorts, so I think I'm winning. Here are outfits 4 and 6. 5 wasn't worth a picture and it was basically 4 with jeans and a blazer.

top and shorts: Banana Republic; shoes: Blowfish

top: ?; cardi: Banana Republic; jeans: Gap; shoes: Blowfish; shawl: handknit!

I bet you missed that wall, eh? ;) I still have two or three pieces to pick out....Hmmm....

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Post and Run

I'm off to work, so here's what I've been knitting:

The right front of my blouse for the Tops, Tanks, and Tees KAL over at luvinthemommyhood. We only have a week left to finish! Will I make it?! Probably not, but it might be close.

I started Celesterium and I love it! I'm so nerdily excited about it, I can't even tell you.

FO tomorrow! Have a lovely day. :)

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Dressed for Summer!

But it feels like spring. Our weather has not been very summery, so my outfits are a bit of a mixed bag. I have honestly not put much thought into all my pieces just yet, so this could get interesting. I still have five items to pick. Here are items 4-9 in outfits 2 and 3.

top: Gap; shorts: Banana Republic; shoes: Merona

top: Banana Republic; jeans: Gap; blazer: I got it at Dillard's?; shoes: Blowfish

I put on outfit 2 long enough to get my bangs trimmed and only put on 3 to go see Star Trek. :) The blazer for 3 is one I used to wear as an undergrad over t-shirts. My greatest fashion trend, I think. I'm going to try to bring it back in a sort of renewed casual glory during the remix. We'll see if it works! I'm excited to summerize the Blowfish shoes, too. They will be super cute in tomorrow's outfit.

Today is John's birthday, so I haven't had time to knit or to photograph knitting, so no WIP Wednesday post today. Tomorrow!

Monday, May 20, 2013


I am doing the 15 for 15 with Eliza and a few others. It did start Friday. I did not start Friday because finals week and laundry and I'm still wearing winter/fall clothes in May, etc., etc....I have rectified the situation! I'm also going to do a sort of digest and give you a couple outfits every other day on my usual blogging days because we all know that I have a hard time blogging even on those days with predictable consistency (this will be less of a problem now that school is out). Besides, I wouldn't want you to get tired of me posting every day. ;)

That said, here is outfit the first!

shirt: Mossimo?; skirt: got it at Penny's, I think?; necklace: Forever 21; shoes: Merona

I put this outfit on before dragging my spring clothes out of storage. I have a hard time wearing a black skirt in spring/summer. It seems too wintry. The bright shirt makes me feel a little better about the whole thing, but I'm still meh about it. Since I'm wearing it, I guess the skirt's in the mix! I'll have to spring it up a bit. I didn't have much spring stuff to unpack, so we'll see how this goes. I might need a shopping trip halfway through.

As of now, I have five items picked out. I'll have to chose carefully and share on Wednesday with outfits 2, 3, and 4.

Care to join us? It's pretty fun to see what everyone else is wearing. I get lots of ideas from seeing the other mixers mix it up. :) As a student, I dress like a bum all summer because no one sees me. I definitely need some help with my summer fashion!  I've already got a summer dress bug. :) What do you wear in the summer?

Friday, May 17, 2013

A Rainy Day Hat

April Showers

Pattern: as the leaves begin to fall by Eliza Jarvi
Yarn: Sublime Baby Cashmere Merino Silk DK in Pebble and green
Needles: US 6
Project Page

I queued this pattern as soon as Eliza released it! I had in mind to make it out of LOFT, but as I can't decide which colors to use until I have all the colors and I wanted the hat sooner than later, I decided to pick some other yarn. We are no longer carrying Sublime yarns in our shop, so I figured I'd finally grab some and do something with it, so the stars aligned and here we are!

Pardon my totally creepy expression.
The pattern is fantastic. The decreases required a lot of attention, but look absolutely fabulous. I had a few of my own troubles, of course. I didn't choose a green that contrasts enough with the grey/tan, so I couldn't knit on it in the evening by the light of our dim lamp because I couldn't tell the colors apart! In daylight the leaves are quite easy to see, but they could be easier. I also started the hat over three or four times because my stranding was puckering. I blogged about my ah-ha moment, then restarted again and look at how beautiful it is! Yay! I'm excited to do another. I will have a LOFT version some day for sure, but a few other versions in between now and then.

I modified it just a bit. I have a huge head, so I cast on 104 and increased enough to do one more repeat of the leaves. I also omitted the first few stockinette rows at cast-on because...I forgot.

In sum, Eliza, thanks for a really great hat pattern! I'm hoping we'll get a little bit more rain this summer and it wasn't all spent in April when I was trying to knit this hat specifically to wear on rainy days! I suspect it will serve me well. The yarn is so fabulous that I might just wear it all summer in the heat and humidity to feel the softness on my head. :)

I've got a lot of knitting to do this weekend! Don't you? For more FO Friday posts, visit Tami's Amis!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Sit Back, Relax

Let's all breathe a collective sigh of relief, shall we? It's finally spring/summer! It was ninety degrees here yesterday and really miserable. I spent the entire day on the couch in my pjs writing my last seminar paper ever. The hot computer and insulation of books and notes around me didn't help the heat any. Today, I don't have to worry about the heat of the computer or deadlines or where my notes blew off to because I. am. done. Mostly. I am spending the day grading papers and finalizing grades so that all I have to do Friday after my students' exam is pop their grades in there and submit them.

So there is one...or two or three deadlines I do have to worry about, but the good news is that they are all knitting deadlines. :) This little pretty should be as done as close as possible to the 22nd. Is that next week?! Holy moly! I think Shannon might give us a week or two leeway. I can do that! It looks kind of complicated, but it's pretty quick and easy. The back is entirely stockinette, so that'll be a breeze. It'll be easier to talk about next week when you can see what it will be.

I also have to get this started by the end of the month. It'll be Celestarium. I'm really, really excited for it! Anyone want to cast on with me? I need beads yet, so it might not be until this weekend at the earliest.

My Deco got very large and heavy, so it hasn't been travelling with me or growing much. Now that I don't have school (yay!), I will get to spend a lot of time with it. I just bought the perfect dress to wear with this and the pink cardi above. I'm aiming to have one or both done by the time I decide to wear it.

I finished a hat, which I anticipate I'll be able to share with you Friday. I'd love to know what you are knitting or what you are looking forward to this summer or what you are excited about this week. :) Talk to me! I've missed you!

For more WIP Wednesday posts, go to Tami's Amis!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Lightbulb Moment

I've been struggling with a hat for a few weeks now. I've restarted it four times now, though it has nothing to do with the lovely job Eliza did writing the pattern! I've been having trouble with my fair isle tension. I keep losing the green stitches in the tan background. I thought at first that it was the new tacking technique I was trying, so I stopped doing it, but I was still having trouble.

Check this out:

For the lower half of the leaf (the puckered part), I held the yarn like nyah*:

The top half of the leaf, I held the yarn like nyah:

I've figured it out! I'm a Continental knitter. I hold my yarn in my left hand when I knit. I read or inferred (probably by reversing instructions I thought were meant for English knitters) somewhere that the dominant color in fair isle should be held in whatever hand you use dominantly (second picture). I was wrong! I think the reach from my right hand to the the needle created too much tension on the contrast color yarn so that the stitches got sucked into the background.

I don't know if I've explained that very well or correctly, but the lesson learned is: the dominant color should always go in your right hand and contrast color should always go in your left when stranding two-handed (third picture). I'm excited about having a perfectly even stranded hat when I'm done!

What is your stranding experience? Have you experienced the same trouble? I'm entirely willing to be proven wrong if you've found a different solution, since this is just my experience. I mean, I use stranded knitting and fair isle interchangeably...I don't even know if that's correct. :) I am going to take a fair isle class this weekend, so I can get a professional opinion.

*John and I watch a lot of South Park.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

So Much for Blog Week!

I gave it the old college try. Then college consumed my life! It still is. I have too much to do to be taking any time to write this, but I miss you all! Thank you all so very, very much for your wonderful comments on my last post. I'm itching to get started on my dress, but I think I'll try to wait until later this summer. If I picked up any new readers with my whole two Blog Week posts, thanks for coming back! :) I didn't get any bunnies or fish in at all! In time....

With the whole five minutes I'm giving myself to finish this post, I want to share with you what I'm working on. Sybil has taken another break because I've been obsessively (obsessively!) working on my Deco. I need a good song-title name for it. I'll have to browse my music files. I've been searching high and low for the prefect floral print dress to wear with this wonderfully green sweater and a pink one I'm swatching for, but I'm having absolutely no luck!

As I said, I'm swatching. I don't...ever, but I've never worked with crochet cotton thread, I have the wrong size, and I want it to work, so the swatch is a must. I hope it softens in the wash because right now it's really stiff and not fun to work with. I also can't decide if I like the cardigan on the whole, so this could turn into a big disaster very quickly. It'll be an adventure! :D I'll be knitting it as part of luvinthemommyhood's Tops, Tanks, and Tees KAL. You should join if you've got a top, tank, or tee in the works. The ladies are amazing, as are their projects!

I'm trying to finish things and swatch for other things, too, but these are the biggies right now. I'm trying to hold of casting anything on officially at least until I am comfortably through my papers, grading, studying, etc., etc....

I can't wait for this semester to be over. Have I told you?! I passed my comp, so I'm All But Dissertation (ABD)! No more classes ever! Yay! I'm five minutes over my five-minute limit, so back to homework. For more WIP Wednesday posts, visit Tami's Amis! I'll post something on Friday, though it might not be anything finished.