Saturday, July 30, 2005

Silk corset too small, and artwork for work

The good news: I finished the silk corset body, and have started on the sleeves.

The bad news: it's way too small. I'm using the size Medium design option, which should have given me plenty of ease, but maybe my gauge was off. (Wouldn't surprise me... Usually I knit stuff like hats, which I felt until they fit, or scarves or shawls, which don't have to fit as closely). Lesson learned -- knit a bigger gauge swatch next time, and measure more carefully after blocking.

Anyway, the thing is so tight I don't think it would stay buttoned. Options are either a) frog it and start over, or b) finish it and give it to my sis, and knit myself another one later. I'm leaning toward the latter. She liked the design so much when I showed it to her she said something like, "Hm, maybe I should learn to knit." She's thinner than I am, and these colors (if you can call grey and black colors) would definitely work for her. Sis, consider yourself warned.

Today went to K's house and bought some old Douglas Fir from her, along with an antique Singer. The Singer was originally a treadle, but was electrified (fine with me!) and might just fit into the treadle table I have (I have the original treadle head in the basement -- much older than K's model -- but it was never electrified and had wonky tension, so was never very useful to me).

Other news: We're moving to new offices this weekend at work (the movers are moving the boxes we packed over the weekend, that is), and I actually have an office, complete with a door, rather than a cubicle. This is partly because the person who was going to get the office is going to be telecommuting from Boston instead, but all the same, I'm happy to finally have an office.

Since I'll actually have a wall or two to hang stuff on, I'm thinking of bringing in some of my paternal grandma's art in. I really don't have a good spot for it at home (the walls are already kind of covered with various pieces). Need to get two of them framed before I take them in. Here they are:

For balance, here's a pic of the only painting I own by my maternal grandmother. She taught art and was professionally trained as an artist and architect -- worked during WWII as an architect, in fact, but had to go back to teaching at the local high school after the war.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Silk corset body nearly done, but too small

I tried on the Silk Corset the other day, and it's really a tight fit. I was going for the 40.2" finished bust size, so I don't know what happened -- maybe my gauge tightened up after I did the swatch.

I don't feel like frogging it, so my sis may be getting a sweater for Christmas. IF blocking doesn't remedy the problem, that is...

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Silk Corset - in denim cotton?

I'm done with Chart D on the corset. Pics soon, I promise! I just got the latest email from Elann, with a cotton yarn, Den-M-Nit, dyed with real indigo (I've done indigo dyeing, and am very fond of indigo). I'm really tempted to buy enough of this to knit the corset a second time.

your friendly neighborhood yarn pusher

So, this past weekend, I was at the Virginia this past weekend with my reenacting group. One of the other groups there is portraying British troops from the 1880s/90s; I made some Victorian corsets for the gals in the group a few years ago. Anyway... Amanda, the daughter of the head of the Victorian unit, is about 14 (I think), and reminds me a lot of me -- precocious, very into textile arts, and probably a better seamstress than I was at that age. She's got a drop spindle (I introduced her to spinning last year at this event), and is teaching herself how to knit (gave her some pointers on that, too).

So I brought a bunch of my lace knitting books to look through, loaned her one of them, and gave her some Jaggerspun Zephyr and a pair of Brittany needles. Her mom said, half-teasing, "You're not helping!", meaning that Amanda already has too many hobbies. Hey, I can't help it. Besides, sitting in camp and knitting a Shetland lace shawl would be an appropriate activity for her. (Lace knitting isn't period for my era, alas, so I sit in camp knitting stockings and highland bonnets.)

Yeah, I'm bad. But I remember being 14. It's such an awkward age. I really appreciated it when people took me seriously and showed me how to do stuff.

Monday, July 25, 2005

silk corset report

Pics later -- haven't had time to take any; but I'm down to Section D.

A good friend is in the hospital with a heart attack, and I can't think, let alone knit.

Thursday, July 21, 2005


I suppose there are some advantages to coming down with an infection/sore throat. I did manage to finish the latest Harry Potter this afternoon, since I really couldn't stand to do anything else but lay in bed and read. Hope I'm back on my feet again tomorrow (literally -- having dizzy fits today), as I have a deadline.

I got a start on the silk corset earlier this week, but haven't had time to take pics. It's coming along nicely. I decided to purl the decreases on the return row so I have a column of knit stitches there, but otherwise have been following the pattern faithfully (unusual, for me), and it's coming along nicely.

Also got some more yarn for shawls in today's mail. The good thing about laceweight yarn -- it doesn't take up nearly as much space as yarn for sweaters.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Yarn for Silk Corset

And here's the yarn for the Silk Corset (below) and the Landscapes Sock yarn (top).

I'm also trying to get a bit further on the Diamonds shawl before diving into this, but I did start swatching for the Silk Corset top, as you can see.

Diamonds and Feathers, take 2

Here's a pic of the Diamonds and Feathers shawl, take 2 -- I'm knitting it again, this time with Koigu KPPPM, and on larger needles.

So, I'm vaguely uncertain about whether the yarn is too 'busy' for the design, but looking at the picture, I think it works, actually.

I also got my first Knitpicks order in, with the "Yukon" Landscapes sock yarn. I'm debating whether to use that for the stole version of this shawl, or use it for the Baltic Sea Stole instead. I think I'll do a bit of swatching to see what I think.

You know, I got the latest Harry Potter book Saturday, and I have just barely started to read it. I've been SO busy, running errands and cleaning and... knitting. This is bad. I need to just quit and read.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Dayflower Scarf

This is the Dayflower scarf from StitchingGirl's blog. Very nice! I think it'd make a nice project for those who have finished Branching Out and want another similar project.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Corset Top

Saw this on Sara's blog and had to order it. Firstly, it's just plain beautiful; secondly, I have made, and worn, corsets, so it'd be rather fun to make a corset sweater.

I'm also a bit upset at the moment over a new development at work (which I won't go into here).

So, I went to Knitpicks and bought some Andean Silk in demure slate and pitch. Silly me. I should have bought some brigher colors, but I do like, and wear, grey, and one of my favorite Victorian corsets was a silvery grey satin.

Also ordered some of their Landscapes sock yarn in "Yukon", which may or may not be made into the Baltic Sea stole; I may go back and buy some of their laceweight yarn ("Morning Mist") for that stole instead, and use the sock yarn for something else.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Closeup of the stitches. I think I'm going to reknit this in Koigu, with larger needles. This was knitted with Jaggerspun 2/8 Wool Heather, color "Moss". I'm also planning on designing a stole version, since one of the ladies in my local guild doesn't wear shawls because she says they make her look like an old lady. (For the record, she's one of the most a**-kicking older women I know, in terms of her take-no-prisoners attitude toward life.) Posted by Picasa

Here's the "diamonds and feathers" shawl, blocked and draped over my spinning wheel. Posted by Picasa

View of the sleeve Posted by Picasa

Here's the pic of the sweater I'm working on. The concept of a v-necked top-down sweater isn't that hard, now that I'm trying it -- for the front V part, you knit it flat, increasing the front edge by one stitch at the two ends every right side row, until you have as many front stitches as you have stitches for the back panel. Posted by Picasa

And here's a pic of Flower Basket draped over my (small) walking wheel. The wheel is about 52" wide, so it's considerably smaller than many of the wheels one sees. I'm mentioning this so vierers won't get misled about the scale of the shawl. Posted by Picasa

closeup of the yarn Posted by Picasa

A detail of the beads I sewed onto the bottom edge of my Flower Basket shawl Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 08, 2005

Living in a target zone

After yesterday's events in London, it's hard to know what to say. I was fighting off tears all day -- probably not doing as well as the Londonders themselves, who, by all accounts, were handling things with the traditional stiff upper lip. My heart goes out to them.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Sweater, finally

Ok, so I've done fairly complicated lace knitting -- but no sweaters. Ok, one sweater -- for a teddy bear.

I bought this pattern, a pretty simple top-down v-neck shell, at MSWF in May. Finally decided to knit it up in TLC Cotton (because it's cheap and readily available), and found myself bored silly with the pattern, so I added a 2-2 rib and a cable down the sleeve. I think I'm also gonna make the sleeve a 3/4 sleeve.

Pics soon.