Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Hello 2009!

Many people seem to think that the way you bring in the new year will be reflected in your entire year. I hope that is not true, because 2009 started as I was in the middle of a state if disorganization, and procrastination. I worked late, rushed to get home at 11:45, changed my clothes, realized I never did pick up that bottle of champagne to bring to my neighbor's party.... and then it was midnight. Actually, I've never thought of New Year's Eve as a big party holiday, anyway.
I haven't been blogging because my camera was forgotten at my sister's house on Christmas day. Also, in the days leading up to Christmas I was so busy that I completely forgot to photograph all of my FOs before gifting them. I was completely irritated with myself for that.
The last photo of the granny square afghan was a pretty good representation of the finished product. It weighs almost 5 pounds, and my mother loves it.
The thrummed mittens, however looked so much better complete and with the ends all woven in. I am most disappointed that I didn't get a shot of them. I will try next time I am at my sister's house.
Speaking of Christmas, I hope you all had a wonderful one. I had a very nice one, which included a very long nap in the middle of the day. I usually torture myself and go the whole day on about 2 hours sleep. It was nice to skip that tradition.
I received a very nice gift from my brother of this yard-sale yarn.

It's 20 balls, 1000grams total, of an aran yarn from Ireland.

I tried to get a photo that would enable you to read the label, but it seemed like no matter what angle I used there was some sort of glare. What that says under Aran is: made in Ireland specially for P. Quill, Ballingeary, Co. Cork, Ireland.
The only other information on the label is the fiber content (wool) and colour, and lot number, along with some product care/cleaning symbols.
I have no idea of the yardage, but that's easy enough to find out. I'll just wrap a ball around my niddy noddy. I have also started a swatch, but at 4 stitches to the inch the fabric seems really dense and stiff. I have decided I will have to make a few swatches at different stitch counts, then wash them all to see what I like best.
Since Christmas I have managed to whip out a few more quick projects. Some were gifted before I got the camera back. Once was actually for me, so I can share:
I made these felted slippers because I wore a whole in the ones I made last year. I decided I'd better use something a little more sturdy and thick this time. So, these are lite lopi double stranded. I just used a basic cuff down/heel flap sock construction. They were worked on size 11 needles, and would have been finished in one evening, but the lopi started to irritate my skin. In order to save my hands I knit them over two evenings.
I love the way Lopi softens up after felting (or even a tiny bit of fulling). These do need to be shrunk down a bit more, but I've been wearing them anyway. They are so warm!
I have also started 3 new baby blankets this week. Two are more than half done. I'm not sure if I am excited or relieved about that. I have decided to design all three of these, so I will wait until they are more complete to share pictures.
I do have one Christmas project picture to share today. Remember that doll? Well, here it is:
This doll was a gift for my friend Chris, who is known lovingly on the ravelry Peaches & Creme group as Wonderwoman. Chris (sorry non-ravelrars she has no blog) is such a wonderful and supportive friend, and does many of my crochet pattern testing. This summer when another one of my pattern testers was unable to complete a project when I needed it I emailed Chris at the last minute asking her to test the pattern that very day! She did, and enabled us to confidently print up the patterns for the Peaches & Creme workshops on time.
That was when the idea for this doll was born. I had to do something to thank her for that. If you notice her current ravitar I think it is fair to say she likes it.
The doll and her outfit are completely free styled. I first made two little tubes for legs, then joined the tops to form the crotch, then I added on the red shoe-tips. I knit up from the joined legs pretty much in the style of a seamless raglan sweater, made a long-ish neck, then doubled the stitches to work the head.
The hair is some eyelash yarn that was dug from the bottom of my stash. The hair just cracks me up! The outfit, which was originally intended to be much different, was made out of rayon chenille, and rayon crochet filament. The rayon filament- while it is wonderfully shiny and golden had to be multi-stranded to knit up at a sport weight gauge to match the chenille, and it became a bit too stiff to work with the fair-isle vision in my head. So, I crocheted a little birdlike shape over the knitting instead! It wasn't exactly what I envisioned, but I was pretty happy with the outcome.


Joansie said...

What a nice gift from your brother!!!

I love, love, love, the doll, and yes, the hair is perfect. Brian, I've decided there is no end to your talents.

Keep sharing pics with us!!

Knitnut,Karen said...

I love the doll! The hair is a hoot! What a great gift from your brother. It's nice you were gifted with something pertaining to your interest!

Toni said...

Happy New Year Brian!

Love the doll and I am really jealous of your Aran yarn....oooooh.. LOVE it what a perfect gift.

The slippers are lovely!

Have a great 2009

Chris C - Ringwood, NJ said...

I love the doll..oh wait...she's MINE!! I don't think I did anything that special to warrant such a spectacular gift...but I am thrilled beyond words that you think that much of me to make her just for me. I can't tell you how much I appreciate her and love you.
Thank you just doesn't seem to be enough. Know that she will be cherished for years to come. I have her at work right next to my computer screen and I see all day while I work. She's sitting right on top of my Scooby Doo stapler..Ride em Cowgirl!! Hugs and much love!!

Unraveling Sophia said...

That doll is so cute - I love her!! And your slippers! Well, I love all your projects!

That yarn is indeed a great gift. I hope it softens up with washing so you can make a nice sweater with it. I suggest a great vintage cardigan with leather buttons downs the front and pockets a la Narnia style! :)

Maureen said...

Wow that is some net of yarn! Amazing really. Lucky you! Love the new slippers ( I have to make a new pair for myself since mine are falling apart!) Glad you had a lovely holiday and 2009 is here! Did you cast on for some socks yet? Can't wait to see the new baby blankets! I have three gifts to make for new parents in the next couple of months! I'dbetter get moving on those too!

hakucho said...

If what you say about starting the new year is true...I'm doomed. I brought the new year in sick as a dog!!

The doll you made is very adorable. I can see why Chris likes it so much!
You did a great job designing her :)

LDSVenus said...

The slippers turned out really well, I may have to break down and make me a pair for my feet as well :).

I'm glad you had a wonderful holiday with family and that you got that well deserved extra little bit of sleep :).

The doll is sooooo cute, she looks like Wonderwoman to me, except that wild hair, love it :P.