Friday, August 29, 2008

Lot's of new little projects!

Wow - I haven't touched my blog for over a month  - Lots of things happening - My mom went into the hospital with double pneumonia - she was there for over a week and we weren't really sure what was going on, but she's finally home! She must be doing better cuz she just had to go get her nails done! 
Maddie came home twice! We knew she was coming the first time, but she totally surprised us the second time. Her motive was Alice's 18th birthday - Maddie flew in around midnight, just when Alice and her friends were gathered around the firepit. Jim said he's never seen me look so dumbfounded when Maddie walked into the house. And when Alice realized her sister was home, she lost it and turned into a blubbering idiot! Maddie stayed 5 days - her job and school and  real life in Seattle was calling. We had so much fun.
Knit-wise: I've been knitting up storm - when don't I? 
I needed to get started on class projects - I taught 3 classes this summer - The beanie class was especially good, I guess because it's a beginner class and it teaches a few basic techniques which will be used in many other projects - knitting in the round, decreasing, changing or adding another color, and moving to double points. 
I also taught a beret class, which went much better when we split it into 2 classes, instead of 1  four hour class. We needed to master two important techniques: provisional (or invisible) cast-on, and short rows before moving on to the 3 needle bind-off. The break between the two classes let the students get comfortable with recognizing the wrap and turns of the short rows. This beret is a good learning as well as a creative project, since the size and feel of the hat can vary widely depending on the needle and yarn choice. 
My final class of the summer was the Rusched Pillow class. This was incredibly easy - the pattern is "Penelope's Pillow" from the book "Knitters Stash". The August class went especially good, since the gals taking it were visual people and could see the expansive possiblities. One gal is making the pillow, one is making it into a shawl, and the other an afghan. Mine morphed from a pillow to a scarf back to a pillow, but much different than the first. The front will remain pretty much the same, but different colors and the flipside will take on a totally different vision. I'll be using the same colors but it will be a fair isle pattern. If I get it done, it will be fabulous!
I also knit 3 little bags, two of them are an evening-size bag and one is more wallet sized. The pattern is the "Pleated Denim Bag" out of the Fall 08 Knitscene and a book called "Boutique Knits".  I used totally different yarns in all of them.
The wallet-sized one is out of Pagewood Sock Yarns, one is Ella Rae Shibu, and the other is a mix of Rowan Felted Tweed, Mountain Colors Barefoot and a metallic mohair. I went to the bead store and took a class and constructed a necklace that could be use as a handle for this last one.

Currently I'm working on the "Lucy Bag" for a class this fall, and I'll be teaching the Target Wave Mitten, by Norah Gaugan. I still have to work on Jim's sweater - Eeerrrggg! I feel like I'll never finish that!