Tuesday, July 29, 2008

endpaper mitts

i can't believe i'm finally posting about a finished pair of endpaper mitts! these have been such a long time coming...and as much as i'm happy with the finished results, more than anything, i am just glad to move them off the top of my ravelry projects page, down into finished object territory once and for all.

i started these in january, enthusiastically rushed through the first mitt, and then abandoned the project, since it was no longer new or novel. i still loved the yarn (oh nature's palette!), and i liked how the endpaper that i did finish looked, but more exciting things beckoned. occasionally, jenna would poke me with a stick and insist that i finish them, but these prods accompanied threats of stealing the finished endpapers for herself, so i took her advice with a grain of salt.

but she was right...i really did need to finish them! so finally, some time in june, i picked up my barely-started second endpaper mitt and started to work. i worked on it pretty slowly and intermittently (ha!), but never set is aside for good. and finally, they are both done. see...two!

i really, really love the color combination i used, and i will definitely use the nature's palette yarn again. i was a little worried that they were too small, but i took eunny's advice and blocked them on a tall glass that was about arm sized, and they loosened up to just the right size. i'm very glad i went ahead and finished these, and am left wanting to do some more color work.

pattern: endpaper mitts, by eunny jang
yarn: hand jive knits nature's palette fingering in coral, about half a skein, and shibuiknits sock in bark, a little over half of one skein.
needles: size 3 and size 1 addis
mods: i did not do the tubular cast on, because i tried it and it was way too tight, so i just did a regular long-tail cast on. i didn't do the tubular bind off, because i forgot. whoops!

ooh...one more thing! i made the now-famous new york times chocolate chip cookie recipe this weekend, and holy moly those are some good cookies! i followed the mods that orangette used (chocolate chips instead of the chocolate disks called for, and i just used regular all-purpose flour). i think the key is the long chill time (up to 36 hours!) and the sprinkle of sea salt on top, making these the perfect salty sweet treat. this recipe makes really big cookies! for my own health and safety, i've frozen half the batch so that i can enjoy them in a more moderate fashion, but i have no delusions that these will last long. go make some now!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

i'm a work in progress

i think i mentioned at the beginning of the year that i wanted to be better about blogging my works in progress, rather than just having a project appear fully formed out of nowhere on my blog. so here are two things i'm working on right now.

first...i took your advice on the wee skeins, and went for socks in the end. i'm just about done with the first color, and so far so good. i really like knitting socks two at a time! other than the two balls of yarn getting tangled, there's really nothing to it, and i feel an immense sense of relief that i don't have to worry about knitting one sock and then not feeling like knitting the other. genius!

as i started knitting these, i had to decide what order to do the colors, and i kept thinking that several combinations looked sort of like a sunset, with cooler blues and purples graduating up into vivid oranges and reds. so i'm dubbing these my sunset socks (or maybe sunrise? i can't decide). i'm eager to see how these actually look all knitted up, but in my head they look really pretty!

the other project i've got on the needles now is quite a big deal for me...my first big lace project, the swallowtail shawl! this project came out of nowhere for me...i have never really been drawn to triangular shawls before, but i saw this version of another shawl, the shetland triangle, and i was in love. but i didn't want to buy the book for just that pattern, and i equally loved the swallowtail, so i immediately cast on for that instead. i'm using some jamieson's ultra that i found at my yarn shop...i really liked how rustic and wooly it is, and the pretty pinky purple color, though sort of out of the ordinary for me, seemed just right. i'm halfway done with the second chart, and it's going fine. though the fact that each row gets longer and longer is starting to freak me out a little...

and that's it! two projects that i'm really enjoying at the moment...one simple and mindless that i can take anywhere, and one that is challenging me with a new skill. i hope to have both done pretty soon.

oh! and my weekend in anacortes! as i mentioned in my last post, we went to the what the heck? fest this weekend in anacortes, washington. i bought random junk at the shipwreck day event, and saw lots of very good bands play. it was a good time. i didn't take too many pictures, but i did snap this one outside a thrift store, that for some reason really cracks me up:

i'll be back soon, because i finally finished my endpaper mitts. finally!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

things i've been doing instead of blogging

- eating watermelon and rainier cherries and golden raspberries
- swimming in the lake, picnicking on the beach
- making my first semi-successful batch of peach jam
- reading this and this and this
- attending a whole lifetime's worth of barbecues
- hitting up the thrift stores every single weekend
- finishing some old knitting projects, and starting some new
- seeing this movie (love!)
- getting super excited about a weekend getaway to anacortes, washington, for this festival (hello, city-wide rummage sale!)

what have you been up to these past few weeks?

(the above pic is not really related to anything, but so as to not have a photo-less blog entry, i present 'still life of jam and sugar bowl')