Thursday, December 30, 2010


Did you have a wonderful Christmas? We did! Though it was very intimate and quiet, just the four of us. Our families all live far away, and my work schedule did not permit any travelling. But it was fun nevertheless.

Baby Calvin turned two. Having a birthday just before Christmas is a bummer, but he is too little to care, yet.
There was a Sponge Bob ice cream cake, after all

It was much enjoyed. All over the table, the floor,  and the kid.   
 And then of course, the Big Show! Christmas Day is so much more fun with two little kids around.

Presents under the tree! now we are talking

Yahoo! what a loot

a happy customer, hoarding his toys

Three hours of wrapping, gone in minutes

I got the sweetest Christmas gift too! A bottle of perfume engraved with a very sweet message from my husband, and a DRESSFORM! yahoo! It just melts my heart to think of my husband calling sewing stores trying to get the thing.Of course, I got him a tool chest, and I am like a fish out of water in a hardware store, so we are even.  So now, I have no excuse to try and design a woman's sweater.

Incredibly, my year end's plan for knitting was almost realized. A couple of secret projects done, gone, and waiting to be published. The 2010 Kalendar done in time! and so many gorgeous pictures cropping up of your finished projects! I am so proud of what we have all achieved. And... Winterchild finished! And I can't resist showing it off on the new dress form
Here it is, pre-blocking

DH found these extra-large, well priced mats at Home Depot

Here it is - all blocked

A triangle drape

here showing the square shape better

A detail of the pattern

I have gathered a nice group of testers, and the pattern is off to Kate the tech editor, and now I have to manage some beautiful photographs, and it will be in the KnitPicks IDP site very soon. I enjoyed working with their Shimmer Alpaca-Silk blend lace yarn once more, it feels luxurious, it has a beautiful sheen and feel. DH is working on making me a little table-top studio, to see if we can improve the quality of the photography. He is such a gem.

Of course, right now I am suffering from the post project blues. Sometimes, after powering through a big project or two, I feel drained. So yesterday I went on a pointless shopping expedition, which is usually a great pick-me-up.
First, to the bookstore - I got a copy of Wrapped in Lace, and I almost read it cover to cover sitting at the Starbucks inside B&N. What a lovely book. I felt immediate kinship with Margaret Stove's creative journey through lace. I wish I could create such lovely, perfect gems as she has.

And also, a copy of this. It has been a long time since I have read it, so I thought I would do the homework to get my inspiration together! I wanted a hard copy I could earmark, make notes and put tabs on. After the first two chapters, I found myself remembering how much I have loved Verne's books as a child. If you want to read it too, the book is available as part of the Creative Commons, and free in the web in a number of free pdf's formats. Here is one, from U of Philadelphia. So now you don't have an excuse not to read along!

Then, to the yarn shop... of course! To show off Winterchild. And I could not escape without a copy of Barbara Walker's Knitting from the Top , since I fully intend to design a woman's sweater some time in the future. Always an excuse to get another book.

And yes, yarn. I promised to myself I would not buy any, but I had promised my sister a hat months ago, after her favorite Urchin started to fall apart. And conveniently, they had some Yak/cormo blend yarn in natural hues that was to die for! After a quick Rav search for a pattern that suited my sister, I settled for Louisa by Kristi Pedersen, which not only uses the same hues, and same gauge, but it just looks like it is made for my sister.

The first few rows form a knitted Latvian braid, a technique used in many Nordic style patterns, which is fun (but slow) to make and quite lovely. I expect that I will need a couple of quick, fun projects to get over the whole shawl blues. Hats, mitts and socks, here I go!

And of course, expect to hear more about the 2011 Kalendar soon, as I start drawing inspiration from the book, and swatching, lots of swatching.

My new year's resolutions?
To give you all a lovely 2011 Kalendar to treasure
To design a woman's sweater
To get off my chest a couple of other small designs (shawlettes, mostly)
Once more, to clean off my WIP drawer
To do a better job of keeping in contact with my friends.
And to lose 10 lbs and exercise more. This one is a bonus and i would not hold my breath.
Have a great 2011 everybody!

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