Saturday, October 22, 2011

Rav member Fenna, and her gorgeous shawl through clue 2
My silk triangle shawl, through clue 1, with gold beads
One more clue, and the end is so close we can almost touch it! By now, the rounds are becoming tediously long, but as the edge begins to unravel, hopefully you all have new found energies to arrive in London safely and claim your wage :)
Unfortunately, my experimentation with some of the new Ravelry features had a rather disastrous effect; Some of you found that clicking the "update" button brought indeed the new clue, but also wiped out the past clues from Rav library. In retrospect, this makes a lot of sense; the "update" function is there to let you know that there is a new version of a pattern you acquired, and that means the old pattern is obsolete and it is removed when the new, updated version is uploaded. sigh.
Fortunately, I think I will be able to use this feature next year, and just have one cumulative pattern that gets updated with the new clue added, so you won't miss old clues or have dozens of little clues all over. This is still on the refining process, and I definitely have to make sure that there are no glitches (such as, Rav attempting to charge you after the pattern changes from free to pay). But we are getting there. Meanwhile, if your data got wiped out, you can either buy the cumulative pattern (2.50, not a bad deal), which you can keep in your library forever, or if you honestly feel you are owed a copy, email me and I will send you a copy of the pattern up to clue 12, but yo won't be able to keep it in the library or update it with the final clues.
Clue 3 will take us one step closer to the end. However, I need to push its release a couple of days back, to Sunday, October 30th. I will be in a conference in San Francisco until then, and even if I take my laptop with me, I don't want to have any surprises having to rely on whatever Internet connection I have in the hotel (some hotels give you very limited data upload and such).
Any good yarn stores I should visit while I am in SF???

New projects

With my square shawl trudging along the last rows of USA, I really needed to get cracking on my mom's coat. This is the first time I design a truly shaped sweater, with set in sleeves, sleeve caps, and all that jazz. There was a lot of math, and I really had to struggle to stay organized and type down the instructions as I go. I have a bad habit of making shorthand notes in a dozen different locations, which make perfect sense at the time, but after a few weeks, or even days, I can't decipher my own gibberish. Case in point is the hat I developed as a swatch. I did some beautiful crown shaping with the cabled motifs merging gorgeously, and now I can't for the life of me figure out how I did it. Which means making another hat while I try to figure out whether the scribbles are cable symbols or Chinese characters.
This coat also meant I had to develop smarter strategies to make the model, and minimize frogging. I am almost programmed to start a sweater at the back, then make the fronts, then the sleeves. However,  I started at the front side, to test the armhole and neck shaping. Now I am moving to the sleeve, which also has a lot of shaping. If those fit well, then the rest of the coat follows. I am scaring myself with all this organization. And I am shaking in my boots to think about grading this (adding extra sizes). But the pattern is too beautiful to keep it solely as my mom's pet projects, so I will have to woman up and do it.

Elly Samples
A big thanks to those of you who offered to make a sample Elly for me. I ended up with five samplers, one who offered her own stash (thanks Dragonflyjenn!), and here is what the other four got:

From the top: Pink yarn is Stroll Glimmer, a fingering yarn with threads of lurex. It is actually quite soft to touch, and the twinkle is quite subtle. I think if I was a little girl, I would go nuts over a little hat or scarf made with this. I think it is going to make a very cheery and fun scarf!. Red yarn is the luscious Gloss DK, a silk/merino blend that is just delish to touch. Purple yarn is some Shadow from my own stash, a pretty basic workhorse lace yarn with a lovely heathered color. Finally, the blue yarn is Stroll Tonal, but the picture really does not do justice to the lovely color variations within. All in all, a stellar lineup, I think we should have a great collection of Ellies in a variety of impersonations, and I can't wait to meet them all!
Thank you to all of the participants!
Just some pretty yarn...
 All my latest project are brown, brown, brown... so I was thrilled when I got my first installment of the Sweet Georgia Yarn sock yarn club. Such lovely, romantic blend of browns, purples and turquoise. The photo does not do it justice.
I have also been toying with the idea of making a little football shirt for my littlest one using Gridiron. The ownership of the magazine is up, and the pattern is now all mine. So I need to type it up, make some new photos, and put it up for sale. I have a Minnesota Vikings version for my eldest, so the choice now is, what to do for the little one? Arizona Cardinals or Iowa State Cyclones? I think daddy would love the little monster on a Cyclones shirt...It is such a fun little knit! And there has to be some football lover moms and grandmas that want to make one for their kids this Christmas, don't you think?

Will there be a 2012 KALendar?
Of course there will be! it is just too much fun not to do it. I have started chewing on some ideas and inspirations, but as usual your input means so much to me. You all know that the KALendar is a frogocracy (I get to make all the decisions), but still your opinions and wishes often fuel my inspiration and help me push the envelope. So I will likely start a thread within the group so you can all sound your opinion, and get me going. This year, it was very clear that things are a lot better when you have more planning time, though we ended up in crunch time for the border. Thank God for my test knitters!!!! They saved my butt a few times.

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