Random.. Thursday.

I lose whole days all the time. This year.. I think I lost the whole month of November. *sigh* So.. this will be a sort of catch-up, wrap up loose ends kind of post..

First up – the last photos from last weekend’s dyeing spree! When I last posted, there was some yarn soaking in the 2nd exhaust dye bath of the cochineal, along with some blue vitriol mordant. I promised pictures the next morning, but I forgot to actually take the yarn out until the next morning (or maybe I was supposed to do it in the morning and didn’t get to it until that night? Something like that) so here’s both skeins sitting in warm water but not really rinsed while I reheated the dye bath and added the 2nd mordant (cream of tartar):

(All images are clickable thumbnails; click to load a larger version)

Both skeins have a definite purplish cast to them which I believe is due to the blue vitriol mordant. I was tempted to just leave the cotton skein (the lighter, lavenderish one) because I really liked that color, but I was also aware that it would likely fade quite a bit once I rinsed it well. So back they both went in, and when they came out the second time and were rinsed, they looked like this (sort of.. this shot is a bit washed out from the flash):

Definitely more reddish, but still more purple than the previous stuff. I hung them to dry and they ended up like this:

It’s pretty neat, all in all, especially since this was essentially the third set of items we dyed with this dye bath. I really love how the skein of wool turned out – it’s got some variation in it, but it looks like it’s been dyed in a nice red wine – and I can’t wait to see what Carol makes with it. The cotton is fairly subtle, but still definitely purple, and I’m thinking I might need to figure out a little girl shirt of some for my niece for her birthday in May.

Right then – up next is the Easy Lace Jacket. I’ve had a few people contact me, either here or through Ravelry, with questions about this pattern, as well as asking for modeled pictures.

Generally speaking, if you have questions about any pattern, I would strongly recommend you contact the person who wrote the pattern – in this case Joan McGowan-Michael at White Lies Designs – as they’re going to be the best person to help you out. I can tell you, at least as far as I remember, how I did the decreases (one stitch in from the edge, adjusting the lace pattern as I went) but I really am not that great at relaying the details of exactly what I did to text. Similarly with the lace for the cuffs & collar – I followed the pattern, knit each piece separately, and sewed them all together at the end. Sorry not to be of more assistance, but really – contact Joan if you’re running into difficulty or have questions!

Modeled pictures, though, I can do. *smile* First, though, I should pr’bly admit that I never bothered to do buttons or button loops for this one. I pretty rarely ever close cardigans when I wear them and I was excited to start wearing this one pretty much as soon as I finished it, so that part never got finished. For me, it works fine, especially because the lace pattern – which acts very much like ribbing – would make the cardigan more clingy than I’d be comfortable with, but your mileage may vary.

Sort of profile.. (and a bonus shot of one of my favorite prints in the background!)
An attempt to better show the collar and sleeve lace better

I think I mentioned this when I first finished it, but it’s worth mentioning again now – if I were to do this one again (and I might), I’d change the sleeves a bit. They are both too wide and slightly too short at the cuff. I would make them a few inches longer and taper them more to the wrist, and also likely try to figure out shortening the lace dags so the seam fell closer to my actual wrist. That said, I wear this one as it is pretty frequently and I *LOVE* the length of the body.

Right then, moving on.. the holiday sweater I’m working on is not terribly exciting to photograph, but I will let you know that the back is finished and the front is about 2/3rds finished. It should be finished in plenty of time and I’ll take pictures when it gets there.

I’m continuing to work on the DNA scarf, though not as diligently as I thought I might.

I have the cable chart memorized at this point, though, so I can knit it just about anywhere. It will need some judicious blocking when I’m finished as it’s a little lumpy at the moment, and at some point I’ll need to figure out how long it will want to be so that I know when to start crossing the cables in the other direction (I’m not doing the ribbing in the middle because I don’t like how that would look, so I’ll just end up picking a point at which to make the helix twist in the other direction).

And since I’m pretty sure my sweetie doesn’t make it over here to check up on me, here’s a peek at one of his holiday gifts:

I’m doing a pair of Garter Rib socks, toe-up, in black Panda cotton. I’m glad I heeded Cathy‘s advice and went with a non-cabled pattern because the Panda is a bit splitty! Socks in a men’s size 11 are *huge*, too, and I’ve been trying not to knit them when he’s around (he doesn’t always pay that close of attention to what I’m working on, but sometimes he surprises me), so I’m hoping I can snag enough time in fits and starts to get them finished on time.


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