Thursday, June 23, 2011

TP Roll Wall Art

As soon as I saw this a few months ago, I started saving up my TP rolls.

6.20 TP roll wall art

I used the glue/clothes pin method (as opposed to the staple method) with some old "school glue" I had. I had to do the project over a few days, due to my number of clothes pins. When the glue was all dry, I spray painted it green. For now, I've hung it up on one wall of my living/dining room, though I feel like it looks out of scale with the wall and am thinking of where else to put it in my house.

TP roll wall art

A great, easy, CHEAP project. :)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Mmmm Cake!

I made this yummy cake last weekend with rhubarb from my mom's garden.


Rhubarb cake out of the oven

Rhubarb cake - glazed

It was really good. I'm going to try to adapt it into scones.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Today I like...

  • The Swing Years and Beyond, a great music program on KUOW (you can stream it on their website).
  • Love Bites, a new NBC show. It's a bit different than anything else I've seen. Each episode is a series of vignettes. There are some recurring characters and some people who only appear for a part of an episode. I'd like it if it didn't get canceled, so everyone should start watching (except you, Mom--this is not a show for you).
  • Trader Joe's Nonfat Plain Greek Yogurt. Slightly less expensive than other Greek Yogurts, but just as good.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Uh oh...

Totally cruising on the blanket for Rupa's baby. I've got some notes up on my ravelry project page about what I'm doing here.

But I'm realizing more and more that I may have a problem with this project. I'm afraid I will have a very hard time giving it away. I'm in love with the colors. That crappy cell picture DOES NOT do the Noro's magnificence justice.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

FO: Pink Baby Cardi

Pink Cardi

Pattern: Louise Cardigan from Vintage Baby Knits (ravelry page)
Yarn: Pagewood Farm Yukon
Size: 3-6 mo

This project was great on many levels: Uses less than 1 skein of sock yarn; Minimal seaming; Simple directions; Adorable result. The yarn is wool, bamboo and nylon, and the bamboo lends a nice sheen to the fabric. I did soak this with a bit of vinegar because I sensed there would be some color-bleed, and I was happy to see only minimally pink-tinted water when I pulled the sweater from the vinegar bath.

I considered leaving the buttons off. The neck seems a bit small to me. I'm not sure who I'll give this to (maybe my sister-in-law if her baby is a girl), but I'll suggest to the eventual recipient that they remove the buttons and just let it be an open cardi.

Pink Cardi

The book that this pattern is from, Vintage Baby Knits, is chock full of adorable baby/toddler patterns. This is the first thing I've knit from the book, but I do anticipate making at least a few more of the patterns. My sister gave me the book for Christmas as a not-so-subtle hint. :P

I kind of want to make myself a grown up version of this sweater. The stitch patterns at the neck and sleeve cuffs are fun, and I can totally picture a grown up version of this in a lovely pale gray. Hmmm...

Friday, June 17, 2011

FO: Noro Shoulder Hug

Noro Shoulder Hug

Pattern: Gaia Shoulder Hug (ravelry page)
Yarn: Noro Kureyon Sock
Needle: US 5

This is project was a fun, easy knit. It allows the colors of Noro to do the work. I'm not too keen on these colors, though (not sure why I bought this ball of yarn in the first place...) and I'm not sure where this shawlette is destined to go, but for now it'll go into the To-Gift pile.

On a totally unrelated note! Yesterday I learned about a great, FREE, in-browser photo editor ( and I made myself a better blog banner. The UI is pretty user-friendly, considering it's free. I found it really easy and nice to use. :)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

FO update: Geurnsey-ish Wrap


I posted briefly about this way back on Jan 1, and now I finally have some modeled shots of it. I gave it to my sister in honor of her completing of Masters degree.


She is moving to Pennsylvania next month to begin work on a PhD, and I think this wool wrap will prove useful in the harsh East Coast winter. It can be worn all bunched up at the neck, or wrapped around the shoulders for different levels of warmth.


The wrap garnered lots of ooohs and ahhhs from the other guests at the graduation party. I think the pattern really showcases the yarn, Dream in Color Smooshy (2 skeins, none left over). I'm glad to send this project off to its new home.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


...then throwing that plan out the window!

That's what I've been doing. Since I found out that Raj's sister is pregnant a couple weeks ago, I've been deep in thought about what to gift her. Knitted blanket ideas have been swirling around in my head and I've been making little notes to myself and [heart]ing designs on ravelry. Today I made some sketches of what I envisioned: a square knit from the center out with three different lace motifs--flowers, leaves and waves. Then I went to the yarn store.

I had asked one of Raj's cousins about colors for Indian babies. In India, it's illegal to determine gender before birth (according to Raj), so gender-neutral was a must, but I wanted to know if there were color preferences. Raj's cousin said she didn't think there were color preferences but "they all love bright colors." So I went in search of vibrantly colored yarn that would be appropriate for a warm climate (Raj's sister lives in Bangalore where it will be about 60-80 degrees when the baby is born in December).

I thought I would use a dk or smaller cotton or cotton blend, but nothing at the yarn shop was striking my fancy. Nothing, that is, besides the new Noro Taiyo Sock yarn, a blend of cotton, wool, nylon and silk. If I was a crow, Noro yarns would be my shiny thing.

Taiyo Sock

I decided to throw out all my previous plans and use two colorways of the yarn to make a simple striped blanket. My new plan is to work from the center out, alternating colors every two rows with a jogless stripe, then work an attached border all in the darker color. So now to plan out my border....

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Today I like... (library edition)

  • Knitting in public. (Outside the library.)
  • Listening to Bossypants on CD from the library.
  • My local library branch. Golly, I love my library! (It has a green roof!)
  • This fun cookbook--that I got from the library!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Geek Cake

XY cake

Sunday was my dad's birthday, Raj's is this Saturday, and my brother-in-law's was about a month ago (and we never really celebrated it) so we went on a family hike on Sunday, followed by dinner and cake at our house. In honor of us celebrating the birthdays of all the males in our clan, I decorated this cake in sweet, geeky berries depicting their XY chromosomes. How could I resist???

I used this tutorial for tips on frosting the cake, and smooshed some berries in between the layers for a bit of added yumminess. The cake was from a mix (Dr. Oetker's Organic Chocolate Cake--pretty dry) and the frosting was from this recipe--it was delicious without being too rich (I made a batch and a half, and had barely enough to fill and frost the cake).

For our hike, we went to the Coal Creek Trail. It was a really nice, relatively easy 6 miles. The scenery was gorgeous, a little pocket of oasis in the middle of suburban sprawl.

Coal Creek Trail

But it was humid as heck! This cute sign was posted at the trailhead. Hehe.


Thursday, June 9, 2011

FO: Plush Letter Pincushion


I used scraps to whip up this stuffed R pincushion. I tried my best to stuff it so that it didn't look so wonky, but with only limited success. Still, I love it. It has a little ribbon the top so that I can hang it on the wall (or my lamp) when I'm not using it.

I think I'll make more of these for gifts.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

End of Spring Playlist #2

The Heart Is A Stone
  1. Aurelio - Mayahuaba (no video available)
  2. Beach House - 10 Mile Stereo
  3. The Watson Twins - Just Like Heaven
  4. Bon Iver - Blood Bank
  5. eastmountainsouth - Hard Times
  6. Flight of the Conchords - Friends
  7. Local Natives - Wide Eyes
  8. The Love Language - Summer Dust
  9. Miniature Tigers - Dark Tower
  10. Quadron - Slippin
  11. R.E.M. - Oh My Heart
  12. Ray LaMontagne & The Pariah Dogs - New York City's Killing Me
  13. The Watson Twins - Lady Love Me (no video available)
  14. Avi Buffalo - One Last
  15. Beach House - Take Care
  16. I Nine - Same In Any Language
  17. Iron & Wine - Half Moon

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

FO: Mystery Shawlette


Pattern: Summer Mystery Shawlette (rav project page)
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Sock


I had to use my best aggressive blocking skills on this one. The pre-block shawlette was smaller than I expected, but after blocking, I'm happy with the size. I'm not sure about the destination of this one, but I think I'm thinking of entering it in the fair.


A little note about mystery knit-alongs: They're great fun! I've done a couple of socks ones (this and this) and this was my first shawlette. It is a bit of a leap of faith, but it's interesting to have a bit of mystery in your knitting. If you get the chance to do a mystery KAL, go for it!

FO: Taiyo Heaven Shawlette


Pattern: 198 Yards of Heaven (rav project page)
Yarn: Noro Taiyo, one skein--none leftover


This shawlette was great fun to knit. The yarn is showcased by the relatively simple pattern. It really came down to the wire with yarn, though. I barely had enough to weave in the end.


I think I'll save it for myself and wear this coming fall--the Taiyo is a bit warm for this time of year.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Are shawlettes the new socks???

Two more finished shawlettes to share, plus one more on the needles currently. It's got me wondering: Are shawlettes my new socks?? I used to whip through socks; they were my knit of choice for quite a while, but now it takes me months to finish a pair, and it gets to be like pulling teeth by the end.

Shawlettes have piqued my interest as a great use of sock yarn. I've made a couple of shawlettes 2 years ago (this one and this one) and I guess I forgot the near-instant gratification of knitting a lace shawlette.

Experiement: Jean Jacket

I have this old jean jacket. I think I got it in about 2001.


It's been getting a bit faded, though. So I thought I'd dye it darker. Trying to not think about all the freaky chemicals it contains, I bought a package of Rit in Jean Blue and used the washing machine method described inside the box to dye the jacket.

Re-dyed jacket

I have slightly mixed feelings about the result. I wish it was a bit darker, more toward indigo. But I'm going to go with it as it is, for now.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

End of Spring Playlist #1

Some People Say That We're Incredible

note: links are youtube videos (except 16 which is vimeo)
  1. Miniature Tigers - Bullfighter Jacket
  2. Quadron - Pressure
  3. The Love Language - Heart To Tell
  4. Beach House - Used To Be
  5. Flight of the Conchords - Hurt Feelings
  6. Local Natives - Sun Hands
  7. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Soft Shock
  8. LCD Soundsystem - I Can Change
  9. Avi Buffalo - What's In It For?
  10. Miniature Tigers - Lolita
  11. Aurelio - Tio Sam
  12. Iron & Wine - Tree By The River
  13. The Love Language - Brittany's Back
  14. Local Natives - Who Knows Who Cares
  15. The Swell Season - Feeling the Pull
  16. The Watson Twins - Savin' You
  17. Wait What - Juicy-R

FO: Daybreak

Daybreak Shawlette

Pattern: Daybreak by Stephen West (ravelry project page)
Yarn: Jojoland Melody Superwash
Needle: US 4

This was my first time knitting one of Stephen West's patterns. This shawlette had been floating around in my brain for a few months; each time I saw a sample in a yarn shop, the idea got a bit stronger. Then I inventoried my sock yarn stash, found these two balls of Melody, and a bit later I was buying the pattern.

Daybreak Shawlette

It was simple, nearly-mindless knitting, and I love the result so much that I'm keeping it for myself. :D

I plan on knitting this again with a couple of colorways of Noro Silk Garden Sock that are in the stash (this and this).

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Today I like...