Christmas, right around the corner...

One gift down!  The giant Christmas afghan for the parental units has been completed.  I really enjoyed working on this, my third blanket.  It's wonderful to have a blanket going this time of year where you want one on your lap anyways.  My parents are Christmas freaks and should appreciate the Red, White, and Green goodness that has kept me warm for the last few months.  I think the next blanket will be crocheted...

I'm not usually big on Christmas.  Halloween is more my thing, but this year i kinda missed out on Halloween and i'm pouring it into Christmas.  Nothing crazy like my parents, but doing it up in my own way.  Susan/Sanddollar had crocheted up the CUTEST christmas tree from a Gnome pattern on Ravelry and i decided i needed one too ; )  Aren't they adorable!!!

It hasn't been decided yet how the adorable trees will be gifted.  Last year consisted of homemade cookies and fudge in snowflake chinese takeout containers mailed out to good friends not in the bay area.  I've been on the vegan cooking spree this year but am thinking about setting it aside for some delicious tiger butter.  Mmmmm...  What's your favorite holiday small gifty item(s)?

Ramble, Ramble

It's been a long couple of weeks, i'm tired.  Two weeks of system testing including one week with the end users in NY.  I'm so looking forward to the Thanksgiving break!  One good thing from NY was the start of the Purple Snowflake socks.  Pictures soon...but i want to have more then 2" of lef to show before the socks are put out to the public.

I sat down for some quality time with the blanket for my parents christmas present this evening.  Good progress made, and blanket will not be knit on the plane...but my brothers scarf may be.  Oh well : )

Handspun done over the weekend: Shiny Night
50% Tencel
45% Suri Alpaca
5% Mohair Top
Spinning Method: over the fold
Date Spun: Nov 23, 2008
Yards: 166

Merino: Watercolors

Merino: Watercolors
Originally uploaded by dre_ah
1st yarn off the new spinning wheel!

Content: Merino
Spun: short forward draw/worsted
Ply: Navajo
Yards: 77spun

Vintage Crochet Strikes in SoCal

I spent a few days with friends in family in my homeland of Southern California this past weekend.  Part of any good trip involves a yarn crawl.  Unfortunately i was reminded of how lacking in the creativity department SoCal can be.  Out of 3 yarn stores within 25 miles of my parents house we came away with the following results:

1) Open, 95% dedicated to Cross Stitch - That's NOT yarn or yarn~ish goodness!!!
2) Closed, on Saturday, @ 2:30pm?!?!?! - Ummm...that's just dumb
3) Open, hard to find tucked up on the second floor with no signs

#3 - Phebie's Needle Art (pic on left) - turned out to be ok, but i was so over it by the time i found it there was a quick walk through noticing all of the basics they had in stock and a dart out the door to see if there were any interesting shops tucked away in the complex.

I found a Vintage Shop - La Bomb Ba.  Super awesome find of some crochet tops from the 60's through the 80's.  Nothing came home with me, but I totally fell in love with a short cropped sun design that would make a beautiful sundress.  Must improve crochet skills.

And now for giggles and kicks ... drum rollllll ... the fantastic vintage tops.


Does anyone have any vintage~ish crochet tops?  Am i the only one feelin' the Granny Square calling?

Fresh Spring in November

Yes!  The Denim Spring Cardigan has been finished!  The actual sweater was finished a few weeks ago, but the attachment of 3 large buttons took awhile.

I never thought I could be so picky about the buttons.  Originally i had picked up three large black flat circle buttons from JoAnne's, but when i got home i realized that this sweater was going to need more love in the button department then just a couple of generic buttons from the generic store.  Thus began the button search.  I stumbled across, The Button Drawer, cute buttons for a good price and no minimums!  I would totally recommend the site, awesome everyday round flat buttons to crazy celtic designs.

I purchased three different sets of buttons to checkout on the sweater.  The winner was Countryside, but the others are definitly going to find awesome projects in the next few months.  I LOVE the branch detail on Stormy Night, and they're 1" wide.  Yea for large buttons : )

Countryside  /  Tudor Rose  /  Stormy Night

Binary Hurts

Trying to make some progress on my brothers scarf for Christmas while listening to War and Peace.  Making great progress on War and Peace, i'm down to the last 7 1/2 hours (56 hours already listened to)!  During this marathon i have had an epiphany...i do not like straight needles Sam i am.  The scarf is double knit and looks awesome, but i'm working it on straight needles to ensure that i keep even tension while working the double knit pattern.  Even just with the break to type this out my fingers are happy and joyful for the relief from the straight needles and ready to type the night away.  This will have to be the last project on straight needles for awhile.  That very pretty lace scarf is just going to have to wait.

Here's the progress on the scarf so far...

Steampunk Knit Accessories

One thing came to mind the minute i heard about the Steampunk Convention...little lace gloves!  I found the perfect pattern on Ravelry - Mrs. Lovitt's Mitts.  They knit up super quick and looked perfect with both of my "evening" costumes.  I really enjoyed working with the crochet thread.  Shiny...

Mrs. Lovitt's Mitts

After working on sewing costumes for 4 days straight, the day of the con i decided that a shawl would be another essential accessory...and i had plenty of left over fabric scraps from the costumes: Denim, Chiffon, and Crepe Satin.  Thus the Steampunk Shawl plan was put into effect.  Cutting the scraps of fabric into 3/4" wide strips of varying lengths (essentially everything i could get out of what i had in the trash pile) and sewing the strips together.  I used my sewing machine on a medium short zigzag stitch, kind of like a stretched out buttonhole, to mimic a bartack.  It worked great the the pieces really stuck together.  I didn't even have any problems moving to the chiffon.  I started on Friday, and was done by Saturday in time for the concert.  This is definitely one of my favorite hand made items of all time.  The purple and blacks look awesome and i think the bows on the back really help to soften up the look.  More fabric strip knitting to come...

Steampunk Shawl  Steampunk Shawl of the costumes to follow.  Unfortunately i was totally silly and didn't take any at the con, so modeling will hopefully take place this week before the trip to SoCal.  The busy holiday season is upon us.