Sunday, November 27, 2011

It's been a while

I had been doing well on the posting-something-every-day front, until approximately three weeks ago. Oops.

I have a sweater design going, but it's on indefinite hold. When I originally bought the yarn, there wasn't enough in stock. I bought what was available and put in an order for the rest; it was expected to arrive last week. Unfortunately, the manufacturer's warehouse was out of stock. Fingers crossed, it'll come in December. Until then, inertia.

In the meanwhile, I've started something completely different. Last year, I made the Aran Necklace Camisole (Caroline Bautista, Interweave Knits Spring 2010). My FO is peach, but the yarn I originally intended to use was a dark plum. As I knit the braided cables, most of the detail was lost between the dark color of the yarn and shadows. I switched yarns, and the plum languished in the bottom of my stash for a year and a half. Because of the aforementioned inertia, I went stash diving, and got the inspiration for another design. I'm nearly finished; hopefully I'll be able to post it next weekend. Sizing may take longer.

My Black Friday "Haul" (because two items doesn't really qualify as a haul) includes More Last-Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson. Coincidentally, Joëlle was my name at French Camp, where I was a counselor for a couple years. I really like that it's organized by the estimated time it will take to knit. On my knit list: Leah's Lovely Cardigan, toe-up socks, soft as a cloud cowls, very pretty lace scarf, beret, sideways fingerless gloves, spiral seat cushion, big lace scarf, baby bonnet, linen-stitch bookmarks, and pointy elf hat. If I actually make half of these, it will have been a wise investment.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

DIY Unity Candle

My fiancé was raised Jewish, I was raised Catholic; now we're both atheists and are planning our wedding (a civil ceremony, of course). He doesn't want any reference to anything remotely religious, so anything like "blessing," "this holy day," "the spirit" is out. I still want to do the Unity candle, because I really like the symbolism; the challenge was to make it non-religous. I have yet to see anything marketed as a unity candle that didn't have a cross on it, and hadn't found regular, pretty candles that fit the picture I had in mind, so I made one. It's really easy, but pushing the pins in left my thumb sore for several days.

Materials:                                                   Candle                                                          Scotch Tape                                                  Graph Paper                                                      Pen or Pencil                                                    Pins with Pearlized Heads

1. Draw your design on the graph paper. I did a simple grid, offset by two squares in either direction. Design anything you want, but be careful not to put the pins too close together. If they're too close together, they don't quite go in all the way, and any slight misalignment will be very noticeable. 

2. Putting tape on one end of the paper, tape paper to candle, being sure to line up the bottom of the paper with the bottom of the candle. 

3. Carefully wrap the remainder of the graph paper around the candle, again keeping the bottoms in line. Tape the paper to keep it in place.
4. Push the pins halfway in as marked, all the way around the candle. 

5. Gently tear away the graph paper. Remove any spare bits of paper or tape stuck on the candle.

6. Push the pins in the rest of the way. Ta dah!

The finished project
Close up

For a different look, you could use straight, unadorned pins alone, or put a bead or sequin on the head. 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Is it good?

Can one still eat that opened can of beets that's been in the fridge for 9 days? Find out here. Those beets, as it turns out, are not so good anymore. Especially if they were stored inside an open metal can (oops).