Vacations + Lots of Free Time = Startitis

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So, since last Tuesday after work, I have been on what I term a mini-vacation. Which means I’m still in Des Moines and at home, but I don’t go out, sleep as much as I want, eat when I want, ect. My schedule is amazingly ready for classes despite this. I’ve spent some time gaming, but with this my last day of summer, I decided to take pictures of all my works in progress. Maybe I’ll even finish some of them

To start, some food I’m pretty proud of:

This is my same old bread recipe I’ve been using, but my technique has come a long way in my opinion. For one, the top doesn’t crack nearly so bad, the outside shell is a bit thinner and super wonderful, and I get stuff that looks about the same each time. Quite pleased.

Next are mulberry pancakes I made on the first day of the mini-vacation. This is the bottom side, so you can’t see the golden deliciousness on the other. And they’re on a towel so I can keep them covered while I cook the rest.

These are incredibly light and delicious, with nice crisp edges. My secrets: separate eggs to be used in batter. Throw the yolk in, and then beat egg whites stiff but not dry. Fold in lightly after batter is mixed, as the last step. You should also only have enough mixing done prior to this for there to midsized lumps. To keep my berries from burning and/or bursting horribly, I drop them in, as you can see below, after I pour the mix.

And now we can move to my major pet spinning project! In an attempt to see how I want to spin, I’ve decided to turn the Jacob from the stash bust into a 9-ply yarn, hopefully around aran weight. It’s also my attempt to spin a uniform single. Too bad I forgot to take a picture of the sample card I’m so proud of.

I’ve got eight bobbins so far (the spindle is ready to be transferred). I’ll be spinning different sets of them into 3-plies, and then all of those together into the 9-ply. IE, bobbins 1, 4, and 7 go together, 2, 5, and 8, and so forth. I’ll be keeping track of which 3-plies where spun when too, so I can do the best mix possible to get as even a yarn as possible.

Knitting has oodles, as apparently I’ve had a case of startitis and not noticed.

The phoenix cardigan is coming along swimmingly–here you can see the talons and tail as they’ve formed. I didn’t even notice until I was spreading it to keep the floats from being too short, and then I was just happy as a clam with myself.

I started work on second cardigan, which has slowed down. The yarn was starting to hurt my hands in places, and it’s also a bit big to move around much. If you follow me on twitter, you’ve seen a few photos already.

The first of the socks knit from my handspun is done, primarily because I was sick of the yarn, and I’m not satisfied with this draft of the pattern. I also realized I really have to go down a needle size if I ever want the other one to fit. This one is a bit loose, but hey. Draft. Right.

In happier sock news, I’ve moved from the first sock of my Ruby Slippers and into the second. I used a short row toe to start this time, and I must say it is an adorable toe, the least fiddly toe up start ever, and I’m entirely pleased with how adorable it looks on my toe. It’s perfect. I’m trying to do the second sock by ‘reading’ the first, with the occasional check of the pattern before I get too far in to make sure I haven’t seriously messed up.

The not-seen-since-the-swatch Greek Key Lace scarf is here again; I’ve added a few rows, but otherwise I have to finish all the yarn before I can finish, and I don’t want to keep knitting without knowing when that is. I’ve got a bit to go, but I really do mean to finish this. Sometime. It’s too pretty to leave in-progress forever.

And last, a slightly not really secret new design I’m working on for a potentially large shawl. It’s all multiples of 12, which is the only reason I’m not crying in a corner somewhere, and I’m totally in love with it so far. I think it’s a fusion of what I love in Orenburg lace–using blank space to accent the not blank–and Estonian lace–every stitch pattern ever–to create something I think will make for a lovely large shawl. The sample, however, is at best scarf material, and provided I love it, I will likely include the chart to make it with the pdf for the larger version, which will have the center rectangle framed. (You can make out my mostly to scale drawing on the left, just barely. The sample is being knit with some Plymouth Baby Alpaca Lace I had in my stash, 2 balls of Chocolate)

If I like it, I’ll attempt to get some more silk/merino lace and knit the large version. Then pattern testing, and then… I may actually have a pattern I won’t feel guilty selling because it’s stupid easy and you could put it together by yourself.

And I think I’ll this stuff finished in time for me to still do Christmas knitting. Hah!

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One response »

  1. I can’t wait for fall to start – I haven’t done any bread baking over the summer but now that fall is approaching I want to bake more. Do you know what you are going to knit with that lovely Jacob you are spinning – it is so lovely! All of your projects look so lovely – I can’t wait to see your new design! I hope the first week of school wasn’t too painful and that you find a great balance between school work, work & crafting!

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