Breaking the fast

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For about six months, I bought no yarn, no notions, no magazines or books. I could do this only because I knew that I'd be traveling to the Pacific Northwest and all its glorious yarn shops at the end of summer.

First up was Village Yarn and Tea, near my cousin's house outside Seattle. I bought this wonderful Kauni (pronounced cow-knee, as I learned) and will probably make a few hats out of the two large skeins. I hope to do a fake-isle style hat, something like these (Rav link).

Kauni
Kauni

Next was Churchmouse Yarn and Tea on Bainbridge Island. This is a truly lovely shop. They have tons of beautiful yarn, many shop samples, and a very helpful staff.

I bought two skeins of Socks that Rock Lightweight to make another Chevron Scarf (rav link).

This is Lunasea

STR lightweight, lunasea

and this is Carbon Dating.
STR lightweight, carbon dating

Intrigued by a linen scarf they had made up, I also bought this Manos Silk Blend, which feels just heavenly.

Manos Silk Blend
Manos Silk Blend

Next we went to Portland, and we had some time to spend before we could stop in on a friend so we stopped at Twisted. My husband had some tea, the kids played with shop toys (It is wonderful for a yarn shop to give more than lip service to welcoming children!) and I had a great time shopping and chatting with the sales clerk. She helped me find a great pattern to go with this Malabrigo I wanted to buy -- and only three skeins!

Malabrigo

I also bought this Socks that Rock Silkie that was just too pretty and soft to pass up.

STR Silkie

Lastly, we went to the Yarn Garden, a large shop in Portland. I was actually a bit shopped out, but I did find one treasure, from Amelia Acres Alpacas.

IMG_5137

The label says, "My name is Adonis. I hope my fleece keeps you warm." and has a picture of the alpaca on it. So sweet!

Actual Knitting Content

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Look! I've been knitting!

Ravelry has definitely taken over my knitting computer time, but I have indeed been knitting. I started both of these projects while camping at Lair of the Bear.

This is the Chevron Scarf from Last Minute Knitted Gifts, made with Socks that Rock Mediumweight leftover from the Syncopated Cap I made.

Chevron Scarf

This is my "screaming orange" CeCe, knit with Knitpicks Shine Worsted in Terracotta.

CeCe Continues

Hair contest entry

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Whoorl and moosh are sponsoring a contest. You may have seen Whoorl on Nightline? She helps people find new hairstyles by having the internet vote on two choices she's picked. Anyhow, the contest deal is to post a bad-hair picture of yourself, a good-hair picture, and a picture of "where your hair stands today." The prize? You get moved to the top of Whoorl's queue and money for a fancy haircut.

Here goes... I'm terribly embarrassed of this first picture. It's my freshman yearbook picture, circa 1985. I'd like to think that this was a particularly bad hair day, with the flying wings and odd pieces everywhere, but I suspect I looked like this most of the time. I was growing it out and seem to have used a curling iron to make the best of things, but I obviously failed miserably. The tiny head and braces certainly don't help matters, but the hair is atrocious. The worst thing about the short hair was that in seventh grade I cut it all off, removing the only feminine attribute I had, so if I didn't at least try to style it, my hair fell completely flat and I looked like a boy (with bad hair).

ninth grade

This picture is my good hair day. This is about as good as my hair gets these days.

261550922_9gXar-O

And here's what my hair looks like most days, when I don't blow it dry. Blown dry, it's closer to the good hair day, but when I don't have time, this is what we end up with.

IMG_4081

I like the side-swept bangs, but the rest of my current style is functional, but not very interesting. I'd love to find a style that's easy and looks great (duh!). It's not quite the hairstyle I've had for most of my life, but only because it's shorter and has the longer bangs. See this from 1989

1989

and this from 2004

2004

The reason I keep coming back to the roughly shoulder-length, curled under style, is because when I go away from it, I get ninth grade, or this from 2001 (when I was very pregnant).

short hair

Ugh.

Here's hoping Whoorl can help!

My Celebrity Look-Alikes

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Thank you Big Sister for inspiring me to try this Celebrity Look-alike craziness. Apparently I look like Fleetwood Mac's lead singer, a Canadian actress, Mrs. Brady, a Puerto Rican actress (she's on Without a Trace), and the little girl from Everybody Loves Raymond. Really?

It's the smile, right?

February Hat explained

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I was asked to go into more detail about the "February Hat" I made. First, the picture.

February Sweater's hat

Inspired by teeweewonder's baby beanie (Ravelry link), I made this hat to go with the February Baby Sweater I made. It's Elizabeth Zimmerman's sweater on two needles.

I started CO 70 stitches, which made seven lace pattern repeats. I started with four ridges of garter stitch, then switched to the gull lace pattern from the sweater. After a total of about five inches, I decreased using a vertical double decrease (sl2tog knitwise, k1, psso) within every other repeat to continue the lace in pattern as far as possible. Specifically...

Round 1: vertical double decrease in the center of every other repeat. It's on an all-knit round so that's easier to do the decreasing.

Round 2: work without decreasing. I did the regular pattern for the repeats where I hadn't decreased and k2tog yo k1 yo k2tog in the other repeats where there were only five stitches to work with.

Round 3: (all knit round) I did another set of vertical double decreases in the center of the five-stitch repeats to make them only three stitches each.

Round 4: I did the regular stitches in the big repeats and a vertical double decrease in the smaller ones to make them just one stitch each.

Round 5+: I started the same procedure in the bigger repeats, eventually getting them down to one stitch each. Then one round of k2tog to get down to half the stitches, then close up the hat.

Let me know if anything doesn't make sense or is incorrect. I hope you find this helpful!