a few things.

in one weekend i finished a wiksten dress (the dress version of the wiksten tank) and the aidez sweater. i realize that sounds impressive until i admit that i started the aidez sweater a month and a half ago.
the wiksten dress was quick to whip up, and i added a lining because i used a gauzy linen - i did not think i would be able to do the lining well, but it ain't so bad! i love this vintage fabric (which i got for exactly $1 at a yard sale) and i have some more to play with. my only modification was to use the hem of the medium (the dress is a small), which basically added about 1/2" because i am tall.
the aidez sweater, while a relatively quick knit, took me longer because i knit the back all the way up to the armhole decreases and realized it was TOO SMALL. i stopped, put it in time out, and knit the two fronts the next size up. then i ripped that back out (all the while bitching about it, lucky ben), and knit it up again. thankfully cascade eco wool is nice and thick and knits quick.

  • because my gauge was too tight as always, i followed the directions for a M to end up somewhere between an XS and S.
  • because that meant my row gauge was bigger, i modified all the armhole decreases to decrease a little faster so the armholes weren't too big (and i have small arms). here are the modifications: follow the bind off sts as written, then knit one row even. at the first k2 and/or ssk decrease, do two instead of one. then when there are 6 decreases left, do two again. then when there are two left, do two at once again.
  • i kept the live stitches on needles at the top of the two front pieces and kitchener stitched them together.
  • this isn't really a modification, but i knit the sleeves at the same time and i looovved it. i hate finishing one and having to start from scratch with the first one and i always forget any modifications i made because i never write them down. so.... i am starting a pair of socks two at a time now too!

that's it for mods, folks. a really good pattern and it ended up fitting well - i didn't even add length. each sweater i knit so far i like better than the last one! and here is the sunwashed picture i like the best, unfortunately it really doesn't show you what i made...


knitting needle case

i finally made a knitting needle case for my straight needles (after i've been using a circular needle case for all my needles for quite some time. i did not know that there was such a thing as a circular needle case when i got it). i love this tutorial from the bbbcraft sisters for design*sponge and i LOVE using a drop cloth canvas for the material. this was a super-quick project.
i found mine for $2.99 (benny's!) and used bias tape for the edges, and a vintage ribbon of my grandmother's to tie it all up (that's what i call it but i think it might be old school bias tape or hem tape or something). i wish i had stamps for the numbers, but i might just have to find something i can write them with.


hippo stash-killer

i made a little hippo for a 2-year-old birthday gift, and took care of some extra yarn stash too. i made the hippo from susan anderson's itty bitty toys. the only modification was obviously the stripes, which i used to offset the fact that i only had two skeins of debbie bliss baby cashmerino, and as usual lately, i came to within inches of the yarn left. the stripes are some type of boucle that i don't remember the name of. i was inspired by this hippo by tentenknits because it has the sweetest face, which i tried to replicate, but....
if you can't see the smile, it has demonic white eyes..... yikes.


my first craft hope

i finally completed my first project for craft hope, which i've meant to do for a long time. craft hope is an awesome charity that coordinates crafted donations, giving specific instructions for an identified cause. project 11 was a birthing kit for Konbit Sante in Haiti. the "crafting" part was a stuffed animal (see my creepy bunnies below) and a tote bag, as well as an optional receiving blanket, which, due to my procrastinating i unfortunately did not complete. i made two birthing kits.

the unbelievable part of this is the non-crafting contents. look at the list that i had to pack:

  • 1 bar of soap

  • a 3'x4' piece of plastic sheeting

  • a 24 inch piece of clean string

  • an alcohol wipe

  • hand sanitizer

  • latex gloves
and with that, a baby is born. WHAT?! one in every TEN THOUSAND Haitians has access to a doctor. Konbit Sante trains birthing attendants (not midwives), and these kits are for them.

sometimes facts like this make us go "ohmygosh" and move on with our day. i think we quickly reference a movie or a photo or maybe a news report, but if you try to imagine yourself as the pregnant woman in poverty, even homeless, in the heat and dirt, about to give birth, on a plastic sheet, with woman armed with a razor blade and a piece of string, it makes you stop a little longer. really imagine it. you can't. you cannot imagine what that is like. or at least, many of us are lucky enough to not be able to.

given that, i am disappointed in myself for procrastinating and scrambling to make mediocre kits. i hope this will make me remember to re-prioritize and exercise patience when i have a dozen projects i want for me, me, me.