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Wednesday, November 30, 2005

My favorite thing about Dear Watson is his POCKETS!

For some reason, my little brain is not coded to carry *extra* stuff off-person. Be it a purse, doggie bag (don’t even offer to wrap it), or glasses, if it isn’t in my pocket, it will surely be left behind. It’s a measure of my Passion/Obsession for Knitting that I can even carry a project around without it going up in smoke, but so far, none have gone AWOL…

So, it is in my ultimate Best Interest to put pockets on things that Might Be worn outside. Little Dear Watson, then, was a ripe candidate for the addition of same.

And like any variation on a theme, practice, practice, practice! is the order of the day. I like to think of it like playing the piano – most anyone can pick up Chopsticks the first time out, but a concerto, oh my! I must say, would you rather be Charley Brown or Linus! (whispering)

This hand-knit pocket took 5 versions before I liked it. THEN, it took a bit of pinning to go where I thought it would look best. Everybody is shaped differently across the hips, below the waist. In my family, we look broad from the front and thin from the side – not really very round – more rectangular. So my pockets will hit differently from someone who is shaped, perhaps, more cylindically.

watsonP1.jpg

Now comes the fun part! I run a colored *thread* (a piece of yarn brighter than what I knit with which in this case is almost any yarn on the planet) through the row of stitches right above where I want the top of the pocket to be placed.

Then, being a lazy bones, I use a giant safety pin to mark where the side should be, running it through the column of stitches a distance from the front band. I note the number of rows and the number of columns, because in this case, there is Pocket #2 to be attatched later.

watsonP2.jpg

Secret Weapon #2: I use a plastic cutting board under the top piece (front) to seperate it from the back of the sweater. Then I can pin to my heart’s content on whatever needs pinning.

“Excellent!” I cried. “Elementary,” said he: to get to the finish line as quickly as possible, I sew this to the garment while I am STANDING UP! I can control the sewing much better from above, on a smooth plane. I put my non-needle hand on the piece being sewn, and slip-stitch the pocket to the sweater, using small stitches, stopping to tighten them (but not pucker) around the edge of the pocket, removing the pins when they get in my way. The Cutting Board allows a firm contact below the two pieces being joined, without distortion to the fabric or damage to my table.

and dear Watson was heard saying as he went his merry way: “I had neither kith nor kin in England, and was therefore as free as air


Tuesday, November 29,2005

ChicKnits New Threads Tuesday
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drwatson2.jpg

Dear Watson
Pattern: Chic Knits
Designer: Bonne Marie Burns
Yarn: Black Water Abbey
Color: Navy
Gauge: 18sts/24rows over 4″
Needles: #6, #7 & #8

Knowing, on this grey, cloudy day, I didn’t stand a chance inH of taking a good picture of this wonderful color, I give you the above – including, at no extra cost, the Fred&George hair! I figure this Fusion Knitting thing is as close as I’ll get to the Molly Weasley School of Knitting…

The Yarn: I fell in love with this yarn at a fiber fest this summer – and before I could shout IMPEDIMENTA! it jumped out of the booth an into my bag. Stupified, I carried it home, without a clue as to what I was going to do with it. Even though the vendor (the actual BWA people) had a trunk show going on in the booth with a whole cast of cable rich characters, I longed for something that would just show off the beauty of the color of this yarn.

And so it became the simplest of all – Stockinette Stitch – perfect for a run on the knitting machine with Hand Finishing of the edges. Out of this yarn, even the lowly St st has reached its top form. BWA makes a firm FABRIC and this sweater reminds me of my favorite DARK Blue Jean Jacket – I have little pockets (rounded bottoms this time out but just big enough for the keys & cards) that button and a nice shaped fit.

Elemental (still in the finishing stages) my Dear Watson! (DONE!)


Monday, November 28, 2005

  Monday Morning Mirth  

I spend ALoT of time on the road – probably 30, sometimes 50% of my day is in my vehicle. More and more it’s happening…

I thought it was just us, just the MidWest, trying to carve out a Hip Identity in the Cultural Wilderness that is the USA…

but nooo…

IT’s EveryWhere!

and now that the Holidaze are upon Us, the bling has changed accordingly – trees, wreaths and more!

What’s the strangest one you’ve ever seen?

NYTimes SlideShow

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