Work Ethic? Pfft.

I don't have very many works in progress that I care to share right now - most have been abandoned between the move, and will be frogged and put to good use. Right now, I'm working on three things (as evidenced by the nifty little progress tracking sidebar, courtesy of http://www.yarntomato.com 's nifty WIP tracker image generator).

1. The Minty Shawl of Goodness. This is a vintage shawl pattern which I found in one of the many pattern books my grandmother gave me years ago. I'm making it for the second time, for the same woman I made it for the first time. My "Aunt" Lois is a friend of my mom's. She lives in Louisianna, formerly New Orleans, and was going through a rough time a few years back. So I made her the shawl. It was a pretty shawl, in a nice, minty, worsted weight acrylic. Nothing special, as far as yarn goes. I'd had some Red Heart in a seafoamy color that I needed to get rid of, so I started making it. Ran out of yarn right after they discontinued the color, ran around town, couldn't find the color, and ended up using a similar, but different yarn (Caron One Pounders). When Hurricane Katrina hit, the shawl went off into oblivion. Now, Lois is going through some really bad health problems. Big, really bad health problems. And I want to cheer her up. So I'm making the shawl again, and maybe an afghan. The shawl was a pattern my grandmother made for my Aunt Tina when my aunt had her prom. Grandma made it in a hideous black acrylic with gold sparklies in it. So abrasive it could be mistaken for steel wool. But it's pretty. Now, I'd misplaced the pattern booklet in all the moves I've been through. So through a stroke of serendipity, I found the pattern again online: http://www.knitting-crochet.com/lacevewra.html. I wish I could remember who the designer was or who put out the pattern booklet, but the site doesn't credit anyone beyond saying "All Shawls 1976". I'm making this baby in another minty green yarn, a bit brighter than the first seafoam color. And in DK weight like suggested.

Yarn: Bernat Softee Baby in color 02004 "Mint" DK Sport Weight 100% acrylic 140 g (Which doesn't tell you the yardage. I HATE that - rant about this later). But it's a very soft, very forgiving acrylic that actually feels non abrasive. It's much more bold than in the picture.

Needles - Boye Balene II size 6 US (8 Canadian) 3.25 mm 14 inches long- While I enjoy the Balene II needles for their flexibility, texture, and shape. These three features which I like, however, work against the needles of a smaller gauge. While size 6 isn't that small of a gauge, the flexibility often causes the needles to become almost flimsy. I'll continue with this brand of 6's, though, until I get fed up. Gods only know I've got enough size 6's.....

2. Her's and Her's Bath Set - Molly and Amanda are some of the best friends David and I have. I'm still not quite sure how we met, I just recall it was college. Molly and I are both crazy horse majors, and Amanda is quiet and quirky like me, and shares David's music passion. So we're all around a good match as friends. Weird, quirky, crazy. Molly and Amanda are getting married (well, comitted) in July. They've been amazing friends in the short time we've known them, and were at our small wedding in January, and offer tons of moral support when things go wrong. David and I aren't exactly rich at the moment, or even close. So I wanted to get them something nice and quality without spending metric tons of money. I came up with the perfect solution - A Her's and Her's bath set, no pattern necessary. I'm working it out on my own.The washcloths (facecloths, whatever) have a seed stitch body, with a crocheted "robust" (IE: not flimsy) border on all four sides (no pattern, not even sure of the stitches, I just know what I did, and know it looks good). I wanted to work "Her's" into the washcloths, but didn't fancy doing intarsia on them. I tried duplicate stitch, which I'm awful at, and I tried cross stitch, which is still horrid. So I'm leaving the washcloths blank. I had a bit of an issue with the crochet border - I picked up too few stitches, and the thing curled horribly. I'll fix it on the next washcloth, but the first one has to be blocked. And blocked again. The towels, I haven't worked out yet. I'm sure I'll figure out the perfect stitch and perfect composition. I want the towels, definately, to say "Her's" on them. Intarsia, definately. Crochet borders on two ends only - top and bottom. The sides stay bare. So they look more, towel-like.

Yarn: Coates and Clark's TLC Cara Mia (13% Angora, 18% Rayon, 19% Nylon 50% Acrylic) 210 yards a skein Worsted Weight (but a very light and sleek worsted weight). I'm not sure the color, I tossed the yarn label long ago, and cannot for the life of me find anything about this yarn online. It seems like it just disappeared, so I take it that it was discontinued, and thus, I'd better use what I have of it wisely. This is the contrasting color. It's a sort of pistachio color.

Lily's Sugar and Cream as the main color. 100% cotton in color Hot Purple or Soft Violet (again, label thrown out a few years ago. Am running out of the unmarked stuff, so I got Hot Purple to work with. Cross your fingers!) 120 yards. A medium weight worsted yarn. I like it, it works very well in the seed stitch that I'm doing. It's softy and nubby in texture when knit in that manner.

Needles and Hooks: Size 8 Swallow Caesin Needles in Timbergran coloring. Tortise shell colored needles made out of a processed milk protein hardened with formaldehyde. I love these needles. The flexibility is JUST right. The shape is wonderful, and the texture is smooth, and holds in the warmth from your hands as you work. I love them. I'd buy the whole set if I had the money. But they're massively expensive, made by an Australian company. Best needles I've ever worked with, these needles were gotten at a small LYS in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia. I had an hour for lunch, and my high school is about a mile and a half up the road, so I walked (okay, RAN) there and picked these up. And I've loved them. They got left at my parents' house when I moved for college, and the cat has taken some liberties with them, so the texture isn't what it used to be (they're all chewed up. damn milk protein being so attractive...) I can't recommend these enough.

The hook I'm using is an old Boye aluminum crochet hook, dark blue coloring, in size E. Oh, I adore it.

3. The Wedding Patchwork Quilt - this is going to be a big quilt. This thing is done with so many yarns and a huge hook, it works up quick. Which is good, because it's going to be big enough to cover a king sized bed (which is what two of the dorm beds pushed together were. Now that Davey and I aren't at the dorms, it will just be a nice, big blanket. If I ever finish it). The pattern is just rectangles crocheted in a row. But the rows are staggered, so the effect is kind of like a very colorful brick wall. Entirely Single Crochet, this thing is massive and mindless. It makes a good project for when I'm upset or otherwise engaged.

Yarn: Everything I can get my hands on in a worsted or bulky weight. Most of the cheaper large yarns from Wal Mart. A lot was donated by the Redneck Santa Clause (my husband's friend TJ). A lot was from relatives, or my own stash. And a lot I just bought. It's a giant orgy of colors and textures. I love it.

Hook: A crystallite N hook, from Wal-Mart, I think.

And these are just what I'm working on right now. More will follow, I think.

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