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Archive for April, 2007

White Quartz Cardigan

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Neglected this for a while, but it’s time to wrap it up.  Plan a few more rows on the body in a lace pattern, long sleeves, and a reinforcing border on the inside edges and neckline.

Previous post on this project.

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D-Day April 30

Woo-hoo! Dropped off Chapter 5. Fifty-nine pages. My reward:  a yarn winder, gifted from my partner.  He’s been storing it in his office for weeks, it turns out, waiting for me to finish Ch. 5.  Can’t wait until he brings home the baby tonight.

I also picked up my Ph.D. cap and gown rental. Oh my god, what a bizarre costume! Tried it on and positively suffocated in massive folds of stiff black muslin and velvet.

Last night I worked up my first knit hat:

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Red Heart Grande super-bulky yarn. The knit sample at Beverly’s had fun rainbow striping, but the row length/colorway harmonics worked out just so and the colors pooled badly. I’m too lazy to alternate strands.

I didn’t have a pattern, but it was pretty easy…. until I was down to six stitches and had no idea how to finish it off. So the hat has a little tail, until I learn how to fix it.

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Grace Cardigan

The Cupcake sweater wasn’t going so well, but I wanted to use the yarn–Patons Grace, a mercerized cotton with delicate sheen–for a summer garment. Someone on Craftster pointed out that Eddie Bauer had some nice crochet sweaters this season, and I was inspired to make a knock-off. Here is the back panel, a couple of rows into armhole shaping. I think it’s going well. Wish me luck! I’ve never done bottom-up flat panel construction before.

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I must lack originality or something, because I’ve also been inspired to make something like this Be Sweet tank at Dream Weaver Yarns. Since I look awful in nubby yarn and can’t afford Be Sweet (too bad, since it’s a noble cause), I’ll have to improvise with a stash yarn.

One of these days I will crochet or knit a truly original garment, I promise! But first I need to learn basic garment construction.

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Salade Nicoise

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My partner, sister and I took a great hike in Redwood Park today. (Hurray for the East Bay Regional Parks system!) I regretted not having brought my camera along–the woods and views were beautifully verdant, with clear water running in the streams.

The hike worked up my appetite. I rooted for Szechuwan food, but was out-voted by my companions who wanted a “healthy salad.” Upon returning home we snacked on some of the leftover dim sum my sister had brought over from San Francisco; then my hubby served up Salade Nicoise. (Sorry, I don’t know how to do foreign punctuation in WordPress.) Zingy and substantial, it’s our favorite dinner on a hot day. It’s also the kind of meal that can be prepared mostly with ingredients ready in the cupboard of fridge. Recipe follows. (more…)

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Worth a Laugh or Two

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Know what it’s like to run around town hoping no looks down at your feet? Was a tad distracted when I left the house this morning. Blame it on the dissertation.

My partner introduced me to the Piled Higher and Deeper (PHD) cartoon strip. I spent a few minutes exclaiming “oh my god, that’s so me!” and nearly laughing myself off my rolling desk chair. The 3/21/2007 edition struck a chord, since I have to get a real job this summer. I’m not worried about being forced to “sell out”, but know the pang of “But then… what have I been working towards all this time if not to become a professor?” 🙂

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D-Day — oops

I forgot to do D-Day on Monday, so here is my belated dissertation update. Not much done since early last week, basically, with the papers to grade and the conference and… a trip to a spa in Calistoga with my sister. 😉

But I deviously took along my draft of Chapter 5 to the Friday panel. As expected, my adviser (who organized the panel) asked, “So, when do you think you’ll be getting me that chapter?” I whipped out a binder-clipped, 55-page stack of paper and waved it around, exclaiming, “I just need to copy edit this!” That mollified him for now. Hee hee.

There are three dissertation laggards who are driving my adviser nuts: me, my friend Chris, and a guy who already has a tenure track job back East. After I flashed my chapter, the old prof turned to Chris and told him that he was now in last place. It was in good humor… but kind of brutal, ain’t it?

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WIP: latest pic — Woolease Raglan Sweater

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Cupcake Progress

I do everything the hard way. For instance, Cupcake from SnB Crochet: The Happy Hooker. Instead of crocheting it in flat panels from the bottom up like the pattern says, I’m doing it top-down in the round.

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Because the sweater started to pull down on itself as it gathered weight, I worked the neckline trim and began the sleeves in order to stabilize those openings. Crocheting the sleeve panel separately just didn’t work right, given the gauge and pattern changes. So, I’m crocheting the short sleeve directly into the armhole. The sleeve panel will have a completely different geometry from the pattern, but at least it will fit.

All in all, what was supposed to be an easy pattern is turning into a lot of work. I hope I don’t have to frog it at the end. I’ve tried to cut the yarn as little as possible, in case I decide to use it for something else.

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