Thursday, November 15, 2012

a cardigan for Alexa Brooke

We're meeting our dear friends' new baby girl, Alexa Brooke, this weekend, and I knit a cozy little cardigan for her in a lovely shade of duck egg blue. This is my third time with this pattern, and I love how quickly it knits up, and doing the crochet edging is a lot of fun. Debbie Bliss Cashmerino is definitely one of my desert island yarns.
needles: US 6 (4.0 mm)
 size: 6 months
my ravelry project page

A great little pattern that's easy to knit. Can't beat top-down when it comes to baby knits! I did YO raglan increases this time, but otherwise followed the pattern as written. I think the sizing tends to run small on this pattern, so keep that in mind if you decide to knit one.

I contemplated using more exciting buttons in a contrast color, but just couldn't make a decision. The (very affordable and basic) buttons are made by Slimline and run just 99 cents for a card of five at my fabric store.
I have a new favorite trick for sewing on buttons! I used to sew buttons on with yarn, but it was often too bulky and lumpy and not fun to work with. Embroidery floss to the rescue! It comes in every imaginable shade, so it's easy to match colors, and it's very affordable. I keep my floss organized by DMC number in a nerdy tackle box. This took a little time to set up at first (as my prior organization consisted of throwing all the floss in a plastic bag), but has been well worth the effort in the long run.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

voting day

I voted! My polling place just happens to be my local library, which meant that I could pick up some audiobooks and holds at the same time. Very nice.
Sadly Chicago does not give out cute stickers, just "ballot receipts." I did, however, get to vote using two seriously oversized paper ballots, which I fed into a ballot reading machine. A surprisingly satisfying experience, especially since the scanner makes a dramatic noise as it accepts your ballots and sucks them in.

Even if you're not a fan of the big two, many states have important congressional races and referenda (oh, how I wish I could "vote no twice" in my home state of Minnesota).
 I've been knitting up a storm the past couple of months, but seem to be lacking in follow-through.

 A shawlette and scarf to block....

wee little cardigans in want of buttons...

and another cardigan on the needles for me. This time it's Drops pattern no. 113-17 in a lovely heather shade of Cascade 220. I'm done up to the underarms -- time to get to work on the sleeves before my momentum dissipates.


Moxie is fluffing up quite nicely for the winter. Paul has nicknamed her "Captain Crochet" for her fascination with handmade afghans.

in the kitchen

I made a rather amazing looking chicken en croute the other night. I'd like to tweak the leek and bacon stuffing, as it was a little bland, but I'll share the recipe once it's perfected. This is really fun to serve to guests.

Martha Stewart's amazing recipe for giant ginger cookies is always a hit. I recommend slightly underbaking them to keep them nice and chewy!