She and I drove around quite a bit looking at the gorgeous gingko trees in Lexington.
And other gorgeous fall colors:
I also visited a very cute shop called "ReBelle" and succumbed to the temptations of Malabrigo (the colors--OMG!). I made my escape with only four skeins, but, yeesh, I wanted to carry out an armful.
In my downtime, I finished my Sockhead Hat. I wasn't feeling a great deal of love for this project while I was knitting it, but I really like the finished product.
And the back:
We took a quick trip to the beach this past weekend.
I took a little knitting along, including this:
It's a Sockhead Hat using Vesper Sock Yarn in a color called "Autumn Sky". This is one of those great knitting-in-a-car projects. And on the beach and in coffee shops. I'm using it to practice my continental knitting, which I can't quite do because the last two fingers on my left hand are weak due to an old injury. Still, I keep trying to adapt.
I've also been working on "Favorite Cardigan" from Wendy Bernard's "Custom Knits". I had planned to do this last fall/winter when I was so enamored with madelinetosh yarns (not that I'm no longer enamored!). I'm using what used to be called "Tosh Worsted" in "Gilded".
Oh, and my big white cowl is done! It's still a little damp, so the photo shoot will have to wait.
Now I'm off to pick up my car. I noticed a grinding noise when the brake was applied firmly, but it seemed to be working fine. I finally took it in last night and the mechanic showed me how the pads were gone and the rotors were completely shredded. Um, we drove this to the beach. And lived! Seriously, shouldn't there be some sort of indicator light when the brakes are almost completely shot? Ah, lessons learned.
Ooh, I'm still loving Hipstamatic.
I didn't get around to posting about our trip to Maine (and New Hampshire and Vermont--oh, and Salem, MA and Providence, RI, too!). It was all wonderful. We're already plotting a return trip. I definately prefer New England to the Mid-Atlantic where I live now. And Maine! Maine is the best of all. We stuck mostly to the coastal towns, but the photo above, taken October 9th, is from a lake a bit inland that we passed on our way to the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The water was really that blue.
Earlier that week, in Portland, I picked up a skein of Quince & Co. "Puffin" and quickly knitted cowl:
It's Cullin from the Quince & Co. website.
There was a little frost on my car windows this morning, so maybe soon...
Behold the coordinating, but not-too-matchy-matchy wool accessories I've knitted for my sweetie recently.
In sum, they are:
Dashing mitts, knitted with Cascade Ecological Wool:
Turn a Square hat:
and Noro Striped Scarf (which I finished awhile back) :
The alternating stripes really bring out the colors of the Noro Silk Garden (#047).
He needs a nice pullover, doesn't he? Maybe this?
I find myself returning time and again to Quince & Co. I'm loving the somewhat muted color palette of the soft wool yarns and the simple, lovely designs. Plus, it's just a beautiful website.
Recently, I ordered a sample card and, just to see, one skein of "Lark", a light worsted weight of American wool. I'm making a pair of their "Moira" mitts with it. The yarn is pretty comfortable (I'm a bit sensitive to wool). It has a really nice smooth texture, kinda bouncy. I'll bet it would be great for doing cables.
The yarns are sold online only, for now, with the exception of one shop in Portland, Maine. Hopefully, during my Maine road trip in a couple of weeks I'll be able to stop by and fondle the yarns in person. Not that I can really buy much--not until I make a dent in the stash anyway.
I'm only now remembering all sorts of wool knitting projects that were mysteriously abandoned when I spontaneously stopped knitting (and blogging) last spring.
Among them, this unfinished cardigan was left languishing at the bottom of a work basket.
It's Fair Enough from Knit and Tonic. It's knit in Tosh Worsted (which is called something else now, I think) in Twig, with little bits of Maple Leaf and Copper Penny. It was near completion--all that remainded to do was to knit one of the button bands and do a little finishing (sewing on buttons, a little seaming under the arms, weaving ends--that's it). But, the weather was so hot and I couldn't be bothered to buy the buttons--so there it sat until last night.
It's pretty warm at the moment, but at least the weather has finally begun to cool a bit--so, I know that Fall really is coming. Well, I knew it, of course, but I don't think I believed it until this weekend when the highs were never above 80°F. We had over 50 days in excess of 90°F this summer--the norm is maybe half that many. Furthermore, I have whined about the excessive heat nearly every day since the beginning of May--that has to be some sort of record.
But, I digress.
The cardi looks a bit neglected, but I should be able to whip it into shape before our Maine adventure, perhaps as part of a nice leaf peeping costume.
The Elsebeth Lavold Angora is lovely (albeit, a bit on the "ivory" side for my taste). It's nice to knit on US9s. Giant fluffy stitches.
I've nearly finished the first round of the chart (two more to go). This is going to be cuddle-icious.
I've finished the brown "Dashing"s and one of the gray madelinetosh mitts--I'll post about those next. I seem to be back in the mood for knitting, but everything else is suffering. It's kind of all-or-nothing with me. Must everything be obsessive-compulsive?
*Macro photo from iPhone using this.
I never seem to want to use a stand-alone digital camera anymore. Oh, maybe I would if I had a super groovy SLR, but point-and-shoot? Nah, I'll just stick with my iPhone--especially for blog photos.
Recently, I've been taking an original photo with the built-in camera and manipulating it with one or more apps. Oh, sure, I could do all this and more with PhotoShop, but with these apps, it can all be done on my phone, completely intuitively and in a relative few minutes. I'm not lazy so much as I'm impatient. OK, I'm lazy, too.
These are my favorite apps, currently:
Photogene: I use this for basic cropping, rotating, color adjustment, etc., before importing the images into other apps that don't have those functions.
TiltShiftGen: As you might guess, this app was created to generate "Tilt-Shift" images. However, I've been experimenting with the selective focus to accentuate a particular object or texture. The app is nice in that gives you a choice of either a circular and linear progressive blur that can be positioned at any point and/or in any direction on the image. It allows one, also, to adjust the amount of vignetting and basic brightness, contrast, and saturation.
PictureShow: There are a lot of ways to manipulate a photo with this app's variety of frames and filters, most of which don't suit me, but I really like the few that do. All the components can be used interchangeably and then, beyond that, the app imitates a number of types of photography such as "Instant", "HolgaGraphy", and my favorite (although I haven't used it here) "Cinema", which mimics the look of litho photos you see in old magazines or posters. This app also allows you to adjust the red/green/blue separately, but it's a little clumsy (as is the brightness/contrast) and the vignette function is useless. Best to do that stuff in Photogene before bringing the image up in PictureShow.
The best part of all this is the CONVENIENCE, which I love.love.love. I can take my photos, manipulate them, and post all from my phone (although, I usually still compose long posts on the computer).
It's funny, I seem to be moving in two separate directions. I have a Holga, an SX-70, and a Yashica mat 124g that I've been experimenting on the lomo end (which may be the subject of a future post) and at the digital end, I have my iPhone photography. I suppose the unifying principles are the often dreamy, not-quite-real quality of the resulting images and my willful ignorance (and laziness) about the technical side of photography and/or software.
So, there you go. If you try any of these at my behest, have fun and let me know how they work out for you!
It looks fine now, but when my Sweetie-Pie tried on his newly finished "Turn a Square", it was enormous! Just plain too big. It simply hung on his head. I'm not sure if it was a gauge problem or just the wrong size (I'm guessing the former). At any rate, drastic measures were called for.
I soaked it in hot water for a couple of hours and then put it in a medium dryer for two fifteen minutes sessions. While it was still just barely damp, he tried it on again. It appeared to have not budged even a mm.
I set aside an hour for later that evening to perform major surgery. The plan was to cut off the ribbing, rip out a few rows, and graft the band back on. I was actually kind of psyched in a very sick and wrong sort of way.
At the last minute, I had him try it on again so that I could determine exactly how many rows I needed to lose and, behold, it fit perfectly!
Somewhere between "barely damp" and "completely dry" the magical shrinking occured. And it's a perfect fit now. Weird.
I guess there's a lesson learned. I wish I knew what it was.