Monday, June 09, 2008

changing colors

My house is changing colors. The inside. That is, we're painting.

So my family went to Australia, which was super awesome. While we were there, the floors of two rooms in our house were redone. (They pulled up the carpet and refinished the original hardwood floor.) Then in the couple days after, they redid the floor in another room. (They pulled up the carpet and installed a floor of laminated bamboo.) Then we decided the walls didn't go with the floor anymore and spent the weekend picking out paint colors and starting to paint. The room with the bamboo floor is going to have "Cosmic Ray" colored walls and "Kimono" colored trim. I hate color names that say nothing about what the color is. The walls will be a light aqua and the trim is a lovely blue. In the rooms with the hardwood floors, we're doing "Linen Ruffle" walls and "Earth Rose" trim. Slightly more descriptive. And in the stairs we're doing the same colors but also with "Aster Petal" kickboards. That's a very light blue. I'm just writing all this on the assumption that knitters like colors.

By the way, I could totally knit on planes in Australia. Before going, I read a ravelry board about security in Australia, and it really seemed like a crapshoot. I was worried about losing my needles, so this is what I did. I have the Knit Picks Options Harmony needles, so before going through security I unscrewed the tips and stuck them in a separate part of my bag, hoping that they would look no more dangerous than wooden pencils. I stuck a pen in that pocket too, to further invite the comparison. My knitting was just on the cables. Then once I was on the plane, I reassembled the whole thing and nobody gave me grief about knitting on the plane. This got me through an international flight to Australia (no problem since that was from America, where they don't care if you knit on the plane,) a domestic flight within Australia, a domestic flight within Australia that was continuing to an international location, so we had to do some of the international security stuff, and an international flight out of Australia.

What was I knitting on these planes and all over Australia? I was knitting Emerson's gansey, which now only needs sleeves, button band/collar, and finishing. I was also knitting two rainbow scarves for some Gay Presbyterians.

Here's the first one, done in the Yarn Harlot's one-row scarf pattern:

Here's the second one, done in a drop-stitch pattern of my own devising:

And the two together, where you can see how interesting and exciting the pooling was.

You can also see our lovely new bamboo floor in these pictures.

Actually, working with the terrible acrylic yarn wasn't as terrible as I thought it would be. I think it was because I had spent weeks going to Knitting Liberally and listening to people gripe about it, since we were all doing this project. Also, I had a really good time watching the crazy pooling effects. Kind of cool.

I also finished the socks for my mom in Australia. Hurrah!

Now I'm working on a vest for that same mom. It's this pattern, very heavily modified. I am making the front to look like the back, so absolutely no plaid. It's in brown. And it might not have buttons, I haven't quite decided. I'm making good progress: armhole shaping is now underway, and I'm about to start the neck shaping.

Last, I have finally made a move on a hat that my other roommate Noah has been coveting for some time. See, back when I made a hat, nay, two hats for my friend Kyra, Noah liked it a lot. The problem is that the pattern (Veronik Avery's Short Row Hat) really calls for a yarn with a very long color change, and Noah is allergic to wool. We went to WEBS to look for an appropriate yarn, but to no avail. Noah also became quite sad on this trip when he realized that the best yarns are made of wool and he has been longing after a swatch he found there ever since. The only yarn I've heard of with a long color change and no wool is Noro Sakura, which is discontinued and very hard to find. However, since TECHknitter has started talking about lining hats with polar fleece, I gained hope that I might be able to make a nice wool hat lined with fleece that will not make my roommate itch. So then we embarked on a quest to find the yarn that made the swatch that Noah loved so much.

I was pretty sure it was Noro Kochoran, but Noah didn't think so, and it looks like WEBS doesn't carry Kochoran any more. Much internet research happened, and finally today I placed an order for a ball of Kochoran in a discontinued colorway on eBay. I'll let you guys know how it goes!