moderne blanket

EDIT: Make that title “finishing these“… :)

moderne 2 complete

mom's moderne; first completed blanket

Pattern: Moderne baby blanket from Mason-Dixon Knitting
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool-Ease in cranberry, camel, chestnut heather, and fisherman’s white for the top blanket and the same yarn in peacock, seafoam, camel, and light heathered gray for the second
Dimensions: 48″ x 36″
Needles: Size 9 straights and circular for the border
For: Dad and Mom!

These were such huge projects for me because this is the first year I have ever made anything for anyone else, and not one but two projects of this size was pretty tough for my slow and accident-prone knitting self. However, nearly one month after Christmas (… sorry), the lap blankets are complete!

One minor modification was that I only knit 42 garter ridges for the bottom two rectangles for fear of running out of yarn; in the end I believe only two skeins of each color was required (don’t quote me on this, though) while still yielding a decent-sized lap-warming product.

So what’s in my post-garter stitch marathon future? Since I still have over a week of self-imposed apartment confinement/total isolation minus blogging left, I hope to finish two more gift knits (thank-you presents for a very nice family!) before the semester begins.


Finals week is approaching! And that means study food:


Though I am excited to move off campus, I have to admit that I will miss the delicious late night prepaid goodness that is the Commons Shop. The frozen food is usually no good and the produce way, way overpriced and not fresh, but the back section is home to unexpected foods like my two purchases above: whippets and a bag of veggie sticks.

A whippet is basically a s’more without the meltiness. This doesn’t sound very exciting but man I love a good fruit jelly and this particular box of whippets I found are raspberry flavored. Delicious! I also like this piece of trivia, courtesy of Wikipedia’s article on chocolate-coated marshmallow treats:

The Whippet cookie is a distinct part of Quebec culture because it does not travel well outside its area of production. This is partly because the pure chocolate melts very easily (compared with a chocolate mixture) and therefore they require refrigerated transport in summer. Furthermore, the combination of the hard chocolate shell and the air-filled inner marshmallow make them self-destruct when placed in the unpressurized or semi-pressurized cargo section of an airplane. However, they are currently available at least as far away as Toronto, Ontario and New York City.

Seeing this happen would have been fun :x But I’ll settle for the challenge of not eating the whole box at once.

Continuing on my shameless eating spree, let’s go to these veggie sticks. I’m well aware that they are nothing more than colorful and glorified potato chips in stick form, but they taste a lot like shrimp chips so I was sold. Besides, the last time I had a good bag of potato chips was in York… even Martin’s potato chips is the only snack food I’ve seen that still has trans fat in it, they are seriously still my favorite chip.

Study also leads to lots of knitting; it’s good procrastination and good busywork for the hands during seemingly endless studying and reviewing. Here is the beginning of the moderne that will be going to my dad this Christmas:

moderne 2 in progress

PS. As I was knitting last night I looked down at what I was doing and also saw the box of whippets out of the corner of my eye and realized that I am making a blanket in raspberry whippet colors. So as it turns out I really am a slave to food. Not that this is a bad thing…

And one more! I found these in the closet over Thanksgiving: a pair of Kate Gilbert’s “Gifted” mittens I made a couple of years ago (2004? 2005?).

chunky mittens

I wore them today and they are as warm and squishy as ever :) The yarn is Classic Elite Paintbox from Ben Franklin’s in York–this may be the first wool I ever bought! It is merino, so it is soft and has plenty of spring to it. Some of this might be good for the Cherie Amour I have wanted to make for a little while if I can find some on eBay. But that’s reserved for after Christmas…

First and foremost I would like to share the glory that is the delicious food that my mom made (minus the pomegranate, obviously) over Thanksgiving:

my mother can and will outcook anyone

So if you read this thank you again :D As for everyone else I would just like to point out that the first picture is ox tail vegetable soup, THE dish that I would choose if I were told to only eat one thing for the rest of my life. Number two is the aforementioned pomegranate. The third picture should be recognizable to anyone familiar with Chinese food–to those of you who are, is there another English name for this other than “red bean soup”?–but if not it is basically a sweet snack/dessert soup with red beans (usually not kidney beans as in the picture but rather 紅豆) and sometimes balls of sticky rice. Next picture: the remnants of Thanksgiving DUCK DINNER! (Too delicious to take a picture before eating.) Finally, some good healthy apple pie :)

Now for some knitting news. First on the agenda was to take some pictures to replace this older group shot of Sheldon, Pasha, and Kate of fame. Thanksgiving day was happily sunny so I think the new photos turned out well.

Kate / Pasha

(PS. please excuse overuse of Mosaic Maker… but it is truly awesome.)

KON Next is an overdue picture of a Kon amigurumi I crocheted for my brother’s birthday in July. The pattern is based on Ana Paula’s lion amigurumi from her “Tiny Ami” collection, only with a crocheted (not felt) muzzle, a knot for a bellybutton, and some little circles for hands and feet. The thing is that when I draw/make anything based on a pre-existing character I tend to err towards the cute. So here is my version:

kon amigurumi

Close enough, I think :)

Last bit of news! The moderne blanket pictured in the previous post has been frogged because I for reasons unknown thought I could get away with making smaller rectangles and still have a decently sized lap blanket. But no. So I tried again with no modifications but apparently forgot how I was picking up garter bumps before; this second attempt (I refused to take pictures) yielded incredibly loose color joins. So, for my third try I knitted a to-scale miniature version for practice. Allow me, then, to present the “tiny moderne for tiny Mozart”:

tiny moderne for tiny mozart

This blanket measures 6″ x 8″. And I figured out what the hell I was doing wrong (do not overcomplicate matters when picking up stitches) and happily proceeded to make the actual blanket.

Progress shot as of Saturday:

moderne in progress

All in all, a lovely and relaxing Thanksgiving :D

Okay, okay, I changed my mind AGAIN. The Christmas-present-to-be mitered square blanket turned into the entrelac blanket which is now the Moderne Log Cabin Blanket (baby version). An excerpt of Mom’s is pictured below:

garter color scheme A

Still using LB Wool-Ease, this time size 9 needles for better ease and garter stitch only! No turning after 10 stitches! No seaming! More than two colors… and colors that don’t clash horribly! If I’m going to be fickle I should at least be constructive somehow. Four blocks on blanket one are already finished after two nights of studying for music history… cram session tonight, which means a lot more Well-Tempered Clavier and a lot more garter stitch.