Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Story Of A Pillow

It all started that fateful day two months ago, when we needed a new pillow and went to the best bed and bath store in town, to buy one. It was all nice and fluffy and I was happy with my new pillow. I just thought it was a bit uncomfortable because it was new and needed some breaking in.
Life was very busy then and I failed to notice that the crimped neck and shoulders in the morning that I started having, began at that point in time. I attributed my symptoms to sleep deprivation that is the sad lot of mothers of newborns or maybe some ill-adjustment to co-sleeping. I did notice my slightly stiff neck and its rather limited range of movements, from time to time, and wondered if I was developing arthritis. Or maybe it was one of those subtle signs of aging that creep up on you. I considered all this but still the new pillow did not make my list of differential diagnosis till the very end. 
Then suddenly, four days ago, something satanapped on the right side of my neck. Even a slight movement brought on a lot of pain. I finally had my diagnosis: neck strain due to a new, over-fluffy pillow.
Needless to say, that pillow has been ditched and I am getting by with the help of a boatload of painkillers and muscle relaxants. It is day four now and the pain has not let up yet. I am told it can take up to two weeks to heal. 
Hopefully, this story will have a happy ending for both me and the pillow. Once I get better, I intend to rip its guts out (that sounds so good) and remove some of the fluff. Meanwhile, I am left to ponder on the lesson we can take away from this story, one that my husband has been considerate enough to point out _ all that glitters is not gold. I am so not going to that store anytime soon.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Purple Toddler Coat


 We have had a lot of rain this month and so while I finished this coat a week ago, there has not been enough light to take proper photos till now. It may look benign or even nice, but it was one of the most tedious things I ever knit. Not fun at all. In addition, the honeycomb pattern can be physically challenging to the wrists.

The technical details..Initially, I picked this pattern to knit, but my yarn was a different weight, so I decided to do my own math. And go with a top-down, contiguous approach, which I later realized, was all wrong for this design because of the considerable gauge difference between stockinette st and honeycomb pattern. So when I tried to get proper sizing at the yoke, the sleeves caps grew quiet loose. At that point, I had already invested a great deal of time and energy (remember the honeycomb pattern being hard on the wrists) to rip back. So I decided to move on and get it done.
 Thankfully my toddler does not have an eye for such details yet. She is happy and content with the fact that her mom made her a new cardigan. And that is good enough for me. It is a bit large on her at the moment as it is intended to fit her next winter.

Monday, March 17, 2014

A Bit Unravelled

My current wip (work in progress)
I am knitting this cardigan top down. I had planned to finish the neckline with a few rows of ribbing and it was to have the first buttonhole as well. So i put in the rest of the buttonholes accordingly. However I had a nagging suspicion that the neckline was too small and ribbing would make it even smaller. So on reaching the bottom of the cardigan, I decided to knit the neck ribbing before the bottom edge and just as i thought, it made the neck opening too small. So I frogged the ribbing and did an I-cord bind-off instead. But that meant the first buttonhole was now too far down, thus creating the need for this unravel of the buttonhole band.

Thankfully the band is all fixed now and I am binding off the cardigan now. I have made several mistakes while knitting this cardigan ans sadly not all were so easy to fix. So I have had to put up with them. More on that when I show you the completed cardigan. For now, I am happy to be almost done with this cardigan and if I am wise, I should be sticking to tried and tested patterns for a while (highly unlikely..).

Friday, March 14, 2014

Looking For Suggestions

I know I have been neglecting this blog for some time and I am sorry about that. What with a new baby, two rounds of flu which escalated to something worse for our youngest two, the annual exams of the older kids, life has been an ongoing series of hectic. That did not leave much time for knitting or blogging. Things are still pretty busy but the final exams are over at last and we are recovering from our latest colds, so the things are looking up. Hopefully I will be able to blog more frequently. The cardigan I am working at ought to be done soon and I am planning on some spring sewing soon. So I will have some stuff to blog about. However I am looking for blogging ideas in addition to my usual knitting and sewing projects. Are there any particular topics my readers would like? I would love to have some input/suggestions.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Peplum

 
Once we somewhat settled into a routine with the new baby, I treated myself to some yarn shopping and bought three sweaters' worth of yarn for the older kids. I got to work on the first sweater in late January. It went quite slow because the only knitting time I get is after the kids' bedtime. Still, a few rows at a time and I got this sweater done in under a month.
   This is for my oldest daughter. I knit this top down, checking the fit as it went along. I did not follow any pattern, just did some math and cast on. She specifically requested raglan sleeves otherwise I had initially planned set-in sleeves. I miscalculated the button band width and it turned out too narrow. So, to avoid gaping, I sewed the cardigan closed from the second buttonhole down to the peplum. About the peplum, I have been wanting to knit one for some time and I think it looks awfully cute on seven-year olds.
  The yarn is our local acrylic DK weight which is surprisingly soft and wears well. My daughter is quite pleased with the sweater and I had a fun time knitting it. I guess that makes it a success.
 Now, on to the second sweater. That is half the size of this one and ought to be done sooner, inshaAllah.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Minion Hat

These days, my toddler is quite fond of minions (of the Despicable Me animated movies). At some movement of overwhelming maternal affection, I promised her a minion hat a couple of weeks ago. So this had to be the project marking my post-partum recovery. I used this pattern for the basic hat pattern (it is an awesome pattern by the way, and I was much tempted to cast-on an actual fair-isle version) and improvised with all the minion components. I am happy to have fulfilled my promised and my daughter is happy to have a "min" hat, which she would much rather hold and look at, than put on her head...
  

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Introducing...

...our newest family member. Our daughter was born on December 20, via c-section, alhamdolillah. We both are home now and getting a much needed rest.