Friday, September 08, 2006

BBQ and a Hooded Cardigan

We had a pleasant time over the Labor Day weekend. Like many folks, we had a barbeque with friends and family. We don't do fancy BBQ like you see on the Food Network; we stick to simple, familiar foods that everyone likes, and prepare plenty of it.

Here's a collage photo of some of the offerings at our place this year.

Marinated steaks and chicken, hot dogs and assorted vegetables were grilled. We have had great success with mushrooms, bell pepper and zucchini threaded onto skewers before cooking. Baked potatoes, coleslaw, fresh melons and assorted buns and rolls filled out the menu.

This feast didn't take a lot of time to prepare. We purchased steaks and chicken from the grocery store meat counter that were already marinated and ready to throw on the grill. While the guys hovered around the BBQ, I cut up melons and baked potatoes in the microwave. I even had time to start a new project.

It's the end of summer, so I decided to make a sweater for the 3-year-old for the cooler weather of fall and winter. The Stephanie jacket from Anny Blatt Creation magazine #1 is just perfect. It's an aran-style hooded cardigan that I fell in love with at first sight. In fact, it's that one pattern that convinced me to purchase the book.

A side note here: Anny Blatt and Bouton d'Or books have great designs, but their pattern instructions are not always as detailed as I would like them to be. I am an experienced knitter, so I have no difficulty figuring out the bits they've left out of the pattern, but I chafe at the necessity of having to figure it out when I've paid a princely sum for a pattern book which should include all the information one needs to recreate the garment.

If you are not an advanced knitter, you may have difficulty following some of the patterns in these books. I recommend that you make sure you have an experienced knitter that you can ask for assistance, whether a friend or your local shop owner, your first time using one of these patterns.

In the photo on the left is the beginning of the back of the sweater. In the photo on the right is my progress after a full week. The sweater back, left front and right front pieces are completed.

As you can see, my youngest has chosen a lovely watermelon red for his sweater. This is Schachenmayr Nomotta Extra 100% superwash wool. 22 stitches x 30 rows = 4 inches/10cm on #5US/3.75mm needles. I like the yarn so far, it has a nice texture and it doesn't split very easily while knitting.