Sunday, September 30, 2007

A kid in the kitchen, EZ, and other stuff

Ruby says hello :]

Current reading - in the last week with David on holidays, and therefore less running around, I've finished the second book in the Dresden Files [ Fool Moon ] as well as book three and I'm now onto number four [ Summer Knight ] It's less than a year since I read these the first time but I'm enjoying the re-read.
Next cab off the rank, once I finish the Jim Butchers, will be one of Lisa See's ... probably Snow Flower and the Secret Fan.
Quilting - still making triangles for the vase quilt's border. I've decided to cut the purple inner border from 4" [ two triangles wide ] to 2". It looks much better. I tried the charcoal as the inner border [ just looked flat and dead ] and also played with placing a narrow charcoal one inside the purple... that didn't work either... the colours are just too close in tone.
Knitting - As soon as I started reading Knitblogs, I also started seeing references to EZ and BSJ. Huh??? What was this? Some secret code that only the cognoscenti understood? Well eventually I worked out that EZ was Elizabeth Zimmermann, an American based, British born knitwear guru that I had been marginally aware of in the last great knitting wave of the 70s and 80s. The mysterious BSJ is her fabulously clever Baby Surprise Jacket, which is a classic from the early 70s and probably the cleverest piece of knitting engineering on the planet. Now I understand. It takes a long time to type in Elizabeth Zimmermann Baby Surprise Jacket so I guess it's not a conspiracy to make the rest of us feel foolish after all, just a desire for brevity. [ yeah well there's probably a teensy bit of the 'wanting to be one of the cool kids who knows what's what' involved as well]
Anyhoo, thanks to some rare and handy enabling from Chris and Maz, I have my very own copies of two of Elizabeth Zimmermann's classics: The Knitter's Almanac and The Knitting Workshop [ which contains the aforementioned BSJ ]
What did it matter that I was about nine tenths finished on a baby top down raglan? Restraint? Pshaw! I scoff at restraint!
I scoured the stash, dived on a ball of lovely Opal Prisma that Nora gave me through GoodYarnKarma and cast on the BSJ on Thursday night. On Friday morning it looked like this:
Yesterday was mostly spent looking after David who was throwing up uncontrollably but I still managed some knitting in between the bouts of washing down the loo walls when he didn't quite make it in time. [ TMI ??]
anyway by the time I finished the last Ruby feeding and tidied up, it looked like this:
a couple of folds and presto chango:

the woman is a bona fide genius.
and I have to tell you something: whoever said that they're like potato chips wasn't kidding. You really can't stop at one. This morning I cast on for BSJ2. This time in an 8-ply / Sport [ Patons Zest ] that I just happen to have the right amount of in the stash.
I haven't sewn the first one up yet because it's Purl's Princesses on Tuesday and if I'm still knitting on number 2, I want to be able to show them how that strange looking object becomes a jacket.

and btw David is a lot better today although a bit pale and tired. The downer is that it means we had to miss my aunt's 80th berfday bash in Melbourne. I couldn't put him through two lots of two hours in the car, plus he couldn't have eaten anything at the Bistro with a dodgy tummy anyway. We don't get to gather the whole clan all that often. Bugger.


Rose Red said...

N'ooor, Ruby!

Love that BSJ - and you knitted it up so quickly! I so have to cast on one of those SOON!

Alice said...
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Alice said...

Shame that you had to miss the family get-together but David's health had to come first. Hope he continues to recover quickly.

I've been wondering what you do with all of the items you knit. Do you sell them, keep them, give them away, or what?

You certainly keep busy, don't you?

catsmum said...

Never sell 'em. Some are for family and/or friends, some go into the granny box for Nadie in case I'm no longer able to knit by the time she has a family [ as happened to MY mother ], some are for charity donation - some friends and I support a group of refugee women in Melbourne - plus occasional donations to NICUs either locally or in Melbourne, and some are sold in Windarring's gift shop to raise program funds.[ Windarring is the day placement that D attends ]

crazyhaberdasher said...

.....aww..look at that face..! How can you resist that, mum-of-many!?
Fantastic fast knit baby jacket, do I see a production line going?
Poor Dave.....too much holidaying??
I do hope he recovers quickly.

Lisa L said...

I too love the BSJ! It really seems miraculous every time it works!

Stop by my blog this week when you get a chance - there's a little something there for you!

Sheepish Annie said...

I'm looking at baby knits these days (No!! Not for me!!!) and have been thinking about the BSJ. It just seems so neat...a few folds and there it is! Let's see if my knitting mojo returns before I cast on though.

Glad to hear that David is feeling better. But so sorry to hear that it messed up the family plans. It was probably the best decision, but it's always sad to cancel out on a fun gathering.

Sara said...

I can't believe it! I just got that pattern to make a baby sweater for a friend of mine's daughter! How funny is that! I saw it at the quilt shop - and knew I had to make it~!! I'm starting it this week!

Donna Lee said...

I understand about the abbreviations. I had to look up SEX and let me tell you , there are alot of very strange people out there in the world who do some weird things. I have never made a BSJ but have been seeing them a lot lately. I think I might like to try it. I just have to find someone with a baby to gift it to.

The One and Only Nadie said...
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MadMad said...

That's a beautiful BSJ! I've knitted two... but can't for the life of me figure out how they are supposed to fold up. I think I will go stare at your pix some more in case I can figure it out from there. It's possible I'm just an idiot, though.