Thursday, August 27, 2009

Time’s a-wastin’.

Tomorrow is Charlotte’s 8th birthday extravaganza. She has planned an enormous Build-a-Bear party for basically everyone she knows, except the neighbour girl who recently (oh, who am I kidding, ‘continuously’) bossed her around.

And that’s what is known as ‘comeuppance'. NO CAKE FOR YOU, HA.

At this very moment, party being tomorrow, I should be cleaning something, or baking something. Instead, I’m posting about a couple of books I keep meaning to talk about: “Socks from the Toe Up” and “Mother Daughter Knits”.

ToeUp

“Socks” is the baby of Wendy Johnson, who writes Wendy Knits. This book has got some cool stuff, plus lots of tips for basic toe-up sock construction. The patterns are nice. (Weirdly, though, many of them don’t continue all the way around the back of the leg – the patterning is just on the front.) My favourite so far are the Labyrinth socks (Ravelry link) but I haven’t cast them on yet…just need the perfect yarn.

This is a great book if you’re a sock knitter in general, and especially if you usually knit them top-down and are wondering about a switch. Wendy has included instructions for a good heel-flap imitation, too, so you won’t be limited to short-row heels.

Socks from the Toe Up gets:

3/3

Mother-DaughterK

Mother-Daughter Knits” is from Sally Melville and her daughter Caddy Melville-Ledbetter. Sally is apparently a friend of my mother-in-law, and I think I might try to wangle some kind of introduction – based on this book, I would LOVE her. (And her daughter, too.)

There is a lot of good stuff in this book. I’m impressed with the sections on fitting body shapes – they’ve gone to a lot of trouble to explain the theory and application of knit design, including changing parts of the pattern to suit your figure, and what to wear WITH your chosen sweater shape. I like that – so often, as they say in the book, a nice piece is ruined by an off bit of styling.

I love the Camelot Coat, designed by Sally. I also like Caddy’s Minidress, although that is not my usual style (cap sleeves, argh!) – but the back is marvellous.

I see a lot of pattern books and mostly they are the same old, same old, but this one really appeals. There is more good information than I expected, the sizing range is generous, and the designs are pretty. Check out “Mother-Daughter Knits” if you get a chance.

Mother-Daughter Knits gets:

3/3

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And now I really must go plan the cake. Charlotte wants layers of both vanilla AND chocolate, plus real buttercream. I believe this to be in honour of the “Buttercream Cub” from Build-a-Bear.

Which, by the way: cute, but what a racket they’re pulling. They are masters of the up-sell – and now they’ve got my daughters trying to pull out their own teeth in order to get money to spend at the Build-a-Bear Workshop.

Literally, they are trying to pull out their own teeth. Emily actually succeeded in getting one out, last night, but she’s in the lucky position of having at least three teeth that are currently in varying degrees of looseness, and are therefore potentially extractable for the Cause. Charlotte doesn’t have any loose teeth at the moment, but the way she’s pushing them around, she soon will.

Off to whip some butter. The cake has to be especially soft and creamy, so my children will be able to eat it with their bare gums.

8 comments:

Geek Knitter said...

I don't believe I ever wanted something badly enough to pull my teeth out for it... have to admire their determination if nothing else!

bethro said...

Thanks for the reviews - who doesn't love getting knitting books by recommendation? Good luck for the big day with all the tykes. I hope that pushy girl understands the cause and effect here.

kate said...

Hope Charlotte has a fabulous birthday, sans bossy girl.

Over at our house it is Bakugon which are the coveted current item. Good for getting odd jobs done though ....

Kristine said...

Happy birthday to Charlotte! I am insanely jealous of your Build-a-bear nearness; VT Teddy Bear Factory is about twenty minutes from our house, but I don't exactly want to spend $100 per bear...details, details.

Gena said...

Happy birthday, Charlotte! Hope the party is great and wonderful.

Okay. When I was a kid, I hated having loose teeth, and never intentionally pulled them. I just let them hang on by the shreds until they mysteriously fell out on their own. My brother, however, tried all the old tricks to pull out teeth, which never seemed to work.

lizbon said...

Happy birthday Charlotte!

And ohmigod the teeth-pulling was just hilarious.

Annalea said...

Those books look lovely. Thanks for reviewing them.

I thought of you today, while following an exercise video led by Nina and Vina, two incredible belly dancers. I never knew I was so pathetic. I've always had a little native grace, but this left me feeling most definitely clod-hopish, and wanting to go through the video again to try to capture some of that incredible grace of arms and hands.

Happy birthday to Charlotte, and best of luck with the party!

karen said...

A BIG Happy Birthday to Charlotte! Build a Bear is a wonderful(money Makin and Takin idea!!) - wish I had thought of it!
Your review of " Mother Daughter" sounds appealing - I was thinking of getting it, and now I probably will.
Wishing a wonderful and stress free day with the Birthday Girl, h and her friends. Hope to see you soon, chat,knit and drink something(!).