Archive for August, 2007

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Blink and you’ll miss it

August 31, 2007

Since I now have both a Ravelry account and a knitblog, I feel like my FOs shouldn’t really sneak up on me anymore. I feel like I should be very well aware of just how much progress I have made on any given project and be able to project when it will be finished.

But…like…that blue beret I mentioned, like, a couple day ago? It’s done.

How in the name of puppies did *that* happen? It’s like, after all the time and emotional investment that went in to getting the Bellatrix sock finished, this hat shouldn’t be done *already*. But no. It’s done. And I’m kind of a fan…

 

I have no other hats that look even kinda like this beast. I also love the bright blue color and no longer regret not using a nice khaki green like the other examples of the Sea Urchin beret I could find. I have kind of a soft spot for this yarn, too, as it’s the leftovers from my first ever sweater (<3). It’s so big, too! It covers my ears completely and is so toasty I can’t see myself ever being cold again in the winter. I’m happy. I don’t care if other people think it looks silly. This thing’s getting worn.

Speaking of winter, I think I’m finally ready to start gift knitting….Oi vey….

In other crafting news, my joined rings are improving in my tatting. I have come up with an idea for a crazy knitted bag incorporating my tatting skillz and have been kinda mapping it out recently, but before I can start on a project like this, I have to kill more stash…for everyone’s sake, especially my own. I’m being haunted by the Ghost of Acrylic Past and need to purge some demons.

And sewing! Yes, sewing! I’m going to try sewing. I have fabric for a few skirt patterns, but not the elstic or thread or zippers and stuff. *And* my mother found an awesome retro apron pattern! I’m so stoked! This means we get to go to the GOOD fabric store this weekend! Our JoAnne’s is pretty weak, so Fabric Land is worth the trip.

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Hawt Socks

August 29, 2007

Woo hoo! Finished a pair of socks in under a month! Bellatrix is done!

Still have all praise for the Knit Picks Gloss. I wore these for a little bit before I went to sleep last night and they were nice and cozy and cushy. Not machine washable, but I’ll get over it. I still have quite a bit left over, which made my grind my teeth a bit over my continued inability to use up yarn.

Moving on from the yarn, these socks are hot. Like, super hot. I felt hot just wearing them. I’m definitely seeing them worn with a skirt, but maybe not with the heels I wore in the picture. Too much? I dunno. I just really really like them and would hate to only ever hide them under jeans. and sneakers.

I also gave in to a bit of that starter madness I talked about last time. I’m justifying it as some “color therapy” after working with so much black yarn. I’m now working on a My So Called Scarf in this lovely Malabrigo to my right (the colorway is Curacao, which, when left to my own devices, I try to put in to every alcoholic bverage I make. everything is better in blue).

The project that threatens to take time away from it, though, is a hat that is basically everything that I want from a hat. Texture. Warmth. Uniqueness. Ability to use blue yarn. The Sea Urchin Hat from Craftster. It looks *amazing* on the original maker, and I’m hoping for even a bit of that sucess. It’s a great looking hat, but I hadn’t reaslized what that cool stitch pattern was until I started making it. It’s seed stitch ribbing. Seed Stitch. Ribbing. Ribbing that is also seed stitch. I don’t know what it is about this that is blowing my mind, but consider it blown. I’m using old bright blue Cascade 220 double stranded, even going so far as to frog a really ugly project to get the yarn. I know it ought to be in green for the whole “sea urchin” theme…but I want an enormous blue beret. Is that so wrong?

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Starter madness

August 23, 2007

The first Bellatrix is done! I’m just past the twisted rib of the second sock, and trying very hard to stay focused on getting it done before October….

 But then the start madness hit. Perhaps you, fellow knitters, can share my feelings. All of a sudden you want to start about 20 new projects all at once. This is also known as “Startitis,” but I classify start madness as when you don’t just start a new project, you start and abandon it all in the same night.

I have a few already begun projects that I could be focusing on. The felted box that’s using up the last of my green Lamb’s Pride, the Clashtastic Blanket, drinking more soda for the Tin Can Tote. Plenty to do! None of it really getting done. Dabbled in the box and the blanket last night but not a lot of measurable progress.

The trick with the start madness this time was that I managed to convince myself I was being responsible. You see, I’m finally passable enough at knitting that it’s becoming expected that I knit for others. Oh em gee I’m so awkward about this. All of my knitting, to this point, has been for myself because I don’t want to inflict it on other people. Now there are actual requests coming in, so it’s unavoidable now. Hats for two friends, two baby things, and I know that if I make things for a few friends, I have to make for the rest…So basically, I told myself “Christmas/Hanukkah Knitting doesn’t count toward me being bad, right?”

I picked up the yarn for one friend’s hat and put it down. I’m making her a black Kittyville hat and the thought of seed stitch right now makes me gag. I even cast on and did a few rows of Berocco’s Pie baby sweater before realizing that I suck at seeming garter stitch and the Elizabeth Zimmerman baby patterns I have are way way cuter (Baby Surprise, Tomten, Baby Bog…). So started and frogged. Looked at the leftover black Mission Falls and tried to think of a hat that I could make for a friend that would use it up, look cool, and *not* be the pattern he requested. He wanted a Shedir after seeing me wear mine to a bonfire….yeahno. Not happening. Then I thought about the Trellis I want to make for my cousin’s little boy and got tired. It’s aran design on a small scale, but I think I’m still cabled out.

Guess I’ll wait on those. I don’t know if I want to do one of the Zimmermann patterns in just one color, cables are a no right now, and I can’t bear the thought of starting another black project.

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“Does not follow written directions well”

August 21, 2007

Story of my Elementary School life….

 Now that the shrug (which I’m loving more every day with this lousy weather we’re having) is done, I’m focusing all of my attentions on the Bellatrix socks. Got most of the foot done over the weekend while sitting on the porch listening to an Agatha Christie audiobook. Miss Marple sure is clever 😛

Thing is, I worry I’m breaking some, like, unknown to me sock commandment. The Bellatrix socks have a reputation for being very loose, what with all the dropped stitches. As I’ve mentioned before, that works just fine for my calves, but I didn’t want something droopy on my foot. My solution was to change needle sizes from a 2 to a 1 for picking up the gusset and making the foot. So far, it’s worked out really really well…but should it? Are you supposed to mess with needle size this much, I wonder.

Some guy yaking about psychics!I’m a big fan of the “knit however will make it work for you” philosophy. And even if my gague is more gonzo than Hunter S. Thompson, it’s coming out to a comfy, cozy pair of socks that I think look awesome. I’m already picking out outfits to wear them with! And the Knitpicks Gloss is holding up really well against the abuse my knitting bag suffers, so brownie points to that yarn. The heel still feels a little short to me, but that might just be because my only other experience has been with Jaywalkers, which are known for having heel flaps that could eat Cleaveland.

As a roundup for my own future reference, here are the mods I’m going to be making on the second sock: Using size 1’s for the ribbing at the top (worry about grippyness on the 2s), 2’s for the leg, 1’s for the feet, slipped stitch heel.

I’m excited and near the toe, so the second sock should be on the needles shortly…and then I can take a month to finish it like I did with the Jaywalkers…Hooray?

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Finally! Some progress!

August 18, 2007

About a week ago I went a little nuts with the starting. This morning I had no less than 5 WIPs that I was trying to spread my attention around on, but it just wasn’t working. Sometimes you just feel like you need to finish something, ya know?

So. I decided to pick something and see it to the finish this weekend. *Clearly* this was not feasable with the Clashtastic Log Cabin, which if I’m going to be honest has been getting most of my attention, so I went to the black sheep of my knitting bag: The former Two-Toned Shrug which was reduced by cutbacks to something more like a Two Skein Wonder.

I was really pessimistic about the pattern. If I wasn’t complaining that it wasn’t going to fit, I was whining that it was going to make me look like a linebacker. When I got to the ribbing around the body I turned in to an even bigger brat. I’ve been in a lousy mood lately and the boring yet not mindless-ness of 2×2 ribbing was driving me up a wall. I only did 14 rounds of ribbing as opposed to the more than 20 called for. I bound off grumbling, but still pretty pleased to have finished something. But clearly, it was going to have been a waste of time, I thought. Went upstairs to the full length mirror and took a look.

 I like it. I like it a lot. My shoulders look pretty normal, I still like the color, and it’s nice and warm, while still being right for this August weather. I like it so much that I feel bad skimping out on the ribbing around the body. It’d look even better with the full complement. Still burried under a heap of WIPs, but you sure do get a lift in mood finishing something, eh?

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The point of no return?

August 15, 2007

I think I may have hit the point of no return and am now transitioning from a knitter to a Knitter.

What brought this on? I really really *really* want to join this “Sock Yarn of the Month” club I heard about on Ravelry. It’s nice, independently died sock yarn and I really really want it….But can I do it?

 I have the money to do the monthly instalment plans, but it’s the stash space I worry about. I refuse to purchase any more containers for my yarn. It’s gotten out of hand already. I picked through it the other day and the thing is it’s not even just odds and ends of yarn. It’s like several groups that have enough to make a sweater. One set I know is for my cousin’s baby girl, and another bunch is for my other cousin’s little boy. I need to just sit down and use those large patches up, but that brings me to the next problem:

Has anyone ever sucessfully used up their yarn? Like, the whole skein/ball/hank is gone, baby, gone? I seem to be incapable of using up any given color. The skeins of Lamb’s Pride I had in Turkish Olive? *Still* have some left. And this is after making a small scarf, part of a felted purse, and a set of garter stitch mitts with it! I still have a lump of it that’s too small to really make anything with, but too big to just throw away. For *once* I’d just like to use something up…

Good thing I have that Clashtastic Log Cabin. Blankets = stash killers, so all that old Homespun is as good as gone. Of course, this knowledge put me in to a false sense of security and I felt safe to toss a couple of balls of Pallete in to my shopping cart when I ordered my friend’s birthday preasent from Knitpicks. What? I needed to round the order out to $45 for the shipping…

…If this gets any worse I’m going to want to try spinning…and that will just be bad for all of us….

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I think I may have actually lost my mind

August 13, 2007

The internets are a place filled with magic and wonder. Somewhere between the celebrity gossip sites and half-baked political blogs, you can sometimes find things that actually make your life better than it had been previously.

I never knew just how dull my existence was until today. I hadn’t known it, but something was missing. Something I never could have guessed I needed until I saw it and I just KNEW.

I must have, as soon as possible, a Tin Can Granny Square Tote Bag.

I found the above work of unspeakable beauty while at work and had to go out shopping for it right away. Instead of scrutinizing skein after skein of yarn at the LYS, I was comparing the colors and aestetics of the various soda cans at the A&P. I eventually settled on Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper based on its color scheme (I have leftover white and red acrylic in my stash), unlikelyness of choice (Coke was too obvious), and tastiness (gotta drink this stuff, ya know. My friends might be willing to help me out with this one since it’s diet).

This also has an element of construction that sounds like a lot of fun. Since I picked up some wire, beads, and beading pliers,  I’ve become more interesting in the old Shop Class style of crafting as well. I’m really looking forward to cutting up the cans with my awesome new spring action titanium bladed scissors (not as badass as they sound. got them at Target on sale). I can also snatch a pair of my mom’s gardening gloves. I’m also wondering if I should pick up some goggles as well. I’m really paranoid about stuff happening to my eyes, so I’m willing to be overprotective of them.

Do I sound overly excited? Because I am. I can’t *wait* to get a move on with this little bit of heaven. I even sense this might make for a new knitting bag!