Archive for April, 2008

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Burny progress

April 30, 2008

Knitting is, in my mind, sitting calmly in one spot and working on your fun little project be it challenging or mindless or in between, but things have just been so crazy lately there was no time for me to sit down and work on the sweater I started *or* the new shawl…

Well my problems with lack of knitting time were solved this weekend after I got a really really bad sunburn on the tops of my feet while I was in Delaware. To give you an idea of how bad, my feet swelled up to twice their normal size, I couldn’t walk so much as stumble flat-footed and in immense pain, and now four days after the initial burn my feet are still deep cherry red with a lovely complement of blisters on the right foot near the toes. It’s pretty gross, but the fact that I was confined to whatever chair I could fall in to means I got a bunch of knitting done.

This is the Flutter Sleeve Cardigan for the Spring Interweave. I’ve actually been working on it since the beginning of the month, but as busy as I’ve been, bloging’s gotten shoved down the priority list. I’m knitting it in Rowan Handknit Cotton, a yarn that doesn’t seem to get much use in full sized sweaters if my skimming of Ravelry is any indication. But so far I’ve got nothing but love for this stuff. It’s got a good hand and shows texture very well. Plus it comes in like a billion colors.  I’m also really enjoying the pattern itself. The “kimono construction” is really neat and I’ve never done anything like it before. I am, however, concerned about how well my short-rows are concealing themselves in this yarn. A good blocking should cover up the little gaps (I’m hesitant to call them holes). Then there’s the ever popular “I sure hope I’m reading this pattern right..” paranoia, but that’s nothing new.

The other really active project is the Victorian Lace Today Melon Shawl. I really need to get trucking on this one since I want to be able to wear it to a wedding in early June. Sure the wedding is in North Carolina and the last thing I’m going to want is some fuzzy whatever stuck to my shoulders, but it’s always good to have something like a shawl on hand just in case. This is a gorgeous pattern and deserves all the raves it’s gotten. Super easy to memorize and execute, it’s surprisingly good TV knitting.

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Soft but pointy

April 14, 2008

Lace is really something. You work and work and work on this thing that’s basically just a bunch of holes held tenuiously together by a substance as thin as dental floss. When you’re done it looks sad and crumpled like pantyhose thrown in the hamper.

But dunk it in some water and magically…

…you have a lovely, opework scarf with discernable points around the border!

Now that it’s all done, I’m super excited to do more. I think I’ll get a ton of mileage out of Victorian Lace Today before I need to go around looking for more lace books. And there’s plenty of materials in my stash! Let’s see, I have the bright green Kidsilk Haze, the ultra-lightweight Cashwool, that malbrigo I bought once-upon-a-time ago…

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The simplest things…

April 9, 2008

…often turn out to be the biggest pains in the ass.

Okay. Purl Beret. About as easy as a hat can be without being a roll-bottom beanie, right? Apparently I can’t do simple right now because I’ve had to rip the thing back to the end of the body THREE TIMES. One was me being completely stupid and trying to mess with the decrease pattern. Resulting hat didn’t fit at all and looked dumb, so I ripped it back to a three inch body (as stated in the pattern), and then proceeded to screw up the decrease order another two times. What the hell is the matter with me? I’d just say “screw it” and move on at this point but the Koigu is so pretty and so expensive and I’m SO stubborn. But now the hat just feels like it’s in the way sicne I swore I would not start the Flutter Cardigan until it was finished.

On the other hand, the knitted lace border is going shockingly well. My numbers are a little off on the side loops, but if I fudge the numbers I should get what I need out of it. And if the first corner is a bit off, that’s okay. I’ve never done anything like this before, so imperfection is to be expected and accepted. But now that I’m doing the border it’s hit me that this lace thing is really really fun! I picked up some Kidsilk Haze for the extremely popular “Melon Shawl” in a nice bright green that I think will go well with a dress I have for wearing to a wedding this summer. Sadly it took me two trips to get all the yarn for it. Victorian Lace Today apparently has a history of being a bit short on it’s yardage calculations and thanks to Ravelry I found that I needed 4 balls of KSH, not 3. I should have been able to figure that out with basic math (3 balls of KSH does not add up to 700 yard).

Speaking of Ravelry, I gotta say it’s a bit sad to see that the Drama Llamas have managed to make some of the more general boards a bit….well, dramariffic. But frankly, I still feel that there’s no one on that board trying to pull the kind of schoolgirl style Mean Girl Games most of us went through not too long ago. Seriously, all these people who are saying that the Ravboards have turned in to little vitriol fountains should absolutely NEVER go look at other bbs systems like Fark or Something Awful. The internet is predominantly for Haters, but Ravelry seems to manage a variety of sweet to balance the sour and even outweigh it to a point. Sure we like to focus on the bad, but seriously if you go anywhere off the big general boards you start tripping over good vibes. Maybe I’m just jaded from all the Fark reading, but I’m hesitant to all this any kind of apocalypse.

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Long term strategy

April 3, 2008

MAJOR dropoff in posts here, I know but I just haven’t had anything new to post about. I’m still making things of course, but the thing is they’re all rather long term and difficult to really see progress on.

 I started the Clashtastic Log Cabin blanket so long ago I feel like I can use the phrase “once upon a time” to describe when it began. The good news is that the end is finally in sight! This blanket will be done when I no longer have usable amounts of Lion Brand Homespun taking up space in my stash. I started with 8 colors and am now down to 6, which doesn’t sound like much of an improvement until you learn that the rest of the colors only have maybe about one stripe left in them. So, amazingly, the knit blanket is almost done! And what have I learned from this? That knitting blankets is inefficient and nowhere near as speedy and fun as crocheting them!

I have a lot of green and blue yarnOn that note, I finally decided what to do with my outcast natural fiber yarns: Babette blanket. It’s huge but the squares are super fast to make and the modular construction makes me really happy. Like I can put together squares based on color sequences and then find a way to make them fit in the big picture. For example, the purple-black-blue square in the picture looks nice and all, but I don’t think it looks so good next to the big prime square (the blue-green concoction), so I’ll just save it for later! I’ve never been particularly good at seaming crochet, but I guess I have to learn sometime and the crazy resulting blanket will be totally worth it. The trick to this blanket is that I *will not* buy yarn specifically for it. This will be made slowly over time of my leftover worsted bits, and maybe if I figure out some voodoo with the DK that can get rolled in too.  Considering I almost always over-buy yarn for a project, the materials shouldn’t be too hard to get 🙂

Lastly, the color cycle of Project Spectrum have changed over to EARTH. I am so all over this one. I have green yarn like you would not believe, with brown also heavily represented in my stash. Like Fire before it, this new cycle gets kicked off with a new beret (maybe even one to replace my sadly felted tweed one 😦  ) It’s the most basic beret pattern on the internet, but the specialness comes from the Koigu I’m using to make it. First of all, I can totally understand the hype over this yarn now. It makes a really bouncy fabric and the colors are amazing. This colorway reminds me of the very beginnings of spring when everything around here is, to be honest, more yellow than green.