Archive for the ‘FOs’ Category


Just because you don’t need it…

December 18, 2007

…doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make it.

 For example, I had absolutely no need for another hat. I have a ton. I probably have a hat to go with every type of outfit in my arsenal. Plus I have Christmas knitting left to do.

So clearly I had to devote a ton of energy in to making the Estella beret.

 It’s pretty much the kind of knitting experience you really hope for when starting a new project. It starts with a solid technique, moves in to a stitch pattern that is fun to make a looks great, and the pattern holds your hand through the decreases. And all the while you get to look at a beautiful hat taking shape.


“Well there’s your problem”

November 20, 2007

“What a cute hat!” my mother exclaimed on seeing the completed Odessa.

 “Thanks,” I mumbled halfheartedly.

“It’s such a pretty color! Is it part of Ryan’s Christmas gift? It’s a bit big for a baby hat, but I bet she’ll grow in to it soon.”

“Not supposed to be a baby hat,” I grumbled.

But, sadly, there is absolutely no way this is going to fit on my head. Not with my hair. The yarn is very smooth so it slides right off, on top of the fact that it’s too shalow and too small around. I got gague. I don’t know what went wrong. But look at it! It’s the size of my hand! Now I don’t know what to do with it…

Heir of Slytherin Coriolis…what can I say? I did the socks really really terribly wrong…but I don’t mind. The second one is almost done and I’ll have some wonderfully warm, neat looking house socks (they’re not gonne fit in any of my shoes). Just a few inches of the leg and some 1×1 ribbing left to do before I show them off. The third shipment, Prizoner of Azkaban, came in on Monday while I was stranded at home from work due to bad weather. The colors are DEFFINITELY ones I would buy for myself, and I like the included pattern. It’s a bamboo blend, which I’ve never used before, but it feels so smooth and nice. I’m looking forward to getting the Heir off the needles and digging in to the new yarn.

Speaking of yarn, I haven’t actually purchased any new yarn at all this month. None! I’m not counting the sock club since that was set in motion months ago. I’ve been mainly stashdiving and making presents for people with yarn that was bought ages ago for just that purpose. No new yarn…that’s so strange. And I’ve even thought about it too. When I decided I wanted a heavy version of the Luna Moth Shawl, I was thinking of hitting my new favorite LYS (The Down Loft in Basking Ridge. It’s AMAZING in there) for the materials…when I looked in my stash and found some perfectly nice undyed Cascade 220. This was perfect! I love natural colors of wool and figured it would make for  nice, versetile shawl. Never done a real lace pattern before, but so far it’s really fun. Plus I’m kinda cheating as the yarn and needles are so big.

I also have a very fancy new coat that I hope to have a picture of soon, and it requires a black hat fancier than my beloved Glaistig (which probably gets worn more than anything else I’ve ever made) to go with it. I’m thinking some kind of beret (I might fancy up a basic pattern) out of the Black Lamb’s Pride I have stitting in stash. See! I’m being good!


Success helps

November 15, 2007

Thank heavens for Urchin. It was a quick hat with some interesting new things to learn that used a full skein of yarn and looks completely unlike anything I could have bought in a store.

It’s exactly what I needed.

This thing took no time at all to make. I don’t think it looks half bad, either (though I know I’ll never look as good as Ysolda in it)! The short row shaping was fun, and I learned how to do a provisional cast on *and* garter stitch grafting! Hats are also like comfort food to me. If I’m feeling low about my abilities, my best bet is to make a hat. In fact, I was feeling so much better after finishing the Urchin, that I got down to the business of overhauling the cuff of the Heir of Slytherin Coriolis.

This was serious surgery. I was ripping back like a full inch and a half, so I did the “put needle in right arm of stitch to hold it in place and frog away” trick. I only grabbed the wrong stitch in a couple of places, but managed to fix that with some crochet thread, a tiny hook, and a lot of profanity. A few rows of 1×1 ribbing and a sewn bind off later and I finally FINALLY have one sock completed. I was trying to finish before the next shipment from the sock club came in, but apparently it’ll be here any day now. Even at top speed I’ll probably be a little past my goal, but I think I really understand this pattern now. But I gotta say, the New Pathways patterns are not for people who don’t like math and thinking. The coriolis pattern itself, however, is great for handpainted yarns like this. I wasn’t really jazzed about these colors when I first got the yarn (not the pallette that I would pick myself), but I’m really growing fond of them as the play out in this pattern. Really looking forward to what Carrie does with Prizoner of Azkaban’s cover. It’ll also be my first time knitting with a bamboo blend. Is it weird that this is so exciting to me?


A happy knitter

November 6, 2007

I’m feeling really content with my knitting right now. That’s a nice feeling. I did my first ever true stash-dive project and made a quick beret out of some leftover Skye Tweed I bought last year for $2 a ball. Sale yarn, good project, using up stash. That’s a happiness trifecta for me. I used the Le Slouch pattern, and I think it’s pretty good looking. I like the yarn, and the color goes well with a lot of things I own. This pic’s kind of a cop out, but I hope to get an actual wearing shot up soon. Didn’t have time this morning.

I’m also finally past the hesitation stage on my poor Heir of Slytherin socks. They just didn’t fit and no amount of stitch shifting was going to save them. I still really liked the coriolis idea, so I figured out the master numbers and I’m going to be making the Master Spiraling Coriolis to fit my crazy ass feet. P.S – The Whirlpool toe? fits really well but was murder to start. My figure 8 cast on was terrible. I’m gonna have to sew that up with the yarn tail. Feels nice to have a pair of socks back on the needles, finally.

Lastly, today I hope to begin spinning up the blue roving I bought. I think it’ll look nice with the yellow, and then I can try to ply using my ultra-high-tech Lazy Kate:

My motto is: If it can be built, a reasonable facsimile of it can be made out of carboard.


Two Paths Diverged

October 14, 2007

I have two knitting roads I can choose right now.

 One is the more prudent path. It says “Wow you have a lot of stuff on the needles. The best thing to do right now would be to focus on what’s already been started and finish that off. You’ll feel better and you’ll have actual knitted objects to wear.”

The voice on my other shoulder is something more to the effect of…..


It’s been very hard to choose, but I’m kind of striking a balance. I actually have two new FOs: The My So Called Scarf that took much too long to finish off and the Back to School U-Neck.

The thing is, I liked making this scarf a lot. It’s just that….well…It’s a scarf. A scarf in one stitch pattern forever and ever amen until you run out of yarn or patience. But this was Malabrigo. Sweet, sweet Malabrigo. And the stitch pattern makes a beautiful, thick scarf that look really sharp.

And the sweater-vest. Wow. Am I ever surprised with this one. It was another one of those projects where I was like ‘man this is gonna look dumb and probably won’t fit it seems so big on top…’

It fits great. It looks even cuter in person than it does in the photo. It really is nice to finish things. I ought to keep this up.

As for the “MOAR!” screaming in my brain, it’s partly spurred on by how gorgeous my new sock yarn is.

Look at that! It’s even better looking in person than it is on dyer’s Etsy! I wanted to cast something on with it right away, but my sock-fu is apparently not at its best. I tried on the Waving Lace Socks last night and found that they didn’t fit at all. I seem to just have really bad luck with Lorna’s Laces. I didn’t want to be discouraged, though, so I cast on some Monkeys. Good ol’ Monkey. There’s a reason everyone on the internet seems to have made a pair. Intuitive stitch pattern that makes great use of really variegated yarns. The colorway is still very My Little Pony, but it’s all good. I’m looking forward to these…

Also going to give in to my inner moarCat and pick up some more size 2 DNPs (my magic needle for sock gauge, it seems). I’ve got more sock yarn coming from the Potter’s Covers Sock Club…can’t just leave that sitting around…and nothing says I can’t have more than one pair of socks going at once….

Just leave me to my rationalizations or I’ll send ceilingCat after you. And he doesn’t play around.


Sock Madness

October 6, 2007

Must. Knit. More. Socks.

I finished the Owl’s Flight socks early this morning and they are beautiful.

I love the colors, I love the yarn, I love the pattern and I love how they feel. These socks are more than enough to cement in my mind that I love knitting socks. Just look at these! It’s a hand knit object that I can wear every day! That really means something. It’s not always cool out enough to wear a sweater or a hat or a scarf. But socks? I wear socks all the time, year round (I have a hang up about being barefoot. It’s a really long story, but suffice it to say the only times I’m barefoot by choice is in the shower or down the Shore). And you know what? If I’m going to wear socks all the time, why not make them special. I’ve used that term a lot with these socks, but it’s the best description for them. I wish you could see the lace pattern a bit better, but since my camera sucks, I’m afraid I can only really show you the pretty pretty colors that Carrie put together. Aren’t they great?

This pattern proves to me that knitting is something I’m actually good at. I read my knitting, I repaired dropped stitches, I followed a lace chart, I compensated for my choice of a different heel, my kitchener stitch toe is great. I’ve really found something I’m good at, enjoy doing, and can make something great.

And since I cannot stop making socks now, I’m gonna wreck myself against a difficult task: I’m gonna design my own toe-ups. I’m swatching tonight and using the Universal Toe-Up formula from Knitty. Since I don’t want to make these too plain, I’m going to incorporate a little lace pattern from the first Barbara Walker Treasury. The one I picked has a nice little story to it (I love storytelling, but that’s for another blog). It’s a lace pattern from a pair of stockings worn by Queen Elizabeth the First, and since I’ve always had an interest in my namesake I think it’ll be cool to try and knit a pair of socks with “her pattern” in it.



September 24, 2007

I apparently develop super-completion-powers when I get sick.

I’ve been sick with some kind of flu/cold bug since Saturday and the fog that comes with it has made me want to sit back and finish the things that are already on my needles so I can start some fresh projects. First thing  was the last bit of sewing on my Festival Print skirt. All I had to do was finish up the hem by Saturday and I’m pretty sure I actually got the hem straight.

 This last one’s a little blurry, but it shows the length.

And if we’re talking about things that need to get finished, Trellis was it. It had to go. It’s been causing me so much worry that I needed to at least be able to say “Well that’s over.” So I sewed it up, finished the collar, then proceeded to try and block it. It wasn’t a pretty sight. Used all of my T-Pins and the tiny cardigan looked like it was auditioning for the Hellraiser remake. If anyone ever makes a “lolknitting” site I’d like to suggest a caption for this pic:

“O hai. U needz moar T-pins”

It’s just the flash on that photo that make it look like the cables aren’t even there. There’s a better photo on my flickr. But now that this isn’t using up a 7 circular, I can swatch for the Back to School U-Neck vest.

Then I wanted to start my first sock club socks, but I had to make sure those size 2 dpns were going to be free…Well to do that I clearly had to finish that second Endpaper Mitt in one night. After all, it simply wouldn’t do to start the socks only to realize I needed those smaller needles to do the ribbing for the top of the Endpapers! So the Endpaper Mitts are done. I absolutely loved this project. It’s quick, easy to follow, and has some really great new techniques to learn (the tubular cast on is my new best friend). It also gives you plenty of confidence when it comes to color-work, which I’d never done before. It was a project way out of my comfort zone and I had fun with every part of it. So if anyone out there is looking for a way to get in to stranded knitting but doesn’t know where to start, I highly recommend the Endpapers.

Lastly, I think as a reward for making something cute for a family member, Mommy took me out to the yarn store in Montclair and I got some gorgeous Rowan Felted Tweed in a super pretty red for a sweater vest that I’ll probably think up off the top of my head, and some Lorna’s Laces in a colorway that I think is called “Gold Hill.” It’s a beautiful fall color variegated that I think I have just the pattern for…but first, my super cool awesome Harry Potter colorway 🙂