Saturday, April 28, 2007

Personal Growth

This has been a week of much personal growth in my household. Number 1, and I realize this doesn't seem like much, but I drank coffee without any milk in it. Very exciting. Previously, I tended to freak out at the idea of black coffee, as opposed to my lovely light brown that it is after the copious amounts of sugar and milk. But, faced with the need for coffee and a lack of milk, I just added my sugar and drank it. And it was good.
Personal growth for my fiancee: He has admitted to a use for knitting needles. Aside from entertaining his girlfriend, that is. He managed to get a game stuck in his X-Box.Which was very sad for me, to see him holding his game console, sobbing, "Not my baby, Lord, not my baby." He's very attached to his X-Box. But I managed to use my size 4, blue aluminum straight needle to bring the game to the front of the opening, and a pair of tweezers to get it all the way out. Apparently, this makes up for stabbing his hand into my container of DPNs.

More personal growth for me:

One sock, knit toe-up to use all the yarn I could. For the first time, I have no sock leftovers. Plus, since the Jaywalker pattern this was adapted from is not terribly stretchy, I had to add stitches along the way to get it to fit. I wouldn't quite say I added calf-shaping. That implies some sort of plan to the increases, but I added stitches, you can't tell where, and they fit. Have I started the next sock yet? For the pair? No. I started a completely new pair. Deal.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

I had hoped to offer, by way of excuse for a lack of posting, a picture of a rough draft of a paper. However, even if you are the queen of procrastination, turns out you can't write a twenty page paper in two days. Who knew?

But I was working on the paper more or less the entire weekend. I did get some knitting done.
Sock number 1 for my dad's huge, clown-like feet. I'm calling these my cholera socks, because I was knitting these while I was supposed to be writing a paper on cholera.
Sock number 2 will not be knit until I know that number 1 fits.
Stats: Basic stockinette sock, knit on size 2 DPNs on 64 stitches around.
Yarn is Regia something, Jacquard color.
I like the socks, though I wish they were a bit longer in the leg. The yarn, I did not like at all. Felt like Lionbrand MagicStripes, and plies had frayed in four different spots, causing me to have eight additional ends to weave in. Maybe the second ball will be better.

Friday, April 20, 2007

What do Germans know about sock yarn, anyway?

My dad, wonderful sweet man, went out and bought me yarn a while back, including some sock yarn as a not-so-subtle hint about what I should knit for him next. (No one in my family is known for subtlety.)

The yarn was a Regia jacquard print. I was rather excited about this, because up until now, I've only ever knit socks with Lionbrand or Knitpicks yarn, and this was my first time using anything remotely expensive. To my knowledge, no blogger has said anything bad about it. Most people seem to like it.

To start with, I was disappointed with the feel. It reminded me rather strongly of the Lionbrand Magic Stripes. But more expensive. Still, this was what my dad wanted, and he's the one who paid for the yarn. So I started knitting. I'm not even halfway up the foot (knitting these toe-up) and I have already encountered two spots where plys have broken, leaving a rather ragged looking yarn that I can't knit with. since this is superwash wool, I can't just cut it and felt it together, instead, I have to weave in ends.

Now, maybe I got a bad ball. Maybe Regia really is the cat's pajamas when it comes to knitting socks. I will admit that it seems to knit faster than Essential. but all in all, this is not worth the money.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

I caved

So there I was, diligently working on the Endpaper mitt, thinking about how I really liked the way the white and orange yarns looked together, and wasn't I happy that the weather had turned cold again, so I'd have a chance to wear them... and I got distracted.

All of my bridesmaids are wearing the same dress, so there was nothing to distinguish my MOH. Since the dresses are sleeveless, the perfect thing would be a little shrug... Knitty has a pattern for that... and I have that Microspun leftover from Solieil.... I had a plan.

The Endpaper mitt was cast aside, and I cast on the shrug... It didn't work. Number 1, I should have thought that acrylic doesn't block, so a lacy shrug, not a good idea. Number 2, the knitting made my hands hurt. I didn't even make it through the first row, and my hands hurt. I found another pattern, ordered more yarn (so cheap!!), and devotedly returned to the mitts.

Last night, it happened again.

Socks for my dad.

I'm not a good person.

Monday, April 16, 2007

The center portion of the wedding veil is half-way done. Yay! Since I only wanted a half circle, I pretty much just knit until it looked long enough, then bound off the top edge.
It's a bit pointy at the top corners, but I think I'll be able to block it into an appropriately semi-circular shape.
I knew I didn't want that inner border, with the crowns and hearts and what-not, so I modified the pattern a bit, to skip it. Instead, I picked up all the stitches around the edges, knit a couple of rows, an eyelet row, and a couple more, then left the stitches on the needles and started knitting the braid and sawtooth edging. I got about one and a half repeats done last night. I'll need about thirty total.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Pirate mitten is blocked, and looking rather pretty, I think. The only thing I really changed about the pattern is the back. I used pinstripes.
Because of the pinstripes, I had to slightly modify the year on the right hand mitten. I reduced the two and the seven by one stitch each. I like it.
Since these mittens don't really fit me too well, I'm giving them to a friend. We were hanging out last weekend and I noticed she had really small hands, so I asked if she wanted them. They'll have a good home.
The other thing I knit, to get rid of the yarn is this:
It's a modification of Java-a-Go-Go. With argyle. It makes me happy, although I haven't actually used it yet, so I don't know if it'll work.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

3 down, 4 to go.

The second We Call Them Pirates mitten is finished. Proof:

I've included both mittens for two reasons:
1. Proof that I've actually knit the second, and am not just showing the same one as earlier.
2. Evidence as to the importance of blocking. The one on the left is the old one, nice and even and blocked. The right is new and, well, rather rumply. It will be blocked soon.

I took a temporary break from knitting my UFOs. After this mitten was done, I still had some of the yarn left over. Not enough to save, really, but not enough to throw away. So I'm knitting that up, to get it out of my stash. tomorrow, I'll show a picture of what it's become. It's nothing special, but I think it's pretty nifty.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

So Far, So Good

The attempt to clear out my UFOs is going pretty well, I think. Twinkletoes has been declared a lost cause (what was I thinking?), and, um, well, disposed of. Sheldon now has one leg attached to his sad little body, and I have started the second pirate mitten. Which has served to remind me that I hate, hate, corrugated ribbing. But I'm halfway done with that, and will be onto the fun, fun, fair-isle section soon. Beyond these, may I present you with:

The completed baby cardigan, from this pattern, modeled by the lovely Calypso Beragilt (the closest thing I have to a baby-shaped object). As soon as I've washed it, it's going to my fiance's nephew.

The hardest part of this was finding buttons masculine enough for a boy. Apparently, dark blue dragonflies (which is what I was going to use) are not masculine. They are, in fact, girly. So, the buttons I used are very gender neutral numbers. 1, 2, 3 in primary colors on a white background.

But I still liked the dragonflies.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Almost Finished FO.

The knitting for Soleil is done. Not bad, it took me, what, a week an a half? Of course, it's not done completely. Ends need to be woven, it needs to be blocked, and I need to crochet a border around the top edges. Of course, for me to crochet a border would entail me getting a crochet hook. So this is just going to be tossed back into my knitting basket for a while.
Sorry, Blogger's not uploading my pictures.

On the subject of UFOs, I have too many of them. So my next projects will be those.
In no particular order I have:
1. Sheldon - missing his legs.
2. Norberta - not sewn or stuffed at all.
3. We Call Them Pirates Mittens - one done, one not even started
4. Endpaper Mitts - see #3
5. A baby cardigan - missing buttons (I have the buttons, I just haven't sewn them on yet)
6. Twinkletoes - one done, but missing leg ties (I'm going to use ribbon instead of the knitted string), one not even started.
7. Sweater of my own design - I'm going to finish up the front, but aside from that, I'm willing to let this one go until fall comes around again.

I'm pretty sure I can get some of these done before I get distracted again. I'm shooting for about five of the seven. We'll see.

Thursday, April 5, 2007


In lieu of my current projects, I knit something new.

No, this is not a knee pad for a cat. Instead, this is the world's smallest gauge swatch (cue triumphant music). The music isn't triumphant because of the size of the swatch, but because I did one at all. My second ever, for my dad's socks.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Current projects?

So what have I been working on since I got back from Spring Break?

School, mostly. Sorry, but I would like to graduate eventually, and with three papers due at the end of the semester, I need to start now. And, as often happens, knitting suffers.

That's not to say that I haven't been knitting at all. I usually get a couple of hours in the morning, when I make my blog rounds. The wedding veil is still a work in progress. Unfortunately, it doesn't photograph well, being all bunch up on the needle, so there may not be any more pictures until the center portion is done.

Aside from that, I have been working on a nice little summer tank.

Soleil from Knitty. Knit with Lionbrand Microspun in French Vanilla on size 6 needles.

Everything was going along swimmingly. I had cast on, finished the lace portion and started the stockinette when I made a fatal mistake. I checked my gauge. I know I've said this before: I don't swatch. So far, everything's worked out for me. This time, my tape measure said I was off. Rather significantly. After some quick calculations, I was worried about the fit of this tank. So I tried it on. And it seemed to fit. And so, the intrepid knitter forges ahead.

Monday, April 2, 2007

What I Knit Over Spring Break

I needed a small project to go on the plane with me. Something small enough to fit wherever I chose to stuff it, but big enough to last the entire trip. At first I was going to bring a pair of socks, but when I started on the Red Herring socks from Knitty, they came out too big and I ripped them. Instead, I knit this:
Doesn't look like much, huh? That's just because it hasn't undergone the wonders of blocking!

Much better.
The stats:
Swallowtail Shawl from Fall '06 Interweave Knits, designed by Evelyn Clark. Knit with Knitpicks Shadow in Jewel on size 5 needles. Finished, blocked measurements: 23 along center back and 55 across the top.
I started this last Tuesday, knit the first chart, then set it aside until Thursday, when we were on the plane. We got back from Spring Break on Friday, and I finished on Saturday and blocked the shawl on Sunday.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Why I Love My Parents

Well, one of many reasons. I went home for spring break this week (part of the reason there has been such a lack of posting here), and this was waiting for me when I got there:

That is two 2-oz balls of JaggerSpun Zephyr Silk/Wool in Garnet, two 2 oz balls of JaggerSpun Zephyr Silk/Wool in Juniper, two balls of Regia sock yarn in color 5180 (the label is in a foreign language, so that's as much information as I can glean), and two balls of Fortissima sock yarn in 9099. Plus, a set of bamboo size 2 dpns.

Sock yarn is always great (and the Regia is destined to grace my dad's feet), and the lace weight is the same brand as my wedding veil is made out of, just different colors. Total coincidence.

Apparently, my parents were in a yarn store and my dad, always an enabler, selected some yarn he thought I would like, ignoring my mom's protests that I had enough yarn. Silly woman.

As if that weren't enough, my mom and I took a trip to the local Hancock Fabrics, which was going out of business. This means, of course, that everything was on sale.
It's all Lionbrand, but it all has a purpose. There are six balls of Microspun in French Vanilla, three balls of Lion Wool in Rose, one balls of Fun Fur in Soft Pink, and a ball of Magic Stripes in Jellybean. In addition, there are stitch holders, cabone rings to use as stitch markers, and my very own Chibi. Blue.
Come back tomorrow to find out what Rhiannon knit on her spring break. I think it's terribly impressive.