Sticking to the Plan

Oddly enough, I actually find myself exactly where I want to be with my projects at the moment.

Let me savour this strange feeling for a minute…

**deep breath**

Okay, that’s enough ๐Ÿ˜›

This week’s plan was to finish the WendyKnits’ KAL Summer Mystery Shawlette (aka my “Lucky Penny Shawl“), get as far as I could on my Dreamscape Shawl (“In Dreams Mystery Shawl“) and start on the Christening Set for my nephew.

Here’s how I did:

~~~

Lucky Penny Shawl

As I mentioned in last week’s post, the main part of the shawl (clue 3) was to be released later Thursday afternoon.

Lucky Penny Shawl - Clue 3 complete

It was done by Friday night.

The final section was released around 5pm tonight (my time) and took about a half hour to finish it off.

Lucky Penny Shawl - Complete

Blocked to within an inch of it’s life and completely dry by dinnertime.

Final measurement on it is about 56″ x 26″. Not too bad, but I do wish that I had done the extra repeats since I ended up having about a third of the ball of yarn leftover.

Oh well, into the Patchwork Blanket project bag it goes.

~~~

Dreamscape Shawl

I’ve been going great guns on this shawl since last Saturday.

Clue 5 took a good 2.5 days of fulltime knitting:

Dreamscape Shawl - Clue 5 Complete

It was at this point that I suddenly discovered that I had accidently deleted any and all Clue 6 emails without actually downloading said clue.

My normally rational zen mind shattered.

I flipped out. Full on Kermit flail.

After some rather panicked emails to the designer (Susan, you are a SAINT!) and a very large serving of chocolate pudding, I was back in business.

Dreamscape Shawl - Clue 6 Complete

The last 2 rows of Clue 6 were finished this morning.

Clue 7 is printed off and ready to go. I hope to have it finished by Monday or Tuesday.

Oh, and Susan? I owe you martinis and cabana boys. Seriously.

~~~

Christening Set

The first part of the set, the bonnet, is off the needles and awaiting silk ribbon.

Christening Bonnet - Complete

I cannot *begin* to tell you how difficult it is to photograph 3-dimensional lace objects in this yarn.

Here is a picture of it before sewing up so you can actually see the pretty:

Christening Bonnet - pre-finishing

That line above the leaf motifs? Knitted pin tucks. I am so proud ๐Ÿ˜€

The rest of the set is going to be altered a wee bit. I’ll be doing the same as many others have done and combining the bodice of the jumpsuit (with shortened sleeves) and the skirt of the overdress. Then work a pair of simple “longies” (pants w/feet) for underneath.

It’s a bit more of a user-friendly option I think.

Crossing my fingers it’ll all be finished before he’s born.

~~~

Quick and Dirty (Clean?)

BadgerDan prefers to wash dishes with a plastic scrubbie (*shudder*).

I ethically refuse to buy any more of them from the dollar store.

So I made him a tawashi out of some leftover Red Heart SuperSaver:

Spiral Scrubbie

He’s happy – I’m happy. Win-win.

~~~

Coming Attractions

The next Windsbraut Shawl KAL will be starting tomorrow (Windsbraut “Bertha”).

My SKA socks for this month will be “D-Man” by Lykkefanten for BadgerDan.

The June Woolly Wormhead KAL Hat is the Tebe Slouch which I quite like.

Yarn options are still pending.

I may or may not get to them next week – we’ll see.

~~~

Furkid Update

Little Miss Lilith seems to be settling in very nicely and is holding her own with the boys. There’s quite the personality under that shy exterior that is showing itself a bit more each day.

She loves to hide behind curtains and suddenly attack or chase Maverick, Tomi and her toys. Lightning fast and super quiet – we have dubbed her “NinjaCat”.

We think it’s funny as hell – 13 yr old half-Siamese Tomi is not as amused.

~~~

Until next week…

TTFN.

Published in: on June 2, 2011 at 11:39 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Baffling Brain Fogs and Resulting Chaos

The Thursday before last, I couldn’t do my regular blogpost as I was the helpless victim of an inexplicable brain fog.

This fog was very strange and kept me in it’s evil clutches for about a week and a half. It scrambled me so bad that I could barely string 2 relevant thoughts together.

You can imagine what it did to my knitting. It fairly near reduced me to tears.

Nothing would work, and when I bravely soldiered on, it caused much cursing due to skipped instructions, miscounting and multiple rippings back of hours of stitching.

~~~

Adventures in Entrelac

I did, somehow, manage to finish the first Crocodilian Sock through sheer willpower and gritted teeth.

The leg took 3 runs at it to get the stitchcount down to where it fit an 8″ leg.

Final count = 45 stitches. Fingering wt. On 2.25mm needles. BIZARRE.

I swear, entrelac must warp the space-time contiuum or something.

Upon finally reaching the cuff, I changed first round of cuff to (K1, P1, KFB) to increase stitchcount from 45 to 60.

I also had to alter the first row of the heel by knitting into the front & back of each of the 15 stitches to bring it up to the required 30.

Okay, from here-on-out this should be a cakewalk, right? Wrong.

Following instructions, I diligently worked the heel and half of the gusset as written:

Crocodilian Socks - Sock 1 heel

Then I tried it on. The rectangular heel turn (Welsh?) as a rule doesn’t work well for me, but the worst part was that *the gussets weren’t lining up*. One side was about an inch ahead of the other side. HUNH??

For the life of me, I couldn’t work out how to pick up the bloody stitches evenly on the sides of the entrelac instep.

Being so fed up with this idiot sock at this point, I did the only logical thing possible.

(No, it didn’t involve copious amounts of alcohol or screaming, although those thoughts did filter through the fog.)

I ripped back to the heel turn, did a regular triangular heel turn (French?) and proceeded to knit the gusset and sole without joining to the instep. When the sole was long enough, I simply kitchenered it to the bottom of the toe and sewed up the sides of the foot.

Crocodilian Sock 1 - Done

DONE.

This pair is going to BadgerDan because I simply cannot get over my ambivilent feelings for this pattern enough to wear them.

~~~

Lace Limbo

I didn’t dare even *attempt* to pick up one of my shawl projects, but I had promised my friend Heather Zoppetti (aka “Digitalnabi”) to test knit her newest sock pattern “Bobbie Strow“.

It took me *three days* to knit the lace cuffs. This would generally take me the matter of *maybe* 4 hrs.

Garden Stroll Socks - Sock 1 progress

This is as far as I got on my version – “Garden Stroll Socks” Thankfully far enough that I could send my notes off to the ever-patient Heather with confidence.

These will now become the resident “purse” socks until they’re done as the hard part is over.

~~~

Maybe It’s a Yarn Weight Thing

Sure, that’s it – you’re overloading on sock & laceweight yarns. You need to knit with some chunky yarn.

Emmaline has been in the queue for a while, why not give it a go? Okay.

After screwing up the bodice increases 3 times, it occurred to me that perhaps gauge wasn’t the issue after all.

It did get done though, however slowly.

Emmaline Bodice

I had to put it away, but pulled it out again yesterday and finished it this morning:

Emmaline Top Complete

Emmaline Top

Finally – a Finished Object! (a week late.)

~~~

What Can I Do????

If you’ve ever wondered what happens to a Knitter who can’t concentrate enough to knit – let’s just say it isn’t pretty.

Over and over I muddled over in quiet desperation what I both wanted to do and *could* do in this troubling state.

I was almost to the point of hysteria when a little internal voice answered.

“You can spin”.

So I took it’s advice.

I spun:

Life's Lemons on Spindle Life's Lemons - Skeined

Highland Handmades Superwash BFL – “Life’s Lemons” (4 oz)

And spun…

Fertility Handspun Handspun Fertility

Intentions Yarn Superwash BFL – “Fertility” (4 oz)

And spun…

Handplyed Brown Heather Shetland

Handplyed Recycled Shetland (from sweater) – Brown Heather (36g – 2 ply lace to 4 ply fingering wt)

And spun some more…

Handspun Cinnamon Simon

LlamaGoldsmith Alpaca Roving – “Simon” (1.3oz)

Toasted Almond Alpaca Wool

Louet Dyed Eastport Alpaca/Wool Roving – Toasted Almond (2oz)

I even spun up some itty bitty samples into 55yds of self-striping laceweight singles:

Self-striping laceweight alpaca

Natchwoolie Samples of: “Black” Alpaca; “Hazelnut Truffle Fawn” Alpaca/Tussah Silk; “Milk Chocolate” Alpaca; “Sterling Mixed Grey” Alpaca/Tussah Silk (total weight: 12g)

~~~

All Spun Out

Relaxing a bit, time to branch out a little and ease yourself back to knitting. How about some crochet?

Fingerless mitts – that should be simple enough…

Bohemian Opera Gauntlets

Bohemian Opera Gauntlets

Wow, those were unexpectedly fast and easy.

Bohemian Gauntlets

And very sexay!

~~~

On a Roll

Hmm… perhaps you should try to do something with all those tiny balls of dishcloth cotton that have been driving you nuts…

Crocheted Dishcloths

Clockwise from top: Big Blue Flower Washcloth; Nature Star Tawashi; Spumoni Starflake Tawashi; Forget Me Not Tawashi; Eye-Searing Leftover Dishcloth; Softie Leftover Washcloth

Little balls of cotton? GONE.

~~~

Then Badgerdan returned home from Toronto with a set of Ikea Kassett CD Boxes.

Who knew that this small act could make me deliriously happy and spawn a joyful afternoon of cutting up sleeves from the overloaded CD binder all to the tune of blaring 1990s music?

CD boxes

I am such an organizational geek.

With my appetite whetted, I moved onto the 2 unsuspecting DVD binders with scissors in my scheming hands…

DVD Collection

Believe it or not, there’s 76 DVDs and 14 extra empty sleeves in that small plastic dollarstore basket. I’ll pick up a snazzier box for them next week.

And the binders didn’t go to waste!

Cross-stitch Binders

They’re now safely housing my collection of cross-stitch patterns and magazines. ๐Ÿ˜€

This little adventure got rid of 2 plastic binders, one slightly warped CD binder and 2 plastic magazine holders. YEAH BAYBEE!!!

~~~

There’s still some residual fogginess going on, but the worst of it seems to have passed.

I think I can safely start on Clue 6 of Evenstar without too much chance of casualties.

I hope.

TTFN.

(Note: Will be back to regular Thursday updates starting next week.)

A January of FOs and Preparing for the Olympics

First off, I decided that with the new decade, my blog needed a bit of a facelift – you like?

~~~

January started, as in previous years, with my annual New Year’s Day Crochet-a-thon.

This yearโ€™s sampler afghan will use all 3 of the CAL patterns – the 12″ Ravelry Square, 12″ Craftster Square and the 6″ Ravelry Square (of which I’m making 2 per month). The plan is to have all the 6โ€ squares in an โ€œAranโ€ coloured acrylic and the 12โ€ squares out of scrap neutral acrylics (including some darker colours and black, but no white or cream). The final border will be done in Chunky cream acrylic.

January Squares

February Squares

With my plan in place, I’m able to piece together strips every 2 months – yay for forethought! (See 2010 Sampler Afghan project page [Ravelry link] for pattern details)

Here’s what it looks like as of right now:

2010 Sampler Afghan - Jan-Feb

I also started a Moderne Log Cabin Blanket out of 4 colours of frogged sweater cotton that have been sitting in my stash *forever*

Moderne Log Cabin Blanket - Yarn

It currently sits at the 2 square point:

Moderne Log Cabin Blanket - Square #2
~~~

But, as the title of this post suggests, I do have some FOs to show you and I hope they go towards explaining my radio silence during the previous month. In order of completion – here we go…

~~~

Wings of Horus Shawl

Wings of Horus Shawl - Blocked & Complete

The beaded edging on this shawl nearly *killed* me, but I love the results!

Oh, and if you don’t believe me when I said that it was big – here’s some proof:

Wings of Horus 1 Wings of Horus 2

~~~

Some gifted dishcloths were next:

Double Flower Cloth Double Flower Cloth

Denim Squidge Cloth Denim Squidge Cloth

Lacy Round Cloth Lacy Round Cloth

~~~

Niagara Falls Socks

Niagara Falls Socks - Complete

I only did 2 pattern repeats on the cuff and used a standard heel pattern rather than as written, which, by centering it on the back, accidently off-set the foot lace pattern. You canโ€™t really tell though.

(I had also originally planned to use white yarn for the heel and toe, but chickened out and used dark blue instead.)

~~~

Mystic Waters Shawl

Ahh, yes… Let’s just say that my wonderful friends over on Plurk could tell you *all* about the saga of Alynxia and the big blue shawl. Took 2 years to knit the first 3.5 clues … and a *WEEK* to do the last 4.5 clues (+ border edging)

Mystic Waters - Clue 4Mystic Waters - Clue 5Mystic Waters - Clue 6Mystic Waters Clue 7Mystic Waters - Clue 8

Mystic Waters - Complete

Makes Wings of Horus look like a shawlette – doesn’t it? ๐Ÿ˜€

~~~

YenforYarn Socks

YenforYarn Socks - Complete

I really like these – even if I had to use a different dyelot for the second toe. (When they’re in shoes, nobody’ll notice :P)

~~~

Road to Oslo Socks

Road to Oslo Socks

Nancy Bush, how I do love thee! Leave it to her to have the perfect pattern to use up some recycled lambswool in grey and red. (This one is from Knitting on the Road)

~~~

Everglade Hat

Everglade Hat

Made as a gift for YenforYarn, who recieved it earlier this week and thinks it’s wonderful. Glad you like it Lisa ๐Ÿ™‚

[Just a quick note here: I *did* cast on a pair of Lisa’s Manhattan socks in January (see?), but the yarn I used (Lisa Souza Sock!) was just a little too light for the pattern and ended up frogging it. So after all the Olympic hubbub dies down, I’ll be casting on again with a slightly heavier yarn.]

~~~

On to February’s FOs

Smoke & Ashes Cardigan

Smoke & Ashes Cardigan - Complete

Yes. A mohair cardigan.

I finally found a pattern that those pesky balls of King Cole Luxury Mohair liked!

Can’t say that the pattern didn’t have it’s issues – it was a really sketchy English translation which really made me rely on my knowledge of how a sweater *should* kinda fit together. Many a “hunh?” and “oh they must mean *this*” was muttered throughout.

I completely ran out of yarn as I cast off the second sleeve – so the picked-up collar ended up not being an option. So I added a couple of strategically placed buttons and made it into a rolled edge, wrap around. Wabi Sabi ๐Ÿ˜€ Fini!

~~~

Handspun Headscarf

Handspun Headscarf

I whipped this up yesterday on some 12mm needles to use up the small ball of experimental superbulky barberpole I spun up in January. (Yes! I’ve been spinning! More on that after the Olympics.) The black is some stash Cascade 128.

Attractive – no?

Handspun Headscarf - Headshot

Well, I like it ๐Ÿ™‚

Handspun Headscarf - Front

~~~

Other than the long-term blanket projects, I do have 2 current WIPs that I’m working on, heading into tomorrow’s Opening Ceremonies in Vancouver…

~~~

Rocky Butte Socks

Rocky Butte Socks - Sock #1

AKA “The Team L&V Fitness Challenge Bootcamp Sock” by Eliza Metz (the incomparable Miss Violet of the Lime & Violet Podcast)

(What is the Team L&V Fitness Challenge you ask? Well, head on over here and Miss V will tell ya all about it ;).)

This is one of the very rare times I’ve actually intentionally gone out and bought yarn for a specific pair of socks. The yarn is Sandnes Garn SMART (superwash DK wool) in col. 1093 (black/grey variegated).

The pattern calls for sportweight (STR Mediumweight specifically), but I like a slightly thicker yarn when using US3/3.25mm needles. My gauge ended up being bang on and I think it looks pretty darn close to Miss V’s original:

Rocky Butte - Original

I’ve started the second sock and think it’ll probably be done by the start of the Opening Ceremonies tomorrow night – cross your fingers.

~~~

DivaRomana Shrug

DivaRomana Shrug - Clue 1, Side 1

This is a mystery KAL from Knitting Delight Yahoo Group. It’s a shrug (not a shawl, which I’m not allowing myself to cast on until the last one is finished.) and Clue 1 looked sooo pretty! Had to do it, couldn’t help myself ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m using the same yarn combo as I used for this scarf a few years ago – CPY Kid Merino in Chocolate (col. 4673) and Spinrite Orlon (also called “Chocolate”) held double throughout.

Mmmmm Fudgy.

It’s knit out from a provisional cast on (centre back), then you work in the opposite direction. I’m 20 rows shy of finishing the second side, but if I don’t finish it before tomorrow night, I’m not going to worry about it too much.

~~~

So why all the fuss about the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics? (You know other than they’re the OLYMPICS in MY HOME COUNTRY?)

Why, the Ravelympics and Knitting Olympics of course!

I’ve signed up for both ๐Ÿ™‚

Team Madness in Progress

I’m on Team Madness In Progress for the Ravelympics. (Many people are on multiple teams, but I’m keeping it simple *cough* this time round.)

In the WIPs Dancing Event…

Shetland Faroese Shawl

My long neglected Shetland Shawl. This is how it looks going into tomorrow and it hasn’t been touched since I can’t remember when.

In the Sock Hockey, Cable Cross-Country & Stash Compulsary Dance Events…

Saviano Socks - Yarn

A pair of Saviano Socks in See Jayne Knit Superwash DK, “Iguana” (that has been marinating in the stash since October 2007). It’s Yarnissima’s pattern from the latest issue of Knitty.

The official start of the Ravelympics is the beginning of the Opening Ceremonies.

The Yarn Harlot‘s Knitting Olympics, however, begins with the official lighting of the Olympic Torch.

And this is what I’ll be casting on when the torch is lit:

Maple Leaf Forever Socks

My Maple Leaf Forever Socks, (aka “Regent Man’s Socks No. 2065” from “Hand Knit Socks by Regent, Vol. No. 20”) will be done in Cable’s & Lace Lizard Toes in “Beltane” (totally Canadian Flag colours!), some vintage Paton’s Scotch 3-ply Fingering wool in White & some leftover Sandnes Garn Lanett in black.

The maple leaf pattern will be intarsia’d in white on the handdyed red/white background. The black will be used for the leaf detail and used to embroider an outline around the white leaf for contrast.

Vintage. Intarsia. Embroidery. Leg knit flat and sewn up.

Challenging? Hell yeah.

[Note: These socks also qualify for the Ravelympics in the following events: Sock Hockey, Nordic Colorwork Combined, and Snowcross.]

~~~

Now there is another mystery KAL that starts tomorrow that I haven’t mentioned and that is the Evenstar Shawl KAL by my incredibly talented friend Susan Pandorf (aka Pandosu). She’s a fellow yarn-obsessed lace junkie who has one of the most creative minds in the business. Not to mention her patterns are like crack.

The Evenstar Shawl is the start of a whole Lord of the Rings series that she came up with one day and it sort of steamrolled…

Over 770 members (from 18 countries) as of today and still growing. Way to go Sue!!!!!

I have my yarn and beads ready to go for when I can find time to start it. (You know, *after* I finish the WIP Shetland – wink, wink, nudge, nudge.)

Evenstar Shawl - Yarn & Beads

~~~

Well, I guess there’s only one thing left to say…

GO CANADA!!!!!!!!!!!!

I believe – don’t you?

In the shadow of an old Chinese curse…

“May you live in interesting times.”

With all the ups and downs our little family has gone through over the last 2 months, trying to keep one’s head on straight has been hard enough, let alone trying to blog about it.

I’ll give you a cliffnotes version of what’s been going on and then give you the project/stash enhancement details.

– Competing in Sock Madness 3 (I’ve made it through to the Semi-Finals!)

– Yarn Crawl with SilverPheonix in Toronto (we had so much fun! He blogs about it here.)

– Elderly Father-in-law hospitalized & undergoes brain surgery (he had a subdural bleed resulting from falling and hitting his head). He’s home (and doing well) now after scaring the pants off of us after a month & a half of surgery & rehab.

– WE’RE FINALLY MOVING!!!! Unbelievably, we scored the assistant building managers position of my In-Laws’ apartment building. We move in June 1st. The new apartment is IMMACULATE, has a balcony (which being on the 5th floor gives me the willies), and the building has laundry facilities! (Can you hear the angels singing?) Best of all 50% off of the rent and the opportunity of maybe running a building of our own in the future. Sweet.

– My laptop (or rather the harddrive thereof) DIED. Subsequent tries by my beloved to repair the ancient Dell Latitude resulted in 2 more fried harddrives. We have since decided that this is my laptop telling us to “Leave me the hell alone and let me die in peace!”. BadgerDan is allowing me to share his laptop until he can get us some new MacBooks. No more screwing around. We did a backup a while ago, so I didn’t lose too much data (I hope.)

– Our nephew Richard and his girlfriend Shannon are going to have a baby boy (first baby in the family in a *very* long time and soon-to-be big brother Eric doesn’t know what he’s in for). Yay, baby knitting!

– My cousin is getting married at the end of July and I’m thinking a blanket will be a good gift. If I crochet it, I might just be able to get it done in time.

A whole bunch more has been going on, but those are the biggies.

Okay, lets get to some fun fibry stuff!

First, some shout-outs:

My darling SilverPheonix gifted me with these:

Shears To You Laceweight Alpaca

Organic 2-ply Laceweight Alpaca from a local breeder! A 4 oz skein each “Li’l Miss”(brown) & “Verdy” (cream) which I assume to be the names of the individual animals.

and he *made* me these gorgeous stitch markers!

Stitch Markers by SilverPheonix

(There was a bunch of other goodies in the care package too – spoiled me rotten, you did, David! Thank You!)

Remember all those finished socks from the last post for the Sock Knitter’s Anonymous February Challenge? Well, I *actually* WON some yarn!

Black Cat Fibres, Yak Wool

This is a wicked 100g skein (500m) of Yak Wool 4Ply in “Electrical Storm” donated by Ruth (Cinders over on Ravelry) of (Black Cat Fibres) all the way from Lancashire, England. I can’t stop petting it.

Katkoe
of PaperandYarn sent me an adorable little set of flowery stitch markers to brighten my day. Which they did, but I just can’t get a good picture of them. They’re real cute though. Thanks again!

Some purchased Yarn Pr0n:

Koigu from Lettuce Knit

I was a really good girl (and I have David to back me up on this), yarnwise at least (lol) while on our Yarn Crawl and only fell down when I saw this absolutely GORGEOUS skein of Koigu KPPPM over at Lettuce Knit. I think it looks like African Violets, don’t you? I paid full price for it, but as it was a special occasion, we decided it doesn’t count :P.

In the interests of full disclosure, I’ve also purchased the following yarn:

– 4.5 balls of Bouquet “Marina” Superwash Wool (around $2.50 from the Salvation Army) I needed it to make my FIL a pair of gloves (detailed later).

– A mixed bag of yarn which included a few of balls of Kroy wool & some misc. acrylic ($4 from the Salvation Army)

– A ball of Cream Georga 100% Mercerized Wool from Walmart (I paid full price for this one, but needed it to make these socks as a future project, I already had 2 balls of the dark grey and don’t want to mix with a non-mercerized wool.)

– 2 BAGS (20 balls) of Twilleys of Stamford Freedom Spirit col. 417 “Promise” (which I scored at an unbelievable 70% off). I don’t have plans for it yet, but by the Gods, 2400m of DK Wool should be enough to make *something*!! Maybe even something “Rowan-esque”. Ain’t it purty?

Freedom Spirit 517-Promise

See? I’ve been good.

If you follow me at all, you won’t be surprised that I’ve been working on a whole whack of projects since my last post. So consider yourself warned that this section is heavy on the photos and content.

I’m going to detail the misc. stuff (in chronological order) first, then the Sock Madness Rounds, followed by what’s currently on the needles and what ended up in the proverbial Frog Pond. Sound good? You sitting down? Let us begin.

Miscellaneous FOs

SilverPhoenix Hat – a surprise gift for David given to him on our trip to Toronto.

SilverPheonix Hat

Pattern: Louisa by Kristi Pedersen (West Coast Creative)
Yarn: Twilleys of Stamford Freedom Spirit, “Air” (Shade 506); Filatura di Crosa Zara, light grey (Col 1494)

Quilted Windmill Cloth – the March 2009 Mid-month cloth for the Monthly Dishcloth KAL Yahoo! Group.

Quilted Windmill Cloth

Pattern: The Windmill Dishcloth by Sew-Funky
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton; Jewels, Delft Blue, Light Blue

FIL’s Manly Gloves – Danny’s Dad lost one of his leather winter gloves, so I offered to make him a new pair. When I asked what colour, 3 voices responded in unison “Grey. Plain.” *SIGH* Let’s just say that I would rather give myself a lobotomy with a plastic DPN over making these gloves again.

FIL's Manly Gloves

Pattern: Gloves for Service Men by the American Red Cross (vintage pattern from 1942)
Yarn: Bouquet Marina, col. 6750 (Steel Grey)

Pleated Beret – This was the April Vertical KAL Woolly Wormhead hat. It worked up fast and well, but just looks *wrong* on my head. I don’t know why. I’ll take it apart later and reuse the yarn for something else. I’ll try the pattern again with a different yarn some other time.

Pleated Beret

Pattern: Pleated Beret by Woolly Wormhead
Yarn: FibraNatura Oak, Tyme (40255); Sublime Extra Fine Merino DK, WaterLeaf (019)

Highland Hose – They’re finally DONE!!!!!!! And OMG I love them!!! I reversed the cables on the second one to make them symmetrical.

Highland Hose

Highland Hose - 2

Pattern: Rose’s Hose by Rose Singerman (from “Sock Hop: Socks to Make Your Feet Dance” by Joseph Madl for Philosopher’s Wool)
Yarn: Hayfield Falkland, col. 16004 (250g)

Illusion Egg Hunt Cloth – the April KAL Cloth for the Yahoo! Monthly Dishcloth KAL. I used up scraps to stripe the โ€œeggsโ€. Trust me that there are a lot of better looking versions than mine :).

Illusion Egg Hunt Cloth

Pattern: Illusion Egg Hunt Dishcloth by Deborah C. Tilley
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Natural; Lemon Swirl; Denims; Natural Ombre

Malachite BSJ – A jacket for the new grand-nephew! I forwent the buttons and did some i-cord ties instead.

Malachite BSJ

Pattern: Baby Surprise Jacket by Elizabeth Zimmermann
Yarn: Georga 100 percent Cotton, Green Multi; Dk. Green Cotton from frogged Old Navy Sweater

April Squares – The April CAL squares for the 2009 Sampler Afghan.

April Squares

Pattern: April Square by Julie A. Bolduc
Yarn: Chunky Homespun from frogged Equadorian Sweaters

Mystic Star Shawl – is COMPLETE and FRICKING GORGEOUS! Couldn’t be happier (although I thought that last clue was going to kill me). I assure you, there are beads in there.

Mystic Star

Pattern: Mystic Star by Anna Dalvi
Yarn: Broder Medicis 2-ply laceweight wool (from France) handdyed to a midnight blue by me.
Beads: #8 Miyuki Clear Beads

Little Acorn Bag – I crocheted up this little project bag on a whim. (Little did I know where it would lead…more on this later.)

Little Acorn Bag

Pattern: Little Acorn Project Bag by Brigitte Read
Yarn: Light Brown Mystery Tweed from Stash; Noro Kureyon, Col. 149
Beads: 3/4″ Wood

Absinthe Socks – a pair worthy of the Green Fairy, don’t ya think? A couple of modifications: I ran 2×2 ribbing up the back of the leg, made the cuff longer (total 18 rnds instead of 12) and reversed the middle cables on the second sock.

Absinthe Socks

Pattern: Absinthe socks by Sara Morris (Knitty, Spring 2009)
Yarn: Scheepjes Invicta Extra, Electric Green (discontinued)

BadgerDan’s Bad-ass Driving Gloves – My beloved had his birthday at the end of March (his 49th – I love you honey! *duck*) and these are what he wanted me to make him. Had to do an inter-library loan to get the pattern, but it was definitely worth it. (I plan on getting my own copy when I do my “book binge” this year.) The only thing I modified was shortening the straps to 7″ and replacing the D-rings with a button closure.

BadgerDan's Badass Driving Gloves

Pattern: Driver by Robin Melanson (from Knitting New Mittens & Gloves)
Yarn: Gjestal Selbu Husflidgarn, Col. 312 (black heather)

April Showers Cloth – the April Mid-month Cloth for Monthly Dishcloth KAL Yahoo! Group. I โ€œintarsiaโ€ed the contrast border.

April Showers Cloth

Pattern: April Showers by Deborah C. Tilley
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Green Twists; Forest Green

May Squares – The May CAL squares for the 2009 Sampler Afghan.

May Squares

Pattern: Rainbow Crochet 6″ Square by Sarah Bradberry
Yarn: Homespun Wool from frogged 2nd hand Equadorian Sweaters

If you’re wondering, the 2009 Sampler Afghan currently looks like this at the moment:

2009 Sampler Afghan - Jan-May

I whipped off a bunch of baby socks in leftover yarn (details in the links):

Spring Stripe Baby Socks Spring Stripes Baby Socks

Woodsy Baby Socks Woodsy Baby Socks

Reese's Pieces Stripe Baby Socks Reese’s Pieces Stripe Baby Socks

Baby Huntsman Socks Baby Huntsman Socks

Cosmos Baby Socks Cosmos Baby Socks

Dr. Who Baby Socks Dr. Who Baby Socks

Which bring us to my latest FO – the Little Knitted Acorn Project Bag

When I shared my crocheted acorn bag with my Sock Madness friends, a few of them requested a knitted version as they don’t crochet. Always willing to assist, I offered to write one. And this is the result:

Little Knitted Acorn Bag

I consulted with the original designer and she gave me the green light to offer it as a free pattern. As soon as I hear back from my test-knitters and get the pattern re-typed (my master was nuked with the rest of my laptop), the PDF will be available as a Free Ravelry Download and I’ll have a direct download from here as well. (Providing, of course, I can figure out HOW to make it work.)

So, if you’re interested, stay tuned!

Sock Madness

This year’s Sock Madness has been a lot of fun so far. We’ve just finished up Round 5, with only 2 rounds left to go. And I’m STILL IN THE RUNNING! I guess all the practice has paid off (lol).

In retrospect, I do admit that some of my yarn choices could have been better…

(As the designers are always better at explaining their own patterns, I’ve provided links to the Sock Madness blog posts in the pattern notes for each.)

Round 1 – Tropical Mer-tini Socks

Tropical Mer-tini Socks

Pattern: Tropical Mer-tini Socks by Ronni Smith
Yarn: Austermann Step, Col. 09
Needles: 2.25mm

Round 2 – Tokena Socks

Tokena Socks

Pattern: Tokena by Tricia Weatherston
Yarn: Shelridge Farm Soft Touch Heather, Cajun Spice; Paton’s Kroy 3-ply, Col. 390
Needles: 2mm DPNs (cuff, heel, toe); 2.25mm DPNs (fair isle)

Round 3 – Talia’s Wings (The Manly Version)

Talia's Wings

(A little note: BadgerDan requested a pair be made for him during the competition – these would be them.)

Pattern: Talia’s Wings by Heatherly Walker
Yarn: Lana Grossa Meilenweit Marmi, col. 7001
Needles: 2.5mm circs

Round 4 – Lucky Diamond Socks

Lucky Diamond Socks

(After I finished this round, I made the following modifications to my socks: Lengthened toe by 1″ and lengthened cuff to 1.5″.)

Pattern: Lucky Diamonds by Melissa Goodale
Yarn: Shelridge Farms Soft Touch Ultra 3ply, col. SU0107A-081(Blues); Paton’s Kroy 3ply, col. 374 (Dk. Navy)
Needles: 2.25mm circs

Round 5 – Fine Feathered Feet

Fine Feathered Feet

Pattern: Dimpled Diamonds Socks by Deborah Swift
Yarn: Opal Rainforest 4ply, Owl
Needles: 2.25mm, 2mm

Next stop…the Semi-finals!

Which brings us to what I’m actively working on right now:

Works In Progress

The Zen Pullover is slowly taking shape:

Zen Pullover, body begun

I’ve opted to sew the sleeves and instead of working the back & front pieces seperately, picked up and am knitting the body in round top down. I hope it will fit – if not, I’ll just pull it back and add more stitches. It is a “Zen” pullover after all…

I joined yet another Mystery Shawl KAL – this one is called “Wings of Horus” by Kalinumba and involves solving riddles before you can open the PDF Clues. Due to Sock Madness demanding my attention, I’ve only completed the first 2 clues (the 5th one was just released):

Wings of Horus, clue 2

If the yarn looks familiar – it should. It’s the same yarn I used for the now frogged Casablanca Shawl. Doesn’t it look like falcon feathers? The last clue will have us adding a whole bunch of beads – I’ll have to find some golden ones I think.

Sock Knitters Anonymous is running another mystery sock KAL – this one by the famous Yarnissima! The pattern is called Kiila and I’ve finished the first clue (again, delayed by Sock Madness).

Kiila Socks

The yarn is a discontinued yarn from KnitPicks called “Memories” in the “Redwood Forest” colourway. Here’s a close-up:

Kiila Closeup

And since the only knitting book to somehow escape being packed away for the move is my copy of “Favorite Socks” and I’m so close to finishing the 52 Pair Plunge II (it ends May 31st and my current total stands at 43 pairs), I have a couple of pairs on the go from there:

SuperMeida Socks (Meida’s Socks by Nancy Bush) is using up one of my oddball, single skein, “what was I thinking” yarns – Cascade Sassy Stripes in a forgotten colourway that I can’t find the name of. It just reminds me of a superhero costume. The toe is some closely matching dk grey 4-ply Kroy.

SuperMeida Socks

Here’s what it looks like with a foot in it:

SuperMeida

The stitch pattern reminds me of Wonder Woman for some reason…

And begun today…

Cable Rib Socks

Cable Rib Socks (by Erica Alexander) which I’m altering a wee bit by knitting them out of the Fleece Artist Blue Face Leicester Aran (Cosmic Dawn colourway) from my frogged Thrum Socks (I kept the mohair roving to spin – hey it’s Fleece Artist and I’m thrifty!) on 3.25mm needles. I’ve reduced the stitch count down to 42. So far, so good.

This brings us finally to:

The Frog Pond Report

Even after changing to yet *another* yarn, the Dogwoods in Spring Mystery Shawl didn’t want to cooperate – so into the pond it went. Eventually, I hope to find the right yarn.

Dogwoods in Spring

Believe it or not, it’s taken me over 7 hours to complete this blog post. I really do need to start contemplating blogging on a daily basis…

That is, if my “times” don’t get any more “interesting”.

TTFN.

On Obsession, Inspiration and Adaptation

Holy smokes! Here it is, the middle of March & I haven’t posted since my birthday.

In my defense, our internet connection went down in February, followed by my laptop having a meltdown (BadgerDan was able to resurrect it, but we are seriously looking at new ones right now for both of us.)

When last we left our intrepid knitter, she had just discovered the Sock Knitters Anonymous group over on Ravelry and was working on the January Mystery Sock Pattern…

The Beaded Mystery Socks are now done:

Beaded Mystery Socks, complete

Pattern: SKA January Mystery Pattern by Sheryl Giles
Yarn: Lang JaWoll Color, 82.0198 (2 skeins)
Needles: 2.25mm
Beads: #8 Miyuki Glass Beads, Gold-lined Brown (8-135S)

As are the Strange Bedfellows Socks:

Strange Bedfellows Socks, complete

Pattern: Coupling by Deb Barnhill
Yarn: Louet Gems Fingering, Fern Green; Misti Alpaca Handpainted Sock, Taos
Needles: 2.5mm circs

I used a “Judy’s Magic Cast-On” Toe instead of Short-row one as in the pattern & did the foot in plain stockingette.

What they don’t tell you is that SKA is *not* a 12-step program and will lead you down a slippery slope, as I soon discovered…

First, I thought, I have time to do another pair for the January Challenge…

Rolling Thunder Socks

Rolling Thunder Socks, complete

Pattern: Rolling Thunder by Sivia Harding (from Knitty)
Yarn: Austermann Step, col. 01 (approx. 1/2 ball – 45g); Patons 3-ply Scotch Fingering, Butter Yellow & Dark Burgundy
Needles: 2.25mm KnitPicks Classic Circulars, 2mm DPNs (for 3-ply sections)
Beads: Amber A/B #6 Miyuki Beads (6-257)

I shortened the leg by 1.5″ and reduced to only 68 sts at the gusset to accommodate tighter gauge and needles of 3-ply.

Hey, it’s stash busting right? Sure.

Enter the February Challenge and a designer that I had lots of patterns by, but had never gotten around to knitting…

Naniboujou Socks

Naniboujou Socks, complete

Pattern: Naniboujou by Chrissy Gardiner (from Knitty, Winter ’08)
Yarn: Cascade 128 Solids in Dark Brown (1108), Rust (2414) & Cream (8010)
Needles: 4mm

Chunky yarn, why not? (I used the 4.75″ size of the pattern)

Nice and fast, neat pattern, Husband loves them.

Which soon led to some simple kneesocks…

Ribby Retro Socks

Ribby Retro Socks, complete

Pattern: Ribby Retro Socks by Chrissy Gardiner (Knitscene, Fall ’07)
Yarn: Sean Sheep Armytage, Greens; Bucilla Tapestry Wool, Col. 011
Needles: 2.75mm DPNs

Hey, why aren’t you using the “good” yarn? Okay, I thought, let’s do some really nice ones…

Knotty or Knice Socks

Knotty or Knice Socks, Complete

Pattern: Knotty or Knice Socks by Chrissy Gardiner (Interweave Knits, Fall ’08)
Yarn: Stonebarn Fibers/Gypsy Girl Creations, Cattails (2 skeins)
Needles: 2.25mm

I worked a toe-up flap heel (a la Wendy Johnson) instead of the short-row one as written (added a stitch to the sole needle sole to accommodate this) and then added 15 rnds of K1B, P1 ribbing as I felt they needed a cuff.

This yarn was actually the first yarn I ever bought from The Loopy Ewe.

Why not a cabled pair?

Tilted Cable Socks

Tilted Cable Socks, complete

Pattern: Tilting Cables by Chrissy Gardiner (Interweave Knits, Winter ’07)
Yarn: Lana Grossa Meilenweit Multiringel, Col. 5020
Needles: 2.5mm

I again knitted the foot in plain stockingette and lengthened the heel flap from 32 rows to 36 rows for my high instep.

Here’s a close up of the cables:

Tilting Cable Socks, close up

How about another stash buster pair?

Kaibashira Socks

Kaibashira Socks, complete

Pattern: Kaibashira by Chrissy Gardiner (Knotions)
Yarn: ONline Supersocke 100 Highland Color, Col. 840 (45g); Patonโ€™s Scotch 3-Ply Fingering Wool, Kelly Green (18.4g); Ornaghi Filati Merino Oro 2-ply Laceweight, Black
Needles: 2.25mm DPNs

I held the laceweight and 3-ply held together to recreate the effect of the Supersocke yarn and to bring up the gauge.

And darn it, I need a pair to go with my big ol’ grey tweed sweater…

Squares & Stripes Socks

Squares & Stripes Socks, complete

Pattern: Squares & Stripes by Chrissy Gardiner (from Lion Brand โ€œJust Socksโ€)
Yarn: Sandnes Garn Smart Superwash DK, Grey Tweed (2 balls); Mission Falls 1824 Wool, Raven (005)
Needles: 2.75mm DPNs

Enter the March Challenge and another mystery sock kal…

March Mystery Socks

March Mystery Socks, Clue 3 Complete

Pattern: SKA March Lace Mystery Sock by Kristi Schueler
Yarn: Cascade 220 Paints, Cherry Berry (9926)
Needles: 3mm DPNs (leg & heel); 3.25mm DPNs (foot)

I used the 42 stitch option & we have one more clue (the cuff) to go on these.

Did I mention that the new Spring 2009 issue of Knitty is out and fricking incredible???

I couldn’t stop myself…really!

Absinthe Socks

Absinthe Socks, Sock #1 Foot/Heel

Pattern: Absinthe socks by Sara Morris (Knitty, Spring 2009)
Yarn: Scheepjes Invicta Extra, Electric Green (discontinued)
Needles: 2.25mm

And how about some baby socks?

Sporty Striped Baby Socks

Sporty Striped Baby Socks

Pattern: 44 stitches, 2×2 rib leg, flap heel, reduced down to 40 sts for foot.
Yarn: DGB Confetti Superwash, Col. 193
Needles: 2.5mm DPNs

Yarrr!! Baby Stockings

Yarrr!! Baby Stockings

Pattern: I started out with a standard Judy’s Magic Cast-On Toe, 32 sts (3″ foot), short-row heel and worked 1.5″ of the leg in stockingette, then on a whim incorporated the central pattern from “Jack Sparrow’s Favorite Socks” by Pamela Northrup, worked 3 rounds, then did 1/2″ in 2×2 rib before binding off. Leg measures 5″ to the bottom of the heel.
Yarn: Opal Pullover & Sockenwolle (10g sample ball), unidentified colourway; Paton’s Scotch 3-ply fingering wool, Black
Needles: 2.5mm

These just crack me up to no end.

Good news? I have 29 pairs already done for the 52 Pair Plunge II ending April 31st. Bad news? I think my husband wants me fitted for a straight-jacket.

By the way, the first round of Sock Madness 3 is tomorrow (maniacal laughing…)

It wasn’t just socks I’ve been working on during this period of radio silence…

There has been sweater knitting:

Austermann Abotanicity is finally off the needles!!!!!!

Austermann Abotanicity Sweater, Complete

Pattern: Abotancity by Cassie Rovitti (Knitty, Winter ’07)
Yarn: Austermann Step, colour 06 (4 balls)
Needles: 2.75mm, 3.25mm & 3.75mm circulars

I made mine short sleeved by using 2.75mm needles and decreasing every other row to 83sts then knitting even until I hit 4โ€ and will need to put some darts in at the back as itโ€™s a little big on me.

I finished half of a mohair sweater before deciding it wasn’t working:

Swirling MIsts of Doom Sweater

(I took it off the needles, but haven’t yet pulled it apart, just in case I want to give it another go.)

And started what I’m calling my Zen Pullover:

Zen Pullover

It’s the “Rectangela” pattern from Berocco that I’m doing in Briggs & Little Heritage, Sheep’s Grey.

I mean how pretty is this?

Rectangela

There have also been dishcloths:

February Monthly KAL Cloth

Peppermint Pink Kiss Me Cloth

Pattern: Kiss Me Cloth by Lisa Milan
Yarn: Scrap Dishcloth Cotton in Pink, Bright White & Variagated Pink
Needles: 4.25mm

(It is *very* pink to my “non-pink-person” eyes, but isn’t really all that aesthetically or technically offensive.)

February Mid-Month KAL Cloth

Circle Cloth

Pattern: Circle Cloth by Hakucho
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Sage Green & Green Twist (+ a scrap of lighter green when I ran out of the sage)
Needles: 4.25mm

And the March Monthly KAL Cloth

Pot o' Gold cloth

Pattern: Pot O’ Gold Dishcloth by Emily Jagos
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Banana Yellow
Needles: 4.25mm straights

For some reason, I decided that I immediately needed a new spring scarf to go with my green Levi’s jacket and after a stash dive, came up with this:

Grizabella Scarf

Grizabella Scarf

Pattern: Wear-as-a-Collar Scarf by Sally Melville (from Scarf Style)
Yarn: 3 Novelty yarns from stash (your guess is as good as mine)
Needles: 6.5mm straights

I am thoroughly surprised at how much I actually like it, for a novelty yarn scarf.

There has been crochet:

March Squares for the 2009 Sampler Afghan

March Squares

Pattern: March Square by Julie A. Bolduc
Yarn: Chunky Homespun from frogged Equadorian Sweaters
Hook: 8mm

Thoroughly by accident, I stumbled upon a crocheted lace shawl mystery CAL and one “ooh shiny” moment later had this done:

Dogwoods in Spring Mystery Shawl

Dogwoods in Spring Mystery Shawl

Pattern: Laceweight Mystery Shawl 2009 by Tracey McCorkle
Yarn: SouthMaid Mercerized Crochet Thread, Size 20 (White)
Hook: 3.5mm

which I took apart and re-did yesterday in some ancient 2-ply wool from the stash because the mercerized cotton was playing hell with my hands.

Dogwoods in Spring, take 2

I plan on handpainting this shawl when it’s done.

And talking about shawls…

Last post I mentioned Mystic Star and how I wouldn’t start it until after the other ones were done.

Yeah. Then I saw a gorgeous clue 1 done in midnight blue accented with clear beads on Ravelry.

In the span of 3 hours this happened:

These

French 2-ply laceweight

went in here

Dying laceweight

to look like this

Rit dyed laceweight wool

and a bit of a blow-dry later, became this:

Mystic Star, clue 1

It now looks like this:

Mystic Star, clue 3

I just have clue 4 to finish and it’s done. Stunning.

(I also signed up for Mystic Roses, but honestly won’t be starting that one for a while – it’s the same size as Mystic Waters & I don’t have the yarn for it at the moment.)

It just goes to show you what happens to a knitter when you limit his/her internet useage!

In other news, my extremely wonderful & talented friend Silver Pheonix from over on Plurk & I will be meeting up in Toronto for a bit of a takeover yarn crawl on Friday. You have been warned. (Muahahahahaha)

Sock Madness and David within a 24hrs of each other. Be afraid, be very afraid. (I can’t wait ๐Ÿ˜€ )

It’s my birthday and I’ll blog if I want to…

Just got home from a fantastic dinner with BadgerDan at our favorite local restaurant (& a stopover at the Chapters bookstore).

My birthday gift?

MP3 player

It’s a Samsung S2 Digital Audio Player, aka “The Pebble”. Now if we can just fool the software into thinking that I’m running Windows instead of Linux, I’m all set.

As for what I’ve been up to these last couple of weeks – hooboy.

Where do I start?

How about some FOs?

My February Lady Sweater is done:

February Lady Sweater Done

and it fits like a dream:

FLS Modelled

It’s knit out of “the good stuff” – 2 balls of Noro Kureyon (col. 150) and 5 balls of Queensland Collection Kathmandu Aran Tweed (col. 120). The buttons are mother of pearl, natural side out. I think this is the nicest sweater I’ve made to date.

Hot off the needles today is my Hemlock Ring Blanket:

Hemlock Ring Blanket

The result of much late night lace knitting, ripping out and redoing on larger needles – OMG soooooo worth it though.

Some small stuff:

The first pair of the promised “oodles of baby socks” to an online friend of mine who found out over the Christmas holidays that the IV was successful and is finally pregnant with her first child. YAY!!!! (Elaine – expect socks – lots of ’em!)

Rainbow Baby Socks

There are definitely more where those came from!

Baby sock yarn (more…)

Published in: on January 23, 2009 at 11:22 pm  Comments (4)  
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And on the 8th day…

…she blogged.

My personal mission this year will be to knit/crochet only from stash and get it down to the point where I can upload it to Ravelry.

I make the following exceptions for Stash Enhancement:

1. Thriftstore yarn.
2. Discounted oddballs @ 40% off or more.
3. The occasional ball of happy dishcloth cotton.
4. One or two splurges (aka sock yarn) on Worldwide Knit in Public Day.
5. Any yarn won in a contest/draw.

I think this is a feasible, realistic plan that I can follow.

In keeping with this plan, I hit the ground running (or crocheting) this year:

The January Squares for the 2009 Sampler Afghan are the first FO out of the gate:

January Squares

Followed closely by a completed Lopi Vintage Vertical Stripe Afghan! Yep. Done.

VVS Afghan - Complete

What had been taking me *forever* to complete ended up taking 4 days (I had to give my hands a day or two of rest in between sessions) to complete. And holy smokes – what a stashbuster!

The Lopi stash which once looked like this:

Lopi Stash

is (after setting aside what I need for my Hemlock Ring Blanket) now down to just this:

Lopi Stash (Post-VVS)

Not a bad start I think.

Speaking of the Hemlock Ring

I’ve managed to make it to the first Feather & Fan repeat:

Hemlock Ring

My Seaweed Socks are done too!

Seaweed Socks - 1 Seaweed Socks - 2

First Pair of the year. (And super comfy too, I might add.)

I have signed on for the 2009 Monthly Dishcloth KAL Challenge over on Yahoo! rather than doing the Weekly one this year. This means only 2 cloths a month and those are done 10 rows at a time with my morning coffee. Infinitely more manageable and those not to my taste can be given away as gifts.

January Cloth #1 – Ice Skate Dishcloth

Ice Skate Dishcloth

Completely by chance, I stumbled upon Clue one of the Sock Knitters Anonymous Ravelry Group‘s January Sockdown! Challenge. They have the occasional Mystery Sock KAL and this month’s KAL is a beaded lace sock designed by Sheryl Giles (aka Emm1e) who also did the Zombie Socks for last year’s Sock Madness 2.

What can I say? Mystery? Beads? Lace? SOCKS? Potential Prizes? Umm…yeahhhhh…

Beaded Mystery Socks - Clue 1

I’m soooo loving these socks! Already halfway through with Clue 2 (which was released today). Gorgeous.

The socks beckon…must go knit now…

And see if Maverick will let Mommy put the blanket away…

Maverick on VVS

Published in: on January 8, 2009 at 11:05 pm  Comments (1)  
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Due Diligence

As promised – here’s what has been keeping me from y’all for the past two weeks.

Let’s start with some sweaters:

Sensational Cabled Cardigan - Right Front complete

The back and right front pieces are now done on the Sensational Cabled Cardigan. I’m really happy with how it’s turning out.

On a whim, I started another sweater that has been on my list for a while.

Cabled V-Neck Pullover Pattern

Yes, it’s from the 80s but I like it anyway – so there. I’m using recycled yarn from another thriftstore handknit sweater – an acrylic/wool blend (which I don’t use very often), but I loved the colour.

Airy Cabled V-Neck Pullover - Front 80% Complete

Bad photo, but you get the idea.

Socks:

Whitby Socks - Complete Whitby Socks - Done

I finished the Whitby Socks this morning. Sooo cushy – I can’t wait til Fall.

These are my 21st pair of 2008, the 8th pair for the 52 Pair Plunge II and the 5th pair for the Summer of Socks.

I started some plain “Zen” socks in some Garnstudio Fabel yarn, colour 518 from the stash:

Fabel Zen Socks - Sock #1 Toe

72 stitch toe-up on 2mm needles and I’m still not sure what kind of heel I’m going to use.

Shawls:

Last week was spent catching up on some lace knitting…

Goddess Knits Anniversary Shawl - Clue 3 Complete

Clue 3 is now done on my Goddess Knits Anniversary Mystery Shawl.

(It was also featured in WOYNW #40 on Lime & Violet’s Daily Chum blog – thank you Kit!)

And Secret of Bad Nauheim is DONE!!!!!!

Secret of Bad Nauheim Stole - Complete

OMG – did that border take a while to knit, but SOOOOO worth it.

Final measurements came out to 24″ x 82″ (I’m glad I went with the small version!)

As many of you know, Mystery Stole 4 is now in sign up mode – so those of you who missed out last year, what are you waiting for?

Here’s what I’m going to be using for mine:

Mystery Stole 4 Yarn and Beads

It’s a 2-ply heathered olive green lambswool from an old cardigan which I’ll be knitting directly from the sweater pieces (you might recognize this from my Slow Bee II Swatch). Beads are #8 Miyuki (457) Bronze.

It’s going to be GORGEOUS.

Speaking of which – I picked up Susan Pandorf’s (the genius designer behind the Arabian Nights/Moroccan Days Shawl) newest scarf patterns in her Garden Variety Collection:

Hydrangea Scarf

Hydrangea

and

Iris Scarf

Iris

(both available from her website here.)

I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next!

Now – I share with you the fate of my Arabian Nights Shawl. It has been frogged. I will make it at a later date, but right now it is just far too involved for me to work on at the moment. Good news is that the yarn and beads will work PERFECTLY for the Iris scarf.

Now, how about some KAL dishcloths?

The weeklies:

Grid Pattern Dishcloth

Pattern: Grid Pattern Dishcloth by Cheap Knitting Patterns
Yarn: Georga 100% Cotton, Green Multi
Needles: 5mm

I knit this as written, just added a hanging loop.

Lattice Facecloth

Pattern: Lattice Facecloth by Monica Miller
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton Stripes, Tie Dye
Needles: 5mm

I made my cloth smaller (only 25 sts) than the original and again, added a crocheted hang tab.

The monthly:

Summer Breeze Cloth

Pattern: Summer Breeze by Sue Schaefer of Harvest Moon Designs
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Sage Green
Needles: 3.25mm

The mid-month cloth for July. I knit this on smaller needles and added a pattern repeat making it perfectly square. (The patterns are only available to members of the Monthly Dishcloth KAL Yahoo Group, but you can join the group here, if you’re interested.)

I even managed to work on my Log Cabin Blanket (it’s been cool for the last few days).

Log Cabin Blanket - Side Panel 2 Begun

Unfortunately, no yarn pr0n – but I do have pattern pr0n!

Vintage Mary Maxim Sweater Patterns

You should have seen my face when I found a 5″ thick STACK of original 1950s Mary Maxim “Cowichan Style” sweater patterns at the local Value Village. After carefully going through all of them, I whittled myself down to the 11 in the above photo. In a fluke, the cashier sold all of them to me for $2.50. I felt like that chick from that Ikea commercial on my way to the car.

In a fit of pique, I coloured my hair:

My new hair colour Hair Colour - 2

I love it!

(Yes, that’s me. I figured if my “sunstroke” photo is in Vogue Knitting, I should show you what I look like on a really good day. I don’t usually photo that well.)

In other news:

My very talented friend SilverPheonix is having a contest on his new blog – go give him a visit, you could win stuff!

My sidebar is overdue for an facelift – so please bear with me if it looks like a dog’s breakfast for a little while. Codemonkey, I am not.

Whew! Told you it would be a big one. That’ll teach me to be a wee bit more diligent.

TTFN.

Published in: on August 11, 2008 at 10:21 pm  Comments (3)  
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I must obey the yarn

Okay, first I apologize for the long (2 weeks!!!) delay in posting. I’ve been pretty focused on my knitting projects and hanging out with my buddies over on Plurk.

The good news is that I now have a whole bunch of FINISHED projects to show you!!!

NOTE: I’m linking to the project details on Ravelry so I don’t clutter up the post too much. If you aren’t on Ravelry – click on the Flickr address and the main specs are with the photos.

Let’s start with some socks, shall we???

After a rather weak start on my part for Summer of Socks 2008, I’ve picked up the pace:

New England Socks - Done New England Socks - Complete

New England Socks – DONE!

Nanner Socks - Done Nanner Socks - Complete

Nanner Socks – DONE!

Magical Mystery Tour Socks - Sock 1 Done

Magical Mystery Tour Socks – Sock #1 DONE!

2008 SOS Socks - Done 2008 SOS Socks - Complete

2008 SOS Socks
– DONE!

You haven’t seen these ones before – it’s another WendyKnits pattern “2008 Summer Socks”. I played with it a little by using a sportweight yarn (Zen String Lotus Toes Sport, “Mount Monadnock” – so pretty!) on 2.75mm needles and using the 6″ size instructions. I also did a plain foot on these ones.

And begun last night…

Whitby Socks - Sock #1, 4

Whitby Socks by Nancy Bush. These are the July/August “Knitting on the Road” KAL socks. Again, I’ve up-sized the yarn to a light worsted “mercerized” wool (Georga 100% Wool, Brown) and the needles to 3mm. Other than that, following the pattern to the letter (it’s written for fingering wt on 2.75mm which just isn’t durable enough for me). Perfect socks for the fall with my clogs.

So the sock tally now stands thusly: 2008 – 20 pairs, 52 Pair Plunge II – 7 pairs, Summer of Socks 2008 – 4 pairs (1 single and 1 partial).

Not bad – not bad at all.

I’ve taken a small break from the KAL shawls and have decided that I’m actually going to rip out one of them for good.

Slow Bee Shawl

The Slow Bee Shawl pattern just doesn’t do it for me. Thankfully, I have found a different shawl that will work perfectly with the yarn and beads (which is good because 3 hanks of Misti Alpaca Handpaint Lace and 2000 silver beads don’t come cheap).

When I saw the Diamond Sage Wrap in the latest Interweave Crochet, I simply fell in love:

Diamond Sage Wrap

Things just have a way of working themselves out beautifully, now don’t they? ๐Ÿ™‚

A project that had been at the back of my mind for a while finally got put onto the needles. I had these 2 balls of Opal Rainforest “Tiger” sock yarn that I originally started to make into a Convertible a couple of years back, but found it too busy so I had ripped it out and threw the balls back into the sock stash. Lately, there have been quite a few customers at the shop coming in wanting to make Clapotis and then a discussion over on Plurk (yes, Harley’s Mom, I’m talking about you ๐Ÿ™‚ ) finally put me over the edge.

Tiger Clapotis - Section 3 begun

Meow.

Remember the yarn from last post? Well, after a lot of searching and a productive trip to the local library, I found a cabled cardigan pattern for it!

Sensational Cabled Cardigan

It’s the Sensational Shirttail cardigan by Ann Regis from “Arans & Celtics: the Best of Knitters“. By shortening the sweater by 4” (it’s pretty long) and doing a contrasting collar and cuffs, I should be able to squeak by with my yardage. Here’s the back so far:

Sensational Cabled Cardigan - Back

The Dishcloth Report:

I was not enthused with the July 13th weekly KAL cloth so I knit another “Mason-Dixon special” instead:

Ballband Dishcloth

Pattern: Ballband Dishcloth by Kay Gardiner and Ann Shayne (Mason-Dixon Knitting)
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Burgundy & Natural Ombre
Needles: 3.25mm

This is a 33 st (7″) version with single crochet down the “rough” sides.

And last week’s cloth:

4-Corners Dishcloth

Pattern: 4-Corners Dishcloth by 1870 Pearl
Yarn: Georga Cotton, Swizzle
Needles: 3.25mm

This one I’ll probably make again.

Some Yarn Pr0n:

See Jayne Knit - Happy Accident

I fell and fell hard when I spotted these on See Jayne Knit’s etsy site. 400yds of handdyed mercerized worsted weight woolly glory called “Happy Accident”. I see a stunning version of one of these in my immediate future:

Backyard Leaves Scarf by Annie Modesitt

A new shipment of my drug of choice arrived at the shop last week, so of course one of them came home with me:

Fleece Artist Merino Sock - Earth

This colourway is called “Earth”. OMG is it gorgeous. I may just have to use it and another FA golden brown colourway I have for a future shawl project.

Hmmm, have I forgotten anything?? Oh, yeah!

New Appliances

We have acheived “kitchen”. ๐Ÿ™‚

TTFN.

This week’s post is brought to you by the colour “yellow”…

Hi everybody! It’s been a bit of a slog this week project-wise, as my knitting mojo seems to have gone down the toilet. Thankfully, though, I have managed to complete a few things, so I don’t feel like a total failure.

Here’s last week’s KAL dishcloth:

Tulip Lace Dishcloth

Pattern: Tulip Lace by Love 2 Knit Dishcloths
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, Lemon Swirl
Needles: 3.25mm

This is another one that you had to add border stitches to the pattern (I did 3 on either side and 3 garter ridges top and bottom). Nice pattern, but I fail to see the tulips in the pattern.

Block of the Month for July:

Star Overlay Square

Pattern: Star Overlay by Chris Simon
Yarn: Mission Falls 1824 Wool, 013 Curry, 005 Raven, 007 Cocoa
Hook: 5mm

I broke my own rules this time and used a third colour for this one due to yardage issues. The colours really are much better in person and blend in when put with the other squares. See?:

2008 Sampler Afghan Progress

I’m behind by a couple of filler squares, but them I can catch up on later.

Recognize this little gem?:

Austermann Abotanicity Sweater - skirt

Yes, that is my Abotanicity Sweater. I had goofed on the lace and had been putting off tinking it back for a while. It’s now corrected and has one finished lace repeat done on the skirt.

Work has been going very slowly on my New England Socks:

New England socks - progress

I put it back down after only being able to knit 1″ into the second sock before it was driving me nuts.

So, I cast on for this instead:

Nanner Socks - Sock 1 Foot

Nanner Socks!!!! Another pattern by the wonderful and talented Wendy Johnson of WendyKnits fame (and reigning enlightened Overlord on Plurk).

Finished the first one last night:

Nanner Socks - Sock 1 Complete

What can I say? Plurk is driving me bananas ๐Ÿ˜‰

Well, even if there hasn’t been much in the way of knitting going on – certainly there has been stash enhancement:

Madeline Tosh - Fireside

A gift from the Lovely Fiona of some stunning Madeline Tosh handdyed superwash merino entitled “Fireside”. I darn near tackled her.

Misti Alpaca Handpaint Sock

A new shipment of Misti Alpaca handpainted sock yarn (50% alpaca, 30% merino, 10% silk, 10% nylon) arrived at Unwind this week. OMG!!! This one jumped into my arms of its own volition and wouldn’t leave. It’s called “Blues in the Night”. I weep.

Nature Wool Chunky

I found the burgundy Araucania Nature Wool (#113) on sale and grabbed the lot. Only 500g/600m of it, but I still have the vision of some sort of cabled sweater. Thankfully, after digging around in the stash a bit, I found 4 hanks of Cascade 220 in a dark wine colour (#2403) that’ll work. Now if only I could find a pattern…

Tomi wants everyone to know that he’s feeling much better and is back to his old loveable self. He just wishes that Maverick would stop using him as a pillow.

Do you mind???

In other news, our new stove was delivered (by our landlord – it’s shiny ๐Ÿ™‚ ) but there’s still no sign of the fridge people who were supposed to show up on Saturday. The landlord and I were NOT amused, especially since they called to confirm TWICE! Bizarre.

TTFN.

Published in: on July 14, 2008 at 2:14 pm  Comments (1)  
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