Friday, March 30, 2007

Sore Hands

I don't have a lot of knitting to show this week because it has been the week of Yard Work. I hates yard work. However, when one is preparing one's house to sell, the Yard Work becomes necessary. Curb appeal and all that. I managed to clean out the flower beds (which haven't really been touched or weeded in at least 3 years...I know...bad homeowner.) and during this, discovered that our flower beds are apparently some sort of resort or retreat for slugs and snails. Anyway, my body is sore and my hands are especially sore. Crampy, even.

However, I do have some knitting to show! I finished the first Monkey sock, which will now be known as Cho:
Sorry, I'm not going to bother giving you all the info's only like 2 posts back.

I recently taught a class on the Diamond Fantasy Shawl by Sivia Harding, using Jaggerspun Zephyr laceweight (mine is in Basil). Originally, I thought about doing the full shawl size, but I really had other lace knitting I wanted to get to, so I opted for the scarf size again. I think this will go to my mother-in-law for Christmas:
As you can see, it is blocking now.

Finally, here is my new Kleenex box, for Anne - because it looks a lot like her wallpaper (scroll down to the second picture):

Sunday, March 25, 2007

SPS with Sidekick

I don't know why I seem to insist on doing these SPS pictures first thing in the morning, before a shower and sans make-up.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Another Week

I feel like I've been a busy knitter this week, yet I have no finished work to show you. Instead, we just have progress, in general.

First, a project that hasn't been seen for quite some time. Perhaps it was on a secret mission for Dumbledore. Here we have the Hagrid socks and as you can see, sock 2 is ready for a heel.
Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock in Petrified Wood
Pattern: Mock Croc Socks from KnitPicks

Next we have some new socks that have no name. I've found this pattern just as addicting as everyone says it is, but the yarn and I have a serious love-hate relationship. I love the colors...a LOT...but the yarn itself has a bit of stretch to it, which really messes with knowing what numbers to use with a new pattern. I have tried this yarn as a Jaywalker several times, as well as at least two other sock patterns. I know it will work fine in this pattern, but I'm just not feeling the love anymore. The yarn also has very bad pooling/swirling issues and has looked completely different in every pattern I've tried! I started this new sock and was perplexed to see it doing a stripey/swirly thing:
Yarn: Claudia Handpainted in Blue Fields
Pattern: Cookie's Monkey Socks

I've started a new lace project:
Yarn: Sunshine Yarns Laceweight Alpaca in "It's Cold Outside"
Pattern: Wing-of-the-Moth by Anne Hanson

I love it.

Finally, I've been thinking a lot about scrapbooking lately and last night, I found myself powerless to resist. It has been so long since I've done a page or even looked at anything scrappy that I wasn't quite sure where to start. I found myself trying to revert to old formulas and instantly feeling frustrated because it was just the same old thing. I thought to myself, "What would Rose do?," and knew she would tell me to forget about what I used to do and instead, do what I want to do. And I didn't even have to text her.
This is not an earth-shattering layout. In fact, by most scrappers' standards, it probably barely even qualifies as a layout. But I like it. The text is the lyrics to a song I quite like - you can see them here if you'd like. I knew they wouldn't really be legible and that was fine with me. It was much more about the picture and how it makes me feel. Again, not earth-shattering, but at least I seized the moment and did something.

Finally, this is what happens when you turn your back during a crafty picture-taking session:

Sunday, March 18, 2007

SPS: Perhaps it was a burning day...

Here I am this morning with a nifty wee granny square. What? Everyone else is doing it.

I used some leftover Fawkes sock yarn and a sz E crochet hook. As much as I love this colorway, it's a bit odd in a granny square, methinks. Not Fawkes in his full glory, that's for sure.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Jawbreaker Cardi question

gina L said...

I really like your jawbreaker cardi. I think I like this yarn better than the specified yarn. How many skeins did you use - for what size cardi?

I ended up using 10 skeins of Artful Yarns Reality for the Jawbreaker Cardi (I bought 13, which got me closest to the yardage of the specified yarn). I did get gauge with it on US sz 10.5 needles like the pattern says, BUT I did have to knit very loosely - for me, anyway. Oh, and this was the 2nd largest size.

Now that I've worn the sweater a few times I can say that while I do like how light and airy it is, I think that fact is a bit of a negative, too. Part of me wishes the sweater was a bit more substantial. Not thick and heavy, mind you - just a little sturdier. Then again, if it was, I wouldn't be able to wear it in warmer Spring weather.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Monday, Monday

It's Monday and I was a busy knitter this weekend. I had two classes to teach at Neighborhood Knit Shop on Saturday and then spent most of the rest of the weekend knitting away happily in my new recliner. I finished the worsted weight socks I'd been using as a demo in Sock Class:

Pattern: my own basic toe-up pattern with garter rib
Yarn: Autumno (this is sooooo soft!)
Notes: I used one full ball per sock and got about a 3" cuff - so these are ankle socks.

I also picked up the Panda Wool sock and got into the gusset decreases:

I think I'm going to love the look of this sock, but I find it hard to work on because the construction is so different than what I am used to. It's not right or wrong - it's just different.

I also threw caution to the wind and started a new sock on Friday night (because I'm crazy like that). This is the first time I've used Trekking XXL and I quite like it.

Pattern: my own, toe-up, 64 sts on sz 1.5 needles, 6x2 rib
Yarn: Trekking XXL in color 100

The Trekking has 459 yds, so I'm making these as long as I can. Currently the cuff is 6.5" and I am only at 34g (skein was 96g to start with), so I still have a few more inches to go.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Sunny Days

The weather has been so lovely this week. Not great for winter handknits, but really lovely in a Spring sort of way. In order to celebrate, I decided to whip up a quick 3/4 sleeved cardigan.

Pattern: Jawbreaker Cardigan, from Interweave Knits Winter '06
Yarn: Artful Yarn's Reality, in Survivor
Needles: US sz 11 for ribbing, 10.5 for everything else

I've had my eye on the Reality yarn for a while, but wasn't sure what to do with it. Then I remembered the Jawbreaker Cardi, which I'll admit didn't do much for me at first - but then I realized it could be what I wanted: a plain, simple sweater with 3/4 sleeves that I could just hack around in. The yarn is a chain yarn, so while technically it is bulky, it is very loose and airy and when knitted up, the fabric is quite light. I realize that the real money shot would be me actually wearing the cardigan, but I couldn't be bothered to make myself look presentable and then figure out the timer settings on my new camera before 8:00 AM. Oh, and yes, I do realize that none of the stripes match up. I didn't want them to and after working with this yarn, I don't think it's even possible.

In light of Spring and new beginnings and all that, I've been thinking a lot about this sweater from my past:

This is an Ann Taylor sweater that I got when I was in college. Bobbles anyone? While the bobbles are a bit much for my taste these days, I do think it's still a pretty sweater. 80% silk/20% cotton. It's in desperate need of a good cleaning, but once I do that, I have big plans to deconstruct this sweater...totally unravel the whole thing, give the yarn a good wash, re-skein it and then consider the possibilities of what it could become. I'm open to suggestion...any ideas?

While I was outside taking these pictures, the kids came out with me and started dancing together. Pardon Ethan's jammies - he wasn't interested in getting dressed yet.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

A Little Something & A Big Relief

I had a little bit of Rowan Kidsilk Haze leftover from my Scribble Lace scarf and wasn't sure what I would ever do with it. My mother-in-law saw the Scribble Lace when she was here recently and was in love. While I wasn't willing to give it to her, I was willing to try to figure out something for her with the leftovers, since it was really just this yarn and the color that she was so taken by. Enter good old Feather & Fan! I think I used sz 9 or 10 needles. The finished scarf is 4.25"x41.25". Short for a scarf, but nice for a lace scarf, I think.

It is such a relief to have this Clapotis finished. I don't even remember when I started, to be honest. The SWTC Bamboo was very nice to work with and feels delicious! I know my sister will get a lot of use out of this and since it's not wool, she can use it year-round.

Sunday, March 04, 2007


Self portrait with newly finished Clapotis for my sister. Yarn is Southwest Trading Company Bamboo in Tequila, worked on US sz 4 needles.

Edited to add: I ended up using two full skeins of the SWTC Bamboo and just a bit of a third skein (so the total yardage for this was just over 500 yds). The final measurements (pre-washing, haven't washed it yet) are roughly 18"x52". This is only a smidge different than the original pattern (22"x55") and I can tell it will grow a bit after a wash and dry.

Edited after washing: Holy cow!! This yarn turned the water red the moment it hit the water! And I don't mean the water was sort of was RED. Yikes. Good to know, though. I'll be sure to include that on the note to my sister so she knows to not wash it with anything else.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Is it in the air?

There must be something in the air this week for little girls who are 5 years old. Scout documented Supergirl's adventures yesterday and, oddly enough, it happened here too!

Yup. She learned to knit. I'm having to arrange the yarn around her fingers for her, but as for the actual knit stitch, she totally knows what to do.


Actual Knitting Content

Contrary to what you may think by looking at my blog every day, I do in fact still knit. Life is just getting in the way.

My closest lys, The Neighborhood Knit Shop, just got an order of Panda Wool and I was quick to grab some. This sock will be on display in the shop, along with the pattern: Narrow Arrow by Natalie Wilson of iKnitiative.

Those who know me well may be surprised that I would pick out this oh-so-pastel colorway (called "Rosewater"), and in fact I rather surprised myself on this one. But the more I look at it, the more I love it. The Panda Wool is sooooooo soft - this is a bamboo/wool/nylon blend, for those who haven't heard of it - and one of the strands has a bit of a sheen to it, which makes the Rosewater look very formal when knitted up. They remind me of a wedding.

Next up...log cabin. I've been teaching a few classes at The Neighborhood Knit Shop and this version of log cabin is one of them. I like the ease of keeping the same color all the way around the square.

The yarn here is Berroco Pure Merino and it is so delightfully squishy I can hardly contain myself!

Finally, I've started another Diamond Fantasy Shawl - this time for a class. I made one in fingering weight for my mom, but this time I'm using Zephyr laceweight (in Basil).

I'm also still working on my sister's Clapotis - finally in the home stretch, just have other things taking priority right now.