Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Another FO!

Update: now with photos!

I finished one of the remaining 6 UFOs (that I can think of) on my list. It's another Magic Scarf, to replace my black one that disappeared in December. (boo hoo!) I had bought some soft, fluffy brown eyelash yarn when Yarn! closed, and started the scarf in December, probably while I was at my mom's. Put it down when we got back and hadn't touched it since. I had about 1/2 ball to go.

I got to the end of the skein last night and had to tink back an entire row, as it needs to be bound off so very loosely. I used my Daisy 35s to bind it off, and took the end and knotted it securely (but with a loose loop) to 2 other threads. The other Magic Scarves I've made have a problem with the end coming loose and hanging down. I'm hoping this method will work. I hate making knots, but clearly, the other way was not working.

This yarn is a lot heavier than the NY Yarns Fluff yarn I'd been using for the other ones. It feels a bit like a beaver pelt! Which is fine. I can still put my hands in it, stretch it out, and make it into a cowl. Works for me!

I also did a few more pattern repeats on Branching Out, after having to rechart it. I have no idea where the pattern went, and the chart was always a smidge too small for me, anyway. I did it by hand, but maybe next time, I'll use that knitting font and just make it oversized. I moved my lifeline every 10 rows and (knock on wood) didn't make any mistakes. Maybe I'll finish it yet!

(Hmm, dark photo. Yarn is a dark-to-medium purple, not navy.)

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Purple sweater is in the frog pond

I finished frogging the purple acrylic sweater today at noon. My sweetie stopped me from frogging it by hand on Sunday, and helped me realize that frogging it with the ballwinder made loads more sense. So I did that today, frogging straight to the ballwinder, and then taking the full ball off and rewinding it with less tension, since the tension from frogging made for very tight balls.

So nice to be done with that. I made a list on Sunday of my current UFOs and I think (think think think) I only have 6 now! Woo hoo!

Monday, January 29, 2007

They know me! They really know me!

My sweetie gave me Barbara Walker's Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns for my birthday. Today, I got a forwarded email via my sister that Amazon has now shipped Sweaters from Camp!

And, wonder of wonders, my "Please don't make me any homemade stuff for Christmas; I'd rather not receive anything" sister has asked me to knit a hat for her! To her own specs, of course, but...


Saturday, January 27, 2007

UFO update

I frogged Pasha. That acrylic is going back to the frog pond. No regrets there.

I also frogged a laceweight mohair hat I started for one of my son's aftercare teachers--fool that I am, I actually thought I'd finish a laceweight hat on size 8s in a moment's time! Don't know what I'll make out of it now, as it has no label so I have no idea of the yardage. It does have a lovely sheen (it's black).

Finally, I frogged a scarf I'd started last fall. It's in Skacel Contrasto (in olive), which I bought from Herrschner's because it contains silk. This was before I realized that the kind of silk yarn I like is the kind with a nice sheen. I had started the scarf in L!on Brand's Reversible Cable Scarf, because I love the idea of cables that reverse. But the pattern made it incredibly stiff and awful. So I frogged it entirely, cast on fewer stitches, and am doing a Mistake Rib scarf. It really looks super. Not sure who I was doing it for--my son asked, and after he felt it, he asked for it. I have 3 balls, so that should make a nice length of scarf.

Maybe I'll also frog the purple sweater tonight. Whee!

Friday, January 26, 2007

UFO challenge update

My next step in the UFO challenge will be to frog one or two projects, the first being Pasha, the doomed penguin. I was going to make it half-size and ran into some pattern-resizing challenges, and quit. Forget it; I'm done. She's going to the frog pond.

I'm also going to completely frog the purple acrylic cardigan I started in France with a long-lost French pattern (Pingouin, I'm guessing). I may reuse the yarn, but the cardigan, at this point, will not fit me anyway. And bright purple acrylic? Gives me pause.

I was thinking, at this rate, will I have enough UFO projects for all 12 months of 2007? And then I couldn't stop laughing.

Cozy is done! And is cozy!

A coworker just commented that Cozy, which I'm wearing today, is very cozy looking. And it is!

I finished last night, having to tink back 5 of the pattern rows because I didn't have enough yarn to do all 8 plus 3 garter-stitch rows plus casting off. As it is, I have maybe 3 yds left of the Plassard Bourette yarn. Despite looking like string (I bought the color Twine to match the original pattern, because as Dharma likes to remind me, I am a rules follower), it wasn't bad to knit with--not even as tough as cotton.

I did have to wonder, as I put it on today--have I become a little old lady, wearing my lacy shawl because "it's a little cold in here for these old bones, dear"--or is it just fine these days for middle-aged women to wear a lovely, lacy, cozy shawl?

I have decided that yes, it is just fine. And I love it. This may be my "leave at work for when it's chilly" shawl that I've been wanting for a while. We have had a heck of a time keeping our offices warm here. I'm wearing my River Rapids socks today and my feet are barely warm.

But I'm so glad to have finished Cozy! Tickled, really.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Just keep knitting, just keep knitting, just keep knitting, knitting, knitting...

I'm finishing the fifth ball of Cozy (of eight) and still enjoying it. It's getting big--too big to be a transportable project, I think. I have once again misplaced my camera, or you would be looking at photos of it-so-far and Fetching.

I continue to make mistakes on row 5 of Cozy. I get lost in the stitch pattern and get to the end with too few or too many stitches left. It is frustrating and I don't know how to resolve it. I do think it's much faster to knit from a chart, at least for me, and am surprised no one has put a chart on his or her blog for it. I'd do it but I don't have the characters/font set (does anyone?).

Ah--of course, the second I type it, it occurs to me to try to search for it again, and this time "knitting font" turns up a hit first off: a freeware font. Yay! Now I can go to the effort of typing in this chart to share. Whoopee!

I am, though, casting about for a truly transportable project again. I do have the Child's First Socks on the needles, but they're not what you'd call mindless. The other candidate is Branching Out, which is so challenging for me that it's the opposite of mindless. I do want to start the Lang Yarns Viva "Sleeveless" Top (to which I'll add sleeves, grâce à Knitty). But even the beginning doesn't seem mindless. And after a page from my Stitch & Bitch calendar encouraging me to do so, I kind of want to knit both the front & back at once, to make them the same size! (Now that I write that down, it does seem a bit insane. Perhaps good notes would help?)

Speaking of notes, I am really enjoying using a knitting notebook these days. I picked up a pocket-sized, lined, spiral-bound blank book at the Powell's store in the Portland airport (yes, in the airport--how cool is that?) with an elastic to hold it closed, and the spiral not only holds my pen but also lets me flip the cover completely to the back for writing. Am loving it! It was on the sale rack, and being the sale snooper that I am, I carefully peeled back the stack of stickers to see what I'd saved off the original price. They all read $4.98, which was the price I paid. Not cool, Powells. Sale usually means "at a discounted price." Hmph. (I do still love it, though.)

OK, enough blather--off to the day's activities. Just keep knitting!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

They are fast!

Fetching is done! They were done Tuesday night, in time to be used Wednesday (and today, and tomorrow). My sweetie made appropriate sounds about them tonight (they really are cute). Hm, perhaps she'd like a pair? :)

I continue to work on Cozy, nearing the end of the third ball. It already seems large but a long Cozy might be really nice... I'm still loving it, despite having had to tink back almost the entire row 7 because I made a mistake on the second stitch of the row. Yes, the second stitch. Argh!

I'm now thinking of organizing my stash better--putting patterns with the wool, etc., so I have a better idea of yarn that has no planned purpose. The idea of planned projects out 2 years really pleases me, even when I can imagine others finding the idea appalling (my sweetheart knows I'm no spontaneity queen). And I do love the idea of future finished projects, yeah!

Monday, January 15, 2007

I'm a winner!

In a huge fit of irony, a contest that I entered only on second thought, turned out to be a winner for me. Jenn wanted folks to guess how many balls of yarn were in her stash (see the photos). I looked at her boxes, thought of how yarn compresses, and guessed 613.

Got a message today that I won! I have no idea what I won, but who cares? It's nice to be a winner some days!

I stopped work on Cozy (2' done) to make Fetching since I am soooo freakin' cold at work these days. Almost done with the second one already! Great pattern! I'm using charcoal grey Mission Falls 1824 superwash merino wool. It is so cushy. I got it at Yarn! before she closed. I hope I find another source for this great yarn!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Tour of Sweaters: #2

Note: Sweater #1 was found! See its photo at the bottom of its post.

Whenever I see an ad for Lopi yarn, I remember Sweater #2. Sweater #2 was really, in retrospect, complex. It was an Icelandic-style pullover. It called for Lopi yarn. I found Lopi yarn somewhere, and knew I couldn't afford to buy all that was required for it. So I ended up buying a bulky weight--say it with me--acrylic yarn. (Of course!)

It actually turned out pretty nice. I can't remember if I made it for myself or for my mom (see a trend here? How many of my knits are for my mom? I'm thinking half of all of them). The body was brown and the yoke designwork was a neat heather grey and an off-white. The only problem with it (beside it being out of acrylic!) was that the neck, predictably, was pretty tight. I may have ripped it out at one point and reknitted it. Oh, and I think it did pill like a mofo.

Not bad for a second sweater, though.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


First, a photo of the cuffs of the Anniversary socks. You'll see that the yarn did a lovely striping thing, and then when I switched from size 2s to size 1s, it pooled in a big way. This is good, in the end, because one sock did end up a smidge bigger than the other, and K has one foot bigger than the other. So the pooling helps to tell them apart.

Finished sock photo soon to come!

Now, my currently active project (did you like how I neatly avoided saying "my current project," as if I have just one?), Cozy. I have about 1' done and am 1.5 of 8 balls into it. And LOVING it! Some folks think yards and yards of knitted lace are awful, but I am really enjoying getting into a rhythm and am also enjoying the WS purl rows for some time off.

I think, despite what Rabbitch says, that this actually does not look like boiled ass. It will look lovelier when I'm done and it's blocked, but I already find it quite pretty--and downright cozy. Really. Yum.

Monday, January 01, 2007

FO, mostly

Oh btw, I did finish the Anniversary Socks, by the 5-month anniversary. But (there's always a but!) they are a smidge too short. I'll be pulling out the toes today and re-knitting them. Am hoping to be done (done done DONE!) today.

Runs in the family

My son woke up today and snuggled into bed with me. He said, "I had a dream and it wasn't scary at the end. It was about knitting. There were a lot of needles--and no dropped stitches, Mom! Tom and Jerry were in it and there was a little loop at the bottom, but Jerry said he had enough slippers."

My son, dreaming about knitting. Aaaaah.