Sittin' Here Knittin' - Old one

Ramblings about Knitting and other important stuff

Monday, February 27, 2006

Gettin' Organized

I've been wanting to move my stash out of the dresser in the guest room that it's been in. I wanted it somewhere where I can look at it. Out-of-sight is out-of-mind right? So Saturday morning it finally happened. I have a built-in bookshelf in the loft area (one of my favorite features to the house) and I had gotten a few shelves cleaned off. I was looking at these shelves and thinking I wonder if I could build little cubbies for these shelves and just use them instead of buying or making additional shelving for my yarn. Then I thought some more. I wonder if my yarn will just fit in these shelves. The answer? Barely.

This is the small plastic bin I've been keeping "overflow" in. Now it houses my WIPs in the top bin, my non-feltable leftovers in the middle bin, and my feltable leftovers in the bottom bin.

This is a mid-sized shelf. I've got wools on the right, wool cottons in the middle, cottons toward the left, and nylon/acrylic/whatever on the far left.

This is all wool baby. It started with just Cascade 220 and Lambs Pride but grew into much much more. I love sitting in my loft now. The chair is right next to this beauty.

Cute container to keep straights together.

Leftover baby yarns. I really have to get these knitted up. They are from the Rock-A-Bye blankie I made last year. I really really overestimated how much yarn I needed for that. There's also some tweed on a cone and a kit for the Tapestry Garden caplet in Wrap Style. Yummy! You can see my knitting library directly underneath it.

Such joy from something so small. Um. Moving the stash I mean, not the stash itself. DH was a bit shocked but I think he liked that I have it out and visible now. Or maybe he likes that I can't hide it in the cubbies anymore...

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Jazzy Satchel

I haven't posted any progress picks of my Weekend Satchel or my Fair Isle Jazz for a while so I thought I'd catch those up with where I'm at. Sadly, all the work I've been doing to get some of these WIPs finished means I haven't been working on the afghan. You didn't actually want that on your wedding day did you, DS?

The weekend satchel is HUGE.

I got my toes in there for scale. Whoa dang. This is just the back.

No, this isn't some weird bikini for a giant, its the bottom and two sides. Toes included for scale again.

Right now I'm working on the two straps and then I'll start the front (a.k.a. the fun part). It is supposed to be larger than the back so I'm a little concerned about how big that puppy is going to turn out. I plan to felt the back, bottom, and sides soon. The straps are felted separately to ensure they stay a vibrant beautiful red.

I've also been putting in a little time with the fair isle jazz. I had a lot more fun with the fair isle part than I'm having with the cabled section. I finished one cabled repeat now though and we have decent bobbles this time around.

Non-flacid bobbles = happy me

I tend to work on this only when I'm waiting in the car for something. It isn't the easiest knit while hanging out in the car though and now that I have a new pair of socks on the needles its location may be changed. I've also been trucking along on Rouge. I'll take a photo of her once I'm done with the hood. I really want to get her, Evergreen, and the Jazz done. What was I thinking having so many cable projects going at once... I love em though and know I'll enjoy wearing them so I can't really complain. Hope everyone has a great weekend. Happy Knitting!

Friday, February 24, 2006

Sweet Surprise

I got such a sweet surprise yesterday when I checked the mail. This luscious scarf from my ISE pal!

DH drew you a heart because I love this scarf

It's so beautiful. I love the colors, pattern, and fiber (mmmmm.... alpaca...). Sarah included a ball band from the yarn so I got to see what it was. Unfortunately I left it at home this morning (though I wore the scarf to work).

Please ignore the goofy expression. I was mid sentence... Click for a close up of the scarf.

I think the pattern is a Diagonal Rib Scarf. It's so lovely in this yarn. I almost made this same pattern not that long ago. One less scarf I need to make now. It's awesome. Thank you, Sarah!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Reading Meme

I found a meme I've never seen over at Chris' place. Thought I'd give it a try.

I was kind of surprised by how many of these I've read. Have at it if you'd like.

Meme instructions : Look at the list of books below. Bold the ones you've read, italicize the ones you might read, cross out the ones you won't, underline the ones on your book shelf, and place parentheses around the ones you've never even heard of.

The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger
The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy - Douglas Adams
The Great Gatsby - F.Scott Fitzgerald
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
The Time Traveler's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger

(His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman )
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - J. K. Rowling
Life of Pi - Yann Martel
Animal Farm: A Fairy Story - George Orwell
Catch-22 - Joseph Heller
The Hobbit - J. R. R. Tolkien
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
Lord of the Flies - William Golding

Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
1984 - George Orwell
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - J. K. Rowling
(One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold

(Slaughterhouse 5 - Kurt Vonnegut)
Angels and Demons - Dan Brown
Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk
Neuromancer - William Gibson
Cryptonomicon - Neal Stephenson
(The Secret History - Donna Tartt)
A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
(Brave New World - Aldous Huxley)
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe - C. S. Lewis
Middlesex - Jeffrey Eugenides
(Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell)
The Lord of the Rings - J. R. R. Tolkien
Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte

(Good Omens - Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman)
(Atonement - Ian McEwan)
(The Shadow Of The Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon)
The Old Man and the Sea - Ernest Hemingway
(The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood)
The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
Dune - Frank Herbert

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Socks again

I haven't taken any photos but I decided to knit another pair of socks. I'm going for seriously easy this time. I'm using that great Austerman's sock yarn I picked up on the legitimate yarn buying day. It has Aloe Vera and Jojoba Oil in the yarn (supposed to last through 40 washings even) though I'm only counting on it to soften my hands a bit while I knit with it. It's super soft and such a pretty colorway (I'm using the green one).

I've decided to make every sock in the Sensational Knitted Socks book. It sounds ambitious but I didn't say how long it's going to take. The first one is first up. It doesn't have a great name so I'll be referring to it as Sensational Sock #1. I always wanted some sensational socks so it works for me.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Fourth Time is the Charm

It seems that in my case it's the fourth time that is the charm. It's been a while since I mentioned my Must Have (and just over a year since I started it). Last time I recall talking about it I was a bit upset about the sleeve caps as written by Pattons.

I finally decided last week that enough was enough and I was going to figure out how to make these sleeves fit. I found this wonderful article on Knitty, printed out my knitting graph paper and gave it a whirl.

The original sleeve is on the right and my second attempt on the left. As you can see there isn't a huge difference in the two. Neither of them worked. I figured out my gauge as it worked in the moss stitch but didn't take into account the actual number of stitches I was working with. So I tried again...

Whoa. Definitely a noticeable change this time. I had my doubts though and didn't want to expend the time or energy in seaming this puppy up only to figure out then that what appears to be an obviously too-skinny sleeve cap wasn't going to work.

It's not easy to tell in the photo, but it wasn't going to work out. It was very tight across my shoulder and if I picked up my arm at all I got these great shoulder peaks that would be fine if this were still the 80's.

So for the fourth and final time I tried to get these caps done. Once it occurred to me I had to do a mental head slap. It was so simple a solution. I followed the pattern as written for the first part of the decreases, then worked a straight section (no decreases) until it was as tall as I wanted it and then followed the final decreases. Whoa.

The original is on the left and final version on the right.

And Voila! It worked great. Finally. I even made myself weave in all the ends, sew on the buttons, and finish all seaming before I took pictures. Huuraaaay.

Well worth the wait and energy. I love this sweater.

If anyone out there is stuck with their sleeves I'll post what I did to make it work here. Hope it helps!

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Fallen from Grace

I finally got the camera out to show you what I bought on our "day off" from the stash-a-long.

Some gorgeous Araucania Nature Wool in a worsted weight (perfect for a Cozy)

Two skeins of sock yarn (really, what is my deal with sock yarn?), a really cute orange poppy button, and black purse handles.

Had I stopped there I'd be ok but no. I got my annual bonus from work on Friday. Bonus money. Meaning, not-budgeted-for-anything-else-money. Still could have been ok but I stopped into one of the LYS before a knit group and found a bag of Noro Kureon that was screaming at me. I hugged it for a while and walked around with it. I decided to be strong and walk away. The problem really came in when I went back to the LYS the next day and bought it. I'm weak. What else can I say? I did decide that if I was getting kicked off the stash-along I was going with a bang so I got a few more things. We'll start with the Noro as it's the main culprit.

Isn't it pretty!?

This is a new yarn I hadn't seen before but looks like a great deal of fun. It's Nashua Wooly Stripe (100% wool) and I think it'll look great as the scarf Leisel just made for the ISE.

Some yarn for my soon-to-be brother-in-law for a hat. It's Cascade 220 Superwash. Hooray for superwash.

And finally some Cascade 220 to make a bag out of this new book. The poppy button goes perfectly with the orange yarn. I don't know that I'll actually use the orange but I picked some up just in case I wanted to do some detail work on the bag to tie in the button.

I stash-along no more but I'll still be cheering for those that are. Good luck!

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Onto Something

Warm clothes straight from the dryer. Coffee. I think she may be onto something here.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

What else?

I'm still not done telling you about the weekend. I'm loving this...

So, on Friday I finally managed to get my Ribby cardi seamed up. On Saturday morning she looked a lot like this.

I was very pleased with the fit (except the sleeves were too short for my taste) and I just needed to pick a collar I wanted. For anyone that hasn't made this yet (is there anyone that hasn't made this yet?) the pattern comes with three different options for a collar. I thought that was very cool. I finally decided on a mock-turtleneck collar.

I also needed to figure out how to extend those sleeves without ripping them out completely. I decided to pick up stitches around the cuff and knit in the opposite direction. Since I knew that would leave an obvious line I opted to use the grey. Now she looks like this.

Now just to get her over to one of our LYS that will be able to sew in the zipper I picked up on Sunday. I thought about doing it myself but I really don't want to hate my cardi (which tends to happen when I get frustrated with what I'm doing). Nearly there!

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Reminiscing on Friday past

Friday was a good day. It all started with yarn (is there a better way to start?)...

A few days back a friend that works upstairs stopped by my desk. His wife knits and he knows that I do as well. He told me that his wife had some yarn she didn't want anymore. He said she had become a "yarn snob" and didn't like this yarn anymore. Now, I admit I'm a bit of a yarn snob myself. I told him this and he assured me it wasn't Red Heart or anything from Michaels. He tells me she went on a trip to someplace, like a factory, and bought all this stuff. I'm having this whole internal dialogue as he's talking.

Hope: Could he really be talking about Brown Sheep? That's near here and would be a factory to visit...
Realism: No. Couldn't be. Nobody dislikes Brown Sheep.
Hope: Oh well. What can it hurt. It's not Red Heart.

So I tell him I'd be happy to take it off his hands. I know other people that collect yarn for schools and such so if I couldn't use it I could get it to people that could. So imagine my Friday morning when I find a grocery bag FULL of yarn on my chair. And it was full of... Brown Sheep. Sorry schools and little kids. I'll find something else for you. I'm keeping this!

Any more yarn snobs out there? I'll take this "junk" off your hands!!! I couldn't be more thrilled that she decided she didn't like this anymore. Gets my wheels turning. Especially when I consider this...

Friday also ended with yarn. Our regular knitting group moved on over the our Sheepy friends home to get going on the Knitting Olympics. While I'm not participating in the Olympics myself I thought it was a great opportunity to cast on for something new. Who am I to walk past an opportunity like that. So River has begun. Right now I think it only qualifies as a creek though...

Here's my lovely lacey poo (that I know will look better once finished and blocked). It's a beautiful wrap from the Winter 2005 Rowan and is an incredibly simple pattern.

There may be some out there that wonder if, since I just received such a lovely gift of yarn, will I refrain from buying yarn today (the exception day for the stash-along). I'd keep you suspense but Realism keeps yelling in my ear. Yeah Right. I'll show you what I get tomorrow. Have a great day!

Monday, February 13, 2006

So much to say

I actually have a bunch to tell you. It seems like it's been forever since I had anything to say about anything. First, I was naughty this weekend and probably only got three rows done on the Afghan For Sister (AFS). I did manage to finish these babies though

so I'm feeling quite justified in my lack of attention to the AFS. They turned out nicely. I don't care for how they fit me though. It turns out on the first sock I was a bit impatient to be finished and could have made them about a half-inch longer. Have you ever done that? Wanted to be done so badly that you might stretch them a bit more than is realistic to make sure you are done? Sigh. Don't feel too bad though. I'm so sick of these puppies I'll be quite happy to see them off to a good home. My mom has tiny little feet with huge arches so she wears nearly the same sock size as me. With her tiny feet they should fit perfectly.

What else kept me from the AFS? Ribby, Must Have, and something new. It's been so long since I've had so much to say I'm dragging this out for all it's worth. I'll tell you more tomorrow.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Big & Cozy Update

I've been plugging away at the Big and Cozy afghan. I must say it's getting pretty Big and Cozy to knit on too. It's large enough to cover my lap while I knit (a serious bonus on day's like today - the high's only in the 20's - brrrr). Here's a progress shot with the second set of blocks completed. I started the third already but there isn't enough to bother with a photo.

Just on the second set of blocks there are two of these:

Two of these

Two of these
And one of these
It's pretty fun to get to the next set of blocks to see how it will all come together. One big complaint I've heard about this pattern book is that there is no good picture of the whole afghan. I'm starting to see why. This bugger's going to be too big to get a good shot of. I'll do my best though.
Everyone ready for the Olympics to begin tonight? I've had a great deal of fun reading all the posts out there about plans for the knitting Olympics. Though I'm not joining the fun, I'll really enjoy seeing how it all turns out. Good luck to everyone!

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Slipping quietly into the night

I promise it wasn't a painful death. I made it quick. Thank HEAVEN for ballwinders.
Hot Lava went cold for me.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

I bought yarn

Before everyone starts yelling, I was good. I used that gift card my boss got me last month. I had been saving it to buy the new Rowan magazine but who was I kidding. I mean really. I can buy a book.

I'd love for my wedding colors to match that lovely (and funky) shade called "Jelly" of Rowan Kidsilk Haze so I decided I'd buy a couple of skiens so I could make the wrap called River in the Winter Rowan magazine. I don't know if I'll knit the beaded tie to go with it but I love the wrap and wouldn't it be awesome at the reception? We'll see if I can pull it off. I have to un-bury myself from the afghan for my sister first. I'll tell you more about that tomorrow though.