And…. We’re Off!

Way off. I finished Rex’s Sweater several months ago and happily sewed the pieces together. It was supposed to be a Christmas present for 2012. Not even close. Then I thought it could be a Valentine’s day present. Nope. Anniversary? March 21, I could handle that. I think I finished it about a week early. Then when I held it up I noticed…. The collar opening is off center. Way off center. By my measurements, 1 inch to the left. EEESSHHH! 

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Maybe you can’t really see it in this picture. It looks like I shot it at an angle, but I assure you I didn’t. Here’s another one. 

 

 

 

 

 

See? Way off. :(

I put it aside since summer was coming and there was no way I could frog and reknit in time. This brioche stitch on size 1US needles in this yarn is hard on the hands. It takes approx 2.5 rows to equal 1 row of stockinette. So, no.

Now his birthday is coming. He’s in Amsterdam, so I’ve got some time. But have I been working on it? No… I’m making socks for my sock class, a shawl that I decided on months ago, fingerless gloves for a pattern I’m writing. In other words, I’ve been avoiding it. But now it’s time to face the music. I’ve got approximately 11 days to get this redone. If I don’t though, it is still very hot, so I won’t be too disappointed. Christmas is not far off…

And so I’m off… to unstitch and frog. Ribbit!

Knitting @ 36,0000 Feet

I’m flying over New Mexico on my way home from San Antonio. The plane was three hours late but I didn’t mind. It gave me a chance to catch up on Rex’s sweater. I finished the back just now an I’m casting on for the front. I’m going to need some more yarn though. The double stockinette brioche pattern eats yarn like crazy! My hands seem to have gotten used to it. At first they were hurting, so I learned to hold the needles a little less tight.

This weekend was DH’s company Christmas party. A good time was had by all at Howl At The Moon. Especially one guy. He danced all night and was still dancing when we left at midnight! I wish I had that much energy!

I wasn’t able to knit on the sweater much this weekend so I was happy to sit at the gate plugged in to my knitting podcasts and knitting.

I can’t wait to get it done, not only because I’d like to give it to him for Christmas , but I have a design for fingerless mitts in my head that needs to get out. I’m thinking of knitting a mitt a month for 2013. Maybe I could publish an ebook. I think that would be fun! :)

I’m trying to write the pattern for the sweater as I go too, so look forward to that In the new year.

I forgot to say, how cool is this that I can post on my blog from 36,000 feet! Southwest WiFi is awesome!

UFOs

I have several UFOs in my queue. In a way they make me feel a little guilty. Here are some of them.

Click picture for more views on Ravelry.

Wakame Lace looks beautiful IMHO. I have the front of the sleeves to finish and the back sleeves. The top is worked in the round up to the armpits, then you hold the back stitches and work on the front sleeves. I’m not sure, but it looks like I  have only 2 or 3 more repeats to the shoulders.

This poor dear keeps getting pushed aside for other projects. She’s sweet, but time consuming. I love how the fabric is turning out. It is Fyberspates Scrumptious Lace in Oyster. It’s merino and silk so it’s soft with a gorgeous sheen. The original pattern was engineered for a sport weight yarn. I did a gauge swatch and determined that I needed 7 panels across the front and back and  3 on the bottom. I also added to the lace ground between the top and skirt.

When I saw this yarn at I Knit London, I just knew it wanted to be Wakame Lace. It took me a while to recover the pattern from my stash. I couldn’t quite remember the name, but I was sure of the edition of the magazine. It is from Interweave Knits Summer ’08 magazine.

Click for Ravelry Info.

Palindrome – This scarf was supposed to be for my husband. I’ve been working on it for almost a year now! Yikes! Ravelry says I started in 12/10. The problem with this one is the yarn keeps getting so tangled as I’m knitting, so I have to constantly stop and untangle. I’m just so stubborn that I haven’t put it on bobbins and I’m working off the balls. I got this yarn 2 years ago at I Knit London. It’s also a bit scratchy since it is pure wool. I haven’t been excited because I think it might not be fun to wear. I do like the two tone thing I’ve got going. The pattern itself is very easy when you’re not using two colors.

Click for Ravelry Page

Ahh, Twist and Shout. I have been wanting to make this sweater ever since I saw it on the cover of Knitty Fall ’08. I found the yarn in the bargain bin at Patricia Roberts Knitting in London. It was the same trip in 2010 that I bought the above yarn. It is also a pure wool, and I have gotten no farther than the picture. I hope the moths haven’t found it yet. I’m not even sure that I have quite enough to finish the sweater. This may be destined for the frog pond. :(

Click for Ravelry Page

I called this “Lighter Than Air” because it is. It is super soft and floaty. It’s made from Rowan Kidsilk Spray that I got in Amsterdam at De Afstap. I used the Large Rectangle in Leaf and Trellis Pattern with Trellis Border from Victorian Lace Today. The first thing that stopped me was the beads. I bought the beads from a street vendor in Waterlooplien and even though they are common seed beads, I have not been able to find the exact same kind. They have a metallic center that gives them a cool shine. The next thing that stopped me even after I found some beads that will do is (shame!) I ran out of yarn. I have been hunting down Kidsilk Spray in the Medici colorway ever since. I have many skeins now, but none quite the same shade as the one I left off with. The crazy thing is I bought 3 skeins at the same time in the same dye lot, but one of the balls was noticeably darker than the others. (I didn’t notice till I got home though. Home in California. Yeah.)

I refuse to frog this. Mostly because it’s very difficult to frog mohair. I’m probably going to give in and use one of the closest skeins I have. Or if I get real brave and have nothing else to work on I might rip out the border and start it over with a more matchy-matchy skein. It really is lovely in person.

Click pic for updates. This one will finish.

Meet Maybe Mulberry. This is a take off on the Mulberry Scarf by Colinette. I am making it for Unwind Yarn. This one will finish. Soon. It is two rows of Luna and 2 rows of Stella by S. Charles. I examined all the photos on Ravelry and read some of the notes and determined that if has a twisted drop stitch. I did two rows of them. The original pattern appears to have one row. So it’s different.

Those are all the UFOs I have listed on Ravelry, but I know there are many more forgotten ones in my basket. (I have a big basket.)

Tell me a little about your UFOs. 😉

Silence…

I know it’s been quiet around here. I’ve been knitting a lot, traveling a bit and having an anniversary weekend. This is our 30th year of wedded bliss! Honestly it doesn’t seem that long, but we have grown kids to prove it.

I’m also trying to get our $%!@&!^# taxes done. See how I procrastinate? Messy bookkeeping + tax time = :( Just sayin’.

In my kniti-verse I’ve been working on writing a couple of patterns. One is for Cathy’s Wrist Warmers.

I made these for my SIL for Christmas. I made another pair in London out of one of my purchases from last year’s trip, Sheepshop Wensleydale Longwool. I’ve just finished another pair out of the yarn in the picture, Rowan Cashsoft Baby DK. They are so very soft… The pattern will be posted shortly.

Another pattern that I am writing up is for my RSS Socks. RSS is for Really Simple Socks. I based them on a pair of store bought socks that I liked. I initially made them from a KnitPicks sock yarn in black, so they didn’t photograph too well. I am currently knitting them from Classic Elite Summer Sox. I’m hoping they will be comfortable in warmer weather. I’m finding that the climate in So Cal is not conducive to wool socks. My feet get itchy. Here’s the photo from the first pair. This picture isn’t great and I can’t find the original. I had to steal this one from my Ravelry photos. Weird. Like I said, the black doesn’t show the detail well but I like the way the blue Summer Sox is coming out. Photos to follow soon.

I need to catch up on posting my other knitting. I’ve started the Wakame Lace Tunic. I probably have the bottom finished. I just need to block and measure  to be sure. The lace pattern is easily memorized, so it goes quick, except for the volume!

I’m also working on a Palindrome scarf out of the Wensleydale Longwool in two brown colorways. Ugggh, need photos. Ok, I promise. Soon.

Just before heading off to London I made Nicole from The FibreCo’s Terra. It came out a little large and quite slouchy. It’s really warm and goes with all my pink stuff. I also made a blue one from the Wensleydale Longwool in blue. I felt guilty for buying all that yarn in London last year and not using it! I’m doing much better this year, thank you very much!

Ok, enough with the knitting. Back to taxes. Can I throw up now?

Knitter Ditter

That's How I Roll

I know it’s not Friday. I missed by a few days, but I was at the NAMM show all weekend and there was no wireless in my hotel room! Can you believe it? I think Holiday Inn Express needs to get up to speed…. Not that I had much time anyway….

We saw lots of cool musical toys and interesting people. I think some thought it was Comic-Con. My husband was there with his company, NewTek, Inc. producing the live webcast each night. If you are interested in webcasting videos, say a video podcast, they have the equipment you need.

Looks pretty in the picture.

(Mini Me)

I had a very busy knitting week. On Sunday, I took a yarn dyeing class with Shannon Okey at Unwind. I had never dyed yarn before. I’m not sure I’m crazy about my results, but it was a great learning experience. I’ll have to see how it knits up. I think I’ll call ’em, “Crazy Socks.” I like how my sample skein came out much better. I must have left more space between the colors on the test skein than on the big skein so I had a lot more blending of colors. I even have some blue between the purple and green and I didn’t use blue at all! Very interesting!

On Wednesday Sarah Hatton from Rowan taught a class on how to update your favorite sweater. She taught how to take your measurements and figure out the stitch count. Then we worked on figuring the decreasing for sleeves and necklines. She was great, very knowledgeable. Of course I had to get the pattern book and get it autographed! I wish I could visit Rowan when I go to London. They are in the countryside, about 2 hours away.

[amazon-product image=”https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51XSPfQMfoL._SL160_.jpg” region=”us” type=”image”]0307586618[/amazon-product]


I worked like mad to get the Baby Shawl done by Wednesday so I could turn it in. I blocked it that morning and even put the blocking boards in my car’s trunk to finish drying while I took my mom to the doctor.

I knew I might not make it back in time to go home and I was right. I was a 1/2 hour late for my class so I was a little surly by the time I got there. I really felt like all my brain power was drained by the traffic between Santa Monica and Burbank. Uggghh. Still, it was a good class. I just wish I had been there from the beginning and had brought a simpler sweater to figure out. I tried to figure this one that I got for Christmas. I think it’s really pretty. But she said I would have to take lots of measurements for it. My head just about exploded in trying to figure it out! I think I’ll stick to figuring out DH’s favorite sweater which is a drop shoulder sweater with straight sides. I brought that too, and no one could figure out the stitch pattern. It must be some crazy machine knit thing. I suspect it is double knit because there is rib on the back side and brioche on the front. At least from what I can tell.

At the end of Sunday’s class Stephanie and Shannon were talking about Stitches West. Stephanie said she doesn’t have any socks for her display. Of course my eyes lit up. I haven’t done any socks in I don’t know how long. I’ve been itching to get started on a pair. Shannon just happens to be working on a new book and I get to make one of the socks from it! Yippee! I’m using Sweet Georgia Tough Love Sock in a lovely gold color called Ginger. I love the depth in the color, and it really shows off in the pattern that Shannon designed. Since the book won’t be out until March, I’ll save the details until later. My socks should be done sooner than that though. 😉

Two Socks, Two Needles. That's... how I roll!

Happy Knitting and I’ll see you Friday!

Knitter Ditter

New Info: I just found this pattern on Ravelry so I can talk. It is called Gördes and is published in “Silk Road Socks” by Hunter Hammersen, published by cooperativepress.com. That’s all for now.

Boy-O-Boy

My latest knitting project is a little sweater for my friend’s new baby. Its from the 101 Designer One Skein Wonders book. I started it last Sunday. It’s due tomorrow (Sunday) for her shower. Ahem. The directions should clearly have stated, “NEXT ROW: K3 (On the front button band, you idiot!) and place these 3 stitches on holder.” I in all my wisdom placed the stitches on the SEAM side of the front on a holder and thought,” Gee, that’s funny, oh well.” Now when I come to the 3 needle bind off on the shoulder seam, my pattern isn’t lining up. I go to Ravelry to look for info or eratta on the pattern and guess what? The picture there clearly shows that I should have put the center front stitches on the holder so that I could knit the neckband onto them. IDIOT! Also we are suddenly going out tonight, so I need to finish this afternoon. I’m glad it’s not a full sized manly sweater.

11/21 – Finished!

Finish A Scarf, Start A Sweater

I have been working on a scarf for my LYS, and I finally finished! Yey! But I forgot to take pictures before I turned it in. You’ll just have to wait till I get it back. I didn’t know when I started knitting samples for the store that we got to keep them when she’s done with them. I got my Annis back several weeks ago. I love it!

The scarf is from the Easy Bamboo Lace Scarf pattern by Michelle Miller. The pattern was so easy, I quickly got bored. Knitting scarves isn’t really my thing. I like how it turned out though and the yarn is yumm, yumm, yummy! Classic Elite Silky Alpaca Lace. Soooo Soft! I decided that I will knit some fingerless gloves to go with it. If I get it back by Christmas it will be a gift. If not, it’s mine! Muah ha ha!

Yummy Silky Alpaca Lace, Soon to be Fingerless Gloves

Yummy Silky Alpaca Lace, Soon to be Fingerless Gloves

I started a sweater today for DH. I’ve been meaning to start since sometime in the summer. I’ve had the yarn that long. The yarn is Rowan Purelife Revive. It’s a little stiff to work with though it is soft. DH had a sweater that he loved, but it got a hole in the front that is impossible to fix. I can’t figure out the stitch pattern. I thought it might be a variation on brioche stitch, but I can’t get it quite right and it doesn’t work in this yarn anyway. I like how this comes out in stockinette, but I really want to add some design feature, cables or something. I’m still working that out. Meanwhile I cast on 224 stitches for the bottom rib. I will be working this in the round. Once 1 1/2 inches are complete I will increase by 90% for the body per Elizabeth Zimmerman.

Beginning Project Details:

Yarn: Rowan Purelife Revive in Marble, dye lot 1440
Needles US 4 3.5mm
5.5 stitches, 7.25 rows / inch

Rowan Purelife Revive

Rowan Purelife Revive

New Year, New Habits

Happy New Decade! So many things to think about. This is the year I turn 50, so of course it’s a milestone year and makes you consider creating some new habits.

I have already created the habit of running, although for the last month I’ve really fallen off the wagon. I’ve had a cough, a cold, and earlier in the month the winds were kicking up the ashes of the Station fire and creating such an environment that I wasn’t thrilled to be outside. But for Christmas I got a Wii Fit and now I can work out in the house. I did work out to DVDs before, but sometimes you just have to change things up. The Wii Fit has so many fun exercise games that it will be a long time before I get bored! I’ve heard that the hula hoop burns lots of calories! 😉

A habit I need to get back is gardening. I haven’t taken it seriously for many years. This house doesn’t inspire me to garden because there isn’t much room. The back yard is mostly concrete with a small patch of grass. There are borders around the edges which are wild and overgrown now. That’s where I will start. I think I will work on flowers and bulbs for spring.

I need to create a habit for practicing the guitar every day. I’ve bought a few programs and taken lessons, but I rarely think to pick it up like I do the knitting needles. I got a beautiful new guitar for Christmas from DH. It is much easier to play than his Takamine, and it has a beautiful tone. Playing guitar is something I have done on and off since I was 13 or so. Mostly off. I often think that if I had kept it up over the years I would be pretty good by now.

Scrapbooking is another thing that I need to create a habit for. I haven’t done it for quite a while, but I keep collecting digital downloads from Gotta Pixel. I do love the digital scrapbooking. I take a long time to do it though. If I do a little bit a week, maybe I can learn what I like and create pages faster.

I definitely have the knitting habit down. 😉 After Christmas I finished my Clandestine socks. I finally took a picture of the shopping bag before I gave it away as a gift. I finished Josie’s Little Miss Greenjeans Sweater and gave it to her for Christmas.

I also need to create a habit for cleaning up after myself. After eating/cooking, working, knitting, dressing, etc. Yep, I’m a messy person. It’s actually much better since the kids moved out. Now it’s only my mess! I notice that in the weeks DH is gone, I tend to be a slob. So this year I resolve to clean up after myself.

While I’m at it I could get in the habit of organizing my time better. Calendars and timers might be good. I tend to rebel even against my own rules. What?!? I know… Pathetic.
So this year I resolve not to rebel and teach that rebellious kid in me to stay on track.

I’ve got lots of stuff there, not to mention choir/vocal practice and school homework – oh yeah – and blogging. 😉

Daily stuff to do would be Bible Study, exercise, guitar knitting, voice, homework, clean up after myself.

Weekly stuff could include cleaning house, gardening, blogging and scrapbooking. Not bad.

Now that I’ve got myself somewhat organized for the year and spent way more time blogging than I meant to, I’m off to practice guitar! See ya!

Confession Time

Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. In church last Sunday the lady in front of me was wearing a sweater that distracted me so much I couldn’t concentrate on the sermon. I spent most of the time looking on my Ipod for a fern leaf knitting pattern. She got the sweater at Mervyn’s. I want to make one. It was a wrap type sweater with the leaf pattern on the yolk front and back. The bodice was plain stockinette and had a few pleats at the center back. Probably on the front panels too. I don’t remember.

I spent all day yesterday trying to work out the pattern. I found something here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/leaf-bookmark. There were only 4 “leaves” on each stem and it had a clover like pattern in between the leaf. It’s driving me nuts!

Finished!

Today I finished the Oriel Lace Blouse! Whooo Hooo! I’m going to wear it to church tomorrow. It looks great if I say so myself!

I had it done except for the placket and buttons for several weeks. I even got the sleeves done and sewn in a couple of weeks ago. In fact, I was working on them when I lost my cat. He sat with me while I sewed them in. On 8/7 I had the back door open because it was so hot. I heard the dog chase him, but I thought he went upstairs. When I went to bed I noticed that he was missing, but he always shows up in the front yard, so I didn’t worry. The next day he didn’t show up and I got concerned. The dog looked so guilty when I asked him about the cat. After a few days I made up missing cat flyers and took them around the neighborhood. A few hours later I got a call from our neighbor 2 doors down and she said,”I’ve seen your cat. He’s in Buellton.” I said, “excuse me?” Buellton is 130 miles away from my house. Turns out he had gotten into the storage compartment of thier camper and rode all the way up there with them. He jumped out and scared them to death when they opened the door. They tried to get him back and he hung around for a couple of days, but wouldn’t come to them. I called the animal shelter, but they haven’t seen him. Every couple of days I check www.petharbor.com, but he doesn’t show up. We went to Buellton the next weekend, but didn’t find him. We left missing cat flyers around, but haven’t heard anything yet. I really, really miss him.

Finished Another!

Yesterday I had to take my mom to the doctor and the grocery store. It’s warm out but when we go to the grocery store I always freeze. I was looking for something to wear and remembered that a couple of summers ago I made a sweater out of a heavy cotton yarn. I ran out before I made the sleeves so I wore it without them as a tank. Turns out the cotton was so hot I didn’t wear it much after that. I did go back to the store to get more yarn and finished the sleeves but I never set them in. When I decided to wear it I found the sleeves and decided to sew them in. Yay! Another sweater done!



Front Back
It’s funny, now that I’m more experienced I noticed all the imperfections in it. It looks ok. It’s a little loose, but that’s perfect since I overdid it on the carbs this week. It was great for the frigid grocery store.

And Yet Another!

Today was the day for finishing. I finished my Coupling socks too! I had them done for a couple of days except for the bind off. I did the same bind off that I used for RPM. See the post below. I love them! I’d wear them tomorrow too, but they don’t exactly go with the blouse. Oh well, I’ll definitely wear them in Amsterdam.

We are going to Amsterdam in a couple of weeks. DH is working, but I’m going to hang out with the boss’s wife. I’m looking forward to it. Hope I can find a yarn shoppe!

Currently On The Needles

The latest project is a wrap. I call it my Simple Sideways Wrap. I got the yarn last week at Unwind. They gave me a pattern for a wrap they have in the shop, but when I got home and cast on it wasn’t what I remembered. I fooled around a little and came up with a pattern of my own. It is knit, left leaning decrease, knit, yo. I say “left leaning” because I knit combination and for me it’s k2tog, but if you were to do that with western style knitting it looks different. So If you want it to look like mine you’d have to ssk. Or you can slant it the other direction. I think you’d start with the yo, but I haven’t tried it myself yet.

I started a cozy for my Zen with this pattern and the sock yarn from coupling. It’s a yarn called “Maizy” and it is made from corn fiber. The only thing I don’t like is that it was spun in Taiwan. Why did they have to do that? I believe that Crystal Palace Yarns is an American company. I guess it’s cheaper, but is transporting the fiber back and forth worth the savings? I remember when things used to have a made in USA label on them. Now you don’t see that much if at all. My next quest will be to find fiber that is manufactuered in the US.