Sunday, December 30, 2007

Update

I finally finished my super secret gift project. Once it is safely in the recipient's hands I will reveal the awesomeness. It was 5 hours of finishing work! No joke! Have I mentioned lately that I hate finishing? I did a lot of it while I was cat sitting at a friend's house and their cat politely ignored my yarn and let me work - unlike a certain other kitty cat I can think of.

I realized I left the buttons I was going to use back in Boston. Luckily I inherited a giant box of vintage buttons from my grandmother and it is still in SLC. So I found some that would work.

Next up is to cast on for the vest. I'd like to get it started so I can work on it on the plane ride home. (I don't like casting on in public. I am still a little self-conscious about knitting in public, I guess.)

Will she finish her socks before New Years Day?? The jury is still out.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Christmas Knitting

Well, I'm nearly done with my super secret gift project. I tried so hard to finish it up last night before I saw Joe (the giftee), but I gave up. I'm definitely going to finish it this afternoon, then I will post an FO later this week.

So far I haven't gotten any knitting done over this break. I swatched a little for my vest in the airport, but on the plane I just zoned out. My swatch is hideous and probably useless. I swatched in the round, which I hate. I'm not sure I'm in love with how this yarn is knitting up into the waffle stitch pattern. I think I'm just going to start the vest and see if (a) my gauge is completely off and (b) if the yarn is bad for this project. I'll report back.

In other news, for Christmas my parents got me a blocking board. It is awesome, but still in Boston so I don't have pics. Soon, my pets.

Friday, December 21, 2007

It's Here!

Roxy says:
"Yay! My yarn is here!"
I'm done with finals! Yay! Now I can devote all my time to knitting. (Well, aside from the need to clean, pack, say farewell, fill my prescriptions, shop, and go to a job interview....) I spent last night furiously knitting on the one gift I have to get done. I am pretty pleased with my progress. I think another hardcore knitting session tonight and I'll be nearly done. I can finish at home. I would have stayed up all night knitting last night, but I decided I should really be social and go out for a glass of wine, which turned into three - making late night knitting inadvisable.

I have to pick out which project I am going to take to SLC with me. It is so hard! I want to make sure I have enough projects to keep me busy, but at the same time, I don't want to lug a whole bunch of supplies across the country only to haul them all back again. (Especially when I'm sure my suitcase will be loaded down with presents!!) I definitely need to bring the super secret project and my socks which I am determined to finish up before December is out, to get my KAL letter! I also think I'm going to bring the supplies to get started with my U-Neck vest. Then, I'd like to bring Danica.... Now my project bag is getting loaded down. I'm not bringing Roxy's bed because the yarn is way too bulky. (Sorry hon!) I'd also like to bring a few things in case I have time for any more last-minute gift knitting - but whose do I bring??

Maybe if I food-saver all the yarn into a flat little package I will have room to bring it all. But my mom will make fun of me.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Grafting

A tip from today's Knitting Daily: how to graft kitchener-style on the needles.

http://www.knittingdaily.com/posts/legwear/306-1.html

stored away for future use...

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Midnight Yarn Run!

I ran out of yarn for Roxy's bed at 1:00 a.m. Thursday night! Anyway, first I cried. I know, it's dumb to cry over yarn, but I've had a stressful month. Anyway, then I was like, "dude, you have enough things to cry about! This is one thing in life that you actually have control over." So I hopped right on the computer and ordered more (FOUR balls, just to be extra sure). Thank god for the internet! What did we do before then? Were there all night yarn stores? (Because if so, damn the internet! ha ha)

Friday, December 14, 2007

yarn porn

I had a naughty photo shoot tonight with a big ole' box of yarn. Now I can drool at it all without pulling everything out from under the bed.

I'm now using my ravelry account to keep track of my stash. Their system isn't perfect (yet!), but I think it is still better that my dopey excel spreadsheet. Plus - PICTURES!

p.s. sorry mom, that's not all of it.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Angst

I WANT TO KNIT!!! I HATE YOU STUPID FEDERAL INCOME TAX!! I HATE YOU!!

Yes, I have to study for my tax final instead of knit. Having stared at the revenue code all day, my brain wants to strike back with a vengeance. My skin is just crawling with creative energy! This is awful!!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Crochet, my nemesis!!

Another failed attempt to crochet last night. Probably didn't help that I was drunk. I think it's easier to knit drunk than it is to crochet sober.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

FO: Bluebell

Well folks, it was a long and bumpy road, but I finally finished up our dear friend Bluebell this week. Overall, I'd say I'm pleased with the end result. Here she is:
yarn detail:
Cascade 220 Tweed in Blue Tweed
90% Peruvian Highland Wool, 10% Donegal Wool

Aran weight
cost: 100 g / 220 yds @ $9.15

pattern detail:
pattern: Boatneck Bluebell Sweater by Stephanie Japel (Fitted Knits, pg. 99)
needles: #8 circs from my Boye set
gauge: 18 stitches over 24 rows
hours: 5 months and across the country twice!
yarn used: just under 4 skeins
total cost: $37

notes:
- My boatneck ended up a little wider than I would have liked it, so I will have to wear it with a strapless bra. Or I can have the hip hot pink bra straps showing as I do here. My grandmother loves that look on a young lady.
- Lots of math disasters and pattern misreads in this one, next time I knit out of this book I just need to be super careful to keep my head on. (math notes on 7/27 and 7/28)
- It looked like hell until it was blocked... thank god for blocking.
-Next time I am just going to knit the sleeves in the round for these top down sweaters. I have a wealth of dpns so I might as well use them.
- If I knitted it again I would make the sleeves and the peplum slightly longer. I just prefer a longer top because I wear low cut pants and I don't want my gut hanging out.
- Oh, and I learned an important lesson knitting bluebell: DON'T LOSE YOUR YARN! And for god's sake - write down the dye lot when you first bring it home!!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Bluebell Blocking Under the Christmas Tree

Here she is, blocking away. I was able to stretch out the sleeves to 17'', like on the diagram in the book, so we'll see how it turns out. I went back after I took this picture and squared up those shoulders a bit. I wish I could have blocked the arms reaching out in a T-shape, but you can see that my table is not big enough. I could barely manage this configuration. I'm a little worried about the neckline. The diagram says it should be 8'' and mine is more like 12''. I tried to scrunch it up a bit here, but it's nowhere close to 8''. C'est la vie. All I can do now is wait for it to dry and hope for the best.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Danica says "ribbitt"

Danica got frogged last night: part accident and part on purpose. I was thinking about starting over anyway, but I didn't want to lose all the work I already put into it. My carelessness made the decision for me.

I recklessly yanked Danica out of my knitting bag and pulled it off the needles and pulled out some of the stitches, then I couldn't quite figure out where everything went and which way to best pick up the stitches I lost, so I just decided it was messy already and would get messier after I tried to save it, so I just frogged the whole thing.

That SWS is not fun to unravel. It got knotted at the end of almost every row and I had to tear at a bunch of fibers to get it out. The yarn is now a little ragged, but I'm reusing it anyway. I cast on again last night and have the first round done. It already looks much better because I did the correct bar increase for the pfb's and I reviewed the instructions on picking up stitches and my work is much neater now. (It turns out I was picking up stitches under one loop of yarn when you are supposed to do two. It looks a lot better now - no more long, holey stitches.)

Here is a pic of me kicking back, enjoying my act of destruction in a somewhat perverse way:
p.s. Yes, I did buy needle stoppers earlier this week, and yes I'm now going to use them because I have learned my lesson.