Archive | July 2016

Reyna & Saroyan

Yesterday was a happy day:

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That’s my new dishwasher! When we bought this house, it came with an old dishwasher. It worked, mostly, but it also wasn’t installed correctly so when we opened it, it would rock forward. The silverware container was small, cramped, and partially broken. So we decided that part of my first paycheck would go toward a replacement. And it’s fantastic!

But I also finished my Reyna yesterday. After a morning of chores and errands, I picked it up after lunch and realized I was running pretty low on yarn. That meant I could only get five more rows in before binding off, and that went very quickly. Then Grace said she would try it on for me.

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She approved. It then went upstairs for washing and blocking. I blocked it a little aggressively, because it was a wee thing and I wanted it bigger. Can’t wait to unpin it later today and try it on. I really really enjoyed making this shawl. The pattern was fantastic, and it’s not often you come across a pattern that works so well with variegated yarn. I’m pretty sure I’ll be making another Reyna.

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While I was blocking, I figured I might as well go ahead and block the Secret Beach Scarf too. I’m a little embarrassed to share this photo because it’s such a crap blocking job. But it’s SO LONG, and I’d used up all my KnitPicks blockers and just couldn’t stand the idea of doing T-pins all down the length of this scarf. It’ll be fine. Right?

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So, big shawl done. Bulky cowl done the other day. You know what that means: time to cast on something new! After much (and I mean A LOT) perusing, I finally chose a pattern for my Dream in Color Classy with Cashmere. The winner was Saroyan.

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I feel like this is one of those super popular patterns that’s kind of required for knitters, much like the Hitchhiker, and I can see why. Isn’t it lovely? So much fun to knit, though part of that is the super-soft merino/cashmere yarn. I adore the leafy border. I have a playdate with my Knitting SIL this afternoon, and this is what I’m taking with me.

Enjoy the last bit of your weekend, friends! Monday will be here all too quickly.

Insta Cowl

Boy, this one went fast! I started it last night while I watched TV and was able to finish it today on my lunch break. I quite like it.

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It’s thick and cozy, and the Rasta is so soft.

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I had to try it on, but it’s so warm I could just keep it on for a minute.

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Pattern is Insta Cowl, yarn is Malabrigo Rasta. Now I’m off to wind yarn for my next project!

Waffles Hat

I finished a hat today! This has been my work lunchtime knitting and today was an extra-long lunchtime, so I was able to finish it up. I’m quite pleased with it.

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Pattern: Violet Waffles. This is my third one and I love the pattern. Yarn: KnitPicks Preciosa Tonal in Boysenberry. LOVE this yarn.

I also got some new yarn in the mail! That’s always a good day, right? ErikaShmerika shared a destash on Instagram and of course I couldn’t resist checking it out. Sigh. Her prices were ridiculously good. Like, I got Malabrigo Rasta for FIVE DOLLARS. Yes, it needs to be wound, but…FIVE DOLLARS!

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I also got some Araucania Coliumo. I haven’t knit with it before but it’s a bulky purple yarn. I’m pretty sure I’ll be happy with it.

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This is StitchJones Dyepot, worsted merino in a colorway called Conspiracy. The colors are AMAZING.

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Last but not least, I got another skein of Manos del Uruguay Alegria. It might be my new favorite yarn. I love the colors, love the feel, love how it knits up. Look at this! Isn’t it gorgeous??

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And that’s ALL. I’m not buying any more yarn for…at least another week or so.

Three Times a Cowl

Last weekend I cast on a couple of new projects. One of them was with my treasured Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Bulky.

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I wanted something simple to show off the yarn, something quick and easy that would be a good travel project for my lunchtime knitting at work. I chose The Simplest Cowl, all stockinette, cast on, and took it to work with me last week.

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It was definitely fast; I finished in just a couple of lunch breaks. But I didn’t like it. It was too wide and too short. I frogged and started over with 75 stitches, but then the yarn pooled (not sure if that’s the right word) in a weird way. The colors stacked instead of being more random. Frogged again and started with 85? 87? I’m not sure. Again, it went quickly and yesterday I finished it and bound off during lunch, and happily put it on.

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It was still too short. It curled so much that the curls were all you saw when I was wearing it. My one skein just didn’t go far enough to make the look I wanted from that pattern. Now, if it were any other yarn, I probably would have tossed it aside, listed it on Etsy and forgotten about it. But I love this yarn, plus it was a gift from my mom. It had to be something I loved, something I would wear. I frogged one more time and rewound it. I went through the cowls on Ravelry that others had made with this yarn, and found one that looked quite delightful called Squishy Soft Cowl. I found the right needles, double-checked the pattern, and headed out with the girl to see The Secret Life of Pets. This would be my first foray into movie theater knitting.

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And it went quite well, I must say! I got a good chunk done before the movie even started and was able to keep track of the simple pattern while still paying attention to the movie. It probably helped that the movie was a little silly and I didn’t have to work at all to keep up. I’m not sure I could knit that well during a movie aimed at actual grownups. Anyway, I got through 3/4 of the yarn and finished it last night and THIS TIME I’m happy with the end result.

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I chose the smallest version so it would be snug and tall, and it came out exactly right.

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Do you want to see my other current project too? It’s the Reyna shawl with my new blue/green Araucania Huasco. I think I love this as much as I love my rainbow. It seems to be such a good match of yarn and pattern, and the pattern is so fun. It’s just sections of garter and mesh alternated so that you never get tired of either one.

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I’m using my new Addi Turbo Lace needles and really like them. They’re lightweight, super smooth, and I love the pointy tips. I’ll be adding more of these to my wish list. I have about 40 rows left and then it’ll be done. But this isn’t a good lunch break project, so I’ll be casting on something new today to take to work this week. Maybe a hat this time!

Something else fun: I keep finding more knitters at work. The lab manager knits, and brought in a shawl she’s working on so I could help her with it. And we decided her 8yo daughter needed to learn to knit, so I brought in some 10″ size 11 needles and a skein of bulky acrylic in a pretty teal for her to try. Anything to create new knitters, right? The needles were metal ones I’d found secondhand for cheap, so I didn’t mind passing them on. As we sat in the break room knitting, we discovered another knitter as well as a crocheter. Just wait, I’ll bring all these yarn people together and create a big yarny community over there! *rubs hands together evilly* Bwahahaha!

Yarn Pics

Remember how my LYS is closing this summer? Well, it’s happening at the end of this month, and yesterday I realized I needed to get up there before all the really good stuff was gone. I’m glad I did because I got a few awesome treasures for an awesome price.

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Alegria by Manos del Uruguay. This is the yarn I used for my Peek-a-Boo Bay shawl (different colorway obviously) and I loved knitting with it. I’m tempted to make another one in just this yarn, skipping the stripes. This wasn’t a huge steal, just 25% off, so it was my biggest splurge.

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Araucania Huasco (fingering weight Merino) in Wine. This was 50% OFF!! I grabbed the last two skeins in Wine…

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and the last skein in green…

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and the last skein in this fun summery blue-green colorway. I’ve already decided this one will be my next cast-on. It’s going to be the Reyna shawl.

Finally, remember my Color Block Chalet Wrap? Well, it’s one of my favorite pieces, and the yarn was 35% off. They didn’t have enough that I could replicate it, but I think I’m going to do a half-size version, just cast on half as many stitches, and have a yummy color block scarf. That’ll take one skein of each color. Not sure what I’ll do with the rest, but I love this yarn so much I couldn’t leave it there.

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With my arms full of yarn, I passed by the needle section and realized they were on sale too. I’ve needed a size 4 16″ circ and it was 50% off so, plus I’ve heard so many good things about the Addi Turbos that I wanted to try them. They were only 35% off, so I only picked one size. It’ll be enough to get me hooked, I’m sure!

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Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go finish my Secret Beach scarf so I can cast on all the new projects!

A wee bit of purple

Where did my knitting time go?? I think my body is still adjusting to this new schedule, because by the time I’m home from work and done with dinner, I’m exhausted. I knit a few rows and my eyes are drooping, and I’m usually in bed with lights out by 10. I got so spoiled the last few years that my body is struggling with this new “wake up at 5:30 in the morning” thing. As a result, I have very little knitting to show off this week. I’ve been working on the Secret Beach Scarf and I made it through the second contrasting color and onto the third. And it’s my favorite: the purple!

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I’m on the homestretch now, just need to get the purple section to 18″ and then it’ll be DONE and I can cast on something new with no guilt.

I did get to meet the knitting group at work and they seem to be a lovely group of people, very welcoming and funny and irreverent, as the best people are. They meet twice a week over lunch break so I should start getting a little more knitting time. Yesterday I took lunch out onto the patio and had some solo knitting time. It was lovely to have that little respite in the middle of the day.

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The other thing I’ve been doing is reading. Lots of my favorite authors have new books out, and I’ve finished Elin Hilderbrand’s Here’s to Us and Emily Giffin’s First Comes Love and I’m almost done with Allison Winn Scotch’s In Twenty Years. Coming up I have Sarah Pekkanen’s new book, but first I want to re-read Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell before the first book club meeting. (Haha, I’ve never been in a book club before, so this will be interesting!)

The puppies are not a fan of my new schedule, and are so so excited to see me when I get home. My first job is always to sit down and cuddle with them for a while, otherwise they just follow me around and jump on me.

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That’s it, that’s my week. Hopefully next week I’ll have more knitting to include!