Tag Archive | knitting

I like cables now?

What the heck, who am I? I always thought I didn’t want to knit fingering weight, now I love it. I didn’t want to knit socks, now I’m addicted. I knew I’d hate cables — they’re fiddly and slow — and yet I chose to knit another hat with cables. And it didn’t even seem that fiddly!

img_7731It probably helped that this is worsted weight yarn and wool, so it’s sticky enough that the stitches don’t slip out easily when you’re doing the cables. And I’d say it helped that I’ve done this pattern before except I got to the cable bit and had no memory of how exactly to work it and had to look up the comments on the Ravelry pattern page. It’s Winter Walk, by the way, and knits up quickly. And next, I think I’m going to do some cabled mittens for my nephew. Clearly the shelter-in-place stuff has addled my brain.

Or maybe it’s paint fumes? After my bedroom, I tackled our upstairs hallway. It was a dirty tan with woodwork that had been painted a flat reddish-brown. I’m sure they did it to make it look like “wood” but I hated it, so the hall got the same gray/white paint as my bedroom.

It’s so bright and clean! I love it. There are SIX doorways in this area, though, so I got to paint a lot more trim than I would have preferred. The good news is that I’m now quite good at painting edges cleanly, but still, I’m so glad the next room to be done has beautiful natural wood trim! I’m taking a couple of days to rest before starting the next project; my hands and shoulder and elbow are feeling a bit of strain. Plus I was starting to miss knitting a little bit. I’ll get to the dining room soon though. It occurred to me that before I was furloughed, our plan had always been to hire someone to paint all these rooms, so I’m saving us a ton of money, probably a couple thousand by the time I’m done, as big as the bedroom and dining room are. That’s a pretty good feeling, and once you add on getting to enjoy the new paint, so far it’s worth the sore muscles!

Oh, and Mother’s Day was lovely too! We had a family breakfast, and went by to say hello to the mother (keeping a safe distance, of course) and I got plenty of knitting time before our delicious steak dinner, complete with mashed potatoes, and chocolate cake for dessert. The boy picked out a great t-shirt for me, and the husband ordered the most gorgeous blue Franklin Christoph fountain pen.

img_7719The girl’s gift was running late, so I’ll get a bonus Mother’s Day once it arrives. Hope all my fellow American moms had a good Mother’s Day too!

Lifelines

THIS is why we use a lifeline, friends.

C3490BD9-9267-426D-95CC-3126682DD30DI had to frog 30 rows of lace on Saturday. 327 stitches per row. That’s over 9800 stitches, and it was only 15 rows from the end of the shawl. But I’d dropped a stitch a few rows back, thought I’d fixed it, then I dropped another stitch, thought I’d fixed it, my stitch count was off by one so I adjusted, and then the next row my stitch count was off by three. Upon further investigation, the diamond lace pattern was hecked up, to put it in technical terms. I hated to do it but I want this to be a good shawl, thus, the frogging. I got all my stitches back on the needle safely and have done three rows correctly. Now I’m just trying to decide how often to move my lifeline now!

I’m not sure how much knitting I’ll be getting done in the near future, though, because I seem to have found a new project: painting. Alas, no, not pretty pictures but rooms in our old house. We’ve been here five years and never painted a room, mostly because we always had other projects that needed the time/energy/money/focus first. But now I’m not working, the girl is home and will be done with school stuff soon and is eager and willing to help, and paint is relatively inexpensive. It all started with the husband’s office, which was an unattractive salmon-pink color. It’s a small room and he’ll be in there for at least the rest of May, if not longer, so I offered to paint it for him. I filled and sanded all the cracks, taped all the trim, and the girl and I painted it a fresh pale gray. The prep took longer than the painting itself!

I’d forgotten how satisfying it is to paint a room and have it be all fresh and pretty! We’re all jealous of the new room. And honestly, I think it was good for me to have a project that made a difference. I felt a little…lost last week, for lack of a better word, without work to give me a sense of purpose. The last times I wasn’t working, the kids were younger and my purpose was raising them. Well, at this point, that’s pretty much done, and it’s not like the younger one listens to me anyway! So directing my energies toward this sad house is a good plan, I think. It needs to be done before we can sell in a couple of years anyway, and we might as well get to enjoy the fresh paint jobs. Next up, my bedroom!

091869DE-AA0E-437F-A2B0-33DAC2B512B1I hate this color so much. In person, it’s a touch more yellow. It’s like a pale pea green. It’s hideous. All the many cracks have been patched (hooray for old houses with plaster walls, right?) and today I’ll sand them down and start prepping furniture to be moved out of the room. And then it will be painted the palest gray and the girl said she’ll repaint the glossy white trim, and then! Don’t tell the husband, but then I’m going to order new bedding and it’s going to be PURPLE and I will love my bedroom.

And then I’ll take more ibuprofen and lay down because I’m old, friends, and my back hurts.

FO Friday: Rainbow Socks

Well, I started the week with these socks and I’ll finish the week with them. I actually finished the toe of the second sock yesterday but FO Thursday doesn’t have the same ring to it.

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These socks do not match. Can you see why? Yes, the toes match up beautifully and I love that! But look at the rolled cuffs: I started on different colors. So one sock is longer than the other. Whatever. They’ll still wear just fine. Plus this might be my favorite sock yarn ever. It’s from Two Sisters Yarn Company and these colors are just so fun and happy. I used more yarn than I expected on these, about 54 grams, so I’ll have to get creative with my second pair.

I’m still working on my Vestigial sock and am in the middle of the gusset, but I’m planning my next sock as well. These will be for a good friend and here’s what I have in mind:

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They’re even machine-washable! The multi-color is Plymouth Yarn Happy Feet. The green might be Madtosh?? Or maybe Treasure Goddess Treasured Toes? I hope it’s the latter because that’s also machine-washable.

This week I also finished watching Little Fires Everywhere and I highly recommend it. It’s different from the book in a lot of ways, and I’m not sure how I feel about the ending, but I was hooked. And now I need to read the book again to see exactly how it’s different!

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Happy Friday, friends.

Sock It To Me Monday

Yesterday was a sunny, lazy day and it called for a new sock. I pulled out my Two Sisters self-striping and cast on a Rose City Roller. I’m thinking that if I make one pair of Rollers, I’ll have enough left for a pair of full-size socks with contrasting heels/cuffs/toes. And having the shortie socks knit up first will help me pick the contrasting color. Plus I will actually be able to wear the short socks now, unlike the full socks which would be set aside for fall.

img_7619I love this yarn so much. I would wear a sweater in this yarn. I just don’t know how well it works to make a sweater in self-striping sock yarn!

I also spent some time with my sewing machine yesterday. In all my mask-making recently, I hadn’t made any for myself or my family. And with so much uncertainty around the virus and when we’ll go out in the world again and what restrictions will be required when we do, I thought it would be best to be prepared.

img_7616They are all reversible with the same fabrics but I used different ties for each one so we’d know whose is whose. They’re also not perfect but it was still fun and satisfying, even if my eyes were so tired by the time I was done. I don’t think sewing will ever be my favorite craft, but I am tempted to try to make something fun, like a small project bag. What’s your favorite simple pattern for beginner sewing?

Mad World

Do you know that song? I’m sure you do. It was originally by Tears for Fears, I think, but I discovered it through Adam Lambert’s cover and it’s running through my head today. This really is a mad world right now. I’m constantly up and down and okay and not okay and angry and grateful and more than anything else, exhausted. I’m loving the time I have with my family; we’re still doing family LEGO projects and having a blast. I know I’ll miss that when the restrictions ease up, but then I’ll get to see my extended family, and that will be a treat.

Knitting has been slow lately but I did finish the other worsted weight sock for the boy. I’m glad to be done with brown socks!

img_7581I still have a sock on my needles but I’m tempted to cast on a new pair, with one of my recent colorful acquisitions. I’m also feeling the itch to get back to my more complicated projects. I did a few rows on my Dowland shawl yesterday and I’m hoping to get back to it this weekend. Since it’s full-on lace and currently over 300 stitches on the needle, I save it for when I can give it my full attention.

Also in my weekend plans are baking more pumpkin muffins and finally vacuuming these disgusting floors. I still hate housework but sometimes it has to be done, I guess. Happy-ish Thursday, friends.

FO Friday: Socks!

I have new socks to wear for spring! I finished my scrappy shortie socks last night and they’re the same size and used up two little leftover balls of yarn. They’re a pattern from my head but I’m pretty sure it started with the Rose City Rollers and I just modified the leg to add a short cuff.img_7550

My yarn friends at work are going to do a worsted-weight sock knit-along through work, so that will motivate me to do the second sock for the boy. I’m kind of…leading it, I think?? Which is so weird to me but whatever, I have made a lot of socks so I’m pretty skilled at basic sock skills, I guess? Anyway, it’ll be fun and give us a good excuse to meet virtually and show off socks. And maybe I can get someone else addicted to sock knitting because it’s the best.

My apparently never-ending supply of happy mail continued today with this fun collection of goodies from the Treasure Goddess:ea25de0f-c7d8-4475-b1ba-c0cde6023f8eThe sock yarn will actually become socks, and the two little pirate sheep in the middle are temporary tattoos, how fun is that? And that sticker in the upper left corner? LOVE with the yarn ball? I think that would make an amazing real tattoo! Only if I did it, of course the yarn would be purple. We’ll see if I still want it once we’re allowed to go out into the world again.

I don’t expect any happy mail tomorrow but who knows, something could show up! Happy Friday, friends!

 

More Masks

I wish I could show you some fun knitting, but I have none to share. The nurse friend I’ve been making masks for said her team was required to wear masks now and they loved the ones she had, and I’d offered to make more, so she wondered if I’d still be willing. I definitely was, especially since I had supplies on hand. I used up the last of my dish-cotton yarn and the last of the cotton shirt I’d cut up to make six more masks.

I think this is a total of 16 I’ve made, and I might be done now. It felt good to do something to help people in healthcare, and my friend said her boss, a senior VP and CIO of a major hospital system, liked it enough to ask for one herself. That made me feel pretty cool! If you’re interested, I used this pattern and added a two-layer cotton lining. I used the sewing machine to sew the two pieces of lining together, then hand-stitched the lining in place. I ran out of ribbon so I slip-stitched yarn into place on the corners and just chained for 18″ to make the ties. I tried to make them as sturdy as possible to withstand many washes in hot water.

Besides masks, I had a short interlude for another puzzle. The girl is now sheltering in place with us, which is really comforting for this mom’s heart, and she’s my puzzle buddy. (She’s also my showtunes/musical buddy and my chick flick buddy.) Good news: I have someone to help me. Bad news: the puzzles go much faster!

img_7540I was spreading the ModPodge on this one last night and the husband walks by and says with dismay, “You’re gluing that one together too?” LOL! I guess he’s not a big fan of finished puzzles either! This is the last one to get glued, I think, so he’ll be fine. But I like the idea of hanging this one in our sitting room, which is where we have our record player and piano, and where the kids used to practice their instruments.

Now, I’m gratefully back to sock knitting, which is good because I have a VERY GOOD supply of sock yarn thanks to pandemic stress-shopping! (Somehow, I am still in the black for the year: I have used more yarn from stash than I’ve added! NO IDEA how that’s still true and no idea how long it will last.) The latest is my first skein from Mint Rain Yarns, a self-striping in a color called Make Me Smile.

img_7541And it does! The hardest part might be deciding which awesome sock yarn to knit next!

Okay, it’s 8 am which means it’s time to get to work for the day. Happy Thursday, friends. Hang in there.