Tag Archive | shawls

Working on Wonder Woman

I’ve been knitting on a sock during lunches, but that’s not the fun knitting. The fun knitting has been the Wonder Woman Wrap, which has grown significantly this week! I managed to get both side stripes done, short rows and all. I was putting it off, afraid it would be tricky or confusing or time-consuming, and it wasn’t at all. The first side went faster, since it was the knit side.

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I still don’t love knitting them, but I will concede that they are not difficult, and they can help create some awesome shapes.

The second side was all purling, and my gauge was slightly different. But once it’s all knit, I don’t think it’ll be too noticeable. Right now I just wish I could spread it out and see how it’s coming along! This is as good as it gets, though:

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Maybe I can finish it this week…if I don’t get distracted by all the purple yarn I wound yesterday, that is!

Warrior Shawls

I have gone off socks, it would seem. Don’t worry, it’s temporary, I’m sure. I’ve been working on a pair that has not been very fun, not intuitive for me, which means I have to put more mental effort into it and then it’s not good travel/lunch time knitting. And the pattern insisted I cast on more stitches than I usually do, so I’m worried it won’t even fit after going through all the trouble. And even if it does, I’m already dreading the second sock. And now that I’ve verbalized all of that, I’m wondering why I’m not frogging it and picking another pattern. I did use a hot pink contrast yarn, and I cut the yarn after the cuff and heel, but if I reused it for a pattern with fewer stitches, it should be fine, right? Right. Anyway, I needed a break from socks, so I’ll worry about that another day.

In the meantime, I’ve got a mindless cowl on my needles. It’s the Chunky Basketweave Cowl and I’m using gorgeous ivory Ella Rae Cozy Alpaca, which is some of the softest, squishiest yarn I’ve used in a long time. It is very splitty, but I can work with that. I want it to be long enough to wear doubled, and I’m using smaller needles to make a denser fabric, so I started out with a cast-on of 180 stitches. That was too short, so I frogged and started over with 200, and that should be just right. I can’t wait to wear it when the temperatures cool down!


And for fun knitting that makes me think, I’ve been working on my two new shawls. The Rainbow Warrior is addictive. I’m so glad I waited until I could get the beautiful Miss Babs yarn, because I’m in love with how it’s turning out. I’m already planning other color variations! (Gray with purple variegated and black with rainbow are the top two, I think.) I’m on slipped-stitch section four of eight, so it’s coming along nicely.


Then there’s Wonder Woman. I took a short break because it was time to do wrap & turn short rows, which I’d never done before, and I was a little nervous. But last night I decided I didn’t want to wait forever for my wrap and just pushed through and did it, and it looks great, IMHO! It wasn’t hard at all, just fiddly, and I had to really pay attention to where I was in the pattern. I did mess up, because I somehow hecked up my stitch counts (off by three stitches), so the row after my triangle was a little tricky as I fudged to get the counts back to where they were supposed to be. I think it’ll be okay. Thank goodness it’s just garter stitch and not a complicated lace pattern.


So those are my WIPs for the week, but I’m already itching to cast on another new shawl! And as soon as the temps drop a little bit more, it’ll be time to pull out the alpaca for cowls. Fall is the best time for knitters, I think. So much delicious anticipation!

More birthday fun

One last birthday photo, because I can’t not share the super awesome cake one of my coworkers made. It was a chocolate cake covered in shiny purple glaze!! It was gorgeous.

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Okay, wait, one more. Because a couple of other awesome coworkers gave me some beautiful knitting needles that look like magic wands!! (Again, purple.)

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They gave me yarn too (Madelinetosh! HELLO!), but it hasn’t come yet. Seriously, do I have the best coworkers or what?? Another one gave me delicious chocolates, but those didn’t last long enough for a photo!

I’ve also had some good knitting time this week and I’ve cast on two new shawls. I was finally able to get yarn to make the Wonder Woman wrap, hooray!

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I chose Malabrigo Sock yarn in Ravelry Red and Ochre. I’ve cast on and done the easy first section, and am loving it so far. Now I need to move on to the scary part, which has wrap & turn short rows, which I’ve never done before. It’ll be fine, though. Fine. Just fine.

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Did you notice? I’m using Wonder Woman stitch markers too! Love them!

And this morning, I cast on for the Rainbow Warrior by Casapinka. I’ve been wanting to make this shawl for ages, but I wanted to do it with the Miss Babs yarn, just like the original, and I could never bring myself to order the yarn. Thanks to birthday money, I was finally able to place the order. And along with an adorable little mini-skein and three stitch markers, I got two skeins of Yummy 2-play, one in Perfectly Wreckless and one in Thunderstorm.

I’m pretty sure this will be a quick, fun knit. I’m already loving it and can’t wait to go back! How do I choose which awesome shawl to work on??

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Plus I want to cast on more things. Really I just want to cast on ALL the things right now. But hopefully I can contain myself to two shawls at a time. More might be overwhelming!

Duncan is settling in nicely. He’s feeling more comfortable, which is mostly good. He’s not quite as mellow and easy-going as he was the first couple of days. In fact, he can be rather ornery and mischievous, both with us and the other dogs. His appetite also grew noticeably, and he’s much more playful and spunky that I thought at first. He’s making the other two play much more than they’re used to, so at least they’re getting worn out. I’m having a marvelous time watching them all interact, and I’m so glad I was able to convince the husband to add just one more dog to the pack.

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Happy weekend, friends!

Socks and Scarves

Time to show off the FOs from our road trip last weekend! The first I actually finished on the way to Colorado, which was perfect because then I could wear it! Apparently Colorado weather is just as unpredictable as Missouri weather, and as we drove into Denver we saw signs warning us of an impending bout of heavy snow. Swell! Thankfully we avoided all the snow, but we did have strong, cold winds to contend with and we all forgot our coats. I couldn’t believe it: here I was with the perfect opportunity to put all my handknits to good use, and I’d left them all at home! But at least I  had my new little Copper Boom, lightweight and airy though it was, and that provided a bit of comfort.

fullsizeoutput_aa5fullsizeoutput_aa7fullsizeoutput_aa6The yarn is Madelinetosh Tosh Sock in colorway Night Hawk, and it’s the best Madtosh yarn I’ve used. I find their yarns splitty, but didn’t have that issue with this yarn. I love all the colors; they’re all colors I wear frequently so I think I’ll get a lot of use out of it. The pattern is Copper Boom and it comes in two versions, the eyelet one that I made, and a solid pattern. It’s very simple but not boring, and my only minor caveat is that one edge comes out a bit tight so the ends curl even after blocking. Still, I love it!

My other FO is my first pair of sock yarn socks! Yes, I finished my Hermione’s Everyday Socks and they are perfect!

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Okay, not really perfect because they’re a tad too big, but they’re wearable and now I know to make the foot portion shorter. I love the feel of the fabric, the density of the tiny stitches, and the magic of turning the heel. So, FINE, yes, I agree: making socks is fun. In fact, I’ve already got a new pair on my needles.

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This time I’m using Kate Atherley’s Basic Ribbed Socks because I love ribbing and I love snug socks. And ribbed socks out of rainbow yarn are extra perfect. I just wish the yarn had kept up with the striping instead of starting to pool.

The socks are my lunch break knitting at work; my new at-home knitting is a scarf in yarn from my stash. (Gasp! I’m using stash yarn, not new? Crazy, I know!) I wanted a versatile ivory scarf and this more than fits the bill. It’s Manos del Uruguay Fino, which is a merino/silk blend that is just delicious to knit with. It feels good in my hands while I knit with it, and it feels good in the scarf. Every day, I look forward to going home so I can knit with this yarn. I’m going to want more Fino for sure.

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The pattern is Frisson and I love how it’s knitting up. But I’m not crazy about the way it’s written. My main peeve is that each section has several lines like “knit to 8 stitches before YO in previous RS row”. I mean, I understand the directions, but it’s just kind of a pain to have to watch for that YO two rows below each time. A stitch marker would probably help, and this far into it, I’ve gotten pretty good at spotting it quickly, but it’s still a bit annoying. Maybe I’ve gotten spoiled by patterns that tell me when to place/slip a marker, or how many stitches to knit before doing something different, so that now when I pay $4 for a pattern, I expect that kind of work to already be done for me. What can I say, I’m a lazy knitter, I guess! Anyway, like I said, it’s turning out beautifully and I imagine I’ll wear the heck out of it.

That’s my week of knitting; hope you all got plenty of knitting time too!

Silverleaf Complete

I just finished it this morning and had to share it right away because I’m so excited!

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It’s nice and long, and the garter stitch sections are squishy and soft.

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The leaf pattern is gorgeous. It amazes me how people can take a relatively simple lace pattern and make something so beautiful. I love knitting designers.

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The color is also perfect for me. It looks predominantly gray, so it should be nicely versatile, but in person it’s got a hint of purple.

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This might be my very favoritest knit of all time. So much love for my Silverleaf! If you don’t have it already, go buy it and make it. You won’t regret it.

Progress on the WIPs

Yes, it is Friday, and here I am blogging! Thanks to a dentist appointment today and a book event this evening (I get to see JODI PICOULT!!! SQUEE!) I decided to just take the day off. I’ve got errands to run too, of course, but thought I’d take advantage of my rare quiet morning at home to slip in a quick new post. So: lots of knitting time this week! My beautiful new Color Block Wrap is coming along nicely. I’d forgotten what a fast knit it is. I decided to just go with the size 10 needles because I liked the resulting gauge. I figure I’ll do the first three sections, see how long it is, and decide then whether I need to add another skein or two. I don’t have more dark pink but I’ve got a light pink and more grays, so I could easily add more yardage.

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And I was a winner this week! We went to a fundraiser for the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra and there was a silent auction, and I won a new knitting tote! Yes, I totally DID need another bag, thank you for asking. Isn’t it cute?

img_2157I also won a gift certificate so I’m ordering another bag and I think I’m even going to splurge and get it personalized!

Look at this: I also managed to work on Silverleaf this week:

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Yep, that’s the leaf section! I made it through half of the leaf lace pattern, so just the other half and the final boarder left to do. I’m still loving this project. It’s just perfect. But I’ll love wearing it too!

This weekend promises to be quite busy. Another band competition (the last of the season) will give me plenty more knitting time, so look for a FO on the blog soon!

Knitting all the things

Ha, I finally finished that dumb ribbed beanie! I mean, the pattern was fine–I just messed up at first and then got tired of it. I tried to modify and guessed wrong and ended up with a hat that was too small and too short for the boy. Okay, fine. I frogged and started over. But 1 x 1 rib on size 3 needles with fingering weight yarn, even held double, takes a while to knit. It got rather tiresome, which is probably why I set it aside for a while. Then I got tired of seeing it so Sunday I decided it had to get done. I was at the decreases anyway, so I was thisclose to the end. Before too long I had a finished hat and the boy put it on and said…”It’s a little big.” Argh. Yes, he’s still alive, but only because I had witnesses. Anyway, it’s done, it’s close enough, and he can wear it or not, I don’t care much at this point.

After that I was free to cast on something new because I only had 4 WIPs. Of those, one is a blanket (hibernating WIP), one is a long seed stitch cowl (hibernating WIP) and one is my Royals baseball crackerjack scarf, which is by design a summer-long project. I needed more! First I started Here Be Water Dragons with Stitchjones Dyepot Superwash Merino. I’d actually started it a couple of days ago, but didn’t like the fabric with the suggested needles, so it got frogged and I’ll start over with size 9 needles. I love the colors in this yarn–they’re perfect for fall/Halloween knitting–but it’s not the softest. I don’t know if I’ll be able to wear it next to my skin.

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Then there’s Madelia. I started it last week and accidentally pulled the needle out of several stitches, and there were way too many k2tog and YOs to try to pick them up. No biggie, I wasn’t that far in. Plus I used the opportunity to switch from my Karbonz to bamboo needles. I adore my Karbonz; they’re usually my favorite needles. But they were too slippery for lace with this yarn: Berroco Fiora, which is 40% cotton and 30% rayon. After yesterday’s knitting session, I’m on to the fourth section and having a lovely time. It’s a really fun knit. I think I needed to add a more complicated pattern to the mix.

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I also cast on for the New Bittersweet Cowl. I’m calling in the Bittersweet Birthday Cowl because I’m using my birthday yarn, and because it was my 40th birthday, which is a little bittersweet. I’m modifying it to be a one-loop cowl because that’s all the yarn I have.

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And in that picture you can see my only FO for this post: the yarn bowl! It was actually made by the Knitting SIL for my birthday, and I added the black frog closure over the weekend. I LOVE it. It’s so pretty, and fits one wound skein perfectly.

 

I’m still working on my Sockhead hat and it’s knitting up beautifully, but it’s definitely too simple and mindless to be my at-home knitting.

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Finally, I have Silverleaf. I’m loving knitting with the Malabrigo Arroyo but I’m a little stuck in the garter repeats. I’m so eager to get to the leaf pattern! And eager to wear it, too, so I guess I better keep on knitting.

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Now I have this fun, varied collection of WIPs to choose from when I have some knitting time! I’m not sure I’ll even do much gift knitting this year: my knitting time is so diminished that I don’t know if I want to spend it making things for other people, unless I’m 100% sure they’ll love it, and use it. So far I don’t have anything like that in mind. Selfish knitting for the win! I’m sitting at 8 WIPs right now, and that’s a great number, don’t you think? Heck, I think I’ll add one more–I just remembered a birthday gift I need to knit. But it’ll be a small, quick knit, so that barely counts, right?

As if all of this wasn’t enough, I did some blocking over the weekend too, and now my Saroyan scarf and Fern Lace Cowl are ready to wear! The scarf is especially scrumptious and makes me long for a colder day.

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Yes, with all this crafty stuff going on, I’d say it was pretty darn close to an ideal weekend. I definitely felt like it recharged my creative battery–and that helps keep me sane and happy throughout the week. Now, let’s see how much I can actually get done on all these projects this week!