Tag Archive | shawls

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!

Silly Selfies and FOs

I have some FOs to share, and apparently I like to take silly photos of myself wearing them. Here’s the Cruella Cowl, a beauty in black and white. The pattern is Darn Knit Kinetic Cowl and it’s the fastest cowl I’ve ever made. img_7189In case you don’t recognize it, the yarn is my vacation Berroco Brio. img_7210

And then we have the Squarshy Hat, finished tonight, which I adore. I could have added another half-inch to the body, but it’s just fine as is.img_7208This is also vacation yarn, the Malabrigo Mecha.

Lastly, we have Fractal Danger, completed at last! But no silly selfies with this one, sorry. img_7184This was an interesting knit with unusual shaping, and was also my first experience with short rows. They’re not really my favorite. Kind of fiddly, turning so often and making sure your stitches stay on the needles and all that jazz. They slowed down my rhythm, and anything that does that is not my favorite. img_7211Still, I like this a lot, and I do think the shape makes it wonderfully wearable. I just need to get it blocked!img_7213

Next on my needles: Silverleaf with Malabrigo Arroyo! Can’t wait to get going on that one; I’ve been itching to knit it since it was released.

It’s been a while since I shared some puppy photos, hasn’t it? Grace is as much a love bug as ever, giving as many kisses as we’ll allow. img_7167

And Jack, silly cute Jack, he forgave me for boarding him after a day and went back to his charming self, always asking for belly rubs no matter where we’re sitting.img_7180

Wishing you all a lovely weekend!

Three WIPs

The new job is going well, and I’m catching on quickly to most things. I think the biggest hurdle has been the Spanish accent of one of my bosses. I struggle a bit with accents, so I’m really hoping that with time, I’ll get more used to it and it’ll be easier. As it is, I’ve had a couple of scary moments where I asked “What?” once and didn’t want to ask again, and then had to ask someone else for help later. Thankfully, he’s a very nice man, so he’d probably be patient with me too. It’s just hard to admit you can’t understand someone, isn’t it?

I’m enjoying bolstering the knitting group at work too. I knit every day, and one day at the cafe, one woman sat with our group because of my knitting. She used to knit, keeps projects handy, but struggles to find time. Of course I told her about the knitting group, so I’m hoping to see her there soon. I go to every lunch meeting I can, and I’ve got the other AA who started with me knitting too. She learned the knit stitch as a child, and I donated a pair of needles she could try again and see if she liked it. She made a mug cozy in about a day, and is now working on a chevron baby blanket! There’s one other woman there who’s a dedicated crocheter/knitter, so she’s always got her yarn too, and we can talk about stash and what to do with leftover yarn and weaving in ends and understand each other perfectly.

But despite my daily lunchtime knitting, I haven’t finished a project in a while. Instead, I thought I’d share what I’ve been working on. I’ve got three biggish WIPs that are moving slowly. First is my KC Royals Crackerjack scarf. I got bored with it a while back and set it aside, but recently realized it makes great lunch break knitting so I made note of all the wins and losses for the last two months (yeah, I neglected it that long) and within a few days I got all caught up. I really like the random look to it, especially if I don’t think about the fact that the big blocks of white and gold mean they lost a lot.

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My Saroyan is progressing nicely too. I’m loving the pattern and the yarn. (How could you not love a hot pink cashmere blend yarn?)

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I just started the second skein last night while watching the Olympics, and I can see a definite difference in color. But it’ll be the middle of the scarf and at the back of my neck when I wear it, so I’m trying to let it go.

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I also have Fractal Danger on my needles, in my newest Manos del Uruguay Alegria.

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This is a Martina Behm pattern, so it’s full of delicious garter stitch. This was my lunch break knitting this week, but I had to keep track of the rows just enough that it was hard to eat and chat at the same time, so I think I’ll cast on for a new hat for this week. I might do Yoda hats, since those are strong sellers on Etsy and I can almost make them without any thought at all.

Yesterday, the husband needed to donate something to the Habitat ReStore, which just *happens* to be next door to a lovely big LYS, so I decided I’d ride along. It’s somehow appropriate, given the location of the Olympics, that I came home with some new Malabrigo Rios.

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I keep buying new yarn despite having less knitting time than before. This might be a problem soon.

On the way home, we saw this:

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Yep, a little chihuahua in a cart on the back of a scooter. I love it.

Now, I’m going to spend the rest of my Sunday baking, knitting, and watching the Olympics. The real question is whether I make myself work out before doing the fun stuff. (I KNOW. Don’t tell me. I KNOW I should. But I don’t WANT to.)

Enjoy your Sunday, friends!