This weekend at I Heart Knitting was spent being a crafty supergirl. Ever since I got back from vacation (and possibly before I went on vacation) I've had a case of the blues. Nothing serious... just ready to be done with some crazy work stuff. So this weekend I decided to take advantage of some down-time and be crafty. Mostly, I worked on WIPs that haven't been getting much attention lately.
I'm FOUR ROWS away from finishing the shawl. FOUR ROWS!!!! However, just for safety sake, I may throw in another pattern repeat (20 rows). I want the shawl to be plenty big to keep my poorly circulated best friend from freezing in her sleeveless gown at the November wedding. Trust me, she'll be cold.
I just measured the shawl, though, and stretched, it measures 18 inches, which is where the pattern says to stop. Do you think I should keep going? This will require joining a new ball of yarn, and I'm already worried about the one join I have. I'm scared I won't be able to weave the ends in and make it look nice. Any pointers?
I'm seven inches from the ribby cardi being done. Well, at least the KNITTING of the ribby cardi will be done. I apparently am not to be trusted to knit two sleeves at a time while I'm tired/upset/stressed out because I make many mistakes... mistakes that require ripping. I had started the sleeves before vacation, and got about 50 rows complete when I realized that I'd made many, many mistakes. Mostly, I would just knit one sleeve for two rows, then join in the other one. It was never consistent, so I ripped it out. I decided to knit the sleeves only when I coherent. And now, I'm at least half done.
I took an earring class at the bead store I found near my house. Making those bracelets on vacation really inspired me to make jewelry. It will never EVER take the place of the knitting, but it is an easy, semi-mindless craft (for now), and I really enjoy it. So I wanted to get better at it. Plus, I got 50% off the class fee. I learned some new things, and improved on some things that I already knew how to do. And, I made really pretty earrings.
I've actually made several other pairs since I took the class Saturday afternoon. I need better tools, but you know how that goes... money money money. Its rather short this month because I'm throwing the bridal shower on the 27th. Oh, did I show you the invites? No? Well, I apologize for that...
The little flower is there to show where the sensitive information used to be.
I'm excited about the shower, but nervous because I'll be in California the week before the shower. No last minute planning for me.
When I returned from vacation, and back to the real world with actual technology and loads of time for doing fun lazy things like reading blogs, I saw the funniest post from Crazy Aunt Purl. That woman puts a smile on my face daily, but this time, she went over the top. Well, in her post she mentions that she "refers to all sorts of foolishness as SNAKES ON A PLANE." See why this cracks me up? Only, it isn't just the fact that using SNAKES ON A PLANE as, er, foolishness... its the fact that... well... I had my own SNAKE issue while on vacation.
SNAKE IN A POOL!!!!!
As I was attempting to sun myself, all by lonesome, on the last day of vacation, I got a bit hot and decided to jump into the pool. Again, I was ALONE by the poolside when this event occurred. I removed my sandals, because, I don't know why, but I still had them. To decide if I wanted to jump in the pool or use the stairs, I decided to do a little foot test. You know, if its too cold, I was just gonna jump in to get the cold over with, but if not, the stairs were fine. That's when I spotted the little bugger. He was swimming along happily, seemingly trying to exit the pool and come onto the deck, which is where I was. And seriously folks, if he would have been successful at his exit strategy, neither the snake or myself would have been exactly "happy" any more. So I'm there, all alone with the SNAKE IN A POOL, and I'm starting to freak a little bit. I mean, I'm in North Carolina, which, in my head, is totally part of poisonous snake country. Who cares if this guy is just a little garden snake... he's a SNAKE! I was thinking that I should run and get the camera, but then, what if the snake leaves (this would be a good thing, right?) and I didn't get a snap shot of him. And what if no one believes me that there's a SNAKE IN A POOL? So I wait... just standing there staring at the snake, making sure he doesn't leave the pool. I tried to call to somebody and tell them to come down and bring the camera because there's a SNAKE IN THE POOL, but no one hears me, and then, after about four minutes of me just watching the snake try to leave the pool, he stops moving. I think he's dead. And my niece comes onto the patio. Well, she rallied the masses inside the house, and they all came down running, with cameras in tow thank goodness! The snake still wasn't moving when we got him onto the pool cleaner net thing, so I'm thinking he's dead. Which kind of made me sad, because I hadn't done anything to actually get the snake out of the pool except for to tell him it maybe wasn't such a good idea to leave the pool because we'd both freak out and maybe both end up rather dead - me from him biting me and him from me falling over dead on him. But apparently, just because SNAKE IN A POOL isn't moving, doesn't mean he's dead. Or happy. Because then he started to stand up, and he looked like he was going to strike. That's when we said forget more pictures and dumped him onto the other side of the fence.
So now, when I run into crazinesss in my life, it isn't SNAKES ON A PLANE I'm finding hilarious... its SNAKE IN A POOL!
Vacation's over... again. Man, it seems like just yesterday I was getting back from Myrtle Beach with the family. But it was almost a year ago. This time around, though, it was the Outer Banks with the family. And boy, was it relaxing!
There was knitting in the car on the way down... and I can't show it to you, because I'm gonna try my hand at *actual* design.
There was posing in the store with funky sunglasses...
There was ear piercing...
There was beach time...
There was yarn... but yea, can't show you that, either. It's for super-secret Christmas project #1.*
There was bracelet making...
There were lighthouses...
There was putt putt...
But mostly, it was just a blast!
* There is no planned super-secret Christmas project #2 (or #3 for that matter), but I'm trying to keep my options open with the numbering system. Also, this project may turn into something for myself, as I'm not as thrilled with the color(s) as I thought I'd be.
The ribby cardi's right front is done. Finito. All stitched up (literally)!
You can't really see it in that picture, but about halfway up the right front, there is a wonky bit that's driving me insane. Here, let me show you up close.
It is quite hard to see, even still, but its wonky nonetheless. When I was knitting, I ran into a few knots here and there, and well, my yarn got all tangled up. And I untangled it. When I did, though, I noticed the yarn had started to come un-plyed (de-plyed, untwisted, how would you say that?). And the un-ply-i-ness of the yarn at that point caused the wonky bit. The stitches look twisted, but trust me when I tell you they're not. They're fine. I've tried lots of stretching and pulling and even a little minor surgery, but nothing has fixed it. I'm hoping the wonkiness will block out. Because I'm sooo very close to being done with this cardi. I even started the sleeves.
I really didn't want to waste any time here, so I'm doing both sleeves at the same time. This also helps because I don't have to remember so much about the pattern repeats. It is a bit difficult, though, as my balls of yarn keep getting all twisted up, but not as bad as when I'm doing color work.
Now for the big debate... I'm clearly not going to finish this before I leave for the Outer Banks Friday evening. Should I take the (very hot) wool sweater on my vacation. Or should I work on something a tiny bit more portable, like, say, my fingerless mitts? This will cause me to abandon the ribby cardi halfway through. And that's something that I have been trying not to do. (Don't mention that shawl to me... I know all about it) Should I knit something that makes sense to knit on vacation, like a cotton shell (which, I do have yarn for)? Should I take all three? I'm just not sure... help...
I have a crush. On sock yarn. Want proof? (I'm almost embarassed to post this, but I think that this might keep me in line. In other words, I don't need any more sock yarn!)
ETA: If you're reading this, and you were planning on gifting me with sock yarn, or if you just feel like I deserve sock yarn and now WANT to gift me with sock yarn (or any yarn for that matter), go right ahead. I will glady accept
Beuregard. I got her in the mail today from Mama-E. It is the July offering of the Project Spectrum Sock Club. I'm so excited to try Mama-E's new superwash wool.
This is Junebug, the June offering of Mama-E's Project Spectrum Sock Club. I really wasn't ready to make another pair of socks when I received this, and the more I think about this yarn, the more I think that it would make a great pair of gloves. For now, it looks lovely all hanked up, no?
I ended up getting a spot in the Socks That Rock Sock Club. And this was my first installment. The colorway is named Fairgrounds, and I actually wasn't thrilled with it in the skein, but I've seen it worked up several places, and the colors are really cool. I'm not the biggest fan of the pattern(scroll down for a view of the socks) for wearing, but it makes a really neat sock if you're a process knitter.
I won this on Cara's blog during the Jaywalker KAL - Socks That Rock in the Prove It All Night colorway. I really love this yarn, and cannot wait to make a pair of socks from it. Oh, the socks are going to be Jaywalkers.
More Socks That Rock. This is the Blue Moon Rock yarn that I started using a month ago. Note that I've ripped my socks because I want to make something that fits. Also note that I haven't started anything else. I received this yarn from Chelsea when I helped her with some computer issues. Isn't that awesome? Getting paid with yarn!
This yarn by Three Rivers just jumped into my hands at Sheep and Wool. I love the colorway, but I'm not sure I see this as a pair of socks. For one thing, I think I could just make sock-lettes. The yardage is a bit short for "real" socks. But I love the chocoloate/pink combo (ya can't tell that from my blog, can you?)
My first skein of Fleece Artist sock yarn. I beleive this is the Rainforest colour (the company is Canadian... I gotta go with the Canadian spelling of that). I want so badly to knit with it, but I've had several other projects going on. And I'm trying to stick with Project Spectrum colors. It would have been a good May to June transitional project, but I had other things that I wanted to work with, so this yarn took a back burner.
My second skein of Fleece Artist sock yarn. This one (I think) is called Cosmic Dawn. I love that name! I got this at the Great Lakes Fiber show because it was supa-cheap (for sock yarn, that is). The colors aren't what I would normally want, but for some reason, I really like this yarn.
ETA: Destashed as a gift to my Secret Pal. However, I originally bought her something else that I decided to keep for myself. This was, in fact, a wise decision, as she liked this colorway and wouldn't have been happy with the other.
It is kind of hard to see, but this yarn is red with hints of browns. Really a cool color, if I do say so myself. I bought this from Ellen's Half Pint Farm at Sheep and Wool. I've tried to knit with a couple of times, but I haven't found a pattern that suits the yarn just yet. Plain stockinette just wasn't right for it.
This is another yarn from Ellen's Half Pint Farm. The shine of this yarn was irresistable at Sheep and Wool, so I snatched it up. And I actually cast on for a pair of socks last week. But I ripped them because I needed to be faithful to the ribby cardi.
Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn in Peacock. I was so thrilled with this yarn that I thought I'd knit with it right away after I purchased it at Sheep and Wool. But I haven't touched it. Not for lack of wanting to, but for lack of time. I love the blues and greens of this yarn. Very deep, very masculine. Maybe another pair of socks for my dad?
This was a gift from my Secret Pal. It isn't really something I would have picked for myself, but I like it just the same. That's what I love about the Secret Pal exchange. It tends to open your eyes to new things. The yarn is a blend of cotton and wool, and will make great summer socks... next year.
Austermann Step in Jagd. I had been seeing this yarn and had read about it a few times before I really saw it in person at Sheep and Wool. This yarn contains Aloe and Jojoba to keep your hands soft. I need it, too, because I'm getting a sock yarn callous on my throwing hand!
My Secret Pal from SP7 got me this Knit Picks Sock Garden yarn. I really don't see this stuff on their site any more. This is a yarn that I want just the right pattern for. I haven't seen it yet.
So I really loved Lara's socks when I saw her working on them way back in the day. And a few months ago, I got an e-mail from Webs. They had the exact Mini-Ringel for like $4 a skein. I snatched it up. It might be my August Project Spectrum project.
ETA: Destashed. I knit some socks
I purchased this in Canada and its Regia's Canadian Colors (I think this is Montreal). I love this yarn and really, really, really want more of it!
Tess's Super Sock and Baby yarn. I'm not sure of the colorway, because I wound this up shortly after I purchased it. This is so soft and so pretty. It was my front-runner for June's Project Spectrum project, but then I felt bad for having the STR Blue Moon Rock in my stash for so long. And in the end, I didn't even use that for June's project. I ended up doing my ribby cardi (which I'll post pictures about tomorrow).
Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Tuscany. I got this yarn at a swap held by Fidget in February of last year. I had never bought any Lorna's Laces sock yarn for myself and was in love with this when I saw it.
The Knit Happens colorway of Lorna's Laces Shepherd sock. I bought this shortly before I moved out of the DC Metro area. As if I'd never be able to purchase sock yarn again. Ummm... Knit Happens has an online store. I think I can get my fix.
Lorna's Laces Bittersweet Shepherd Sock... this yarn is aptly named, as I'm glad I received it, but I'm not happy about why. It was my going away present from Lara.
Koigu for socks. I'm not sure of the colorway off the top of my head, but I do know that I bought this on sale at Woolwinders. I had been lusting after this yarn for weeks, but never thought they had three skeins. I'm always too shy to ask about these things, as well, but during their sale (I'm thinking it was the Valentine's sale) I saw skein number three lying underneath the masses of Koigu. It was karma telling me to buy it.
The beautiful Woolarina handpainted yarn. I'm definitely going to be making fingerless mitts out of this. And I think I'm going to design my own pattern. Keep your fingers crossed that this works out, as its going to be my first step into design.
This yarn (Brooklyn Handspun in Chocolate Covered Cherries) was a total impulse buy. I don't regret buying it, because look at it. Its beautiful. But at the time, I could have used the cash. What I regret is not winding it up and knitting socks right then and there on the spot. Now, its taking a back burner to other things, and I don't want it to. But I'm really trying to be true to the older stash right now.
Knit Picks Sock Landscape in the New England Foliage colorway. This was another yarn that I picked up at a yarn swap. I'm not sure its "me", but I really like the way it feels. And it is pretty autumn yarn. So it shall become socks - or gloves. I think this yarn would make a great pair of gloves.
ETA: Destashed. I gave this away in a contest.
Trekking #109. This was a purchase in NYC, shortly after I learned how to knit socks. I love this yarn! And I really need to knit this stuff up!
Trekking #105. Another NYC purchase. I like this colorway a lot. I've even given it as a gift!
Trekking #107. This yarn started to be socks at the first of the year. And then I messed up the ribbing, and I just put them aside. Then I ripped them. Now the yarn is waiting to be knit back up.
So that's my sock yarn stash. And it is, honestly, most of my stash. I do have other yarns, each and every skein with a project in mind. But the sock yarn... that's my true love.
I can't believe its been so long since I've posted. I really try not to go more than a week, but there are some weeks when you just don't feel like it, right? And last week, I didn't feel like it.
I did feel like knitting... a little bit.
I finished the back of the ribby cardi last week while I was in Pittsburgh. Notice anything strange around the top?
Do you see it now? Yes, that would be a color change (not quite as dramatic as Lara's, however). When I ran out of yarn on my first skein and joined the second, the yarn changed colors. Just slightly, but still... its different. I'm not so worried about it, since its the back and by the neckline and my hair will probably cover it. Also, from the beginning, I was planning on using the ribby cardi as a stay-at-home cardigan. Not to be worn anywhere in public. Because its my first cardigan. And it will probably be terribly finished. So far, though, I love my ribby cardi! It is so pretty (aside from minor color mishaps). And it has been a fairly quick knit. I even finished the left front over the holiday weekend.
I've made a few minor pattern modifications as I've worked the ribby.
On the back, I cast on two extra stitches to create a slip stitch edge. I'm hoping this will make my ribbing more even on the side seams.
On the left front, I added 8 extra stitches in the plain panel section, and one extra stitch on the ribbed side for the side seams. I'm just really scared this will be too small. I'm hoping that I didn't mess it up royally. That pattern says that when you finish all of your armhole decreases, you should have just one stitch left over. I had 9. We'll see in a few days if it matters.
I'm doing the same extra stitches for the right front of the cardi. Again, I hope it isn't messed up.
That's it for knitting over these past two weeks. I haven't started anything new, even though I really, really want to start a July Project Spectrum project. I'm holding offf, though, until the ribby cardi is done. I'm going to the Outer Banks in two weeks, so I think I'll have lots of knitting time in the car on the way down and on the way back. And I think I'm going to use this yarn.
That is some Woolarina handpainted sock yarn, though I'm not sure if I want socks out of it. Its slightly thick for my taste. When I purchased the yarn at Crafty Bastards last year, I really envisioned a pair of gloves or fingerless mitts. And with the new knitty out, I think I could pull it off. What do you think?