Sunday, February 25, 2007

Snow and no knitting..

Can there be a worse day?
I've had to put down my needles and most likely won't pick them up again for a few days. I'm in pain. About a 3 on 1 -10 scale, but constant, in my left wrist. This sucks. I've knit 5 inches on each sleeve and have 12 more to go. I want this sweater done, but I obviously need to change my knitting style. I never had pain when 'throwing' just now that I 'pick'. But you can't change your style in mid-project. I can just imagine the lovely tension issues, besides the fact your stitches slant differently.
So here I sit, listening to podcasts and getting ready to read some more on Harry Potter. A knitter that can't knit.
What a pathetic thing!

Friday, February 23, 2007

In Theory...

Yes, in theory this sounds like a good idea. Knit both sleeves at the same time...and so far it's turning out to be.

Anyone have any experience otherwise? My circs are long, 32 or something, so I'm pretty sure I should have plenty of room. And this way 'Sleeve Island' won't be as long a stay. Granted I have to stitch it all up. But the front is done as is the back! Yay!
I highly doubt I will get to wear this sweater this year since it is 100% wool. By the time it is finished/blocked it will no doubt be spring. I will fold it up nicely and put it away for next year. Trust me, there will be no complaining. I'm sick of winter. What is it with February? Ugh. We are supposed to get at least 6" of snow this weekend. YUCK. I grew up in the southwest and am having daydreams of 100 degree weather.

Next up on the radar will be the STR Club. They promise they are shipping next week! Woohoo!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Birthday and a Sweater..

Happy Birthday to me, well it was on the 16th, but here' s pict of my haul. I got an iDog and nintendogs. See a pattern? :) We are currently a dogless house, but someday we'll have one if not two. I just refuse to housetrain and pottytrain at the same time.

Please note the guilt worked!! That would be the front of the Perfect Sweater. I'm almost to the armholes and v-neck. One of my stumbling blocks was the bust. I'm a busty gal. It's life but I knew I needed to figure out short-rows and make darts. I found an amazing website, don't you love how knitters share? It's the Knitting Fiend and she has so many useful patterns/engines/hints.

I've been pretty monogamous with the Perfect Sweater, now that I completed the darts. It will be interesting to see how the V-neck turns out. The problem is my wrists start to ache if I do SS too much. I've completely switched over to Continental/picking and my tension is good. I enjoy the motion more than English/throwing which I think might be an echo of learning crochet first, when I was in 2nd grade. Anyway, Shifting Sands gets a few repeats done every now and again. I love the yarn, but it's hard to photograph up close because it does have a bit of a halo.

This week should be fun. My S&B group is doing Kool-Aid dying! Whooohoo. It should be a really good time and I'll make sure to take some good pictures.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

V-Day, Some Knitting and a Decision

Happy Valentine's Day!

Some folks seem to want to tear Valentine's Day down, blaming Hallmark and commercialism for berating singledom or some such.

Sorry but I'm not in that camp. I love Valentine's Day. I feel it's actually more for children than for adults which might be why it doesn't upset me.. Valentine's morning was always fun in my house growing up, and I'm continuing the tradition. There are cards, chocolate and a small gift for everyone. Today my girls both received these adorable pop up/playhouse/paper doll books I'd purchased last month at Borders. They were only $7.99. Both the girls seem to love them, and if they don't, I'll play with them after they go to bed!

This is why I didn't have any knitting photos the other day..
I'm thinking that I should take that flag down now. I feel I just might be tempting fate a bit.
But thank goodness the sun actually came out today!
So here are the obligatory shots.

The completed Chemo Caps that will be mailed off to Kate in the next few days.

The Humane Society Cat Blanket, made from Wool-Ease.

Shifting Sands, growing along.

Now onto the decison. Have you SEEN
all the gorgeous cabling going on around the net? Cromarty at Wendy's site is amazing and has me thinking feeling the need to cable. I just need to figure out what I want to make. I've whitled it down to 4 choices, all gorgeous.

Which do you think?

Monday, February 12, 2007

Knitting and Knits

On the knitting front here the Shifting Sands is longer, and needs to be MUCH longer. I knit a 12x12 basketweave blanket to give to our local humane society. It will be a blanket for a cat. I think that's cool. Also I knit another Chemo Cap, this time in Pink and Purple.
And NO pictures of any of it. Don't you LOVE cloudy days? *grrr* Stupid snow.

I'm waiting for my Socks That Rock Club stuff. I called and they won't be mailing it out until the last week of February. Again, *grrr*. I do understand they had to be set back slightly due to the stupid Bank Snafu, (Read about it here if somehow you've never heard about it!) but I want my socks!

Speaking of socks, do you want knee high enterlac socks with tassels??

I so DO! Eunny is an amazing designer and I'm going to have to try these. I'm not sure if I'll do knee high..but then again why the hell not! Koigu has a ton of amazing colors to choose from, I'm not sure which way to go. Thinking maybe yellow and orange..hmm..

Other than that I didn't see much in the Spring Interweave Knits. Normally I think they have some good designs, this just seemed light on them.

The Bonsai Tunic is kinda cute, maybe I'd make it.

Of course Grumperina's socks are a given! Again, as noted prior, this girl can really design! I can't believe she's only been knitting for 2 years. That's so unfair!

Now THIS on the other hand will not be hopping off the needles anytime soon!

Friday, February 9, 2007

Ramblings and 2 socks..

I've been thinking about how I approach knitting and wish in some ways I could be different. I believe, for me, the draw to knitting is the repetitiveness of the stitching. The fact it's only made with one stitch (the knit stitch from the front and the back - purl). It calms me. Helps me find my center. Structure can be a good thing.

But, as they say, too much of a good things isn't necessarily good. (Who are they anyway. Know it all's..)

I find myself locked into rigidity with my knitting 'queue'. It drives me nuts. I want a sweater for myself. I started The Perfect Sweater and well, I am not enjoying it. Period. I set it down and haven't picked it up since early Dec 06. It's so boring. It's SS and it makes me crazy. The yarn is ok, (Cascade 220) and I believe I will LIKE this sweater. As in, I will wear it and enjoy having it. But there really isn't any fun in the making. And isn't that why we knit? Fun? Hell I could buy a sweater (yes I know. Please don't throw stones at me for saying that in a Knitting Blog) for less pain. So it sits. On the needles. Mocking me and making me feel inadequate!

I've always been pretty monogamous in my knitting. I start something, I finish it. Pretty much one thing on the needles and that's it. I feel strange if I abandon anything in mid-stream. Why? Since childhood I've been an avid crafter; painting, stenciling, jewlery making, crocheting, scrapbooking, flower arranging, sewing. But everything was on a light level. I had incomplete projects scattered everywhere. I had great intentions, but never seemed to come through. There are boxes full of 'craft crap' in the basement to prove it.

Then I found knitting and it changed how I feel about things forever. Sounds drastic, doesn't it? But if you've made it this far into this post, I bet you feel similar. I have always been a giver, and knitting has given me another outlet for this. Yet I'd like some hand knit items for myself! So far I have 1 pair of socks, 3 felted bags and a scarf for me. That's out of amost 3 year of knitting. I'm hoping that this year, 2007, will give ME more handknits! Which is why that stupid 'Perfect Sweater' is mocking me. Maybe I'll move it close to my knitting chair and will get a few rows done on it every now and again.

Anyway, on to knitting pictures!

The minute they were off the needles, they went on her feet. Too cute. I'm glad she likes them! This was my first attempt using the Yarn Harlot's Sock Recipe. I've created felted bags and scarves without a pattern but I've always used one for Socks. I love the Charlene Schurch book Sensational Knitted Socks. But this time I did it all without a pattern, and you know what? I got it. I finally get it and think I could manage to make a sock for anyone with any yarn. Wohoo! I love it when I understand what I'm doing and not just following directions. It takes me awhile, but eventually I get there!

Val's Socks
Pattern: Sock Recipe, Yarn Harlot (Size 8 Toddler)
Yarn: 1 hank of unknown sock yarn
Needles: size 1 DPNs, Clovers
Started: February 4, 2007
Finished: February 7, 2007

As for getting it, I did NOT get the Shifting Sands pattern by Grumperina. I had earmarked some Malabrigo for it and now that it's freezing here in Wisconisin I could use a new scarf. So I cast on. And frogged. Cast on. Ripped. Cast on. Cursed. Ripped. I honestly cast this stupid scarf on more than 6 times over the last week. (Remember the Motto: Yarn WILL Not defeat me, Damn it!) Yesterday I sat down and tackled it one more time. That's when I realized something.

I've been sick. Really sick. I've had a cold, then a sinus infection and overall ickies since last Thursday. Due to the ickies and various cold meds, I was plain out it! Now that I'm feeling better and less medicated I 'get' it. It's not a difficult pattern, but it requires cabling without a cable needle. Ok, doesn't require but you are nuts if you try to use one since there are over 1,000 cables in the scarf. It's a great pattern, as all ofGrumperina's patterns are. And is turning out luscious in the Malabrigo. Swiped that idea from brooklyntweed!

Now I'm off to work on MY scarf!!

Monday, February 5, 2007

Simple Socks and Cold!

Frigid! Dumb stupid Wisconsin..freakin'..frakin'..
Ok, so it's SO cold here..
HOW cold is it?


Bitterly cold. Mostly clear. Lows around 10 below. West winds 5 to 10 mph. Wind chill readings 10 below to 27 below zero.

Bitterly cold. Mostly cloudy with a 50 percent chance of light snow. Highs around 8. West winds 5 to 10 mph. Lowest wind chill readings 6 below to 24 below zero in the morning.

So cold they cancel stupid school for 2 days! Today (Monday) and tomorrow, no school. And Tuesdays are preschool day! My 'free' day. Instead of a free day, it's my day to be sick and home with 2 well, very bored, kids. Aren't you jealous!

On to the knitting. I'm one of those sick sock knitters. I love the yarn, I love turning a heel, love how the project has different parts so I feel as if I'm making progress. Then add to this the fact I have 2 young daughters. Whoohoo! Let the fun begin. There's nothing like a quick knit for a 3 year old. I make them a tad big so they get worn, but I'm not too worried since I know a handful of girls younger than V.

I've one done and am onto the next. I'm using some yarn I bought at Stitches. It was only $5 a hank because it was a test dye run. It's superwash merino with nylon, so there's a no brainer!

Lovin' the piggie flannel jammies! The toe looks a bit pointy, but as I mentioned I made it slightly big. Off to work on the second!

Thursday, February 1, 2007

New FO - Cable Purse.

Yep, This is a quick/easy item but is so adorable.

The pattern is free from KnitPicks.
Chunky Cable Purse
I've made it twice with Sierra, the yarn recommended. It's fairly nice and soft but does pill slightly. This time I made it with Hubro from Dale.

I ADORE this yarn. I've loved all yarns I've used from Dale and this is no exception. It's a Super Bulky, 100% Wool yarn. It's very lofty and gives great stitch definition. This is a very clever pattern. You knit it in the round and close the bottom off. You need handles, magnetic closures and a little canvas tote bag. The handles are removed from the tote and it's inverted to become a nice liner for the purse.
It's large enough to hold my full sized wallet and a cell phone easily. I've had many compliments/comments on mine. This one is for my best friend in Las Vegas for her birthday. (Hi J if you are reading!) Hope she likes it. :)

Pattern: Chunky Cable Purse
Yarn: 3 skeins Hubro, 0020 (cream), 4132 (dusty rose), 5062 (plum)
Needles: 16 in size 9, Addi Naturas
Mods: I made it a few row longer
Started: January 31, 2007
Finished: February 1, 2007

I'm going to have to take the leftover Hubro make a zipper bag or something to felt, just to try it out.

Not sure what I'm going to tackle next. I have more Fun Fur that needs to be made into Chemo Caps. Also our local Guild is making blankets for the Humane Society. Decisions Decisions!