Friday, February 23, 2007

Can I knit with my eyes closed?

I ponder that exact question every morning as I knit on the T. I often am sleeping and find my eyes slowly closing and my fingers continue to work away... but for how long? Will I sleep past my stop and end up back where I began at the beginning of the line? Will my body wake myself up when I get there? Can I knit in my sleep or will it be a huge mess? On the mornings when I find my eyes closing the most, I usually stop knitting. I then arrive at work feeling less productive then normal. "I normally do at least 3 rounds of the shirt by the time I arrive" I say to myself "Today I did less then one".... My inner voice chooses to ignore the rounds I did on the sleeve instead of working on just the body. I then sit in my calm office and think about my knitting, wondering if today I will give into temptation and knit just a few rows... just to make sure I did enough. (Don't tell anyone, but I have given into temptation in the past and I am ashamed.)

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Today's Knitting Advice of the Day is...

Don't roll over your yarn on your rolley chair. I did today at work. My chair has those silly caster wheels and the yarn got wrapped around it and then stuck in between one part of it. Next thing I knew the chair and I were sitting on the floor as I kindly detangled the yarn and gently removed it from the chair parts. My yarn is having a rough 24 hours. Last night after knitting on the DPNs while watching tv I put them in the bag and put that on the chair next to my dining room table for a minute. Less then a minute. In that time Zacky was on it. I thought he had just chewed on the long tail left from the cast on and cut off the wet and half chewed through piece. But no, when I opened up my work on the T this morning I saw he had also chewed through the working yarn. So I got to practice changing yarn this morning on the T with DPNs.... it required more brain power then I normally give out at that time in the morning. At least I got a good seat, so I was blockaded in and the guy next to me didn't seem bothered by my twitching around and flaring elbows as I tried to find a good DPN knitting rhythm. I think I got it finally... I find after learning something new you look pretty silly for a while until you get more comfortable and stop making mistakes....

I remember when I started knitting again this fall. I had the book and the needle and the yarn all out on the T. I read over and over the page about casting on and I tried over and over. Something was wrong. Nothing felt comfortable and the stitches weren't even making it onto the needle. The woman next to me politely asked if I was a knitting beginner. I nodded in shame and glanced back at the book. I then noticed I was reading the section for casting on for left handed knitters (I am right handed), I switched quickly back to my proper section and before I knew it, I was making significant progress on the scarf that shall not be mentioned. (I am allowed to mention it, since "the scarf that shall not be mentioned" is just it's name after all.)

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Learning something new

Today sitting in the new Simmons Library I taught myself how to knit on DPNs. It took me two tries and 3 cast ons to get it just right (Yes I am a virgo so I am a perfectionist). I kept casting on until I finally told myself I couldn't go to the bathroom until I got it right and thought light thoughts. The new library is a pleasure to sit in, lots of light and really comfy seats. All it needed was a pillow behind my back to deminish the back pain. I am at past 12 inches on the body and I am glad that I started the sleeves before I finished the body. I managed to do half of an inch on the DPNs and needed to stop since I was getting tired. It was a lot of work thinking about it but getting slowly easier. I hope that there aren't ladder stitches and I am holding it tight enought.

I do have to say that I love my DPNs. They are blue and they click so nicely together.
I want to post a picture of them but I can't find anything like that online. See that blue crochet hook? They are that color. They look like they are from this set.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

And the knitting continues.....

The shirt is now 10 and 3/4 inches. I feel like I am on a roll. Last night I hung out at Maria's for a while and knit a bunch and drooled over the sweaters I will one day make. The yarn called for in the pattern has lead to an interesting discussion. Turns out that Gedifra "For You" yarn no longer exsists so we can't view it to make the best subsitution. I found KnitPicks Merino Style that might work and another brand as well. Its now just a debate on if the yarn is twisted or in a chain. I found a picture of it here and you can see a picture to the left. It looks twisted. The purple swatch is what color I want to do the sweater in. That is Knitpicks Merino style in Iris.
Maria taught me how to block and we worked on finishing her sweaters that we found in her WIP basket. One of them she made for her daughter when we must have been eight years old and it doesn't have a prayer of fitting. She is going to give it to a daughter of a friend of a friend when we finished it. I wove in all the ends on the sweater for her daughter (current size) and all that is left to do on that one is finish seaming up the side and attach the collar. I am really looking forward to doing the sleeves of this shirt. I have never worked with DPNs before but I really can't wait to try. Only 4 1/4 more inches to go until I can start the sleeves. I am also thinking what type of yarn to get for Tempting II. The pattern says to use something elastic. I wonder what I should try?

Saturday, February 17, 2007

It's Saturday, it must be knitting time...

Saturdays so far is when I meet with my knitting buddy Maria, an awesome family friend. She has been knitting for so long and teaches me so much and its so nice to just sit with her every Saturday afternoon and just knit. I recently discovered when I am at her house I really like to read knitting magazines while I knit and talk. Today we looked through a ton of books in the living room and took a break and went to the local Yarn Store and then came back and knit some more.

Ok, I have to admit that I use to avoid Yarn Stores. I was a crocheter for so long. We tend to feel unwelcome in Yarn Stores that are aimed mainly for Knitters and I have found that many yarn store owners are can be mean or snooty to knitters. There is this wonderful yarn store in Wakefield RI that is not like that at all, but in general when I crocheted I bought cheap yarn from Joanne's or another cheap craft store. Last Friday I went with Maria to Windsor Button for the first time and it was wonderful. I love that store, the staff were fun and very helpful. I liked that there was a wide range of yarn prices so that I could get a moderately cheap yarn that was still very soft and looks wonderful.

The Yarn Store we went to today ( I forget the name) was more of the snootiness I remembered. One of the ladies there was not knowledgeable and the other was very snooty. The yarn was wonderful but totally out of my price range. (I also was refusing to buy yarn not for a project at this time). I spent a bunch of time looking at the needles and tools and the bags and books. I however bought nothing but I had a good idea from there. I decided that I did want to get a good knitting bag to either take to work with me or to use around town since I don't have a bag in between a small purse or a large tote work bag. I however am addicted to bags and probably have way to many. I found online a really nice knitting bag that I am going to order and I emailed the designer about colors: I want something in blue/purple. I really like that it will be made for me, that makes it even more special.

I looked at the Denise Needle Set. I have been going back and forth for a week or so about if to get Denise or KnitPicks Option Sets. Today after touching the Denise I finally decided on ordering the Knitpicks Options when I feel like I have the money. I love the plastic needles that I am knitting on now (the original Boye set that I borrowed from Maria) but I did start on metal. I really like the case and the connectors and I think it will work great with the projects I like.

Tempting Update: 7 1/2 inches and done with the first skein of yarn. I feel like I am really making progress with it, being halfway done with the body. I hope that between tomorrow and Monday I will make a ton of progress on it.

I was looking through Maria's books, as I mentioned before and I found some more designs that I want to do. I found this wonderful shawl that is on the to do list and another sweater or two sweaters from the catalogue that the other sweater I like is in. In fact I love so many of the designs in that catalogue. I can't wait to begin working on the long purple sweater. I just have to finish Tempting and Tempting II first. I am excited about Tempting II, since I have no idea what color to do it in and I haven't done 1 and 1 ribbing before.

Friday, February 16, 2007

A new beginning?

I swore on my other blog that I would NOT start a new blog. Did I listen to myself? I have no self control.

Ok, welcome everyone to my brand new blog. I am a beginner knitter who is determined to get much better. I use to crochet and I still do even though it hurts my hands. I occasionally do counted cross stitch as well as a bunch of other hobbies. I have a cat who is fascinated in watching me knit and his biggest hobby is biting me.

Projects that are open right now (WIPs): (in order from oldest to newest)
1. Single Crochet Purple Blanket (in my parent's basement. I really need to work on it but it hurts so much and its all single crochet.)
2. Blue Wave Crochet Blanket (in good progress, I just need to work on it.)
3. Crocheted Octagon Baby Blanket (2/3s done. I NEED to work on it because the baby it is for is due in about a month)
4. Knitty Tempting Sweater
5. Secret Scarf (Knitted in between projects)

Projects I want to do next:
1. Tempting II
2. This purple sweater M showed me.