Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Is this my blanket?

I remembered to take pictures today so this post is finally going to visualize everything I talk about.
The Unfinished Baby Blanket.

Tempting proving too tempting....
Finally, the current projects: Tempting II is on the left and the Honeymoon Cami is on the Right.I am really loving the color of Tempting II in that lovely wine color. When I knit in the sun it catches these wonderful red highlights. The yarn (Cotton-Ease) on the Honeymoon Cami is not as much fun to knit with. In all truth, it reminds me of the twine my parents keep in the drawer in the pantry for random string needs. The swatch of it was beautiful when it was knit up, its just handing it as it gets there.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

WEBS closeout sales will be the death of my paycheck....

With two knitting projects in progress and one knitting project before the dream sweater (as mentioned here) we return to the debate about yarn subsitution for aforementioned dream sweater.
The choices as they stand so far:
1. Knitpicks Merino Style in Iris for $2.49 a ball
2. Laines Du Nord Giunco in 115 for $2.99 a ball
3. Queensland Uruguay DK in 02 for $3.99 a ball

I need about 18 skeins. Does anyone have an opinion? Please?\

(Don't make me find a picture of one of my animals begging...)

Monday, March 26, 2007

Spring Fever!

Spring has caught me in its grasp and simple knit one, purl one ribbing in merino will not suffice. I needed something spring like. On Saturday, I admitted this all to my knitting mentor, Auntie Em and her quick response was "do a new, harder project at the same time as the boring one."
The lucky project is..... Honeymoon Cami! We hurried off to our neighborhood yarn store (ok, took the T to the nicer yarn store) and soon returned with 3 balls of Cotton-Ease in snow to begin my first journey into piquant level knitting. Having been slightly worried about the gauge, since Cotton Ease is not DK weight yarn, we emerged victorious from our swatching with being perfectly on gauge. And then disaster struck. I cast on. And 180 stitches into 192 I realized I didn't have a long enough end. Frog it and start again. I cast on. I join, after checking that on the brand new still twisty number 6 needles it was all straight and not twisted. I made it to row 5 in the pattern and decided to check that it was not twisted. And guess what? It was. Frogging done by Maria, being too heartbroken myself to do it. Trying to keep my anger in check. Cast on again.

So far, third time is the charm. I have made it to row 8 and only want to hurt my knitting slightly when you have to knit 2 together and I have the worst time getting the needle through the yarn over and then stab my finger repeatly with the needle. When I need meditation and recovery, I knit on Tempting II and today's total is: almost 3 inches.

Friday, March 23, 2007

The official measurement of today is...

1 and a 1/4 inches. Not bad. I do feel like my brain is going to fall out knitting knit one, purl one rows forever though. I was contemplating switching to continental knitting but seeing how I don't know it and my gauge will be different... Brain melting.... I am starting to dream about yarn for the next project, and I think I will try Shine Worsted from KnitPicks instead of the Cotton Blend suggested. Shine Worsted is: 60% Pima Cotton and 40% Modal. What is Modal anyway? It is 4.5 to 5 stitches per inch on #6-9 needles. The pattern calls for 4.75 stitches per inch on size 9 needles.

But... and this one is big... they don't have colors that I really want to knit this sweater in. Hmm.

I think it is weird that I am totally wishing I had already knit certain items of clothing because I want to wear them on that day. Anyone look through "No Sheep For You" and see that bright pink cartigan. I really wanted to wear that today. Even in bright pink, and I normally can't stand bright pink. But it would totally go with my pink and green socks and make all the black I am wearing to work look less depressing. Yesterday I was dying to wear knee socks and my dream knee socks were Clessidra. My roomy Beth said once I start knitting knee socks her boyfriend would comission me to knit her a whole bunch of knee socks. Well he can wait in line, since I want a whole bunch of knee socks too. Oh, wait. I have to learn how to knit them first.
Back to the never ending rows of ribbing so that one day I can move onto bigger and scary/interesting projects.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

And it is ... finished?

Tempting I is finished... Am I happy? Well first you have to hear the story.

So I made the mistake of reading Knitting Rules before I finished Tempting I and it talked about bad first sweaters and I began to get nervous. Tempting was already looking huge on the needles and the stress was rushing to my head. I set myself a deadline of last night to finish it, I was determined, I was a knitting flash, I was worrying with every stitch. I also read in Knitting Rules about her friend's huge sweater, the one that fit two knitters in it and for some reason that stuck with me. I tried to deny it, claimed we got close to gauge. But on the other hand we were knitting a size large and part of me thinks I should have knit a medium. I was almost in a panic during the binding off stage. It was huge. It looked like an elephant skin. It was late and night and I wasn't going to bed until it was done. My apartment mate choose to ignore the wimpering coming from my room, which seemed like a wise decision.
I finished. I wove in the top yarn and left everything else on. Didn't even do the three needle bind off of the arm pits. I tried it on. And it was huge around me. Revealing Huge. But I felt calm come over me. It wasn't two people in the same sweater huge. It could be shrunk or fixed. It was going to be ok. I went to bed.
This morning on the T I finished the gauge swatch for Tempting II. As the train neared Park Street and I got close to finishing it, the worry came back "What if it is too big? Should I plan on getting off at Park Street and waiting until Windsor Button opens to buy size seven circular needles? Why did the size seven needles from Maria's kit have to be broken?" As the train left Boylston and pulled into Park Street I measured it for the third time. I had gauge horizontally. It was perfect. (I was off gauge vertically by an inch, but since the pattern calls for measurement in inches not rows, I was ok) I cast on during the rest of the ride.
I love the look of a knitting project during its first few rows. The ribbing is just starting to show, all of the promise of the pattern is there with none of the worry. It is so cute in that stage, when it could become anything.
I am slightly worried that one women on the knitty coffeehouse said that she ran out of yarn. But I am trying to ignore that thought by telling myself we bought extra. Auntie Em, I think I need your wisdom in this problem.

Oh, a few more things. Here are some patterns I like from MagKnits:
Holy Cable! Honorine Sesame Oh, and I love this one for a guy. Hmm, notice how they are all more advanced then I am in knitting... I will have to grow into them I think.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A review of the knitting and yarn filled weekend...

I set unofficial goals for myself last weekend: To finish Tempting I and to finish that baby blanket that is hanging over my head (can you see its shadow? Because I can't escape it!)
So I set out on Saturday to knit my little fingers off and I did, for the most part. I knit until I ran out of yarn. Thats right, entirely out of yarn with 5 inches still left to do on the yoke. I followed the directions and bought more then enough and I still ran out. So Maria and I declared this a Yarn Emergency and headed off to Windsor Button praying to the Yarn Gods that they would have a skein in a similar color if not in the same dye lot. Well, my prayers had been answered after I dashed into the shop and right to the display of the yarn needed. The second ball my hand touched was miraculously in the same dye lot. So now, less then a minute in the store and I got what I needed, but of course we couldn't leave after a minute when we went all the way down there... So I started looking at books. I found this lovely book and hidden in the back was this lovely book. My book need is calmed. I returned to Maria's and knitted away some more and once home crocheted until my hands ached. The total is: I have an inch and a half left on Tempting and 4 rows plus edging on the baby blanket. I need to finish these this week! (The baby is due on Saturday and Tempting is just pissing me off now, it being stuck in its almost finished stage. The yarn for Tempting II has been pleading with me again too.)
I hope to begin anew and cleansed on Saturday with Tempting II. Oh, did I mention I got this wonderful Namaste Executive Bag? I need to take pictures of it. It is bursting right now from carrying around an almost finished sweater with stuff for class and my lunch but by next week it should be back down to its lovely sveltz size with a new project in it.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Headaches eat away at my knitting time, or Happy Day after Pi Day

Today's post required a super long title to place its self in history. I seem to be in the delusion that people read this blog. Maybe no one but me does, but I enjoy making myself laugh at my witty remarks so I continue to write here in the hopes that this blog will one day become a blog that people flock to get their daily dose of humor or knitting or whatever other reason they feel the need to read my blog.
My mood in general is anger at these head aches I keep getting. They are seriously cutting into my knitting time, not to mention the occasional time I actually feel like crocheting on the baby blanket that I am foolishly telling myself will be done before baby arrives. (I am in that happy delusion state where baby isn't due in a week and since when do babies come on time... I have plenty of time to finish it, I even did most of a row just this morning. This state is similar to the holiday denial that Yarn Harlot suffers in her blog about finishing presents for the holidays. Pure denial.) I knitted a few rows last night and a row this morning. The neck is going painfully slow and each row mocks me as I finish it saying "You may have finished one but there are SEVEN inches you need to do and I don't even add any lenght at all so don't even try to measure me to see how much progress you made". Yes, they are at the mocking stage. I feel like this sweater has been in my bag, yes my new wonderful and beautiful knitting bag, forever. I am sick of carrying it around. I want it out of my bag and in my closet or on me. I want to begin to use that wonderful yarn that I ordered. I want to move on to new sweaters, to learning cables, to bigger and better projects. But I am stuck with my sweater feeling like I will never make it past the neck. And so I knit round after round until my hands hurt and I am bored and it doesn't even equal two inches. How did I ever knit fifteen inches of the body? I will never know.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Calorimetry from Hell

Here is the picture of the calorimetry from hell. I didn't take a picture of it before I sent it out I was in such a rush so PatGear was nice enough to let me use the picture of her wearing it here to show it off.

Yarn: Unidentified Wool. No, wait, I found another ball of it. It is Scheepjeswol Superwash 100% wool in color 4864 (aka Grey)

Pattern: I used 108 stitches casting on instead of 120 and did 9 repeats of row 5.

I washed it with shampoo and conditioner to help it soften up and reshaped it on a towel overnight and then let it finish drying on a drying rack.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Wil Wheaton is my uber geek...

So those of you that actually know me may know two random facts about me:
(Well make it more then two to expand on the story)
-I am a Star Trek: The Next Generation Fan
-I had a crush on Wil Wheaton as a child
-I am the daughter of an uber geek, have always dated uber geeks, was raised almost entirely around uber geeks and calligraphers and like to think of myself as uber geek in training.
-I have heard Wil Wheaton speak. It was awesome. He signed a table afterwards.

Well here is my information: Wil Wheaton thinks is cool. Don't believe me? Look here. And it is. I don't think I would make the socks but the scarf? I have gone so far as thinking on who to make it for and then I remember it is not a sweater and thus not calling to me with t he same power as the sweaters do. Man, they are noisy. One day, dear Binary Scarf, you will get made for the proper uber geek, but not today. The sweaters are bigger then you and they will eat you if you get to close. Something along the lines of being at a zoo.
Knitty was also mentioned at boingboing which started this whole thing. I actually saw that mention before my father. That in itself is amazing and he was impressed when I responded to his email telling me all about the mention in that I had already seen the issue *THE DAY BEFORE*. I am truly his daughter, just in other geeky ways.

Spring Knitty

I have a confession to make: I have not been a knitter very long. I have attempted to be a knitter many times, each time failing. The first was in my childhood when I was giving a "my first knitting kit". Needless to say, the kit in its entirety was given to me with the rest of the yarn that was laying around my parent's home. One summer I begged my boyfriend at the time who was a knitter and my mother to teach me. I didn't get far on that attempt. What finally turned me into a knitter was a ride across country where in Blue Earth, Minnesota, I decided to teach myself to knit. I did take a brief vacation from it for a few months but learning that time has seem to stuck with me.
So Spring Knitty 2007 is the first new issue that I am seeing. I waited for days for the new one, wondering how many patterns from it I would like to knit. And now I have discovered the answer: two.
I am in a sweater kick right now. Sweaters and cartigans are calling to me to knit them. As previously mentioned I have a list of 3 sweaters to knit up and I feel like that list will only grow. for that reason I really enjoy this pattern but not with the collar pinned together. Where will it fall on the list? I am not sure yet.
I also really love these. There is one small problem with them: they are socks. I have not knit socks yet, let alone cables and I am trying to advoid the call of socks for a little bit. Sweaters are a different story but socks... they can wait until I am really ready.
Other then those two patterns, there isn't a whole lot in there that even looks interesting to me. There is a lot of kids clothes and frankly, I don't have kids right now and I don't love any random children enough to knit for them. Baby blankets, yes, clothing, no. Finally the other sweaters look kinda.... oldish. I want knit shirts and sweaters that look young and fun. Something that I can't find in the store (since I can never find sweaters in the store that I like.) and something that will look good on me. Vests will always be out (at least for now) and a boring t-shirt? Not something calling my name.
Maybe I am just cranky today. I was about to write a post this morning showing my true feminist colors in response to a news story on the Today show about girls being suspended from school for saying the word "Vagina" while other kids were allowed to say the word "fuck". I have for the time being, taken a deep breath and contained my inner feminist, at least for now. Who knows if she will break out later and go on a rant about the messages we are sending our children?
I feel like knitting lately has made me look at knitting sterotypes a lot. My "sister" commented that only single girls knit, and there is the discussion on the knitty board about the sterotype of grandmothers knitting that lead to the creation of a new Blog Ring. I think a lot about Madam Defarge knitting away in "A Tale of Two Cities". She wasn't demure or mellow... just biding her time and watching, knitting the names into her project and waiting for the tides to turn. She was a knitter who wasn't afraid to use her needles to poke someone. This goes along with the subtitle of JenLa's blog: "Ponchos don't kill people, people who knit ponchos kill people" Knitters may only look all calm on the outside, inside we are feminists and crazy women (and men) biding our time and making wonderful sweaters in the process.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

A glass of wine makes the posting easier...

Just warning people that I already had a glass of wine. I am not posting drunk here. Not even tipsy. Oh well. Feel warned, dear blog readers.
Knitting news: I finally finished the damn craft swap calorimetry. I swear here that I am never again knitting something for a deadline. I really hated knitting that thing. Binding off took me forever and I really really hated knitting on my metal straight needles. Stitches were falling off left and right and I was getting knitting elbow and it was making my hands hurt... It was bad all around.
Then I knit 6 rows on the gauge for Tempting II for my reward. Yummy yarn. So soft.
And I knit a few rounds on Tempting I's yoke.

But my headache is back. I slept most of the day and laid on the couch the rest of the day. I think my dream day at home would be knitting all day, but I don't think that would be the best sick day ever. Normally the idea of a sick day is you feel like crap and don't want to do anything, let alone knit.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Lessons on a cold day

Ok ok make that a bitter cold day. So cold that I didn't feel like knitting this morning. My fingers just didn't want to even think about holding cold metal needles between them and trying to make progress on this simple but neverending project. I am under a lot of stress for this swap. First I am trying to make it perfect which already went down the drain. If it was for myself I might be able to dismiss a lot of the dumb things I did wrong but for someone else.... Second it is going to get there late. Not being able to do much more then sleep for about a week has me so far behind. I want to finish Tempting I, I want to start Tempting II and instead I am stuck here on straight needles (my size 8 circulars with projects on them) trying to make a swap craft. Plus the baby blanket is starting to hang over my head. Rows upon rows of painful crochet and I just put it back into the bag. Once this craft swap is done, I think I will reward myself with knitting on Tempting I if I finish a row+ on the baby blanket. The baby at this rate will be born without a blanket. Poor baby.

My headache is gone leaving just sleepyness in its wake. I went home from work early and slept 4 hours yesterday and it was wonderful. My body is almost pleading for me to do that again which it won't get unless the headache/other mystery illness comes upon me. But man, did it feel good. I totally planned on sleeping less and knitting more at home but the sleeping felt so good.

Monday, March 5, 2007

Dumb mistakes my brain can't stop making....

This is my third time making a calorimetry. You would think that by the 3rd time I would have worked the kinks out of my system, but no.... I am sitting here realizing that in my joy of wrapping short rows I forgot one important thing: the button hole. Hmmm.... I wonder if a wrap is going to have to have minor surgery at this point. It kinda needs a button hole to really make this project work. I wonder how this one will look when it is done.

:::magic dream sequence to see into the future:::

What? You can't see it? Oh right, cause it still isn't done yet. I will rejoin you all when it hopefully will be finished.

Are my posts that yummy?

So I posted on Wednesday and my post is missing... I guess somewhere a server thought it was tasty and ate it. Oh well. Basically it was all about the hunt for the perfect yarn for Tempting II and finally ordering it from

My yarn came on Friday and Saturday I got to hold it in my hands. It is wonderfully soft: 70% Merino, 30% Acrylic. Yummy. There is one ball that is a different dye lot from the rest, but I will simply use that one last and it either won't be used at all or it will be the collar which won't be noticable. I will take a picture of it when I get a chance.

Tempting I: Sleeves are finally attached. All that is left is the yoke which I want to work on but I promised someone a Calorimetry in a craft swap and I need to mail it out on Tuesday so I am knitting away. My pocket is full of safety pins before I go down to the conference so that I can knit during the talk and do Japanese Short Rows. (I think I am doing a weird mix of short rows that hopefully will look ok when it is all over.)

I didn't knit much last week because of a migraine that left residual pain all week. On Saturday I was knitting but it was so hard to focus. I am slowly knitting. I want to but my body doesn't seem to get the message. Damn Body! Let me Knit!