Saturday, July 28, 2012


The legs have finally been joined.
 Now, when I look down at the mountain of knitting in my lap it is extremely obvious that I am actually knitting pants.
PANTS. 0_o

Thursday, July 26, 2012

A fun diversion

Today I had some extra time in the morning to pore over my blog subscriptions, and it put me in a right good mood. (Even before I had my coffee!)
One post that especially had me thinking, was this cute description of  what a knitting podcast sounds like to a non-knitter, on Knit, Nicole, Knit!. It cracked me up- and made me wonder what the other members of my household think when I'm on my bed, needles clicking, laughing hysterically at basically a radio show about knitting.
Me? I love knitting podcasts. I have very little time during which to sit and listen to them (while knitting, of course) and therefore only have 1 that I listen to religiously (Never Not Knitting.) but on the whole I think they're wonderful diversions from my own knitting life.

So. Speaking of my own knitting life... Like many other knitters I am often afflicted with startitis. In fact yesterday I started 2 new projects and had to restrain myself to prevent the start of yet another sweater. One of the projects I started yesterday is quite boring to look at and is just an inch or so of stockinette in the round with a garter stitch hem. It's a funny, soft, 100% acrylic yarn I found at Big Lots in an insane electric blue color. It's (eventually) going to be a sweater. (That no human being should wear.)

The other is also not very photogenic, but at least I have a picture of what I'm going for.
Meet Mars

Invented in the summer of 2009, this cute little doll was knit in plain ol' acrylic yarns and with no pattern or forethought. I did, however, have the sense to write down what I did on a sheet of Hello Kitty binder paper I had at the time. The Hello Kitty binder paper- I had thought- was lost to time. Then, in a cleaning rampage spurred by a lost birth certificate, it re-appeared.
Rejoice! (Though in case you're wondering, the birth certificate did NOT reappear.)

At any rate, I have cast on for a new doll, this time for my niece. (Yes, it says something about me that I would rather knit her a new one than entertain the idea of giving her mine.)
Unfortunately my directions are....not-good.
Seriously. This is what it says to do for the front:
CO 20 sts gray
St st stripe pattern on front:
(2 gray, 2 yellow) for 18 rows
Shape Armhole:
K2tog, k through
P2tog, p through
K2tog, k through
P2tog, p through
St st 3 rows, following pattern.
For back, ignore all striping.

Ok well it makes sense. I could follow the directions and made a cute little front to the new doll.  But 3 years later and I'm just looking at myself like, Seriously? That's how you'd do that? Like using k2tog instead of ssk. I know I only did that because I didn't know about ssk, not because it looked better there. And the WHOLE thing is worked flat, in pieces.
Like am I even the same PERSON????
So long post without much continuity.
And last but not least, an incredibly bad picture of the new doll in progress.

Can you even see that at all?
No. Not really. Oh well. Purple and yellow for the dress, pink for the skin color, and the hair will be done in wild scraps. I swear this whole infatuation with creating little dolls came from the fact that my niece got one of those LaLaLoopsy dolls. Basically I want one. This one.
I'm seriously going to finish this project for tomorrow.
I haven't had a finished object in soo long!!! It's getting sad.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

WIP Wednesday: Pea Wee Coat

I've been working steadily on my niece's Christmas present lately. The pattern is Vicki Howell's Pea Wee Coat, available for free here. I didn't end up liking the recommended yarn, Sheep(ish) and picked a nice shade of Stitch Nation Washable Ewe instead. I ran the swatch through the washer and drier 4 times and it came through looking great! A little fuzzy and there was minute shrinkage, but I am gifting the coat with the instructions "dry flat," and so I doubt the final garment will go through washer and drier 4 times anyways. But just in case it goes through once or twice, it will be OK and that is good knowledge for me to have.

So I've made most of the pieces. And yes,they look amorphous blobs in real life, too.

There you have the two fronts, the back and the collar. As you can see, the two fronts are different widths, because the pea coat fronts are meant to overlap.

Here they are sort of assembled. Single crochet sure is curly! I hope I don't have to block this as much as it seems like I have to block this.

Left to crochet: The sleeves, and the pockets. The pattern actually calls for faux pockets, but I personally find faux pockets offensive. And when you're a little kid and your jacket feels like it has pockets, it is a very sad feeling when you go to put your newly found cricket, rock, or slug into your pocket only to find that -alas- the pocket is a lie. So, real pockets for my niece.

Then it's just a matter of sewing it all together. Now is probably as good a time as any to admit that I have never sewn any crocheted fabric before in my life. This is my first crocheted garment, and actually it's the first time I've really done any shaping.

Well that's  kind of a lie: I had to do some sctogs and dctogs when I made my little amigurumi guys, and I also did a bit of shaping on the slippers I made, but this is the first time where messing up would actually matter. Luckily I did not mess up, and it is looking pretty good so far. This is also my first time making crocheted buttonholes: much quicker than knitted buttonholes.

Did you notice that the yarn seems to be a different shade in every one of these pictures? Yeah. I need a real camera. The color is "Strawberry," and it is much more red in real life.

Anyways the plan is, eventually, to go back onto my Craftsy account and re-watch the Beyond Rectangles class to figure out how I'm supposed to sew all this together. I still remember that first sweater I ever knitted. When it got to the last instruction, "sew side and sleeves seams," I just sat down and sort of whipstitched it sloppily together. I had no idea that sewing knitting was any different than sewing cloth. Properly learning mattress stitch changed my life, and now it's time for me to learn the crochet equivalent!

Check out more WIPs with Tamis Amis.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

A wee update

A few items are languishing.... the Ugly Cardigan, now that it has had it's glorious steeking moment, lies untouched in the closet. My striped pants, though very fun to work on, have grown large and cumbersome. The socks now bore, the colorful hats lack charm, and the ribwarmer (lacking yarn to complete) depresses.

In short my knitting mojo seems to be missing.

This morning I pulled out the Ugly Cardigan. It's truly almost done. I only have to add on the buttons, do the afterthought pockets, and sew on the elbow patches.

Did you notice that the one-of-a-kind, unique, hand-crafted and hard-won rosewood buttons didn't make the cut for this sweater? It turns out I really, really, REALLY, wanted at least 5 buttons for this sweater. This set, acquired after the wooden button went missing and before it was found, is a set of 6 plastic shanked buttons. I quite like them, and this way the wooden buttons can be saved for something that really fits their style.

In case you don't remember: I didn't add buttonholes to this cardigan. I had planned for I-cord tabs, and then once I put them into place they looked... not-good. So the plan has changed and I have been looking into my options.

In the end, I decided that I'm a big fan of cutting into my knitting and that I might as well employ EZ's afterthought buttonhole. It is a simple snip and sew method which can be found in Knitting Without Tears.

And then? I remembered that I used up every last smidgen of the Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool and couldn't really do anything without at least a few yards of it. I though about frogging the elbow patches since in practice they are not very attractive. But in the end it all boiled down to "my knitting mojo seems to be missing." And so the Ugly Cardigan went right back into the bag.

So basically I am getting absolutely nothing done over here, and I don't even know why I bothered to tell you.

Maybe I'll pick up one of those crochet projects today...

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Did you guess pants?

Time to reveal my super secret project!

Yes, every day when I get home from job searching, I've been knitting an inch or two of pant leg. Did you ever really think about how long your legs are? Apparently I never did: these suckers are going on forever!!!

I think this is the final proof that I am actually insane. Yes these are going to be cool pants but... seriously. Who knits pants?
I do.
(And this isn't even the only pair I have on the needles.)

Yarn: Lion Brand Wool-Ease- all scraps and leftovers.
Needles: US 5 (3.75mm)
Pattern: Nether garments by Elizabeth Zimmerman. (Kinda. Mostly making it up as I go, because the increases were ALL wrong for me.)

I hope I'll be able to check in sometime again later this week. Hoping to aim for an FO on Friday, but my days have gotten very very busy. I tried to participate in WIP Wednesday as far as reading posts and commenting on a few, but I wish I had more time for it. I guess this is my late WIP Wednesday post haha. As an explanation for why I'm sort of MIA lately on the blogfront, I have been doing job interviews and tomorrow I have orientation for a position at the new Hobby Lobby in town! I'm pretty un-natrually excited. Anyways, for now I think I'll work on the pants a bit more before turning in early for another busy day tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


Ah, hats.
Good morning, everyone. I'm in a rush today, blogging in the 15 or so minutes before I have to run out and catch a bus. Normally I would be spending quality time with my son, since I have to be gone all day, but today he decided to sleep in. (No complaints here, though I may get a wee bit weepy by lunchtime.)
So I decided to take a quick snapshot of some hats I've been working on during my lunch breaks. 1,2 3, go!

Knitted in all Patons classic wool (my favorite good plain wool) these little beauties just pop right off the needles. Did I ever mention how much I love knitting hats? Did you ever look around and notice just how many different sized heads there are?
And what about the different personalities? I could make a neon green hat with ugly purple shamrocks on it, and it would be right up somebody's alley. And on top of all that, my favorite bit about hats is that you only have to make one of them. One single hat. No worries about matching the decreases or stripes on a second hat. (Although I am tempted to make some mittens to match the purple striped hat up there.)
In other knitting news, when I get off of "work" (it's actually more like a  temp agency, but at least it's something.) I have a nice big sit-down project to work on. You won't even believe it. I'm not going to delve further into this secret project until I get far enough along to reveal some telling photographs, but it's pretty awesome. And this other project I've been working on IS the kind of thing where you have to make two match. So there's a wee hint for you.
All right.
Off to the bus now.
Today's hat is brown with some pink patterning, and it's the same yarn on size 6's so it should turn out child-sized.... Maybe everyone in my family's getting hats for xmas. ;)

Friday, July 13, 2012

FO Friday

This moment has been long coming.
I cast on for this Ski Sweater on November 11th last year. 11/11/11.
I knit on it exclusively for almost two weeks. Sleeves and body finished, I put them in a bag to await the day when I would learn how to use a sewing machine and machine stitch the armholes for steeking.
Guess what day never came.
Now, the sweater is finally done. 9 months. I could have had a baby in that time! It feels like I did. Here he is: Meet Norman, my newest baby.

The pattern is Ski Sweater in Color Patterns by Elizabeth Zimmerman. It can be found in Knitting Without Tears, though a horrible representation of the beautiful pattern. In fact, I never knew I wanted to knit it until I saw the photographs in The Opinionated Knitter. Especially since they illuminate the red hems so beautifully. Yes, it is this picture that got me hooked on the idea of knitting a stranded ski sweater.

The original Ski Sweater Elizabeth Zimmerman knitted for the 1966 PBS series, The Busy Knitter
The yarn I used for my sweater is Cascade Ecological Wool (That makes a total of 3 hand knit sweaters out of Cascade Eco Wool in my closet, with the makings for two more in my stash- Can you say SALE?) which is a bit scratchy, but should be very comfortable when layered on top of a long sleeved sweater. It doesn't get very cold in this area of California, but I am a person who is not tolerant of cold at all, so it should still get plenty of wear. Also we don't have a heater in our house, so I can totally picture myself wearing it over leggings cozied up in front of the fire on lazy days off.
Haha I took this picture right when I woke up (because it's too hot in the afternoon to entertain the idea of wool) and I had no idea how tired I looked!

So I think the most important thing about this sweater is that I steeked it. This is my second steeking project, and I think it was more difficult than the first. Steeking a sweater front and making it a cardigan is fine- you secure it, cut down the middle, and sew the cut edge down. Then you just have to pick up the cardigan band, which is So Much Easier than having to sew in sleeves.

Seriously. Don't be scared of cutting! That's the easy part. It's the sewing that got me. I'm still not entirely sure I sewed the sleeves in correctly but they are attached to the sweater and what more could I ask for? Also? Blocking worked a miracle for the purl armscye hem:

Before blocking: Look how those purl ridges BULGED!
After securing the cut edges and steaming it down a bit, they smoothed out a lot. ^_^

As for securing the cut edges, I learned the herringbone stitch for this sweater, and it was a pretty, easy stitch and looked good. I found that the best way to keep the little flap of cut stitches nice and tidy while you're working is to sprinkle some water on there and iron it down. If you're bad at sewing, like I am, and find that you get nervous? Play some slow-ish and well-loved music. (I chose Stephanie Dosen.)

Herringbone stitch done in purple sock yarn- 100% wool.
My favorite part of this sweater? The red hems. ♥

There you have it.
My newest baby.
Check out more FO's with Tamis Amis!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

WIP Wednesday: Shark Attack!

Back in March, I decided to knit a pair of toddler sweaters. The first on, The Teddy Bear was made quickly, but other projects got in the way of the second shark-inspired hoodie. Well, after reading some inspiring knitting books and realizing that I, too, can design my own projects I decided to finally cast on.
Here is my shoddy rough draft drawing of the sweater in question:

The design is still in the works (Read: I'm not entirely sure I can make the hood thing happen, and that is an awful lot of teeth to  consider) but I've done quite a bit of knitting already.
This will be my first time designing a sweater knit flat with set-in sleeves, and I was hoping to use it to practice my seaming skills.

I finished the back in one evening and decided to work both fronts up to "about" where I plan on starting the neck shaping so that both pieces are the same length. I'm nearly to that point.

(P.S. See how uneven my knitting is? That's why I never knit flat- but I recently learned how to make perfectly even flat knitting! But since I did my swatch a long time ago I did it the ugly way for simplicity. This is just a prototype anyways.)

So that's where I'm at with this little project. I still have some maths to do for the sleeve cap shaping, and then it's just finishing finishing finishing. Which, no matter what, there will be a ton of thanks to the zipper, the teeth, and the possible crazy sharky hood.

That's the fun part, anyways. ;)

Check out more WIPS with Tamis Amis.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Mary Thomas Knitting Book Review

As I mentioned a few days ago, I recently acquired the Mary Thomas Knitting Book for dirt cheap. I sped right through it, skipping only the chapter on frame knitting since-let's face it- I don't plan on ever using a frame to knit. So here's a bit of a summary on how I feel about this book. (No pictures in this post: sorry.)

This little book (245 pgs) wholly surprised me. Expecting an outdated book filled with charming antiquities and a brief explanation of English knitting, I was happily mistaken. Maybe we no longer call straights "knitting pins," and maybe our sets of 4 or 5 have been re-christened "DPNs," but there is good, helpful and new information in this book. By new, of course, I mean new to me, as the book was originally written in the '30s. The book is full of relevant knitting instruction: well rounded in both English and Continental styles as well as a combination of the two.

The combined English/Continental method that has no doubt left me a changed knitter! Seriously. No longer will my stockinette stitch be uneven, due to my loose purling. I'm looking forward to employing this new technique in a new sweater design soon!

I feel like I should compare this book with Principles of Knitting, which arrived back in February and which I never actually finished reading. POK is huge- 700+ pages and I'll be honest and say that it is dry. Reading POK kinds of made me feel bad. Knitting is something I love! How can it bore me? And yet POK did indeed bore me. I read the chapters on gauge, fibers, and fabric construction, but all in all it is truly a book of technique best approached with needles in hand. Mary Tomas, too, goes into detailed step-by-step instructions but she entertains as well.

The little humorous illustrations help you along, and occasionally she goes off into the history of why this stitch came about or what it used to be called or a little fact about how to use it in "modern" knitting. (My favorite of these: "A modern use of moss knitting is for wigs.") It's just enough to keep you reading.

Indeed I learned many new things. Did you know, for instance that in Shetland knitting is called "macking?" And that the knit and purl stitch were once the white and black stitch, respectively? That Austrians call the picot hem the "hem with treasure teeth?"

I was also surprised by the "block pattern" method of designing garments, which employs brown paper and your ruler to define your outline and assist shaping. The last few chapters are especially interesting, with in-depth guides for how to design and knit different styles of gloves, stockings and socks using only your measurements.

Grafting, hems, double knitting, different necklines, pockets, seaming, woven knitting, colorwork and shawls! This book is a gem. Not kidding. And I got my copy for 93 cents plus shipping! This book is worth way more to me than the pattern books I see for $20 or more at the store. Pattern books are great, and they have beautiful color photography with attractive models and wonderful knitwear but this book really goes into the bare roots and teaches you to Figure It Out! I can see this book joining EZ's Knitting Without Tears and Maggie Righetti's Sweater Design in Plain English- the books that leave the shelf most often.

I leave you with a quote from pg 14, where she's discussing the history of knitting.- I can't resist sharing it.
"Even lovers went courting with their knitting, and it was a thing well understood in the dales that when a young couple married, if both were expert knitters, no matter what were their shortcomings in housewifery or husbandry, they would 'do all right and get on in the world.'"

P.S. I've got a few more books coming in the mail- I was very excited this morning to receive Knitting In The Old Way and I'll try to post my thoughts on that one next ^_^

Monday, July 9, 2012

Sheep(ish) Yarn Review

I've been swatching for my niece's Pea Coat, and I thought I'd share my experience with this new(ish) yarn! I want to preface this review by saying I am no Clara Parkes, but I still think some of you might be interested in what a "regular Joe" like myself has to say about it. Oh, and I did not get paid for any of these words, either. Not even in free yarn ;)

Colorway: Robin Egg(ish)

Vickie Howell launched Sheep(ish) with Caron International in June of last year. It is a worsted weight, roving-style acrylic blend made in Turkey.

70% Acrylic/30% Wool
3 oz/85 g
167 yds/153 m
Price in my town: 4.99

At first, I found myself thinking this was a wonderful option for children's clothing: easy-care, beautiful bright colors, soft in the skein, and with a nice sheen. Unfortunately, from the second I reached in the skein to find the center-pull and ended up with a giant pile of yarn barf my opinion dropped.
Here is a list of random notations from while I was crocheting with the yarn:
1) Yarn barf- not easy to untangle because the "roving-style" fibers stick together
2) Very loosely spun
3) Thick and thin spots
4) Pretty sheen
5) Pre-washed= plasticky and stiff
6) Softer in skein
7) It has a halo, but not in a good way- sort of makes the FO looks shabby
8) Splitty (especially when I switched to knitting- even with pointy metal tips)
9) Looks fine after frogging, but actually frogging is difficult due to point 1
10) Breaks easily

I guess most of my problems are derived strictly from the fact that it is made to mimic roving yarns. But a quick look at the Ravelry Comments proves that I am not the only one who was disappointed by this yarn.

I made several swatches, and here they are pre-washed:

The two crochet swatches were for the Pea Coat. I didn't end up getting gauge after 2 swatches and that was plenty of time to decide I didn't want to use this yarn anyways- I'm awfully glad I only bought the one ball to test it out!

Swatch in Single Crochet

I then did a simple stockinette stitch swatch to check out the drape, as well as a little ribbing/cable swatch to test for elasticity. I used a size 9 needle- the ball band recommended size 8's but I wanted to see if a looser fabric would be softer.

Can you see the weird plasticity, sparkly halo?

It's not a terrible yarn. By that I mean, if I ended up getting a bag of yarn from someone (I'm not the only one who gets those, right? Every once in a while? From someone's aging relative or something?) and there's the usual Red Heart, some Fun Fur and a skein of Sheep(ish), I'd be super stoked about the Sheep(ish). But still, I'm not likely to go out and buy some any time soon.

After going through the machines (Wash and dry- no special treatment, just thrown in with my clothes) the swatches came out exactly the same. Seriously. Even in that picture above, how you can see a little bit of uneven tension? If that was knit with 100% wool and I washed and blocked it by hand, those uneven bits would have diminished greatly. Not so with this blend, although the washability is a very nice factor.

At heart, I am a Wool-Ease girl: I thought I would enjoy this yarn because of how I feel about Caron's Simply Soft (LOVE!) but I believe Wool-Ease serves the same purpose as Sheep(ish) with fewer difficulties and a softer hand. All in all, not a yarn that I'm planning on using again. Also I think the yardage is skimpy.

There you have it! Some random person's thoughts on Caron's Sheep(ish)!
Thanks for reading ;)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Saturday, July 7, 2012


First published in 1938, this book has been regarded as a must-have by knitters worldwide. I have passed it up at my local library for being too "boring" (i.e. drawings instead of photographs, wordy, black and white, "outdated") but I decided it was time that I got myself a copy. After all, I had passed up EZ's Knitting Without Tears for the very same reason and only gave it a chance when I found it for $2.50 at my local library bookstore!
I got this copy of Mary Thomas's Knitting Book online for .93 cents plus shipping and handling. A total of about $3.99. I can't wait to read it and come back and tell you more about it!
I'm sure it will be a fascinating read.

Friday, July 6, 2012

An Exhaustive and Thorough Look in the WIP Pile...

(It's time to rein them in again.)

Here they are in no particular order. Links go to Ravlery pages- you'll notice most of them aren't on Ravelry.
  1. Vine Yoke Cardigan

    Cast on date: 1/26/11
    Percent done: maybe 40%
    Left to do: Um... Most of it. I still have to knit the back, the second sleeve, and the left front. Then there is plenty of garter stitch grafting to do before I get to add 8 or so buttons and block the living hell out of it.
    Prognosis: It's been sitting for a long long while, mainly because I think I'm going to run out of yarn but also because alpaca is hot. I would like this to be my next "big" project, because it has sat for so long and frankly I'm sick of it guilt tripping me.

  2. Ugly Cardigan

    Cast on date: 6/21/12
    Percent done: 85%
    Left to do: Attach buttons, make afterthought buttonholes, afterthought pockets, attach elbow patches, maybe add thumb-holes at cuffs.
    Prognosis: I should be able to complete this one fairly soon. Right now the only problem is it is too hot in my house to try it on and place the pockets and elbow patches. Well, that and I have no buttons, but that can be solved.

  3. Ribwarmer

    Cast on date:
    Percent done: 70%
    Left to do: Finish second half (10 ridges plain, turn second corner, and 35 ridges plain), seam up center back, apply I-cord edging. (I will probably try a sc edge first.)
    Prognosis: I think I am going to run out of yarn. But that's an easy fix, and while I'm at the shoppe I might as well pick up a ball of white wool for the edge. It is a fun project, and will make an excellent Xmas present for my mom. It should be finished this week.

  4. EZ Ski Sweater

    Cast on date:
    Percent done: 80%
    Left to do:
    sew and cut for armholes, sew in arms, sew up shoulders, puck up and knit hem for neck.
    Prognosis: Very good, now that I know how to steek. I'll probably get on this one this week.

  5. Crazy Pants

    Cast on date: 1/9/12
    Percent done: 30%
    Left to do:
    Finish first leg (thigh increases and up), knit second leg, attach at crotch and do the short rows for my bootay.
    Prognosis: Meow. I know that once I finish the first leg I will speed right through the second one, knowing where to place all the decreases. But I don't want to try on the damn leg all the time and that's why it has been sitting there. I will probably start working on this one with fervor when it starts getting a bit chillier. I think fingering weight yarn wasn't the cleverest of choices with these....

  6. Garter Stitch Scarf

    Cast on date: I don't even know.
    Percent done: 40% ish?
    Left to do: Knit, knit, knit, knit, knit, knit, knit, and knit. It's a garter stitch scarf.
    Prognosis: .... It's a garter stitch scarf. I'm sorry; it's not that interesting. Also the yarn is kind of splitty, so even though it's totally brainless I can't turn off my brain while I knit it. I actually have to pay attention to my boring project.

  7. Heart Lace Scarf

    Cast on date: Dunno; I don't know why this one isn't on Ravelry either.
    Percent done: 40% ish, more if I can bare to make it short.
    Left to do: It needs to be at least twice as long as it is to count as a scarf, really.
    Prognosis: It's quite a tolerable project to work on but I don't work on it very often. Every time I do, I get in at least another 4 repeats though. I kind of like it as a background project, in and out of rotation.

  8. Patchwork Socks

    Cast on date: 6/?/12
    Percent done: 50%
    Left to do:
    Second sock
    Prognosis: SSS. Need I say more?

  9. Ribbed Cable Socks

    Cast on date: 7/4/12
    Percent done: 12%
    Left to do: Still on leg of first sock
    Prognosis: I am enjoying this sock. It's simple enough to knit on the go but looks cool. It also fills me with pride since I am making it up as I go ^_^

  10. Hippo slippers (Crochet)

    Cast on date:
    February 2012
    Percent done: 50%
    Left to do: 50%
    Prognosis: I crocheted the first slipper at a time where I, apparently, was stressed out or something, so every time I try to do the second one it comes out much looser. Also I already crocheted 4 pairs of these mary janes so I kind of lost steam. Frogging is totally an option here.

  11. Crochet shoes

    Cast on date: May 2012
    Percent done: 20% or less
    Left to do: Crochet the soles out of jute, two more cotton soles, the tops of the shoes, and seam it all together.
    Prognosis: Have you ever crocheted with jute? Don't.

  12. Hexipuffs

    Cast on date: 11/12/12
    Percent done: Please don't make me calculate that. I have 48.
    Left to do: 52 more this year.
    Prognosis: I don't know who I thought I was, starting a project that takes at least 300 of the same little tiny things...

  13. Bear Mittens

    Cast on date: April 2012
    Percent done:
    50%Left to do: Knit second mitten, embrioder faces, add buttons and crochet ears.
    Prognosis: Good, even though I knit the first one a little short. I think that's why I don't feel like making the second one. That and I'm still working on the pattern so knitting them feels like a chore. I'm also not too much of a fan of acrylic-y blends.

  14. Thigh High Stripes
    (I am not adding a picture here because it just looks like an inch of ribbing.)
    Cast on date: unknownPercent done: .2%
    Left to do:
    All of it.Prognosis: These will probably just be striped legwarmers instead, especially since the yarn has proven to be a bad choice for socks in the past. (Cestari Sock Yarn)
  15.  Granny Square Messenger Bag

    Cast on date: ?
    Percent done: 30%
    Left to do:
    Make a few more grannies, join them together and crochet a border with the dark gray. Knit the "bag" portion and strap and assemble.
    Prognosis: I had seriously actually forgotten this one existed. That doesn't bode well.

The things that are in the swatching stage:

  1. Green gala ribbon yarn, thinking a top for Zoe

  2. White polyester gala yarn, thinking a top for me
    (sorry no pics. If I wait until I get one I'll never post this.)

  3. Pea Wee Coat (crochet)

  4. Baby Corn
    (Ravelry page has the incredibly boring picture of my swatch.)

  5. Basic baby Cardigan (crochet)

So there you have it.
The plethora of unfinished objects currently taking up Way Too Much Space in my house. I'm fairly certain that's all of them... pretty sure.
So tell me. Am I insane? Or does your closet look pretty much the same?

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

WIP Wednesday

After I lost my button, I decided there was nothing much to be done but go ahead and wash my sweater and block it.

We sat out in the sun, my sweater and I, as I cast on another project to ease the pain of losing my hand-crafted prize.

The new project is Elizabeth Zimmerman's Ribwarmer. I had thought I might use up the rest of my Fishermen's Wool with it, but upon searching Ravelry I realize I might need 2 balls to complete it. Hmm....Still, it is great fun to work on and I am already about a quarter of the way done.

Aaaaaand that's what I'm working on. Linking in with Tamis Amis, as usual ^_^

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

"In a Hole"

I sewed the buttons on my sweater last night. This is the only picture I took before I decided the top buttons was not in the right place, and took them all off again.
And then, fate intervened.

The buttons were hand-carved by a friend's boyfriend, and I won them as a prize after I finished my Holden Shawlette for a KAL. Needless to say, they are special to me. They are a set of four, and- though this sweater really needed five- I thought they were perfect for this cardigan.

I knitted the button-tabs, first, but after trying them on decided that I would rather have regular buttonholes. So, I put the buttons in place, trying them out on each stripe and trying to determine the perfect spacing between them. Then I turned away to get my needle ready and- Vyvyan.

Vyvyan, Vyvyan, Vyvyan. Terrible twos, terrible terrible two-year old. He stole two of my buttons, one in each little fist and ran around the porch with them. Needle at the ready, I saw his theft and looked up at him expecting him to return the two buttons to me but instead he came to me with tears in his eyes and said, "Mama's thing! Mama's thing!"
In his hand, one single button.
"What happened." (Note that there is no question mark there: this statement was said with level fury.)
"Mama's thing, in a hole."

Remember how I said we were on the porch?

I might have flipped out a bit, then, screaming, "WHY DO YOU PUT EVERYTHING IN HOLES!???" (Why no, this is not the first hole incident, why do you ask?)
And then I crawled around the porch, one eye in the crack, peeking desperately through to find my brown button among all the brown foliage.
And then, I went inside, handed Vyvyan off to my mom lest he try to follow me, put on a long sleeve sweater, some long jeans, boots and a hat, and pried off the wire keeping the dog out from under the porch and kneeled there, taking a good, hard look.
I was looking for the button. I was also looking for spiders. None seen, I took a deep breath, and I crawled in there. It was wholly unpleasant, and the button was not found. I did find lots of little spider egg sacs, which was disconcerting. When I came out it took a long while to shake off that itchy, twitchy, things-might-be-crawling-on-me feeling.

I am still struggling to come to terms with the fact that I now have a beautiful set of 3 hand-carved buttons, and that my sweater is to remain button-less for now.

I'm quite upset, though. My family really doesn't understand. "Oh, you lost a button?"
No. I lost a unique, special, and hand-crafted button. A button that matches my sweater's personality. Not just any button, a button I won and which arrived in the mail with a beautiful card and note. A button that has 3 brothers wondering where it went.
I seriously almost cried.
Especially because the buttons were already ON the garment! Why did I ever take them off? Why? I should have just done the tabs and seen that I didn't like them. I should have just cut afterthought button-holes and left it at that. I am a lazy finisher, but this one time I decided to NOT be lazy, to go ahead and try to sew them on a bit more straight, a bit more perfect....
Next time, I will not strive for perfection.

Next time, I'm just going to put the kid in a box while I do my sweater-finishing. Not really... though I suspect they did invent television for this express purpose.