Thursday, December 23, 2010

Second Sock Syndrome

I have completed one EXTREMELY AWESOME piratey looking cushy ol' sock.
Here is a picture of a small portion of it:

It is really sweet.

Sweetness aside, I have 2 feet.
I have 1 sock.
I have 5 empty sock needles.
I have 3 half-knit balls of wool-ease.
I have 0 desire to knit the second sock.

I don't know anybody with only one foot.
I have considered just putting a loop on the top and making it into a really badass christmas stocking for my son, but I like them so much I'd want them all year round.
So I am doomed to making a second one.

I don't want to.

Just wait though. One day I'll post a picture of me wearing 2 really awesome piratey socks. Yes indeedy.

Friday, December 10, 2010

A thouroughly depressing announcement.

My Cable Coat Does Not Fit.
Okay that's putting it rather boldly. In fact it does fit. Or would fit. But somehow the arms turned out wrong.
I know I knitted them correctly, I have the notes to prove it.
I checked off every single row by hand on paper.
I knitted the sleeves at the same time so they have the same decreases and everything.
And yet... They do not fit into the armholes. It looks as though the sleeves are raglan and the shoulder is a set-in.
It's very depressing.

After I miserably tried sewing in varying ways to avoid bunching or sagging in any way, I came to the Ultimate Decision: I'm going to frog the sleeves.
However, since I'm relatively certain that the error is on the part of the pattern not on my part, I'm going to have to redesign the sleeves so they fit.

1)Frog sleeves
2) Sew side seams
3) Pick up stitches around shoulder
4) Knit sleeves down from there

So I guess there needs to be another step.
Step 0) Do some math and figure out how many decreases over how many inches you need to make the sleeves fit.

It's a good thing, really, because the sleeves were coming out baggy at the armpit and tight at the wrist, and much too short for my liking.

Still, depressing. I don't want to touch it until the new year. It's hiding in a drawer.

Monday, November 29, 2010


Totally wearing them Right Now.

Also, I finally downloaded the Central Park Hoodie pattern. Although I solemnly swear I will not cast on until after Christmas. Which means I have to finish
1) fibonacci
2) unfinished garter legwarmers
3) unfinished wristwarmers
4) cable car coat
5) ... is that it? is that all i'm working on?
Yes. Those things come first.

Also, I got some cotton yarn for the Empire Strikes Back dress in the new SnB book. Super excitement. I'll pretend it's in honor of the fact that the director of Empire Strikes Back died yesterday.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

So I have a little problem

Good news: I have finished the back, left front AND right front of the Cable Car Coat.
Bad news: The left front is slightly too long. The right front is slightly too short.
I'm deciding later whether it's troublesome enough for me to take anything back and have a do over.

It will actually fit right, once I add the buttonband. I hope.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Knitting updates...

Vyvyan's Hood is finished!!!

And it fits!!!

Also the Cupcake is done baking.

And it fits rather nicely
And now I get to begin the Fibonacci scarf! 

So about the Fibonacci scarf. I am an idiot. That's all I really WANT to say about this, but I suppose I have to explain the whole story...

Will bought me the yarn so I could knit his bestest friend a Fibonacci scarf. Seeing as said bestest friend is a mathematician and all. So it's a Christmas present for Duncan. And I was like "What? You're buying me 5 balls of Alpaca Love right now? Heck yes I'll knit you a scarf I'll do whatever you want just hand over the yarn!"

And then I realized how knitting a reversible scarf with uneven stripes might be a bit of a problem. I could use garter stitch of course, but we all know about that unpleasant stripe that garter stitch has on it's reverse side when you start using two colors. But I thought... You know, it might not be so bad. And garter stitch is easy. And stockinette would roll, and if I did a garter stitch border it wouldn't be reversible and so garter stitch is the best way to go. Except for tubular/double knitting but learning a new technique frightens me especially when math is involved.

So I cast on 24 stitches and started going.
One row in, five rows in and... The stripe is happening! And it is ugly! And there's nothing I can do about it because I have to add colors on both sides due to the nature of the Fibonacci sequence.
(If you don't know the Fibonacci sequence I will now explain it to you. All you do is add the rows in the two previous stripes to get the number of rows in the next stripe. So:
Anyways I realized that garter stitch wasn't working out. And the stockinette with the garter stitch border would be unattractive to say the least. I hate when scarves aren't reversible, it makes me crazy and I wouldn't ever want to say that I made one. (we'll ignore the cabled one I made last month, because it was pretty)
So I was doomed to double knitting.
I looked it up and found that it was much simpler than I'd imagine.
Cast on an even number of stitches
row 1 and all subsequent rows: K1, sl1 wyif, K1, sl1 wyif
TWO rows = 1 row (Because you're knitting in a tube. So the first row you only knit half the stitches and the other row you knit the other half, making one round. Get it?)
In my superstar knitting book, Debbie Stoller advises "YOU SHOULD ADD A NEW COLOR ON ODD-NUMBERED ROWS"
Well this gave me a start.
I'm doing the Fibonacci scarf! The colors change on odd AND even numbered rows! But I remembered what Stephanie Pearl Mcphee says, how all patterns are merely suggestions and Debbie Stoller DID say "should" instead of "must" so maybe it would all work out for the best.
And you know what? It did!
I was in shock, but I just kept knitting and had a happy ending.

12 hours later:
It's 2 am. I wake up to feed the baby and then when he settles back into the dreamy land I find that I can't sleep. I start thinking about the scarf and suddenly I realize why it worked out. Using tubular knitting I will add a new color on an odd number no matter what. Because 13 times 2 is 26, an even number. Then you change color on an odd number. And 21 times 2 is 42, an even number. Then you change on an odd number. In fact 2 times any number gives you an even number. So it goes without saying that you'll add a new color on an odd number. Because 2 =1.
Then I realized that I could have avoided the whole double knitting problem if I had just remembered that 2 makes everything even and knitted two rows for ever one of garter stitch.
No problems, less yarn used, happy knitter.
But as it is, I learned to double knit. So I'm pretty damn pleased anyways. And hey, an utterly reversible scarf! Truly, a happy ending.

Friday, November 19, 2010

I feel like Santa Clause

So I was knitting in math class, as usual, and the guy who sits in the front row stopped by my seat during our break and whispered "I want ear muffs."

Thursday, November 18, 2010

CUPCAKE HAT!!! And other stories of the day.

I am officially making a cupcake hat.
And a sweater.
And a coat.
And some legwarmers.
And some more legwarmers.
And some armwarmers.
I really need to finish some of these projects before I go casting on for the new ones.
-The Fibonacci Scarf
-The OTHER legwarmers
-The Pedicure Socks
-The Epic Central Park Hoodie.

Luckily I don't have to worry about CPH because I have no money with which to purchase the yarn for said project. The socks, however... I'm afraid I may have acquired a few sock balls. The Fibonacci Scarf is actually an Xmas present, so it will have to be cast on soon. And of course in the light of other people being more important than me I can put off my (glorious) coat for now.

1.) Cupcake hat. Because class ends on Dec 17th
2.) Vyvyan's sweater. Actually this is a close tie with the first, because although there is no due date he is fast-growing. Of course he's not going to remember if I ever finished it or not so I could always finish it later and be like "awww look what your mommy made you back when you were wee!"
3.) Garter Stitch Legwarmers due by the 25th.. These just need 3 buttons sewn on.
4) Pink Armwarmers just need the thumbs to be completed.
5)Fibonacci scarf needs to be cast on!!! Due on the 25th also, possibly later.

Unfortunately the most portable project are the purl bee legwarmers. So guess what I'm taking to math class.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

What's Done is Done...

I just had to rip back 5 inches.
After binding off all the stitches for the armpits and knitting in straight st st for long enough for me to feel satisfied with the amount I got done today, I did a quick count of the stitches and got 67. One stitch too many. The room I was sitting in was dark so I counted again. 67.
I have enough problems with this sweater without having to worry about an entire stitch popping up out of nowhere, so I had to go back and fix it.
Unfortunately the last time I did a good count was right around when I got to the armpit and since the armpit area is fairly obvious the best place to tear back to was the beginning of the binding off.... what's sad is that I had thought of putting in a safety line after I got the count right but I had shrugged it off.
One point given for becoming the kind of person who wouldn't just knit two stitches together, one point subtracted for thinking lifelines are for the weak.

At least I get to do all that shaping again. It really is a pretty boring sweater, all that stockinette...
So, I picked up my stitches and am about to continue bravely.

I sat there in the middle of the living room floor tearing back my sweater and I felt like such an evolved person. No crying, all my bad feelings were acknowledged but not expressed through throwing the knitting or cursing at it. I felt like showing it to my family: Look! I'm tearing back an hour of hard work with grace!!
I think that takes the grace out of it.

Anyways I did some measurements of sweaters I own, due to the off gauge thing.
One that fits at the waist (which i think is really stupid- i like a long sweater) was 17" at the bottom of back.
One that fits pretty long but when you button it doesn't really go all the way around my hips (although I think this was supposed to be part of the style for some reason) measured at 19"
And the one I was wearing today and, actually, wear more often than a lot of my well-fitting clothes measured 28".
So if I'm willing to tromp around sporting a 56" sweater of my 36" chest then I'm sure I'll have no problems with the way this hand-knit fits.
Still though, ripping out five inches? That burns.
I bet I could have finished the back tonight.

Cable Car Coat notes

Ran into my first (of many, I'm sure) problem. Somehow, despite having swatched 3 times for this project (a real feat considering I usually skip the swatch) I've run into gauge problems.
Apparently using these #10 needles gives me a 18 stitch gauge over 4 inches. Unless you believe my more recent 2 measurements of 17 stitches. Either way, these numbers are NOT 16, the required stitch count.
So after I knitted 9 inches of 90 stitches I realized this. Why didn't I start on the sleeve so I could check my gauge as I went and not have such a sizable piece...
At any rate, the bottom of the back now measures 19", and that's with slightly curved edges. The schematic says the back should be 17 3/4". Apparently I'm not the kind of knitter who cares enough to take it out and watch again.
I did, however, tear back 3 inches because I forgot waist shaping.
I've already knitted a ball of yarn into this thing: like I'm gonna turn back now.
Who cares if it turns out so big an elephant can wear it?
And we haven't even discussed what's going to happen when I block it. What if it grows to monstrous proportions?
In that case, ribbit ribbit. At least I'd get all that yarn back. Next time, wash your swatch BEFORE you tear it back and excitedly cast on.
For now I'm just pressing on. If it's too big maybe I can sew a little extra fabric into the seams and it'll still work out okay. If it's too small I can... cry a little.
Let's not discuss the fact that the more and more I look at the picture of the sweater the less and less I like the look of reverse stockinette.

Checking gauge again... yep. 17 st.

A part of my continues to whisper: "That's what you need for the central park hoodie!" But i quiet her by reminding myself that I'd have to pay $5.50 for the pattern. Which I couldn't print anyways without any ink. And besides, I want to knit it in green heather cascade 220, and without the central park hoodie I have nothing to look forward to after this coat.
That might end up miderably ill-fitting.

None of my sweaters really work out. I think it has something to do with how little I care. And probably how badly I sew.

But the thing is, I'm using size 10's to knit this damn thing, and I'm getting 17 st / 4 inches. But when I tried 10 1/2's during the swatching I got 14 st per inch. 17 is way closer to 16 than 14. I'm afraid of how this is going to turn out, but on the brighter side if it doesn't fit me I'll never wear it. And if I never wear it I'll never have to hand-wash it.

oh. and I still haven't finished Vyvyan's sweater. Bad momma, bad knitter.

Friday, November 12, 2010

vyvyan's sweater update

I haven't made the hood or the border yet. the front is rolling a bunch right now cuz it's still in stockinette, but i'm too lazy to finish it today because
1) The pattern is on the computer and i don't have ink and i dont want to write it down by hand.
2) Reknitting the front turned me off to this sweater pretty bad.
3) I just got 30 balls of new yarn in the mail
4) He showed his appreciation for the sweater after I took this picture by throwing up on it.
So it needs a bath then i'll let it rest a while before I work on it more...
but I can't put it off too long cuz he'll outgrow it!!


Here's my bavarian hat, in a crappy mobile phone picture.

Here's Vyvyan's chunky sweater. This was yesterday, before I took out that left front and reknit the whole damn thing. Actually, what's really lame is that I finished both fronts AND sewed them on before I realized I had big problems and reknit both fronts. It's still not done, I still have to make the hood. When it's done I'll post a pic of Vyvyan being all warm and cozy.

AND HERE.......... are my 30 balls of yarn I've been waiting and waiting and waiting for. I haven't decided whether to make an afghan or a sweater out of them, but I had imagined they would be slightly bigger and I'd have enough to make both. Upon realizing how small they are, maybe $20 a bag wasn't so great after all... Oh well. I love yarn mucho.

Also, I was shopping at TJ Maxx yesterday with my sister and something kind of funny happened. Instead of looking for things I wanted to buy or even things that were my size, I went looking for things I could knit. First I went to the scarves hats and mittens, then I went to the sweaters and fondled each of them while taking mental measurements. At one point I found a sweater that I liked AND that was in my skill range. I grabbed the tag to check the gauge. That was the point where I realized that what I was doing was odd. Of course there was no gauge on the tag, only the company label, the price tag, and a big "M." I was like wtf?? Oh yeah. This is a store. For people who buy things.
It tripped me out a little. Maybe next time I'll bring a measuring tape.

Dunno if I mentioned yet that I bought Debbie Stoller's new book. I'm totally excited about learning how to double knit, but I'm not having a ton of time these days what with the chunky boy and school. But at least I can look at it and stroke it's beautiful pages and imagine the one day when I, too, can knit fair isle skull socks.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

So I feel like an idiot.

There's something wrong with you when you go to track your package online for the 14th time and you just barely realize that you wrote in your address wrong.
So two balls of merino were shipped here and sent to the post office. Luckily I called and got a hold of them before they shipped it back to wherever Wisconsin. So now I have two yummy balls of merino. But unfortunately they're not quite the color I wanted. That's what happens when you shop online. But it's not like it matters, beautiful yarn is beautiful yarn, even if they were out of Cinammon so I had to get Brick.

Anyways once I finish the orange hat I'll be good to CO for the legwarmers <3

I got the newest issue of Creative Knitting, only didn't realize til I left the store that it was a "special issue" and is full of accessories so you can "accessorize with style." Right when I decided to get a bunch of knitting magazines solely for their sweater patterns so I can start "Real Knitting" again.
But anyway I still found a few things I found worth making. So I cast on the Bavarian Style Hat on page 71 because it looked both simple and challenging enough to be a fun knit. There's a a "celtic vine hat with fingerless gloves" I might try to make later on, when I feel like working in DK weight. (so probably never.)

I kind of feel like... Well honestly I'm just lucky that the store by my house only has one knitting magazine for sale. I mean, I know a lot of these patterns I'm never going to knit either because they're hideous, (Ski Band Stripes? Hello Eightie's lady) they're too complicated, or I just don't see any point to them. But something about just owning more knitting magazines, more projects that I COULD knit if I could find the yarn and time to do so, is very comforting. Like, yeah I think cowls are the stupidest thing on the planet but I could knit one... maybe.

Meanwhile I'm still waiting for the 30 balls of chunky Peruvian to come. Man, am I glad I didn't mess up the address on that one. Hey... uh... yeah I have an order of 30 balls of purple yarn. Yes it's for personal use.

I don't know, I'm kind of wishing I'd just got some Cascade 200 for the Central Park Hoodie. I mean, yeah the chunky yarn was on sale but I ended up spending 60 bucks anyway. And yes it's a lot more yarn, but you don't understand how badly I want that hoodie.

Oh, also on the knit list I've been thinking about re-knitting the skully sweater. Yes, again. That would make thrice, and if I fail as miserably this time as I did the last two times then that would equal three pathetic attempts at knitting the same stupid sweater. But seriously! If only I could get gauge with the full o' sheep. Actually I was thinking it might be even better because it would come out  a little small and thus tighter? I don't know, I'm kind of stupid.

I swear they need to make a knitting math class. I'd totally go figure out how to re-design things that are almost perfect, and how to actually get gauge.

Anyways, I'm posting pictures of the orange hat soon. It was a pretty fun knit. Okay it made me want to strangle the designer a few times, but it's coming out okay.(All fingers crossed)

Monday, November 8, 2010


Waiting impatiently for the Elann Chunky and Manos del Uruguguay. Not going to mention the vaguely dirty feeling I get from the dent in my credit card. The fact that all 30 balls of yarn are purple doesn't help. Once I can squish it I should feel better. (Although I've read reviews that say it pills and has knots...)

Once it finally gets here I can cast on for my GIANT afghan and be cozy while I knit with it on my lap all winter. I just hope it works out. Well, I also hope no one accidentally felts it.

Looking at my pathetic stash right now. You know I have 6 balls of Lion Brand Nature's Choice Organic Cotton? It was recklessly purchased and I still have no plans for it. It's been in the stash since i was pregnant. So at the very least that's 5 1/2 months. I did knit up half of what I bought on Alyssa's scarf, though. I just can't think of anything else to make out of it. Definitely not another garter stitch scarf- how mind-numbingly boring.

I think it's doomed to be a bag of some type. But being cotton it has no elasticity so it's bound to stretch out. Like I said, man, recklessly purchased. Fuck sales.

That's how i got those two balls of "loops and threads" country loom, too. When I looked them up online guess what I found? It's Michaels' brand yarn! No wonder it was crappy! It's basically ghetto brand homespun. Although in all honestly I liked homespun even less because it would bunch up and break randomly. And hey, i made a sweater out of homespun so apparently I don't care what I buy or what I knit with.

I mean, dude, I bought 30 balls of yarn "because it was on sale." This has got to change.

Remember: if you start with crap you'll end with crap.
True, knitting with the good stuff is intimidating because you can no longer blame the yarn, and true the good stuff's expensive but who's to say I don't deserve to make crappy sweaters with expensive yarn if that's what I like to do?? And maybe I'll get better, even.

At the very least I'll be able to collect yummy balls of wool that I can dig out and squeeze when I feel sad.

This way I won't end up with 6 balls of mismatched cotton staring me in the face. Or ONE ball of fun fur. Or fourth of july sugar n cream. What the hell was that?

And maybe I have no talent as a knitter. Maybe, after acquiring fine merinos and cashmere, gaining access to wonderful patterns and all the time in the world to knit I'd still make crap. Somehow, I don't think that would stop me.

You have no idea. I have itchy fingers. But I don't want to CO anything because I'm about to receive all that yarn in the mail.... >_<
Anyways here's a hat I made yesterday.

I'm totally gonna buy the new SnB booklet pamphletty thing and make that lime green jacket with the full o sheep wool. mmmmmmmmm wool.
Oh yeah, apparently I've become a yarn snob overnight.

<3 Cecilia

ps fatboy's doing good. he be gettin' a toof.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

mmmmmmm wool

Casting on for the free twisted waffle stitch hat pattern from Rav. "Waffle's Waffles pattern" found here
Going to finally try out the new debbie stoller's full o' sheep.
Actually there's a Ravelry member who did it in full o' sheep and there's a good pic of it here
I'm totally making a new resolution for 2011: DO NOT BUY ANY ACRYLIC WOOL!!!
It's beautiful.
This year's resolution was "keep track of all the books you read" which I've actually kept all year so far and I'm ALMOST at 50 books, but with all the knitting I've been up to I doubt I'll get there.
However, I did just blow a bunch of money on knitting humor books by stephanie pearl mcphee, so maybe I'll reach the goal after all.

I cannot wait for my yarn to come in the mail. mmmmm chunky peruvian wool. mmmmmmmerino. Making an afghan, a sweater, and some awesome legwarmers. So many plans!!
I got rid of 30 balls of crappy red heart yesterday, most of which was baby blue, pink, or white. I don't know how this stuff piles up, I swear it's not me that buys it....

The chunky is currently strangling himself. Time to play mommy.
edit: he's not literally strangling himself. i'm not that terrible.

Friday, November 5, 2010

So this is my blog, this is my life.

For no reason whatsoever, I have decided to start a blog. I will no doubt regret this decision as, for one thing, I have no time at all and for another I'm forced to blog with a fat chunky drooly child on my lap.

Oh, and I have a name. It is Cecilia.
Oh, he has a name too actually. It is Vyvyan Ziggurat.

The poor child is to be the unsuspecting victim of much knitting in the future as I have just purchased 33 balls of yarn online for no reason whatsoever. I'm the kind of person they just shouldn't let on the internet at all. It's true.