Thursday, April 30, 2009

creating and destroying

Whole wheat snickerdoodles from One Smart Cookie,and taking apart my lovely shrug.


I've been thinking about this for a while, and I think I might take the plunge and do it. I completed a shrug a while ago using a beautifully soft alpaca yarn. However, I have never worn it because it sits a little funny. I think the edge ribbing is too tight, and have tried to block it looser but to no avail. I didn't want to have to redo it because once something is done, I have trouble starting it again (because its done! I want to be enjoying it!!) However, I keep looking at it, touching it, trying it on, and it has so much potential but looks so terrible right now. I think I have to finally do it.

I'm going to rip out the entire edging. The reason this is a pain is because the edging requires picking about about 300 stitches or so which is incredibly painstaking. But I have 1.5 extra balls of the alpaca left, and its so soft I really want to give the shrug another try. I'm going to try picking up more stitches around the neck and the bottom (where it curves) in hopes that it won't pucker and will lie flat.

Here's hoping. If it doesn't work after the second try I'm giving up. As my stack of unworn sweaters will tell you I am good at this ...

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

wishing i was knitting instead of sitting

I like ordering yarn online, because it is sooooo exciting to get a big parcel of yarn in the mail! However, the waiting period is torture, especially when it is coming from the U.S. This time around, I received a tracking number, but when I enter it in the post office website, I get a notice saying it is expected to be delivered by ... one week ago. Bleh. How am I supposed to track that?

I am waiting for some lace weight merino/silk yarn to start the fountain pen shawl, I am very excited about trying that, I've never knit with lace weight before, although I have knit with very fine gauge sock yarn so it's probably very similar. I am also waiting for some bright red worsted weight wool for the february lady sweater. Due to the massive blocking required for coraline, I'm finally admitting that a) swatching is important and b) i am not ALWAYS an extra small and not all sweaters need to be fitted, so I'm hoping to make the FLS a nice, loose, swingy sweater.

The buttons I ordered off etsy are wonderful, but they are raw so i need to coat them before I put them on the coraline sweater. Then, just the button loops and I'll finally be done. I have to say, after washing, the Berocco alpaca yarn is super soft and deliciously smooshy. I will definately use again.

My stripey socks are coming along, but I gave up trying to knit continental with them. It was just too hard with such a small needle, I kept splitting stitches and it looked awful. So I frogged and started again regular style. Also had a minor brain setback that required me to frog the heel FOUR TIMES before I got it right. The sad thing is the first three times I did the exact same thing each time, thinking that I must have made an unknown mistake, not realizing that I was interpreting the pattern wrong. Sigh. Well, I learned my lesson and I will never mess up a short row heel again!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

i have the best mom ever.

I received a parcel in the mail today from my mom ... do you know what it was? An Easter parcel - full of chocolates and home made Easter decorated sugar cookies! Oh, and did I mention that it was shipped half way across the country? Oh and also that I am an adult? I think I need to start repaying all the sugary kindness and send some cookies back her way.
Thanks mom!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Puppy's first sweater

We took puppy for a hair cut, they kind of butchered his hair, but the end result is still pretty cute ...But then I decided that with no hair, he should really have a sweater ...I knit this up over the weekend. I love it! Puppy does not ... but maybe when it gets cold again he'll appreciate it!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

gasp! blocking success!

I bought more knitpicks yarn. I couldn't help it, it's so cheap yet yummy! I also finally got my DPN WIPs. So I'll be checking the mail in anticipation every day for a few weeks now!

Also, the Coraline blocking worked!!!! I still need to do a second blocking, as the first I was really focusing on length. I got the length! It's perfect and so soft and beautiful, I can't wait to wear it. I just need to lengthen the arms about an inch, and widen the shoulders a little. But it looks absolutely amazing, I am going to love this sweater I can tell ... I ordered some buttons off of etsy so hopefully I will receive them about the same time I finish a second blocking, and then I can take some pictures of the finished product. Love, love, love this one!

Monday, April 13, 2009

pictures of things (or, my busy day)

This post is going to be full of pictures. So let's just start with a nice yummy picture.Earl Grey cupcakes from Cupcakes Galore .... deeeeelicious!! I've already had two. :)

I've been able to do some baking because I no longer have to focus on my yard, which had been flooded as evidenced here:However, some good ice chipping work has cleared the drainage path and it's starting to dry up. Phew.

In knitting news, I finished Coraline!!! Except for the buttons, of course. Here is a pre-blocking picture.Yes, it is that small. How on earth will I fit into it? Here is a during-blocking picture.I estimate this may be the first of a number of blockings to get the right shape, but so far I'm getting some good stretch out of it. And yes, I do need a better blocking solution, as stabbing sewing pins into my carpet is not working very well.

Here is a pre-blocking picture of my dog.And a during-blocking. He is not that interested in blocking apparently.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

i'm such a smocker

I've started the smocking on coraline, it is taking quite a long time but it is turning out quite nicely, I think. The first smock row I did took me close to an hour. I think part of the problem is that I am not using a cable needle, just a dpn, which requires careful juggling. Here is a close up (as close as I can get) of the first 16 rows. I think it looks pretty neat, and it's going to look great once its all done.While I'm displaying photos of coraline, here is the sweater, hanging out on my coffee table. It's starting to have significant mass now. This is the body and the arms up to the shoulders. Only about 30 more rows until completion. I'm still worried it will be too small though, I really hope the yarn stretches as much as the pattern requires.And just for fun, here is my dog, with a bone that is clearly too big for him, but he doesn't mind!

Friday, April 03, 2009

imaginary blog readers

I've decided I want to make the fountain pen shawl from interweave's spring 2009 issue. It never struck me as being something I wanted to make when I first got the magazine, but just yesterday I thought it might be neat to make a lace shawl - I don't know where this idea came from, but I went searching for lace shawl patterns, and the one that caught my eye was the fountain pen shawl. Convenient, since the pattern is sitting on my desk. However, I think I am going to try and finish Coraline first or else it may never get done. I'm finished the stocking stitch portion, so now I am about to start the smocking - I'm excited about that, I've never done smocking before.

Once I've completed that, I'll start the shawl, keep the long term stripeys going, and then start on another sweater - either owls or fls. Speaking of fls, the 0 votes on my last post indicate to me that the only ones reading this blog are the imaginary ones. But that's ok, they are the most forgiving and enthusiastic ones! (In my mind at least, they are saying 'Yaaaayyy!!!!')

Anyways, I'm trying to plan projects to keep diverse ranges as WIPs. If I have 3 pairs of socks, I won't work on them all. But if I have a lace project, a mindless project, and a big thick project, I can switch back and forth to keep the variety going. Oh, now I have an urge to start on that shawl, luckily I can't go to the yarn store until next week anyways, so hopefully I can resist for a while!

Looking forward to the long weekend next week, I need a break from all this doom and gloom.