Friday, December 28, 2007

Haha, I didn't do any Christmas knitting this year.

I've been knitting the Nomad Hat and Scarf from Interweave Knits Fall 07 issue, which is still the last one I've gotten (Yeah, I could whine about it but my head hurts too much for shrill noises). Instead of the called-for yarn, I'm using Bernat Alpaca because it was cheap on sale. It's soft, I seem to not be allergic to alpaca (score!!!!) and it being a blend (with acrylic) rather than bulky-weight 100% alpaca yarn means I won't be too overheated if I try to wear it, since after all, I live in south Texas. It almost never gets freezing.
This yarn sheds. The photographic evidence shows the yarn's hairs all over my knee. But I really don't mind that much, because it really reminds me of Pooh this way. She was a prolific shedder, and her hairs were similarly greyish white.
Oh, I've made myself sad.

Changing the subject then! I keep forgetting to take a GOOD picture of my laburnum socks, but this will just have to do! I knit them from Panda Cotton in Red Cinnamon, using two balls, toe-up on 2 circular needles, size 1. I used the instructions from Sensational Knitted Socks, except that I used a Turkish cast-on. They bias a bit because of the stitch pattern, but they're comfy and I like the bright colors. They look great with my red Birkenstocks.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Two examples of "Cozy"

Timothy has found my pillow to be juuuust the right size for himself. It's the kind that has an indentation in the middle, and is good for supporting my neck while I sleep, but Timmy discovered its secret other purpose of cat bed. Such a clever boy.
Oh yeah, and remember how I sometimes knit? Well, I've actually got a FO to show, but it's tiny.

My favorite lip-balm, Burt's Bees, had become lost! I was pretty distraught and for a week or so went around with dry lips. My Mom, my hero, bought me a new tube and I vowed to never lose it again, so I made a cozy. Not much later the old tube showed up, but oh well. I used a minuscule amount of Sugar 'n Cream in countryside ombre, and US size six needles. I saw it as an opportunity to play with double-knitting, and I really like the way the yarn makes stripes when I used so few stitches. Now it's attached to my keychain so I can't leave home without it.

Eventually, I'll post photos of my brand new socks! Won't that be nice?

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Stripey wrist-warmers

I did not knit these. All I did was cut the holey parts (the feet) off some knee-socks and then make a ruffly edge with the sewing machine. But they're cute anyway, and I like that this photo includes my Banzai inspecting my work.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I suck at titling my posts

Pat's hat has been finished and given to its recipient. If I'd been thinking this morning I'd have brought my camera with me to church to get a picture of the hat on its owner, but I have been feeling dreadful. I'd had this headache for probably 34 hours?
Anyway. I've since embarked on a new project, and photographed the (mid-blocking) swatch: As usual, my photography kinda sucks hard, but I really like this lace pattern and am going to use it on a stole for myself. Though the swatch is in color #80 (ivory), I'll do the stole in #59 (orange) and it will be great. The pattern is Vine Lace from Barbara G. Walker's Treasury of Knitting Patterns (the first) and is so easy I feel like I'm cheating.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Third time's the charm, eh Vin?

Okay, well. Pat, a woman who goes to my church and loves Newsboy-style hats (I can't blame her!) has asked me to make her the "Headline News" cap from Stitch 'n Bitch Nation, in "fire-engine red". I asked what kind of yarn she wanted it out of and she requested acrylic since it's washable.
Monday I went to Yarnivore to get some orange yarn to knit a something to go with my new Earth-mother dress that I love (I got Plymouth Royal Bamboo for that btw) and while there I asked Melanie for help finding a really bright red acrylic. She produced Dark Horse Yarns "Fantasy" and I squeezed the skein. It does not feel acrylic. So I checked the label--aha! It's 50% nylon. Nylon is my guilty pleasure fiber. It's made of coal, so it's not exactly eco-friendly, but it feels as soft as bunnies.
So anyway I've been knitting this dang hat all week, because I'm just incompetent. I didn't like the gap between the last knit stitch and the first purl stitch on my wide ribs so I went down a needle size, which required me to use a different number of stitches and I had a headache. Then I decided to omit the first of two purl stitches at each occurrence then pick up the missing stitch near the end, which worked but it all got cruddy after that as the really loose top stitches didn't match the neat tight stitches below. And so now I've finally decided to just do it as written and hope that some blocking will miraculously make it not so bad (Don't spoil my fantasy). Only now I've lost my cable needle.
So I'm giving cabling without a needle a try, as learned from Grumperina's tutorial here. I've done one round of them, and it looks kiiiiinda messy, but I guess that'll just happen when using worsted weight yarn on 6.5mm needles?

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Bamboo socks, yum.

I finished these socks quite a while ago, but only recently have gotten around to taking a picture. I used the turkish cast-on, found at Fluffy Knitter Deb's blog. I worked in beaded rib stitch and followed the heel instructions as found in Charlene Schurch's Sensational Knitted Socks. As might be expected, the second one turned out better--the toe was less tight and heel moreso. As my feet are wide at the toe and narrow at the heel, these changes were welcome, but the first sock is still usable and quite comfy. I haven't really worn socks for several months now, as warm weather makes anything but my Birkenstocks seem a silly choice, but I'm sure they'll get plenty of use this winter. Maybe under my Birkenstocks.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

So many pictures.

Heh heh heh.
These are very belatedly posted, even though they were finished and given to their recipients before Christmas. But... uh... well, no time like the present to post them!

And I'd like to say that Ravelry has inspired me to get on the ball about this stuff (I can be found there as Angeluhh) but it didn't. It was Cutie. I took some cute pictures of him with my parents' camera today and then borrowed said camera to get the pictures off it and found our Christmas pictures too.

Cutie turned 19 on July 4th and he's my inspiration. I thought he looked super sweet rolled up like that. I love you Cutie.

But here are some things Ravelry DID inspire me to photograph (I am so bad at the taking pictures):
Needle Roll that I made when I'd just started knitting.

And my Shapely Tank that I've been wearing a LOT this summer (see that unfortunate color pooling? Yeeeeah.):

And finally, my Lutea Lace-Sleeved Shell, which I've also been wearing a lot but which I washed in the washer making it fuzzy. I need shots of me actually wearing these but something > nothing, yes?

And now finally, my Work-in-Progress.
17july07 001
I love the way this yarn looks in the feather & fan pattern, and it's easy enough I can work it in front of the TV or whatever. The only concern I have is that my yarns so far are two different dye lots, but that didn't really dawn on me until I had gotten quite far into skein #2 and said, "Oh my, these don't quite match." I'm debating whether it's noticeable enough to rip out... which I do not want to do.

Monday, July 09, 2007

a wip

I cast on 288 stitches for this, which will become a tunic (knock on wood) and am working feather & fan pattern in the round. All was going smoothly until one of my Denise cables did this:

Well. After a brief moment of panic, I started right at work rescuing the piece. Victory! As for the cable, the Denise people are pretty great about that, so I'll send it off and get my replacement pretty soon. My only concern is that this has happened before. I don't think I'm a particularly rough knitter...

Edit: 288 was way too many stitches. Gotta rip.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Yarn porn, and a wee little FO

Admire my photographic (total non-) skills.

This is Blue Sky Alpaca Organic Cotton, in color 83 (sage). It's worsted weight, but seems quite a lot thicker than other worsteds I've used. So far I'm using 8s and getting about 3.25 st/inch. Am I counting right? sacre bleu. But oh man is it soft.

Story time!
I have been using Dove body wash for like uber-sensitive skin with no perfumes or anything, and that's all well and good, except that the new bottle it comes in has a lid that's difficult to remove, and I usually like to use "Lotion Saver" bottle couplers to get the last bits of stuff from one bottle to the next so less gets wasted. But with lids that don't like being removed (or replaced once removed) and that lack the standard bottle threading that makes the lotion saver a viable tactic, that gets a little tricky. Not to mention, Dove is made by Unilver and they've made no promises (as far as I know) to, say, not torture animals in the name of testing their products. Add to that the fact that, even though the plastic bottles are recyclable, reduction is still always better. So I decided to go with bar soap. Specifically, Dr. Bronner's, a bar of which I picked up at Sun Harvest, in peppermint scent (one that's never caused me allergic reactions!). I was drawn to it because it's 100% cruelty-free, uses fair-trade ingredients, and has hemp oil, and I'm a huge fan of hemp.
I was feeling all good, but then I couldn't find my soap-saving sack thing from way back. Therefore, I made one. And none of the patterns online really satisfied me. I wanted to knit one because I like knitting, and crochet projects never really work out well for me. Plus, I wanted to use nylon yarn that I have lying around, and most of what I was finding called for worsted-weight cotton, which is great stuff, but takes forever to dry. So I just winged it. Wung it? Wang?

Sorry about that unsightly shadow. Anyway, it's pretty simple. Size four needles. Turkish cast-on 24 stitches (12 wraps), did a couple rounds stockinette then switched to seed-stitch until it was long enough, then a couple more st st rounds, a round of yo, k2tog, a couple more st st rounds, and bound off with a sz 9 so it wouldn't be too tight to get the soap in there. And it fits perfectly. And I already used it too, and it works great. Is it my imagination or did I get cleaner this morning than ever before? Dudes, my SOUL is cleaner.
That's probably the hemp talking.

Oh, one more thing: Those socks I made, they were only 40% wool, and superwash at that, but apparently even THAT is enough to irritate my stupid feet so FINE. I give up! I will seriously never try knitting wool things for myself ever again!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

shaken, not stirred.

Ugh. Is the little pop-up on the blogger dashboard (even though your blogs are already showing) a phishing thing? Because I fell for it. And kept on falling for it. And then I thought, "Oh, I'm already logged in... OH DAMN."
That's neither here nor there as I have taken care of it.
Now! I recklessly spent a chunk of my paycheck on an Ultimate Sweater Machine. I had a 50% off coupon for Joann's and ... well... I am weak. I like toys. Especially knitting-related toys. And possibly my least favorite knitting to do is back-and-forth stockinette (that's just knitting; as far as finishing, well, I hate ALL that).
It arrived today and I wasted no time in setting it up and beginning to knit with it. Only AFTER that did I watch the video that came with it, which is mind-numbingly boring. I watched it on 2x speed and even then the lady didn't seem to be talking THAT fast. Anyway, I didn't watch the WHOLE thing because I was eager to get to the projects, which I had heard are something like a workbook; you do each and learn new stuff.
So I started with the scarf which I hate.
I didn't bother with the seaming it up or attaching tassels because I hate this look of worsted weight yarn that is knitted on size 15 needles, single-stranded. This is achieved here through dropping every other stitch. Yeah, it's neat that it works that way but... seriously. If I wanted that look I'd just handknit it on needles that were way too big. It's not pretty.
Also I evidently haven't learned not to drop stitches all over the place. Irritating! AND one of the latches is BROKEN so ... I don't know what to do about that.
In short, I haven't decided yet if I hate this totally or just haven't gotten it down yet. In the meantime, it makes me feel like a really good hand-knitter.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


That was the cast-on edge. The yarn broke when I was putting on my sock.
Granted, I broke this same yarn twice while winding it and that's why the yarn left over is in several pieces but, still. I mean, I thought I must have been being uncharacteristically rough on it but as it turns out, no. This yarn is just weak! Boo!

Sunday, March 18, 2007


They're just plain stockinette with a little bit of ribbing at the top; top-down, heel flap. Kitchener toe. My first socks ever. Done in Plymouth Sockotta (45% cotton, 40% Superwash wool, 15% nylon) on US 2 DPN, as per the label, but I think if I use this yarn again for socks I'll want a tighter guage because I can feel individual purl bumps on the soles of my feet.
I made them pretty short because I didn't know how far the skein would go, and so I'm left with enough to make something else small-ish.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

just a link

This pattern: Felted Red Rose Handbag Made me laugh for about a solid minute.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Not-so-Local Yarn Stores

On Wednesday Mom and I made a trip up to the town of Boerne, just outside of San Antonio. We knew there was a yarn shop there so we set out to find it. Well, we had a hard time finding Rosewood Yarns, even though it's on Rosewood street and just off of Main. We seriously drove right by it without seeing it somehow. That turned out to have been Divine intervention because when we were lost we located another store by the name of Ewe and Eye. I don't know if she stocked every color of Tahki Cotton Classic, but she may well have. I scored a set of bamboo #0 DPNs which makes me happier than it should, and a spool of "Knitting-in elastic" in black. Yayyyyyyy for toys. Then we did eventually find Rosewood Yarn and they had banana silk yarn! I've long been intrigued by this, and since I've already gotten hemp, corn, soy, and bamboo yarns, banana was due! I could not wait to get home and play with swift, winder, and yarn and produce:
BALLS I love that the one on the right, which is called "Rangi Changi" looks like recycled sari silk, but without all the death!