Monday, August 30, 2010

FO : $12 in Pasadena

Drum roll please!

I give you, $5 in Paris!

Tada! 見て!できたよ!

Pattern: $5 in Paris
Yarn: 3 skeins Patons classic wool
Needles: 3US & 6US
Cast on: July 30th
Cast off : August 28th

I really enjoyed knitting this pattern! It's very simple, and with it being top-down, it's very easy to make adjustments until it fits exactly the way you want it. Knitting this as a knit-along with a friend only sweetened the deal. I never would have thought I could knit a whole sweater in a month, but I guess anything is possible with the right motivation ;)

I decided to go with wool rather than acrylic because I'm going through a phase where I really dislike the feel of acrylic while I knit it. I like the crunch of wool on needles and I've been a fan of Patons classic for awhile now, so I thought it was a sure choice. I've knit mostly scarfs and hats out of it before, and I've always been perfectly happy with how they've come out, so I was a bit surprised to find it a bit scratchy to wear knit up as a sweater. I haven't washed it yet, so it's possible it will soften out. Otherwise it wont be a big deal to wear something light underneath. I'll just chalk it up to experience, clearly my skin is more sensitive than I thought it was!

I don't have any actual problems with the sweater itself though. My problem with changing colors was solved easily while weaving in ends, and although the bind-off is tighter than I would like, it certainly isn't a significant complaint. This is definitely a pattern I'll want to knit again!

Currently suffering from a severe case of 'acute boredom', with startitis being one of the primary symptoms. I may not have enough left-over sweater yarn to knit the Penny wristers like I wanted, so I've cast on and frogged that pattern once already. I'm currently working on another pair of Treads and a Turn a Square hat and am actively scanning the queue and other people's favorited items for further inspiration...


Monday, August 23, 2010

Gauge makes no sense

Ever notice how the math involved in gauge makes no sense?

Like, I knit Treads using worsted weight yarn. The pattern says size 5 needles for a gauge of 6 sts to an inch. The Bernat silky was a loose yarn, so somehow dropping 3 needle sizes worked out perfectly. Now here I am with some lion brand worsted trying to knit the same pattern again. At us2 I'm getting a measly 4 1/2 sts an inch, dropping down to 00's gives me only a 1/2 sts increase to 5 sts an inch. What? The majority of the people who knit this pattern did so using size 5 (or bigger!) ??? Is my personal knitting really THAT lose in comparison to other people? Is it really such a shock that Hey-Teach turned out too big for me despite frantic swatching? Am I just really dumb and doing something retarded with my ruler? Only time can tell. (Or, possibly, any knitting goddess that may or may not exist.)

Meh. /rant

In other news, incase anyone was wondering. Apparently, I am still a 12-year-old girl. Was at the mall the other day getting sibblings' hair cut and wondered into Claire's..... and had the teenage girl version of a 'kid in a candy shop' glee attack. I think I was hyperventilating at one point. I spent a lot of time freaking out over all of the zipper themed jewelry.... I scored this ring :

But there were dozens of variations on necklaces and earrings too. This was my first time seeing the zipper motif in jewelry, and I felt like I'd died and gone to heaven. Of course, appropriate time was spent ogling the skull-and-cross-bones jewelry and the skeleton key necklaces, but those are all old hat compared to the zipper.

Oh, speaking of hats.

Ok. I think I'll stop now. Suffice it to say that, what started out as a chore (Mall, kids hair cut, remember? ) turned into an early Christmas for me. lolz.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

A Sick Turtle...

Hey Blog.

Mostly, things have been going good. Progress on the sweater is... fast - I'm nearly done - and I've made sort of sideways progress on the cursed scarf (I'm probably going to frog it ). Last week I was on this whole crochet kick and I did a half dozen granny squares using leftover yarn... originally I was totally going to go for a whole blanket made out of left over yarn, but I started running out of the original colors, and I'm not sure the perfectionist side of me is ready for patchwork crochet....

Anyway, today I'm a bit sick. I'm thinking of this cold as a 'Summer Storm' because it came on so fast. Literally one day I felt great and the next day - BAMB - I feel miserable. The only warning I had that this was coming was that my sister got it first... I guess I sort of thought popping extra vitamin C and gargling with listerine would defend against it. I was wrong. This phrase "A sick turtle is a slow turtle" is stuck in my head. At college, they'd post this slogan in the bathrooms to encourage hand washing. I always though it was mildly sadistic, because there always seemed to be alot of them posted RIGHT after I got sick, like the universe was mocking me.

Anyway. Unlike Jeanne, I'm finding motivation to finish my sweater to be very low. Once it's finished, I wont have anything exciting to knit. Swallowtail and I are still not speaking, and I don't have any other good yarn on hand. (I have enough acrylic in my stash to make a few hats, but honestly, my acrylic knitting days are numbered. )
Nothing that really excites me is waiting after this sweater, so I'm dragging it out for as long as humanely possible.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Two Hats are Better


Today, a brief review of my two latest FO's. A Chunky knit beanie using the blue Lion brand yarn, and an Irish Hiking Hat in the teal patons chunky.

The chunky knit beanie was kind of interesting to knit. First of all, the lion brand Hometown USA yarn is super bulky, and I didn't have any needles the right size so I had to go out and buy them..... I was insanely lucky and all of the needles and crochet hooks were on clearance at the Jo-anne fabrics that I stumbled into (more on why I care about crochet hooks in another post). Knit this on US15, knit it flat, and then seamed it up afterwards. I've been scared of seaming for awhile but I managed it without a hitch! You really truly can't see the seam from the right side. And the inside looks pretty cool. Check it.

The Irish Hiking Hat.... Not much to say there. It's an awesome pattern, doubly so if you're infatuated with cables, and this is my third go at the pattern. Yeah. Go knit one.

Anyway, don't have much else to say, except I'm almost done with the sweater! (I know, OMG, right? ) I've started the increases for the hips and it's only one stripe, some ribbing and two sleeves between me and a wearable FO!


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Weeks of Sweaters

Today, dear blog, a message for Brent Weeks.

Brent Weeks, if you are out there. I think you are awesome. I've only just discovered your books, and they sucked me right in. I read The way of Shadows pretty much in one go, and yes I was still up reading it at 3AM. But that's not how I know that you will be going permanently to my list of favorite authors. No, what clued me in was that, after reading the first book of the trilogy, my first impulse was not to reach for the second book, but rather, to read the acknowledgments. In simple terms: I love you. My only regret is how much this relationship will cut into my knitting time.

And now, the feature presentation.....

Tada! I did 6 increase rows before setting aside the sleeve stitches, completing one whole stripe and starting on another. At Jeanne's pool, did another 3" after the armpit and then started the waist shaping. So far, so good, as the daring say.
I only have 1 decrease left to go according to the pattern, but I'm thinking of adding one additional decrease round...We shall see. Also there's no actual reference to when to start increasing for the hips... so I'll have to lurk around on Ravelry for more specifics.

Stay tuned...

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

FO: Treads

Hello Blog. S'up?

In all the excitement to start $5 In Paris, poor Treads got pushed into the background and forgotten. Despite sitting pretty and finished on my desk for the past few days, I've only just given it the photo shoot it deserves.
I love this pattern. I think it looks cool, and hip. The texture is nice without being obnoxious to knit, the braids look freaking amazing, and apparently, this pattern is even gender neutral. (My brother has requested a pair. )
This was my first time doing fingers on gloves, and I was grateful to find that they weren't nearly as horrible as I expected. I'm still not convinced about the thumb for this pattern..... It's interesting and I like the fit, but my first love was the thumb from Fetching, which I still think is pretty spiffy.

Pattern : Treads
Yarn : Bernat silky
Needles : 2US DPNS
Cast On: July 26
Cast Off: July 31

This pattern knit up really fast. I knit the first glove from start to finish in one day, while watching season two of Being Human. I attribute the shock of the cliffhanger ending, and the knowledge that I will have to wait until NEXT YEAR to find out what happens next, as a huge factor in why the second glove took so much longer. Other distractions like new projects and 'real life' were only secondary to this first disappointment. In any event, I think these gloves are full of win, and I *gasp* can't wait until it's cold enough to wear them!


PS. The bernat silky is really soft and knits up loosely. *I* like it and I'd recommend it to other acrylic knitters. One thing to be aware of though, is that after only wearing these gloves for small bits of time, they are already developing a bit of a 'yarn halo'. If it doesn't get more pronounced than it already is than it's no big deal but.... Time will tell.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Super Bulky

Dear Blog.

Remember that trip to AC Moore? The one where I went crazy and decided to start a sweater project? Well, I bought more than just sweater yarn. Two additional skeins. One, Paton's Shetland Chunky, in a very romantic shade of soft teal. The other, Lion Brand Hometown USA In a Super Bulky Charlotte Blue. I love these two skeins of yarn, and the fact that I bought them is absolute proof of my ironclad self-control. Twice, two times I went to AC Moore and petted, fawned over, and drooled on these skeins. I wanted them, Oh how I wanted them. But I knew I was on a yarn budget and supposedly working out my differences with my Swallowtail shawl. It was only on that third fateful visit that I finally bought them. If that isn't self-denial I don't know what is!
I absolutely love the color of the Patons yarn.... But the Hometown is so perfectly squishy! it makes me so happy, just squishing and squashing it. I wish I could meld the two skeins together and make one perfectly colored happy, squishy, shetland skein of pure bliss.

If I have my way, they will both become hats. One, full of cabled goodness, and the other a simple stockinette slouch with a seed stitch brim. (Yes, I love this yarn so much I'm even willing to knit seed stitch for it. That's true dedication)

I've got my hands full with other things *chough*sweaters,lace,cursedscarf*cough* but expect to see these two beauties hitting the WIP list very soon.