Monday, January 28, 2013

Monday Meh

Hello Everyone, Today I have more to say on the subject of crochet. For starters, that is a really weird word to say, I'm always spelling it wrong, and don't get me started on how many times I have referred to my crochet as "my knitting" this past week. Guess I can't get mad when other people get them mixed up anymore!

I finished my Hat (blog post pending ) and, eager to start on a new crochet adventure, I started these mitts with some Lorna's Lace I had on hand.

First I cast on 60 stitches like the pattern said. Since I was using a smaller hook than called for I figured I'd be set. No such luck.

Then I cast on 40 stitches. This fit much more snugly (to the point where it was a bit tight to get over my thumb)  However somewhere along the line I started adding stitches

Now I have almost 50 stitches.  Ack! I know this problem is related to the problem I had with my hat - not joining the next round consistently. Instead of a nice tidy line of joins I had this weird zigzag thing going on. While the mitt's joins seemed to line up much nicer, I must still be doing something wrong here to create new stitches. I fear that not only will I have to rip out and start (almost ) from the beginning, but I will have to COUNT to 40 every row until I figure out what I'm doing wrong.

Also. The pattern didn't specify exactly how to work the thumb, so I guessed. Does this look right?

I realized when I said that I had a book of 'fancy crochet patterns' that I didn't really specify what I meant. Just so that we're on the same page, it's this book.

I love pretty much everything in this book, but especially love the Shimmer beaded lace cape and the Visage Lace Beret

Friday, January 25, 2013

FO : Masonic Lodge

Hello everyone, I meant to post this way sooner but the day kind of ran away on me! Long story short there was a deposit put on a reception hall for a wedding, and then Aaron insisted on watching Hunt for the Red October and I completely forgot about knitting for a scary chunk of time. How does that even happen?

Anyway, I finished Aaron's socks and I think they are pretty spiffy.

Pattern: Masonic Lodge
Needles : US 0
Yarn : Shibui Sock (2 skeins)
color : Midnight
Cast on: Jan 5th
Cast off: Jan 20th

This was my first time knitting with Shibui sock. Instant favorite! Such a pleasure to knit up and the colors are just enchanting. I really enjoyed the slight variations in blues. They mostly behaved and gave me a pretty decent attempt at stripes, but I almost like the heel/toe part better where the colors all just kind of blurred together without actually pooling.

Although I am on a huge crochet granny square kick right now, you will NOT see the left overs from this project in something crochet. I have something else in my queue in mind for this :)

Make sure to check out Tami's  for more FO's.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Crochet or Die

Hello all, Today's WIPW post needs a bit of an introduction.
I am a knitter. I've been knitting for a long time and I love knitting. I'm also a dabbler. I can't stand seeing someone do something crafty without at least finding out the basics of how it works. So I've had an on and off again affair with crochet. One of my BFF's Crochets, she's bought me a few crochet books and patterns, and occasionally, due to her influence, I've knit masses of random unrelated granny squares, and once, even a hat.

I want to get better, but unlike with knitting, every time I start a crochet project I have to re-learn all the stitches. And the patterns in the book I have are all knit with difficult types of yarn, like lace weight, or ribbon yarn. So I want to make sure I really have stuff down before I start. Plus it's all charted in that book, and crochet charts still look like black magic to me!

All that being said, I promised myself I would try to knit crochet This Hat after I finished Aaron's socks. (Finished, btw, photos on friday. )

But I wanted to practice the stitches first, which meant granny squares. Last week on WIPW I read about a bunch of crochet projects that other people were doing that inspired my granny square choices.

Yarnknitreadlit got me started with granny square CALS and a cool plaid crochet blanket
Little Bird knits  is doing a weekly granny square pattern. So is
8th Gem
Mixedmartialarts introduced me to this pattern, which I am now obsessed with!

So, to make a long story short. I've been making Granny Squares using leftover sock yarn and a 3.50 MM crochet hook.

I also finished the band for the hat :

The puff stitch is so relaxing I can't put the thing down!


For more WIPW posts visit Tami's Blog!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


So I'm trying something different today. A few things actually. There's this cool work-in-progress thing going on that I found out about on Ravelry, I thought it would be cool to try to be more social and participate in some group stuff.  Also, hopefully I'll get some new readers. Hello everyone :)

So this is what my workspace looks like on the week-end. 
My computer is on the right and Aaron's is on the left. We generally sit side by side knitting, playing gameboy, watching TV, and surfing. Usually simultaneously. All that diet coke belongs to Aaron. I don't like soda and caffeine makes me crazy. But he goes through several a day!

As you can see, I've got a lot going on. The blue yarn is the second sock for my Dreamy Knight project. I feel relatively optimistic in the possibility of finishing the pair in just two short weeks. A record for me with socks! The little pink book the yarn is sitting on is my small-project notebook. It's graphing paper so I can keep all of my pattern charts and notes in one place that fits in my purse.  Also in the picture is a Dragon Ball Z DVD (loads of knitting gets done during that ) Below that is the Juneberry chart, and then a book on Russian Grammar. The dry erase markers are for practicing various languages on my dry erase board. Currently Aaron is teaching me Russian and I am brushing up on my Japanese and trying to teach what I know to him. 

And this is one of my many WIPs. The Juneberry shawl, knit with SHELTER. It's coming along well. I love how sharp the stitch definition is and how crunchy the yarn is. I'm about half-way through chart D and my 2nd skien of yarn. I'm really enjoying this project and would be farther along if it wasn't so big. Cant' really cart this to work with me so I'm averaging 3-4 rows of this during the week. More on week-ends if I'm not too busy.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Knit Knight

Today's WIP highlight is the Masonic Lodge socks.
I started knitting them on Saturday. Got the cuff done and memorized the pattern for the leg and then set them aside. (No point wasting an easily memorized pattern on a weekend). On Monday I knit the whole leg at work, and then at home I tried to finish the heel flap and gusset. I couldn't get it all done in time, however, and not wanting to deal with that fiddlyness at my desk, the Zombie Vixen Mitts went to work with me on Tuesday and Wednesday instead.

I did have a pretty serious moment of panic doing the heel flap, where for several minutes the instructions for continuing the pattern looked like complete gibberish and I was very upset. Fortunately the moment passed and then everything worked out ok.  The long and short of it is that today I knit the first 4 inches of the foot, and only have 3 inches left before I start the toe decreases. I think I'm making pretty good progress on these.

Another kind of cool thing about this project; I think I'm finally getting the hang of turning the heel and the gusset! I could almost but not quiet do the whole heel from memory, which was kind of cool. I had the instructions on hand but I found myself regularly anticipating the next step and then just double checking with the instructions to make sure I was right.  Pretty sweet.

Monday, January 7, 2013

WIP Report

I got a whole lot of knitting done this past weekend.

Finished the right Zombie Vixen mitt and cast on for the Left.

Cast on a new pair of socks. Masonic Lodge The yarn is Shibui sock in the color midnight. I'm a little pleased with myself because Yarn Harlot just finished a pair of socks in the same yarn and color-way (I already had the yarn in my stash). Not that I'm stalking her projects or anything... no....

Anyway. I'm knitting these for Aaron to placate his frequent sweater inquiries. It's going to be fun knitting for size 10 feet!  I'm really loving this pattern because it's so simple that I can knit the leg at work without really having to pay much attention, but it's interesting enough to still be somewhat stimulating. Not sure but the color might be too dark for the cable to really show up much. But subdued is manly, right?

And lastly, the Juneberry shawl is progressing rapidly.

Finished chart C on Sunday night and thought "Woah, all I have is chart D and the knit on edge. Darn!" After which I promptly put it down and started knitting something else. A project and yarn combo this delicious doesn't happen every day, and I definitely plan to savour it a little before binding off!

Of course, I'm only on my 2nd of a total of 4 balls, so logic says that I still have a ways to go. Still. You can never be too safe!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Welcome to 2013

Hello 2013!

This post comes a *little* late, but I think it's still OK for me to wish everyone a happy new year. I started mine right by ending 2012 on the right foot.

The Vampire Boyfriend Socks.
Started : 7OCT11
Finished : 30DEC12
Yarn: Knit Picks Essential Kettle Dyed
Needles : Silver 0US

Yarn : Decent for the price. Soft. Splitty. I used one skein per sock (with left overs) and only discovered afterwards that they were radically different dye lots. I'll own up to that seriously basic knitting error. My Bad.
Pattern : Good, Love the concept. Chart easy to read and instructions clear. You have to seriously love cables to knit this on tiny needles though.
Why It took Over a Year : Knit the toe of the first sock two inches too long and grafted it together. 'Nuff said. All that stood between me and completion on the 30th was unraveling the toe and re-knitting about 30 rows....

Having cast off the bad knitting vibes from 2012, I spent New Years swatching and ball-winding, hoping to gain favor with the knitting gods...

And today I cast on Juneberry.

I feel good. It's been in my queue since the pattern was released in 2010.

And since it's New Years, here are my knitting goals for 2013.
The first one is simple (and mostly done). Re-do the queue to only include stuff that I already have the yarn for or that I plan on buying the yarn for soon. It's to help de-stash and prevent (wasteful) yarn spending.

Knit the following.

- a real honest to goodness wearable sweater. Hopefully This One in a blue or green shade of cascade.

- More and bigger lace shawls. At least one in silk. Also for the love of god stop impulse buying variegated lace! Find a reliable source of nice solid-color lace weight yarn.

- Alternative natural fibers. Try out Silk, Bamboo, And Cotton. Potentially as a fingering/DK weight cardigan.

- Spinning. The spinning wheel thing keeps getting pushed back due to unavoidable budget constraints. *cough*stupidcarandbuyingahouse*cough* But I have my drop spindle back, so spin the BFL with that. Maybe by the time I finished it I'll have the wheel to spin my other two fiber club braids with.

I think that's pretty doable. Don't you?

P.S Also, crochet something.