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Posts Tagged ‘Multiple WIPs’

Project bags

I’m still crafting

I was still crafting throughout the long dry spell, and I have had had other things to blog about since I started posting again, so this seemed like a good time to join in Paula’s WiP Wednesday push (as started on the Tangled Mess blog).  Depending on how this goes I might join in FO Fridays as well.

Mont Royal Socks

I always have a pair of socks on my needles.  In particular, it seems that I always have this pair of socks on my needles.  I started them in July of last year, they’re toe up and I haven’t reached the heel turn yet.  I’m generally a slow sock knitter for whatever reason, and this pair is not ‘mindless knitting’, so it’s been a row now and again.

Slow going or not, I do like these.

Mont Royal status

Charming Crawling Eyeball

One of the things I did during my posting hiatus was to join in the Charm City Yarn Crawl.  I didn’t hit six shops (so I didn’t join the drawing), but I did pick up a skein at each shop I visited. It did kind of break my heart not to get more, but reality intervened. Here was my tour:

Clover Hill Yarn Shop: I picked up a skein of Hikoo by Skacel Abracadabra.  This is a photosensitive yarn.  Mine turns pink in sunlight and, as soon as I had it, I had the idea of the theme project for my crawl.

All About Yarn: This is my LYS. I grabbed a skein of Berroco Linus (which is a ribbon yarn) in a color very similar to the Abracadabra when it’s not in sunlight.  The texture is very different.

Lovelyarns: I got a skein of JoJoland Tonic in an amazing blue.

The Knitting Boutique: One skein of Kraemer Yarns Perfection in the sand colorway.

Have you guessed the project?

Captain models crawling eyeball

Captain graciously modeling the (Yarn) Crawling Eyeball Hat

Guinan Hat

Guinan Spiral

This pattern has been one of my Ravelry favorites for a long time, so when my friend Kay asked if I had any suggestions for a Guinan costume it came to mind immediately.  It turns out that Kay didn’t think she had time to finish it before the event, so I told her I’d gladly do the work in exchange for the pattern, so it’s a win-win.  It’s also my 200th Ravelry project.

The construction on this one is interesting.  I used split ring stitch markers to keep four strands of yarn ‘live’ at a time.

I expect to finish it up today

Guinan unassembled

 

Millers Fire

My one spinning WiP is using the Millers Fire colorway from Alpaca Joy on a mini destiny spindle from Snyders Spindles.

August 8

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I didn’t win the Slipped Stitch Studios giveaway.  PhatFiber is hosting a  number of giveaways for 20 August.  I entered the “shiny briny” giveaway, the “Golden threads breed study” giveaway

 

 

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What was I Thinking?

I’m working on at least four projects with due dates, only three of which I have started, and I’m starting a new craft.  This seems crazy.

Honestly, I wasn’t.  Thinking was something I was unable to do.  Spinning, I could manage.

I couldn’t think for the past few days, because I had a migraine.  Yes, a migraine which lasted (on and off) for about two days, which mine generally do.  So while I wasn’t lying down in a dark room, or scalding my head under pounding hot water, or shuffling around in a haze of uselessness and despair, I still wasn’t in any shape to knit.  True, I’ve got a couple of decent ‘no brain needed’ projects going right now, but even those would have required more ‘cope’ than I could possibly muster.

Alphyn

On the other hand, my drop spindle didn’t require much brain power.  At least, not at my level of expectation.  And the spinning was relaxing, almost hypnotic.  So, basically, my migraine meant that I finished that half ounce of sample yarn which came with the Alphyn spindle very quickly.

Full Spindle

See, that’s  lot of yarn, volume wise.  It’s also (supposedly) a single.  Yup, fuzz brain, needed the round and round, couldn’t make anything thin and fine and delicate, and you know what?  I don’t care in the slightest.  I took this big chunky single and wrapped it around my hand.

andean windThis weird little cat’s cradle looking thing is the beginning of  an Andean Bracelet.  This is a technique which lets you reach both ends of the single at the same time, to easily ply them together without tangling. IAndean bracelett didn’t take very long at all to transfer the whole spindle to my hand.

Then I could have just held the two ends together, and plied them directly.  I was cowardly, however, and didn’t want to be stuck with the bracelet still around my wrist if I couldn’t do it all in one sitting, so I wound the two ends onto my nostepinne as a center pull ball.

Plied SpindleThen I just attached the two ends of the single to the same spindle and spun it in the opposite direction.  Here you can really see how fat the yarn is.

Since I don’t have a niddy noddy to neatly skein and measure my yarn, I set my umbrella swift to a one yard diameter and kept track of how many times I could wrap the plied yarn around it. skeining

As it turns out, I had almost (but not quite) seven yards.  This is from a little less than half an ounce of fiber, that’s a lot of weight for a little length… A quick check counting WPI (wraps per inch) told me it was ‘super bulky’ yarn.  In my migraine fuzzed state I didn’t believe it, so I weighed it, and took a look at the bottom of my Knit Picks yarn scale, which also told me it is super bulky yarn.

So I soaked it, and whacked it a few times to even out the twist.set

Then I hung it up to dry, and wrapped it neatly up.

geode one

So here it is.  Super sloppy, bulky, uneven, not very much of it…  I don’t care.  I think it’s beautiful and I really love it.  I’m pretty sure I’d have had to rip out and reknit any of my ‘on a deadline’ projects, so I don’t begrudge myself the time ‘wasted’….

On the other hand, this Jacob/Alpaca fleece which has been hibernating in my stash for years (not always under a cat) is just going to have to wait.

Jacob Alpaca

 

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I didn’t win the tea from Lisa Bogart.  She’s not doing any December giveaways, but please check out her blog, she’s putting up wonderful Christmas album covers you won’t want to miss. I entered the Phat Fiber Drawing (20 December) for a skein of handspun hand dyed yarn from Willow Fairy Wool.

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Life is full of frustrations

Well, the not-ready-to-talk-about project has hit a snag.  I feel that I’m handling it pretty well, but I’m not quite ready to blog about it yet. Other areas of my life aren’t much easier. This morning DH dropped me off at the Motor Vehicles Express office.  It’s a mile and change from home, across the street from a weekly coffee-and-yarn meetup I like to go to.  The office had barely opened, so there wasn’t too much of a line.  The clerk couldn’t give me the duplicate title I needed, but she could write down the information I needed to order it online.  This was about what I’d expected, so I thanked her, tucked the slip of paper in my wallet, and went on the knitting meet up.

The meet up was fun.  I don’t know the other knitters (and crocheter) very well, but I’m starting to.  One woman there has a daughter who’s been a PCV twice, who is just starting a job teaching English in Indonesia.  We met each others, and both daughters, at previous meet ups, so we swapped stories and that was good.

I tried multiple times to create a provisional cast on for a lined toddler cap.  Honestly, I should be able to do this by now without referring to the internet, but no… no such luck.  I gave up and worked on the cricket sweater for my husband instead.

After I walked home, the paper was gone.  It must have fallen out of my wallet when I got my coffee.  Totally my own fault, but I didn’t want to walk down and back again so I called it a loss and I’ll just have him drop me off again tomorrow.

This afternoon I got the letter Abby sent me before leaving for Senegal.  It was lovely, but I found myself crying again.  This is going to be hard.

Knitting News

So now I have four WiPs, one for each project bag.  I expect the sweater is going to get too big for the largest bag pretty soon.  Even if it doesn’t, I have bought yarn for the Aidez, which is much bulkier.  So I ordered a new project bag.

The Exploding Tardis Project Bag from AmeliaXJIoy’s Etsy shop

Honestly, I think missing Abby has prompted a big bout of ‘retail therapy’.  I invested in a second CritSuccess counter ring (this one in blue – so pretty!). I also got a swift cover from Slipped Stitch Studios, because I’ve been kicking myself for missing the chance to get that one in the Exploding Tardis print.

So now that I’m going to have a fifth project bag, I naturally had to order a notions case to go with it.  I was torn between the Namaste “Better Buddy” case and the Lantern Moon “Mindy Pocket” case.  They’re both kind of expensive for notions cases, but they’re cheaper than drinking…

Anyway, I ordered the Namaste online, because I noticed that retailers were kind of low on stock.  Then someone at the knitting group told me that they’re stopping production because the Pleather doesn’t wear well.  Oh well, we’ll see how long I can get mine to last for.

Following a conversation on Ravelry, I’ve decided to add a pen and notebook to each of my notions bags.  Post it notes for the small boxes, handmade notebooks from Etsy for the larger ones.

4 map bound mini-journals from Carta Papiera on Etsy

For pens I’ve gotten a Fisher Space Pen stowaway (a neat, compact pen), an Ohto Petit B (a really pretty, tiny pen), a Xonex Piccollo (wow! is this thing tiny) and a keychain pen/stylus (the last of which I found at the checkout at FedexKinko’s).  The Namaste buddy is bigger than any of my current pouches, so I’ll probably get a larger writing implement for that.

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I didn’t win the Mooglyblog “Cast Off Chemo” CD, but I did bid on (and win) a cowl kit their eBay fundraiser.  I entered a drawing for a chocolate hamper from Plutonium Muffins (21 October)

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September was rather a crazy month for us.  I’m not going to go into too much detail, but we saw Abby safely off to her Peace Corps staging, and waited breathlessly to learn that she’s arrived safely in Senegal.  It still churns up all sorts of different emotions to think about it, so I’m just going to get back to blogging about knitting.

It’s been a month since I’ve posted, so here goes.

Finished Objects

I finished the Stereotypical Shades in September, and that’s it.  Yup, a whole month, and only one FO.  Not that I’m down on myself, or the project.  It turned out beautifully:

Stereotypical FO

It was a stashbuster project.  I used diadem (leftover from the Win Either Way cowl) and Pagewood Farm Denali sock yarn (left over from the Wayfarer shawl) on the outside, and Old Maiden Aunt laceweight (from the Bigger on the Inside shawl) for the lining.Stereotypical WIPAs you can see the color values are very close to each other.  If I knit this one again I’ll go for something which pops a bit more, but I’m still pleased with this one.

Works in Progress

The Mont Royal socks are just starting to come together.

Mont Royal WiP

The cricket sweater for my husband is coming along, but slowly.  I haven’t gotten to the armholes yet.  Since I’m working it in pieces that means very slowly indeed.

I’ve cast on another shawl.  This one is Illustriation, by Wooly Thoughts.  It’s a fun striped and textured shawl, which does the standard Illusion thing of looking different depending on the angle of observation.

Illustriation WiPShades of purple for this one.

Row Counter

What I’m really excited about right now is my new row counter.  It’s definitely an indulgence, but I’m thinking I’ll have to budget and get one for each project bag.  It’s a ring

CritSucessIt’s made by a CritSuccess, which is a high end RPG supply company, the other rings they sell are dice. How cool is that?!  (watch for them on Geek and Sundry this holiday season!).  I really cannot fangirl enough about this.

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I didn’t win any of the giveaways I had entered.   I entered Lisa Bogart’s latest giveaway, for a copy of her book Knit, Purl, Pray (end of October).  I also signed up for another Mooglyblog giveaway, this one for Yarn Happy (7 October)

So, yeah.  That was my September.  Hopefully I’ll do better about sharing October as it unfolds.

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Yarn Projects

My Most Recent FO

Goatless Pocket

I picked up stitches on the inside right where the bottom met the side. First stitch of each row I K2Tog with body of bag, slipped last stitch of each row. It worked well. (click for enlarged picture)

I finished the felted handbag using mohair from Flying Goat Farm.  I ran out of the darker brown just as I got to the handle break, so I switched to the orange there.    I had a bit of orange left over, which I used to make a knit-in (garter stitch) interior pocket.  I didn’t have quite enough to make it a good cel phone pocket, but it’ll be good for something, I’m sure.

The bag (pre felting) was a little bit lumpy and awkward, but I was sure it was going to turn out nicely.

Unfelted Goatless

Yeah, I know, if I was more consistent in my tension I wouldn’t have this much unevenness.  BUT – I kept my floats short (see pocket picture above) and felting is a really forgiving process.

Goatless Felted

I’m very happy with the result.  At some point I plan to seam up the swatch ans turn it into a change purse, but other than that it’s good to go!

Current WiPs

So – four project bags, four projects.  From oldest to newest –

Mont Royal Socks

Mont Royal patternThese are slow going, mostly because 1) I’m working on four projects and 2) they’re not mindless.  This picture clearly shows the downside of the asymmetric toes – the stitch pattern is totally centered in the base pattern.  It doesn’t bug me enough to frog and re-knit, but it’s worth remembering for the next pair.  Anyway, the pattern is lovely, the CoBaSi yarn is doing the right thing, I’m happy with these, even if they won’t be done until (at this rate) mid – fall or so.

Fifth Doctor Sweater

This is the project I alluded to in the cockroach post. I’m knitting my husband a sweater.  Now, there’s a knitting superstition that knitting your boyfriend a sweater dooms the relationship*, but I have it on reliable authority that that doesn’t go for spouses.  Besides, over 24 years of marriage we’ve gone through so much (of the good and the bad) that I don’t think a little curse can make much difference…

Because it’s cotton I  not only blocked the swatch, I hung it overnight before re-measuring it.Five Swatch

Yes, with cotton it really does grow and stretch with blocking and hanging.  About a 10% vertical difference, enough that I know to knit it just a tad short.  Not only did I get valuable information, I can use the swatch as a dishcloth (but I’ll hold onto it until the sweater is pieced and finished, just in case).

Five Cast On Casting onto a large project (like a sweater) always intimidates me a little, so I placed a marker every twenty stitches during the cast on, and double counted those stitches, to make sure I had the right stitch count.  I’m not sure how much time it saved over double and triple counting the stitches straight off would have taken, but it did lower my anxiety level about the whole process.

This sweater is the Cricket Jumper from Joy Gammon’s The Doctor Who Pattern Book, because Five is his Doctor.  You will notice it runs over $30 on Amazon, but I managed it for about $15 on eBay.  I’ve been looking on and off for this book for years, and it looks to be worth the search.  Joy Gammon did a lot of media fandom pattern writing in the 1980’s in particular, and the patterns are great (I’m so tempted by the K9 bag!), but she was basically writing with the target audience of not-necessarily-skilled costume and toy makers, so I read over the pattern with an eye for adapting.

The most needed change was size (I had to extrapolate one size beyond the pattern).  I also added a slip stitch selvage. A little reading convinced me that the classic cricket jumper (which would be what Davison wore) would be knit flat in cotton, so that’s the way I’m making the sweater.  I expect this to be done by mid to late fall, because it’s a big project and because I’m working on three others.  There was a little bit of calculating to make sure the cables were properly centered with the new stitch count, but I don’t expect any serious hick ups. I used my LYS’s ‘customer loyalty’ discount for this one, but even if I hadn’t buying the yarn would still have been less than I’d pay for a decent cricket jumper off the rack.

Stereotypical

I’m making a case for my sunglasses.  Once again, I’m knitting a pattern from Stiching in the Stacks.  This time I’m making a case for my sunglasses.  It’s a simple enough idea – two color outer case, change yarns and purl (or was that the other way around) and keep knitting for the lining. Close it up and there’s a lined case.

It’s a small piece, but I’m just planning to have it finished by next summer.  The colorwork is pretty, but it’s not TV knitting.

Pineapple Sunrise

So while I was at Ocean City (watching the beautiful sunrises) I bought a lovely orange-red sundress.  It’s pretty and floaty… and I don’t have anything to accessorize it with.  Fortunately, it was always my plan to stop by Salty Yarns.  Yes, they are a needlework shop, but they have a nice little room full of knitting yarn, including this skein of Kauni.

Pineapple Sunrise Tequila

It coordinates with the dress, and it looks very sunrise like.  I’m using the pattern I Promise You Pineapples by Justyna Kacprzak (it’s a free Ravelry download).  I’m liking the effect very much so far.  In fact, with the colors and the title of the pattern and the whole sunrise thing I just had to call it Pineapple Sunrise.

Then I asked my local bartender to make me a Tequila Sunrise with pineapple juice instead of orange juice.

It was beautiful and tasty both!

Pineapple Beginning

This is the last WiP I started, and the one I’m concentrating on.  I want to finish it before it gets too cold to wear that dress…

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I didn’t win the fabric from Marshall Drygoods, or the One Skein Wonder book from Lisa Bogart.  No new giveaways this time.

*Apologies for pedantry, but I can’t make myself not say that the superstition probably has a lot to do with the length of time it takes to knit a sweater vs the length of an average romantic relationship. I just can’t make myself believe that it’s anything more than that, but still, folklore is fun!

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Now it can be Told

I have finished my “secret” project, and gifted it to my friend.

Snatchel

This is a Snatchel.  It’s a delightfully ‘naughty’ project from the Anticraft, which is always full of delightfully naughty.  I made it for a friend who is recovering from a hysterectomy, and put a bottle of Fireball, because, hey, everyone needs fireball.  I think she’ll be using it for a dicebag (the snatchel, not the Fireball).

Other FOs and WiPs

I finished the second Artful Infinity scarf, and have given it to my younger daughter.  She absolutely rocks it (as she does everything she wears).

Artful Infinity PhotobombThe not so goatty bag is coming along nicely (if slowly).  It really doesn’t look much different than the last picture I posted of it, but  I’m having fun playing mix and match with the motifs.

Mont Royal toesMy only other WiP right now is the Mont Royal socks. I’m playing around with my usual asymmetric toes.  Rather than my usual plan of increasing on both sides for the first few, then switching to only increasing on the outside of the socks, I’ve staggered it.  So the first few increases are on both sides of the sock, then the next few increases alternate between increasing on both sides and increasing on the outside only, then the final few are on the outside only.  I think it looks fine, and the CoBaSi yarn gives it a very crisp feel.

You can’t really tell from the picture, but I’ve just begun the chart. This is my first project using my new Knit PIcks magnetic chart board, and it will be the first one I use my new KnitPicks sock blockers with as well.

Blog Contests and Yarn Giveaways

I didn’t win the Red Heart giveaway from Happily Hooked, or the Yarn Crush box from the Dainty Fawn blog.  No new giveaways today.

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!Surprise! Plans Change

Works in Progress

Almost as soon as I posted “Doing the Numbers (part 2)” I realized that I’d forgotten an important one.  The number of stitches for the goat motif was, in fact, pretty close to the number of stitches in the first skein of yarn.

Goatless Bag colorworkSomehow I must have thought that having two skeins of yarn involved would mean it was OK.  Since it’s stranded, and the background color will be used on all rows, I’d be cutting it too fine.  Not a big problem, I’ve found some lovely abstract motifs in the same book, they’re just smaller.

it’s going to look fantastic.

The Picotty is coming along fairly well.  I think it’s going to work, but I have two more rounds of crochet ribbing with splitty yarn, so I’m doing a bit at a time, even though I’m almost done.  I’ve really slowed down on it, because I was doing it in my ‘brainless knitting’ time, and the splittiness means it needs more concentration than that.

New Projects

So I started a new ‘brainless’ project.  Tamara Kelly’s Artfully Simple Infinity Scarf, using some recycled sari silk yarn I got on eBay some time ago.  It seems like the perfect pattern to handle the ‘clown barf’ problem and show off the yarn.

Artful Infinity wip

Modeled by my cat Comet, who decided that my photo surface was his…

I was planning on just having four WIPs, really, but I actually found the perfect recipient for a knitted gift I’ve been wanting to make for a long time.  I’ll post pics, and details, at a later time, but the project uses bits of three or four yarns from my stash and one skein of novelty yarn which I’ll have to go hunting for.  Yes, I know, yarn diet and all, but I’ve already ordered the cotton yarn for one of the ‘big projects’ I wasn’t going to buy any more yarn before I got…  and I’m not going to need the novelty skein until the end, so that’s OK, right?

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