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Posts Tagged ‘wip’

Another WiP Wednesday

Have I mentioned before that my rule is not to have more than 5 WiPs going at a time?  5 project bags, 5 WiPs.  Well, I’m at 4 now, and I’m stretched a bit thin with that…  Still, it’s nice to give myself ‘permission’ to start one more project if I really have to.

1) Mont Royal Socks

Still working on (and loving) these. They’ve  been in progress for nearly two years now – no sock should ever take this long.  Believe me, it’s not an issue with the pattern or the yarn or even the combination.  I’ve just been really distracted.  Still, I’m plugging away, and looking forward to wearing them.  I’m less bothered by my choice in toes than I was.  I just haven’t decided how long to make them, and how much to increase to accommodate canckles…img_2284

2) Ex Libris

I’m not usually that bad in general.  This is my next oldest WiP, and I started it a bit more than two months ago.  Then again, it’s a small project.

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Duplicate stitch is not my strong suit, but I’m comfortable with how this is turning out.  I’m close to done here, but this one, too, keeps getting put aside for other projects.

3) Coming (Back) To America

Abby is coming home in late November.  She’s coming from Senegal, and although November in Baltimore isn’t that cold, I’m worried about the transition from equatorial Africa might be a bit much.  So I’m knitting her a sweater.  Because of the inordinate amount of time some of my recent projects have taken, I’m starting now.  Actually, I started about three weeks ago.

img_2282The pattern is Viva by Signe Strømgaard.  The yarn is Lion Brand Heartland.  I usually go for animal fibers for projects like this one (cables, warmth wanted, not being worn by a small child…) but Abby has an issue with itchiness, so I wanted to go as non reactive as possible.  It’s a stunning pattern, (though it could use tech editing) and I’m making good headway.

4) His Pewter Lair

Not that I haven’t been distracted by the next shiny.  In this case, it’s literally shiny.

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“His Golden Lair” by Kourtney Robinson has been in my Ravelry queue for a long time.  I picked up the yarn for it (Berroco Lustra in colorway 3107) in October 2015.  There’s a ‘designed in Canada’ knitalong running now, with the deadline by the end of September.

So that’s what I’ve got going now.  There have actually been a bunch of FOs since I last posted (three baby+big sister gifts which were done before the baby arrived and a needle felted notions pouch to name a few).

Wish me luck, I’ve got things to get done on time…

 

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I haven’t wound the brown skein of Cascade 220 into a ball for the Mantis yet.  Instead I’ve been merrily knitting away on the green bits.  Click on the picture at left for a (much) larger image, showing the stitch texture and the sheen of the yarn.

I’m currently ‘stuffing’ the legs, which means whip stitching them closed over both chenille stems and the 16 gauge copper wire I mentioned before.  I’m liking the results both for texture and stability, and holding the two together while I stitch is much easier than trying to ‘thread’ them through the finished legs would be. The same method would probably work really well for flower stems, should I ever be so inclined.

Blog Contests and Giveaways

Didn’t win the Patons Divine. I entered A Year at the Wheel’s March Giveaway (31 March) for a couple of skeins of Knitpicks Suri Dream.  She’s also got fiber up for grabs, but I’m so slow at spinning…  I also signed up for another Phat Fiber giveaway, this one for Wandering Wool sock yarn. (26 March) Not a blog contest, but Celeena Cree Creations Etsy story is giving away free patterns to people who blog about their store.

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The Portable WIP

Last post was devoted to Wonton, the sit and think project. As per usual, I also have a less brain intensive project going…

First Repeat Almost Done

Stockinette and dropped stitches

This is my Les Miserables shawl (the Ravelry project is named “Miserable Maiden Aunt” because of the yarn I’m using for it).  Most of the finished projects I’ve seen for this pattern have used solid yarns, but I really think it calls out for the variation.  I might randomize the dropped stitches a little bit too for a more tattered look.  12 repeats of 54 stitches, then felted.  Whee!

The KIPping experience

This has been my car-and-waiting room project recently.  I’ve been getting a lot of comments and queries on it.  So far, none of them have been ‘is that crochet’? which tends to be the most common KIP response in general.  Crocheting in public gets (you guessed it) ‘are you knitting?’  Honestly, it’s to the point where I’m pleasantly surprised when someone gets it right.

Have I been tempted to snark when it happens?  No, not really.  I guess the yarn in hand lowers the blood pressure to the point where I’m pre-mellowed.  It’s just a friendly experience, and I generally respond with a smile (as opposed to laughing in someone’s face), well, sometimes I may chuckle.

It’s not very common that I come across someone else KIPping, though.  Recently ran into a woman at a coffee shop struggling with a new cast on.  I might have been able to walk on by, but she was using such yummy chunky yarn – it turned out to be pure roving, and we’re not talking pencil lead width roving, I just had to say ‘Hi’ and see if I knew the CO she was trying (I didn’t).  Her children showed up and had that ‘oh no, not again’ look on their faces because here was Mommy, talking about knitting again.

Search Term Observation

I was thrilled to see that someone found this blog by searching for “crochet beholder”, and disappointed on the searcher’s behalf that there is not, in fact, a pattern for such here. I assume that the searcher was looking for an amigurumi version of the the D&D monster first published in the original Greyhawk by Gygax and Kuntz. I may put one up sometime, but there are already several of them out there.  A quick Ravelry search revealed these three, reproduced here in case the searcher is not a Ravelry member:

They are all pretty awesome.

Success in Searching

If the above searcher was in fact looking for my Pokeball Tea Cozy she could now find it listed at Crochet Pattern Central!  Thanks for the link, guys. I can see my hits going up already (on that one page in any case)  🙂

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I did not win the skein of handspun from Wool and Cotton,  I did put in for a Phat Fiber drawing for undyed local wool (results probably on Friday).  I’ve also joined the March Madknits NCAA tournament pool – for yarn! I passed on the Addison’s Yarn Giveaway (closes March 14) because I don’t love the color, but other people do. You might, in fact, so check it out!

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My Sister-in-Law and her new husband gave me a gift certificate to JoAnn’s this past Christmas.  I already knew that they only sold yarn-ball-winders online, so I decided to see what else they carry that isn’t available in their brick-and-mortar store. I discovered that they sell a lot of books which are definitely worth checking out.  I fell in love with Hansi Singh’s Amigurumi Knits, and apparently so did Comet –

The cat used it as a pillow, along with the WIP

Apparently the book is as cuddly as the project

The book has a “top 10 list” of reasons to love Amigurumi knitting. #4 is that it “helps you become a precise, highly adept knitter”. This seems to be the case, as I’ve never been much for Kitchener before, but look at this seam –

The seam really does look like another row of stitches here.

I impressed myself with my awesome grafting skillz

Now that the shell is done I’ve started on the chelipods (claws), which use a lot of short row shaping.  I did the first one as written, but since I’m knitting with two different yarns (Wendy Aran with Wool and Filatura di Crosa Baby Pom Pom) held together this got a bit tricky.  So for the second claw I used a yarn over short row method, which I like doing a bit better but is still a bit awkward and I don’t think the results are as polished.

YOs to mark short rows

Here is a sample before closing the gaps. The novelty yarn makes short rows a particular challenge.

I’d like to try the Japanese short row method next, but I don’t know if I have enough split ring stitch markers on hand…

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I didn’t win the Phat Fiber yarn giveaway, but that’s OK, as I put in for this week’s Sample Box giveaway. I entered Yarn Lover’s bumper sticker giveaway (7 March)

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Since I’m on a posting jag, and I have some yarn giveaways to follow up on (and new ones to link to) I think it’s time to get all my readers caught up on my current project list.

What I’m Doing Now

Yarn Work

Chuppah

Yes, it was used in the wedding.  Yes, it was beautiful.  No it’s not ‘properly finished’.  Yes, this is another example of me being lame…

As you can see, it was light enough to be caught by the wind, which was a good thing.  Now I just need to finish putting the little flower motifs between all the bigger ones.  Not difficult, but it’s large enough to be unwieldy and unportable.

Hopefully I can give it to them on their first anniversary!

Hermit Crab Amigurumi

My friend Colleen has hermit crabs.  Last fall, when she went on vacation, she asked DD#2 to crab sit.  She gave us all the instructions, and an isolation tank to use if one of the three was unwell or being bullied.

We ended up using it when “Wonton” began to bury himself.  Poor DD kept digging him up, and was eventually convinced that he was dead, but kept misting him daily because she didn’t want to admit defeat.  When Colleen came back she was impressed that DD had nursed him (successfully) through a molt!  I am making her this little guy,

It’s the Hermit Crab from Hansi Singh’s Amigurumi Knits (it’s a Goodreads link, you can use the Amazon link from within Ravelry and give them the referrer’s cut…)

Unfortunately, the tight gauge makes my hands hurt, and it’s definitely not driving knitting anyway, so I’ve got a third project.

Les Miserables Shawl

I’m using the  Old Maiden Aunt “Moody” laceweight yarn I won in a giveaway from Knitting Pipeline back in 2010, and I’m knitting Les Miserables (by Cynthia Parker, published in Handheld Knitting).

Useful Resource

I’ve found that the amigurumi knitting is both physically and mentally intensive, so that I can’t do it for too long at a go without my hands complaining.  So far I’ve just switched to the less intense shawl project, but thanks to a post I found at Knitfreedom, now I have 5 Stretches to Relieve Knitting Pain.  Of course, I first read this as “5 Stitches to Relieve Knitting Pain”, which was even more exciting, but I’m still happy to have found it.

Other Projects

March is National Novel Editing Month (NaNoEdMo).  Since I finished NaNoWriMo last year I’ve signed up for it.  Here’s hoping that in April I’ll have a draft I feel confident in showing to others…

Blog Contests and Giveaways

I didn’t win the Retrobaby giveaway, or the Twist & Twine giveaway, but Earthmama 101 has a giveaway which will be of interest to parents of young children.  Natalie Servant Designs is giving away a wonderful skein of yarn hand dyed by Indigodragonfly, but I’m not sure I can write a limerick for yarn, so I’m holding off on this one (I’ve tweeted about it though, that’s worth something, right?).  Also followed up on the Knitfreedom handspun giveaway and free pattern. I entered the Red Heart Yarn of the Month giveaway as well (after checking out projects made with it on Ravelry)  If I actually had any Malabrigo I’d join Mr. Yarn’s Malabrigo March giveaways – but you have to have some to win some.  😦

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Like turning a heel, that is.    I’ve turned the heels on the On Your Toes Socks, and I’m very pleased with the result.  The pattern calls for a basic short row heel, which went beautifully.  The last time I had knit a sock I was left with a row of tiny holes along the short rows.

Some time last year I began to use the Norwegian style of purling. This is particularly nice for short row shaping because wrap-and-purl can be done as a single stitch, by positioning the needle differently.

Now, I was still left with an annoying gap where I rejoined the heel to the front of the socks.  I think it was exacerbated by the two socks on two circs knitting method (which meant that I had to put the final wrap on a stitch marker, and probably did not get it reseated correctly).  My eyesight has never been that terrific, and I find it difficult to see how the stitches should be seated. Sooner or later I’ll get it figured out.

Now I just have to decide how long I want the socks to be (I usually like short ones), and whether I want to use the patterns bind off or play around with it a bit.

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The ICC (Inter County Connector), MD rte 200, is being built across I95 between DC and Baltimore.  Leaving aside the myriad issues this brings up, ecological and otherwise, and just talking about the physical structure, it’s really pretty.  I’ve been wanting to take pictures for a while, and the other day I finally did.

ICC

There’s a problem, however, with pulling off 95 to take pictures of construction sites, and that’s getting back on 95 afterward.  So rather than trying to ease my way back onto the shoulder and then merging into traffice, I pulled through the gravel path and onto the on/off ramp, also being built.  I’m glad that I did, because once I drove up the rise I saw some more really pretty construction. (images link to larger copies).

Several layers of ICC

I took all these pictures at very high resolution, figuring I had the option of either scaling down the finished picture or cropping in regions of interest.

So then I had to figure out how to get back on 95.  I asked a friendly construction worker, who suggested I pull through the site, turn left, then right, and I’d end up back on MD 198, which I did.  So that was a bit of an explore.  Drove off to a quaint littl hardware store I like and spent too much for a weed wacker.

Following up to Thea’s question about the stitch marker, here’s what happens if you use a non split ring and the ‘trick’ to thread a lifeline through, the ring gets stuck.  Click to get a larger image which really shows the unblocked texture (purl side of shawl).

I’ve entered a couple more Blog Contests.  Sunset Cat is giving away some combination of yarn, stitchmarkers and patterns, plus is fixing to review knitting books (drawing from a date guessing pool).  To celebrate her 50th post Implausible Yarn is giving away yarn and a bag, (drawing from those who explain their blog or screen names).

The Haruni itself is coming along nicely.  The ball of yarn is now 19.5 cm in diameter, so coming up on that halfway mark (I’ve totally lost count of my repeats, so this is now my only check…  GAK!  If I miscalculate and run out of yarn I’ll scream).

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