Archive for April, 2009

Stop! Read Directions.

Part of why I start so many socks (the number that I finish is inconsequential, really) has to do with the inevitable stop points along the way. Right now, I’ve got what may or may not be the yoke of a February Lady Sweater — I won’t know until I TRY IT ON.

I am subtly shaded. Also cushy.

I am subtly shaded. Also cushy.

This involves slipping the stitches onto scrap yarn, and a reckoning of some kind with whether my row gauge really was a little on the tight side at the very top or — as I desperately hope — not. I’m irrationally irritated and worried about slipping stitches onto scrap yarn. Irritated because I think that it will take SO much time and SO much effort, which is actually less than one aborted sock startup, which is what I will probably do to prolong the agony the inevitable. Worried because I think that I don’t know how to slip the stitches back on to needles in a way that won’t involve a row of seriously twisted stitches. But, you know, see above — the time I spend retwisting stitches into place won’t be that unbearable, particularly if the sweater is going to be so squishy and fabulous. I hope!!

Amorphous am I!

Amorphous am I!

Side note — I started this sweater two weekends ago when it was sunny and gorgeous out. I cranked out (what I think might be) the yoke during a three day stretch of doom and gloom weather, and then it got all sunny again, and the temperature shot up into the nineties. The forecast for this weekend is back down in the mid fifties/sixties and thunderstormy…

Even if I'm heavy and cumbersome, you still love me.

Even if I'm heavy and cumbersome, you still love me.

Which means more knitting this! Woo!

But you know, I’m still me. So I’ve started myah:

3 x 3 Rib -- The Fun Never Stops

3 x 3 Rib -- The Fun Never Stops

[Kai-Mei, Cookie A’s new book Sock Innovation in Sundara Sock Yarn in Prickly Pear which is sprightly and murky at the same glorious time)

and resumed myah:

Pre-frogging

Pre-frogging

which meant a dose of myah:

At least 420 (heh) stitches worth of yarn

At least 420 (heh) stitches worth of yarn

Ye Olde Toe-up sock, Socks that Rock Mediumweight in colorway Pride.

I’m particularly fond of the subtle reds and sweet blues at work here.

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I could save these for a pick-me-up, but…

Aw hell, here’s some knitting:

Remember these??

Remember these??

Now with thumbs!!

Now with thumbs! And sun!

Now with thumbs! And sun!

Wow does natural light (and a real camera!) make a difference!

I’m just now getting used to playing with the edit features for the photo software on this thing… the top shot is bit of an experiment.

What about the mittens? Right — it’s been a while since a genuine finished object. Sort of.

Another shot of the Merion Mitts

Another shot of the Merion Mitts

Yarn: Dream in Color Classy — and is it ever — in Spring Tickle. The yarn alone made me rilly happy during some grey spring weather, today’s sunshine and warmth notwithstanding.

The Pattern: Merion Mitts — I’ll admit, I had some moments of gruntlement with the pattern. But I sure love wearing them, and once I knew what I was doing, these babies practically knit themselves.

The one dilemma about finishing up some mittens that I love in the middle of the first spring heat wave?

If wearing mittens on an 85 degree day is wrong, I don't want to be right.

If wearing mittens on an 85 degree day is wrong, I don't want to be right.

Now I kind of want some crappy weather, just so that I can wear my mittens out in public.

Green Mittens!

Green Mittens!

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A couple of small spring things.

Briefly — I have ‘work’ to do, and it is OMG so effing gorgeous out — some photos:

Long, lacy, lovely!

Long, lacy, lovely!

I had fun working on this yesterday in the sunshine at my alma mater — Wesleyan — an impromptu trip that Johann and I took.

Has been around longer than Nina would like to acknowledge.

Has been around longer than Nina would like to acknowledge.

Socks on double points in awesome yarn (Yarntini, Joan) that I’ve been working on for more than a month. I just keep getting distracted!

Lighting so-so, yarn excellent.

Lighting so-so, yarn excellent.

Verrah nice. Two more inches before ribbing and then the eternal question of how to bind off. But not for a bit, eh?

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some reading to do.

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Reunion in two acts

The first reunion of the long weekend: with three of my former college housemates — the reunion with the fourth will happen sometime in August maybe? Guys, can we make this happen??

Way back last summer, I coyly asked if yarn meant for others counted as stash, and decided that it didn’t. As if Malabrigo Chunky could last for long in anyone’s stash, but no worries — that yarn changed into the following…

Whale's Road and...

Whale's Road and...

and the following…

Stonechat and...

Stonechat and...

and the following!

Vaa, oh my!

Vaa, oh my!

Cowls Assembled:

By your cowls combined...

By your cowls combined...

Hey Tracy, if you come back from Thailand, you can also get something warm and wooly!!

From left to right are Emily, Melanie, and Adina — not present is Tracy — and seeing them was such a great break from school, work, et cetera. Em is a PhD student in SCIENCE! (I always forget the technical name of her field) and a guy from the Electric Feel video is in her class, Mel changes the world in New York and does the twist in a subtle way in public, and Adina is an art student who can quote maybe every Andy Samberg video. I’m not on a boat right now, but if I were, we would all now know what to say about it.

The weekend was basically like any other weekend we might have in college, minus homework — we found shirts for Em to silkscreen, made pizza, walked around, watched Em silkscreen an artichoke onto Mel’s sweatshirt, and tried to learn dances from music videos on YouTube*.

Some highlights in photo form:

Emily washes her silk screen. Nina annoys her with camera.

Emily washes her silk screen. Nina annoys her with camera.

Flamingoes that live in glass houses should not something something.

Flamingoes that live in glass houses should not something something.

Do you have any idea how rickety this structure is?

Do you have any idea how rickety this structure is?

Walking in the wind.

Walking in the wind.

Everything ends better with an artichoke.

Everything ends better with an artichoke.

A beautiful weekend with wonderful people — good fodder to defend myself with on a rainy Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday.

The second reunion?

A new camera cable. You didn’t think that I captured all of those pictures with my webcam, did you?

*I’d like to head off any mentions of irony by acknowledging that I linked a Hulu clip on the word YouTube.

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Holy Blog Post, Batman!

As a heads up, there is nothing graceful about the following pictures. There is nothing color corrected about them either.

Momentum. Is. Everything!

Pretty yarn is pretty.

Pretty yarn is pretty.

This responds to a craving for a sweet, light, soft, lacy scarf.

Mom, Nina's stretching me!

Mom, Nina's stretching me!

I like the idea of a really long scarf, but my mom was so taken with the look of this that I’m considering two somewhat shorter scarves.

So fresh and so soft soft.

So fresh and so soft soft.

Super duper simple eyelet lace pattern that I realized I loved while knitting a February Baby Sweater after I cocked up the gull stitch pattern. It is now my favorite go-to lace stitch, even if it runs the risk of being “plain”. (Plain is relative, anyways…)

Mittens are almost done.

Give us our thumbs!

Give us our thumbs!

Well, now just one thumb. It’s amazing how much progress you can make on a mitten IF YOU DO NOTHING ELSE WITH YOUR DAY.

They’re super squishy, and so close to being done, and yet it’s so sunny and warm today. Le sigh.

On to das homework!

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Keeping up momentum:

Still no functioning camera cable BUT let’s not look a gifthorse (sweet little PhotoBooth) in the mouth.

We are squishy palms!!

We are squishy palms!!

Wait for it …

We lack thumbs in a major way!

We lack thumbs in a major way!

And from the back of the hand side…

I am a partially done Merion Mitt!

I am a partially done Merion Mitt!

Bet you can’t blog just one:

Merion Mitts! In progress!

Merion Mitts! In progress!

Yes, folks, these are Merion Mitts, designed by Minty. No color alteration, what what — suffice it to say that they’re a juicy green with delightful wacked out yellow and rust accents, and when I have the means, a nicer picture you will see.

They’re also my first official pair of mittens that may have some likelihood of being finished. All of my prior attempts at mittens have suffered from First Mitten Syndrome (the second wasn’t even a gleam in the eye of the creator), and these definitely showed signs of following that path. Let’s see if blogging about them doesn’t lend some element of accountability into the process, shall we?

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Better than nothing…

Two hats:

St. Patrick’s Day Slouchy Beret —
Frog Tree Alpaca, two row stripes, two different shades of green.

I am a big fan of Kelly Green, but think that it looks lousy on me with my complexion and general coloring, so striping the bright almost pure secondary color with a muddy acid green was just what the doctor (I) ordered. The matching St. Patrick’s day hobo gloves did not exactly make themselves, though I put a lot of energy into hoping that they would, while I dealt productively (not) with a mad case of start of spring break startitis.
I didn’t rely on any specific pattern — I just cast on a bunch of stitches, knit upward, and cast off once the hat seemed slouchy enough. I have not yet woven in ends, and I finished this … a month ago? Yikes.

Next Hat: Dorothea, by Kristen Kapur

Yarn: Madeline Tosh Worsted, in Clover. Yum.

Jury’s out on whether this is actually a flattering color for me, and I don’t trust my computer’s web-cam at 11:45 pm to give an accurate picture of the color, but gawrsh do I like this yarn in this color…

I wanted another Spring Hat since Easter is New English for “another freaking cold snap after you thought it would be warm forever and ever amen” — the leaves and green and the squishy squishy merino seem to fit the bill.
This pattern is lovely, and all errors with it are my own durn fault, namely for not printing out a copy of the pattern and trying to conjure it up in my head on a long bus ride to Boston and back (a long story). I would absolutely knit this again, and there are so many squishy green merino yarns out there to try…

The past year has been almost an entire period of Startitis (and a wicked case of Second Sock Syndrome), and I’ve got quite a few projects on the needles — a lace scarf, a ribbed scarf, a pair of mittens, the aforementioned hobo gloves, at least three mate-less socks, and a baby sweater that needs some freaking seams and buttons and to be mailed to my cousin’s baby girl — and then there are the sweaters (three) for which I have all the yarn, I have the patterns, I just need the time to swatch, start, and finish, and, of course, they’re all winter sweaters just in time for spring.

Try to guess how many of those projects are green…

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