Friday, July 31, 2009

Y'see, it's like this: they muliply like rabbits.

Yeah... the UFO numbers just aren't going down, are they? *Sigh.* It's been that sort of a week. Here's the alleged "progress" - which, you'll note, somehow includes three new UFOs.


Yeah, that's the same photo from last week.


Um... I've had a Masters Program-free week, by accident.
Here's the link to their website - clicky on the banner and go check it out!

Knotty or Knice Socks:

They have heels. Yay?

Dream Width Head Scarf:

... see yesterday's entry; I didn't get to knit at lunch.

Bridget Scarf:

Um. Here's some of my Broncos stuff that the scarf will go with?


Finally got it into my floorstand, to save my shoulder.

... And picture another fifty things out here, none of which have been touched (or possibly even seen) for at least six months. The UFO Count is not going down right now.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Yarn on Thursday: accidental Bamboo Redux

First - yes, C, yesterday's featured pattern is available for sale on Ravelry... this link for "Bridget Scarf" should take you to it; the designer is StitchLove on Ravelry.

Next - changing it up a bit this week, still due to illness, thus this isn't so much "Yarn on Thursday" as "I have had no time to ruffle through the internet to find things to post for Yarn on Thursday this week". So, you get to see Round Three of my latest bout of Startitis. Yeah, I know, every year, I'm all "I'm gonna get under 50 UFOs!" and it never happens because I really like starting things... and I'm not so good on the finishing them in a timely manner. (They all get done, eventually. For example, I no longer have any UFOs that I started in the 80's, and there were some on the list well into the new millenium.) Anyway, I saw this stunning headscarf and mitt set, and since I'd had a yarn accident at Nature's Yarn a few weekends ago and that lovely yarn just resurfaced, this got started when I was home sick on Monday. Anyway, this is the Dream Swatch Head Scarf, from

... as of Tuesday evening...

... as of this morning (and an accurate idea of the color).

I'm doing it in this intense dark turquoise yarn, Bamboo from Southwest Trading Company. They call it "sky blue" - but it's more like "Sea at Dawn Off the Coast of Cozumel". Lovely, lovely color. And the yarn is soooo soft, it's just a joy to work with - and the drape of Bamboo is lovely for headscarves.

I've done Bamboo Head Scarves before. This one, in a slightly darker greeny-blue, is my own design, which I keep threatening to write up, and yet I never do. It's out of Be Sweet Bamboo.

... and I did this one from Alchemy Bamboo.

Hm. I may have done a YoT Bamboo post before... yep, I did... but I hadn't included this *new* (to me) Bamboo Yarn, so consider this a YoT update that actually contained more yarn that I thought it would!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Other crafts - "Chain 50" doesn't usually look like this...

Since yesterday wasn't "Other Crafts" day, today is. And that craft is crochet. Now, I have something to confess: I actually started this Bridget Scarf the day the pattern was released, since I work two desks down from the designer. (Very convenient, that.) Over the weekend, when it was too hot to play with wool, I opted for lovely acrylic TLC Simply Soft (my favorite artificial fiber yarn) in Denver Broncos colors (although the orange is a bit muted, for a change. I think the actual color is "Persimmon"). Anyway, here's the chain:

And here's the beginning of putting-it-together-with-an-edging, phase 1:

And, just in case you're curious, here's how the scarf and hat look when theyr'e finished. (This is the designer's version... I'm hoping mine winds up looking half as good.)

What's especially nifty about this set is that the hat and scarf are TOTALLY REVERSIBLE when finished - for two very different looks. I'm figuring I'll get the scarf done over the summer (yeah, you've heard that before) and the hat once it gets cold again.

Which it seems like it never will.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

It's the Humidity. Really.

Still a little under the weather - the weather being HOT and HUMID, which are two conditions that will usually collapse me. (I was an ice skater as a kid, right through high school - because it meant spending all summer where it was NOT HOT. Oh, and because it was fun, but the NOT HOT was a major plus in my book.) Anyway, just because it's unbearably ikky weather-wise, that doesn't keep me from playing with wool. Here is a nice shot of both Knotty or Knice socks, ready to start the short-row heels, at the doctor's office yesterday:

And here's one of them last Friday, with George:

See, even ailing, I can bring you knitting content.


Monday, July 27, 2009

Masters Monday - Called on account of Sick

Masters Monday will return next week, when I'm not worried about contaminating my poor yarn.


Friday, July 24, 2009

UFO Friday - not going in the right direction.

Um. So I discovered that I'd done one of my swatches wrong, so I had to re-knit that. (At least I noticed BEFORE I submitted!) Twice. Because I kept getting interrupted by Lego Star Wars while I was knitting the first one, so I can definitely say it is NOT my best work. This one, done Wednesday night, though, is.

Um. Hat. The hat is underway. I actually had to reprint the first page of hat instructions, and circle each "10 rows of..." and number it to make sure I had Enough Rows. For some reason, reading the instructions in a paragraph just wasn't working AT ALL, so I had to make my own list. Anyway, there has been hat knitting. I actually made it up to the final white part (color change 5, for stripe six), so now it's all about the decreases. And the Techknitter Article about actually getting a flat hat-top. Which is for ribbed hats, but still, flatness is desired. Except I have to follow the instructions on the pattern... so nevermind. I'll hide the middle of the hat with the pom-pom.

I think it's to gauge - I hope it doesn't "grow" during blocking!

Um. Clapotis. I've been carrying it around faithfully, and doing nothing about it.

Um. Because of the Knotty or Knice socks I accidentally started after I accidentally went into A.C. Moore last Friday night and accidentally picked up three balls of Patons Kroy Sock in a lovely soft kitten grey and two sets of size 2 dpns (also an accident) and the yarn just ATTACKED and jumped onto the needles, even though I hadn't found my copy of the magazine yet, but I figured it it out and suddenly I had half a sock and more, since I long ago learned to knit both socks at once to avoid Second Sock Syndrome.

Anyway... socks!!

Cast on two at once... four times.
Eventually decide that you actually want a short row toe anyway.

Get two short row toes that actually fit.

Got one sock up to the heel, and the other's getting there...

Hopefully, I'll have SOMETHING finished by next Friday, or I won't have actually finished *anything* in July, which will totally kill my monthly average project completion stats!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Yarn on Thursday: Ten Things I Don't Really Need (but want anyway)

Okay, there are some seriously cool crafting gadgets out in the world that I wouldn't mind having, but just can't *quite* justify getting (as yet). My ten favorites, in no particular order are:

    A gridded magnifying lens, so the Mystery Count Cross-stitch Fabric in the closet can be identified once and for all. (The link is to Nordic Needle, a lovely shop in Fargo, North Dakota, where my very craft-tolerant husband let me spend a few hours ON OUR HONEYMOON. Seriously. You can see why I *had* to marry him.)


    This little wonder cleans your rotary cutting mats. I do quilt, but I haven't actually used my rotary cutting mat enough that it needs cleaning. Somday, maybe. I don't deal in flannel yet, but this looks like it could solve that problem.

    The Bead Nabber may well be useful for beaders who deal with tiny seed beads all the time. I put beads on things (cross stitch, knitting, crochet...), but I've never had all that much trouble picking them up. (Long fingernails probably help.)

    Puffin's Craft Strand Separators are adorable, and I might wear one as jewelry, but I don't know if I'd actually *use* it if I got it. (Plus, I'd never be able to find it when I needed it, unless I treated it like jewelry... that's the only way I ever find my sterling silver thread cutter pendant. It's jewelry.)

    The Knitzi. I don't knit quite enough socks that I can really justify getting one of these lovely handcarved critters. Eventually, though, I'll be getting one of these lovely "bundled reed" ones. Again, someday. Maybe after I've actually finished 20 pairs of socks. Which may be sooner than I thought.

    I love the look of fused glass. I would love to be able to make my own. For that, however, I'd need a kiln of my own, and kilns involve "heat". I don't deal well with things that require heat (ask me about "ironing" someday), so getting one of these will probably never happen. Fused glass sure is pretty, though!

    I would love to make my own jewellry and stuff - my friend M makes some really pretty stuff using metal clay. I keep trying to justify getting some of my own to play with, but I don't have anywhere to put it. Or a table to make things on... I really need to clean up and organize my house. But then... little copper Gryphon pins for everyone!

    Now, I do knit, but I don't know if I'd used Knit Clips, since I have an undending source for low-grip binder clips, and a love of magnetic fridge clips, both of which I use instead. If someone didn't have an undending source for low-grip binder clips or a magnetic fridge clip obsession, however, these would likely work well.

    Hm. As long as we're into the crafts-I-do, check out these Tapestry Needles from Crown Mountain Farms. These are amazingly lovely... but given the rate at which I lose tapestry needles in my house, I'm not sure I can justify getting any of these. Maybe as dangly earrings? *Sigh.* Lovely stuff.

    Lastly, the Easy Count Guideline is a fiber to grid cross stitch with, so you can (a) keep track of where you are on your chart and (b) skip around if you're one of the finish-all-this-color-then-do-the-next chippies, like me. (If you've ever done a large Teresa Wentzler design, trust me, you grid.) I tend to use contrasting cotton thread (not floss) to grid, so I'm not sure I'd use Easy Count. If anyone has, please report back - was it especially helpful & easy to remove? This might be worth tracking down.
If you've got any cool gadget/accessory ideas, please share!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Life will find a way...

"Life" is one of those really, really persistent things. I found this little bit of plant life working its way through the bricks...

... on the side of an architectural detail in the middle of a sea of brick, tar and concrete.

The nearest actual plant is twenty feet away; the nearest actual Green Area is a quarter-mile.

Pretty impressive, Mother Nature!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Um. I was gonna have all this stuff to show you, but...

Other crafts, other crafts, I know I do other crafts. This weekend, though, when I wasn't knitting, I was Organizing Things. (Erika, you might want to look away. This doesn't meet your specs for organization at all, and since you're good at organizing, I don't want to give you the heebie-jeebies.)

Okay, okay, I was supposed to be organizing things. We had to haul everything out of the bedroom to organize it... which kinda left the rest of the house full of stuff, which we're slowly going through.

So, instead of impressive before-and-after photos of organized living space ('cuz that SO didn't happen this weekend), here's a photo of my latest handbag/totebag acquisition, since I collect them, and that counts as another hobby, if not an actual craft. It's Betsey Johnson's "Betseyville" Strike It Up Small Tote:

Want one? Zappos Has It!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Masters Monday: Half a Hat

First off the bat, I must point you to THIS:

(Thanks to Mt. Mom for pointing out the link!) It looks like Level 1 is an older version that the one I'm doing, but it is still *so* cool to see all the pretty swatches and projects, and to realize that no, my binder is about as thick as everyone else's. (Well, as at least one other person's.)

I have all my swatches. I have a binder, with pretty page protectors. (Top loading pages for the paper; side loading pages for the swatches. The paper is unlikely to spontaneously fall out; the swatches might. Ergo, the swatches can only "fall" into the inside of the binder.)

Other than finishing up the swatches once and for all (until, of course, I get them back for re-knitting), it's been all about the hat. Since I've been knitting everything on bamboo needles, and have a pretty good idea on gauge therefor, I'm knitting on bamboo DPNs. Here is the hat as of Friday:

(It's kind of a challenge to take a picture of half a hat while wearing it.) This week, the plan is to try to finish the Dreaded Hat, pray that it doesn't change gauge when I block it, write up the tags for all my swatches, and start assembling the binder with all its parts. I need to re-re-knit my Swatch #15, using only the pattern, and see if what I get looks exactly like what I knit before.

Friday, July 17, 2009

UFO Friday - it's a finish, just not mine.

Um... I've been working on my swatches like a good bunny. I have NOT started the Knotty or Knice socks published in Interweave Knits. My mom, however, worked up a Warm Fuzzy Wrist Warmer in about an hour while watching the NASCAR race with me last weekend. Here is me modeling it:

Hey, somebody finished something. That counts!!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Yarn on Thursday - T-Shirt Goodness!

My favorite Knitting T-Shirts (with links so you can get them, too)!

This classic quote from Karate Kid may not actually be about knitting - but c'mon. There are some knitting classes that FEEL like a full-steam-ahead-take-no-prisoners workout, right?

I've got a "cross stitch" version of this that I actually cross-stitched on a sweatshirt about a decade back. I entered it in a wee-small local show, and I think it actually got a prize. I'll try and track down a photo later; until then, consider this knitting version of If I Knit Fast Enough...:

Sarah Utter - she gets it. Go look at all her stuff (I'm seriously considering a "No Tatoos... Yet" shirt just to freak out my mother.)

Alice Thelma has some *wonderful* tees available. Here are two of my favorites, but seriously - go look. They're all great! (And I see myself getting one of each in totebag form. Hey, you knew I had a totebag problem...!)

Craftster has tees, too, thankfully. (I mean, really, they should, right?)

May have to give serious thought to this one. If you squint just a little, the owl kinda looks like a gryphon... so, Knitting Owl!!

Chrissy H Studioshas the Peace-Love-Knit shirts that I've been seeing here and there:

Red Paper Knittingon Etsy has this cool knitting "argyle" tee available from time to time:

More from Zazzle - I Knit in Bars

I knit because I'm smarter than you seems harsh, but I'm not so sure. I'm frequently surrounded by people on public transportation who look amazingly stressed, and ask "how I can find time to do that"... when I'm doing it on said public transport next to them. If they knit, they'd be less stressed. Yep, I've discovered the Secret of Actual Success.

Finally, two I actually own, from Modern Yarn. I'm pretty sure I got them at Stitches East one year, along with a third one I can't (a) find on-line or (b) remember exactly what it said, other than it was a dark olive green tee with knit-witty black writing and some sort of picture. I wonder where that got to?


If you've got a witty knitting shirt, let me know where you got it (and if it comes in "totebag")!!