Oh Hi

Oh Hi blog.  How are you?  It’s been a while… I started a new Job at the beginning of June and I can’t believe I’ve been there a month now.  waking up at 6:45 every morning is not fun, but the job is good and the work can be fun.  The real reason I’ve been derelict in my posting is because I moved in the last two weeks of June and I’m still trying to settle into my new place.  The packing up and getting out of the old place wasn’t so bad, I had lots of help from Ryan and Adam.  It’s the unpacking and trying to get the new place set back up that’s killing me.  Have to find a new place for everything, have to figure out how this place wants to be set up, ugh.

I did finish a knitting project in the midst of all the tumult.  A friend of mine got married last weekend, and the invitation suggested that “cocktail attire” would be most appropriate… So I went shopping, found a dress, found some shoes, found some earrings, and a necklace.  The dress was strapless, the wedding was in the evening, and the “summer” that Portland has been dishing up lately hasn’t been very warm.  This was my solution:

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The pattern is Lacy Hug Me Tight from the Knit2Together book.  I managed to finish it in just under a month (and on the night before the wedding.)

The pattern is exceedingly boring to knit.  First you knit a giant block of 2×2 ribbing, 21″ worth of ribbing to be exact.  Then you knit three strips of lace, two to go around the sleeves and one to go around the body.  The strips are about 20 stitches wide.  The lace is not charted, so you either have to chart it yourself (which I did after the first repeat) or try to follow written lace instructions.  Then you fold the body and add a little seam.  Then you sew the strips of lace around the edges.  It’s a lot of finishing work.  I do like the result though.

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At the wedding there was a sort of photo booth set up and everyone there got the password to access the photos.  The company is located in WA but I guess they do shoots in Portland too.  I’m holding a cardboard cut out top hat and Ryan is holding cardboard bright red lips.

The yarn is Elsebeth Lavold Hempathy.  41% Cotton, 34% Hemp, and 25% Modal.  I love the finished project, but this yarn is hell to work with.  It’s so rough on your hands, there is no give at all, it’s not at all soft before it’s washed.  After it’s washed it blooms like mad and becomes super drape-y and soft.

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Here’s the back view.  Excuse the wet hair.  I thought it might be a bad idea to ask the professional wedding photographer to focus on the knitwear rather than the wedding guests…  And a close up of the sleeve lace:

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I focused my knitting attention on this pretty exclusively to get it done in time for the wedding and now I’m feeling the backlash in the form of some major knitting ADD.  I can’t settle down to any one project I do a few stitches on one a few on another.  I’m super tempted to start something new but I’m trying to finish my old project.  I have a few that have been lingering for far too long.  I’m working on the finish two to start one system.  Now that this is finished I have to finish one more before I can cast something else on.

Two FOs and one giant WIP

Love the way the dye broke!

So as I said last post, it only took me two days to knit up the Nintendo Cozy but then I had to add the buttons… Which means I had to go to the store and find some buttons and then motivate myself to attach them. Needless to say it’s two weeks later and the project is finally 100% finished.


This project was the perfect project for one skein of Noro Silk Garden. The yarn is so soft and beautiful. It would make a fantastic lizard ridge blanket, but the blanket would end up costing about $250. I may start it anyway and just do one skein at a time for a year or two until I have enough for a blanket.

The other FO I have is the baby sweater that I was working on. I got the pieces all seamed together, the button bands picked up, and the buttons sewed on. It’s darling, I can’t wait to see it on a baby.



So cute for a baby being born into a dedicated Packers family. Even better the baby is due right at the start of the football season, so I can see mom putting him in this sweater a lot this fall. To compliment this little sweater and to give me something easy to do while I watch movies, TV on DVD, and read I started a Moderne Baby Blanket from Mason Dixon Knitting. It’s a beautiful looking geometric pattern where you knit blocks of garter stitch, cast off, then pick up stitches along the side of the blocks to add colors and length. Here’s what I have so far…



The blanket is just made with Red Heart yarn. I don’t love the yarn. The up-side is it’s acrylic so it won’t irritate sensitive baby skin, it’s machine washable so no matter what the little baby puts it through it can get clean easily, and it’s cheap which is nice since there’s over 3 miles of yarn in this project. There’s absolutely no way I could afford to make this out of yarn that’s $5 for 50 grams. Like the sweater, the blanket is also Packers colors–a light yellow and green and a dark yellow and green.

In other news I tried my hand at yarn dying for the first time about a week ago. The result was beautiful but unexpected. I used the Jacquard acid dyes and was trying to dye my yarn a sage green color with a semi-solid kettle-dyed look. The instructions tell you to bring your water pot to a simmer then add your dye and drop in your yarn. I wanted to play with the dye color and not worry about burning myself so I added the dye to the cold water and tested it until I got the color I wanted then I heated the water and added the yarn. Turns out, if you let Jacquard dyes sit for too long the colors start to separate, so while my pot was waiting to heat up the colors separated into light and dark colors. The yarn turned out really cool looking but it wasn’t what I was expecting. It variegates from almost black to a bright green.


This picture isn’t great but it does show how it goes from very dark to much lighter. It’s had to get a good photograph of something green. The yarn is lace weight merino, part of the Knitpicks Bare line. I really enjoyed dyeing and now really want to try hand painting. To do some more dyeing I ordered a couple of sock blanks from Knitpicks and started a dyed sock blank swap on Ravelry.

The last thing I did was knit a swatch for try #2 of Andrew’s sweater. This time I’m doing the Unisex Irish Pullover a free pattern that I found on Ravelry. I think I figured out what I did wrong the first time but it’s pretty stupid. I think I knit my swatch with the smaller size needles listed on the pattern when it specifically says do the the gauge swatch on the larger needles. I knit a new swatch for the new pattern (I can’t bare to redo the Eden pattern right now) and I double checked about 100 times that I was using the right needle size. I’m not going to start knitting the project right now I think I’ll save it and try it for the knitting Olympics in August. Here’s my swatch…


According to the swatch I’m on gauge so we’ll see… I haven’t worked at all on the pink boucle wrap as if that’s surprising.

Not sure about this blogging thing…

Since I’m already on Ravelry and have a hard enough time keeping projects updated there I’m not entirely sure that I’ll be terrific at this blog business. However, there are so many knitting blogs that I enjoy reading that I thought I might just give it a try and see what happens. Also, who doesn’t need another distraction from studying for finals? Politics and Human Nature BAH! Temporal Monarchy, Autonomous Collective, Representative Democracy… who needs it. Anyway don’t expect any sort of gushy life details in this thing it’s going to be purely about knitting… with the occasional complaint about school thrown in. And anyway my life doesn’t have any gushy details to share so bugger off if that’s what you want.

Now knitting.

I have three (maybe four depending on how you count) WIPs.

The first and most urgent is the Baby Baseball Tee from Knit2Together. It is for my boss who is preggers so there’s kind of a time line on finishing. So far, the back is completely finished, the pocket lining is finished and knit into the front (but not sewed down) and I’m up to the decreased on the front. I am very happy with this as the baby is not due until September. While I could care less about the Green Bay Packers the mother is a huge fan (I mean HUGE) and the baby is a boy, so I’m knitting the sweater in Packers colors, gold body and green sleeves. I’m knitting it in Plymouth Encore which is 75% acrylic and 25% wool so it’s machine washable, cheap, and baby skin friendly. I’m not a big fan of acrylic and, like I said, I don’t care about the Packers so the yarn/color scheme isn’t too appealing to me but it makes me happy to knit something for Jenny because she’s a good boss and cool person.

Baby Baseball Tee


Second WIP is going on a full year now. It is an acrylic and nylon blend boucle wrap/shawl/wide scarf. The yarn is fun to look at and touch but terrible to knit with–it’s splitty and impossible to frog; the stitches might as well be glued together. It Jo-Ann’s Sensations Rainbow Boucle I like the fabric that I have so far, but I’m only half way done. The pattern needs 36 4-row repeats over 80 stitches and I have 20 done. It’s not at all a hard pattern, it’s a simple drop stitch patter–basically a way easier version of the Clapotis. It’s boring and fussy which is why progress is slower than a snail’s pace. Hopefully I will like the finished product as I like the bit I have now. Otherwise, I will cry bitter bitter tears of sad regret for my wasted time. Obviously it needs some blocking…

Rainbow Boucle
The last WIP is coming up on a few months shy of a year now. It started out as a sweater for my brother who is pretty skinny but 6’8” tall and makes me look like a rag doll when I stand next to him. I quickly realized that even though he’s skinny I would not have enough yarn/time/sanity to finish. My dad said he hates wool because it’s scratchy after glaring at him and making him hold my softest merino sock yarn until he admitted that it’s not too bad gave up on him. I thought about just wearing it myself since I had cast on for a 36” chest anyway but then my boyfriend said hey that’s a cool sweater who’s it for. I told him if he liked it is was for him and the darling accepted. Sweater curse be damned. It’s in Cascade 220 wool and is a pattern from the Rowan Pure Wool Collection: Eden.

 

Edan

The last WIP is sort of not mine, but really it mostly is. It’s a pair of socks out the Trekking Pro Natura done one-sock-at-a-time, cuff down, on two circs. It’s supposed to be Andrew’s, he said he wanted to learn to knit. (OK maybe I pushed a wee little bit but he agreed to learn in the end.) He didn’t want to buy any yarn In case I don’t like knitting, instead he wanted to knit out of my stash. No problem, I love the kid so I went through my stash and laid out before him all the things I was willing to part with for him to learn on–of the two balls of sock yarn he chose the green one and not the pink, green, purple, and yellow striped one… go figure. Now I know that socks on size 1.5 needles is not the most encouraging fist project but he didn’t want to buy his own yarn and that worsted weight already has a project assigned to it damnit. And just so I don’t come across as selfish, that sock yarn was supposed to be my first pair of Monkey socks… now that’s sacrifice. Andrew dutifully learned to cast on, do the knit two purl two ribbing, and the simple garter rib pattern for the leg. The pattern is from Sensational Knitted Socks The sock is on Knitpicks fixed circs which I love because they are very pointy but Andrew has no knitterly blisters yet and his fingers start to hurt after one or two rows of 72 stitches per row. I frequently pick up these socks and work on them when I’m in his room because it’s knitting and it’s there so I’ve probably done more of the knitting on them than he has… but it’s still his project right…

Alright I’m going the “publish” this now and then try to figure out how to go back and add links and photos… we’ll see…

ETA: Success! I’m a natural born blogger.