Wednesday, July 24, 2013

{WIP} Hey, Hey, Hey

I'm a sucker for test knitting and I'm working on another pattern by Megan.  This time it's the Blurred Lines socks which should be released in late August.

This pattern uses self-striping yarn, so after digging through my stash I undug my Quaere Fibers self striping in the Tokyo Underground colorway and got to work. Since my yarn does  not have 4 rows or more between stripes, I'm testing the method of doing it every other color change. may notice I am knitting these toe-up TWO AT A TIME. BOOYAH. I'm getting to my sock knitter's goal of learning. (and this way I won't have second sock syndrome)

And since the sock pattern is called Blurred Lines....I've had the song stuck in my head non-stop since casting on. Hey, hey, hey.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

{WIP} It Fits!

It has been too hot and too muggy to do much of anything lately.  Very little knitting, spinning, or stitching has happened in the last week.  But, I finally knit the few easy peasy stockinette rows after separating the sleeves from the body and with trepidation I finally tried it on. And it fits! Hallelujah, hallelujah! Now if I can survive the oncoming onslaught of short rows I will hopefully have a wearable garment :D I feel like half the battle is won. 

One thing that it has not been too hot for is reading! This week, for Ginny's Yarn Along, I am currently reading Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor.  This book is amazing.  Simply amazing.  It is YA, as I am a self confessed YA junkie, but please do not let that scare you away...this book is gripping in its storytelling and features a strong female protagonist.  It is a fresh twist on the age old battle between angels and demons with such very unique twists.  It also takes place in a part of the world that doesn't really appear much in YA, or any American, fiction.  From the streets of Prague to Paris, adventure happens on every page.  I am almost done with it and cannot wait to start the sequel.


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

{WIP} Great Moogly, Oogly! I've got some sleeves!

Better late than never! I kind of completely forgot today was Wednesday what with having tomorrow off for the 4th of July.  And accounting.  The accounting (work related) is eating my brain cells.  For those of you curious, I am the FSA Specialist for my company and I am currently in the midst of the year end forfeiture accounting.  Which is hysterical because one of the reasons why I was a European History major back in my BA days was so I could AVOID using maths. Lets just say this: there is a slew of former Amy math teachers who have been wandering around in a panic and not knowing why the last two weeks. As long as I keep telling myself that accounting isn't really real math I don't freak out too bad!

So, I didn't finish my Vitamin D in time for Must Stash Podcast's sweater KAL. But, I am proud of myself for trying to get it done in time.  Last weekend I finally took the plunge and separated the sleeves from the body.  As I figured I totally over thought it.  Piece of cake.  However, I do have the scary short rows coming up.  

It actually looks like a sweater (kind of)

I have also been working on the Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery's Springtime Sampler and I'm really enjoying this! Since each picture is small and contained I feel a great sense of accomplishment each time I finish a square.  As you can see I have just started the outline for the third square.  

Square one is a pint of strawberries, square 2 is a bunny, and square 3...well, we will have to wait and see!

I took a trip to the library yesterday evening and picked up a bunch of books that had come in (I like to "order" them online and pick them up on my way home).  With my usual slew of YA books, I did pick up The Lady Most Willing by Julia Quinn, Eloisa James and Connie Brockway.  I am such a sucker for regency romance novels.  

Friday, June 28, 2013

{FO} Sanibel

The Sanibel Cowl was such a fun, easy knit...and I think I might be itching to cast on a second one! Knit up in the Louisa Harding Albero, the cotton/viscose blend gives this cowl amazing drape.  And it's so squishy! 

This was part of the East Coast Knitter's summer KAL, and I actually finished it on time! Woo!

Check out some other amazing finished objects on Tami's page. 

Sunday, June 23, 2013

{TDF} Practice, Practice, Practice

A person I had met at the Connecticut Sheep and Wool festival in April had told me that once I started spinning, in the beginning, I should spin for 15 minutes a day.  

I tried a little while ago, and put it up.  I am taking lessons in July for the Tour De Fleece from the very talented Linda who is well known in the Rhode Island spinning community (I am going to be checking out the RI Spinning Guild in upcoming weeks as well) so I figured I would "get it" then. 

But then yesterday, at an ASPCA event, I met a lovely woman named Emilia who is a knitter and spinner as well and who really encouraged me to try some more before my lessons.  

So, I broke out the spindle and fiber last night and did 15 minutes.  And today, I did 15 minutes more.  I am having trouble drafting (could be the fiber I'm using which is 50% merino and 50% alpaca which has a short staple) and there is no notch on my cheap-y beginner spindle so I have issues getting the yarn around the hook and have some parts that untwist so I needed to "respin" those sections.'s getting there.  I have some bumps and thin areas but practice, practice, practice.

When I first attempted spindling, I was giving it a flick with my left hand.  And I wasn't getting a lot of twist.  So last night I tried the down the leg method and holy moly sooo much twist.  I think when I shattered my wrist last winter I lost a lot of OOMPH in my left hand, so this is much better!

"Designer" Yarn

Friday, June 21, 2013

Road Trip to New Jersey

Currently listening to the most recent podcast from The Fat Squirrel Speaks and wishing I had decided to join the Orange KAL -- some amazing prizes out there to be won.  But, I have two active KALs one of which will be finished in time...and the other, well, that was a pipe dream.

So, as I mentioned in this post, for Father's Day weekend I went home to New York to visit my dear old daddy and there was some definite stash enhancement.  We went down to New Jersey for the day, and of course I had to check Ravelry for yarn stores. What better way to say "I love you dad!" then "let's go to a yarn store!"

My first stop was Do Ewe Knit? in Westfield, NJ and despite the cicada horded that has settled in that area of NJ, it was such a fun shop! The owner, owner's husband (I think?) and her adorable Shih Tsu Ruby were so amazingly nice.  Karen (the owner) stocks quite a bit of smaller hand-dyers and I was resistless.  I scooped up a skein of Anzula  (the cricket base) in a stunning red colorway called "Madam" and a knitter's kit -- sock monkey stitch markers, a row counter and scissor set that clips onto a project bag.

My next stop was in Red Bank...and the name of the shop was just so much fun, I couldn't resist. I mean, could you have resisted some place called The Wooly Monmouth? (Red Bank is right in Monmouth county NJ). I had just intended to browse here, but the selection was so amazing and I found a yarn I have never used or heard of before.  Skein is an Australian company and I got their Top Draw Sock base in Static.  This yarn is AMAZING. I love the color and I love how soft it is.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

{WIP} Fiber ADD

As a reminder there is a KitchenAid Stand Mixer Giveaway in my post from Sunday about cancer that can be found here. The contest ends on Saturday!

Another one of those weeks where I feel like my Work-In-Progress pile is rather large. 

Click here for lots of other amazing WIPS
I will start with a KAL project that I actually will finish by the June 30th deadline.  The East Coast Knitters group is knitting an adorable, quick, easy cowl for their summer KAL.  Sanibel uses drapey worsted weight yarn and size 8 needles with a totally customizeable pattern.  Despite attempting to use stash only yarn for my next few projects, I had nothing that was both worsted and drapey in my alas, to the yarn store my long suffering Nathan went for me.  He picked me up a few skeins (on mega sale!) of Louisa Harding Albero, a cotton/viscose blend. Seriously guys this pattern is super easy and fast and FREE.

Looks like antique lace

I also started a non-yarn related project this week! I have jumped back on the cross stitch bandwagon thanks to my friend Siobhan sending me a pattern.  I am stitching the Springtime Sampler by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery as a summer stitch-a-long with Tami and my friend Viki from high school. I haven't gotten too far yet but I'm really enjoying the cuteness of it.  One of the reasons I got bored with cross stitching was because it all felt too old lady.  These kawaii characters will definitely not go into the land of old anytime soon.  One thing I find amusing is how much my shoulder aches afterwards!

I am so happy all my Xs face the same way
I haven't worked too much on my shawls lately as I've been consumed with working on the Vitamin D cardigan...but as I'm nearly approaching the sleeve separation and body work I've gotten nervous. Sure, it's just knitting. But now is the part where I will begin to tell whether or not I'm going to have a wearable garment.  Additionally, the body involves A LOT of short rows. And instead of doing a normal Wrap and Turn (W&T) I wanted to use the no wrap no gap method I used for the heel in my super secret sock I test knitted (which I might have a HO on Friday for now that the pattern is out) but I haven't worked out the logistics yet...and my luck I would screw up.

My progress is much more than this but I love how this photo looks

I love the little sleeve wedge

And that's it for this Wednesday.  Now that I'm a couple of years out of the learning to knit stage I've been thinking of doing a blog re-branding with new name and possibly moving to Wordpress....but the very thought is super overwhelming. Thoughts?