Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A bit displaced

IMG_3874 by kbshee
IMG_3874, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

It's been a bit of an odd start to the week. But first: knitting. I'm at that point in the fair isle sweater where I am dong some heavy duty fair isling! There are 300 stitches on the yoke of the sweater and I've knit about four rows of the fair isle. So far, so good (although this is a lot of stitches, even for two circular needles). A bit unwieldy.

So I'm in an organizational mode. I had to move a bunch of stuff, including my computer, home for a year and a half due to a major construction project at my office. So all the books and papers and STUFF are now currently trying to find a home in our (already full) office and (already very full) guest/yarn room. And on top of that, my home computer started going south, so I got another laptop and a portable hard drive. So the already full office needs to find room for two additional computers. I don't even want to tell you what the grand total of computers (working and nonworking) is in our house now.

BUT the good news (ish) is that I'm going through the gazillion scraps of patterns and organizing them into a file that has been sitting around empty for a few years. The patterns are in notebooks, folders, and just loose running around the office (yes they do run. Sometimes they're on a shelf and sometime they're on the floor. What other explanation do you have?). And I think I can prune a lot of them....as cute as it is, will I ever make the felted pumpkin basket? Will I ever make those bulky 80s sweaters from patons grace? No don't think so.

So that's my day so far. I hope to do a few more rows on the sweater because it just looks sort of scary the way it is.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Monday Mishmash

IMG_3870.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3870.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

1. Check the 10 mile knit down total. YES!
2. That was accomplished by finishing the purply green sock.
3. We did a paddle yesterday, which for some reason wiped us both out so we just lay on the couch when we got home and did nothing. Except I finished the sock.
4. The paddle was great, we just didn't take a break.
5. Saw a turtle!
6. This is the front of the pink sweater.
7. My SIL Candace, who knows these things, says the sleeves take about 1/3 of the total yarn. So I should have enough.
8. Yes, there is a blank patch on the front. Some I cords go there and look sort of jaunty knotty.
9. Sort of. It may look like crap. We'll see.
10. Juneau's latest bloodwork shows she's still doing well. Miraculously well. Yay Juneau!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Getting there

IMG_3871.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3871.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

I've actually been knitting on this sock since yesterday morning when I took this picture in my attempt to get to five miles before Friday. But before I started my obsessive knitting on this sock I did take a picture so you can see where I was yesterday morning.

This is DROPS sock yarn, and it's thick but I don't like it that well. I think it is a two ply but very lightly twisted, almost thick and thin. A bit hard to work with. However, when Tim puts on the sock and gives a deep smile of satisfaction I figure it is worth knitting on these.

Picture of one finished sock...and update to the mileage...soon!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Review of IK Weekend 2011





Interweave Knits published the "Weekend" magazine once a year. I think the idea is that this special issue provides ideas for weekends throughout the year (although I'm not sure in the IK world how a weekend differs from your basic Monday or Thursday). There are also a few articles which readers of my blog know I really don't read.

The stories are divided by season with March to May featuring some warm thing, June and July having lighter things, August to September a bit of a catchall, October filled with more warm things, November has even more, and December has gifties. Sort of an awkward arrangement but it's not like you need to be a rocket scientist to get through the issue.

The Good: 33 patterns for $13...not bad. And I like several of the patterns. I absolutely love this, the 8000 foot hoodie by Amanda Scheuzger. In fact, I'd pay half of the cover price...ok 2/3 of the price...for the pattern. I went running to the stash immediately to see if I have anything to make this out of and SURPRISE I do!



Also in the good, there's a nice tote (the Hold everything tote), Meg Swanson's Twisted-Sttich Stockings, Kilronan Mittens and the Braided Slipper Socks, and a cute marionette that I'll never make but it is still cute.

AND a cute kid's coat that I would make for myself if it was just a bit bigger: the Paddington Duffle Coat.

The Bad: some sad photography on the Almost-Cabled Pullover (can't see any details), some sad yarn choices on the Riot Yoke Pullover, and too many cowls for this girl.

The Ugly: guess what, nothing ridiculous! Of course a few things photographed in the traditional IK manner, meaning a t shirt under the top, but on the whole it's a nice collection of patterns. Nothing earth shattering, but lots of things that look comfortable.

Shhh

IMG_3869.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3869.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

Super secret knitting for someone who reads the blog. I can only work on this certain days of the week, and I got a chunk done yesterday. It may be done prior to a holiday later this year.

I've been knitting on this and that, in addition to this, trying to work on things that can contribute to my 5 mile total. Did you check it out? I'm only about 130 yards from meeting the five miles. So given everything in progress, I know in my head that I've met the five mile goal but I'd like to get that number to five miles. You know how that obsession thing works.

Other than that I've been working on some wire projects that are, um, interesting. And not in a good way at all. Pics soon.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Panic at the Disco

Well, not at the disco, really, more in my yarn room.

So that hot pink sweater with the cables? I'm panicking that I won't have enough yarn. Does anyone know what percentage of total yarn go in sleeves compared to the body of the sweater?

In the meantime, I posted an SOS on Ravelry so we'll see.

Because the yarn is from Elann, it is no longer listed, and it has the scary name of 'limited edition'. You understand.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

With a week to go..

I'm 300 yards and change from meeting my 'knit five miles of yarn' goal in the first half of the year.

I've been very focused on getting rid of stash this year. Everything I've knit I've knit from stash, and I've only bought a few balls of yarn: one ball of sock yarn to replace a sock that I shrank, and the other a few balls that are part of a kit for a gift for someone who reads the blog.

This weekend is the Black Sheep Gathering, and I'm not planning to purchase anything...there just isn't a point. I might not even go. I'm at the place where I don't want to buy every single yarn I see, and I want to stay there for a while.

Will I actually hit that magic number? Yes and no. I only total up yarn when I finish a ball, and most of the things I'm working on now use bigger balls of yarn. One does use 90 yard balls so I bet I could get through a few of those. If I focus on one project I could probably do it, but the important thing is that I know I AM doing it, not that the numbers hit exactly on an arbitrary measurement system.

But it would be nice to hit that five mile mark..........

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Look closely

IMG_3862.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3862.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

I finished the second front of the cardigan the other day, and thought "oh, I'll do a light blocking on this so all my blog readers will be able to see how nice it looks."

And standing in the laundry room, under the fluoresent (how do you spell that?) light, I realized I had two different dye lots on the piece.

Now here's the thing. I knew I had two different dye lots..I knew I had two skeins of one dyelot and about 8 of the other, and have double checked the dyelots as I've worked through this. But for some reason, one of the lot of 2 was wound into a tight ball (not a cake, like I usually do) and so I started using it for the last few inches of the cardigan.

It's hard to see in normal light. Tim told me to not worry about it, or maybe to do a light overdye.

But I ripped it out and reknit it with the correct dye lot, because that's just the way I am.

I've reknit so many sections of this sweater I could probably be finished with the whole darn thing. Yet. I endure.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

This can't be that interesting for you

IMG_3847.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3847.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

So if it isn't one cabled pink sweater it is another cabled pink sweater.

If it isn't the grey sweater it is these socks.

Over and over and over again!

Except I don't think you've seen these socks yet, have you? Drops design. For Tim.

Our anniversary was lovely. Presents, walks, and dinner at one of our favorites, Cafe Soriah, that was absolutely wonderful!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Friday!

IMG_3848.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3848.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

I'm still doing the transition from on to off and yesterday didn't help...a series of meetings and little emergencies and the day flew by (which is good, but too much like that work thing).

Today is my anniversary: 16 years! I kind of can't believe it, where has the time gone! We'll go to one of our favorite restaurants (Cafe Soriah) for dinner tonight.

I've done the second sleeve and I think I misspoke earlier if I referred to this as fair isle. Fair isle, technically, only has two colors per row and several of these rows have three. So that makes it, what? Bauhaus? It's from a Scandinavian knitting book so I guess it is some Scandinavian word. If you know it, please let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Shifting Gears

I'm trying to get my head around being in 'summer' mode...it should be easy but it isn't.
Being a Professor is one of those jobs that go from 0 to 60 in the fall and then from 60 to 0 (or, perhaps, to 5) in the summer. While I generally psyche myself up for the fall to prepare, I never think I need to psyche myself 'down' for the summer. And I do.

So this is what I'm trying to remember:
-I don't have to be in class at 8:30.
-I don't have any imminent deadlines hanging over my head.
-I don't have any grading to do.
-Even though I wrote a 20 item 'to do' list yesterday, I don't have to scratch everything off today. Or tomorrow.
-Even though cleaning the 'yarn room' seems overwhelming, if I take it a little at a time I'll get it done.

This time of year always makes me feel a little disoriented and somewhat sad, like a part of myself is put away for a while. It is worse this year, I think, because we had to move out of our building (construction) and I had to pack up my office and ship some of it home and some (most)of it to storage as I volunteered not to have an office during the duration of the construction. So I feel my 'there' is gone. Does that make sense?

I'm sure this will pass in a day or so, so bear with me.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

You've seen this before

IMG_3844.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3844.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

But I thought I'd show you that I finished the first sleeve of the fair isle. I've started the second sleeve but have already screwed up the fair isle part, so that will be ripped out and reknit, i guess.

I've been uninspired by knitting lately. I'm not sure why. Maybe it is that all my projects are too big, but even the thought of starting a new project isn't that exciting. Hopefully this is just a weird weird phase.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

So

I would have some knitting to show except:

-on the cardigan front I was working on, I knit about 8 rows past where I needed to start increases.
-so I ripped back. Thought I followed the cable pattern pretty well as I put the stitches back on my needle (on how blithely I ripped back!)
-then I thought I knew what row I was on so I started knitting again.
-turned out I was two rows off, and the pattern looked like crap.
-ripped back three more rows.
-now I'm ok. But pretty much a whole evening was spent knitting and ripping. Good times!

Friday, June 10, 2011

I See The


Classes done. Projects turned in. Grades entered. Trustees entertained. Grad student advanced to candidacy. Grant obtained.

All that's left is give an award on Sunday and live tweet graduation on Monday. And that, friends, is nothing.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Inch Per Hour

IMG_3842.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3842.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

I finished...finally...the back of this sweater from Inspired Cable Knits. It looks great (if I do say so myself) but my friends, this is not a fast knit. I've been tracking myself on this and guess what?

One inch per hour.

I'm not a fast cable knitter...I've tried with a cable needle and without a cable needle and cables just slow me down. Even on the WS rows, there's so much switching from knit to purl that this takes a long time.

So, let's see. The front is another 22 hours. The sleeves might go a bit faster, but let's say another 25 hours for the sleeves. So if I knit on this 2 hours a day, that gives me another month til this is done.

And when I write it down like that, it doens't seem that bad. But right now it seems like this one will never get done. Luckily I love how it looks, so that should keep me going!

Sunday, June 05, 2011

So here's that fair isle sweater

IMG_3839.JPG by kbshee
IMG_3839.JPG, a photo by kbshee on Flickr.

The one that has been languishing in a drawer for gosh knows how long.

I really don't know what happened with this....the front and back are done (right side of the picture) and I had the first sleeve (left hand side, with the fair isle trim) about halfway done. The pieces all get joined and then you do a fair isle yoke and finish it off.

But languish it did and now I've picked it back up and got it moving again. So now there are three sweaters in the works along with all the other wips (2 scarves, one pair of socks) and this sweater...as long as I don't have to do fair isle yet...is the only 'mindless knitting' that I have going on right now.

Yes. You're right. I need a sock.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Vogue Knitting, Early Fall 2011 Review

It's June and it was about 40 degrees this morning here in Oregon but in the wacky crazy fashion world of Vogue Knitting it is early fall! So let's take a look at what we get in this issue where the 'Red Hot Trend" is "Knit Fantasy" (hoo boy) and the other cover line is "Cape Play" because who does not. Love. A. Cape. Raise your hands.

You may follow along with me here: http://www.vogueknitting.com/magazine/early_fall_2011_fashion_preview.aspx

The Good: There's a very cute article on knitting inspired mugs.

I also have to say I like #18,the "Inversion Theory" jacket because it can be worn upside down or wrongside up...you get what I"m saying. However, it needs about 1/3 of a mile of merino which does not come cheap. I'm holding out to look at the new book, Knit Swirl. Anyway. There are 30 patterns which should make this a good value but...

The Bad: Of the 30 patterns:
-5 are for capes, which I won't wear. And I would wear a cape if it was like, you know, cape like. Think Batman. Cruella DeVille. Meryl Streep in "The Devil Wears Prada." These are not those capes.
-3 hippy dippy mohair things. One looks like it has growths on it.
-2 crochet (I think) vests. Even if they're not crochet, they look like 60s crochet. You know. Hippy dippy,
-1 cowl. Ugh.
-4 "Maude" like long vests. I love a long sweater. A long vest, not so much.
-This: I don't understand how this blue cardigan works.


-and a handful of sweaters that make me yawn.


The Ugly:
Look at these sleeves:
What is wrong with her arms?

Bottom line: I hope you find something you like in this issue. I really, really, do. But this reminds me of a really bad Verona. Oh VK. I'll hold out some hope for late fall.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Is anyone else having Flickr problems?

As of this morning it thinks this blog no longer exists. Oh well.

Anyway....here is the front of this sweater...the 'monks sweater' from Inspired Cable Knits. This is pretty much the color...a dusty pink Elsebeth Lavold silky wool. I finished the right front and did a little happy dance in my head since I thought I was almost halfway through.

But then I read the pattern, and discovered that in addition to a back, two fronts and two sleeves, this cardigan has these extra pieces of knitting joy that go under the arm and connect the front and back. So yay. More pieces. MORE SEAMS. Luckily these are in stockinette so they should go quickly.

Casting on!