knitting

Bwahahaha I’m aliiiiive.

Sorry I skipped you November. You were a good month of healing and getting reacquainted with the Midsommer Murders mystery show on Netflix.

I’m still healing from the surgery, but things were not as bad as I thought they would be. I barely needed the harder pain killers and was just fine on IBP and Aspirin. The scar isn’t so bad either. I do have weird stretched skin that’s figuring itself out. Also my inside bits figuring out what to do with all the new space!

Projects I managed to get work done on include the Mindcraft hat…and that’s about it as far as what I had planned on doing. Most of my time in bed has been sleeping and watching tv. I realized half way through the hat ribbing that any tiny particle in the air was causing me to cough, which was INCREDIBLY painful. So I wasn’t knitting much at all the first few weeks.

I’ve returned to work part time now, since the 4th week. (Those first 3 weeks were spent sleeping and unable to sit up on my own). I spend a lot of time on the couch these days: working, knitting, eating. By Thanksgiving I’ve been able to sit up at the table for short periods of time. I’m planning by Christmas to be mostly 100%

At the suggestion of my sister in law, I’m going to investigate joining a yoga class for women who have recently given birth / had a c-section. That’s basically what happened to me. Also, I think it will get me out of the house more often!


Current knitting projects: Sweaters

I have 4 sweaters I started this year that need to be finished!

Nightingale Cardigan, Bloom Cardigan, Jonathan’s Sweater, and the sweater dress Laneway

I’m kind of tempted to completely frog the Laneway sweater dress and make it into another cardigan. I’ve been feeling I need more/new cardigans ever since fall started and I realized I haven’t gotten a new one in over two years!

Why buy when one can make! =)

 

 

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Hello! Here’s an update. The surgery has been scheduled. I’ve already gone to my pre-op appointment. Things seem to be ok now. I have about a week and a half until the 23rd. Going to miss Halloween, Kumoricon, Jonathan’s birthday, Thanksgiving, and possibly Christmas. =(

All in all, it could be worse. I was originally planned to be under the Monday after Thanksgiving. =/ at 6am…so yeah. Not super duper first choice. Which is totally fine, but they ob/gyn office was nice enough to double check with the doctors to see if I could get scheduled earlier. So yay! That’s where I’m at now.


Knitting Projects in the Works:

Short sleeve top. Knit with Koigu yarn. I’ve never heard of this yarn before, but omg is it squishy! The color pallet is a little bright for me, but IDC it will be perfect for spring next year! The pattern I used is by Oh May! designs. I don’t think it is up on Ravelry yet, but once it is I will come back and edit this post.

Long sleeve open cardigan. Finally getting around to using the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran my aunt Debbie gave me. Har har. Not Debbie Bliss. Anyways, it’s¬† a cool toned grey, so I’ve paired it with 8oz of handspun I tried to make in a similar weight, but it ended up kind of bulky. It still works though. The pattern I’m using is called Crosscountry by Alicia Plummer. In aran weight yarn it is a quick knit. I’m using my colored handspun for the center back detail and the textured stripe around the waist.

Knitting Projects Finished:

Pom hat. I recently picked up an aran weight merino by Hedgehog fibers. It’s a quick little reverse knit hat with subtle cable details and a vegan pompom I picked up at Pearl Fiber Arts at the Rose City Yarn Crawl last year. I have another pompom somewhere in my stash I think, but I can’t find it. (boo).

Lisa Frank themed shawl:

Aww yis, another Norichanknits project! I started it in Hawaii, but had the wrong size needles. Sticker Book still turned out wearable, though small. Yarns used are a single ply merino in Blush by Fierce Fibers, and a semi-solid red by Tell Tale Yarn Co. (which unfortunately seems to have taken a permanent hiatus *sadface*), both fingering weight.


Trying to keep my hands busy even though I should instead be planning for the upcoming surgery. =/

Eh…

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The first round of the mega-kal this year has come and gone. So many awesome sets of hats and shawls or cowls!

Next up is Legs and Arms? Well hands? Well whatever. No hard and fast rules in the group! Keep things fluid so that FOs and not UFOs are generated.

On my list is the circle mitts and the rejoice leg warmers. I haven’t decided what I want to make them out of just yet though. It’s been pretty gloomy in terms of the weather here, so I’m trying to knit some stuff with perkier colors. But…I don’t wear perky colors? Haha!!

Moving out of my comfort zone isn’t exactly a bad thing. ūüėČ

So for the next two and a half months, May is half over already, I’ll be working on some shawls and then those two little bits for the mega-kal group. Hopefully it results in some cute little ankle/leg warmers I can wear with my Blowfish sandals this fall. =D

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Hello!!!

I haven’t updated in AGES! First post of April and it’s already over half way through the month, my bad.

A lot has happened over the past few weeks that I’m just now getting settled into a routine for work, housekeeping, cat attendance, knitting, and other…crafting…

So, in that order: Work.

Things are kinda same old, same old at the office…my home office…my kitchen table. Projects keeping me busy enough. Stuff going smoother than expected. My dissatisfaction at work as ebbed a little bit due to some external factors which will be somewhat apparent in the rest of this post.

Housekeeping: WE MOVED!

Holy crinoline, batman. We’re in a new place: closer to town, closer to stuff, closer to everything. It’s amazing how much of a change being 2 max stops closer to downtown makes. We’ve also increased our altitude. We’re not on the 4th floor of a 5 floor building. Kitty has SO MANY WINDOWs to choose from! We got lucky and have a corner unit, so there’s 2 walls of windows. We’re also NE facing, so no summer blistering sun to worry about! The view from here is pretty bland, but it’s nice to watch the rain fall and the trees outside. We’re high enough to see fights between pigeons, crows, and falcons.

I know it may seem weird, but Lucy has been chirping again! At our last place we had a lot of wild life, but not so much of a perch for her to be able to watch and chirp like she did at the place before. Each time we move it seems like we’re just getting a better situation for the cat…and then realize it’s absolutely terrible for either us or her. It’s only been a few weeks, but so far it seems like we hit the jackpot with this place! More room, more storage, we have CLOSET SPACE AGAIN!!!!

Life Pro-Tip: Never compromise on closet space thinking you’ll be able to get by with shoving your clothes into a dresser. Seriously.

Cat Attendance: All the space for activities!

Lucy is having the time of her life: people watching, napping, and playing with her toys. That last bit there, the toys, she’s doing it on her own?! This is something she barely did in the other places we were. Granted the first place we were at she could, but I was hardly ever home to witness it.

She’s got a semi-routine down now that things have gotten situated.

AM: Wake us up, wait/meow for breakfast, signal that she wants the blinds open, watch people from her perch for a little bit, use the box, run around like a crazy animal, hit up the toys in the living room, roam around for a little bit, settle in for a mid-morning nap.

PM: Wake up from the mid-morning nam (she’s a cat), check up on the plebs down on the street level from her perch, wait for the heater to turn on, snuggle in her bed, roam around, nap until dad comes home from work.

PPM: Meow for dinner, be as obnoxious as possible, check up on all the rooms in the new place, use the box, snuggle in her bed and blink at us for a few hours.

PPPM: We go to bed, she starts her night watch. Eventually returning to a kitchen table chair to settle in for the night.

That’s basically what she’s been doing. When we first moved into the place, she was all over the place and wasn’t napping as much. The more I moved around during the day unpacking, the more she had to be awake to investigate progress and micro-manage me.

Knitting: projects on hold and new projects on needles.

At this point I can proudly say that I’ve knitted A sock, and it fits! On hold though is my flower cardigan as I work on some secret knitting.

Other Crafting: spinning and sewing.

I GOT A SPINNING WHEEL FOR MY BIRTHDAY!!!!! Yes, I’ve managed to not be all gooshy about it on Instagram. Jonathan bought me a Kromski Minstrel in Mahogany finish!!!!!!!! Drove me all the way out to Newberg to pick one out at Pacific Wool and Fiber. I’ve already managed to figure out the setup with Scotch Tension and have spun up nearly all my fiber. I’m still a little iffy on plying, but my first and second attempts so far seem to be legit. The drafting technique isn’t that far off from using a drop spindle. Which btw, I’m kinda glad I don’t have a huge collection of drop spindles as I think from now on this spinning wheel will be my main cheese for spinning.

As for other crafts, I’ve gotten really into beading recently. Just small things, nothing fancy or crazy. I really enjoy it because it’s like instant gratification. I can many just about any design that I want too without having to follow some crazy techniques. The basics I have down are from Angela Clayton’s beading videos on Youtube. She’s really good at showing her technique and it isn’t complicated so that anyone can easily pick it up. And thanks to the enabling factor of Etsy, I have some more seed beads on their way to me! (I’m actually planning on using some of them for a knitting project, but I got a little bit more to experiment with!)

So yeah, that’s about all that has been going on in my world. ¬†=)

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HELLO THERE!

Welcome to 2017! I’m so excited for 2016 to be over already. Some hardcore celebrities and childhood hero’s died over the last few months that melted into the holiday season…so…I dunno, not a whole lot I can say that hasn’t already been said.

But as far as feels go. Have you seen Finding Dory? ToT Yes, that’s right. Crying text emoji. Pixar working that magic again, and me crying like a pathetic broken person in front of my husband (whom’s idea it was to rent it from Amazon to begin with). Thanks dude.

And speaking of movies, we also watched The Secret Life of Pets. That’s a fun movie that could have been better if it was pg-13. And then that infamous Rogue One. Oh yes, that movie…that Star Wars movie. THE prequel we all wanted and had to suffer 3 horrifying films, and 3 horrifying remastered upchucked splice edited originals…if you don’t know how I feel about ep. 1-3 and the 90’s edition ep 4-6…NOW YOU DO! Any time I’ve ever seen A New Hope playing on cable tv they neeever play those shitty 90’s releases, so I know I’m not alone in my opinions regarding that…stuff… Continue reading Happy 2017!

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Have you ever worked with lace weight yarn and found it to bring out the hater in you?
Have you ever worked with lace weight 100% mulberry silk yarn and found it to break your knitting spirit?

I think for this entire year I have a grand total of 5 FO’s compared to last years almost double digit number. Granted, a lot of them are hats and small shawls, but still FO’s!!

So here it is, the glorious lace weight silk masterpiece that I’ve been working on as a sample.

Also, my unimpressed Lucy cat.

2016-09-20-16-36-09

The Gehry Wrap consists of two sections: foundation and window.

Pro-tips:

  1. Use alternating sets of stitch markers. You really need A and B markers so you don’t get lost. Do not use all markers of the same color/type. You will get lost.
  2. When working the wrong side of the rows, that is when I would place a marker. This made it easier for me to whip through each row without having to double-triple count the number of stitches I needed before a wrap/turn.
  3. Double wrap the working yarn around your pinky. This is particular to us that throw our yarn when knitting versus those of us that knit continental style. Since it is 100% silk  it will help you not only hold the yarn, but keep tension as well without straining your wrist.
  4. The piece will block out.

With the Gehry Wrap out of the way, I plowed through the rest of the Mayu Sweater. The last parts required were the sleeves, which is my least favorite part of knitting. To circumvent the lack of size 15 dpns, I decided to do make a few changes.

2016-09-22-13-18-06

  1. Since I had messed up and somehow managed to be 2 stitches short of what I should have been at the sleeves for the size I made, I cast on 1 more on each end of the sleeve underarm. This is cast-on, not pick-up and knit.
  2. To even things out I added 1 more stitch at the end of the row. Where I should have had 30 stitches, I did 31. (3, 25, 3) Half a stitch is taken on each end of a row when seaming, so the 1 extra stitch essentially disappears.
  3. I knit stst until desired 8″ length careful to count as I go so that I could duplicate the correct number of rows for the second sleeve. After the third decrease, switched to smaller needles,¬†purl¬†1 row (ws row), begin cuff ribbing (rs row).
  4. Seam up the arm from the cuff, seam the underarm, block, enjoy!

I’m currently wearing it and since it is made of a slick, yet puffy, superwash bulky weight yarn (Biggo from Knitpicks), it grew quite a bit after washing. While drying it I was almost afraid it was going to be dress length! Luckily for me, it grew just the right amount. =)

I now have a nice puffy cozy sweater for fall!!

 

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imageNarf! Pinky is one of my all time favorite cartoon characters. Sure he wasn’t all brains, like Brain, but his unique way of looking at the world and his creative intelligence, though a mouse cartoon, is just as important to embrace in society today as a PHD. So I have named my shawl made with Beachy Keen gradient kit by Fierce Fibers the Narf! Shawl.

(note: the shawl is really easy to knit, however my instructions are not detailed enough for a beginner, sorry…this is my first pattern, ever. Please bear with me! If you see anything amiss, please don’t hesitate to contact me on Ravelry.)

Narf! Shawl

Narf! Shawl:

Yarn: 1 gradient kit by Fierce Fibers in the Beachy Keen color way, or any other set of 5 colors of fingering weight yarn.

Yardage: 400-460 yards +- 10 yards depending on how full/long you want your tassels to be.

Gauge: 23 stitches and 32 rows = 4 inches in stockinette

  • Gauge is not important as the shawl is designed to use up all the yarn from the gradient kit. When a¬†row cannot be completed, set aside the remaining yardage for the tassel. =)

Size: approximately 51″ wide x 18.5″ deep

Tools:

  • Size US 7 (4.5mm) 24″ or longer circular needles
  • the Loome tool or 3″ piece of cardboard
  • Darning needle
  • Scissors
  • Blocking supplies

Abbreviations:

  • M1R – make 1 increase right leaning (insert left needle into bar between stitches, back to front, knit into the front loop)
  • M1L – make 1 increase left leaning (insert left needle into the bar between stitches, front to back, knit into the back loop)
  • yo – yarn over
  • ssk – slip, slip, knit
  • k2tog – knit 2 stitches together
  • psso – pass slipped stitches over

Basic Construction:

Start with a garter tab. Cast on 3 stitches and work 8 rows. With 3 stitches still on the needle, pick up 5 stitches evenly along the edge and 3 at the other end for a total of 11 stitches. I went with 3 for a solid garter edge. Just my preference. =)

The main piece¬†is a basic 6 increase shawl – 4 increases on the right side and 2 increases on the wrong side. There is 1 stitch in the center and three stitches each side¬†for the garter edge. Check out¬†the various shawl construction types here on Craftsy for the wide and shallow triangle shawl or if you’d like a different shape.

Row 1: Work garter edge. yo, knit to center, M1R, knit 1, M1L, knit to last three stitches, yo, work garter edge. (inc 4 stitches)

Row 2: Work garter edge, yo, purl to last three stitches, yo, work garter edge. (inc 2 stitches)

Work each color in these two rows until you cannot work a complete row. This leftover yarn will be used for the tassels.

End the 4th color after a right side row, knit row (inc 4 row). Begin wrong side row with the 5th/last color and work as a normal wrong side row (inc 2 row).

If you are using less than 5 colors, note that the lace edging section is worked with the 5th mini-skein being a little under 100 yards.

Lace Edging:

image

Set up Row (WS): Work garter edge stitches and purl to the last 3 stitches, you will no longer be increasing for the rest of the shawl. Work last 3 garter stitches.

Row 1 (RS): Work garter edge stitches, repeat (k2tog, yo) across until the center stitch. Depending on how many stitches you have you will either come to 1 stitch before the center stitch, or just the center stitch.

  • If you have 1 stitch before the center stitch: yo, slip 2 as if to knit, knit 1, psso, yo. This should give you a neat centered decrease.¬†Repeat¬†(ssk, yo) to the last 3 stitches, work garter edge stitches.
  • If you have just the center stitch: knit 1. Repeat (yo, ssk) to the last three stitches, yo, and then work the garter edge stitches.

So now you’ve got your first set of eyelets going. The right side should be slanting slightly to the right¬†and the left side should be slanting slightly to the left.

Row 2 (WS): Work garter edge stitches, purl across, and then work garter edge stitches.

Repeat this eyelet pattern across again (rows 1 and 2). (total of 4 rows worked! yay!)

Row 5 (RS): Next, to create the subtle zig-zag effect, on the right side of the shawl work garter edge stitches, repeat (yo, ssk) to the center stitch. Work the center as previously noted in Row 2 depending on how many stitches you have available.

  • On the other side of the center stitch if you did the center decrease: Repeat¬†(k2tog, yo) to the last 3 stitches, work garter edge stitches.
  • If you did not do the center decrease simply continue to repeat (yo, k2tog) to the last three stitches, yo, and then work the garter edge stitches.

Row 6 (WS): Work as Row 3.

Repeat this eyelet pattern across again (rows 5 and 6). (total of 8 rows worked! yay!)

Row 9 (RS): Work as Row 2.

Row 10 (WS): Work as Row 3.

Bind off loosely knitwise. I prefer the double knit method: Knit 1 (knit 1, slip both stitches back to the left hand needle, knit together through the back loop), repeat. This should leave it nice and sproingy for blocking the edge out to points, or giving the shawl a nice curve. Your choice! =)

Tassels:

imageI used my H Loome, you can use any piece of cardboard or pegboard you have at about 3″. If you’re not familiar with tassel making, watch this video! (does not require the Loome)

Make 3 tassels.

For my tassels I did this:

Step 1: Cut off extra yarn from the edges of the shawl, leaving a tail long enough to weave in.

Step 2: Take the two shortest pieces and cut them in half.

Step 3: Taking one of each color of the yarn you just cut in half, wrap them onto the Loom for making a tassel.

I happened to only have three usable pieces of leftover yarn to use for the tassels. If I make this again, I think I will purposely stop each color earlier so that I make sure to have a little bit of each color in all my tassels.

I also made sure to use more yarn for the third tassel and placed it as the center stitch decoration. I managed to make it a little bit longer than the other two by wrapping loosely around my H Loome.

Note about blocking:

image

For a subtle wave, I blocked out the top of the shawl as straight as I could, and then every 5 k2tog/ssk column along the bottom edge. (I really need to get my mitts on blocking wires!)

Attach tassels to the two opposite corners and the bottom center stitch, weave in loose ends. Wear and enjoy!

Narf! Shawl


*I am not sponsored to produce this blog post. All products mentioned were purchased with my own money and are things that I enjoy using. *

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Current WIPs —

Gehry Wrap: 50% done

Frosty Acorn: 85% done

RCYC MCAL – 65% done

Polwarth/Silk Spinning: 30% done

Crosspatch Spinning 50% done

Burton Vestigan: 50% done, need to get more yarn

Mayu – 85% done, need to finish sleeves

Jonathan sweater attempt #4: Just started

Playground shawl: A grudgingly 10% done, might frog this. The material is too good for a basic shawl! XD


Stuff That I Want to Make over the next 6 months¬†—

Basic Brioche Beanie – Learn brioche!

Best Friend Shawl – Have the materials, need to do it

Lady Olivia – Need new hand warmers for this fall

Lingon – Use my handspun

Regina – ‘cuz more hats

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