Friday, May 09, 2008

Baby Strawberries

I have knitted since the last time I posted, but I really lost my knitting mojo the last week and a half or so. I don't have anything to show you, so I thought I'd show you some baby strawberries instead.

We picked and ate our first ripe strawberries this morning. It was awesome. :D

I'll be out of town and country for the next week. I should have some knitting to show you by then! Take care.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A Purple Sheldon

Look who I found outside playing by our pond!

It's Sheldon, finished at last! I had no clue it took baby turtles so long to hatch.

Pattern: Sheldon by Ruth Homrighaus, published in Knitty.
Yarn: Knit Picks Shine Sport in Violet (darker purple) and Hydrangea (lighter purple)
Needles: US 2 DPNS, and US 3 KP circular
Mods: None

Sheldon is finished just in time to give to my friend Jana for her birthday. She'll love him. I can't wait to give him to her when I have dinner with her a little over a week from now! I have plans for cute packaging including making a little "birth certificate" tag to give important information about care instructions.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Round and Round

They are finally finished, and just in time for a cold snap!

Pattern: RPM by Aija Goto, published in Knitty.
Yarn:: Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock, 2 skeins, Lake View colorway
Needles: clover bamboo US1 dpns
New Techniques: None
Mods: I knit these on dpns instead of 2 circs. I cast on 72 stitches instead of the 54 or 63 suggested. I did extra repeats of the spiral pattern on the leg to make it longer. I modified the stitch count on the heel flap to match my cast on number. During the gusset decreases I decreased until I had 66 stitches. I followed the directions for the large pointed toe, the only directions I had to change was the first line where I decreased two stitches to reach the 64 stitch count called for.

I really enjoyed knitting these socks because the pattern was interesting enough that I didn’t get bored, but simple enough that I could relax with it. The pointed toe is the perfect end to this sock.

The best part yet is that these fit perfectly!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

It is here!

Guess what I received in the mail today! It's my package from my favorite color secret pal! She wrapped everything nicely. See?

She also included a nice hand written note - on purple paper no less. Her name is Jaymi. She doesn't have a blog, but you can find her on ravelry here.

I know us knitters don't like to be kept waiting, so here it is all unwrapped!

Here are some close ups.

A keychain sock blocker! I've really wanted one of these for awhile, they are just so cute!

Two sets of pretty stitch markers. They are little and perfectly sized for socks or other small gauge knitting!

Yarn! Two skeins of SWS in a dark blue purple color, and two skeins of cotton. I'm not sure what I'm going to do use the SWS for yet (hat? mittens?), but I think I'll use the cotton to make a ball band dishcloth. I've wanted to try that pattern out for awhile!

Two very nicely knitted dish cloths. The color on the one to the left is really interesting. Close up you can see bits of green, pink, and purple, but far away it looks sort of metallic.

To top it all off there was also a cute blank book, and a lovely magnetic note pad to put on the refrigerator. The note pad even came with matching magnets!

After some careful inspection Mario determined that the box was the perfect size.

Thank you so much Jaymi! It is all perfect! <3

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Earthly Delights and Contest Winners

First thing first, in the past month I completed six projects. There were two people who guessed that I would finish 6 projects, and Jo of WildPeculiarJoy won the coin toss! Joy – I’ll message you on ravelry.

Now, on to project spectrum. The end of the fire months has passed and the earth months have begun! For fire I only finished two projects. At first I felt like that wasn’t enough, but I don’t think it is so bad. The point of project spectrum isn’t to limit me to just certain colors for two months, but to open up some new horizons.

Picture from

I think it is fitting that we begin the earth months just as spring is starting to peak out of the ground. Spring is a time of renewal, when the old is pushed aside to make room for the new. In the spirit of this I have some spring cleaning to do with my projects. Despite my finishing spree I still have four projects left over from 2007, and one project from earlier this year.

My knitting goal: Finish or frog all current WIPs, and make a pair of socks out of my green or brown koigu.

Things outside of knitting might include a bit of gardening, baking, and taking pictures.

The official colors for project spectrum earth are greens, browns and metallics. I personally would love to see bits of pink and yellow peaking out in some projects. It is spring time after all!

Also remember that Earth Day is on April 22

Friday, April 04, 2008

Puppet Master Gloves

Pattern: Gloves from the Knitters Handy Book of Patterns by Ann Budd
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino, black, 2 skeins
Needles: US size 3 dpns
Guage: 7 stitches per an inch
Mods: I made the cuff way shorter than suggested, because that’s what he wanted.
New Techniques: I learned how to "make 1 right" and "make 1 left".

These are finally done! I was getting a little bored with the black yarn and weaving in all those ends was tedious. My roommates suggested I not weave the ends in at all, because they got amusement from yelling "puppet master!" whenever Danny would try on the glove with all the finger ends dangling. I'm glad my knitting amuses someone. :)

Daniel loves his gloves. He even wore the first glove in his car one chilly morning while the second one was still on the needles. He told me that he only wore it in the car because he was fairly certain he'd look silly with only one glove one. When both gloves were done and our gaming group was over he proudly showed them to everyone. All this from a guy who originally didn't want knitted stuff. Now he is saying "I'd maybe wear a hat, and some socks!"

FO count: 6, which leaves us with two contestants. :)

Monday, March 31, 2008

Undergarments on your head

At the beginning of knitting Quant when it was still looking like a little triangle with a long string attached to it, my roommate walked in and said "Whatchya knittin?" I held it up for him and he said "a thong?"

Imagine you can see the i-cord string, and just a few inches of enterlac.

I started to explain what it was when I stopped and really looked at it, he was right. At that point it did look like you could make a cute little thong out if, that is if wooly undergarments are your thing. He suggested wool was much too absorbent and that licorice would be a much better choice for a thong.

I'm not much into thongs, wooly or otherwise, so I continued on with the project as planned. And I must say I think it makes a much cuter ear warmer than it would have thong.

Project details:
Pattern: Quant by Star Athena
Yarn: Taos by Crystal Palace, color number: 17
Needles: US 8, knit picks options
Mods: In the beginning when expanding the i-cord so you can do the set up triangles the increases just say "make 1", for which knitty gives the directions for "make 1 right". I used "make 1 right" and "make 1 left" at the appropriate times. I doubt it made much of a difference, but it made me happy.
New Techniques: I-cord and enterlac

Pattern review: I loved making this pattern. It was simple, well written, and worked up very quickly. I also think enterlac is a really fun and interesting technique. The one thing I'm displeased with is how the ends don't match up.

This would not be difficult to fix, I'm sure someone has already written up directions on how to do so. I was watching prison break, so I didn't notice how badly mismatched the ends were until I had started the i-cord already. This particular yarn doesn't frog well, so I decided it wasn't worth going back to fix. It doesn't show when it's on, but little details like that matter to me. If I ever make the pattern again, I will be sure to make the needed adjustments.

If I were to make it again, I would also make it just a little bit shorter to allow for the patterns natural stretch. It isn't too big as it is, but I would prefer it just a bit shorter.

Luigi was extra special helpful with the picture taking.

Yarn thoughts: I really enjoyed this yarn for the most part. The colors are lovely, and the color repeats are long which lends its self well to this pattern. The yarn is very soft and losely plied, and a little fluffy. This does make splitting an issue, though not a major one. Frogging and lots of tinking are difficult in this yarn. I had to frog once and it was a mess of tangles and snags. The yarn also was a lot fuzzier after being frogged.

I think this is a nice yarn, once you are aware of its downsides. It created a very soft and comfy knitted fabric. I'm going to love wearing this thing next winter!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

A sort of FO

I finished my first hat!

I think the cabled pattern is really cute. I also enjoy the colors of the yarn I used, despite the pooling. My problem with this hat is the size.

It is a little tight. Nothing a good washing and blocking couldn't fix. The big problem is that it is way too short. I'm debating between adding another repeat and adding ribbing to the bottom. My plan is to let the hat rest for a bit until I can decide. Until then, it is finished!

Pattern: An Unoriginal Hat by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Yarn: Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Bulky. Color: Storm dyed over with cherry kool-aid.
Needles: 10.5 dpns
Mods: None
New Techniques: Helix stripes as described by Grumperina. I used this method to work from both ends of the yarn ball. You can still see the pooling easily, but it is a little more gentle. Had I felt like messing with it I think working with 3 or 4strands would have fully fixed the pooling problems.

FO count: 4

Monday, March 24, 2008

Bibs O’Green

Daniel has a manager that is very pregnant and on Tuesday night he asked if I could knit something small for her. We talked about it a little bit and agreed that he would find out the gender the next time he worked and then we would pick out a pattern together.

On Wednesday I was heading to class and the only item I had to work on was the misbehaving glove. I grabbed a ball of Peaches and Creme and my Mason Dixon Knitting book and headed out the door.

Over the course of the day I finished the first bib.

I had so much fun making the first one that on Thursday I started the second one, and it was a good thing too. Thursday Daniel learned that the baby was a boy and that the manager’s last day was Friday! We ran off to Jo-Ann's and picked out buttons and a patch. I finished all the knitting that night, and did the finishing work on Friday afternoon.

Pattern: Bibs O'Love, from Mason Dixon Knitting
Yarn: Peaches and Creme 100% cotton, 1 ball each "Baby Green" and "Shades of Green"
Needles: knit pick options size 6
Mods: None
New Skills: This was my first button hole. I also learned how to properly sew on a button.

I really enjoyed making these bibs. I especially love the way the bib with the patch turned out. I sewed it down, and then ironed it on for extra security.

That brings me to three FO’s! Dad’s socks, and two bibs.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Spring Time

Yesterday was the perfect first day of spring. The sun was shining and the temperature was comfortable. In the late afternoon I decided to celebrate by going for a walk and bringing my camera. My goal was to find some sings of spring and take a picture of them.

The first thing I saw right outside my door were green shoots coming up.

Next I saw a flower had already bloomed

Sadly I had to prop this flower up to take it's picture. The stem was broken, most likely from the storm we had the other night. Regardless of it's ill fate it is still the first flower to fully bloom in our yard this season.

How about this little guy who hangs out on the side of our house?

Isn't it neat how the water collects in the leaves? I thought the water droplets looked like little jewels nestled inside the plant.

Someone else’s yard had a bunch of pretty flowers

I hope we have some soon! We might need to do some planting.

I'll have an FO to show you tomorrow! :)

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Quick Trip Recap

The trip to New Jersey and New York was fun, we kept really busy while there. Going out and exploring during the day and visiting with my parents in the evening. I wish we'd had more time, but that’s the way it goes.

Here are a few snap shots from the trip:

We had Korean food for the first time.

We went to The Chocolate Haven several times to have yummy hot chocolate and peek in the windows so we could watch chocolate being made.

We visited the Bronx Zoo and saw baby gorillas! A lot of the animals were no where to be seen because it was chilly out, but the baby gorillas totally made up for it. They were cute, playful and constantly on the move.

I didn't get nearly as much knitting done on the trip as I thought I would. I did finish one of Danny's gloves. It fits him perfectly and we are both very excited about it. The second one is in time out until the thumb gusset I forgot to do magically appears on its own, or until I decide to frog it. Whichever comes first.

Happy First Day of Spring!

Sunday, March 09, 2008

"This is doomed to be awesome"

What do you do when you have a cancelled flight, several inches of snow, one sled, and no idea where good sledding hills might be found? Go sledding with 7 other people of course! I mean come on, isn't that the most brilliant idea ever?

What about this for brilliant? On top of our one real sled we had a few Rubbermaid type container lids, and several pillows wrapped in plastic bags. The Rubbermaid lids didn't work. The pillows wrapped in plastic bags had varying degrees of success. They worked pretty well if you used one pillow under your chest, and one under your knees. We suspect that body pillows would really awesome.

If you have one good sled, and two OK pretend sleds, the "best" thing to do is to go down in a train.
Step 1: Person1 gets in the real sled facing forward, that way if you are about to run into a tree, you know.
Step 2: Person2 gets in the real sled behind person number 1 and faces backwards.
Step 3: Person3 lays down on a pillow and holds person2's hands.
Step 4(optional): Person4 lays down on a pillow and holds onto person3's legs.
Step 5: Someone who is insane enough to help you, but not insane enough to join the train helps you get started down the hill.

It was awesome. Awesome enough we did it multiple times. One of the pillow people would always end up separated from the train half way down and spinning around in circles.

The day was finished off with homemade hot chocolate and hot wings, naps, pizza and beer, and games on the wii.

No pictures were taken. I was too busy playing.

I wore my hand knit socks, and got some knitting done.

Friday, March 07, 2008

My Surprise Contest

We have snow coming down now and it reminded me of the last bit of nasty weather we had. It was a little ice storm and I was shocked when I stepped out my door and almost walked face first into these branches. The weatherman is suggesting anywhere from 4 to 10 inches of snow. I am really hoping they are wrong, because I have a plane to catch tomorrow morning! Cross your fingers for me, will you?

As far as knitting goes I've realized that I have an absurd number of projects on the needles. My mind flashed to the Christmas knitting wars and the competition to finish the most projects. From there I remembered that I have been bouncing around the idea of having a contest.

1. SOTSii hint 1, 2. rpm sock, 3. dad's sock, 4. Boy Gloves, 5. unoriginal hat, 6. fetching, 7. sheldon, 8. clapotis

I have 8 projects on the needles. Your job is to guess how many projects I will finish in a month. The month will start today, and end on April 7th. I will do my best to concentrate on projects already in progress. I reserve the right to cast on new projects, and if I finish them they will count in the FO total.

Guesses are due by March 13th. The person with the closest guess wins. If multiple people are equally close then the winner will be randomly selected. The winner will be announced on April 8th.

The prize will be a surprise. :) The prize might be big or small, but I will do my best to make it something fun and enjoyable for the winner. The prize will be sent out sometime in April.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

WIP Wednesday

What have I been up to? I've not been posting much. I fell off the wagon with my picture project, been busy, been sick, and my current knitting projects are a bit boring to look at.

I'm almost finished with dad's socks:

I have about two more inches to knit before I start the toe decreases.

I started a pair of gloves for Daniel

I hope they go quickly so he can get some use out of them before the cold weather disappears.

Between brown socks and black gloves I have been feeling a desperate need for color. My ball of cherry kool-aid yarn has been sitting on the coffee table mocking me. Begging me to make it into a hat.

I love the colors. I don't love how they are pooling. I'm going to rip this and fiddle around with it to see if I can break it up.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Fearless Fingerless Mitts

For Valentines Day I jumped head first into a color work pattern. I didn't even bother to swatch. I figured if they turned out a little bigger or smaller than they were suppose to it was no big deal.

Pattern: Companion Mitts- Coordinate with Fair Isle Tam
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool in Red and Blue (greenish blue)
Needles: US size 4
Mods/tricks: I shortened the thumb. Used a slip stitch to minimize the jog on stripes, and knit the first row of a ribbed color change all stockinette so that I wouldn’t have purl bumps of the wrong color sticking out. During long floats I used this method of weaving in as you knit, to carry my float along with me. This was great for long floats, but I didn't find it to be secure enough to actually weave in ends. The lack of security may have been a short coming of my own instead of the technique's, so I will try it again someday.

This was honestly not the best choice for a first color work pattern because some of the floats are quite long. Also between my lack of a swatching, and my small hands these mitts are huge on me. I could easily wear a pair of thick gloves under them.

I'm very proud of them regardless of their flaws.

These also count as my first PS3 fire FO!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Huston, we have a problem

My Dad's sock is too small... on me. I can assure you that his foot is bigger than mine. Plus, the sock just sucks overall.

Here are all the gory details:
First we have the funky Dutch heel which bags out even when I scrunch my toes so I can pull it up correctly.

Then there is the loosey goosey cuff. It is knit on significantly more stitches than the foot (a whole 3/4 of an inch more stitches). The cuff is loose on me, and Dad is not exactly a man of thick ankles and calves. The cuff would be forgivable if the rest of the sock didn't suck so much.

Look how funky it looks. Yes it really does want to crinkle up on its own like that when left to its own devices.

The sock ended up being about 8 inches long. It should have been 9.25 inches long. Now I did make a mistake and start the toe a quarter of an inch too early, but that doesn't explain the other missing inch! I think it is the heels fault, the way it pulls everything in all funky makes it hard to measure how long the foot is.

The short explanation of all of this is: I hate the heel, and blame all of the socks problems on the heel. ;)

Now there are a few things I DO like. The longish ribbing has grown on me. I found the purl stitch it has you do on the back (like a seam) to be interesting. I also enjoy the way the toe decreases make the bar along the toes. I didn’t like the suggestion of threading the yarn back through the stitches to close the toe. I felt there were too many stitches left for that method.

What really baffles me is I seem to be the only one who has problems with this sock. Everyone on ravelry claims theirs turned out just fine. Poo on them!

I'm ripping the whole sock out and starting anew.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Project Spectrum - the elements

There are five elements, and those elements seem to change depending on the culture. For example in Chinese culture the five elements are wood, metal, fire, water, and earth. In Japanese culture they are chi (earth), sui (water), ka (fire), fū (water), and kū (void/sky/heaven).

The elements that I'm most familiar with are the western elements common in the pagan culture: Fire, Water, Earth, Air and Spirit. Project spectrum is utilizing fire, water, earth and air as its color inspiration this year. February and March have been assigned to fire.

Fire: Love, passion, destruction, rebirth, warmth, cleansing.

From the Celtic Dragon Tarot

For project spectrum the official colors of fire are red, orange and pink. I've never really thought of pink, but it fits. I also include yellow in the fire category.

I have some yarn that fits in nicely with project spectrum. Top right is knit picks WOA Bulky in storm, over dyed with cherry Kool-Aid. Top left is knit picks palette in red. Bottom right is The Knittery in Orange Blossoms, and the last one is knit picks WOA in holly berry left over from an Irish hiking scarf.

I also have one more red yarn, but it’s in use and you'll see it later this week.

Consequently, I also just completed a blogstalking! One of the recent blogstalking tasks was to photograph your favorite color. My favorite color just so happens to be red. :)

Monday, February 04, 2008

Go Team!

I hope everyone enjoyed National Knitting day! To be honest I didn't get any knitting done. I was too busy hanging out and cheering. That was one exciting game!

I did make some awesome cookies. Danny in his ultimate football dorkieness arranged some of them into an actual football play. The guys had fun picking up cookies and saying "I'm going to eat player X", or "I think I'll eat a wide receiver".

Female roomie who is a non football fan simply cheered "Go Team!" at the appropriate times. This insured she did not accidentally cheer for the wrong team, which surely would have been a death sentence. ;)

Thursday, January 31, 2008


I finished the first of my RPM socks

The fit is perfect, and I can't wait to start working on the second one! Sadly, I have to wait. I must first make my dad a pair of socks, so he doesn't feel left out.

I selected the Plain Winter Socks from Knitting Vintage Socks because my guage matched, and because they would work up quickly. I'm close to the heel turn already.

I'm hoping to finish hint 2 of my stole sometime tonight or tomorrow. Hint 3 will be published tomorrow, and I'd like to be ready for it!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Wouldn't ya know

Last week I posted about how I tried to capture snow falling and mostly I ended up with a picture of the world around me.

This week I have a picture where I was trying to capture the snow covered world around me, and ended up with a picture of snow falling. Or are they orbs? Or faeries?

Luigi believes in faeries.

He chases them all the time.

Friday, January 25, 2008


I'm so excited!

I finished hint #1 tonight! I even finished in time to submit it for the prize drawing. :D

I've been thinking that maybe those diamonds are actually flowers. They look sort of like flowers. You have the cluster of decreases in the middle with yarn over petals surrounding it. Flowers would match the suggestion that we use an earthy color for this stole. hmmm....

I believe it is time to go celebrate with a class of wine, my sock, and an episode of the Sopranos.