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Archive for the ‘knitting’ Category

Been A While

I looked at my last post and realized that I have not accomplished much in the knitting department since then.  I had to frog the baby cable socks because after I turned the heel, I realized that they were going to be too small for me.  And I don’t know any adult with smaller feet that would be able to wear them.  I debated doing the cable but changed to the Waterfall pattern.  I just turned the heel on the first sock last night and it looks like it might be too big. It’s so hard to tell though–I’m used to store-bought socks that look smaller and stretch more.  If they are too big, I can give them away easily.  Well, except that there are all kinds of problems with the pattern.

Basically, the yarn I selected, Wildefoot’s Forget Me Not, is horrible for any cabling or fancy stitching.  So the pattern, while it has it’s flaws, appears even worse because the yarn didn’t knit up the way I thought it would.

I’m also working on a Mermaid shawl using beaded silk.  Very nice feel to it, but again, it’s knitting up different than I had imagined.  Part of that is this is my first experience with any lace knitting.  It’s a very, very basic pattern but it has still taken me some time to get used to.  And the sides are not as even as I’d like.  I run into the same problem with scarves, so I need to find the “fix” so that the sides of an item remain smooth.  Is it to just slip the first stitch?

I have managed to get my son’s baby scrapbook done.  It was a pre-designed book where the pages were already embellished and all I had to do was paste the pictures in and add some stickers.  Shouldn’t have taken me almost 2 years, but there you are.  I cringe at the thought of how long it’s going to take me to get the second baby’s scrapbook done.

Swinging Bells Doily

Swinging Bells Doily

Other projects include another Swinging Bells doily.  Haven’t started it yet, but plan to once the first sock is finished. The picture here is the one I created for my SIL at her wedding shower.

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I’m currently working on a baby cap–the umbilical cord cap from Stitch n Bitch.  I’ve never really gotten the top of it right, but practice makes perfect.  I’ve made several and they all have holes when I get to the serious decrease parts because apparently I drop stitches when the number of stitches on each needle gets to be around two.  I’m using my old bamboo circular needles because that’s what I used to cast on.

Since I started the project, I purchased my Harmony needles from Knit Picks.  I always hated how the yarn “stuck” between the cord and the needle and that’s not a problem I’ve had with the Harmonys.

I’ve got to wash, starch and block the doily for my future sister-in-law.  It’s the Swinging Bells pattern.  I often make it for bridal showers, but I’ve never taken a picture of the finished product.  I need to get a picture to post on Ravelry.

I’m also knitting a market bag using the Harmony needles.  I’ve frogged it once and it still has problems.  I don’t think they’ll be that noticeable once it’s watched and blocked.

I’m also still working on the baby cable socks from Sensational Socks.  I’ve started using a leftover notebook from the Hot Reads program as a stitch counter and it’s making all the difference.  The sock is knit cuff to to and the area by the cuff is kind of wonky because I had lost count of the rows and some of the stitches were dropped as I was learning how to make the cable.  I picked them up–or thought I did–and even frogged back.  It’s not terrible, but the rest of the sock is looking a lot better.

Finally, I’ve made a little progress on the Midsummer Night’s Fairy cross stitch.  I’m on the wings–it’s going to take a while to complete them, but it’s the last major section of the piece to do.  I can’t wait to get it done and framed with its counterpart, Titania.

So that’s where I am on my projects.

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Another Field Trip

This time it was to Kristen’s Knits in Rochester. I’ve almost finished the socks from the yarn and pattern I purchased at Bella Lana and I’ve been itching to make some more. Sad isn’t it, how I can’t finish a project before dreaming of the next. And yes, I’ll post pictures of the completed pair. It could be any day now.

However, I’m also still fantasizing about the beaded silk yarn I saw at Bella Lana, and I had hoped to find some in Rochester along with a suggestion as to what to make with it. I’m learning the hard way that it’s all well and good to find a yarn I love but if I can’t turn it into a project–then it’s just taking up space.

Kristen’s Knits was easy to find and had a wonderful selection of yarn (alas, no beaded silk). It wasn’t terribly busy so I got just the right level of service. She, Kristen herself, let me explore on my own and then when I came to the point where I needed guidance, she was easy to find and extremely helpful as well as knowledgeable.

Again, I overspent. I purchased Sensational Socks, yarn for two pairs of socks and yarn for two market bags. (I’ve got this Earth Day thing going) I totally forgot that I had some hand-dye on order that is very similar to one of the colorways I purchased at Kristen’s. I suppose I could make a market bag and give it away. It’s been a while since I’ve made a project to give away.

It was recommended that I take the Sensational Socks book to Kinko’s and have them convert it to a spiral bound book. I’d heard that from the author herself when she was interviewed on the Knitpicks podcast. Apparently, it costs around $4 to do. The bibliophile in me is horrified, but the craft artist who needs to use the book is planning to sneak it to the nearest copy store and see if they can do it.

All in all, it was a pleasant experience. Especially since there was a 20% off moving sale. No, they don’t know where they’re moving to, which is kind of sad. I hope she finds a location fairly soon and that it’s in a reasonable location. I’d like to go back.

In spite of my overspending, driving home, I didn’t feel guilty. In fact, I felt energized and in a wonderful mood. I have beautiful yarn to work with, I supported a small business, and I’m going to learn some new techniques to create items that are going to be used/worn.

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Field Trip!

My coworker, A, and I skipped lunch to head over to her favorite LYS, Bella Lana. I thought from the website that it would be some snooty, upscale store, and it does have that feel when you walk in. Everything is very neat and organized. Almost bare. The yarns are beautiful and well displayed–and look like they’re expensive. And they do cost more than the cheap Red Heart I often make afghans out of.

But the staff is amazingly helpful. They helped me select yarn for a pattern I picked out–and they didn’t just show me the $22 and up skeins. A says that they’ve been great about her first attempt at a sweater. She is taking a class, but I could overhear them helping her select a better pattern for the yarn she was using. Turns out her problem was that she couldn’t see her stitches and she was learning to do the seed stitch.

Of course, I spent way more money than I should have. I picked up a really cool book called Last Minute Knitted Gifts. I am quite sure that it will take me longer than the 2-4 hours that simplest patterns reportedly take, but there are some really cute ideas in there.

I also picked up a beginner sock pattern, some sock yarn, and a set of #3 dpns. There was some gorgeous yarn in a tiny skein that had glass beads woven into it. I loved it, but at $22/skein, I decided to pass for now. I see a pair of fingerless gloves in my future though…..

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