Wednesday, January 23, 2008

There She Grows

Last week I made speedy progress on the Central Park Hoodie. I guess because it's such a simple pattern repeat and the action only happens every 10th row, I ended up hurrying up to get to the “action rows”. I sped through the back and up to the armpit shaping on each side in over a weekend. Then I had to put it down for a week because my wrists were killing me.

I had to pin to the blocking board to make sure it was stretched out width-wise before I measured it for length. I don't want to repeat the DOH! moment I had while making the Cabled Hoodie from Paton's Street Smart (currently in hibernation). I measured for length whilst it sat on my lap, later when stretched out to the correct width after binding off I was horrified to discover it only reached my navel.

Today is National Pie Day! This would be the PIE day (not the pi day 3/14).
A holiday brought to you by the American Pie Council. Apparently you can become a member of the Pie Council of America for one 35 dollar lifetime payment. Membership benefits include a subscription their newsletter Pie Times and access to the member’s only section of their website called Pie Talk.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Don't Leave Home Without Them

On to knitting resolution number two: finish a sock a week (or half a pair). Inspired by Kelly Petkun’s recent entry about knitting socks on the go I decided to pop into World Market and see if the have any of the cute bags she bought to carry hers around in. They had piles of bags to sort through and I couldn't remember what hers looked like. I ended up picking out the exact same type though because they are, well, the perfect sock size. The length is just right as well for hanging around my neck and working from. For me anyway. Someone who's less shall we say vertically challenged might find it a little too short. Added bonus: they were on clearance for 50% off. Yay. I got a pink one and a brown one. I managed to keep them with me for the last two weeks. I always knew in theory I could be getting more knitting done if I remembered to carry it everywhere I went. But holy gussets batman I’m amazed at how fast I got these done (a six hour round trip car ride the weekend before last may have helped). I’ve already cast-on for my second pair and was able to get a good chunk started and maintain some sanity at the same time during the 40 minutes we waited to be served Sunday brunch.

Details: Plain old garter rib socks in Regia Line Steps Color for my husband's gigantic size 11 feet. Knit 2 at a time from the toe up with yarn over short- row heels

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

New Year's resolutions

My New Year's goal, like millions of other people's is to lose weight. Yarn weight that is. After 3 years of knitting under my belt I've come to the realization that justifying a 50% off sale because I can never have enough good basic wool in a sensible color is a complete untruth. I can have too much, and I do. I don't have enough room left in my stash to squeeze in even one skein of something non-basic and non-functional i.e. what I'd actually enjoy knitting up. I know a lot of knitters, including me, are happily existing in a kind of imaginary 2nd life where we can actually complete in all the projects dream about, meanwhile merrily making the necessary purchases like we have all the time in the world. Unfortunately, perhaps because of latent feelings of unworthiness, I have not allowed myself a frivolous fantasy life. Choosing instead to labor under a delusion that I'm eeking out an existence on a windswept Scottish island and need to cloth a family of twelve with sock yarn described but with a single positive attribute: the phrase "wears like iron". The idea of organizing the stash and assigning projects to it so I can check them off like a giant to-do list sort of appeals to my masochistic nose-to-the-grindstone, no-dessert-before-dinner approach to tasks. This is, however, a new year. It's time to loosen up a bit. Actually to be honest I gave up the idea of organizing the stash in Ravelry because I stupidly gave my mother-in-law my Flickr account info and I'm too embarressed to continue taking pictures of it. Perhaps if I renamed the folder "pictures of other peoples yarn" that would fool her?

Tame That Stash

Back to the stash again- anyway, after much soul searching I have come to the realization that it's not the amount of yardage that's bothering me it's the amount of room it's taking up. Light bulb moment: to get rid of volume stop reaching for the fingering weight for a while (except socks of course) and go for the bulkiest stuff first! Duh! I don't remember the last time I cast-on with anything heaver than DK weight. But here is the worst offender in the you’re taking too much of my limited stash space please take up space elsewhere (maybe the closet) category:

9 hanks of Carodan Farm Worsted Weight in the Blackberry colorway. I don't usually like purple but this color is an exception, warm, varied with flecks of deep cherry, burgandy and a lighter heatherd gray that will mask any cat hair that makes it's way in. Rustic factor maybe a bit too high though, even for me. Smells pretty ripe, fairly full of chaf, and extremly scratchy. I cast on for a gauge swatch in hopes of doing the Central Park Hoodie with it last night and this morning awoke with what only can be described as rug burn on the tips of my left pinky and index finger. Not an encouraging sign. Seems to have softened up a bit in the wash. I'll try to reserve judgement until after the swatch has dried.