Is it a monster?

August 7, 2009 § 2 Comments

I always felt like most of my projects have taught me something.

My first scarf taught me to knit. My first hat taught me to join carefully, without twisting, and for god’s sake double-check that. The teal hat taught me that thinking you know the right number of stitches to cast on can result in gorgeous accidents.

My fair isle fingerless mitts taught me the importance of tension. Different socks taught me different heels and toes, and the importance of casting off loosely when you’re doing toe-up. My shrug showed me there are things worth knitting through the night.

Christian’s pixie shoes taught me there is such a thing as too many bells. My first lace taught me to not follow patterns blindly, check what other people have to say about a project, and not worry too much if there’s one row doubled up by accident – nobody’s gonna notice in a shawl that size.

My ambitious Christmas projects attempted to teach me that you shouldn’t start in October if you want to have 11 pairs of socks by Christmas, but unfortunately failed to have any lasting impact. Likewise, the Sock Yarn Shawl failed to teach me to weave in ends as I go.

But no project, ever, has taught me the simple, exquisite joy of binding off after having plowed through 11 feet of garter stitch that are gonna end up even longer once I wash and steam it.

Sometimes it isn’t finesse or a particularly well-thought stitch pattern.

Sometimes it’s perseverance, and a good bit of old-fashioned stubbornness.

Of course, it helps if you’re really, really entertained by the stripes.

**

Edit from August 12, 2009: I just linked this post to all the Ravelry project pages mentioned in here, and it’s hilariously overreferenced. And I didn’t even link all Christmas projects, or all socks I have ever made.

Therapy socks – the end

April 20, 2008 § 2 Comments

I finished the second therapy sock on my 5 1/2 hour train ride to Leipzig, where I chatted about  knitting with two charming old ladies in my compartment. it was great. It’s funny though, I was waiting in Hamm for almost an hour and nobody commented on my knitting – and then suddenly within two minutes, two old guys came up to me (separately) and were like “Socks or scar”, I replied “Socks” and they both proudly showed me their own handknitted socks they were wearing. I love old people.

So, where the first therapy sock is too tight (the bindoff), the second one is a tad too loose. Funny, kind of. Otherwise they fit perfectly, I slipped them on as soon as I was done (sans  weaving ends in) and went through what felt like half of Leipzig in them.  Brilliant.

Ah, Leipzig.

Give yourself over to absolute pleasure…

April 14, 2008 § Leave a comment

I started an Odessa hat with the teal Piace yarn. Sigh. I didn’t want another WIP – two pairs of socks and a scarf (plus the sweater I need to frog and redo the arms that I’m not even thinking about) should be enough, shouldn’t it? Well, apparently not, and I just couldn’t resist I suppose?

Anyway, the Piace is a luxurious knit – unsurprising with 60% Merino and 40% microfiber, and the color really appeals to me. It will also look good with my more or less undyed/growing out brown hair as much as it will when I’m a firetruck-colored redhead again. Complementary colors! :D September will also be the time I’ll slowly be needing hats again, anyway. Anyway, this is my procrastinating-from-everything WIP: Procrastinating from Bio, the Q sock (damn the day I fell in love with the pattern) and sort of Express Lane. That is, Express Lane is supposed to be my train knit, apart from maybe the toe, so I need to stave myself off that. Though I should really do Q on the train to get it over with… oh well.

This means I’m basically using all the yarn I bought in Dortmund the other week. Ooops.

Also, apparently my second Leo cozy got lost in the mail. Which is sad, cause I don’t have anything of the red yarn left and it was so nice and variegated and perfect for a lighthouse-stripe wool condom.

Still haven’t ordered the Erdbeerbecher. If I have money left after Leipzig, I will though. Good plan.

Now I have a Q one and a green one

April 6, 2008 § Leave a comment


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Originally uploaded by slashkitten

I just finished the first therapy sock! It went really quickly considering how little time I had. It’s pretty short (12 pattern repeats) which I like. Somehow I managed to get the bind-off to be too tight though.

But apart from the difficulty of getting the cuff over my heel, they are PERFECT. Seriously. I’ve never had socks that fit that well. *in love*
And the yarn too. It looks better by daylight, I’ll have to take a picture tomorrow.

Yay socks!

Woops, where did that heel come from?

April 5, 2008 § Leave a comment

I haven’t had any time recently – organizing, studying, running errands and studying some more – yet I got around to turning the heel yesterday on my first therapy sock. It’s so fast I can’t believe it: I timed myself and did half a pattern repeat in 8 minutes (minus the heel and toe, that’s only 2 hours and 40 minutes, roughly), and there’s 7 1/4 pattern repeats on the foot of the sock… yes, only 7! The yarn is so stretchy I made the small size, and it’s perfect and snug. And I still love the colors, the way they change… even though somehow it reminds me of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for some weird reason. Hm.

And the pattern is so great. Have I gushed about the pattern yet? I probably have, but it’s so awesome. I knit in class yesterday (last day, it wasn’t like we did anything anyway, and I’m perfectly capable of knitting while we’re talking about future plans), which is where I finished the heel and two pattern repeats. I didn’t do the pattern heel, like with the tip, cause I couldn’t understand what they wanted me to do, so I did the heel described in Charmed Knits, which is a short row heel with the yarn wrapped around the ‘short stitches’ instead of… whatever. Ah, I love these socks. They’re so quick and easy, yet not boring. Maybe, if I’m not sick of them after the second one, I’ll do another pair, maybe with solid color wool yarn. And I still need to think of something for the Erdbeerbecher yarn in (the rather probable) case I splurge on it. And the Q socks… *sigh* Well, I’ll have 6 hours of train riding on the 18th and another 6 on the 2nd in which I have to keep myself occupied…

Stress relief and wishlists

April 3, 2008 § Leave a comment

My therapy socks – I could also call them spring socks or outdoorsy socks, the color is so nice and reminiscent of a meadow – are progressing better than I thought. I can do half a pattern repeat (4 rows) in 8 minutes and I’ve been taking it everywhere. Even though I’m mortally afraid of one of my bamboo DPNs might break. They knit very well though – I like the lightness and the smooth, but not too smooth feeling.

… I want Ebony needles from Holz und Stein. Or KnitPicks Harmony. Selana had hers with her at the Knitting Meetup and they felt awesome, though I’m sot of skeptical about the shortness – they’re two inches shorter than my other DPNs. Hm.

I also discovered the Tausendschön online shop and fell in love with the Erdbeerbecher. I really like the Golden October and the Koi, too, but the Erdbeerbecher has such a spring/summer feeling to it I just wanna knit it RIGHT NOW. But €11 is kind of expensive (with shipping; still cheaper than Wollmeise though and almost as pretty as her Rhabarber), so I decided to see how well my exams go, esp. history. And if I have a feeling I did well, I’m gonna treat myself. Gotta set goals, cause I’m fucking sick of studying!!!

Yarnwhoring and the Rose Shrug

March 29, 2008 § Leave a comment

I went to Dortmund yesterday, for the monthly Stricktreff (Cafe Max) and to try the Plaetzsch Garnhandel. Which is basically a big old storage hall crammed full of yarn at really low prices, and I splurged a little. I.e. I bought yarn in advance, and some I have no idea what to do with yet.

This is woodsy-colored cotton sock yarn. I’m curious how it knits up compared with the sock wool I’ve been using. I don’t have a pattern set for it yet – I have a couple on my Ravelry queue, like the Primavera socks (which I sort of want to order Wollmeise Rhabarber yarn for…) or the currently unavailable Kaylee. But I still have time, I want to finish Q before starting another pair of socks. And this time, on my bamboo needles, which premiered on Leo II but have been hanging out in my needle box otherwise. Since it’s supposed to be stretch, maybe I can knit them a size smaller? I’d love that.

I title this the Splurge Yarn, since I have no idea what to make with it. The color jumped at me out of the new arrival box, and when I saw that it was mostly merino, I had to have it. (The fact that it was, like all of these, under €3, helped immensely) I might make a pair of Fetching gloves with them, since I did a pretty awesome pair with Lana Grossa’s Merino 2000, which is a really similar yarn. Or… hmmmm. We’ll see. I’m glad to have it at hand in case the perfect pattern pops up.
And then last but definitely not least, the Luna yarn (3 balls) for my Rose Shrug. Aaaah, the Rose shrug. I’ve done my first left-twist row and it’s already the most bohemian thing I’ve ever knit, but maybe because of that I’m really excited. It’s not just red – there’s black, brown, ochre, green and blue mixed in, and it just looks… well, very bohemian :D I shall pair it with some obscenely big wood jewelry and hippie music.
It’s weird knitting with 8mm needles after so much sock knitting, but it’s so instantly gratifying and the whole thing is just 5 stitches more than my Q socks. (Which, by the way, are progressing much more nicely than anticipated. I had a lot of time yesterday, waiting for and in trains, killing time in Dortmund, and two and a half hours at the Stricktreff) I already have 6cm/2.”, which isn’t bad for a day when my hand hurts and I’m supposed to be studying history (though the edge is so stupendous – seed st – that I studied while knitting. Yay for multitasking!)
Ah, knitting. I can’t wait for my exams to be over so I can knit more.
Oh, and for the 6 balls of yarn I paid €14.65 – I’ve paid that much for 3 balls of Lana Grossa – and the bargain shopper in me rejoices. And then I went back and bought a pair of 8mm circs – for €7 -.- WHY DO NEEDLES HAVE TO BE SO EXPENSIVE??? Well, at least they last you for, oh, a lifetime. (Still expensive *grumble*)

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