Thursday, May 29, 2008

It's Blue

Thought you might like to see something other than pink!

Last night I finally got the back half of my Prairie Tunic off the needles. This was mainly a travel knit when I didn't have anything else small enough to bring back and forth to work. It felt like I was working on the 16" to get to the decrease/shaping for forever. Alas, I dedicated myself yesterday throughout the work day and on the train home. Last night there was no stopping me as I had to work less and less stitches.

As you can see, it will need to be seriously blocked before seaming with the front (just started it this morning). The edges are rolling under like no tomorrow. As for the sizing I think we will be alright. So many people had issues with it being too large so I went down to a smaller size as recommended. My goal is to finish this in time for my beach trip to South Carolina in a little over two weeks!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

4 FOs in 4 Days

In my Saturday post I stated that I had set a goal of finishing 3 knitting projects by the end of the holiday weekend. I have already shared with you my completed Tickled Pink Retro Rib Socks. I wasn't sure exactly which projects I was going to finish by Monday, but I had a rough idea. Well one project is one that I have shared with you before and the other two are ones that are new and I finished before I could share. Out of technicality, I had 3 FOs by Monday evening and an extra FO by this afternoon.

First up is my Cozy! I really only had about 5 inches left to finish it on Sunday and had no doubt I would get it done. I still need to block it, but it sure is pretty big as is. Please pardon my couch modeling it. I live alone and the camera timer has a way of not taking oh so great pictures in my dungeon apartment.

Yarn: Cascade 220 Superwash; Color: 837
(Roughly 3.75 skeins)
Started: April 22, 2008
Completed: May 25, 2008
Needles: Knit Picks Options Size 8

After finishing Cozy, I had enough leftover that I knew I wanted to do something with it, even if it wasn't enough to complete the project. Back in March, I had purchased a hank of Malabrigo Worsted that I knew I wanted to use for a hat. What was perfect is that in this hank the color pink matched the Cascade yarn.

Thus came about my Koolhaas Hat. I started the ribbing and first 5 rows of the pattern repeat in the Cascade yarn, then switched over to the Malabrigo. I also used the Cascade yarn over the last 3 rows of the very last pattern repeat and finished off with the Malabrigo.

Yarn: Cascade 220 Superwash and Malabrigo Worsted; Colorway: Amoroso
Started: May 25, 2008
Completed: May 26, 2008
Needles: Size 6 and 8 circs; 8 dpns

With the hat done, I realized I had enough Malabrigo to make a little neck warmer. I keep wanting to call this a *Pidge* - On a blog I read, someone made something similiar and called it this. It has just stuck in my mind.

After browsing my lovely friend Ravelry, I came across the Tudora. It was perfect for this bit of yarn. The only thing I have to do to make it totally complete is purchase a button. I think I have a bit of time since my hat and neck warmer won't be worn for at least 4 months from now.

Yarn: Malabrigo Worsted; Colorway: Amoroso
(Half hank used)
Started: May 26, 2008
Completed: May 27, 2008
Needles: Knit Picks Options Size 6

So what can I say?!?! I am thrilled to have Cozy done and it is also very satisfying knowing I completed 2 additional projects using up yarn from each project. What's even better is that they all can be worn together!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Tickled To Death

Today was a gorgeous day here in NYC! After I completed my morning run, I decided it was too nice of a day to stay inside. The sun was shining brightly with a light wind in the mid 70's. What a perfect day to spend in the park!

Astoria Park is just a few blocks from my apartment. It sits right along the East River. I packed my knitting, book, snacks, blanket and headed out. For the 2 hours I was relaxing in the park, I believe the sun shined for a total of 45 minutes. I think Mother Nature knew I was heading outside and decided to let the clouds roll on in the sky. Nevertheless, I didn't let it stop me from enjoying myself.

I watched a couple posing for pictures with their dog (which couldn't be bothered to look at the camera), girls trying to sunbathe in bikinis (still a little chilly to be doing that), children playing soccer, guys throwing a frisbee over my head, boats strolling on down the river and plenty of people taking naps on their blankets. What fun! I myself knitted on my Retro Ribs Socks and read a a couple of chapters of "The Golden Compass" before getting too chilled to sit outside any longer.

Since this is an extra long weekend for me due to the holiday (I normally have Fri-Sun off and now with the holiday, I will have Mon off too), last night I told myself I wanted to try and complete 3 FO's by Tuesday. As you can see by the picture, I have my first FO of the holiday! I completed my Retro Rib Socks this evening.

Yarn: Lorna's Laces - Tickled Pink

Needles: Knit Picks size 2
Started Sock #1: March 25th; Completed May 21st
Started Sock #2: May 21st; Completed May 24th

I absolutely love how they turned out and this yarn is so yummalicious! I can't wait to get my hands on some more Lorna's Laces. Now I won't be starting my next pair of socks until SOS08 starts on June 21st. I am ready. My sock mojo is back.

Lastly, I just have to say I adore I received my yarn from them yesterday and can I just tell you, they saved me from having to do any frogging on my Lacy Skirt. They had a skein of Hempathy in Dye Lot 10! Woo Hoo!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Falling Short

Well I almost would have completed my Lacy Skirt this week. I had the feeling over the weekend that I was going to need 1 more skein, but it was confirmed last night when I officially ran out. As you can see, I ran out of yarn on 1 panel sooner than the other. The panel on the left has only 6 more rows to go and the one on the right has 27. Ohhhhhh soooo close!

This has never happened to me so you can understand my surprise. The only thing I can think of was when I calculated the yardage needed, I computed for the small size instead of the medium. See, this skirt is going to be worn as a top (possibly as a skirt too if the fit is good). I had bought the yarn a few months ago, so when I casted-on for the skirt I decided to make the medium to ensure adequate room int he chest and in hopes of maybe actually wearing it as a skirt too. I think I was thinking I had bought yarn for that size.

Anyway, I am in contact with where I purchased the yarn in hopes of getting 1 skein in the die lot needed. We shall see what happens!

With all that aside, I am loving this yarn. It is so soft and will hang very nicely when done. I will definitely work with this yarn again. I am already contemplating a different skirt to use this yarn in another color.

Monday, May 19, 2008

New Additions

I finally placed my very first order with Loopy Ewe the other day. I had been a browser for quite some time and never managed to purchase anything. Primarily because I couldn't make up my mind what I really wanted. I'm the type of person that loves to see yarn in person and touch all of its loveliness.

Now that I am participating in the Summer of Socks 08 this year, I new I wanted to get at least a couple of more purty sock yarns in my collection. I placed my order on Wednesday, received an email from Loopy on Thursday stating one of my choices was no longer available and package was at my doorstep on Saturday.

Two yarns below is what I got from Loopy. The third is one
Kim bought for me at MDSW (Love that she offered to be my personal shopper).

Top down in picture are: Tess' Designer Yarns (colourway: Have No Idea) - This is what Kim picked up for me at MDSW. It's hard to see in the picture but there is a good deal of purple in the yarn. Nice yardage on the hank too! Next: Farmhouse Yarns - Colourway Plums and Pinks. I originally had ordered Red Roses but got this as a replacement. The plum color is not very prominent in this mostly pink yarn. it will be interesting to see how it knits up. Finally: Cherry Tree Hill - Colourway Blueberry Sorbet.

So I am now prepared for SOS. All my sock yarns are now nice little cakes waiting to be picked from the pile. It's a small stash compared to some of those on Ravelry, but I figure if I make it through all this yarn before the end of SOS, I can always purchase more!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Pullover Photo Shoot

At lunch on Wednesday I met up with Kim and we did a little Gathered Pullover photo shoot.

Here are my thoughts - Fat, Frumpy and Fudging Hot!

What was I thinking of wearing this sweater when it was going to be 75 degrees? Must have had been out of my mind. Needless to say, this sweater is going into hibernation until the fall!

After wearing this sweater for a 10 hour work day, I can tell you all the issues I had with it. First, a positive note, it does fit nicely around my bust. Issue #1: Sleeves are too long. As you can see in the picture, they come down over my fingertips. I spent all day with the cuffs folded over and pushed up to my elbows. As the nice wrinkles in the yarn around my elbow nicely demonstrates. Issue #2: The V is too low, this causing extra length going up to the shoulders. The cable motif should actually sit in the middle of my chest and I think it would probably be a bit more flattering if it had. Issue #3: I found the right shoulder wanting to expose by skin, while the left stayed put. So maybe there is a chance of the *Flash Dance* look once I lose more weight. Issue #4: I wish I had incorporated waist shaping. I think this would have made this sweater more slimming than expanding.

So will I knit this sweater again? Believe it or not, yes. Next time though I am going to use a DK weight yarn, add waist shaping, not do a three needle bindoff on the shoulders and leave the sleeve length alone.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

On The Prairie

What? Another new project on the needles? Actually, this knit has been on my needles for at least three weeks. It became my travel knitting when everything else I was doing became to big to lug around. I know I did indeed finish a project before casting on, but for the life of me I can't remember which FO it was!

So what exactly is this going to be? It's the Prairie Tunic from Interweave Knits, Spring 2006. After doing much valuable research on Ravelry, I learned that everyone who has knitted this has found it to be too big (suggested to go down 1 size at least). Some were happy, some were not. So I am knitting the smallest size, with my fingers crossed. The yarn I am using came from my stash. I finally found a project for the yarn I won from Sophanne many moons ago. I'll be using 5 of the 10 skeins of Rowan 4-ply Tweed. Right now I am about halfway done with the back.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Lace Anyone?

First, I want to thank everyone who commented to my last post. It's nice to know there is a place where others can relate to my anguish over a sweater that doesn't fit properly. I am happy to report that on Thursday night I sat down and attached the second sleeve. It is an official FO now. I did try it on again and while it does fit in some places, it doesn't in others and that's ok. It is still wearable and maybe I can snap a picture of myself in it in the near future.

Friday night I decided I was ready to reward myself with starting a new little project for the summer. Like my
sis, I am knitting the Lacy Skirt with Bows from "Greetings From Knit Cafe". (I can be a lemming too.) I wasn't sure if I was going to knit the skirt in two separate pieces or in the round. So I thought that until I decided, I would go ahead and knit up the initial lace pieces. I mean, I did have until I got to the fifth piece to really make my decision because at that point the pieces are knitted into one piece.

On Sunday the verdict came to me. I decided to knit them seperately, but at the same time. I am actually a little further along than this picture below shows. I didn't feel like pulling out the camera again. I am using Elsebeth Lavold's Hempathy yarn in colorway Red Roses. There is ribbon that will go with this skirt that I will share once Mr. Mailman delivers it to me from South Carolina.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Cry With Me

On Sunday I decided I was going to finish my Gathered Pullover. I mean the sleeves and collar were done on Saturday. I just needed to attach the sleeves and weave in those pesky ends. I was about to have a FO! Yipee! I was doing the dance of joy joy. I was excited. So why on earth did I decide to try this baby on after only having 1 sleeve attached? Why couldn't I just keep with it and attach the second one before putting it on my body? I do know that I never ever do that again.

After putting on the appropriate undergarments (cause my boobage needs the support for modeling of clothing), I slipped my arms into the holes and pulled the sweater down over my body. I was like, OoOOooOOooo. I then proceeded to check myself out in the full length mirror. What do you think I saw? Well let me just take the guess work out of it. I was now wearing a sweater that did not fit! It's too big. Waaawawawaawaaaaaaah!

I have to say here that I did a gauge swatch. I made gauge both in rows and stitches in the flat and in the round. I felt confident. The first time I noticed something may be off with the gauge was when I did the fronts. I even removed about 20 rows from the pattern on the fronts to ensure a good fit. I tried the sucker on and it was working for me. Now the V is too low and the shoulders are slipping around.

After I completed my first sleeve, I tried it on and it fit me perfectly to where I wanted the cuff to land. 'Cause remember I added some inches to the length of the arm because the orginal was too short for my liking. What happened by attaching it to the body? Did the basement monster's come out while I was sleeping and tinker with my knitting?

So needless to say, I was totally deflated, disappointed, distracted, disturbed and maybe a teensy bit disgruntled. I couldn't muster the excitement to slave over attaching the second sleeve on Sunday. Boo Hoo. I was now doing the dance of disappointment.

I shared my disappointment with a dear friend today. After I aired my feelings about this, she said, "It's gonna be even bigger after you lose weight from all your running!". Waawawaawaaaah! I love her dearly and am not upset over the comment because I was thinking the same thing.

I know I will attach the other sleeve this week!. I will wear my oversized Gathered Pullover proudly! For now my friends, just cry with me.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Cozy With Me

Yes I started a new project, but as you can see from the picture I didn't just start it yesterday! I know I'm a fast knitter, but really folks, am I that fast? Well, maybe, but I have been working on this while also working on my Gathered Pullover and Tilted Duster.

After I saw Nora's completed Cozy I knew I wanted to knit one up for myself. This is the perfect addition to my summer wardrobe. Crazy eh? Well no. The air condition in my office is always way below freezing during the summer months. I usually have myself bundled up in a sweater (and sometimes my shawl wrapped around my neck like a scarf). Now Cozy will keep me warm!

I am knitting Cozy with Cascade 220 Superwash that I purchased at a great discount at Webs. The color I chose was #837 - Magenta. Right now I just started my third ball. I purchased 4 and I might make mine a little longer than suggested.

On another note, I have joined the masses in Summer of Socks 2008 that Jessica is organizing. I don't know exactly how many pairs I will complete but I know it's going to be fun! If you're interested in joining, go on over and sign up. The fun starts on June 21!