Sunday, March 30, 2008

So much progress!

I am so proud of myself. Usually - after doing most of the knitting on a garment I would set it aside until maybe during my 2 week December vacation when I finally did all my finishing. But in one week - I finished my Mermaid and I finished my Southwest. Well the Southwest still needs to be blocked but here it is:

Once I block it I will model it (which may not be until next December..hah!)

Then I decided it was time for something easier. Here is the start of Mr Greenjeans (Knitty pattern) in Dream in Color Classy - color Giant Peach:

The color in the photo is brighter than the actual yarn. I futzed with my image software but it still looks too bright. This pattern is very easy - done top down - mostly stockinette. Nice change after the fairisle and Mermaid. I'm using Harmony Circulars from Knitpicks for this. They are perfect points.. not so pointed that they are jabbing my fingers which tend to push the end of the needle but pointy enough to make it easy to knit.

I mentionned earlier that I fell in love with Anne Hanson's patterns. This week I found a yarn she recommends for her Morning Glory shawl - Briar Roses Fibers Wistful:

These colors are gorgeous - blues/browns/greens. And very soft. I have seen a lot of hanks on Ravelry and I know this won't be my last purchase.

We have snow again in Denver this AM - but I guess winter is lasting long into the spring in the midwest too so I can't complain!

Oh - and I beat Slash (Guitar Hero on my WII) yesterday! Hah!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Size 2 did the trick!

I normally don't post during the week but I've been dizzy all week so decided to take a full day off today to rest. Resting doesn't preclude knitting so I just bound off the first buttonband on my Southwest.

I took Anne Bourgeois's advice and went down one more size.. knit the band on size 2's and I think it looks so much better than my Traditional.

Here is the result so far:

And a closeup:

And here you can see that I knit the neckband and buttonbands to match the top stripes rather than my original ribbing for the body and sleeves but I think it will still be OK. I plan to do some crocheting around the bottom too:

So I'm hoping I can get the second band done today. Other than my Opal sock its time to plan my next project. I have decided to knit Greenjeans. I have been eyeing that pattern ever since the Ravelry LoopyEwe group created a KAL using Dream In Color Classy. So I will be making it using this.

Just the right color to put me into a Spring mood!
Enjoy your day.

Later: still have to crochet the edge of the bands and do some weaving, but the hard stuff is done and the front is cut! Voila!

I'd model it but not when I'm sick! Hah!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Slow Ride! Take It Easy!

This has been a productive and fun weekend. First of all I wasn't paged at 4AM on Saturday and then I set up my Guitar Hero! I haven't had that much fun in years. I know - my life is dull - but this thing is a real kick! It took me about 30 times but I finally got thru "Slow Ride" on Easy Mode. Hah! If any of you were like me - the last people on earth who hadn't heard about it - the game rolls colored notes to you and you need to push the same colored buttons while you strut to the song. The notes roll faster and faster (I can't imagine how this can get any harder in higher modes). If you don't do very well - they stop the music, the crowd boos, the lead singer rings out his hair and the guitarist who represents you cries. It really is funny.

Well - that wasn't all I did this week. My mermaid is woven and done!

Here is another photo of me in it - again not the best view:

It fits beautifully. This sweater has taught me a lot: 1) I don't like garter stitch: It goes too slow since I find it hard to put my needle into the purl stitch 2) I need to think ahead: I should have done a provisional cast-on for both the sleeves and the I-cord edging. I gave up on grafting the I-cord and just made a seam. Aside from all that - the final product is gorgeous. Hanne Falkenberg is a genius!

And then I also spent some time on my sock:

And my last item to be finished is my Southwest Philosopher's Wool cardigan. Steeks are sewn, sleeves are seamed, and I'm adding the neck band now:

Here are some closeups:

And the neck:

(Later: Hah! Realized I was supposed to do ribbing on the neckband so I just ripped it all out!)

And I have recently discovered another amazing knit designer. Anne Hanson of Knitspot. I found her designs on Ravelry and I am diving in with both feet.

I have bought yarn and downloaded these beauties:




I'm so impressed. If any of the yarns I ordered for these arrive by the time I finish Southwest that project is next on my list. If not - I'm sure I'll find something!

Happy Week!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

One sleeve to go! WIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII!!!!!!!!

After getting woken up by a page Sat at 3AM - I wasn't awake enough to do much more than knit my simple sock but this AM I decided to tackle the seams on my Mermaid. Sigh.. The sleeve was easy compared to the rest. The two sleeve seams went fast. Then I knit the attached I-Cord. After spending an hour - I realized I was supposed to do them from the wrong side of the sleeve. Oh well - I think they look fine.

But then I started the other seams. I had to do every one of them twice because the yarn kept tearing when I give it a tug. Sigh.. So frustrating. I would have been done by now but all I can show you is one sleeve done. Here is a clear photo of the garment:

And here are two very fuzzy photos of me wearing it. Don't ask me why my camera is taking such fuzzy photos thru the mirror. I finally gave up trying to get a good one.

Well here is a one armed Mermaid on a fuzzy lady (I am wearing a navy long sleeve tee shirt under it which is what you see on the right side of the photo). The photos aren't good. The sleeves aren't as short as they look - they are being pulled up by my tee shirt sleeve.

And one more - please ignore the clutter in my bathroom:

As you can see - I still have a lot of weaving to do and I need to graft the ends of the I-cord but I'm getting close. This one has potential if the yarn would only behave. For those of you who are thinking of knitting this.. it fits very much like a fitted jacket. I will get a lot of use out of it at work. Altho - I don't really enjoy garter stitch that much.

And here is the Opal Crazy simple sock. I love this yarn. its fun wondering what comes next:

And since I was feeling sorry for myself yesterday after that page. I decided to join Queen Elizabeth and ordered myself one of these:

Yes its a Nintendo WII! And I have to confess I really bought that so I could buy this:

Hah! And Jesse says oh no - Momma is regressing. It will never be peaceful around here anymore!

Maybe next week I will have a whole Mermaid!

Later: second sleeve is done.. but I think I'll put it aside for awhile before I tackle all the weaving:

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Anyone ever seam two vertical garter stitch edges?

I finally finished the second Mermaid Sleeve but now I'm puzzled. Puzzled on how to sew a seam when both edges have been vertically gartered stitched. I cannot find any help anywhere - I have looked at my books, my DVD's, the internet. There are directions for one vertical and one horizontal - but not two verticals. I asked for help from the Hanne Falkenberg KAL - but most knitters did a provisional cast-on at one sleeve edge and then a 3 needle bind-off to join the edges together.

So.. HELP! If nobody has any advice - I will just wing it. My sister reminded me that this seam will be under the arm and not too noticeable which is true but I would like it to be at least decent.

So here are my sleeves.. Please don't tell me you can tell that the one on the right looks a little shorter than the one on the left. It can't be true - I think they will be OK after I block them which is the next thing on my list:

It feels good to get that knitting done. I find that I don't enjoy knitting rows and rows of garter stitch..especially with yarn that isn't very soft. I'm not a fast knitter normally - but with garter it takes me longer to get my right needle through the bump. Maybe I need to use my KnitPicks Harmony's which are pointier. But they are done. Now its just finishing!

And is anyone feeling like we shouldn't be eating dinner this early? It always takes my body a week to adjust to Daylight Savings Time. I think we all should petition Congress to just forget it. Just forget it! Geezz..

Later.. I blocked the Mermaid and then realized that unless I sew my Southwest steeks I had nothing to knit all week! Eeekk.. Sorry Judy - but I don't want to start the Antique Lace before I finish the other two. So I shopped my stash and out popped this: Opal Crazy. This yarn is so much fun, changes irregularly. I don't know why I haven't used it yet. I decided to follow my toe up recipe - very simple and mindless. Here is the start:

Mindless knitting is good!

The next day: I did some more searching and finally found a description of how to seam vertical garter to vertical garter in Sally Melville's "A Knitting Stitch". Looks pretty simple.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Embossed Leaves are off the needles!

Yes - I finished something.. Well maybe I still need to weave in some loose yarn but it feels like I finished something. My Embossed Leaves Socks in Dream in Color Smooshy. Ta da!

And a closeup:

I love these! I've been wondering why some bloggers say this is a fast knit but it has taken me 2 months to finish these. I think part of it (in addition to the fact that I knit slowly and don't have much time to knit) is that I did it with fingering weight yarn on size 1 needles. I know - I'm making excuses but I am constantly impressed on how much knitting other bloggers accomplish. Then again - I also worked on my Southwest cardigan in between socks.

So - my next goal is to finish my Hanne Mermaid. Only one sleeve to go and then the finishing. I'm going to set a goal to finish it by the end of March. I think that is realistic. Then I will finish my Southwest my the middle of May. Right?

I have a day off tomorrow. Have a doctor appt at 9AM but plan to get a good start on the Mermaid sleeve. It will feel good to work with larger needles again.

Have a great week!