Friday, November 20, 2009

Knitting Events.... way after the fact

Want proof that I went to Rhinebeck?

Where else would one meet Bob?
awwww yeah.....

BackstageKnitter, HeadwigBC, AlainaJane, Evad and I all went to Rhinebeck this year, for a fiber rich, freezing cold, lamb burger filled weekend of excitement!! Of course, I suck, and didn't take many pictures, but I made up for it in yarn buying!

The only thing missing from this picture is the two skeins of Briar Rose Fiber's yarn that I have all ready knit with. Ooops. I managed to stay in the budget and pick up a mess of gorgeous stuff that I can't get anywhere except from the dyer. I still haven't officially put it way. I keep getting it out to pet it.
I also went to Star Wars in Concert! Ok, not a traditional knitting event, but I did knit during it!
Anthony Daniels was awesome in person, and the MUSIC. OMG. THE MUSIC. The whole thing was fucking fantastic. Really. GO see it if it comes near you. You don't have to bee a SW geek, the story is narrated as the concert goes on, and film footage is played behind the orchestra to help "tell" the story. The lobby display is totally cool too:

Just in case you wanted to be inches from the costumes like me!!!!!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Neck things

Did you know that "Neck Things" is a category of knitwear to me? I didn't either until I just typed it. It is fitting though, since I've knit 4 "neck Things" since my blogging hiatus.
1. Evad's Rockstar Bodyguard

Ever since I knit myself the 'rochoke', Evad has wanted one for himself - in blood red. Since I am always in favor of encouraging Evad's love of all things knitted, I, of course, agreed. There is no pattern- just knit a shape, felt it, and add a clasp. He wore it to Rhinebeck with great success, and hopefully it will get some more use this winter. (The name comes from his Rhinebeck status. He is a big guy, and can move people out of the way when the rockstar (me), or her entourage, needs to get through.)

2. Angora Leaf Scarf from Vintage Knitwear for Modern Knitters.

This is a holiday gift, gone slightly awry. In theory, I thought I had enough black angora to knit this scarf. One ball, and less than 1 leaf into it, I realized that I in no way had enough angora to knit this. I dug about in the yarn wall and came up with a few balls of wool/poly with sequins. woo! I combined it all together, shortened the pattern, reshaped a leaf, and *just* eeked it out. All in all, I'm pretty sure the recipient is going to love this! It's sparkly and soft!

3. Monet Shawlette
A little holiday gift for my Intern! The pattern is "Sunshine and Shadows" from Evelyn Clark's "Knitting Lace Triangles" book. I love this book. If you are an aspiring lace designer - who plans to design triangle shawls, you should totally read this book and knit a few things from it. Seriously. The yarn is from Briar Rose Fibers. I got it in the sale bin, so I'm not sure on the colorway or yarn, but I think it is "Celebration in 3014". At any rate, it's pretty, and the colors remind me of a Monet painting. The pattern was a great knit. It took me like 16 hours total to knit this thing! Perfect gift knitting!!

4. RAHA!
Another Holiday gift in progress! This one is for (soon to be) Mrs. Ship. (A lace scarf is the decider of her 'knit worthy-ness'. We shall see how it goes.....) Oh, and yes, this is the same yarn as #3. I had a second ball, with a slightly more blue overall color and thought it would be great for a gift for her. I went to my personal library and pulled out this gem of a book - "Knitted Lace of Estonia". It's not too feminine, not too plain... a good medium interesting. Hey, it's hard to knit for someone you never met!!
Oh, and for those who are counting - #2 ,#3 and #4 are all from books on the list! I have 21 left to go, and one in progress! Dear god. I shouldn't have counted. It seemed like less....

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


I'm a sweater machine
and I don't work for nobody but you
ye-ah baby!
I've been cranking away on the sweaters, semi-recently. I can't really say "recently", since I am including the near 2 months of almost total blog silence. Although, in knitting time, 2 months isn't that long....
I digress. I've been knitting, and surprisingly, completing sweaters! I've completed 2 adult size sweaters, and am rounding towards home on a third!
First up, my sweater KAL sweater!!
Name: Iceberg Lettuce
Pattern: Lettuce Sweater from Custom Knits
Yarn; Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride worsted in Silver Sliver, 6 skeins
Needles: KP Options, 9, 10, 10.5, and 11
Notes: To quote the Yarn Harlot, "If I change the decreases on the sleeve, make the bust bigger, add shaping and short rows in the front and knitted darts to the back, subtract some length, leave off the collar, and change the neckline to a V... when/if it doesn't work out, I do not have the right to speak ill of the designer's abilities."

yeah. My sweater, besides the back yoke and front to the bustline, in no way resembles the pattern i set out to make. it has short rows, the skirt starts further down towards the waist, the sleeves have different cuffs, and the skirt has a different stitch pattern AND is shaped totally different as well. wee! I only had to rip back three times to make it fit properly...

But, I love it. I got it finished in time for Rhinebeck, and before the end of the KAL. Lamb's Pride is one of my favorite yarns, but man does it shed the first few times you wear it! The seat of the car I was sitting in on the way to Rhinebeck was coated in a nice thick layer of silver wool hairs. heehee.
I also knit a holiday gift sweater for my Mom!

Name: Mom's sweater
Pattern: Classic Open Silk Cardi from Classic Elite 9098
Yarn: Filatura Di Crosa "wave" in colorway 11
Needles: Knit Picks Options 5 and 7
Notes: My mom isn't a "fussy" sweater person. She likes clean lines, a little detail, and semi-fitted shapes. Mostly, she owns fine knits in Stockinette, maybe a few cables. Finding a pattern for her is oddly hard. But, I think I found a winner!

Purple is her favorite color, and this is one she should be able to wear well, based on her coloring. It knit up very quickly, even if it was a tad dull to knit. Frankly, this would be a great travel knit, since it doesn't require much thinking at all, and the pieces are small enough to be pretty portable. let's hope she likes it!!
Last up is another Holiday gift:

I'm to the part where I join the body and sleeves, and do some yoke knitting magic! This sweater is very... um.... plain to knit, until this point. It is like you get a treat for making it through the SS slog. good thing my "soon to be SIL Kate" is a small person. I also hope she likes it. She is a little bit tomboy, and a little bit girly - just like this sweater feels to me. (cross your fingers that she feels the same way!)

Monday, November 09, 2009

bloggers block

I know I said I was going to update you with all my FOs and WIPs, but I have had a serious case of blogger block. I think about it everyday, plan what to blog about... but never get there. I'm just more interested in actually knitting, instead of just blogging!
I'm forcing myself to write today, in hopes that I can shake my blockage. (Insert Activia joke here) I ate the roughage of a good Sunday spent just sitting on the couch knitting, only getting up to pee and make food. I think I am ready to write!
Since I last 'really" blogged, I finished 3 projects for Schaefer Yarn. The one was a sweater that I enjoyed knitting, but never took a picture of. Sigh. She was 'Jamie Lee', and it was a really fun and quick knit! (Hee, insert second Activia joke) The neck/collar construction is really awesome. I wish I would have taken a few snapshots. Oh well.
I also knit up this cutie:

Name: Peter Sweater
Pattern: #62 Nichole Collared Pullover
Yarn: Schaefer Yarn Co, Nichole, in Peter
Needles: us 6 and 7 knitpicks options
Notes: This sweater was ridiculously entertaining to knit. You wouldn't know it from looking at it, but the stitch pattern is just interesting enough that you just... want... to ...keep... going! Plus, it is a kid's sweater, so it goes quickly anyway.

I'm not usually a huge fan of variegated colorways, but I did really like this one. It had blues and greens mixed together, but they were very close in tone, and it almost feels like a solid knit up. I ended up knitting with two skeins, alternating, so that I didn't get a lot of pooling, but I imagine YMMV. Different size, different knitter...different outcome. The shot of the full sweater is the closest to the real color. It is a nice vibrant color, and for some reason my camera was just not interested in capturing it completely. :(
Overall, a very fun project, quick to make up, and cute as a button!
I also knit a pair of socks for Schaefer...

Pattern: Bines
Yarn: Schaefer Yarn Co, Anne, in Thistle
Needles: US 1 knitpicks classic circs
Notes: This is not a sock pattern for the faint of heart! It has no rest rows, twisted stitches, and tons of purls! That said, I TOTALLY think it's worth it.

Bines is based on a 1x1 twisted rib, with "lace" elements. The twisted rib is not hard, and becomes almost second nature after a repeat or two. It took me unit the foot of the first sock to not need to refer to the pattern every row, but they are also written to be ankle socks, so I didn't have much leg to memorize the pattern. I cruised through the second sock though, hardly needing to look at the pattern at all!
If I had anything to say to those thinking of knitting these beauties, it would be:
1. write down how many repeats you did of each chart on the first sock. This is a hard pattern to "see" your rows if you go back and count - specifically at the toes
2. try them on after you get the cuff and one repeat of the leg finished. The gauge you get in SS is going to be different than the gauge in twisted rib, making the socks snugger than you would think they would be. Twisted rib is just like that! It's aways better to check before you get a whole sock finished!

Overall, though, they were a very fast knit, and quite pretty. I was sad to send them off!
I think next I will try to update on the sweaters I've knit since before my blogger block. Yes, that was plural. I've knit 2 and half sweaters since then. bad blogger. bad. Tonight I shall get some more knitting roughage and be prepared to blog again reliably! (Activia joke 3!)