Sunday, January 23, 2011

WIP roundup

I am kinda-almost-technically stashless right now, since I sent my first box of stuff home in anticipation of moving back at the end of next month.
I sent almost all of my non-WIP yarn back and knitting books too.  Honestly, though, I started several new projects before I packed up the box, just to make sure that I'd have crafty stuff to do for the next two months.

There were also some older WIPs lying that I picked back up now that all my Christmas knitting is done.  For example, these socks are for the bf, in a cotton sock yarn.
Diamond Gansey Socks
The pattern for these socks is from Wendy's book,but I made the heel flap much longer.  I should have made the foot a wee bit longer too but as this yarn is mostly cotton it might stretch anyway.

I've had a skein of Rio de la Plata sock yarn marinating in my yarn box for a while. After reading the reviews on Ravelry I decided not to use it for socks.  But what else to do with it? Each ply is a different color and I think that anything really lacy or cable-y would get lost.  So I cast on for another Adia scarf, since I enjoyed both the knitting and the FO before.
Adia #2
Since this yarn is smoother and less "hairy" than the alpaca yarn I used before, I think the end product is going to be a little more substantial.  We'll see.

I've also made good progress on the first pair of mittens for 2011:
Mitten Pattern 12
The photo does not do justice to how garish this color combo is - when I bought the yarn I thought the blue-green was a little darker and the pink was a little lighter.  Anyway, these are for me, and the way I see it, I will certainly have trouble losing these suckers.

I also started a shawl.  It's the first triangular shawl I've knit, because I find it hard to imagine anybody I know wearing a triangle shawl in public.  In fact the only person I know who wears any kind of shawl is myself!  I have a couple non-knit rectangular shawls that I wear at the office.

But, as they say, you can't knock it 'til you've tried it so I cast on.
Juneberry Shawl
(Forgive the funky photo - I had to fight what looked like several different species of ants for this shady spot to snap photos for today's post, and also I was getting sweat on my bf's camera.  I was in a bit of a rush.) 

I'm going to leave the shawl for plane knitting since it's on interchangeable needles with wooden tips.  I'll be going through airports in Thailand, India, and the Netherlands so I don't want to take chances - the wooden needles are unlikely to be confiscated and if they are, I can unscrew the tips and leave my project intact.  As far as the wisdom of bringing a big complicated project on the plane... Well, in my experience if the flight is more than a few hours one needs something to keep one's interest.  A plain sock, for example, is only going to keep me occupied for an hour here and there... I am not capable of knitting stockinette for ten or fifteen hours straight.

Speaking of stockinette socks, I started a pair on which I plan to try out the Fleegle heel.  I was planning to save these for plane knitting too but somehow I am nearing the gusset increases.  Woops.  I should have taken them out of my purse once I cast on!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

FO: Nancy's Sweater, and WTF

At long last I have finished this sweater for my friend Nancy.  Unfortunately, she's significantly smaller than me, so I can't model it for you.  This is the best I can do for a FO photo:

I am really worried that this is way too small for her...  I guess it's hard to tell from the photo but the sleeves look like doll sleeves.  They fit my forearm only, but then again I always have trouble with sleeves being too tight.  I don't want to say the word "arm-flaps", but you know what I mean. I wove in the ends but didn't trim them, in case it's necessary to reknit the shoulder area.  I'm not sure I followed the pattern correctly for decreasing the lace panel on the shoulder, but I think it came out ok:

Anyway the only way to find out if this sweater is a success is for Nancy to try it on, but it may be a while before that can happen.  I was hoping to send a box out today, but it is now THREE days since I blocked the sweater and it's still not dry.  Oh yeah I love Singapore weather.  Certain things, like towels and apparently worsted-weight wool, will simply never dry unless you keep them in air-con or direct sunlight.  Neither of which is possible for me to do for this sweater.

This sweater project has been dragging on for quite some time.  Here are some previous posts about it, and you can check my ravelry page for details.

In other news, I caught this local news story from my home town - "Cincinnati Police arrested an Addyston man Saturday morning for stealing two knitting needles out of a car."  Are things really that bad in Cincy these days?  They don't mention that any yarn was taken, so the man was either extremely confused or a knitter in crisis (maybe he couldn't get the right gauge?).  Assuming the man was confused, what could he have mistaken the needles for that would have been valuable enough to steal???

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

FO: Cowl

Modelled by my charming bf.
Yarn: ???
Needle Size: 4.5 mm
I bought this yarn a few years ago at Knitter’s Connection.  I think I lost the label before I even got home.  I know that it is wool and a weight suitable for socks. And incredibly soft!   I absolutely adore the colorway – I would use any of the component colors individually and they really look great together.  Like a grey day by the sea.

 I knit a single Hourglass sock from this yarn a couple years ago, and had started the second when disaster struck.  I’ll spare the gory details, remembering them puts me in a bad mood hehe, but I ended up with less than a sock’s worth of gorgeous sock yarn and nothing to do with it.

After using up other sock yarn with a neck thing knit at a loose gauge, I decided this was the way to go.

This yarn is thinner than the pattern calls for, and the result is a very floppy cowl.  I made it a bit too long too.  Not exactly the most appealing or useful thing I’ve knit.  I wonder if throwing it in the dryer to felt it just a wee bit might help?  I’ll find out when I get to the US in March, I don’t know anyone who has a dryer here.

Anyway, it was a fun simple knit, used up apparently useless stash, and may become wearable with some finessing.

Meanwhile, bf has decided that it’s the perfect accessory to wear on his visit home to India in a couple weeks and wants to borrow it.  But wait, isn’t it really hot in India?  And, um, isn’t he a dude?  Yeah, I really don’t understand Indian men’s fashion either.  Whatever floats one’s boat.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Year!

Here's my crafty plan for 2011 by the numbers:
  • 6 Pairs of Socks.  I am loosely following the Yarn Harlot’s Self-Imposed sock club.  I aim to make 6 pair of socks, from stash yarn and patterns I already own (or free ones).  I own four sock knitting books so patterns won’t be a problem, and I had an “adult conversation” with my stash yesterday and concluded that I have plenty of sock yarn to do this too.  I didn’t realize how much yarn I had accumulated in the past 18 months. I am lucky that it’s hard to find sock yarn in Singapore or else I’d be swimming in the stuff!  By the way there is a group on Ravelry devoted to personal/self-imposed sock clubs.
  • 11 Mittens in 2011.  It’s a straightforward challenge: knit eleven pairs of mittens this year.  If you’re interested check out the I Make Mittens group on Ravelry.
  • 52 Blog Posts.  I know, for some people blogging once a week is a piece of cake but it’s doubling the output for this blogger.
I would also like to knit my mom an outrageously awesome hat this year, to replace a comically bad one I crocheted her six or seven years ago.  (Whoa, has it really been that long since I made something for my mom?  What a bad daughter.) My mom is more deserving of knitted gifts than many people in my life, because she proudly wore that ridiculous hat to work every day that winter.  A mother’s love.
Before I dig into all these new challenges, I feel obliged to finish up my big projects from last year.  I have both secret Christmas knitting gifts off the needles and will hopefully mail them out soon.  I am also thisclose to finishing Nancy’s sweater:
I am pretty sure I can get the knitting done this week and another week for the finishing.  Woo hoo!
Besides the sweater I’ve got this fun cowl on the needles, but I’ll save the details for an FO post since I’m already almost done with it.

And I’ve got these cotton socks for the bf.  I was less than halfway done with the first sock on 1 Jan, so I’m counting these as sock #1 of 2001.

The flip of the calendar, and a totally crazy year ahead personally, has me energized and ready to rumble.  2011, bring it!