Friday, October 28, 2005

Look what I did!

I made socks!!! These are my first socks. I have knit things before - really cool things, baby sweaters, booties, hats, mittens, but none of them gave me this giddy "oh my goodness I can't believe I really did that" feeling. These socks are by far the coolest thing I've ever done. Not to mention the fact that they are the first project I've ever made for myself that I'm actually going to get to keep.

I am now a raving lunatic about the socks. I have shown them to everyone. I am wearing them today (see my feet there on the desk, yea I'm at work). I made sure to wear slip on shoes for easy access. Knitters, non-knitters, everyone must see & appreciate the sock, well only myself and my fellow knitters can really appreciate the socks, but I'm showing everyone anyway. And lets just say I work in a 90% male environment and they could care less about hand knit socks.

I'm going to wind up being a sockaholic, I know it. How can I resist when just looking down at my hand knit clad feet fills me with this weird euphoria! I can't wait to cast on my next pair!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

The evil hat from hell!

It's finally done. The hat from hell. It doesn't look like the devil incarnate does it? It looks like a nice simple hat done in plain stockinette stitch. Nothing fancy, no cables, no yarn overs, or intricate intarsia. It should have taken me no time at all to do this annoying little hat. Yup - that's what I said when I cast it on, "this will be a quick Christmas present, won't take me anytime at all." That's when the powers that be decided to mess with me. How dare you, you insignificant little knitter you think you can whip out a project in a week I'll show you!!!

This is what it looked like when I went to Rhinebeck. I don't know if you can tell in this photo but those are jogging stripes. I didn't know about jogging stripes when I started this hat. I had heard of them but didn't really understand what they were. I do now. I had the whole stripe part of the hat finished and I looked down at it and ... well it looked like crap! All the stripes were uneven and to add insult to injury I had taken the dark blue and caught it in the back to carry up for the next row instead of cutting. Well you could see the dam dark blue on the front, it caught funny and got trapped on the wrong dam side of the fabric! It look horrible so I (who doesn't rip when it can be fudged) wound up ripping out the entire stripe section. Took a few lessons about jogging and started again.
Managed to make it through the stripes the second time with no problems and it turned out rather well. Onto the decreases!

That went great until I got to within an inch of the end... I looked at my hat and hmmm doesn't that look a little short? I put the stitches onto waste yarn & tried it on. Yup the stupid thing didn't even cover my ears. Rip - Rip -Rip. I hate ripping. I'd rather fudge it that rip it out. But here I was ripping out this "simple" hat again. I wound up starting the increases to soon (twice) I finally came to the conclusion that the pattern I was loosely following had ear flaps so was a bit shorter in the body that a regular hat. Which is why I kept screwing up the decreases. What a brainiac! Oh well it turned out really cute in the end! I've finally got one Christmas present down & only 4 more to go! At this rate I might not make it.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Liar, Liar...

Last night we had a our Stitch & Bitch destash night. I scored a bunch of DPNs a pattern book, some really nice sock yarn, and a harsh reality. As D and I were discussing possible patterns for my new socks I told her about some sock yarn that I scored at the LYS for a very reasonable price. Feeling all full of myself I went on & on about the beautiful green socks I was going to make for my mom for Christmas. She was a little shocked that I paid so little for my yarn, what brand was it? Well I get home last night to see what the brand is (it's Socka if you care) but I came to a horrible realization. They (I bought two) are 50g balls!!! I distinctly remember the yarn lady telling me they would make a pair of socks, that's two socks! How the devil am I supposed to make two socks from 50g???

In my own defense I bought these skeins before I had completed my first pair of socks. In my ignorance I believed the yarn lady when she said I could make a pair. I don't think I can make a pair. She lied. Well maybe she didn't intentionally send me down the road of failure...Maybe she didn't know. She is the new owner. She did only have 7 skeins of sock yarn in the entire shop. She did flippin lie to me and tell me that 50g would be enough for two socks!!! Dam, my knitting ignorance strikes again!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Knitter or Not?

It occurs to me, going into the second week of the blog, that I have yet to show you anything I've done. Some skeptics out there might think that I am a knitting imposter, or it could be that I am terminally lazy and just haven't gotten around to it yet. Well skeptics behold, a whole 3 days early, the blanket for the baby that wasn't supposed to be born until December!

Yes I realize that it's not knitted, but cut me some slack. I haven't knitted anything since I found out that the blanket I thought was going to be a month early is actually a month and a half late. What would you do?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Early baby?!

So a few months ago my father asks me if I could whip up something for his co-worker who is having his first (weren't supposed to be able to have one) baby. This is a first, he has never asked me to make anything for anyone. So I say sure and ask when the baby was due. December he says, great I got lots of time.

So I'm crocheting a blanket for the baby and I'm feeling good because I'm using up some leftover stuff & I'm way ahead of schedule, (would it be too much to ask for that to work.) I ran out of one of the colors. No biggie right? Just run to the AC Moore and pick up another skein, it's TLC Essentials, it's not like I'm working with some exotic alpaca blend only available under a full moon when Jupiter is in the seventh house. I should be able to get more with no problems. Right? WRONG!! Yea, the AC Moore stopped carrying Essentials - so did every craft place within a 20 mile radius of my house. And I don't have the label so I'm unsure what color it is and don't want to order it off the internet because the color doesn't look the same. (I hate returning stuff from the internet)

So I abandoned blanket A (I've still got four months) and begin blanket B (also using leftovers, but this time I cannibalized a blanket I had started eons ago & wasn't really happy with - so no danger of running out) So I'm moving along on my little blanket, working on it when I'm watching t.v. and need to pay attention (I don't have to watch my hands to crochet) and I've got about 12" left and a border. Still way ahead of schedule right? Wrong...Dad tells me yesterday they had a baby girl last week. What?!! She was early?? Is she alright?? Baby & Mom are great, baby is right on time, and I'm an idiot. Apparently he told me October not December (dumb ass). Luckily co-worker lives in Florida, Dad will be seeing him next week in Vegas so I've got 6 days to finish 12" of blanket. No big, provided the powers that be don't throw me anymore curve balls.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Llama's, Alpaca's, & Bunnies Oh My!

I went to the Rhinebeck sheep and wool festival yesterday. All I can say is WOW. I'm still on fiber overload. It was an amazing day. The weather finally cleared (after 8 solid days of rain) and we had a beautiful drive up. We saw this on the way...isn't it lovely.

We got to the festival and... you just don't know where to look, don't know what to buy or how much. I spent the first hour or so just wandering around in awe, touching everything. I got to pet some really, really nice yarn. Got to pet some really adorable animals too. Deffinately wanted to take some home with me. Imagine having your fibers on demand (this is my fantasy, but alas I don't spin-oh well).

After walking around in a daze for a while I finally got down to buying some stuff. Now amazinginly enough I have never stashed...I just buy what I need for the project at hand. (I know you probably don't belive me but if you'd been to my local yarn shops you'd know that there really isn't a whole lot to go bonkers over. The one store in my area that does carry beautiful hand spun natural fibers is soooo overpriced that it pains me to walk in the door. But I digress) Since I don't really stash so I had no idea how much to buy. Since there is no project in mind I don't know yardage or anything. I almost paniced until I found this niffty little yardage calculator that gives you a number depending on size & gauge and article your planning to make. So with my niffty little gizmo at my side I bought this...
There's some really nice alpaca in there, some 50/50 alpaca wool blend (enough for a sweater I hope) some really pretty green wool, some needles, (imagine some really soft beautiful maroon colored lace weight that I forgot to put in the picture), some icelandic lace, some undyed wool that's like a cloud it's so soft, and sheep steering wheel covers. I get to pet sheep whenever I drive... could life get any better than that?

Friday, October 14, 2005

I have finally succumbed. I'm creating a blog. I've only been reading blogs for about a month, and the more I read them the more I'd like to have my own. So here I am, writing a blog. I don't suppose anyone will ever read it, so I may only do this for a few weeks until I get board with it. Then again... this may be my new calling. A quasi-author writing about nonsense on the web that no one will ever read.

So anyway after much though and deliberation (it took me weeks just to think of a name) I've decided that my blog is going to feature my latest obsession - knitting. I'm sure I'll venture off onto other topics from time to time, probably a lot because I don't knit very fast, but mostly I'd like to share my triumphs and failures in knitting. At this point I could show you pictures of my works in progress, but I don't have any. Pictures that is. I've got lots of WIP. For the first time ever I've got more that one project going. I've got lots of projects going, 2 hats, socks, a blanket (in crochet) and a shawl. I usually only do one thing at a time, but for some odd reason I felt the need to do five things at once. I think that is Stephanie's fault.

Like I said before I've only been reading blogs for a little bit. One of the blogs I read is The Yarn Harlot (that will be a link as soon as I figure out how to do one) anyway the Harlot does no less than 100 things at the same time and the world does not end. So I thought, hey why can't I do that too? You see, I am a sorta newbie knitter. I've been at it about a year. Until recently I've done mostly easy projects, nothing really exciting or challenging. I had no desire to try anything hard or complicated (a point of much argument between my mother & I) until I started reading other blogs. These people have been knitting for years, and they still goof up. I know that doesn't sound like a good thing but my point is I had thought I had to reach some sort of mastery before I tried anything hard. Reading about seasoned knitters screwing up made me realize that I don't have to bore myself right out of a hobby. I can try anything - and if I mess it up... well that's what frogging is for right?

So since this revelation I've cast on projects that are more interesting and fun to do. I finally get why people become obsessed with their knitting, and why they want to talk about it all the time. I've been driving my non-knitting friends nuts with my knitting. And I've started stashing I've never done that - before I just bought what I needed for a project. And I've crossed the final line and created a blog so I can go on & on & on with no one to tell me to hush. I think this is a great beginning. I'll post some pictures soon (when I figure out how).

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