Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects, Knit Ramblings

Elektra, Cleaning the Craft Room, and Projects

I finally have pictures to show of my Elektra shawl, which I finished back in April, right before our cruise the first week in May. I absolutely love how this shawl turned out, despite running out of yarn and having to finish the bind off with a thinner and darker version of the yarn. The beads in the pictures are true to color, but I couldn’t get the Fuchsia color just right in any of the photos. It’s a bit darker in person.

Elektra (Front)

Pattern: Elektra by Rosemary Hill (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: April 7, 2011
Completed: April 28, 2011
Yarn: Wollmeise 100% (609 yards) and a little bit of Wollmeise Lace (17.5 yards) in Fuchsia
Needles: US 5 Addi Lace circular
Notes: Pattern was pretty easy to follow once I got past the start of Chart B where the marker placement is only listed in the written instructions. Despite getting a smaller gauge then stated in the pattern, I still ran out of yarn, so I would suggest anyone knitting it have at least 630 yards of yarn and be sure to check gauge! Placing the beads wasn’t too bad until the bind off row where you place beads AND work the bind off. I did end up missing to place a bead, which I noticed after it was blocked, but I managed to sew one where it should have been without it looking weird. I love how it turned out and it looked great with my dress on the cruise in May. 🙂

Elektra (Full Size)
Eketra – Full Size

Elektra (Back)
Eketra – Back

Elektra (Detail)
Eketra – Detail

This weekend, I spent quite a bit of time in my craft room getting it clean and more organized. I wish I had some before and after photos! I cleaned out this plastic 3-drawer thing that has been through many moves with me (and that I’ve hated for the longest time, mostly because it was full of heavy things which made it hard to open or close) and moved everything worth keeping into the 3-drawer chest I bought from IKEA a while back. There wasn’t a whole lot worth keeping. Most of it was things that should be tossed or go in the Goodwill box. I took 3 bags of trash out and a box of things to go to Goodwill the next time I go. I think it still needs a little work to be how I’d like it to be, but first I need a bigger shelf, so that’ll have to wait. Only thing left to do is put up the blinds in there.

While cleaning, I found my Namaste bags (a Newport and a Zuma) and a buddy case. I decided it’s time to let my Namaste bags go to a new home since I will never use them. They just aren’t the right knitting/purse type bag for me. You can see pictures here. They’re also listed in my stash on Ravelry on my sell/trade page, with info. Leave a comment, email me, or PM me on Ravelry if you’re interested in them.

I also found the scarf I started for Matt back in 2009 during the cleaning of the craft room. It’s got to be my oldest WIP! This sucker needs to get finished, so I’ve pulled it out to work on. I plan to get it finished before it’s cool enough for him to wear this winter.

Matt's Scarf
Matt’s Scarf

Despite all the cleaning I did, I got in a fair amount of knitting time, too. I started and finished the Dahlia Cowl out of my handspun on Saturday. It’s currently blocking and waiting for buttons. I didn’t run out of yarn! Not sure I got gauge since I didn’t check, but I had a little left over from my skein after knitting it to the 24″ the pattern says to. Hopefully it’ll be dry today and I can finish it up by adding the two buttons. It’s super squishy and will be nice to wear come winter!

I’ve been moving along on the Gush socks. After figuring out how many extra rows I needed and knitting them where indicated, then starting Clue 2, I decided that I really didn’t like how they looked with the extra rows. I frogged back to where the design starts on the toe and added the additional rows in the toe before starting the design. Adding the extra rows where indicated just didn’t go with the rest of the design at all.

Gush Sock
Gush Sock

I’m hoping to get Clue 2 done on both socks before the next clue comes out on Wednesday. I’ve already re-knit Clue 1 of the second sock, so as long as I don’t get too distracted by casting on High Seas tonight! 😉

Posted in Current Projects

Mystery KAL’s Aplenty This Month

This month, I decided to join in on some mystery knit-a-longs. I usually start these, then drop out, but so far I’ve been able to stick with it. I’m doing the Sock Knitter’s Anonymous November Mystery KAL, Barking Dog Yarns Opposites Attract Mystery KAL, and the Woolly Wormhead Mystery Hat KAL (two patterns A and B). I figured that since I didn’t have much on the needles and not a lot was really calling me, why not give some mystery patterns a go? So far I’m through clue one on all patterns, have clue 2 for the Opposites Attract and SKA socks, and clue 2 will be out for the two hats will be out today.

I’m not sure how I feel about the SKA Mystery Sock. I think it’s the yarn that’s making me re-consider it. The yarn is a bit on the bright, eye searing side. I’m using Yarntini merino/nylon sock in Strawberry Frenzy, which was part of the Semi-Solid Sock Club from last year. It’s not very “semi” to me, but a very solid bright red. It’s even just a bit brighter then the picture shows. Definitely going to finish them. They may end up as a gift, though.

November MOCK
SKA November Mystery Sock KAL

The Barking Dog Yarns Opposites Attract Mystery KAL is going well. The clues are coming out faster, so I started on clue 2 on Saturday. The yarn is a fun concept. Two skeins that go together, but are different. You’ll see what I mean when I start the second sock. I took pictures just after finishing clue 1. Definitely want to get more of this yarn!

OA Mystery Sock
BDY Opposites Attract Mystery KAL

OA Mystery Sock
BDY Opposites Attract Mystery KAL

I was a little hesitant to join the Woolly Wormhead Mystery Hat KAL since I don’t wear a lot of hats. I looked through my stash and found that I had yarn for both hats on hand, so I figured I’d give it a go. If I don’t care for the hats, I’m sure someone I know would love and wear them. For Pattern A, I’m using Wollmeise 80/20 Twin in Lowenzahn. For Pattern B, I’m using Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool in a lovely orange color (color 81). I finished clue 1 for Pattern B the same day the clue came out. Not the case for Pattern A, though! I was working Pattern A on US 1.5, 40″ circular and something about it was hurting my hands. Probably the twisted stitches, which I’ve found is a different motion then knits or purls. That combined with fiddling with the big cable likely wasn’t helping much. I did do the brim shorter then the clue said to for a few reasons. It was difficult to work on without pain in my hands and wrists after a short time, I’m not a fan of 3″ brims on hats (2″ is about my maximum), and I am just a tad worried I might not have enough yarn (I’m using about half of a leftover skein of Wollmeise). The picture below doesn’t show it, but I am finished with clue 1 on Pattern A and the brim is 2″.

Pattern A
Pattern A

Pattern B
Pattern B

Do you do mystery knit-a-longs? Why/why not? I’m always curious what other people think about knit-a-longs where you don’t know what the pattern will be like other then what the finished item itself will be (ie a sock or a hat).