Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects

Saroyan FO and Current Projects

It’s Friday and I have an FO to share! 🙂

This may be the fastest scarf I’ve ever knit. Three days and it was done! It was an enjoyable knit, too.

Saroyan (Full)

Pattern: Saroyan (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: March 11, 2011
Completed: March 13, 2011
Yarn: Malabrigo Worsted in Rodecian, 2 skeins
Needles: US 9 bamboo circular
Notes: I initially did the entire increase section wrong. I did the increases every right side row of the pattern repeat, but it shouldn’t be done on rows 3 or 11. Oops. I ripped it out and started over on March 11. After I restarted it, I couldn’t put it down! I did change the part worked when you first cast on and before the first pattern repeat and the last part after the last pattern repeat and the cast off. I followed the notes here (Ravelry link). I did the decreases differently then written so that they better matched the increase section. I followed the notes here (Ravelry link). I have a total of 28 leaves – 6 for the increase section, 16 for the straight section, and 6 for the decrease section. I’m happy with how this project turned out!

Saroyan (Scarf)
Saroyan Worn as a Scarf

In addition to wearing it as a scarf, it could also be worn as a wrap!

Saroyan (Wrap)
Saroyan Worn as a Wrap

Saroyan (Back)
Saroyan Worn as a Wrap

After finishing Saroyan, I started on High Road. I had a bit of trouble with it at first because I had a hard time keeping count of what row I was on, but I finally got smart and put a row counter on my work to help me keep track. The yarn, Metamorphasis from A Verb for Keeping Warm, is 70% merino, 30% silk blend and it’s very nice to work with. I like the colors and the fabric it’s making.

High Road
High Road

I’ve still been working away on Cassis. It hasn’t seen much progress this week. I managed to spill tea on the collar of it when I got to work one day, did my best to wash it out, then it took about a day and a half to dry out completely. You can still see some of the brown tea stain on it. It’s not too noticeable, but when I look at it, I definitely see it. Just like mistakes in your knitting – it’s probably not as noticeable to someone else as it is to me! Not sure what, if anything, I’ll do about it, so right now I’m just continuing on and not worrying about the stains.

I have a stripey sock I’ve been working on since December (often setting it aside for other projects). The yarn is Perfect Day Yarns self striping in the She Woos Me colorway. I like the colors and the yarn, but for some reason, stripey socks sometimes get sent to the back burner when other things are more interesting. They’re good to keep around for something portable and easy to pick up, though, so I pretty much always have some type of plain sock on the needles. Anyhow, I was finally at the point where I finished the heel on Wednesday.

PDY Sock
PDY Stripey Sock

Then I tried it on and it was too tight. There weren’t enough stitches around and while it fit alright, the stitches were really stretched around the instep area of the sock. I knew it needed to be frogged and more stitches added. I frogged it completely and started over. The first time I had 60 stitches around, this time I have 66. So far it seems to be fitting, but then the other sock fit at this point, too. I’m just hoping it fits once I’ve done all the instep increases! Here’s where I’ve knit back to since frogging it.

PDY Stripey Sock

Yesterday was a beautiful sunny and warm day. Today is rather gloomy and rainy. This weekend is promising warmth and sun, though, and I’m looking forward to that! This winter seems like it’s been a long one. It’s nice to see warmer days here and there. Not much in way of plans this weekend. We’re going to see the new movie Paul with some friends tomorrow and I do hope we get out and enjoy the nice weather at some point. I’ve got Monday off and I’ll be hanging out with my mom for the day! Should be fun. 🙂

Have a good weekend everyone!

Posted in Current Projects

Cassis, Saroyan, and High Road

Last week I did take pictures of my current projects as promised. I was even going to post on Friday, but I just didn’t feel up to it with everything going on in Japan with the earthquake and tsunami. I just felt like anything I said would have been insignificant compared, so I decided to put it off until this week. Then, I knit so much on one project, it needed a new picture! Oops! (The pictures aren’t my best, but in an effort to blog more and keep my projects updated, I’ve been using my point and shoot more often lately.)

As soon as I finished my Seneca sweater, I knew what sweater I wanted to cast on next: Cassis. I’d been seeing this one around Ravelry for a while and after seeing a number of people knit this, I knew I needed one of my own. One of my goals with knitting 12 sweaters this year is to primarily use stash, so the first thing I did was go stash hunting to see if I had something appropriate for it. The Knit Picks CotLin I bought with the intention of making Jali (then decided the cables didn’t work with the yarn) came to mind and I even had a swatch already knit from my Jali attempt that had the exact right gauge! Seemed like a perfect fit and I cast on as soon as I had Seneca blocking.

I started this February 26th and I’m well into the body. I decided I’m going to make this with longer sleeves and I’m adding waist shaping. I debated about sizing since I’m between the 42″ and 44″ sizes, but went with the 42″ size. Since the fronts are meant to overlap by about 2″ and I don’t plan on wearing it closed all the time, I think it will fit me better overall this way.


I was on the fence for a while with how I felt about the Textured Shawl I’d started in Malabrigo. Ultimately I decided I didn’t want another triangle shawl and the textured pattern (while nice) was annoying to knit for me. I just had this feeling I wouldn’t wear it much, so I frogged it. After frogging, I went in search of another pattern for this yarn. It was calling me to make it into something, so after some searching I decided to knit Saroyan. I started this on February 27th, but after a week and a half of working on it I found that I’d not read the directions properly and did the increases wrong (they aren’t done on row 3 and 11 of the pattern repeat). I realized this on March 10th when I reached the point where I would work straight. I waited a day to decide what to do since it was late at night when I realized my error. The next day, I frogged it and started over. I’ve worked on it non-stop since then and I’m three repeats away from finishing it!


I should be able to finish it tonight and get it blocking. I’ve already got my eye on the next project I want to knit once it’s finished: High Road. This is from A Verb for Keeping Warm’s 2nd shipment. I’ve wanted to knit this since I got it. The construction is interesting and I love the color of the yarn. It’ll be a good project to work on when I can’t work on Cassis since that sweater is getting rather large and hard to cart around easily.

AVFKW/Pro-verbial Club - Winter 2011
A Verb for Keeping Warm
Yarn: Metamorphosis, Pattern: High Road

I’ve been doing a lot more project planning lately then is usual for me, but that’s not such a bad thing. Sometimes I feel at a loss for what to knit and other times I just know what I want to work on. Just the way things go sometimes!

Since I’m working on planning a trip for some training, I’ll just throw this out there for folks in the DC area: I’ll be visiting in April. If you want to meet up or hang out while I’m there, let me know and we can figure it out! Still not solid on the dates since I’ll be taking personal time as well, so if some days work better then others, I’m sure I could plan my trip accordingly. 🙂

Posted in Current Projects

Scalloped Potholders, Volna, and Socks

Recently, I kept seeing a crochet potholder pattern come up in my friends feed on Ravelry being favorited and queued. There are a number of pretty and colorful ones that people have made and since I had some cotton yarn in my stash, I caved and whipped one up in pink and green. The pattern is Scalloped Potholder by Pracilla Hewitt. This is the first one I made and I’ll consider it finished when I make the second one, using up two full skeins of Lily Sugar’n Cream cotton. At least that’s the plan assuming I can get another one out of what’s left. I don’t think it will be a problem, though.

Scalloped Potholder
Scalloped Potholder

I think I’ll use mine more as a hot pad then a potholder, but you can never have too many of either! I thought they’d be a good way to use up some yarn in the stash and make something I can use in the kitchen. The second one will be opposite: green shells, pink for the rest, and crochet the two together with green. On the second one I might try going up a hook size once I hit the scallops so it will lay flat easier. The one above I blocked because it was curled pretty bad and wouldn’t really lay flat. It seems lays mostly flat now. I think my crocheting was just too tight and pulled it in. We’ll see. I’ll play around with it a bit to see if I can’t get it to lay flat. I seem to have trouble with that sometimes when it comes to crochet!

For a few months now I’ve seen Noro lace at various LYS’s. I keep thinking I should pick up a skein, then debate about what I’d do with it and eventually put it back on the shelf. For months, it’s been calling me. Then I saw the perfect pattern: Volna. I had other things going on at the time I posted about it back in November, but recently I picked up a skein at the LYS and cast on last week.


I haven’t progressed on it much because I’d been focused on knitting Watershed, then I started the Textured Shawl, but I hope to get back to it once I get one of my other WIPs off the needles. Speaking of which, I did finish one of Matt’s Camo Socks a week or so ago and I started the second one. I love nice the yarn feels knit up.

Matt's Sock
Matt’s Camo Socks

I’d like to focus on this and get it done now that I have Watershed finished. We’ll see. My interest changes all the time on what I want to work on or what interests me! 🙂

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects

Honeycomb Cowl and Juneberry the 2nd

Last week I spotted this honeycomb stitch in a pattern and had some other ideas for it, but since I lacked the yarn needed for a large project, I tried it out on this cowl. Not sure I’m too fond of the ribbing as it tends to extend out when worn and I’d probably change that if I were to knit it again, but the cowl turned out very squishy, soft and warm.

Honeycomb Cowl
Honeycomb Cowl

Pattern: Honeycomb Cowl (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: January 13, 2011
Completed: January 14, 2011
Yarn: Malabrigo Chunky, 1 skein in the Butter colorway
Needles: US 10.5 bamboo circular
Notes: See my Ravelry page for more details on what I did. This was my own design that I threw together, but since I’m not 100% happy with it, I think I’ll tweek it some before writing it up properly. Used up an entire skein, with no leftovers! Malabrigo chunky makes as nice of a cowl as it does a scarf and I like the stitch pattern.

I still have plans to use the stitch pattern on something else in the future, but I need to get yarn for it first and I’m still debating on what I want to use for this project I have in mind. More on that at a later time!

After my Bel Air sweater fail, I swatched to figure out what sweater to knit next. Swatches didn’t meet gauge, so I swatched more. Finally settled on Watershed and it’s making slow progress since I started it earlier this week since I’ve been consumed with finishing Juneberry the 2nd.

Last weekend being a 3 day weekend with only dinner plans on Saturday and Sunday, I spent a LOT of time knitting. I was waiting for swatches to dry, so I spent that knitting time working on Juneberry. By Monday I had finished chart B, C, D, and started on the edging! I’m nearly halfway through the edging now and I’m hoping to get it finished this weekend so I can focus more on sweaters I want to knit.

Juneberry 2
Juneberry the 2nd

Juneberry 2
Juneberry the 2nd Edging

One exciting (at least for me) thing I’ve done on the blog is finally get a Completed Projects page up. I’d been meaning to do that since I converted over to a self hosted blog from TypePad. It’s not exactly where I want it to be yet, but it’s getting there. Currently the only year missing is 2010 because I typed it up and left it on another computer. Hopefully I’ll get that up tomorrow. I’d like to add photos on the pages as well, though I’m not sure how I want to do that just yet. Updating everything made me realize that there’s a lot of things I didn’t photograph or didn’t blog! I think I’ve been a lot better about that in the last year or so, but it still surprised me how many smaller items were never blogged.

Snow is falling and piling up faster as the day goes on. If you have snow where you are, stay safe out there if you must go out! Thankfully I’m tucked safely inside the house for the rest of the night. 🙂

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects

A Little Jazz

It’s FO Friday! 🙂

This week I finished up my first project for 2011. Feels good to get something off the needles after feeling like I’m knitting all the time and not getting anything finished. As a process knitter, it’s not really about the finished item to me, so I don’t think it was really that I wasn’t getting anything finished, but rather feeling like I was in a total black hole of knitting with everything on the needles and not really getting anywhere. Anyhow! On to the FO!

The pattern and yarn are from The Loopy Ewe Sock Club shipment from March 2010. This is the first one I’ve knit up out of all the shipments! I think part of that is because most of the patterns didn’t appeal to me right away (and sometimes neither did the yarns) and part of it was that I was busy with other knits when they arrived. This particular one I felt meh about when it arrived. Wasn’t too thrilled with either pattern and the yarn isn’t colors I’d normally wear, but when I saw someone else’s knit up in December, I suddenly had to knit it. Still don’t think it’s something I’ll wear much and I may gift it at some point. I did like working with the yarn and I plan on trying it for socks in the future. I think it would make some really squishy, comfortable socks!

A Little Jazz (Wrapped)
A Little Jazz

Pattern: A Little Jazz (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: December 28, 2010
Completed: January 12, 2011
Yarn: Fiesta Yarns Baby Boom, 1 skein in the “Spring Chill” colorway
Needles: US 5 Addi Turbo circular
Notes: Knit as written. Didn’t swatch because it’s a scarf. Had a bit of yarn left over after knitting just over 2″ on the ruffle. I would have kept going, but those ruffle rows are ridiculously long and time consuming and I didn’t think it would look that great being longer then it was. Haven’t blocked it yet, but I plan on doing that this weekend.

A Little Jazz (back
A Little Jazz

In other project updates, I think I’m going to frog Bel Air. I know, I know. I’m 12 inches into the back and that’s a lot of work! I’m just not happy with it, though. My two major concerns are that it’s going to be too long on me and too big on me. I think I should have gone with the 40.5″ size rather then the 44″ size. My bust is 42.5″, but holding that back piece up to me it wrapped well around my sides and this isn’t a sweater that I want to be baggy. I want the sweaters I knit this year to fit and fit well! The length of the 44″ size states it should be 16″ from the hem to the underarm, which is too long for my short torso. Had I known that I would finish the increases at around that point making it hard to just knit a shorter length like I’d planned on doing, I would have started the decreases and increases sooner or done them at a different interval so that I could make it 14″ or so instead. With all that in mind, I think it just needs to be frogged and I’ll come back to it later.

Now I need to figure out what sweater I want to knit. Debating finishing up Junberry #2 before starting a new sweater, but I’ll think on it for a day or two before jumping into the next one. Have to let the soon-to-be-frogged sweater wound heal first! hehe 😉

Have a good weekend everyone! It’ll be a 3 day weekend for me since I have Martian Luther King Jr. Day off.

Posted in Current Projects

New Year, New Projects

Since the new year started, there’s been no shortage of new projects or knitting for me!

Along with the 12 sweaters, I joined Year of Stash Socks. I figured it would help me with my stash reduction goals since the majority of my stash is sock yarns. For the month of January, I decided on a plain vanilla sock. I was having trouble picking yarn at first, then figured this would be a good time to knit Matt a pair of socks out of the Camo yarn I got from Jessica. He likes ankle socks, so I think I should be able to finish them up this month. I’m through the heel and on to the foot of the first sock.

Matt's Sock
Socks for Matt

I’ve started on my first sweater of the year as well! I had been wanting to make a sweater out of Vesper Quick Sock in “Ivy League” that I had. This was a club colorway and I collected three other skeins that people were destashing to go with the one I received to have enough for a sweater. My first attempt at making this a sweater failed to be come the striped Jumper Cardigan. I do love this color by itself, though, so I set it aside for something else. When I saw this pattern, I knew I had to use this yarn! The first sweater I’m working on this year is Bel Air. The back is moving along pretty quickly, though it is a little slow going on US 3’s!

Bel Air
Bel Air (Back)

This next pattern may look a little familiar from my last blog post. Yep, another Juneberry Triangle! I couldn’t resist it. A bunch of folks on Twitter were talking about a KAL and well… I caved. I love the pattern so much and had already been thinking about knitting another, so I joined in. I’m using Brooks Farm Solo Silk for this one. The color may also look familiar! It’s leftover from my Cottage Garden Sweater (which was later felted and unwearable). I was going to try and destash this yarn, then decided to keep it so I could have something out of this very lovely yarn.

Juneberry Triangle #2
Juneberry Triangle #2

I have one other project that I started, but haven’t finished, from last year. I started this the last week of December after seeing Sarah’s finished one. The pattern and yarn are from The Loopy Ewe Sock Club last year. Initially I wasn’t in love with the yarn or either of the patterns, but like a lot of yarns and patterns, one day I suddenly must have it. The pattern is A Little Jazz and the yarn is Fiesta Yarns Baby Boom in Spring Chill. Now that I’ve made it to the ruffle part, the rows take a long time to get through. I’ve made this my TV knitting since it doesn’t require much attention. Come to think of it, three of my four current projects don’t require much attention! Sometimes that’s not a bad thing. 😉

A Little Jazz (On to the ruffle)
A Little Jazz

January seems to be the month of “Start ALL the Things” for me. I started another shawl, but I’ve set it aside to work on the projects above. I started this when I was trying to resist the call of another Juneberry Triangle, but you can see how well that worked! This is the Summer Flies Shawl (free pattern, but not charted) out of Malabirgo Worsted in the color Rodecian. This was a gift from Alita and I thought it would make a nice shawl after seeing a few knit up in Malabrigo on Ravelry. I did use a different needle size after looking at the notes from those who knit this with Malabrigo. I went with a US 10.5 to give it a little looser fabric which should make it drape a little more. So far I like the result!

Summer Flies Shawl
Summer Flies Shawl

Hope the new year is treating you well so far and you’re off to a good start with your own knitting goals! 🙂

Posted in Completed Projects, Cooking, Current Projects, Sewing

OppAtt Socks, Little Christmas Tree, and Juneberry

It’s a week from Christmas and this year I have zero “must finish this by December 25th” things on my needles. It’s kind of nice, though it’s a little sad, too. I didn’t knit anyone a thing for Christmas. Last year, I knit things for 3 family members, but this year nothing really jumped out as me as things I should knit for so-and-so. I didn’t feel stressed about last year’s gift knitting since I started pretty early, so it wasn’t even that holding me back. I looked and looked at patterns. Thought about what those I’m giving gifts to might like from me (handknit or otherwise). The one thing I really kept coming back to is this: I don’t get asked for handknits from people I would knit for. That makes it hard to think of things they might like that I could knit and they’re all a bit difficult to buy gifts for (I realize I’m hard to buy gifts for, too). Ultimately I concluded that store-bought gifts would be what I would be giving this year.

So… that means I’ve been knitting merrily away on some things for myself since I last posted! I even finished two things.

First thing I finished was the Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks. Didn’t take me long to finish the socks after I finished the commissioned knits I did.

Side note about that: everything worked out well. I think it was a misunderstanding on my part about price or maybe I misheard what was said, but regardless, things turned out well. I have been thanked repeatedly and was told many times over that they knew they were getting a huge discount and the items are “worth hundreds!” I feel a bit bad for complaining and getting worked up about it. I’m just relieved that it all worked out well in the end and wasn’t as uncomfortable as I thought it might be.

Anyhow, back to the socks! I like how they turned out and I’m very pleased with the fit. I don’t often do mystery sock KALs and usually end up frogging them. This one kept my interest and as the design came out one clue at a time, I continued to like the pattern and kept on knitting.

OA Mystery Socks
Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks

Pattern: OppAtt Mystery KAL for Barking Dog Yarns by Jeannie Cartmel (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: November 3, 2010
Completed: December 12, 2010
Yarn: Barking Dog Opposites Attract, colorway George & Gracie, one skein
Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm) Knit Picks circular
Notes: No modifications to the pattern, knit as written for the 72 stitch sock.

OA Mystery Socks (Front)
Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks – Front

OA Mystery Socks (Back)
Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks – Back

The other item I finished was a little crocheted Christmas tree. It was pretty simple to do, though it did take some fiddling to get the leaves how I liked them due to me misreading part of the tutorial. Took just a little more then a day to finish. I still need to add ornaments to it, so I’m not calling it completely finished yet. Once I add ornaments, I’ll do an FO post for it. The tutorial for it can be found here.

Crochet Christmas Tree
Little Christmas Tree

A few posts ago, I mentioned wanting to crochet the Boteh Scarf. After finishing the Opposite Attract socks, I immediately started this, then lost a bit of interest when the I found the tree pattern above. It’s a pretty easy pattern and the first scarf I’ve ever attempted crocheting. It’s even helping me get the hang of crochet charts a bit. Not completely, but it is at least making some sense for a change. The yarn I’m using is Bigmouth Yarns Buxom Sock in “You’re Turning Violet, Violet!”

Boteh Scarf
Boteh Scarf

Around the same time that I started the scarf and crochet the tree, Sairy posted about buying yarn for the Juneberry Triangle, which I immediately went to queue and realized I already had! Suddenly I needed to knit it NOW, so I looked through my stash and found that the DK weight mink/cashmere yarn I bought from Great Northern Yarns a while ago had enough yardage and would work for the shawl. Didn’t take long before I had cast on and found myself not working on any other projects.

Juneberry Triangle

Juneberry Triangle – Close

I’m now halfway through chart D, which is the one with bobbles. I rarely pick projects that have bobbles, but I have no real reason for that or aversion to them. Just haven’t really knit many things with them. I was actually surprised to realize there were bobbles in the pattern. I either didn’t pay enough attention to the photos of the shawl or just chose to ignore the fact that they were there. I find them to be a bit fiddly and they usually don’t appeal to me in a pattern. I will say that being able to knit backwards really comes in handy when knitting bobbles. None of that turn, turn, turn stuff, which got on my nerves after the first row with bobbles. I can only do the knit stitch well backwards, but I am very thankful I learned that when I took my first knitting class at Knitter’s Connection a few years ago.

I’m hoping to do a year end wrap up post like I have the last two years with all my FO’s, though I’ll likely wait until after Christmas to do that to see if I can sneak in another FO before the year is out. In preparation, I’ve been browsing through some old posts, looking at the projects I’ve completed this year, and even re-reading the goals I set for myself at the beginning of this year. If I don’t get a chance to post again before Christmas, I hope everyone has a lovely holiday! 🙂

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects, Spinning

Sunny Riverwalk Scarf Finished and Project Updates

The day prior to leaving for Rhinebeck, I finished the scarf I was hoping to wear while there. It ended up that it wasn’t really cold enough to need it, but I did finish it in time and brought it with me.

Sunny Riverwalk
Sunny Riverwalk Scarf

Pattern: Riverwalk (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: October 2, 2010
Completed: October 13, 2010
Yarn: Malabrigo Chunky, 4 skeins in Butter
Needles: US 10.5 bamboo straight needles
Notes: I did the wide version of the scarf (two cable/chart repeats) and used up exactly 4 skeins of Malabrigo Chunky with none left over. This scarf is soft, squishy and warm. I have a feeling it will get quite a bit of wear this winter! I’ve decided to call it my Sunny Riverwalk scarf because of the lovely yellow color.

Try as I did to get at least the front and back of the Climbing Vines Pullover done to wear at Rhinebeck, it didn’t happen. I’ve finished the back piece and half of the front piece. It’s moving along pretty quickly and I’ve enjoyed working on it. The dark red of this sweater is pretty hard to photograph properly! I always seem to have difficulties with reds. I’m still undecided on the sleeve length of this, though I’m thinking that I’ll do 3/4 length to get more wear out of it. I think I just tend to get too warm to wear long sleeves, even in the winter.

Climbing Vines Pullover
Climbing Vines Pullover (Yarn: Cascade 220)

I’ve been itching to cast on something new in the last week or so. Sweaters have been calling me! As soon as I saw Anne Hanson’s new pattern, Bel Air, I knew I needed to make it and exactly what yarn I wanted to use. I got the pattern, swatched, washed the swatch, checked my gauge… then came to my senses that I needed to finish the Climbing Vines Pullover and start my handspun Featherweight before starting this. I think as soon as Climbing Vines is done, I’ll be casting on for Bel Air. The way I’m going, I don’t think that will be too long of a wait!

So, instead of casting on Bel Air, I cast on for Featherweight. I had to do a little math because my gauge is different (the gauge I thought suited my yarn best). I’m knitting to the smallest size in the pattern, but it will end up about the size of the 43″ in the pattern had I used the gauge the pattern called for. Working with my own handspun has been lovely! I have an idea of what I’ll use for the collar since I don’t think I’ll have enough yarn for that. Waiting until the body is done to decide, though.

Handspun Featherweight
Handspun Featherweight

I’ve been doing some spinning as well! Currently breaking in the spindle I purchased at Rhinebeck. 😀 I never thought I’d say that I enjoy spinning on a spindle, but I love this one! It didn’t take me long to feel comfortable enough to drop it and let it spin while I draft. I think the smaller size of this one compared to other ones I’ve used really helps me feel more comfortable with it. I’m sure I’ve learned plenty from the wheel spinning I’ve done, too. It’s nice to have a portable spinning project now. The fiber I’m spinning is superwash merino from Bonkers Fibers in Deep Sea.

Breaking in the New Spindle
Breaking in the New Spindle

After finishing the Maelstrom socks, I haven’t felt the desire to knit socks, despite it being Socktober. I had a pair of Jaywalkers on the needles that I’d been working on here and there. When I picked them up after finishing the Maelstrom socks, I just wasn’t loving them. The pattern is just a bit too snug on my leg and since I wasn’t totally in love with the pattern or the yarn, I frogged them this week. I think sweater knitting has taken over the sock knitting for the time being. I’m sure the sock knitting will return and I’m considering a few sock patterns currently, but for now it seems to be All Sweaters, All The Time around here!

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects, Fiber Events

Sweater Disaster, Sweater Success

Tragedy hit my knitting over the weekend. Specifically, my Rhinebeck sweater.

I took a risk and wet blocked my Cottage Garden late last week. Pre-blocking it fit me perfect. When I washed and blocked it, I was worried the silk in the yarn would stretch and make it too big. I tried to sort of squish it together when I laid it out, but apparently that didn’t help. It finally dried Saturday and it was way too big on me. The sleeves hung well past my fingertips and the body came to about mid-thigh. After a lot of thought, I decided to throw it in the washer in warm water for about 10 minutes, thinking it would felt just a little and shrink up enough to be worn. Well… after 10 mins when I checked on it, it was completely felted. The yarn is a 50% wool/50% silk single and I’ve had yarn that is 100% wool take WAY LONGER then 10 mins with HOT water to felt, so I really didn’t expect this outcome. I thought “maybe I can stretch it out and it will still fit!” Yeah… no such luck. It’s small enough to fit a child or possibly my youngest sister, who’s rather petite. I suppose all is not lost if it does fit her, but I’m still rather heartbroken that my Rhinebeck sweater is completely ruined. 😦

Camber vs Cottage Garden
My Camber sweater on the left (fits very well) and Cottage garden on the right

Sadly, I don’t even have any pictures of me wearing it pre-blocking, but as you can see above, it’s definitely too small for me to wear. While it was still wet, I put it on and tried my best to stretch it. I did get it on, but the armholes were too tight and even if I was able to stretch it, I doubt I’d be able to get it the size I needed. Not sure if I’d knit another one to replace it at some point. I think the pain of ruining this one is still too fresh to tell.

In a fit of crazy and after the loss of my Rhinebeck sweater, I cast on for the Climbing Vines Pullover with Cascade 220 Heathers in a deep red color. I’m almost done with the back piece. I have NO idea if I’ll finish in time, but hey… I can try right?? Hahahaha

On the plus side, I did finish Iced last Monday, blocked it last week, and it fits quite well! It still need buttons, but I haven’t found any yet, so I’ve been using a DPN to hold it closed until I find some.

Iced (Closed Front)
Iced – Closed Fronts

Pattern: Iced (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: September 15, 2010
Completed: October 4, 2010
Yarn: Universal Yarns Deluxe Chunky, 5.5 skeins in Cappucino
Needles: US 11 bamboo circular needle
Notes: I did make some modifications to this pattern. Instead of knitting it a few inches larger then my bust size, I picked the size closest to my bust measurement so there was no ease (for me this was the 42.5″ size). This gave me a more fitted sweater, which was exactly what I wanted. The other thing I did was modify the collar. In looking at the notes on other people’s project pages in Ravelry, I noticed that many people mentioned being displeased with how the collar hung lower then the body of the sweater. To counteract any hanging/sagging the collar may do, I slipped the first stitch of each row, then when I picked up the collar, I picked up one stitch in each of the slipped edge stitches instead of the 3 stitches for every 4 rows the pattern called for. This made it look like the collar was bunched up before I blocked it, but it worked great for keeping it from hanging lower then the body and is even with the edge of the sweater. The last change I made was to give it long sleeves and adding more sleeve decreases. For the 42.5″ size, you only decrease a total of 4 stitches, which leaves some very wide sleeves when it’s done. To make long sleeves that weren’t really wide, after the last pattern decrease row, I k 8 rows, then worked the decrease row. Worked “new” decrease repeat 1 more time, then knit 8 rows, worked decrease row in purl (p1, p2tog, p to last 3 sts, p2tog, p1), worked until garter stitch cuff measured 2″ to match garter stitch edge of body. Long sleeves measured 16″ from where the underarm stitches were picked up.

Iced (Open Front)
Iced – Open Fronts

Iced (Back)
Iced – Back

A few days after finishing Iced, I suddenly had the urge to finish the Maelstrom socks that had been hanging out on the needles for far too long. I picked them back up Saturday and by Sunday, the second sock had been completed. It felt good to get them done and off the needles and I like how they turned out.

Maelstrom Socks
Maelstrom Socks

Pattern: Maelstrom (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: June 23, 2010
Completed: October 10, 2010
Yarn: Dream in Color Smooshy, 1 skein Ruby River
Needles: US 1 Knit Picks circular needle
Notes: No modifications. I followed the pattern exactly, including the number of repeats on the leg. I like short socks, but I can definitely see adding more repeats if you like longer socks. They fit really well and hug my feet. Love them!

Maelstrom Socks (Legs)
Maelstrom – Leg

Maelstrom Socks (Foot)
Maelstrom – Foot

I ended up frogging Xeriscape, but haven’t cast on anything new with that yarn yet. I have some other ideas of yarns in my stash that I might use for Xeriscape or I may pick up something at Rhinebeck for it. Since I frogged that scarf, I started another! The pattern is Riverwalk from the same designer, Mary-Heather Cogar. I’m using Malabrigo Bulky in Butter. This yarn is lovely and soft to work with and it’s going to make a great scarf! The pattern has been a lot of fun to knit (I can hardly put it down) and I’m nearly finished with it.


Off to keep working on my sweater in an attempt to finish it by this Saturday!

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects

Cottage Garden, Iced, and Xeriscape

Ahhhhh, the end of the fiscal year is today and I can feel people at work breathing a big sigh of relief right along with me! September is always a crazy month at work and even if it isn’t super busy for me on any given day, you can just feel the tension and stress from other people some days. I’m glad that the month is over and things can get back to “normal.” Well… as normal as usual for work anyhow!

A little over a week ago, I finished up the yarn for the SAL/KAL over in the Zarzuela’s Fibers Junkies group on Ravelry.

Emeralds Targhee Yarn
Finished! 8 oz of Targhee in “Emeralds”

I ended up with 977 yards of fingering weight yarn, which is a bit less then the 1200 yards required for Featherweight. I’ll need to combine it with something to have enough yarn. I’m still undecided on what to combine it with, but I have a few ideas that I’ll try out when I swatch. I plan on using whatever yarn I decide on for the collar and possibly the cuffs, too. This will be my first handspun sweater and I’m pretty excited to get started on it! I’ve been holding off on starting it because I wanted to have my Rhinebeck sweater done before I started anything new. Well, guess what I finished Tuesday!!

Cottage Garden
Cottage Garden – FINISHED!!

It’s done! My Rhinebeck sweater is finished and with time to spare. 🙂 I was concerned for a while that I wouldn’t get it done because the colorwork felt like it was going slowly once I started it. Then, before I knew it, I was done. I modified the final neck decreases because I thought it might not fit around me very well if I’d done it as written. I’d seen some notes from others about changing that part, so I did my own version of modifying it and I’m quite happy with it. It still needs to be washed and blocked, then I’ll get some FO pictures before sharing all the final details on it. I’m excited that it fits well, I love the colors, and I finished with two weeks to spare!

OMG TWO WEEKS UNTIL RHINEBECK?! Kinda just hit me after I typed it that it’s getting really close. I’m excited and a little nervous, but mostly excited! I should really get my packing and buying lists in order soon. I think I’ll do the same thing I did last year and make a list of the projects I’d most like to knit, how much yarn is required, and buy based on that. I’m sure there will still be an impulse purchase or two! Last year it really helped to make a list with yardage requirements so that I didn’t end up with a single skein I don’t know what to do with. I’ve been keeping up with the Rhinebeck group on Ravelry and someone suggested making event reminders in your phone for any events you want to see, so I’ll probably do that as well. I didn’t see any of the events last year (didn’t think to!), but there are a few I’d like to see this year and that’ll be a good way not to miss anything.

Will YOU be at Rhinebeck? I’ll be at the fairgrounds Saturday and the Ravelry party that evening, so if you’ll be coming and want to meet up/hang out/have someone else to check out vendors with, let me know. Or, if you just happen to see me there, wearing my sweater above and my Ravelry name badge, come say hi 🙂

Ahem. Got sidetracked with excitement for Rhinebeck there!

Since Cottage Garden is all finished, I’ve moved up Iced as my main project. I finished the body today and started on the first sleeve. Picture shows it when I was working on the garter stitch edging on the body, before I did the bind off.


I knit the body to 13″ (measured from where the sleeves were split off) before doing a 2″ garter stitch edging to keep it from rolling since I’m using 100% wool yarn. I’ll be doing the same edging for the sleeves as well. It’s going pretty quickly, so I think I’ll have it done this weekend. Still undecided about any buttons or closures and I’ll probably wait until it’s completely finished to decide.

I’ve been working on Xeriscape, but I’ve run into some problems. I got to the halfway point in the pattern and it looked like there was NO WAY I’d have enough yarn. I weighed it and sure enough… I don’t have enough to finish it. I figured out pretty quickly that my gauge was off and I hadn’t checked it while working on it because… well, it’s a scarf! Figured it didn’t really matter, disregarding the fact that I had the exact right amount of yarn the pattern called for. D’oh! I decided to frog back to the halfway point in the yarn, which would give me less scallops and length overall, but now I’m not sure about that decision. I’m considering frogging the whole thing and knitting something else with this particular yarn and coming back to this pattern later. Here it is at roughly the halfway point, pre-frogging.


This week the new issue of Knitty went up (Deep Fall 2010). Nothing really jumped out at me screaming “KNIT ME NOW!”, but I’m thinking of frogging Xeriscape and knitting Eleanor with this yarn instead. The scarf is so soft and squishy in garter stitch and I really do want to make one, though I think I want to have a yarn with bit more yardage so I don’t have to worry about my gauge with it. Hmmmm. Decisions, decisions!

The mittens haven’t seen much progress, but I’m still hoping to get them done before Rhinebeck. Maybe even get a cowl (Eleanor?) or scarf done, too. Guess I should get to knitting then! Hope everyone has had a good week and has a good Friday and weekend. 🙂