Archives for posts with tag: yarn

It happened.  Again.  I was just minding my own business, checking my email, doing thinking about doing my laundry, drinking some tea and suddenly I found myself here and here and, oh god….here.  How did that happen?  My credit card was lying next to me; it smelled strongly of misuse.  My email was blinking, signaling I had new messages, mostly confirming what I didn’t want to be confirmed.  My pulse was racing, palms sweating, I had a shit-eating grin, but it felt so wrong.  K2P2 looked on disappointed, disgusted…. But by the time I could comprehend it all, it was too late.  The deed had been done.

I’m sure to the outside observer, it looked like I was in control.  It probably looked like I knew what I wanted, the way I was breezing through the websites, picking out the perfect colorway for the perfect sweater.  Effortlessly making my way through the ordering process, typing in that 3 digit security code like it ain’t no thang.  I’m sure that’s exactly what it looked like, because I could see myself doing it.  I wanted to stop, but I was paralyzed against this strong (yet oddly familiar) urge to buy all yarns.  I lost all control to the nerves in my fingers, clicking away on the mouse, working that 10-key.  It was as if I was being possessed by the yarn itself.

Yarn.  It seems so fragile, so innocuous.  Yet, it has a darkside; a quiet desire to control you.  It beguiles you with it’s lustrous coat and silky touch.  It holds you.  It keeps you.  It steals your credit card and buys itself for you, usually in mass quantities.  I swear, that’s exactly how it happened.

Madelinetosh Vintage in Opaline made me do it.

Rowan Fine Tweed made me do it.

Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Tweed made me do it.

Basically, every single one of Thea’s patterns made me do it.  Not saying that Thea Colman is fraternizing with the darkside.  I’m sure she’s lovely; in fact, part of my daily fantasy entails us frolicking through yarn stores together, sipping on a cocktail or two, laughing because we are millionaires and can buy whatever we want, and we do.  But damn it all if she would stop putting out so many awesome designs!

You may think that I’m in denial and trying to place blame on others (as is usually the case with any addiction).  But I assure you, this all happened against my will.  I’m a lovely person that believes in frugality and abhors frivolous spending.  I would never…oh, hello there…..

I might have stayed up until 4 am last night so I could seam this sweater.  I realize how this may sound, but I was really excited at the prospect of having a new sweater today, that I couldn’t help but stay up into the wee hours of the morning mattress stitching.  This being my first pieced sweater, I have something I would like to say on the subject of seaming…

I LOVE it!  It is the most magical thing you can do with knitting!  After reading countless stories of how everyone loathes finishing and seaming, I was slightly dreading the fact that I would have to seam this sweater.  I even knit the sleeves in the round so I would have two less seams to do.  But in the end, seaming is probably the most fun you can have with yarn…except maybe untangling it! Yes, I know that this places me in the 10% of knitters who enjoy seaming and probably the 1% who enjoy untangling yarn.  I’m an oddity and I stay up late to knit, sacrificing a social life and sleep.  And I’m okay with that.

I loved knitting with this yarn.  It was nice and squooshy and soft, and quite affordable, I may add.  Somehow I managed to use a whole 2-1/2 skeins less than what the pattern calls for.  I don’t know how that happened exactly, because the sweater measures out to a size S perfectly.  There were many reports of the armholes being too tight, but I knit the sleeves as directed (although in the round) and do not have that issue.  I loved romping around in this sweater today and staying up until 4 am so I could do so was totally worth it.

Pattern Details:
Pattern: Aidez by Cirilia Rose
Yarn: Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Bulky, in Bare (~700 yards)
Needles: US 10.5 (6.5mm) Crystal Palace Bamboo
Modifications: Knit sleeves in the round.  Did not bind off on the front pieces.  Instead, left the stitches live and used kitchener’s stitch to sew the neck extensions together.  Added applied I-cord to the open edge of the front pieces before blocking.
Recommend to a Friend:  Definitely.  I think this is a great pattern for those new to sweaters.  There are a few stitches that were new, but otherwise very straightforward and well written.  Also, being an open cardigan with vertical details, I find it to be flattering for all shapes.  Plus…SEAMING IS AWESOME!!!

Seattle is always in complete disarray when it snows.  Schools and businesses shut down, grocery stores are overcrowded with people rushing to stock up on non-perishable items, the roads are taken over by cross country skiers clad in their newest REI gear…

Me?  I make sure I’m stocked up on yarn, because if I’m going to be stuck at home, I might as well be doing something productive and fun.  Let’s not forget the hot cocoa.  That’s definitely a must for snowy days.

Before you drink hot cocoa, it is very important to block your pieces of Aidez.  First of all, it’s white and you are a klutz.  Secondly, it’s much more fun to sip hot cocoa while you’re pondering your next project.

Really, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with planning your next project before you’ve officially finished your current one.  I’m thinking stripes, I’m thinking open, drapey cardigan, I’m thinking nautical… knotical?  Well, I laughed on the inside.

How do you enjoy your snow days?  Do you stay in or out?  Knit or ski?  Hot cocoa or hot tea…or hot toddy?  Whatever it is, hope you’re staying warm!

Last week during lunch, I found myself in a pet store staring into a cage with the most adorable kitten you ever did see.  I stuck my fingers through the cage and scratched her soft furry little head.  She responded with a soft purr and, people, believe me when I say that she actually sat up, looked me straight in the eyes and said, “Freshy, please take me home meow.”  What an intelligent kitten, I thought.  I began to imagine how wonderful it would be if I took this sweet little thing home with me.  Our future brightly flashed before me: curling up next to each other under a warm blanket, telling each other funny jokes, eating tuna, I would train her to use the toilet and I would knit her cat toys….

Suddenly, I saw that upon bringing her home I would find out that she does not dine on tuna, however, she has an unprecedented palate for fine merino wool and silk blends.  Unacceptable!  Besides, I’m already a crazy knitting blog lady.  Being a crazy cat lady with a knitting blog might be too much for me to live up to.  With all that craziness in mind, I left the kitty behind in the pet store and went to work googling this.

Today, as I was walking by the pet store, I noticed she was still there.  Fate, why do you tempt me with soft cuddly things I can’t have?!  I couldn’t help but have that same momentary lapse in judgment where Freshy’s knitting world would be so awesome with a cute little kitty in it!  Imagine all the fun kitty sweaters I could make!  What fun we would have!  I could change my blog name to Yarn Over Kitty, in which every post would feature a cute little kitten mischievously playing with yarn!  Wait, my yarn?  Damn, that’s right.  This will never work out between us, Kitteh.

It’s a good thing I have such wonderful judgment (haha, that’s funny…), because I definitely would not have been able to block this shawl out on my bed with a soft, playful little ball of mischief hanging around.

I also listened to my better judgment when I decided to reknit this using a size larger needle.  The shawl may not be as soft as a cute little kitten, but it’s big enough to wrap around your neck a couple of times to keep you cozy while it’s snowing outside.

Pattern: Rock Island by Jared Flood
Yarn: Madeline Tosh Prairie, Lace 2 ply, in Tart (~700 yards)
Needles: US 7, Knit Picks Harmony Wood
Modifications: Used US 7 needles instead of US 6
Recommendation: Yes. 
Notes: It’s a simple pattern to memorize and pretty fast to knit up.  I also love that it’s a reversible pattern.  This was also my first time knitting with Madeline Tosh, and I was really pleased with how strong this yarn was.  There was no splitting or snagging while knitting.  The color is such a deep red (pictures really don’t do it justice).  All in all, I loved the end result!
 

The other day I was walking to the market for lunch when suddenly every bone in my body was urging me to stop, lie down on the sidewalk and take a nap.  My eyelids were heavy and the warm concrete beneath my feet looked so inviting and divine.  I never thought I would think that taking a nap in the middle of the sidewalk would ever be so tempting.  Maybe when I was little I took naps on the sidewalk, but that must have been after hours of bike riding and sidewalk chalkin’ and (most likely because I was a weird kid) eating grass.  Did you ever eat grass?  I have a distinct memory of lying underneath a trampoline eating grass because I wanted to be a cow.  Grass underneath a trampoline is probably the most nutritious of grasses because they’re safe from trampling feet.  Additionally, the trampoline provides coverage from the ever watchful eyes of adults who frown upon grass/bark/twig/bug eating.

That tangent has nothing to do with knitting, I know.  The important thing that I want you take home from this post is that I recently procured a mother-fiber-load of yarn.  Couple of birthday presents:

From a friend: Handspun and dyed wool from Snowberry Studio Yarns on Lopez Island.  Probably going to turn this into a chunky cowl of sorts.

From the sister: A skein of Tiny Annapurna in Coral Reef from A Verb for Keeping Warm in the Bay Area.  I see a beanie in it’s future.

From myself: I got me a whole box of yarn.  Because I deserve it and because I have big plans for a couple of sweaters.  Holly aka sillylittlelady and I are about to venture into a knit-a-long.  We’ve both been admiring Aidez for a long time and finally decided that we needed to do this. now.  Thus I have begun:

I still don’t own a ball winder and I honestly have no free time to go to a yarn store to use theirs.  So I will be using my overturned chair and kitchen utensil method to wind 11 hanks into semi decent center pull balls.  You may think that this is a horribly bad and tedious thing.  But I assure you it is not.  I wound one hank and it was the most personally rewarding thing I’ve done all week.  It put a smile on my face.  I knit a swatch and I felt even more accomplished.  It’s really the little things that get me excited…even if it is eating grass.

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