Archives for category: Lace

So funny story… Remember that one time I said I’m not buying anymore yarn?  Hahaha, hohoho, hahah heehee…. ahem.

So, uh… ya.  Can we skip past the part where I apologize for not being a better person and knitter and stashbuster and can we also skip the part where I try to justify it?  Good!  I’m glad that’s settled and we can put that all behind us; I can tell that we’re going to be great friends.

Friends!  I want to show you something I just finished making with newly purchased yarn.


I give you Sabrina: an infinity scarf of my own devices.  Named so, because that’s whom I’m gifting it to and because I’m terrible at naming anything but plants (at least I think my plant names rock).  It’s a soft and lacy little number that you can easily wrap around twice (or even thrice, if you make it long enough, which I did).  I love combining lace motifs almost as much as I love twisted stitches.  Do you know about the magic and beauty of twisted stitches?  I might make a few mods for future iterations. Like maybe pick up stitches along the edge to add a border of sorts.  And I’d probably make it a little shorter since this cowl has a lot of stretch lengthwise when you wear it.  But otherwise, I love how it turned out.

Also, this is my first time knitting with Malabragio.  Whahahahahaaaaa?!?!  I know.  I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to jump on the Malabrigo band wagon.  Maybe because most of their colorways disturb me.  But this one.  This one is a gem.  And so nice to work with.  So nice that I didn’t want to stop knitting with it.

I would really love to write this pattern up and put it up on ravelry.  It’s kind of late and I’m in a rambling mood, so I’m just going to air my apprehensions and fears for a moment, so bear with me… I’m really nervous and afraid of venturing out there as a designer.  Am I good enough?  Are my patterns good enough?  Are my ideas different enough to stand out?  I have to admit that I’m pretty judgmental about other patterns.  What I would pay for which patterns and so on.  So I think that’s how other people are as well.  And being rejected is a terrible thought.  But I guess we’ll never know until I try, right?  I’d like to know what you think, as knitters and readers and craft lovers alike:  Could you see yourself knitting this?  Could you see yourself wearing this?  Would you think differently about it if it was a free versus a paid pattern?

Thanks for letting me air my thoughts.  And thanks for letting me get away with buying more yarn when I said I wouldn’t.  You guys are all amazing and I love you.

Remember that day that I was boasting about all the FO’s I had in my back pocket?  You might be wondering where the last one is.  You might even be thinking that I was lying to you that day.  But I’m here to say that I wasn’t lying and I haven’t forgotten to show you this last one.  I’m just really good at procrastinating.

I’m so good at procrastinating, that when I tell you when exactly I finished knitting this hat, you will be shocked and amazed and probably scared, because you will have then realized just how good I am at not doing things in a prompt-like manner.  When I think about it, I’m also scared because I begin to wonder if all my projects will be like this.  The answer is most likely a definite yes.  I think that’s just the nature of procrastinators.

Ok, so here’s the ugly truth about this hat.  I finished it in May. GAAAAAAAAAAAASP!!!!  Here’s the funniest part: (are you ready?) I finished knitting this hat in two consecutive days.  DOUBLE GAAAAAAAAAASP!!!  Yes, I really finished this hat nearly 3 months ago.  I finished it so quickly that I didn’t even bother photographing my progress.  Plus, I think the guy sitting next to me on the airplane thought I was weird in the first place, so I didn’t want to add to the weird factor by busting out my camera and posing the hat all over my tray table.

I couldn’t believe how fast I made it.  I was impressed with myself.  I had every intention of adding the buttons and blogging about it the moment I got back home.  But then a terrible thing happened…. I bought more yarn and cast on for about 10 more projects.  Oops?  Then I was just making excuses that I hadn’t seen the recipient in a while and we were kind of having a sort of summer in Seattle and I had to find the right buttons, and isn’t this other project so pretty and soft and don’t you want to touch it?  It was quite pathetic.

Pattern Details:

Pattern: Argyle Lace Hat by Laura Irwin in Boutique Knits
Yarn: Classic Elite Yarns Fresco (60% wool, 30% baby alpaca, 10% angora) in Charcoal Black
Needles: US 4 [3.5mm] Circulars
Modifications: None, knit exactly to pattern instructions
Recommend to a friend: Yes! 
Notes: Pattern is fun and easy to knit, with enough details to keep you busy.  This yarn is also pretty amazing.  It shows off the stitch definition well and it really softened up after blocking and has great drape.  Perfect for a slouchy hat or a flowing scarf.

Maybe I just like deadlines.  Maybe I just like the self-imposed pressure of finishing everything before some big event.  I’m not really sure.  But then the recipient of the hat decided to up and move to Vegas.  Umm, will she still want a hat if she lives in Vegas?  An alpaca/wool blend hat?!  She did.  So I buckled down and found the perfect (in my opinion… and mostly because I was tired of looking) buttons.  Thus I finished the hat and she’s really happy she has a warm hat, even though she’s now living in Vegas and I let another 3 weeks pass by without blogging about it.

So there you have it.  The story about how I procrastinated….yet again.

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!

Happy New Year (albeit a few days late)!  I hope you have all enjoyed your holidays.  I’ve come to the conclusion that it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been on vacation, it’s always hard to go back to work/the gym/real life.  Yet, it doesn’t matter how long it’s been since I’ve picked up knitting needles; it’s always easy to come back to that sultry temptress that is knitting.  It’s even easier to load up your knitting to-do list with more projects.  Maybe that’s where the difficulty in knitting arises.  I haven’t quite figured it out yet.  Call me in a few weeks after I have officially bitten off more than I can chew.

Rock Island Shawl is done (granted it’s still sitting in a pile over yonder waiting to be blocked and blogged about), so naturally I picked up another lace project.  I know, I’m rolling my eyes at me too.  It’s just that, well look how pretty it is…

It’s Kimono Shawl by Cheryl Oberle in Folk Shawls, knit with Jaggerspun Zephyr.  I can’t even explain how much I love this color.  I went to Home Depot to have paint mixed to match this yarn.  Incidentally my living room wall is now a beautiful sage color.  My pajama pants (which I’m currently in, because real clothes are for working hours) match up perfectly.  Why can’t I have more things this color?  This yarn has been waiting ever so patiently in my stash for the last two years.  I’d pick it up occasionally, pet it softly, and reassuringly whisper in its ear that someday it will be something special.  I swear, after knitting up the garter edging, it looked at me and smiled.

Meanwhile, I’m still successfully working on Aidez.  Earlier this week, I finished up the two front pieces and have started on the sleeves.  The pattern calls for the sleeves to be worked flat, so naturally, I threw caution to the wind and started knitting them in the round.  Why I do these things, I cannot say.  The upside to this is that it’s two less seams that I’ll have to do.  The downside is that I don’t have enough room on my circulars to knit the sleeves two at a time.  I’ll just have to stay vigilant with my note keeping so that I knit the second sleeve the same.

I expect that I will finish the sweater in the next week or so, because my little eye did spy my next WIP (among many others).  And I really can’t help it if I start casting on for it in the very near future.  Startitis is real, people.

What projects are you working on this winter (knitting or otherwise)?

Seattle has seen it’s 3 weeks of summer and so now we enter into our overcast and slightly chilled days.  Most people would complain about this.  It’s mid-September already?  Why is it so cloudy today?  Where has the summer gone?  I haven’t been able to tan my rear yet.  So on and so forth.  Not I.  No, I welcome Fall with open arms and jubilation in my heart.

Fall means that knitting season is here, not that I ever stop knitting, but somehow it’s cozier to knit when it’s cold outside and the rain is pitter-pattering on the window.  The knitting high begins, where any particular knitter is keen on making anything and everything for everyone in time for the holidays.  Of course, whether or not we ever accomplish the things we set out to knit is an entirely different story.  Fall means I can close my windows and my neighbors can close their windows and therefore I no longer have to listen to moans and cries of pure ecstasy.  Ahh, apartment living.

Fall means knitting sweaters, like Aidez.

Fall means wearing shawls, like Rock Island.

Fall means butternut squash curry.

Fall means apple/pecan/pumpkin pie.

Fall means I can stop worrying about being bikini ready, because honestly my body is just meant to be under a cardigan.

Fall means finding cute boots to wear if only to knit cute legwarmers that will peep just so over the top.

Fall means back to school sales on crayons and other craftacular tools.

Fall means I can start showing off my handknits!

Basically, I love Fall.  I also love the way the shawl is looking with my new gauge.  I kept the edging from my first iteration so I could compare.  I know it’s subtle to the most casual observer (hint: it’s the bottom one), but the important thing is that I notice and I’m completely happy with the change.

I’ve also started on Aidez, although working overtime has forced me to prioritize sleep over everything else.  One should not knit when one is tired.  At least this is what I tell myself after I make a million mistakes over three rows.  I always think I can do it, but it turns out I’m just an idiot.

But fellow knitters, I have a dilemma…. the gauge for Aidez is 15 st across by 16 rows = 4″.  I get 4″ across, but I don’t get a 4″ height.  I feel like this will work out in the end because I’m short, so I won’t miss that little extra bit in height.  However, I’m worried how this will affect the armscye, which I heard is tight to begin with.  Anyone have any suggestions for this besides knitting one needle size up?  I tried swatching with a US11 and it came out pretty sloppy.

For now, I will continue to knit and keep my eyes open for big piles of leaves to jump in.  Who’s with me?

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