January 30, 2010

back in the saddle

Thanks for all of your interesting comments about what you're up to! What a busy bunch. It was great to meet some of you for the first time. Please see the winner in the post below.

So I took a small hiatus from spinning to knit some things and I was really missing it, so I got my 2nd 8oz batch of CMF roving out and spun some singles. It's for the sweater I've talked about before a few times. Slow, but still on track. The finished yarn is gorgeous and squooshy.

I'm also working on an argyle cardigan for my husband in Rowan baby alpaca dk (which I imagine has to be the closest substitute possible to having a soft baby kitten on your lap) and I'm done the plain back, but now I've hit my nemesis on the front: intarsia.

I split my dark grey ball so I could run each of those lines up separately, but I figured I could run the taupe loosely behind the white and do it fairisle-style. It's adequately loose, but I'm having doubts. The alpaca is so fine and delicate that the slight bulge created by the extra string behind the diamonds might bug me forever.

Even though these few inches have been tediously slow and I really want to finish this before moving on to the Olympic sweater (and the Olympics are coming up.Fast.) I think I've talked myself into frogging and re-doing it with 2 taupe balls - one on either side of the diamonds. Since the diamonds go right up both fronts and there's more on the sleeves to notice it on. Drat.

Hope you're having a great, frog-free weekend.

edited to add: After ripping down, I'm back to where I was, this time with 2 balls of taupe. Totally the way to go. Faster and better all around. I would feel more clever about this if the instructions hadn't pretty much laid this out for me from the start.

January 23, 2010

one (a giveaway!)

Thanks for your lovely comments on my last post. You guys are awesome.

So this little blog is turning one year old in a few days and I thought I would do a giveaway to celebrate. Here's the details (top to bottom):

- Fleece Artist Merino 2/6 handdyed sock (or anything you want) yarn
- Fleece Artist Suri Blue laceweight (alpaca/blue faced leicester)
-The Plucky Knitter merino superwash sock yarn
- Mission Falls 136 Merino Superwash (2)
- Erika Knight's 'Simple Knits for Little Cherubs'
- Fiber Optic Yarns merino/tencel spinning fiber - 4 oz (says 100% merino but there's also tencel - this adds strength which is good for socks)

I chose these because I love them all and thought you might, too. The Fleece Artist and Mission Falls are also Canadian, and I don't know how available they are elsewhere.

So leave a comment about whatever you're doing/thinking/knitting and I'll pick one (boldly assuming there's more than one) using a random number generator on the day of this blogiversary - Friday Jan. 29 - 9:00pm CST. Thanks for stopping by!

And the winner is #1!

January 16, 2010

starlight, starbright

Pattern: Starlight, Starbright by Kirsten Jensen
Yarn: Brown Sheep Nature Spun Sport, colours #117S Winter Blue, #N80S Mountain Purple, and #144S Limestone

So my first FO of the year/decade is this one. As I mentioned, I test knit it for Kirsten and every bit of it was thoroughly enjoyable. I loved the pattern and the yarn and I finally cut my first steek (!). These late-in-the-day photos were all I could do today - I'll see if I can get better ones later. This week has had a constant crazy agenda and I got in very little knitting time or at home time at all. But here it is. And even though it's big on her my daughter loves it (I think you can tell). So do I.

January 9, 2010

in the wings

I'm humming along on the Starlight cardigan, but I'll wait until I finish to post. I'm almost done. I will likely finish after this weekend, though, and the weekends are the only time of the week that I am home when there is any daylight. So I may not have photos until next weekend. These depths of winter are already getting a bit tedious.

I got this happy package in the mail yesterday, though. It's the Dale of Norway yarn and pattern for the 2010 Olympic sweater. I'm making the smallest adult size for my son. How long could it take?! Sure it's sportweight yarn but there's so little colorwork. Piece of cake. I don't know about finishing it by the beginning or end of the Olympics, but it'll fit him for quite awhile nonetheless. I'm not really a sports watcher (except my own kids) usually, but there's something about the Olympics that gets me. I love the excitement. And February will definitely need some of that around here.

January 5, 2010

running with scissors

I thought I would show you some steeking. This is before I got to the front opening, but you get the idea (I ran out of sunlight to photograph). So there are 5 extra steek stitches up the front, and there was a short baby steek on the neck shaping (which is already cut in the top photo), between the stitch holders on the front and where the shoulder stitches start, plus armhole steeks (also cut in top photo).

I tried both crochet reinforcing and sewing machine. I read everything I could get my hands on (Eunny's are the standard go-to instructions, I think), and then started by crocheting the neck steek, then one armhole (middle photo). Then I cut the neck steek and decided I didn't feel secure enough with the crochet. Crochet and I try to get along once in awhile when I need an edging (mostly), but I just wasn't happy this time. So I ripped out the crochet on the arm and dragged out the sewing machine. Much happier with that method. Feeling more secure. Even the need to stitch exactly down the middle of a very tiny stitch did not deter me.

Super fun. I really don't want to ever knit on straight needles ever again.