Gingko Shawlette: a Journey

I finished the Gingko Crescent shawlette yesterday and… what? I didn’t even take any ‘real’ pictures of it, I was so busy. Sorry. So, today, we’re going to try something new. I’m going to build a post entirely around the pictures I posted to Instagram of it.

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I cast on Thursday night and took this picture of what I so far Friday morning.

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I worked on it on and off all weekend and posted this picture Monday afternoon while I was on a road trip. I was probably 3/4 of the way through the stockinette body.

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I posted this later that night at the hotel once I had finished the body. I admit I was rather scared to start the lace since I had never been completely happy with any lace I’ve ever knitted.

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Tuesday night on the car ride home I worked the first ten rows of lace before it got too dark to see. I took this picture Wednesday morning at home. I was loving the lace. Even though I had started it at the amusement park while waiting for others to get off the roller coasters it was turning out great.

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Yesterday morning I finished it and immediately wanted to take a picture of it, unblocked as it was.

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Last night, just before I went to bed, I posted this picture of it while it was blocking. I let it dry overnight and, even though it wasn’t exactly shaped as specified I was very happy with it.

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This picture I posted this morning once it was dry. The middle part where the original cast on was has reverted to its original snap a little. I might re-block it but since it’s going to be against my neck it might just leave it. I absolutely live this project. It has to be my favorite thing that I’ve knitted so far and proof to myself that I can, in fact, knit lace and be satisfied with it.

Notions Therapy

Day Four (Thursday 15th May): Conversations Between Workers.
Start by writing a few short paragraphs from the point of view of one of the tools you use for your craft. this might be a spinning wheel, crochet hook, pair of scissors or your knitting bag. These first few lines should include a description of this tool’s task and usage. If you are feeling particularly in tune with this item you might assign it feelings.

Then, write a dialogue between yourself and this item. It might describe your relationships, the annoyances that you have felt for this item at some point (or could it have possible ever have felt annoyances with you) and the wonderful work that you have created together.

I decided to put my own spin on this prompt since I neglected yesterday’s. I decided to write as if one my petulant darning needles (they just disappear everywhere, couches, backpacks, you name it I’ve probably lost one in it) was going to therapy.

The scene: A cozy bedroom with slightly purple walls, an armchair with a teenage knitter in it and an end table with a few framed pictures on it and knitting magazines in the side holders. On top of the table, in front of a lamp are a porcupine pin cushion, a stitch marker and a darning needle.

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Cleo: Hello everybody and welcome to this week’s Notions Therapy.

Notions: Hello Cleo.

Cleo: I see we have a new face with us today. Can you tell us your name and what kind of notion you are?

Daryl: Hello my name’s Daryl and I’m a darning needle.

Cleo: Why don’t we have everyone else introduce themselves to Daryl? I’ll start. I’m Cleo and I’m a knitter.

Penny: Hello, my name’s Penny and I’m a pin cushion.

Marcus: Hello, my name’s Marcus and I’m a stitch marker.

Daryl: Hello everybody.

Cleo: So Marcus, at the end of last session we were talking about how you felt like your relationship with Nina was on-again-off-again. Care to continue?

Marcus: Yeah, every time she comes around she just leaves right away. Zoom! Onto the next stitch, no time for me.

Cleo: Well, you know that’s how circular needles can be… They’re just going around and around… But they’ll always come back to you. You just have to decide if this relationship is the kind you want. And if not? Maybe get to know the nice stitches to your left and right. Penny leans forward

Penny: You think you have a crappy relationship? I can’t seem to get anyone to stick around. Gesturing wildly A few pins fly out. Everyone ducks. As soon as I get them whipped into shape they leave.

Cleo: Do you think, Picks a pin out of her hair, maybe that you’re being to controlling?

Penny: Yeah I know. Sighs. It’s just so hard to find a nice lace piece these days. Looks pointedly at Cleo.

Cleo: Guilty as charged. I just don’t have the patience for lace.

Daryl: At least you get to be involved with the knitting. I just tie up everybody’s loose ends. Slumps in his seat.

Cleo: You could look at it like that. Or, you could think of yourself as the one who holds everything together.

Daryl: Yeah, that’s true. Sits up straighter.

Cleo: Looks at watch We don’t have a lot of time left, before we end this meeting is there anything you would like to add?

Penny: Knit something lace.

Daryl: With a lot of seaming.

Marcus: In the round.

Cleo: I’ll see what I can do.

What I Did Instead

I should be working on the Ginkgo Crescent shawlette.

I have the pattern.

I have the needles.

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I have the yarn.

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(Madelinetosh Tosh Sock)

Buuuut…

Monday morning I pulled out the yarn to wind it and when I removed the scrap pieces of yarn holding the skein in order I found two bugs! They were larvae of some sort and after a post on ravelry suggested that I freeze my yarn for three days, let it sit for one and then let it freeze for another three.

So instead of working on the shawl I found various other things to do.

I wound the yarn I dyed earlier this week with yellow onion skins and an iron after-mordant.

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(The lighter yellow is without a mordant.)

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I got caught up on recording temperatures for The Weather Scarf.

I tried to turn a heel on the Bahamas socks and ended up with an extra needle with ten stitches on it when I picked them up after finishing the sole flap.

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Seriously, who does that?

Upon closer inspection I realized that, not only do I have no idea where those extra stitches came from or how to eliminate them, they are too mall in various places, the heel being one. So,  I frogged it and started over, making a medium instead of a small.

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I worked on a sister to the Stevedore hat. It is only slightly different. I’m using the Alpaca yarn I bought in Gettysburg last summer. I’m calling her Stevedora.

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I bought the hair ties I needed for Flower Power (AKA Tiny Tether) and a set of pacifiers.

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Apparently you can only buy a 72 pack of these suckers at Wal-Mart and apparently they make different sized pacifiers for different ages. I bought some for age 16 months. I’m going to go back and get some smaller ones I think.

I did a lot of things other than the thing I wanted to do but I still got a lot done.

FO Finally

You would think that this year, with only one knitted gift, I’d be a little more on top of things. Nope. With one week until our family leaves for our Christmas vacation I’m scrambling to get everything done. I have to pack and a whole lot of other craziness (why didn’t I realize that becoming a teacher would require so much paperwork)

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I blocked Reid Saturday. Sewed it together Sunday and, after hours of cursing and fiddling I had the border crocheted on. Hallelujah, it was done! This cardigan has given me more issues than any other project I have ever worked on. The finishing instructions were virtually non-existent and there was no schematic for the fronts. I had no idea how big the arm holes were supposed to be or how far across I was supposed to seam.

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Last week I got my first ever commission. An acquaintance requested a black and green and red hat. He’d pay ten dollars he said. Since I already had the yarn in my stash I agreed. Well let me tell you I whipped that sucker out in two days.

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I know it’ll stand up to the bitter nineteen degrees that has become the norm around here because it can stand up on its own.

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I got this adorable crocheted owl hat at a local craft fair to give to Rosie along with Reid. I figured that she should get something she could use right away since Reid is more of a spring cardigan.

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For Christmas my Aunt sent me these three books about knitting. I’m working on ‘Knitting Yarns.’ I’m trying to pace myself but it’s difficult. It’s just so good! It’s a collection of varying essays on knitting. Most are personal. One’s historical. There’s even a poem. Not to mention the patterns scattered throughout.

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I wound up the Borealis last knit. This is going to be my commuter knitting. I’m envisioning a cowl or some sort of neck warmer because, around here, sometimes scarves just don’t cut it.

Lifelines

I’ve been working on Reid for a week or so now and I’ve been making some good progress.

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I have the back and the left front done. I started the right front last night. I’ve been putting in a lifeline at the end of every lace repeat (sixteen rows). There are so. many. lifelines.

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The lace is starting to look like it’s supposed to, which is good, because when I started, it just looked like hole-y fabric. Kinda chewed on actually.

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It’s sideways but you can see the diamonds a little. It’ll open up more once I block it (I hope).

Christmas Knitting… Finally

It’s that time of year. I’ve started my Christmas knitting! This year the only thing I’m knitting specifically knitting for Christmas is a sweater for my niece. It’s called Reid. It’s by Brooke T. Higgins and you can find it on Knitty.com for free (of course) if you click on the little linky back aways. I’m using Berrocco Weekend DK. It has very nice stitch definition.  It’s all lace so I’ve been progressing slowly since I cast in on Tuesday.

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Swatching, Tuesday. I was on-gauge the very first try!

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I always forget how to SSK from one project to the next.

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I’m on the fifth row of the second lace repeat out of 6 total.

It’s pretty easy, for lace, and only occasionally do I find myself having to unpick a section, having forgotten to YO at one point. That’s my biggest problem. Those pesky YOs.

I fogot to show you a skein from my last trip to the yarn store.

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I’m thinking of (another) slouchy hat called Double Double. What do you think?

Away but Busy

Hello hello hello! I am so sorry, once again, for disappearing. This time I was away. I got home today after work. I attacked the housework and unpacking and snapped the needed pictures (That’s why they all look similar. They were taken on my kitchen table.) I have been busy for the past two weeks. Much busier than I normally am on a trip like this.

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I finished Libra II and I am about to open the test so check out my ravelry group if you’re interested. (ignore the camera strap. It’s hard to take pictures one-handed.)

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I knitted up these babies for my mom. It’s one skein of Sidar Snuggly Crofter 50g, 179 yds (265 m) , 55% Nylon 45% Acrylic. I even had yarn to spare, which I gave to one of the ladies at the local lys where I was staying. Very friendly folks.  They wouldn’t have to be blocked but I’m going to in order to even out some of the ribbing.

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I finished Rod (last night actually) I need to trim the ends down and block him as well but I really like the way it turned out.

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I bought this skein of faux fur yarn to make a scarf for the woman I stayed with. She requested the yarn specifically, and who am I to deny her?

I’ve Gone Viral

Well hello again! I think I might actually be getting back into this blogging thing. (haha, I could never stay away!) I promised you guys some social networking news so here it is! (Drumroll please!) I have started a YouTube channel! Now, I’m not sure how all this is going to work or how far it’s going to go, but, I’m planning to have instructional videos to go along with my patterns. For instance, I want to post a tutorial on how to dye yarn with Kool Aid so if anyone who wants to make Kumpel (fingers crossed) and wants to dye their yarn the same way I did they’ll have a convenient, reliable link to that instruction right either in the pattern itself or below the  pattern on my Patterns page or in the pattern notes on Ravelry.

Also, I was wondering, what do you think about me starting a group on Ravelry? I probably would use it just to coordinate tests, launch  patterns and answer any questions. I know I only have a few patterns published but I have E-String, Kumpel and Libra II (formerly known as ssp) waiting in the wings.

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This is going to be close. I’ve only got this little bit to finish Libra II with. I might actually make it but right now it’s too close to tell.

After some intense, well not intense but prolonged, internal debate I decided to self-publish Libra II. Here’s a peek into what I’ve been hiding. I promise I won’t hold out so much ever again guys. Libra II is a pair of fingerless gloves knit flat the buttoned up the sides. I decided on knitting them flat because I really hate swatching in the round. The thumb will be sewn together at the end. I used the Sausolito yarn I bought a while ago. I Was really hoping I could one pair out of one skein.

I picked Libra because the lace pattern I was using was supposed to look like scales (But I don’t think it does at all.) and Libra is the scales. It is also my astrological sign. I had planned to finish them by my birthday but that didn’t work out at all. The II… I have no idea where that came from. Just ‘Libra’ didn’t sound right and for some reason. I’m not even sure how I got the idea to add two to the end but it just sounds right.

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Here’s the first one. Pre-blocking, oy.

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Some stitch definition…

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See? So close.

Keep your fingers crossed for me!