Another Christmas Scarf

Even though the first Christmas Scarf (that would be the Irish Hiking Scarf), is still on the needles, I’ve begun a second scarf. I won’t tell who it’s for, as I’m not sure if she reads my blog or not. But suffice it to say she’d better like it. If she doesn’t I’m going to have to insist she return it, because I think it’s the cat’s pajamas.

This is the Willoughby Scarf, pattern by Jared Flood. The pattern calls for cashmere, but I couldn’t find any that was inexpensive enough to afford the 800 yards required. So I’m using Berroco Ultra Alpaca Light. I’m also using size 7 needles rather than the size 8 he suggested, as it looked extra sloppy with the larger needles. Because of these two modifications, I’m quickly realizing I’m going to be doing WAY more than 40 pattern repeats. But that’s ok, because I really like this pattern.

The Fascine Braid Socks are on hold. I’m nearly to the point where I can start decreasing for the toe of the sock, but when I tried it on I noticed that my purls are not even, and the sock looks… not very well done. This may be due to my inadvertent substitution of thin sock yarn for the recommended medium.

I’m going to do a quick swatch using smaller needles and figure out where to add stitches to make the pattern work, then start over. Just as with the Willoughby, I’m not upset about this because the pattern really flies.

Well, back to work!

ps…

Valerie, I did see your comment on my last post voting for the FLS to be the next thing I worked on. However, we went on an adventure (we drove to Julian) and the sweater was too big and hot to work on in the car.

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so….tired

I would really love to be knitting on any of my many projects right now, but instead, I’m sitting here with Max (in his Superman jammies) watching “Curious George” (Max’s commentary is actually more entertaining than the movie) because I am totally, utterly, completely tired. I have to go in to work early tomorrow, so I think that I’m going to go to sleep.

As an experiment, let’s do this.

What should I focus on tomorrow?

1. Fascine Braid Socks

2. Lace Scarf

3. February Lady Sweater

4. Latvian Mittens

Vote as often as you like via the comments.

And then I knit some more

The Hemlock Ring Blanket has survived it’s mistake, and all is well with it. In fact, on Tuesday afternoon I reached a critical point in its progress. I was at the row where brooklyntweed ended his blanket, and I was originally planning to do the same, especially since I wanted to do the fancy edge and was worried I’d run out of yarn if I did any of the additional rounds. So I did what any responsible knitter would do.

I called Clever Knits, where I bought the yarn I’m using, to see if she had anymore. And she did. And she had it set behind the counter, just waiting for me when I went to knit night.

This morning I took a quick detour to stop at another LYS because the short size 10.5 needles were driving me crazy. I got a set of 45″ long Addi Turbos, and oh, what a difference it has made! The needles I started with have horrible joins, and I was constantly having to coax my stitches from the cable to the needle. Now everything just slides. I have nine rows left to knit, then the bind off. I’m planning to be done sometime tomorrow so I can block it on Saturday. As soon as I have it pinned out, I’ll post a photo so you can share my excitement.

Now that I’m coming to the end of the Hemlock Ring Blanket, I’ve been trying to organize & prioritize my knitting projects. Here, then, is a list of what I think I’m doing. Since many of these are gifts, I won’t be mentioning who they’re for.

  1. Finish the Irish Hiking Scarf (it’s soooo close to being done)
  2. Sweater for Christmas gift
  3. Birthday Shawl
  4. FLS (only one sleeve, for the love of wool. Just finish it already!)
  5. Socks for Christmas gift #1
  6. Socks for Christmas gift #2
  7. Mittens for Christmas gift
  8. Socks for Christmas gift #3 (these ones are small, so they can go at the end)

Holy moley!! Maybe I shouldn’t have written all this down. Although, I have to say that getting the Hemlock Ring Blanket done in less than two weeks has given me hope and new confidence in my knitting abilities.

Later!

I’ve been a bit preoccupied

Since my manic posting on Thursday, I’ve been a bit preoccupied. I just couldn’t stop spinning!

Here is my first skein of yarn, spun Thursday afternoon after about 2 hours of practice and reacquaintance:

It’s a little uneven, but overall I’m pretty pleased with my initial efforts. This is a mixture of the batt that I purchased from Grafton Fibers (Corriedale, color 411 Blended) and the wool that came with my wheel from Louet. Here is skein number two:

This is just the wool from Louet, and I got 33 yards of two ply before the constant gray bored me to tears. This wool is significantly coarser than the stuff I purchased from Grafton Fibers and overall I’m not very impressed with it. Here, then, is my third skein:

This is my favorite. I managed to spin 56 yards of two ply yarn, although I couldn’t tell you what the weight or wraps per inch are. This is only from the batt that I purchased from GF, and it was really quite lovely to work with.

With the loveliness of that wool in mind, I just can’t wait to start in on this:

But first, guess what’s back in my active queue…

Yup, the orange shawl of doom! Even though I showed my poor math skills the other day with the sleeve of my February Lady Sweater, I am going to tell you that, according to my calculations I have 30 rows left to go on this shawl. You may want to check back on Wednesday, though, to see if I have fewer or more rows at that point. My bet would be more.

Here are some final notes:

Bea, I hope you’re feeling better. We missed you at knit night!

I did finish Sami’s costume on time, and I’ll let you know tomorrow how it went at ComiCon. It fit her (which was a major accomplishment) and she looked very cute (which was the easy part).

The Endless Sleeve

You know, I’ve never claimed to be great at math. My estimating skills, likewise, leave a lot to be desired.

Yesterday, I tried on my sweater and measured the space left between where the knitting stopped and where my wrist is. I came up with about 6.5 inches. I measured how long each pattern repeat was (1.25 inches), and did the math. According to my calculations, I had 25 rows left. I knit 10 rows during lunch, then 5 more during a break. This morning I knit 10 more, and tried my sweater on, wondering if I’d have to rip any out due to going too far.

It’s still only halfway down my forearm!! What the….?

Well, if I’d bothered to compare my math plus the number of repeats I’d already done on the sleeve with the number of repeats I’d done for the body, I’d have realized that I was WAY off. With my math, I’d end up with ~23 repeats in the sleeve. The body has 19 repeats. My arms are about 1.5x the length of my torso. That just doesn’t add up.

So, here I am, a day before the knit night where I’d planned to debut my not only finished but washed and blocked sweater, with a sleeve and a quarter still to go.

The yarn I needed to finish Jojo’s shawl arrived on Monday, but I’m still working on Sami’s costume (still stymied by the zipper).

My wheel is still in North Salt Lake City, UT, according to the FedEx tracking website. I’m hopeful that this is because it’s still en route there from New York, rather than that it’s been sitting there since Saturday, forlorn and forgotten. Tomorrow is the big day (theoretically) . I wouldn’t be able to stand it if I didn’t have a gazillion other things that needed to be done.

Today my editor was Max, who contributed by smacking the keys on the right side of my keyboard, sometimes adding a bunch of “\”, sometimes deleting a whole chunk of text. So, if any of my sentences change topic midway, it was due to Max’s fine editing skills.

We interrupt the knitting…

…of the February Lady Sweater to bring you hours of sewing on a costume for ComicCon (for Sami, not me) in a 100+ degree kitchen allllllll day Sunday and after dinner Monday, and I’m still not done. I got to the point where I needed to pin the zipper into the back of the shirt at Midnight. Since it’s been years since I last sewed a zipper in, I felt that embarking on this particular adventure whilst tired and feeling more than a little gross because of the heat in the middle of the night was ill advised. So I turned off my sewing machine, unplugged the iron, and took my bath.

I’d meant to take a photo of the kitchen table where I’m doing my very best impersonation of a seamstress, but after I’d finished bathing, it was 1:00am, and I was so sleepy I could barely keep my eyes open. Hence, no pictures of her outfit. I do have it with me today, buy it’s all the way in the car, and I’m not, so tough.

I do, however, have a picture of the February Lady Sweater, with her half-a-sleeve.

February Lady Sweater, as of this morning. I have about 25 more rows to do before I even consider trying it on to check the sleeve length (I decided to do full-length sleeves).

The past two nights, as I was sewing away, pricking my fingers on pins (and swearing) the whole time, I longed to knit on her. But Sami is hard to refuse, and I’d feel really badly if her costume only made it to being “nearly finished” by Sunday. I told her that someday, when she becomes an angst-filled teenager, she may attempt to claim that I’ve never loved her. When that day comes, I will remind her of this project and the extreme heat that coincided with it’s making. Not to make her feel guilty. Just to give her proof.