Monday, October 31, 2005

Happy Halloween!

z's been sick...he got me sick...z's dad's also sick (unrelated illness)...on the knitting front, slow to no going on the sweater. I think I'll have to do a scarf for instant gratification. Alternatively, I should go and find z's costume from the basement so that he won't be incognito boy for trick or treating...

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Bad me, not much knitting news

Well, I have been knitting, but using #5's to make a man's sweater in the round is kinda slow and boring. And so, I've been lugging it around w/ me and knitting a bit here and a bit there, but man, it's slow to grow. I may have to start (or finish) another project just to get some gratification.

z wants me to make him another sweater. And honestly, I'm almost done w/ his sky blue one. No, honestly...

Friday, October 21, 2005

Skein Lane

Finally went to pick up some yarn that I had ordered from Skein Lane today. I must have forgotten I'd ordered it since she's been calling me to come pick it up for awhile.

And found out that they're having a pretty cool sale. At the counter, you pick from a bucket and you get anywhere from 15%-30% of your purchase. I picked 20% -- how cool was that? I forget how long the sale's for, but it's pretty good if you were walking in thinking you're going to pay full price for stuff. Just a little bonus.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Actually knitting

The good news is that instead of tinking, I'm knitting. I've gotten a total of 1.5 inches done on z's dad's sweater. I'm trying to be careful about not having loose stitches and so, I'm going much slower on the knitting. The other thing is that I'm using some metal needles that I have and they're a tad slippery. I don't know if the knitting will be better if I switch to addis or if I go the other way and switch to bamboo.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

z's dad sweater revisited

Couldn't sleep and woke up at 5am. The internet connection was being funky so what was a girl to do? Yep, frogged z's dad's sweater. You know the one that I've been working on since this summer -- the one that if you count the stitches, would have been completed by now if I hadn't had to rip it how many times already...

Wound up all the yarn and did yet another swatch, this time w/ #6 needles. You'll remember that I originally got gauge w/ #9 (recommended), and #8. But the knit fabric was too loose, so I went down to #7 and redid my math and started over and got through 2/3 of the body part only to decide that my gauge loosened up and the fabric is again too loose. And there it sat, sadly waiting while I learned to do cable and lace, and cleaned my house (okay, that's a lie), and read non-knitting books (which I'm only on page 175), and played w/ z, and did stuff w/ the family. Everything and anything except pick up the darn sweater.

So, I'm now using #6 needles and w/ my gauge of 4.5st/inch instead of 4 st/in, I'll be following the sweater pattern for an XXL (which if calculated correctly, should result in a men's medium).

I've connected the neck and now it'll be endless rounds of knitting and increasing for the raglan. Wish me luck!

Monday, October 17, 2005

Really should knit

But instead, I'm reading. Yes, I'm finally reading Harry Potter --The Half-Blood Prince. I really don't think I need to link you to it, y'all have already read it. The book actually originated from my nephew. He got it the day it came out (or maybe the next day), read it in a weekend, passed it to my MIL who also read it quickly, and then lent it to me...where the book has sat for several months, unread.

Well, am not speed reading since I don't have to, and am trying to enjoy it. I am finding it a tad slow, though.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Most Excellent!

I'm absolutely thrilled. I won a contest! yes. me. Most excellent. I read Two Sheep's blog and she had a contest (for her wedding anniversary). The contest asked readers to leave advice in her comment section on how to have a successful marriage. And guess what? I actually won. Okay, I didn't have pithy advice, but it was advice that has served us well. Pretty much say thank you for all the stuff that 'magically' gets done around the house. You all know you've got to thank those fairies.

June chose randomly and I was the big winner.

Thanks so much June! Now I'll have to figure out what to make w/ the beautiful yarn. (btw--her pic does the yarn much more justice than my pic).

Please let me know if you have any ideas as to what this gorgeous yarn should become...

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Knitting Shanties and Elvis?!

So, I was reading knitlist and came across a post about this book: The Old Hand Knitters Of The Dales by Marie Hartley & Joan Ingilby and had to google it and found this website where goodness, they talk about how in the olden days, folks knitted for income and sat in the dark to save candle wax and yep, you guessed it, sang songs about knitting in the same style as sea shanties.

As you may know, when our SnB were meeting at Coffee for Thought, the sea shanties folks were also there the same night -- uhh, they were sometimes okay, but sometimes off-key, and a little annoying. All I can say is shh, don't tell the sea shanties folks that
there are yarn songs too or they may decide to hunt us down and serenade us (again).

Here's an excerpt from the site:

'.....while far into the night
The housewife plied her own peculiar work,
Making the cottage through the silent hours
Murmur as with the sound of summer flies.'

But the other thing I found on the site is this.

knit Elvis wig

Ya know, I may just have to make it...or not. But how funny is that?!

Flora One Petal

I'm working on Flora from Knitty. (I don't have to link to it since y'all know about Knitty and Flora). It's so popular that two of us showed up at SnB Monday night making the same scarf. It'll be very interesting to compare ours since her's is double-stranded using a #8? while mine is single stranded w/ #10.5. I'm using GGH Lamour in purple for this scarf.

As I'm working the petals, I realize that I either need to go down in needle size or double the yarn since the petals are too floppy and holey. I decided on doubling the yarn. That's where I'm at.

Yes, this too will be a gift.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Fulling around w/ Lucy and Pink

I've felted both Lucy II and Pink. Here they are.

1 skein of Galway, doubled. Felting took forever. 3X without much shrinkage, and last time shrank to present size.

I really liked the shape of the bag. I was a little worried about the 'wings' I got prefelting. But after felting, it looks very nice (if I must say so myself).

Now, I will have to figure out how to use the felting needle and felt some designs on the bag.

Lucy II (aka Brown Lucy):
Made with Patons wool. Less than 2 skeins of the primary brown color and bits of the green and black. Patons felts beautifully. This is 2x in the wash. It was completely felted after the first round, but it was a tad tall, so I washed it again. I may felt the brown bag again to see if I can get the height down a bit more. And the straps may need to be refelted since they sorta folded and felted together.

The thing I'm bummed about is that on the 2nd wash, I forgot to zip the bag and some papery stuff from the wash got onto the bag.

Here's the comparison shot pre and post felting.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Lucy II done

Observation: Knitting 40 inches of a strap is very boring using worsted weight yarn. It was much faster when I made the bag using Lambs Pride Bulky. However, Kitchener stitched the straps together, and am done. I've Kitchenered for a couple of other projects, and always had the SnB book open. And always had a problem after the 4th stitch. uhmmm, do you pull 2 and 4 stitch off the needle and start w/ fresh stitches? Do you count stitch 2 as stitch 1 of the next round? So, previously, I'd sorta winged it as I went.

With this project, I read through the instructions again, and looked and figures in other books, and I had an epiphany (or at least I've figured out a way to do Kitcheners that works for me). Very happy.

Here's Lucy II prefelting. She's quite large.

I think I need another scarf project. Flora from Knitty?

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Knit and knit and knit in public

Well, I want to finish LucyII, so while waiting for my car to be fixed (sounding like a truck due to a hole in the muffler and squeeking like a banshee since I have no more brakes left), I hung out at Cafe Trieste (Annex) in Berkeley and worked on the strap... knit and knit and knit. 40 inches of knitting 17 brain is numb. my fingers are even getting bored. But, I will perservere and finish the darn thing. Once the long strap is done, just the short strap. That'll be a snap. (I'm at about 36" by my crude measurements).

The coolest thing was that I was also reading. Yep, reading and knitting. Knitting and reading. And in public. However, I think that maybe part of the reason why I'm getting bored doing the strap is due to the book being a little slow. I'm reading ... gee, I don't even remember the title. Man, that's sad. It's the newest book by Deavers, the author of The Bone Collector. Made into a movie w/ Denzel and Angelina.

I'm sorry I haven't posted any pics, but I will have a before and after pic of Lucy II when I'm done.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Non-knitting blog related post

Well, we're finally doing it. We're upgrading the computer. When we bought it back in 2001--got all the bells and whistles that came w/ it, including a subwoofer. And yes, it's the best sound system in our house...So, we've ordered memory from This company sells memory and they've got a very nice system set up where you can figure out the memory you need for your computer. Pretty painless. I wish I had found this site weeks ago. But, depending on when we install said memory (once it arrives in a week), I may be blogless (but not knitless). Hey, maybe I'll actually start something new, or finish a project...

Okay, here's my rant about this computer. At the time, it was state-of-the-art and all that. Using RAMBUS memory. Well, did you know that this is 'special' (insert $$$) memory? And that you need to apparently purchase specific brand or it doesn't work, they have to be installed in pairs, and on top of that, some companies have stopped making some of the memory. argh! And the final topper is that is we upgraded to lots more memory, we may as well just buy a brand new computer (w/ even more memory), 'cause that's how much it costs.

Well, I hope this works.

Inspiration at SnB

The thing about the SnB is not that I get any knitting done--actually, very little of my own knitting is done Monday evenings. Rather, it's a place where I get inspired. Kinda like a research conference (albeit much much smaller--last hematology meeting I attended was over 40,000 people), sometimes you go and talk about your stuff, but you mainly get to see what everyone else is working on, and that jump starts your work...

Anyway, I think I'll start the Fiber Trend clogs soon. I got the pattern ages ago, and got the yarn too, but just haven't gotten them on the needle. I think it's time.

The other thing about SnB is the Mexican Hot chocolate. mmmm. If you're ever at Julie's in Alameda, you gotta get one.

Monday, October 03, 2005

WIPs progress

Well, here's my current projects
1)I've got Pink, but she's not felting correctly -- can't needle felt until the bag's felted.
2) Brown Lucy -- just going round and round knitting. I'm at row 60 something of 100. And then there's the strap to knit
3) z's dad sweater that I've got to rip and start over (again)
4) scarf that I've been KIPing because it's small and very toteable. And I don't want to finish too aweful soon since I'll have to find another small project to tote around.
5) z's sweaters (yes, multiple) that I've got to figure out how long/big to make.

Maybe I'll start a new project...