Sunday, August 31, 2008

dear knitpicks - stop yanking my chain!

Dear Knitpicks,

I was very excited to get an email from you. I opened it, hopefully expecting it to be the shipping notice of my latest order. However, I was very disappointed to find that it was actually an ad, letting me know that you are now selling Harmony straight needles. Except I ALREADY KNOW you sell Harmony straight needles. I ordered a set of my very own last Thursday. Sending me an ad for the very thing I'm anxiously awaiting the arrival of was just cruel, especially since the ad included several photographs showcasing just how lovely these needles are.

No love til my package gets here,


Ketchup post! Stuff has happened, I haven't blogged about it, so here we go. This'll be quick, stay with me.

  1. Twisted Maiden gloves are being sent to the frog pond. Got up to the thumb gussets on the first one, and decided that it's too tight, I did the math properly for figuring out if it would fit me, but neglected to take into account that armwarmers shouldn't fit like a second skin. Will be redoing them in a larger needle size at some point.
  2. Finished one of my second attempt at socks, and it actually fits! Hurrah finishing something and it fitting correctly!! I've been putting off starting the second one because I have to make the yarn start in the same place on both so the patterns match. First one ended just after where the second should start. Other skein of yarn starts in *almost* the same place, but I'm going to have to take some yarn of skein A and splice it to the end of skein B to make it long enough to cast on with, and that involves pulling it out to see how long the pink and white section actually is and blah, I'm making this more difficult than it has to be. I could just cut it at the start of the next pink section, but I hate wasting things.
  3. Finally got a good start on the blanket I'm making for the future in-laws for Christmas. I'd done the foundation chain, did half the first round and lost interest. Now I'm about twelve rounds in and though it looks more like a placemat than an afghan at this point, I like how it's coming out. Good choice in colors, go me!
  4. My birthday present from aforementioned future in-laws came in!! They bought me the set of Harmony wood sock needles, and of course I had to use them right away. That's how I ended up finishing that sock. Oh, they're so lovely and I'm so happy and in love, and it was all it needed to convince me to go ahead and use part of my birthday money to order the set of 14" straights, and enough yarn to finish my Calorimetry. <3 <3 <3 I placed my order on Thursday, I'm hoping to get them by the end of next week. *fingers crossed*

Monday, August 25, 2008

i can't stop starting things!!

Yep, that's right. I started yet ANOTHER project. This weekend my friend came to visit, and she wanted to start the Twisted Maiden Fingerless Gloves. She requested that I help her with it, which I agreed to. Then she pointed out that it'd go smoother if I simply worked along with her. I resisted, I really did. But I am weak, and gave in. So I picked up a lovely skein of Cascade 220 in Marine Heather I had slated for the 12" blocks for my CAL, and began knitting it up.

I only have a pair of size 6 dpns instead of the recommended size 8s, so I cast on 32 stitches and went from there. It's coming out rather nicely, and I really like how the cabling looks done at a smaller gauge.

The socks I were so gung-ho on finishing are now sitting in a heap with all my other UFOs, glaring forlornly at me. Well, it's their own darned fault they're there. Teach them to be stubborn....

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I am weak

I am. I swatched. There, I admit it. I grabbed a skein of that Swish DK and cast on. Then I went and hid in the computer room to knit it up where all of my other yarn and UFOs couldn't stare at me in their accusing way. I could just hear them in my head. "Why aren't you finishing us, Leandra, don't you love us anymore??" Shut up shut up shut up it was just one little tiny swatch I didn't mean to it just sort of happened it didn't mean anything I swear!

I feel like such a knitting tramp.

And in any case, it came out too small, and I don't have a pair of size 7s. Usually I'd say eh, close enough, but I figure for a sweater I should probably make more of an effort to make guage, what with my liking to actually be able to wear it and all...

After the swatching incident, I very meekly slunk back to the sofa and picked up my half of a neglected sock and kept working on it. And wouldn't you know, the damned thing got its revenge on me. I knit up the heel flap, and when I went to turn the heel I mysteriously didn't have the right number of stitches. It turns out that I'm making the sock in the second smallest size, but I knit the heel flap for the smallest one. Aaargh. Stupid sock. It did this to me on purpose to force me to pay more attention to it. Either that or I fail at reading comprehension.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

blaargh, sickness

Yep, so I'm sick today. Luckily, I wasn't scheduled to work today, so I ended up spending the day crashed on the sofa with some knitting. I spent the afternoon swatching* and knitting up my calorimetry. But Leandra! the more astute readers will say, You don't have a calormetry! Well, I do now. Or part of one, at least...

*Where swatching means casting on the required number of stitches, losing interest a few rows in, measuring it anyhow and going "eh, close enough" when it comes up a quarter of an inch short.

Now, I bought only one skein of Shamrock yarn in Beckett, and when it got here I thought to myself, Gee, self, this looks awfully small. But I shrugged and assumed that I would have been smart enough when ordering to check the amount of yarn the pattern called for and ordered accordingly. After all, I'm the one that always orders on the side of caution and picks up an extra skein so if I thought one was enough, well dagnabit, then one's enough.

Turns out I was only half-smart when ordering yarn. I ordered the recommended 50g of yarn, but the yarn used in the pattern is 93yd. Mine is only 82. Fuck fuck and doublefuck. Ah well, I thought. I knit a little tighter than the average knitter, and my gauge "swatch" came out a little short. Should be fine. So I knit. And by the time I got to here:

and the ball had decreased by a somewhat disturbing amount, I was forced to admit that, yes, I do not in fact have enough yarn. *sigh* Note the lovely, lovely way the colors of the contrasting strand are knitting up. Focus on that and not the paperclip stitch marker I've got sticking out the top of it.

The way I see it, I've got a few options. I can:
  • A - Keep knitting and pray that I've got enough.
  • B - Frog what I've got so far, cast on less stitches, do fewer repeats in the middle and pray that I'll have enough.
  • C - Buy more yarn and pray for the same or a matching dyelot.
Option A is clearly silly and will end in me investing a significant chunk of time in knitting something that will inevitably be frogged.

Option B is less silly, but could quite conceivably have the same end result.

Option C makes the most sense, but will inevitably end up in me buying more yarn I really don't need. Plus I've had my eye on those oh-so-lovely Harmony straights, and my mother just gave me check for my birthday and it really would make more sense to do that because then I'd get the free shipping and - no no no! Bad brain! Do not need!

So what am I sitting here doing now? Well, obviously I'm blogging. But why am I blogging? To avoid starting yet another project. See, when the calorimetry failed, I eyed the lovely stack of Swish DK and thought perhaps I should swatch it for my Sesame sweater. But I've fallen into that trap before. Swatching is only fun for the first few rows. Then the novelty of playing with a new yarn wears off, and I wind up starting the project. And I certainly do not need to start any more projects, as clearly evidenced by my Ravelry page.

See, Ravelry shows that I have five WIPs. Nine if you count my hibernating projects, most of which are hibernating just because I don't want a billion WIPs listed. Then throw in the other three smaller projects (amigurumi and a granny square) that I felt were too small and would be finished too quickly to warrent calling them WIPs, and of course the calorimetry I just started. And we might as well add to that the bag that I haven't woven the ends into and lined so I can't actually use yet (aka: it's not done, aka: WIP!), and the beret that's too big to fit a human head and I still need to try to salvage with a few rounds of decreases but I went ahead and listed it as completed anyhow because it was mostly finished and that's close enough, right? And what do we have? A grand total of fifteen. I have over a dozen projects I've started and not yet completed, and I'm wanting to start ANOTHER one?? What is wrong with me???

Even now, that seductive little voice in the corner of my mind is whispering, go ahead, just swatch it! that doesn't really count as starting...

Except I know where it would go! Bad brain, stop trying to lead me into knitting temptation!

I'm going to go keep working on my socks. Maybe if I finish another project in the next few days, I'll reward myself with just one little eensy swatch. That can't hurt, right?

Monday, August 18, 2008

mmmm, yarn


Naturally, I ran up the stairs to my apartment where I promptly shredded the packaging in my eagerness to get at the yarny goodness within. After wasting devoting about five minutes of my life to petting, I grabbed my camera to share it with the world.

Caution! Yarn pr0n ahead! May cause yarn-lust, especially to those on fiber diets!

Knitpicks Swish DK in Merlot Heather and Cobblestone Heather.

I ordered this for the Sesame sweater I'm planning on making. The yarn is a little more brownish than it looked online, but I like it and I think it still works with the grey.

Knitpicks Shamrock in Beckett.

I'm in love with the colors. Bought for my calorimetry.

Knitpicks Palette in Rainforest Heather and Ash.

For socks for myself and the fiance. Green is mine, grey is his.

Knitpicks Cadena in Leaf, and Knitpicks Andean Silk in Slate.

Not for me, sadly, but for a friend. The Andean Silk is very lovely and oh-so-pettable.

And last but not least we have the reason I try to avoid yarn stores. I went in to pick up some dpns for the socks I'm going to make, and ended up walking out with not only the needles but a $20 skein of yarn. I've heard lovely things about Noro, and have been curious about it for a while, but I *just* ordered a big box of yarn. I do not need MORE yarn. But I saw the colors, and so here we are.

Isn't it just lovely? The picture doesn't even begin to do justice to the gorgeous, gorgeous colors all twined into one disappointingly scratchy ball of yarn. But I've been told it softens in the wash, and I have high hopes.

Now that my yarn is finally here, what do I want to do with it? Why, knit it, of course! Never mind that I already have about a billion other projects going. Never mind that I know myself and that once I start I'll lose interest in a few weeks and start something else new and exciting. Hence why I am forcing myself to finish what I start at least reasonably close to when I start it.

I'm trying to be strong and resist the seduction of new yarn, but I am only mortal here...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

startitis - i has it

Yep, that's me. In one day, I started not one, not two, but THREE new projects. Yeah. Startitis - I has it!

Project the first: Another pair of socks. I had tons of yarn left over from my first pair of socks, so I cast on for a second pair. The first came out slightly too large, so I'm knitting these the next size smaller. What am I going to do with two pairs of near identical socks? I have no idea. Maybe I'll befriend someone with slightly bigger feet than me and give away the first pair.

Project the second: Binary scarf. I stumbled across this pattern while looking for something else, and decided that Jason just needed to have it. And since the Portal scarf I'd started for him way back in March had more or less fallen to the wayside, this would be a nice substitute. This is also my first attempt at colorwork in knitting. We'll see how that goes. I anticipate working like heck on it for about a week before putting it away indefinitely. Then a few months later I'll find a pattern I like better and the yarn will be frogged a third time.

Project the third: Granny square afghan. I've had this project planned for a while, and finally started hooking it up. It's supposed to be a Christmas present for my fiance's parents. I found the yarn on sale, and the colors match their living room. Only three and a half months to go until it's due. Hopefully I can make it in between trying to finish my billion other projects.

Startitis. I do indeed has it. I often wonder at people who only have one or two projects going at a time. Monogamous knitters. I marvel at them. I admire them and their monogamous ways. Even more revered are the people who have no stash. They'll go out, buy enough yarn to make one project, knit that project, and then go buy yarn for their next thing. The gears in my brain actually clunked and skipped a few turns at the thought of that. I'd love to ask how how how! they do that, but I've never actually stumbled across one of those people. Maybe they're a fairy tale, like Santa and the Tooth Fairy and people who don't like chocolate.

Me? I am a project tramp with a stash big enough to keep me occupied for the next couple of years.

In other stash-related news, my knitpicks order shipped!!! (Like I really need more yarn or more projects....) But my bff (a fellow knitter) and I split the order to get free shipping, and if the yarn is as lovely as the last batch I got, then it'll provide much-needed motivation to hurry up and finish the projects I've got cooking now so I can get started on new ones. (See? See how easily I lie to myself to justify buying more yarn and starting more projects??)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

obligatory first post

I mostly created this blog as a way to prattle on about my yarny ways without driving my friends batty. Expect lots of babble about yarn, knitting, crocheting, and lots of whining when I am expecting a box of yarn in the mail.