Thursday, December 31, 2009

happy new year

Yep, it's that time again! Sitting back for a moment and reflecting back upon the last year. It's been a big one for me -- bought my first house, adopted a couple of beautiful Siamese kittens, got married... It's been a year of milestones for me.

I thought it'd been a big year for me knitwise as well, but I was surprised to learn that I was actually far less productive than I was last year.

2009 saw:
--22 total finished projects
--5961 yards of yarn used up

As compared to 2008...

--24 finished projects
--9,979 yards of yarn used up

I'd only finished two more projects in 2008, and for a minute I didn't feel so bad, until I realized that 3 of my 2008 projects were crocheted afghans. Yikes. I blame it on the fact that what with moving into my new house I lost a lot of knitting time. And the fact that I've just been lazy...

So, resolutions...

1. Keep more organized in all aspects of my life. Need to keep more on top of housework, and keep my knitting and yarn more organized.

2. I need to be far more productive knittingwise. I have several large WIPs I need to get done, and I have some projects I've had planned out forever that I'd like to finish up as well.

3. I want to work through at least half my stash this year. No more buying yarn I don't have a project in mind for, and I'm only allowing myself to buy one skein of yarn for every two I work though from my stash. Realistically, as long as I can get my stash to fit comfortably on its shelf I'll be happy.

4. I want to work on my writing more this year. I want to have my book finished by summer, and ideally have a good chunk of the first in the trilogy rewritten.

5. I want to read more. For some reason I've stopped reading as much as I used to and I really want to get back to that.

Here's to hoping 2010 is even better than last year!

Monday, December 28, 2009

minor update

Onerva is done done done! It's currently pinned out, blocking. It's nearly dry, so hopefully tomorrow there will be some picture-taking before it goes off to its new home with Sarah. I'm so excited over this project -- the pattern is simple but elegant, and the yarn is just gorgeous. Hopefully she likes it as much as I liked making it.

Because I already got my yarn in, and because I'm an impatient little so-and-so, I started my Quadrat.

By which I mean I swatched.

Erm, by which I mean I started to knit my little 4"x4" square, lost interest halfway through, went "eh, I'm not quite getting gauge but the smallest size is going to be slightly too large for me so I'm just going to say it's close enough!" and started to cast on.

However, Quadrat outmaneuvered me. See, I knew I shouldn't be casting on because the reason I bought the yarn for this to knit it NOW is so that I could participate in a KAL for it. And casting on before the KAL begins sort of defeats the point of doing a frigging KAL in the first place. Well, Quadrat told me to cast on 110 stitches using a cable cast on.

The Cable Cast-On, ladies and gents, is the work of the devil at his finest. I thought that casting on in general was a pain in the ass. I thought that knitting lace was a form of torture. I thought that Intarsia was up there with dancing barefoot on hot coals and broken glass. The Cable Cast-On, my friends, puts them all to shame. I think I made it about ten stitches before the whole thing got so tight that I could barely cast on the next stitch, and then I thought about knitting that first row and how horrible that would be if it was already this tight just casting on. Ripped it out, started again.

Rinse and repeat about half a dozen times before I stuffed the whole mess into a bag and shoved the bag under my bed, and sat down to work a few blessedly mind-numbingly simple rounds on the leg Jason's sock.

Maybe in the meantime I'll actually swatch like I should...

Friday, December 25, 2009

happy christmas!

Happy Christmas, all! Here's hoping that everyone's holiday is going well.

As for me, I'm enjoying a rather lazy Christmas Day with Jason's family. Mmm, Christmas.

I'm also still knitting Onerva. But really, who didn't see that one coming? I've only got another two or three repeats left. I don't really know for sure, since I'm just knitting until I run out of yarn, and I'm terrible at estimating amounts. I'm optimistic about having it done by next week. Then just blocking and it's done!

In other happy news, I got in my yarn order yesterday! Mmmm, Cascade Dolce is just as soft and pretty as the name implies. Nine skeins of it looks like it might not be enough. I know that it's MORE than enough, because the suggested yarn is 109 yards per 50 grams, and the Dolce has the exact same yardage to grams ratio. And because I'm paranoid I ordered a whole extra skein more than what I need. I'm going to worry about it until I actually start knitting and I see that it's not using up as much yarn as I fear it will. I wish I were better at judging amounts.

Anyhow, I couldn't resist balling up one of the skeins last night, and mmmm, so soft! I'm going to knit on Onerva today, and tomorrow I'll let myself play with the Dolce a bit. Because, believe it or not, I'm actually going to swatch for this thing. And I mean actually swatch, not the half-assed swatching I normally do. Exciting!

For now, back to knitting for me.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

I've been bad

I know I have. I am a bad, bad blogger. I suck. I know.

But! I offer you pretty pretty pictures in return for your forgiveness! Dane shawl is bound off, blocked, and already happy in its new home with Rina. I'm in love with it. I really want to knit another one. For myself. Which I would keep for me and wear all the time. Mmmm, love.

I also finally took pictures of other FOs I'd been meaning to photograph for a while now. My Silk Garden Kerchief, for instance. I'm really happy with how it came out. It's very warm, and I've been wearing it pretty often. I was slightly less than thrilled with how the colors came out, but it's since grown on me...

Then there's my Envy. This was half-finished for a while, but I finally got off my lazy ass and sewed the buttons on it so it's actually, ya know, wearable. I'm pretty happy with this as well. It's a pretty color that looks nice against my grey coat.

And this is my latest FO, which I am so so so happy with. It's for my friend Jon. It's a little big on me, but fits him well, and was very well-received. He put it on right away and went around showing everyone. He's been wearing it all week, which makes me feel all warm-and-fuzzy inside. Nothing like knitting something for someone and having them really appreciate it. Makes me want to knit tons of things for everyone! But I'm too lazy for that, really...

In other news, I'm still knitting Onerva. And still putting off finishing J-L's hat. (hence the blogging! nothing like a good lengthy picture-filled post to put off knitting something I don't want to knit!)

I'm also planning more projects. Yep. I know. Heard it already.

I'm in love with Quadrat from the latest issue of Knitty. Mmmm, boxy cabled sweater. AND I found the perfect yarn for it. I was planning on using Cascade 220 for it, but I stumbled across Cascade Dolce on sale for mega-cheap. Wool/alpaca/silk blend at half off? Don't mind if I do! I ordered it in Silver. Smallest size is for a 33" chest, so I'll be knitting it at a smaller gauge to take off an extra inch or so. I went ahead and ordered more yarn than I'd need for knitting the pattern as-is though, since the reason the Silver is on sale is that it's discontinued. That does make me a bit nervous, but hopefully it'll only serve to motivate me to knit this sucker straight off. That way if something goes horribly, terribly wrong (as it is wont to do) I'll still be able to get my paws on more yarn in that color. Hopefully.

Also in the works are plans for cabled socks, and a hat for Jason. He really liked the one I made for Jon, so he'll be getting one as well. In alpaca. Mostly because I want an excuse to play with alpaca. Also because I love him.

Mmmm, alpaca...