Friday, November 26, 2010

Black Friday, Sad Friday

I went out with my husband and in-laws to do some shopping. Unfortunately in the process, I lost my striped hat (from the March 7th post). I stuck it in my pocket and it must have fallen out. I didn't realize it until we were already heading out. I went back into the store and took the same route I had taken while shopping but couldn't locate it. We're going back on Monday to see if their lost and found will have it. I'm not holding much hope in recoverying it. I hate you Carson Pirie Scott.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Not Enough Hours

It's been really hard to put any time into knitting lately. I've been working overtime on many days or when not at work just thinking of work. The stress from this isn't really conducive to me knitting because I can't really fall into it. I find knitting to be really meditative but if I'm already incredibly tense then it's hard to start or concentrate on the act of knitting.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Drop-Stitch Tank: The Progress Made

I'm working on a larger project that's going to be a gift and I'm a bit stalled on the tank top. The drop-stitch tank is now at the point where I should be dividing the front and the back to start making the arm holes. This is the first time I've knit a garment in the round that wasn't a hat and I'm not sure if I want to just divide up the stitches or if there is more I should be doing. After working on this for so long, I don't want it to have an imperfect appearence. Also, out of the six balls of yarn I had, I'm now down to two. It seems unlikely to be enough so I order two more skeins but they're not of the same dyelot and now I'm going to have to stripe the yarn to blend them together.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Yarn Belt Buckle

Several weeks ago in Vogue Magazine, I saw an ad for a handmade, glass belt buckle that featured a ball of yarn. I had to have it and placed an order two weeks ago. And today it arrived!! I requested custom colors of opaque gray glass and red ink because the orginial glass color was opaque ivory. I'm not a fan of white. The maker is local to the Chicago area and you can find the website at There are loads of other really cool buckles. If you're a sewer, there's a great buckle featuring a vintage sewing machine. That might be my next purchase. The other buckles I thought were interesting were the Camera buckle, Underwood buckle, and Robot buckle.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Like Magic

"It's like magic," I tell my husband as I continued to darn a hole in my mom's handmade sock. I had made the sock out of 100% wool - a slight failure on my part - and they were suffering from a lack of nylon. The woman loved them so much she couldn't deem them to be special, napping on the sofa/chair socks. Oh no, she put them to work walking around the house (thankfully she did not wear them with shoes) and they worked the best they could. After a few months the heel developed a hole and it was in need of a mend. I used my brand new darning egg and the instructions on darning I found at Knitty (Summer 2008) to fix them. The darning egg came in my possession when I was buying my TKGA Master Hand Knitter Level II Program yarn at Knit Picks. I was completely astonished at how nifty it worked and felt quite handy/self-sufficient at the accomplishment. It's not that I don't look at knitting as an accomplishment but there is really something to fixing a hole that is well...more impressive. Unfortunately, I didn't take a picture of before or after. I'm sure she'll continue to wear them and more holes will develop, which couldn't make me happier. Thanks, Mom.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Drop-Stitch Tank

I'm tackling my most difficult project to date, the drop-stitch tank from Fitted Knits. So far, so good. It's been really awesome. I had to go to a training all of last week, which included an hour-long commute in the morning and evening. I made a lot of progress. But my picture is pre-training. I'm converting the pattern to circular knitting, from flat pieces. I haven't exactly worked out how to leave an opening for arm holes or for the split-neck. I'm not even up to armholes at this stage so I'm not terribly concerned. And, from looking at photos from other people on Ravelry, I'm going to start on the split-neck further up on the chest. I'm not a fan of low-gaping shirts. In fact, I even stitches up a shirt from Banana Republic because I didn't like the gaping effect it was having.

I'm using Cascade Pima Tencel and it sheds as much as people say. But my goodness is it soft. This is a very pleasant cotton to touch, which is not something I can say of some other yarns. I speaking of you 20 balls of Rowan All Seasons Cotton, sitting in my closet - sigh. I do hate that I'm covered in navy, cotton fur after I've knit a few rows but I'm willing to accept it if it means I can bare to have it against my skin.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Leaf-y Scarf

I finished the Backyard Leaves Scarf featured in ScarfStyle. Had I to do it over again, I'd use a nicer yarn. Cascade 220 is scratchy and this really calls for merino wool. But merino wasn't in my price point when I envisioned making this scarf, which was more like 2008 and less like 2010. This made me learn don't buy stash yarn you'll later regret. Just wait (i.e. save) and be happy with the product.

As for the project itself, I didn't enjoy grafting the two ends together but I did it and it doesn't look half bad. What doesn't look great though is that it looks a bit puckered and I imagine it's in part because the edge is both the cast-on and at an angle. Or perhaps I cast-on too tight. There's a lot of variables to try and narrow down what the issue(s) might be.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Cast On Anniversary Issue

The highlight of participating in Level 1 of theTKGA Master Hand Knitting Program was having my name published in an issue of Cast On as a Program Graduate. Better yet, was when I showed my mom the issue and she beamed with pride.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Progress...I guess so.

I finished the second cable sock yesterday. I'll now have socks for the fall. It's way too hot nowadays to even think about wearing socks. Since May, I've been in sandals.

The majority of my knitting time has been devoted to Level 2 of the TKGA Master Handknitting Program. It's really not easy. So if someone out there is looking for easy, pass this up. I think I finally have my lace and cable patterns written and will start knitting them soon. I didn't want to start knitting until I had a better idea of what the pattern would look like on paper. I had begun a swatch without doing this and had to cut it. Ripping wasn't an option because the yarn just clung to itself. I'm thinking of starting the mitten while continuing to work on the swatches.

I have knit the material for six swatches - they need to be blocked and seamed. But one of them it turns out will need to be reknit so it's really just five (5 out of 22). I didn't read up on seaming before knitting the K2P2 and made an error that won't allow for seaming - dammit.

But I also want to make my husband a pair of socks. The only knitted item I've ever given him was a K1P1 ribbed hat when I first started and well, I cast on an odd number without realizing that this would give me two knit stitches at the end of the row. He got an imperfect hat. I'd like the socks to come out better.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Cable Sock

Only one still needs a mate. The yarn is Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted Multi.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I passed!

I got word today that I passed Level 1 of The Knitting Guild Association's Master Hand Knitting program. Hooray! Below is my binder with all my material (swatches, report, hat, etc.).

I ordered Level 2 and have begun to work on the swatches - most of which are about seaming, which I loathe. I've knit six swatches (not seamed or blocked) and written my book reviews. That's the extent of my progress. I read on Ravelry that they're revamping the instructions so if I want to not use the new instructions, I really have to get this done in a year (by May 17, 2011). Unlike the first level, level two requires yarn of various weights and lots of yarn. I had to place an order with Knit Picks because I needed yarn for lace swatches, a mitten, an argyle sock and a vest.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Must Resubmit

What did I find on my doorstep this evening? A package containing my TKGA submissions with committee reviews. It was better than I expected. They accepted my hat, even though I was minus an embellishment on the top (e.g. tassle, i-cord or pom-pom). Also, my hat appeared to have a stain but since my T-pins are new, I can only guess that the cause was my cat. She's a messy little Persian who loves to shake her head after every meal and she might have come into close range of my blocking board. Now I know to lock it out of harms' way.

I have to submit four new swatches, including #15, which includes writing out a cable pattern. The other swatches are 5, 6 and 8. My cable pattern had some pretty glaring omissions and didn't follow the instructions they provided. Two of the swatches need to be resubmitted because I put the decreases on the wrong selvedge edge. These will thankfully be easy to correct. And the fourth swatch had the wrong stitch so they provided a reference that I will follow to execute it. I think #15 will be the trickiest.

There are also six questions I have to re-answer. Some are easier to answer than others. Mainly because I'm going to have to do some more investigation because I'm at my limit on what else to provide. But that's the point to learn and progress.

The overall comments were I maintain my tension well with stockinette. My bind-offs and cast-ons can be on the tight side and cause the edges to curl. I often find myself using a larger needle-size to cast-off.

I'll work on the resubmissions this week and next and hope to have them in before May 1st.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Yarn Acquisition

Somehow it slipped my mind to post my most recent yarn purchases. In January, I used a gift certificate to purchase Noro Silk Garden (used in the Noro Striped scarf I recently posted), and two lace yarns (Filatura di Crosa and Malabrigo).

More recently, I purchased the colorway "Manly Yes, but I like it too!" from Blue Moon Fiber Arts to make some socks for my husband. The yarnband says "Watermelon Tourmaline," which is really a crazy mix of orange, purple and green - colors that are indeed not manly nor a palette for him. But the yarn is correct and that's all that matters.

Update: Officially Under Review

I was able to get in touch with the folks at The Knitting Guild Association (TKGA) and mail off my forgotten swatch. The submission was sent off to the Committee for evaluation on April 1. When I get the results back, I'll be sure to post them. Hopefully, it's nothing too labor intensive.

Friday, March 26, 2010

It's mailed!!

And I forgot to include a swatch...

I have no idea what to do now. My husband mailed theTKGA Master Hand Knitter Level I package this afternoon and I came home to find swatch #10 on the floor, where I had been packing up the contents this morning.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Striped Scarf

I made a striped scarf with Noro Silk Garden (Silk, Kid Mohair and Lambswool) and Noro Kureyon (100% wool). The Silk Garden helps make the scarf a little less scratchy but really Kureyon is not something you want around your neck. It's great for a hat and gloves, which is what I will use for a striped hat (but in a different colorway).

The scarf carries the yarn along the right side so I had to block it to help alleviate the yarn pulling on this side, which made it look really lopsided.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


I made a pair of Glovelets for myself using the other ball of yarn intended for the first pair. I made a few modifications to the pattern. I made them shorter on the bottom because I don't like gloves to travel very far down my wrists. Since I was going to use them at work and outside, I made them a smidge longer, going up to my knuckles.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Sister's Glovelets

Here is one in action:

They should arrive at her doorstep in the next couple of days. I hope she likes them and that they fit. With the extra skein, I've started a pair for myself. I'm making the cuff shorter and will make them longer on the top.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


I made a Treeling from the book Softies by Therese Laske as one of my brothers Christmas gifts. It's adorable!!