31 October 2009

Felting and What was I thinking?

I've been meaning to make a post about all of my knitting adventures, but I just couldn't until now. I've been at school for two weeks now, and it looks like it's going to be a tough trimester. Unfortunately, this tri so far, the knitting has been set aside, and I've been concentrating on studying, getting enough sleep, and most importantly, eating correctly - the goal is to stay healthy this semester. If my goal is to promote a healthy lifestyle as a chiropractor, then I better present myself as one by eating the right foods and remaining trim. I've also been distracted from posting because my new neighbor, a firefighter from New England (Palmer Student) made me lasagna the other night. Anyways, here are all of my knitting treasures so far:

Yarn: Cascasde 220 Wisteria (leftover from my felted slippers)
Pattern:"Out of the Frying Pan" by Amy E. Anderson from the Madison's Knitters Guild
Needle: US 9 dpn

I ended up frogging the project from my last posting because I messed up big time. This one is actually correct. It knitted up beautifully and felted nicely as well. I have a few concerns for it though. The thumb is a little too big for my hands, so I wouldn't knit as many rows next time. In addition, I don't think that the name "Oven Mitt" is well suited for worsted weight. I cook a lot of things in my oven with my Pampered Chef Stone and coming from the oven to the stove top, I'm starting to feel the heat through the mitt. It may work better for just stove top items, but I'm also not sure how well it works with cast iron, as I haven't had the chance to use it for that quiet yet. I would either knit with two worsted weight strands together, or just knit in a bulky weight for true heat protection. I suppose one could line it, but that seems to be a waste of time to me. Either way, it was a nice pattern and really easy to knit up, plus in my opinion it looks really nice and doesn't necessarily look handmade.

My clogs have finally been felted, but they are still at home becuase I have to put the suede soles on them. The suede that I got in Richland Center won't work for my color scheme, but it should work for my mom's clogs. My mom has an old suede jacket that is showing some wear and tear, so I'll probably use that for my soles. Hopefully over thanksgiving break, I'll be able to finish them and wear them this winter.

Yarn: Cascade 220 (2 Wisteria and 2 Sage)
Pattern: Fiber Trends Felt Clogs AC-33
Needle: US 13 circs (13" and 29")

When I got back to school, I had wonderful yarn in my mail box. Now I have pictures to share. I have no idea when I will start these projects, but the yarn is still pretty nevertheless.

Yarn: Araucania Rancho #101 Purple
Pattern: Monkey Socks by Cookie A
Pattern: Clapotis by Kate Gilbert

Over break, I was also knitting a pair of socks. I got to the heel, but then had to frog that part out because I lost track of where I was. I am following two patterns, and using percentages for increasing and how much to knit in a row, it does get confusing. I'll post about the specifics of my sock later once I've finished it.

Yarn: Berroco Sox (Johnny Moore 1425)
Pattern: Slip Stitch Heal Basic Socks by Wendy Johnson AND Universal Toe-Up Sock Formula by Amy Swenson
Needles: US 2 dpn

My first week back, I went to the Quad City Stitch and Bitch at the Bettendorf, IA library. It was a lot of fun, but with the amount of studying that I have to do, I don't know how often I'll be able to go.

Anyways, I must go; I have more studying to do. Hopefully I'll be able to knit soon.

25 October 2009

Where to begin... so many goodies

Last Wednesday marks the end of my first trimester at Palmer - boy was I excited to head on home. I certainly remembered to pack my knitting. My yarn collection kind of exploded this past week, with the addition of some more yarn. Will I ever stop collecting? Probably not. For my congratulations, you've made it to the end of first tri, I got two kinds of yarn and this is what I plan on doing with them:

Yarn: Malabrigo Lace (Holly Hock) from Eat.Sleep.Knit.com
Pattern: Featherweight Cardigan

I got the yarn in the mail during finals week and it was a real treat.

I ended up getting the yarn and choosing the pattern for a couple of reasons. I am a listener of Lime and Violet and Lime raves about Malabrigo yarn; so trying it out was on the "to do" list. Secondly I really liked the Whisper Cardigan from the Spring 2009 Interweave Knits Magazine and the Featherweight is similar, but I think the Featherweight just won this toss-up. In addition, not that one has to use the suggested yarns for patterns, but since it was suggested, it was just one more reason. Lastly, I found the pattern off of a blog that I read and ended up liking it. Not that I like copying, but if it looks good, then I can't pass up the opportunity.

Originally I was at Web's website and was going to order yarn from them, but they didn't have any Malabrigo that I liked. On that particular page, there were more yarns listed and I absolutely fell in love with Araucania Ranco #101 Purple. Webs, however didn't have any left, so I ordered it from Hugga Bugga.

Yarn: Araucania Rancho #101 Purple
Pattern: Monkey Socks by Cookie A
Pattern: Clapotis by Kate Gilbert

Unfortunately, that yarn has not come in the mail yet (no personal pictures, yet), so hopefully when I get back to Davenport I'll have some goodies waiting for me in my mailbox.

Wednesday, I came home to a dog in the driveway that was unknown to me. Aparently, we acquired a 1.5 year old Chesapeake last week, named Reese. I guess originally her name was Reeses, after the candy. If you ask me, naming pets after food is absolutely rediculous and hidious. My mom absolutely detested the name, until I convinced her that Reese is a good name because of Reese Witherspoon. Can't really change a 1.5 year old dog now can we? Her previous owner wasn't the best of sorts (sort of neglected her) and gave her to my dad. She is 15lbs underweight (probably due to heartworm), but is quite graceful and elegant. She is growing on me. She does need to be trained however and not the pet kind of training, but for the hunting kind of training. If she needed to be trained for the "pet" type, then the occasional sit and stay would be okay I guess. She is really smart, certainly smarter than "Smooch" or Baylie, our previous Yellow Lab.

We were at the Credit Union today and I was waiting in the car with Reese. She decided to jump in the driver seat and have a go at her chew toy. The pictures aren't the best since she was moving so much and the resolution of my BlackBerry isn't my DSLR.

I ended up getting the "Knitting Workwhop" DVD from the library and watched them last week. Elizabeth Zimmerman was certainly talented and I learned some tips from her. It was also good to watch the portion on her EPS system on the Seamless Yoke Sweater since that is on my "to do pile" also known as hybernating on ravelry. I have "The Opinionated Knitter" book by Elizabeth Zimmerman, but eventually, I would like to get more of her books.

On Saturday, I took Ali, one of my best buddies, to Lakeside Fibers since she doesn't know how to knit, nor has really been to a good fiber shop, aside from the one in Galena. I ended up teaching her how to knit. We started off really easy - dishcloths. I gave her four patterns to choose from and she decided to start off with the Basic Dishrag. I brought my Malabrigo yarn to show her, in addition with my socks, Tweedy Vest (this will probably be a project that will be ongoing for awhile because I have decided to make it into a sweater and I have to figure out the sleeves), and Irish Hiking Scarf. In addition, I brought some of my leftover Rowan Big Wool that came from my Tank Top. I casted on and we knitted away.

At Lakeside Fibers, I absolutely fell in love with some hand painted sock yarn.

Yarn: htNEVELE designs Sock Yarn (Belle de Louvan)
Pattern: Nine-to-Five Socks

I bought the yarn not known what I was going to knit with it, aside from socks of course. On Ravelry, I come across new exciting patterns, but sometimes I forget that I have "old" exciting patterns too. I decided that I wanted to do a cable type pattern, to try to reduce a self-striping effect. The 9-5 hopefully will work out perfectly. I just think that the yarn is absolutely gorgeous. Unfortunately it will not be the next sock that I cast on. I plan on casting on my Laburnum Socks from "More Sensational Knitted Socks" by Charlene Schurch. The pattern is for toe up, which is fine, but I don't want to do a short row heel, I would like to do a reinforced row and "Socks From the Toe Up" from Wendy Knits has a heel that I may try to incorporate into the sock.

At Lakeside Fibers, I ended up casting on to make the Banana Republic Knock-off Hat, but later on, I found out that I didn't have enough yarn for the project, so I frogged it. Here are some pictures of the Republic Hat:

Originally, I was doing the seed stitch, but liked the garder stitch better. In the end I guess it didn't really matter becasue I frogged the project anyways. After doing a more of an advanced searched on Ravelry, I decided to do the Aspen Hat from Twinkle's Big City Knits. It turned out nicely:

It looks very similar to the Knock-Off hat, but this one turned out much nicer, especially since I was able to finish my project without running out of yarn.

The pattern calls for US 19 needles. I have them in straight needles, but not DPN.

I ended up using size 17 DPN to finish the hat off. Five rows were knit around before the decrease instead of the normal two (to me a hat has to fit over ones ears, otherwise it’s just a piece of decoration and this hat wasn’t going to be just that). Also instead of the decrease what the pattern gave (the original decreasing looked unpleasing), I did a four part swirl decrease; not sure what the technical name for it is.

Very pleased with the project; it would make quick gifts for people.

Here is Pipie; she was sleeping next to me as I was knitting.

In addition, I saw felted oven mitts at Lakeside Fibers. My oven mitts at school were purchased from the dollar store 7 years ago and they don't really do the job - I have to double up. That inspired me to knit some.

Yarn: Cascasde 220 Wisteria (leftover from my felted slippers)
Pattern:"Out of the Frying Pan" by Amy E. Anderson from the Madison's Knitters Guild

I started this project later last night and found as I was knitting, I somehow added more stitches, so I k2tog to decrease to the correct amount. In addition, I knitted three extra rows, but since it’s being felted and I was tired as I was knitting it, I really don’t care.

Since I’m felting my slippers this week, my goal is to knit as many felting projects as possible for the event.

This morning, I reread the pattern and noticed that I even screwed up after my "correction" last night, so I frogged the project and started over. I believe that I was probably too tired last night to start knitting it.

I am also hoping to knit bulky weight oven mitts and hot pad holders to use up some of my Brown Sheep Bulky from my Fairly Easy Fair Isle Sweater.

I think that's all for now.

19 October 2009

Finals are nearly over

I have taken three finals so far and I only have four more to go. I cannot wait to head on home on Wednesday after my last final. I especially can't wait to see my kitty (Piper), that I'm unfortunately allergic to (found out this summer). In addition knitting, sleeping, and doing a little extra walking will be on my list of things to do.

Before I went to Europe to live in Poland for a semester, I took a whole bunch of pictures of Pipes and this was one of them; one of my favorites.

She loves the Sun Room

Right before I came to Palmer, I found out that I was allergic to cats (RAST test was performed), so obviously I wasn't going to get rid of my lovely kitty of nine years. Instead she was booted out of my room and I have to wash after I handle her, etc. She usually found a nice warm spot in my bed, but since that is no longer an option, she had to resort to something else. Call me obsessed, but I call my cat and like to talk. My mom couldn't find her for such a long time, and this is where she ended up.. certainly not in my bed.

The common, I haven't seen Pipes in two months can I have a picture picture.

This was when I was back at school after coming back from Poland. I had gotten into an accident last February and no longer had a car for quite some time, so I couldn't come home as often to see the Pipes. This is the Pipes talking on the phone with me.

Okay, so I miss my kitty; especially taking naps with her, but that doesn't happen anymore.

Anyways, I've decided what to do about the tweady vest. I'm going to make it into a sweater and just add sleeves, I just have to do some math and figure that out, which may take awhile. This break I probably won't be in the mood to do TOO much thinking because of being brain dead from finals and all. I'll probably knit what the pattern calls for and then put it aside for a bit. I'm also going to be doing some felting during break, which means that I will have to think and come up with some type of pattern for a circular needle case and dpn needle case (they will also be felted). I'd also like to continue on reading Anne's House of Dreams (I started reading Anne of Green Gables this summer, but had to stop b/c of school).

05 October 2009

Cannot Decide

I really cannot decide.

I JUST realized for some reason that I have:
Unikat by Zitron Color 06 - 5 skeins at 160m each (800 m total, which translates to 875 yds)

Originally, I was going to knit:

Tweedy Vest
Calls for 501m (549 yd)

That leaves 326 yds of some nice expensive yarn. I have a tendency to buy expensive yarn, and I don't know if I want to "waste" it on just a hat. I don't know what I was thinking to begin with with and having 326 yards to spare, then again I was living with "creature" at the time, so that could explain a lot.

This weekend I knitted up to the arm shaping for the vest and realized that I just went through one skein, and thus a problem of the 326 extra.

So here's my next thought:

Knit something to use up all of the yardage and not "waste" it on a gloriously expensive hat and such.

Francis Revisited Sweater which calls for 850 yds
Cozy V-Neck Pullover with Deep Ribbing or (link) which calls for 810 yards


I like the way the Unikat knits up in a pattern, but I'm not sure if I would like it in regular stockingete stitch.


03 October 2009

I finished my first pair of socks

I needed a break from the mittens, so I picked up my socks that I started awhile back and I finished them. I'm pretty happy with the final product, except for the first sock that I was knitting; I didn't follow the reinforced pattern for the heel flap. I didn't realize it until I got to my second sock. I don't know what I was thinking for the first one other than it was winter break at the time and I think that I had finals the week before. Anyways, here they are: