Thursday, April 29, 2004

Back and forth:

I had a lovely, non-delayed flight to New Orleans. Usually I wait 40 minutes on the tarmac before we begin the 45 minute flight. So, the sleeve cap for the traveling sweater did not get finished until that evening. I washed and blocked it, and while it was drying I noticed that I could not quite match it up with it's mate. Upon closer inspection, I find that one half of a pattern repeat before the cap decreases seemed to be missing. URG. Since I was amused by Sarah's notion of putting a sweater on "time out", the sleeve went there for a few days, and I picked up the lace. As mentioned before, I do travel prepared with the knitting.

I did the dirty deed last night, and the kinky yarns are now drying on the hotel lampshade. I may help them out with the blow dryer so that I can begin to re-work the piece on the way home.

I'm looking forward to going home - we have a sailing event this weekend and my husband will be out on the committee boat. He's been traveling too much, and has not had a chance to hook up with any sailing activities since we settled down here.

I'm not looking forward to going into the office. Apparently we have a manager who is bringing irrationality to a whole new level, and this time it affects me, albeit indirectly.

Oh, yeah - while getting ready for blog birthday this weekend, I updated the gallery. Happy sailing!

Sunday, April 25, 2004

Busy on getting projects finished.

Got serious with the knitting machine, and I thought I finished my blanket. It stretched from the table top down to the floor. Surely it is big enough now. I had may panties in a knot about getting it off the machine so I could take it on my biz trip next week and work in the ends in the hotel. I took it off the needle bed, and found I had a 26" wide 24" long little blanket.


I wanted this to be crib size; at least 36" long. What happened? Well, knitting machines depend on weight to tension the piece on the needles. The one I use starts you off with a "weighted hem", and these weights really stretch the row gauge out to immeasurable dimensions. One must really be a slave to the gauge swatch, and not only that, the gauge swatch needs a rest before she can be measured.

It looks nice - not county fair quality, as I had some machine mishaps along the way, but ok and colorful.

What to do?

While it is off the needles I'll work in the ends that I have. YIKES! .

Then I'll latch it back onto the needle bed and do another three pattern repeats. That should take me to 26x33. Then off again, and do a 1.5 inch or so garter border, and I'll have 29"x36", which is a respectable crib blanket size, I think.

On reflection, choosing a pattern that generates 60 ends for every 3 inch pattern repeat was a bit more intense for a charity effort than is reasonable. I remind myself that the point was to learn intarsia on this knitting machine, and to develop the skill to be able to make a nice project without going crazy. And, the skills are coming. I need to try and try, then leave it alone for a while. When I come back my body and my subconscious has figured something out, and the three of us can move to the next level.

I've had a lot of issues with the carriage getting stuck, and stitches popping off the needles. I'm not exactly sure what I'm dong differently, but the process is moving smoother. Actually, I know I'm doing a lot of little things differently and the additive result is smoother machine knitting.

Well, off to Baton Rouge for hush puppies, and snips.

Shiloh will have to find another laptop to keep warm until Thursday.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

And what is this?

After setting all those priorities yesterday, and making committments, this is what happens? Yeesh. No work upstairs, too tired at the end of the day, and I'm feeling like there is a cold coming on.

What else? A new spring/summer color scheme for the blog. It is April after all. Blog birthday comming up and all.

And, for Lisa who commented on the vest yesterday - it is pretty. However it was designed for a woman who is 6'1", and has a 54" bust. I'm not nearly that size, so giving it away will be no heartache. In fact, maybe the size of the piece was what made it drag on in my mind. It's enormous!

Monday, April 19, 2004

Wow, progress on almost all knitting fronts.

It's all done but the buttons, and just in time for the Texas summer. I have no idea why I had so much trouble making myself work on this. It was, after all, my idea to donate a hand knit vest as a Girl Scout Leader appreciation item. I'm thinking that I prefer to do all the choosing. Maybe that is what I enjoy about the knitting process - the ability to be the one to control the outcome.

Now, since I have been having trouble with the motivation, I allowed for a box to sit on my desk unopened for two weeks. I knew what is in it, and I wanted to fondle the contents, but I decided to hold off until this vest was finished.
And, here we are:

It's Brilla rayon/cotton from Elann. And swatched:

I also ordered the "Crystal Cove" pullover pattern from "Just One More Row" I have some business trips coming and it appears to be mostly mindless garter, with an interesting shape.

Upstairs, I got to the knitting machine blankie. It's been lonely as I've been pushing to finish the vest. This, I recall is an exercise to learn knitting machine intarsia. It went smoothly until the first glass of wine, then the carriage started sticking. Don't know if the weight needs to be re-arranged, or if the wine does not go well with machine knitting. I'm five of eight pattern repeats into the piece, and want to get it off the machine this week so I can take it on a business trip to finish. If I can do a repeat a night, except for Tuesday when I have a Girl Scout Leader meeting, it will be done by Friday. Then, lovely hours of end weaving, and a vast expanse of I cord edge awaits.

Not to be forgotten, the traveling sweater second sleeve is now about seven inches.

All this is clearing the deck to finish the patient and long neglected Henry8.

Well, I'm interested in that Inbeborg knit along that Wendy is hosting. Discipline - I won't start that until Hank is finished.

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Look ma, one arm!

In the mean time, the camera shy GingGong is supervising the blocking of the front and back now attached to each other.

Even more amazing. The enormous pink and purple vest has I cord around all the edges, and has been washed. This is what happens when you work on your projects. Looks like the steeked edges need to be tacked to the inside. They don't seem to want to stay in the proper place naturally. Pictures later.

Now, in preparation for a Girl Scout meeting last week, I made these:

Pretty useless, don't you think? The feathers are from the guinea foul that were hanging around the vacation cabin. I meant pretty, but also useless. They were fun to assembled.

Monday, April 05, 2004

I'm remembering a fundimental rule of life:
If you don't work on a project it does not get done.

So, this weekend, I worked on taxes, bills, laundry, sweeping, Girl Scouts, getting ready to go backpacking w/my daughter. Those projects are either done, or have progressed significantly.

Hmmmmmm no knitting. Funny, no progress either.