Monday, January 28, 2008

Lots of knitting this week.

For the "Charlie Brown" sweater, I have a sleeve. I'm trying to work on this one during conference calls and in waiting rooms. The sleeves, and most of the body are pretty dull; plain stockinette, with a very simple zigzag. I make myself work on it. I have a business trip next week, and plan to take only this project.

Now, for the fun. Isn't she pretty? I just love all over fair isle patterns, and this one reminds me ceramic tiles. This is two full pattern repeats. I want to end the shoulder at one of the two "mirror image" inflection points in the pattern so I can do the "in pattern pick up" that Meg Swanson discusses in her "Knitting" book. ( this would be the Russian Prime project text)

From a stash busting perspective, by the way, I used up 12 ounces of yarn just this week. Wow!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Big picture day.

First things first. I became so enamored of Ravelry, linking to see other projects, setting up my queue, wandering through the forums, joining groups, and looking at more projects that I quite forgot to knit for a time. Well, knit, or do much of anything else.

This is progress on a Brilla print "Graduated Ribs" top out of the "Knitters Stash" book. I threw the yarn and the pattern into my travel bag for Christmas, in case I needed something to start, and especially if I couldn't stand making another mohair scarf at the time. I did an arm and a half. Since then, the other arm has been done, and I'm on the third ball up the body. That's about 7 inches. I'm going to set it aside for a while, because I really want to knock out some wool projects. I've found that once it starts warming up here in Houston, I can't stand to work on wool, so I'll pick this one up then. See you later, Brilla.

Now, here is a boring one. I decided to offer a hand knit sweater as my gift to the family gift swat. The fellow who won the gift wants a "Charlie Brown" sweater. Plain, crew neck, yellow with a black zig zag. lucky for me, I've got the right yellow, and some black that is the same gauge in my stash. I'm using the "Grand Plan Pullover" directions from an elderly Interweave Knits so I don't have to calculate a set in sleeve from scratch. I did an intarsia swatch, but still have to math out the zig zag.

Now, the one I'm currently thrilled with. It's a little fair isle from a very old Vogue Knitting magazine. Holiday 1987. I'm using some vintage Marietta Knitting Worsted from the Caron company for the light green, and some no name wool for the dark. Both procured from eBAY, both stash. I love watching these Nordic patterns grow out of the ribbing.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Phew, nice for Fern to be done. I was putting off a lot of stuff, because I thought I should get her finished first. So, a lot feels backed up.

A while ago, I changed my template, to make it more compliant with standard blotter. I had really hacked up a template to my liking, but I wasn't keeping it up because I'm interested in doing a knitting blog, not proving that I can hack HTML.

I'm adding sidebar stuff as I go along, not even trying to replace what I had. I put the rings back in, and I think they work properly. I left out the Knit along stuff, as I've completed the ones I signed up for. I will be contributing to the Vogue 25th anniversary KAL this year.

I put my year goals up top. Pretty much like last year, knit from stash, try to do six sweaters. Different than last year, in that I have actually planned most of the sweaters I want to do, and have pulled and boxed the stash for them. I also learned from looking at my blog activity that I just can't bear to work with wool in the summer. So, I've set aside some cotton and cotton/rayon projects just for summer.

I'm loving Ralvery, by the way, as their project queue seems to make the planning even more real than the boxed yarn with their assignments.

The stash has been quite a lump to deal with. I found I would dig around, and not use particular yarn because there was either too much ( enough to make an entire sweater, or enough for half a two color sweater ), or not enough, or I was saving that yarn for this project or that. Talk about a Goldilocks syndrome.

I have a lot of "Vintage" yarn where the ball bands are either absent, or do not indicate yardage. This causes a lot of anxiety when planning a project. Keeping records last year has helped a lot. I have been weighing finished sweaters, and now have a much better grip on how much I need to do a particular sized piece.

My head had some projects that got into my head, that I can't stop fussing over. This is where I started with my planning exercise. I wanted to make a set of "his and her" sweaters for BIL and SIL. They wear that kind of stuff; I've seen their whole family decked out in matching Aloha shirts on vacation. So I did a lot of digging, and fussing, and finally decided on what I wanted to do for that project. Hence, the Fair Isle pullovers. His will be light avocado and pine green. Hers will be purple and the same light avocado. I'm making some modifications in order to make the pattern suit the gauge, and noting that.

I also have a baby sweater still on my mind. This is one left from my last year baby mania. The girl is born, but I'm not feeling a rush. I like to make a 1 year old size; newborn sizes are too small after a short three months. I got these GREAT vintage fish buttons while on vacation, so, I'm thinking of making this Dale of Norway model, but doing a fish motif in the yoke band instead of the leaf motif. I like the way the hem edge is wavy; I think it will go with the fish motif well. I have to go into the stash and find the colors. I know I have the pink, and yellows and pretty sure I have good choices minty green. Should be cute.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Houston, you can get to cold winter now. I have a new sweater.

I was planning on stating my goals for 2008, but I'm sort of bushed now.

Maybe tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Happy New Year.

I've been back from holiday since Saturday evening, but still getting my life sorted out. We had a nice driving and visiting and sight seeing vacation that lasted two and a half weeks. I really disconnected from my normal day to day, which is what vacations are all about. I didn't do too much evaluating of 2007 or planning for 2008 either. Just saw a lot of people; did some hiking and sight seeing.

I gave every one of the brioche scarfs I had knit this year away.

Husband needed to start on a business trip, so I had to drive at the beginning. This made me a bit grumpy, as I was planning on finishing Fern and the Dale baby sweater on the trip out. I did finish the baby sweater completely, and all the knitting on Fern. Still have to sew it up.

So, Knitting Evaluation from 2007

Goals were

1) use only stash

2) knit 6 adult sweaters


1) purchased some stash on Mothers day, but it was all used up by the end of the year. Count as a success

2) I will count Fern as a 2007 sweater, and make the count 5 sweaters.

2a) A Cardigan for Arwen - 26 oz

2b) Elegant Diagonals - 16 oz

2c) Hardangervidda - 32 oz

2d) Brilla coverup - 17 oz

2e) Fern - 20 oz


13 fluffy brioche scarves average 2.5 oz per scarf = 32.5 oz

5 baby sweaters 28 oz total

If the goal was to use stash to make 6 sweaters, I'd say that the scarfs and baby sweaters count towards that goal, and the goal was well met.

Total ounces removed from stash 171, if I added correctly.

That's over 10 pounds!!