Sunday, January 27, 2008

Going back to the beginning

I finally finished the Yarn Pirate Spooky socks. They turned out okay and do fit, although I have to pull them over my heel a little. I like them, but I don't like them. I think it was working on the size 1 needles. Somewhere I saw that if socks start to pool to cast on less stitches. The person who suggested this, cast on two less stitches and her yarn stripped well. That wouldn't work for me. I would have to cast on four less stitches to make the stitches divide well. But, I found another alternative. HiYa HiYa makes size 1.5 bamboo needles. Maybe that would work instead and the needles wouldn't be as thin. I'll have to buy some and try it next time this happens to me.

Yarn Pirate Spooky completed
I also finished one sock using Plucky Knitter's yarn in Palatial. I really love this yarn and love the colorway. The only negative was that I had to go down to size 1 needles to get it to stripe. They striped better than the Yarn Pirate socks above. I really love this sock. Now on to finish the second sock. I don't plan on starting a new sock until I finish this pair.
Plucky Knitter - Sock1
I did start knitting on my sweater that I started in 2004. This was my first knitting project that I started when I began knitting. It's the Olivia pattern from Berroco booklet 219. I am using Araucania Nature Wool Chunky yarn in color 108. I like the yarn a lot. I have the back completed and I'm almost finished with the front. The sleeves shouldn't take long. I won't be at my knitting class for a couple of weeks, so I am hoping to get close to finishing the front by the time I am able to go again. Then maybe I can start on the sleeves. The sweater appears to be really big for me, but I don't care. I just want to finish it and I can wear it around the house as a big comfy sweater. Maybe I will knit another in a smaller size later. I found that I have learned a lot about knitting since I started this sweater. Sock knitting has helped me.
Sweater - 2004
Got my STR club yarn for January. I love the color. It's called Dragon Dance in lightweight yarn. This will probably be my last year for this club. It's getting too expensive and I have a big stash of sock yarn.
STR Club - January 08
I did order some knitting books from Knitpicks. I love them all. I think the toilet roll covers are cute and I love the scarves in the Ocean Breezes book.
Knitting Books - Knitpicks
Well, this week will be tough for knitting. I am working every day this week plus Saturday. This past Saturday was slow, so I got to go home early, but I don't think that will be the case this week. There are times I wonder why I am doing this because I love to be home, but it's only until April 15th (79 more days and counting).

Monday, January 21, 2008

Dishcloth, Headband, Socks and Cupcakes

Well, my time off is coming to an end. We are starting to gear up for tax season, so I will be working more. I'm kinda sad because I really, really liked being home. But, the good news is that it is only until April 15th. That will bring sunlight lasting longer, warmer weather, and time off.

I have been knitting a lot. I finished up the Mid-Month KAL from the Monthly Dishcloth group. It's a Diamond Lace pattern and I like how it turned out. I used Peaches and Cream Peppermint Ombre yarn that I got from Elmore Pisgah. It was an easy pattern to do.

Jan Mid Month KAL

I also finished a third Calorimetry headband using Berroco Jasper Yarn in black.

Calorimetry - Black Jasper

I am at the heel with the Yarn Pirate spooky yarn. This sock has been on the needles for awhile, so I will be glad to finish it up. My plan is to do the heel tonight, so I just have to knit to the toe and finish it up

Yarn Pirate - Spooky Sock

I also got to the heel with the Plucky Knitter yarn in Palatial. I really, really love this yarn and the colorway. I like it so much that I might get another skein of this colorway.

Plucky Knitter - Palatial Sock

For both of these yarns, I had to go down to size 1 needles to get the yarn to stripe the way I liked it. I saw something on someone else's blog, where she cast on two less stitches to get the yarn she was working on to stripe correctly. I may try this, but instead of two less stitches, I will try four less stitches and of course use size 2 needles. Size 2 is easier to handle than size 1.
I snagged some yarn from the last Loopy Ewe sneak up. I was even able to get a skein of Wollmeise yarn (Iris Sibirica). Apparently, they had server problems because so many people wanted the Wollmeise yarn. Everything was running slow, so I was glad to be able to get some of it. I also got two skeins of Collinette Jitterbug (Coulis and Castagna), and one skein of Rio de la Platta (Wood Thrush). I just love the Loopy Ewe!
Loopy Ewe
I found two skeins of Knitpicks Essential yarn that I had in my yarn tote. I forgot that I bought this. It is the Meadow Multi colorway which should make a pretty pair of socks.
Knitpicks Essential - Meadow Multi
I'll finish off with a cupcake that I bought from the Betz White store. What a neat knitted cupcake. I recommend it highly. It makes me hungry for cupcakes. I know that there are now cupcake bakeries, but alas there are none in my area.
Cupcake - Betz White

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Happiness Is Knitting All Day

Last week was a great week for finishing projects. I completed my Jitterbug socks in the Gaughin colorway. I had no problem with running out of yarn. In fact, I had quite a bit leftover.

Jitterbug - Gaughin - finished

I also completed another headband (Calorimetry) in the brown colorway. This was made with Berroco Jasper yarn.

Calorimetry - Brown

And, I finished up another comfortghan square in the Little Checks Square pattern by Mary Dixon.
This week I have been working on my Yarn Pirate Sock in the Spooky colorway. I am using size one needles for this sock because it wasn't striping using the size 2's. I was concerned that they would be too tight, but they fit okay. Whew!
Yarn Pirate Sock
I started on another sock using the Plucky Knitter yarn in the Palatial colorway. I had to use size 1 needles for this sock as well because of the striping. This yarn is really soft and stretchy, so it should be okay. I am annoyed when a sock doesn't stripe well.

Plucky Knitter - Palatial

I started another headband (calorimetry) in black. I told you I really liked this pattern as well as the yarn.
Calorimetry - Black
I finished my third comfortghan square this year. Pattern is Double Broken Rib Square by Mary Dixon. Only 21 more to go for the year to reach my goal.
Comfortghan Square - Dbl Brkn Rib - Dixon
I have off from work three days this week and I spent all day knitting today. It was wonderful to be able to do that and I was able to accomplish alot. So, it's back to the knitting the headband. I would like to finish that up this week as well as the second Yarn Pirate sock and maybe pull out the sweater that I started back in 2004 to finish that up in the next couple of weeks. Wish me luck.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Time to Knit

2008 keeps ticking away. I found that by making a list of things I want to accomplish for the week really helps to keep me focused. Hopefully, this will continue for the rest of the year.

I am working on my Jitterbug socks. I really like the color of these. The yarn is like Socks that Rock (I wonder if they will fade?) and I think I will end up with enough yarn for the two socks. There has been a bit of controversy on the Internet that one skein will not yield two socks over size 8. I am a size 9 and believe that I will have enough yarn to finish. I did buy a half skein from the Loopy Ewe just in case, but can use it for a smaller pair of socks later.

Jitterbug - Gaughan
I have completed one comfortghan square and started on another. The pattern is Little Checks Square by Mary Dixon. I am using a Light Celery Green in TLC Essentials for this pattern. I am currently working on a second one in this pattern.
Little Checks Square - Green
I also completed the first KAL in the Yahoo Monthly Dishcloth Group. It was a football pattern. I used Lion Brand Kitchen Cotton in Natural with a size 7 needle. I joined this group in August of 2005 when Andi first started it and now we are up to 5000 members. Wow, that's alot of members. It's a great group because we have two KAL's a month and you really learn new things by participating in them. I like the KAL's too because you get 10 rows a day. This is much better than just participating in a KAL and knitting at your own pace. 10 rows a day is doable and if you can't knit one day, it's easy to catch up on another day.
Footbal KAL
I started a second Calorimetry headband in Jasper using a brownish color yarn. I am about half way done with this one.
Caliormetry - Jasper Brown
This pattern is so great. It is fast to knit and I love the yarn. I know I will be making more of these.
I started my yarn diet, but I did receive two types of yarns that I ordered in 2007. Lisa Souza in Little Devil and in Denim colorways. I have wanted to order from her for quite awhile so I bit the bullet and did it before my yarn diet started.
Lisa Souza
I also ordered from the Plucky Knitter. What great yarns she has. I got three skeins in colorways: Palatial, Verdant Valley, and Dapper. I discovered her on a Ravelry ad that Jess recommended and I am not disappointed. When I finish my Jitterbug sock, I WILL be casting on with one of these colorways (I think the Dapper will be my first choice). I also saw that the Loopy Ewe will be carrying her yarn too.
Plucky Knitter
Time to stop chatting, I am off to do some knitting!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Looking Back and Looking Forward

Today is a day to reflect on what I accomplished in 2007 and what I want to achieve in 2008.

I completed the following projects in 2007:

18 Dishcloths
12 Comfortghan Squares
6 Pairs of socks - I'm really proud of finally feeling comfortable with knitting socks.
2 scarves
1 pair of fingerless gloves
1 baby blanket
1 headband
In addition, I read 62 books this year. Posted on my blog 39 times in 2007.


Mystery Stole
Berroco snowflake
Two pairs of socks
Socks that Rock scarf
Silky Tie Wrap
Candle flame shawl
pair of fetching gloves
Beach tote
Ripple afghan
Thrummed Mittens

Other things that happened in 2007: We lost our wonderful, wonderful cocker (Sadie), we acquired a precious cocker named Maggie, who is now a year old. I lost my job and I got a new part time job. I became a member of Ravelry and I'm starting to keep track of projects and stash.

Goals I hope to achieve in 2008:

1. Complete installing files and programs on my computer (hard drive crashed)

2. Organize closets and cabinets and purge items (or maybe a yard sale in spring).

3. Organize my yarn stash better and continue to update Ravelry.

4. Update my blog at least once a week.

5. Do some stashbusting - I really need to stop buying and use up my stash. But, I know I will be tempted and will allow it occasionally.

6. Knit 24 comfortghan squares for my Yahoo Dishcloth group.

7. Knit 12 socks (one for each month) if not more.

8. Knit a patterned sock

9. Knit a Christmas stocking or two

10. Knit the Ice Queen pattern on

11. Attempt two color mittens (Icelandic type) and a fingerless glove with cover.

12. Finish some UFO's

13. Read 65 books

It will be interesting to come back at the end of 2008 to see how well I did.