Archive for the ‘Thrums’ Category

To knit.

January 29, 2007

I have been working all weekend on Rogue, because I’m a terrible person who’s ignoring the socks I’m supposed to be working on. I’m making excellent headway on Rogue – I’m on row 53 of the body chart, which is actually a little deceptive because you repeat 6 rows of the chart multiple times (I threw in one extra because I like my sweaters long), so I’ve actually knit much more than that.

Much to my chagrin, I found a mistake in one of my cables, right back at the beginning, and after despairing over it for a few minutes, have decided to leave it. (If I were as popular as the Yarn Harlot, somebody would have noticed the mistake in one of the earlier pictures and pointed it out. Alas.) I figure it adds character, and it’s pretty minor in the grand scheme of things, although annoying since it means the two sides don’t quite match. I know I could drop down to fix it, but we’re talking dropping 90 or so rows of cables. No thanks. I tried overstitching it to make it look better, but I just don’t really get how to do that, so unless someone can explain it to me, I’ll leave it. It’s down around the bottom – I won’t be able to see it when I’m wearing it!

Anyway, after excellent progress despite having to work yesterday (dinner at my in-laws on Friday gave me lots of knitting time while I watched Barnyard with Jamie’s cousin, and yesterday I hung out with various people over at the International House of Party, and got yet more knitting done), Rogue is now closing in on dividing for the front and back, which is encouraging progress. I was planning to knit it exclusively for the next few days until the body gets finished, but then I looked at the weather forecast for this week. (This was a moment of forethought that is highly unusual for me, I should note.) It is supposed to be really cold by Thursday and Friday – lows in the minus 20s. Brr. And when it was freezing earlier this week, I was cursing myself for not finishing my thrum mittens yet.

So! Eight more rows before I hit the thumb on the second mitten – encouraging progress that leads me to optimistically believe I can finish by Thursday despite working every day this week. (I volunteered for more hours because my desire to have lots of spending money in Disneyland outweighed my desire for lots of knitting time. There are few things I like more than knitting, but Disneyland is one of them. Two months this week until we leave! Eeee!)

Anyway, the mittens are now at the top of the list, but they won’t take long. (HOW did I not know about how excellent mittens are to knit before now? They’re so fast and cozy and nice! More mittens are in my future – hopefully more thrummed ones for my mother.) Once they’re done, Rogue and my sockpal sock will go back to sharing time, with occasional forays into the baby blanket. (I think I will try to knit one strip a day.) The Mountain Peaks is on hold for now, partly because it’s not exactly shawl weather, but also because I think it’ll be excellent airplane knitting so I’m saving it for my trip. (I’m flying alone both ways due to the world’s most complicated vacation set-up between the four of us, so I plan to spend the entire flight there knitting and listening to Disneyland music to get hyped up, and the entire flight back knitting and listening to Disneyland music to depress myself. Do I know how to party or what? And the complicated vacation set up involves multiple cities, three different arrival dates and two different departure dates with Jamie and me taking different flights home despite leaving the same day. It’s ridiculous, I know, but we will all be in the same place for approximately 48 hours. I’m there the longest, though. Woo!)

Once Rogue is done, I plan to buy some Cascade 220 to make the Central Park Hoodie. After chasing around to several yarn stores, I got my hands on a copy of the KnitScene that had the pattern, and it looks like just what I wanted in a cardigan. (Please don’t talk to me about my obvious cabled sweater problem. I am aware of it. After that I want a boring plain v-neck sweater with no cables in sight, I promise.) I decided to do Central Park over A Cardigan for Arwen, because I think it’s more my style. (Erin agreed – she was very patient about looking at pictures of both to decide which would be better. I have very tolerant friends. And might I add, two other people were knitting last night at IHOP, so the conversion is gradually occurring.)

And of course, there is the endless parade of babies to knit for. The next one after this current log cabin isn’t due until April, but it’s going to sneak up on me. The yarn for that is in the mail – I think it’ll be another hoodie, since that was fast and cute.

I like this idea of having one of each type of thing on the go. Once I finish my sock pal socks, I’ll cast on Rachel’s socks. Once I finish Rogue, I’ll start in on Central Park. Once I finish this log cabin, I’ll start another baby blanket. Once I finish the mittens, I’ll cast on a baby sweater. (Small and mindless – seems like a good category!) And once I finish Mountain Peaks (which seems like never in my mind right now, because it’s such a big project), I’ll either hit the Reversible Rib Shawl, for which I already have the KidSilk Haze (mmm), or the Sea Silk shawl with the Sea Silk I just ordered.

Oh, sure. Totally manageable.

How did I think my knitting list would get any better after the Christmas knitting was done? Good grief.

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WIPs on Parade

January 19, 2007

I totally got out of the habit of taking pictures of works in progress during the Christmas Knitting Mania, because I knew I wouldn’t be posting them until they were finished. However, given the nature of the current WIPs, it will be a long drought without pictures if I keep forgetting to do photo shoots. (Do you like how I say that like before the Christmas knitting I took WIP photos all the time? I just flipped through my archives and the only WIP photos are of the sock’s cultural tour. Geez, I suck.)

Fortunately, I remembered this evening, and whipped out my new blanket, perfect for photo shoots. As I mentioned, I seem to be burgundy obsessed at the moment, so the nice light blue blanket that my in-laws bought us for Christmas will be excellent for photos of projects. I finally got around to putting the really good lamp next to my knitting chair (there is space thanks to the tidying now), so I hve reasonable light. I know you should take knitting photos in natural light, but we get very little light in our house (which has its advantages and disadvantages), and it’s cold and snowy out, and I don’t want to dump my knitting in the snow. So this will have to do. It’s a pretty bright light, so it will do the job for now. Better solutions will be pursued.

After my surprisingly successful monogamy around Christmas, I’ve gone back to my usual slutty knitting. It’s nice having so many things, actually – I have something different for every mood.

First up is the beginning of my beautiful, beautiful Mountain Peaks Shawl, pattern here. This pattern is fantastic. The only lace I’ve done is Branching Out and Pomatomus, yet I am following the charts with almost no trouble. (of course, I’m only on chart one!) Even better, when I was reading over the pattern in advance (!), I was confused about one thing emailed Miriam, and got a fast and helpful reply. Awesome! Two thumbs up for this pattern so far. We’ll see how I do when I get to the short rows.

This is the silk that Beth bought me for Christmas. It is very subtly variegated, which just makes the lace look like the sun is shining on it. Glorious! It is so shimmery.

Mountain Peaks 1

Mountain Peaks 2

It’s more burgundy and pink than it looks in those pictures – a great colour for me. I’m hoping it will go with the dress I’ll have for Erin’s wedding.

That’s right! Erin is getting married! Ashley proposed on her birthday (January 3rd), and they’re getting married next summer. (For those of you who don’t pay much attention to these things, Erin was my roommate before I got married, and she was the greatest roommate ever. We had a blast. Imagine my delight when she moved into the basement suite in our house last year! So now she’s my downstairs neighbour, and she was also a bridesmaid in my wedding.) Not only that, but she asked me to be her maid of honour! Whee! She’s leaning towards burgundy for dresses, so I’m hoping I can wear this. (Because let’s be honest here, my lifestyle does not really offer up too many opportunities to wear silk shawls.)

As previously mentioned, I have, after wanting it for well over a year, picked up Rogue. Flush with my success on Samus, I decided I was up to the task, and once I printed off the (awesome and well written) pattern, I felt pretty confident about it.

Here’s its progress so far.

Rogue Full View 2

It’s in Bartlett 2-ply yarn, which is very sheepy and full of lanolin, which means my hands are way less dry than usual. (This is clearly an excellent winter knit for Edmonton.) It’s a bit scratchy, but when I washed my swatch (!) in wool wash, it got very cozy, so I think it’ll be perfect. It’s exactly the oatmeal-y colour I wanted.

I finished the kangaroo pocket at Stitch n Bitch the other night, which looks great. (It’s a little wonky in the photo because the needles are in behind it.

Rogue Kangaroo Pocket

I was a bit nervous about the closed cables (it says ADVANCED cable skils on the pattern, and I hate to presume about my own skills), but so far so good.

Rogue Side Cable 1

I am loving knitting this. The pattern is SO good, and it’s a great mix of mindless and attention requiring. Two thumbs up! My knitting is very satisfying at the moment, can you tell?

My log cabin baby blanket is also coming along well. I’m using Trillian’s technique to avoid some of the picking up, so it’s scrunched up in this photo because it’s all on one big circular. (I love interchangeables.) The colours are also so bright that they really don’t photograph well.

Log Cabin

I really like how the Crayon is looking in the log cabin style, and it’s so nice and soft without being too heavy. Excellent for babies – I will definitely be ordering more of this.

Log Cabin Closeup

And, finally, my thrum mittens. It’s been a bit neglected this week (so many projects to choose from means some get neglected), but one is done and the other is in progress. This is a Fleece Artist Thrum Kit. Highly recommended – it’s SO soft.

Thrums

Outside…
Finished Thrum Mitten

And inside!

Thrums!

My mother was so impressed with this that she actually sort of hinted that she’d like a pair! That’s totally unheard of for her. By the time I’d get a chance it’ll be spring (curse you, spring babies!) but I’ll hopefully be able to make her a pair for her birthday in November. (Somebody remind me in September when the babies have settled down a bit, ok? And nobody get pregnant for the next few months so I can have a lull.) She’d never heard of thrums before but apparently her hands get really cold, so it seems like the least I can do.

I have a few other things in the immediate queue – I promised a few things to people, and since poor Karen broke her hand she made a very pitiful request for a mitten that will go over her cast, which seems like a manageable project that will drastically improve her life until the cast comes off, especially once it gets colder. I’ll have to figure out the best way to do it once I see the shape of the cast tomorrow. We’re going to Calgary tomorrow (woohoo!), so we’ll hit the yarn stores and find some nice non-wool yarn to make her some broken hand mittens.

Isn’t that selfless of me? Going to the yarn store to buy yarn for my poor broken-handed friend? I know. I am a giver. Mmm, Calgary yarn stores.

Now the question is, what knitting to pack? Hmm. Decisions decisions. Unfortunately, due to broken hand I’m driving, so I won’t be able to knit with my snazzy new headlamp. Poo. Still, I’m sure there will be knitting time. Maybe I’d better just pack everything.