Technical oops

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I put up a post about a week ago, or so I thought. I guess when I hit post and waited for a second it didn’t go up. So now I’m going to have to update you point by point. 
1.  Adonis is finished knitting, finished it. Few days ago.

2. I had to rip out the saddle once because of a line in the pattern that confused me. I don’t think it needs to be there it’s redundant (the instruction not the saddles).

3. That fixed I put in the collar. 

4.  Ripped out the cone of a collar. 

5. Fixed that problem and brought up the front of the neck since it was too low for my taste. 

6.  I’m weaving in ends right now and have been for a few days. 

7. It’s taking me a bit because I’m splitting the yarn into plies and duplicate stitching them in. 

8. This sweater looks fantastic on. 

9. Wish it was cooler so I could wear it. 

10. Next project is in progress and I’m super happy with it so far. 

On a mission

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As a knitter there are times that we know exactly what we want to knit. We know the exact pattern, yarn, needles, gauge, and every little detail that will go into that project.   That yarn for that project may be in stash, or it could arrive one day at your local yarn shop.  When you see it you know exactly what it is going to be and how much you want it.  Or sometimes you just know what something is going to be even without seeing or touching it first.  As a designer I have to look at a yarn, it’s color, texture, and have it go through my mind.  It has to take on a journey from start to finish to know exactly what it’s going to be, look like, feel like, and make me want to start it.

 

I went up to another local yarn shop on Saturday, looking for a yarn I needed for a design, part of a series I’m working on.  I won’t give you any details on what that series is, the yarn I purchased, or anything.  But I will say that I had to make decisions right then and there in the shop, is that amount of yarn going to be enough, is this garment going to have this attribute or not.  Stitch pattern, size, all of that and a myriad of other decisions made within a few minutes.  So I picked up the yarn, brought it home and now it taunts me a little bit.  I’m really surprised that I’m sticking to the whole monogamous knitting so well.  This is the second project that I’m going to cast on, the first, well that’s something I’ll have to make you all wait to find out about.

 

For now heres a picture inside of the shop.  I have to finish my Adonis Pullover, just about half way to the underarms.

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Nearing the end

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We are slowly progressing to the end of March, which it doesn’t feel like the end of March to me.  Honestly it still feels like the first few days of March. As always this year is going by way too fast, which means that in reality everything is going to happen in rapid succession. In any case every morning when I actually get up with my alarm (instead of my body just thinking it suggestion) I have my ritual. Get up, turn on the coffee maker, human functions, make my coffee, open up my knitting bag, pull up YouTube, and knit while having my coffee. It’s something I do every morning, it’s my ritual. It’s something you can sometimes tell when I don’t have time in the morning to do it. 
I’m not sure what that tell tale sign is, but it’s there. I think I’m just more on edge and under caffeinated if I don’t have time for the ritual. It keeps me human, or as human as possible given all of the things I have to do on a daily basis. 

  

Yes that is the Adonis pull over and yes that is also in Fyber Spates Scrumptious sport. I really do like this yarn, soft nice to work with (besides the occasional split stitch). This project will be going over monotonous knitting March and that’s ok. I’m kind of liking this one project at a time thing. I might just continue forward with it. 
Might just be I need more caffeine to come to my senses. Only one way to find out, more coffee. 

Glitch 

I had a small glitch with the monogamous knitting. The loxley that I was making needed another skein and I was going to run out. So I ordered a skein and I called upon my monogamous knitting friend. I needed advice if I was going to stop knitting till it arrived or what else. Fortunately I got the yarn and finished it, but that wasn’t the glitch. I finished the project which was good but then I needed to knit on the next project. It took me some time to figure it out. I decided on the conflagration which I was knitting it out of Miss Babs Yummy in Bats***crazy. Love how it’s looking but I was not happy knitting it. Nothing wrong with the pattern, I just was not wanting to knit on it. So I had to think, either knit on it and not want to, or just stop and frog it. 
I know it’s crazy, 6 repeats in, with about 8 more to go, I should finish it. But I just couldn’t get myself to do it. After much talk around the table at knit night I decided that it’s going back into the WIP bin. It’s also under frogging consideration, I might finish it one day. But it’s not going to be right now, so back to the what am I going to knit phase. I figured another WIP would be a good place to start. I looked through my queue too to see what else I could work on. But I pulled out he Adonis pullover I started a while ago. It’s out of FiberSpates Scrumptious sport and I forgot how much I love this yarn line. Being a merino silk it’s so soft and fun to knit with. The pullover has one sleeve done and the other almost half way. So I picked it up, started knitting, and I’m so much happier. It’s going fairly quick, well as quick as sport weight on US 3s can go. After this sleeve I’m going to get the body started. 

In other news, I am about 80% sure I will be attending Rhineback this year. I still have a few things to iron out before I can be 100% sure. 

Post Stitches

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As many of you may or may not know I made the decision  this year to not go to stitches west. I’ve gone for the past 7 or so years and this year I thought about it. I sat there, thinking long and hard about going. But why did I want to go? To see my favorite vendors, but I didn’t need anymore yarn (it’s always a want, but I’m trying to get my stash down).  Well I could have gone just to see new vendors, but nothing on the list excited me. But of course it could just be to go and be social.  But in a market place where there is temping fibers and yarns all over I think I would have been more concentrated on that. There was no reason for me to go this year, so I didn’t.  I went to a state park instead and did a whole day hike with my dad.  Of course being me and my dad we had our backpacks full of photography gear and headed out.  We spent around 6 hours hiking around, taking photos, just taking in the beauty of the park.

 

There was so much to see, so many photo opportunities.  I’m not sure if I discussed this on here or not but I primarily shoot film.  Which might sound strange in the age of digital technology, but this analog form just gets to me in the right ways.  I could talk and talk about it, writing long love stories of film, but I won’t.  This is a knitting blog after all, but I will share a photo or two from the hike.  These are from my digital camera, I haven’t gotten the film developed yet, still have a few shots left.

 

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And I’m writing this 2/29, the last day of February, which means tomorrow starts Monogamous knitting march.  I know this sounds crazy, but I really want to get through more of my WIPs.  This should help and if it goes well then I think that a few other months will be turning into only one knitting project start to finish.  Since I finished the knitting on Girasole tonight (finally) I have the Loxley for my friend I need to finish.  That’s the project to start off this venture.  After that I haven’t really decided.  I don’t think there’s enough knitting there for the whole month, so chances are I’ll pick something else up.  Either a WIP or something new, just depends on my mood.

Random on a Friday 

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1.  Progress has come to a halt. I haven’t been really working that much on my knitting.

2. I have been trying to work more on the girasole after

3. I’m on the border finally, I thought I would never see it.

4.  It’s 640 sts around, it’s slow progress

5.  I will not be at Stitches this year.  I decided a week ago that I wasn’t going to go, there is nothing that is screaming “buy me!”  I’m going to do something else today, not knitting, but photography related.

6.  I did buy some yarn about 2 weeks ago now, I’m still waiting for it.  Not the dyers fault, the shipping provider is dropping the ball.

7.  I’m already thinking about what I’m going to be knitting next after Girasole.

8.  I have this crazy idea for March, knitting on only one thing until it’s done.  No switching between projects, just powering through a project from start to finish.  Hopefully getting me to finish more projects, maybe I’ll do more spinning too.

9.  Crap I forgot about spin the bin.  I better get to work on that too.

Read the pattern

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This has been an interesting knitting week for me. We start off with that swatch that lied to me. Well that still hasn’t gotten it’s resolution. I’m still thinking of ripping it out and going with the size I was intending to knit on. But that’s the least of my worries at the moment. It was however the ominous event that led to two other knitting issues. One of them was preventable by myself while the other was the luck of the draw. The socks I test knit, they’re almost done. I have the second sock almost down through the gusset, but there is a blaring problem. I am running out of yarn at an alarming rate and not one that I can just play yarn chicken with. It’s now at that point where I am going to run out and there is no real good solution, except for buying another skein. I don’t feel like dealing with that at this moment and I put it away. It may get me to go to stitches, but I might just order a skein and ask if it’s possible for her to send a skein that is close to what I have. I know it won’t be a perfect match and that’s fine. 

No the really big issue is with my Girasole. You remember that from my trip to the UK, well I brought it back out. I really want it to be done so I can enjoy it and so the needless can be free. Well I found out that I didn’t read the pattern enough and I ended up blowing past something important. But let’s back up first, because I was thinking why is this so small, am I sure I’m doing this right. Is there a repeat this pattern I miss? And I looked at the pattern and realized I did exactly that. I didn’t see the repeat this chart 3 times total. I knit it once and was almost done with the next chart. So I had to make a choice, add more size to the pattern, or just keep going.  I made the decision that I wanted the extra width the repeats would have given me so I decided to go back to the end of the first repeat of that chart. Looking at it I though at first I’ll put in a lifeline 4 rounds below and then just knit the next row. But with how the pattern moves it wasn’t going to happen. So I decided the best solution was to remove the needles, rip out 3 rounds and put the stitches back on as I rip out the final round. Avert your eyes if you are knitting squeamish. 
  

Yes that’s the entire 600ish stitches with no needle. So I did it, everything went smoothly, and now it’s back on track. Halfway through the second repeat of the chart, making slow but steady progress. Let’s hope I can actually bother myself to read the pattern, otherwise this wouldn’t have happened.  Back to knitting. 

When swatches lie

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Swathes are an important part of making garments. You have to ensure that your yarn will meet the gauge of the pattern to make sure that it will fit. Not only that so that you don’t make a sweater that is too large or small. I always try to make a swatch, wash and block it like I would the finished garment. I learned my lesson a while ago when I didn’t wasn’t the swatch and I had a vest dress. It was my own fault and from that point on I went ahead and did my do diligence. Keep in mind for this I did a gauge swatch, I really did. I decided I wanted to make a sweater for myself, modifying the pattern to omit the waist shaping. With plenty of yarn I pulled out needles and swatched. The swath got its bath and blocked, after drying I measured. I was about 1 stitch too many per 4 inches, not a problem. I did my math and calculated that the next size up was going to be just about right. I wanted a 44″ chest and I was going to get about a 45″ chest. So I went ahead and cast on, the ribbing seemed bigger then I thought but decided with the cables it would even out. 

That was not correct in the least. I knew the fabric would grow a little bit getting me to about 18 stitches to 4″. Well the swatch lied to me. I measured what I had unblocked and found the sweater would be about 48-50″, which I checked my measurements and I would most likely swim in it. Granted I love this yarn, I have probably waxed poetically here and to my knitting group about it. But I don’t think I want a sweater that large. So now I have to decide if I am going to block on the needles and see if it changes to be small, doubtful. I’m thinking just ripping out the 4ish inches that I have and go with the correct size I wanted.  But then again what if it’s too small at that point. I guess I won’t really know if the gauge is going to trick me again or not.  I think that’s something to decide maybe tonight when I need to wind more yarn. 
I think I should just knit on something else until I decide what to do with the sweater. But in other news Stitches West is this month and I have not decided if I’m going or not. I haven’t bought yarn since my purchase in December. So almost 2 months again, which is good. I want to get the stash to a reasonable level for me. As for the spin the bin, it hasn’t started really. I haven’t spun for about a week and this is fiber on the wheel that isn’t part of this endeavor. I think I better kick it up into high gear, otherwise I’ll never get through the fiber I want to spin. 

Ta-Da

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Well there’s no more secret test knitting, with no pictures being able to be shared.  That test knit is done, the pattern is live, and I think you might like it.   That test knit would be for the Whiskey and Rye Socks designed by Audry, who is a friend of mine.  We all saw these socks and we all knew that they would be something we wanted to knit.  However, the larger size is too big for most of the knitters around the table, me being one of the very few it would fit there.  So I volunteered to test knit the pattern, but lets clear up one thing.  I have not finished them yet, I know how horrible of me not finishing a pair of socks.  I have my reasons, one of those being I have a lot of things on the needles that need to be worked on.  Which means I spread my time as evenly as I possibly can.  However, don’t fret I do have evidence of my test knit, which I did out of Miss Babs Yummy in Zombie Prom.

 

Aren’t they just awesome? Picture will come soon.   I like how the color plays with itself throughout the design.  I might need to pull out the Zombie Reunion and make another pair.  But only after this pair and a few other things are complete.  I did do some swatching, but that will come a bit later when I’m ready to knit on that.  There’s a bit of math involved because of the gauge the pattern uses and the gauge that I got.  But for now I am working through the Loxley for my friend, which is taking a bit longer then I anticipated.  It’s just a lot of knitting compensating for lots of hair.  I’m going to have her test fit it one more time to make sure my alterations are good and I’ll finish the brim and make the scarf portion.

 

I did start something new, something that from the moment I got the yarn I knew what it was going to be.  The yarn was a gift 2 Christmases ago, Madelinetosh Merino DK in Tart, and it’s a good Tart.  The pattern it’s now becoming is Scrollwork and I have to say it’s going fairly quickly.  I started it Monday evening and am currently done. Finished it Friday, just need to wash and block it now. 
  

I started a new seater, wanted to knit it in a week. Probably not, but maybe 2 weeks??

The tributes

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They knew that their time would come, that they would be put into the running, but didn’t know it would be this soon.  As I dug around the bin, they all stopped speaking, they all just sat there as one by one they were pulled out.  With each selection the rest became a little more relaxed, but still nervous to see if they were going to be pulled next.  One by one the 12 selections were made, each different then the next.  Finally all 12 were chosen, the rest let out a sigh of relief, the 12 knew they were going to have a long road ahead of them.

 

If you don’t recognize that book/movie reference (I read the books first, highly recommended) then that bit of cleverness has been lost on you.  I’m actually talking about the Spin the Bin challenge, which I spoke of last time.  I had to go through the fiber stash bin in order to choose the 12 fibers that I wanted to spin.  If you’re not familiar with Spin the Bin, it was first introduced to me last year or the year prior by one of my knitting friends.  She told me about it then and I thought it was a bit crazy, but now looking at the stash I realized it was brilliant.  You have between Dec 20, 2015-Dec 31, 2016 to spin all the fiber selected, which has to be at least 2 ounces and 12 different bundles.  You can of course do more then that, but for me I knew the 12 would be a challenge.  You also have to take a picture of all of the fiber and post it to the group with all of the selections that you made.  There are some other rules and such, like if you don’t finish, what you have left is going to be sold or given away.  I’m not going to do that personally, but I will be modifying the other option.  You can switch the fiber of one without penalty and after that you have to put back in double.  For me the second part will be the same, but the first will be you may remove or substitute one without penalty.  Since my fiber stash is not that large it wouldn’t hurt me to do either.

 

You must be curious to see what I chose, well not all of this is on Revelry, but here it is.

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It’s just so fluffy!  Alright lets break it down.

  1.  Abstract Fiber Mixed Merino Silk, Colorway: Laurelhurst, 4 ounces
  2. Abstract Fiber Mixed Merino Silk, Colorway: Shady Glade, 4 ounces
  3. Shaky K Fibers, Merino Top, Colorway: Electric Green, 4 Ounces
  4. Malabrigo Nube, Colorway: Solis, 8 Ounces
  5. Pigeonroof Studios Superwash Merino, Colorway: Blackeyed Susan, 4 ounces (Spinion [spinning minion] project)
  6. Lisa Souza Zen Top, Colorway: Flahriduh, 4 Ounces
  7. Sweet Georgia Merino Bamboo Silk, Colorway: Love Letters, 4 Ounces (Club color 2014, most likely going to be gifted)
  8. RedFish Dyeworks MYS, Colorway: Unknown (it’s shades of browns, red/rogance browns, tans), 4 ounces
  9. Miss Babs Merino Tussah, Colorway: Monster Mash, 4 ounces
  10. Miss Babs Merino Bamboo Tussah, Colorway: Shaken not Stirred, 4 ounces
  11. Greenwood FiberWorks Superwash Merino Nylon, Colorway: Earthen Hues, 4 ounces
  12. Greenwood FiberWorks Superwash Merino Nylon, Colorway: Cider House, 4 Ounces

 

And that’s it, that’s all of the fiber that I chose for Spin the Bin.  I think ti’s going to be interesting to see what they all come out to be, that is if I can finish them all.  I’m currently trying to get the fiber that is on my wheel off ASAP so I can get started with this. I’m not going to go in order of the list above, it’s going to be whatever I feel like that time and what I grab.  I’m thinking of starting with the largest amount of fiber, which would be the Malabrigo.  What it’s going to be when it’s yarn I’m not sure.  2 ply or 3 ply, not sure yet, all I know it’s going to be fingering weight, as most of these will be.  In the mean time I better get back to the wheel, I have about an ounce left to spin on that fiber.  It’s also GreenWood FiberWorks, but in a merino silk, in super bright colors.  It’s also super, super thin so I might need to weave it.

 

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