Monday, September 26, 2011

Thanks!

I don't know why Blogger won't let me respond to all comments, but it doesn't, so thank you to everyone for the anniversary wishes.  I can't believe it's already been five years.  It has just FLOWN by!

Speaking of flying by--it's Monday already, and I still have no pictures to put up.  BUT, there has been knitting and in fact, I'm closing in on finishing the second sock.  I've never really had problems with Second Sock Syndrome, thankfully.  Once I get one sock done I'm in a real rush to get the second sock done to make it a Finished Object, so it may go faster than the first one.  Of course, nothing is going fast right now because of the gardening/canning/entertaining happening around here, but fall is in the air.............:)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Not So Much Finishing Friday..

Today is our fifth wedding anniversary, and we're having a party tomorrow to celebrate, so Finishing Friday has temporarily been put on hold in favor of "Clean Up The House" day--a trend which I really don't see being repeated.  I've actually been cleaning and straightening and putting up fall decorations all week, but Canning Season is upon us, so it has really BEEN a whole week's project.  BUT I am happy to report that there is a finished sock, and if the computer, camera, sock, and I ever get our act together, there will be a picture.  And hopefully some serious progress on the second sock.................

Saturday, September 17, 2011

You Know I'm Going To..........

So, I mentioned that I was thinking about attempting 12 sweaters in 12 months for 2012.  If you've been following this blog for any length of time, you might have noticed that it's a surprisingly short leap from "thinking about insane behavior" to "behaving insanely."  Maybe more of a small hop, really.  12 sweaters in 12 months is crazy, completely idiotic, and likely to have me whining about project monogamy/monotony by mid-February.  Andy yet.............I'm still going to do it.

My one real saving grace is that even I am willing to make it 12 sweaters or shawls, so the long-languishing dem fischer sin fru would count,  as would the current Pi shawl.  They're both mostly done, so I'm thinking the 12-in-12 challenge might be a good way to bribe myself to get them finished.  Then there's the Kauni cardigan, which is fabulous but slow, and which has pretty much been neglected because even "fabulous" sweaters in fingering yarn are a pretty stupid idea when one is trying to rack up 100 or more projects in a year.  There's also the Loden Mist cardigan, which would really be nice to be able to wear by spring.  So, I'd be starting with 4 WIPS, which would qualify as a head start, so I wouldn't even need to finish a full sweater each month.  Easy, right?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Little Birthday Knitting

Yesterday was my birthday, and I decided to celebrate by casting on a new sweater for myself.  Being down to a svelte 15 WIPs, I felt I could splurge a bit.

I have been lusting after Alice Starmore patterns for years, and last year's reward yarn splurge included yarn for one of her sweaters, so I dug out my yarn and book and settled down to do a swatch
--not something I am normally smart enough to do, but when a pattern calls for size 2 needles, I thought it best to check.  And, as luck would have it, my 4-inch swatch was easily 4 and a half inches, so I need to go down a needle size, which means I would need a size ONE circular needle.  I don't own a size one circular needle, as I have always maintained that any knitting that would require a size one circular is behavior that should not be encouraged.  I almost made a trip to the store yesterday, but rational thinking (and the desire to stay in PJs just a bit longer) prevailed, and I decided to look for another option.

Starmore pattern 2:
No size 1 needles here!!!  Again, I found it best to swatch....and AGAIN I found I needed to go down a needle size, but this time I was in luck.  I have several size 4 circular needles.

.....and here they are:
This might discourage a lesser knitter--or convince a smarter knitter that perhaps she should finish some WIPs to get her needles back--but insaner minds prevailed, and I decided to work on the green vest long enough to get it switched to the bigger needles for the body (and worry about whether or not I needed those needles as well at some random date in the future).  So, there I was, happily knitting away, when I discovered the ribbing for the vest which is NOT for a really big man, could double as a jump rope:
Oops.  I'd like to say that I wisely thought, "Wow, I really must check gauge on all my knitting."  Of course, what I actually thought was "WHOO HOO!!!!!!  Free size 4 needle!"
So I cast on happily and started the pattern.  Not that I'm doubting Ms. Starmore in any way, but if the ribbing is [K1, p1, k1tbl, p1, k1tbl, p1], is there really a reason for that lone K1?  I can guarantee that about 2/3 of the first round is correct, but then I got a bit muddled and decided that no one would ever be able to tell the difference and just did the twisted rib the rest of the way.  Which is why I ended up spending my day making
 birthday socks!!!!!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Meet The Magic Scarf

No matter how many rows I do or how I knit, the ball of yarn remains about the same size and the scarf is about the same length.  It's been about half done for a week or two and apparently is going to be about half done for the rest of my life.  Or longer........................

Sunday, September 11, 2011

12 in 12?

So.....today I've been flirting with the idea of attempting to make 12 sweaters in 12 months.  Since it will BE 2012, it seem really fitting and appropriate...........

............and a bit insane.  Talk me down, anyone?

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Planning For Next Year

My crafting weekend moved the 111 projects goal much, MUCH closer, so let's just say for argument's sake that I hit my target for this year.  What then?  I like having a goal for finishing projects because otherwise I start a bunch of projects and may or may not finish them (anyone remember the 45 WIPs?).  However, I'm not sure that even I want to attempt 112 finished projects.  111 is a pretty daunting number already, and I'd like to work on some bigger projects next year.  But I'm also worried that I won't take myself very seriously if I drop back to finishing 50 projects in a year, and the sewing room is still overflowing so finishing a healthy number of projects will definitely help declutter.  Maybe set a goal to finish 50 sewing projects and 20 knitting?  Set a poundage goal to be used up?  Keep doing the basket challenges but include fabric?  Revive the Project of the Month bags and perhaps do 2 of them--one knitting, one sewing?  Finish 75 projects for the year?

When "Type A's" have hobbies..................................

Friday, September 9, 2011

In Spite Of My Helper..........

I was actually able to finish a Mardi Gras themed Christmas tree skirt finished today--though not so much able to get it photographed without Theo.  It's a gift that I've been planning to do for about 3 months, so I seem to have stayed on the time frame I adopted with Andy's birthday sweater.  I have another gift that is now 2 months behind schedule, so I guess that should be my next project............

I did manage to get two more tribbles done
mostly because Theo isn't interested in them.  I think these would be really cute as a gift with some bath salts or bubble bath.  They're also pretty quick to make, which is also very nice, although...........
they're not filling up my stash-dash basket very quickly.  The tree skirt would take up a nice chunk of space....but unfortunately it will be packed up and mailed off next week.  Oops.  I think I'm seeing an inherent problem in trying to fill a basket with gifts when one is making gifts that are months overdue.................

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Craft Weekend - Part 1

When one has a burning desire to cast on a new sweater, it's a good time to revisit the WIP pile.  This,

has been waiting for seams and buttons for 4 months, which made it the easiest one to complete. I'd like to say that I then moved on to other WIPs, but......
I then moved on to quick and fast projects to start filling up my Christmas "basket." 
which is going to take some effort.  A few more dishcloths and the bottom will no longer be visible, at least.

While I've been knitting, I've had Jeeves making ornaments:
They're free-standing lace being done on wash-away stabilizer.  When they're soaked in water, the stabilizer (which is just starch) will wash away and make them very stiff.  Perfect for ornaments.  At least, I hope so......
I'm counting 6 of these as one finished "project" as they take some effort on my part, but not too much.  They're small so I can do 3 of them inside one hoop, so that makes them go pretty quickly.  This year some friends of ours started a "music club," so we've been practicing and playing a lot this summer, so these seemed appropriate for the year.  And that they're quick and are helping move along my "finished project" tally before serious canning/harvesting season in the garden kicks in doesn't hurt at all........

Thursday, September 1, 2011

"Dead Heat" Ends, Christmas Basket Begins

August 1, I started with this:
At the end of the "dead heat" stashdash, I am left with a bit of yarn I didn't get to,
some remnants from finished projects,
and two projects not actually finished:
which is probably farther than I really thought I would get in just two months.  I haven't had a chance to figure out my yardage yet, as I've been busy rounding up this
for our next challenge.  Starting today and running until the end of the year, instead of emptying a basket of yarn, the idea is to fill a basket with finished projects.  Lots of people have cute little baskets to use for this challenge, but I need 44 projects by the end of the year, so I scrounged in the garage for the biggest "basket" I could find.  Since I have 4 whole months, a wee part of me was sorry I couldn't find the big box our chest freezer came in.  But I suppose this one will have to do. 

I am kicking off this challenge with a crafting weekend.  That's right--for the first time in months, I haven't made any plans for us at all, so we are spending the long weekend doing hobbies.  Mine kicks off tomorrow with Finishing Friday, so I have FOUR DAYS of nothing but crafting.  I canned salsa yesterday and did some massive weeding today so that should hold the garden for the weekend, the laundry is done, the kitchen is clean, I raided the library for movies and audio books, Jeeves is working, and I've got my sidekick all lined up:
Let the crafting marathon begin!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!