Friday, January 10, 2014

Knitting Progress and a Sock Monkey

I thought I'd zoom in with some of the progress I've made on my knitting since I last wrote about my projects here. This is an effort to demonstrate that I actually do stuff when I'm not writing on the blog... I do assume that you know that, especially since I haven't been writing that often... I do other things.... OK, right, here are knitting projects in progress:

1. The Cascade Chunky Baby Alpaca Throw which looked like this:

And now looks like this:

Almost exactly the same...

I had knit through two balls of the gray yarn and added a cream stripe and a red stripe when my daughter said "Hey mom, that looks like a sock monkey." It did indeed look like a sock monkey and while I do like sock monkeys, "sock monkey throw" was not the look I was going for... so I frogged it (knitter speak for "unraveled it" because you rip it rip it rip it, get it?) and started again, this time with a version of the Double Seed Stitch Blanket from Purl Bee. I say "a version" because I cast on a bunch of stitches and I didn't do a gauge swatch so I don't know how big it will end up. I also bought a light gray so it will be dark gray, light gray, and cream striped and I'll use the red to teach Lu how to knit.

2. The yellow swing cardi which looked like this:

And now looks like this:

PROGRESS!!! Love it. So fat it's a good pattern and I have no desire to frog it. Bodes well.

3. The swing coat by Debbie Bliss which looked like this:

And now looks like this:

More progress, fun pattern, no desire to frog it, all good.

Then, I added three more knitting projects to the list. One day soon I'll explain my weird relationship with my craft supplies and weeding out, but suffice it to say that my mom knows that when I "weed out" my yarn and fabric it's only a matter of time before I take it all back again. She has that time to use what she wants before I come and collect it, which I did over Christmas (sorry mom) Like is said, weird.


4. The Tea Leaves cardi by Madelinetosh available here.

This is a hugely popular sweater to knit (if you know what's going on in the knitting world) and for good reason too, it's pretty and it's knit from the top down. That's the neck/yolk you see there. It's super-easy to follow and I've seen so many on Ravelry, they come out beautifully! 

5. Shift of Focus from Rain Knitwear available here.

So this yarn is very special. A woman in Vermont hand spun and hand-dyed this for me. It's a merino/tencel blend and it's just GORGEOUS! I saw it at the Montpelier Farmer's Market and I went ga ga over it. It was very expensive (the way handmade things should be) so I'd knit to the end of a skein and get another. Here's the problem though, I love that yarn SO MUCH that I have completely frogged it twice. As in: it was finished and ready to sew together and I unraveled the entire thing...TWICE. I need to have the exact right pattern for it and I've found it with this sweater.

Of course I've had to unravel this one once because I did it wrong. I was looking at it going "I'm not seeing how this is working. Maybe that's because it's top-down with short rows? Maybe if I keep going it will make sense to me? Nah, I was doing it wrong. Now that I'm doing it right I can see it. It's amazing how doing something the right way makes so much more sense.

6. This baby bonnet from Purl Soho's Last Minute Knitted Gifts.

I love this book! I love and have all of Purl's "Last Minute" books. I have knitted this bonnet twice before without incident but this time it's giving me absolute fits! I've frogged the stupid thing six times. It's not a hard pattern either. I keep getting distracted or something, I don't know, all I do know is that I'll be happy when this one is done! Gah! What a pain in the patootie!

Hun is really annoyed when I unravel something. He takes it personally. When I unraveled the Shift of Focus he was like "ARE YOU UNRAVELING THAT AGAIN!!! WHY DO YOU ALWAYS DO THAT!!!!"  Alas, I believe that herein lies the difference between knitters and other species,  we actually find the act of knitting calming and meditative, "I'm at peace when I knit" so to speak. So while we do enjoy finishing projects, the process is also enjoyable so unraveling isn't the worst thing in the world. Besides, yarn is expensive so you want to get it right. Except that dumb bonnet. I really just want to get that thing done.

I have the yarn for four more projects here. I have the patterns all picked out and the gauge swatches all knitted for a couple. I may start all of them at once. I keep very good notes so I know where I am on a given project... Hey, I get bored easily, what can I say?

So i'm off to finish the dumb bonnet, hooray. Hopefully I won't have to frog it again.
See you soon,

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