Knitting! Plus some gardening, cocktails, and whatever else strikes my fancy.

Month: September 2006

Another WIP Wednesday

Another WIP Wednesday

Today’s WIPs are one that is really a pseudo-WIP, some previous and still WIPs, and a new, exciting WIP (at least for me). First up, the pseudo-WIP. I have two balls of aqua La Gran from my stash that I thought might make a nice […]

Exploring the Knitting Blogosphere

Exploring the Knitting Blogosphere

I don’t really like the word “blogosphere” but I am going to use it out of sheer perversity. Today I visited Beth’s blog and found out that of all the shades of orange she is a pumpkin. So I clicked on her link, and low […]

FO Show and Tell

FO Show and Tell

Here at Molecular Knitting there are 2 new FOs. Well, one is new, and the other was in hiding until given as a gift. My MIL wanted to knit socks; she knits scarves on very big straight needles. She bought two different balls of Lionbrand self-striping sock yarn and some dpns and went nuts. She couldn’t stand it. So she sent me the yarn and asked me to knit the socks for her. That she tried both balls of yarn I find a bit perplexing. But anyway, I knit the first pair for her this last Spring but not in time for Mother’s Day. So we sent them as part of her birthday gift earlier in September, and she did tell M to thank me for the socks. But she didn’t say how they fit (she had sent her measurements with the yarn). I made M ask her this past Sunday and it turns out she finds them too big in circumference (I made an 8 inch sock for her 9.25 inch foot). But the problem is that she wasn’t going to tell me! I know she didn’t want to hurt my feelings, but as I have the second ball of yarn to knit up for her, I really needed to know how the socks fit. I’ll knit the second pair with fewer stitches and see how that works, but there won’t be any other surprise pairs of socks until I know how the second pair fits. But here is the first, too large pair:

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On the subject of handknitted Christmas gifts, my mom has some novelty yarn that she tried to knit into a vest, but it just didn’t work out. She figures the yarn wants to be a scarf, but she opined that another scarf was “the last thing she needed,” so the yarn has gone to stash. I guess I won’t think about knitting her a scarf for Christmas. My gift knitting projects are vanishing. More time to knit for me! I think Mom is way too smart to ever say she doesn’t need more jewelry even though she doesn’t. Hmmm….

But my other FO!

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Don’t you like the bandage?

At first I thought fingerless gloves was to be honest a stupid idea. But then I thought about how cold my fingers get while reading in bed in winter when our thermostat is set at 62 F. Suddenly I saw fingerless gloves in a whole new light. These each took part of an evening to knit on size 10 dpns. The yarn is Misti Alpaca Chunky, and it is super, super, super soft. The pattern was free with the yarn purchase, and it worked pretty well, although I was not overly impressed with the plan for the thumb gusset. I did it as written, and it worked, but I think the Fetching pair from the Summer 2006 Knitty, has a better construction plan. I will have to try that pattern too. On this pair I liked the mock cable made by ktog, leaving both stitches on the left needle and then knitting the first stitch again, slipping both stitches off the needle. It went fast and easy.

The success of these gloves with their missing parts has led me to think about other knits with missing parts. I speak of the shrug. I have really thought the shrug a ridiculous article of clothing, but as with the fingerless glove, I am experiencing a change of heart. I work in a lab that is “environmentally” contolled so well (you should sense the deep sarcasm) that temperatures fluctuate almost wildly and the various areas of the lab have very different microclimates (it’s a pity we don’t work on making wine). A T-shirt or blouse is often too cold, but a cardigan too warm. A shrug just might the answer. I’ll have to ruminate on this some more.

If you need a laugh on Thursdays, be sure to check out Jessica’s blog Rose-Kim Knits. Thursday is dedicated to “What the hell is this?” You have to look at last week’s winner; it’s a beaut.

WIP Wednesday

WIP Wednesday

While familiarizing myself with the knitting blogosphere, I found that many knitters make Wednesday work in progress show and tell. So, since I have some WIPs, I’m game.First, the pile of completed pieces of the La Gran cardigan grows: I have the first sleeve done, […]

Progress and a Trip to an LYS

Progress and a Trip to an LYS

I haven’t blogged for the past few days, but I have not been idle. Discriminating viewers will notice that I have changed my blog’s template, and I am still in the midst of fiddling with colors. M, alpha geek that he is, gets so excited […]

Beads, Wire, Yarn: It’s All Good

Beads, Wire, Yarn: It’s All Good

I put on my dark berry T-shirt and couldn’t find any earrings to wear with it. I found dozens of pairs of earrings, but I’d worn them all before, many times. I was suffering from earring ennui. It was time to retire to the Bead Room at get at it. I took this postcard I bought at the Monet in Normandy show M and I went to in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago.

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After a bit of poking around in my drawer of Swarovski crystals, I grabbed some sterling headpins and my pliers and made these:
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The pliers in the picture point out an important aspect of making these earrings. You have to mark the pliers! I used the second mark on the long nose pliers to mark the distance from the crystal to the place to make the loop. And the mark on the round nose plier tips showed me where to wrap each loop. I made wrapped loops. I almost always make wrapped loops. They are just so much more secure than a simple loop. Only if the wrapped loop would severely compromise the design, AND a simple loop wouldn’t cause pieces to fly off (I’ve had it happen! I learned this lesson the hard way.) will I think of considering a simple loop.

Are you old enought to remember mood rings back in the 70s? I didn’t have one, but my friend Margie did. Her hands were always so warm that the “mood stone” was always a deep royal purple. This meant she was relaxed and at peace, in love with the world. Well, Margie would get bored with her purple ring, so during recess and lunch, she would have me wear it. I have low blood pressure, so my hands were/are usually cold. Margie would watch her ring turn from deep purple to royal blue, turquoise, gold, brown and then black on my hand. Black meant I was tense and anxious, at odds with the world. She shared her Little Debbie snacks with me at lunch, so I put up with her teasing me about my “mood problems.”

Last Spring, while looking at bead auctions on ebay, I found some new mood beads (I don’t remember the site, and I couldn’t find it today). The beads were on my beading table, so I strung those up with some Thai silver beads that look faceted. I wanted to string the beads on black leather cord, but the silver beads’ holes were too small, and I really liked the faceted silver so the leather idea bit the dust and size 6 Czech black seed beads filled in. I like the look.

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Mood and silver beads up close and personal:
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I wore the necklace today to work, and the beads were turqoise, blue or purple most of the day. I was relieved that they weren’t black, that would be pretty lame if my neck were that cold when the beads were greeny-gold lying on my desk.

And in yarny-knitting news, I’ve finished the gusset of the first of Nancy’s Peacock socks. I chose to do what I’ve read called “eye of the peacock” slipped stitched heel flap. I thought it was appropriate with the yarn colorway 😉
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Must go knit and watch House.

Is this right?

Is this right?

Help! Of the six people I know of who read this blog, 2 are master sweater knitters (yes, Mom, I’m including you in the 2!). I am not sure I have done the neck shaping correctly, although I can’t think of another way to interpret […]

Shameless, Truly

Shameless, Truly

First and foremost, I must rectify my neglect from yesterday (even though I wasn’t called on it). The cat photos were taken by my brother, Thomas, on his new digital camera. He’s become a really good photographer. I meant to give him photo credits, but […]

It’s a box!

It’s a box!

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Yes, it’s a box of yarn. A care package soon to be on its way to Wisconsin, where the winters are cold, and kitties need felted kitty beds. Mom, the knitter who taught me to knit, has promised to make some. I sent her the links to the pattern on Wendy’s blog. I hope that soon Wendy will have a bed for Rip and one for Katrina to add to her album. Speaking of Rip and Katrina:

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Aren’t they cute? Rip is an 18 year old Burmese, and he is starting to show his age. Katrina is 5 years old and birthed by a feral mother, but she decided she liked people, so my family adopted her. Rippy was 13 at the time, and he really didn’t see a need for a second cat in the house. A sort of cold war detente now reigns as each pretends the other doesn’t exist. Katrina would like you to know that even though she isn’t a pedigree cat like Rip, she is an Ur cat, which is a fancy way of saying all her coat markings are dominant genetically. She thinks this makes her very special. It’s a good thing cats don’t have to take a genetics class.

In other knitting news, I haven’t made a lot of progress since my last post: bit of a heel flap, a bit of leg, the start of neck edge shaping (for some reason the bane of my existence). But I do have a picture of some Fleece Artist merino that is going to become a Diamond Fantasy Shawl (I hope) from the gorgeous design by Sivia Harding.
IMG_0941.JPG At least that is the plan, and I hope to have this done in time for the holidays. The scarf version, which is what I’m planning to knit, takes only 350 yds of FA merino, so I am hoping that it won’t take me forever. The colorway is Ruby.

Well, the heel flap is calling to me to get cracking and get it turned. One must always obey the knitting.

It’s September. It’s Autumn. No Shirking Mohair.

It’s September. It’s Autumn. No Shirking Mohair.

Over the past few days, I’ve tried to do some prioritizing (I’m pretending that I can stick to this). Namely, what I need and want to have done by Christmas. I am not the fastest knitter in the West, so now is the time to […]