Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Unblocked Kiri

I bound off the last stitch tonight! My two ball Kiri shawl is done. Wow, the last few rows took me days to finish. Mostly because I didn't devote enough time to sit and knit. Each row took me maybe 30 to 60 minutes to finish? Depended upon how distracted I was.

Speaking of distractions, I paused while knitting a leaf during last night's earthquake, but I kept on going after the shaking stopped. Seriously, I ought to have ducked under a table during the earthquake, but I just couldn't put down my lace! I was counting the stitch pattern and was not about to break my concentration, unless the quake worsened. After all of those elementary school earthquake drills and the 1989 quake, I knew better than to sit there by a glass window and watch the walls shake. I guess I was waiting for the quake to intensify before I took cover, but it never did. Everyone's fine, nothing even fell off the shelves. Anyway, I really hope I'm not so addicted to knitting that I can't even put down the needles/yarn during a natural disaster. If it's true, I'm in trouble!

Back to less scary things (happy halloween). Let's zoom in on the fern leaves!

I was afraid I'd run out of yarn and have to buy another ball just to finish the last bits. Although I knew I should've put in lifelines towards the end, just in case I needed to rip back and end the shawl a little earlier than planned, I didn't do it. Just kept pushing to see how far I could get. This is what was leftover. Yay!

Time to give the shawl a dunk in water and block it out. More details next time.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Cable and Lace Scarf

An FO (Finished Object translated for my non-knitting friends), finally! I'm already wearing my new scarf, as I blog. Just bound off the last stitch today and am so glad it's done. It took longer than I thought to finish this project, but it has been a secondary project for the past two months or so. This yarn is really nice to knit with. Very soft, thick, and squishy. I think I started working on this in September, with the notion that it would be my relief yarn while I made socks for Simon. Going from thin (and hard bamboo/wool) sock yarn to this thicker alpaca blend and back again. However, once I finished the socks, I started up the Kiri shawl with threadlike yarn. So once again, my red scarf was the relief project. One that I could zone out, knit, and relax with.

Pattern: my own combination of three 4-stitch cable panels with lace yarnovers in between and selvedge edges

Size: 3.5 inches wide and ~60 inches long

Yarn: Andean Silk (alpaca/merino wool/silk) from Knitpicks, 3 whole balls

Color: Barn red

Needle: size 6 (4mm)

At least that's an accomplishment for the week! I'm happy with my new scarf, but now I need to focus on what else is on my needles. I'm still slogging through my Kiri shawl. I knit and knit and don't see any progress. Yes, it's the knitting black hole. It's around ~300 stitches per row, so that's probably why. That's not a lot for some people, but it's enough for me. I have to concentrate and sit near good lighting to see these skinny stitches. Wah wah wah :) Here's the deal: I won't allow myself to cast on for a new project until I finish my shawl. I'm almost there (I think). Well, maybe I'll wind the yarn for my next project... just to get a head start.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Fern Cobweb

Lace knitting! My first real entry into lace knitting. I'm making the Kiri shawl, pattern designed by Polly. I've got two balls of Kid Silk Haze, so that will limit the size. Almost done with ball 1, so I guess I can say I'm 50% done! (picture is not exactly up to date) I'm on the 8th repeat of chart 2. A few more fern leaf repeats and then the edging. I really hope I don't run out of yarn before I reach the end. I also hope I don't underestimate and have too much leftover either. Then, the leftovers will go into the scrap pile, which I can't seem to throw away.

Anyway, I wonder when I'll finish this project. I started off with a bang but as I increase the stitch number in each row, I am slowing down. The pattern is easy enough that I can memorize the pattern for the particular row I'm working on, but I'm not good enough that I can zone out and keep knitting. I really do have to concentrate and watch my needles and the thread-like yarn. Since I can't watch tv (trying to catch up on The War) that requires my attention, I've gotten back into P&P (6hr version), Jane Eyre (4hr), and Jane Eyre (6hr). Mind you, I'm not watching ALL of them back to back. I can listen and occasionally look up, since I've watched these movies hundreds of times already. I like the long versions because I don't have to stop knitting and hit the remote control too often.

All in all, I'm enjoying knitting this pattern. In the beginning, I screwed up a lot, although I don't think you can see it very well (thank you mohair). I had trouble "reading" my knitting on the needles. The stitches were so big and airy that I couldn't really make out what was what. Looked like a big messy cobweb. Now, I'm used to it and it's a coming along.

Also, this week, my orange legwarmers got mentioned by Jenny & Nicole! I'm glad you liked them. There were so many fantastic entries for the one skein contest. Everyone made something inspiring.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

I am mohair

What kind of yarn are you?

You are Mohair.You are a warm and fuzzy type who works well with others, doing your share without being too weighty. You can be stubborn and absolutely refuse to change your position once it is set, but that's okay since you are good at covering up your mistakes.
Take this quiz!

Is this true?! I think it is! No one knows how I cover up my mistakes ;) Ha ha! And I'm currently working with Kid Silk Haze (mohair silk!). I can see why it'a aka Crack Silk Haze. Kiri shawl, in progress. Take the quiz and tell me what kind of yarn you are.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Simon's Socks

Done! On Monday night, I finished knitting the socks. Tuesday, Simon wore the socks to work. Initially, he thought they felt a little rough (probably the bamboo?) but were fine after a while.

Basic stockinette socks
Trekking Pro Natura (75% superwash wool, 25% bamboo)
A little less than 1 skein
Color: brown multi

As I've mentioned before, knitting with this yarn was ok, not great. Not nearly as soft and smooth as my other 100% wool sock yarns. After working with this for about a month, I adapted to the feel, but I'm not sure if I'd choose this wool/bamboo blend again. We hope it'll soften after washing.