It has been since I last bought yarn!

Monday, July 30, 2007

Hat Sunday, Ravelry and Ebay

Alas, hat Sunday proves to be fruitful again. Behold the hats that I knit in the name of stash busting!

And, in case you were wondering what kind of stash the MiL and I are trying to bust, I thought I'd also include a picture of the Bernat Softee Baby stash.

Um.... yeah. We can basically choose from every color combo available!! For the most part, this is leftovers from various blankets the MiL has knit, (she too has the unfortunate luck of knitting 90 zillion blankets a year), and I continue you to hold her to the "you better knit from my stash too" rule.

That is... if my stash ever arrives. I suppose it's not like I'm really using the current stash I brought with me, but now the moving company is telling us our stuff won't arrive until around Aug 9-22... I'm trying to pretend that this fact isn't depressing me. I MISS MY STASH!

In other news, I've spent the better part of the last three days completely "ravelry-ed". OH MY GOD is that site ever wonderful. I love that just by clicking a button, I'm connected to a tonne of options and ideas to knit. Like a pattern? Click on it and see the hundreds of the same item someone else has knit in various sizes and colors. Not only that it connects you to equally obsessed knitters instantly. I haven't gone on a "friending binge" yet, only because I'm trying to get myself adequately represented on there first. I can look at yarn pictures, finished objects and even a place where they have a hall of shame type FO's. It's glorious. I love Ravelry. If you knit, you should be on there. Go now to the homepage and sign up for a beta tester. The wait is a bit much, but it's TOTALLY worth it!

In fact Ravelry has already forced me to spend some money. I found a cardigan pattern that I absolutely MUST have. The pattern was found in a back issue of "Rebecca Magazine" and a quick ebay search, and a bid later, I was the winner. That won't most likely arrive until the end of the month, which is good, because I'm still trying to make good on the yarn diet's manifest decreeing that I cannot buy yarn until September.
So, yes, it's been a busy weekend... with all kinds of things in the fire for this week.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

I Never Thought This Day Would Come

I've be Ravelry-ed!

Much discussion on this topic to follow once I get up and running over there.


Monday, July 23, 2007

Hat Sunday!

Okay, so remember how I agonized how much stash to bring to last me 1 whole month without my stash and eventually settled on this?

Apparently I shouldn't have spent so much misery on it, because I have discovered something much more interesting and self gratifying... knitting from someone ELSE'S stash. That's right, it's bad enough that I have entire box of neglected yarn (with KOIGU no less), waiting for me, my MiL got me hooked on knitting from HER stash. She's been knitting baby hats for Rockyview hospital. They're simple, they're quick and addicting and most importantly, they eat left over yarn.

That's 2 afternoons of just casual, "I'll just knit a few rows" . THREE. STINKIN' HATS. I've had to put a hat ban on myself already, because otherwise nothing I intended to work on will get done. Since I kind of like that it's charity knitting and I like that it eats stash, I've declared Sunday as "Hat Sunday". It will be the only day devoted to baby hat knitting. Sunday, and only Sunday, I can knit little baby hats to my little heart's content. Also, I'll be keeping a running tab, with a goal of knitting at least one baby hat per week.

I think the hats were so addicting because the Spiral Socks were wrongly named. They should have been named "THE INSANITY SOCKS". I don't know what it is, or I'm just not engaged, (because I'm not), but I have made mistake, after mistake, after mistake, AFTER MISTAKE on this stupid pattern. With every 4 or 5 rows I knit, I will envitably have to go 2 or 3 rows back to fix an error. (I'm of the "OCD" knit set... meaning I can't seem to just let invisible errors go.) Progress has been slow, and painful, and motivation is at an all time low to finish.

That's not to say I'm not making ANY progress. My goal is to focus on this annoying sock this week and never look at the pattern again. Ever. (And I don't really think it's the pattern maker's fault... {although the toe is not that great}, its clearly the knitter with the problem.) Thankfully the leg is beginning to form and I'm making some headway.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Parlez Vous Francaise?

This past Christmas my MiL (from now on Mother-in-Law will be known as MiL on here) and I checked out the Boxing Day Sale at Make 1 Yarn Studio in Calgary. Our intention was only to go and see what the store was like, but three and a half hours later, high on yarn fumes, we left with several purchases attributed to our credit card. Yarn was procured at awesome discounts and we were practically giddy going from shelf to shelf, fondling the merino wools and enjoying the reduced prices.

One could argue that we may have not been thinking entirely clearly, so taken with happy yarn feelings, when looking at the book we purchased. MiL and I both purchased a cute baby pattern book from Phildar... entirely in french. Yes. We knew it was in french when we bought it. The book was $2 and the patterns were so cute that we convinced ourselves that a little time on the internet could help us procure an English translation to the pattern.

It wasn't until this summer, when I brought the book home with the intention of translating the pattern and knitting it did we realize that we may have bitten a little more off than we can chew. An email was sent to Phildar, and they sadly let us know that, no, there was not an English version of this particular book available. And so... feeling brave, we hit the internet to look for french-english knitting translations.

We did actually find a pretty good resource, (Chez Plum- a goddess if there ever was...) and have been slowly making progress on the pattern. Slow being the operative word here. I'm sure there will be more developments in a few days, and hopefully a back knit up soon... but I must say it's been interesting so far. The French seem to make a pattern more complicated than it is, (my humble opinion only), especially since instead of specifying a knit or purl, they say to knit on the wrong side (presumably purl) or the right side (presumably knit). I'm glad I didn't think to attempt this before being WELL familiar with English knitting patterns as this could have been even more difficult.

Will keep you posted on pattern translation!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Craving Pudding on my Yarn Diet

So the husband and I have been spending some time aquainting ourselves with our new neighborhood (as of Aug 3) and checking out all the great little stores and restaurants around our condo. At some point a while back someone told me that there was a yarn shop close to my house. After a quick little text to Google (I love the Googl text), I found out that close was an understatement. The yarn shop is, prepare yourself, A BLOCK AWAY. A block! Do you know how broke I'm going to be?

The husband, being rather indulgent to my yarn affair, suggested we take a quick peek inside to see what the store was like. Not only was it cute, and fairly priced, (very relieved, it's about the same as American prices), I spied a familiar label out of my eye. KOIGU. They just got KOIGU in TODAY... AND, they're getting more. As far as I know they are the only shop in Calgary to carry KOIGU... my first and only love... A BLOCK. AWAY. FROM. MY. HOUSE! (And here I thought that hoarding was going to be completely necessary while in the US.)

Pudding Yarn... I have a little crush on you right now.

Monday, July 9, 2007

The Summer of Socks

Yup! More socks!! It kind of dawned on me the other day that I've been "hardcore" with the sock knitting lately. It's probably because socks are light and travel well, and right now, in the heat of summer, they seem to be the best little project for me. I suppose I'll go with it for now, and just enjoy the steady stream of "quick finish" projects... before the perpetual wave of baby blankets come crashing down on me. (It's only a matter of time...)

It seems the more socks I make, the faster I'm able to churn them out, the most recent socks the best examples of the lightening speed pace.

Lightening Quick Knit Sock #1:

Pattern: Monkey Socks (By the infamous Cookie A)
Yarn: Regia Stretch Color #87 (I actually bought this at WEBS... but they don't seem to have it in stock anymore!)
Needle Size: US #2
Sock Model: Those are the feet of my lovely sister, who is also the proud, (hopefully), new owner

This is an addicting, easy little pattern that looks so good when you're done. The stitch pattern is awesome because it looks way more complex than it actually was. I was nervous starting these, as my last forray into knitting socks designed by Cookie didn't turn out so well. (They are so ugly {my bad knitting, not the designer's pattern} I pretend they didn't happen, so will not enlighten you with details.) But, my fears were quickly put to ease, as this turned out exactly like the picture told me it should. I would note for those who are interested in doing this pattern for themselves that you want to use a fairly subtle varigation so that you don't lose the pattern definition.

I knit these babies very quickly, one in some spare time during our move and the other over two days on our very long car trip back to Canada (that consisted of four days of driving). I'm hoping that the flying fingers and speed knitting I did will help work off the copious amounts of bad/fatty/fried food I was forced to eat thanks to the American Interstate system, that apparently doesn't believe that it's users would like a healthy dining option now and again.

Lightening Quick Knit Sock #2:

Pattern: Mine/Cookie's (I used the stitch pattern from the Monkey socks above, but came up with the anklet pattern from my own little head.)
Yarn: Koigu and Clauadia's Hand Painted left over from the Candy Necklace Socks
Needles: US Size #2

I suppose, technically these aren't complete socks... but close enough. These are little pedicure ankle socks I came up with for my mom, who is notorious for ruining the paint job on her pedicure, moments after it's been applied. I'd been wanting to use the left over Koigu (*slobber*) and other yarn from my Candy Necklace Socks, and this seemed like the perfect amount of yarn to make the pedicure sock anklets. I literally have 2 inches left of the Claudia's Hand Painted and very little of the Koigu (solid pink). No one can accuse me of not using every last inch of my leftovers!

I knit these puppies really fast- the pair of them in two days (8 hours each) 0f car tripping. I think even the husband was shocked to see how quickly I churned these out.

With those done, I turn to the temporary stash, (I've been in Calgary for two days and I already miss the rest of my stash), and am finally getting around to my Lorna's Laces I bought over Christmas. I'm doing the Spiral Eyelet Socks, and already have made progress from this picture that I took!

I have a feeling those might be done as soon as the end of this week- they too are also a very quick knit! I'm also turning my eyes to a more complicated sock pattern for some very fun looking pink varigated Koigu... if anyone wants to make suggestions for a pattern, I'd be greatful!
The next little picture is a little bragging I'm doing on behalf of my mother-in-law, who is "SB" or "sadly blogless". While I've been knitting socks like a fiend, she's become addicted to hats. The woman has been a machine churning out hats for newborns and has a huge stack of them ready to donate to the hospital. Behold the cute little hats in all their glory!

Some of us knit socks... some of us knit hats... all of us stay warm. Stay tuned as the Summer of Socks continues!