Monday, January 26, 2009

The Pretty Post

...in which I finally post all the photos that had been accumulating on my camera. There are actually fewer than I thought there were, but oh well. New business first! This weekend, in no particular order, I:

1. Took my first handspun, seen here:
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and turned it into my first plied yarn, seen here:

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It's, um...textured. To say the least.

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Many thanks to the SO for loaning his hand & arm.

2. Took my second handspun, which I apparently did not photograph as singles, and turned it into my second plied yarn.

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Apologies for the absolutely bizarre angle of that picture. It was late, I was tired, and the SO had gone back to his video game and I didn't think it was fair to bug him again. Also, I am impatient and could not wait for him to cross the room.

While not perfect, I think we can all agree that the second attempt was much better.

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I'm sorry - I meant to say the second attempt had not nearly so much character as the first. Yes. Character. But it is soft and beautiful and I plan to make a hat or something out of it. I am rather desperately in need of a hat, but I have spent all my time knitting them for other people and haven't got one for myself.

Both skeins are currently hanging in my shower drying out. As prescribed, I put them in water and Euclan to set the twist and then hung them up (actually, the prescribed method according to Maggie Casey's book is to put them in water with dish detergent, then dump that out and put them in with distilled vinegar, and then to put them in with a plain rinse "to get rid of the salad smell" but I figured the Euclan was close enough). I checked on them several times before bed and when I got up this morning. The bottoms are still wet, but I have faith that when I get home they will be dry.

3. Finished a super sekrit hat.

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Ha! You all didn't even know I was knitting that one! The SO's birthday was this past week and I didn't want him to know, and while I don't think he reads very often (most likely because he hears way more about yarn and knitting than he wants to when he is home anyway) I didn't want to take the chance. 1x1 ribbed hat based on a cross of the noro scarf pattern and Kim's Hats from Last-Minute Knitted Gifts. I took the largest size from LMKG, looked at the difference between it and the second-largest size, which was about 2 inches. Since I needed one four inches larger than the largest size, I took the difference in cast-on stitches between the second-largest size and the largest size, and added twice that many stitches to instructed number of cast-on stitches for the largest size (bless that man and his 26" head). I then ignored the pattern until I got to the decreases.

I knit the whole thing in Noro Kureyon, using a 1x1 rib, and switching colors every two rows. I'll have to check the tags when I get home to see what colors they were, I forgot to look for the purposes of this post. I didn't finish the hat before the birthday celebration (which took place several days after the actual birthday), but this turned out to be a good thing, because when he tried on the unfinished hat I found that I had actually overestimated the length I would need to knit (I will be taking better notes on this hat than I did on the last one I made him, for sure - also, I will make an effort not to lose my knitting journal that has his measurements next time. I did find it - right after I finished the hat). I frogged a couple inches, did the decreases last night, checked it on his head several times, wove in the ends, and dunked it in water with some Euclan to try to soften it up a little bit. It's actually wet in the picture above, because I did not plan ahead, so the colors are darker than they should be.

Once I finished that, I cast on this:

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Men's wristwarmers from LMKG, only in a 1x1 rib instead of a two by two so that they will match the hat. I had planned to make the hat, and then a scarf, and then the wristwarmers if I had enough yarn left, but the man expressed a level of enthusiasm for the handwarmers that made me think maybe I should do those first, and just end up with a shorter scarf (or go buy more yarn). Thankfully for my sanity, he does not care if the two wristwarmers match each other in color, because I think attempting a match would send me off the deep end. If I can get them close enough to at least look related, I'll be satisfied. The scarf will pull it all together anyway, if he wears it.

4. Saturday I went with a friend down to the Museum of American History, and I needed metro knitting, so I wound this:

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I'm knitting it up in Pink Lemon Twist's New Fallen Snow pattern from her Visions of Sugarplums Sock Collection. Now, this colorway looks nothing like snow - it is actually all the colors of a tropical ocean somewhere in the Carribean. But, I think the NFS pattern could also be interpreted as waves, so - as far as I am concerned, I'm knitting the Carribean sea.

(ETA: Oops, almost committed a blog sin. I'm going to hae to go off memory until I can look up the details. The SO bought this yarn for me while he was in New Hampshire. It's from a local dyer. The tag says Serenity and it has a Celtic knot on it. The blend is superwash merino, bamboo and nylon and I will have to look up the colorway. I actually thought I took a picture of this yarn in the skein along with the purple one he bought me, plus two skeins of Happy Feet I received for Christmas that I had forgotten to photograph, but I did not find the photos last night.)

(ETA2: Ah, here we go - Sereknity yarns Sereknity Sock Options Shimmer Merino Bamboo[rav link] Ravelry to the rescue as always! The other yarn he brought me from them is a merino-seacell blend [rav link].)

(ETA3: I'm slow. The spelling rang a bell and I went and look, and sure enough - this is the same Sereknity that dyed the Eye of Jupiter Yarn the Yarn Harlot is using for her Battlestar Galactica socks.)

So, that was new business. On to (or back to?) old business.

One of my Memorial Day activities was stashing all the Christmas yarn.

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Except for that which I intended to knit over the long weekend.

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(I may have overestimated my abilities somewhat.)

From left to right: Yarn for the noro hat pictured above. My noro scarf and the two balls of yarn I had left to knit into it. Malabrigo Silky Merino in Velvet Grapes for a Just Enough Ruffles scarf. Right above that, a ball of Valley Yarns Northampton (one of three) for the Hemlock Ring Blanket (I have been pilfering the yarn off that ball to use as leader on my spinning wheel, because I didn't have any non-superwash scrap yarn that I could find). And, last but not least, the nearly finished Tilli Thomas bag I have been meaning to get to. There is a lot more finished than it looks like because it rolls up, I really only need like an inch and a half to get it done and I swear half an hour would do it, if I could just stop KNITTING STUFF FOR EVERYONE ELSE FOR FIVE MINUTES.

I'm not actually sure what that purple ball in the left corner was...maybe the Homestead yarn I was going to use for the Hamsa scarf? I think that's right.

I am crazy enough that I actually believed I would finish the bag, the hat and the scarf and the center part of the Hemlock Ring blanket (leaving me with easy tv knitting at the feather-and-fan section). Ha. On top of that, I'm actually crazy enough that when I put it together for the picture I was thinking that that was my knitting stuff for the day. Then I took the picture, stepped back, and thought, that it was probably enough to last me the weekend. Maybe.

One week later, I have finished the hat, gotten through about half the two balls left on the scarf, cast on and worked maybe six rows on the Just Enough Ruffles Scarf, and the rest is pretty much untouched (although actually...I don't think that's half bad).

And, of course, the one last bit of old business...pictures of the finished and blocked Whispering Pines Shawl. Unfortunately, they are kind of crappy pictures, because it was really late by the time I got around to uploading stuff last night and I didn't take much time to fix them. They also just weren't great shots to begin with, since I was a bit giddy after pinning it all out.

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I did not pin out the edging, since I kind of liked it floopy, and I may have chickened out at the thought of pinning that many points.

1 comment:

Karen said...

Love the texture of the handspuns--if you ever come up with something you don't want to knit--throw it my way....and, of COURSE I LOVE my shawl.