Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Knitting schedule roundup

How went July? Well, my goals were to complete all of my current WIPs. I managed to complete two of the five. One of those, however, was a freaking sweater. See:

Details: Double Cream by Marie Wallin, published in Simply Knitting January 2009. Yarn is Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Bulky in Emerald, which they have marked as "last chance" as of this writing.

I decided to forgo the buttons and the accompanying button loops, because they required crochet, and let's face it, crochet is evil. (*grin*) At least, I didn't have the patience to try to learn how to do triple crochet in the round, or whatever it's called in crochet.

I also finished the January sock club socks, called Cascadia. They're beautiful, pink, and MINE. No photos because I don't want to get up. (Details: Cascadia (not available until January 2011) by Sivia Harding in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Lightweight, colorway Happy Go Luck (also not available until January 2011))

Both of these projects are exquisite. Even though I didn't get through my schedule, I really couldn't be happier to have finished the sweater and the socks. The sweater is SO. COZY. Even living in Texas I can tell I'm going to use it constantly - people overair-condition the crap out of their houses.

As for the hat, gloves, and endless cardishawl... Well, I worked on the gloves some today - hopefully I can finish those by Sunday. The hat I want to finish before I go on vacation next week. (Before I go on vacation from what, I ask rhetorically.) I suppose I can take the cardishawl on vacation and have something to do then! (Which is good because I got the yarn for this year's Christmas sweater and I don't want to work on it around the recipient.)

I imagine I'll also be able to finish one pair of socks and one hat, maybe two. At least, this assumes I have time to knit, something that's been sorely lacking lately.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Knitting Goals

End of July:
All my WIPs:

  • Cascadia socks (aka January sock club socks)
  • Double cream sweater (aka Knitting Olympics sweater)
  • A's hat
  • M's gloves
  • Endless cardishawl
Probability: 50/50

End of August:
  • Two pairs of socks
  • Two Christmas presents (hats)
End of September
  • Two Christmas presents (sweater and a pair of socks)
End of October
  • Two Christmas presents (socks and something I haven't decided on yet)
  • One pair of socks for me
End of November
  • Two Christmas presents (mittens)
  • Classic striped cardigan from Knit Picks for me
End of December
  • One Christmas present (socks)
  • Whatever the hell I want to do

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Progress, sweet progress.

My works-in-progress are progressing! I am SO FREAKING HAPPY. I can't wait to start some new stuff, which I'm hoping to do by the end of the month. (I've imposed a moratorium on new projects until the WIPs are all done.)

I would show you pictures, but I don't have any new ones still. (I found my camera, but it's too much effort to take photos right now, so you'll just have to take my word on it.)

The January sock club socks are over 3/4 of the way done, which is a LOT of progress. I just have a few more inches and to choose a new cuff because the one that came in the pattern doesn't do it for me.

I finally wound another ball of yarn for the Double Cream sweater... this thing is going to be SO COZY when it's cold outside. I'm imagining wearing it at Christmas while opening presents - of course, the weather will probably refuse to cooperate and be 70 degrees outside because, let's face it, it's Texas, and Texas weather don't play nice.

Okay, looking over the list, it doesn't look like I've made that much progress. BUT I refuse to be deterred. Back to knitting Double Cream!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Holy crap, time flies!

You know that unreasonable schedule of completion-ness that I had a couple posts/months back?

As you can probably guess, nothing on that list is done. (I blame turning 21, 40 pages of papers due in one week, graduation, and moving.)

Here's the list again, and all my excuses:
  • Meaghann's gloves - Tiny. Have to reknit the fingers. Too fussy, basically.
  • Wishful Thinking hat and pattern - Sized incorrectly so just a tad bit too big - too long, mostly. Ear flaps are done but not attached because I want to rip out part of the brim to account for the excess length.
  • Knitting Olympics/Double Cream sweater - Um, still not done. Still only has just half the collar. I'm planning on snuggling up with it today, though, because it's raining cats and dogs and I'm sick and injured (krav maga injury)
  • Unnamed, undesigned hat - Funny story. We're not roommates anymore (no falling out, just lease expirations), so I think this one is getting frogged in the hypothetical sense.
  • January Sock Club Socks - I have actually been working on these. These have not been working for me though - I had to rework the gusset three times to get the length right, and now the heel is being wonky so I'm ignoring it by way of punishment. And yes, this is still the first of two socks.
  • Dye hunting sweater yarn - That aforementioned lease expiration put quite a cramp in my plans to dye the yarn: I'm living in someone else's house and I would REALLY hate to screw up their kitchen. Oh, and the New Zealand hunting trip is done and over with. Oops.
  • Hunting sweater - See above about NZ hunting trip
  • Socks for my uncle - Heh. Promised him some for Father's Day. Then promised they'd be done by the time he got back from his three weeks of traveling to places I can't remember.
  • March Sock Club Socks - Got the yarn, got the pattern, don't got the time yet.
  • A Christmas present - I don't even remember what I was talking about at the time, and I'm not sure who the recipient was supposed to be
I did, however, finish a project that I had forgotten about since Christmas. And by finish, I mean I got through the knitting bits. There's a crochet border that I'm ignoring. (I'm getting really good at ignoring knitting, apparently.) It's a bath rug, the Garterlac Bath Rug from 101 Designer One-Skein Wonders. It's in Peaches N' Creme Daisy Ombre, so it looks like popcorn a bit. (I'll add a photo later... my camera's gone missing in the move and my iPhone cable is downstairs.) (When I took it out of the bag to get a photo I accidentally pulled out a couple of (very short) rows on the last corner. So now it's not really done any more. Not that it was really done anyway; see above re: crochet border.)

I want something that will knit up really FAST. My current inventory of WIPs, excluding the bath rug mentioned above, looks like this:
  • M's gloves
  • January sock club socks
  • Endless Cardishawl
  • Wishful Thinking hat
  • Double Cream (Knitting Olympics) sweater
Those were all I could think of when I was coming up with a "WIP: To Finish by the End of the Summer" list.

Did I mention I intend to knit Christmas presents too? And that two of the WIPs on that list are from LAST Christmas?

Crap. Time to knit.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

(Almost) relaxed...

This Wishful Thinking hat that I'm working on is not my first attempt at colorwork ... hang on, wait, yes, it is. It took me a day or two to remember all the tricks I've read about how to handle the yarn when working with multiple strands of yarn, but once I did, knitting started to go SO much faster.

And then Saturday came around. Saturday was my 21st birthday. 21st birthdays are expected to be full of debauched fun. Mine ended with me passing out around 11-11:30 p.m. on my uncle's couch because I didn't eat lunch and drank two glasses of wine and two margaritas BEFORE dinner even started, plus another margarita with dinner. (Honestly, I barely remember dinner.)

I didn't get back to my apartment until 6 p.m. the next day, since I stuck around my uncle's for shopping and an early dinner, and then my roommates and I celebrated my birthday.

Needless to say, I did NOT get much any knitting done this weekend. However, I did re-learn the value of fun and entertaining yourself, for which I am so grateful. I had been spending weekends sitting on the couch, watching TV, and worrying constantly.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Things unfinished...

I have been ridiculously stressed out by, well, everything. I made it through my tests and paper just fine (two A's and a B, thus far - just haven't gotten the paper back yet), but then, during Spring Break, instead of spending my week relaxing on the beach, I had to get caught up with doctor and dentist appointments, visit people I hadn't seen in a while, and deal with familial medical problems. 

Not at all surprisingly, I didn't knit too terribly much before or during Spring Break, and I haven't really gotten back in the groove. I did make a schedule of projects that I want to finish in the next couple of months.

Sara's (Probably Unrealistic) Schedule of Knitting Completion-ness

3/31 - Meaghann's gloves (these have been on the needles since early January. I am not pleased.)

3/31 - Wishful Thinking hat and pattern

     This is just a swatch. I have now cast on for the hat... let's see, three times? I'm hoping this time will be the charm. Also, the swatch does not look that funky in real life. It just refused to lay flat for a good photo.

4/4 - Knitting Olympics sweater - except for the addition of what is maybe half the collar, it still looks the same as in the previous post.

4/11 - Unnamed, undesigned hat - For my roommate's boyfriend. (My roommate is getting the Wishful Thinking hat, so don't get any funny ideas.) This goal could prove interesting. 

4/18 - January Sock Club Socks

Why, yes, I have had this yarn and pattern since the end of January. Yes, this is the first of two socks. No, the color is not that muted in real life. It's what one gets when one takes photos at 10 p.m.

4/24 - Dye hunting sweater yarn. This is for my mom. She's going to New Zealand. She also paid for the yarn and dyes, so I figure I should get the freaking sweater done before the NZ trip in June.

5/9 - Hunting sweater. As in, completed. As in, I am insane. I think there are two weekends between the dyeing and the completion, so maybe I can do it.

5/14 - Socks for my uncle. Because I've only been promising them to him for about a year now. 

5/22 - March Sock Club Socks. Haven't got the yarn or the time (yet). At the bare minimum I'm looking forward to getting the yarn in a few days from now.

5/31 - A Christmas present. I think the recipient reads this blog, so I will probably only provide hints.

I only got this far in my planning - the bell rang. I have other schedules in my favorite drag-around notebook, but this one is the most recent (though perhaps least realistic?). I always like seeing if I can make reasonable deadlines (create and reach, I mean). 

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Three tests and a paper in the next two days...

... and what am I doing? Updating my Ravelry notebook. I am an idiot.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

A sweater-coat! Mostly...

I sewed the coat together on Saturday (and wove in ends while I was at it). When I tried it on, it hung a little strangely, but I think the problem will be rectified with the addition of the collar, the button bands, and the buttons themselves.

I'm still working on other projects that I haven't taken pictures of, and it's starting to feel like my knitting is stagnating. I haven't really worked on anything else in the last month, and I'm frustrated creatively. Two of the projects are in second-whatever stage, and I'm bored. The other project seemed complicated enough, initially, but now I'm bored again and have the chart memorized, too. I'm not really sure how to deal with this knitting ennui, since most of these projects need to be finished soon.

And to finish, a picture of my kitty!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

An occupied bed...

... and the pictures to prove it:

I am finally finally FINALLY closing in on the finish line of my Knitting Olympics sweater... just in time for the weather in Texas to warm up for good, I imagine. I feel bad hoping that it will be cold enough to wear this sweater before next November (thank you Texas weather), but I really want to show it off!

Also currently on the needles are my socks from the Blue Moon Fiber Arts Notorious Sock Knitters club. But, since this is a member-only organization, I can't show them to you. Not that there's much to look at, since I haven't even finished the first little bit.

I'm also working on *something* for Mother's Day for my mamá, and I'm trying (not too) desperately to finish a pair of gloves for my roommate for Christmas. (I started them in January. Yes, I feel bad that it's taking so long, especially since the same warm weather that prevents me wearing my sweater-coat prevents her from wearing her gloves. Also I think she might have appreciated having them that day that it snowed here.)

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Setbacks and progress

Setback number 1382934:

I found a mistake where I accidentally crossed the purl stitches in front of the knit stitches right at that point that I dropped the sixteen pattern stitches to. It took me three hours on Wednesday night to fix it.

I have made more progress in the last two days than I had in the last two weeks. Don't believe me? Look at this:

Okay, last two days may be an exaggeration, and looking at the photo, I realize that the back and one front piece were completed by Thursday (2/25) and the other front and that one sleeve you can see were finished Friday and today, respectively.

I was thinking that the sleeves might be too short, but I think that since the shoulders will be slightly oversized the sleeves should be fine. At least, I hope they will.

Also, there's almost no hope of me finishing this sucker by tonight. It won't stop me from trying, but I'm not holding out too much hope. I still have the other sleeve, sewing together, knitting the collar and button bands. Plus I never bought the four 1 1/2" buttons I will need to crochet covers for. Did I mention I don't really know how to crochet? I can make foundation chains no problem, it's the rest that gives me trouble.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

So far behind schedule...

... that it's not even funny. See this photo? I took it just a few minutes ago. If you look at my schedule, that front panel that's a quarter done was supposed to be finished Friday, and the other (currently nonexistent) front panel was supposed to be done yesterday.

What's the problem? Laziness. And my mom (hi Mom!) came into town yesterday so we went shopping. I'm either going to have to knit like crazy (starting tomorrow afternoon, since I have a paper due tomorrow morning that I need to finish) or admit defeat.

But you know, it is the Knitting Olympics. Maybe I can pull an Ohno and come from behind for the win (or bronze, in Ohno's case)...

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Knitting Olympics Event Schedule

In my head, I have a loosely formed plan for my Knitting Olympics sweater. It mostly goes like this: Finish the back by Wednesday 2/17. That's pretty much it. I guess, outlining the rest of it, this is what it looks like:

Wednesday 2/17: Finish the back. (Possible, but unlikely, as I haven't even started shaping the armholes yet.)
Friday 2/19: Finish one front panel (with a pocket)
Saturday 2/20: Finish the other front panel (with another pocket - details below)
Monday 2/22: First sleeve finished
Thursday 2/25: Second sleeve finished, block finished pieces
Friday 2/26: If the pieces aren't finished, dry them in the oven. Stitch together as instructed. Start collar
Saturday 2/27: Finish collar and one button band.
Sunday 2/28: Finish other button band, make crochet button covers. Wear my lovely new coat for the closing ceremonies.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Progress Report

This is a slightly out-dated photo from my Knitting Olympics progress:

Isn't it purty? I took this photo Saturday night after spending almost all day Saturday knitting (not really. I spent half of Saturday reading, the other half knitting.). This is the back of the pattern I'm knitting, and I'm delighted to report that I have yet to notice any screw-ups.

Since that photo was taken, I have made this much progress:

(Yes, it is the same ball of yarn as in the previous picture.) I didn't work on the sweater much yesterday, since I was sick and tired and reading and doing homework and cleaning the apartment and grocery shopping. I'm rather pleased with my progress nonetheless, and will continue knitting after I do my homework for tomorrow.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Christmas Yarn Fund

Okay, that's not REALLY the name of the savings account (though maybe it should be). The savings account itself is called Short-Term Savings, of which Christmas is one of those things that needs saving for in the short term.

Anyway. I decided after last Christmas that I should save up about $400 for Christmas for this year (which, retrospectively, seems a tad excessive, BUT better safe than sorry). By "after last Christmas," I mean literally the day after Christmas. I also decided that I wanted to have all that money in place by November 1, so any shopping that needed to be done (for non-knit presents) could be done at my leisure.

There are only two people (currently) on my Christmas present who don't want/deserve knitted presents. (By deserve, I mean that they appreciate the present upon receipt, but then I never ever see them wear it, so why waste my time and yarn?) These two people have agreed that non-knitted items will be under the tree for them, so don't go feeling sorry for them. That leaves nine people (family members and my best friend) who will be getting knit Christmas presents. As you mathematically-minded people might have realized, $400 for 11 people is kind of INSANE - at least for a college student. Which is why I used some of the money for my Knitting Olympics project.

The nice thing about knowing what I'll be making for people for Christmas 2010 is that I can do things like save up a little at a time for presents, and I have lots and lots of time in which to MAKE those presents, which is really the more important thing. (Fun fact: I didn't finish Christmas 2009 presents until... ah crap, I still have one more present! Ah geez. Hopefully by the end of February.)

The whole point of this post is that by thinking ahead (way, way ahead), you too can get a handle on Christmas 2010 presents. I'm currently saving $33.33/month for Christmas presents, and I am free to withdraw that money any time I'm ready to start another present. Also, I have a schedule in place for making stuff, and I have to make only one present a month from March through November to have everything done on time. See? Nice and relaxed.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Waiting for the torch...

I got my Knitting Olympics yarn in today, thank goodness. I spent the last hour watching the pre-show, I suppose, and the Opening Ceremony while swatching furiously, trying to get the right size needles. I managed 15 stitches per 4 inches on size 10 US (6 mm) and 19 stitches per 4 inches on size 9 US (5.5 mm). The gauge given on the pattern is 17 stitches per 4 inches. Since I tend to cheat on my swatches and only knit a few rows, I decided to play it safe and go with the size 10, since cables pull in knitting. Now I'm just waiting for the torch to be lit, and since they've only made it to China in the parade of athletes, I think I might go wind more yarn. Or clean my room.

Knitting Olympics Yarn

If I don't get my yarn today, there's no guaranteeing the mailman's safety.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Knitting Olympics

The Knitting Olympics start tomorrow. I am knitting this:

It's called Double Cream and was published in the January 2009 edition of Simply Knitting (which is a British knitting magazine. I have no idea where I got it. I would guess JoAnn Fabrics or some such.).

I am knitting it in this beautiful emerald green Wool of the Andes. (Something I have never seen on knitting blogs: No one ever bitches about how friggin' expensive it can be to knit. Even with the WotA, which is $3.99/100g hank, I paid $47.88 for the yarn for this project. I AM A COLLEGE STUDENT. The money for this project came out of my Christmas yarn fund (which I will explain later). Now, granted, I will end up with something that NO ONE else in the world will have, BUT holy crap that's a lot of money for one project.)

I just had a small panic attack about not ordering enough yarn, so I had to go through figuring out the number of meters of yarn necessary, convert meters to yards, then divide the number of yards necessary by the yardage per hank of yarn in order to confirm that yes, 12 hanks of yarn really is enough. (Really 11.4 hanks, but fractional orders apparently don't work.)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Hat to Start Me Off

I got this hat pattern from Ravelry, of course. You can find it here. Picture quality is crappy because I took the photo while wearing it... which means, of course, that I couldn't see the tiny display on my camera.

I LOVE this hat. I had to leave out one cable repeat because I was using leftover yarn and ran out in the middle of the decreases (so I ripped back and removed a cable repeat). The only objection I have to that method is that the brim stretches out very easily, but I think I can block it back into shape. Which is, of course, a terrible thing to say.

This is one of the few things I have knit for myself. Probably 90% of everything I make is given away. I feel like I've forgotten half the things I've knit already. I should really update my Ravelry account... (bibliophibian, if you're wondering). But not until I do my homework, which is what I'm currently avoiding.