Friday, March 29, 2013

FO Friday - 3/29/2013

The list of WIPs has gotten a little shorter...

I finished the Summer Chills Cardi:

I followed the instructions for the six month size, but I knew that this cardi was going to turn out larger because of the gauge. The yarn I was using (Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Cotton) is really more of an Aran weight than a worsted weight.  No matter - I like to make baby gifts at least in the 12 month size, as babies grow fast in those first few months.  Most of the time, I start the garment after the baby is born.  I'm not really the fastest finisher, since I seem to have several things going at once...Also, babies tend to stay in size 12 the longest; so, it has worked out for me. 

I also finished the Purl Ridge Scarf:

It was a pretty fast knit, but I have to tell that I had started it on size 5.0mm needles, since I had forgotten (and not paying attention - It's becoming a pattern with me) that the yarn is a DK weight...not worsted.  It was looking all loosey-goosey, and it wasn't very flattering.  I frogged it and started it on size 4.0mm needles.  I liked it much better.  To account for the fact that I was using smaller yarn and smaller needles than what the pattern instructed, I cast on 260 stitches and worked two more repeats of the pattern.  It worked out just fine.

MK out.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

WIP Wednesday - 3/27/2013

So, I kind of had a Cast-On Palooza on Sunday.  It is really hard not to cast on things that are in my Ravelry queue.  I tend to put things there that I want to knit sooner, rather than later...and they call my name all.the.time!!!

Besides the ones I showed you on Friday and you are about to see again, like the Purl Ridge Scarf:

the Summer Chills Cardi:

the Casu Cowl:

and the Lacy Scarf:

I started my March socks (finally):

The scoop is on my Ravelry page.  I will not be finishing them in March, as they are not very far along, even today, but so far, it is an intriguing knit.

I started a spring cardi for myself:

I chose Gaia.

I've been wanting to make a Honey Cowl for the longest:

The pattern is so easy, but looks so special.

That's a lot of things going right now...If only I can finish a few...

MK out.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Movie Monday - 3/25/2013

I spent last week watching the shorts presented by PBS's On-Line Film Festival. There were about two dozen films...each from a few minutes to up to twenty minutes long.  Some were inspiring, some were informative...most were entertaining.  There were three that I really liked:

Noc Na Tanecku - about one of the last Czech dance halls in Texas.
Capsule - about two astronauts depleting the oxygen in their crashed space ship.
CatCam - about a cat with a small video camera strapped to its collar to record its life away from his family.

The films are still on the website - go watch them when you have some time -

Not too long ago, a friend and I had lunch and then went to the movies.  She wanted to see Safe Haven.  Julianne Hough plays a woman running from her past.  She starts a new life in a small town.  Josh Duhamel plays a widower with two small children who takes an interest in her.  It was cute but predictable...definitely a renter.

MK out.

Friday, March 22, 2013

FO Friday - 3/22/2013

Lot's of knitting...a few FOs.

I finally finished the February 2013 Socks on March 13th, but I was out of town and didn't post last week:

I used Rainy Days and Wooly Dogs Henbane in a color called Blood Queen.  The pattern is Iron Maiden Socks by Phyllis Evans.  They were a fun knit, except for the fact that I had issues at the beginning - see this post.

The Rikke Hat is also complete:

The pattern is by Sarah Young.  I used a 100% single-ply merino by Inca Tops, but I don't know the name of it.  I don't really like single-ply yarn - unless it is Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light.  Since it has a tight twist, it holds together quite nicely...unlike this mystery stuff.  I managed to make it through though...

My donation for The New Start Project for which the DFW Fiber Fest is collecting washcloths this year is complete:

I used a cotton chenille yarn by Numei Yarns.  The pattern is the diagonal garter-stitch...I don't remember the official name.

Since I didn't do a WIP Wednesday post this week, I will show you what is OTN currently.

The Purl Ridge Scarf by Stephen West, using Fiber Lady Makimo in Relaxing:

The Party Lace Scarf by Lisa Sisk, using Bollicine Sissi in a multi colorway:

The Casu Cowl by Galia Lael, using a no longer available a base by Madelinetosh in Jade:

A Summer Chills Cardigan by Danielle Reiner, using Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Cotton in a pretty blue:

Lot's of WIPs means not so many FOs on any given week...

MK out.

Friday, March 8, 2013

FO Friday - 3/8/2013

It's been a good knitting week - but not so much to show for it.

I do have one FO:

Although I had 9 skeins of this off-white yarn (Plymouth Yarn Silk Merino) - 8 of them were one dye lot and one was a different one.  The Loopy Ewe's 1st Quarter Challenge was to knit something with cables using one ball of yarn.  Well, I made the Lava Flow Cowl as evidenced last Friday - but I started and finished it in January.  That is my official entry, since only yarn that has been purchased or is carried at TLE will qualify. Since I seem to have quite the collection of lone skeins of yarn in my stash, I continued with the cabled project using one ball of yarn them and also started and finished the Basic Cable Hat in January.  I figured one more for the road wouldn't hurt; so, I made these fingerless mitts this month.  The pattern is One Cable Mitts.  It was fast and easy.

MK out.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Movie Monday - 3/4/3013

Yes, I am still disgusted that Argo won Best Picture. 

I managed to watch two documentaries recently - both of which were nominated for Best Documentary.

The first is Jiro Dreams of Sushi - the story of Jiro Ono, the meticulous owner of a sushi restaurant in Tokyo, Japan.  There are only ten seats in the place, and a 3 month waiting list to get a reservation.  Jiro is now in his 80s and has been making sushi for 70 years.  He is a perfectionist about every aspect of his craft and restaurant.  His apprentices are expected to learn each step of his method perfectly before they move on to the next one.  He has two sons also in the sushi business - the older one works with him and will someday inherit his father's restaurant.  I thought the film was interesting.  I learned alot about what it takes to make sushi.

The second is set In the 1970s, when Sixto Rodriguez was essentially a musically talented singer-songwriter who signed a two album contract with a record label.  Despite the fact that the biz highly praised his music, the records didn't sell well and Sixto disappeared into obscurity.  His music was brought to South Africa by an American traveller.  It didn't take long for bootlegged copies to make the songs became quite popular.  Rumors of his death circulated the country.  Meanwhile, here in the United States, not many people knew he had ever existed.  Stephen Segerman, an independent record store owner in South Africa, began the hunt to find Rodriguez.  Searching for Sugar Man is about that search.  I really liked it.  It won the Oscar.

Then, I watched another movie. In Safety Not Guaranteed, Kenneth (Mark Duplass) places a want ad in the paper, looking for someone to join him in a time travel exercise.  This person must bring his or her own weapons and is told in full disclosure that safety is not guaranteed.  The ad is brought to the attention of a magazine.  Jeff (Jake Johnson) volunteers to find the author of the want ad.  Two interns are assigned to help him - Darius (Aubrey Plaza) and Arnau (Karan Soni).  It's a quirky, sweet little comedy.  I liked it, of course.

MK out.

Friday, March 1, 2013

FO Friday - 3/1/2013

I've been starting projects left and right the last few weeks, and I've managed to finish a few along the way.

I've been in a bit of a funk lately - yesterday being the worst day e-VAR!  I looked at the Infinitude Cowl/Scarf that I sort of finished a while back.  The pattern calls for 300 yards of worsted yarn.  Well, after completing three repeats of the horizontal pattern, I had used 274 yards and I wasn't sure if I wanted to go on.  I liked the way it looked; so, I bound off and put it aside.  I had three balls of the Plymouth Yarn Silk Merino left, and I had another cowl pattern that I wanted to try.

As I was saying, I looked at my Infinitude and decided that I wanted to either finish it or move on.  I had started (and by started, I mean I had cast on) a Garland Cowl on Tuesday; so, I picked it up and knitted along...all day...I finished it yesterday afternoon:

It took a smidge over two balls to complete.  The middle panel doesn't thrill me - I'd be very happy with another five rounds of the YO, K2tog pattern instead.  I know that if I did a little blocking, it would probably bring out the lace pattern more, but I really think blocking is over used these days...

Being that I had leftover yarn, I picked up the Infinitude and picked back the bind off.  I proceeded to complete another repeat of the horizontal pattern and binded off last night:

I'm not the best picture taker, but I think I need props.  I'm thinking I want to purchase a mannequin of some sort on which I can style my creations and photograph them better.

Until then, y'all will suffer a bit, I'm afraid.  I hope your retinas don't scar.

Back in January, I finished knitting a Lava Flow Cowl.  It begins with a provisional cast on, as the ends are to be grafted together when the cowl is completed.  So, this whole last month, I've been trying to wrap that one around in my mind.  I can graft stockinette with my eyes closed (not really, but it's a descriptive sentence) - however, this item was knitted in a pattern - 2x2 rib, but a pattern just the same...It ain't stockinette.

Today was the day...I pulled out my copy of Lucy Neatby's Finesse Your Knitting 1 DVD.  (If you don't have any of Lucy's'd better get right over to her website and get some...I'm just saying.)  The section about grafting stitches from top to bottom is very helpful.  Unfortunately, I was already behind.  I should have prepared better for the grafting before I started the pattern. 

Lucy loves waste yarn setups in more than one color, because they help you see how the yarn is traveling.  Darn, all I had done was a cable provisional cast on.  Oh well...

I did the best with what I had at that point.  (I have another cowl OTN that I started the same way and it has a pattern - moss stitch - so, I will have to wing it a little after-the-fact with that one too).

I did the graft and pulled out the red "first row" in the waste yarn on one side:

After I checked it to make sure it was okay and pulled out the different colored row on the other end, I deemed the mission a success.  It's not perfect, but the join is not visible to me:

I wove in the ends, and vee-oh-lah! it is finished:

It is my entry in The Loopy Ewe's 2013 First Quarter Challenge.  I used one skein of Madelinetosh Tosh DK in Moorland.  It was a pleasurable knit.

And...finally...I came across a pair of socks a couple of days ago that I had finished in January...the January 2012 Socks to be precise...

The pattern is Elderflower Wine, and I used Black Sheep Dyeworks Sock Weight Superwash Merino.  It is heavenly.  I liked working the pattern, although it required much concentration on my part.  I remember that it was challenging to find the time to sit down and follow the chart.

I'm glad that I found them when I did, because yesterday was the last day to post them on the Sock Knitters Anonymous January Challenge thread to compete for prizes.  I'm not so concerned about that, as much as I like to finish what I start.  I had a cast on post and I needed a bind off post to feel complete.

Lot's of FOs, huh?  Don't worry...I have just as many WIPs currently. 

MK out.