Lost in a Knitting Vortex

Hey y’all, so sorry for no post yesterday! I thought we were going to take a day trip to New Orleans, but plans fell through and I ended up just sticking around home for the afternoon. I started in on the never-ending 4″ of ribbing that I needed to complete the body of the Lightweight Pullover. Here are some pictures, since I think they explain it a bit better.

On Tuesday, I finished knitting the stockinette stitch portion of the body. All that was left was 4″ of 2×2 ribbing – not bad, right?

Wrong. I finally finished the ribbing today after only knitting 3″ yesterday. It was somewhat odd to knit for so long but not get the length to add up. I was a tad worried about casting off, since I haven’t tried the sweater on since right after I divided the sleeves – and there it hit me right underneath the bust line. Despite all this, I think I nailed it!

Now off to the sleeves, which will probably take some time, since they’re knit all on DPNs, which always take me a bit longer to use relative to circulars. I think my biggest obstacle now is to not lose focus or determination on this project – it’s going to be so easy to want to start the baby sweater!

How are your Ravellenic Games projects going? I’m loving seeing all of the Finish Line projects – what’s your favorite?

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A Sweater Takes Shape

All weekend, I’ve been knitting. For most people, this may mean 2 hours or so each day, making sure to go out and do other, ‘normal’ things. But nope, not me – with the start of the Ravellenic Games, my competitive side has certainly come out to play. I’ve been knitting almost non-stop, and have been watching the Olympics for the majority of that time.

In the past two days, I’ve actually gotten a fair amount of the Lightweight Pullover done – I’m past the raglan increases, past dividing the sleeves, and am on to the waist shaping. I’ve been debating pausing on the body work and knitting the sleeves (those are my least favorite parts), but I haven’t been able to stop myself from just knitting.

The stockinette stitch is rather soothing – though it’s easy to get bored, I like that I’m able to focus on other things without having to worry about where I am in the pattern. Every so often, I’ll take the time to measure where I am, but usually I just eyeball the distances.

How are your projects coming along? I’m really hoping to finish the sweater this week, but that may be a tad aggressive – I definitely want it done by the 9th (when I fly north), but I think Friday would be amazing. I’d like to get back to some of my other knitting, but I just can’t seem to put the sweater down long enough to finish my latest Miranda hat. Do you ever have that problem?

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On your marks, get set, KNIT

Unfortunately, I don’t have any FO to show you this Friday, so instead, I’ll catch you up on what’s been going on in my knitting.

After I posted on Wednesday, I went out to JoAnn’s and went slightly overboard in buying wool – but it was only $0.80 per skein ($0.97 on clearance, then each was 20% off with a coupon). I did the only mature thing and bought 20 skeins – 3 are for a toddler sweater for my mentor’s kid, 2 are for Miranda Hats, and 15 are for a sweater for myself.

Yarn for the Candlestick toddler sweater

Yesterday I basically just hung around and knit – mostly on the blanket, though I finished a round or two of the latest Miranda Hat. For some reason, I just don’t really have any motivation to finish it. Maybe it’s because I can use that as knitting on the plane to visit Michigan! (My parents surprised me with tickets to fly and see my friends for a week) I just bought more yarn to make other Miranda Hats, so I’m hoping that the new colors and yarn will re-excite me to make them. Aren’t the colors just so pretty?

I’ve slowly been making some progress on the never-ending Dorm Blanket, but it honestly doesn’t look as if I’ve lengthened it at all – have you ever had problems like that? It is so demoralizing to do one or two repeats, then hold it out and it doesn’t look any bigger. I just bought another pound of the pink/coral/persimmon color yarn so that I can continue the blanket (that was the real reason for going to JoAnn’s), but I’ve somewhat given up on the idea that this blanket will be done before I head off for college.

Today marks the beginning of the Ravellenic Games, and I’m counting down the hours until 3 p.m. so that I can cast on and begin my Lightweight Pullover. I’m really hoping to finish this in a week or so, since I have so many other projects I want to do. Project: Stash just started a Fall Sweater KAL, where we can knit whatever sweaters we want, but they should be done by the end of August – it’s not so much a KAL as a motivational thing – I’m hoping to finish the Lightweight Pullover and the Candlestick before August, and am hoping to cast on the Cool Cardigan in the wool that I just bought for another fall/winter sweater for my wardrobe (the cream, grey, and teal in the bottom 3 rows of the yarn pyramid). It has been great getting input from other knitters on patterns to use the wool for, since my searches didn’t really come up with anything – I’m loving the idea of raglans, since they don’t have any seams, and this cardigan seems just perfect with the three stripes and the weight of the yarn.

I hope that y’all have a wonderful weekend – I’ll probably knit and watch the Olympics for most of it, since my dad is keeping it low-key after having some oral surgery yesterday (don’t worry, he’s fine, just a little sluggish). What are your plans for the weekend? Is anyone participating in the Ravellenic Games? If so, what events?

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Almost Done, and Ambitions

For the last couple of days, I’ve been plugging along on my never-ending dorm afghan to try to keep my mind off of my soon-to-be-knit Lightweight Pullover. This afghan has been in the making for most of the summer, and though I always try to chip away at it row by row, this pattern seems to be stuck in the eternal vortex of knitting: no matter how many pattern repeats I knit, the blanket never grows any longer. Have you ever had that happen? After some frustrations, I decided to actually measure the darn thing, to see exactly how much longer I’m going to have to deal with the eternal-blanket-from-heck, and found out that I’m supposedly about halfway done. Here’s a picture snapped last night – it doesn’t seem that large, does it?

Yeah, I didn’t think so either. When it’s on my lap, it seems huge, but when laid on a bed, it barely covers a third of it. I figured that I needed 10 more repeats in order to hit the point where the pattern says that I should stop, but considering I have 4 more skeins of the caramel colored yarn (that’s roughly half of what I bought originally), I think I’m going to keep plugging along at it until I just want to bind off.

With all this griping, don’t get me wrong – I absolutely love the way that the pattern is coming along, and if I had actually followed the directions and knit in a bulky yarn, I don’t think I would be having this problem. But you see, a stupid cocky college student (read: me) decided that I didn’t want to spend the money for bulky weight yarn, so instead knitting double with two DK weight yarns would suffice. The blanket sure is cozy, but it seems to go by so slowly – I was hoping to have this done by the end of August to take to my dorm room, but what with the Ravellenic Games starting on Friday, I already know that the afghan will be on the back burner while I try to whip out my Lightweight Pullover.

Another thing that really isn’t helping this giant monster that has taken over my room is the fact that all of the autumn sweaters are luring me to knit them. And yes, I do mean all of them. I’ve had requests from other people (read: an old mentor and my brother) to knit them sweaters (or in the case of my mentor, knit his son a sweater). I’ve been perusing through patterns and finally have decided on the Candlestick pattern for the little boy, and am still planning to knit the Drops pattern for my brother.

But that’s not all, oh no, because my brain refuses to believe that knitting sweaters and cardigan could really take all that long, I’ve also gone through most all of Hannah Fettig‘s (aka Knitbot) designs and have made a list of the things I want to knit: everything. I’m being honest – my Yarn to Buy list has 4 of her patterns on it, including another Lightweight Pullover! A picture for proof:

So yes, I am somehow going to complete projects totaling over 7,000 yards of yarn/wool by, you guessed it, the end of the year. (Also, I’m not sure why I seem to have an obsession with Lion Brand’s LB 1878 yarn … other than you can buy it in bulk) After I finish the toddler sweater, and perhaps my brother’s (I’m still deciding whether I want to take it on), I think I’ll start the Effortless Cardigan – I think it would be a nice fall/winter sweater. Granted, I won’t be heart-broken if I don’t finish, but I really would love to have some nice spring cardigans (Featherweight and Breezy being the favorites) when Michigan decides to finally warm up, and just the thought of knitting with fingering yarn during the winter time sounds glorious.

If all those projects aren’t ambitious enough, I stopped by the library today. You’ll soon learn: that’s never a good thing. I came out with 4 knitting books, but they’re mostly just for some ideas and techniques. I’ve already gone through two of them and they’re ready to be returned to the library – don’t worry, no sticky notes flagging pages and pages of projects that just must be knit. Do you ever have that problem too?

I think that the Ravellenic Games are just getting me so excited for starting projects, not to mention the fact that Project: Stash is talking about knitting her own wardrobe for the next 6 months. She has even discussed the possibility of a Knit-a-long! I’m not sure if I’d join, but I guess it depends on the pattern. What’s on your to-knit list? Do you ever get a bit overly ambitious when planning projects?

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Breaking Down

This weekend brought more ball winding – it truly is addictive! Thus far I’ve wound just about everything that I can get my hands on, save shaving the cats and spinning their fur into yarn (wouldn’t that be so soft?). My room is slowly but surely turning into Mt. Yarn Cakes, but I’m honestly okay with that. Don’t they just look so pretty?

While lounging around waiting for the Louisiana storms to pass, I also had some time to swatch for the Ravellenic Games Sweater Triathlon. I didn’t realize that the stitches could grow after being washed (thanks Ravelry users for your knowledge!), so I re-swatched with two of the three possible needles, a US 6 and US 7. Though I originally swatched with a US 8 as well, I really thought that the fabric that was knit up with it was too light and airy for what I was looking for. After dunking the swatches in water for a quick minute, I let them dry and then measured the gauge. Lo and behold, the US 6 swatch (what was originally suggested for the pattern) gave the correct gauge!

I’ve had such an itch to start the sweater that I ended up starting my fourth Miranda Hat to try and get my mind off the Lightweight Pullover. I also stopped by JoAnn’s this weekend to pick up some needles to make socks (yes, I think I’m taking the jump and starting some eventually). Nevertheless, I’m finding the sweater calling to me, and it really is testing my will-power to not cast it on. I’m not quite sure if I can hold out for the opening ceremonies on Friday.

How do you resist the temptations of starting a new project? What are you knitting for the Ravellenic Games? I’m thinking that if I break down and start the sweater, I may just go in for the Hat Dash or Sock Put, or perhaps knit a smaller sweater for a mentor’s son. I also accidentally promised my brother this sweater for a holiday gift, so perhaps that’s the next big project.

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Friday FOs and Knitspiration

It has been a busy week for knitting – I was actually able to complete my final initialed washcloth (this time it was navy with an E on it), as well as my third Miranda Hat and another simple potholder.

I cut it a bit close on bringing yarn to knit with – I really only packed the initialed washcloth (which I had already started), yarn for one hat, and another ball of cotton yarn to make whatever I wanted. After completing the initialed washcloth on the first day of travel, I started (and restarted) the third hat during the second travel day, finishing it up during some downtime in Florida. Yesterday was my final travel day, and I just couldn’t decide what to make with the last ball of cotton yarn: a hat? another initialed dishcloth? a new pattern? After starting a hat and having it be the right size for a giant, I decided to go for a new pattern, a simple dishcloth that involved yarn overs and is knit from corner to corner – it almost looks as if the border is lacy and crocheted on.

 

I finished my grandma’s dishcloth, and ended up wrapping some soap in it for her – she absolutely loved it, so I’m glad I stayed up late before my trip finishing it up.

Even though I wasn’t necessarily able to keep up-to-date with all the knitting blogs throughout the past week, I’ve found some nice posts since I’ve been back.

  • Steph’s hunt for the right needles had me absolutely in stitches (no pun intended) – I had a minor emergency while on my trip (I thought I had lost 1 dpn of my set) so her debacle certainly resonated with me!
  • I love Sheri’s idea to turn this room decoration into yarn balls – I may just have to try that with some smaller balloons for the dorm room – it might even be cute to not go all the way around the balloons so as to make little baskets – perhaps they could be used as project bowls? I could see myself putting the cakes of yarn in the bowls and feeding the yarn through one of the holes.
  • Glenna’s TTC Knitalong makes me wish that there was more public transportation in the cities I live in – I’d love to make a trip to Toronto one weekend (or week) and partake in their Yarn Shop Hop.
  • Last, but certainly not least, I think Cassy’s Albatross Socks could be the perfect ones for me to learn to knit – they’re simple but elegant, though I’d be sure to use different yarn.

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Filed under Finished Objects, FO: hats, Knitspiration, Year of Projects

Reunited and New Toys

Sorry for the hiatus from the blog – I’ve been travelling and didn’t bring my laptop with me on my trips to North Carolina and Florida (my grandmother doesn’t necessarily understand how you can spend more than 5 minutes on the computer at a time).

I’ve just landed from Florida, and am reunited with my computer, yarn, and family – it’s a great feeling. I was rather stingy with packing yarn, so I’m really glad to find new skeins waiting for me on my bed when I got into the house. While I was gone, the 4 skeins of Dishie and 3 skeins of sock yarn arrived, as well as my Stitchionary and BALL WINDER!! I’ve been having so much fun with the winder – not only do I already have 1/4 of the yarn for my pullover wound, but also 1 skein of Dishie and the remnants of the yarn I brought on my trip. I’m definitely looking forward to winding the rest while watching some TV and just relaxing.

There will definitely be a long update tomorrow with finished objects (after all, I did travel for 17 hours), but for now, I’m going to leave you with a picture of the mess on my bed and try to find a place to curl up for a nap – it’s hard to believe that I’ve already been awake for close to 12 hours, and it’s only 3:00 p.m.! (it also doesn’t help that I’ve gained an hour going from Eastern time to Central time …). I hope everyone had an amazing week/weekend, and check back tomorrow for a parade of photos!

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