Sunday, March 28, 2010

Spring is in the Air!

I finished one of the last projects I had in my queue that was for someone else.  A pair of Fetching fingerless gloves (ravelry link) for a co-worker.  It will be the very last time I knit that pattern.  There are too many other neat fingerless glove patterns out there and I've created 3 of the Fetching gloves.  Thanks for helping me learn, it is now time to move on.

Since my queue was down to a manageable level again, I rolled up some fabulous hand spun yarn I received quite some time ago by Kitty Grrlz.  I decided to use both skeins to make a Chevron Scarf.  I've only got about 6 inches done, but I am very pleased with the results.  No pictures yet of my progress, but here are some not so good pictures of the yarn.

Besides knitting I'm enjoyed this wonderful spring weather.  Yippee for wildflowers!

This Tuesday I begin my first sweater, a neck down summer cardigan, and I've already selected my second sweater, the new Que Sera pattern featured in the Spring 2010 Knitty.  Can't wait to get started!

Enjoy the rest of this weekend and have a great week!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Holy Sock

I've made good progress on my first toe up sock.  The other day I finished heel of the sock and was ready for the final push for the finish line.  Then, to my horror, I found a hole in the sock about an inch before the heel.  What to do?  At first I continued knitting and I thought about going back and fixing it after I completed the sock, but the more I worked on the sock and thought about it, the more it bothered me.   RIP, rip...I carefully took out my needles and ripped back past the hole.  Then I carefully picked up those live stitches and voila, I am ready to get going again.

I'm not going to talk about how to rip back to a problem spot.  There are plenty of videos and instructions available on the web for that.  As a new knitter, I use to get a horrible feeling in my belly when I would drop a stitch or had some other problem that needed to be corrected, but I've noticed lately that I have confidently gone about solving these problems.  While I am not super excited about having to reknit those two or three inches of work, I glad that I have the confidence to try and fix problems in my work.

I am almost ready to start working on the heel one more time, and oh yes, here is a photo of my wonderful hubby with his new cigar glove!

Now I just have to finish the second glove!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Knitting Withdrawal

I left my knitting bag with all of my needles and two of my projects in my office on campus.  I cannot knit tonight (unless I were to run back up to work, which I'm not).  How will my idle hands survive?

Maybe a forced break will be good for me...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Lots of Juggling

After spending all of my knitting time on one project for two weeks for the Ravelymics, I could use a break from large, time consuming projects.  I had been working on my toe up socks, but wanted to do something different this weekend.

When I took my first class at the Knitting Nest, I noticed all of these knitted balls around the store.  Some were stuffed to be a toy for dogs, but some were stuffed with lentil beans to be used for juggling.  Since I was just learning to knit, I didn't feel like I could make them, but after all of the other projects I've done I felt confident that I could make them now.

Aren't they cute!  These were made with some of the yarn I bought for my first knitting project 24 year ago!!  It is a cotton yarn which I didn't enjoy knitting too much, but I love the results.  After knitting with this stuff for awhile, I thought to myself, "No wonder you didn't finish that first project when you were 16."  I remember getting frustrated when I was knitting back then, but never realized it was the yarn, not the knitting.  If it hadn't been for this yarn, I would probably have 24 years' experience knitting now.  Oh well, no reason to dwell on the past.  Now, I've got to relearn my juggling skills.

I've also finished another Kitty Hat (ravelry link) for one of the crazy kat ladies in my life and have almost finished some gloves for my hubby.  I was surprised with how quickly the gloves knitted up once I spent a little time working on them.  Of course, our winter in Texas is pretty much over with so he won't be able to wear them until next winter, but they'll be waiting for him then.

I have another small project to work on after I finish the gloves.  Then it will be time to knit my first sweater.  I am looking forward to learning some more techniques!  I also have selected a scarf pattern for some special yarn I got a few months ago, but more information on that will come soon.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Sock it to Me!

Just in case there are any budding sock designers out there, my wonderful knitting instructor, Staci Perry, is judging a sock design contest at the Exercise Before Knitting blog.

Blogger Elinor Brown has gotten some wonderful baskets together for the winners.  I wish I had the experience to design a sock...or anything for that matter.  The deadline for entering is April 19, 2010.

This year I'll just have to knit some of the winning designs and maybe next year I'll have some mad knitting design skills to share.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

In Record Speed

So I've only been knitting for about 4 months now.  I have definitely gotten faster then the glacier pace I set on my first scarf, but I am still not a speed demon by any stretch of the imagination.  I've watched videos.  I've watched my knitting instructor's technique, but I just haven't been able to change the way I hold the needles and yarn so that I can increase my knitting efficiency.  I don't worry about it too much because I enjoy the way I knit.  It is comfortable.  Are there others out there that struggle with this?  I don't want to foster bad habits, but I think I will just have to live with my knitting style for now.

Speaking of speed, I finished my French Market Bag (Ravelry link) in record speed...for me.  It took me about 2 weeks of knitting to finish this large project and I am proud of that.  When I concentrate on one project I make great progress.  I altered the pattern and made it wider and taller with longer straps.  Here it is before I put it in the washer...

It is hard to get a perspective of the size of this thing, but it was huge.  After I felted it, it was the perfect size.

Meet my new project bag.  I am very pleased and now I am trying to pick out colors for the one I am going to make my mother as a Mother's Day present.  Shhh, it's a surprise.

Ok, I promise no more posts about this project.  I am on to the next one!

Monday, March 1, 2010

A Lack of Materials Leaves This Olympic Hopeful Out in the Cold

Well, I would have finished knitting my lovely French Market Bag this weekend.  Even with my huge work commitments over the last week, I was making great progress and could have finished it on Friday.  Unfortunately, I ran out of yarn with about 2 inches left on the last handle.  Booo, Hisss.

Oh well, since I worked about 80 hours this last week, I've taken today off so as soon as my LYS opens this afternoon I will be there to buy another skien of Cascade 220 in a lovely shade of evergreen.  I'll finish the bag at the Knitting Nest and use their washer to felt it.  I am very excited!  I will post some before and after photos soon.

Also, while I am there I hope to sign up for a couple more classes.  My knitting guru, Staci, mentioned that she was going to offer a sweater class that I should take.  I am looking forward to making my very first sweater!