Posts tagged ‘on the needles’

March 11, 2017

Slippin’ Out, Slippin’ In

There are a bunch of things I’ve been wanting to write about, but I’m going to take them one at a time.

A couple weeks ago, I found myself working on two projects that both use slipped stitches. It wasn’t intentional, and it wasn’t one of my big Proof They’re Watching kind of coincidences (seeing as how I was the one who picked the projects), but I thought it was worth noting, especially since the slipped stitches have completely different purposes.

I bought a Swiffer a year ago or two, with the intention of making a reusable cover for it. I started one that was crocheted, in some obnoxious hunter orange acrylic that I had, only to find out when I ran out of the first ball that it wasn’t the obnoxious hunter orange acrylic that I thought it was, and I didn’t actually have any more to finish it. I got busy with other stuff, and my Swiffer sat in the laundry room, unused. I finally made a different cover for it, the Ballband Dishcloth Reusable Swiffer Cover from Strange Yarns;;Skull Charms. It’s based on the Ballband Dishcloth from Mason-Dixon Knitting. I should have done a full three repeats of the pattern, I think. I haven’t tried using it yet, but I imagine it will still work, even if it’s a little small.

IMG_2108

It’s a simple pattern, and a nice way to use up some cotton leftovers. I should make at least one of the dishcloths, too. I’m pretty sure the point of the slipped stitches is to get the reverse stockinette to puff out and make it better for scrubbiness.

My other slip stitch project is a Mermaid Tail Blanket for my little Cindy Lou Who (who is much more than two). There are a bunch of patterns out there for making these. I’m not sure why I picked this one, but, I did.

Mermaid Tail Blanket Top

Mermaid Tail Blanket Top

For this one, the slipped stitches give the illusion of scales on the tail. Purely decorative, and since starting it, I’ve realized how handy they’ll be for my Cindy Lou Who to loop her toys through and pull the stitches out. I really like the way it looks, but I know how good she is at destroying knitted things, and I’m wondering what made me think this was a good idea. But, I bought the pattern, I’ve already started, and if I can keep her from mangling it up, I think she’ll really like it and it will get a lot of use.

The tail is worked in a pattern of welts, knit one row, purl two rows, knit one row.

Mermaid Tail, Not Just a Fluke

Mermaid Tail, Not Just a Fluke

Of course, I misread the instructions where it talked about ridges, and was making it about twice as wide as it needed to be. Luckily, I caught my mistake just before I got to the decreases.

I’m still working on the top part. I took theses pictures today. It uses large needles (US11, I think), and my carpal tunnel syndrome has been giving me fits lately, so I can only work on it for a few rounds at a time, and then I have to switch to something else on smaller needles, or, really, not knit for a few days.

But there you have it. Two different uses for slipped stitches. Well, I thought it was interesting!

September 22, 2016

Hell Is Making Pom-Poms

I refuse to act surprised at how long it’s been since I posted anything on here.

I’m making an Official Kittyville Hat for Thing One. I’m all done with it — ends woven in and everything — except for the dreaded pom-poms.

read more »

August 5, 2014

Summer Is Almost Over

Thank goodness. I’m not a summer person. Really, truly, and honestly, you will not find me wishing for summer in the middle of winter. I may pine for spring, or wax nostalgic over autumn, but even if it’s fifty below, I’m not wishing for summer.

It’s been a rough summer for us this year, for a variety of reasons, and I took most of July off from designing. I knit all through summer, except on the absolute hottest days (which, thankfully, this year have been few), but designing — however serious I am about it — is still at the hobby level for me. I put much more money into it than I get out, and this summer, I didn’t have the money to spend. But, that may be changing. At least enough that I’m back to working on the MKAL shawl I keep mentioning.

I spent about an hour last night working on the script for the video I’m going to do for the cast-on for the shawl. (Wow, that’s a lot of prepositional phrases.) Once I have that done, I’m going to start knitting the second prototype (the first one came out much larger, and used more yarn, than I wanted), and get a test-knit underway.

My original plan was to do this MKAL back in May, right after spring semester was over. Now it’s taking me so long to get it all together that I’m wondering if maybe it’s going to be next May!

June 22, 2014

How Goeth the Knitting?

I keep coming up with posts I think I should write, and then I don’t get around to them, and I think of others, and then I don’t get around to them . . . it’s a vicious cycle.

Anyway, I mentioned, very briefly, back in December that I was working on a shawl pattern for a mystery knit-along. I’m not done with it yet, but it’s definitely getting there! Spring semester was really, really difficult for me (largely my own fault, I think), and I didn’t get a lot of . . . anything, really, done between February and April. Then, around the last week of April and first week of May (aka finals week), I got a really special infection in my right thumb’s cuticle, for which I wound up having to take antibiotics, and because of which I still expect my nail to fall off any time now. There have been quite a few days since then when my thumb has hurt too much for me to knit. But, there have been enough when it hasn’t hurt — or at least it hasn’t hurt too much — that I’ve been able to work on the shawl.

I don’t know why it’s taken me this long. Well, no, I do know. I think I’m nervous. Not only have I never released a shawl pattern, I’ve never done a knit-along. Much less a mystery knit-along. And on top of that, this will be my tenth pattern. The supposedly magic release that so many designers have said, “I got a lot more interest in all of my patterns after I released my tenth.” (Although some say twenty, or even forty.) So, if I release this pattern, and I don’t see an increase in interest, I’m going to feel like a failure, even with all the other designers who’ve said it takes longer, because that’s just how I am.

NO PRESSURE.

AND AND! AND I think I need to start a YouTube account, because I want to do at least one video for the pattern, for the very pretty, but very fiddly, cast-on I used. I’ve never made a knitting video. I’m not entirely sure how to go about it. And while it isn’t exactly speaking in public, I get pretty nervous about that kind of thing, and I’m sure I’ll do a lot of fumbling, both with my hands and my mouth. And my thumbnail looks like it got caught in a combine. (If’n you didn’t know, people can be very critical of the state of your nails in knitting videos!)

Besides this, I’m working on Mariah, for Grace.

Oh! And I’m on Pinterest now, too. I spend way too much time on there looking at dessert recipes.

I guess that’s about it for me, right now. How goeth it with you?

December 26, 2013

Drive By Posting

I have a bunch of things I need to post about:  All Cats Are Grey is live and available for sale on Ravelry; all my patterns on Ravelry are 30% off through the rest of this month; I have a test knit going for a pair of socks; I am working on a pattern for a shawl for a mystery knit-along . . . what else?  What else?!?  I know there’s something, but I can’t think of it. Now I remember. A bunch of independent designers are getting together to do a group blog, and I’m going to take part in it. Hopefully this will inspire me to write more on here!

Anyway, what I really wanted was to ask if it’s just me, or do you really hate it when you’re working on something and the pattern says, “Work in stockinette stitch for three inches,” so you work about as many rounds as you think you need, then measure it, and see that you need another round, so you knit another round, and measure again, and you’ve got half an inch to go still?

May 17, 2013

Promises, promises

I know, I know, I keep saying I’m going to actually write more here, and I don’t, so who’s going to believe me now? Especially when I just joined Facebook.

The All Cats Are Grey hat has been re-knit in Cascade 220 Sport, which was just awesome to work with.

All Cats Are Grey final

All Cats Are Grey final

All Cats Are Grey final (inside)

All Cats Are Grey final (inside)


The test knit for it just finished up, and I need to do some final revisions before sending the pattern off to my tech editor!

Next on the designing list is a pair of socks. And I have kind of a vague plan for something in the current Design Along challenge, but I don’t know if I’ll get to it any time soon. But it’s the fifth month of the year, and I’ve still only released 3 patterns. I’ve got to get cracking if I’m going to manage 12 this year!

In non-designing news, at least with me as the designer, I’ve been working on a test-knit for Rachael Richardson. She released the pattern yesterday, Connemara Coast. It is really, really cute, and I definitely recommend it, if you have any little girls in your life.

I’m also supposedly working on Laura Nelkin’s Juego, and Laura Aylor’s Sunstruck, both of which are mystery knit-alongs, but I’ve been so busy with other things that I haven’t gotten past clue #1 on either! They both started last month.

I really will try to post more here. So far, this year has been kind of crappy, to be overly polite about it, and I haven’t felt much like writing anything. Here’s hoping it’s getting better, for all of us (even if you weren’t having a crappy year)!

January 7, 2013

Placeholder

There are a few posts I want to have written by the end of January. This is not one of them. This is just a post saying I want to write these posts. I’ve already mentioned most of them, I think, but I’m putting this post here so I have a fairly easy place to find the posts I want to write, so I can (hopefully) actually post them. I also want to see just how many times I can use the word “post” before someone tries to stab me through the phone lines.

1. Weaving in ends.
2. Ripping back.
3. My new favorite soup (which I’ll probably be making for dinner sometime this week, which would seem a good time to post about it). Done!
4. My resolutions for 2013. If you ever remember hearing me say that I don’t make resolutions (which is entirely possible, because I say it almost every year), you’ve probably also heard me say, “Never say never.” Of course, one of those resolutions is to write more on my blog. You know, this one.
5. Ken’s sweater.
6. The All Cats Are Grey hat (and maybe mittens, and scarf . . . and possibly even slippers?), which Cascade Yarns has been gracious enough to give me yarn to make for the final pattern.
7. Valentine’s Day crafting. I have a great idea for making Valentines for Little Cat Z’s first-grade class. If it works, I’ll even tell you how we did it, with enough time for you to make them, too!
8. Little Red in the City. I got a copy for Christmas/Monkey Day 2011, and I’ve been meaning to post about it. Maybe I should finally do that.

I think that’s it.

Except I want to share something else right now. I did a very fun swap this past fall in the Mystery 220 group in Ravelry (if I haven’t already posted about that, it should be added to that list up there). So when Linda Browning, aka tinyknit, suggested doing a swap in her Ravelry group, Tinyknitters, I joined that one, too. It’s the Valentine Pampering with Hot Cocoa swap. If you’d like to join, all you have to do is log on to Ravelry, join the Tinyknitters group (Linda does some amazing things with lace, you won’t be sad you joined), and post in the swap thread that you want to be part of it. There’s one catch. Sign-ups end today, January 7, 2013. I don’t know a specific time, but I do know that Linda lives in Florida, so I’d probably say, try to post before 9 pm Eastern. The swap is international, so you don’t have to live in the US, or even the western hemisphere, to join.

I think that covers everything I wanted to post about tonight. I hope everyone is having a happy new year so far, and I’m glad you all survived the apocalypse last year!

December 2, 2012

“The time has come,” the Walrus said,/”To talk of many things:”

Like how to convince my two-year-old that it would be perfectly reasonable for her to go to bed around 8:00 at night, and wake up around 8:00 in the morning. She seems to think it’s much better to stay up as late as possible (sometimes the sky is starting to get light already when she finally conks out), and then probably wake up in the middle of the night and refuse to go back to sleep unless Mommy holds her (which means I get to sleep sitting up), and then sleep until 10:30 or 11:00. I’ll admit, she did fall asleep around 6:30 tonight, but then she only slept until about midnight. Now it’s anyone’s guess just how late she’ll stay up. And I can’t just pop her in the playpen or crib and let her stay up while I sleep. She’s a climber. In fact, we call her our little jewel thief, because she’s frighteningly good at it, and quiet to boot.

Or we could talk about the real purpose of this post, which is what I’ve been up to for most of the last month.

read more »

June 29, 2012

The State of the Knitting

I’m making a pair of Paraphernalia socks (Ravelry link). I finally got really started on them around the 16th. Last Friday, the good spouse bet me $19.05 that I couldn’t finish them by the time we left my mother-in-law’s house on Monday. I wasn’t yet finished with the first sock. I took the bet. I might have made it, even, except my cousin died, and her funeral was on Monday, and that took precedence. But, I figured I could at least get them done in time to turn them in for Nerd Wars last night. But then it became an everything that can go wrong, will situation. So, I am not yet finished with them, but I feel pretty confident that I can knit a pair of socks in two weeks, if I put my mind to it (at least, a pair of socks with no colorwork), and I will have them done by the real deadline, which is someone’s birthday.

************

My pattern didn’t get into the Knit Picks Late Winter/Early Spring collection. Which just means I have to finish it so I can submit it to Knitty for the Spring & Summer issue next year. The sooner I get it done, the more likely that I can take season-appropriate pictures, but submissions aren’t due until January 2, so I’ve got time. Just so I don’t keep saying that and don’t get it finished.

************

I am doing a dissertation for Nerd Wars this tournament, and it is a design that I’m working on for the Design Along group. At first, I was working with the idea of Medusa, and her snakes. I wanted to do a cowl on the bias, but the Medusa angle (heh) wasn’t quite what I was looking for, and I moved from there to the Midgard Serpent, and from there to Yggdrasil and Nidhogg. So I added leaves to the bottom of the cowl. This is what I came up with for my first sketch:

Cowl sketch #1

The clown colors are what I thought I was going to use, because I had it on hand. Then I did a little swatching, and found more yarn, and came up with this:

Cowl sketch #2

The proportions are off, but the colors are a little less clownish.

Then I kept thinking about it, and realized that the number of leaves was the same as the number of tails on the oldest and wisest foxes in Japanese folklore (Kitsune grow more tails as they age, to an apparent maximum of nine), and decided those weren’t leaves after all.

Cowl sketch #3

I’m still working with the pinks and green, because I have them, but I think a combination of reddish-oranges and browns would be perfect.

************

Twist Collective has a call for submissions out for their Spring/Summer 2013 issue, and I’ve got an idea that I think would be good for that, too. It’s something I’ve been thinking about for at least a year, but this might be the kick in the pants that gets me doing more than doodling and thinking.

November 28, 2011

I have been remiss

I have been very busy knitting and crocheting for holiday gifts/Nerd Wars/Mystery 220. And there’s still so much to do, not to mention the baking.

And I need to figure out spinning with a drop spindle, too. One of my Nerd Wars teammates gave me one of her old spindles (and some roving and a small pot of the Knitters’ and Spinners’ Balm she makes and sells in her shop — it smells really good, and does soften my rough spots nicely), and I’ve borrowed my mom’s book Respect the Spindle, and I’m trying to do it. I finally got the hang of just using the dowel and spinning on a stick (I looked for an example on-line, but I don’t see anything), but once I get some spun, and try to draft some more . . . it breaks. It doesn’t seem to matter what I do, how thick I leave the draft, it still breaks. I know, this takes practice, and I haven’t been at it very long (like maybe . . . twenty minutes total?), but I’m very frustrated. I want to get drafting to the point where I can do more than ten inches of yarn before the fibers come apart before I try the spindle again.

And I need to finish the shawl I’m designing. Not to mention the other couple of designs I’ve got started.

Next year I’ll get cracking on updating this more often. Really.

Oh, and just so’s you know, 7-UP Mixed Berry (I get diet) is awesome, and I really wish it wasn’t a “limited edition” flavor.