Friday, October 29, 2010

Happy Birthday, Mr. Yarnhog!

The love of my life.

This picture was taken at Civil Air Patrol Encampment this summer. He hadn't slept in a couple of days. He doesn't like this picture because he thinks he looks worn out. I love it because it shows his commitment to helping develop awesome young adults and his love for our kids.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

What Was I Thinking?!

I am an instant gratification sort of knitter. I like aran weight yarn. I like top-down knitting. I like no finishing. I like plain stockinette. I get the kind of rush from casting off a project that is usually reserved for heroin addicts. In short, I am a knitter of limited patience, which explains my aversion to knitting lace and socks. Or, heaven forbid, lace socks.

It does not explain why I thought it would be a good idea to test knit a lacy camisole in fingering weight yarn.

Somewhere around row seven bazillion, I realized I am essentially knitting the world's largest sock. With lace trim. Aaargh!

This is Cecily, which I've mentioned before I am test knitting for the designer, Snowden Becker.

Now, don't misunderstand: this is a lovely, lovely project. The design is just beautiful. It may, in fact, be the perfect knitted camisole.

The pattern is excellent, and the shaping is truly inspired. Check out the princess-seam waist shaping:

And the beautiful bust darts:

I have just started a third set of shaping at the top of the bust, but you can't really see it yet. And the straps are even bra-friendly without being chunky.

It's a gorgeous project. But if I have to knit any more stockinette in the round in fingering weight black yarn at 7 stitches to the inch, I may just lose it completely. Fortunately, I am almost to another set of...lace repeats. Oh, joy.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Fiber Tool FAIL

I really did plan to share my newest fiber tool with you, but alas, after finishing, marking, and drilling that piece of wood I showed you in the last post, something went horribly wrong and the thing had to be scrapped. Not to worry--I have already acquired materials for a second attempt. I can tell you, though, that it is not a loom--although the number of people who guessed that makes me wonder if I ought to reconsider my no-weaving stance.

Instead, I have this to share:

This is about 1200 yards of dk weight cashmere. What makes it interesting is that it started out as about 3600 yards of lace weight cashmere. This yarn was originally a couple of women's machine knit pullovers. It was reclaimed by...someone. Not me. Then I acquired it and discovered that knitting with crinkly frogged lace weight cashmere is not part of my skill set. We all know my history with lace knitting. But it turns out it is possible to re-ply an already plied yarn to turn a lace weight 2-ply into a dk weight 6-ply. So after two days of plying and winding and washing, it is now a weight that will actually get used around here.

Now comes the real dilemma. I bought this yarn to knit a sweater for my husband. After a year of not knitting it, I bought him a machine knit black cashmere sweater. I think this gets me off the hook and I can now use this lovely, lovely yarn to knit a sweater for myself. He asserts that the yarn is his, independent of the sweater I later bought, and that any sweater that comes from it also belongs to him. We have reached an impasse. We could resolve it the same way we do all the major issues in our marriage--a game of high-stakes Yahtzee--but I thought I'd appeal to the knitters first. What say you: am I obligated to make him a sweater from this, or can I knit one for myself? And if I am obligated to knit for him, would it be adhering to the letter of the law if I knit a sweater for him that will only fit me?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Spinning My Wheels

I'd love to be able to show you any of the three finished sweaters I have yet to do FO posts for, but alas, it has been pouring rain for two days here--in itself, a very good thing--so decent pictures are out of the question.

Instead, here are some crummy pictures of the yarn I finished spinning and plying yesterday. It looks somewhat better in person, although I'm not thrilled with it. It was prettier in the roving; the finished result is a bit muddy and bland looking to me.

I have two large skeins of this (eight ounces worth), in what I think is about a sport weight. It will probably end up being a camisole eventually. The very blandness of the color, which is actually a combination of silver, purple, and green, will make it a good choice as a layering piece.

I have another project in the works. It's not a knitting project, although it does have to do with yarn. Here's a sneak peek:

(The project is the piece of wood, not the teenager. He is also a work in progress.) Any guesses what it might be?

Thursday, October 7, 2010


A bigger woman than I would just admit she's been lazy and distracted, but I'm totally going to blame the weather for not blogging for the past two weeks.

After the soul-killing record heat, the temperature abruptly plunged fifty degrees overnight and the sky opened up with pouring rain for two straight days. The startling temperature change wreaked havoc on traffic, tempers, and sinuses, and there has not been a day in the past two weeks when some member of my family was not sick.

The weather also substantially interfered with my blogging, since I wasn't about to go outside in 110 degree heat to take photos, and pouring rain and fog aren't conducive to great photography, either.

Today, however, it is 70 degrees and clear--just beautiful, actually--and so I have photos to share, and advice to ask.

This is Ribby in progress:

I got to this point a couple of weeks ago and stalled out. The problem is, I can't decide whether to go sleeveless, cap sleeve, or elbow length.

You can see here that I started to make a sleeve on this side. I tried it on when I got this far and my husband immediately announced it needed to be sleeveless. (He says I have great shoulders--gotta love that man!)

This is the sleeveless side. If I don't do sleeves, I'll do some sort of edging here, either a little bit of ribbing or a crochet trim to make the straps wider and more substantial.

My goal for this is a top I can wear in a conservative, formal office environment under a jacket, but that won't be inappropriate if I take off my jacket at my desk. So whaddaya think: sleeveless, cap sleeves, or elbow length?