Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Next WIP

In contrast to my swatch-free spring projects, I swatched for 2 projects in the last 2 days.

Yes, the darker pink swatch is sort of pathetically small, but I was really convinced I was going to end up starting the light pink shrug.  The first swatch raised a bunch of doubts so I hurriedly swatched for Laika this afternoon since I seem to be under the impression that I cannot leave town without a new knitting project.  It always cracks me up that my knitting bag usually gets more attention than the rest of my packing.

I knit just enough for Laika to see that gauge appears to be okay.  Pattern is printed and yarn and needles are packed away, ready to cast on as we drive out of town Wednesday morning.  Today has been too crazy to actually start the sweater.   I'll be spending about 20 hours in the car over the next week, so maybe I'll have a legit WIPW post with actual progress for next week. 

And sadly, since today was so hectic, Citron remains without photos, so no FO Friday post this week.  It was a tough call between actually packing or spending time photographing and writing about a shawl.  The shawl is pretty cool, but having enough clothes and food for the week won out.  Go figure.

Monday, July 16, 2012


Have I mentioned that I love my Jordan top?  Love. It.  I’ve worn it twice in 4 days and not because I neglected the laundry or something.  It goes with everything, is super comfortable, and I adore it. My next project has a lot to live up to, and with Citron finished (pictures and details on Friday!), I’m on the hunt for patterns desperately hoping to repeat some of my Jordan success. 

I seem to have the best luck with lacey lightweight tops.  Something light I can throw over a camisole with jeans is pretty much my work uniform.  Conveniently, I have 2 sweater quantities of laceweight yarn waiting in the wings for just such a project.

Option 1 is Mithril from the Verdant Gryphon that I picked up at MD Sheep and Wool, intended for Laika.

Option 2 is the laceweight yarn I whined was taking forever to spin a couple of months ago.  It did take forever, but the end result was over 1500 yards of my first laceweight.

I’ve been going back and forth over patterns for this yarn, but I think I’ve finally decided on the Barton Cottage Shrug (Ravelry link) from the Interweave Jane Austen Knits 2011 magazine.  While I’m not thrilled with the idea of buying a $14 magazine for one pattern, I really think has the most potential of all the laceweight sweater patterns I’ve poured over for the last several weeks.

Knowing myself, I would likely dither over which to start for days, possibly weeks, then decide, but change my mind and start from scratch searching for new patterns.  Since I’m heading out of town on Wednesday, I need to have it figured out and ideally swatched (yes, I’m really going to swatch this time) by Tuesday night.   Perfect timing to post the new project for this week’s WIPW.  See you then.

On a side note, WTF is up with me and pink lately?

Friday, July 13, 2012

FO Friday: Jordan

Well it took me long enough to finally get around to seaming the sleeves onto the body (possibly as long as it took me to knit the entire top), but Jordan has finally made it to FO Friday!

Pattern:  Jordan by Wendy Bernard
Yarn: M&K Linen (aka, impulse buy at LYS), about 615 yards
Needles: 5 US 
CO: April 2012
Finished: July 2012

I’m thrilled with how the top came out.  It is yet another project that I was too lazy to swatch for and decided to wing it and see what happened.  So far this method has been working out rather well for me. The length is perfect, the fit is perfect, and I’m sure this top is going to get a ton of wear.  I knit the pattern with no modifications, with the possible exception of adding an inch or so to the body.  The pattern is clear, the lace patterns are easy to memorize, and the knitting really did go fast when I devoted more than 5 minutes to it.

There is really nothing else to say about it, which admittedly makes this a pretty boring blog post.  I’ll try to have some disaster next time so I’ll have more to share. 

Happy Friday all!  Visit Tami’s for more FO Friday! 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Work-in-Progress Wednesday: Starling Citron

This post should also be titled "duh", because really, there was pretty much no chance I would be working on any other project.

Citron is moving along quite nicely.

I'm completely enamored with this project.  I haven't knit a stitch on anything else since I started it.  It requires almost no thought, and I'm getting huge kick out of knitting with the handspun. This might be the closest to knitting monogamy I've been since....well....ever. If I were sticking to the pattern size, I would only be about 10 rows away from the ruffled edge--not bad for only casting on Friday night. 

Since I want to make the shawl larger, I'm still far from the finish line though.  I've never been a fan of projects with super long rows (pretty much the only reason I've been able to withstand the Color Affection craze), and I realized pretty quickly that the rows for this are going to get insanely long.  For the runched sections, you basically  double the amount of stitches, knit 5-6 rows, and then decrease back down.  My current row has 444 stitches, which is tolerable but approaching my patience limit.  As written, the ruffled edge has 540 stitches, but since I'm going to add a few extra sections, I'm thinking that by the time I get the ruffle, my rows will have 700-800 stitches. 

I really wish I hadn't just worked that out.

Visit Tami's for more WIPW!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Timing is Everything

My timing is impeccable.  I busted my ass all last week to finish the Starling yarn so that I could kick off Tour de Fleece 2012 on Saturday with new and shiny fiber.  So far, TdF is not exactly going according to plan.

On day 1, I spent almost no time spinning yarn.

Instead I spent hours at a different type of spinning--74 miles on my bike.  I feel like 5 hours on my bike in close to 100 degree temps was a valid enough excuse for my poor showing on day 1 of TdF.  Especially since the bike ride required a 4:30am wake up, and when we arrived home at 4:30pm, it was to a house without power.

I have no such excuses for days 2 and 3.  It's not that I've done nothing.  There has been at least some spinning each day.



But I'm underwhelmed with my progress and particularly with my lack of enthusiasm.  I'm just not in the spinning mood right now.  Terrible timing since the next 3 weeks are supposed to be a crazy spin-a-thon. 

The upside though?  I'm totally stoked about my new knitting project.

Yup, I did in fact cast on Citron Friday night, and I've been knitting away furiously and loving every minute of it.  I have a sneaking suspicion that my love will wane once the rows get up to 500 stitches, and I'll once again want nothing else but to sit at the spinning wheel.  With my timing, though, that will probably happen the day after TdF ends.