26 February 2008

All quiet...

Swamped with work. I spend my free time at the gym. I haven't even knitted that much. Some progress on the capelet -- I ended up frogging it and going through the pattern. My suspicion is that it's missing some K2togs or K3togs in the middle section, because without the decreases there is nothing to balance out the YOs... which explains why my stitch count was about 40 stitches over what I should have had according to the pattern. So I rewrote it myself and knitted merrily away. I'm almost finished the leaf section and will soon start the "garter stitch to the end" stretch. The pattern is also missing the third buttonhole, but I don't want to rip back just to put it in. If I get desperate, I'll get creative with my scissors...

I know this post is a bit lean, but I wouldn't leave y'all without some sort of fiber- or textile-related goodness...

19 February 2008

The Peculiar Aristocrat

I did this. It gave me wonderful aristocratic titles, but I thought I'd flesh 'em out a little bit with helpful character descriptions.

Countess-Palatine Courtney the Cosmopolitan of Bartonhurst in the River
: hosts candlelight suppers with riparian entertainments that are so chic, it's almost painful.

Lady Madame Courtney the Weird of Much Madness upon Avon: runs the best bordello in town, whose motto is, “We do it all. And we mean all. No request too kinky. Do you like pancakes?”

I cast on for the Hoja Otoñal (Autumn Leaf) Capelet from Kiparoo. I am in love with this yarn. It's the one I was gushing over in the last post. The capelet got wonky somewhere around Row 18, so when I have a minute I'm going to go through and count stitches on the needles and in the pattern and do a little problem-solving.

I worked on Bryan's Beanie during the Ravelry meet-up last Friday. I was having so much fun chatting that I sort of forgot that I had adapted the pattern for gauge... I was doing the decreases, and didn't allow for the fact that the pattern says: DO DECREASES EVERY THIRD ROW. No problem, chief! I did decreases every third row, plugging away through that 1x1 ribbing and running my mouth to anyone who would listen -- completely forgetting that where the gauge swatch in the pattern is 33 sts x 44 rows = 4", my gauge is 22 sts x 26 rows = 4". Yeah.

I also started working on a long-queued sweater for my nephew (Ravelry link). I'm going to try to finish it for his 1st birthday (end of March).

In general news, my workouts are kicking my ass -- in a good way. I do weightlifting two or three times a week, and have combat class once or twice a week. Bag work is hard on my wrists, even when I wrap them... so we'll see whether I continue that. I'd rather have less-effective punches and still be able to knit for an hour in the evening. :-) It's the busy season at work, which means less time for knitting and blogging. Hopefully that also means I'll try harder to sneak in more time for knitting and blogging. ;-) Until next time...

12 February 2008

Lead me not into temptation....

I already know the way.

I slipped up on my yarn diet this weekend--not only slipped up, but fell on my ass. And I'm very pleased about it.

But first, quick recap and summary:
Saturday, I went to tea in Frederick with Anne and a bunch of her friends. I had a wonderful time meeting everyone. Afterwards, I was heading home to help take care of my baby nephew when I saw some cute things in the window of a boutique. I hemmed (want to go in; parking meter might expire). I hawed (really ought to be going home). I went in... and I emerged victorious. I bought two skirts on sale (woohoo!) and one cardigan that wasn't one sale, but went PERFECT with the brown wool skirt. I think I also liked it because it looks like something I would want to knit.
(tea image from here).

Sunday: two yarn sales. You already know what's going to happen.

1. Dancing Leaf Farm
Picked up another skein at Dancing Leaf Farm of Loopy Mohair in the Briar Patch colorway (the sample is a little bolder than most of the yarn in that colorway actually looks). I like to have it on hand for edging whatever I end up making out of the Salsa and/or Tango.

I also bought a copy of Knitting Loves Crochet -- partly because I do not love crochet and I'm hoping this book will give me a reason to use my multi-pack of hooks for something other than seaming (and fake-seaming à la Elizabeth Zimmerman) -- and partly because it was 50% off. If you didn't know already, I have a huge prejudice against crochet. I think it's usually ugly and screams, "OMG I'M HANDMADE BY A CRAFTING ROOKIE STUCK IN A 1970s TIME LOOP." I bet that there are more aesthetic offenses committed by crochet enthusiasts than any other fiber group.

knitting loves crochet, even if Courtney doesn't.

Ten bucks was about as much as I was willing to invest in finding out if crochet had any redeeming qualities when paired with knitting... or whether it would be the fiber equivalent of Cooperative Learning, the great education debacle of my childhood (if you have questions about the efficacy of Cooperative Learning, ask me. I'll tell you how quickly I learned to hate the stupid kids, as well as anything that smelled of group work). I'm not planning on working any of the projects out of it in the near future, but I look forward to flipping through it.

Rounding up my random purchases at Dancing Leaf were:
- a purple shawl stick (could have also been a hair stick in my longer-haired days), which goes beautifully with my stashed Dancing Leaf Salsa and Tango yarns, in case I make that Ring Wrap thingy (whatever it's called, from Knitter's Winter 2005).
- two grab bags of yarn in random green colors. I know, green is not my thing, but I'm hoping that if I buy enough green yarn, I will make things for my two best friends because they look good in green and I want that green stuff OUT of my stash.
- three bars of Wooly Queen goatsmilk soap (two in Cucumber/Cantaloupe and one in Honeysuckle).

2. Kiparoo Farm
Then we did a quick shimmy over to Kiparoo Farm, where the wind was threatening to blow away everything in its path. Safe in the shop, I picked up a chocolate from one of the many heart-shaped boxes. Mmmmm, chocolate...

and then I saw some yarn tucked in the back corner of the shop. I wasn't planning on buying any yarn; in fact, I was planning on buying NO YARN WHATSOEVER. I picked it up. I held it up in the afternoon sunlight streaming in through the window. I admired the deep burgundies and dark chocolate browns with occasional hints of silver. I opened the big binder of patterns sitting next to the yarn; the very first one was for an Autumn Leaves Capelet in the colorway I was fondling. The model was hanging up on the wall just to the right. Well, who was I to argue with the conspiring forces of Fate?

Kiparoo Farm "Moonlight" (wool/nylon)

Normally, I advise against red+brown combinations -- even the thought sends shudders down my spine. But in this colorway, Annie got it right. The colors work. It reminds me of chocolate-dipped strawberries eaten on a warm summer moonlit night. Wanna see it again?

I also picked up a skein of brushed mohair/glitter yarn in deep, saturated overly-ripe-strawberry red. I figured I could always do a 1" or so border in it. The color in the photo below isn't exactly right... but trust me, it works with the yarn.

Kiparoo Farm "Glitter" (brushed mohair/sparkly stuff)

3. Miscellany
I take back what I said earlier about everything crochet being ugly. Here is the first cool thing I have seen come off a hook:
the Marcel Wanders Crochet Table.

4. Afterward: Remember the cute skirt and sweater I bought on Saturday? I bought these fairly sensible shoes at Nordstrom today to go with them (in brown, of course). I generally have a thing against sensible shoes, but these are actually cute on. Will post pics eventually.

11 February 2008

08 February 2008

Long time, no blogging

It's been a busy couple weeks here in Knit Goddingdom.

I'm thinking of running a content and giving away yarn. Anyone interested in free yarn? I have some nice stuff here to give away. It would involve a comment contest of some sort. Details to follow.

2. Ravelry meeting. I met up with some local Ravelers last Friday. It was fun. I finished...

You know what, I haven't had enough caffeine yet this morning to write a cogent post. Check back later... maybe I'll write something up after work.