Category Archives: finished

summertiiiiiiime, and the livin’ is easy

Do you guys know that song? It is pretty catchy. Also, I haven’t posted in forever! Sorry! I would feel worse, but no one reads this.

Also on the list of things to feel bad about: I have totally not finished the other Endpaper Mitt. To be perfectly frank, I haven’t even started the other Endpaper Mitt. Whatever! It’s summer, and I probably wouldn’t wear them anyways! Instead, let’s talk about some stuff I did knit.

I got invited to a baby shower on Sunday, which prompted my first foray into baby knitting. I used the DK weight Lion’s Brand that my mother got me for Easter, remember that?

Featured is a run-of-the-mill crocheted beanie, and a pair of Saartje’s Booties. Or, as I was referring to it at 2 am Sunday morning, “stupid fucking baby stuff.” Guys, I don’t really like babies. Knitting for them is not that satisfying. Although, as everyone knows, the bootie construction is pretty sweet; if I hadn’t been under the wire I might have enjoyed them more. As it is, I have already received a thank-you card from the mom-to-be (so punctual! I’m envious) that assures me she is both impressed and delighted. Mission accomplished.

More interestingly, and less baby-focused, is the shrug I finished last night:

Cute, right? It’s my own design, knit in one piece with worsted-weight mercerized cotton. (I wish I knew the brand – it was all in Greek, of all things, and I’ve lost the ball band.) You may recognize the lace pattern from ohmystars’ Razor Cami. There’s crochet edging on the sleeves, and plenty of lace mistakes in the body. The lower picture captures that very well. If I could do it over, I would do it a little less on the fly, and plan out a way to make the body of the thing wider. Right now, it’s more or less a pair of sleeves with a flap for my upper back. Next time!

In real-life news, I am gallivanting off to Montreal for the weekend. Que magnifique! I think it is a pretty good city to wear handknits in; I will let you know how it goes.

love forever,

rachel

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turkey threat: eliminated.

hey, internet. thanksgiving happened! that was cool, right? good. that’s all i’m going to say on the subject.

in the meantime: it is almost december. this means several things. first, in The Real World, the malls are playing christmas carols and my neighbors are inflating snowmen in their yards and i am about to max out my debit card on amazon. in College, this means that i have three final papers, two take-home finals, and a presentation in three different languages. and i want SO BAD not to do any of it. luckily, i am a knitter! so here we are.

1. I finished The Roommate’s scarf. 3 skeins of Paton’s Shetland Chunky in white. it turned out pretty nice! I think she will like it. this is me modeling it; I can testify that it is in fact pretty warm.

2. That’s pretty much it on the Christmas knitting front, though. Look, it’s been kind of a hard couple of weeks. Finals are killing me, my best friend’s mother is dying of cancer, I just spent twenty cumulative hours in a car with my family, and it has been raining non fucking stop. I am not really up to marathon sweater-vest knitting. So I’ve been doing some therapeutic, self-indulgent, me-time knitting. First, I whipped up a Calorimetry in about three hours. I’m wearing it right now.

3. And last, but definitely not least: the hat-in-progress. I’ve done all of this in the last 48 hours. My (loaded) aunt took me yarn shopping, and I have material for at least 2 more sweaters now. I also picked up one singular skein of Jo Sharp Tweed in Pine, and I am totally in love with it. (God, I love tweed.) I am enamored of these slouchy hats that everyone and their mother is knitting; I think “mad cute” is what the kids are calling them. But I think they really look best on short-haired people, and alas, I have been blessed/cursed with rapunzel-esque tresses. Therefore, I am making up a newsboy cap on the fly. I’m not at all sure yet how this will turn out, but I’ll keep you updated. Here’s what it looks like right now:

 

 

that’s more or less all for now, folks. i need to do some reading, write a paper on dante, go to work, watch Hairspray, and go to bed. stay safe, make good choices.

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the season of giving begins

to start off: it’s done. finally. it’s in the mail, it’s off my mind and my needles, and some fine young Gryffindor student in Arizona is going to have it soon. hopefully, a snazzy new needle roll will be winging my way in return? (perhaps by owl post? or is that going too far?)

in all honesty, this wasn’t such a bad project. i’m just whiny. i liked the finished project pretty well, and i think (from what i know of Mystery Swap Partner) that it will fit her. it gave me a chance to use Rowan Scottish Tweed for the first time in a tentative, non-committed sort of relationship. (the yellow accent color. the red is leftover Gloss from my Thermal.) my thoughts: not soft enough to wear against skin, but a nice kind of structured-ness that would work well with cables or other pretty stitchwork. for the MC, i recycled an old, ugly sweater from the Gap. (take that, heartless sweatshop-labor-propagating CEOs!) through some sort of yarn alchemy, i only needed to use the front, sleeves, and cowl of it, which means I have the whole back panel left to use however I wish. I’m thinking maybe newsboy cap? This project also reminded me that while I love top-down seamless like no one else, I still have some issues I need to address.

1. Figure out a way to do the armhole join so that there are nogaping holes at the armpit that will need to be sewn up later.

2. My necklines are square. Can you see it in this photo? New mission: pull off a nice smooth v-neck, or a nice round crew neck.

of course, I started a new project literally the same day. (I have a problem.) Behold the Ugly Scarf, a present for my aunt. I don’t actually hate her; she asked for this yarn, and I felt like there wasn’t much I could do. She also asked for no fringe, but I feel like I can’t have the scarf just end; so I tried crocheting some little square thingies for the end. My crocheting skills are marginal at best, but I still think this will look better once blocked. I took this picture a few days ago; the scarf is actually pretty much done by now, but i’m too lazy to take another picture. I’ll show it to you once it’s blocked, okay? It’s curling like nobody’s business.

Lastly, and my favorite current WIP: a double-knit bookmark, to use up the leftover Gryffindor yarn. I think I’ll give it to my friend Sabrina, who is a knitter herself and appreciates useless, handmade things. I’m unsure as to whether that will happen over Christmas (do we give Christmas presents to our Jewish friends? what do we think about that, guys?), or when I see her in a few weeks. It’s a quick, fun knit. Her books will be the warmest this side of Siberia.

 

A few more things: I went home this weekend, and picked up some more yarn. Of course. 3 skeins of Patons Shetland Chunky, 8 of Wool-Ease. The Patons will become an Irish Hiking Scarf for The Roommate, or so I hope. (Um, is doing that by Dec. 20 really feasible?) The Wool-Ease will be a Christmas sweater vest for my dad. I feel justified in using Wool-Ease when it’s not going to touch your skin directly, when the person it’s meant for dresses mainly in Pats sweatshirts anyways, and when they are so massive that the item of clothing is could double as a circus tent. I will, of course, be updating you all regularly on that. In the meantime, have fun, be good, make safe choices.

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Snowdrop Shrug

 

this green thing is finished. i bought some buttons at the new yarn store yesterday (yes, they were expensive. i don’t think i can call them pretentious, though.) so here we are. i like it, although it slips off my shoulders a lot and also the lace sections stretch out a little more than i would like, and look less attractive than they do flat. c’est la vie, no?

also, i put a kind-of pattern on Craftster. (in retrospect, people usually do this the other way around, don’t they? link to their blogs. i’m not very good at this.) but if you’re some poor lost soul who wandered over here instead, this is the link.

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fee fie FO fum

i’m going to run out of witty titles soon. until then: some FOs, and stuff.

my brother’s birthday hat. this is not my brother wearing it; this is me. it is made out of buffalo wool, and shockingly soft. i was unable to photograph the birthday yarmulke i also made for him; it kind of needed work anyways.

 

this is the Ill-Advised and Self-Indulgent Shrug. I may have mentioned it earlier. this is, obviously, pre-blocking. made of paton’s shetland chunky in a nice green color, with an imperfectly executed sort of snowdrop lace thing going on. it’s waiting for buttons. (if you look carefully, you can also play Find That Object with my dorm room. Can you see the copy of Homer’s Odyssey, my favorite tea mug, and the Boy Scout cookie tin?)

 

This is tragicheroine’s Ribbed Lace Bolero. Duh. (please look at the bolero, and not my face, here.) As you can see, it is sort of… I don’t know, too big? How do you even make a rectangle too big? I modified the pattern for worsted weight yarn, which may have been part of my problem. I don’t know, boleros aren’t really my calling. (But shrugs are? What’s the difference?) Whatever, I wear it sometimes.

 


Last but not least, the WIP. This is going to be, eventually, a Gryffindor sweater, made for a personal swap. As you can see, I have a ways to go. I’m doing my best to finish it by Halloween; i can do that, right? A Thermal in 2.5 months makes a straight stockinette seamless raglan in one month seem like nothing. we’ll see how it goes.

After this is completed, the List of Things to Knit for Other People is, in order of urgency/length of knitting:

Sweater Vest, for the 6’2″ father
Pop-over gloves/Frankenmitts, for aunt
Scarf, for same aunt
Armwarmers, for Sibling.

What do you think? Can it all get done by December 25th? Tune in to find out!

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a triumphant return


hello, internet. i have been gone for a very long time. but i don’t think you missed me much, so it’s okay.

here is what i have been doing in the intervening time: going on vacation to colorado, working full-time, and moving back to university. fun stuff, but very little time for knitting/blogging about knitting. ohmigod for about three days ALL of my yarn was packed; i almost lost it.

anyhow, let’s being. first, check out this yarn haul! turns out that laramie, wyoming is like the yarn capital of the west? who knew. so let’s talk about yarn. the two small skeins on the left: crimson sock yarn, and some brown fingering-weight stuff. they are meant to be used for Eunny Jang’s Endpaper Mitts. Yes, I realize that they are different weights. I was buying under pressure, okay? i’m sure it will be fine.

now, the yarns on the right. i’ll get to them in a second; first i need to tell you about the guy i bought them from. so he’s not even a knitter; he’s a photographer, and his wife is a professional weaver. they run a combination photography equipment/fiber shop. (of course; what else?) they specialize in novelty fibers; not Fun Fur, but musk ox, yak, and BUFFALO. and did i tell you about their daughter? their daughter is a grad student, doing her thesis on micro-geology and the movement of tectonic plates. also she is an award-winning Celtic fiddler. these people are INTENSE. oh, and did i mention their colorways? they don’t dye them themselves, but they do design the dyes personally, using colors from Mr. Yarn’s landscape shots. also he gave me his home phone number, in case i needed to talk about yarn in a crisis, i guess?

on to the yarn. the huge hunk of handpainted in the upper right corner: a pretty reddish/greenish/brown slub wool. called “prairie homestead.” my aunt bought it for herself as a sort of birthday present; she wants a hat and scarf made out of it. we’ll talk about that later. the brown yarn in the center? guess what that is. guess. it’s BUFFALO YARN. made out of BUFFALO WOOL. it’s pretty soft; feels like regular wool to me. it’s going to be a beanie for the brother, who was tickled by the concept of wearing buffalo. last but not least, the beautiful stuff at the very bottom. angora blend, gorgeous colorway. it’s for me, going into a Florence Scarf for the fall. hooray!

not pictured: my tiny, wonderful friend Megan somehow obtained and gave to me a skein of sari-silk yarn. i am so excited! it is very beautiful. i’m thinking maybe an airy, lacy scarf; i think the garter-stitch ones are just too much when done in sari silk. i’ll show you sometime soon.

the knitting projects are really piling up, actually. let’s count:

Sept. 1 – hat for my aunt
Sept. 17 – beanie for brother
Oct. 31 – sweater for a Craftster swap
Dec. 25 – sweater vest for Dad, armwarmers for Brother, scarf&gloves for Aunt (scarf for roommate?)

doesn’t leave much time to start my armwarmers or scarf, or to finish my Evening Shell. (finally got my last skein of yarn off eBay!)

but that is neither here nor there; i shall just have to march along, like the soldier of fiber art that i am. to finish off, i would like to share some FOs with you. how nice!

Some wristwarmers that my mother requested. Yarn is Berrocco Glacé, in some sort of lavender color. The lace pattern is Pointelle Lace; I found it on the Lion Brand website. (my actual mother is pictured. say hi, Mom.)

The hat that my aunt requested, in aforementioned Prairie Homestead yarn. If it looks kind of weird,that’s because it is. She told me she wanted “a fedora. Or, like, a hat with a brim.” I did the best I could; it’s a top-down pattern, found here. I increased a bunch at the bottom, and finished off with some single crochet, so it does have a tiny brim. Blocking worked wonders, as well. (sorry for my massive face.)

Lastly:

This is obviously not knitted. But it is my birthday cake, made by my adoring mother, and it is made to be a ball of yarn. I helped with the pattern on top; I don’t know if you can see, but it also has real-life knitting needles stuck out the sides. So great! My mother is wonderful.

until next time, internet.

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free at last, free at last

thank God almighty, I am free at last. the knit wasn’t actually bad enough to warrant that kind of talk; mostly i have just always wanted to say that. it does feel really, really good to have it done, though. i think you can probably recognize in my face the expression of a half-crazed, sleep-deprived knitter who has just achieved what is for that moment her only goal in life: finishing the goddamn sweater. it’s beautiful, i love it, i want to marry it. call it the early infatuation with an FO that took a lot of work, but i’m pretty sure this is the sexiest piece of clothing i own. obvo, it is missing some buttons. that will be remedied this weekend.

dry stuff:

pattern: knitty’s thermal, size A.
yarn: 6.5 skeins of knitpicks gloss.
gauge: slightly less than what was specified in the pattern. i.e. this should have been too small.
time to complete: 2.5 months. (score one for continental knitting.)

magically, this fits me perfectly. i had been planning to block it out to the length i prefer (“too long,” according to my mother.) but somehow, through a combination of my anxious habit of over-knitting and Sweater Magic, it fits exactly the way I like. sleeves and all. i cannot recommend this pattern highly enough; every detail, down the the bindoff of the neckband, is wonderfully exact and well-explained. it’s easy to do, with a marvelously professional result. i really just can’t find anything to complain about.

i actually finished this on monday; my goal was to finish it before august, and i succeeded. in the time since, i’ve gotten started on Twinkle’s Evening Shell, which I picked up the yarn for at my LYS on Saturday. can we talk about the gauge difference for a minute?

plymouth encore mega. now that is a yarn. (apparently i have a thing for burgundy right now? don’t judge me.) i’ll put up some pictures later, when there is more to show. it may be much later, because this weekend i am headed Out West for a while, and may be incommunicado. until then!

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