Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Production rate through the roof!

I got a little worried when I made a list of all of my holiday projects. There were so many, and several of them are new projects so I have no way to gauge how long they'll take. I have three "for sure" projects that must be done by Christmas, two quick little projects that have to be done by mid-December, and two projects that I would really like to give on Christmas, but they're the low men on the totem pole. That's a lot of time spent knitting!

Saturday morning I started Holiday Project 1. Even with helping Sarah move in the morning, and cooking dinner and going to a show Saturday night, I still managed to complete more than 50% of it! Thank goodness for HGTV and terrible chick flicks! Those, plus an easily memorized pattern, have made my knitting tasks much easier. Hope to finish over Thanksgiving weekend. Would love to be able to knit during the 3.5 hour drive home on Wednesday, but I'm not sure I trust my brother to drive my car over the snowy pass....

No pictures for now. Wouldn't want my "readers" to see their own gifts in advance! But I will leave you with this.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Finishing up the mittens. I'd say just in time for New Moon, but I have no plans to see it. So there.

They are lovely, though.

Too bad the lighting in my room is terrible.

Ollie, who is also a bit of a fiber freak, wanted to help show off the 2.5 hour scarf I made.

He's very selective of what he uses for a bed or sharpens his claws on. The afghan I made is one of his favorites.

Made a super narrow "scarf" with the leftovers of the fuzzy purple yarn. Not quite long enough, so I put a button on it and am calling it a headband or a muff.


Two months ago I had the brilliant idea to knit myself a koozie to take to Husky tailgates. I used yarn I had laying around from a hat project for my brother several Christmases back and made myself a striped beverage cooler/hand warmer. Voila! A thing of beauty!

I used it at a tailgate and had about ten requests for the same, and several people mentioned that if I could work in a big ol' Washington W, they'd even pay for them, so it was back to the drawing board. After an attempt with different yarn that turned out more like a stein koozie, I got it down and wrote up a pattern. Husky fans everywhere rejoice.

It can be downloaded here. (Thanks, LP, for all the help!)

Go Dawgs!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

My name is Robyn and I'm a Yarnaholic.

I have a yarn buying problem. Sometimes I'm really good when I'm in a craft/yarn store and only buy what I need to make a specific pattern, but other times... Went to Bad Woman Yarn in the Wallingford Center today (it's pretty cool) and blew $50, and not on what I went for.

I have lots of projects on the books for Christmas this year and have been on a mission to find the perfect yarn for XXX's gift. Had planned on buying it at the Pacific Fabric's Holiday Open House last night, but they didn't have the right color. This morning I called Acorn St and Weaving Works, with no success. I guess in the back of my mind I knew it was a terrible idea, but I decided to go to Bad Woman at lunch because it's only a few blocks from the office. "Even if they don't have exactly what I want, surely they'll have a similar enough replacement!" I told myself.

Ha. Yeah, right. Not only did they not have a replacement, but I talked to the shop girl while I was there so I felt duty-bound to browse for a bit. Does any fibrephile ever really "browse?" Isn't it really more of a "want-everything-and-narrow-it-down-to-two-to-buy?" Alas, I am a true fibrephile and purchased my requisite four hanks of yarn (two hanks of each type, of course). Now the question is how can I afford Christmas presents when I blew my whole budget on yarn? But oh what beautiful yarn it is.

Alpaca with a Twist, Highlander - Color: Lady Fern
45% Baby Alpaca, 45% Merino Wool, 8% Microfiber, 2% Viscose.

Berroco, Lustra - Color: Aioli
50% Peruvian Wool, 50% Tencel (R) Lyocell.

Think I'm going to try to sneak in a project for myself with the Lustra after the holidays are over. Sometimes you just need a cream-colored scarf, right?

And, to make myself feel even worse, I'm going to post the yarn I bought last night, too. Not quite as soft, but more man-ish and much more affordable. Plus, I think I found the perfect pattern for it!

Cascade Yarns, Pastaza - Color: Charcoal
50% Llama, 50% Wool.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Who loves Twilight knits? It's me, it's me!

I'm not a Twilight fanatic, but man, does that movie have some nice knit patterns! Leda's hat was from it (or at least an actress from the movie) and I just started these awesome gloves.

(photo by marielle henault)

This will be my first attempt at mittens. My repertoire expands daily!! I started on Saturday and completed the first mitten Sunday night. I was a little worried that it would turn out too big on my tiny carnie hands, but it's perfect! I did shorten the thumb by one round, and probably could have gotten away with two. The pattern also calls for casting on in the middle of a row, which I've never done. Lisa and I played with it a bit and did something that kind of works, but now that I've started the second I think I'll look up how to do it for real. I'm keeping these, so I don't really care if they look a little different, plus its only four sts AND it's in the thumb crack.

Hope to finish these on Thursday at the latest. May have difficulties with that due to bowling tonight and the Pacific Fabrics open house and demo on Wednesday, but I'll try my best. Already have most of the arm done.

Pattern: Bella's Mittens by Marielle Henault
Yarn: Paton's Classic Wool, Dark Gray
Needles: Size 8 DPN

Monday, November 16, 2009

Warning: Stash Busting in progress

My parents brought back two skeins of yarn for me from a cruise to Norway last summer. It's pretty yarn, a nice deep red wine color, but two small skeins does not many projects make! Determined to use it in a way that would display the quality of the yarn, I started a scarf. Two months later, I'm still only 2/3 of the way through. It's an easy pattern, but it just can't hold my attention. I'd much rather be making my UW beer coozies or working on my first attempt at mittens!

Pattern: Ripened Scarf by Danielle Chalson
Yarn: Norwegian nylon blend (??), wine
Needles: size 7

Leda's birthday hat

This hat drove me a little crazy in the beginning. Had the brilliant idea to make this using the green yarn left over from a friend's housewarming afghan to make my roommate a birthday hat, and our other roommate would make a scarf using the same pattern. Multiple disasters followed.

Bought size 4 16" circulars and cast on at my parents house. After failing to start with enough yarn using long tail method four times (!!!), I realized after working a row that I had miscounted my sts and had to try again. I wised up and placed stitch markers every 10 cast on sts and got working for real. Finished the ribbing for the brim and wanted to shoot myself in the foot because it was HUGE. No doubt about it, using worsted weight yarn and needles one size too large did not gauge correctly. Who would have expected that? Modified the pattern by decreasing purls between columns by two and got to working. My first try at cable and it turned out awesome. If only the Husky's had pulled out a win that night, I would have been able to go to bed happy. End result: A little big on my head, but perfect for Leda's massive amounts of hair!

Lisa started the scarf around the same time as me and after 18" of work we compared and found, to our dismay, something was awry. We worked the same pattern, but Lisa's scarf was much looser and the lace pattern were super stretched out. Perhaps a gremlin had crept in at night and changed our needles so we were not both working with 6s? Ten minutes later we realized we watch too many SciFi made-for-tv movies when Lisa had the epiphany that while we were using the same pattern, her project was stretched x2 due to purling the wrong side. Alas, no gremlins here, just yarn monsters and one Jabba the Cat.

Pattern: Ashley by Bethe Galantino
Yarn: Vanna's Choice, Dusty Green
Needles: Size 4 for ribbing, 6 for hat body

In the beginning...

After knitting for nigh on 8 years, I decided that it's time to keep track of my work. I'm starting this blog in an attempt to keep track of the patterns and yarn I use on projects, and to remember what I've created and given away. Yay for organization!!

Now to try to post pictures and pattern links.