Yeah, no…the things that didn’t happen

I started out pretty good with the knitting. Unfortunately, I had a bout with pneumonia and it won. To the tune of a few hours in the ER and a week in the hospital, a side of lethargy and dose of couldn’t care less.

I’d pick up my sweater and knit a row or two. Put it down faster than the speed of light. Look at patterns, look at yarns. Think about doing something huge. Think about doing something small. Do nothing. Sleep a lot.

It has eased somewhat. I ordered a yarn for a chameleon kit. It uses two skeins of yarn and is full of i-cord stitches going every which way. It is interesting to look at, and Earthfaire had the same yarn used in the example pattern. The multicolor yarn doesn’t seem to be as pinkish as it looks on the pattern, but it’s kinda darker, so I guess I will like it anyway. Hard to say at this point.

I got a little cranky about not really feeling like doing anything, so Monday night I started finishing the second ply of a Falkland fiber I bought from Juliespins.etsy.com sometime last year. I had spun most of it Saturday, and last night I had the goal of giving it at least 15 minutes if it didn’t go well. And if it did go well, I would just spin til I felt less cranky and then go to bed. It got a little irritating the last couple of minutes, but it went fairly quickly.

Now I just have to ply them together and maybe block the yarn a little. I think it’s going to be pretty. (Falkland top in Fairgrounds colorway).

I still couldn’t tell you the difference between Falkland and merino. There’s rarely anything I get from Julie that I don’t like. I just don’t pay attention to fiber that way. I only know the difference between rambouillet and merino because ram is so fluffy…it is obvious there’s a difference.

Since the spinning’s so easy, I think I’m going to maybe pull out that sweater’s quantity of JS I bought to make myself a sweater from scratch. A while back I asked Julie to make me some braids similar to the one I navajo-plied this heavyweight yarn from a few years ago. I want to spin them up and work them into a sweater that fades from natural to black yarn.

Yes, it is stupidly ambitious for me, but go big or go home. Or something.

Knitting and arm numbness

Over the past few months, I have been having some numbness in my hands and arms the past few months that affect my knitting after I’ve been doing a few minutes.

I went to my chiropractor and told her I had a goal to knit every day, but the numbness wasn’t helping. She said the numbness was coming down from my neck due to me having my head down all the time, especially when knitting.

She worked on my arms, hands and shoulders, and showed me a few things that should help. There are pressure points in the shoulders that need to be pressed on, and the muscles moved back and forth to loosen them up.

She said if that didn’t fix it, we would have to try something more specific.

I think another thing adding to the problem is I got a new cell phone and I have been playing games on it a lot, which I couldn’t do on my old cell phone. I probably need to make some changes in how I hold that thing and how I sit when playing it.

I have only missed two days knitting so far. There were a couple of days I was super tired, so I even went to bed early.

The main project I have been working on is the black rainbow socks. I’m on the ribbing and I think I am going to make them crew socks. Even though I love the yarn and I want to use it all up, I also want to be done with these already. lol. Here’s what they looked like as of Jan. 12.

I also picked up the sweater sleeve one afternoon, and now it’s almost to the cuff part. I think I’m going to finish off the cable, then do about an inch of double moss stitch. I need to do some major decreasing in there somewhere and switch to ribbing to make it fit my wrists better. I don’t want drafts of cold air going up the sleeves.

And another thing

I was talking to my knit group telling them how I almost bought the yarn pack for the Knitpicks Hue Shift Afghan. It was on sale for $28 or so. I didn’t get it because I’m supposed to be on a yarn diet and I wasn’t sure I’d like knitting a mitered square. (It is all mitered squares.)

Sierra said she bought the kit and it has just been sitting in her stash for 8 years. Did I want to try it using her kit? Yes. So she dropped it off today and I am most likely going to try knitting a square tomorrow.

/

I also was going to knit my cousin a hat using some DK weight yarn in purple, her favorite color. I wanted worsted, but I don’t have any good purple worsted. (Photo not true to the purple, but as close as I could get with the program I used.)

I just recently decided to double the yarn to make it a worsted weight. I hate that it took me a week to come up with that idea. I used to be faster on the draw than that mentally. I am slowing down in my middle age.

/

Great idea, Renee!

I have been enjoying a lot of Youtube videos lately. Knitters, cooks, gamers, salon artists and more have been helping me get through the pandemic.

Lately I decided I am going to start a Youtube channel to document me working through my stash, with a goal of knitting everyday of 2021 to deal with the UFOs, miscellaneous balls of yarn, beads and other stuff in my stash.

That said, there’s a huge learning curve for me and I don’t have all the equipment I would need, so I thought why not document it on my blog first, since I already have one.

“Great idea, Renee!” lol

I’ll play catch up on the videos later, once I figure out what I need to do. If it goes well, I’ll probably do it like a slow knitting podcast, maybe with a knit with me Saturday morning component. When I lived with my roommate, I would get up about 7 a.m. Saturdays and work on my knitting for a while.

I want to get back to doing that. I think it was relaxing most of the time. I’d knit, read or take photos, fix errors if I had any, and tackle parts of patterns that I had trouble figuring out.

So that’s my goal. Start knitting or crafting a little bit everyday, so I finish my WIPS, UFOs, and other projects in waiting.

I recently figured out I need to trim my Fish Lips Kiss Heel sock knitting template. Previous attempts at the heel didn’t seem to fit right. I am pleased to report that trimming the template seems to have worked for me, as the heels I finished knitting yesterday seem to fit my feet perfectly. I am so happy with them!

So, since today is the first day of crafting everyday, I have worked a couple of rows on the black rainbow socks, and I may start spinning the second half of some yarn that has been on hold for a couple of years. Tomorrow, I plan to finish one sleeve of the Saga sweater. There’s 3-5 inches left on it. The other sleeve is somewhere around the top of the shoulder.

Thanks for visiting my page.

85% done with the Saga sweater I’m making

I am just past the elbow on one sleeve. The rest of the other sleeve, pockets, and the collar will be the rest of the knitting. I am not stressing about it any more. Some of the changes I made to get it to fit me are wonky, but I can live with them and it is super warm.

The sleeves are nice TV knitting, and I will enjoy getting someone to help me take some good pics of it to share with the Marveng group knitters when I’m finally done.

I have renewed interest in socks and will be adding some to the to do list.

Pattern buying

As much as I tell myself I’m going to cut down on buying patterns and yarn, I keep on doing it. I still have a ridiculous amount of optimism on what I think I can get accomplished.

I never really take into account how much stash I already have that I’m not using. I am always like, “Ok, well, this will just be the pattern that makes me more stash conscious and the prolific knitter I keep coming across on Ravelry.”

It’s never going to happen, but I can dream, I guess. If you take into account how many projects I have frogged and fixed and restarted, I am very prolific. It just doesn’t show up as finished items.

Another thing about patterns that has creeped in is I feel like I am supporting amazing designers the best way I can by buying individual patterns. There are some patterns that are so awesome, I can’t not buy them. Even if I may never knit them or use them in something I’m making.

I am loving my Linda Marveng patterns. She releases so many, and they are all so striking. She has written one book, and is running KALS for the next one being published.

I have only bought about 3 of her patterns. Two of my favorites were gifted to me. She has 175 patterns and counting. And she has some dedicated knitters who show up in her Rav group and complete multiple sweaters (prolific knitters for sure!), while I am stalling at one.

My current goal where her work is concerned is to fully participate in a knitalong. I am not fully participating in her finish-along in that I don’t knit everyday, but I am still working on the sweater.

One future goal of mine concerning her patterns is that one day I will fully participate in a knitalong for one of her test knits and finish it before the KAL end date. Over the past year, she has had about a test knit a month. Some run concurrently. One day I’m going to be a contender. lol

Here’s a photo of Saga, one of her designs that I’m making a version of:

saga-website

© Eivind Røhne

It only goes up to a large, and I am 2X, so I’ve had to reknit the fronts so they will fit me.

I am making it in a green Malabrigo Rios yarn that it’s hard to get a picture of.

SagaBackShoulder

I am so bad about another designer, Susanne Daum, that almost whatever she is working on, I want to buy it. And I have. Celtic blankets, involved sweaters and wraps. They are amazing!

I first came across her designs when she released the Beastie Celtic blanket, and I had to buy that too. It is complicated looking, and I felt like it was one of those I am never going to be able to do myself. After watching other test knitters go through it, I think I can do it, but it is going to be a while. I am going to try something simpler first, the Glencoyne Dale  Celtic wrap. I may use the Cotton Viscose yarns in purple and black that I was using to knit a Juliet sweater. I hope my purls come out all right.

Glencoyne1

A useless-for-knitting day

I made a to do list of all the things I wanted to get done last weekend. One of the items on the list included clearing out a drawer that I wasn’t able to shut all the way because it was disorganized.

I started taking stuff out, and one of the items was a beaded knitted bracelet that I’d had in time out. It was 90% finished, and coming across it made me forget about clearing the rest of the drawer for a little while.

I thought, “There’s only a little left, I can finish knitting this and be done with it today.”

Wrong! Not only did I not finish it, I frogged it back down to about 10 percent before putting it away in disgust 3 or 4 hours later — and for the same reason it was in time out in the first place.

When I couldn’t knit tight enough that one of the beads I’d place would sit properly, I frogged a row or two and knitted them back up.  The yarn is a fine strand knitted into a worsted weight tube, and unfortunately, it gets caught up in the current row and the bracelet edges. So it keeps unraveling itself, and will eventually unravel the beginning rows of beads.

So the bracelet will soon be frogged from both ends. lol. I am definitely going to have to use another yarn, same beads, and maybe even different needles. It is a mess, and it is so irritating.

 

SagaBody

In other news, my Saga sweater is coming along pretty well. I am at the beginning of the armhole decreases. I just need to reference a short row sweater bind off tutorial (this one, https://youtu.be/ur30NRtsB4U, by Cheryl Brunette) to figure out what I’m doing.

I tried binding off like I would for a shawl project. The right hand side would look good, but the left hand side looked all weird, so I’m going to try her sloping bind off technique.

I finished a shawl and need to block it again so I can give my friend her blocking wires back.  (I semi blocked it once, but couldn’t locate my yardstick for measuring.)

I don’t know why I have been dragging my feet and putting stupid conditions on getting this done once and for all. It just seems like it has been thing after thing after thing happening, which makes me not want to deal with any of it, I guess is the problem.

It looks okay here, but one of the edges will not lay flat, and may even need to be steamed or ironed afterward.

Shawl1stBlocking

 

About 140 balls of yarn

I think my closet is very well insulated with yarn, except for some of the more flammable acrylics.

I plan to start seriously addressing it after this year is up.

Work-related stress makes me want to come home and not do anything that looks the least bit tedious.

I’m a project-oriented knitter, not a process-oriented one. I finish complete objects so slowly I lose interest before I get started good, most of the time. I hope over these next three months the stress goes down and I enjoy working on projects more.

Current projects, Sept. 2018

  1. Finish the scarf test knit I’m working on. I am about 1/3 done. I keep making myself work on it when I’d rather be knitting on something else. (Reminder to myself to never sign up for another test knit. I can no longer guarantee that I will finish the item, no matter how much I love it initially. That’s not fair to the person I offered to do it for. I made a cowl for the same designer that turned out great, and I was able to stick with it and finish it by the deadline. Which made me think I was able to handle a larger project. Stress from work got in the way and made me not want to do anything at all.)
  2. Finish the Speckled Space Socks. I am about 1/4 done with the foot, and have to reknit the part I frogged because I made a mistake reading the pattern. I love the pattern though. I also need to verify that I frogged both parts to the same particular row.

Here’s the list of other projects calling my name when these are done:

  • spin the rainbow batts I bought from Blue Barn Fiber on Etsy. They’re so gorgeous, OMG! Still haven’t taken a pic, but one is a black version, and one is a fleece white version of batt, and they have rainbow-colored bits throughout, and some sparkle, I think. Photo of the white batt from their website:

whiteartbatt

  • Spin the rest of the blue fiber gifted to me. I don’t know yet if I want to spin it as thin as possible and ply it with the thicker plies I finished years ago, or try to match the thicker ply and make a 2-ply that will wind up sport weight or heavier.
  • Knit a vest from the Cheryl Oberle Folk Vest book I bought from another Raveler. There are more than a few vests in there that I absolutely love, and I can use up some of the random fingering weights in my stash.
  • Send off a box of unwanted yarn to another Raveler. It is huge, therefore probably expensive as hell to send, and needs to be wrapped before I can send it off.
  • Spin the braids of fiber I ordered last year and never got to, especially since it helps take down my stress levels more than knitting does. I just want to get better informed about the details of spinning when I start them. There are terms like grist, s-spin and z-spin that I really want to get the gist of for my spinning from now on.

Back to stashing down for the new year

Current projects:

Lime & Violet green socks:

The foot and ankle sections are complete. I am going to add a couple of increase stitches to continue up the leg in ribbing. The foot is plain, the ankle section is in waffle stitch.

I was going to continue waffle stitches up the leg but I want to be able to knit these without constantly changing the stitches I am doing, so I have done increases and will begin 3×1 ribbing stitches soon.

I haven’t been knitting much, but I have been working on swatches to test yarns and whether I could actually do a pattern.

Swatches:

Potential sweater:

Knitting an enjoyable big swatch for the Idunn sweater by Linda Marveng. I think I’m using a size 7 needle with bronze metallic yarn. While the yarns not just right for the pattern, I think it would make a nice blingy cardigan on a slightly smaller size needle.

There’s only one row of cable moves to make and the only difference in the cables is the length of rows knit before you do a cable crossing row.

It just looks difficult. I have begun to appreciate easy things that look hard, very much.

Swatch test of Alice Starmore yarn:

I like the Hebridean 2 or 3 ply, and I love the colors. I do worry that I am nowhere near careful enough with my handknits to use non-superwash wool, considering I have ruined more than a few outfits and knitted items over the years accidentally.

I’m going to knit another swatch at the gauge required by the project, but I have to get some needles free.

I loved getting that order in the mail though. Loved it.

In January, my and a few of my friends are going to do six months of cold sheeping. So naturally a spoiled myself with two bundles of yarn in December. I’m going to have to start back knit way more often.

First step: Start knitting first thing early Saturday mornings when no one else is up. I used to enjoy this and maybe that will help me get cranking on some other things.

Second step: Go to more knit nights. Even if I don’t knit the entire time, going gives me a necessary break from other things.