Friday, February 25, 2011

Spoke Too Soon

So, I guess making fun of the snowstorm that didn't hit my neighborhood wasn't a good idea.  Not too long after I posted yesterday, this is what it looked like out my window.

Luckily it didn't last too long.  It's quite cold, though, below freezing, but luckily no more precipitation is expected so the roads should be okay.  Today the sun is out and the scene this morning was lovely.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Snow! Well, Sort Of.....

I imagine all of you living in parts of the country where you can really tell that it's been winter were amused to see Seattle on the weather channel yesterday.  Yes, we've had all our local news reporters out in their yellow jackets marvelling at the tiny bit of snow that has everyone in an uproar.  To be fair, there was some significant accumulations in the surrounding areas and in the mountains, but here?  Nah.  News stories of kids sledding into muddy grass while enjoying a "snow" day are very entertaining.  Doesn't take much to get us going here.  Here's a photo of the sun glinting off the tiny layer of snow in the yard.  It looked very pretty in real life!

In other weather news, though, I'll be heading back down south early Saturday morning, where it's been cooler and rainy (60s) but hopefully will be heading back up into the 70s shortly after my arrival.  I've been wearing my Cassidy sweater as much as possible, since I know the worsted weight wool will not be necessary for me next week.  Yes, I got the sweater done in time to wear it to Madrona Fiber Arts Festival and it worked out well.  It was comfortable to wear (not as itchy as it seemed at first) and wasn't too hot for most of the indoor time.  It's very nice to wear as an outer garment in the cool weather.  I received lots of compliments and am very happy with it.

It doesn't have a hood because I ran out of yarn and my friend Jann gave me a great suggestion as to how to use the partial hood to make a collar, thus avoiding the dreaded ripping.  I was a little hesitant as to my ability to make this type of alteration, but it came out great.

I've packed up yarn to take to the desert so I can work on some lighter weight sweaters.  The way I packed, I'll have about 4 sweaters done, yarn spun for some shawls, and a blanket started in the next three weeks.  Who's betting on that?  Knitters are nothing if not confident.

I'm working my way through some mittens with limited success.  They're called Elise and are a February selection in the Ravelry group, Year of Stash Socks.  Here's my progress after trying to fix the problem of size (too large) and finally ripping back to the cuff, adjusting how I hold the colors, and starting again.  I'm hoping this version will succeed, since I really like this pattern and am enjoying working with the yarn.  (0f course, it's Wollmeise, so who wouldn't).  My friend Lori offered me a skein of Natur from her sizeable stash, which I gratefully accepted.  I was going to use some Knit Picks Bare for the light color, but it wouldn't have matched as well.  The green is leftover yarn from my Norwegian Rose socks, so this is stash-busting (some of mine and some of hers!)

I'll catch you later from the sunny south.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Seaming a Sweater on Superbowl Sunday

This report is a little bit late, but I liked the alliterative headling, so I'm sticking with it!  I did spend much of Superbowl Sunday seaming up my Cassidy.  I started this sweater with the Knitmore Girls' podcast Knitalong but have had a couple of delays along the way.  I'm trying to get it finished so I can wear it next week to Madrona if I want to, so we'll keep fingers crossed.

The seaming:  I do not like sewing and seaming is more sewing than knitting to me.  No matter how careful I vow to be, the seaming never looks very good to me.  So I won't enter the sweater in the looks like it will stay together and the sides are even and it fits! so that's all good.  I picked up the stitches for the hood the other night (another job I don't much care for) and the hood is coming along.  However, my ball of yarn is getting suspiciously small and I know it's the last one, so I'm hoping for the best.  I did have a little more yardage than was called for (after a kind Raveler sold me a matching skein) so there's no reason I should run out.  I just like to worry about things, so that's what I'm doing.

The progress after seaming shoulders, sides, setting in and seaming the sleeves:

And I finished a long-standing WIP!  Reading the Yarn Harlot's blog recently, I noticed that she referred to a disease she had called "Finishitupitis".  This is apparently the opposite of the more commom affliction of "Startitis" which I usually have to some degree.  Anyway, for some reason I decided to finish up a small blanket that I had started soon after I learned to knit about 6 years ago.  It's a pretty simple pattern with alternating squares of pattern that switch orientation every 18 rows.  It's simple to recognize the pattern and you just have to pay attention to where each square of patterning ends and not mindlessly continue knitting the wrong design. (Ask me how I know.)

What I found interesting was that I remember having so much trouble keeping track of this when I started it originally.  I counted obsessively, had tons of stitch markers in it, and couldn't figure out what went wrong when I got off track.  I was happy to observe that now I'm able to read the knitting and can easily see when I get off track.  (I'd be happier if I could say I don't get off track any more, but that would be stretching the truth a bit.)

So I pulled out this blanket a week or so ago and decided to finish it.  I stopped one pattern repeat (36 rows) short of what was called for, but I decided that it was plenty big for a lap blanket.  Too bad the loveseat I made it to match is now slipcovered in a different color, but the blue still goes in the bedroom just fine.  It blocked out nicely and is lovely and squishy.