Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Finished Objects

Thought I'd share pictures of some of the things I made while I was on Blogging Hiatus.

I didn't make this one, but it's so nice, I wanted to share it. Lisa made this cardigan from Erika Knight's Simple Knits for Treasured Babies for my baby shower.

Bottom-up pullover from an Ann Norling pattern. This one turned out to be kind of a disaster. The collar is a mess, which I disguised with a strategically placed sheep button. I feel lucky that it went over his head at all -- we won't speak of the green and blue striped pullover that won't. Let's just say it's fortunate that I'm a Process Knitter rather than a Project Knitter.

Candy Cane Hat from Itty-Bitty Baby Hats. I used Svale from Dale of Norway, which I would not use again because the stretch and drape isn't right. But I like the pattern very much and plan to make another in Steeler colors for the fall.

Cardigan from the above Ann Norling pattern with matching Umbilical Cord hat from Stitch 'n Bitch. The yarn is Pittsburgh Print, which is what we carried in the old Knit and Bead rather than Encore. I really like this yarn a lot, but haven't seen it since the store closed. I wish I'd bought some for The Stash when the store closed and I got my super-duper discount.

Big Bad Baby Blanket from Stitch 'n Bitch. The yarn is Lorna's Laces Shepherds Worsted. I know it seems insane to use $17 a skein yarn for a blanket, but this wears and washes beautifully, and at the time I still had my employee discount.

Vest from Louisa Harding's Natural Knits for Babies and Moms. I wish I had a better picture of this because the stitch detail is beautiful: I used Rowan Calmer, which again, seems insane, but it washes surprisingly well, despite the Dire Warnings on the label. I bought the Harding book because it has two patterns for nursing sweaters in it. I don't like these particular nursing sweaters, but I feel like any designer who thinks to make one should be supported.

We will not speak of the three unfinished baby sweaters I have in my closet. I'm so embarrassed to say that I hate seaming so much, I stuffed them away and now they don't fit Henry anyway. See the bit about it's a good thing I'm a Process Knitter above.

By the way, there's an interesting discussion going on now on Yahoo's Knitlist about Destashing and going on Yarn Diets. Looking over my own stash, I'm surprised that for a Process Knitter, most of the stash has been purchased for specific projects. The only random stash things I have are things I snapped up when the store went out of business. Hmm.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

More Jimmy Beans Love

My new needles arrived yesterday! So to recap, I sent off broken needles last Wednesday, got a confirmation email on Friday, and the needles came on Monday. In less than a week they replaced $20 needles that they didn't even sell me in the first place for $4, and then basically refunded that $4 with a free shipping coupon. Amazing.

Everyone go buy a lot of yarn from them now!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Tempting sleeve join - thinking out loud

I'm at the point in Tempting where I've knit most of the body and need to join the sleeves, working in the round.

I've done this before using the Ann Norling children's sweaters from the bottom up pattern. Her method goes something like this: The beginning of the round is the back of the sweater. Knit x number of stitches until you get to where the sleeve begins. Place a marker. Slide y number of stitches to a stitch marker. Take the sleeve and knit from the DPNs or stitch holders onto the circular needle. Leave y number of stitches onto the holder (the same amount as you left on the body). Those two sets of stitches will be grafted together or joined by a three needle bind off later. Place another marker. Continue to knit across the front, then repeat the process when you get to the other sleeve point.

In Tempting, though, Jenna Adorno gives these instructions:
Place next 12 [14,16,18,20] sts on waste yarn, work across 60[66, 74, 82, 88] sts, place next 12 [14,16,18,20] sts on waste yarn, work to end of rnd. Set aside. Do not break yarn.

[Sleeve instructions, blah, blah, blah]

Join Sleeves to Body
NOTE: Read through this entire step before beginning.Using circular needle and ball of yarn attached to body, and working in 2x2 rib as set, work across 40[46, 52, 58, 64] sts of one sleeve, work across 60[66, 74, 82, 88] sts of front of body, work across 40[46, 52, 58, 64] sts of second sleeve, work across 60[66, 74, 82, 88] sts of back of body.There should now be 200[224, 252, 280, 304] sts on the circular needle, and the sleeves and body should be joined, ready for the yoke to be worked. At the underarms, the sts on waste yarn from the body and from the sleeves will be opposite each other. These sts will be joined later on.

This makes no sense to me, in part because I tried to work it out last night at 10:30 while watching Munich (not exactly an uplifting or subtle film - were you all aware that terrorism is wrong, no matter who does it? Thanks, Stephen Spielberg!), and in part because I'm so used to Ann Norling's method. Adorno's method, as far as I can tell, leaves long floats across the armpit? Do you knit the stitches before putting them on the waste yarn? If you don't, how do not join the sweater inadvertently before adding the sleeves?

If you've made this before, help! Is there a reason to this madness, or will this work using the method I know?

Okay, knitting-related things to be grumpy about:
  • Everyone is on Ravelry except me! I feel like I'm looking in, my face pressed up against the glass. Let me in!
  • It's June 25. Do you know where your CotLin is? Apparently Knitpicks doesn't either. New date? July 11.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Jimmy Beans rocks

I heart them. Here's the email I just received:

Hi Anna,

I just wanted to let you know that we received the Lantern Moon Needle that you sent in for the broken needle exchange. We are sending you a new set of needles this afternoon, and have created an order in our system for them. The order number is 79805, should you need to call us for any reason about your needles.

They should arrive shortly, and thanks for checking us out!

And in a separate email, they sent a coupon code for free shipping on my next order. Wow. Where's my credit card? I have shopping to do.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


Amanda has saved the day!

Jimmy Beans Wool will replace broken Lantern Moon needles for just the cost of shipping and handling, even if the needles were purchased elsewhere. Hooray! Hooray!

Since the pain of breaking an expensive needle has been alleviated, I figure this is the Knitting Universe's way of telling me Enough with the Mason Dixon Bibs already. I'll continue work on Tempting and perhaps begin my socks. (By the way, I bought 8 inch DPNs for those. Too long?)

PS Just so I don't lose my grumpy edge, KnitPicks is now claiming June 25 as the date when CotLin will be available. Hmm.

Extra-Grumpy Knitter

And it's all my fault this time.

I sat down on the couch this morning and saw my knitting out of the corner of my eye. The thought "Oh, I should be care--" flashed through my mind, and then I heard it. SNAP.

I sat on my size 7 Lantern Moon needle and broke it. :( Not my cheap Clovers that I purchased with my employee discount, but my $20+ beautiful rosewood Lantern Moons.

Is there anything I can do? Wood glue? Or is it doomed?

Monday, June 18, 2007

Grumpy Knitter

Dear Knitpicks:

I really would like to purchase some CotLin. Would you please sell me some? At first you said it would be back in stock on May 31. So on May 31, I went to your website and you'd changed it to June 15. Last Friday was June 15, so I eagerly went online to choose my colors. No! You changed the date again to June 18!

It's June 18. Your website indicates that you have CotLin available. I placed six skeins in my cart. But when I went to my cart, you wouldn't let me buy it!

What is wrong with you people? Either you have it, or you don't. If you're sold out, stop advertising CotLin tantalizingly from your main page. It's cruel to hold out the promise of CotLin, only never to deliver.


PS I'm reading the Yarn Harlot books, which I confess I've never read before. Why, dear Yarn Harlot, did you stick that Dead Baby story in the middle of an otherwise charming and funny book? I know you mean it as a Tender Story that Shows the Emotional Power of Knitting, but it's not a Lesson I need right now.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Knit One yarn sale

I am proud of myself. Lisa and I hit the big sale at Knit One this morning around 9:30, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was not completely crazy as expected. The checkout line was actually quick and efficient (note to Knit One: whatever you did today to get people through the line quickly, do that again all the time).

Usually at these things I get overwhelmed and turn into a magpie, buying bits and bobs of yarn I think are pretty or interesting and then they sit unused in my stash. This time. I bought yarn for three projects and spent "only" $110:
  • "UltraFemme" from Stitch and Bitch Nation, also shown on Knitty Gritty, yarn as called for in the pattern
  • "Tempting," from Knitty (what can I say, I like Jenna Adorno's designs), Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran in a beautiful pewter blue color. I'm currently making one in taupe for my sister, and after all the MDK knitting I've been doing, it was so nice to knock out a few inches of that sweater while visiting with Lisa.
  • Two skeins of Koigu sock yarn in a lovely red colorway. I've never knit socks before! Any tips or hints for a beginner? What pattern should I use? Should I teach myself the Magic Loop method or muddle through on DPNs?

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

How quickly time flies

How we got from the top photo to the bottom one, I don't know. I know it's a cliche, but I'm amazed how quickly the year has passed. The birthday was a success, even though the birthday boy got a tad bit overwhelmed by the cake and the singing. Please note, though, that he is not wearing his hat!

PS Lisa, I know you tagged me, but things have been crazy around here! I'm sorry!

Friday, June 01, 2007

Completed Birthday Hat!

You can see how the recipient really appreciates my efforts. ;)

I made the size intended for a 2 year old because Henry's hat size has tended to run larger than recommended for his age. I knit to gauge, but the Bernat yarn stretched to the point where the hat also fits me and my husband. A hat for the whole family!