Friday, July 27, 2007

Lovely, yummy stuff!

Look at what was waiting for me when I got home today:
Hand Maiden Tussah or Two Four Silk in Sangria:
Fleece Artist Sea Wool in Tiger. I was born in the year of the tiger, and besides dragons, tigers are my favorite animal.
And for everyone who gets optic nerve damage from most of my color choices, Fleece Artist Suri Blue (50% Suri Alpaca/50% Blue Face Leicester) in Stone. It's as yummy as it looks. Given Skunk's extreme fondness for alpaca, I'd better put it away quickly before he discovers it.

The good news is that I know what the Sea Wool and Suri Blue are going to be: respectively, socks, possibly the Bordello pattern, and Evelyn Clark's Spirit of the Southwest shawl. The bad news is that I forgot what I wanted the Tussah Silk for. I'm sure I'll think of something. Wait! Now I remember! Elann's Sun Ray shawl.

Vroom Vroom!

The cars are blasting around the track right now. We saw Paul Newman! OK, we saw his car. It's quite noisy out there today. In here, too. I think almost everyone has left the office for the day now.

I brought my sleeve in to work on at lunch time. Unfortunately, I got the ball band gauge, not the pattern gauge. So I ripped it out and will begin again when I find larger DPNs. I think I have 8s at home, somewhere. I really need to get all my DPNs in one place. I did notice that the sleeve was huge, and that was both before I started the increases and at a tighter gauge than the pattern calls for. I liked the fabric, and thought it was pretty loose for a sweater as it was. I'm not sure that I'm going to like it any looser.

It's totally quiet this afternoon, perfect for knitting. And I have...the unraveled sleeve in my knitting bag. I should have brought a second project. Oh, well, 3 more hours and I can go home.

My project for the weekend is to find all my UFOs, match up yarns and patterns for those "someday" projects, and then decide on a plan of attack. Maybe I'll start de-stashing, too.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Grand Prix Madness

Today is the beginning of Grand Prix madness in downtown San Jose. Actually, it started much earlier, when the grandstands went up around the 4th of July, but today is the day the streets are closed. Last year, I worked just outside the perimeter of the track, but I've since changed jobs, so I'm actually on the track this year. In fact, it's right outside my window at work. Practice doesn't start until tomorrow, thankfully. However, since I'm a contractor, I'm grateful that I don't need to stay home today and tomorrow, like unlucky people who work inside the track.

I admit that it is kind of fun to drive, sedately, down a race track, with the barriers up and the empty grandstands, but it can be a little confusing at the lights, since the barriers make it hard to judge distances. But still, the cars make satisfactory Vrooom! noises against the barriers, even my 10 year old Pontiac.

On to knitting! I did something bad to my lace scarf, I'm still not sure what. Anyway, it looks rather sad at the moment, and I am frustrated. I seem to have lost four stitches, out of 36! And I can't figure out where, probably because I'm frustrated. So I've set it aside. I was going to work on one of my UFOs tonight, but they're all so hot. So I cast on for a sleeve of Curvalicious, for a KAL I was supposed to be working since May. I'm using Rowan Calmer and it's very pleasant to work with, even though I want to stick the wooden needles in a pencil sharpener. At least I had dpns in 7.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Well, so much for *that*!

So, the aran handbag. It's kaput. The wandering cables were one thing, but when I managed to slip my fingers through the double moss stitch, well, that was something else entirely. I had to face the reality that my gauge was suitable for a sweater, but wasn't going to be a particularly useful handbag. The yarn calls for US 11, the pattern for US 10.5, and I should have used US 10, at least. There was no gauge given on the pattern, which should have been a hint. I think I was in knitterly denial - it'll be fine, I'll just line it. Right. I've knitted purses to be felted that were tighter. So I'm going to re-design the pattern to replace those braided cables that I don't like with a wandering "cable" that doesn't cross, use moss stitch instead of double moss stitch, and maybe make a few other minor changes.

Last night, I swatched my Socks That Rock. I got a whopping 7 stitches/inch. On 0's. It's a nice fabric, but I'm not sure it will be sturdy enough for socks. Am I doomed to knit socks in sport weight, just because that's the only way I'll be able to find needles small enough? I really don't want to contemplate knitting socks on delicate 00's, 0's feel dainty enough as it is.

I also went shopping at Colorsong Yarns, one of my favorite online yarn shops. I refrained from this, although I really, really want some. Luckily, someone finally bought out the Paris colorway, which was my favorite. Because really, what would I do with a single skein of hand-spun, hand-dyed cashmere? Besides drool on it, I mean. Buying more than one skein was out of the question, but I certainly envy those lucky people who ended up with 7 or 10 skeins of their favorite colorway.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Waiting for Harry...

I managed to do something bad to my left hand (that would be my dominant hand), so I really haven't been knitting too much, except for the 4 rows a day (but not every day) on the aran handbag. I have managed to mangle the cables but good in one place - how do you choke a cable? There really are two stitches there, but it looks like one. I must have done a double-twist there. I've also mis-crossed, well, actually, not crossed a couple of times on the braided cable, so it looks particularly snake-like in those sections. It's been a fun knit, overall, and continuing on past the mistakes has taken some work on my part. Yes, cables are easy to fix, and I certainly could have ripped back, but I'm finding the mistakes interesting, a real change for She Who Has To Do Everything Perfectly, So Often Does Nothing Or Gives Up In Disgust.

My next project is the Forest Canopy Shoulder Shawl, using Blue Moon Twisted! in Sherbet that I bought at Stitches in February. Here's a pic of it wound and ready to go:
I believe I've mentioned in the past my disdain for "dull" and "boring" colors? Well, this may be a bit bright, even for me. It reminds me of that rainbow stripe bubblegum I used to get when I was a kid. It didn't look that bright in the skein, really. See? Er, maybe it was. I wonder what an aran pattern would look like in Toasty Toes Las Vegas Brights?
Ow, stop hitting! :)

(Harry Potter has still not arrived, and I'm still waiting! Hurry it up, already!)

Sunday, July 01, 2007

To frog or not to frog

So, I've been knitting a dragon scale scarf in a pretty hand-painted yarn on my lunch breaks at work when I don't have to run errands. It takes half an hour to do one repeat, and I'm 1/3 of the way through. But I'm thinking that the yarn is too busy for the pattern.
What do you think? Too busy? Of course, it's not blocked yet, but I'm not sure blocking will help in this case.

So there I was, cabling along...

And, whoops, hey, where'd all those stitches come from. Ack! Way back there, I skipped a cable. Sigh. Back I go, tink, tink, tink. Uncabling isn't any fun, either, especially since I'm on the line that has 6 cables, with 4 different cables. Whew, I made it. Back on the wrong side row. Uh-oh. Why do I have an extra stitch right here at the end. Nooooo! Peer at knitting. It appears that when I went back to that cable, I picked up an additional stitch. All the other cables and stitches are in the correct place, so, k2tog in the seed stitch! I'm going to end up ripping this, too, aren't I? Because there's still that row where I knit when I should have purled in the RS p1, k1, p1, WS k1, p1, k1. Maybe I'll drop down and pick those stitches up. Whimper. I know! It's an interpretation of the design!

Here's a pic: