Monday, April 29, 2013

Blogger Fail

So, I got exactly two days into the week-long blogging exercise.  My main excuse is that I had to go out of town unexpectedly Thursday to Saturday, but that really only excuses me from two days!  The Day 3 exercise was to produce an infographic of some sort.  My idea was to make a Venn diagram showing the intersection of socks, lace, and pink yarn in my projects, but I had a problem finding a Venn diagram-maker that (a) was free and (b) could deal with three concepts.

I will admit that, despite this failure, I LOVE Venn diagrams and Boolean logic.  I remember learning about Boolean logic in 6th grade and, for the first time, being interested in math.  However, I didn't see any possible use in my future life for it.  Little did I know that I would become a librarian and use Boolean logic constantly in complex MEDLINE searches!

So, although I fell down on blogging, I did cast on for a new project over the weekend, and it is neither pink nor socks.  It does involve some lace, though.


The pattern is Cladonia, which I think I queued the week it was first published!  The blue yarn is madelinetosh pashmina in Betty Draper's Blues, and the other is Blue Moon Socks That Rock Heavyweight in Corvid Fledge.  In person, the Corvid Fledge looks much more purple.  The lace edging will be in Betty Draper's Blues.  I'll be taking this project to my conference that begins Saturday in Boston.  I'm also taking a sock, for a little more portability!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Day 2: Mascot Project

For Day 2, Eskimimi wants us to select a project that "embodies that house/animal."  Although she suggests that we might blog about "the journey" to select this pattern, but frankly, since I am of the House of Bee and have already knit not one, but TWO bee-themed projects, I will cheat and talk about those!

The first was the Honeybee Stole, by the incomparable Anne Hanson, which I finished in February 2008. I made this stole for my (very) tall sister.  It was supposed to be 7 feet long, but, lightly blocked, mine turned out to be 11 feet long.  This was the project that made me admit that I have a problem with loose knitting!  I don't have a decent picture of it, but you can see some of the bee patterns here.


My other bee-based project was more recent.  I made the Buzzy Bee Baby Blanket for a friend of mine last summer.  Frankly, it was adorable.


Because I had made it from KnitPicks Swish Worsted, I threw it in the washer and dryer.  Unfortunately, one bee tried to "escape" or, maybe, commit suicide.


See the crochet hook and markers there -- I was trying to fix it!  I finally gave up and just sort of re-knit all the stitches, making this bee look like he had lost a wing.  The blanket was still pretty dang cute!

I have another bee-themed pattern (and the yarn for it) in my queue.  The Bee Fields triangle shawl has been in line since 2007.  I even purchased the suggested yarn -- Wooly Wonka Merino laceweight in Buckwheat Honey.  This is a very "not me" color, but seemed so perfect for the project.  I'm thinking this needs to move up a ways in my queue....

Monday, April 22, 2013

Busy as a Bee

I have been such a bad blogger of late.  I write blog posts in my head all the time, but actually posting them is hard. I think that's because I don't like to have a post without a picture and for some reason (maybe the grey, grey winter weather which still lingers here?), I have had no inclination to take pictures.

Steven posted about Eskimimi's Knitting and Crochet Blog Week, and I decided being forced encouraged to post daily might get me back into the groove.

Eskimimi is providing prompts for each day, and today's is to assign ourselves to a Hogwarts-style house.  It took me about 3 seconds to choose.

From the Houses of Bee, Manatee, Monkey, and Peacock, I am definitely a Bee.   Bees are described thusly:

Bees are busy and industrious, but can flit from one interesting project to the next as bright and shiny things capture their interest.

Ah, yes.  I do have a short attention span, and always have multiple projects on the needles.  I also have a tendency to abandon projects, although I will frequently pick them up later.

For example, last time I blogged, I asked about advice on what to knit out of my MadTosh Vintage.  I wanted to knit a worsted-weight shawl, with lace or some sort of interest.  I got several suggestions, but instead -- the new Knitty came out, and I started a pair of socks (one done, although I've knit twice).  I also went back to my Whispering Pines shawl, which has been languishing for well over two years!  So, yes, "bright and shiny things" to capture  my interest!

Sunday, February 24, 2013


I am not even going to try to explain why I haven't posted since November, because there is no good reason beyond the fact that it's way easier to compose blogposts in one's head than to actually get them written.

So - if I have any readers left, I need your help!

You might remember that I knit Juneberry last winter. If you've been around a while, you know I love knitting lace, and knitting with anything heavier than DK is "big yarn" for me.  But I'm coming around to using heavier-weight yarn for lace - I love the way my Juneberry looks, even with it's one "odd" corner.  (I think it reminds me of my kitty Harley's one tan paw, although I didn't think of that when I chose the color.)

Who, me?  

I love that odd corner so much (it's Madtosh tosh vintage in Trodden) that I bought four more skeins, making, combined with the 3/4 -- at least! -- of the skein I had left from Juneberry, about 950 yards to do something.

So, I am trying to not cast on for anything else until I finish what I consider my current projects: the second Waffles! sock, the second Peerie Flooers mitten (that is, of course, the inside of mitten #1), and the Winter Arboretum* shawl.  But that doesn't stop me from making plans!

I had pretty much decided that I would use those 950 worsted-weight yarn to make Willoughby, which has been in my queue for three years. I like the idea of a rectangular wrap, rather than a triangular shawl. Then I saw Pachelbel.  Hmmm....  I love it, but I'm pretty sure I would be really, really bored during the long expanse between those gorgeous ends.

I've spent the last week or so going back and forth between those two. And then a few days ago, I cam across Leila Raabe's designs.  Suddenly, I like the idea of a "non-lace lace" shawl.  The one issue I have with Juneberry, which I wear pretty much daily, is getting things caught in the lace.  Leila's designs look like lace, even when they aren't.  Kindling and Ashby are both "non-lace" and written for worsted weight, so I've added them to my list.  Of course, if I'm going with triangular, there's also Maroni....

So what do you think:  Willoughby, Pachelbel, Kindling, Ashby, or Maroni?

*About Winter Arboretum:  If you check Ravelry, you'll see that I'm the only one knitting it.  And because of that, I've learned my lesson about being the first knitter from a designer I'm not familiar with -- even one who claims to have used a tech editor. I was most of the way through the edging, which is knit first, before I finally admitted to myself that no amount of blocking would make my garter-stitch-looking edging resemble the stockinette-based one in the pictures.  I compared the chart (which of course I had been using) to the written instructions, and realized the wrong-side rows on the chart were wrong.  The only good thing is that I had been rethinking my colors and decided that if I had to frog the whole thing, I would change the colors I was using.  I also emailed the designer.  Within a couple days, she had a corrected chart available, although I'm disappointed that she doesn't mention this in her pattern notes.  I'm sure I'm not the only person who bought the pattern, even if I was the only one knitting it.....

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Where the heck have I been?

1) September 7: closed on my new townhouse
2) September 13-16: moved a lot of stuff
3) October 5-9: Rochester, Minnesota for the annual meeting of the Midwest Chapter of the Medical Library Association
3) October 12-14:  Breckenridge, Colorado for a friend's wedding
4) October 14-17:  Lubbock, Texas for the annual meeting of the South Central Chapter of the Medical Library Association
5) October 17-22:  San Antonio, for a little vacation (after all, I was already in Lubbock, only an 8 hour drive away!  And my chauffeur was another knitter!)

And then I did next to nothing (except move more boxes around and, oh, yeah, go to my regular job on a daily basis) until.....

6) November 18-19:  Sister and brother-in-law visited on their way to Mom's for Thanksgiving
7) November 21-24:  Thanksgiving at Mom's!

And now -- since last Saturday, the 25th, I've been in Chicago for yet another conference.

As you can imagine, I still have boxes to unpack, but I have finished some knitting projects, including finishing a pair of much-needed and long-languishing gloves for myself.

It's really hard to take a picture of your own hand!

I also worked a bit of conductive thread into the tips of the right index finger and thumb, so I can use my iPhone while wearing them. It really works!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

One of these bees....


One of these bees...


is not like the others.


One of these bees...


just doesn't belong.

On the other hand, it DOES look better than it did when I pulled it out of the dryer!


As you can tell by the presence of the crochet hook and the stitch marker, this was not immediately after I pulled it out of the dryer -- it was after I had started to lay it out to take pictures and noticed that one of the 21 bees on this blanket was missing a wing.

I can't figure out what I did to make this happen.  I first tried to re-knit it in pattern, with absolutely no luck.  So then I tried just to knit it back up. I did a little better then, but it's still not perfect.  This is a gift (obviously!) and I considered not giving it, but then I decided that, out of 21 bees, less than half of one was a mess.  My friend can just position some baby body part over that one bee, and it will be fine!

Right?  (I'm right, right?)

The pattern is the Buzzy Bee Baby Blanket, knit out of Knit Picks Swish Worsted.  Ravved here.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Oh, Hi!

Sorry for the blog silence.  Despite the fact that I am knitting a baby blanket for a baby due this week, there really hasn't been much knitting.  The non-gender-specific blanket is the Baby Buzzy Bee Blanket.  I bought the kit from Knitpicks, because it came with Swish, such a great baby yarn.  The pattern itself is a tiny bit problematic. English is not the designer's native language, so some things are a little quirky (to quote someone on Ravelry!).  For example, charts are called "schemes," and borders "planks." There is also one big error in the pattern, which is pretty obvious if you're an experienced knitter -- in one place, it says all wrong-side stitches are knit. This is not true, and the instructions later on are correct -- you "knit the knits and purl the purls" on the wrong side.  Nevertheless, it's a very cute pattern, and I'm about 2/3 done.

I've been slowed down somewhat by the summer heat -- it was 105 here one day last week, which is hot anywhere, and particularly so in Iowa.  But my main obstacle to knitting has been the fact that I am in the midst of buying a townhouse!  It's brand-new, and should be done at the end of the month. I expect to close and move in mid-August. So I'm starting to pack up and imagine window coverings.  Luckily, this move is less than 10 miles, which will be much easier (and cheaper!) than my last move from San Antonio!

Next time -- knitting pictures!