rope. tree. fan. spear. snake. wall.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

the pictures are the problem

So I STILL haven't blocked the two sweaters I'd finished as of my last entry. Since then I've finished another one and made significant progress on the Giant Clam featherweight, a hat I keep starting and then frogging, that cool cobalt-colored leafy-lace silk scarf I started, and the adding of sleeves to a cami that I test-knitted for Adri, who has a new baby and is still better at blogging than I am. Plus the endless Aldi yarn sock project, and an actual finished pair of gloves. Gloves!

But then. I bought a bunch of yarn from Harlequin last time I was up north. Then I very generously helped a local knitter de-stash some of her Wollmeise. Last Thursday Aldi was selling sock yarn again. Of 6 possible color combinations I bought only 5, which I think shows admirable restraint on my part. And after a weekend of photographing all this yarn and cropping uploading cataloguing the pics on Ravelry, I do not have the energy to do the progress photos for all these projects. I am starting to think that the key difference between me and a successful knitwear designer is that I can't be bothered to faff around with pictures. I just want to knit and do lots of math.

Maybe I should find an aspiring designer who loves taking pictures and hates math. Maybe we can make a deal.

Anyway, since I do have all these yarn pics, I can at least share one with you. This is all of the Aldi sock yarn I've managed to accumulate, minus the stuff that's already been turned into socks.
I regret nothing.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

progress on various

Right! So May was reasonably productive, I think. Aliénor is cast off and end-tucked, but not yet washed or blocked, and I need to figure out who the best person is to help me photograph it. Also still need to finish writing the pattern and get test-knitters, but - ulp - that means letting other people see the pattern and - ack - possibly CRITICIZE it, oh noes! This is not a thing at which I excel. Anyway, this is how it looks, unblocked and folded on a chair, in bad light. Either my camera or my computer screen is falling down on the color, but in real life it's a nice plain blue. The color name is Cornflower, and as it was a limited edition color I can't even find an image on the Fyberspates site. Oh well, one of a kind and all that. 

Next up: also cast off and end-tucked but not yet washed, blocked, or properly photographed and also not documented at all for some reason, nor even properly named, is a wool/alpaca sweater that combines ribbing, cables and lace. I bought the yarn at Webs when I went to Rhode Island with Mr Husband, lo these many years ago. It's Elsebeth Lavold Classic AL which I think might be discontinued. I had intended to make a cardigan from a Schachenmayr booklet that I'd bought at some point - they didn't name the pattern either - but as it happened, the pattern as written wanted thinner yarn and redoing the math turned out to be more than I could be bothered with. Also I wanted to try out this new contiguous method of knitting, so hm, modifying this super-simple pattern was actually more work than redoing the math on the Schachenmayr thing. Which I guess goes to show that it's not only my kids who work very hard to avoid doing any work. Anyway, it will be nice and warm this winter, though the yarn is somewhat hairy and I'm a little worried about pilling.

Further progress on last month's acquisitions: the Resilience Top that I was going to make with the Drachenwolle yarn I bought, well, that is also too thick for the pattern, but I do have this Wollmeise Laceweight that should to the trick. I also found some fabulous buttons (not as many as the pattern requires, but I don't like making buttonholes, so I would have reduced the number of buttons anyway) at a little vintage et cetera shop handily located between my office and my bus stop. That is still waiting to be cast on, and will probably be waiting a good long while, all things considered. So it's not exactly a WIP, is it? I guess the point of this paragraph is look! Buttons!

The Giant Clam Closing Forever laceweight from Dye For Yarn is well on its way to becoming a featherweight cardigan. I already have one in Wollmeise Laceweight, with a lace front panel, and another in progress in light purple silk, so I decided this one needed something to distinguish it from the others. Hence th butterflies. It's still mostly plain stockinette, so I can knit most of it while reading, with the occasional rows of lace so I don't die of boredom.

Then there's the Windspiel shawl in the cobalt silk, which is making limited progress but I do love the pattern and the result thus far. The yarn is quite splitty and requires attention, so this makes excellent podcast knitting.

And of course all of this had to be set aside for a week so I could do another fabulous test-knit for the always-fabulous Yarnissima. It's for a publication so I can't really tell you anything except that my version is red and it has been extra super fun to knit and these will be my socks for feeling like a movie star while slouching around the house this coming winter.

And that's all that is currently going on, knit-wise. I'll post better photos when I have them.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

First German Wollfest in a while

So one of the Heidelberg knitters posted that she was driving to the Backnanger Wollfest on Friday the 25th and did anyone want to ride along, and I said oo! me! so that's what I did yesterday.

The location was the local Waldorf school and hoo boy, I'm a little skeptical about the Waldorf method, but if we'd had this available, I'd've sent my kids there, because LOOK!
Coolest school I've ever seen, I'll tell you what. After we signed in and got our nifty red rubber souvenir bracelets, we all scattered to look around at our own pace, and then some of us reconvened for lunch and to show off our purchases. At that point all I had was some new Holz & Stein needles to replace the ones Lilu and Fufu ate. Yes. They didn't eat them UP, but someone bit the point off one end of my ebony 2.5mm circs, and someone gnawed the other end quite ferociously, and I've been using them anyway for lo, these 6 years now. And while I was there anyway I got some rosewood 2.75s, because that's a size I didn't have yet. And they threw in a free pencil!
After lunch I took a class on photographing your knitting, which was all informative and stuff, but I am clearly a creature of habit because even though I couldn't wait to try all these neato tricks I learned, all my photos still look the same as they did before. Tja. At least I learned that my phone has a macro setting (and a panorama setting, which is not knitting-related but I have been complaining about this phone not having that for oh, must be nearly two years now). 

So then my cohort were all in classes, and I had oh, two hours to kill before it was time to head home, so that's when I did all my yarn-buying. I'm glad I waited, looked around, and made sure to have a plan for each thing I bought. The things I'm planning are not things I knew I needed, but that's okay. I know now. 

Drachenwolle has yarn you want to hug, in big shouty colors. I loved their red, but I'm never going to wear anything that color, so I chose some nice pale jeans-blue stuff to make this little jacket from Needles & Artifice. Which means the button-quest is on. 
Aaaand then there was Dye For Yarn. Holy cats y'all, I saw the Muknitters talking about it on Facebook and really didn't think anything of it. I should've known better. I must have visited their stall 10 times - partly because I needed several trips to decide what color I wanted, and also then because once I was closer to a decision I couldn't fight my way through the crowds. The colors? Are amazing, even apart from the names. I finally settled on "Giant Clam Closing Forever". My camera came close to capturing the intensity of the color, but my computer is totally letting me down here. You'll just have to come visit me once I've made a Featherweight out of it, but I'll warn you - you won't be able to resist hugging me. The color is just that fabulous. 

And then I simply had to buy the pattern for a scarf they had hanging around, and of course the yarn to go with it. Say hello to "Severe Cobalt Intoxication" in 100% Silk. 
I don't even know what to cast on first. My little heart goes pitty-pat every time I look at these. Also I have to go to the Dye For Yarn store. You should come with me!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

a possible step forward

I'm going to the Backnanger Wollfest next Friday, where I will be taking a "Photograph Your Knitting" workshop! Maybe that'll help me blog. I am not finding a good surface for taking pictures, my camera does not love me, and there is probably good light, but it's on the other side of some pretty filthy windows. I'm thinking of buying this dress form from eBay. I daydream about getting a better camera. I have no intention of cleaning the damn windows.

But I am making progress! I cast off a nice snuggly-warm wool sweater on this, the first really nice spring day of the year. I'm sure I'll enjoy wearing it in six or seven months. Photographing it is a different story. It's dark purple, textured, and impossible, and it is the project I will be taking to the photography workshop. I am fairly certain it will defeat the teacher.

Also, there are socks. The Jemisin design is now my official go-to sock pattern. I'm making a pair for a friend in Mannheim, and this weekend's Star Trek marathon meant real progress, so that's good.

Aliénor... wow, I should really set up that test-knit, huh? But the sleeves are the perfect zero-ease size in plain stockinette, and then the lattice pattern is too ridgid around my Popeye-forearms (probably because of the yarn's high silk content) so I have to reknit them, AND I put in way too many short-rows at the bust so that has to be re-done too. I was stupid, I just plowed ahead and figured I'd fix it in the blocking, but reality must be faced. So I basically finished the sweater - okay, I actually finished the sweater, put it on display at the Brei- en Haakdag in Amersfoort last month, and now I'm frogging oh, about half of it. A little more than half. Argh.

None of this, of course, constitutes an excuse for procrastinating on the test-knit.

I know the Song du Jour of the Day is a feature of the other blog, but I'm on this blog today, and I have a song, so: Simply Falling, by Iyeoka.

Sunday, February 02, 2014

One more tiny sweater

Here is the last of the 4 tiny sweaters I made to test the update of my 5-Hour Baby Sweater pattern (almost done, I promise!) and also for my friend Ann's new babies. They've been done a week (the sweaters, that is. Not the babies), and I still haven't mailed them out. I did gain a new job this past week, and lose a cat (*snif*sob*) so I've been a little busy. Mostly moping. I really loved that cat.

Anyway. The pattern has gone out to the testers for one final proofread, and I need one more photo and then it'll be ready to go. Good thing I've forgotten how to publish on Ravelry, eh? Oh well, I'll probably figure it out.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

oops more sock yarn fell into my shopping cart

Hm, so looking over my previous post I see that I did not tell you to stop me from buying more sock yarn at Aldi. That was a serious oversight on my part, because I am sure you would've come through for me if I'd asked. But I didn't, so you didn't, and this happened:


Thursday, January 16, 2014

tiny sweater update

Size newborn1, worsted weight
Size newborn2, worsted weight
Size newborn2, fingering weight
Four sweaters knitted, three photographed, none washed or blocked yet. I'll try to get that all done this weekend so I can mail them to their new little owners on Monday. 

I wrote out the pattern for four yarn weights and six sizes, and sent it to Arja(aaa), who invited, oh, 27 of her closest friends to a test-knit (for which thank you, Arja, because it got me moving like nothing else would) and there has been good feedback and now I am struggling to work it all in and rewrite the pattern like a real writer, you know, someone who can do stuff with words. Then there's pictures and formatting and such still to do. It's taking me ages, because every time I find a mistake anywhere I have to recheck all the math, which is a real recipe for crazy. Once it's done I will very seriously consider sending it to the MuKnit group for a second round of testing. Just to try being all rigorous for once. (It probably won't suit me.)

Then, too, other non-knitting related things are going on, which drag my attention away from What Really Matters (hint: it rhymes with "schmitting"). Don't know how I let that happen...

And oh, epic noes! Aldi is going to have sockyarn again next week! What'll I doooooooo!? Well, knit all the sizes of my pattern, for one. And many more socks. 

Which I will definitely blog about. There, I said it. Now I have to do it.