Compliments and Curiosities

January 31, 2019

Explains my last week. This week, nothing got done as everything was closed. So, I caught up on homework, Graduate School Applications, small personal matters, and quilting.

However, last week, when I got busier than busy (as everyone thinks I have a spare hour, really), I found two things happening.

Let’s revisit Tuesday first. I took my shawl to quilt guild. It’s simple knitting, and the weather was only bad, not horrible. So I got to chat with Jan, who was presenting and had a great trunk show. But others noticed my “mindless” knitting. The knitting is mindless in that I can knit while chatting with others.

dscn4445

So, this is what ‘even stitching’ looks like. I never gave it a thought…in fact, I wish I’d followed the pattern more closely.

One of my fellow quilters (and likely knitters)  commented on my even stitching. (I never gave it any thought, it is pretty even, isn’t it?). Alas, that’s just the shawl, in which I admit I have no idea what I’m doing.

Also, Thursday of last week, I was waiting for an appointment, and took my socks. I was working on them when an 8-10 year old boy asked about them. I think he’d been grounded from his phone and he forgot a book or toy. His buddy wasn’t there yet, so my complicated socks happened to be the most interesting thing in the room. I was happy to explain the stitches as I waited for my own appointment.

dscn4447

The latest on the complicated socks…we’ll see what happens between now and next week (hopefully).

Here’s the progress, so far. (Classes have been mostly cancelled this week, so knitting has been light, but here’s the current progress).

Advertisements

Or perhaps half of the fun is accomplishment…And don’t ask me tonight about changing the pattern. I think the fatigue of a bug has left me addle-pated. Read on to find out what I mean…I hope. 010

Almost finished…one more row…then the next set…Toe Up Travelers by Ann Budd

 

I enjoy every moment knitting and snuck some in time class knitting this week on a particularly complicated row. To be honest, I started the row just before class and didn’t finish it before class started. So, in the midst of taking notes, I had a complicated row of cabling and knitting through the back loop six times. Half of the fun is getting there, which I’m working on now.

012

Forgive the shadow…What would this sock look like if I inverted the pattern?

The other half of the fun is the sense of accomplishment from getting there. I got within one row of finishing the repeat this afternoon. However, class was cancelled and I felt simply worn out. I came home and decided to try to nap. Not only did I find I could sleep, I found myself going hot/cold. I really don’t like getting sick. So I took most of the night off, and slept, and sewed and worked on a little homework.

 

However, serious concentration is out the window, so that last row is debatable if I should get to it or not. Part of me says I could do it, part of me says read a book and go to bed. Okay, okay; you talked me into it. Mostly, because if I let it wait, I won’t get to take the photo I want. Instead, I just went ahead and knit up that last row, and voila! I’m one-third of the way done with the foot.

 

However, as I look at this pattern, I want to knit the second part of this round upside-down and turn this repeated triangle of meandering twisted stitches into a diamond…This could get interesting to see…Stay tuned, folks. 

New Cast-Ons…

December 20, 2018

Who doesn’t love a new cast on?

The beginning of my new shawl…with Briannag’s help for modeling. (If I let her wear it, she might decide it is hers.

I needed something new after the post classes slump and having time on my hands (in which I should put down the needles and clean at some point, but that’s not why we are here). I did two cast-ons. I frogged the 216 stitch sweater vest with various sets of stitches throughout and opted for a simpler shawl. I’ve based mine off of a couple of free patterns and am hoping for the best, but I’m just knitting as I go along increasing on the same side of either row. Currently, this is my television and chatting with others knitting.

Beginning pattern work on the new sock

I also cast on a “Twisted Stitch” sock. This sock is in Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting: Master Class. It’s lovely, but this one will likely only be knit at home. This chart is pretty intense and requires concentration. It won’t be easily memorized for some time. But check these out…Now I must find some comedy or a good podcast (because the television went out last night at the height of Christmas movie season and we won’t have it playing shows or movies until Sunday, likely).

DSCN4296

Beginning of the toe, when things begin to straighten out

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

The Cuff Is Almost Done!

October 4, 2018

DSCN4119

The trees are beginning to turn here…

I wanted the cuff to be done today so I could start the next section of the pattern. Unless I start on it right now, I will not be able to make that happen. I have behaved (somewhat) and worked on homework for the last three hours. Making sure quotes are correctly attributed can leave me feeling a bit off…so a break is deserved. However, that break is likely going to be in the form of reading, for another class.

DSCN4117

I couldn’t resist the balancing rock…I didn’t do this, but I did nestle that tiny one in the top. It looks like a slightly grumpy rock with eyelashes…

In the meantime, you guys are here for the sock knitting. I think I’ve finally figured out the cuff pattern. I only have one more row of each to finish before I begin the slightly more complicated actual leg pattern. It’s more complicated in that it adds in yarn overs and simple knit two togethers or slip, slip, knit stitches. It’s easier in that I’ll have less groupings of threes, less knit two together and knit the first stitch again then slip both off. I got worn out just thinking about it. The pattern is Ann Budd’s own Mock Cables and Lace.

DSCN4123

Did you ever notice that on some trees, the tops turn first?

I also do not have to knit through the back loop anymore. This may be a good thing, but now I have to remember how to knit…kidding…there was some standard knitting in these twelve rows. Next time, nevermind…unless I fall in love with a pattern, there won’t be a next time. However, once I got used to this cuff, I almost started enjoying it. It’s easier to enjoy when I’m knitting alone, but I was knitting before class, and made a fellow student laugh when I suggested I needed to teach the instructor not to talk to me while knitting. I’m not sure this instructor is trainable though…at least he’s fair, so far.

DSCN4126

There are still a few flowers on campus

Alas, back to the knitting. I’m still waiting on the tatami yarn and hoping it comes in soon. I’m also planning to work on repairs as it gets chillier, but I haven’t been able to bring myself to do them. Until next time, Happy knitting!DSCN4127

Update! Do you see this? I had a bit of wait time before and during the reading tonight (which was quite entertaining). I got the next two rows done and can start on the beginning of the pattern next time I pick these up.

Knitting While Scheduling…

November 3, 2017

…in my world almost means less time for knitting. Unless you schedule that in too. How do I explain? Two weeks ago, my instructor said, “You seem stressed. Why don’t your turn your study into an online study?” I said, “I’ve already prepared for the traditional method.” Him: “Look into making it an online study.” I felt my stress(which was high,) go through the roof. I didn’t know how to tell him changing this in the middle of class was not a good idea. I tried, I really tried. He wasn’t having it. So, I went on one of those newfangled survey websites and set up an online survey. I put it in the system…I went live…and nothing. No data, though I had a subject. Maybe it takes time I thought? So I looked into it…How long should it take? Finally, I contacted said participant through email. She couldn’t get to the survey.

DSCN2820

Current progress on the Grayfields hat…part of me cannot wait to see how it knits up.

I contacted the instructor, who thought I should visit him in class (while I still believed things were going well and I was collecting data, like he told us to do). Long story short…study was reverted to traditional method, and now I’m playing the timeslots/book a room game. The rooms get booked for an hour or two at a time. The students show up for a ten to twenty minute experiment…a simple one…no real cruelty here, promise…except the frightful weather they sometimes have to traipse across campus through. Scheduling fun…and I can only carry so many books. So, what’s lightweight and simple to carry: Knitting! Can you believe it? .All that to tell you I was knitting before my study tonight…but the second sock is cast on and the first two rows are knit.

DSCN2823

Second sock cast on…we up and running…these are probably a Christmas gift…

I’m calling that progress…because I also made progress on the winter Gray Fields hat …at least I think I have…If you know any Russian knitters, send them my way (via internet, of course). Otherwise, I’m continuing with this pattern as I interpret it. But I have made pretty good progress on the hat as well…the pattern rows cover 126 stitches, feel like they take forever and are complicated…but the knit rows work up pretty quickly…after I note my progress…it’s almost like knitting two socks at once, but that was 144 stitches….I’m going to need an attention grabber if ever I attempt an afghan or a shawl…or some tricks….In the meantime…feast your eyes on these and hope my scheduling goes better this week.

 

One is done…

October 6, 2017

..but the pattern was in English and one I’ve knit before. That’s not cheating, is it?

I had grand plans. I was going to make a sufficient dent in the homework and get my knitting blog written. I stayed home tonight as the homework workload started to feel heavy. Then there was the cat…who either does not like poetry homework or she is attempting to learn by osmosis. One of my poems was about the cat sitting upon my homework. I think I have to do a total tongue-in-cheek poem about a cat sitting upon my homework in place of the dog eating my homework. The first poem was almost in letter form. We’ll see how the next draft comes out. It wants to be there.

DSCN2719

But I got so caught up in writing about the cat sitting upon my homework, and Project Runway drama(and they are spooning in extra drama this season, and frustrating me once again), that I almost forgot I had to update my progress on this blog. I will admit, there has been much walking and knitting lately…I’m not taking photos of that, as it’s one more thing I’d have to take to class. However, I have been working on the cabled headband as much as possible. I even got it finished and did the three needle bind-off on it. It is done!

 

It is not Ta-da because as I knit at the Renaissance Festival this weekend, I noticed some errors. However, I gave it the boyfriend test–he only noticed the dent where the cables are supposed to be. I’m calling the ridges grips. It’s done. This one is for free and a kindness gift brought on because I respect a friend and it is for a mutual friend’s grandmother. There is a small part of me saying “Frog it and start again.” Tonight, I am employing the “Done is better than perfect philosophy.” Forgive my imperfections…if it’s an issue, I’ll tell you all about the poem next week.

 

 

 

I had grand plans. I was going to make a sufficient dent in the homework and get my knitting blog written. I stayed home tonight as the homework workload started to feel heavy. Then there was the cat…who either does not like poetry homework or she is attempting to learn by osmosis. One of my poems was about the cat sitting upon my homework. I think I have to do a total tongue-in-cheek poem about a cat sitting upon my homework in place of the dog eating my homework. The first poem was almost in letter form. We’ll see how the next draft comes out. It wants to be there.

DSCN2718

Still showing the good side of the headband…

But I got so caught up in writing about the cat sitting upon my homework, and Project Runway drama(and they are spooning in extra drama this season, and frustrating me once again), that I almost forgot I had to update my progress on this blog. I will admit, there has been much walking and knitting lately…I’m not taking photos of that, as it’s one more thing I’d have to take to class. However, I have been working on the cabled headband as much as possible. I even got it finished and did the three needle bind-off on it. It is done!

 

DSCN2718

In case you ever wanted to see the wrong side of the cables…

It is not Ta-da because as I knit at the Renaissance Festival this weekend, I noticed some errors. However, I gave it the boyfriend test–he only noticed the dent where the cables are supposed to be. I’m calling the ridges grips. It’s done. This one is for free and a kindness gift brought on because I respect a friend and it is for a mutual friend’s grandmother. There is a small part of me saying “Frog it and start again.” Tonight, I am employing the “Done is better than perfect philosophy.” Forgive my imperfections…if it’s an issue, I’ll tell you all about the poem next week.

I did get some knitting done on my socks…but not much, as the headband took over. I’m curious though how many more repeats I have to the toes. I like toes. It means I’m almost done with a sock. Unless I’m knitting on circulars…but those aren’t just on the back-burner, they’re shelved, or dropped behind the stove somewhere until I get these hats done. I may even have to get some Christmas gifts in there somewhere. (I swear I’m starting the next set of Christmas gifts in January–crap, did I say that last year, too?)

DSCN2721

Sock progress…at least this pair is for me…

Alas, back to studying psychology and writing bad poetry…though the prof seemed to enjoy the poem about meter I wrote that begins “I hate meter.” Perhaps I’ll put some up for you guys. But for now, I’m fixing the title for that one and submitting it to the Central Review and any and all poetry contests to obtain money for school.  Wish me luck. In the meantime, happy knitting!

 

 

Socks and Poetry…

September 28, 2017

…mostly socks…or was it poetry? This week there was not poetry about socks…much. Perhaps there should be more poetry about knitting. There was a line in the ode to purple I wrote. The instructor enjoyed it as it was unexpected that purple saturates the sock yarn. I”m not sure the line sounds poetic even…unless you are a poet or a knitter. Alas, this week, I’m not working on purple socks…Though I almost miss them.

DSCN2672

“Purple saturates the yarn, hugging my feet in thousands of tiny stitches…” Also, in my defense…the Hemp purple was inspiration for a revised draft of the purple poem.

I’ve been working on socks, a cabled headband and plan to finish translating the hat pattern from Russian as soon as the school workload shows a small break. I have no idea what that term really means, but perhaps I’ll sneak one soon…When I’m not busy with other things.

DSCN2669

Cabled Headband beginning….1 cable worked…

I did not get much time to knit this weekend as my social time was spent driving my Little to Mackinac. I love to visit. We made it a quick visit, and still had dinner, but I still did all the driving. It was a beautiful drive and visit…it always is. I was hoping for a little more fall color, but fall is arriving a month late, and it has been hotter than blazes around here.

DSCN2670

Current Progress on Slip-N-Slide socks…it feels small but I’m making progress.

Speaking of heat…there was a poetry reading tonight, which I attended. The author read a poem about fall…hoping to do a fall dance, similar to a rain dance. I’m hoping it worked. Don’t get me wrong, I’m in no hurry to see winter, but I am ready to wear my knit socks and get some more done.

DSCN2671

Side view of Slip-N-Slide socks thank goodness for meetings today.

Now, it’s time to take stock and make plans for next week, because this girl still needs to hit the books.

I Love A Challenge…

September 21, 2017

…and if a project isn’t challenging enough, apparently I can make it a challenge without too much effort. Imagine that. Let me explain…or in American-ese: Hold my beer and watch this…no drinking it…I’m gonna need it.

DSCN2620

Those first weeks when your sock is a tiny dream of a toe…

Someone I highly respect at work asked me about knitting a hat for a co-worker’s grandmother to keep her head warm. I knit with wool and will not knit with acrylic. My first question: Is she okay with wools/animal danders? If she has allergies, I need to find a new fiber-I was thinking bamboo or silk blends, which I may still look into. Apparently, Judy’s grandma is not allergic as the ONLY answer I get to this question is, “She likes soft stuff.” Who doesn’t? I asked if she had allergies.

DSCN2622

The knit side doesn’t want to show off yet… These will be the Stealth Argyle socks by Eunny Jang in Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting: Master Class

Alas, an overly easy client is tougher than a picky one sometimes. The next question: what colors does she like? I got the answer of pinks and purples. Sounds easy enough…but it’s not, because I don’t know if she means carnation, fuchsia or heathered or if she means indigo, lavender, or heathered…I’m probably going with what’s available as I’m buying the yarn…but…I’d like to know she likes it before I buy the yarn. I’m considering sending pictures and links and hope they do the yarn justice.

DSCN2624

Current Progress on Slip-N-Slide socks by Chrissy Gardiner in Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting: Master Class

In the meantime, if pleasing an overly-easy client is tough enough, I was searching for patterns on ravelry.com. I found a gorgeous hat that I won’t get bored with. Let me get a sip of my beer. Now hang on, while I go over how fun this is…Hold my beer again please;-). The pattern, by Tatyana Rovenskaya is called Hat-Gray Fields. If the name doesn’t give it away, perhaps the link will…Okay, okay, I’ll tell you: The pattern is in Russian.

DSCN2625

Current back progress on class knitting…

A sane knitter, not asking you to hold her beer (while checking over her shoulder that you haven’t taken too large a sip tax), would find another hat, right? What does a not so sane knitter do at 2:30AM when she should be reading psychology articles about gender differences in anger? She says, “Ooh…Russian…I can translate this…” thinking darn it Mrs. Ovenhouse and Mr. Toodzio…How dare you teach me not to fear Russian translations. It’s only a page or two. It’s only a knitting chart…Right. (it’s okay to stop laughing now, wouldn’t want you to spill my beer).

DSCN2627

Beer was not really involved at 2:30AM(though that’s not how you’ll re-tell the story), but lack of sleep and homework procrastination are just as powerful of motivators…and now…I’m going to need a sip…Please return it. I know it’s good.

Two hours later between a google translator and a Russian dictionary, I haven’t made much headway…about a quarter of the pattern. In my defense, I was not writing things down. Once I went towards bed with a Russian dictionary I had suddenly relocated, I began writing things down. I made some headway…but only about half. As I put the tools of translation away, and set the pattern aside for the night, I thought, my school has Russian classes…perhaps I’ll find a Russian teacher who knits…perhaps I can tutor Russian for a student and they can help me translate this…Checked today, I don’t see any Russian classes this year. I’m going to have to brush up on my Russian and bring it to this school.

DSCN2608

Terpander socks by Melissa Morgan-Oakes in Ann Budd’s Sock Knitting: Master Class for those that missed it last week. Why knit vanilla socks when one can complicate matters and add an adult beverage?

Sure, I could find another pattern, but where is the fun in that? Besides, I might not have met the Vogue International Knitting Terms page. It’s worth a look, and I must research needle sizes to make sure I guess right. Now, I must start memorizing a performance of literature, and writing an Introduction for Psychology…thank goodness the poetry comes easy. Anyone think there’s a poem in there? In the meantime, I hope you enjoyed the post and the photos of my current works in progress.

Ta-Da! Hot Off The Needles…

September 14, 2017

Apparently the latest term is H HOTN! I had no idea what they meant the first few times…then someone spelled it out (Hot Off The Needles)!

DSCN2608

I think one of my favorite hobbies is photographing my stocking-clad feet…

I’m not even terribly acronym challenged. But I couldn’t get this one. However, it was 72F degrees today…I wear socks at 65F or less. I sometimes chance it between 65-70F, but that’s about my limit. So I was stuck wearing store bought socks today…bummer.

DSCN2603

Check it out…No Waste Here! That’s all the yarn that was left.

However, these babies get to be test driven as soon as it cools down, and I don’t have to work Monday, so that might be the day…I’ll have to check the weather. Are you guys checking the weather until you can wear your knit socks?

DSCN2605

Through the heel and over the gusset…I’ll stop there…enjoy.

In the meantime, I’ve had other decisions to make as well…the most important decision being “Which pair do I cast on next?” The choice was almost made for me though…I chose the one I certainly had the needles for. That way, I don’t have a deadline to buy another set of knitting needles, though I will soon. But I’m saving for school and a house. One day, perhaps I’ll get to be independently wealthy.

DSCN2604

Goes better on the second attempt…look!

So, Pipe dreams aside…I’ve made some progress on the Slip-N-Slide socks this week, and hope to keep going in the midst of writing papers and introductions to research proposals. But somewhere, I still found the time to bind these off…Next time, I may do the super stretchy bind-off as this one is a little tight on the right leg.

DSCN2607

I think I’m going to love these socks!

Knitting Show-and-Tell…

September 8, 2017

This week, for my Oral Interpretation of Literature class…we were tasked with bringing something to class that defines ourselves in three ways. We had some interesting presentations, such as a Minnie Mouse chapstick with a surprise inside, and some jealousy inspired presentations with soft and comfy blankets we were hoping the ladies that brought them would pass them around and let us huddle under. I was jealous wishing I had remembered to bring my own double fleece cape to keep warm, especially on this gloomy, rainy day.

DSCN2571

Terpander Socks by Melissa Morgan-Oakes in Sock Knitting: Master Class by Ann Budd

I went first. I find it easier to simply get it over with. Then I don’t have to worry about it. I don’t mind setting the standard. I don’t even mind talking in front of people anymore. I will sometimes mind the memorization that will be required. However, you’re probably curious about which of the many tenets of knitting I used to define myself, even if I do tend to fidget with the yarn as I present. I always have cards or chips in my hands anyways. The yarn is softer and more comforting to feel. Let’s get back to petting our yarn.

DSCN2572

I was almost wishing I had brought this knit 1, purl 1 rib with me today…It would have made my day more cheerful.

I had just finished the heel flap before I began the presentation as well. First, the yarn is soft and pliable, as I can be…after a good massage. Yes, some days I require a good massage to be pliable. Don’t we all?

DSCN2571

The yarn is already pliable, and thankfully, I haven’t tangled this yarn too much…

Secondly, if you push in too many needles or other things into the yarn ball, it can get tangled up. I also get tangled up if you put too much into my day or week. Sometimes, I get tangled up without much seeming provocation.

DSCN2580

Scamp is curious about where the bag has been…she’d be more curious about the contents if I let her(but she’s half the reason the bag has a zipper.

Thirdly, if you are patient with it and work with the yarn, you can knit it up into a beautiful pattern and yarn comes in a variety of styles of looks, so one never knows quite what they are going to get. This little blurb is not verbatim, but it’s pretty close to what I said…if you do use my words,  I simply ask  that you mention you find them here, provided you have to present a 30 second show and tell about a fun object that defines you…or you have to explain some yarn inspiration.

DSCN2583

I’ve forgotten how tough kitten selfies can be…and yes, Maeve got a summer hair cut this year…Putzer just likes to snuggle in…and it’s a matter of time before Briannag joins us.

Once I got home from the play Love/Sick, which was an interesting take on the lifecycle of love, marriage, divorce and death (of humans and love)…there’s poem line…I wrote the first draft of the paper due for the play, caught up on Project Runway (which I missed for the play), and finally sat down to knit the heel turn. I did not knit the heel turn earlier as I like to do so all at once, instead of leaving my knitting mid-row and figuring out where I left off later. However, as noted above, knitting does bring out the kitties…then again, two of them are demanding attention as I write.

Until next week, Happy Knitting!