Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Merry New Year?

Oh man, I am painfully slow on the uptake this year... I hope everyone's having a great holiday season!

I did virtually zero Christmas knitting this year. I started out with the best of intentions (as always) and began cranking out random hats. There's 8 other people on my team at work that I was thinking I'd make them for. And then apathy (and some illness) struck me and those plans flew out the window. In the end I came through with approximately 1.5 hats. (I think I've officially banished the .5 in that equation as well).

I had a massage appointment on december 18th, so mostly by virtue of the date (and her general awesomeness) that's who the hat in question went to: my RMT! She has the misfortune of seeing me naked on an almost monthly basis so I suppose it's the least I could do!

pattern: le Slouch by Wendy Bernard (I've knit this several times's the perfect "slouchy" beret I'd say...)
yarn: Patons Shetland Chunky in "wine"
needles: 4mm
mods: I only knit to it's shortest slouch specified. It's more than slouchy enough...

My creepy headform "Sam" makes another appearance, as this picture was really all the energy I could muster in terms of taking a photo of myself wearing it.

I figured this whole exercize would be a great excuse for me to stash-bust. Here's what I've discovered about my ability to stash bust: it's pathetic. This is how things generally go: "I know, I'll knit a hat with that 3/4 ball of Shetland chunky I have left!" knit. knit. knit. "Hmmmmm, I've run out of yarn." drive. to. store. buy. new. ball. knit. knit. knit. Finish hat. (with different dye-lot on top). Put remaining 3/4 of NEW ball of Shetland chunky back in the stash. Stash remains exactly the same."


There's also two newer things on the sticks (also being knit-from-stash, so here's hoping I don't run into the exact same issue...)

The Colonnade shawl from Knitty,

and the Destroyed cowl which will be some nice mindless knitting for me.

Listening to my Stash and Burn podcast recently they were talking about having a knitting "gift box" for all those items you knit and basically have no use for the second they're done (in my case, a SEA of hats) and I thought "Man what a GREAT idea!" So I definitely plan to put that plan into action for 2010. Maybe by Xmas next year I'll just be able to pull from the box for any last minute knit gifts.

I was also gifted some yarn for this for my birthday as well (yes, I'm a Christmas baby...)

Cape Nebuleuse from

I know I'm taking a chance here --how attractive can one look in a blanket with a neck hole? (Y'all know none of us look ggod in our snuggies!) And knitting a cape also flies in the face of my hatred for ponchos. Cape. Poncho. I'm walking a fine line. I've convinced myself that it's the difference between chic and say, covered in mud at Woodstock.

At any rate I have yet to cast on for it...that's likely to happen in the next couple of days. And hopefully I'll be able to get my act together enough for my usual New Year's Knitolutions post and a look back at 2009.

Happy New Year everyone!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Cowl Nation

sweet bejebus I am so behind on posting about things!

See I'm still a redhead here:

You know, I think I actually finished knitting this at least a month ago now. (And it's already gotten LOTS of wear...)

yarn: Sublime Cash Merino Silk DK (about 2 and a half balls?)
needles: 5mm circs
pattern: Eternity Scarf from Michele Wang

Now, Michele is one of those people whom I've never actually met in "real life" but who I feel a definite affinity for. Hers was one of the first blogs I came across when I first started knitting and getting into this whole blogging/online knitting community dealio. Really I'm not even sure how I found her way back then, but I'm glad I did. She has great taste, and just recently has started to come out with a few patterns. (And currently so many cowls! and you KNOW I can't resist a good cowl!)

This one is no exception...and I am already planning a second one in a slightly more appropriate yarn. The Sublime yarn I used here was a serious splurge for me originally and was left over from the Raglan Wrap sweater I finished earlier this year. But then horror! I still didn't have enough and a trip to my LYS to replenish was met with mad disappointment (I think this colour is discontinued?! why?!) Undeterred I then tore out the Birthday Cowl in order to finish it off. I mean, I liked that one too but meh, it can be knit again.

Seriously I feel like that's my M.O lately. I have been really, REALLY good about buying NO new yarn...unless it is for a specific project that is to begin upon purchase of said yarn. As a result though I seem to either be tearing out previous knits (possibly boring for you as a reader having to see the same yarn over and over again?) OR knitting from stash projects that I can't possibly hope to complete with the amount of yarn actually IN said stash (resulting in secondary trips to my LYS to "finish things off" --often in a different dye lot). Dare I say that I think it's time to just start THROWING.OUT incomplete balls of yarn. I'm hanging on to this odd assortment of blobs of angora and stuff, I mean really, what will I ever do with it??? Still, the fear of purging it remains.

Anyhoozle, my side-track rant about my yarn woes aside, the Sublime did make for gorgeous stitch definition:

I love how that cartridge rib turned out!

But I don't know that I'd use a DK like this again (I find I am wearing it doubled-up more than anything, it's quite stretchy) or if I was smarter I would have cast on probably 20 or 30 less stitches with it. Something to think about at any rate if you're planning to knit this in something similar.

The same week I knit another cowl in Twinkle soft chunky. (Let's get real...that stuff is so huge it took me like 20 minutes). It has since been frogged and is awaiting another never even made it to the photo stage.

But this beast did:

(greetings to the new brunette)

And, yeah you can tell by my non-woven-in ends the fate that this chunky cowl is also about to meet.

That is the My kind of cowl from ttwcreative. It calls for one skein of Cascade Magnum (which is what that is...) but I didn't have quite one skein, and that really made all the difference. It's knit flat and seamed, so if you don't knit it long enough, the cowl will never be "wide" enough. Exactly my problem here. Just a few more inches and it would have been perfect, ah well. It's still wearable (and I am still in love with this awesome purple...), but I can't really pull it down onto my shoulders. Which makes for a little bit of "neck claustrophia".

I tell yah though, there's nothing warmer than this bad boy. Sometimes I'd just throw it on when I was cold and sittin' on the sofa watching a movie, but it's like narcolepsy in a cowl --impossible to stay conscious for the duration of any movie while wearing it. You slip it on and immediately fall into a deep coma! At present my cat is currently using it as a bed when he's cold too.

Hmmm, would it kill us to turn the HEAT up? Um, Apparently.