Wednesday, April 27, 2011

WIP: Outside the Comfort Zone

I have been feeling the need to challenge myself more in my knitting, since I've fallen into habit. Not that habit is bad, but I'm craving some more knitting that requires thinking.

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On that note, I've started the Honeybee Cardigan by Laura Chau - this has been in my queue for aaaaages. The main challenge is the lace pattern, which is active on both right and wrong sides of the knitting, involves dropped stitches, and all kinds of manoevering. Whee! Of course, I'm only on the bottom ribbing so far, but I did do a lace swatch to get the feel of the pattern, and it was pretty interesting.

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The other thing that pushes this project out of my comfort zone is the colour. Raspberry pink! I don't usually wear much, but I got this yarn super cheap and I couldn't resist. If it turns out I really can't handle the colour, I'll see about dyeing it. I'm kind of looking forward to having such a bright cardigan, though.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

To the sea

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In the interest of having more fun and to distract myself from job hunting, I've been striking off in different directions and seeing where I end up. The other day, I stumbled upon the Firth of Forth. Somehow it's easy to forget that I live within walking distance of salt water.

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Oh hello

Stumbled might be the wrong word. Still, there was an abrupt moment when I emerged from the "woods," and the damp forest smells were immediately replaced by salty sea smells.

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Exploring my surroundings does me good, although I have to keep reminding myself of this.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

WIP: Simple City

My current WIP is the Simple City shawl/scarf by Eskimimi.

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Zauberball garter stitch blob, hurray! I love watching the colours work up, and I am enjoying the way the stripes are getting narrower as the triangle gets bigger.

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Oooh squishy...

Yarn and pattern were gifts from Stephcuddles in the blog hub swap last year - finally getting put to good use!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Free Pattern: Danube Cowl

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It's up! I got over myself, and chose a palindromic pseudonym because palindromes are fun. You can now download the Danube Cowl pattern for free! Hurray! I hope you like it.

Details

Yarn: Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend, 100g / 270 m skein
Needles: 4.5 mm / US7

This cabled cowl is knitted flat with a provisional cast-on. The ends are grafted to form a long loop suitable for wrapping around the neck. Knit in a wool-silk blend, this cowl is warm, cozy, and super soft.

Cabling without a needle makes this project go faster. I like to use this method as described by Grumperina.

See this tutorial for one way to graft the loop together in pattern.

Thanks to Novanz, Smokeandashes, and ZooGirl for testing. Let me know if you find any more errors/wrong things.

Download Danube Cowl Now

Monday, April 11, 2011

Knitwear design and privacy dilemma

I'm feeling a bit conflicted right now. Having gone through testing for my first "design," I'm finally ready to release the pattern to the wilds of ravelry. I've been delaying due to underconfidence and self-consciousness, but I finally got over it and decided the pattern was ready. Sort of.

I'm used to being mostly anonymous on the internet. I've had various internet handles over the years, and on this blog I use my first name, but I'm not prepared to publish under my full name. The thought freaks me out. Is this irrational? It's not that I have a super-awesome career that I want to keep separate from my knitting life, although I may one day... A good compromise, I thought, would be to put my pattern up under my first name and initial.

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Gratuitous photo of cave from my Lake District adventure, just so this post isn't pictureless. Yay, the closest I'll ever get to spelunking! :P

Alas. Ravelry doesn't accept this. At the moment, they require a full first name and last name to assign to a designer page. (I tried entering my last name as an initial and it yelled at me. Boo.) I could come up with a pseudonym, but I don't like the pressure to choose a totally perfect new name for my knitting identity. I didn't think this was going to be so stressful!

So, input appreciated. Did anyone else have a similar crisis of self-conscious anonymity? Those of you who have patterns up on ravelry, do you use a pseudonym? Why or why not? Help me, I'm paralyzed with indecision! Haha.

Friday, April 08, 2011

FO: Little green spring mitts

My green mitts are complete, in time to be seasonally inappropriate.

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Pattern: Calculation by Natalie Selles

Yarn: Sweet Paprika Messa di Voce

Notes:
Those of you reading along may remember I only had 42 g of this yarn left, so I was worried about running out. I needn't have worried. Upon finishing, there were 11 g left. Plenty! (What did I do before I had a digital scale?) In fact, next time I would keep knitting for longer lace cuffs in order to use up even more of the yarn. This pattern is great for partial skeins and small amounts of yarn.

It's way too warm for mitts surprisingly, but I'll keep them on hand for the next coldness. Up until now the only mitts I had with me were my pink Endpaper Mitts. I'm fairly relaxed about being non-matchy, but nothing else I have is pink, whereas I have a lot of greens/blues/purples. These are in the same yarn as my Herbivore scarf, and I suspect they will be very useful if I decide I want to start being matchy.

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I'm done apologizing for how inaccurate the colour is, but just another reminder - the mitts aren't actually teal. As much as I love teal and wouldn't mind if they were, of course.

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Sunday, April 03, 2011

2KCBWDAY7 - knitting time is every time


Last day! For some reason I'm finding this week a lot more overwhelming than it was last year - maybe because there are more participants? I've been bending over backwards trying to read as many blogs as possible, and it's tiring! (Oh poor overstimulated me haw haw.) I want to thank everyone for their comments - I'm doing my best to check out all your blogs, even if I'm not commenting on everyone's. Hearty thanks to Eskimimi for organizing this whole thing again.

Unfortunately, I'm having trouble coming up with anything interesting to say about my knitting time. Sometimes I knit in the morning. Sometimes I don't knit all day. I knit at knitting group. I knit on trains. I knit in front of the computer, sometimes. Yeah.

You'd much rather look at pictures of lambs than hear me blather, though, wouldn't you?

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The Lambs of Grasmere

Thought so.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Something to aspire to - 2KCBWDAY6


I feel like I'm repeating myself. Almost every time I make a list of knitting goals, I put double-knitting on that list. I've never tried it yet. The possibilities of this technique fascinate me; reversible and double-thick results!

Other than having an overly long queue of other things, and being easily distracted, I can't explain why I haven't attempted double knitting yet. Is this the year I'll finally try double-knitting?

The Four Winds hat by Alisdair Post-Quinn is gorgeous, and might be a good place to start.

Something different: 2KCBWDAY5


I'm late on this one because I spent the last few days hiking in the Lake District, and I didn't get myself organized to schedule a post in advance. As it turns out, it's a good thing I didn't; I entertained the idea of going yarnbombing for yesterday's nonspecific topic, but again didn't get myself organized.

While exploring on my trip, I realized someone beat me to it.

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Yarn art in Grasmere, Cumbria.

It looks like there is moss growing on it, but in fact, it seems to be moss-coloured bouclé yarn.

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Does anyone know anything about this? I found these sculptures in the Quiet Garden at Rydal Hall. I'm sure it is a deliberate art project, but in my haste to post I haven't done any research (by which I mean googling) yet.

For more Knitting and Crochet Blog Week posts, search 2KCBWDAY5.