Thursday, February 26, 2009

Blog has Moved

C'Mon over to my new site:

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Its snowing ... again

More snow today. Just when it was almost melted! I cannot wait for Spring to come! I am tired of being cold and it being dark out.

My sweater lives. Last night I seamed up the shoulders and picked up stitches for the neck. I told myself before I started to make sure I wasn't doing the neck backwards and lo and behond ... I promptly picked up the stitches inside out and backwards, as usual. So I ripped it out, tried again ... them realized, duh, I was doing what I usually do, so I reversed it and viola, it was right, LOL! There are certain things that I just will never get right. Once I picked up the stitches correctly and started several rounds for the neck I stepped back to view my work and it looks awesome! I can't wait to finish this project.

I did not block the final pieces ... because the pattern says block according to manufacturers instruction ... well there are none on the ball band, or on their website and since the yarn is a wool/acrylic blend and I am not an expert at blocking, I am not doing it. The pieces are ribbed and flat, I had no problem seaming the shoulders so we'll see how the rest of the seaming works out.

FO Cat Dishcloth

I finished a dishcloth that was in a bag of yarn I found after we moved. Not sure why I didn't finish it before, guess I got bored with it. It only took me one evening knitting off and on to complete it. I blocked it to even it out. I am going to send it to my MIL ... because I think that's who I intended it for in the first place!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

No Sleep = Different Perspective

I worked my part-time job this weekend, third shift, and realized that lack of sleep and being stuck in a room for hours by yourself gives you a much different perspective in life. Luckily I am able to watch TV (otherwise I am sure I would fall asleep since I can't leave the room unattended unless security or maintenance come) and I was watching Law & Order - a show I never watched before. I was cracking up because there are two cops and in each episode its always the same way, while they are interviewing witnesses or perpetrators or victims, one cop has some form of an expression of incredulity, while the other has a blank, almost lobotomized appearance. I don’t think I would have found this half as funny or even noticed the hilarity of it had I been fully alert.

I got my shipment from The Unique Sheep a week or two ago and started winding the yarn the other day. I do not own a swift and ball winder, and why I thought this would go well, I don't know. I started winding on the couch with the hank draped over my lap and it was going ok. Then it started tangling up, so I put it on the back of a chair and kept winding. Towards the end there was a tangled mess, but most was already wound in the ball, so I put it aside because I was getting frustrated and nothing is worse then being irritated and trying to untangle yarn. I took it to work with me figuring I have nothing better to do for eight hours and I was able to untangle it rather quickly and patiently while I was there. So here's the ball of yarn, lovely colors, can't wait to start my socks.

I was thinking of quitting this part-time job since I got it to buy a house, which we've done and that took care of the downpayment and other associated expenses ... until I got the utility bill this month. Looks like we need to seriously investigate our usage of gas or I have to keep this job, LOL! I also realized that I really need to commit to refraining from buying yarn for a while. I think I can do this since I pulled my stash out of storage and can see it now ... I can go shopping in my stash when I get the urge, plus I've got serveral projects lined up that will take me months to complete anyway. It also helps that I signed up for the sock yarn club, so I can get something new in the mail every other month too.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Finishing up old projects to make way for new

I am happy to say that I finally found a skein of the yarn I needed to complete my Quidditch Sweater. I started this sweater during a Harry Potter knits class, using the book Charmed Knits. The class went for a month I think, it was back in October of 2007. I started the sweater there ... and then it sat in a bag for several months. The sweater is done in 2x2 ribbing and it is oh so boring at the beginning! Its worsted weight yarn, so it does go pretty quickly, but at the beginning I was seeing no real progress, so it was put aside. I picked it back up at some point ... I really don't even remember when and was then starting to see real progress. So I knit, and knit and knit and then ... ran out of yarn for the contrasting color! So I went to the yarn shop I usually frequent and they were all out. I went to another yarn shop after we moved that's near where we live now and they didn't carry much. So I called another one that is close to where I work and alas, she told me on the phone she had one skein, I said that's all I need, please hold it aside. And so my sweater knitting started again the other day and its almost complete! I will be so happy once its all seamed up because I will probably get to wear it before winter is over. I am half way through the decreases for the sleeve cap, so it shouldn't be long now.

Also, in the bag that this sweater was in, I found the gloves I was making for a friend. So I can finish those up now. When we moved I lost track of a lot of works in progress.

Of course I have plenty of yarn and ideas for my stash to start all kinds of new projects, but I am going to try and finish up a few things before I start anything new (excluding socks of course).

After the sweater and gloves, I also have a cabled scarf, a hooded scarf and what I like to refer to as the Faux Dr. Who scarf. In addition is a Christmas stocking, baby blanket and drawstring bag on the needles. So, once I get all of those done, I can start working on some new projects ... and hopefully only start one or two at a time so that I don't end up with so many unfinished projects on the needles at the same time again!

We are enjoying our new house immensely! Now its time to try and figure out what colors and decorating style I want to go with. I picked up a few magazines today to get some ideas rolling around in my head. I of course know what colors I like ... doesn't mean they belong on walls, hahaha!!

Funny, I was feeling a little out of sorts and creeped out ... like something was missing. Once I took 1/4 of my stash out of tubs and bags and displayed it in a bookcase and got my UFOs out where I can see and get to them ... aaahhh ... relief washed over me, LOL!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

One month down ... 11 more to go ...

I can't believe that its February already! I would ask where January went ... but I know where it went!! We moved into our new house with a few days left in December and then a week or two after found a buyer for my mom's mobile home that we were renting for the last few years. So we spent January cleaning it up and moving the rest of our stuff out frantically because there was a buyer and we had to get everything out (well we really should have had it out within a month anyway, but time disappears before you know it).

Now that that issue is finally behind us we can move (no pun intended) on with our lives in our new house and finish unpacking everything!!

I am planning on participating in the Year in a Blanket group on Ravelry, but have yet to complete my January square because of the moving. I think I have decided that I will knit the blanket in Berroco Comfort Worsted Weight because its machine washable, affordable and comes in a wide range of colors (its soft and squishy too). Now I just have to decide on the colors. I found a great dishcloth pattern of a house that I wanted to do for January to symbolize our purchasing our first home.

My Vinnland socks are coming along nicely and I figured out how to work with the two skeins of yarn and not get them tangled on the cables of the needles while I am doing two socks at a time on two circulars.

This is a picture of a scarf I have had on the needles for far too long and it has since at least tripled in length. I decided that I wanted a hat ... most likely for next winter since its now February, LOL! But wanted something to go with my winter coat and this scarf. The pattern calls for a different yarn and I substituted Ultra Alpaca from Berocco. The pattern suggests a length of 70" for this scarf ... I am only 5'2" so that's really not necessary for me. I am on the 2nd of 3 balls of yarn, at this point I am going to pause knitting the scarf (its been on the needles for over a year anyway, LOL!) and I am going to make a hat out of the 3rd ball of yarn, then finish the scarf and incorporate whatever is left over from the hat into the end of the scarf. This way I use up all the yarn and my hat and scarf will match.

I ordered some yarn from Knit Picks and The Loopy Ewe recently, will post photos soon ... didn't I say I wasn't buying any yarn since we bought the house?!?! Did I mention that I have no self discipline too?!?! Hey, at least I have a good excuse ... I work part-time (in addition to full time) and have for a year now so that we could buy the house, so I think I deserve little rewards now and then!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Pattern: All Used Up

All Used Up

Materials: Left over sock yarn, MC (main color) approximately 40-60g; CC (contrasting color) approximately 15-25g.

Needles: Size US 2 (2.75mm)

Notions: Stitch Marker, Darning Needle

Size: Women’s Medium (shoe size 7-9)

This pattern is written for one long circular needle, but can be used with any method. This is a great way to use up those ½ skeins of yarn left over after you make a pair of socks! If you are using self-striping yarn, check ahead of time to make sure that the color changes will match up at the end (one skein may have more yardage left over than the other and you may find that the second sock doesn’t have enough to match the first). If you check ahead you can find out which skein is shorter and determine the length of the leg by that one.


With CC cast on 12 stitches to each needle using Judy’s Magic Cast On.

Knit one round.

Rnd 1: K1, LRinc, K to last stitch, LLinc, K1.
Rnd 2: Knit

LRinc is a right leaning increase. Lift the right side of the stitch below the next stitch on the left hand needle; place it on the left needle and knit into its front leg. LLinc is a left leaning increase. Lift the left side of the stitch two stitches below the last one on the right needle; place it on the left needle and knit through its back leg.

Complete these two rounds until there are 32 stitches on each needle for a total of 64 stitches.

Switch to MC and start working pattern stitch on instep needle only.

Pattern Stitch

Rnd 1: Knit
Rnd 2: *P2, K4, repeat from * to last two stitches, P2.

Continue knitting these two rounds until sock measures 2” less than desired foot length. End with Rnd 2.

Switch to CC and begin heel. This is a short row heel working on half the total stitches while the instep stitches remain resting on the cable.


Knit across heel stitches to last stitch, do not knit the last stitch. Turn work, slip the first stitch on the left hand needle and purl back, leaving the last stitch unworked. Turn work, slip the first stitch and knit across to the last two stitches, leave these two stitches unworked. Continue knitting one less stitch across each row in this manner until 10 working stitches are left.

Turn work, slip the first stitch and knit across 8 stitches, knit the next two stitches together, then pick up one leg of the stitch in the gap between the stitches you just knit together and the next ones on the needle and knit through it creating one stitch to compensate for the decrease. Turn work, slip the first stitch and purl across 8 stitches, purl the next two stitches together, then pick up one leg of the stitch in the gap between the stitches you just purled together and the next ones on the needle and purl through it creating one stitch to compensate for the decrease. Continue in this manner until you are back to 32 stitches and all stitches have been worked. If you are short by one, create one at the end of the last row in the same manner as before.

Switch to MC and begin leg.


Rnd 1: Knit
Rnd 2: K1, P1, K4, *P2, K4, repeat from * to last 2 stitches, P1, K1. Repeat this pattern twice around the leg. The start of the round should be after the end of the heel and should match up with the start of the instep stitches.

Repeat these two rounds until the leg is the desired length or you run out of yarn.

Switch to CC and knit one round.


Work in K2, P2 ribbing for 1” to 1 ½”. Bind off using EZ’s Easy Sew Bind off.

Weave in all ends and enjoy!


Judy’s Magic Cast On

Cat Bordhi’s Toe Increases Video

Priscilla Wild’s No Muss No Fuss Short Row Heel (Video) or Lifestyle Socks Pattern

EZ’s Easy Sew Bind Off or Video

Pattern by Angela Trun. Not to be sold or re-distributed for monetary gain. Permission for personal use only. 1/29/09

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

To knit ... oh what to knit

Oh what to knit I said to myself the other day. So I grabbed my binder of patterns and picked out Vinnland. This one was in my binder for a long time .. and oh joy, the yarn already waiting patiently in my stash. An even greater joy (since we just moved about a month ago) this particular yarn was right on top of the plastic tub when I went looking for it ... fate?!?! I would say so!

So I cast on for Vinnland. I modified a bit by using Judy's Magic Cast On for the toe, and I made two toes, then I transferred them onto two needles so that I could knit both socks at the same time, and be oh so happy when they are completed at the same time :o)

We are finally done getting all of our stuff from the place we used to live in. My mother owns it and we were renting it for the last few years, there's a buyer so we have to get everything out by this week. Its amazing how much *stuff* you can accumulate over the years. Now its all haphazardly piled in our new house with no particular place to go at the moment, LOL! We'll have to weed through it all and find homes for it, hopefully sooner rather than later. At least here we have a huge basement and attic ... so no lack of storage space!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

FO: MP3 Player Cozy

Yarn: Knit Picks Essentials Twist in Volcano Twist
Needles: Knit Picks Harmony Size US2 (2.75mm)
Cast On: Only a few days ago, but now I can't remember exactly when
Cast Off: 1/22/08

There was no pattern. I took my stitch gauge and figured out how wide it needed to be and cast on 40 sts using Judy's Magic Cast On. Knit in the round for about 1" then did the skull chart from Jack Sparrow's Favorite Socks, then continued to the right height, did two rows of purl so that the top wouldn't fold over on itself and then cast off. Fits the MP3 player snug but well :o)

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Back to Blogging

I recently started using my MP3 player for what it was actually intended for. The model that I got actually doubles as a flash drive, which is why I picked it. I used to have a flash drive, though it was a measly 128KB ... and it was so small that I lost it at some point and have no idea where it went. So I picked up this MP3 player that is also a 1GB flash drive. I downloaded some knitting podcasts the other day and I am SO ADDICTED! I love them. I listed to them at work, in the car and at home while doing housework. I tried a few different sites, some, which are no longer currently casting anyway, but found two that I really enjoy.

The first is The Knit Picks podcast with Kelly Petkun. Kelly is fabulous to listen to, she has a great speaking voice and is sure to vary her tone so its easy to listen to her. She mostly discusses knitting related things, but there are a few casts where she will discuss a trip she recently went on (with knitting too of course). Most of the places she goes to are places I would like to visit someday, so I love hearing about them and her reviews are worthy of being an excerpt from a novel, I feel like I am listening to a book on tape sometimes.

The other podcast that I enjoy is Sticks and String with David. He talks about knitting and some other things, one of the recent casts was about the "T" word and it was brilliant. You have to check out the cast to find out what the word is :o) David is from Australia so there's also that awesome accent to listen to as well! G'Day Mate.

One of my goals for 2009 is to blog more ... and about more interesting topics. I usually blog like I am making a grocery list, not like I am talking to a friend. I am going to try and brush up my writing skills ... I actually have quite a vocabulary when I speak, but it doesn't come out in my writing, LOL!

2009 will be a year of stash busting for me. We bought a house late in December and I said that I wouldn't buy any yarn until I had gone through my stash ... for obviously reasons ... like I'd like to keep the house! I went a little crazy in October and November hoarding yarn balls like a squirrel hoards nuts in preparation for winter. Because of this though, I feel confident that I can keep up with this commitment and not end up in a straightjacket and padded room involuntarily in a few weeks. There are some areas where I am allowed to buy yarn ... for the sake of my sanity. I do work a part time job in addition to my full time job, so I do deserve a thrill every now that then :o) I have one project that I can buy yarn for - A Year in a Blanket. I have been thinking about this and I think for my budget I will do this in Berocco Comfort, which is affordable, easy to care for and comes in a wide range of colors. My thought was to do each square in a different color, so I will have to buy a skein a month, but that’s OK. The point is to keep my yarn buying under control and reasonable … not necessarily to stop it completely.

I did have the foresight to see this stash busting – no yarn buying – as a potential mental health hazard for me and so last Fall I joined a sock yarn club that starts shipping in February and consists of a shipment every other month for the year. And to boot … its got a nerdy, sci-fi geek theme! The Lord of the Rings sock club from The Unique Sheep is now closed, but details are here.

It snowed quite a bit today here in New England and I found something out about anti-lock breaks … while the concept in theory is a good one, and I am sure they work very well in many situations, they do not, however, work so great in one particular situation. Here are the facts: very steep decline, snowy road, red light = sliding perilously while stomping on the break pedal hoping that the person who has the green arrow to turn in front of you sees that you are not stopping, though you are trying. Luckily this person did indeed see that I was not stopping and was not inclined to cross the nearly fatal path of death in front of my truck.

And now back to your regular scheduled knitting update. While I was working my part-time job this weekend, which consists mostly of having to stay awake overnight, I made a short list of things I learned in 2008, things I want to learn in 2009 and projects that I want to complete that could have been started in ’06, ’07 or ’08.

Things I learned in 2008
Fair Isle
2 socks at the same time
Continental Knitting (this could have been ’07)
Seaming and Finishing

Techniques I want to learn in 2009
Slip Stitch
Knitting with Beads
Lace Shawl

Projects to Finish
Hooded Scarf
Faux Dr. Who Scarf
Tank Top
Mitered Mittens
Christmas Stocking

I finished my socks this weekend and just have to cast off the second sock and weave in all the ends. Once complete I will post photos and the pattern that I came up with to use up some left over sock yarn.

Thank you and goodnight!!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Home Sweet Home

I can't believe its 2009 already! We finally closed on our house the day after Christmas ... and because of that my knitting has not been a daily habit as of late. We actually appreciate the beauty of snow now that we have some land to enjoy it on. Before snow was just a serious pain because we had to remove it from our driveway and had nowhere to put it because there was no land between units where we used to live.

Nikoh is enjoying the new house and getting into all of his usual trouble!

I am now getting back into the groove and knitting is starting up again. I was trying to finish my Quidditch sweater before we moved, but I ran out of yarn! I was on the second sleeve, on the stripe and ran out with two rows to go. So I am waiting for my LYS to find that color for me ... its grey and they were all out ... weird.

Right now I am trying to finish up a pair of socks for my friend. Its my own pattern, so once its complete I will post it. Its great for using up some left over yarn, I am usually left with about 1/2 a skein when I make a pair of socks.

We got cable hooked up this week, but the technician forgot his drill so he could not install a new connection in my computer room ... so I am sitting on my living room floor where my desktop currently is! I have to call them and have them send someone out again ... not my fault he doesn't remember his tools!!

A new project for this year will be a year in a blanket. There is a group on Ravelry. Since we moved into our house the beginning of the year, the first block I do will be a house. I think I found a great dishcloth pattern that will work well for that.

A friend's boy will be two next month and I had a pattern and yarn to make him a sweater ... I think I got yarn to make size 4-6 though to make sure that he would get some use out of it!! Plus I didn't know when I would actually finish it!! Who knows ... might be for his third birthday, hahaha!

Well I should close for now, have more boxes to go through and put things away!