Sunday, December 28, 2008

More socks... surprised, anyone?

I just finished a pair of socks out of this yarn, Claudia Handpainted in some unknown colorway (why didn't I keep the tags? Durrrrr.) which has been languishing in my Seattle stash since I bought it over a year and a half ago. Several times while i was in Oberlin, I would paw through my socks yarn stash in frustration, lamenting the fact that I had no good handpainted sock yarn on my half of the country. And, lo and behold, as soon as I got home for the holidays, these gorgeous puppies were waiting for me. Now, less than a week later, they are a pair of socks. (I'm still lazy - pictures will come!)

Now that the year is drawing to a close, I'm wondering which projects will hold over into 2009, and which will be part of the huge FO pile of 2008. I have half of a cabled gauntlet left, so I think I might try to crank that out before New Year's. I figure a sock project is just fine to keep around, though. And my next projects will most likely be out of this:

Claudia Handpainted in Ingrid's Blues...

or this:

Koigu in deliciously bright f%*ing yellow. I'm thinking cables. I actually had a dream about this yarn before I bought it, and I woke up with a hankering for yellow. Thank goodness Weaving Works provided.

Also, as 2008 draws to a close, I start thinking about the good and bad that came from it. But on the happier side, I'll stick with the good. It's way more interesting, anyhow!

Oberlin has definitely, definitely been a good point. Being constantly surrounded by incredibly intelligent, articulate students and professors is pretty kick-ass; my job as a student information desk attendent has made me come out of my shell; keeping up with classes as well as work and personal life has slowly molded me in the direction of responsibility. I've had some rough spots, mostly around exams and finals, mostly because I take my academics too personally; I get physically stressed about grades and performance on exams, often to the point that I live on coffee for a few days before each one. That's to be expected, though (I mean, what student doesn't go through that?) and once it's over, it's so very satisfying to have lived through it. (Plus, I get to be all like, "Man, I kicked that exam's ass! Pay no attention to my gnawed-off nails and the bags under my eyes. I am hardcore!")

I'm also incredibly grateful for my friends, who have eaten lunch with me; listened to my stories; told me theirs; knitted with me for hours on end; commiserated about The Future and Relationships; dreamed of owning a yarn store; swam in waterfalls and lakes; lived in the basement (literally); eaten at Moosewood; gone dancing; driven in the snow; watched Forensic Files until 2 am and spoken in silly accents. I am grateful for the friendships that fade in intensity for a few months or years and then grow again; for friendships that are the same no matter where you left off; for friendships that make me laugh into my cookies and milk at the dining hall after a long afternoon at work.

Basically, I'm just full of love and hugs and all that gross stuff.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

I feel silly for always doing this, but I knitted yet another thing for the Curmudgeon. The last one was a pair of socks that I never blogged (until now - hahah!) and that didn't actually end up fitting his feet. But this was a totally successful, super easy project. Behold, the Hat Fit for a Curmudgeon! I mean... Boyfriend!

Oh, did I mention that it's been snowing? It's been snowing. It's been a frustrating experience, especially since Seattle so seldom gets snow or extremely cold weather in the winter. Many people complain about how no one in Seattle knows how to drive in the snow - I know I don't! My car has been the Metro this week, and holy crap, kudos to them for showing up and driving up treacherous streets for us poor, stranded residents. Seattle drivers have to deal with a crapton of hills and an infrastructure that just isn't meant to be snowed upon, so it makes sense that it's hard for us to drive in the snow - and one of the main reasons that I don't. It will be the first white Christmas that I've had (ever, I think?), but I'll be pretty happy when it's gone.

Anyhow, knitting! This hat is the Hat Fit for a Boyfriend by Stephanieknits. It took one skein of Malabrigo worsted in the colorway Cypress. When I first bought it, I thought that it was black, but it's actually a very, very, very, very, very dark green. I made the body of the hat 9 inches instead of 5.5, because a foldover brim is nice in Ohio.

Yay fast and easy Christmas present!

And finally, the socks that were supposed to be for Graham:

I have recently become obsessed with Vintage Socks.

These socks took about 3 weeks on size 0 needles, which was a little longer than usual on a smaller needle. But the yarn is nice (Cascade Heritage) and the pattern is just about perfect. I have found, though, that I need to go up .25-.5 mm in needle size for all of the socks.

They kept my feet toasty in the snow going to Kirkland for shots yesterday. I still need to hit up REI for deet and a life jacket (wheeee!) but other than that, I have my clothes and shoes and holy crap, I'm going to Bali! My arm was sore all night from the typhoid shot, but it was really nice to get it over with. The family is now out in Ocean Shores for Christmas, and I'm busy knitting socks and wrapping presents.

Hope everyone has a merry Christmas, happy Hannukah, and a beautiful New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Raffle scarf!

On the last day in Ohio:

I used 2 balls of Sublime kid mohair for this scarf, which was a pattern from one of the Sublime pattern books. It was a super easy and fast project, and I kinda wish that I could have kept it! But we made about $80 in our raffle for Nusa Penida, and I already had most of the yarn in my stash, so it was worth it. I've finished a couple of things since then, but I've been terrible about taking pictures. Finals make me lazy, hahah!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Addicted and unravelled

So I'm working on another pair of socks.

I realized today that my sock yarn addiction can now be classified as rampant. Especially for school, socks are the perfect project - useful, portable, and a surprising draw of attention. I work at the student union, where my job is to sell stamps and point nicely when people ask for directions, so there's a lot of down time. Studying doesn't work well with so many short interruptions, but knitting is easy to put down and pick up. And people are constantly leaning over the desk, cooing, "Pretty!" and petting my socks. Who would have thought.

So right now I'm frustrated with the decreases for my friend's hat, totally over the cabled Baby Cashmerino Gauntlets, and in helpless, drooling love with my Schaefer Anne Gentleman's Fancy Sock. I'm not sure if the pattern is absolutely the right one for this yarn, but I like it. It's stretchy in all the right ways, and looks pretty awesome on my foot. I wish I had pictures to show you - maybe tomorrow.

In other news, tomorrow is my last day of finals. I've been running around every day from 9 am until 11 pm for the last two weeks, studying for 6 hours a day, and replacing sleep with coffee, and last night it finally caught up to me. I could not study. Could not. Tried for three hours and didn't learn or retain anything and finally called my mom, exhausted, to vent about my frustration with chemistry and to chat about yarn and the holidays for a bit. I took the exam this morning and probably didn't do very well, but I did remember most of the previous material. I also wrote a poem for extra credit:

This morning I dreamed that I was a resonance structure,
my electrons flitting from oxygen to nitrogen
and back again.

I woke with the thought of double bonds and lone pairs
and wondered
which of my forms is most contributing.

Or something like that.
And, luckily, by the time grades are posted, I'll be in Bali, knitting 3x1 ribbed socks without a care in the world.

Oh yeah, and remember what I said about addiction?

To reward myself for getting through my worst finals alive, I bought myself (surprised, anyone?) some sock yarn.

Monday, December 8, 2008

My feet hurt from dancing.

More specifically, I have blisters from dancing in cotton socks (forgot my swingy shoes - d'oh!) for more than 3 hours this afternoon. I also have a new pair of socks cast on - Schaefer Anne in a screaming magenta colorway bought in Rochester, in the Gentleman's Fancy Sock.

Tomorrow is my swing final, and I still have to write a final for my knitting class.

What an interesting life I lead. (Hahah.)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Fall in Oberlin is gasping its last tattered, golden breath as we speak. It's been snowing off and on, but it's unseasonably warm today. (You know it's bad when 31 Fahrenheit seems warm.) This weather definitely motivates me to stay inside, knit, and daydream about warmer weather. Unfortunately, I have way too much work to do. So instead, I work for a few hours at a time and take breaks to think about knitting.

I finished my one big paper for the semester yesterday afternoon, and turned it in this morning. Actually, it's terrible how much time I spend on papers. Over Thanksgiving, I worked on it about 3-4 hours a day. I would sit down around 10 in the morning thinking that I would just write a little bit... and then I would write and edit furiously until 2 in the afternoon, when the rumble of my stomach would motivate me to venture out into the world.

I also started a hat for a friend. I'm making it up as I go, and so far it's looking pretty good. And hopefully, appropriately manly. Knitting for people is such a mixed bag; on one hand, it's cool because you get to try out new techniques, or knit something that you might not make for yourself because it isn't enough of a challenge. Or, as is sometimes the case for me, it's an excuse to knit something I've always wanted to knit... except I have to give it away at the end. Overall, though, I think I enjoy the process so much that I don't really mind.

Monday, December 1, 2008

It's almost the end of the semester again. I had an uneventful Thanksgiving spent with some new friends, some old friends, and many a bottle of good wine, and then Bethany and I were up until the wee hours of the morning knitting and watching Forensic Files on Friday night. On the way home, we slipped on the ice and laughed and talked in silly accents. Overall, was a very productive weekend - I got some knitting done, but I also wrote a 10-page paper for the class I'm taking on Hiroshima.

On the knitting front, I finished the Gentleman's Sock in Lozenge Pattern. There is a slight gauge difference between the ribbing of the two socks, I think because I started the first on size 0 bamboo needles, then broke one and borrowed a set of (much nicer, much, much faster) metal needles from Bethany. The socks were intended for the boy person, but instead I will be keeping them - silly me didn't bother to do a gauge swatch, so they fit my feet instead of the Curmudgeon's. Ah well.

That being said, these socks are gorgeous. They are very polished, which I tend to like in clothing. The lines of purls almost create an argyle pattern, and although I don't tend to think of the color, a royal blue, as pretty, it is kind of perfect in its own way.

I also did way too much shopping. After finishing my paper, I walked down to the local bead shop/clothing store and bought a black tunic with a diagonal violet pattern, intending to wear it with a sequined belt that my grandmother sent me (which is totally not my style all - I have been struggling to find an outfit that I could possibly wear it with that would not make me feel completely self-conscious and dopey). When I got home, I excitedly snatched the tunic out of my bag, threw it on, looped the belt about my waist.... and then got suddenly very much less excited. The shirt just did not work. With the belt, it clung in all the wrong places and made me look tremendously long-waisted, which I am decidedly not. Without, it looked like I was wearing a sack. Or possibly a mu-mu. Either way: not good.

So today, I returned the cute but terribly unflattering tunic, and exchanged it for a cream-colored sweater with eyelets and puff sleeves that makes me look like my mom, circa 1975. Much, much better.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Whittling away at the stash... now with more socks!

Last week was fall break, which was a welcome respite from early mornings, exams, cafeteria food, and Oberlin late fall/early winter. Well... everything except for the last one. I stayed on campus for the week, watched movies, did organic chemistry, and knitted. I've never knitted hats. I made one for my brother once, but that was more because he needed a purple and green hat with a ducky on it than because he needed a hat in general.

So, although hats are fast and cute, I've always had a hard time committing to them because I have this idea that I don't look good in hats. Which may be true. But after it started snowing here last year, my friend Graham mentioned that I had no hats, which in Ohio in the winter can be the difference between toasty and frostbitten ears. I had some peach-colored Classic Silk in my stash that I thought might look cute as a Porom. It's a cotton blend, so it's not the most useful for warmth... but cut me some slack, I'm just warming up (hahah) to the idea of wearing hats at all!

Something is on my head!

I've knit my works in progress from 14 last spring down to 1 last week, so I decided to cast on for a pair of plain stockinette socks in Panda Silk that my mom gave me for my birthday this last year. I apologize for the terrible dorm room messiness in the background. But I do think it's funny that my legwarmers are the same color as Porom... except I bought them somewhere in Osaka a couple of years ago (in the middle of summer, no less...), because for some reason I though that legwarmers were sooooo cuuuute! I still have a certain fondness for them, except now that fondness is mostly based on the fact that they keep my legs from freezing off.

Anyhow. I wasn't sure how to feel about this yarn. All of the reviews on ravelry said how soft it was, but I really didn't like the pooling that I saw every time I tried to cast on. So, since my magical US 1.5s worked so well for my alpaca socks, I tried them out with a basic 64-stitch pattern and short-row heel to minimize pooling around the instep. And hey... it totally worked! No kidding about the softness, either - sliding this baby on is like tromping on a blanket made of kitten fluff. If these socks hold up well, I'll definitely be using this yarn again.

Magically striped Paca Peds that made people stare at my socks-in-progress. 'Cause I guess I didn't blog about those, either. They are toasty and wonderful in many ways.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Even more socks.

Here at Oberlin College, we are (apparently and according to some marketing guy who said so) Fearless. Well! Just to show how Fearless I am, I finished another pair of socks. And may or may not have another finished pair say, tomorrow. These ones are orange - which seems entirely fitting to me. 'Cause hey:'s kind of fall outside.

I've been swatching for a mandarin-collared jacket with some dark purple Silky Wool, set to be edged by some light olive piping. I've also been studying for midterms in a strangely zen fashion. This afternoon, I was reviewing vocabulary for my language midterm when a boy walking past me started talking to me... in Japanese. I babbled something back about how I was a first-year Japanese student (which isn't exactly true; I studied it over about 5 years in middle- and high-school, and went to Japan when I was 16) as a lame "I don't even know what that conjugated verb tense means, kid!" sort of excuse as to why I can't speak correctly. It sounds like I'm gnawing marbles à la Eliza Doolittle when I actually try to speak in complete sentences. Meh!

In happier news, Bethany and I had our midterms in knitting class today. Did I mention that we're teaching an Exco called Fearless Knitting? Oh yeah, because we are. We're teaching socks right now, which has been a long process - but it was so awesome to see their finished midterm socks all piled on the table. My little knitters... growing up so fast.... sob.

Bethany is making Blaze (ravelink) in a lovely shade of reddish brown. We are currently trying to introduce our knitters to the joys (and collegiate time-suck) of Ravelry. Seriously, it's worse than facebook.

In conclusion, I have decided that I am going to run away from Ohio to get a degree in underwater basketweaving, move somewhere that is cold in the winter, and wile away my life knitting socks. Cheers!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Oh hey, I'm alive!

A lot has been happening here in Ohio since I last wrote. First off, the fact that it's Ohio and not Seattle. Surprise!

But moving on. We're about halfway through the semester, with fall break sweeping in on Friday afternoon and taking most of us to New York, Chicago, New Orleans, or some other exciting place. I'm staying here, knitting, watching movies, tinkering with some Silky Wool for a jacket, and doing organic chemistry... and I'm actually looking forward to it quite a bit. I will definitely appreciate some quality Oberlin squirrel-bonding time, if nothing else. For some reason, the roly-poly red squirrels that start going nut-crazy this time of year are charming to me. Sometimes I'll be walking along Tappan Square and happen to see a squirrel perched halfway up the trunk of a tree, glaring and chattering at me as if I greatly offend its squirrelly sensibilities.

There has been a lot happening on the knitting front, but very little photographing of said knitting. I finished the Fair Isle cardigan about a month ago, and have finished two pairs of socks in the last three weeks. I also cast off a simple basketweave scarf for the man friend in some squishy Malabrigo. He is still from California, I reasoned, and has but one scarf. Even if it is one that I made him. Cough.

Malabrigo Delicious Scarf

I knitted up both skeins of Colinette Jitterbug in my stash, which made two gorgeous pairs of socks. I love the colors, and I found out that the skimpy yardage is actually just enough for a pair of my plain 3x1 ribbed socks. Perfect for raising some swing partners' eyebrows.

Doin' the Charleston, in Jitterbug (how fitting!)

Some friends and I are planning an FO party soon, where we will photograph our finished objects, chat about yarn, and maybe watch some X-Files. In the meantime, I'm working on a cowl pattern from some handspun wool/tencel yarn from a local studio, a kicky red vest a la Father Dougal McGuire from Father Ted, and a match to the cabled gauntlet I finished back in July. It doesn't want to knit itself, dammit.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

What Is Wrong With Me?

Apparently, I have way too much time on my hands.

So, backstory: I went to Cultured Purls about a month ago with my mom, and we wandered around checking out the new inventory for about an hour. They had a gorgeous pink lacy cabled vest. I tried it on. It fit perfectly. I debated for a little while over filling my room with even more yarn, but I figured it would be a quick knit. And I decided on a pretty spring green. Although I am a huge fan of pink, I already have a little pink sweater. My mom treated me to the yarn, and it sat in my room for a while. About a week ago, I picked it up. And could. Not. Stop.

So yeah. I have another finished object.

The instructions have the same problem that I've found in some other yarn-company patterns: a little light on the specific instructions. When I first started knitting, this would have completely perplexed me, especially since the pattern is slated as "easy". But it made me realize how much my technical skills have improved in the last year.

I found some perfectly matched buttons at Jo-Ann (oh noooo! Corporate monster of dooooom!) and did all the finishing today. I also packed the rest of my room for college and went to a piano lesson that kicked my ass. I'm pretty ready for school to start. Even though I won't be as productive on the knitting front, I like the structure of classes. It makes me even more happy to have the knitting time that I get!

Pattern: Cabled Vest by Rosemary Drysdale, from Terra Collection by Tahki Yarns Spring/Summer 2008
Yarn: Tahki Sky, color New Leaf
Yardage: 5 skeins, 460 yards (the pattern calls for 6)
Needles: Size 8 Addi Lace Turbos
Modifications: None.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Arctic Diamonds and Hexacomb Cardigan

At the beginning of my time in Seattle, I started the Arctic Diamonds Stole in Malabrigo laceweight. I bought three skeins, as per yardage requirements... but it turned out that I only needed the better part of two. Two of the skeins matched really well, but the third was too light - which I realized almost a complete repeat into the second skein. I didn't like the sudden transition, so I ripped back four diamonds (sob) and restarted with the third skein, which was still different, but had much more in common colorwise with the first skein. After that, it was just a matter of plugging away until I finished the damn thing. Which took several weeks longer than I hoped it would.

The stole, before surgery.

Three weeks later, soaking for an ill-fated wet-block that worked abysmally because the t-pins kept on popping out of my mattress and making me use terribly offensive language.

But oh - little iron, how I love you! How you turn my tiny, wavy-edged, sort of pathetic stole into a light, airy rectangle of goodness.

Even after all these trials and errors, I have to admit that I'm pretty fond of this one.

Pattern: Arctic Diamonds Stole, Interweave Knits Winter 2006
Yarn: Malabrigo Laceweight, colorway Cognac
Yardage: 2 skeins, 940 yards
Needles: Size 3 Addi Lace Turbos
Modifications: Knitted 7 repeats of diamond pattern instead of 5. I'm glad that I did, because 5 would be far too short for my taste. I'll probably end up wearing this mostly as a scarf, because stoles aren't super practical in Ohio in the middle of winter.

And my second FO, finished for over a month.

Pattern: Hexacomb Cardigan, Interweave Knits Spring 2008
Yarn: Queensland Cotsoy, color Blue
Yardage: 7 skeins, 770 yards
Needles: Size 6
Modifications: None.
Notes: This fits all right, but I would have liked to see bust shaping, since mine flares out at the waist even though it fits in the bust.

The cow and I, we hang out.

See how relaxed we are around each other? It's magical. And she moos whenever anyone crosses the street, not just when I come by in my cute little cardigan. How considerate!

So.... even thought I'm not completely sure how much I love the fit, I do know that I love the color and the buttons. And I love love love love how it looks with the color pink, but not because I am biased in favor of the color pink paired with as many objects as possible.

.....'cause, um, that would be wrong.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Another FO!

Actually, I have something else to show you, too. Pictures are going to be slow - I've been busy with EMT stuff, finishing, and dancing, on top of my camera spazzing out! But I'll give you a hint about what else I'm going to be posting as soon as I can get my hot little hands on some buttons:

It's like this, only way, waaaay better.

Friday, July 18, 2008

A tiny secret.

I have something to show you.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Finished Object: Hexacomb Cardigan

One of my goals for the summer was to finish as many wips as possible, and I am happy to say that I have been dutifully (read: obsessively) plugging away at that very goal. After New York, Emily's family was kind enough to send a few boxes home for me. In my excitement to get back to the west coast, I forgot to keep any major projects with me. Which, of course, caused an irrational desire to buttonband, sew, block, and button the shit out of anything I could get my hands on... complicated only by the small fact that my boxes and works in progress were in a UPS facility somewhere in North Dakota. After receiving my boxes a few weeks ago, I warily eyed the crumpled pile of Cotsoy Hexacomby goodness that was shoved in a big canvas Knitty bag in the bottom of a box that was mostly occupied by rice cooker, boots, and an EMT book.

My poor little cardigan, so diligently completed except for finishing before leaving New York, was cast aside for the finishing of scandalous underwear, a scarf, another sweater, and (gasp) a newer, younger lace project. No wonder little Hexacomb sobbed and wrinkled in her box for weeks.

So, as a form of apology, I brought her out into the sun today. We took a field trip to Cultured Purls out in Issaquah, where I have been spending many hours petting yarn and working on my lace project lately. All of the people I've met there have been super nice, and Hexacomb was only too happy to be caressed with a new, slick pair of Addi Turbos and fawned over by interested customers. In return for my renewed interest in her soft hand, simple but beautiful stitch pattern, and drooly amounts of drape, she was very cooperative. I finished her button bands, sewed up her sleeves, and wove in her ends this afternoon; tonight I gave her a bath, tried to shape her with pins (which she did not like) and finally gave up and just put her on damp, shrugged her off, and shaped her with my fingers.
As you can probably tell, the yarn didn't like absorbing water. The discoloration was the result of an impatient soaking, because I wanted her shoulders to lay flat. I can't wait to get buttons, because Hexi... oh, she is damn cute.

Hopefully I can coerce my mother or one of my friends to take some real FO pictures. Stay tuned to see Hexacomb in all of her blue cotton/soy sassiness!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Swingy Pants and a Magenta Bag

About a week ago, I went to the Fireworks in my local mall and fell in love with a bag. It was magenta with green cherry blossoms, leather, and absolutely huge. There was a smaller brown version, but I am particularly enamored of pink in general, not to mention that brown does not look awesome with black pants, which is what I mostly wear. So, after almost an hour of deliberation in the store this morning, I decided that

a) the bag is adorable.

b) it is totally big enough for knitting projects, notebooks, textbooks, and even probably a toothbrush and clean t-shirt for the odd sleepover. Or maybe an elephant.

c) it has pockets so I don't have to scrape the bottom of my bag for my keys and phone. This has been driving me batshit lately.

d) hi, my name is Cory and magenta rocks my socks.

So I bought it and tried not to wince at the price of $95. (Teeny little Coach bags go for much more, right?) The girl at the cash register noticed that I was wearing my crocodile/birdie necklace, which was also from Fireworks. I love most things in there, even if some are wildly impractical. Speaking of wildly impractical, these pants are from a recent vintage haul at Stella in Issaquah, which I can't say enough wonderful things about. The owner goes to estate sales and finds lots of old, often designer things, like high-waisted, flared, black polka dot pants. I nearly died of fabulousness when I found these. I've already worn them twice - once to a 4th of July party at a friend's house, and another time out and about.

In conclusion, my swingy pants and I are going to Charleston class tonight. Yesssss!

Friday, July 11, 2008

A little orange sweater...

I've been knitting for about three years, and even though I'd like to say that I've been able to rise to every challenge that sticks and string have thrown at me, that's not quite true. I have friends whose first projects were entrelac and lace, and have only moved onto cables, colorwork, and design. I've managed to tackle all but two of those things that I consider on my list of challenging knit techniques. I've done Fair Isle, cables, steeking, lace, socks, and sweaters. But now that I've fallen so completely in love with every single facet of knitting, I feel as though it's time for me to try a little designing.

Ever since I was a little kid, I've loved to combine challenging colors. My mother would send me to preschool some mornings wearing a pink floral skirt, kelly green tights, and a red shirt - and all because I demanded that I dress myself. My dad took to calling me Sneech in my teens, due to the stripy rainbow socks that I wore beneath long, hippie-styled skirts, huge black plaid pants, or even jeans and my ubiquitous gray Oberlin sweatshirt*. I've changed my dress sense a little bit since then, but I still love loud colors as accents. Orange, in particular, is a favorite. I have a puffy, knee-length orange winter coat that I fell in love with in a Lands' End catalog when I was seventeen and bought for the long, snowy winters of Ohio. This coat has been loved to death. Buttons are missing, and the cuffs are gray with dirt. I got the coat in the mail the day that I had to leave Oberlin after two of my friends died in a murder. I wore it on the train, napped in it, and went for late-night grocery runs in it. Girls would stop me in the aisles and tell me what a great color it was. So I have a special fondness for both the coat and the color... and luckily, I happen to have a skein of handspun, hand-dyed baby alpaca in almost the same shade, that I bought at the San Juan County Fair the summer after my senior year of high school. This yarn has stuck around with me for two years, and I think that I've finally found something to do with it.

I think I'm going to keep it simple, with details in the picot trim and ribbon right under the bust. I like the idea of the dark purple ribbon clashing/contrasting with the (ridiculously violent) orange of the sweater. I want the sweater to be fitted, but to have enough ease to fit a button-up shirt or camisole underneath it. I haven't figured out how to attach a picot trim to the neckline of the sweater, or how exactly to plan the math in order to make the ribbing fit my 29-inch ribcage, and, two inches later, my 37-inch bust. I'm thinking that short rows might be in order. But I'm excited to swatch for this project. I really hope that I can finish it before school starts, so that I can show it to my knitting students this fall!

*I've been an Oberlin fan since I was fifteen, after walking around campus in the middle of spring during my sophomore year of high school. I bought a sweatshirt and entertained a dream of actually getting in, but I knew realistically that I had very little chance of getting accepted at such a great school. Happily for me, I was wrong!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Summer - The Perfect Time To Knit Mittens!

While I've been away, there has been dancing....

(In the boondocks of Santa Cruz, CA, we did a little swing dancing.)

And knitting:

Basic panties from Knitting Lingerie Style in Cascade Fixation.
Love this book, love this pattern.

Cabled gauntlets from Holiday 2007 IK in baby cashmerino.

Mitered Mittens in Silk Garden color 226; thank you, Elizabeth Zimmermann...

Malabrigo laceweight, colorway cognac, pattern Arctic Diamonds Stole from IK Winter '06.

It's been a productive, if not busy, couple of months. I flew into San Francisco at the end of June to visit the boy person and took the train home. Since getting home, I have a renewed obsession with Malabrigo (see gigantic lace project in progress) and a lot of time in which to work on it.

I'm working on watching as many good films as possible, and I'm heading out to swing class right now. It's a little tough being home with nothing to do but knit... but I think I'll manage.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Anniversary Socks

Yesterday Emily, our coworker Zach, and I drove out to Letchworth State Park and went on to Nunda for the yearly carnival. On the way, we stopped and saw Mark Twain's gravesite, which was pretty awesome. And, while Emily was driving, I finished my Anniversary socks!

At last! I started them last year during my EMT class. They were too short for my toes. I got fed up and dropped them, and started knitting the second one in October. Then, I found out that I had massive gauge issues, and that the second sock fit much better than the first. Since I'm ridiculously finicky about my knitting, I decided to rip out the first one and reknit it so that the gauge matched.

And it does! Here are my socks chillin' at Letchworth next to the falls.

Since the toe was too short and I was using a ripped sock for yarn, I had to dip into the leftovers from the second sock in order to finish the third one. Luckily, it was just in the toe - I can't even see the color change. Success!

I'm slowly but surely whittling down the number of projects that I have on my needles. I'm working on Hexacomb again, and it's going pretty fast since I divided for the fronts and back. I still need to block a couple of my projects, but I figure I'll do that when I have a little more space and I'm not living in the basement.