Wednesday, August 29, 2007

day 30, socks, and KIP

Greetings again :)

I ran across another HP-related sock pattern from a link on the Hogwarts Sock Swap Two that is really cool: Firenze the Centaur Socks !! I'd like to make these (of course) - and I think I'll use the Dark Knight yarn I have from Rachel! whoohoo! The centaurs watched the sky for portents, and the yarn I have in mind is yellow/blue/black - deep, rich colors that remind me of the night sky.

I've also put a link in the sidebar for Campanula for a Cure, which is a donor/KAL for the Walk for the Cure in Toronto. I've decided to use another one of Rachel's yarns for these, in the colorway Naked Flesh (red/pink/white).

I have a sock surprise in the works for a baseball friend of mine that I'll talk about at a later date ;-) Don't want her to find out about it just yet! I did order more yarn from Etsy:
  1. A ball of 100% superwash merino in the colorway Dementor (black/silver/purple) from shelbyB
  2. A ball of 100% superwash merico in the colorway Ronald Weasley (green/orange/brown/silver) also from Shelby's shop
  3. A series of superwash merino/nylon blend yarn in 7 colorways - Potters Covers - from dharmafey on Etsy. This one is a subscription series.
  4. The mystery yarn for the baseball project ;) More on that later this year.

I'm coveting the Fawkes colorway from Shelby as well, but will restrain myself! Amazing, I know.

On the sweater front, er, I mean back, I'm up to the end of the first repeat. I had issues with the increases and had to frog the same row about 4 times. It's going to take me a bit longer on the back per row - there are 142 sts across - but it's looking good. The sleeve took about 1-1/3 balls of the Nature Spun, and I just started on the third ball at the top of the first back repeat. The pattern is now memorized, but I'll need to sit down and write it out soonish.

Still need to photo the sleeve; one of my co-workers suggested that I use my cubicle wall to pin out the sleeve to take a pic of it. LOL! Think I will, at that.

I need to reinstall PCStitch, but I can't find the activation code I paid for! WOE! I like to use the program for knit design, as I can make the chart easily. I've used it for the SG gansey patterns, but now I can't open the pattern files to make changes :( It's an older version, and I'll need to see if I can find the receipt of payment for it.

I met some friends for dinner last night at a place called 'Sweet Tomatoes' that has salads, pasta, and soups. I got there early, as I left from work, and D and company had to run an errand before meeting me. I think it was 'funraiser' night, because there were about a hundred kids running all over the place. Since I had to wait for the rest of the group, I sat in the 'lobby' area and pulled out the red gansey sock to work on in the meantime. After about 5 minutes or so, I noticed that the light from the plate glass windows I had my back to seemed to be getting dimmer. It wasn't that it was getting dark - it was because there were seven kids all with their faces pressed against the glass watching me knit! It was way funny! I was just inside the door, so I had all sorts of people asking me about the sock. Right before my group arrived I had one lady actually sit down and ask me where the rest of my needles were, and how was I DOING that? I've been using the Magic Loop on socks for a little while now, and I think I convinced her to try it :) She told me she lived in U City, so I suggested that she go to Kirkwood Knittery or Knitorious for yarn and help. She was fascinated by the fact there was only one long circ, and no pointy ends all over the place. D & Co. arrived about then, so we got our food and went to sit down. The whole rest of the meal I had people smiling and nodding at me as they came by our table on their way out the door. All in all, it was a rather amusing evening. If you can, knit in public! It's fun! hee!

I think that's all for now - have a nice week!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

day 26 and...socks

I'm being so very bad - I have a pirate sweater to work on and what do I do?

I started the "I Love Gansey" socks. *sigh*

It's a fun sock, tho - challenging pattern! I added a few stitches as well, since I have big fat feet and the cuff has mostly stockinette stitches, so won't stretch like ribbing. Here's a teaser:

I'll post a finished pic of these when they get done - they are the August/September pattern for the Six Sox Knitalong, so I have about 5 more weeks to finish. Considering I started these last night and I'm nearly done with the heel flap, I think I'll have them completed in time. *g*

I've finally finished the sleeve for the second time and it will be a much better fit. I discovered another error - this time, it was the printer that did me in. There was a row of the table that had been cut off that had me binding off 8 stitches on each side! No wonder it was far too long! I forgot to bring the digital camera (the good one) to work, so I can't take a pic of the sleeve till later.

I'm having a tussle with the fact that I've added 10 stitches to the front and back of the sweater to compensate for the cabling - now I have to determine how many to decrease so the neck won't gape. It'll get there! I've cast on the ribbing for the back, and then got distracted by the ILG sock.

I'm back to listening to the HP audiobooks again (yes, again) - this time, I'm 'reading' the Stephen Fry version. I noticed that in the very first book, the person who saved the day first was actually *Ron*, when they all met the troll in the girls' bathroom. Just on a whim, I looked up what certain names mean, and Ronald means "ruler's counsel" while Harry means "home ruler". After SS (or in the Fry version's case, PhilS), I think that Ron should be "ruler's champion" instead! Ron's got some great hidden strengths, I think. Yes, I am a geek.

I did finish the reformat of the desktop comp, and iTunes is the biggest PITA when it comes to restoring podcasts! Bleh!

That's all for now - been busy trying to mix computer geekiness and knitting, and so didn't have as much to talk about this week.


Monday, August 20, 2007

day 21 antics

Hello yet again.

You'll have to bear with me here, I'm in the middle of a deep scan on the computer, and may be reformatting here tomorrow night if I can't get the !#$%^& popups to go away. Yes, I do this for a living, and Yes, my computer is infected with at least one trojan, and Yes, I do know how to get rid of it, but there have been other issues with this computer and it's OS for a month or two now, and It's Time. The most painful part of a reformat is the re-installation of all my various programs. Meh.

Sweater update: I finished the first sleeve! Yay! It's 2 inches too long! Ack!


I took it back to the true 18"-from-beginning mark, and started the decreases again. It appears I took the sleeve out to a full 3 (or was it 4?) repeats before starting the decreases, which properly measured out was 19.5". This time, I started the decreases within the main moss diamond repeat. I know this will just add to the complication factor, but it won't have gorilla arms. By the length of the sleeve - and I know, it grows even longer when seamed - it would have been past my knuckles. Too long for an aran-type. I'll be decreasing a little more aggressively as well, I think - not as many 4-row decreases before starting the every-other-row decreases. It'll STILL have 35 every-other-row decreases, which means that the sleeve will still be in the neighborhood of 200 rows long, give or take 10 or so, but it will FIT.

This means I'm holding off on photographing it till I cast off again. Sorry, Rachel! I promise I'll be posting that blocked-out piece soon! If I can work on it this week, perhaps by Saturday.

I did not start another pair of socks (Yay me! Self-restraint is a virtue...) and I did manage to set Teh Pirate Sweater on the sofa to work on it....before I ripped the sleeve. I only have 3 weeks and a few days!

One last word - yes this is a quickie - the TV series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century is just as corny and full of skimpily-clad women as I remember it. D in KS sent me the "Complete Series" DVDs that I couldn't find at Wallyworld here (thanks D!!) and I've been having a lot of fun watching for old-school BSG props on the show as well as the totally implausible and sometimes totally illogical plots. I do still love Gil Girard, tho :)

Okay, that's all for now. Cheers!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

day 19 and horcrux completed!

Been a few days - been a little busy here and there, and oh yeah, sleep!

I completed the Horcrux socks this morning, and here they are:

horcrux socks

Yay! and Yes, I DO have big feet. They fit great! I think I'm going to make some wire-hanger blockers, tho, to wash and dry them on.

I've been working on the sweater sleeve for a while - I'm into the decreases now, and it looks like the arm will be a little long. That's okay, because the sweater needed a little hang space. It's not off-the-ends-of-the-fingers long, but enough to not expose your wrists when you bend your arm. I'm into the second ball of the purple, and nearly to the end of the 5th moss diamond repeat. I'll post a pic after I cast it off and block it. I think it looks GREAT! I'm really jazzed about this sweater.

I really need to work on Teh Pirate Sweater for my pseudo-nephew since the Pirate Fest is in 4 weeks! Ack! *tries to resist the urge to cast on another pair of socks* I really do want to start the 'I Love Gansey' socks from the Six Sox list, but...alas! So much yarn, so little time. Maybe I'll pack it along as my purse project ;-)

Not too long of a post today - gotta get back to work here and make my 'weekend' get here faster!


Monday, August 13, 2007

day 14 update

Just a short post today.

Ripped the sleeve back to the start of the second repeat - I'd changed the spacing on the increases, and it was widening too fast, so I now have them spaced at every 4 rows for about 4 inches, then every 6 rows. Not so much material at the elbow now. It made the pattern a little easier too, as the increases are on the same row as the cable crossings. It's still gonna be a gut-buster of a pattern!

I think I found a pattern I like for the Sirius sock yarn - it's a herringbone eyelet pattern from Vogue's Knitting Dictionary, the old one. I don't have a copy of it myself, but the library did. Speaking of library books [rant], I think people who tear pages out of books should have their card revoked for life. I checked out Walker's Second Treasury and there are pages missing out of it ALL OVER THE PLACE. "Oh, I like this one...(rrip)." Gaaaah! Sheesh, it's a *library* book. If you want a copy of the pattern then make a copy or go buy the book. [end rant]

The Ginny and the Cloak yarns are still waiting for a pattern to yell out at me, but the other two I already mentioned a few days ago are set.

On a baseball front (!!) Rick Ankiel is being adored by Cardinal fans at the moment. He hit a three-run homer in his 4th at-bat last Thursday, the day he was called up, and 2 more homers in the win on Saturday! I know we aren't to expect this all the time (I wish!), but I'm so happy for him. When he hit the three-run shot, I didn't know whether to cheer or cry. He even took his first curtain call. Welcome back!

Didn't get the heel turned on Horcrux Sock #2 - Ashley's birthday was yesterday and so we had a birthday party with lots of people that had to be inside due to the 102F heat. Just a few more rows and I'll be on the flap, however.

I think that's all for now - I'm still tired from yesterday, and the weather is killing me! Looks like there's an end in sight, tho - only supposed to be in the 80's for highs next week. Right after I get the a/c fixed in the car. Of course :)


Thursday, August 9, 2007

d'oh moment

I just realized what pattern to use for the Dare To Enter The Forest socks.

The Horcrux, of course! Duh!!

And for Ravenclaw?

"Eagle's Flight" - this one was originally knit on Opal Owl, but should work well with the hand-dyed.

I also just found the Sock Pattern site to beat all: Free Sock Patterns

*is amazed with the list of 602 patterns* Yes, I said six hundred and two. Woof.

Back to work!

sweater day 10 and sock yarn yarn yarn

I've managed to complete a full repeat of the newly expanded sleeve - I changed the number of stitches I started the pattern on, so I think that should fit better. I'm on the fence about buying enough yarn to make the whole thing, as this was just going to be the design part. I like the color, and will seriously have to think about asking Nancy to see if she can get more of the dye lot.

I reeealy need to stay away from Etsy and the sock yarn. I got some totally yummy yarn from Alabama Fiber Dreams (they have an Etsy store here) in colorway Ginny Weasley that's a very soft superwash merino/nylon blend. It's very very bright! Sunshine yellow, orange, and red. I can't wait to knit this up! Laurie is coveting it as well, so I may have to see if I can find s'more. :)

Some other troublemakers:

  1. A hank of what looks like BFL in Ravenclaw (blue, light grey, dark grey, white) from RazzyTazzyKnits
  2. A hank of Chubby Sock in Invisibility Cloak (silver grey, powder blue, light grey-green) from MacKintosh Yarns
  3. A hank of 100% superwash merino in Sirius (black, bright orange-red, grey) from GeminiKnits
  4. A hank of BFL in Expelliarmus (orange, blue, red, green) from Elliebelly

There's another one on the way, 100% superwash merino in Dare to Enter The Forest (green, brown, burgundy and black) from SpinningDoggies.

I'm sensing a pattern here! LOL!

These will join Superhero, Naked Flesh, Dark Knight, and Knitorious-exclusive Cardinals, all from DyeabolicalYarns.

I told you I need to stay away from Etsy. Now I need to find some appropriate lace patterns to make socks out of all this terrific yarn. Oh, and in the middle of all the yarn, I bought some stitch markers from Sunneshine - HP markers, of course! Silly me.

I have a pair of socks that I just finished using J. Knits 100% superwash merino hand-dyed in Washington (red, orange, hot pink). I used the pattern "Tidal Wave Socks" from SWTC because I thought it looked like flames, and this was a hot-looking yarn! It's still a little warm to be wearing socks with sandals (yeah, it was 100F yesterday, and is supposed to get to 102F today. Ugh) but fall is coming. Soon. Please?

I'm nearly through the lightning bolt pattern on the second Horcrux sock. Since this is my 'portable' project, I'm guessing another week or so on that one, if not a little more. This weekend is already booked (birthdays galore), but I may get the heel turned before next week.


PS: (edit) The 'Birds recalled Rick Ankiel to the majors this morning. They're out of options on him, so he stays in the bigs, or he's out on waivers. I wish him the best of luck - he's had a hard road to travel, and I really want him to stay with the Cards. *crosses fingers*

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

day 8 - rrrrrip!

Can someone please tell the guy upstairs that 100F is too hot? meh!

Well, I came to a decision to rip out the 80+ rows I've completed on the swatch sleeve - the cables were drawing the width in more than I liked, and so I think I'm going to stay with the number of starting stitches and run the increases every 1/2" instead of every 3/4". I know that'll add to the bulk under the arm a little, but I think it'll be compensated by the cables. The sleeve seemed snug at the upper arm, and I'd like a little looser fit.

Knowing the approximate amount of 'draw-in' will help on the body of the sweater as well.

My adopted niece Ashley and I went to the Stitch 'N Pitch last night at Busch - 96F at gametime, lots of people! I think we had fun even tho it was terribly hot. Maybe next year we could arrange for the SNP to be in May? Hmmm? I know there were a lot of people who didn't work on their crafts because it was just too hot. Lots of washcloths and socks being worked on otherwise (like me, working on Horcrux Sock #2). Watching the Cardinals make history (or at least tie it) in the 5th inning was a treat. 10 hits in a row! Woot! Last time the Redbirds did that was 1922 - 85 years ago. Wow. This was Ashley's first ever trip to Busch and she got to meet Fredbird and everything. This was a surprise, since the person who was supposed to come with me decided she wasn't feeling well enough to go. Ash's birthday is on Sunday, so this was an early birthday present from me.

I'll come back for the SNP again next year! If you live in a town that has a MLB team, check out the website at the TNNA site:

That's all for now, I'll update again when I get back up the sleeve to the decreases, or when I have more blatherings to post.


Saturday, August 4, 2007

day 5 of the sweater design and testing

Hi again! Just wanted to update and collect thoughts here.

I had a short brainstorming session with the owner of my LYS (hi Nancy!) and decided a few things:

  1. Bought more of the Brown Sheep Nature Spun to use as test material. I really like this feel of this yarn, and will be using this in the final design. She didn't have any of the blue (BS NS "Navy Nite", colorN39) in stock, but like that's an issue? ;-) It'll get there!

  2. I'll be writing this design out as a chart and as a row-by-row. It's going to be *long*. I've only reached the decrease on the first sleeve, and it is already a full page plus. It's not an easy pattern!

  3. I'm using two different raglan sweater patterns - one from Ann Budd's The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns and one from an online site called The Knitting Fool. I have found a mathematical error in the decreases on the sleeve directions from the online site, and so I am using both sources to cross-check myself. The website's pattern is in pieces, and the book's pattern is in the round. I seem to love the complicated issues.

The sleeve seems to be progressing well. Here's a two-days-into-this-sample pic. Note! The color of the yarn I'm using for testing is ROYAL PURPLE, not the blue that it looks like in this pic from my phone. I need a better pic. Or a different camera.

That's about 40 rows of pattern, and a cop-out of only an inch of cuff. Actual cuff will be about 2.5-3". I have to say the pattern is showing up like a dream against a moderately dark background! I'm getting excited about it!

Sue made the suggestion that I work all the increasing sts on the left and right sides as stockinette, as a) it reduces bulk on the underside of the sleeve, b) it won't drive me crazy trying to incorporate increases into moss st, c) it'll be a lot easier to seam, and d) who (besides knitters) looks at the underside of a sleeve?

The decreases into the moss and pattern sts, on the other hand, will be visible on the shoulder, and I'll work on those when I get there. I'm designing as I knit, so I'll have a couple more main pattern repeats to ponder the decreases.

I started counting the days from Monday, July 30 as Day Zero for this design. Let's see how long it takes to come to fruition.


Friday, August 3, 2007

the reason for the sweater that ate my brain

Okay, here goes.

I've been on a bit of a Potter kick the last month or so. My co-workers and I decided to read/listen to the first 6 books before the last one hit the stores, and so I spent the first 3/4th of July listening to the unabridged version of the books, read by Jim Dale. Didn't see the movie the week it came out, but wanted to read the book right away.


Went to Borders the night of the 20th, and was at the store for 6 hours before checking out at 1:40 AM, three books clutched in my hot little hands. Two of them went to Paula's house, and one came home with me. Since I had to be at work at 8 AM on Saturday, I went right to bed. Slept for 4 hours, got up, went into work, and did actually DO work before cracking the book - cuz I *knew* once I'd opened it, I wasn't gonna be working.

Out of the 4 of us there that day, 2 were reading DH, one was listening to the end of HBP, and one was bored, reading his car magazines because no-one would talk to him ;-)

Finished the book Saturday evening about 11:30, and started the audio Sunday afternoon. Decided to see OotP on Monday since my weekends are Sunday/Monday.

A very full Pottery weekend.

Fast forward to July 29th.

I'm in the St. Louis area, and there's one theatre showing the movie in IMAX, in 3D. A friend of mine told me I *had* to see the end of OotP in 3D, so we gathered everyone up and drove to the other end of town. It was worth it!! First time I'd seen a movie twice in the thearte since I was a manager of one 16 years ago! If there is an IMAX showing OotP near you, go!

Monday I had the urge to watch the earlier movies, since I'd now OD'ed on HP5 and HP7.

Knitters should not watch these movies. They have toooo many items that are tempting! Now, I have the Charmed Knits book, and there are quite a few patterns that are in there that were in the early movies.

But the book is missing one.

In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, there is a scene where Oliver Wood is instructing Harry (and us) as to what each of the Quidditch balls are and do. Harry is wearing a dark blue cabled sweater that I haven't seen anywhere else in the movies, and is not in the pattern book.

Welcome to the sweater pattern that ate my brain.

Here's a shot of it, courtesy Mugglenet's screencap archive:

and another shot, with the shoulder detail (sort of):

I've been deconstructing this over the last few days, and I think I have the pattern now. The hard part will be piecing it! The biggest issue I see with this is that the patterns don't match at the shoulder, which means that it will not be seamless. Each section will have to be finished seperately and then put together.

I'm going to start putting design notes and such into future posts, but for now, I'll leave you with this.


welcome to my blog


Just a little of an intro post to get things started.

I'm Kelly, and I live the St. Louis metro area. I consider myself a rather boring person ;-) I live with a four-legged chicken I was told was a dog - okay, yes, he's a dog, but I think he's confused - who likes to play with yarn when I'm not looking. This is good thing and a bad thing. It's a good thing for him because there is a lot of yarn in my house, and a bad thing for me because there is a lot of yarn in my house!

I fell across Blogger thanks to Rachel of Dyeabolical Yarns (she also has an Etsy shop here) and would advise you to run (don't walk!) to her site. I think I now have more sock yarn than I will ever need, but the colors are fab!!

My current project (HA!!) is the HP sweater design that ate my brain. Among other things OTN:

* Sock #2 of the Horcrux Socks, knit in Plymouth Sockotta "Bright Greys"
* Pirate sweater, second sleeve, from Creative Knits (I think), knit in Lion Brand Baby Soft - this is a Pirate Fest / Halloween costume, so I'm doing okay.
* Rambling Rows afghan - this is the never-ending pattern that's been OTN for over a year. It's too HOT in St. Louis to work on it in the summer, and it's the bed-sized one. I've completed 4 of these, and this is the second one in this size. I'm working it in TLC Plush (yeah, I know, ack! acrylic! but it's good for afghans).

I think after Sock #2 is completed, I'll be working on the "I Love Gansey" socks from the Six Sox Knitalong group. That's the same place I got the Horcrux Socks pattern - they have some really cool patterns!!

I think I'll leave the story of the pattern reconstruction from hell to a later post.