Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The HUGEST Sweater That Could

OMG! TWO posts this week?! What's going on!?

Here's the most recent status of the Reflection Aran Pullover, in pictures:
Reflection aran pullover - the horror part 1
You may notice the stripey colors close to the needle. This is what prompted the following...
Reflection Aran Pullover - the horror part 2
Yup. That's me getting down and dirty with a ball winder right there, and not the fun kind, if you know what I mean...
Reflection aran pullover - the horror part 3
Repositioning the stitches on the needles - note the lack of wine glass or tears! I was a very brave girl! (Total aside: iPhoto works amazingly well at getting rid of red eye! It's so much quicker than photoshop! I still haven't figured out how to get rid of red eye using photoshop.)

Here is where we currently are:Front of Reflection Aran Pullover take two

So here's what happened: EVEN THOUGH I SWEAR TO GOD I BOUGHT ENOUGH YARN, I ran out. So I bought more from Knit Picks. But the new yarn is a different dye lot (big surprise) and is visibly lighter than the original yarn. What I decided to do was rip back to the ribbing, and start stranding. So I'm knitting two rows with the new ball and two rows with the old ball. I'm hoping that this will help it look less odd, and also, I'm thinking that the stranding might lend a little more intrigue (as if this sweater needed more intrigue) to the front. It might make it look like it was hand dyed or something right? That's what I'm telling myself to get over the fact that I just ripped back a month worth of knitting. I am, however, finding that even though the chart is rediculous, that it's a bit quicker knitting the second time around, which is a total godsend, since my brother's been nagging me for the damn sweater since I got back to NY after Christmas.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Knitting Rules

Knitting Rules: The Yarn Harlot's Bag of Knitting Tricks by the Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

I just finished reading this book last week. I'd been reading it for quite some time. I always have a knitting book by my bed in case I wake up during the night and feel the need to read.

It's a GREAT book! I love that the patterns are more like schematics as to how to do something yourself. I think often times we get kinda tied to patterns and when looking for the pattern that does exactly what we want it to do doesn't exist we either give up or wait for another pattern to come along. The Yarn Harlot really describes the anatomy of hats, socks, scarves, wraps and sweaters in a way that makes them a bit more approachable. The only weak point, I'd say was the sweater section. In the sweater section I got the impression that your first sweater is going to suck no matter what, but I never really understood what I could do to make it better or what the basic anatomy was even of a sweater. She seems to have so much knowledge on the other subjects, I kinda feel like she should do a whole book on the anatomy of a sweater (that might even be a good title).

The hat and sock chapters were so good they made me want to knit a hat and a scarf of my own (I actually did pick up that Jaywalker I'm still in the process of knitting)! She writes amazingly well (we all know this from her blog), and in an extremely approachable style. I can't help but wonder if she's our generation's Elizabeth Zimmerman...

Friday, January 26, 2007

I actually survived without my computer

Yay! The computer has a brandy new hard drive (sans any data from the old one...)!
Once I finish setting it up I'll take a shot of the progress I've made (a decent amount if I do say so myself). Also up will be a review of the Yarn Harlot's book Knitting Rules, one of the TWO books I managed to finish while not frying my brain on the computer (the second one was Ernesto Guevera's The Motorcycle Diaries)

So, soon, there will be photos...I promise!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

That's Just the way it goes...

I actually have made quite a bit of progress on the Reflection Aran Pullover for my brother. I'm about 6" into the pattern part of the font. This is the last part of the sweater since I completed the sleeves and the back.

While I'd love to show you the progress I've made, it'll have to wait until I get my computer back from Tekserv - hopefully later this week. Seems like dying is contagious for Macs because an hour after I read about the Yarn Harlot's computer mishaps, my own hard drive began clicking, and really, the only thing worse than a clicking hard drive is that ever scary question mark icon on a folder when you go to boot up the computer. :(

It's going to be a hard week without the computer, but hopefully it'll be a productive one!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Finished 2006

So, while I might not have a photo for all of these, here's a list of my finished projects for 2006. This is mostly so I have a record for later, since I'm planning on taking all the 2006 progress bars off the sidebar in favor of the new and improved 2007 progress bars (fine, you caught me, the look identical)! In chronological order, I present to you

The PassionKNIT undertakings of 2006
  • Embossed Leaves Socks out of green Artyarns Ultramerino 4

  • 2 Petal Bibs for office babies from One Skein by Leigh Radford out of Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere AMZ

  • Morehouse Merino's birdhouse Beret out of a mossy green Morehouse Merino yarn

  • O-Gloves that were published in Not Your Mama's Knitting by Heather Dixon out of a Jager mercerized cotton and some really awesome silver yarn AMZ

  • Ballet Tee from Loop-D-Loop by Teva Durham out of a lavender Cotton Fleece AMZ

  • Lorna's Laces Jaywalkers in Mountain Colors Colorway

  • Zoe's Wedding Present - which were four Moss Grid Hand Towels from Mason Dixon Knitting knit with Euroflax linen AMZ

  • Mobius Capelet from Spring 06 Vogue Knitting out of a light pink alpaca/silk blend

  • Roundabout Leaf tank out of Berroco Denim Silk in Absynth colorway from Norah Gaughan in Knitting Nature AMZ

  • River Rapid Socks inspired by Schrodinger Knits in Cherry Tree Hill African Grey

  • Baby Bobbi Bear (now named Molly) for my friends John and Jennifer's newborn daughter Zoe out of Blue Sky Alpaca Cotton

I feel like there should have been more than that at the beginning. The first thing that's listed there was completed at the end of March, or maybe even early April. I was flying to Seattle then, so it was probably April. If anyone has any idea what I completed earlier than that, please let me know so I can add it to the list. I'll probably go through my archives later when I have some more time to add the things I forgot.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Where have I been?

The holidays were quite busy for me. Consequently, this will be a rather long post.

I haven't finished the Reflection Aran Pullover for my brother quite yet. Here's where I am on it:

Reflection Aran Sweater progress

Like I posted before, I've only got about five skeins left, and I'm thinking I'm more than likely going to run out. I have, however, decided that I don't care if the front doesn't match. I'm just going to knit until I can't really knit anymore. I just want to be done with the damn sweater. The back is done, and I'm about three quarters done with the second sleeve:

Refelection Aran Sweater sleeve II

Here we have the detail of the sleeve. It's coming along quite nicely, but I have made a couple of screwups. There's a few S cables instead of the plain right and left twisting cables. Right there, you see a couple of really awesome stitch markers. They were a gift from my friend Beth. She made six of them and gave them to me in a nifty box. It was like receiving ME in a box really. Each one is just a bit of me. Besides the camera (I really love photography), and the ball of yarn with needles, she also made one with a book and two beads that say DK (DK is the company I work for), one with an achor (yay RI!), one with an Arc de Triomphe (my favorite Parisian landmark!), and another one with a microphone (I used to be a part of WRIU, the college radio station at the University of Rhode Island).

What I did do for my brother, however, was knit him a tiny sweater from Last Minute Knitted Gifts:

My brother's mini sweater

Yup, that's a pipe cleaner made into a hanger. When he opened it, he looked at it and asked if it was a penis warmer (no joke here...he really did think that was its purpose). I had to tell him that no, in fact, it was an ornament, and besides, it'd probably be too itchy for such a place.

While I was in Rhode Island, I got my mom started on her first sweater ever. She's been knitting dishcloths for quite some time now. But, to be honest, I can really only deal with so many dishcloths, so it was time to teach her something new. We headed out into the wild streets of Rhode Island to try to find a decent yarn store to get her some yarn. I wanted to use the trip as an excuse to explore some yarn stores I wouldn't get to explore ordinarily. We went looking for Knitting Traditions...and More! which is theoretically located in Middletown. Well...there's a fishing shop there, a hairdressers and a hardware store. The guys at the fish store told my mom that the yarn store moved down the street. So we went looking for it. We got to the end of the street and still didn't find it, so we took a left towards a group of shops. Randomly, there actually was a (completely unrelated to the yarn store we were looking for) yarn store called Knitting Corner. This is by far my favorite yarn store in Rhode Island. We got her some Cotton Fleece to Make the Hourglass Sweater from Last Minute Knitted Gifts.

She actually called the store a couple days ago and asked for them to set aside a skein of yarn for her. Then she called my dad and asked him to pick it up. When he got to the yarn, he said to the woman "you can make a whole sweater out of this?!" I love my dad.

I also got a bunch of yarn, but I think I'll squeeze that in as a seperate update.