Knitstant Gratification

The crafting adventures of a knitter, music lover, and hockey fan.

Archive for November, 2009

WIP: Cabled Arm Warmers

Posted by Andi on November 29, 2009

cabled arm warmer

I finished my first cabled arm warmer. This photo doesn’t do a fantastic job of showing the different shades of purple in the yarn, but I will take better pics when I finish the second one.


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The Schizophrenic Knitter

Posted by Andi on November 24, 2009

My knitting personality is now fractured.

My wardrobe is pretty plain. When I was a poor graduate student I only bought basic pieces of clothing so that things could mix and match. Because of that I have few interesting pieces of clothing. I’ve been trying to change that, but I don’t have money to buy an entirely new wardrobe. That’s where knitting comes in. I can knit accessories that makes my wardrobe look less blah.

It’s a good thing that most of the projects that appeal to me these days are things like scarves and shawls. For instance, I finished my Herbivore last night, and I will wear it today. It should jazz up the plain cotton shirts I’m currently wearing. But I keep seeing all of these beautiful shawl and scarf and cowl patterns, and I want to make all of them.

The other side of my brain thinks that knitting is an opportunity to jazz my wardrobe up by making pullovers and cardigans and vests, particularly ones that I can wear to work on days when I want to look a little nicer but don’t have to wear a suit. There are so many sweater patterns I want to make, with the Aleita Shell and February Fitted Pullover at the top of my list.

But how can I make all of these shawls and scarves and pullovers and cardigans and vests at the same time? I can’t.

Maybe I should just focus on socks.

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Andi 1, LYS 1

Posted by Andi on November 22, 2009

I have been working on a shawl that called for a size 6 circular needle because of the width of the shawl. I didn’t have a circular needle long enough, so I used my straight needles. It worked until last night. Now the shawl is way too wide, and it’s still going to get wider. I had to bite the bullet today and buy the circular needle.

I was wary to head to the LYS because the last time I went to an LYS just to get a circular needle I think I spent $140 or something like that. That could not happen today! So I grabbed my boyfriend in the hopes that he would talk me out of spending money on yarn that wasn’t immediately necessary.

There was so much pretty, and I had to try really hard to not buy some sock yarn. Malabrigo, Misti Alpaca, Spud and Chloe, etc. There was a cashmere blend on sale, and my boyfriend even recommend buying some because of the price, as long as I could think of a pattern. I didn’t like any of the colors, so I moved on.

In the end I was successful. I came home with a circular needle and no yarn. I won this battle.

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FO: Christmas Lights Socks

Posted by Andi on November 14, 2009

Christmas Lights Socks
Pattern: Gusset Heel Basic Socks by Wendy D. Johnson from Socks from the Toe Up
Yarn: Sophie’s Toes in Christmas Lights
Needles: US 1 DPNs
Date started: 10/11/09
Date Completed: 11/10/09

I love the zigzags in the foot.

The most challenging part of making these socks was using Judy’s Magic Cast On on DPNs. It’s rough for the first few rows. After that, though, piece of cake!

So now I’ve done two pairs of toe up socks. I liked Judy’s Magic Cast On more than the short row cast on. As for the heel, I’m not sure. I like both the gusset heel and the short row heel. I think I maybe like the way the short row heel looks a bit better, but I like knitting the gusset heel better.

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FO: Baby Cabled Baby Slouch

Posted by Andi on November 9, 2009

Baby Cabled Baby Slouch
Pattern: Baby Cabled Baby Slouch by Stacy Mar
Needles: US 5 DPNs and US 7 DPNs
Yarn: Rowan Calmer in 493, one skein
Date Started: November 3, 2009
Date Completed: November 4, 2009

This yarn is left over from making my skull cap, and I planned to make fingerless gloves with it. But I found this pattern which called for this yarn, and I thought I would use it. I thought it would be nice to make a baby gift that wasn’t in a traditional baby color.

Baby Cabled Baby Slouch

I’m very happy that these two recent baby projects were true stash busting projects!

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FO: Heritage Booties

Posted by Andi on November 8, 2009

Heritage Booties
Pattern: Heritage Booties by Jeanne McCanless from Interweave Knits, Holiday Gifts 2009
Needles: US 0 DPNs
Yarn: Dream in Color Smooshy in Giant Peach
Date Started: October 29, 2009
Date Completed: November 3, 2009

I made these booties for one of my colleagues who had her first child, a girl, a few weeks ago. The baby was born early and is still quite tiny, so she won’t be able to fit into these booties for a while yet. I wanted to make something special for my colleague, but I expected to have more time. After the baby was born I started looking through baby patterns that would work with the yarn I have, and I didn’t find anything that struck my fancy. Then I looked through the preview of Interweave Knits, Holiday Gifts 2009 and found these booties. I thought these would be perfect!

Thank goodness the good folks over at Dream In Color decided that their sock yarn would come in 450 yard hanks. I had this yarn left over from the Twisted Tulip socks I made for my mom for Mother’s Day 2008. I had no idea what I would do with what was left over, and luckily it was enough to make these booties. And I think it’s appropriate that yarn that was left over from a project I made for the best mom I know (my own!) would be used to make a gift for a brand new mommy.

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WIP: Christmas Lights socks

Posted by Andi on November 6, 2009

I’m working on my second pair of toe-up socks. The first one is finished.

My second ever toe-up sock

Can you spot where my tension changed on the leg? I love the pooling that I’m getting. I cast on the second sock yesterday and so far it appears to be doing the same thing. Maybe the socks will be similar.

Starting the second sock was just as difficult as starting the first sock. Judy’s Magic Cast On is tough for the first two rows if one is using DPNs. I kept dropping stitches, and I wasn’t always able to pick them back up or I would find them after I overcompensated by doing an M1, thinking I missed one somewhere.

So I did something I usually don’t do. I put the socks away after only completing one and started more projects.

I know two people who have recently had their first child, so I made baby gifts. I will take some pictures over the weekend. My colleague will get a pair of booties, and my hair stylist will get a baby slouchy hat. These two projects took approximately a week or so to do, so that meant I finished one sock and didn’t cast on the other for a week. That’s a long time for me. In order to avoid second sock syndrome I usually cast on as soon as I finish the first one, usually in the first sitting. Second Sock Syndrome didn’t beat me, as I’m now well into the second sock.

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Yarn Con 2009

Posted by Andi on November 4, 2009

I was lucky to make it to Yarn Con this year as I was out of town from work and didn’t fly back until that morning. I went straight from the airport to Yarn Con. My fear was that the best stuff would be sold out by the time I got there. What I wanted most of all was Sophie’s Toes yarn in Candy Corn. Luckily my friend Angela arrived early and had a hank put on the side for me. When I arrived at Yarn Con I went straight to the Sophie’s Toes booth where there was still a lot of Candy Corn yarn, but I was happy mine was reserved just in case.

Sophie's Toes

Then the confusion started. I knew I wanted to buy another hank of Sophie’s Toes yarn, but which one? I wanted to try some of the yarn with cashmere, or the yarn with the sparkles. But I also wanted additional colorways of the traditional sock yarn. What to do? I easily could have spent my entire Yarn Con budget at the Sophie’s Toes booth, but I really didn’t want to do that. Ultimately I decided upon the same type of sock yarn. Then I had to pick a colorway. I was holding Pumpkin Spice and Handsome Park Ranger for a long time. To be honest I don’t remember how exactly I made my decision, but I chose Pumpkin Spice.

Sophie's Toes

I had been at Yarn Con maybe 10 minutes and had already bought 2 hanks of yarn. My goal was to not buy anymore yarn until I had visited every booth. I did good for a while. I went over to the Yarn Hollow booth to show them my Rivendell socks which I had made with their yarn, but I didn’t really look at the yarn there. I moved on.

I made it about halfway through the first room before I failed upon arriving at the Turtle Cove Farm booth. The yarn was so pretty and had such awesome names! I bought two hanks of sock yarn. First I chose a color for my boyfriend who has only wanted me to knit white socks for him. I thought the Major Tom colorway of the Terrapin Toes yarn was perfect for him as far as dress socks are concerned. He will wear darker socks when he goes somewhere nice. Plus, I liked the yarn too, so if he decided he didn’t like it I would be more than happy to wear it myself. Also, since “Space Oddity” is his favorite David Bowie song, I thought that a colorway called Major Tom would be perfect for him.

Turtle Cove Terrapin Toes Sock Yarn

For myself I bought the Terrapin Toes yarn in Punk Rock Girl. And as of last week I think I know what I am going to make with it! I probably won’t get around to knitting with it until after the new year, but yes, it’s already spoken for. I then went around with the song “Punk Rock Girl” by the Dead Milkmen in my head.

Turtle Cove Terrapin Toes Sock Yarn

I did manage to make it all of the other vendors before buying more yarn. I went back to the Yarn Hollow booth. I looked at some of the other types of yarn, but decided to go with the Chrome again since that was the yarn I used for my Rivendell socks and I liked it so much. I considered a few colors, and decided upon Chai, which I thought was absolutely beautiful and appropriate for the season. It is their most popular colorway, and I can see why!

Yarn Hollow Chrome

I spent slightly more than my budget, but I chalk that up to my generosity in buying yarn for my boyfriend. Yeah, that’s it!!

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FO: Curry Spice Hat

Posted by Andi on November 3, 2009

Curry Spice Hat
Pattern: Curry Spice Hat by Kathy Zimmerman from Knitted Gifts
Yarn: Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Bulky in Maple Grove, 1 hank
Needles: US 10.5 and US 10
Date Started: October 21, 2009
Date Completed: October 23, 2009

The only reason why this took two days was because I started it one day and messed up, frogged it, and made the entire hat the following day. This was a really quick project. The hat turned out better than the scarf did, at least in my opinion. Again, this was made to match my brown wool coat.

Next up will be the Texter Gloves, made out of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sport in Maple Grove. Unfortunately the dye lot was really different for the sport weight yarn than it was for the bulky, and it’s much lighter.

Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sport

All of the colors appear to be lighter. Oh well, they will still be pretty gloves. Now I just need to get a smaller crochet hook than I already own in order to get started.

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FO: Curry Spice Scarf

Posted by Andi on November 2, 2009

Curry Spice Scarf
Pattern: Curry Spice Scarf by Kathy Zimmerman from Knitted Gifts
Yarn: Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Bulky in Maple Grove, 2 hanks
Needles: US 10.5
Date Started: October 9, 2009
Date Completed: October 21, 2009

I made this scarf to go with the coat I’m wearing in the photo. I love this colorway and its 1970s vibe. I still need to block it, but I’ve been too lazy. At first I liked that it looked handmade, then I thought that maybe it looked too handmade. I liked the hat (which I’ll post tomorrow) better, even though it was the same yarn and stitch pattern. But I grew to like the scarf too.

The other day I was walking past Urban Outfitters and a scarf very similar to this one was in the window. I guess I’m cool now.

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