Knitstant Gratification

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

Archive for September, 2012

Hexipuffing, Month 13

Posted by Andi on September 29, 2012

Hexipuffing Month 13

Last month I made a grand total of two hexipuffs, for a grand total of 120 hexipuffs. It’s slow going. I’ve been working on a new pair of socks, my double knit scarf, the Rockefeller shawl, and maybe some gifts (shhhhh!!!) so I just haven’t had time to make many puffs. I haven’t made any this month yet. This project is really going to be on the back burner for a while I think — probably at least through the winter.

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WIP: Rockefeller

Posted by Andi on September 23, 2012

Although there are other projects I feel like I should be knitting, sometimes I get an urge to work on something else. I first considered working on Stephen West’s mystery shawl KAL before it started, but the clues were coming out during the Ravellenic Games, and wanted to focus on that. Once all of the clues were out and I started looking at some of the finished shawls, I decided I wanted to make this shawl for this fall/winter.

I’m off to a bit of a slow start, but yesterday I finally made some practice on what was Clue 1 of the KAL. The pattern has a 10-row repeat, which is easy to memorize. I’m working with two different colors, but it’s still easy television knitting.

DSC03554

I’ve been having a hard time getting decent pictures of the colors. The purple has more of a red hint to it. I love how these colors look together, and I’m really looking forward to getting to the next step.

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Garden 2012 Part 4 – New and Old

Posted by Andi on September 17, 2012

I haven’t reported on our garden lately. We’ve picked quite a bit in the last few weeks. Most notably, our green bean plants have done extremely well. So well, in fact, that Tim made green bean casserole from scratch this week. It was very good. However, many of the plants were on their last legs. Many were dried out and dead. We pulled up all but about three of the green bean plants yesterday.

Our pepper plants are doing great as well. They started out slowly, but there are a ton of peppers on them now.

Red bell peppers

A few weeks ago we noticed the first cucumbers.

Hidden cucumber

We were able to pick two, along with some daikon. There don’t seem to be many more cucumbers yet, but there are many flowers on the plant.

Our haul

There were some plants we have had such a hard time with. The first time we planted lettuce and eggplant, neither started to grow. The weather was so awful earlier this spring and summer — hot with no rain. We planted the lettuce and eggplant again once the conditions were a bit better in the hopes that we would get something, and we have!

Here is the first bit of red leaf lettuce from a couple of weeks ago.

New red lettuce

It’s bigger now, but still not huge. Yesterday we noticed another red leaf lettuce plant just came up. Seriously, it just came up — it’s two small leaves right now. But it’s something! I guess that’s still not great. We planted more than two plants.

Also, a few weeks ago the eggplant plants finally started growing, and this week we finally saw the first flowers.

Eggplant flowers

We harvested a second bunch of radishes. Actually, it was the third planting. The second one didn’t take.

radish

We got more broccoli this year than last year.

Broccoli

Kohlrabi!!!

Kohlrabi

And we have lots of cabbage. We picked one of these plants out of the ground already, and the two plants that are still there are still making cabbage. We used some in a salad over the weekend.

Cabbage

And finally, our squash is starting to grow.

Squash

We are still getting a few peas, even though the plants look awful. And we are still getting tomatoes. There were a few green cherry tomatoes left, but I’m not sure how many larger tomatoes we are going to get anymore.

It’s been great eating the variety of vegetables we have this summer. Many of the vegetables ended up in salads, but some ended up in stir fries or served on their own.

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Poppy Socks Progress

Posted by Andi on September 16, 2012

This week I finished the foot and heel of the first Poppy Sock.

In progress - Poppy Socks

I really like how the yarn looks with the stitch pattern. It’s even nicer in person!

People who knit this pattern have made comments that it’s not very stretchy. On the first round of the leg I knit the pattern all the way around the leg, and I agree, I think it will be difficult to get on my foot if I continued in that way, especially with the short row heel (which for me takes a little more finagling to get on my foot than other heels, though I like how it looks and fits well once on). Ultimately I tinked back that first round of the leg, and continued the pattern as it was for the foot — I knit the poppy pattern on the front of the leg, and stuck with stockinette stitch for the back of the leg. I still think it will look nice, and will show off the variegated yarn in two ways.

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Poppy Socks

Posted by Andi on September 9, 2012

Thanks for those of you who chimed in as to which sock project I should choose next. I chose the Poppy Socks. I started the toe today.

Poppy Socks

I’ve read comments on Ravelry which said that the socks aren’t very stretchy because of the stitch pattern, and they can be tough to get on. The Jaywalker socks were the same way, but I had no problem getting those on. These socks are toe up, so I will be knitting the stitch pattern on one half for the instep and stockinette on the other half for the bottom of the foot. The stockinette should make the foot more stretchy, so I’m thinking of continuing that way for the leg — use the stitch pattern for the front of the leg, and stockinette for the back of the leg. I have made socks like that before, so I think it will work.

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Major stash enhancement

Posted by Andi on September 3, 2012

The last time I posted any new additions to my stash was back in July. As much as I say I’m only going to buy yarn for specific projects or at fairs, I still managed to procure quite a bit of yarn since then. Here are the new additions to my stash, in chronological order.

First is this beautiful white Hunt Valley Cashmere 8 Ply Worsted which I received as a prize from the playoff pool. To be fair, in order to win this prize I had to put up a prize, so I don’t think this breaks my yarn diet. Of course, if you recall, when I bought the prize I was going to give I also bought a skein of yarn for myself. So, yeah, but it wasn’t these skeins!!

Hunt Valley Cashmere 8 Ply Worsted

Isn’t this gorgeous? It feels as nice as it looks. I haven’t decided what I’m going to make with it yet, but I’m leaning toward fingerless mitts. I was considering a cowl, but I am worried it will get full of makeup.

Next, I went to the going out of business sale for a yarn store in Chicago. I went with the purpose of buying supplies: needles, row counters, etc., figuring it’s not difficult to find yarn on sale, but you rarely see tools on sale. Yeah. I did buy needles, a row counter, and some needle protectors. I also bought this.

Ella Rae Lace Merino

Three skeins of Ella Rae Lace Merino (though Ravelry calls it fingering weight yarn). Really, I did not plan on buying yarn. It just kind of happened. The yarn has a little more green in it than this picture shows. This is probably the stash enhancement that breaks all of my current yarn buying rules. However, I know have a project mind for this yarn: Spanish Dancer. I think this will look beautiful for spring.

A few weeks ago, I very generous woman in my knitting group brought me a boot box full of yarn that someone had given her, but she was never going to use so she wanted to give it to someone else. She thought the colors were great for me, and those who know me would probably agree.

First, there were a bunch of skeins of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran in this gorgeous rust color.

Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran

I’m not sure what I’m going to make with this yet. Maybe a simple cardigan or a large shawl.

Next up in the box were several skeins of Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in Chestnut.

Knit Picks Wool of the Andes

I’m not sure what I will make with this yet, but I still intend to learn to crochet, so Short and Sweet is a possibility.

Finally, the box included two skeins of Misti Alpaca Lace Solids in this beautiful brown color.

Misti Alpaca Lace Solids

Turns out, I already had four skeins of the same yarn in this nice light blue color.

Misti Alpaca lace

I’m thinking of using them together to make Etude In Stripes. I have more of the blue than the brown, so I would use the blue for the main color and the brown for the stripes. I think they would be really pretty together.

Finally, a new yarn store called Knit Nirvana opened in my neighborhood. I went to the grand opening, and of course I wanted the store to have a successful first day! Part of that involved me buying yarn. I was good about it, though. I went to the store with a pattern in mind: Rockefeller by Stephen West. I bought Shibui Knits Staccato in two colors.

Main color: Artichoke

Shibui Staccato

Contrast color: Velvet (it’s more of a wine color than the purple it appears in the picture)

Shibui Staccato

I think these will look great together.

It’s time to start knitting!!

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Which socks should I make next?

Posted by Andi on September 2, 2012

I decided I want to make my next pair of socks out of this yarn:

Halftone Artisan Handpainted Yarns One-Pair

The problem is, I can’t decide which pattern to use. Here are the ones in the running.

Dead Simple Lace Socks
Lacy Rib Socks
Roof Ridge Socks
Poppy Socks

From what I have seen of the finished objects, all look good when made with variegated yarn.

So which one should I pick?

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