Monday, July 30, 2012

False start

Like many participating in the Ravellenic Games this year, I eagerly cast on as soon as opening ceremonies started. I loved watching the ceremonies and thought London did a beautiful job. The cauldron lighting was amazing. I knit like a fiend and in less than 24 hours I had this:


That's about 12 inches of the back of a sweater. About that time, a little voice in the back of my head started saying "Gee, this looks pretty small." I fought it for a while then decided to check my gauge. It was way off. That can't be, I thought to myself, I actually knit a good sized swatch this time and dutifully measured it. Back to my swatch I went. You guessed it. I had mis-measured the swatch in the first place. Ouch. In a matter of seconds my lovely half-done sweater back turned into this:


Not to be deterred in my quest for Ravellenic gold, I cast back on and dutifully re-knit. It feels so good, when, after ripping back, you finally hit that place where you're knitting with "fresh" yarn again. After several volleyball matches, a little swimming, a little rowing, and a lot of gymnastics (all viewing of course) I finished the back of the sweater.


Only two sleeves, two fronts, piecing, and a zipper to install in the next 13 days. What do you think? Can I do it?

Friday, July 27, 2012


Sorry for dropping of the map for a little over the past two weeks. I got sucked into the hole that is the bar exam.  Tuesday and Wednesday I sat for the test and now I have eight weeks to wait before finding out if I passed or not... It was definitely not the most fun I've ever had.

Now that it's over, I can turn my attention to looking for a legal job and working in the yarn shop. Much more fun that days and days of studying. And, even better, lots more knitting time.

A few weeks ago, before I got swept up completely in studying, I finished the sweater I was crocheting.


I think it's lovely. The sleeves came out a bit big, but other than that it's great. That wonderful little closure is from Plover Designs. They're local to Portland and For Yarn's Sake carries some very lovely ones. 


The pattern is Bluebell Cardigan by Edie Eckman from the Spring 2011 Interweave Crochet. It worked up so fast once I finally put some energy into it. I found the patter a bit vague and hard to follow in places but I think it was because they tried to cram it onto two pages so it was heavily abbreviated and vague in places. I still managed to figure it out. 


I used some yarn that was available through Knit Picks about two years ago. It was yarn that their mill overspun so they sold it for $1 per ball. It's basically their Wool of the Andes sport but overspun. The colorway is called amethyst heather. The sweater's got about 4 inches of positive ease so I will be able to layer it in the winter. (Ryan says a sweater made of holes is impractical, but I think he just doesn't understand the magic of layers.)

Opening Ceremonies start in 9 minutes and I've got a cardigan to cast on. You'll hear all about it. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Douglas Mittens

For the last few weeks at knit night I've been working on a pair of Douglas Mittens by emilyelizabeth.  They are fun and since they are done in worsted weight they are super fast.  I'm already this far after just a few hours of work.


They're sized pretty big, so if you have small hands I'd suggest going down to a DK weight and a smaller needle.  These are for my dad... or maybe my uncle... some man I know with big hands anyway... they'll sit in the Christmas box until December 20th when I finally will decide who gets them.  That's how I roll.  

I'm loving the big fat worsted weight colorwork stitches.  Tami's blog has more great WIPs.  

Friday, July 6, 2012

Cabled Scarf

I finished the cabled scarf I've been working on for the past week and half or so.  Here's my "I'm happy to be modeling my new scarf" picture.


And here's my "It's 80 degrees and I've got wool wrapped around my neck" picture.


The pattern is #8 Cabled Scarf by Elena Malo from the Holiday 2008 issue of vogue knitting.  The yarn is Knit Picks Gloss DK 70% merino wool and 30% silk.  The colorway is called Robot.  It grew like mad when I blocked it.  I knit the scarf to about 5 feet long but after washing it was over 6 feet.  I like longer scarves anyway, but I'm glad I didn't make a sweater or something that needed to be fitted instead.


Overall I like it, but it's too hot to get that excited about a wool scarf.  Also, it's not reversible so I have to pay attention to whether it's "right-side up."  

Only 8 more projects on the needles.

Go check out the projects on Tami's blog. 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Expanding my skills

Last March when the Spring 2011 issue of Interweave Crochet came out I could not wait to make the Bluebell Cardigan by Edie Eckman. I began (cast on?) the same day the magazine arrived.  I quickly worked through the flowered border, then...


I have no idea.  Something sent it to the basket and it stayed there for over a year.  Recently, I've been in a "get sh*t done" mood so I've been pulling out old projects left and right and finishing them up.

I picked it back up and I've been seriously trucking through it.


In two days I've finished about 10 inches of the body.  Thats insane!  I could never bust through a knitting pattern that fast.

The cardi is made in one piece up to the armpits then split and knit separately to the shoulders.  Most of the cardigan is this all-over mesh pattern.


The flower details at the bottom look a little crummy right now, but it looks like they will block out pretty nicely.


I love reading blogs where people talk about what they're reading along with what they're knitting, so I figured I'd start sharing as well.  Recently, I've been reading an excellent book--The Poisoner's Handbook: Murderer and the Birth of Forensic Medecine in Jazz Age New York (why oh why do academics feel the need for long subtitles?) by Deborah Blum.

It's so good! Prior to the late 1800s it was basically impossible to prove if someone had been poisoned--needless to say, it became a pretty popular way to get rid of people.  As scientists started to come up with ways of detecting poisons, poisoners switched to poisons that were harder to detect.  When the industiral era was in full swing in the '20s industrialists were constantly inventing new chemicals to facilitate their industries but there was little investigation into what the side effects of the chemical exposure might be.

The book chronicles the cat-and-mouse between murderers and scientists and the development of the science of detecting poison. The book reads like a story and even though it talks about scientific development it doesn't get overly technical.  Fair warning though, it does describe the effects of various poisons on the body, sometimes in detail.  I found the descriptions of radium poisoning especially disturbing.  Seriously though, I'm loving this book.  Read it!