i have been remiss

in posting for months and months, and I am sorry! Life’s been absurdly busy, and while I’ve kept knitting I haven’t done a good job at all documenting and taking pictures since my last post.

I spent the summer taking an Anatomy class at JHU and working as a lifeguard at the YMCA. My aunt had a baby and I knit her a perfectly splendid BSJ.

Chloe in the BSJ

I knit some other things to, but again with the picture fail.

At the end of the summer I flew off to Ireland for my Junior semester abroad, which is where I am at the moment. Here I am, September 1st, just off the plane in Dublin and seriously jetlagged. That around my neck is the Gail (Nightsongs) shawl, miniaturized.

I went to the Aran Islands before classes began and knit my dad a truly Aran hat for his birthday.

The academics are not terribly challenging here, so I’ve been doing a lot of writing and a modicum of knitting. Several of the projects I brought stalled out when I realized I’d managed to come to Ireland without enough yarn (shocking!) to finish them.

But, that’s my life. I’m not really up on knitting blogs, either, having dropped behind tremendously when I stopped reading my Google reader every day, but I am still reading, slowly, about a month behind.

I hope you’re all well! ❤

OH! Also yesterday I was walking about Dublin and I spotted a woman wearing a Clapotis. It was tremendously exciting, but she was gone before I could say something. /o\ Knitting secret handshake! Why must you fail me?!

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Rhinebeck 2009

I finally got to go!

Okay, first apologies for my extralong unplanned hiatus. This year has been outrageously busy; I barely have time to knit, let alone talk about it. Unf.

So, Rhinebeck. Last spring I missed the Maryland S&W for the spring festival here at school, so this year when fall break and Rhinebeck lined up, I was determined to go!

The Highlights
I finished my FLS in the car at a rest stop in New York on my way down from Vermont from visiting a friend. Sewed on the buttons in a parking lot!

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Classy, no?

Animals!
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Meeting up with old friends and making new friends!
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The Ravelry party, no doubt.
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So many knitters taking over!
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(LOL)

Went back the second day for more animals and to purchase the yarn I’d fondled the day before.
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Then I ran into Jody, go figure!
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Too much fun.

So there’s my finished February Lady, as well as my Quincy and Esperanza hat and scarf set. Malabrigo. Awesome. I really love the Quincy (by Jared Flood) construction; it makes me feel incredibly intelligent as a knitter.

I’ve got my Christmas gifts in the works now… hopefully I can get them finished in time. Most of my knitting these days takes place in class because I don’t have time outside of class (!!!). Also, starting November 1st I’ll be working on another novel for NaNoWriMo, so that’ll be a giant time suck. I need to invent more hours in the day. Eep!

My Rhinebeck Sweater…

is under way! Squee!

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I’m finally knitting the February Lady Sweater, as planned. I’m knitting it in the Brooks Farm Four Play wool/silk blend that I tried to knit a sweater out of this spring, but failed. It’s knitting up beautifully now, and I’m psyched. I’m going to go visit my friend at Middlebury the week before, and then drive down to the festival and camp out in my car. =D It lines up perfectly with my fall break!

Okay, crap, I didn’t mean to leave this alone for two months, but many things happened since you last saw me!

So, since I last posted, I finished work and went on vacation, and then got back from vacation and went to school, and have been educating myself for four weeks. I have since struggled valiantly to keep up with my Google Reader, but right now, five whole weeks after getting home, I am still ~175 posts behind.

Before I left, I finished the Charade socks.

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Start: May 26, 2009
End: July 31, 2009
Pattern: Charade
Yarn: Crash Into Ewe Merino Sock, in “Lady Sings the Blues”
Needles: US 2

Next were the Anastasia socks, which I started before we left as a new selection from my personal sock club.

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Start: August 1, 2009
End: August 19, 2009
Pattern: Anastasia Socks
Yarn: Jojoland Melody
Needles: US 2

These were fun, and simple. I knit them all over the country!

I knit another pair while on vacation, and started another pair when I came up to school, but I haven’t taken pictures of them yet. Ack!

I’ve started to rethink my sock yarn blanket, too. I know, I’ve been working on the original since like, 2007, but I think this method might work better. It means I can use up every little scrap ever, and always be working on one piece, and not have to think about shaping too much.

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It’s the Ten Stitch Blanket, inspired for me by Erin. I love the look of the mitered squares of the original blanket, but I think I’m going to like working on this one even better.

So, so far I’m just knitting what’s there, and I’ll see how quickly it grows, and how excellent it looks. So far so good.

Unf. October is almost here. I love October! Maybe we’ll get our regular I LOVE OCTOBER post on 10/1/09, but no promises. I have no goddamn time to do anything except problem sets and knit in class.

The Mossy Cobblestone

So I’ve done some work on my WIPs for June, and I’ll talk about them later, but I wanted to record the Mossy Cobblestone Pullover I knit for my dad.

Mossy Rock Cascade 220

In April or so, WEBS was having a sale, and a spark of inspiration came to me! I would knit my dad a sweater for Christmas! I even had a pattern chosen! Perfect!

So I bought the yarn, and it showed up, and I gazed at it. I bought the Cobblestone pattern. I put them together and admired them. I pulled out my favorite bamboo size 8 circulars, ready to knit.

Mossy Rock Cascade 220

Then I started knitting. There was no reason to wait; sweaters take a long time… maybe I’ll finish it by his birthday (in September).

I started it on May 2nd, and actually plowed through this fabulous pattern, this fabulous sweater, in under a month. It was awesome. I loved knitting it. The garter stitch is all squishy, and the pattern was entertaining, but simple. I could knit it in class, etc, but it was never boring.

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I love this picture, because I was so excited to be almost done with it! I finished the sweater on May 31st, before Father’s day, even, so I folded it up and set it on my chair and let my cat shed on it.

A sweater in June, my dad joked when he received it, how appropriate! But I knew he loved it. He went to Oregon in the last two weeks, and took the sweater with him. It was chilly there!

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Adorable.

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A successful sweater, I think. Squishy! I’d knit it again, but I’m happy. Now I have to think of something else to knit my dad for his birthday.

blog fail

Darn it.  I was going to try to blog twice every month until December when my 101 in 1001 ends, but I failed for May.  Once I finished my exams, I went home and started work right away, and didn’t have a lot of time to knit, let alone blog.  So, that fell through.  Hopefully I can manage at least two posts in June.

Anyway, today’s about a good a day to blog as any. My sister is graduating from high school today! Hopefully I’ll put pictures at the end of this post, when I get to publishing it.

Okay, what’s happened since the last time I was here? I finished my Flamingo Thuja socks for the PW, and gave them to him last week. I didn’t get a picture of them on his feet, but here they are in their enormity.

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They took me a shockingly short amount of time for such large socks. April 19th to April 30th, and done. The yarn is Dream in Color Smooshy in “Flamingo Pie,” and I knit them on US 2s.

Then I finished my mom’s Princess Sweater from Christmas. My sister dropped the ball on knitting the second sleeve, so I finished it, blocked all the pieces, and sewed it up. Finally. It fits great.

Princess Sweater

Started (again) January 14th, finished May 25th. The pattern is the “Sidelines Top” from the fall 2008 IK. Yarn is Cascade 220 Superwash, and we used US 8 and 9 to knit it.

That same day I sucked it up and crocheted the edging onto my Ballet Camisole, finishing that too. I don’t love it, but it’s not terrible, and I’m letting it sit for a while before I try wearing it again.

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At the same time, however, I’m looking at other things I could do with that yarn instead of this top. I haven’t had a lot of luck lately with sweaters etc for me. Started this one April 13th, finished May 25. Yarn is Valley Yarns Southwick, which is a bamboo/cotton blend, and lovely to touch. Knit it on US 6s.

The last thing I finished recently was the Mossy Cobblestone Pullover, but I can’t show you that quite yet.

Okay, heading off to work now… sorry for the lame post, but I’ll do better this month! Pictures of S graduating forthcoming. Also a WIP post! Or several!

Two and a Half Weeks

I have two and a half (ish) weeks left in school, then a week or so of exams, and then I can go home for the summer. Hooray! This first year at the ‘Ford has been AMAZING, but I’m ready to be home with my family and my cats and my boy and my lucrative summer job. =P

I frogged the Henley. It wasn’t right. I ripped back to the arm join, knit the whole body again, put it on, looked at it in the mirror, and said, “Nope.” So I frogged the whole thing with my roommate’s help, and the yarn is back in the stash. I think if anything I need to wash it to give it a shiny new face. But I do have a plan for it.

So instead I started a camisole!

Ballet Camisole

If I had the lighting for a pretty artsy shot, I’d take it, but it’s raining again and it’s been gray all day. Bleh.

The yarn for this is Valley Yarns Southwick, and the pattern is the Ballet Camisole originally published in MagKnits. The yarn is cotton/bamboo, so it’s hard on my hands, but it’s very smooth and pretty and pink.

Plus with all the reading and stuff I’m doing right now, the stockinette is soothing and easy. The other things I’m working on (Herringbone Rib, Bayersiche, Aeolian) are not simple projects, though all of them are beautiful. The Herringbones are actually past the heel, so half the knitting is stockinette, but the other half is pay-attention-to-me and hard to do in the dark/while reading/etc.

I have another project in mind, in the beginning stages of planning, but it’s a little more secret. Sort of.

Mossy Rock Cascade 220

Aww yeah. Cascade 220 to the max. So excited. I need some more measurements taken, but I’m ready to jump in and start this any day.

An update on the Princess Sweater for mum, you ask? Why no, it’s not finished. My sister is taking her sweet time knitting that other sleeve, and my mum doesn’t really mind. I only mind because it makes my Ravelry page look like I have way too many WIPs, when really it’s only four. Or five. Or so.

I should be reading. Critical essays on the meanings of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray. I do not love my Writing Seminar (although I do love Dorian Gray).

April Begins

I’m so happy to see Spring coming. I love Winter, it’s true (birthday! Christmas! New Years!), but the snowy season needs to end, and I’m excited for sun and lounging on the green like a college kid.

I thought I’d finished more since I last posted, but it looks like 2 weeks was enough to finish two pairs of socks and start 100 new things. I ripped out my Alaska Mittens and my long-neglected Socktober Stockinette socks, both of which had spent too long in the land of “maybe” and needed to be liberated.

Now, finished things! Two finished pairs of socks! The first pair I’m actually going to wait to show, because they are a birthday present for a friend, and while [friend] probably doesn’t read, I want them to be a surprise. Plus on the feet will make a good picture.

The other pair was my pair of Chapman Springs Leyburn socks. I was inspired by the Socks that Rawk!” Ravelry group, which was having a Leyburn Socks knit along, from January to March. I cast on March 16th, the day after I finished [socks mentioned above], and finished them in 10 days (March 26th). I knit them out of STR Mediumweight in “Chapman Springs” (evident), and I love them. They were such fun to knit (US 2s) and fit fabulously. And they’re squishy and comfy and cozy, like STR socks are wont to be.

Chapman Springs Leyburn socks

I paused in the middle to knit a quick square for the Sock Yarn Blanket, but other than that used almost every inch of yarn. They are awesome. I’m going to go put them on.

Okay so I lied about the two-things-today thing. Thing. I should also post some WIP pictures, for the sake of it, because I always forget to. Today is beautiful out, so hopefully I’ll have good light for pictures (envision me running off to take them now).

Also there is a Cricket game going on outside my window (the ‘Ford has the only Varsity Cricket team in the country), and it has been going on since I woke up at 9 this morning. What the hell. Cricket is weird.

Okay but anyway. The first thing I have on the needles still are my Bayerische socks, which don’t look much different from the last time I mentioned them. I have put them in the bowl on the windowsill beside my bed, so that when I am in the vicinity, I will work on them.

Sitting on the floor by my desk (so that I will work on it if I have Blackboard [online] reading, or am listening to podcasts or watching House), is my Henley. I ripped it out a few weeks ago, and have been working on it not as steadily (crazily) as I did before. That’s okay– it will be fabulous when I finish, and it will fit too. I’m about 8″ down from the arms, and I’ve started the very gradual I-have-hips shaping (once every 11 rounds).

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Mr. Bear is baffled.

Living in my backpack (so I’ll work on them in class) are my Herringbone Rib Socks, from Carol J. Sulcoski of Go Knit in Your Hat‘s book Knitting Socks with Handpainted Yarns.

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I love them! They are beautiful, but they are a lot of work. These are not pattern-one-row-knit-the-next socks. There are two rows, and both of them are patternful, one of them is more labor-intensive than the other. So they’re slow-going, but I like working on them. The yarn is Black Bunny Fibers handpainted sock yarn in “The Deep.” I got it at Loop in Philly when I went for the KSWHY book signing there. Fun fun. Beautiful yarn.

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And oh baby, look at that herringbone.

But most on my mind right now is the Aeolian Shawl from the Spring 2009 Knitty. The original is done with beads, but I couldn’t wait to get beads. The yarn is Dream in Color Baby in “Beach Fog,” which I got at Ewe and I in Narberth last fall. Yum yum yum. I missed lace knitting.

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I hope it’ll be done after I get home, so I can block it at home. Dorm rugs are not conducive.

Yay spring!

March FOs!

Maybe I can manage one post a month or something. It’s been a month since I posted, and though I’ve been silent (here), I haven’t been still. I’ve been training for going on Spring Break this year: one week of non-stop Ultimate Frisbee in South Carolina. I’ve been running, in preparation for the 2-mile run to the fields every day. I’ve been lifting weights with my friend ML, in preparation for… something. I’m also trying to lose the freshman 15+ that I very skilfully gained over the past semester, so that’s going well.

But my knitting has not suffered!

The hat I mentioned last time was the Turn a Square hat by Jared Flood. I knit it for the Playwright, and sent it to him as a surprise, and he was very pleased! I wish I had a picture of him, but I just have me.

Turn a Square hat

Start: February 1, 2009
Finish: February 2, 2009
Pattern: Turn a Square Hat by Jared Flood.
Yarn: Cascade 220 in black and heathered teal, and blue Wyoming Wool.
Needles: US 8

The next project that flew off my needles was my long-in-planning Second Semester Henley.

Henley

I wish I had sexier pictures of me wearing it, but I actually think I’m going to rip it (almost) all out. The problem lies in the gigantic yoke I accidentally knit with my shoddy math skills. My math skills are decent, but I think my “swatch” (measuring what I was already knitting) lied to me, because by the time I was at 360 stitches (which should have set off a warning) and ready to divide for the arms and attach at the neck it was enormous and I didn’t notice. So it’s a bit big up top, and for that reason is not very sexy.

Henley neck

However! I love the neck, and I feel very clever for having done this and very sad that it will have to come out. The original cast-on for the neck was too wide, so when I went to knit the collar I just worked each shoulder like a sock heel for a few rows, and pulled it in along the line of the shoulder. The buttons I bought in Montana at the Mountain Man festival. I had 4 buttons originally, but I lost one. 3 is perfect for this neck. I love them.

Start: February 3, 2009
Finish: February 19, 2009 (sixteen days!!!)
Pattern: My own!
Yarn: Brooks Farm Four Play in blue
Needles: US 8 (I ❤ my size 8 bamboo circs)

Quick to follow that was my new alpaca cowl! I knit this fabulous thing out of my own handspun, navajo plied, alpaca. It’s so soft and cushy and cozy. The Playwright says I look like I’m wearing a neck brace in the photo, but I think it’s pretty. =D

Alpaca Lace Cowl

Start: February 23, 2009
Finish: February 25, 2009
Pattern: Ridged Lace Cowl by Elinor Brown (not me)
Yarn: handspun! alpaca! mine! squee!
Needles: US 8 (yup)

Two things I knit that were not for me were this headband, which was a commission, and this fugly bird, which was a gift.

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The headband is knit in Cascade 220 and more handspun, Mountain Colors Targhee in “Northern Lights.” I was sad when she picked the handspun as a match for the Cascade, because I wanted it all for myself, but I have plenty leftover and I’m not crying about it. The bird was knit out of handspun sent to me as a prize for some blog contest by the lovely and fabulous Jessica of Zarzuela Knits and Crochets ages ago.

I think I’ll do a separate (sneaky) post for WIPs, so I can pretend like I post more than once in a blue moon.

Thanks for still reading! I love you! I’ll let you know when I rip out my beautiful sweater.

bag blogger bad blogger

what’cha gonna do? what’cha gonna do when they come for you?

anyway. it’s february.

it has snowed a lot here recently (I’m back at school now). yesterday it started snowing early in the morning and kept on until late last night. i went out and played in it, and there was a big snow ball fight around 11 (pm), which was tons of crazy college fun. this morning, it was pretty out my window:
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I love snow.

Winter makes for good knitting! So what have I been up to?

I got back to school on Monday the 19th. On Sunday the 25th, I headed into Philly to go to the book signing at Loop Yarn on South Street. The book was Knitting Socks with Handpainted Yarn by Carol Sulcoski of Go Knit in Your Hat. It was excellent! I love Philadelphia so much.

Highlights:
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Me and the Schuylkill River.

Philly, 1/25/09
Juxtaposish!

Philly, 1/25/09
I want to live here.

I didn’t take any pictures of Loop or Carol, because I was shy, but she signed my book and we chatted a bit, and then I ate M&Ms and talked to another woman about knitting two socks at the same time.

Also I bought some of her yarn: Black Bunny Fibers
The Deep
Tucked in my bag at the train station.

The Deep
The yarn is fingering weight superwash merino, and the colorway is called “The Deep.” These are so my colors. Colors of my life.

So then the next weekend, my sister visited me!
my sister visited me!
Beyond fun. She’s great. Did I mention that beyond graduating this year, she’s going to college next year? Hooray!

She’s also getting on Ravelry soon. Go Sarah go! Knit!

Okay so THEN I finished ML’s mittens for her:
Swirly Mittens

Start: December 13, 2008
Finish: January 30, 2009
Pattern: Kiehkuralapaset- Swirly Mittens
Yarn: Elsabeth Lavold Silky Wool in black, some of my handdyed in “Firebrand,” and a little Schaefer Anne in an unknown colorway to finish out the top. This addition makes these mittens less than awesome in my book, but ML wears them all the time, and so if she’s happy, I’m happy.
Needles: US 2.

Swirly MittensSwirly Mittens

After those were done, I turned my attention to my Rhythm ‘n’ Blues Monkey socks.

Rhythm n' Blues Monkeys

Start: December 4, 2008
Finish: February 1, 2009
Pattern: Monkey by Cookie A.
Yarn: Fannie’s Fingering Weight
Needles: US 2

The Playwright got me this yarn in SoHo this summer, from Purl SoHo, and it is wonderful. It was fabulous to knit with, and the color combination is so fun and so me. I love these socks.

Rhythm n' Blues Monkeys

I did also finish a Turn a Square hat, but I think its recipient reads the blog, and I want it to be a random surprise. So I’ll post about that later!

I almost forgot to mention two OTHER things I finished since the last post: Baudelaires and my mum’s silk mittens.

baudelaire

Start: January 2, 2009
Finish: January 19, 2009
Pattern: Baudelaire by Cookie A.
Yarn: Dream in Color Smooshy, “Lunar Zazzle”
Needles: US 2 (I’m a fan)

These socks are great! I knit them toe up, and I think they’re actually a little long because I went by full leaf motifs. If I had been less obsessed about full leaf motifs, they might be more snug. But they are comfy, and they’re gorgeous.

Finally (bad picture coming up), I finished my mom’s mittens for her birthday

Mum's Silk Mittens

The idea behind these was that I found a lone mitten tucked in a bag with a ball of yarn. The mitten was beautiful, but too long for my mom (fit me perfectly). I wanted to give it a mate, so I cast on very sneakily (not) and knit up the mitten’s mate in the same yarn, on needles I thought would match the gauge (they did, clever me). Then I cut off the top of mitten #1, which had been knit flat and seamed, and knit up again to the same length as mitten #2, all the time keeping a purl line as a false seam. So mitten #1 has a half-way seam and mitten #2 does not. Success! Everything went swimmingly, and I think mum really likes them.

Start: January 14, 2009
Finish: January 15, 2009
Pattern: none
Yarn: Schachenmayer Nomotta – Saskia in silver/gray
Needles: US 4, bamboo

I think that covers everything up to now. Are these extensive FO posts just too insane, or are they ok? I like to keep track of what I finish, so I’m content doing this, and I like sharing the pictures too. I blog when I have time, yo. College is crazy. I love it.

Nearly forgot: WIPs! I know, right.

I am currently knitting:
1 commissioned headband for LCS, for whom I knit the Crofter’s Cowl in December
1 pair of mittens for myself: probably going to get frogged because I’m almost positive there isn’t enough yarn
1 original design henley sweater out of Brooks Farm Four Play in a fabulous blue. I have these coinesque buttons that I got at the mountain man festival or whatever in Montana, and I lost one, so I only have 3. Thus, the sweater will only open to about mid-boob, and be a pullover south of that. I’m knitting it top-down with raglan shaping, and I love it.

The end! Come back soon. Whew. I need to update more often to save myself all the typing.

Happy 2009!

My sister graduates from high school this year, you know. She’s so clever. She’s also finished her first pair of socks, without any help at all from me except that I told her she could start the heel anywhere she wanted to. Which she was pleased with. She didn’t even need help with kitchenering the toe, which gains her extra knitter points in my book.

But yes! I know it’s already 2 weeks into January, but there’s 50 more weeks of the year! So here’s what I’m up to right now.

Baudelaire socks
Baudelaire socks for the SKA Sockdown! January theme of a pattern from an online magazine. I’m knitting them in Dream in Color Smooshy in “Lunar Zazzle” from Lovelyarns, and they’re very nice. I think the first one is a little too tall, so I may rip and reknit the cuff after I finish sock number 2, but I’m very content working on these. They knit up pretty quickly.

I seem to be in a mitten phase right now, even though I don’t much care about mittens. I finished a pair of charity mittens for the Lovelyarns school charity project, whereupon the knitters are trying to knit mittens for each of the 250some kids at a local elementary school.

school charity mittens

I knit these in a day, January 7th to the 8th, and gave them back to Sue on the 8th. I used some unidentified blue and gray/black/blue yarn, using the jogless striping technique that made it look all streamlined and sexy. They’re very cute mittens, and I hope “M.S.” enjoys them.

In my hands at this moment is the mate to a mitten that my mom knit a long (unidentified) time ago. Her birthday is in a few days, and when I found this mitten I wanted it to have a mate! The mitten fits me almost perfectly, but it fits her better except for its length. So the plan is to knit the second mitten to length, and then pick up, snip, and reknit the second mitten top to match.

The mitten saga

The problem with the first mitten is that it was knit flat and seamed from the top to the cuff, so I can’t just take out the top and rip back and knit it up again. I actually do have to cut it off and knit up again. I can’t decide yet whether I’m going to reknit mitten #1 flat or in the round. Knitting it flat would be in keeping with the rest of the mitten, but knitting it round would be easier. I’ll see once I get there what works better.

First Silk Mitten

It’s such a pretty mitten! It’s soft too: the yarn is a wool/silk blend, Schachenmayr Nomota “Saskia”. Shiny and pretty!

The last thing in the works at the moment is mom’s sweater. Remember how we knit it too large?

Princess Sweater remnants

Well I frogged it, measured my mum, and cast on for a smaller size. Here’s hoping my sister gets in on this too, and that it fits this time.

There are a few other things that are waiting for my attention again. The Swirly Mittens from the previous post are on hold. The fabulous champer from Ravelry is sending me a full skein of Silky Wool in the black I need. I’m so grateful! She rocks. The Monkey socks are waiting until I’ve freed up a US2 again. I was going to start the second one when I’d finished the first Baudelaire sock, but I finished B when I was in a place without the yarn for the Monkeys, so I just moved on with the Baudelaires. Once they’re done, though, the Monkeys are going to be back in action. And of course the long ignored but never forgotten Sock Yarn Blanket is waiting for me at school, for when I need both simple knitting and to get rid of remnants. It’ll always be there; no hurry.

I don’t have a lot of goals for 2009. I want to knit up my sock yarn stash, to the extreme. I don’t want to buy a lot of yarn for now, so I’m going to try to only knit from the stash unless disaster strikes and I absolutely have to buy yarn. =P No but really, I want to knit up some of those socks I have planned. The Playwright wants a pair, for example, and I have just the thing. Also I have a sweater I want to design and knit, and enough laceweight for two shawls. My objective is to stash dive!

Oh and Rowan thinks he’s a person.

Rowan = people

I’m going to miss these boys so much!