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Friday, August 30, 2013

Striping On!

yarma 
I hope you aren't bored of stripes yet around here!  At least these stripes will be in eleven different colors instead of just two.  Hopefully that will be somewhat amusing to you.  It amuses me, but then it doesn't take much to amuse me.

I've done the first little stripe and started the first wide stripe (there are narrow stripes and wide stripes on the body, and the sleeves get completely crazy).  It's fun to watch the colors begin to stack up and even though this is an oversized sweater knit in sport weight yarn (really yummy sport weight yarn), it seems to go fast because I'm watching the stripes build up.  Also, now that I'm past the ribbing and I'm doing stockinette, I can just knit without paying much attention to it.  TV knitting anyone?

Did I mention how much I love this yarn?  I'm thinking that I'd like to use it again sometime.  This lighter weight (she also has a worsted weight version of all the yarns) would make a lovely, wearable sweater for North Texas, and the fact that it's a 3 ply means textural stitch patterns and cables would really shine.

I'll be spending the weekend striping on this sweater, although I do plan to have Mickael try on his black sock (remember, from before Camp Loopy started this Summer?)  I know I'm close to starting the first toe, I'm just not sure how close.  I hope you have a great weekend!  Logan is going to get some good naps (he's already started) to recover from waking up before the sun to run.  If you're in the USA, Happy Labor Day!  Stay safe and I'll catch you Tuesday!

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

A New Beginning

Now that I've gotten a couple of quick projects done, I'm ready to jump back into a sweater again.  This one continues the theme of oversized, cute with skinny jeans, and STRIPES!  Fortunately, weaving in all of those ends on my Tea With Jam and Bread/Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting (anyone else hungry now?) was good practice for my new project:  Milano.
yarma
I fell in love with this when I first saw it on Ravelry, so I ordered the kit, but that was right before Camp Loopy so it had to wait.  It's been sitting politely, waiting for me to get to it, and now I've cast on and started.  Well, first I wound the yarn into balls and that took a bit of time, but now I'm ribbing!  I'm going to work the colors in the order in the pattern, but I'm starting at a different place in the repeat.  The reason for this is because the putty and sand colors (the two wide stripes just below the front neck opening (third picture down in the top link) will not work with my coloring - fair with cool undertones. I'm attempting to get the blue green colors to be in the wide stripes up near my face.  Fortunately, I shouldn't have trouble with the sand and putty colors being mixed into the sweater, as long as they aren't near the edge, by my face. I love the way the colors work in the design (which is why I went ahead and bought a kit).  This is my first time using the Sunday Knits yarns, and just from what I've seen and felt with winding the skeins into balls and the tiny bit of ribbing I've knit, I think I'll be using her yarns again - they're just lovely!
yarma
I'll leave you with a sweet, little gray paw.  He crawled between the layers of a quilt to take a nap yesterday while I was knitting.  Poor little baby - it's so hard to survive a North Texas Summer!

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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Little Birds

yarma 
A few weeks ago, I found the Bluebird of Happiness pattern on Ravelry.  I thought it was adorable (and it's free), so I downloaded it for later.  Since I wanted some quick, small projects after Camp Loopy, I made a couple of birds.  The top bird is made from some 100% wool worsted leftover from another project and the bottom bird is made from some of the leftover red Spud and Chloe Sweater.  In the pattern, the wings and the eye are worked as short rows, but I think the wing looks better if you don't pick up the wraps (the red one does not have the wraps picked up).  I didn't pick up wraps on either eye.  The other thing I discovered on the blue one and used on the red one, is to weave in the ends as I go - at least before I start the eye.  Then you can still get to the inside of the bird.  There are still ends to do at the end (maybe that's why they're called "ends") but there are only two if you get the rest ahead of time.  I'm going to make these notes on my project page so when I do another bird (and there will be more) I'll remember how to do it!

It's a cute, fast project that only uses a little bit of yarn.  These could be great tied onto Christmas presents in a few months!

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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Another Bracelet

yarma 
After finishing my Camp Loopy projects for the Summer, I wanted to do a few small things.  I love big projects, but it's nice to have some smaller, quick ones in between them so I feel like I'm getting something done.  Instant gratification is nice sometimes.

This is another Bestie bracelet, again using Pearl Cotton.  I blogged about my first one here.  This was also the post where I told you about the RoadID bracelet, so if you forgot about it or put it off, there's the info again.  Caleb has gotten to where he puts his on every time he puts on his watch (anytime he leaves the house).  I also wear mine when I leave the house and of course we both wear them when we run.  Logan wears his when we run too, but he doesn't know it since it's on his collar.

I did find Logan a reflective harness yesterday so he'll get to wear that on tomorrow morning's run.  It has a leash clip, but he's never walked or run with a harness, so I'll probably just put his regular collar on for the leash - it rides higher on his neck than the harness so they shouldn't get tangled up.  Today Logan can practice wearing the harness and I'll make sure it's adjusted right for him.  Max can spend the day naked and mock Logan for his accessories.  Should be fun for everyone!

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Monday, August 26, 2013

Tea With Jam and Bread

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Or Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, as I've been thinking of it!  Camp Loopy Project 3 is all finished, which means I've completed all the projects for Camp Loopy 2013 and I get the free yarn!  Yeah!

I used Spud and Chloe's Sweater yarn in Ice Cream (ivory) and Popsicle (red).  I used 3 skeins of the Ice Cream and 5 skeins of the Popsicle, but I only needed a tiny bit of that fifth skein.  (I'm still REALLY glad I listened to my gut and ordered it a couple of weeks ago.)  I followed the pattern, but I used a different stripe pattern instead of the big stripes in the original design.

I love the way this came out.  It's big and slouchy and will look cute with skinny jeans.

Today is also the first day of school around most of the DFW area, so be sure to slow down in the school zones.  Caleb is still running with me (as is Logan), so this morning we were out there before the sun came up, getting in our run.  Caleb and I both have reflective stuff on our clothes and I'm going to swing by PetSmart to see if I can pick up a reflective harness for Logan this morning.  He's light colored, but I think reflective would be better, seeing as in a couple of weeks it will still be dark when we come home from a run.  Right now it's dark when we start, but we get to see the sunrise while we're out running.  I've never been a morning person, but running has meant I get to see more sunrises.  It's kind of nice being out there that early when there are so few other people up and about.  Seeing a beautiful sunrise is just a bonus reward for climbing out of bed so early.

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Friday, August 23, 2013

Finished

The knitting is all finished.  All I have to do is weave in the ends and give it a little steam with the iron and I'm done.

Oh, and remember how I ordered that extra skein of red because my gut was telling me I didn't have enough?  I needed it - for 9 rounds and the last bind off.

This week's lesson:  listen to your gut!

Have a great weekend!  Pictures next week!

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Thursday, August 22, 2013

One Down! One To Go!

yarma
I finished the first sleeve and started the second one yesterday.  Except for the end you see hanging out the finished sleeve, the other ends are all woven in already!  It wasn't any great finishing impulse on my part, I realized that having all the ends loose on the stripes meant the stripes were hanging loose, which would make the sleeve seem longer than it was.  Since I don't want sleeves that are too short, I needed to weave in the ends before trying it on.

On this second sleeve, I'm knitting to a certain number of rounds, not trying it on as I go to double check things, so the ends can wait until the end!  That's the one downside to adding all these stripes - weaving in the ends!

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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A Couple More Stripes

yarma
I haven't gotten as much done on this as I'd wanted to by now.  I'd hoped to be past the stripes, to the lower red section of the sleeve.  I'm not, but I should have some knitting time today and maybe I can get more done.

What I have been doing is organizing my closet.  I've been getting rid of a bunch of things from before I started running.  Things I think I was holding on to because I was scared I might put on the weight again. I've been running for over three years now, it's time to let go of the security blanket clothes.  Some of the things were hard to let go of, but it was time.  I also refolded all of my sweaters and shawls so I can actually see what I've got.  Max helped refold the beaded ones.  You can imagine how much of a help that was.  Yesterday I finished the whole closet.  The only things in there are things that fit, and fit right.  It feels really good to look at it now.  Of course, me being me, it's all arranged by type of clothes and in color order.  It looks like an anal retentive robot did my side of the closet, but that's the way I like it.  Mickael and I share a closet though, and his side of the closet looks like it was organized by a family of overcaffeinated squirrels.  Max loves Mickael's side of the closet.  I'll have to at least get his side straightened up for him, but it can wait until I'm through with Camp Loopy.

For today though, sleeves.

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Monday, August 19, 2013

The Beginnings of a Sleeve

yarma 
I got all the ends woven in and the pocket linings are stitched in!  I've now started my first sleeve - which will give me more ends to weave in.  Oh well.  Also, Max wants you to know that he's helping.  Soooo helpful!

I've tried it on and it's comfy and oversized like I was wanting.  It will look cute with skinny jeans.  If we get a nice, cold winter, I'm ready!

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

A Bind Off!

yarma 
I did it!  I finished the body of my sweater for Project 3!  Now I have to weave in eleventy billion yarn ends before I can start the sleeves.  I count this as being 2/3 of the way through though, and we just hit the midpoint of the month, so I'm on track to finish with plenty of time.  You can just see the top of one of the pockets in the photo.  I got the linings knitted for those yesterday and I just have to sew down the sides (on the inside) for them to be actual, functioning pockets.

Oh, and I think I've got plenty of yarn.  I might even have some left over!

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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Pockets

yarma 
I've finished the outer side of the pockets.  Today I'll be knitting the pocket liners so they can be joined with the front before the lower ribbing.  If I get really industrious today, I might get the body all finished, but I'm not holding my breath.

Whenever I finish the body (and I'm putting it here on the blog, for the world to see), I WILL weave in all the ends before I start the sleeves.  With these stripes there are definitely ends inside to weave in.

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Tuesday, August 13, 2013

A/C, Stripes And Pockets

We had a bit of an adventure the past couple of days.  Sunday afternoon Mickael noticed that the downstairs felt hot.  I checked and sure enough, there was hot air coming out of the vents.  Not what you want to deal with in August in Texas.  Fortunately, our house has two A/C units - a main downstairs unit and a smaller upstairs unit (out downstairs is bigger than the upstairs).  The upstairs unit was able to keep the downstairs livable as long as you didn't do too much.  When bedtime rolled around, we tucked Caleb in upstairs and Mickael and I went to bed - on top of the covers.

Now this wouldn't have been a problem except that Max sleeps under the covers and as a cat, Max expects the world to conform to him, not vice versa.  Max wanted under the covers.  Max didn't understand why his humans weren't under the covers and why he couldn't get under the covers.  Max circled, Max sat on us, Max jumped on us, attacked us, and tried to burrow under us.  Max did everything he could think of to get us under the covers where we belonged.  Max was not happy.  Mickael and I didn't get very much sleep Sunday night (neither did Max).  Logan just passed out on the tile floor and that was all we heard from him.  Yesterday afternoon the A/C repairman came, replaced a capacitor and by bedtime the house felt like it should.  We slept under the covers.  Max slept under the covers.  Logan curled up in his bed.  All was right with the world.
yarma
As far as my sweater, I've finished the last stripe repeat on the body of the sweater and started the pockets!  I've tried it on and it's looking the way I wanted it to.  Oh, and just to clarify, that isn't a belly button in the middle front, it's where I switched balls of red yarn and haven't woven in the ends yet.  I'll be catching up on weaving in the ends soon.

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Friday, August 09, 2013

Camp Loopy Project 3 - More Stripes!

yarma 
This is the only project I'm working on at the moment, so I apologize if any of you are getting tired of red and white stripes.  Next week I won't even have a finished Pogona and cardigan to break it up - it will be all stripes all the time.  Unless Max decides to help out, and he has stripes on his tail, so still, with the stripes.

On the other hand, I'm past the halfway point of the body stripes!  The red stripes are now wider than the white stripes, where before the white stripes were wider than the red.  That means I'm getting closer to solid red and - POCKETS!  Yes, I'm doing the little pockets.  Also, did I mention the red stripes are getting wider?  So.  Much.  Fun.  (So.  Easily.  Amused.)

Oh, and the other day, after I mentioned that I was starting to freak out a bit about not having enough red yarn (gut reaction, not factual reaction, I'm still on my first ball of red), I went ahead and ordered another skein of it.  I like this yarn enough that if I have a spare ball of it I won't mind.  Also red is Caleb's favorite color, so I can do a little something for him with any extra yarn.  This way I won't be worried about it, because it would be a week or so before I know for sure where I stand on red and if they sold out of this dyelot, I'd be in big trouble.  It's all good now!

Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, August 08, 2013

A Finished Cardigan

yarma 
With plenty of time left before cooler weather sets in, I have a finished cardigan!  This is the Bluebelle cardigan pattern that I knit in my own handspun merino.  I finished it with a pewter apple blossom button.
yarma
This is a simple cardigan, but I love the little details - the scoop neck and the gathers at the front.  It's a very lightweight cardi and will be perfect for those days we get around here that are still warm, but the calendar clearly says FALL.  I should get a lot of wear out of it!

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Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Onward!

yarma 
I've made it through the first four red stripes!  Even more importantly, I've made it past the place where the sleeve stitches go to holders.  Once I hit this point on a top down sweater, I know it's clear sailing to the hem.

I've woven in some of the ends (with the stripes, I feel like I need to stay on top of ends or they'll take over) and I'm really happy with the way it's looking so far.  I have a loose plan for getting this done on time:  one week to get past the place where the sleeves go to holders, the second week to finish the body, and a week for each sleeve.  At the moment, I'm ahead of schedule.  I'm not counting on staying ahead because while this week is pretty quiet, the next couple of weeks, right before school starts are going to be much busier.

Also, I have to mention, that while I haven't gone far enough to know for sure, I have a nagging suspicion that I don't have enough red yarn.  According to the pattern, I'll need a total of 950 yards.  I have 1280 yards - four skeins of ivory, four skeins of red.  I know that should mean I have enough, but my gut is telling me I'll need more red.  I'm going to knit like crazy today and if I'm still afraid of running out of red, I'll try to get some more.  Fingers crossed they still have this dyelot!

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Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Pogona

yarma 
Pogona is all finished up and blocked!  Logan wanted to wear it, but I knew you wouldn't be able to see either of them if they were together.  I followed the pattern, but kept going so I could use as much yarn as possible.  I have less than a hexipuff's worth left.  The yarn I used is Tempted's Hand Painted Prissy Grrl Sock in Echo.  The yarn base is Alpaca/Silk/Cashmere.  You can imagine how soft and drapey this yarn is.  I think if you actually knit socks out of it, they would slide right off your feet into a puddle of softness.  It's great for shawls and scarves though.  The color is a dark ivory - almost the color of tea, prepared by children:  way too much milk and probably way too much sugar also.  It's a good neutral though.
yarma
It was a fun knit, and once I understood what the pattern was doing, went pretty quickly.  The shape is interesting but should be fun to wear.

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Monday, August 05, 2013

Camp Loopy Project 3

yarma
I started knitting on Project 3 over the weekend!  (Yes, that means I finished Pogona and the Cardi - they're blocking right now.)  I got a good start on it, but the first part of top down sweaters is always pretty fast.  I've started the striping sequence and you can see the first two red stripes.  The red stripes will get wider while the ivory stripes get narrower until the lower edge of the sweater will be all red.

I'm loving this yarn!  It's Spud and Chloe Sweater which is their worsted weight yarn and it's 50% superwash wool and 50% cotton.  It feels great and it's easier to knit than 100% cotton.  (Cotton has no elasticity, so knitting with cotton can be very hard on your hands.)  This is my first project with it, but I could definitely see myself using this again.  I'm using the Ice Cream (ivory) and Popsicle (red) colors.

Last week I put the pattern into KnitCompanion on my iPad and while it took a bit to set up, this is definitely the way to knit Heidi Kirrmaier's patterns.  She has lots of little shaping things going on when you knit what looks like a simple pattern, but the finished garment fits so much better than a simple one made of rectangles.  I've knit several of her designs before, but I think this is the first time I've used KnitCompanion with them.

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Thursday, August 01, 2013

Camp Loopy Project 3

Since it's August 1, that means it's time for Camp Loopy Project 3!  The only requirement for this challenge is to use at least 800 yards of yarn, single stranded.  Any project, and weight of yarn, any pattern that uses at least 800 yards of yarn.
yarma
I'll be knitting Tea With Jam and Bread with a different stripe pattern and only two colors.  I love the look of the sweater, but I can't get my head around the wide stripes for some reason.  I'm using Spud and Chloe Sweater in Ice Cream (ivory) and Popsicle (red).  I haven't done a gauge swatch, but it will be a few days before I can start anyway as we're having company for the weekend.  I did get my Pogona finished and bound off last night and I'm halfway down the last sleeve of my cardigan, so I'll get both those needles back soon!

Have a great weekend!  I hope to have a lot to show you next week!

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