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Friday, January 30, 2015

Follow Your Arrow 2, Clue 2 Spoiler

I’ve knit the second clue of Follow Your Arrow 2.  I chose version B this time.  Here’s a link to my Ravelry page (along with needle size and yarn info).


I’ll post the picture below.


I hope you all have a great weekend and stay warm, wherever you are.  We’re supposed to get rain and it’s cold again.  I’m planning on some hot tea, good movies, and knitting.


Last chance, turn back now if you don’t want to see Clue 2, version B.


Heere there be monsters!  (Not really, it’s OK.  Don’t be scared.)
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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Onward!

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I’ve gotten the sleeve stitches onto holders - just barely!  The last row I knit last night was the one that separated out the sleeve stitches.  The body should now work along faster though.  I always feel like it goes faster at least.

This is such a bright, happy pink sweater and I should be able to wear it as soon as I finish the knitting.  I love it when I can actually wear things right when I get them done.  When I finish a sweater in July it has to wait until October at the earliest to be worn.  I realize that knitting in the “off season” means I have things to wear when it does get cool, it always makes me a little sad to finish a project and fold it and just put it into the closet for months.  On the other hand, I don’t think I could handle living someplace that I could wear sweaters year round.  I hate being cold!  Maybe I’m part cat!

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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Artesian

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Switching patterns with this yarn was definitely the best thing I could do.  I’m three repeats into Artesian now and I’ve got a feel for the pattern so it’s just zipping along.  I love watching the color changes happen (and I seriously love this color - Mandala).  I’ve decided this yarn reminds me of a Paua shell.  It’s hard to photograph well, but I did get a close up (and then color corrected) that’s pretty close.
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I hope those of you sitting in snow right are staying safe and cozy.  You probably don’t want to know about the sunny, warm day we’re having here in North Texas.

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Monday, January 26, 2015

Pink Cardigan!

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I’ve gotten farther down the yoke of my pink cardigan.  My very pink cardigan!  I’m almost to the point where I’ll take the sleeve stitches off and put them on holders.  I usually alternate skeins of Madelinetosh on sweaters, but I haven’t started alternating yet.  I will probably alternate a few rows before I change skeins, but I’m not really wanting to alternate for the entire sweater.  (I just typed “alternate” a lot.)  Hopefully this will not come back and bite me.

There was a question Friday about needle size with Pashmina.  I’m using size 5’s (3.75mm) for Follow Your Arrow 2 but I’ve used anything between 4’s and 6’s and for something really lacy, I would be comfortable even with 7’s or 8’s.  So, I guess the answer to what needle size to use is that it kind of depends.  One other thing to remember is that Pashmina will relax when it’s washed.

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Friday, January 23, 2015

Follow Your Arrow 2 (Spoiler Alert - Clue 1)

This past Monday Ysolda Teague started her second Mystery KAL and at the last minute I decided to join in!  This will just slightly overlap the very first of Loopy Academy Spring Semester, but I think it will be OK.  I didn’t do the first one, last year, but the finished projects looked fun and I like the idea of picking my own mystery.  The way Ysolda does it, each clue has two parts: A and B.  You knit one of those.  Then the next week you pick and so on.  There are apparently 32 different possibilities for finished projects depending on your combination of A’s and B’s.  I think organizing something like this might make my head explode, but I also think it will be fun to participate.

I decided to stash dive for this, since I was signing up the day before it started.  I pulled several options, some single color, one two color and one three color possibility, but in the end I settled on using a single color of Madelinetosh Pashmina which had enough yardage.  It was originally Silver Fox, but I was afraid the color was too pale and would make me look washed out, so I over dyed it a rich ultramarine blue.  It’s been sitting in my stash waiting for me to make up my mind what to do with it ever since.  This seemed like a good idea.  Not knowing the direction the pattern is taking might drive me nuts with using multiple colors, so a single color was probably my best choice.


On Monday the KAL started and the first clue was released.  I chose to knit the A version.  I’ve got a picture below, but if you don’t want to see it, don’t scroll down.


While you’re deciding if you want to scroll down or not,  I thought I’d save us all some time because every time I mention a KAL, someone asks if I’m going to do another Mystery Shawl:  I’m not planning on it anytime soon.  It’s probably safe to say it won’t happen while I’m homeschooling Caleb.  Mystery shawls just take too much time that I don’t have right now.  He’s in 8th grade now.  He’ll graduate homeschool and head to college after 12th grade so I’ll revisit the idea then.


OK, did everyone who doesn’t want to see stop scrolling down?  Good!


Here’s Clue 1, version A:



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Hope you have a great weekend!

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Thursday, January 22, 2015

It’s New and it’s Pink!

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I've started a new cardigan and this one is happy and Spring-y!  It’s the Alys Cardigan and I’m knitting it in Madelinetosh Tosh Sock in Pop Rocks.  I had a problem or two getting started (my fault, not the pattern’s) but after a second start, I’m good and things are moving right along.  There’s kind of a huge difference in how fast a sweater grows when it’s worsted weight versus fingering weight.  On the other hand, fingering weight sweaters are much more useful in our climate.  Here’s the Rav project page if you’re interested.
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Here’s a close up of the stitch pattern around the neckline.  The color is accurate in this photo too - yes, it really is a bright pink!  I’ve never knit a bright pink sweater.  I’ve knit red and burgundy, and plum sweaters, and one light pink one, but never a bright pink.  I’m going to knit more pink this year!

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

A Change of Direction

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I had begun knitting Music and Lyrics with my Tosh Merino Light in Mandela, but I wasn’t really liking the pattern with the yarn.  I like them both, but they weren’t quite right together.  So, I changed gears.

I’m now working an Artesian with the yarn.  This is garter stitch based, with some simple lace and short rows to shape it.  I’m liking it much better.  I’ve gotten one full repeat worked so far and have started on the second one.  Since I have a lot more yarn (2 skeins = 840 yards) than the pattern calls for, I can just keep going until it’s big enough.  Big enough for what, I do not know.  Maybe a ranch house?

(Here’s my project page.)

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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Finished!

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I finished my BlueBird of Happiness!  The neckline ribbing finished off the neck edge nicely and it pulled the neck in just a bit.  I haven’t really blocked the sweater, but it can sort itself out while I wear it later today!  Here’s a link to my project page with my notes if you’re interested.  I used almost all of my five skeins of Madelinetosh DK Twist (the color way is Bluebell) for this project and the finished garment is soft and cuddly.  Several times as I was knitting it, Max walked over and tried to make a nest in it while I knitted (so that should tell you something about the cuddly).  I could definitely see doing this pattern again, and I’m thinking about a pink one.

My next sweater project is pink, so maybe that’s why I’ve got pink on the mind!

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Friday, January 16, 2015

Happy Happy Joy Joy!

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I just love the colors of blue in this sweater!  Despite the name of the blog, blue is actually my favorite color and this yarn is just so blue, blue blue!  Love it!

I’ve gotten farther down the body and it’s time to try it on again and see where it’s hitting on me so I can decide how long I actually want it.  I’ve got to remember to save a little bit of yarn for the neckline ribbing (which will smooth out the short rows there).  I might go ahead and work that soon instead of waiting until I’m finished with the body so I can use as much as I need to for a longer body.    On the other hand, once I try it on, I might decided that it doesn’t need to be too much longer after all.  Obviously, I’ve got to try it on first.

I hope you all have a great weekend!  We’re supposed to be a little warmer this weekend, starting today, and I can’t tell you how much I’m going to enjoy it!

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Random PSA

I’m still knitting on the body of my pullover (huge surprise), but in an effort to have something different this week, I have the following PSA.

Most of you probably know this, but some people might not, so I thought I’d just mention it.  If say, your ice maker goes out on your refrigerator, after being thankful that it’s January and not July, you can Google and find out the exact part number you need and there might even be a YouTube video explaining the installation for your refrigerator.  Then, if you feel comfortable doing the installation on your own, you can order the part from Amazon (which truly does have everything) and when it comes in you can fix your ice maker and then your wife will call you “Iceman” and “Dr. Freeze” because she’s so proud of you for fixing it and everyone can do a happy dance every time the ice crashes down into the bucket.

Also, I always figure that it costs $100 to get a repairman out to the house and that’s before parts and labor.  The ice maker from Amazon cost us $72!

(Obviously, if you’re not comfortable with the specific repair and/or doing it wrong could result in bodily injury or blowing up your own house, you might want to go ahead and call the repairman.  Remember, if you blow up your house, you’ve blown up your yarn stash too.  Think these things through.)

Oh, and one last thing, yesterday Pioneer Woman posted a recipe for Tomato Soup with Parmesan Croutons on her blog and I made it last night.  Super easy and super yum!

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Monday, January 12, 2015

Moving Right Along

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I finished the second sleeve over the weekend, and I made pretty good progress on the body!  This is a great project to work on when you’re watching TV or a movie.  It just zips right along with minimal attention from me.  Even with alternating skeins, I feel like it’s moving along nicely.

Since it’s going along so well, and I’d like to wear it soon, I’m going to only be working on this pullover until it’s finished.  This is your warning, that this is the only project you’re going to see here between now and when it’s finished.  Sorry, but I want it finished so I can wear it.

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Friday, January 09, 2015

A Bluebird Needs Two Wings

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I finished my first sleeve and have begun the second sleeve.  My hopes are to be back on the body before the weekend ends.  (I’d really like to wear this soon, it’s cold here!)  Worsted weight knits up quickly, so this shouldn’t be a problem.

I hope you all have a great weekend and stay warm, wherever you are.  I think this weekend will be a combination of pajamas and sweaters around here.  Maybe some movies and hot cocoa too!

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Thursday, January 08, 2015

Sleeves

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I got a lot more worked on my first sleeve last night.  I finally set it aside because I’m at the point where I need to try it on and see where it’s hitting.  I think if I knit the sleeves to the length the pattern calls for, they’ll be super long.  On the other hand, I usually have to add an inch or two to sleeves, so I might end up working them to the pattern after all.  That’s why I’ve got to try it on.  Hopefully, I can get this first sleeve finished today!

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Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Music and Lyrics

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My other first project for the year is the Music and Lyrics scarf.  The pattern calls for sport weight yarn but I’m using fingering weight.  Since I am also using smaller needles, I plan to continue increasing to make it wider than it would be if I just followed the pattern.  I’m using Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light in Mandala for this.

I’m tempted to also cast on for a pair of socks, even just another pair of footie socks, but there were supposed to be some sort of “shenanigans” for January before Loopy Academy, Semester 2 starts in February, so I’m waiting to see what those involve.  Maybe.  Unless I can’t stand waiting anymore, then I’ll start some socks.

There were some questions about how I was going to use my year tags on Ravelry projects the other day.  They were good questions, and honestly, I don’t know all the answers to them.  I’m not going back and tagging projects retroactively, so the only projects that have year tags are this one and yesterday’s pullover.  I do have a few WIP’s that were obviously started before 2015 and if I finish them in 2015, I don’t know if I’ll tag them with the year or not.  Fortunately, I’m not close to finishing any of them, so I don’t have to figure out a plan just yet.

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Monday, January 05, 2015

Bluebird of Happiness

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Right at the end of the year, I saw the new In Stillness pattern on Ravelry and I fell in love with it!  This is the kind of classic sweater I tend to live in when it’s cold.  I throw it on with jeans, I wear it with sweats, and I even toss it over my pajamas if it’s one of those great weekend days where we spend the day in pajamas.  It’s not my dressiest sweater, but this type of sweater is definitely one of my most loved.

I checked the stash and found some Madelinetosh DK Twist in Bluebell that was originally purchased for another Tea Leaves Cardigan, but there’s a lot of variation in the blues in this yarn and I was having second thoughts about the pairing.  I knew that In Stillness would be perfect in the Bluebell because the different blues wouldn’t bother me in this pullover.  I chose to go a little oversized, knowing that would work with skinny jeans and that the drape of the super wash wool would be flattering.  (Also, there’s a project in Ravelry from one of the pattern testers who did the same thing and I like the way her’s fits.)  On New Year’s Eve, I cast on and got started.  Once I got past the textured section of the yoke, I  started alternating skeins of yarn.  Then I realized that I’d be better off working the sleeves first so I’d know how much yarn I’d have left to lengthen the sweater.  I put the body on a holder and started the first sleeve - alternating skeins again for the sleeve.  That’s why I have so many strings hanging off of it right now- there are four skeins attached!  For some reason it’s not really bothering me though.  I’m just enjoying the knitting and loving the color!

Oh, fun fact, this is my 2000th post, according to Blogger!  I had no idea I babbled that much!

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Friday, January 02, 2015

The Romy Cardigan

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It’s all finished and has buttons now!  I made this in Peace Fleece Worsted and it’s thick and warm!  I went up a size to make it a bit oversized so I could wear it like a jacket, but I think in hindsight, I should have knit the correct size.  It doesn’t look bad though, and I’m not going to reknit it, but it might be a bit too big.  On the other hand, I can put several layers underneath it and be super warm!  (Yes, it’s still cold here.)

This was the last project I was trying to finish before the end of the year and I got all the knitting done this past Sunday.  Then I washed the sweater to get the Peace Fleece to bloom and fluff into the stitches and it had to dry.  It was finally dry last night so I got the buttons in then, but since the knitting was done before the end of the year, I’m counting it as finished for 2014.  Here are project details if you need them.

Next week I’ll show you my two new 2015 projects!  Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, January 01, 2015

Happy New Year!

I hope that each of you has a wonderful 2015!  We’re starting off the year with freezing rain here.

I got my Skye Boat Shawl and my Romy Cardigan finished before the end of the year, and I’ve started some new projects for this new year.  I have started adding the year to my tags on my Ravelry projects, starting with the project I began last night, so from 2015 on, I’l be able to pull up all the projects in a single year with its tag.  Or at least I think that will work.  I need caffeine.
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Here is the finished Skye Boat Shawl.  I could have gone a little bigger, but I was afraid of running out of yarn on the final border if I kept going.  I think I have enough to make a small pair of matching mitts.  The shawl blocked out at 78 inches across the top edge and 28 inches from the top to the point, so it’s a nice, big, snuggly shawl and I’ve been getting a lot of wear out of it already.  Here is the project page if you want more details.

I finished the knitting on my Romy Cardigan, but I decided to block it before adding buttons.  It should be dry by now, so I’ll be sewing on the buttons later today and will show it tomorrow!

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