Saturday, December 31, 2011

Year End Round Up!

Time for my once-annual FO roundup! This has been a pretty productive year. In actuality, I think I have something like 80 FOs, but as 52 of these were the flowers for Ella's wedding, I'm just counting them as one. So my total on the year is 31, broken down as follows:

  • 8 cowls
  • 3 hats
  • 5 scarves
  • 5 shawls/shawlettes
  • 3 sweaters
  • 4 pairs of socks
  • 1 blanket
  • 1 pair of mittens
  • and the damned flowers
I also have one sweater for Georgia that is nearly done, the lamb for Georgia, also nearly done, and the Snapdragon Flip Tops, nearly done. 

I've learned a few new skills this year, such as cabling without a cable needle, turning a heel on a sock, making socks, and making bobbles. Which isn't something that I'd ever thought I'd do, as personally, I HATE bobbles, but they look nice on my one bobbly project.

I've also learned that I love knitting lace, pretty much more than anything else, socks are fun, but knitting the second one sucks, and I absolutely LOATHE knitting mittens. Go figure.

This  marks my third year as a knitter, which is pretty amazing to me. The craft has seen me through a lot of stuff personally, and it is definitely a form a meditation. Especially lace knitting. I've grown as a knitter, and have seen definite improvements in my skills, which is hugely encouraging. Additionally, I've seen improvements in my own attitudes, both towards knitting and towards the rest of life. While I still occasionally swear, scream and get frustrated with myself (or with the pattern, let's be totally honest here), my reaction to mistakes or whatever has definitely gotten calmer, and I'm now vastly more likely to tink or rip back to where the mistake was, rather than make a huge production of it and set the knitting aside for three weeks and mentally grumble at it whenever I see the offending project. With the exception of the Snapdragon Flip Tops, which I'm still swearing at.

Here's the round up, from the beginning of the year. (all links are Rav links to my projects):


Cynthia's Cowl, Mittens and Shroom:

These were commissions. Quick knits, fortunately, as I discovered that I hate commissions.

Meretith's Eternity Scarf and Propello Hat:

Also commissions. I loved working with the wool, and I found it's a lot easier to do commissions for people that I know pretty well.

Ella's Second September Circle:

To replace the one she lost. Sigh.


This one I made with really horrendous Noro yarn, that I later overdyed with Black Cherry Kool Aid. Here's the after. LOVE this scarf. Love love love. It's warm and I wear it all the time.

Lace Flower Pins (also in March, April, May and June):

Feh. Still tired of these things:


I wear this one fairly frequently, and the Cascade Eco + has really worn well. No pilling so far. Also, I love the giant cowl, which keeps me from having to wear a scarf.

Monkey Socks (my first socks!):

Turning a sock heel? Not as bad as I thought it was going to be. Actually quite easy, to be honest. Still not sure what all the fuss is about.

Hated the original color, overdyed it with acid dye, REALLY hated the second color. Fail. Gave this one to Ella who wears it all the time.

Love the color, love the pattern, love the wool, wear this all the time. Awesome scarf. And yes, despite the wool's softness, this has worn quite well. However, I probably wouldn't use it for a sweater.


Really thick and warm. Enjoyed making these. Bruce seems to enjoy wearing them. Win-win.

(and about 30 lace flower pins. Sigh)


I REALLY  hated the colors on this thing, but my sister-in-law Jen loved them, so I gave her the scarf when it was done.

Quickie scarves for my mom. Just flashy enough for her, and they took about 15 minutes to make.


This one was for me. I still haven't blocked it, (heh, lazy!) but have worn it constantly. LOVE this one. And the silk garden sock definitely softens up with wear. 

She really liked my Monkey socks, and had to have a pair for herself. She picked the yarn, as she didn't have any yellow socks in her wardrobe. Georgia modeled, as her feet were the only ones in the house small enough to fit in them.


Another quickie for my mom. Georgia is modeling. This month was light on the FOs as I was working on the Breezy, which took forever (next project).


This took forever. Also, the Knit Picks Shadow Lace? Not so good for sweaters. This sweater pills like heck. I'm a little unhappy, as I absolutely adore the sweater, and it's really flattering. And I REALLY don't want to make another one, as this one was like three miles of stockinette.

Quick, fun, easy. Loved it. Got to wear it approximately once as my friend Cara accidentally tore another scarf that I made for her, and she needed another scarf. This one looks awesome on her. Speaking of, I need to darn that other scarf. Sigh.


This pattern gets quicker the third time around. Jorie loved it. Hoping her baby boy does too.


I should really get a better photo of this sweater, as I finished it, and Bruce has been wearing it. I finally gave up and took it to a tailor to have the zipper inserted, as my efforts were... horrible. No more zippered sweaters. URGH. Anyway, the tailor kinda (ok, really) screwed up the insertion of the zipper, however the sweater is functional, and looks great on my husband, if I do say so myself.

Loved Meredith's (see above, in January) so much that I had to make one for myself. This scarf matches my Shroom perfectly, so I've been wearing them as a set.


Took me a while, but I finally mastered this pattern. I tried to make it a year and a half ago and failed. Don't know why I failed so spectacularly, but I'm glad I finished it this time around. Gave this one to my sister-in-law Susan, who looks great in it. I hope she actually wears it.

Loved the yarn, was a little annoyed at how the pooling didn't match up. However, they're thick, warm and cozy, and I love wearing handknitted socks. Must make more.


Jordan fell in love with some sparkly novelty yarn, despite my best efforts to dissuade her. So I made her this cowl as a surprise. Looks great on her. She wears it every day, which I can check on, as she is my coworker...

Jordan modeling a commission that I made for my friend Katie's mom for Christmas. Really quick project, despite all the seed stitch. Will probably make at least two more (as Katie seemed to really like this one, and I kinda want one too). Also, yet another Ysolda project. I may make all of her patterns yet. I really liked this pattern, as it was quite cleverly put together.

Great hat. I think I've worn it nearly every day since. However, not warm AT ALL.

I wanted to use up the extra mohair from the wedding flowers (see above), and decided to pair the yellow and gray. Here is Jen, my sister-in-law (one of them, anyway) modeling. I ended up giving it to her, as it looked fantastic on her. LOVE the yellow and gray color combination, although it's proved to be quite controversial. Bruce hates it. Susan (another SIL) hated it, though was too polite to say so, Ella (SIL), Jen and I all loved it.

This one will rate its own blog post. I finished and blocked it yesterday. LOVE this thing. Adore. Love love love. Can't wait to wear it.

And my UFOs:

I've bound this one off, I just need to steek and add a zipper. I REALLY don't want to add a zipper, after the Brigade debacle. Steeking is not as scary as the zipper adding. Sigh.

I tried and failed three times to knit the fliptops. Razzle frazzle frigger frag. Still swearing about this one.

I'd REALLY love to wear them. But you know what? Still ticked. Ticked to the point where I just went and BOUGHT handknit mittens from the Union Square Christmas Fair. $20 well spent, my friends.

And that's all folks. See you next year!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Fluffy cowl and juneberry progress

After finishing a few projects and realizing that we were travelling to Connecticut for the holiday weekend, I decided I needed a mindless knitting project so that I could actually be social with the family. While the juneberry isn't that difficult it does require concentration and counting so I can't really talk and work on it at the same time.

Apparently my family actually wanted me to engage with them this weekend.  Go figure.
Anyway I grabbed some of the leftover mohair from the wedding flowers earlier this year and started knitting up a garter stitch stripey cowl in yellow and gray. On 10(us) needles, it went fast.

I've also made progress on the juneberry despite actually talking to people. I'm now on the border chart and it is moving fast.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Actual Modeled FO pix!

I suckered my coworker Jordan into modeling for me, after I made her a scarf and plied her with chocolate.

First, her cowl (my rav link) (no, I did not make the hat. I will have to rectify that at some point in the future):

My own Norie (rav link), which I finished on the train to the spot where we took photos (Lincoln Center, if anybody's interested):

And the Peaks Island Hood (rav link) for Katie's Mom:

And that is all for today.

And yes, J, at some point I'll post some stories of living in NYC, but lately I've been too busy to enjoy it. Sigh.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

FO: Peaks Island Hood

So I finished off the Peaks Island hood about 30 minutes ago. It is now blocking. Here is a requisite crappy photo:

I'll post better pix once the thing is dry. Also, I should probably have somebody model it so that I can show it's recipient (my friend's mom) how to wear it, as I imagine it might be a bit confusing.

Anyway, I used the yarn the pattern called for, Green Mountain Spinnery - Mountain Mohair in Grey Birch. Just under three skeins. Same needles also, size 10 US (6mm).

Everything else went on hold for this project, so now I have to get back to Georgia's lamb so it'll be ready by Christmas. I need to knit an arm and the head, but I don't think that'll take too long.

In other news, we went to see the worst production of The Nutcracker I've ever seen yesterday. I won't call it out because they were well-meaning and earnest, but yeah, it was comically bad.

Also, Georgia lost both of her front teeth, so we've been attempting to bribe her to sing "All I Want for Christmas is my Two Front Teeth," because really, how often will she be able to do THAT?

Anyway, here's a link to the song, for those of you who might not know it. This video is somewhat nauseatingly cute...

Not sure if I'll be able to post again before Christmas, so in the event that I'm not around, Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah to everyone! Have wonderful holidays!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

New on the Needles

Lessee. In the past week I've had no less than three failures trying to finish up my snapdragon fliptops. It's the fliptop bit that is driving me batty, so I guess for the time being I may just have cold hands. I didn't really enjoy knitting the other fliptops that I made, so I'm thinking traditional mittens for me from here on out.

I also started a Juneberry Triangle  by Jared Flood with some of my Rhinebeck yarn and I've made it through the first three charts. I have not, however, made any photos of it yet. Then again it is lace and it will look crappy until it is blocked.

Additionally, my friend Katie commissioned me (sort of) to make a scarfy thingy for her mother. She said her mom was asking for a big cowl to wrap around her head and neck, and we both agreed that would look ridiculous on her quite petite mother, so I chose the Peaks Island Hood by Ysolda.

I cast on yesterday and I'm nearly at the hood, so this thing is flying off the needles:

I'm using the yarn specified in the pattern, and the same needle size, which is nothing short of a miracle.

Anyway, it's Green Mountain Spinnery Mountain Mohair in Grey Birch, and if this were knitted at a tighter gauge, it would be a very stiff fabric. However, because I'm knitting it so loosely, it's got a lot of drape and feels pretty fabulous. Size 10 (6mm) needles. I should be done with this in the next couple of days and then I can completely finish up Georgia's sweater, her lamb toy and the Juneberry. And maybe actually post pictures.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Quick FO: Sparkly Cowl

A friend of mine (who, incidentally, occasionally reads this blog, but never on weekends) fell in love with some sparkly yarn at the yarn store not too long ago, so I whipped up this cowl (my rav link) for her yesterday:

I held together a bulky yarn and a novelty yarn to make this. I must say, it is my first use of a novelty yarn. It wasn't completely awful. You can see the sparklies if you click on the photos to make them bigger.

Yarn: Chasing Rainbows Dyeworks Homespun and Dark Horse Twinkle
Needle: US 13 (9mm)

I'm hoping that this friend of mine likes it, and that it isn't TOO sparkly. We'll see.

Anyway, it was a fun, quick knit. I might have to make a few more of these for family members for the holidays.

Also, I'm mostly finished with Georgia's sweater. I need to cast off and steek at this point, however, I guess she can wear it once I cast off if she wants.