29 September 2010

Emelie and a snoodle.

Emelie in progress

Working on an Emelie cardigan. I love yellow, so this is perfect for me. Hopefully I'll finish it before the cool weather comes. (Which for me means that I hope it stays warm for a long time. I'm not a big fan of winter.)

I've made about a thousand mistakes in the left side lace, even though it's stupidly simple. I keep forgetting what row I'm on and repeating row three and not noticing until I do row five. And fucked if I'm frogging two rows to fix a YO. So it's going to be a little wonky. I don't imagine that it will bother me, so I'm ok with that.

My only problem is that I hate the construction of this thing. Bottom-up, with sleeves picked up and knit top-down. STUPID. Stupid stupid stupid. I wish I wasn't too lazy to do the math and make it either top-down or sleeves cuff-up, but I am. I am into the look of set-in sleeves, though. I just wish they were knit-in and not picked-up.

Also, I finished a snood last night. I need to take pictures. It's crocheted!

22 September 2010

ten years of service

I spent my Saturday mostly in the car. Six hours, total. Which is about equal to the time I spent in my destination.
Why would anyone ever go to Fresno? I ask myself the same thing every time I find myself on the way there. Usually it’s like this trip. Waking up before 5 am in anticipation of sitting in the car for hours, unable to sleep because I just can’t sleep in the car, before getting up on stage for about 15 minutes total of dancing time. But really, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
This past Saturday marked ten years of Highland dance competition for me. For some reason, I thought it was last year, but my records indicate otherwise. (I have a binder full of old entry forms and a list of my results from every competition ever. If I could have figured out a spreadsheet, I probably would have done that at the time. I was eatsleepbreathehighland for a long time!) At the Fresno competition in 2000, I only did two or three dances and I didn’t place at all. (I think I did Fling, Seann Triubhas, and maybe Lilt. I did place at my second competition and even got a stamp, but was still in Beginner for two years because I took it really slow.) Fresno 2010, I did a lot better. Five dances and two sixth places. If this were the days of Beginner and Novice and working for stamps, I’m sure I’d have been disappointed. But these are the days of having no class and little practice and getting no sleep the night before the competition. And the competition is a leetle stiffer in Premier 16&O than it is Beginner 11&O.
A lot of dancers stop competing at this age, especially when they start teaching. I recently decided that I’m going to do one competition a year as long as I physically can. As demanding as Highland is, I don’t know how long that will be but I hope it will be a long time from now. Twenty years of competition would be great!
I’ve made a lot of progress to get from this: happy pigtail/flashback friday
To this: Fresno Games 2010 Fresno Games 2010
Knitting/sewing talk soon!

25 August 2010

Five Things I Did Today:

black on black
  1. Avoided a girl I went to high school with while having yummy Hawaiian food. And yes, this is a feat worth mentioning.
  2. Ordered Konad stamps so I can really get crazygonuts about nail polish. I’m dying for it to come. I seriously cannot fucking wait.
  3. Left my laundry in the dryer too long and now have to rewash it because it stinks. Yay summer!
  4. Actually caught something that was thrown at me when I wasn’t really paying attention. And, yes, I’m blogging about it. My sister even did a dance when she saw I caught it. It’s THAT unusual. (I have no hand-eye coordination!)
  5. Gave someone a birthday gift I’d love to get. Hell, I may make myself one. (photos to come soon)

21 August 2010

Five things I did today:

  1. Worked my little ass off cooking liver and onions for a 95th birthday party. It was significantly less horrid than I expected and the worst thing that happened was either my own fault or because of a tweaker.
  2. Played with my puppy at my grandma's house. Our bathroom is getting redone and he can't be roaming around and has been in prison (the garage). sleepy puppy tired from sniffing everything in sight.
  3. Spent my Friday night eating Taco Bell with my mom and taking a shower. Also straightened my hair.
  4. Knit a little on a pair of socks I am planning on publishing the pattern for. It's toe-up and I'm knitting the ribbing! Homestretch!
  5. Listened to Dragonfly in Amber on audiobook. I love this series so much. I've read the first three in book form but stalled on number four (Drums of Autumn). Listening is a lot more conducive to knitting, which I like. I wish I could afford an Audible membership to buy the whole series!

19 August 2010

I'm starting to develop a stash.

There aren't enough hours in the day. I've been suspecting this for a long time, but it's now confirmed. I am having to force myself to sleep because I want to stay up and keep crafting. And let me tell you, I'm not complaining because there are times that knitting sounds like torture.

I cast on for Annis the other night at 3am. Three hundred and sixty-three stitches! I kind of like that you are starting with the maximum number of stitches and losing them as you go, as opposed to most shawls where you're getting exponentially bigger as you work. No photos yet.

KnitPicks Palette in Mustard

I stashed four balls of this today. (KnitPicks Palette in Mustard) I'm tempted to turn it into a shawl, but I know I'll never wear it. Hopefully it will become a sweater, just like it's fraternal twin that I have in green. (Knit Picks Palette in Grass)

Knit Picks Palette in Grass

The stumbling block? The fact that I am so picky about patterns that I'm going to have to design it myself. I am literally just too lazy to do the math.

26 June 2010

it's 5 am ...

... and I'm still going strong. I've been taking Sudafed for my extreme sinus and allergy thing I've got going on, but I don't think I can blame this on it. Let me just mention now that I think I'm a convert to the whole sinus rinse deal.

Looking through some older posts, there is so much about what I'm "going to" do. If I said I was going to do it, I probably didn't. I haven't sewn a damn thing since they Aboyne. I quit Couch to 5k after week 1. I started it again 3 different times but not it's too hot to swim. It's going to be over 100 tomorrow! With the unseasonably cool spring we had, this ought to suck.

I've been meaning to restart some kind of daily photo thing, but haven't. I've been really lax about taking pictures and have a TON of stuff that needs to be photographed. I finished a Haruni shawl, and do not have a single picture of it. I even got all dolled up and wore it to a wedding and still didn't take pictures. (I knit it to wear to the wedding.) I have a lot of FOs that need proper pictures taken of them. I knit a Thorpe hat in 2009 that I don't have a single picture of, and it's knit with my hand-dyed. Good grief. I don't know what my deal is. I think after 365, I'm just kind of over taking pictures. It's really an all-or-nothing situation for me.

The only real thing I've really accomplished lately is to start an etsy shop. It's just got Highland dance cross-stitch patterns in it right now, but when there is knitting relevant stuff, I'll probably blog about it. I have a ton of shrinky dinks and stuff that would be perfect for stitch markers. Just need to get in gear and put them together. And uh, photograph everything for it. Heh.

I bought some seriously yellow yarn and don't know what to do with it now. I've got 1300+ yards of both Knitpicks Shadow Tonal in Golden Glow and Knitpicks Gloss Lace in Dandelion. Any suggestions? The Golden Glow is the orangey one; Dandelion is just straight up yellow.

Dandelion and Golden Glow comparison

31 May 2010

finished Featherweight!

I LOVE IT! I want a million, but I'm not sure if I could deal with that much stockinette.

This is just a preliminary FO shot. It's only been steam blocked here, and after a wash and block it is wonderful. The stitches looked REALLY uneven as I was knitting it, but look totally perfect now.

I also really love the color of this yarn. It looks just plain heathery grey, but up close it has purples and reds and sometimes it looks almost brown.

pattern: Featherweight Cardigan by Hannah Fettig
yarn: Knitpicks Shadow Lace in Basalt Heather
needles: US #6s / 4.0mm
[rav project link]

22 March 2010

back on the sewing wagon.

I've got a sad, crappy little sewing machine that sat unused for YEARS. I got it for Christmas my sophomore year of high school when I was taking a sewing class. This same class is the one that inspired me to knit because I am so unbelievably terrible at sewing. This is her:


This year, kind of out of the blue, I got inspired to sew again. After at least five years. Between all the amazing projects that the knitterly and crafty types have been churning out and the numerous costumes we need, I had to get back into it. (Really, what I'd love to do some day is make myself a white Lilt dress out of crepe back satin. Let's all hold our breath for that!)

I ended up at a fabric store with is, no joke, on the same block as my favorite restaurant. I knew where they both were, but never related the two. They had the absolute coolest fabric I've ever seen! Yeah, that's really a bunny torturing a raccoon!


Also found some super cute plaid, and decided to make myself a skirt for St. Patrick's Day. This turned into making a new Aboyne outfit, minus the vest. (Because I am NOT up for sewing velvet. Heck no.)

fabric for St. Patrick's Day skirt Pressing the hem.

I ended up using about 3 1/2 yards for the skirt, and I honestly could have used double that and been happy. (I thought that would be a lot, but this was a fairly lightweight fabric.) I put in a deep hem to add weight to the bottom and it worked wonderfully. It did take me forever to hem, because I sewed it by hand.

Here it all is in action:
this was one of those smiles.

In this one you can kind of see the plaid (shawl-thing) that I spent hours making fringe on:
Scottish Lilt

And just for comparison's sake, here are new and old next to each other:
aboyne comparison
I have to say that I like blue and green better than blue and red, just purely color-wise.

I'm heading to the fabric store again tomorrow. Between wanting to make box bags and an infinity dress, who knows what I'll come back with!

22 February 2010

Couch to 5k

I started Couch to 5k in January, and did pretty well with it. For about a week. Then I had what was possibly the most stressful week of my life, which included a Highland dance competition with totally new steps (my first in six months and my first time doing the 2010 Championship steps), and my BATD Member’s exam (which would allow me to teach Highland). I was practicing every day and decided that doing Highland and running would probably not be the best thing, especially for my joints. My ankle agreed, and thanks me for it now. After the competition, exam, and grueling workshop the day after, I got a little lazy. Didn’t start running again, and lo and behold, now it’s more than a month later and I hadn’t run. ‘Til today! I’ve officially started Couch to 5k again, and just completed week 1, day 1. I’m blogging about it because I think that will help me keep doing it. You’ll know that if I don’t blog, it’s probably because I didn’t run. This means I’m due to blog again on Wednesday, so keep an eye out!

I also want to mention that I really, truly hate running. I need to be exercising more, and this is what it’s come to.

Also, if you’re wondering, I passed my exam! I found out last night. Thank you to anyone who helped me, or listened to me bitch, or reassured me that I would do fine. You guys got me through it. I only cried once that whole weekend! (And that’s a feat, truly.) For your enjoyment, here is a cute picture from that weekend. The ladies pictured helped keep me slightly distracted and sane that day. Our photo sesh was the highlight of my day.

DDN Northern California Faction

26 January 2010

my girly Cobblestone sweater has finally come to fruition.

girly Cobblestone. done.

redoing the yoke

garter panel

It took me a while, but I finally beat this yarn into submission. I'm so happy with it!

Pattern: Cobblestone by Jared Flood
Yarn: Lion Brand Cotton Ease in Stone, 5 balls/ 1035 yards
Needles: US #6s/ 4.0 mm

Mods: I totally re-did the math for this. I read some other places that some ladies had got the pattern to work as-is in the smallest size, but with my gauge it just wouldn't work. I got out my copy of Vogue Knitting, and used the formula they have for bottom-up yoked sweaters. I was a pain in the ass, but 100% worth it. I also didn't do any of the yoke shaping in the pattern, which if I remember correctly is to make it longer/higher in the back than the front. There are short rows, I think. I probably could/should have, looking back. The neckline is a little wide, which should be ok. I also added waist shaping. Nothing too dramatic, but it is a must for a form-fitting sweater for me (otherwise they bunch/ride up around my waist).

I don't understand how this was designed to be a men's sweater because it is SO flattering on the female form. The garter stitch panel down the side is so figure-flattering.

I also feel compelled to say: THIS YARN SHRUNK IN THE DRYER. I know. It's cotton, of course it shrunk. It didn't shrink a lot, but enough to notice. Look at the difference in the first two pictures. First is washed, second is pre-wash. The main difference is in the length. I'll be hanging this to dry from now on.

Some incarnations of this sweater before everything got fixed:

[365.2.96] girly cobblestone-in-progress girly Cobblestone - pre-re-knit yoke

And the horrible Molly Ringwald top that this yarn was before:

Molly Ringwald top neckline detail