Jun 19

I’m a winner!

Gingersnaps with Tea had a contest on her blog, asking for ideas for non-sock patterns using sock yarn and I won an awesome package from her:

Contest Package

She had told me it was going to be sock yarn, but oh what wonderful sock yarn! It’s Toasty by numma numma in Blackberry Jam.  It’s soft and smooshy and the most perfect colour ever for me!  And then there was chocolate and maple candies and little itty bitty Soaks and a beautiful stitch marker and nummy smelling stuffs and a Starbucks card!  You rock, Gingersnaps!

Jun 16

Oh So Wicked!

Finally have pictures of my Wicked. While this was the second sweater I started, it’s the first I have finished. I’m actually very, very proud of it (despite hating pictures of me in it.)

Blue Wicked #3

Pattern: Wicked by Zephyr Style
Yarn: Araucania Pomaire in Dark Blue

I made all sorts of modifications to it, including waist and hip shaping and short row bust shaping. The biggest problem I had with it was the length of the arm holes — I basically ended up making a size or two smaller than I had planned.

Jun 11

To Dye or Not to Dye

This past week’s been a pretty crappy one around Chez Dork. It’s been hovering at about 16 C in the apartment, so we’ve been spending a vast amount of time huddled in blankets. It’s been raining off and on for days, so it hasn’t even been easy to get out and do stuff. But I did brave the elements today to go out and get dyeing supplies and — wonder of wonders! — the dyeing I did tonight actually warmed the place up enough that we were able to shed the top layer of clothing!

I started with one skein of sock yarn divided into 6 mini-skeins and attempted rainbow colours in order to make Brian a long promised pairs of pride socks:

DIY Rainbow

As you can see, it didn’t exactly work as hoped. Since I was mixing colours for the orange, green, and purple I was paying more attention to getting the right colour than how much dye I was adding and had some issues with sections not getting enough dye. Those three colours will hit the dye pot again tomorrow, but I’m pretty happy with the primary colours.

Then I decided to play with some black and I ended up with a pretty variegated skein that I named Bumbleberry:

DIY Bumbleberry

This picture is darker than the reality, with more red showing. I love it muchly, and will definitely be doing some more dyeing!

Jun 6

Fall Leaves and River Water

Another post from me! Shocking, ain’t it? And the really shocking thing is that I even have another FO to show off. I made two scarfs last fall, one for me and one that was supposed to be a Christmas pressie for a friend. If you know me at all, you won’t be surprised that it is now June and I’m just getting around to blocking them now.

Fall Scarf #1

Pattern: Stolen Moments Wrap by Amy Swenson (heavily modified)
Yarn: Claudia’s Handpainted Fingering in Boot Camp

And I finally settled on a stitch pattern for my River’s Edge socks and I’ve gotten all sorts of lovely compliments on them from the m1 yarnies:

River's Edge Sock #2

Jun 3

And now for the rest…

Finishing off a couple of things prompted me to start… well… tons of stuff. I finished Wicked, so I started Green Gables with South West Trading Company Oasis, which is 100% Soy Silk:

Green Gable #1 Green Gable #2

Not only did I recently fall in love with sock knitting, I also fell madly in love with one of the new colourways from Lorna’s Laces, Edgewater. I’ve been trying to find the perfect stitch pattern to go with it, but haven’t really had much luck so far. Here’s one I tried:

Edgewater Socks #2

And after finishing the Swallowtail, I had this urge to knit more lace. Ralae and I were talking about how she doesn’t have the attention span to knit lace, and how I want to knit lace but don’t wear it. So we had the brilliant idea that I could knit a shawl for her instead of the shirt I was supposed to be doing for her (her pressie for Christmas ’05!) We picked the Laminaria shawl and I started it last week:

Laminaria #1

Last but not least, I finally started the Rectangle Shawl in Blue Sky Alpaca Silk:

Rectangle Shawl #1

Jun 3

Finished *and* blocked!

Didn’t feel like going out of the house today, so I skipped knit night and spent the day blocking FOs, photographing stash and updating projects on Ravelry. I still don’t have pictures of my Wicked, but I do have another FO to show off.

Swallowtail #3

Pattern: Swallowtail Shawl [ravelry link] by Evelyn Clark
Yarn: Curious Creek Wasonga in Glacier Lakes (1 skein)

I also finished my first two pairs of socks in the last couple of weeks. I am now madly in love with handknit socks and have started another pair. These ones are just basic socks, one toe-up, one top-down, both with afterthought heels.

Fuzzy Socks Black Parade Socks

Pattern: Vaguelly based on Amy’s Universal Toe-up Sock Formula
Yarns: Estelle Arequipa in Red and Black
Dream in Color Smooshy in Black Parade

Apr 25

Progress? What’s that?

Pretty much all I’ve been doing lately has been working and knitting (while watching tv, of course) so I’ve actually got some knitting progress to show off! First there’s the Swallowtail:

Swallowtail #1

Not blocked yet, but I love it muchly. I added three repeats of the Budding Lace chart, so I had to fudge numbers on the later increases, but it seems to have turned out okay. Plus, I didn’t like the nupps so I just did away with them altogether.

Booties #1

I also finished a set of the cutest baby booties known to man (Saartje’s Booties) for my new cousin. I need to add the buttons and button loops, but this is closer than I got to sending pressies for any of the other babies in the family, so I’m feeling pretty proud of them.

Lift and Separate #3

The Lift and Separate is chugging along. The back and one side of the front are done. The one main thing I’ve learned from this sweater? If you want the front and back to be the same length, count your rows as you go. You’d think that would be common sense, right? I even thought about it before I started, but when I got going and the pattern said “Continue in St st until work measures…” it completely flew out of my brain. So now I’m spending a lot of time counting rows and writing down numbers and the forgetting if that count was from this spot or from that spot. Stupid me.

Blue Wicked #1

But that’s okay because I got completely sidetracked from it these past two days by a lovely new project. It’s Wicked by Zephyr Style, in Araucania Pomaire (two thumbs up for both the pattern and the yarn!) It’s all Sandra’s fault, since she was working on it on Tuesday at Knit Night, and then had to show me Amy’s in the pima cotton. I worked on it all day Wednesday since I was home sick and it’s knitting up so fast! The one thing I didn’t think about was alternating skeins, so I may get some pooling issues. I’m about to start on the second ball, so I guess I’ll find out soon.

Anyway, I’m off to watch tv and knit for another day. This being sick thing is getting me through a shit-load of tv! In the past month or so I watched the entire run of Gilmore Girls, almost 3 seasons of Ballykissangel, close to a season of Torchwood (blame Liza for that!), half a season of Wild at Heart, and a whole bunch of movies. What shall I watch now?

Apr 10

If (Work == Miserable) Then buyYarn();

I am having the worst day yet at work.  The stupid blizzard this morning turned my 10 minute bus ride into an hour and a half bus ride (it took over an hour to go the first 10 blocks but luckily I had a couple of episodes of Gilmore Girls to watch on my iPod.)  So I was an hour late to work, and then I had a call at 12:30 that lasted 2 1/2 hours.  Of course, my lunch is normally at 1:00, so I missed it completely and only had time to run to Starbucks and grab a chai and banana bread before I had to be back on the phone queue.  I solved one case today and had three others get worse than they were before.  It has quieted down now but I am feeling miserable, grumpy, and stupid.

So, I am heading to Make One the minute I’m off and buying pretty yarn to cheer me up.  I don’t have a pattern in mind, but there was some pretty soysilk ribbon that I was looking at yesterday that I thought would make a cute tank top.  Or the Provence cotton.  Or something, I dunno.  I just know that yarn = happy.

There is also a drop spindle that I might buy.  It’s a bottom whorl and just felt right in my hands.  I tried a couple wheels last night during my spinning class, but (amazingly enough!) didn’t fall immediately in love.  Of course, yesterday was a crap ass day as well and I just had no patience for anything I couldn’t catch on to in 10 seconds flat.  I did make a lovely little ball of yarn by plying two singles together – a black and a plum.  Don’t know if it’s long enough to make anything from, but I might try a little hat and just make the brim a different colour.

Apr 1

Hemlock Ring = Giant Amoeba

I absolutely love love love my blanky.  It looks like cat yak right now, but once I block it I’m sure it’ll be great.  More pictures then.

I’ve been watching shitloads of Gilmore Girls lately (as in 2 1/2 seasons in a week) and it has translated to mucho knitting time.  I’ve been working on my Lift & Separate again, but I got the IK Fall 2006 in the mail today so now I have to cast on my Swallowtail Shawl.

Mar 26

I keep putting off posting here because I haven’t had a chance to upload pictures of any of my new stash or projects.  But I’m so excited about my current project that I must share.

I’ve been working on BrooklynTweed’s Hemlock Ring Blanket in some of the Cascade Ecological Wool I picked up in Abbotsford.  Love love love the pattern *and* the yarn!  I was kind of worried at how stiff the yarn felt in the skein, but as soon as I started knitting it softened up, and it’s the perfect yarn for this blanket.

Oh my god, I’m knitting a blanket.  I always swore that was *way* too big of a project to knit and that if I wanted a blankey I would crochet it.  But it’s knitting up so fast!  I’m about 5 m away from the end of the first skein and have about 8 rows to go for the smaller size, so I think I’m going to do the extra rows since I’ll be breaking into the second skein anyway.  And then I’ll have to think of something to do with the leftovers.

Tonight is the Explorations in Handspinning class I signed up for as soon as we got back from FibreFest.  It should be a lot of fun and all I really need to make my life complete is to pick up a new hobby, right?  Which reminds me, someone needs to nag me until I actually complete a project on my lovely loom.  Seriously, this one has been sitting on there for months and I hate it but feel guilty just chopping the warp off.  Of course, my solution involves dropping some cash at M1 for a warping board so that it isn’t such a pain to warp…

Feb 15

I did not sign up to be a hairdresser…

The Doctor’s hair is kicking my ass. It just does not want to co-operate. I’ve been staring at the pattern and the hair tutorial and pictures of David Tennant (such a hardship!) for the past two hours and this is what I’ve got so far:

Yes, he is going to get a haircut, I promise. It’s the back of the head that is driving me absolutely bat-shit. Maybe I’ll take a break and work on something easy, like picking up the 150 stitches along the band of my sweater or re-learning Latin…

In much, much better news, I got myself a job.  Unfortunately, Jason called the house while I was on my way to Make One and now I can’t call him back until Tuesday.  So I have no idea when I start or what I’ll be making, but who cares!  A JOB! Now I can pay off years of debt and have disposable income to spend on YARN!

Jan 30

Fibre Road Trip?

So… anyone want to go to Fibrefest International? It’s in Abbotsford, so an easy one day drive (as long as I don’t leave my wallet on any buses again!) and it’s only $6/day. Ange and I are seriously considering this, so what we’d do is drive out on Thursday (Mar 6th), hit the fest on Friday and Saturday, and drive back on the Sunday (Mar 9th).

We can get a car for $90 and a hotel for around $80/night, and gas would probably cost about $200-250. The more people, the less it’ll cost… Liz? Mar? Tannis?

Jan 23

Doctor Who?

Doctor Who?So… guess what this is? It doesn’t look like much at the moment, but it’ll soon be a Tenth Doctor amigurumi. (That would be the torso, both arms, and one leg.) Yes, I *am* that much of a dork. But I fell madly in love with the pattern at first sight and just couldn’t resist. This one’s for ralae, but I’m definitely going to be making one for myself after. And then a Martha, and then a Jack, and then… I’m sure you get the picture.

I think amigurumi might be my new easy project — I already have a bunch of patterns that I’ve just never gotten around to doing.

And I just *have* to edit this to add more “in progress” pics. I haven’t had this much fun on a craft project in a long time!

Jan 13

Christmas Knitting

I was so proud of myself this year — I actually accomplished Christmas knitting the year I was giving the gift! (This makes up for the Christmas 2005 presents that I’m still working on…)

Chelle’s ScarfThe first was a scarf for my sister Chelle. I had actually planned this one for almost a year, since she’s been requesting one since I gave one to her husband last year. It’s two skeins of Blue Sky Alpacas Duotones, done in double-wrap garter stitch on size 11s. Easy peasy.

The other well-planned gift I gave was a lap afghan (no picture) for my Granny, which took me a couple of months to finish because I only had the patience to do a few rows at a time. It was crocheted out of Knit Picks Swish Superwash that I had originally bought for my Lift and Separate but didn’t like the colour for a sweater (teach me right for not buying a colour card first!) It was another one not done from a pattern — I just kind of came up with a stitch I liked that had a bit of texture and did the entire thing in it.Grandma’s Scarf

The next was kind of last minute — I only came up with the idea of giving my Grandma a scarf the week before Christmas, but I’d done the pattern before and I already had the yarn, so it went pretty quick (aka two nights of sitting around catching up on Stargate Atlantis while knitting, then a frantic blocking session the evening of Christmas Day.) It is the Slanted Eyelet Scarf by Alchemy Yarns of Transformation, out of Silk Purse.

Mom’s HatThe last gifty that I actually gave while I was home for Christmas was the Chunky Buttoned Cable Toque [free pattern] for my mom. Uber last minute. I hadn’t even planned on making her anything this year, but Make One was offering a free course on the 23rd and it was such a Mom-hat that I couldn’t resist. And since I had oodles of left over yarn, I’m making her a pair of mitts to match (the Super Funky Bulky Mitts, same link as above.)

The last Christmas presents were pretty much the first ones I had done — a pair of Maine Morning Mitts [another free pattern] each for Liz, Mar and Drie. Unfortunately, I didn’t think to take pictures of them in their mitts, so I’ll have to do that another day.

Dec 21

Welcome to the Dork Side

So… we’re dorks. Who knit. While sitting around watching Doctor Who. Or roleplaying. Okay, we do a lot of other crafty things too, but knitting is kind of the base obsession around here. The Dork Squad is currently composed of:

mtlaise — our resident anal retentive (she calls it Type A personality, but don’t listen to her.) She’s a Quebecer exiled to Calgary, forced to put up with the crappy transit and all these crazy Westerners. She is the Queen of Useless Knowledge.

ralae — she’s the fashion police, so avoid her if you’re wearing anything pink, ugly or spandex (in her words: “It’s a priviledge, not a right!”) She has issues with punctuation, capitalization and grammar. Mainly punctuation. You’ll see, trust me.

sourcherri — she’s the normal one. Well, in comparison. She can most often be seen dancing. Everywhere. And if she can’t be dancing, she’ll be clapping Flamenco rhythms.

perian — that’s me. I have a little problem with obsessions. And I’m infectious (like the plague!)

Honorary members include Tanya (who abandoned us for a real job in another province), Mike (and there’s no known cure), Doug (who we need to teach how to knit!), and Dave (who found the Bug movie for mtlaise and is stealing ralae away from us in May!)

We thought it would be fun to have a place we could all post about our ongoing projects and stuff. And be dorks.

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