Sunday, September 23, 2012

An Unusual Saturday

Here is a picture of my husband Joe that our daughter Kerry took yesterday.  This is not his usual clothing choice (he is a jeans seven days a week kind of guy -- this is Silicon Valley, after all).  It is also not usual for him to look so relieved.

He had just done something he had never tried before (lots of us over 50 don't do that so often) and in front of over 100 people who were all looking RIGHT AT HIM (that is even harder).

He did a great job, and the rest of us were relieved as well.

This is what he did:

Three weeks prior the bride and groom were among the throng at our home for an end of summer pool party and BBQ.  The bride's older sister was finding herself thrown into the role of mother of the bride (mom passed away a few years back), and she was in a bit of a panic over her baby sister's lack of planning skills.  Big sister mentioned the pair had not yet secured someone to officiate at the wedding. Having had a beer or two (and not having learned the cardinal rule that anyone who has dealt with PTAs knows:  don't ever volunteer for anything unless you want the job), Joe mentioned that any adult could officiate, even he could.

A week and a half later, he had the job and the offical title of minister (from the American Marriage Ministries.Com, which is willing to make you official for no charge).

I didn't get much knitting done yesterday, obviously, but I did finish another cowl from the Stonehedge Mill Ends.  This is the Orbs design from the latest Knitscene Accessories magazine.

I also started another Honey Cowl, this time in Madeline Tosh Merino DK in the color jade.  Joe wandered by as I was casting on and said, "Now THAT's a nice color!"

Since Joe rarely comments on my WIPs except to mention how they are piling up, I think this means I need to get some more Tosh.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Sometimes a Shopping Spree has Positive Results

Ten days ago I went on a knitting shopping spree.  My wallet is definitely lighter, but despite having a fair number of non-knitting projects requiring my attention, I actually have something to show for it already.

First, I finished my Dr. Who type scarf in Stonehedge Mill Ends (called Stonehedge Crazy at Green Planet Yarns for those who've asked).  I love this yarn:  it is constructed from random length (from 3 to 20 yards) mill ends that have been respun into single plies, then those single plies are made into a two ply worsted weight yarn.  One caveat is the balls vary quite a bit in weight (my four ranged from 74g to 89g).  The scarf is a simple garter stitch diagonal construction (SSK the first stitch, K f/b the last on every other row).  It ended up being 5" wide and over 9' long.  I used two skeins totalling 150g.

Next, I knit a Birthday Cake cowl from an 84g skein.  This particular ball had less color variation than most, and, amazingly, the color changes mostly happened right along the purl ridges.  Finished size is 9 1/2" high by 30" circumference.

I took a break from the Stonehedge Mill Ends to knit a Honey Cowl in Lana Bambu.  One skein used and the finished size is 8" high by 29" circumference.  The sun is a bit too strong right now, but the cowl actually has some glints of pine green in among the grays and deep rose.

My last ball of Stonehedge Mill Ends is also destined to be a cowl, this time the Orbs Cowl from the Knitscene Accessories that recently came out.  I started this last weekend and ripped it out after deciding (a) I didn't like how the decreases weren't mirrored (side by side k2tog instead of ssk next to k2tog) and (b) I probably wanted to make it the original 6 repeats instead of 8 that I had cast on for.  If I have finally figured out what this yarn wants to be, I expect to have another cowl done sometime this weekend.

That's four FOs in two weeks -- not bad for someone with knitter's ADD!

Of course, there ARE all those projects requiring just a bit more time and concentration waiting for me to give them the attention they deserve...

Better stop patting myself on the back and get back to work!  (Okay, back to the fun stuff!)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Something in the Air

Whenever the season changes or the weather changes, I seem to catch knitter's ADD.  The weather has been changing a lot around here lately (sometimes cool and foggy, sometimes warm and sunny, sometimes back and forth in the same day). All these weather changes plus the official beginning of fall (school has started!) means I have had an excessively short attention span in recent weeks.  I have been jumping from project to project so often that I think I may have more new WIPs than new FOs in the past month.  I was reminded just how bad it was while reading the Yarn Harlot's latest post.

The other thing that happens during knitting ADD time is if I get within sniffing distance of a yarn shop and happen to walk in (even with the intention of only buying ONE set of sock needles), pretty soon my arms are filled with yarn and I have at least four new projects.
This happened a few days ago. Twice.  It was so bad at Green Planet Yarns that they asked if it was my birthday (it wasn't).

Then the yarn fumes started pouring out of my computer and before I knew it, I had bought multiple projects from two online vendors.

They were both having sales, after all...

So, what did I get, you ask?

Four skeins of Stonehedge Crazy Mill Ends yarn.  This yarn actually started calling to me through the window as I walked by.  Those are strong yarn fumes!  Two have already been knit into a Dr. Who style scarf; the other two are destined to be cowls.  The yarn is even more striking in person.

Dr. Who Ingredients


Another cowl-to-be
Two skeins of Noro Shiraito (their limited edition cashmere blend) that is destined to be a Wingspan (the store had a model that was perfect).

A hat kit with the sadly discontinued O Wool Balance.

A skein of also discontinued Lana Bambu for a cowl.

Alpaca with a Twist Surino (on deep discount):  enough to make TWO Color Affections.
Rosewood, light gray, dark gray

Sage green, pale yellow green, ivory

From the other local store (Yarndogs), I restrained myself (relatively) and got a skein of Tosh DK for a Honey Cowl and a skein of Tosh Sock in the lovely shade of Amber Trinket (probably socks).

Online, I scored two sock kits and two glove kits from Knit Picks (all were on sale).  I also bought some mystery sock yarn from Blue Moon during their blue moon sale (one bag of blues, two bags of mediumweight surprises).

I have finished a few things since I last posted:  a mystery KAL shawlette from Wendy Johnson (mine had beads instead of nupps), three projects designed by Stephen West (a Daybreak shawl, a pair of Dustland Mitts, and a Spectra Scarf), a crocheted bracelet, and two pair of socks.  I've also gotten at least 2/3 through my first Color Affection, started a Thendara (Stephen West again), and gotten well into two new sweater projects.

PS:  I think I got overconfident about my knitting speed a few months back when I was participating in the Classic Elite Spring-O contest.  I was one of the big winners and got all of their fall brochures.  I was expecting 6-10 pamphlets; imagine my surprise when I found 28 pattern booklets along with a lovely note in my mailbox!