Wednesday, May 24, 2006

The solution to knitting-related RSI.... to knit something that drives you absolutely batshit crazy, so that you can only work on it in small doses at a time. Here is my current project of woe:

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Lovely, isn't it? That's Alchemy Silk Purse, and the scarf is this pattern. I bought it because I've always wanted to try it, and it was on super-duper-irresistable sale. It is currently known as Jason's Mom's Scarf (see, getting around the stash guilt by making into a gift!), though whether I'll actually finish the scarf before I go completely insane remains to be seen.

The silk is lovely and soft, but it is also slubby and a single ply so there tends to be a lot of snagging and halo-ing (especially if you've had to tink back as much as I've had to). Also, the silk totally sticks to my bamboo needles, so much so that I'm considering giving metal needles a try, even though I find them icky and hand-hurty. Lesser of two evils, perhaps? In addition, the two balls of yarn are completely different shades of purple (not sure if you can make it out in the picture), so I have to do that annoying alternating rows thing. One of the drawbacks of buying handdyed yarn from an online store, I guess.

Anyway, the yarn is yummy, and the pattern is quite attractive, but the knitting experience has not exactly been a walk in the park so far. Then again, I'm supposed to be doing this in small doses (if at all), and this is definitely keeping me from overexerting myself. =)

Saturday, May 20, 2006


Hurrah, hurrah, some finished knit items! All knit from stash, enabling me to subtract around 20 skeins (23 if we count all half-skeins as "used" =P) from the stash total. Which should make me feel really good and free to go buy more yarn, right? Funnily enough, I don't really feel like it. I like this knitting-from-stash thing so far. Of course, I'm not actually supposed to be knitting right now....and I'm not really, I promise!

OK, onto the unveiling. Here is the Mission Falls Log Cabin Blanket, finished and bordered and with all the ends woven in (which are in the back, of course):

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Next up, a quickie garter stitch scarf knit in Colinette Zanziba using 7 mm needles (fun pink plastic Crystal Palace Daisy needles!). I used 2 skeins, one in colour 100 (Gauguin) and one in colour 101 (Monet), alternating every 2 rows. These skeins were my very first Colinette purchase, and will probably be my last, since I've discovered that I'm not really the hugest fan of bulky yarns.

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And finally, a sweater! My second sweater! A fun cabled short-sleeved Michael Kors sweater, from the Holiday 2005 issue of Vogue Knitting. Knit using Jaeger Extra Fine Merino Aran, colour 552. The seams still need a light steaming, but I thought I'd show it you anyway. It was hard to take a picture of myself wearing it.

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Here is a closeup of the 3 patterns used in the sweater. A diamond-with-berry thing, regular ol' braided cables, and a berry stitch pattern that was quite the pain in the arse. I'm very glad that I knit this thing in the sweater class, because the directions for the neck shaping in the front were just plain wrong, and I probably wouldn't have been able to figure it out myself. I'm finding that a lot of patterns have mistakes in them.

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There is this one glaring (to me) mistake in the sweater, but everyone insists that they would never see it unless I specifically pointed it out to them, so I'll resist the urge to point out my deficiencies as a knitter and just leave it at that. =)

Where is my first sweater, you ask? That blue cardigan-thing? Well, it's completely done, except I haven't sewn the buttons on yet. I'm debating whether I even want buttons. That thing was such a chore to knit. Pictures some other time, when I feel like lugging it out. =)

So how do I feel, with two sweaters under my belt? I'm not sure I'm really a knitter-of-sweaters. I feel like I get bored too easily, that the novelty wears off. It was only having the sweater class that kept me motivated to keep knitting. So I'm taking a break from that for now, since I've been having wrist issues, and turning my attention to smaller projects and thinking about Christmas presents. It's never too early to plan!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Can't I stop pipetting instead?

Well, guess what. This girl has got to take some time off from knitting. I think I've been doing it too much (not too much by itself, because I really don't knit all that much, but too much in combination with doing benchwork and writing at a computer) over the past few months, and it's starting to show. I had a bout of wrist pain about a month ago, but chalked it up to mad sweater knitting + mad manuscript writing/editing, and it got better eventually (I should mention that I wear a wrist brace thing while knitting most of the time). But I think I reaggravated it by knitting the Mission Falls blanket -- a few days ago it hurt to turn a doorknob, and sometimes it hurts to pipette, and tonight when I was sewing my sweater together it sort of hurt too. So I think I need to take a break, even though there is stuff I'm dying to knit up, and even though knitting has been a stress reliever lately.

Which brings me to the question of, what do I do instead? I've been playing around with the idea of taking up some other sort of crafty hobby to complement the knitting, like maybe needlepoint or quilting? Buying fabrics for quilting would be SO MUCH FUN, don't you think? I feel like I need to get better with a needle and thread, my sewing skills (and therefore seaming skills) are absolutely atrocious. Hm, maybe not quilting then, that seems like too much of an investment only to screw it all up. =)