Sunday, November 11, 2007

It's been a while

It's been a while since I've posted. It's been a while since I finished anything. It's been a while since I felt like taking pictures of works in progress.

However, I am so damned proud of myself for the project I just finished that I want to shout out to the world about my genius. Which probably isn't genius, but I like to think it is.


That's right. E.T. phone home.

I set myself the challenge of knitting an E.T. for my friend Jason's birthday present. He's obsessed with E.T., see, and since I was on a kick with knitting things for my friend's birthdays, and he's a boy who probably does not want any sort of wearable knitted object, it was going to be some sort of stuffed toy. I made the giraffe for his brother.

Proud does not even begin to describe how happy I am with this little guy. I had no pattern, but using lessons I learned from knitting Anna's giraffe pattern and things that I've read in various books, I was able to create a recognizable E.T. All on my own. I feel all growed up!

Monday, September 24, 2007


So Old Navy has discovered Fair Isle knitting.

This is kind of cool, because hey! Fair Isle knitting in the main stream.

This is kind of not cool, because hey! Why would I spend a crap load of money to make this myself when I can just spend $30 to buy it?

Well, obviously there's the "feeling of pride and accomplishment in achieving something on my own" and the "not giving into big business and supporting possibly unfair labor practices" (I have no idea what Old Navy's work practices are), and a variety of other reasons.

But the facts of the matter are 1: I'm lazy. 2: I'm kind of poor at the moment and, being on the larger end of the fashion plate, something like this, for me, would certainly require more than $30 of even the cheapest yarn (at least I think it would, since it is rather bulky and would require multiple colors, though I admit I could be surprised). 3: I'm knitting about five different projects at the moment and I'm impatient enough with them.

So yes, I did buy that particular jacket. I'm going to New York City for the weekend and needed something that was warm (it's supposed to be in the low 70s at the end of the week, and while this jacket might be overkill even for low 70s, that was my justification).

One day, maybe, I will be able to scoff at these silly notions of thrift and economy and create these things on my own, but today is not that day. And I'm okay with that.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


I hate the lighting in my apartment. And I'm not yet a competent enough photographer to figure out how to compensate for the awful lighting. Oh well.

I rushed rushed rushed to finish this yoga mat bag for my co-worker and yoga instructor, and wouldn't you know, she wasn't at work today, her birthday! But it's done and I don't have to worry about it.

This evening, instead of working on my mom's blanket, like I should be, I cast on for a ballet sweater. My justification: I need to return the book to the library soonish. I'm a little nervous about it, because I'm subbing the yarn and using smaller needles, so I had to make some adjustments to the cast on. I'm trying to be optimistic that it will work out all right.

An idea that is floating around in my head is going to be insane if it comes to fruition. It's both exciting and terrifying.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Yay finished objects!

Finally, finally finished something that worked out. Jill's fingerless mittens are done done done. And I gave them to her and that's her hands modeling them in the picture. Because they are done.

There's an awful lot of relief connected to finishing something that I'm proud of. It's been a little while since that happened. Over a month, actually, since I finished Eric's giraffe. So, yay.

I still have my mom's blanket on the needles. Theoretically it'll get finished by Christmas. Theoretically.

Next up, I'm starting on a yoga bag for my co-worker and old supervisor. She was also my yoga instructor at the work yoga sessions, and I know she'd love a knitted yoga bag. Or at least, that's what I'm telling myself.

Took a long weekend trip to Gatlinburg this past weekend. My poor friends, all of them guys, made the mistake of telling me that there was a yarn shop nearby. They got dragged into the shop for about an hour, but they were great sports about it. It didn't hurt that the woman who owned the shop was married to the guy who owned the fishing shop (the fishing shop and the yarn shop were connected), so they talked with her about fishing and hiking while I perused the yarn. I had been on a yarn diet, but that went out the window. I came away with a hank of Schaeffer yarn that I think will end up a Swallowtail Shawl, and some pretty Ditto yarn that will probably be a scarf. Also grabbed the issue of Interweave Knits that has the Swallowtail pattern, and a set of Crystal Palace Bamboo circulars to make the Swallowtail. Huh. I'm pretty set on making that shawl, apparently.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Bad like a really really bad thing

So, I cast off the summery tank last night.

It's awful.

Maybe not awful. But it's not good. The vision in my head was good. I think I copped out on a few things, got a little lazy, etc., and now it's not of the good.

So I folded it up, stuck it in it's plastic baggy, and threw it somewhere in my house. I can't be bothered with you right now, tank. It's not me, it's you. Okay, it's really me.

Instead of making the modifications that I was going to on summery tank, I switched to working on the fingerless mittens for Jill. This time I had a pattern to work with, albeit a modified version. I'm using Knitty's Dashing, but modifying them to fit a tiny woman with chopstick-thin wristbones. First attempt, fail. Second attempt, fail. Finally I just said "Forget you!" and put those needles and yarn back in their baggy. They haven't pissed me off enough yet to get thrown.

I spent the rest of the evening plotting out how I was going to fix these things and make them work. Ribbing is stretchy. That's what I tell myself. So it doesn't matter if I only cast on 32 stitches. See above, re: chopsticks for wristbones.

This evening is crafty time with my friend Betsy, and I'm bringing my mom's blanket to the party. It's already started. It's quite simple. Stockinette, then reverse stockinette. I think I can handle that.

I'd better be able to handle that, or knitting and I will be on a break. Pooh.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

So... close...

I'm very close to finally being done with this tank top thing I'm working on. (note to self: come up with better name) I would be done except I decided I wanted the top part to be a little bit longer, and so to add about an inch to this damned thing, I have to go buy an entirely new skein of yarn. Thankfully, it's relatively cheap yarn, and easy to match, so I'm not worried about that. I just want to get this thing finished!

My self-imposed deadline is Sunday. I want to be able to wear it to my friends' birthday party. Of course, I still have to figure out if I actually like it. I've been too lazy to take it off the needles to try it on. But mostly, I just want to finish it and have that sense of accomplishment of making something for myself before I go into birthday and holiday gift overdrive.

Thursday, July 19, 2007


Gargle is finished! Anna's awesome pattern was so incredibly easy to follow, especially for a shaping novice like me. As I was going through the pattern, I kept thinking "Now what the hell am I doing? How is this going to turn out?" But then I got done with a piece and it was all shaped and dimensional and stuff! Amazing! I learned so much from doing this pattern, and it was really nice to have a quick little project to work on amidst the couple of marathon projects I currently have on needles.

I really need to learn how to sew pieces together better, because my poor Gargle is a little bit drunk and has difficulties keeping is head up sometimes. Next time!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

No disassemble!

Gargle the giraffe in pieces

My friend Eric loves giraffes. He'll frequently go to the zoo just to visit them. So when Anna at Mochi Mochi Land created a giraffe, I knew that I had to make it for him for his birthday, which is soon. I kept waiting and waiting for the pattern to be posted, and finally, it was!

I started working on this Friday. If I'd had stuffing, I would have been able to nearly finish it yesterday. As it is, I was able to finish all the pieces within a few hours. It's a wonderfully easy pattern to follow and so much fun to knit. Hopefully today he will be finished, and there will be an updated post soon.

Yesterday I took a trip to the LYS and spent way too much money (well, relative to my available cash flow) on yarn. But most of it was for other people–more yarn for my mother's blanket and yarn to send to Leina for a swap. I also picked up the issue of Interweave Knits that has Eunny Jang's Venezia pullover. One day, maybe, I'll actually get around to knitting it.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Slow Going

So I haven't posted here for a little while because I haven't had too much progress to discuss. (Mildly discernible) progress has been made on two projects, but they're large-ish projects, and I have no attention span, so they're taking much longer than I'd like them to. I'm contemplating having either a movie marathon or Firefly marathon and just sitting and knitting all day. Of course, that would get in the way of the cleaning and other things I need to be doing today. Decisions, decisions.

I've also been distracted with a couple of other projects.

Voldemort can't stop the rock Straight to the core

I made these out of ShrinkyDinks, and some jewelry-making material. I'd never made jewelry before, so I was happy they turned out as well as they did. There's room fr improvement, surely, but for being the first time I've played with these things, I'm quite happy.

I also attempted sewing a reconstruction of a shirt yesterday, but my sewing machine is a cheap little thing a does not appear to like t-shirt material. I'll need to borrow someone else's machine to finish it.

Yesterday, I picked up Knitscene and liked a few of their patterns, so maybe I'll be more inspired soon. Oh, and I got my Ravelry invite, so I'll be playing over there, too.

Monday, June 18, 2007

One of my more stupid moments

I'm working on this project that I want to have a nice sort of open feel to part of it. So I had in my mind this idea that I would put in yarn overs to create a diamond shaped "lace" feel. But I could not for the life of me figure out how to make the yarn overs work in a way that was attractive and sturdy.

That would be because I forgot that I'd need to purl across the wrong side, not try to work in the pattern. Yep, I'm a genius.

I finally figured out what I was doing wrong as I was looking at a pattern book in Barnes and Noble last night. Went home, tried it out on my swatch, et voilá, working pattern.

Of course, I'm doing this in the round, so I'll have to remember to knit the rows after the yarn overs, but I feel much better for having figured this out. I also feel stupid, but hey, what can you do?

In other news, I have never felt any desire to knit socks. Mostly because I live in Florida, it's hot, and I try to avoid wearing full on shoes as much as possible, never mind socks (flip flops are a Florida girl's best friends). I am, however, completely in love with the idea of knitting knee socks, or stockings. I know, go figure. I picked up the Interweave Knits Summer '07 issue yesterday, and there's a pattern for both in it, so I may have to try this out. This could be the shortest-lived infatuation of all time.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Because I need another project to juggle

Today I got inspired to start on a bag I have in mind for my friend Heather's birthday. This "required" going out to buy yet another set of knitting needles. I didn't have the right size for what I have in mind. And if this thing turns out nearly half as well as I'm imagining it, I'll be quite impressed. Embellishing with a design done in embroidery floss? Creating my own cable pattern? Lining a bag? Potentially with a zippered part inside the lining? When I've never done any of those things? I am out of my mind, obviously.

I also bought a sketch pad to start writing down my ideas and jotting notes, in case I'm ever crazy enough to try to write a pattern. Or in case I think of something brilliant and don't want to forget it.

I went to Barnes and Noble at lunch today and picked up Sew U to help me in my process of teaching myself to sew. I really like the organization and the voice of the book. I'm a little discouraged by the fact that the patterns don't go larger than a 12, and I'm a couple of sizes bigger (at the moment, hoping to change that for a variety of reasons, but we'll add "sewing pattern sizes" to the list). Perhaps I can figure out how to fix them. It would be nice to be able to have three wardrobe-staple patterns that fit.

While there, I was also perusing through a few knitting books and flipped through Domiknitrix on a lark. Holy cow, I want this book. The patterns are neat, sure, but the first half of the book is a guide to all kinds of stitches, cast ons, decreases, etc., with color photography for each example and step-by-step instructions. I know how to do most of the things listed there, but it never hurts to have such a sensational reference guide. Plus, how much fun would it be to have a book called "Domiknitrix"? I'm easily amused.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Works in progress

I have four projects in various states of completion.

The one I'm concentrating most on is kind of babydoll-style tank..thing. Sort of. I don't know what to call it. I've finished the top and the straps, they're currently blocking. My goal is to finish the whole thing by the end of next week. Why? I don't know. It just seems like a good goal. But I'll have to see how long the bottom might take before I know if it's a reasonable goal.

The other thing that's getting the most attention is a blanket that I'm making for my mom for Christmas. I'm using a very pretty yarn: Andes in color 13. I'm pretty sure I'm going to need to go back to the yarn store to pick up a few more hanks. Blast. Anyway, I'm doing the blanket in a stockinette/reverse stockinette block pattern. That will make more sense when there are pictures, I'm sure.

I'm also working on a couple of scarves that I've been working on for a good 8 months now. I just got distracted by doing other projects that I've put the scarf making to the wayside.

In an attempt to get through some of my stash, I think I'm going to make some pillows. Stitch N' Bitch has a couple of pillow patterns, one that has a bunch of loops, and it looks like it could be fun. And I don't know what else to do with some of these yarns. They're not really of the quality or quantity that I'd want to use for most of the projects I have in my head. So we'll see.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

A few other finished projects

I'd really rather just start posting new works in progress, but I also want to have a record of these finished project, so here we go.

Fingerless mittens
I made these fingerless mittens for myself for work, because my office is so cold. I'd made another pair following a pattern from Stitch N' Bitch (I'll have to go look that up), so I made these based on what I'd learned from the first pair. I also can't remember the name of the yarn I used, but it's so soft and lovely and wonderful.

Lace headband
I wanted to try my hand at lace knitting but I needed something small, so I came up with this plan to make a headband. I got the lace pattern from and kind of just made up the rest of it as I went along.

Space Invaders pillow Space Invaders pillow back
I found a pattern for Space Invaders on, and I decided to make a pillow for a friend for his birthday. These photos are from it's blocking phase. I forgot to take a picture of it when it was finished.

Felted purse

My first projects were the requisite scarves. I made a ton for people for holidays last year. I don't have many photos of those, though.

The first major project I decided to try was a purse, from this episode of Knitty Gritty. I made some changes, though: no pattern, just a free-hand "image," and wooden-like handles opposed to knitted handles. I used Lion's Brand Wool in three different colors.

I'd never used double-knitting before, or felting, so it was an adventure. And I really like the results!

Felted purse, pre-felting
Bag, pre-felting

Felted purse, post-felting
Post-felting, drying.

Felted purse finished
Finished purse, ta-da.

I wish it were a little bigger. And that I'd made the closures a little more secure. I love using this purse, but it's difficult to carry everything I'd like.

Well, here I am.

I don't know why, but I decided that I didn't want to use my livejournal to blog about my crafty projects. I wanted something separate. So here I am.

I knit. I am about to attempt sewing. I love my hot glue gun, and think magnetic tape was the best invention ever. I like using knitting patterns as inspiration and like to make things up as I go. I have some inexplicable avoidance to knitting socks; could be because I prefer to be barefoot whenever possible.

The title of the blog comes from a Metric song, "Glass Ceiling." I like Metric. A lot. I like other bands, too. You can ask me about them if you like, but since they're not the focus of this blog, I will try not to rave about music too much.