oh the mistakes I make

Sometimes I find myself making the most stupid simple mistakes. This morning was no exception. I’ve been working on the edging of a shawl for probably close to a year now. My first problem (not a mistake, this was intentional) was making the shawl larger. I did this because, well, I’m a larger person than most people, especially circumference-wise. The situation in which I now find myself is that the edging is knitted on sideways and due to the larger circumference it means that the border takes longer to knit. So here I am, knitting away on this shawl. The border is knit on sideways and will have (I believe) somewhere near 35 repeats of the cable pattern. And since this is the second time I’ve knit this, you’d think that I would know this pattern cold. As it turns out, I modified the pattern this morning by adding an extra little yarn over.


See that? This type of mistake is such a newbie one – it is caused by bringing the yarn over the needles when switching from the knit to the purl stitch (or the reverse) instead of moving the yarn down and under the needles. I’m really glad that I go back and double check my work…otherwise I might not have noticed. I probably would have gotten about 3 rows up and wondering why my stitch count was off….But this was easily rectified. :-) I do know how to fix most of my mistakes.

vanity in knitting

Ever since I updated my Ravelry project page for my latest shawl, I’ve had a few people “like” the project. Now I’ve been logging in every day just to see if my “likes” numbers have gone up. Sadly, they are still at 3.

Southwest Ravelry Project Likes

I have to say admit that this is probably one of the best things I’ve knitted. I love it and everyone who has seen it has loved it too. Considering that I still consider myself a relative newbie, for something to turn out “nice” by my standards is saying that I’ve come a long way in knitting. I actually made -0- mistakes in this garment (having to knit backwards to correct mistakes, naturally). I’m quite proud.

Now if those numbers could just go up a little…

the ever elusive new project

Or “too many projects to choose from dilemma”

Now that I’m done with the Southwest Arrow, I’m itching to start a new lace project. Never mind that I still have 2 gifts on the needles. Never mind that I have 2 pairs of socks on the needles. The problem with aforementioned 4 projects is that 1) not all of them are travel-worthy and 2) the two that are travel worthy are going with me next week to DC/Maryland and 3) the last one is, well, boring.

Now, as for the DC/Maryland trip, that is a whole other situation. Saturday will be a mostly travel day – so the knitting will have to be of such a nature that I can pick up and put down with minimal effort – which means no long, complicated charts and no beads (one of the gift projects mentioned above will be my first beaded project). Socks are the best option here – except they get a little boring after a while since the socks I’m knitting are plain-jane-straight-up-non-fancy socks. Comfy, but boring to knit.

One of the gift projects will be perfect for the travel portion of the trip, except that I’m almost done with it, so I’ll need to plan a second project as backup.

So. Here I am, searching for a new project. I’ve several lace projects in mind, but I don’t want to buy new yarn, so I’m confined to what I already own. Not a problem. I have one skein of Madelinetosh Lace weight yarn (950 yards) and I have 3 skeins of some lovely silk blend lace-weight yarn at 550 yards (totaling 1,650 yards). Some of the patterns I’ve seen are too large for the Madelinetosh, but way too short for the silk blend. Back to searching….searching…. I know I’ll find the right project. I just know it.

and another shawl is d.o.n.e.

I finished the last repeat last night at 7 PM and by 8PM I had the thing blocking.

Here is what it looked like before:


Notice that you can’t see the lacework in the middle brown section? That’s because lace needs to be opened up by blocking. Blocking is not difficult but it can be time consuming. First, you have to do this:


Let it soak for about 30 minutes. I add a little bit of Woolite just to soften things up a little.

While it is blocking it looks like this:


Notice how much bigger the shawl looks? And you can see the lacework on the bottom half of the shawl. This one didn’t turn out as big as I had thought it would – I had a fair amount of yarn left over. But it is still a decent size. I’ll take a pic of me with it on tomorrow when I take it off the wires.

Now I get to chose a new project! Yipee!

chugging right along

One of the things I like about the pattern I’m knitting right now is that even though the border is knitted on sideways, multiplying the amount of knitting by a factor of about 10 (really it is a factor of 2, but it feels much more like a factor of 10), the repeats (of which there were 26) are getting smaller and shorter. I’m down to just 5 repeats left and there are only 9 stitches on border, as opposed to 32 when I started.

In the picture below the space between the orange line and the first yellow line took about 25 minutes (or less, I wasn’t really paying attention) and the number of repeats between the two yellow lines is 5, which means that I have about 2.5 hours (or less) of knitting left on this shawl.


Which means that when I travel to Maryland in 2 weeks, this baby will be D.O.N.E. and I’ll have an opportunity to work on something DIFFERENT! Yey!

The only problem is now that the shawl is almost done, it is now summer. :-( Poor timing on my part, very poor.


nothing interesting going on…

Nothing new to report. This weekend is the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival…and I’m missing it.

I’m still working on all the shawls.

I had my annual performance review. I will still be employed come June 1st. Yey!

I just purchased 7 books. Two of the four I need for my class in June and the other 5 will be for one of my Fall classes. Ugh. Just the thought of reading that much has got my eyes sore.

But the good news I have is that I’ve finally got a game plan for graduation. And a date, may 2016. Seven courses and two semesters of internship. I. Can. Do. This.

lessons learned and a shawl update

I think my little “staycation” was successful. Here is a list of just *some* of the things I did:

  1. Received permission to stop wearing my knee brace. YEY!
  2. Made a trip to Ikea and purchased curtains for my little painting project. Then I subsequently ruined the curtains by washing and drying them, effectively shrinking them length-wise by 13 inches. These have now turned into my “test” curtains. When I finally figure out what I’m going to do and make sure that it will work, I’ll go back and purchase some more. Luckily the curtains were only $20 for 2.
  3. Made my first (and second and third) batch of panang. Yum!
  4. Took Bug out to lunch and to see a movie. We saw Mr. Peabody and Sherman. While I don’t think he understood all the “adult” humor, he totally enjoyed the movie, so I’ll call it a success.
  5. Watched Divergent with Kate. I think we both enjoyed the movie, even though I didn’t get home and to bed last night until 10:30. A very late night for me.
  6. Did a lot of knitting – including the picture below.
  7. Took a knitting class on how to do brioche knitting. Fairly easy technique once you understand it properly. Until you make a mistake and don’t know how to fix it. I’ll have to make a run up to the knitting store on Saturday. :-(
  8. Attended the Church of the Fluffy Pillow on Sunday and aside from the 2 phone calls Sunday morning, it was glorious.

Here is the update picture of the Follow Your Arrow shawl. I’ve begun the edging, which is knitted on sideways. This designer has totally blown my mind with techniques on this shawl, up to and including the spine stitch that looks like it is knitted one way but is actually knit sideways. Totally. Awesome. To get the full detail of this image, click on it to embiggen it.

Follow Your Arrow 2 - panoramic





I’ll post a picture of the brioche next week after I get my little mistake fixed. :-)