Letting it out

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Now Listening: Atmosphere – We Ain’t Gonna Die Today
Mood: Exhausted

So, last we met, we have started the Marley, and I might have used up all of the time between the last entry and this making it. Might. *cough*

Finished Marley!

Name: Marley by Tin Can Knits
Needles: US11
Yarn: I cannot believe I had so much scrap wool yarn to make this. Er…various stuff, all wool.

Adding color!

I had to scour the yarn bins to look for more yarn. And I found lots of them. Most of them worsted, of course, but I found lots of sport, fingering, and lace. After this stripe of dark green, I decided to make a rainbow, and I sorted out colors.

So much color...

I forgot that I had several skeins of discontinued KnitPicks lace and fingering yarns, so they went in. Some leftover sock yarn. Lots of scrap from other projects.

Sailor Moon!

Watched a lot of Sailor Moon SuperS while knitting it. Also took it wherever I went, where I got lots of compliments on it.

It's so big...!

I casted off yesterday, and spent about ten minutes or so weaving in all of the ends that I couldn’t on route of knitting, then I tossed it into the washer.

Yes, you read that right, I tossed it into the washer. I filled the washer halfway and put in about a half-travel bottle of baby wash, then I gently placed the blanket into the bath. Closed the lid and let it agitate for ten seconds, then opened it for three or so minutes. Did that twice more before letting it soak for ten minutes, drained the water out. Repeated for the rinse, making sure the water did not hit the blanket while it was filling.

Sadly enough, I did not have enough foam square tiles for blocking, so I improvised: placing a few unused garbage bags on the floor, making an appropriate rectangle around them, and pinning the blanket’s lace border on the tiles, making sure not to stretch too badly. But it worked!

[imagine there’s a photo of the living room floor with the described here]

So yes, it turned into a really nice thing. Squishy and drapey. Oh, and it grew! It was 33x52in. before blocking and expanded to a generous 33x57in. Really nice and warm. Perfect for the summer nights when the AC dips to a frigid 75F. Yes I know it isn’t really. Hush.

Late night postings

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I used to do this. I used to type what I wanted to in the middle of the night. Or the earlier hours. I need to bring this back. This is for the readers who stay up in the graveyard shifts, those who are bored of the unchanging Facebook feed (Tumblr and Twitter has the wonderful thing of changing every other moment.)

So! First entry of the year. First January entry. What do I have to show for this? How about a new shawl pattern?

Ohm shawl III

Ohm Shawl, already on sale on Ravelry [link]. It’s a neat mosaic colorwork shawl, one I hope will make some heads turn. It was knit with Knitpicks Wool of the Andes on US10 needles, making this airy cloth with lots of drape. Already it is heading out as a late Christmas gift to an old friend of mine in Chicago.

While uploading photos, I was surprised on similar the first and last pic of the 364 Photo Challenge was. Here is the one in Jan. 1…

Coffee! #364photochallenge #firstphoto2016

…and the last one on Dec. 31.

*slurp*

I really need to cut down on my coffee intake. [Riiight]

Alright, off to bed.

It’s A Heartache

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Now Listening: Pavement – AT&T
Mood: Zombie Goat

A week has gone by and me with nothing to show for it. Correction: I finished the blanket throw.

Finished blanket!

Hook size: H/8, 5.0mm
Yarn: Scrap wool
Finished size: Approximately 4×5 ft [1.22x 1.5m]

I think I mentioned it before, but I consider this my summer project. Started with enough to make a scarf, but then I couldn’t stop. Until this beautiful thing came out. I even did a border.

Blanket edging

I spend a while trying to find one, and I thought to myself, “Dude, why not just make one?” So, I got a wool I didn’t use with the main body and did a modified mesh stitch, as follows:

First row: Ch5 (counts as a single crochet and Ch3), *single crochet in space, ch3* until end, slip stitch second chain
Second row: Ch6 (counts as half-double and ch3), *half-double crochet in chain space, ch3* until end, slip stitch 3rd chain. Bind off.

After that, I sewed in the ends and gave it a quick wash in the washer – extra large load amount with about a tablespoon or so of Gain laundry detergent. Yes, I know, I can see you guys wincing at that admission, but I was very watchful. Nothing bad came out of it, besides the blanket smelling of faintly pine forest. I spread it out on a shower curtain I bought for the purpose of unpinned blocking, and let it dry for the night.

It’s very warm and very snuggly. I’ve been using it for the times the AC shoots out its thick gooey flow of cold air during the night time, and it is quite comforting.

But right now, I’m making a hat.

0908061348a

It was the Big Nephew’s birthday these past weeks, and I promised him a hat when I was done with the blanket. So when I was thoroughly recuperated from the crochet attack, I cast on for the hat. I’m using the same yarn I used for the Boneyard Shawl, the last skein of it actually, and so far it’s coming out nicely. A bit too big, but I think it will look nice on the guy.

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–but the night waned and he sat upon the rock.”
-E. A. Poe, Silence – A Fable

There’s nothing going on at the moment. My days here have been reduced to me listening to Pizzicato Five while I knit and drink coffee. I am still writing, but right now it is just editing old stories and posting them to the writing blog. Speaking of which, the first story of Bar Jocks is up over there. I gave it an editing, polished a few things up. It was well needed: Story One is almost four years old. I will probably tackle the other Stories later on during the weekend.

I have been inspired in part by another writer I follow on Facebook/Twitter, Miss D. Swian. She has been posting story snippets every Tuesday or so on both avenues, and they are pretty good. I’m tempted to try to write more as a lame attempt to top her, but instead I’ll just go at my own pace.

In other news, I finished the BSJacket.

Baby Surprise Jacket

Everyone says that when you are finished, you end up with the knitted equivalent of a mantis ray, and I agree. It is floppy and nonsensical. You can see how the ombre yarn showed up, and you can also see where the replacement ball of yarn was added. However, if we sew up the seams with a slip-stitch crochet join…

Baby Surprise Jacket II

We get this oversized jacket that looks interestingly modern (to my eyes). The replacement ball has turned to a discernible button band and bottom hem. However, you don’t see the ombre part until you turn it over.

Baby Surprise Jacket III

I am probably going to redo the seams during the weekend. I feel that they are way too bulky. For that, I need to probably sew them. More research needed.

One last thing: I have constantly lamented the fact that my Fortuniana rose was not up to par. It kept on showing off pink blossoms instead of white. I should have reflected that if it wasn’t giving the right color rose, it must have been the wrong rose!

Spray Cecile Brunner rose

This is not a Fortuniana like the lady who gave it to me said, but instead a Spray Cecile Brunner. No idea where the original rose is, but I am pretty sure I have it still with me. After all, it was part of the original package.

Still, it is pretty.

Spray Cecile Brunner II

I just wish the current camera phone can take proper photos…

Endings of Startings

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Hello! How’s things with all of you? I have been okay, really I am. The Writing challenge left me a bit drained, so I decided to take the week off while I focused on other things, namely coffee and gym. And knitting.

As mentioned in the last entry, I was planning on doing the FatMuSlim’s Photo Challenge, and so far I have been plodding along. You can keep up with them on my Instagram page if you wish. I’m not pushing you.

So a few days ago, while I was looking for another skein of Lion Brand Sock-Ease (which I couldn’t find no matter how much I looked), The Soapy One came in and asked a few questions about the yarns I had strewn all over the bed. After letting her gently pet and stroke some really bulky yarn (Wisdom Yarns Poems Forte), she looked at me very seriously (for a six year old child) and said, “Can you pleeeaase make me a hat?”

“Sure!” I said, always willing to show off my talents. “With what yarn?”

She showed me the bulky yarn she was petting. “This one.”

I knew it was useless to argue when she has her serious face on. She’s like me in that aspect: You can give her all the reasons why it wouldn’t work and yet she will dig her heels in and say that it will. And it usually does. Like the hat.

Bulky-weight hats

The left is Soapy’s, the right’s my own. I used Sheep and Stitch’s big hat pattern, perfect for bulky yarn and really good with the hat. After finishing it, I looked at one of the skeins of Araucania’s Maipo and cast on for my own hat, this time I added a basic cable with it. I might be making more of these in the near future. 😀

I also finished socks.

Rye socks!

Tin Can Knits’ “Rye” socks, made on US5 needles, yarn is Tess’s Designer Yarn, colorway “You’re not in Kansas anymore”. They fit like a glove, and I might use this pattern as a standard sock pattern. I just need to find some more superwash worsted.

Also, the other pair of socks are up and running.

Stripy socks!

To the long-time readers of this blog, you may have seen these socks back in 2012, and that I have made a mention of them back in 2014. Well, I finished with the socks but the cuffs needed redoing (the ribbing wasn’t long enough on both), so I took an evening to redo them. As I has said before, when it comes to socks, Second Sock Syndrome hits hard.

Catch-ups and Ketchups

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I’ve been distracted. Things have happened that has left me head-scratching and plain confused. Ergo, the lack of the current updates. But at least I can give you a condensed version.

Monday night I was experiencing dizziness and numbness of the left side, so Tuesday morning I went to the general doc’s to get that looked at. After a few tests, they thought I was having a minor stroke, so I was rushed to the ER for more testing. The ER doc thankfully gave me a clean bill of health, but he said I was having a general case of paresthesias. With that, I was shuffled off to a nerve specialist to see what they can do, but I couldn’t go because Wednesday I was having a case of minor cold and sinus trouble. That could have been the cause of the first event, but I need to go back to the general doc to make sure. *sigh*

For knitting, two things. One is that I am finished with a quick shawl.

Simple shawl

This was meant to be a hat, but the gauge was way too tight for anyone, so I frogged it and added the other two skeins to make this. The shawl is out of Arauciana Maipo, colorway 108, which is a brownish olive. Turns to a burnished gold dappled with browns in the sun. Seeing this is a bulky yarn, I got my US18 needles and cast on for a triangular shawl. Two skeins later, I added a few rows of basic lace and voila! instant fashion. And it feels so soft and cuddly. I’m going to mail this off with the BSJacket when that is finished.

I finally finished Mom’s First Point of Libra shawl.

FPoL done!

Alas, this is only photo of the finished item. The moment I took it off the blocking board and gave it to Mom, she whisked it away and I have not been able to take a photo of it with her wearing it. Still, as you can tell, it is a huge monster. When measured on the side, it was almost 40 inches wide. I just wish I could have taken another photo…

As for the writing challenge, fear not. I’ll post again today so I don’t bog you down with a huge blog entry.

Autumnal musings

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So. It’s September 23. The first day of fall. The beginning of the Libran sun. I am enjoying this day to the utmost. It was so balmy and breezy this morning, then it slowly warmed to the usual heat of the Summer. But during the morning hours, it felt like October Country was slowly arriving. One can hope that the coming month will indeed be cool as a snowcone and welcome as a fluffy kitten.

Speaking of fall, the First Point of Libra shawl is finished.

A better view

[The pattern link]

In all honesty, this was pretty much a nice adventure in mostly mindless knitting. I mean, it is pure garter constructed most cunningly. I like it so much that I already bought yarn for another one.

Upcoming project yarn

The colors look so good that I’m tempted to give the first to mom, who really wants it, and make this one for me. I am not a fan of red in general, but these shades scream out Fall. And Autumn. And will probably stand out more than the other in the dreary days of winter. Hm.