Wednesday, June 22, 2005


From the tyranny of unsuccessful knitting projects.

(I was looking for an illustration for "freedom"...don't know if this quite hits the nail on the head, but hey, who doesn't love Opus?)

I've had a miserable couple of weeks (Without reliving them on my blog, let's just describe them as containing major issues with SN pup and her school/therapy and even school bus schedule that have threated to toss my usually thinly balanced emotional stability out the window.)

I've been really frazzled lately and it's shown up in my knitting. Missed stitches, wonky tension, all sorts of silly stuff that doesn't usually happen to me. Well, doesn't always happen to me.

So, with the permission of the knitting goddesses Maggie and Angela at SNB last night, I ripped out all my WIPS!! (sorry, no pictures, it was a spur of the moment thing and I didn't have my camera with me.)

The Marissa sweater in the green cotton blend was completed up to the shoulders...and I ripped it all out! (Hey, even if I fixed the twisted stitch, and blocked the diamond pattern to an acceptably smooth finish, I still wasn't happy with the drape of the fabric.) Normally, I would feel compelled to press on and complete the item, but it suddenly seemed more practical to not spend 15 more hours finishing something destined for the heap of unwearables in the back of my closet.

The second item to meet a similar fate was a little picot edged baby sweater in pink. (Yeah, I know, SIL just had a little boy, this was a surprise for another baby.) Anyway, I've had this pattern hanging around for at least 10 years and never had an excuse to try it.

Well, I tried it. The shaping isn't fabulous, but the worst part was the picot edge. In my recent fog, I followed the directions exactly, without thinking or comprehending their implications. The instructions called for a few rows of stockingette on slightly smaller needles than the body of the sweater, then a row of yarnovers, then a few rows of stockingette before the pattern began. To finish the sweater, you fold the edge over and slip stitch it in place. On a teeny, tiny sweater this is tricky to make look nice. Bulky and finicky. Had I read ahead, I would have either cast on provisionally and knit the hem into the sweater a few rows after the picot row or just knit a picot edge without the foldover. Grrr....

So, out it goes! It's a little pile of cotton candy coloured yarn again!

I'm back to finding knit-worthy projects again...

Oh, BTW, here is the collection of pj bags for Clare's party a week ago..

Monday, June 13, 2005

35.75 miles...or 57.5 kilometers for you metric folks

That's how much yarn is in my stash, described linearly.

To help you visualize that, I could use my ball winder and wind up my entire stash into a ball of yarn that could be stretched between Toronto and Burlington (more or less)

It goes without saying that the yarn diet is failing miserably.

Thanks to boogaj for encouraging this train of thought!

On the other hand, the yarn stash sounds entirely managable when you consider that one teeny, tiny, practically inconsequential lead pencil can write a line 35 miles long. I mean, how much space can a lead pencil's worth of yarn occupy?

On a happy note, my SIL had a little boy on Thursday! I love knitting for babies, but with 3 girls, I haven't had much chance to make things for little boys. Any thoughts for cute, practical little boy knits are appreciated.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Gosh this is fun!

Maybe a bit too much fun...

Even the snarly stuff is neat now!

Ok, back to reality. The girls' fundraiser is over and I have to produce financial statements for a School Council Meeting TOMORROW night. Oh, the SAC financial statements are due simultaneously.

Did I mention it's the twins birthday tomorrow too? (I know, I'm the world's worst mum, going to a School Council meeting on their birthday, but we are opening a present and having cake before I leave. Plus, the BIG PARTY is going to be on Saturday afternoon.

The theme is "Pajama Party" (not be be confused with "sleepover"...this is a co-ed event for 5 and 6 year olds), so I'm making themed gift bags. I found some nifty polar fleece at the fabric store, so I'm whipping up little pajama bags to hold the loot. So, sometime after cupcake decorating tonight, financial statement preparation, family birthday party and the School Council meeting, I'm going to be re-training myself on re-threading my 1949 Singer sewing machine.

I must have a deep-rooted fear of feeling in control of my life to take on so many silly and time-intensive projects all the time.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

My Next Project...

Ok, technically, I'm not done Via Diagonale yet, but it's at the "non-knitting stage" and I need something more repetitive on the needles for my limited down time.

The body of Via Diagonale is complete and I JUST need to make the I-cord. I find I-cord to be the most tedious type of knitting I have encountered. Wait, I stand corrected, attached I-cord narrowly edges out loose I-cord. I'm planning to cheat (Zibibbo, if you are reading this, avert your eyes) and use this:

the Bond America Magicord Machine, to make the I-cord. I know, then I'll have to sew it on by hand, but for some reason this seems to produce a neater result for me than making the attached I-cord in the first place.

The real show stopper is that I will have to wind another ball of Butterfly Super 10 in the main colour to make the I-cord. I picked up my stash of Butterfly Super 10 when a local yarn store went out of business and some of the skeins were pretty bedraggled when I liberated them. I won't be able to use my new swift to wind them because the skeins are just too frazzled, so I figure I'm in for about a half hour of drudgery unsnarling the skein prior to winding it.

You get the idea...

So, in the meantime, I'm distracting myself by knitting something for me, a summer top!

It's from Melissa Leapman's Hot Knits...Marissa

It's a basic, short-sleeved summer top. Fairly frumpy, but hey, who am I kidding, so am I. Or rather, the currently fashionable tank tops and sleeveless creations write cheques that my doughy, 40ish upper arms can no longer cash!

I'm planning to knit it in a celery green cotton blend from my stash. I'll admit, I was a bit more enthusiastic about this project BEFORE I whipped out my pattern at SNB last night. It was pointed out that an adult-sized project knit on 3.75 mm needles might not be the best choice for someone who complained about the time commitment required to finish Via Diagonale. (Actually, I think someone sucked air through their teeth and said...whoa, that's brave to start so late in the I'm paraphrasing again.)

I'm going to try to knit it on circular needles up to the armhole, partly because it will be quicker than stockingette on straight needles and partly to eliminate any "waviness" noticable on the fine gauge stockingette because of differences in "knit" and "purl" tension. I'm sort of between sizes for this pattern, so I think that I might knit the smaller of my likely sizes and retain the two seaming stitches when I convert the pattern to circular, just to buy me a tich more room.

Anyway, that's what I'm up to...