Thursday, December 20, 2007

Tidying up Loose Ends

Yes, yes, I've been promising readers my notes on my Volare socks (link to ravelry, sorry non-ravelers). Well, here's the instructions, at least the best I think I can give you without copyright violation:

Volare:


You will need:
  • A Copy of Sensational Knitted Socks if you would like more detailed instructions for some points. (please note that this book provides a lot of the instructions for this sock, though experienced sock knitters should be able to deduce the pattern from the given information)
  • Needles in the required size to give you your wanted gauge (I used four size 1 dpns, but do note that you may find the toe and heel significantly easier if you use two circulars, magic loop or five dpns)
  • Yarn, in my case, KnitPicks Felici, in Hummingbird
  • A tapestry needle
  • A scrap length of yarn (about a yard should be enough)
Gauge:
I got approximately 8.5 stitches to the inch in stockinette, but if they fit, don't worry about it. I used 66 stitches; your cast on needs to be a multiple of 11. Or see Charlene Schurch's notes about modifying the stitch patterns.

Instructions:

Follow the instructions in the "Chevron stitches for Self-Striping yarn" chapter of Sensational Knitted Socks, using the following stitch pattern: (essentially, cast on a multiple of 22 stitches and work a few ridges in garter stitch before working the pattern) You may also desire to substitute my variation on the Afterthought (forgive me, Tsock Tsarina) Peasant heel (follows stitch), as I did, because I find the Forethought heel annoying:



From Barbara Walker's Craft of Lace Knitting.Crest of the Wave Pattern:

Rnd 1 (and further odd numbered rounds): knit

Rnds 2 & 4: purl

Rnds 6, 8, 10, & 12: *(k2 tog) 2 times, (yo, k1) 3 times, yo, (ssk) 2 times

Arachnera's heel/toe variation: (Actually, this starts with the toe. To use my heel, knit a row in scrap yarn on the heel needle at the requisite area and ignore Charlene Schurch's heel instructions. Note that this may cause you to encounter some difficulty in trying the sock on.)


At the toe:

Purl to approx. the middle of the instep. Stop. You are going to move your stitches around. Right now, your stitches are arranged something like this:


with the sole stitches on those two upper needles, and the instep stitches divided between the other two needles. You are going to divide the work so that you have at least thirteen stitches on either side of the red stitches(which are the first sole stitches on either side) [ETA: Important errata: In which case, I didn't read my instructions carefully enough to make the picture, as it has been a couple months since I made these: the red(pink) stitches are pictured on the wrong needles] on two of the needles, and the extra stitches of either the sole or the instep on the third needle. You have moved the beginning of the round to the middle of the instep. Make a note of the first stitch on either side of the sole. These stitches are going to be the center of your double decrease and are important.
\
Repeat these two rounds until 34 stitches remain (16 rounds):
Rnd 1: Purl to stitch before side stitch (If you so desire, place a marker to remind you of this point), sl1, k2tog, psso. Knit around to the stitch before the other side stitch. Here, sl1, k2tog, psso. Purl to beg of round.
Rnd 2: Purl all purl stitches and knit all knit stitches. (Knit the side/decrease stitches)
After 34 sts remain, repeat rnd 1 four times so that 18 stitches remain. Divide these eighteen stitches into sole and instep stitches and graft using regular stockinette grafting. Rejoice. Weave in ends...
No! Wait! You're not done yet. Go-back-to-the-heel...Using one of your needles, pick out the spare yarn and pick up the heel stitches. You can do this however you like, however, I highly recommend utilizing the normal knitting direction around the sock for the stitches at the top of the heel. The best way I found to to this is to pick up the stockinette stitches along the sole first without unpicking the waste yarn, then unpick the waste yarn as you go picking up the stitches at the top of the heel because the yo's on row twelve of the Crest of the Wave are difficult to catch otherwise. Okay. You are going to pick up 1-3 extra stitches as you feel necessary at both corners to catch holes. If you wish, match your stripe repeat(you may want to note KnitPicks's note on the stripe repeat if you are using Felici), but you can just start knitting. You are basically going to repeat your feat at the toe, except you are going to not going to purl one side of the toe-so go back to the toe section and repeat that. Graft the stitches shut. Weave in ends. Finally! You are finished with one sock. Now, just wait! You haven't made the other sock yet! Or have you? Well, anyway, if you seem to be in need of a second sock, repeat the whole directions. Wear and show off.
Good luck!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Letters, part I

Note: Arachnera's Web apologizes for bringing you the message that there will be no pictures today. Sorry.

I realized that I have been neglecting my blog, and neglecting to update my Runagogo totals yesterday but was unable to post. Note that these letters are not meant to be taken seriously.

Dear Knitty,
Why in the world do you have to offer such wonderful sock patterns, and so many of them, too? I have "queued" all the sock yarn I own, and I have dozens of sock patterns, including my own ideas yet to knit! Please, Knitty, don't publish any sock patterns for a season or two, so I can catch up on my sock plans! On second thought, though, what if you substitute beautiful hat patterns or something?
-(*Not so*)Sincerely,
Arachnera
P.S.: And why did you have to post that article about spinning!? You're making me want a currently unattainable Kromski wheel even more.

Psst! The winter Knitty is up! Go take a peek. Sock patterns-check. Jeanie-check. Ice Queen-check. Aoife-check. (And no, for those of you on Ravelry, I will not add these to my queue [this is my problem word. I can't remember how to spell it. Along with plateau.])

Dear Ms. Pearl-McPhee:
Regarding: Second Sock Syndrome

I am afraid you seem to have neglected to mention my type of second sock syndrome in your book Stephanie Pearl-McPhee Casts Off or else I have a combination of types. I suffer from an unwillingness to complete and/or cast on the second sock and sometimes wait so long after completeing the first sock that I forget what exactly I did on it to copy on the second sock! Why, I have about 60% of a pair of Meida's Socks done, and about 52% of my Austrian socks and exactly 49.5% of a pair of socks based off Charlene Schurch's cabled socks in Sensational Knitted Socks, but the pattern of my own devising, based off a Barbara Walker stitch pattern.
Oh! Sorry, Ms. Pearl-McPhee. This is not at all your fault. I just have to develop stick-to-it-ness.
Apologies,
Arachnera

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

I AM still here...

Yes, I'm here. I've been on Ravelry a lot lately. I've completed a pair of socks, but not the Bavarian socks, and I don't have a picture of them. Regardless of that, here's a picture of something that has been complete for a while and needs to be blocked:





My snowdrop shawl!

I've been wearing this all day, so that's the reason it's wrinkled. Plus, as mentioned above, it needs to be blocked.


P.S. (ETA) Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Now I go a Raveling, a Raveling

There has been very little progress as of late on anything, but I am now on Ravelry! (I'm Arachnera, of course!)

Here are a few of the things in the design works here at Arachnera's Web:

Unknowns(i.e. I have the ideas and may have started some calculations, but they're on the back burner):
  1. A fair isle style sweater (Theme: a country autumn)
  2. A yoke sweater that I persist in calling the "Chestnuts" sweater after the Christmas song
  3. A unique cabled pullover w/ empire waist
  4. A fiber arts shawl
  5. A shawl themed after the children's classic The Secret Garden

Of those, 1, 2, & 3 are the top priorities, and 5 has been put on the back burner temporarily due to the loss of the acquainted sketch. Still, they are big projects and I do not have a reputation for finishing large projects quickly.

Socks(which should come along sooner:

  1. "Antonym" (hibernating)
  2. A variation on SKS cables (in progress)
  3. Crest o' the Wave variation on SKS chevron aka Volare (finished/notes yet to be written/scrapped full pattern due to copyright, etc.)
  4. G. socks w. cable based on the classic string figure "Jacob's Ladder"
  5. S. socks w. intwining cables
  6. H. socks w. basic texture patterns.
  7. R. socks w. lace patterns
  8. "Pomegranate" socks
  9. socks which violate a cardinal rule of Knitty (tee-hee!)
  10. socks with corn (the existance of which is questionable)
  11. present socks (for Christmas)
  12. knee socks (to be further abreviated ks) in traditional patterns: Aran
  13. ks Fair Isle
  14. ks Norweigian
  15. ks lace
  16. ks Gansey
  17. twisted stitch socks (Die Blau Donau)
  18. twisted stitch socks (In der Halle des Berkonig)

I've left quite a few question marks, I'm sure. Guess what 4, 5, 6, & 7 were designed as a set inspired by?

ETA: the lists above are supposed to be numbered lists! Hello, Blogger?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Dies ist Wetter für Enten.

I beg of you, look at this forecast for my region! This is nothing but weather for ducks. Unfortunately, the Austrian socks have not been given much time, so there is little progress. On the flip side, I apparently made a good deal of progress in the two weeks between my first two piano lessons (No, they are not supposed to occur every other week, but there were certain circumstances that lead to this this past week)

If anyone chances to be reading my blog regularly, they may have noticed that I was promising a pattern for Crest of the Wave socks. Unfortunately, Charlene Schurch beat me too it. So really all I did was combine a technique I learned from EZ (oddly enough, I really don't believe that technique was the one that she was trying to teach), the "Chevron Patterns for Self-Striping Yarn" skeleton, a pattern that both I and Ms. Schurch (in all likelihood, now don't quote me on Ms. Schurch) pulled out of stitch treasuries, and my variation on the toe. So, I will not be giving complete directions, just a quick and dirty chart to show you my modification, a few numbers, and my notes on the heel and toe.

I do have some other sock design ideas, though.... Including ones inspired by the musical compositions featured in my titles (Die Blaue Donau the Blue Danube, which seems to be working out, and In der Halle des Bergkönig In the Hall of the Mountain King, which looks like it will require some tinkering, both of which are twisted stitch designs)

As for Runagogo, I haven't updated my progress meter lately, but I haven't been walking that much, either, and I'm not sure how I might accomplish that in this rainy weather. We'll just see...

Friday, October 19, 2007

Bayerische Stricken in der Halle des Bergkönigs

And still on go the Austrian socks. And Arachnera learns to play "In the Hall of the Mountain King" from Edvard Grieg's "Peer Gynt" Suite No. 1 (listen here)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Doppleviereck mit Dradhi mit Ketterl auf die blaue Donau

[Insert picture of Austrian Socks WIP here]
(ETA: Here's the picture:














Sorry! Forgot to take the picture.
Coming Soon: Picture and pattern for Crest of the Wave pattern socks.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Very Quickly

You probably won't guess what Arachnera has been doing?
Ah, well, I've been starting piano lessons. And sometimes looking at complex pieces is discouraging. Uff!
Goodbye
P.S. I did recieve the KnitPicks October catalogue. Just as I thought this was cute, I now think this is cute!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Just a quick post

I probably have eight more rows on the leg of my Crest of the Wave socks. I've been thinking about the Tangled Yoke cardigan today. (Thank you, Yarn Harlot, for mentioning your reward yarn! It made me think of the Tangled Yoke cardigan) After seeing Scholastica's Tangled Yoke progress at the Tangled Yoke KAL and at Footsteps on Wool I thought perhaps of using KnitPicks Palette on that particular project. By the way, I think KnitPicks is trying to convince me that I should purchase Andean Treasure, because every time I add items to my cart (which is not actually finalized yet...), it displays the Andean Treasure page!
I'm trying for Runagogo this session, but I didn't get to walk yesterday because I was at the library, and I'm not so sure whether I'll get to walk today... We'll just have to see...

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Calloo! Callay! Oh Frabjous Day!

Ever read Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass? Well, the poem Jabberwocky:
'Twas brillig and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gymbal in the wabe
All mimsy were the borogoves
And the mome raths outgrabe

Beware the Jabberwock, my son
The teeth that bite, the claws that snatch
Avoid the ??? and shun
The frumious bandersnitch
.....
something about vorple swords

Calloo, callay, oh, frabjous day!

And that's all I remember. Well, anyway, the USB cable today presents to you:






My shipment from Knitpicks back in July. I am making socks (And could use a beta knitter!) out of the Felici, which is second from right in the top row








My unused sock yarn as of August 1, 2007. (Now I have started a sock in the Essential tweed, which is the blue yarn in the photo. The yarn in the upper left is hand dyed with Kool-Aid.










Doilies from Patricia Kristoffersen's Doilies with a Twist:

Left: Rosa in DMC Baroque, Ecru
Center: Doily #6, the same that's on the cover. I don't recall the name...
Right: Irene in Royale crochet cotton, Mint







A not so well lighted picture (plus an error with the flash) of the hand dyed KnitPicks Lace Weight I am using for a slightly modified version of Hazel Carter's Shetland Sampler Stole from A Gathering of Lace. I'd call the color Dusty Rose or Raspberry Sorbet.








Here is the sock in Felici, my own design (that's where I'm looking for a beta knitter!), taken several days ago (This sock is now finished)


And now let's see if Blogger and my exhausted camera batteries will let me upload any more pictures...






Another of my own designs, this the one being made of Essential Tweed












A Locker Hook rug I (was) working on. I think it's lingering in UFO status....












Guess what technique was used for this potholder....









Nalbinding, that's what! (Self designed nalbound potholder, in Mauch Chunky Kiwi w. Lion Brand Landscapes Rose Garden woven through it.)

An assortment of projects: The shawl back when it was in progress, my first sweater, and a bag I am making from the pattern in SnB Crochet (There seemed to be an error in the pattern, also, I ignored the instruction to turn)









A random pair of finished socks (actually, the ones I mention in this post) modeled by one of the few sweaters I like in this fall's VK










Have any of you received your KnitPicks October catalogs yet? I'm curious as to what all colorwork projects they have. I have Sweaters from Camp out from the library, and I've never done Fair Isle knitting before, and it just blows my mind!

Also, I am knitting a Tomten jacket-in acrylic. I may have more to say on this, so stay tuned

-Arachnera

P.S. As I keep hinting, I'm looking for a beta-knitter/proofreader for my pattern... Leave a comment, or email me at arachnera_at_gmail.com if you're interested...

Monday, September 17, 2007

Lace CRAZY!

Note:
Okay, before we get to today's main content, let me note this:
Camera: Check
Computer: Check
USB Cable: Uh, oopsies...
The USB Cable is absent and thus will not be bringing you today's photos.

Friday:
It all began a little over a year ago, probably the weekend before Wednesday, August 30, 2006's entry "TTY, or a parody of Tortured Tangled Hearts". And it ended perhaps half an hour to fifteen minutes before midnight on Friday, September 14, 2007. It thus took a year and a half. You query, what am I talking about? Well, Arachnera brings you, as of today, the finished (but yet to be blocked) Snowdrop Shawl. (Take a peep at the above note for why the picture is missing...)
Stats:
1 100g skein KnitPicks Bare Merino Laceweight (880yds), natural
U.S. size 6 straight needles
1 dpn, size 10, 10 1/2 or 11 (I don't remember exactly what I used)
1 yr, 1/2 month.
This shawl was proudly modeled at the Wool Gathering.


Saturday:
The day of the Wool Gathering! There will most certainly be more socks on the way, because I got three skeins of sock yarn there. I also bought 3 oz. Wensleydale sliver in a deep green with red and blue fibers, 1 oz. Fox Fibre Vreseis cotton in a medium brown color, and 4 oz. Romney(?) roving in charcoal gray. Check later for more updates on what happens with this sock yarn.

After we got home from the wool gathering, I must have had the "startitis." Yes, oh, yes, I started socks like mad, but one was frogged. Now I have four pairs of socks "in progress." I listened to Lion Boy, by Zizou Corder.

Sunday:
Listened more to Lion Boy. Started a sock on U.S. size 1, set of 4 dpns, in the KnitPicks Felici Hummingbird I received this past July.

What happened to the other skein of laceweight I bought according to the Yarn Harlot's estimated quantity? Ah, well, I picked up A Gathering of Lace from the library, and having been looking around, I have decided that I absolutely love several of the Shetland lace shawls. (Such as the Unst Bridal Shawl, the Princess Shawl, and the Spring Shawl here.) as well as several of the American Alpaca Company's shawls (The Whisper shawl, the Winter Wonderland Shawl, the Misty Morning Shawl, the Forest Path Stole, and the Reflections Stole). (Three free lace patterns that intrigue me, but are being saved for a later date: Eunny Jang's Print o' the Wave stole,{totally irrelated, but I do believe I like just about any Eunny Jang design. Kudos to Eunny!} Orenburg style shawl{As a sidenote, be forewarned that the Orenburg shawl is a huge PDF file due to its pages of charts), and Daisies shawl) Anyway, I'm thinking I might try a slightly modified version of the Shetland Sampler stole by Hazel Carter from A Gathering of Lace. {I keep going off on tangents, or as my teacher calls them, rabbit trails, but anyway, have you seen Sweaters from Camp? I've never knitted Fair Isle, but that book made me want to try} So I dyed the other skein with Kool-Aid this weekend.
This did not turn out as I intended... The color seems to be a pale pink/dusty antique rose, rather than the reddish purple I was hoping for. I used 1 packet grape and 1 packet fruit punch on 1 100g skein of yarn.

Monday(Today):
I have knitted a good deal on those socks in KnitPicks Felici. I am at the time of this blog entry almost finished with the seventh repeat of the 12 row pattern, and past the heel, where I am doing an afterthought heel, albeit with a scrap yarn knitted in. The yarn seems to have some subtle variation in color within the solid section that reminds me (I am not an authority on this sort of thing, having never really properly experienced kettle dyed yarn) of kettle dyed yarn. I may give you a pattern for this.
Also, on the web today, I listened to KnitPicks Podcast 20 while knitting on my socks. This was my first podcast, and I chose today to try one because I had finally remembered to bring my socks today! And what did I start thinking of as Kelley Petkun was talking about short rows and I was working on my socks? This entry, from all the way back in January (!) from the Yarn Harlot's blog. Fortunately, Ms. Petkun does not have any power over my knitting, though it was a bit more difficult to pay attention. I may put up the patterns to my two sock designs, however, they are highly based off Sensational Knitted Socks patterns, so if they do get up, they will not have extensive information. By reading my blogs listed in the sidebar (Note to self: Fix Eunny Jang link), I came across this sock pattern which I will have to try sometime.

For no particular reason, if you were wondering, I kind of lagged out of Runagogo, but I may just make another effort now that cooler weather has started once the new session starts.
Unfortunately, I have got to go now.
Happy Knitting,
Arachnera

P.S.: Fall Knitty's out!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Difficulties

Okay. I have two Google accounts. I have an account "arachnera@yahoo.com" that owns this blog. I also have an account "arachnera@gmail.com " that has gmail and everything associated with it. Have you ever heard of the Blogger email posting feature? Well, I'm trying this out right now from arachnera@gmail.com . I have had quite a few difficulties trying to juggle both Google accounts, and at the moment I seem to be logged into both, but that makes no sense! By the way, here are my Ravelry stats:
  • You signed up on September 10, 2007
  • You are #32086 on the list.
  • 19210 people are ahead of you in line.
  • 823 people are behind you in line.
  • 38% of the list has been invited so far
  • Clearly, I'm still waiting...

Monday, September 10, 2007

Ravelry...

  • You signed up on Today
  • You are #32086 on the list.
  • 20205 people are ahead of you in line.
  • 0 people are behind you in line.
  • 36% of the list has been invited so far
  • For no particular reason, I signed up.

Exactly 5 days until the wool gathering!

The Wool Gathering in Yellow Springs, Ohio takes place next weekend. Unless something goes drastically wrong, I hope to be there. (Note to self: Remember Robert Burns quote: "The best laid schemes o' mice an' men gang aft agley.") What have I been doing?
Well, knitting group at the library is tonight. I have done some work on the Snowdrop Shawl, but I think I'm about 1-2 repeats from the approximate halfway point on the edging.

I started socks of my own design, but based on the cable pattern in Sensational Knitted Socks in KnitPicks Essential Tweed Marina on size 0 needles. My feet are approximately size 7 1/2, and these socks are 77 stitches around in the leg and I believe about 68 in the foot. They are tight and rather difficult to get on. My fingers are itching to start another sock, but I am trying not to. I also have an unfinished pair of socks in Parade.

I have a pair of gloves that has lain in UFO status for probably almost two years now, due to the fact that I do not like knitting glove fingers. I detest the task. However, I have started double knitting the middle finger. Maybe there is hope for these socks.

While I was one a mysterious blogging hiatus, I made a nalbound potholder. It felted out circularly, but the shape was something of a septagon/heptagon before it was complete.

I have started school again. I am running the school newspaper, which is a deal of work, but will not figure prominently in this blog. I do not have my USB cable, so I cannot give you any pictures.

A miscellaneous question:
Why are some Dixie Chicks songs labeled "Explicit" on Yahoo music? I suppose I can understand "Goodbye Earl" but what is with "Cowboy take me away" and all that?

Am I rambling? Good then, now I'll stop.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Finally!


Finished socks!
I have to go now.
Bye!

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

'Round Cape Horn, and Headed for Valparaiso

The title probably makes no sense, and until I did what I was refering to in the title, I was going to title this post after a line in Jabberwocky, but I impulsively wanted to to title the post this.





Although I don't feel like going to the trouble of creating a progress photo at this moment, I worked madly on the Snowdrop shawl, minus the headache that had bothered me before, and reached the repeat after the point! So I am "'Round Cape Horn and Headed for Valparaiso," Valparaiso being the *halfway* marker on the second edge of the shawl. It is a weird looking thing, with the one side all scrunched up on the needle and the other hanging loosely.



I have gotten back to a more familiar computer, so if, if (!) I had my camera with me and the batteries had been charged earlier and I had remembered the USB cable, I would have given you some pictures, but all that did not occur. On that topic, this computer recently went through some problems, so I have lost all my bookmarks and am using IE rather than my beloved Foxfire right now. Also, I have been having line break/paragraph tag problems, er, difficulties, all day in Blogger, don't know why, but this post may look strange.


Last time you heard that I was waiting for a shipment from KnitPicks; well, the package arrived last Friday, along with the July KnitPicks catalog.



What did this package contain? Here, have a looksie at the list:





  • 2 50g balls Risata in Dusk


  • 2 50g balls Felici in Hummingbird


  • 4 50g balls Essential; 2 in each of 2 colorways, Meteor Twist and Peacock Print


  • 2 50g balls Palette in Rainforest Heather


  • 4 50g balls Dancing; 2 in each of 2 colorways, Hula and Rumba


  • and finally! Favorite Socks: 25 timeless designs from Interweave


I had some plans for the Dancing and for Felici, involving the Four Stitch Ribbing patterns and the Chevron Patterns for Self Striping yarns in Sensational Knitted Socks, but I didn't know what I was going to make with the other yarns until I got Favorite Socks. Plans:





  • Risata: Meida's socks by Nancy Bush (Hooray Nancy Bush!), go over and visit Grumperina to see some pictures and her thoughts.


  • Essential Meteor Twist: Mock Wave Cable socks by Ann Budd. I don't feel like finding pictures, but they're the ones with the rickrack/zigzag pattern made in a blue tweed yarn in the book


  • Essential Peacock Multi: Possibly the Cable Rib Socks; I don't remember the designer. However, there may or may not be a problem with pooling. We'll just have to see.


  • Palette: Candace Eisner Strick's Austrian Socks. I loves twisted stitch goodness; find more with Eunny's Bayerische Socks and the Chalet (?) Socks in Nancy Bush's Folk Socks


Several other patterns are lovely, but they didn't fit my yarn or needles, or just didn't stand out to me immediately. One thing I noticed is that the Felici Hummingbird colorway (view here) is strangely reminiscent of the yarn of my first socks, 100% acrylic-only, what, started back at the end of 2004?-in the Jazz Hot colorway of this yarn.

Okay, I neglected to mention this in the last post, but as of that so-called unlucky day, July 13, 2007 (a Friday, see), this blog turned a year old. So happy blogiversery!

New at the library:
First, a quick look at my new book:

Favorite Socks: 25 timeless designs from Interweave

Rating: 9/10
Why?
I didn't find many spectacular projects that stood out to me, but I love 'um all anyway, with few possible exceptions.

Do not deal misses (got Weldon's Vol. 5 out from the library and between that and some translation key between UK/US terms in crochet, I couldn't resist saying miss!):

Take a good look at any and all of the patterns I mentioned above, also the Hidden Passion Socks, Eastern European Footlets, Padded Footlets, and Resoleable socks. Look at all of them in fact.



I haven't gotten a look at this one yet, other than Cat Bordhi's preview page, but I am oh so eager to get my hands on this book! Which one...



So many people were waiting on that magical date

JULY 21,2007 for the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows. Yes, and if you somehow read the same newspaper article as I did, you might have heard about somebody growing their hair out and bleaching to look like Lucius Malfoy (! *Here Arachnera raised eyebrows, may have formed o with mouth and had a bit of a laugh over the matter because beyond unruly bangs and green eyes, neither of which she wants to change, she doesn't look like any character.) And yes, I have read the first six books, although only recently (How I do like the Half Blood Prince-to clarify, the person is probably my favorite character-don't know why.), but I was personally much more excited about....

July 28, 2007

because Cat Bordhi's New Pathways for Sock Knitters came out! I want to get my hands on this book, but I'm going to wait for the library, if the PLoC&HC can possibly get the book. I would also like to have a look at Victorian Lace Today, but PLoC&HC doesn't have that, or subscribe regularly to any of the Interweave Press magazines (except possibly Beadwork, which isn't exactly my area of expertise though I generally look over it.)



Now for the magazines I got out from the library on Monday:



Threads, August/September 2007

Ah, hmm... Threads is evidently on a big vintage clothing/vintage pattern kick this issue (Witness this list of articles, which I didn't mind but didn't love either due to aninterest (Inspired by The Outcasts of 19 Schyller Place, I invented a word) in vintage stuff), but what I wanted to see was the make it quick article on aprons. Thinking perhaps if I can get my Janome out and sew up some of the fabric stash that I may try to find a suitable fabric for an apron.



Another sewing project I wanted to make...

Well, I am officially out of time, and I believe this is already a long post. Hopefully I can tell you my opinions on Vogue Knitting Fall '07 next time.

Knit on for now!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Poor Neglected Blog

I have been neglecting both my blog and my knitting/other crafting (and my email-800+ unread messages is plain crazy!) recently. Plus, due to the fact that I am using an unfamiliar computer, I don't know where the USB port is to give you any pictures. But here is what I've been doing:

Knitting:
I am waiting on an order from KnitPicks, which contains Favorite Socks. I am now a subscriber to Interweave Knits magazine, too, so I have the spring and summer issues of that to look through. The orange socks you saw a few posts ago-well, actually, it was just a single sock, then, have progressed; they're toe-up projects and one is complete (other than those yet to be woven in tails) and the other is a little ways up the foot. Other projects include the Harebell lace socks, which are somewhat of a UFO due to the error in the pattern (By the way, I found another, though minor, error in Sensational Knitted Socks, pertaining to the Spearhead mosaic pattern), the Snowdrop Shawl that seems to be in the doldrums because the lace edging chart was giving me a headache, and the spiral ribbed socks an indeterminately discontinued due to the loss of all the needles (Cautionary tale: do NOT leave your sock projects in a purse unprotected)... There are also the basketweave ribbing socks in KnitPicks Parade yarn. I haven't cast on for the second one yet; suppose I've got a mild case of SSS.

Crocheting:
Neglected Irene from Doilies With a Twist was finally finished, and Tala started in maize crochet cotton. I still have not finished the button-top socks I was making.

Miscellaneous:
I have made ventures into minature punch needle and a locker hooked rug in the past few months. Pictures may come once I find the USB port.

Have you been over to Knitty and seen their everlasting bagstopper? I think it (and a crochet counterpart over at Crochet Me-the Reduction tote) have started me on a mesh bag craze, though I haven't had a whole lot of sucess with them in the past. There's those two, then if you're part of Interweave Knits' Knitting Daily community, there's a couple free patterns in their library as "Market Bag" and "Hemp Market Bag" and Classic Elite Yarns had a mesh bag in their most recent newsletter.

Other than that, I haven't much to say, so I'll stop for the moment.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Goal: Run 100 miles before July 4

I've joined Runagogo. (look at my little button on the side bar) Sure, I'm a late comer, but I will think myself quite accomplished even if I only move 66 miles. So far, I've done a little over two. You can read about it over at Runagogo. I haven't done a whole lot of knitting. Today was Mexican Day at school (In honor of Cinco De Mayo) and I was busy making guacamole (which I happen to like) and putting together our school newspaper. I am ready to start the short-row heel on my orange socks. I think I am going to try to get lots accomplished before my birthday, which will occur in 1 week, 1 day. In addition to walking/running and crafting, I also need to catch up on some stuff, so I'm preparing for a busy weekend.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Dear Darwinists and Atheists:

Note: Non-craft and religion/science oriented content ahead. If you don't want to read it or think you might be offended, please scroll down.

Dear Mr. Stenger,
I randomly encountered your book on Amazon as I was searching for an electronics item. I have rather strong feelings about the subject matter. We all know that your mass can randomly be rapidly and utterly annihilated as you walk or drive around on this earth that is tilted 25° on its axis. We all know that random bursts of energy come out of nothing to produce life on distant planets. Oh, yeah, guess what, the earth is tilted at 23.5 degrees. And those scenarios violate the laws of thermodynamics. I'd like to know how exactly you think the earth came about. And how do you explain the fact that we on earth are tilted at exactly the right angle, placed that the exact right distance from the sun, have eyes that function well, have the mental capacity to invent computers and many other complex items, and are even able to think of such things as these theories? My explanation?

In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth...And God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them: and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the heavens, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. (Genesis 1: 1, 27-28, American Standard Version)

Explain how this complex universe came about without a god or an intelligent designer and without violating scientific laws or mathematics (which means the traditional Darwinism and Big Bang are out of the question since they violate such laws, specifically, the second law of thermodynamics and the mathematics of probability), and I might consider your theory.

Until then, please also read my letter to Mr. J.M. Ridlon below and good luck on your theories.

(Mr. Stenger has written a book that claims that science disproves God.)

Mr. Ridlon:
You say "There was never any positive evidence for an 'intelligent designer'" Well, how do you respond to this:

The earth is tilted at precisely the correct angle and placed at precisely the correct distance from the sun to have life. How can chance do that?

One billion monkeys on constantly working typewriters would have to work hundreds or even thousands of years before it is even probable for one to type Genesis 1:1, a simple little verse that goes "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." And even then, they likely wouldn't do it. Darwin was bad at mathematics. That's why he produced a theory that is ridiculous mathematically.

The Bible was written over about 600 years and by several different authors and yet is not contradictory of itself. It also contains valid scientific and historical facts that were discovered by men only many years later. If you insist that the Bible is all myths that were written down after those facts were discovered, well, all I can say is knock yourself out trying to rewrite history, which claims that the Bible has existed for all those years.

Speaking of history and science, neither Darwinism nor creation are provable--if you use the scientific method. In order to be tested by the scientific method, the condition must be repeatable. History has a whole different system for proof. For example, if someone asked you to testify that Jane Doe committed her crime on date, witness is the way you'll go about proving it. Since evolution is not repeatable (as a one way process) it would have to be proved by witness, and it hasn't.

On the subject of one way processes, it's no wonder you're ignoring the fact that the second law of thermodynamics stands as a huge obstacle in Darwinism, since you evidentially are a biologist, rather than a physicist. Oh yes, entropy stands smack dab in your way. Entropy increases and the amount of usable energy declines. The universe is running down rather than getting more orderly as you evolutionists believe.

Good luck on seeing the truth!

PS: References to evolution in this document refer to Darwinism, which is the belief that one species evolved into another.

P.P.S: A little bird told me that Darwin came up with his THEORY after reading a book on Victorian era economics.

(Mr. Ridlon, a biologist, is trying to defend evolution in the discussion of one of the reviews of Darwin's Black Box by Micheal Behe.)

To all who have been defending ID in the aforementioned discussion:
Thank you for doing so and God bless!

*End of non-craft content*

As you might have guessed if you read the above letters, I am an avid ID (intelligent design) supporter and a Christian. I am neither much of a scientist nor a mathematician, but I know enough about both subjects to intelligently pick my view. Of course, those of you who are interested in reading about crafts are probably not interested in my views on the world's origin. And if you are, go ahead and read the letters. I did start my variation on RPM with the Tofutsies over my trip, although I did not watch LOTR. I have gotten past the heel, though not too far. This pattern is similar enough to RPM short row heel variation to give you an idea what my sock looks like from the RPM photo. Actually however, it is more highly based on a sock pattern from Kids Knit or something like that, that I have enlarged for smaller needles and yarn and added a short row heel to.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Surprise!



Arachnera's Snowdrops in sepia



Arachnera's Snowdrops in regular color



A surprise project



One square of the surprise project




Orange socks, Sensational Knitted Socks, five stitch patterns-Little Shell pattern

Yes, I now have a digital camera.

I think the Tofutsies (I believe I have color 724 Foot the Bill, by the way) will be turned into a variation on Knitty's RPM (see sidebar) during my trip. I also think I will be watching the Lord of the Rings movie.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

I'm still here, but will soon be off!

This is my fiftieth post, which I didn't think about when I was planning a surprise. Well, unfortunately, um, something went a little bit wrong with the surprise, namely something involving a USB cable being left somewhere. You'll still get the surprise, but not yet.

I will soon be going on a three day trip, actually, I'm leaving Friday morning. There has not been much progress. I mean that about both crafts and homework.... Yes, I'm very behind. And although I got plenty of sleep last night, I still feel tired.

I did get some Tofutsies today at my LYS and plan to knit on socks on the journey down to our destination. I suppose I'll used size twos.

Appearently I have very little to say, so good by.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

I'm Back!

Yes, I am back. You might think I had left, but I really hadn't. I just kept having stuff I had to do or forgetting to type up an entry. Anyhow, I have completed the main part of the shawl and started on the edging, I have started another pair of socks and a crochet throw. And to tell you what, that's pretty much all I have to say at the moment.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Add, subtract, and shawls

I've mentioned the local coffee shop before and today I found out that the kitchen is being enlarged. But I also found out that one of a neighbor's cherry trees was chopped down. The same one I have picked cherries from 2 or 3 summers.

Speaking of math, you ought to know you need a break when you start reading "4" instead of "r" as I was doing today in math class.

I have long admired Grumperina's progress photos on her Mountain Ash shawl, (Well, maybe not long-long, but it sounds good!) which I hear was recently completed. (Such as this one:)
So, I think I'll borrow one of the Yarn Harlot's pattern photos and show you where I am in the Snowdrop shawl.(BTW, my image is marked differently than Grumperina's because I used Paint rather than fancy Photoshop)

Yes, indeedy (Where did I pick that up?) I have only five rows of snowdrops in the main section to go (40 rows)








(I'm getting a little fed up with the Blogger image alignment thing, but oh well...)
I also have something to show you that I did this weekend. I used a piece of 1/2" 100% nylon organdy ribbon, nail polish, a seam ripper, the smallest between needle in my multi-size pack, reddish/pink yarn and the book I learned to tat from (Reader's Digest Complete Guide to needlework). Keep in mind, however, that these pictures wear taken with a scanner, so you can't see too well. The two with white background had the scanner closed and the one with the black background had the scanner open.


















Only attempt such feats if you have good eyesight, good lighting, and a fair amount of patience.

Be on the lookout for a few changes in the appearance of the blog!
Have a nice day!
Arachnera

(P.S. That was a non-meaningful reference to a song, yes.)

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

A few more things

You may notice that a tiny bit of blog maintenance has taken place, as I have tidied up the sidebar and placed my newly finished sweater in "FO's".

I guess I've taken up tatting again, and I thought I'd share the link to a site I hope to visit next Monday (you'll see why on the site) www.georgiaseitz.com

Guess What's Finished?

Oh yes! I've finished my first sweater! I may get a picture up later, but right now, I'll just give you a few specifics:

Pullover Sweater:
Yarn: 3 skeins Lion Brand Homespun in Spring Green(?)
Needles: U.S. size 10 & 8's single points
Pattern: Hooded Sweater Free Pattern from Lion Brand (Note: You may get taken to a "register for free pattern" page if you have not done this yet. I don't know of any way to bypass this.)
Length of work: Almost 2 yrs!
Size: Adult S.
Any modifications?
Okay. This is my first sweater, and you may laugh when you read this. I had absolutely no idea about sweater sizes or gauge when I chose what size to make. Also, I have grown in bust size by an inch or two since I choose the size. But anyway, I choose the size that exactly coordinated with my size at the time. I didn't check gauge at all. And so, after almost two years of working off and on on this sweater, I was afraid it wouldn't fit. Therefore I added a zigzag crochet chain insertion at the side seam to add more width. Apparently I was not knitting to gauge. However, this worked for me, rather than against me. Except for the fact that I ran short of yarn to knit the hood, which I left off, opting for no neck finishing at all, this looser gauge was a good thing because the sweater fits! It's a little shorter than I usually like, but I got compliments on it when I showed it to people. There is also one little thing about the front: right under the front neckline there is a purl ridge in the stockinette fabric. It isn't a bad little detail, but I didn't intend it. Unfortunately, my mom took me a little too literally when I asked her to knit a row in my first sweater.
Anything I would have changed?
Not that I know of, actually.

I am wearing the long-running gray cabled socks today. I discovered something the other day. You know about all the issues with the errata in Sensational Knitted Socks, right? Well, there was an error that had already been discovered that I didn't notice. As I knitted, I thought, "It doesn't look quite like the picture but it's probably just me." Well, there is an error in the chart for the Braid Cable with Garter Bead. Someone stuck too many rows in the instructions. There should be eight, but there are twelve!

Friday, March 16, 2007

I wish I were knitting

Or crocheting, or tatting, or spinning, or almost anything. But I'm not. And I haven't been. I seem to have come down with some sort of cold-like virusy illness. I haven't knitted in several days. I am finding the Basketweave Socks frustrating because the pattern should not be so difficult as to need the book, but I have trouble remembering the number of rows or whatever. The Harebell socks are at a standstill.

Today I got to looking again at spinning wheels and looms on the web. I've read comments on Knitter's Review on many types. I love the look of the Saxonys, but I can stand castle wheels, also. It has nothing to do with how they spin, but I don't care for the look of Louet wheels. It seemed that several people or at least one recommended that if you get one wheel and only one wheel, you should get a Lendrum. Frankly, I find them only slightly better in looks than the Louet wheels.
It does seem odd that you would base your decision on what a spinning wheel looks like, but I think I would consider that right under Is this wheel well suited to me? Does it have the capabilities I want? I mean, if you are going to be looking at something every day, you might want something you like the looks of.
I love the looks of the Kromski wheels. I'm not sure which one I'd get though. I'd need to try them out. Which I haven't done, and I haven't spun on a wheel for a long enough period of time to be able evaluate a wheel properly. I like the Schacht wolf looms ("Schacht" is one of those words, like "borchst" [spelling] that I either never know how to pronounce it or never think I pronounce it correctly.), but their spinning wheels are sort of out of my price range.

DISREGARD ANYTHING IN THIS POST THAT SEEMS DUMB OR WEIRD. Due to my cold/virus, I am suffering from "dumb brain"

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Just Call it Putting the Cart Before the Horse....

Er, is that even the way the saying's supposed to go? Make that yarn before needles. Wait! That doesn't work either. I started EZ's Moccasin socks. And finished the first top half. But... I don't have a circular needle for the bottom. Oopsies....

You haven't heard much about the snowdrop shawl recently, but I am at the first point where snowdrops are removed. I knitted a couple rows recently. It seems like I haven't accomplished much and I guess I haven't been doing much. I tried to start the cuff of the button top socks, but I(at the time sleepy) was perplexed when I seemed to have the wrong number of stitches. I still have all these assignments to do....

Anyway, I'll distract you with a reading idea:

Like fiber?
Like Little House?
You might try reading Little House in the Highlands, On the Far Side of the Loch, Down to the Bonny Glen, and possibly others. The subject of these is Laura Ingalls Wilder's great grandmother as a young girl. The setting is Scotland right after the American Revolution. There is not too much knitting, but Martha (Laura's great grandmother) learns to spin on a... I won't spoil it for you. Especially if you like Little House, you should try these.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Moccasin Socks!

Okay, Arachnera finally read in detail the November chapter of Knitter's Almanac. So she thinks "I want to make those!" She go to Micheal's to pick up crochet thread for Irene, the next "Doily with a twist" in my seven in '07 saga. She looks at the woolly yarns she never buys there. She goes to JoAnns over the weekend to pick up buttons for the "Button Top Socks" she has started. And she leaves the store with....
1 skein Patons Classic Wool in taupe
1 skein Patons Classic Wool in paprika
1 90 cent card of white 1/2" buttons.

And then...

Oops! My needles are all in projects! What shall I do?
I will just have to wait until I finish a few things, I guess.
What things am I working on?

Pair of gloves, a UFO that was supposed to be a Christmas present not last Christmas, but the Christmas before that.

Button top socks from Donna Kooler's (Did I spell that right?) Encyclopedia of Crochet (These are a recent development.)


Snowdrop shawl, which is rather neglected.

Pansy socks, which are in an indeterminate state because of the errror in the pattern which I notified Martingale about and they have posted!

Socks in gumball color Parade which are just moving slowly.

I'm also mad at Blogger because I now have Gmail, but I don't know how to merge this @yahoo account with the @gmail account and I can't move any of the blogs.

I'm also swamped with schoolwork and really should not be posting... Oh well...

And, for your info, I have started a Seven in '07 CAL (Craft Along). Leave a comment if you're interested in it. The URL is www.seveninoh7.blogspot.com .

Plus, my neglected Yahoo email has 165 unread messages that I probably want to read.

Plus, my knitting group meets tonight.

Darn it.

Monday, February 26, 2007

What shall I say?

I finished Rosa from Doilies with a Twist this weekend. 2 finished toward my goal of 7. Here's how I've planned it:

Rosa, DMC Baroque in Ecru
Ruby, Size 10 crochet cotton in Orchid Pink
Irene, green crochet cotton
Tala, yellow
Donna, pale blue
Svanhild, white
?, possibly a tatted doily.

I did just contact Martingale about the problem. Unfortunately, I have to go.

Bye,
Arachnera

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Fed up with those Errata!

I don't have time for a long post, but suffice to say that I believe I have discovered another error in SKS. I believe the patterns Harebell Lace and Moorish Lattice are insatisfactory with the specified instep.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Two Finished Objects? Can you believe it?

Yes. Two finished pairs.

One:

Socks from Sensational Knitted Socks 5 st. pattern in Laburnum pattern 60 st. size
Needles:Size 2 dpns
Yarn:Not quite all of 2 balls Patons Grace color: Lavender
Any modifications?
Corrected an error in the short row toe/heel, which I contacted Martingale about. I could not find any tips about how to finish toe up socks in the book, but luckily I have been reading Wendy's blog where I heard about the Russian bind-off (what she calls it, I have no idea if there is another name). This was only my second attempt at toe-ups. (My first is my own design-Homograph, and although I had attempted this pair before, an entire sock was not completed. On Homograph, I tried to do EZ's cast-on bind-off, although I'm not sure I did it correctly) I believe I have suceeded. Admittedly, the feet are a bit long and due to the nature of the yarn, they probably won't be worn much. They're dress socks for special occasions.
Anything else I would have changed?
I can't think of anything at the moment.

Fetching
from Knitty
Needles: size 7 dpns
Yarn: Lion Suede Moonshadow Print
Any modifications:
Yes. Do you really think 45 sts on size 7 needles in this thicker yarn would fit my hands? No. So I made quite a few changes, making note of them. If you wish to make smaller Fetchings, or use the thicker yarn, here's what I did:
Cast on 30 sts instead of 45.
Work only 3 rws before cabling and only 4 rws between cables.
Knit in the rib about 2" past the last cable(I did three cables at the wrist as the pattern instructed)
Knit 5 sts with waste yarn for thumb (I actually purled the last stitch, but do what ever you please)
Work 3 or 4 rws, cable, work 3 or 4 more rws before following the instructions for the picot bind off (or not, you can do how you wish.
For this thumb, you will pick up 5 from lower edge, 4 at top edge, and pick up two on each side as the pattern instructs. I had stitches divided as 5,4,4. I think I worked 2 or 3 rnds before binding off.
Anything else I would have changed:
I cannot think of anything.

I am currently wearing my Willy Wonka/Sweet Tarts socks and my Fetchings. They are both quite comfortable. I am getting a bit fed up with Sensational Knitted Socks. I know a new More Sensational Knitted Socks is going to be coming out, and I was thinking about ordering it, but now...




My voyage with SKS was fine at the beginning, sailing right through calm water. The four-stitch pattern (I forget the name of the pattern I did on the first pair, but I also did purled ladder) was fine, I only modified how much ribbing I worked. As far as I know, the eight stitch pattern (Ribbed lace) was fine. Although I had to look at the lace chart while I was working, it wasn't a big deal as there were 6 repeats in the whole pair, and I really could not manage memorizing every row in it. You can read some of the pattern, but you will probably have to refer to the chart. I'm afraid I'm digressing, so I'll go on. We then ran into some rougher seas, though not stormy when I decided I didn't much care for the Forethought heel procedure and I found an easily corrected error in the Cable socks heel flap instructions. Now we are sailing through rainy weather and rougher seas. I got frustrated when the number of stitches for the above mentioned short row toe/heel gave the wrong number, and now I am having problems with a six stitch pattern sock:




I started this sock back last summer, in fact I remember starting the lace pattern while at the local coffee shop. The merino was a special treat from my birthday sock yarn stash. Then, after 1 1/2 repeats of the pattern or so, it was set aside and became a UFO instead of a WIP. I picked it up after I finished the Laburnum socks, in fact, after completing all these long-running pairs of socks, I was a little unsure what to do in the sock direction. Anyhow, I turned the heel the other day...




(Related: I tried picking up the gusset stitches the "pretty way" and I think I like the results. I haven't tried it till now because most of my socks have followed the directions and had garter stitch edges on the heel flap. This one was from slightly different directions. )




And promptly ran into problems with the instep.




Look at the picture!

Actually don't. Sorry. I don't have time. Bye!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Banana, don't mention the silk, please

I know, the title probably seems crazy, but it relates to 1) my goofy drawings with a little boy involving bananas and strange arms and extremely large eyes and 2) a story problem involving silk, which is haunting me for lack of solving, partially because I misread part of it. I was originally going to title this post "Why do I torment myself?"

Why do I torment myself?
Actually, I don't. I finished a sock in three days. On size twos. This ain't no wimpy worsted weight sock, this is fingering weight. Admittedly, it is perhaps slightly thicker than the average sock yarn, but not very much. The torment was trying to do K3tog with tight stitches in cotton yarn. Ouch. Anyhow, I must email Martingale about the error in Sensational Knitted Socks. Every other size (total stitches divisible by four) has an error in the number of stitches to leave unwrapped for the short row toe/heel.
I used the Russian bind off described on Wendy's blog to finish the socks. I was listening to the Westing Game on CD. A good book, by the way. And, I don't believe I'm suffering from much SSS.
ETA: You will notice that I added a few more blogs that I have been reading to the list on the sidebar.

Knit on,
Arachnera

PS: I have something to say about a few statements I made previously:
I can't say I'm a total Google girl, because I use Yahoo email. I would use Gmail, but am unable to at the moment.
The times the blog displays for posts are earlier than my time, so it wasn't that early when I posted the other day.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Finished pair and problem

Attention!

If any one can give me help with the short row toe from Sensational Knitted Socks, please leave a comment stating this! I am having a problem with my short row toe for the sixty stitch size five stitch pattern sock.

Other than that, I actually have a finished pair of socks!
The Christmas socks are finished!
No pictures, yet again, but here's the specifics.

Needles: Size 2, set of 4 dpns
Yarn: KnitPicks Palette, under two balls in Nutmeg
Pattern: Purled Ladder on 64 sts from Sensational Knitted Socks
Any modifications?
I knitted the rib at the top for a longer length than recommended and did six and one-half pattern repeats on the foot.
Any thing I would have changed?
Possibly knit them on smaller needles. I thought they would have lots more stitches than they did and that it would be more knitting than I wanted for a recipient who I wasn't sure would like them.

One of the pair of Homograph is finished. I probably will make at least three more socks of the design, to create another pair also.

I also made myself a Fetching. I modified the pattern for 30 sts, winging all the details. It was made of Lion Suede in Moonshadow Print on size 7 needles.

I started a five stitch pattern sock from Sensational Knitted Socks in Patons Grace Lavender on size 2s in the 60 stitch size with the short-row heel. It is this I am having problems with. I can't get the numbers and the specifics of the pattern to work out. Charlene Schurch says I should have 13 sts left unwrapped and end with a purl row. I can do either one or the other.

Knit on,
Arachnera

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

The Weather Outside is Frightful...

It is indeed snowing. Yesterday it was extremely cold around here. -20° F wind chill! We didn't get a white Christmas, but we certainly are getting snow now. I think I have discovered another of those Murphy's law things. If you ask for solutions to make a WIP more interesting, you will make lots more progress on it than you thought you ever would. After all, I am now past the gusset decreases and on the foot with 2 repeats + 1 row before I start the toe on the Christmas socks. It's funny. Either I get second sock syndrome and fail to complete the second sock promptly, or I start the second sock after a couple day's hiatus and get it done more quickly than the first sock. Weird.

Does anyone like the idea of a Secret Garden Shawl? (From the children's classic written by Francis Hodgson Burnett) I got the idea this weekend and drew up a bit of a diagram today. I need to find some specific lace patterns, but I think it'll work out. I actually got Homograph fairly far over the weekend.

Last night was my knitting group meeting at our library. Attendance was low, however, possibly because of the cold. I worked on the Christmas socks and showed off Rosa. I have done a little on Ruby, which is in pale pink.

I am working on getting some stuff up at my blogzine.

Let it snow!
Arachnera

Friday, February 02, 2007

Poetry

In honor of the poetry day that is going on in blogland, I present to you:

Ye Banks and Braes O' Bonnie Doon

Written by Robert Burns

Ye banks and braes o' bonnie Doon,
How can ye bloom sae fresh and fair?
How can ye chant, ye little birds,
And I sae weary fu' o' care?
Thou'lt break my heart, thou warbling bird,
That wantons thro' the flowering thorn:
Thou minds me o' departed joys,
Departed never to return.

Aft hae I rov'd by bonnie Doon,
To see the rose and woodbine twine;
And ilka bird sang o' its love
And fondly sae did I o' mine.
Wi' lightsome heart I pu'd a rose,
Fu' sweet upon its thorny tree;
And my fause lover stole my rose,
But ah! he left the thorn wi' me.





No, I do not know why Mr. Burns referred to "my fause lover" as he, but oh well. And, no, I have not had an experience exactly like this, but I can sympathize because yesterday I was upset about something and everything reminded my of it.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Questions

Sorry for lack of entries. So Rosa is done, I started a little of Ruby, and I have most of my ongoing pairs of socks finished. I have the Christmas socks to finish. I think I have one more repeat or so left in the leg portion of the sock, but in truth, I haven't felt like knitting on it. I'm also frustrated that since my size twos are in those socks, I can't start the other pairs I really want to start. Any suggestions on how to motivate myself or help avoid second sock syndrome here? (I already know how to avoid it when you start a pair, but one is already finished. I'm asking how to make this more interesting.)

On other notes, I started spindling up the wool I bought at the Wool Gathering. I have been on a hiatus from spinning for a few months, mainly because I ran out of the other wool, and this smooth, soft wool requires a slightly different touch then the sticky, rougher wool I was using before. I spun up some wool on a toy spindle *gasp!* and when I bought a Schacht Hi-Lo spindle, I had to get use to the extra weight. My first spinning attempts from the Sarai(that is the sheep's name!) wool failed because my yarn kept breaking. Interestingly enough, I learned on a toy bottom whorl spindle after reading a lot about spinning, but now use my Hi-Lo as a top/high whorl. I did not have a real spindle at the Wool Gathering, and thought about getting one. I didn't try to purchase a spindle there, although I did get a neat lucet, but I'm don't think I would have wanted to purchase my first real spindle there anyway. For one thing, I was fairly miserable all day and unable to enjoy the experience of my first ever fiber fest properly because I was catching a cold and for another thing, I think I would feel more able to try it out and choose one in a store. I ended up buying mine in person at the Weaver's Loft. I think I might just need more wool, and some of the wool I've seen on the internet is lovely looking. However, I am afraid to get anything with more than one color, because I don't know how to spin it. Also, my only attempt at plying with the spindle did not encourage me. I suppose I might try the kick spindle plying technique in Spindlicity, but I like my Schacht and don't want to kick it. Another reason I didn't get a spindle at the Wool Gathering was that I was fairly unsure which way I wanted to use it and the spindles there all seemed sort of fancy. So have any tips about spinning with dyed wool or plying on a spindle?

In case you were curious, I have a project in mind and have started knitting it. (Probably a bad idea, but I all ready started! ) I am combining the ideas of the Fingerless Mitts in Homespun, Handknit and the Mitts in OneSkein. I am using size 5 knitting needles. I have not dyed the main part of the mitts and don't plan to. I think if I have some extra wool though, I might dye a little to see how my handspun will do. I might make an accent, or perhaps knit a band for my watch face. I will probably be dying with KoolAid if I do.

Also, I encountered the Cascade Fixation Ankle Sock KAL and am thinking I might try a pair. Apparently they only take a ball for a pair. But do you think I should order Espirit from Elann, purchase Fixation online or get Fixation from my not so LYS (Not so local because it is somewhat out of the way. But then, the only not very out of the way places for me where you can get yarn are the big hobby chains or a few grocery/general merchandise stores that carry it around here. I'm not sure what it would mean if it weren't so yarn shop...) ?

Another note is that I hope to be able to place the green Homespun sweater in the FO column. This thing is my first sweater (and I haven't finished any others yet, though I have started another sweater, as you can probably see from the WIPs sidebar). It is getting to be a PITB. PITB is similar in meaning to "PITA" however, it sounds more like something I would say, because the only occasion I use the a word in is in antiquated sounding references to donkeys. I did not know much about gauge for some reason when I started the sweater, and over that, I picked the size that was identical in finished width to my bust size at the time. *See Digression at bottom of post* Unfortunately, I am about an inch bigger around now and although my gauge is somewhat off, I'm not sure it will fit. All I have left is the end of the second sleeve, but the sewing up may be a nightmare, partially because the Homespun won't work for seaming and I am having problems finding matching yarn for "Spring Green". On top of everything else, although it may not matter much, I stopped creating crossed stockinette stitch about half way through the sweater. My other sweater also has this. Also, I have maybe 1/2 or 1/3 of a skein left (a half is probably really stretching it), about an inch to two inches left on the sleeve, and I have no hood done. I am hoping to finish the sweater by Monday, though. What shall I do for the neck finishing?

Speaking of sweaters, I think my next big sweater or sweater-ish project might be an EZ pattern. (Not EaZy, Elizabeth Zimmermann for anyone who thought otherwise.) Either: A basic seamless sweater with one of the fancier seven seamless sweater shoulder shapings and perhaps the Jewel Cross Rib; or the Faeroe patterned vest from Sweaters from Camp with the ribbing. And possibly without the "noses". Isn't "seven seamless sweater shoulder shapings" a tongue twister? I think I'm adding a word, but they are in her (EZ's) Knitting Workshop.

Here is your very long entry on the first of February.
~Arachnera

Digression: If you somehow have read Stash Envy, which I believe is written by Lisa Boyer, of the quilting world, this gauge issue somehow reminds me of (I am paraphrasing, since I don't have it in front of me "When I purchased Spot, my QAS (Quilters Alarm System) should have warned me against it, but it was not fully active yet." I had read books, and I am sure they preached "Check Your Gauge!" "ALWAYS BE SURE TO CHECK YOUR GAUGE!" et cetera but I still ignored the gauge issue.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Can you believe it?

I was (and am) working on a sock design I call Homograph currently. It's a toe up sock pattern with a special twist I was working on. However, when I looked at Widdershins again, I realized that my idea was devestatingly similar to a feature in Widdershins. I was thinking about maybe submitting it to Knitty or MagKnits, and who knows, I might still. But that might not happen because of this. Darn it!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Excitement with Rosa

Who the heck is Rosa, you ask? Rosa is the crocheted doily I am making from the Leisure Arts booklet Doilies with a Twist. Why am I excited? I found out today that I got the part I wanted in a school musical! Rosa is very beautiful, although I am not yet finished. I also have an idea for an blog-zine entry, possibly later.

Bye for now,
Arachnera

ETA: Here's the link to the first blog-zine entry: Ribbon Baroque.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Fiber Views

I am feeling talkative right now and here is what I have to say:

I know of at least two views on what beginners should do in their projects:

Sally Melville implies with her books that the beginner should learn the knit stitch, maybe decreases and slip stitches, and churn out lots of knitting using those before moving on to lots of basic purl/ purl-knit combination garments, then move onto color knitting, and apparently texture in next. (However, if you google her, at least if you google "sally melville" by mistake (I forgot to capitalize) there is some sort of review or interview where she says stuff that leans toward the other side, so we'll call this the Knitting Experience style.)

Barbara Walker, on the other hand: Learn knit and purl stitches and start being adventurous! You can make simple patterns on your first garment!
( And I don't know where I read it or heard it, but I'll throw it in: Knitting will not kill or maim you unless extremely unusual and highly unlikely circumstances occur.)

I lean toward the Walker side fairly extremely. I love pattern stitches, I get darned bored with stretches of plain stockinette or garter. I do believe that a beginner should make one or two projects with the knit stitch to master it before moving to purl stitch, but I mean things like potholders or eyeglass/pen cases where knitting is not measured in square footage. Then, make a few small things with purl and knit or just purl to master it, then jump into the pattern stitches! To tell the truth, (*knitting *secret* divulged here*) cables are not that hard. They are just stitches with their knitting order changed!

I found out that I am very conservative (Note that I live in the United States when you read this; I am working on a project on Russia and reading about it this weekend, and I was confused because the conservatives supported the Communists. Huh? So remember to note that the descriptives "liberal" and "conservative" will mean different opinions depending upon what exactly the state of the place is. That is, those who wanted to overthrow Communists in Russia several years ago might be called liberals, while we in the U.S would lean toward a description of conservative for an Anti-Communism opinion. That's one example.) Perhaps I will create a similar quiz to tell you which side of this knitting opinion you are on. And, no I don't know exactly which of those conservative/liberal quizzes I took, but the other quizzes told me I was strongly conservative also.

Oh well, good bye!

Barbie Failure

About, the title, let it suffice to say that if you drop stitches while working fun fur type yarn on size 3 needles for Nicky Epstein's fur coat in Knits for Barbie (Or is that the title? I'm not sure), a fairly sane knitter will not be all fine and dandy. The story is this: I was working on several Barbie garments for a young girl I know and this coat was about half complete. Stitches fall off needle. Knitter is frustrated, mad, nearly curses this project mentally and tries to get it out of her sight. Coat is doomed to a painful (because of fun-fur type yarn, not knitterly attraction to project) frogging.

Why are you getting an early morning entry? Well, regardless of what time Blogger says I posted this, it's early morning for me. And I get an hour delay at school because of the 4 or so inches of snow we got yesterday. Perhaps you'll get more of an entry later...

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

No Knitting...

You will notice that this blog has a slightly new look. I am working on a few improvements to the blog and such. The header picture could still use some improvement, but it's there. It was odd, I filled out a survey about Blogger for Google and that was my chief complaint; that I could not figure out how to do that, but now I know how. I guess there might be a bit better way, but I'll post instructions on this at the bottom of the post.

I am also starting something I call a Blog-zine. It is not up and running yet, but it will include articles I write for that purpose, the yarn reviews, and any patterns I make up.

There has been no knitting for a bit...

I am afraid there is no time to go on further, so ignore my promise and try to find some time to go and knit.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

A Bit of Snow and Two FOs

We got a bit of snow today. It has been raining the past few days. Unfortunately the snow stuck very little if at all, but it was snow. I like seasons.

I have finished Wheelie (the visor cover and the steering wheel cover) and the Storm socks, which I now call the Martin socks) {and a Knitty nosewarmer!}:

Specifics:

Wheelie:
Pattern from Knitty Spring '05
Any Modifications?
Not really. I used a whim of the moment method to attach the ends of the steering wheel cover and I made the visor cover to stretch about an inch over the whole of it. I crocheted a chain for the cord.
Yarn: Cascade Fixation color 9045. It's denim-y 1 and 1/2 to 3/4 balls used. I needed a bit of the second ball for the last bit of Wheelie, by the way.
Needles: Susan Bates size 7 metal needles if I recall the brand correctly.
Anything I would have changed?
Maybe try not to knit it in a hurry since it frustrated me when I tried. Or maybe mess around with the gauge because I got slightly strange results.

Martin socks:
Generic top down sock pattern with a pick and choose heel and toe
(Why did I call them the Martin socks? 1. I finished them on Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend. 2. I admire Martin Luther. Notice that there is no "King Jr." on his name, this is a totally different person, a German. 3. I think that certain characters named Martin from one of my favorite series of books would wear them if they were human. )
Specifically: 2x2 rib for leg and instep. Dutch heel from Folk Socks and a short row toe from Sensational Knitted Socks.
Any Modifications?
Um, no, since I basically made up the pattern, there weren't any.
Yarn: Moda Dea Sassy Stripes, which I reviewed in a previous post. Colorway: Storm About 3/4 each of two balls used.
Needles: Size 3, set of 4 metal dpns.
Anything I would have changed?
Perhaps moved the ribbing stitches to have one purl stitch on each side of the instep. And do something different with the short row toe because I did it wacky and I ended up with a hump at the grafting location.

Nosewarmer:
Pattern from Knitty Winter 2002, link above
Any Modifications?
No, I stuck to the pattern, although it really isn't quite an FO, (and I'm not sure I'd really quite consider it to be one regardless since it's so small) since I have yet to braid the ties. Also, I don't plan to put a tassel on it. I made the adult size.
Yarn: Cascade Fixation left over from Wheelie, very small amount.
Needles: Size 2, dpns
Anything I would have changed?
Not that I know of at this time.

I also finished the first "Christmas sock" Even though it was a good bit larger than the socks I usually make, I used only part of a ball of KnitPicks Palette. The sock was a tad large on the recipient, but I'm thinking I might put it in some warm water when I wash it and apply some agitation to it, making it felt a bit and hopefully shrink a tad.

I'll get back to you on something I'm thinking about, but for right now, bye!

Knit On!

Monday, January 08, 2007

Two Socks! At last!

No pics, but I have finished the Ash Braid and Garter Bead socks!
Specifics:
Needles: U.S. size 0, set of 4 dpns
Yarn: KnitPicks Essential Ash
Notes: Wearing them today as I type this, a tad itchy, but comfortable all the same. Stockinette heel flap and Round or Half Handkerchief heel (Nancy Bush (of Folk Socks, Knitting on the Road and Knitting Vintage Socks, which I have not peeked at yet since the library (ies) haven't gotten it to me) 's Heel turn classification.) Pattern from Charlene Schurch's Sensational Knitted Socks. Small error in heel flap instructions. The second sock went through a lot; its cuff was frogged, its heel flap had to be frogged and reknitted, needles seemed to be or were lost several times, it was knitted with my hands behind my neck or back.

Other news:

I have a bit of a rant about something that annoyed me today. We are going to be taking a science test on which we are allowed to use however many notes we can fit on a certain number of index cards. Well, I have finished maybe 1/2 of the chapter in notes in very tiny handwriting (4 lines to each index card ruling, and yes, I can read writing that's that small). I taped it to another index card (very lightly, only two little pieces of tape) to prevent it from getting too smudgey and placed it in my science book. It was there at science period today, but somehow it must have gotten dropped and gotten to the other side of the room. Someone pulled them apart (I foolishly didn't have a name on them) to see whose they were, and now there is a rip. I think it will have to be done over.

A young knitter whom I taught finished his first project last Friday (it was a potholder that was supposed to be a Christmas present, but I couldn't help him over Christmas break) with some help from me and was proudly presented to the recipient. He had started a little strip of knitting that could have been a stuffed animal scarf, but it wasn't going fast and he wanted to make a Christmas Present, so, taking EZ's advice (I believe from the September or October chapter of Knitter's Almanac, anyway, it's the one with the pants-like garment. [I forget what she calls them]) I suggested he make a potholder. And so, with some help and some rows from me, it was completed. Yay! My first teaching success. (I tried to teach some of my classmates to knit once, but I'm not sure that they ever completed a project. )

I have started the other Storm sock, although I decided to make it ever so slightly different, making a very subtle change that no one will probably guess. (Guess if you wish)

Official six-month blog anniversery happens on January 13, 2007. I am having a little pre-anniversery party today at the blog. Really, it appears that the true blog aniversery must have been back on December 28, 2006. Why the discrepancy? Well, if you go back to the archive for July of 2006, you will see my only entry for that month here and it includes several entries that appear to have been posted previously somewhere. You see, I originally blogged with Ask's Bloglines, but the WKS that plagued my keyboard annoyed me. (What is WKS? Part of the letters would not appear except as capitals and I think "a" would not appear as a capital at all. It stands for Weird Keyboard Syndrome.) So I switched to the "old" Blogger in July and reposted all my old posts though I had to retype them because not only did Bloglines give me WKS, but the embleer blogging system would not let me copy the text of my posts. I think I am a Google girl all the way, as I highly recommend both the search engine and their Blogger and the Google-affiliated Mozilla Firefox. Anyway!

I did not tell you before, but I often read the blog of Grumperina . I do sew, and that is why in the world the coat is in the UFO list. I have a sewing background however, and a fine little Janome HF107. (I originally typed little fine, but that sounds bizarre...) I learned on a fancier Singer. I'm afraid I can't finish all I wanted to tell you, but this is a fairly long entry already.

Friday, January 05, 2007

(INSERT TITLE HERE)

I don't know what in the world to title this post.
I just discovered the Yarnivore blog. (ETA: And do you know, I just might tag her.) I did a blog search originating at the blogger bar at Lace Rox! (which I don't think I've linked to, yet.) for nalbinding. I was one of the listings! Speaking of the blog, I have to link to the picture I can't get up, so here it is.

Here is a poem I wrote that is pure fantasy because 1: It is not snowing here. It isn't even really cold. 2: I don't have a spinning wheel. I wish both things were different, though.

Winter Morning

Shimmering, glistening
Bare brown branches covered with ice
Under the pale winter sun
Wind cuts the stillness
Snowflakes fly on the gusts
Light glints off drifts of snow
Swept by the wind as dust by a broom
A bird sings its solitary song
Perched within the pine needles
Its feathers fluffed
The only creature to brave the cold

The fire crackles, the wheel hums,
Whirrs to my steady treadling
Pale gray-threaded wool flies
Through my fingers
My feet dance like the blowing flakes
I watch the wool twist,
The wool sheared in the green spring
Scoured and dried by hot summer sun
Carded while autumn's leaves fell
And now spun by the fire
On a winter morning.

And I think, if I have any time, I am going to go to a nearby coffee shop, drink some tea or hot chocolate and knit on the Ash Braid socks, which are nearing the toes. (Maybe 3 rounds before I start decreases and I may be overestimating.) I plan to have them finished to wear on Monday, which is the day the library knitting group I attend meets.

(ETA: If one or more of my weird things did not seem weird, here's something that you probably will think is weird:

I grew up drinking distilled water and skim milk. I never really liked the distilled water, so now I drink spring water, but only certain brands. I won't drink tap or other types of water or other types of milk! )

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

A New Year

Hi! Welcome to 2007. I haven't completed anything that I can think of, nor do I have pictures to show you. I can't even get the picture I designed for the blog header to get up. (If anyone knows how to do this, please tell me!) If you'd like to see it, I'll try to get a link up. I ran across the Lace Rox! blog a bit ago and I think I will tag her, and maybe a few others. (ETA: I just tagged her!) I just learned what "ETA" means, because it occured both in Jen's meme entry and in an entry at Wendy Knits. It is slightly confusing to figure out what it means...

I took this quiz because I read the first book and I encountered the quiz at Lace Rox!:







Which Chick Are You?




You are SCOTTIE. You live for order in your knitting bag, in your closet and most of all, in your life. You like your friends where you can see them, best friends here, lunch buddies there, and crushes safely admired from afar. Some day you'll come out of your shell, but until your moment comes, you're content to keep your nose low, observing the movers and shakers of the world and taking notes. Your favorite yarn is a nice, workable wool.
Take this quiz!








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Whoa! For some reason the font seems abnormally big, but I'm not going to mess with the HTML since I am terribly un-fluent. (ETA: You can't see this. At least, you shouldn't see it, because it seems to be unique to the editing/creating window)

Perhaps back with some more tags slightly later....

(By the way, ETA means Edited To Add)