Knitting Again

I still have not finished the monogrammed coaster. I can’t decide if I want to make a new chart, monogram a different letter, choose a picture, or if I want to just leave duplicate stitch to those with more patience than I. Maybe I’ll decide something and knock-it-out on Saturday.

I need to make a new chart.

I needed something else to knit, something different, but useful, that wasn’t as large as a sweater. I decided to knit socks. I had some Fixation I bought from Ewe Knit Kits years ago and began the Dayflower Socks. I finished one last night and will cast-on for the second sock today.

First Finished Dayflower Sock

 

First Dayflower from a Different Angle

I’m enjoying the lace socks. I’m not especially experienced in lace knitting and these socks are, therefore, not the best traveling project for me. I feel like I need to carry a small project with me now, one that doesn’t require constant attention to a pattern. Maybe I’ll go back to knitting baby hats. Scarves seem like they would be perfect for me but I don’t really wear scarves regularly. The scarves that do appeal to me are usually not the kind that are a simple pattern repeat. 

I’m trying to decide if I want to start the sweater sampler from Jacqueline Fee’s Sweater Workshop next. Even if I only get short bursts of time to knit, I believe that I can finish the second sock this weekend. I really need to make these educational pieces so that I’ll be ready to knit one of the dresses I’ve been scoping and planning.

In the meantime, I’ll be trying to finish the second sock so that I can wear them. The incisions are healing pretty well and I think I may actually be able to wear the socks without getting anything gross from my leg onto them.

I’m already trying to decide on the next sock. I think I like sock knitting more than I anticipated I would. Maybe I’ll even try a toe-up pattern.

Finished Item Number 1

I finally finished my son’s sweater. Unfortunately, the grafted stitches under the arm on one side are hideous. I did something wrong and I’ve got to undo them.

Finally Finished!!!

Pattern: Child’s Placket Neck Sweater from Last Minute Knitted Gifts

Modifications:

  1. Sleeves were lengthened by 4.5 inches and they are still a little shorter than I would like.
  2. Added collar
  3. Lengthened body
  4. Used worsted weight yarn rather than dk
  5. Lengthened placket slightly

I learned a lot from this sweater. I also know that there is still so much that I want to learn.

Now on the Needles

I’ve decided to try lots of new things this year so that I will have finished pieces that look good, that fit well, and/or are useful. There will be lots of swatching for gauge purposes and just to practice techniques.

My next learning piece is just that, kind of a swatch, in the form of a coaster, that originated as a dish cloth pattern. For this project, I’m practicing crocheting, which I haven’t done in years, as the edging is the single crochet stitch. Then, the center uses duplicate stitch.

I actually like this just to use as a coaster before the edging and the duplicate stitch monogramming but the purpose of the project, other than to give to a co-worker, is to practice crocheting and to learn duplicate stitching.

I think the single crocheted edge turned out pretty well considering I haven't crocheted since about 2005. I haven't added the monogramming because I haven't decided which co-worker will receive it. Each co-worker has requested a knitted coaster and I was planning to make each one in a different pattern.

Hoping the duplicate stitch goes well. I’ve looked at a little video on youtube and I’m feeling pretty confident.

Finished Item Number 2

The beagle coaster was finally finished. My mother decided she wanted it but just has it on display because she doesn’t want to  spill anything on it. I only have a crappy picture of it.

Pattern: That Old Beagle

Beagle in Sunglasses

Today I plan to cast-on for a pair of socks. After that, I’m hoping to start the Sweater Sampler by Jacqueline Fee. I’m determined to make 2011 my “Year of Knitting Knowledge.” Once I’m a little more comfortable with my skills, I’m hoping to knit a dress from Modern Top Down Knitting.  It’s important to me that this project turns out well and I’m hoping all that I do before it will help.

Health News

My leg and ankle are progressing. I go back to the doctor in a little over two weeks. I’m hoping to ditch the boot after that appointment. I’m a little concerned about the rate of healing but I’m going to just try to follow the doctor’s instructions so that I can make as full of a recovery as possible.

Happy New Year to you and yours. May it be full of love, peace, and joy!

I did not finish my son’s sweater before the year ended. I thought that I might, and I probably could have, but there were just other things going. It may be the first finished item of 2011, that or the super-sized coaster for my desk.

Huge Coaster that should accommodate my tea and my water while adding just a little smile to my day.

I finally unraveled the first sleeve on Sunday, the 26th but I don’t think I began knitting the sleeve again until the evening of the 27th. Then, I didn’t knit at all on the 28th. On the 29th, I thought I’d start on the 2nd sleeve but decided that even though the pattern called for a 9.5 inch sleeve, there was no way that was going to be a long enough sleeve for my child. I added more rows, about 5 inches worth.

On the afternoon of the 31st, I finally cast-on for the second sleeve. I knew the chances of me finishing it in the same day were minimal, but I wanted to try. I didn’t finish it. Instead, I was having some kind of allergic reaction and worried that I might need to go to the hospital on New Year’s Eve!

Do you know what hospitals are like on New Year’s Eve? I did not want to go. Fortunately, the doctor called me and gave me some instructions, by early afternoon today, most of the symptoms of the reaction were gone. I am now cast-less as the doctor instructed me to to cut off the cast!

The scars for the second surgery are ugly but not as hideous as I thought they would be. I’m feeling more like myself more quickly this time around, as the doctor said I would, in spite of the allergic reaction.

Sooo…once I finished the second sleeve this morning, I discovered that in my medicated haze I had knit it a few rows longer than the first sleeve. Rather than unravel those rows, I chose to add more to the first sleeve.  THEN, I decided to add more length to the body of the sweater.

I'm going to attach the sleeves, really...I am. I added a few more rows to the body after this photo was taken.

Am I avoiding attaching the sleeves? It’s definitely possible. I’m already debating about finishing up the coaster I started before attaching the sleeves, which is probably just fear again. I want to be finished with this sweater so that my son can wear it to school this week. Even if he doesn’t wear it on Monday I would like for him to have that option.

So, I need to just jump in and do it. I really wish I knew more about this sort of thing but my family does not knit. None of my friends knit either. I do have one aunt who knits but she doesn’t knit garments. I, therefore, don’t have memories of anyone knitting garments, no one has ever shown me how to put together garments, and I’ve never taken a class that involved putting together garments. I’m mostly a self-taught knitter and I really thought this would be a much simpler task than it its.

Maybe I’m making too much of this.

I guess I just don’t want to get it wrong. I don’t want to fail. I don’t want to just ruin it.

I’m going to do it, though. I’m going to attach the sleeves tonight. I’m going to stop making a mountain out of this mole hill. I’m going to conquer this silly fear. I’m going to keep learning and I’m going to be a better knitter when I’m done.

It’s a new year and this year I’m going to embrace challenges, in knitting, in health, and in life in general.

Happy New Year to you and yours!

The day started out early but was going well. Then, I overdid something and it seems I’ve pulled or strained a muscle or something, on the same side as my healing leg. Life is grand!

Still, I’ve managed to have a pretty good day.

I got all my gifts wrapped! Well, there are still a couple of gifts I need to buy. but I won’t see those people until after the new year.

On the knitting front, I still haven’t knit a stitch. I’ve been too busy trying to take care of other things. It’s quiet in the house now and this may actually be the perfect time to knit.

Soo…instead of clicking at the keyboard about how much I’d like to knit or how much I miss knitting, I think I’m actually going to go work on the sleeve to the sweater for my son.

Wishing everyone a Very Merry Christmas.

Mine has been really nice, even with the pain. We even got a little snow! If the leg and the back allow me, I’ll attempt to take a picture of the snow tomorrow!

Feliz Navidad! Joyeux Noël! God Jul! Frohe Weihnachten! Buon Natale!

It seems that there has just been so much to do that I have had very little time for knitting or blogging. As a matter of fact, I began writing this particular blog entry on December 8. Since that time, I’ve made no progress on the sweater for my son. I haven’t even finished ripping out the sleeve.

Big Sleeve
Sleeves for a Big Guy, not a Little One



***Please note the arm pictured inside of the sleeve is my arm, not my son’s arm.
 
Part of the reason I haven’t undone the sleeve is because my son says he thinks it’s a good size for him. He’s not really old enough to be a great judge on fit but he can determine if something looks like a clown on him.
 
I will decide today what to do about the sleeves. Either I’m going to undo the knitting to the seed stitch cuff or I’m going to completely start the sleeve again. Before deciding, I’m going to have the child try on the sleeve again. This will give me peace of mind as I embark on what should be a very simple decision.
 
As I think about this project, I realize I’ve never really knit a complete sleeve by itself. The only sleeves I’ve completed were those of the Baby Surprise Jacket by Elizabeth Zimmermann and they aren’t knit separately. They are actually knit as part of the garment. Maybe part of my problem is just plain fear of the unknown, fear of getting it wrong, fear that it won’t fit…but…it’s only knitting. If it’s wrong I can just pull it apart and do it again. I enjoy knitting so the idea of doing it again shouldn’t be such a tragedy to me.
 
I’m back to knitting coasters again too. Unfortunately, I ran out of yarn while knitting the last one.
 
Like others, I really have a hard time finding the time to knit. Between daily responsibilities and human interaction, I just seem to have quite a bit going. When I feel like I might have a little time to knit, I’m either to tired or too guilty.
 
As I sit here recovering from surgery, I’m going to try NOT to feel guilty about knitting. I’m on bed rest. What else do I have to do besides read, surf the net, and talk on the phone? I’m going to just try to enjoy some knitting time, time where I do something for me while still doing something for someone else.

Wishing everyone a Happy, Healthy Thanksgiving!

I knew the day would be crazy, so I began my day with desert. My aunt baked a pie especially for me and I ate a piece for brunch. No, I didn’t have any other food before it or with it. I just had pie. There are probably enough calories in a slice to cover me.

I am thankful that God has blessed me with family and friends. I’m thankful that God has blessed each of us with talents and gifts. I’m going to try to use what He has given me  to do good things.

Thank you to all who come to read my blog and who encourage me in my knitting efforts.

Wishing everyone a Wonderful Season!

Work in Progress

The sweater for my son had to be put on hold. I couldn’t find my size 7 dpn’s. I’ve looked and looked but they are gone. I don’t know if I gave them away, lost them, or what. I was planning to replace my all my dpn’s as previously I was using Clover and the tips just weren’t working for me. I had replaced a few sizes but maybe I got rid of the 7’s and never replaced them. 

I dropped into a yarn shop yesterday and picked up some Brittany’s in size 7. I’d really rather have the KnitPicks dpn’s but they’ll take to long to get here. I’m hoping to cast-on for the first sleeve so that i can get this sweater back on the burner where it belongs.

During these few days without the proper needles for the sweater I missed having something to knit. I think I prefer working on one  project at a time but I needed something to knit. I didn’t think I’d be without the size 7’s for long, requiring a small simple project.

Heart Coaster at Work

Cute Coaster for the Office

Hence, the heart coaster was knit.

Given the size, it took very little time to knit but the color and the shape are just so doggone cheerful. It’s now on my desk at work and the ladies there want me to make coasters for their desks. Maybe coasters can be my filler projects when I’m in a “knitting jam” or just need something quick and portable.

The pattern, actually written for a dishcloth, can be found here on Ravelry. Written by, Cathy Mangaudis, it’s really a pattern for a dishcloth, but I doubt the dishcloth police will come get me for using it for something else.

Hopefully, I’ll be back to knitting my son’s sweater tonight.

I’m still getting used to WordPress. I’ve got to look into paragraph formatting and spacing. I’d also like to add some other things to the side bar. There just aren’t enough hours in the day to do all that I want to do.

Vicarious Knitting

Over at Like the Queen 2, I’m following along as Bess knits a dress from Modern Top-Down Knitting, by Kristina McGowan. I want to knit this dress and a few other  garments  from the book. I know the short row shoulder shaping will be new to me and Bess has it down-pat. I know I need to brush up on short row shaping and going back through Barbara Walker‘s Knitting from the Top are probably prerequisites for me before starting. In the meantime, I’m learning just from watching Bess. Thanks Bess!