Wednesday, October 31, 2007

quick update

Almost too busy to blog these days . . . but here's a peek at the Super 60's Poncho. The only reason you're getting a photo of this is because I took it about a week ago and never got around to blogging about it.
I love how this is knitting up, but I think it may not be wide enough. So I have to decide if I want to chance it, or rip it all out and add another inch or two. The problem is that it really is a 60's pattern (and if I wasn't tired, lazy, and cranky, I'd get the link for you) and therefore the sizing is nothing like what we're dealing with today. I think the largest size printed is a 16, and it's definitely too small for me. And I'm not very large. Making it bigger is not the real issue, but figuring out how it's supposed to fit so I can make it the right size to look like the supercool picture is.

Anyway. For now we shall just enjoy the Cascade 220 in Lapis, shall we? (And yes, now that I've used this yarn I know why everyone likes it so much. It's just . . . nice. I'm trying to come up with an appropriate simile but am tired, lazy, and cranky. Goodnight.)

Saturday, October 27, 2007

the knitter's eternal lament.

I've just started a new show, and of course I sit around knitting in rehearsal. Duh. Keeps me out of trouble. However, if one more person asks me to knit something for them I will not be held responsible for my actions.

First of all, it takes a long time.
Second, nice yarn tends to be pricey, and I would really rather not work with acrylic.
Third, I have plenty of stuff already lined up to knit, stuff I want to work on.
Fourth, if I'm going to court carpal tunnel, it's going to be for my own reasons.
Fifth, if people were to actually pay what my time and fingers are worth, they'd be forking over something like $50 for a scarf or hat.
Sixth, no one ever offers to barter me awesome stuff in exchange. Learn to make shoes or something, people.

I do, occasionally, make stuff for people. As, you know, gifts. Because I like them. Or because they're awesome at their job. (Or because I made something just to try it, or something for myself that doesn't work on me but might be ok on this other person.) I am not, however, your knitting monkey. Learn to do it yourself. It's really not that hard. If I can do it, so can you.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


If you are cruising the internet for glove patterns and you are just a bit tipsy, there is a strong chance that, when you stumble across the squirrel mitten patterns, you'll get way too excited and think they are the best things EVER.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Knit, very old one! Knit like the wind!

So after making out with my Lanett this afternoon, I really want to cast on some new stuff. So I made a deal with myself that I can cast on something new once I finish my Lake Park gloves. This led to some mad knitting, and now I've only got the thumb left. Yay!

I've also noticed a rather awkward Second Item Syndrome: quite often my second item is knit much more tightly than the first. In the case of the Lake Park gloves, the second one fits much better than the first one does. Maybe I'll just tell people that my left hand is more muscular than my right, and therefore fills the glove out better.

Oy. Can't do that with the Christmas gloves . . . or socks . . . or sleeves in general. Must keep an eye on self.

yarny goodness (sans Rhinebeck)

Mmmm. Yarn.
I've been pawing through my so-called stash recently, looking for stuff that can be turned into Christmas presents. Here's some fun not-so-new stuff, most of which will not be mine much longer. Awww. But then I can buy more . . . .

We have, from left to right:
  1. Colinette JitterBug, in Kingfisher (it does a kind of spiral stripe. I loves it.)
  2. Berroco Ultra Alpaca, in Fig (I've had this forever, methinks it will be a hat soon)
  3. SandnesGarn Lanett in black. Favorite. Yarn. Ever. We may get married.
  4. Fortissima Socka (mit Bambou!) in the cleverly named colorway 0008.
  5. Brown Sheep Wildfoote in Peasant Blue. I wish I'd bought more of this in other colors.

A closeup of my fave Lanett, hanging out with his good buddy Fig. They've been together for a while. They'll miss each other.

I really need to find somewhere other than Knitty City that sells Lanett. The love truly cannot be expressed, even though I try. This is not the first post where I've rhapsodised about this yarn. Again, I wish I'd bought it in more colors. Then I could frolic in it.

Was that too much information?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

when yarn attacks.

Everyone made fun of me for having so much luggage. I couldn't bring myself to tell them that one bag was pretty much only yarn and shoes.

I think I'm going to start the Super 60's Poncho today. It's a bunch of seed stitch, which will be the perfect mindless thing to knit while I learn my lines. I was too tired to think of it yesterday.

And speaking of the Super 60's--though actually speaking of 1972, to be exact--I found the most fantastic pattern booklet at my library booksale. Brunswick's "Mostly Male." Yes, the title makes you think it's some gay publication, but no. It's got the most hilarious models and menswear I've ever seen. One of them is totally trying to be Roger Moore. And there's this orange pantsuit. (The shaping of the pants is actually really nice. I may make them for myself. don't tell anyone.) You wouldn't think a quarter could buy you that much comedy, but it can. Oh, it can. If I ever find my camera, I'll snap a photo or two.

Oh, and the blue sleeves look awesome on my green Noro sweater. I may have made the body too tight: I'm thinking I'll leave it for a couple of weeks and see if working on this show makes me any skinnier. Because it's only barely too tight. But the sleeves . . . oh, the sleeves fit gorgeously. And I'm thinking there's enough yarn to do full-on long sleeves. Which is pretty sweet.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

the end of pocket money

Yeah. Just bought some yarn for Christmas presents. (And the Super 60's Poncho, but shh, don't tell abou that.) Dropped a huge chunk of change at the yarn store. On colors that I can only hope people will like.

Doesn't everyone like to dress like a rainbow just exploded? I was thinking about this the other day, about Color In General, and realized that there's not really a color I don't like/won't wear. Ok, possibly mustard yellow, but that's gross for almost everyone. There was a long time when I owned no green, but I got over that last year. I'll wear yellow, and if I'm not careful, everything I own will be orange. Blue, red, purple, pink--I'm in. Neutrals, I love you.

Ok, now I'm not sure where the color rant came from, but possibly because my Super 60's Poncho is going to be made from Cascade 220 in Lapis, which is a badass bluey-purpley-greeney-pinkey heather. (It's kind of bruise-colored, but in a good way.) And the thing is, when I was looking at the Cascade online, I kept reminding myself that I wanted something that would look nice with jeans. Something not too close to jeans-color, you know? I reminded myself of this in the store. And then I picked up Captain Lapis, which will look ok with most of the jeans I have, but I'll sort of be all in the same tonal palette, which I'm not keen on.

We all know what this means: I'm going to have to buy a pair of dark jeans.

Monday, October 15, 2007


Hey, so I got invited to Ravelry today! Perfect timing, because a new time-suck is just what a person needs when she's packing for a ten-week excursion. Believe me, I wasted a good chunk of time trying to think of a screen name (I always feel like such a loser about screen names) and finally came up with the scintillating KateBee. The 'Bee' part is because I happened to glance at my Burt's Bees lip balm right when I'd decided to type in the next thing I thought of. It was either that or something inspired by the Velvet Goldmine soundtrack, because that's what's playing, but 'Maxwell Demon' made me feel self-conscious, and 'Personality Crisis' too contrived, and 'Needle in the Camel's Eye,' while almost appropriate, was just too long.

Anyway. I have a feeling Ravelry will make me feel more like a hack than ever, but I think the whole catalog o' projects aspect will be v. useful. Since we all know I can never afford the recommended yarn.

In other news, has anyone seen the Vogue Knitting holiday issue? There are some terrifying things inside. Be very afraid.

picture pages

Behold, one of the glorious posts where we get to catch up on all projects at once, because I am clearly too lazy to take pictures off my camera as often as I should. Hell, these are only going up today because I am procrastinating like it's my job.


To start:

Here is my Anthropologie-Inspired Capelet. Possibly the easiest thing I've ever knit. I would make it for friends, it's that easy and uses that little yarn. Now I need to invest in a long-sleeved t-shirt that goes with it.

Next up: the second incarnation of the Noro Cash Iroha. This owes much to the Anti-Craft's Painted Lady, which I love madly, but as I'm not sure I'd wear it as is, I'm putting a body on mine. And probably three-quarter sleeves, because I don't think I have enough blue for full-length sleeves, let alone the mitts. Which I would totally do if I had enough yarn.
Oh, and it's not really that color. It's more a dark emerald, not lame-o washed-out teal.

And speaking of hand-coverings, here is my first Autumn Mess (aka Lake Park) glove.
It is actually the right color.
And no, you're not freaking out: I was too lazy to rotate the photo right side up.
I am totally making these again someday in a yarn that shows off the pattern better.

And now I have to stop procrastinating and throw some stuff in a suitcase.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

be careful.

If you love your keyboard, don't drink anything when you click on this. You may spit your beverage.

possible . . .

Not to jinx it or anything, but the green Noro seems to like being a raglan sweater. It's knit from the top down, and it's going to have blue sleeves. And it seems like it might be happy. And *I* am happy, because after spending last night wondering if I would have enough green to do the body of the sweater, I woke up this morning nose-to-nose with an escaped half-ball of the green.

I really hope my bed keeps producing yarn. That would be SWEET.

Friday, October 12, 2007

le sigh

I frogged a lot of stuff yesterday.

I also started on the second of my Autumn Mess Gloves (known as Lake Park Gloves when they're done in better yarn) and tried to convince myself to pack.

Now I'm re-knitting my green Noro into something else--more info if it doesn't suck--and trying to convince myself to pack. And trying to decide if I should mail my knitting needles or put them in the suitcase. And should I bring my wee sheep, for company? I should really name my sheep.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Ok, so I'm a little out of control with the posting.

But the shrug is done, so I think I can be forgiven. Yay! Not the biggest yay in the world, though: though it had a good deal of shaping on the sleeves, I would have liked them to be narrower to begin with. The back fits ok, though. I think I would also have used a thinner yarn, though I did get spot-on gauge. For once in my life! Go me!

Anyway, I'll probably wear it--I don't want to take it apart, because the yarn tends to go fuzzy and break if you're not careful. And since it's getting cold, I can always use another shoulder-blanket, right? And there's nothing like having a shrug out of posh yarn that you wear every day.

Wow, once I finish my gloves I'm gonna have to come up with another project . . . perhaps how to afford yarn to make the amazing Super 60's Poncho Thingie that I have fallen madly in love with? And what the hell color does one make an Amazing Super 60's Poncho Thingie, anyhow?

Shrug Update!


I have finished the knitting part of the shrug. There was a bit of a fight at the end, with me trying to decide how to match my bind-off to my cast-on, since the shrug is knit side-to-side. Call me an old fogey, but I generally like cuffs to match. More or less.

So now I have to do my verimost favorite part of knitting: sewing in and sewing up. Blargh.

I really should take a finishing class. Everything else I'm pretty good at figuring out, but my finishing is sometimes not the best. This may be from lack of practice, because I'm from the The Less Seams The Better school of thought. Gimme something top-down and/or in the round any day.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007


The Polychrome Baby Rainbow Barf Blanket is finally done! All ends are sewn in and little trailing bits cut off. I think I want to give it a wash before I give it away, but that's easily done.

Yay! Happy.

Am now trying to convince myself not to knit a turtle to go with the blanket. I will have plenty of opportunities to send this kid a random turtle present. Why go crazy when the kid's not even around to drool on things yet?

(And anyway, if I'm not making a turtle, I can carry on with my shrug. Which is almost done. And will hopefully be as gorgeous as it seems. And then I can wear it to the baby shower.)

Monday, October 8, 2007

Well, shit.

How the hell do I manage to lose my tape measure every five minutes?

I literally just had it.

Now I have that feeling that I just went slightly insane. I wonder if I could somehow have the tape measure attached to the inside of my wrist, so I could shoot it out in a Spiderman style when I need it?

This is ridiculous.

Is it time for Heroes yet? Can I please evolve a tape-measure attachment?


One of the things that bugs me most in my knitting life is discovering that your skein of yarn is not one continuous piece, but two pieces knotted together. That pisses me off like no other.

In other news, the shrug is over half done. It had better be more fun to wear than it is to knit, because though I do like the way it looks, knitting it is boring as fuck. I'm not keen on large needles, either. Pretty much anything larger than a 7 makes me break out in a rash, but what the yarn wants the yarn must have . . .

Maybe I'll put a finger on a glove or something. For a break.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Shrug Saga

Yep, you're gonna get a blow-by-blow of my Adventures In Shrugland. Today's installment begins with good news: after much slogging through the perils of this series of tubes we call the internets, our hero has Found A Pattern! Yay! It even uses size 10 needles, which was a necessary part of the Quest, due to things like What Gauge The Yarn Looks Nice At.

The Pattern also calls for some 9's, but our hero also has a pair of those. Or does she? A quick search through Our Hero's Mug o' Needles (please ignore the chopsticks and powder brush) reveals only one elderly plastic 9:

(elderly plastic 9 seen second from left.)

Our Hero knows she has another EP9: she used them to knit her First Ever Scarf, but that was two years ago, and she's really not sure where it may have gone since.


See, Our Hero may be going to the opera on Tuesday, and it's always cold in the opera, and it would be nice to have a badass shrug. Since the 9's are only needed for a small part of the Pattern, Our Hero may just work the cuffs on 8's and hope for the best. Unless Our Hero has a set of double-pointed 9's that she's forgotten about, but she's pretty sure she doesn't.


It was all so close to perfect.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Just so we all know:

Figuring out how to knit glove fingers is exhausting. I need a nap, and I've only got the pinky done.

There is a chance, however, that I will get to like this process. I'm pretty sure that the first time I tried to turn a heel I felt pretty chewed up and spit out. Ohh, how my brain hurts. And how I cursed at those twelve little stitches.

Why do hands have so damn many fingers?

(I am actually really enjoying making the gloves, even if I'd been jonesing for sock yarn to make socks, and it is Socktoberfest, and then I finally get sock yarn and I make gloves. Oy. Well, there's probably a 'Glovember' out there, and I can just say I've gotten a head start.)

(And will someone remind me that, though I do like variegated yarns and self-stripers, that I really loathe the ones that have a black yarn twisted the whole way through? I think this may be the stuff they call 'marled' yarn, though I'm not v. good at classifications yet. Anyhow, this stuff I've got would be a lot prettier if it didn't have the black making it messy. I need to remember this so I don't buy anything of the sort Ever Again. It makes me angry.)

about damn time.

It's a hockey night in Pittsburgh, y'all.

Perhaps I should knit myself some Penguins gear.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

two things:

1. Why can't you find a decent pattern for a shrug when you want one? For that matter, why, when for once in your life you want to knit something on size 10 needles, is everything you find for 7's?

2. Oh crap, I forget what #2 was supposed to be. Oh well. Later.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

I had a plan and a list. I really did.

I did. I really did. Plan and List. There they were, written down on a post-it, stuck on the inside of my wallet. I even got it out and stuck it to my hand when I went into the store. It was all stuff I wanted for potential Christmas presents.

But then the store didn't have any of what I wanted (well, ok, Random Sock Yarn was on the list, just so I wouldn't feel like a complete failure) and I ended up buying six skeins of gorgeous emerald green (with some wee lurking blue) Noro CashIroha. In my defense, it was on sale for 40% off. (Also in my defense, it was my birthday money I was spending. Happy Birthday To Me, dammit!) I keep petting it. I think it's going to grow up to be a shrug of some sort. For me. And then I can wear it all day and pet it.

The Random Sock Yarn was also acquired, but I think it might end up as gloves instead of socks, just for the hell of it. It's a random not-very-posh brand, but the colors are all orange and brown and fun--although there's a chance that the only reason I bought it is because it matched the shirt I was wearing. And really, if it's not my darling Lanett, I don't really care what the hell it is. To tell truth, the store, which mostly has quite nice yarn, is a bust on the sock front. Even the solid colors weren't nice. I was hoping for decent solid colors, since my big bro has moved to chilly climes and will clearly need more than the one pair of wool socks that I've made him.

I need to get me to the super-nice yarn store, but it's more of a pain in the butt public transportation-wise. Then again, you'd think that nothing would be too far for decent sock yarn, wouldn't you?

Wonder if I should visit some friends in New York just to go Lanett-shopping. Hmm.

Monday, October 1, 2007


My mother is a big fan of the garage sale, and while she does not knit, she sews and is a fan of all things fiber. So I was digging through some random knitting stuff today, and as a result I now have:

  • One elderly white plastic US 2 (3mm) dpn. I'm hoping to find its friends eventually, as I have none that size.
  • A zillion (ok, six) size US 4 aluminum straight needles, in various colors.
  • One extremely heavy steel crochet hook, size I. (At least I think that's the size. It could just be a random I. Crochet hook sizing freaks me out with those letters.)
My cable needle also came out of my mom's random craft stuff, but I found that about a year ago.

And yes, I have been knitting stuff. Most of it I've ripped out, but one of it has led to the discovery that the tiered skirt pattern from Vogue Knitting's summer issue a couple of years ago is Really Cute. So now I have to buy some slightly more appropriate yarn and make a real one.