Friday, April 30, 2010

April roundup

This was a better month in terms of finishing objects, because I did. Finish some objects, I mean.

Not all of them, of course, that would be too much too ask for. But, some is more than none and so I'm happy.

Elena's sweater got completed, even though I had to dye more yarn to finish the sleeves.

I also finished several pairs of socks, all for M4A.
-- red-toed Silja socks
-- light green Diana socks
-- dark green Diana socks

I'm looking again at my pile of UFOs in hopes to finish up one or two. We'll see how the month goes.

Forgot to mention

As I was typing up my post about my M4A box, I realized that I hadn't shown you the completed Diana socks.


And in case you doubt that I made two, here's both of the them together:

These were my second attempt, and I used a skein of Chaco yarn dyed green, and the blue/purple sock yarn that was leftover from Murat's socks. They don't show the cabling pattern quite as well as some combinations would, but I still rather like them.

This was my first attempt...

...which I was very pleased with until I ran out of sock yarn midway through the second sock. Once Diana's official pair were done, I went back to these ones and tried again.

I used a different sock yarn that is similar but you can still see the changes--just after the heel on both socks.

These I'm saving until the sock challenge in November. Whoo-hoo--one done already!

The pattern has been tweaked and I'll relist it soon with new pics and changes and then I'll be ready for some test knitters (this means YOU!) Please and Thank You.

M4A box

Today I mailed a package for Mittens for Akkol that'll be going to Kazakhstan by way of Ohio (where the organizer sorts all the packages and fitting them into her suitcases.)

You've seen these before, but here they are in one picture:

Sweaters for Yegor and Elena, socks for Murat and Diana,and two pairs of socks and one mohair scarf that are extras for "just-in-case". That should make these new graduates just a little bit warmer come next winter.

Now that that's done, maybe I should get back to one (or some) of my UFOs.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Not Marathon

The Marathon socks are done! Marathon in this instance means the yarn brand, not the amount of time it took.

Scratch that previous paragraph. These socks are made from Silja Strompegarn yarn and not Marathon yarn. Am I really losing track of this so completely, or did I just miss my daily nap? You be the judge.

They completely used two skeins, one for each sock. (Did I really think no one would understand that unless I spelled it out?)

Anyway, the legs are 8.5 inches in length so I ran out of yarn on the foot. (The advantage of two skeins of yarn is that I realized this on the first sock and didn't have an unpleasant surprise in the middle of the second one.) I added Knitpicks yarn in a cranberry color for the toes.
(That was one of the best things that I did--buying several skeins of solid yarn from Knitpicks to have around "just in case".)

Anyway, size 1 dpns, 68 sts, 9.5" foot length, plain vanilla sock pattern.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Wiggles afghan

"Oh, look, it's knitting content! On a knitting blog! How unusual to find that here!"

"Yes, that's true, but it's not Ruth's knitting content."

"Oh, well. Let's see what she has to say, anyway. It might be interesting."

Maybe tomorrow I'll show you what I've been working on, but until then, DD#2 has a completed object!

This is her first afghan, and actually, her first project of anything larger than a dishcloth.

It's the same pattern as a dishcloth, actually, which is one of the best baby afghan patterns.

The baby was born about a week after it was finished, so she had perfect timing. She managed to handle the stripes by carrying the yarn up the side and not miscount during the whole knitting process. (I'm not sure I could've accomplished that myself.)

Yarn: TLC Wiggles in green and navy.

And there's some yarn left over. Maybe I'll get to play with it, too!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The story of the Rubik Cubes...

... or how to start every sentence with a conjunction...

In the beginning, there was a Rubik cube that DS#2 got as a freebie at a computer competition.

And it was solved (with a little help from a YouTube video).

And it was joined by a friend.

And it was solved.

And patterns were made.

And it wasn't hard enough, so DS bought a 4x4.

And it was solved.

And patterns were made.

And the promise was made that if he solved the 4x4, that his mom would buy him a 5x5.

So she did.

And it immediately fell apart.

But he put it back together.

But it wasn't sturdy enough, so a new one was bought. This one was from Greece.

And it was solved.

And patterns were made.

And the family was astounded.

And the kid went to bed.

The End.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sock knitting time

Since finishing Elena's sweater, I've been working on Diana's socks. I had started these once before, only to run out of sock yarn on the 2nd one. That can be fixed, since the sock yarn is being held together with a worsted weight and I can just use another color, but it will look a bit different and I didn't want that for a graduate.

So, I dyed more yarn.

Actually, when I dyed yarn, I meant it to be blue for Elena's sleeves, but I didn't have any more blue coloring, so I dyed it green. (Can't waste yarn that's ready to be dyed.)

Then, I dyed some blue and continued with the sleeves. Taking another look at the green, I decided I didn't have enough for a pair of socks, so I dyed some more green.

And that's what I'm using. But in the meantime, I have leftover blue plus almost a whole skein of green ready to be used, plus the first green socks to finish.

Lots to knit.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Anyway, here's the sock so far.

The cabling pattern is still there, although it's hard to see. And I have a whole 'nuther skein of sock yarn so this time I won't run out.

In the meantime, I've had occasion to need plain knitting, like at yesterday's soccer game, so I started another sock.

I know, I know, I had another plain pair in the works, but they were smaller. I figured if I started over again with a bigger size, they might get done in time for the graduates' box, so I cast on again.

I've had lots of knitting time on the plain ones, so they're going almost as fast as the cabled ones. Look, I'm past the heel already.

So, lots of sock knitting being done around here. Now, does anyone want to clean my house?

Friday, April 16, 2010

Elena's sweater

Elena's sweater is done. It's a nice warm, thick sweater, which it should be considered how much yarn it took up.

Pattern: Pattern: Hooded tunic #244 from Knitting Pure and Simple.
Yarn: Every skein that I had in my house. Oh wait, it just seemed that way. Actually, it was 8 oz. Fisherman's that was dyed yellow and 8 oz. Fisherman's that was dyed green. Several 3.5 oz. skeins Patons Classic Wool in sesame. Let's call it 6 skeins, but it could be more.
I knitted the smallest size using size 8 and 10 needles. That's up one size from the recommended but I knitted with 2 strands held together so it's nice and dense.

The stripes on the hood ended up evenly without any fudging on my part. I did a 3 needle bind off on top and the middle stripe is still 8 sts wide, just like the rest.

The blue was added when the yellow ran out. The yellow had just enough yarn to do the next yellow stripe, with about 5 inches leftover.

It's been washed and blocked and ready for the Akkol box. I have one more pair of socks to go and then it can be mailed. They're thick socks, so it shouldn't take too long.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Signs of spring

There's been signs of spring popping up around here all over the place. We've had some really warm days, some beautifully nice days, and an occasional rainy, miserably cold day. (Like Tuesday, when DD#2 had her track meet and I sat out in the rain for 3.5 HOURS. At least I wasn't trying to run in that weather, so I probably shouldn't complain.) People have been mowing their lawns and every horizontal surface outside has a lovely green coat of pollen.

In our yard, we have our lilac bushes blooming like crazy. Here are some pictures by DD:

Another sign of spring is DD#2's birthday who turned 15!

And as she tells me, once or twice a day...
Only 9 more months until she can get a driver's permit.

I. Can. Hardly. Wait.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Hiding those ends

What did I do yesterday? Not very much, other than I WORKED REALLY HARD ON ELENA'S SWEATER!

In the morning, I watched "Sense and Sensibility" and finished knitting the sleeves. I had trouble getting them done since this sweater is a big black hole that swallows up pounds and pounds of yarn, never to be seen again. (Which reinforces my decision to do the hood first, then I can be creative with the sleeves. Which I was.)

The yellow and the green were each 8 oz. of Fisherman's wool, and I ran out of yellow, right where I have the first blue stripe. (Knitting top down.) Then the green started running out, but fortunately I had dyed enough blue yarn to make a second blue stripe. I think it looks ok (and I sure bugged my family enough for their opinions.)

I'll show you more pictures later of the finished hoodie, but now I'm showing a picture of the sleeves inside out to show that I also hid all the ends.

And I mean ALL. This took 3 hours all by itself, and was my evening knitting project. Yes, this little pile of scraps represents 3 hours of work. The dark purple in the corner were my place markers for the sleeve decreases. (Which would be nice if I had a picture, but I don't. I was concentrating so much on finishing this as quickly as possible that I skipped multiple pictures on the way.)

In the middle of the day, I did go to DS#2's first soccer game and knitted the i-cord drawstring.

The drawstring is all done, so today's project is sewing the casing and putting in the drawstring and then it'll be done!

P.S. Yes, that is my MDSW shirt. I'm starting to get psyched--it's only 3 weeks away and I think I'm going this year!

Monday, April 05, 2010

Elena's sweater

Elena's sweater has been making good progress. (Elena's one of the soon-to-be graduates from Kazakhstan). The body is done and I just finished the hood.

The yellow really is that intense. I think it's the first time that I wish some of the dye would wash out quickly. Just enough, mind you, not too much.

I did the hood before the sleeves in case I run out of yellow or green yarn and then I could put in a stripe on the sleeves for contrast. That would look much better on the sleeves than the hood.

So far, though, I think I will have enough to finish, especially since Elena has short arms.