June 2007


So, as soon as I got all my STR wound up into balls, I cast on for a Chevron Scarf, couldn’t remember how to kfb (and couldn’t be arsed looking it up), briefly wondered why I was trying to make a scarf in June during a heat wave, and started thinking of other things I could do with my pretty pretty yarn.

 

I have recently discovered the amazing Elizabeth Zimmermann. So I started making a Tomten.

 

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My 10-month-old pseudoniece is coming all the way from South America in August for her first visit to Canada (with her parents, of course…and not a minute past time, it’s been ages since I’ve seen her dad/my very good friend!) She’ll need something to keep her warm when the late summer nights turn chilly. Right?

 

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Right.

 

I also changed my mind about colourway combinations. This sweater is a marriage between Puck’s Mischief and Scottish Highlands. After I’d looked at my four skeins of STR very carefully, I realised that SH was basically just a watered-down version of PM, except with yellow instead of brown. So it really just looks like one gigantic skein of yarn that gets sliiiiiiightly lighter somewhere in the middle. I like it. I especially like that it’s all garter stitch. Actually, I lie; I don’t especially like mindless knitting. It goes very slowly. But I do appreciate the versatility of garter stitch, so on we go.

 

Except this sweater doesn’t need to be done for a couple of months. I have much more pressing sweater needs. So back I go to this one:
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Yarn: Knitpicks Andean Treasure in Woods Heather
Needles: 4.25mm (US 6) bamboo circulars
Pattern: My own, as usual
(Eyelets from the Barbara Walker Treasury vol I)

 

It’s going to be a wrap sweater, kind of like the Airy Wrap-Around Sweater from Fitted Knits, except that I didn’t know there *was* such a thing when I started designing it, aaaaaaaaand I think mine’s going to be better (sorry, Stefanie. Take comfort in your book deal, and the fact that my sweater isn’t even slightly done, so I’m all talk and not much action). But there’s already a problem with this sweater: I…I don’t know where it is. This is just a (shitty, sorry) picture of my swatch. I swear I’ve got about three inches of a hem lying around…somewhere. I won’t include a picture of the hideous mess that is our room at the moment, although it would help you to understand how I’ve lost an entire knitting project. It’s just too graphic for the internet.

 

But when I do find it…there’s going to be some mad throwdown knitting done on it! Just wait and see.

 

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Please don’t mention my paper.

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My Socks That Rock order arrived today!!

I ordered them in pairs with the intention of making a couple of chevron scarves from Last Minute Knitted Gifts, but now I’m not so sure…anyway, here are the pics!

First, Socktopus and Puck’s Mischief:

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then, Rolling Stone and Scottish Highlands:

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I really really love the Sockto/Puck mix, but I’m feeling kind of meh about the Scottish Highlands colourway (and yes, I bought it primarily because of its name). It’s just so…yellow! I am not a yellow girl, me. Maybe this duo is destined to become a present for someone who will really appreciate it…after all, do I really need *two* almost-identical scarves? I do not.

mmmmmmm…I really, really, REALLY love the Socktopus. In fact, I don’t think I will be able to resist ordering some more…when I get a job to pay for it. Some sweet, distant day…

Just so you don’t get the (not *entirely* unjustified) impression that I am all stash-build and no stash-bust, I have to say in my defense that I have a lot of WIPs, but not a lot of time to work on them. Right now on the needles, I have:

  • The blue and white cardigan I photographed earlier (in the koigu post…I still need to source some buttons for this one)
  • a pair of green merino socks for my dad for Father’s Day (I couldn’t finish them until he tried them on, and he couldn’t try them on as WIPs until I “gave” them to him, so that’s that excuse)
  • a new brown wrap sweater of my own design, in Knitpicks Woods Heather (so soft!)
  • a surprise that I cannot divulge here, just in case the recipient reads this before it’s done!

Stupid school getting in the way of my knitting…

After many long months of searching and pleading and surfing and waiting, my Handmaiden Seasilk has finally arrived! And it seems to have been delivered by frog!

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Seriously, I have been trying to track down some skeins of this stuff since February, when I decided I would tackle the Sarcelle as a Mother’s Day gift for my mum. After careful consideration, I settled on the Nova Scotia colourway, and set off on my search.

Of course, everyone in everywhereland has been out of Nova Scotia since sometime last century, so I had to wait until well after MD before someone finally got some in. I really really wanted to pick out the skeins myself, in person, but my LYSes are not actually very local to me at all, and it turned out they were too far and hard to get to for me to pop into every week and harass them to get the colourway I wanted. So I ordered a couple of hanks online as insurance, just to be sure I’d get some before it all sold out again everywhere. I figured, even if I didn’t like what came, I could sell it on, or save it for another project or something.

And then yesterday, it arrived!! Now, to be honest, I was surprised by what I pulled out of the envelope. The dye was a lot (a lot!) paler than I’d expected.
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I picked the Nova Scotia colourway because I adore (and wear a lot of) green and blue, as does my mum, and also because I so admired the beautiful work done by this blogger here. I don’t know why I was expecting it to be darker because I *know* she striped in some Ocean, but still. Anyway, after my initial surprise wore off, I decided I quite liked it, and that my mom would totally love it. She has a much paler skin tone than I do, and suits these colours down to the ground. So everything is awesome.

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Besides, I’d already wound it into a ginormous ball. I couldn’t ask that poor little guy to carry it all the way back to Newfoundland now! Ah well. Now for the next drama: getting the proper needles to start the Sarcelle pattern (I’m thinking some Addi Lace circulars…I really like the normal Addis I just got, even tho they do clickclickclick a lot more than the bamboos I’m used to. But I can’t go back to the bamboo plastic cables now that I’ve experienced the flexiness of the Addis!) Oh, and I should probably finish (or at least start) that 60+ page paper I have hanging over my head. You know, the one that’s due really soon and means I get to graduate from my MA program and move on with my life? Yeah, that one. Wish me luck!

Well, here I am at home on International Knit In Public Day, not knitting and not being in public. Kind of sucks, but I couldn’t find anyone to come out with me except my husband, and since I know he would rather bash his head against a brick wall than go yarn shopping (which seems to be the central activity organized here in Toronto for iKIPd)…also, I have promised myself a sweater’s worth of extra special Dream In Colour reward yarn for finishing my MA research paper (I’m trying to decide between Deep Seaflower, Dusky Aurora and Good Luck Jade…colourways can be found here, for the curious. Also, opinions/reviews would be very welcome in the comments!) But since I have written approximately zero words of my paper, AND the first draft is due next week, AND we’re both unemployed right now, AND I have terrible self-control when it comes to pretty pretty yarn…it just wasn’t a good time for iKIPd to happen for me.

But I can’t let it go by without doing something public and/or knitterly. So I’ve decided to update my knitting blog as a fun, free and in-the-spirit-of-things activity. Except I don’t have any new and/or exciting yarns. So…

Ten Things It May Or May Not Be Interesting To Know About Me

1. I lived in Scotland (Glasgow, specifically) for about two years during and after undergrad. While I don’t ever want to actually live in the UK (too expensive! too complicated!) I loved my time there, and I sometimes experience incredible waves of homesickness just thinking about the place.

2. Just before I moved back to Canada from Scotland, I met a very cute Australian boy who eventually became my husband. We lived in Melbourne for almost a year before finally deciding to settle in Toronto. This means I sometimes break out into a fucked-up hybrid accent, and have strange cravings for candy and/or beer that isn’t accessible on my continent.

3. I have moved once a year, every year since 1999. It’s getting really, really old, and I would like nothing more than to have my own place (choosing paint colours! buying not-plastic furniture!) But so far, our househunting (/condohunting) has been slow going. Being both poor and picky is a bad combination. But I hold out hope.

4. I had a lot of food allergies as a kid, and thus avoided a lot of foods that I now think were probably okay. While it’s true that I am very (very!) allergic to peanuts and other nuts, I’m still kind of hazy about what other foods I should avoid, and even the allergist I went to recently wasn’t very helpful! For instance, as a child I was told I was allergic to “Peas”, and thus stringently avoided snow peas and chick peas on principle. Until recently, when I decided to give them a try (since I have always eaten normal beans without a hint of a problem). Dudes! Humus is TOTALLY DELICIOUS! What other wonders has the universe been hiding from me?? Anyway, it sucks that I am so allergic to nuts, since I think I would be the Biggest Nut Fan Evar if they didn’t make me feel like I want to die.

5. I love fireworks, don’t mind loud music at all, and can deal with being startled (although I don’t like it any more than most normal people do). However, I hate balloons, and hatehateHAAAATE hearing them pop, esp close by. I blame my dad for insisting on blowing balloons up waaaaay past what I thought was a sensible size, then yelling “POP!” in my face just to freak me out. Thanks for the lifetime of globophobia, dad!

6. I often assume I can do something, even if I have no experience/data to back it up. I don’t mean, like, assuming I can drive a backhoe or perform open heart surgery; more like design an intarsia baby blanket despite not yet having mastered the ‘purl’ stitch. Sorry, sister-in-law! (recipient of said baby blanket) Unfortunately, I seem to be mentally and physically incapable of learning something without making a thousand mistakes first…but at least I have the tenacity (pigheadedness?) to keep on trying!

7. I have never had a pet (more allergies), despite always really, really wanting a puppeeeeeeeee!! But when I think really seriously about it, I am sort of turned off by the expense and responsibility of it all. Maybe we’ll get one after we have a kid (between 5-100 years from now), when we’re so overwhelmed with expense and responsibility that we won’t really notice another one anyway. Right now I’m really looking forward to a fishtank.

8. One of the main reasons I made my husband move back to Canada was for the summers on the lake. As someone who never even *saw* saltwater until I was maybe twenty, I just can’t work up the same enthusiasm for the ocean (despite the ocean’s way cooler snorkeling landscape). Heaven for me is going for a swim on a warm, clear, starlit night when the lake is completely flat and there’s a campfire on the beach to warm up beside when I get out. If there’s an afterlife, I think you get what you think you’ll get; I hope that’s what I get when I die.

9. I’ve been anti-pink for…god, eighteen years or something…mostly because I was saturated with it as a little girl (my mom “can’t wear” pink, and was delighted that her blonde, blue-eyed daughter looked so sweet in it, so she kind of went overboard, imo). It’s only recently that I’ve been coming back around to it, but as an accent colour only! I would still never decorate with it, and I have exactly one shirt that is sort-of pink. However, as you can see from pics of my Koigu, when it’s combined with other complementary colours, I just can’t resist it these days!

10. I have a pretty fine-tuned sense of humour. I think I have a lot of male friends because I love to just sit around and laugh about stuff. Sometimes I laugh so hard I can’t see through the tears, and have more than once fallen off my chair laughing (no injuries to body or clothing, tho!) Laughing about things helps me break through my pretty intense shyness, and I think helps me become the person who helps the group become comfortable with each other. Because I will sacrifice quite a bit of dignity for a joke, if I think my audience will respond. Having said that, I can be quite a serious person at times, and really enjoy sitting down with my friends and talking through a problem or issue for hours and hours.

So, there you go. 87% more information than you ever wanted to know about me. And very little of it is related to knitting. Now it’s time for me to go outside and celebrate iKIPd by doing more research for my paper. Good times, good times.

Imaginary Readers, I have been doing a lot of knitting, honest I have. It’s just that none of it is really ready to be photographed, even as WIPs. They’re so infuriatingly close to being done that I just. can’t. do it. But I can show you this one panel of the cardigan I’ve been working on…that is, until I realised I didn’t have enough yarn and had to re-order from knitpicks…it’s Panache in “Dusk” and “Cloud”. The drape is a little bit heavier than I expected, but I’m reserving judgment until I’m done the whole thing. It’s knitting up nice and fast, anyway (well, until I ran out of yarn…)
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Fans of the Winter 2006 issue of Interweave Knits might recognize the motif from this sweater by The Eunny Jang. Um…it might look better in Jameson sticky DK weight yarn than this chunky, slippery stuff. Ah well. It looks fine from the distance most people will be viewing my chest.

To make up for general lameness of this fuzzy picture, here are some pics of my Koigu collection!

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Koigu in the sun!

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A closeup of the 314 I didn’t think I would like, all knitted up. Turns out it’s actually quite pretty!

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And a closeup of the 323, which I thought was going to be more intense, but it’s still quite nice.

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With silver bells and cockle shells and pretty skeins of Koigu all in a row!