trollwife: (Default)
Well. The Rigatoni scarf is coming along nicely, but the ball of mini mochi that I'm halfway through now resembles not so much a ball but the results of the sudden introduction of the Flying Spaghetti Monster to the Shinkansen. Tangled, tangled mess, sans meatballs. I've got a great deal of it wound onto my niddynoddy, and the Boo is going to help me untangle the rest of it. It's frustrating because the scarf itself is coming along so nicely, and it's being just the kind of I-can-knit-this-while-sleeping project that helps as a pain management fiddlement in class.

The Boo took me to the kinda snooty, definitely overpriced but close and open and oooo they have pretties yarn store in Napa and ordered me to get yarn enough for a new Rigatoni. After a lot of back and forth, I finally picked 3 skeins of Rowan Tapestry in "Whirlpool", soft oceanic blues and greys. I cast on last night and worked up a few inches, adding beads to every selvedge stitch, but the soft pearly beads I was using just completely vanished into the yarn. So, I frogged it, and I'll take the cast-on scarf to the bead store to find something that will work with this. I really want the beads on the selvedges to both highlight the whirly twirly awesomeness of the pattern and to stiffen the edges a bit. So. Bead store. Yeah.

In other news, the Janel Laidman sock books of ultimate glory got here today, completely surprising me since they only shipped out yesterday. The Boo and I spent a happy morning squeeing over the various pretties, and she has found a handful of things that she'd like me to knit for her. I'm absolutely desperate to knit for her, and I couldn't be happier, or more daunted, with the patterns she's chosen. However, unlike me, she has lovely slim legs, narrow feet, and shapely calves. Really, really fabulous legs, and so easy to knit for! Yay!

GLEED!!!

Oct. 17th, 2010 10:41 pm
trollwife: (Default)
"Gleed", gentle readers, is a portmanteau of "glee" and "greed" of my own invention, and it is the only term that describes my emotional state at having discovered both Janel Laidman's books, The Eclectic Sole and The Enchanted Sole, for less than the original publishing price! This is particularly fabulous as The Eclectic Sole is currently OOP, and I fear The Enchanted Sole may soon be as well. The Eclectic Sole is currently available through resellers for various astronomical figures ranging from a low of $75 to upwards of $300. I was briefly tempted to squirrel away some copies as an investment, but I can't bring myself to charge people those kinds of prices. I'm content to have my own copies, and I'm just delighted to have found them both for less than $60! (Pennies less, but still...) I'm going to knit the most beautiful socks ever!

Gleed gleed gleed indeed!
trollwife: (Default)
Tomorrow's my 40-somethingth birthday. It is, in fact, my very first 40-somethingth birthday, a reality to which I'm not yet accustomed. It seems that the upper digits are akin to higher altitudes: the further up I get, the harder it is to believe that I really hauled my ass this far along. I'm not complaining; it's certainly better than the alternative, but I am rather startled. Nonetheless, this has been a splendid day, despite it being technically the day before the b-day day, but I'm nine kinds of busy tomorrow, so celebrations ensued a tad early. Yay!

My Boo is an enthusiastic enabler of my knitting habit, despite the fact that she neither benefits from it in the form of knitted niceties for herself nor does she understand the appeal of twiddling with sticks, strings, and occasional beads. As evidence of her awesomeness, I offer the fact that she has taken to letting me chose a new knitting class and outfitting me with the necessaries for same for major gift-related holidays. I've learned how to knit toe-up socks and beaded lace, and this time I signed up for a color workshop that promised an opportunity to learn Fair Isle, intarsia, slip-stitch, "and more!".

I've tried my hand at stranded colorwork before, and had some tension and entanglement issues. I think I'm hampered because I don't know how to knit and purl continental-style. I've seen stranded knitters working with two different colors, one held in each hand. That's some seriously Batman-level cool shit there. So, I've been super-excited about this class. I ran around for hours today looking for cheap, non-fugly, 100% wool to take to the class. I finally found a sale at the local(ish) Beverly's on Kertzer Rejuvenation and picked up a skein each of white, grey, blue, black and red. I also found a skein of Red Heart (dude, I know, blech, right? but wait!) Pomp-a-doodle in candy floss pink, which is basically a bunch of pompoms onna string.
From Trollwife @ Ravelry

My flash washed the color out a bit, but still. POMPOMS ONNA STRING!!! How awesome is that?

Sadly, the class was canceled because I was the only one to sign up. That "and more!" will forever remain a mystery to me. I refunded my class fees for store credit and bought a couple of books I've been getting my grubby little eyeprints all over for well over a year: Susanna E. Lewis's Knitting Lace: A Workshop with Patterns and Projects and Evelyn A. Clark's Knitting Lace Triangles. They are both much more technical in nature than the usual "follow this pattern to make this design" lace books I've seen, delving a bit more deeply into the structure of lace and how to design your own patterns. I'm veryvery happy with them both so far.

Oh, and! Pat at Village Knitters, my very favoritest LYS, taught me how to use the swift and ball winder to deal with the skeined Malabrigo baby merino lace, averting a near catastrophe in the process. She was very gracious about it, in her usual brusque Midwestern way, despite the fact that it's Not Usually Done for one to bring yarn purchased at LYS A for winding at LYS B. Tacky trollwife was tacky. *fail* She was nice about though, especially considering that another customer was admiring the Malabrigo. I know that some people have had a hard time with Pat's forthrightness, but I find her refreshing and kind of adorable, like a grumpy puppy who you just want to scritch behind the ears. She's also a great teacher and a fantastic knitter. I got to eavesdrop a bit on the stitch&bitch in session as I wound... and wound... and wound... some 940 yard of lace. My Wintertide™ wish list has an umbrella swift and ball winder at the very tippy top of it! I wonder if I can get a winder that will count yards as it zooms along? That'd be awfully useful for some of the unlabeled and handspun stuff I've got tucked away, and y'know, easier than wrapping and weighing and doing the math.
trollwife: (Default)
I found this easy lace scarf pattern via Ravelry and decided to try to knit it up in time for my mother out-law's Wintertide gift. I was going to use Elsebeth Lavold's Silky Wool in "mallard", but I couldn't find any in my LYS's. My MOL has a very particular green that is her very favorite color ever, and the closest I could come was Malabrigo Baby Merino Lace in "Verdes". It's very soft, somewhat finer than the stuff called for by the designer, and I really love the variegations. All shimmery with leaflight, appropriate for the pattern.

I'm using Addi Turbo's, which I'm not finding as prohibitively slippery as I have in the past, and I'm using the stretchylicious long tail cast on. I'd knit the first 5 rows when I realized that the lovely loose skein of lace yarn was just begging to be tangled and snarled into a Gordian Knot, so I frogged the baby beginning of the scarf. I'll be trotting down to Village Knitters to see if I can't get the Malabrigo wound into tidy center-pull balls, good'n proper. Still, it looks like an easy pattern, and I have actual hope that I'll finish it in time for the holidays. Yay! I guess for tonight, I'm back on the Rigatoni scarf, with maybe a little homework between rows.
trollwife: (Default)
I've been mostly laid up with a bad knee (and ouchy back, and migraine) today, but I managed to sort through another bin and get the stash therein inventoried on Ravelry. The first bin yielded 35 different yarns, and bin 2 has given up another 25. There are another four bins, not counting WIPs, piles of stuff to be frogged, and random yarns stashed in boxes, on bookshelves, and behind the cereal. Nonetheless, the project is being extraordinarily useful. Okay, yeah, it's a little tedious, especially taking or scrounging photos of the yarns, but being able to easily see and sort through what I've already got tucked away into my greedy littlehamster cheeks has been inspiring a ton of new projects and reminding me why I bought that yarn in the first place. (All except the Bernat Galaxy in "Saturn" and "Star". Nothing can explain how those came to be in my stash, and I'm stumped as to how to do something with them that doesn't violate the UN's Declaration of Human Rights.)

Yay for progress!

On the other needle, boo for being too distracted by pain and made stupid by migraine to actually knit anything. I don't dare cast on the Mother Out-Law's Wintertide gift. I'm not even sure I'm up to working on the rigatoni scarf even though that's basically zombie knitting.
trollwife: (Default)
Originally posted by [personal profile] neo_prodigy at Spirit Day
 


It’s been decided. On October 20th, 2010, we will wear purple in honor of the 6 gay boys who committed suicide in recent weeks/months due to homophobic abuse in their homes at at their schools. Purple represents Spirit on the LGBTQ flag and that’s exactly what we’d like all of you to have with you: spirit. Please know that times will get better and that you will meet people who will love you and respect you for who you are, no matter your sexuality. Please wear purple on October 20th. Tell your friends, family, co-workers, neighbors and schools.

RIP Tyler Clementi, Seth Walsh (top)
RIP Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase (middle)
RIP Asher Brown and Billy Lucas. (bottom)

REBLOG to spread a message of love, unity and peace.




This is the dead-easy drop-stitch Spirit Day scarf I knocked out in Lion Brand's purple Homespun:
From Drop Box


Here's a closer look at the dropped stitches:
From Drop Box


The yarn looks much more blue than purple in the twilight. Maybe I'll try retaking the pictures tomorrow.
trollwife: (Default)
This is my obligatory and customarily awkward first post in a new blog. I had all these clever and poignant musings about knitting as a spiritual practice that reveals the essential nature of the universe, but all that's been tossed aside in favor of babbling on about my BIRTHDAY PRESENT! My beloved Boo took me down to my favorite LYS (Village Knitters, review forthcoming)and let me choose a knitting class. I'm all signed up for the Color Workshop, where I'll be learning Fair Isle, intarsia, slip stitch colorwork "and more". I'm so excited! I've tried my hand at stranded knitting before, but I think it will be more successful and less prone to unintended kitty bondage if I have a little guidance and, y'know, fewer cats around.

Of course, a knitting class requires yarn with which to knit, and therefore I have been inspired to sort through my stash in search of the umptillion balls of Lion Brand wool I've got tucked away and hey! Since I'm going through my stash anyhow and I've just signed up at Ravelry, I really should organise my stash, with photos and everything!

I started last night by dragging in the seven large off-brand Rubbermaid-style bins that keep my yarns safe from the rattlesnakes, mice, and wild turkeys that make regular tours of my garage. I've labeled the bins "yarn 1" through "yarn 6", bin 7 being reserved for WIPs, things to be frogged, things to be untangled, and things to be burned lest my occasional lapses of sanity are discovered. (Electric blue and acid green arm warmers? Really?) I managed to get half of bin 1 sorted and stashed within a little over an hour. I still have to go back and add photos, but I think the extra effort will be well worth it. I love the ability to look at pics and descriptions of my yarns in one place, rather than having to heft about a bunch of bins and rootle through them like a prize pig snuffling out truffles.

Oh, and that half bin? Yielded 26 different yarns, my friends, many with multiple skeins. I'm simultaneously gleefully amazed and a little embarrassed at how much yarn I have. In my defense, I lucked out by starting with the bin that holds most of my small, "fancy" yarn. Most of the other bins are full of cheap, often super bulky workhorse yarns from Patons and Lion Brand. Still, this sorting project has led to the declaration that I'm now going to work through my stash before I bring home new yarns. The Boo is tactfully grateful and even pointed out that she has even more art supplies than I do fiber-related stuff. Neither of us mentioned that she's an art and graphic design student whereas I am just a fiber whore who keeps dragging home shinies for the hoard. At least my pile of pretties is cozier to sleep on than poor old Smaug's.
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