January 2008


Stripey mitts. Whipped these up a few weeks ago to use up some scraps of superwash wool, and keep my hands warm. I completely made up the pattern as I went and lucky me, they fit perfectly! We’ll see how long I can go before I lose one. (Speaking of losing mitts…I had been missing one of my Delicato mitts for awhile. Then I found it about a month ago…but I couldn’t remember what I did with the one that wasn’t lost. So I stashed the new-found one with some of my knitting stuff…and when I was digging through that spot yesterday, I realized they were both in there. Brilliant.)

Remember NaKniSweMo? Well…it only took 3 months, instead of one…but the Treeline Striped Cardigan is FINISHED. I lost my momentum in November during the long plain stockinette portion of the body. Over xmas (when I couldn’t work on my sister’s mittens because of her presence!) I got through some of it while hanging out with the family. Then, a week ago…something possessed me. I knocked out the last few inches of the plain body section, and once I finished that, nothing could stop me. All day at work I would think about going home to whittle away at those raglan decreases. I waffled about knitting the collar as written, but I went with it.


Yarn: Cascade 220 – 2.5 skeins of navy, with Artfibers Tsuki carried along; just over 2 skeins of periwinkle.

Friday night I picked up the button band (which doesn’t have any buttons…so what do you call a buttonless button-band?). I stayed up until 1:30am doing a new bind off (the double crochet bind off), which was completely worth it. It has just the right amount of stretch, and it gives a slightly bolder line that stands out from the muddle of color from the stripes worked in 1×1 ribbing. It rounds off the corners and connects to the solid-color ribbing at the bottom of the sweater. I was excited to have it done, but that bind off just…MADE it.

My motivation (however fleeting it might be) toward finishing, rather than starting projects has continued over to Mystery Stole 3. I finished chart H and started I last night, and I’m feeling just as excited to continue tonight. I really want to start Muir with the orange Hello Yarn laceweight I got awhile back, but I absolutely refuse to start another big lace project before finishing MS3.

For February, I’ve joined Thing-a-Day. This is it’s second year running, and by signing up, you commit to making something each day – it could be anything – and posting about it on their site. My goal is to broaden my horizons in what I make each day…knitting everyday is a given, but I want to try more digital photography, cooking, and sketching, maybe even some writing. Some days, I’ll no doubt take the easy way out with knitting or spinning. It will also be a challenge for me to post every day about it. I’m thinking of doing weekly recaps on this blog, but if you happen to be interested in my daily updates, you can read them here starting February 1st.

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I made it a point not to overload myself with gift knitting this year, though I did strive to give handmade (whether by me or someone else) whenever possible. Still, in December I kept thinking of more ideas. There are a few little things I made that I didn’t get pictures of (felted bowls and a wrist pillow for my Dad) but these were the major achievements.

(from left to right)

-Seahorse stuffie! This is not knitting, it was hand-sewn. My first stuffie/softie toy like this of any sort. It only took me about two hours and it was a lot of fun! I made this for James’ sister; it was VERY well received. I bought the pattern here.

Phineas socks. I’m glad I started these early (at the beginning of November) because they took quite awhile, as socks always do. They were for my uncle who lives in Montana, so his feet need to stay toasty warm. The yarn is Louet Gems fingering weight. I haven’t heard anything, but hopefully they fit him ok.

Tiffany mittens. These actually are not finished. I had the first one done in time for xmas, so I wrapped it up. I would have had the other done, except that I was home with my sister (the recipient) the last few days before xmas. Since I have to mail them to her anyway, I took a little break, but I hope to have them finished up before the end of the month so she can actually get some use out of them this winter in New York.

Clementine Shawlette. This may look familiar. It was quite nice to have something done that far in advance, though I didn’t get around to blocking it until right before I sent it. My grandma loved it.

-Plain Jane slippers. This is a pattern that I acquired not long after I first started knitting. Unfortunately the link doesn’t seem to be active anymore, but luckily I have the pattern on my computer. This was my fifth pair, I think. I used Queensland Rustic Wool (superwash!). This pattern is awesome: fast and cute. Made these for Michelle, because she had wanting something knitted by me so badly. The little red heart buttons were the perfect finishing touch!

I know it’s been awhile. I wouldn’t say it’s the holidays that made me too busy to blog; there’s really no one reason to blame. Maybe it’s the working 50 hours (or more) a week thing. It’s been tough enough to keep on up blog reading. And in the spare time that I have, I’d much rather be actually knitting and spinning than writing about it.

This was Christmas at my parent’s house.

I got to hang out with my sisters, see my dear kitty, Merlin, and do holiday stuff like frosting cookies and wrapping presents. I hardly left the house except to see a few high school friends at night, and it was completely relaxing. Christmas day is always extremely low-key with my family; it takes us hours to open all the gifts because we take our time, and take breaks, and enjoy being around each other. I don’t have many gift-knitting pictures, but I’ll show the ones I do have in my next post.

I’m not really one to make New Year’s resolutions, goals, life changes, etc. Usually I tell people that my resolution is “to be more awesome than last year.” But, reading all these blogs the past few weeks on the subject has inspired me to at least lay out some *guidelines* for improving my life a little bit.

1. Meal planning. I received a few cookbooks for the holidays that I had been wanting, and I would really like to actually use them. I get it together and cook every now and then, but this post over at Obsession with Food has inspired me to plan out the meals for the week. This will hopefully a) make cooking at home more and more frequent, b) allow me to be more adventurous and creative with what I make, and c) solve the pesky problem I tend to have of leftover, unused ingredients spoiling and going to waste.

2. Eating more intuitively. Another interesting blog post inspired this. I want to take on a new attitude toward, and better habits about eating. It’s not about dieting, but it is about both enjoying what I’m eating, and giving my body what it needs to feel good. Too often I deprive myself of adequate food during the day, and then come home and eat terribly in the evening. The meal planning should help with my dinner dilemmas, and make those late-night Taco Bell runs less frequent. And if I’m planning out my meals, it should be easier to ensure I’m eating wholesome, quality food, rather than whatever happens to be lying around.

3. Making time. I tend to think that I “don’t have enough time” to do everything, from infrequent hobbies to cleaning the house. While everyone just needs to chill out and do nothing once in awhile, I really think that I can use my time at home better. The other night when I got home from work, rather than sitting down immediately and knitting for 4 hours (until I was tired and starving), I got my laundry going, cleaned the bathroom, and vacuumed right away. It didn’t take very long, and I still had plenty of time to work on several different projects. I felt productive, and I didn’t spend the evening thinking about how filthy the house was. I want to be the same way about my other hobbies too. I’ve been trying to spin every few days, and and I hope to make sewing more frequent as well. Also included in this should be picture-taking and blogging 🙂

I’ve already got a ton of projects either started or in the planning stages.  Lots of good ideas and inspiration have been coming my way lately.  Lots of nice yarn and fiber to see, too.  I promise pictures soon!