all work and no play

makes the handknit librarian a very dull girl indeed.

I’m on day six of what is scheduled to be thirteen straight days of work and in combination with a lot to do for both classes it really isn’t very good for my mental health.  Oh, and factor in the architect ripping up half the kitchen floor with the consequent dirt and chaos and I’m really crazy in the head.  Stepping in wet concrete while wearing suede shoes yesterday was almost the final straw.

Sanity may be saved by sneaking a day off work next week and going into NYC with the architect.  While he goes to some boring IT thingy at the Hilton mid-town, I’ll be hanging out at the NYPL, getting fish & chips for lunch at A Salt & Battery, then walking down to Purl in SoHo to drool over yarn.  I have to buy some sock yarn for a swap for the blankie, but I know it’s going to be hard to restrain myself …

Progress is slow on In Vino Wisteria.  I’m finally down to the cabled section at the bottom of the body, but it’s just going to get slower and slower as I go along because there are more and more cables.  Still, it does look great, and hopefully the sleeves will move along more quickly when I get to them.

I did manage to finish’s Grant’s (giant) CMU toe-up socks and he likes them (shown here with a “normal” sized sock for comparison):

I also made a nice hat for Alexandra (A Slouch for All Seasons) in Moda Dea Bamboo Wool which was really nice to knit with:

What is most likely only the first Meret I’ll make is finished (and I don’t think Phoebe has taken it off yet):

I’ve managed to start a little bit more holiday knitting too.  A Calorimetry for the girl in some luscious Malabrigo Dos (it really feels like butter) supplemented with some Woolen Rabbit laceweight.  The colour combination looks great:

End of "summer" update

In Vino Wisteria is underway and I’m loving it! (well, apart from a few tense moments when I screwed up the count on the chart and had to tink back through some complicated cabling).  The Dream in Color Classy is a delight to knit with, although not quite as soft as I expected.  The swatch did seem smooshier after washing and blocking, so we’ll see.  I’d hate to end up with a t-neck that I can’t wear because it’s itchy.

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I finished the hearts booties finally – all they needed was seaming, stuffing and tying.  I did have an epiphany while I was sewing the seam for these.  Finally a great use for all the ends that live in the mason jar on the crate that sits next to the couch where I knit … stuffing for booties!

heartsnrjarends

I started another pair of socks.  Need them to knit in the car on the way to and from NYC.  I’d rather be working right from a pattern than figuring it out as I go along (as is the case with the yet unfinished CMU toe-ups).  Just the toe of one done so far, but that’s plenty to get me off to a running start (anyone see that episode of Mythbusters?) in the car.

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Oh yes.  The architect, in a move totally out of character, has determined that we’re going to a party next weekend.  A dress-up party.  Admittedly, the theme is not too scary to contemplate (Woodstock), but turning two middle-aged people with really short hair into hippies is a bit of a stretch.  So, in the meantime, I need to knit myself a belt and a headband for him.  I have two balls of Lion Brand Suede which should do the trick, one in purple and one in dark brown.  I scored a fairly cheap “tie-dye” skirt at TJMaxx a couple of weeks ago (that I actually like and can wear to work), and a too big white cotton “peasant” blouse which will look okay with a belt over it.  I also scored a truly hideous linen pullover shirt for the architect to wear loose over old jeans.  I need to borrow a pair of the girl’s crappy plastic flip-flops to complete the look.

Pictures may follow.

WIP update

A rethink is in order for several wips – some strategizing, some knitting maths, some sweating, some graph paper, and probably much swearing.

First: LS 502: First Toe-Ups – the combined factors of working out how toe-up socks happen and planning for them to fit the world’s second biggest foot have temporarily confounded me.  I’m part-way through the gusset and totally winging it with the length.  I may need to send these for some temporary hibernation while I start another pair of toe-ups (Double Eyelet Rib) for myself so that I can work out the actual mechanics of the process and still be able to try it on a normal sized (mine) foot.

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Second: Josephine – having cleverly and largely ignored gauge, number to cast-on, knitting front and back separately, etc., this seems miraculously like it might actually fit.  The next dilemma is whether to do another pattern repeat of the lace before I do the eyelet rows and start the bodice.  I think it’s probably fine as it is right now (5 repeats), but I’d hate to have to finish it and rip it back to add another repeat for length.  Might be a good time to put a lifeline in today before I decrease for the eyelets and bodice.  Another problem (caused by my largely ignoring the pattern specifications) is figuring out the decreases needed and the eyelet placement according to the number of stitches I have.  Time to get the graph paper out! (mods available here)

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Third (and this one’s more positive): Pumpkin Booties – I’ve been wanting to revise the top of these for a while, get the pattern written up properly, and get it up for sale on Ravelry.  The “leafy” top is inspired by Grumperina’s Jaywalkers sock pattern, as well as assorted chevron patterns.  I’d like to get permission from her to include the attribution for the inspiration, so I sent her a pic this morning and I’m waiting to hear back.

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Fourth: Socket to Phoebe (her 21st birthday sock yarn blanket) – More knitting maths were needed here as I suddenly realized that I have less than a year and a half to finish this.  It appears that if I average one square a day I’ll easily have it done in time to do the edging section and the I-cord edge.  Seven days since I worked that out and eight squares knitted – I’m ahead of the game!

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In other knitting news, the Bumblebee Bootie reverse-engineering project has been relegated to hibernation status again.  I really thought I was going to get it this time, but I’m not happy with the way the decreases look at the sides of the instep with the puffy stripe pattern.  I need to reconsider these again.

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The hibernating Sock Yarn Pillow is almost ready to come out of hibernation and be dealt with.  I really only have to do the I-cord edging on the top piece, then join the two pieces together and put the zip in.  I don’t know what my problem is with this project.

blankiepillowfrontblankiepillowback

Oh yeah, maybe it’s that whole sewing and zip thing.