Tuesday, August 22, 2006

I'm flippin' crazy.

I started law school this week. I think I'm insane. I just finished one graduate program, now I'm jumping in head first right back into the deep end. I didn't realize how much work actually goes into it until now - and we aren't even out of orientation. You can watch Legally Blonde 17 times and read all the "How to succeed in law school" books that Amazon can ship you, but only now do I really get it.

Moral of the story is that the time in between postings is going to exponentially increase starting now. I'm going to try to keep a little something on needles in my locker at school (yes, that's right - we have lockers!) so that when I need to just break away I can knit for a little. I set my school/study/work schedule today, and I was careful to leave an hour every evening to take a walk or knit or just read anything besides casebooks.

Anyway, enough pity party for Amanda. I finished two more of the ballbands in my last weekend of freedom. I really love these colors, they are so bright and festive. It's hard to tell from the bad lighting, but the background colors are varigated subtly.

I've made about 6 or so of these things now. Washcloths are the knitting addiction of the month. Scarves have now fallen by the wayside. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Karaoke Cable Scarf - Complete.

I finished up the Karaoke Cable Scarf today, and I have to say that it was not a moment too soon. For whatever reason, I was so bored with this and it actually felt like a chore to knit. I think it was mostly because I knit the majority of it while sitting in airports last week. It conjures up bad memories. I think my boyfriend's fear of flying is starting to rub off on me. I do like how it turned out. I made it a little over 6 feet long so that it would wrap around once and still be a little long. It's not too wide either, maybe only 4-5 inches.
Pattern: Karaoke Cable Scarf - Free
Materials: Caron Simply Soft (leftover from another project)
Time: About 12-16 hours
Cost: About $2 in stash yarn Posted by Picasa

More dishcloths.

I spent the last few days adding to my dishcloth collection and I thought I would share. The ballbands are from Mason Dixon Knitting, and the lacier one is the July mid-month dishcloth from the Monthly Dishcloth yahoo group.

I kinda screwed up on one side and added two rows too many, but who cares in the whole scheme of things? I'm going to use it to wash off my makeup at night. My bathroom is done in white and pink, so I'm going to make several different patterns in pastels, and I thought this pattern would make a good place to start. Posted by Picasa

Monday, August 14, 2006

Lots and lots of nothing.

Well, in the past two weeks since my last post - I've moved to another state and spent a week at home in Tennessee doing lots of nothing with my family. And then I did more nothing.

This is the first summer my family has spent in the new house, and I have to say that it is beautiful. The back porch as two levels.. the upper level is for soaking in the sun, and the lower level is especially for the 3/5 of my family that is fair skinned and goes straight from pasty to sunburned with not even a hint of color in between. The view is absolutely spectacular. I spent hours and hours out here in the evenings. Most days that I was home, the temperature was over 100, so there wasn't too much outside time during the day.

This is the view from the upper patio:
And this is the lower patio. Apparantly we've taken to giving treats to all the neighborhood dogs, so anytime you step a foot on either patio, about 5 dogs come running for Beggin Strips.
What does this all have to do with knitting? Well.. all those hours on the patio spent fending off the packs of dogs was also spent knitting washcloths like crazy. Since I am moving into a new place, I thought I would make myself a housewarming gift and replace all my icky kitchen cloths with new, spiffy knitted ones.
The three ballband cloths are from Mason Dixon Knitting. The one that looks like a quilt piece is also from the Mason Dixon knitting webpage (I swear the pattern is there, just scroll down to the bottom). And the final one is the ever-popular Grandmother's Favorite. Since my hometown was so small and all my yarn was in a mysterious location somewhere within my new apartment, I was stuck with the cotton yarn that I could buy at Wal-Mart. I know, I know.. I shopped at the Evil Empire. However, in my defense it was the only option and it was my first slip up in nearly two years of not spending a dime there. Surely that can be overlooked just this once.

In other knitting news -- I taught my mom to knit!! She's doing pretty well. She's been a crocheter for years and I'm proud of her for wanting to branch out. She's almost got her tension perfect! She also taught me to do some simple crochet. I'm really bad. No seriously, really bad.

In summary,
Total cost: About $1 for two cloths (Peaches & Cream cotton)
Total time: 2-3 hours each (with lots of distraction)Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

An unexpected cable problem

I'm one of those knitters who gets on a kick of something and can't seem to stop. The latest is a cables. I started this scarf tonight, and unless I'm just absolutely insane.. my scarf looks nothing like the picture on the pattern. My cables are the traditional twist while their picture makes it look more like an upside down V.

Don't get me wrong, I really like how mine is turning out. I stared at the pattern all night trying to figure out what I've done, and I get nothing. Any advice is appreciated. Posted by Picasa

Monday, July 24, 2006

Cables aren't really THAT bad..

After getting a cable needle the other day, I was itching to learn how to actually use it. It was surprisingly easy. I found a pattern online that didn't look too difficult, and I cast on. It knit up in no time, although I did make it a little shorter than normal because it is going to my step-sister who is 12. It is another Christmas gift, of course!

Since I wasn't accustomed to using the cable needle, I probably should have started off on something that required a few less stitches to be put on the cable needle. Apparantly, I knit a little too snug, and it was a struggle to get all 8 stitches off the needle. It got better towards the end, but you really can't tell too much of a difference. It is a really lovely pattern.

As I was finishing up the scarf, Jasmine refused to get off my lap. So, to get her back I made her wear the scarf for awhile. She didn't seem to mind, but is giving the camera the meanest look I think I've ever seen.

Pattern: Quick Knit Reversible Rib Scarf - Free!
Cost: About $3 in Caron Simply Soft stash yarn
Time: 8-10 hours Posted by Picasa

Sunday, July 16, 2006


So, instead of working on my thesis that needs to be in final form in T minus 2 weeks, I finished up Block 8 on the Moderne Baby Blanket this evening. I must say that I think it is starting to look good.. although the camera makes the colors look horrendous (the colors are bright, but not quite enough to make you dizzy if you stare at it for too long).

Rumor has it that my family is getting me a replacement digital camera for my birthday. This is one rumor involving me that I am hoping is going to turn out to be true. Posted by Picasa

Non-knitting Weekend

I didn't get much knitting accomplished this weekend, but I did get the knitting deal of a lifetime. I got a $5 coupon in the mail from Erica's in the mail this week, and it turns out that Saturday was their Sidewalk Sale, where you could get one item for 25% off. I purused through the yarns for about a half hour and talked myself out of several large purchases to keep with the whole Summer of Stash theme. (I've been really good about not buying yarn unless it was needed to complete a project that was well underway.) I wound up buying some size 7 double points and a cable needle and after taxes paid 20 cents for both. You read that right - 20 cents.

I had a little get together this weekend, and my girlfriend, Sarah, came bring goodies. She got me the most fabulous yarn for my birthday. It's from a company called Malabrigo in Uruguay. Its a Merino Wool and it is so soft and cozy. I've petted it all day. I really don't know what I'm going to make with this.. but it will be gorgeous. Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 14, 2006

Another Angel Hair Scarf!

So, this was the last of the Joann's Sensations Angel Hair yarn. I bought 8 skeins at a great sale and paid $3.10 each, regular price $5.99. It took basically 2 skeins for each scarf, with just a little bit left over of each. I think I'll probably buy another one of each color (if I can find a sweet sale like that again) and make matching beanies.

This scarf (in beige) is going to a girlfriend of mine for her birthday. She's dropped numerous hints that she wants a handknit. The other day, one of her sons pulled my knitting needles out of my bag and started jousting with them. After a mini freak out and visions of little kids losing eyes (I'm a little frightened of all things mommy-related these days), I showed my friend her scarf but didn't tell her what it was for. She started oohing and gooing over it and said that it would look so good on her with her white pea coat. I told her I knew that.. and I was making it to go with mine! Ha! She was all sad after that. When I finished the scarf, I held it up next to my own white coat to see -- and she was right, it does look really classy. Imagine this paired with brown boots!

The yarn has a really awesome quality.. the stitches are in a creamy color, and the fuzziness is the light brown/tan color. Of course you can't tell how beautiful the scarf really is because of the whole Treo situation. It almost looks drab and lifeless, but I promise it really isn't at all.

Total Price: $6.20 (2x2 rib pattern - free)
Time: About 5 days of knitting during my lunch hour
Having a birthday gift finished a month early: Priceless Posted by Picasa

More Moderne Blanket

Yes... I am still working on this dang blanket. It is just taking me forever. It's gotten too big to throw in my bag, so I can only work on a few rows each night. I'm never home these days, so I only work on it for about a half hour each night. This whole two job business with trying to write a thesis on the side isn't quite as easy as I was hoping it would be.

After the current block is complete, there's two more large ones that get put on the bottom, along with a long strip down the right. I'm pretty sure this thing is getting a border too. If I can finish before my big move in 2 weeks, I'll be a happy camper. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Cats and yarn

And for the longest time, I thought the wet spots in my yarn got there because it was sitting next to a glass of ice water. Little did I know that it was because Jasmine was trying to eat the yarn.

I caught her in action this time! When I fussed at her, she just sat and looked at me with this blank expression. Believe me though, she knows what she did. Posted by Picasa

Monday, July 10, 2006

Birthday Blues

Today is my birthday, and I must say that it was possibly the worst birthday I've had in awhile. Not to wallow in my own sorrow, but no one remembered. Well, let me rephrase that - no one who actually lives in the same city I do, remembered. So after feeling sorry for myself all day, got take out sushi for dinner, bought myself a birthday cake and finished up a scarf. Having another Christmas present completed really feels good. And, not to sound evil -- but none of the jerks who forgot my birthday will be receiving handknits this year.

The scarf is yet another Sensations Angel Hair scarf. I know, this makes my third, but it is such an easy project, with amazing end results. Don't believe me.. look for yourself!

So, my boyfriend way outdid himself this year for my birthday. He met me at a friend's lake house for the weekend. About 15 of us were there to soak in the sun, and it was lovely (minus the fact that every single one of the girls there was engaged and could only carry on conversations involving weddings or invitations or caterers or dresses or... you get the point). Anyway, when he arrived, I met him at his car to help him carry his stuff in. He asked me to get his car charger out of the glove box. When I opened it up, I saw the infamous teal box and I knew it was going to be something lovely because he has amazing taste. This is what I found:

Then.. when I was only half paying attention because I was still in shock at the beautiful necklace, he says "hey look what I found back here!" It was another box that contained these:
I think more than one tear popped up in my eyes. He's such a wonderful man. I know I'm very lucky. I wore them both to work today even though they really didn't match my outfit. Not surprising, the same people who didn't acknowledge my birthday didn't notice my amazing new jewelry either. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Still chugging along on the Moderne Blanket

I'm kinda an idiot when it comes to knitting. I got so excited to start this project, I just picked the same sized needles that I would normally use for this yarn, and started the pattern. Because the pattern calls for size 6 and I used size 9, you can imagine how big it is turning out. I'm only on block #7 out of #10 (and the last few blocks are huge), so my baby blanket it going to probably be a toddler or a young child blanket. Oops. It's still fun to make, so I won't cry over it too long. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Cartoon of a Moderne Baby Blanket

In my fit of insomnia, I decided that I couldn't wait to "see" what my finished version of the Modern Baby Blanket was going to look like, so I drew a quick schematic so that I had a rough idea. I'm lovin' it already! I just started the first purple block (4th one total), and I'm hoping to at least knit through half of the 5th one before the weekend is out. I'm a little over booked, so that might be an ambitious goal. A girl can dream, right?

The colors from the photo that I posted the other day really don't do it justice. They are very much brighter and more vibrant in real life. Oh well, I guess that's the best you can expect from a camera phone!

I think my camera (and maybe my television remote) are the two things that I miss most after the robbery. But I did learn an interesting trick by accident the other day - my remote for the small TV/VCR combo works (sorta) for my living room TV. You can't do anything fancy, but you can scroll through the channels and adjust the volume. It tends to get a little annoying when you want to go from ABC Family (Channel 78) to The WB (Way down at channel 5), but it's definitely better than playing the "who's closer" game. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Moderne Baby Blanket

Somehow, I was lucky enough to win a copy of the Mason-Dixon Knitting book. Honestly, I probably wouldn't have bought it myself, because of the name. Even though I'm originally from the South, I'm not into the whole country theme, and I really thought that was what this book was about. Boy was I wrong! I want to knit everything - in seven variations. The patterns are all really simple and things that you've probably seen a million times. However, they are hip and updated with lots of suggestions on how to get your creative juices flowing and truly make it "your own".

Using some leftover Caron Simply Soft, I cast on for the Moderne Baby Blanket a few days ago. It's just a variation of the Log Cabin Patterns, but a little larger. At first I thought all the garter stitch would bore me, but it really doesn't. I get so excited for the color change that I just keep knitting and knitting.. What did you say? These colors look familiar? They should!

When I finish the blue rectangle, I'm adding a dark purple and then the colors start to repeat. If I'm feeling feisty, I might add a yellow border in the end.

They have a great knit-a-long going, and when I actually get a camera other than the one from my Treo, I'm going to join. There are lots of really beautiful projects being created in this! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Pea Green Scarf - Done!

So, I slipped up. My "home" project needed new yarn, and I was too lazy to drive across town and actually pick some up last night. I had a whole evening to myself, and I knew that I wanted to spend every minute of it knitting, so I worked on my "lunch" scarf. I finished up the rest of it during lunch today and I have to say that I just love this yarn!

For some reason, I had serious trouble with the bind off today. I was two stitches shy of the end when I ran out of yarn, so I had to frog a few rows.. then it kept slipping off the needle. Argh! It took a good half hour just to do that last row. Does this happen to other people, or is it just my bad karma lately?

Christmas Present #3: Check. (and it is only mid June!)

Price: $6.20
Time: About 5 hours Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Progress Report on Ribbed Scarf

Today, every bench within a 200 foot radius of my building was taken during lunch.. it was like everyone had the same idea of having lunch outside for the day. I finally found a nice, quiet bench in an area that I really didn't know existed.

It might be my new lunchtime home because I didn't get interrupted a single time. Generally, at least once a day someone sits down next to me to tell me about how they used to knit, or how their great aunt twice removed knits. That's nice and all.. and normally I wouldn't mind being social, but this is my time to be alone and enjoy my 45 minutes of peace before heading back to read more boring journal articles for the afternoon.

I made quite a bit of progress today.. I thought that I would share. I think I can finish it up by the end of the week by only working on it during lunch. That's my goal anyway. Posted by Picasa

Monday, June 12, 2006

I finished the Yarn Bee Luscious scarf this weekend. I feel pretty impressed that I managed to finish it in a week with working two jobs, 16 hours a day and going out of town for the weekend. I know it is just a scarf, but it does make completed Christmas Present #2! I'm on a roll.

Total cost: $5.88 (Hobby Lobby 50% off sale)
Total Time: one week of knitting lunches and a couple of Saturday afternoon movies

I cast on for another scarf today and accomplished a little during lunch. I know that I've already made a Ribbed for Her Pleasure scarf, but this is the same yarn and I know from multiple froggings that this is the only stitch that I like with this yarn. Other people might have better luck, but all those fancy stitches just disappointed me. I'm using size 13 needles with Joann's Sensation Angel Hair yarn in Light Green. I'm really making some progress on the de-stashing.

 Posted by Picasa

Friday, June 09, 2006

Knitting Conspiracy

There is definitely a knitting conspiracy going on around the Bend.

First, my apartment was broken into this week. They took a lot of stuff, including my digital camera for taking progress pictures of my knitting! They even let my cat run away in the process of stealing all my stuff. As if that wasn't bad enough, they destroyed several projects that were in progress, and threw unused yarn all around my apartment. The couch cushions were in the kitchen floor! The police officer's first question was "Does it normally look like this?" Are you kidding me? Who naps on the kitchen floor!?

Anyway, Jasmine returned minutes after sending up a little prayer for her safety. She was gone abot 12 hours, but came home in good shape. I was worried about her safety because she's always been an indoor cat and doesn't even have her front claws any longer. (Please don't spam me with comments about how this is inhumane. I tried the alternatives, and they didn't work.) Anyway, my baby girl is home now and I'm so excited.

Back to the knitting conspiracy. I think they are trying to ruin my lunches too. The bench that I park myself on every afternoon became a haven for lawn work today. I'd been sitting there, minding my own business when three lawn mowers and the hedge trimmer guy decided that my bench was the only area in the whole campus that needed attention. I lasted about 20 minutes and then I just had to pack it in early. It looks like the Yarn Harlot was having similar problems the other day.

Anyway, here are some fun pictures of the hedge trimmer guy and my scarf project. I had forgotten that my Treo can actually take pictures (and video if the mood strikes)!

 Posted by Picasa

Monday, June 05, 2006

Knitting in public can get you in trouble

During lunch today, I went outside by the Dome to knit awhile before heading back to my lab to read more boring papers. I was listening to my iPod and working on the scarf that I started the night before, when two ladies walked up to me to inquire about what I was making. They were so excited that "young people" were knitting these days. Somehow at 26 I don't really feel like a young person anymore, but I digress.

It turns out that one of the ladies worked at the amazing new yarn shop that has opened up downtown within the last year. This is the yarn shop that I have grounded myself from after going in and realizing that I literally wanted to purchase every yarn in the store. I can eat Ramen noodles for a month, right? She was telling me about all the great yarns they have in now.

I want more yarn.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The Beginnings of a Luscious Scarf

What? Two updates in one day? Shocker.

So, I started another project today and I thought I would share. I think this makes project #4 on the needles, but who's counting?

Anyway, this scarf is going to be a Christmas present for one of my girlfriends. The colors completely remind me of her, so there is no way that anyone else could ever wear it. Isn't it funny that some things remind you so strongly of a person or a place? I can't quite pinpoint it, but once I got about 4 inches into this project, I knew exactly who this scarf needed to belong to. I didn't buy the yarn with any intentions whatsoever, but it is nice to know that it is going to find a good home.

The yarn is Yarn Bee Luscious in Blueberry Twist. It's 100% nylon and very soft - and purchased on sale for $2.94 a skein. There's a small string that runs through the middle and lots of little wispy fibers that make it fuzzy. At first I thought I was going to throw it against the wall and just let it collect dust for awhile until my anger at it subsided. It was so difficult to get used to using. I am not an especially tight knitter - although I can cast on so tightly sometimes that it makes breaking out of Alcatraz look simple in comparison.

There is absolutely no stitch definition, so I'm just using plain ole garter stitch to make it simple on myself. I like how it is working out.. it almost looks like a watercolor or something.

To be honest, I'm trying to make all these easy, breazy projects to use up a lot of the yarn that I've collected since I first started knitting in February. I have to move at the end of the summer, and if the boyfriend sees how much yarn I really do have, I'm afraid it won't be pretty. Unfortunately, I like to make a little too much fun of his watch and shoe collection and this will just give him too much ammunition! No joke, he has more shoes than can fit on the top and the bottom of an extra long closet - and all the shoes are stacked and in individual boxes. My yarn collection definitely rivals that. Posted by Picasa