Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Yippee skippee

I talked to my friend KH last night. She used to live a couple of hours away from me, but then she moved to Chicago. She has moved back in this direction, but is still several hours away. Anywho, about a year ago I made her a scarf and some fingerless mittens to wear up in the Land O' Yankees. She mentioned then that the folks she worked with were jealous of them and wanted some of their own. That was the last I'd heard of them. I wasn't sure if she still used them or not. But last night she mentioned that she really needed to wash them because they were dirty since she wears them all the time. But she didn't know if they were machine washable. I explained they weren't but told her I'd send her some new ones that were. It really made me feel good to know that she was still using them, that she appreciated them that much.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Le Hat

Here it is, folks, my Le Slouch. It was super easy and only took one skein of Lion Brand Nature's Choice Organic Cotton. I think the color I used was called Walnut or something like that. The pattern is a free one from Knit and Tonic. (Love her stuff!)

The picture was taken on a cell phone so its a little dark. Also, the lights were messed up in the office, so I had to work by lamplight.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Its all your fault, Jared

I was originally inspired by your Noro Striped Scarf and made one for myself.

(I apologize for the poor quality.)

I'm now working on one for my bestest knitting friend in the whole, wide world for Christmas and I am feeling the itch to make another one for myself. How many striped scarves does one person need?

Friday, November 14, 2008

I have KPADD

Knitting Pattern Attention Deficit Disorder.

Since frogging my cardigan, I've embarked on a number of new projects. Ok, that's not completely honest. I embark on a number of new projects all the time. At a much faster rate than I finish said projects. However, in the last few days I've managed to finish a few. I have a new slouchy Le Slouch (pattern is on Ravelry and Knit and Tonic's fab blog) a pair of Fetching Fingerless Mittens to match a hat I received in a knitting exchange and I'm almost done with a new hat Mary inspired me to do. Felicity had a couple of false starts, but I'm well on my way through now. A few increase rows and then the decrease rows before finally binding off and I shall have a new hat.

Which begs the question, why the new obsession with hats? I have curly hair and am very susceptible to hat hair. That and it really doesn't get "cold" in Alabama. Not real cold like my Yankee friends have. It cools off. And we might get a light dusting of snow once every few years that melts after a few brief hours on the grass. But as for REAL cold weather, doesn't really happen around here. I guess its my need to finish something, ANYTHING. Frogging that sweater was a bit of a traumatic experience. And I needed some instant gratification. So, I can justify all of this, at least to myself, while staring at the pile of yarn that is destined to become blanket squares for yet another exchange. (I wonder why those easy, 10"-by-10" squares don't hold the same level of instant gratification these other projects have. They're much easier and much smaller really. Could it be that I'm being selfish with my knitting and keeping it all to myself?? Eh, probably. Note to Self: Tonight, you MUST knit blanket squares.)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Karma is not my friend

I put waaaaay too much emphasis on the importance of that damn sweater. When I blocked and dried it, and put on.... it made me look like a linebacker. No amount of blocking would correct it. So, I frogged the whole thing. I shall find another project worthy of the Malabrigo. But I did learn something from this. Next time, I will do a gauge swatch.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Seriously, folks...

All my posts won't be as dramatic as the last one. I'll try to be a little perkier next time.

In the meantime, how some pretty pictures...

My First Sweater...

I started knitting about two years ago on the heels of REALLY NASTY breakup. I needed something to distract me and I wanted that something to be productive. Let's face it, getting sloppy drunk every night would certainly be a distraction, but productive it ain't. So, after seeing an old friend post pictures of her knitting, I decided knitting was exactly what I needed. I had no idea at that time that knitting would become an addiction/obsession. But it has.

I started, I think like many other knitters, with scarves. I knitted scarves for everyone I could think of. I eventually branched out into socks, but they were done flat and had to be sewn together. Noting fancy, but when done in a wool yarn, they sure were warm. My mother has worn her first pair out and I think I'll make her a second for Christmas.

It wasn't until I met Carrie that I really felt the urge to knit a real garment. Something I would wear proudly and tell the world, "I made that!" She had this gorgeous cardigan that I'm sure some of you may be familiar with. I'm talking about the Minimalist that was published in the Winter '08 Interweave Knits.

Carrie and I decided to take off to Birmingham to go shopping and hit up a small LYS and do some damage to our bank accounts. It was my birthday after all and I deserved to treat myself. After browsing a bit, I came across this wonderful thing called Malabrigo. I'd heard the word tossed about in various forums and on all three incarnations of Knit Knack, but it wasn't until I found 8 skeins of the most beautiful olive merino wool that I knew what the buzz was all about. My greedy little hands quickly snatched it up, lest some lesser knitter come along and think he/she could make a scarf out of MY yarn.

That was Feb. 25.

I took my yarn home (I also purchased some blue Malabrigo that was to be Carrie's birthday present and some red Blue Sky Alpacas for a Swallow Tail Shawl... but we'll get to that project when I actually cast on.) and cast on for my first ever sweater. That was just over 8 months ago.

Things happen and other projects came along offering more immediate gratification than a sweater can give. I've knit socks, a teddy bear, a couple of purses, some naughty items for my friend Cherry and dabbled in the not-as-scary-as-it-looks land of entrelac. But through it all, I knit away, row by row, inch by inch on the sweater.

And I've finally come to the home stretch. I finished knitting all of the pieces and have begun assembling the finished product (pictures are forthcoming, I promise). I have one sleeve to sew in and then the side and underarm seam and I will be able to wear it. The feeling of accomplishment that I know will accompany the first wearing of the sweater is just over the horizon. And I don't care what it looks like. I don't care what other people think. I've learned more from this sweater than I thought I would.

Truthfully, I've learned more from knitting than I thought I would. I have reserves of patience that were untapped before this little endeavor sent me over the crafting edge. I've learned that when things are going quite the way I want and I think that I should just give up, that I can keep going and work through whatever problem I am facing and find a solution. I've learned that there is a whole world of fellow fiber artists out there and they are the warmest, kindest, smartest, most giving group of women I have ever known. (This is where my Knit Knackers come in! And Carrie, you rock as well!)

And I think, in a way, that it is kind of fitting that a hobby I picked up 2 years ago has helped me through one of the darkest points in my life has culminated in a sweater that I can now wear as the weather turns colder. Something that will remind me, every time I put it on, of the hard work I've put into it. Of the tears I poured out when I just couldn't take it anymore and I needed something, anything, to keep my hands busy and my mind off other things. A sweater that will remind me that even when the path is dark, and things are easy, that there are people out there who have my back when I need them, people who I know I can turn to anytime, any place. And their warm thoughts are always with me.

Welcome to the Nut House...

Hello, everybody. This is my first foray in to the world of blogging, so forgive the shaky start. I intended this first entry to simply be an introduction to any of you who don't already know me. But since I've filled in most of the "about me" parts on this profile, there's not much more to add. But please, feel free to ask me anything. Well, almost anything.

Oh, and I wanna give a big shout out to all my girls (and guy) over at Knit Knack. I love you, man!