29 January 2007

Gracious Authors and New Techniques

I have no pictures. I don't have time. I barely have time to update here. I've fallen behind on my reading and it's only a month into the class, BUT a third of the way done. I'll try to get pictures taken and posted, but I'm not making any promises.

Thanks to all of you who are reading and told me to keep this up. It not only showed me that someone across the country is reading, Hi Nikki!; it sort of keeps me connected to those of you who I no longer see at the SnBs and who don't have time to keep up with their own blogs. For those of you who I do see, sorry for the redundant nature of my stories. ;) [Should any of those "who"s be whom?]

I am making the Bump Sweater from "Natural Knits for Babies and Mom" by Louisa Harding. I got lost pretty quickly while working on the front of the sweater. There is seed stitch border, and once I got past that my comprehension level dropped quite rapidly. I queried my friends and fellow knitters. I wrote to Interweave Press about possible errata (they never even acknowledged my query). I asked the Executive Assistant to the second man in command at work, who I heard was a prolific knitter, and she didn't know. Daniella suggested I write to the author. In my head I scoffed at the notion of this woman, this knitting book author writing me back, but she did. She was gracious and gentle in her instruction and she resisted what must have been a very strong urge to call me an idiot and send me on my way. I'm still working on it. The sweater will NOT be complete by Wednesday, but I'm thinking maybe by the end of next week. Thank you Louisa Harding!

Here is the sweater:

Other than that I've been working on socks. I finished the socks for my instructor, and picked up the Sockotta one that I like to think of as The Ocean Sock. I've been trying to scribble down the pattern, and I use that word loosely. Since I claim absolutely no design capability. I can alter what you design, but coming up with something all on my own is probably never going to happen, and I'm okay with that. Anyway, I kept looking at the heel flap on this sock and I hated it more and more. It was the reason I stopped working on it in the first place. The yarn is so small that I cringed at the thought of counting the rows and picking up the gusset stitches. Christine has the exact same yarn in an orange colorway that I love, and she flew through her socks without a hitch. After some questioning I realized that she had not picked up gusset stitches or turned the heel, she did a short row. AND she had done a short row heel for her first socks too. What is wrong with me that I can't figure this out? She explained that she didn't do the "wrap and turn" for her short rows, she did a yarn over technique. So, after an exhaustive internet search I came up with a few patterns that explained a short row heel. It was ultimately the Interweave Press Better-Than-Booties Baby Socks pattern by Ann Budd that broke throught my wall. I messed up the first one, and will probably mess up the second one, but I'm proud to say I have a short row heel on my Ocean sock and am decreasing for the toe after a weekend of classroom knitting. Thanks Christine! I wish I had pictures because I really do like the colors in the yarn. Someday soon.

Hope you all had a good weekend!
Happy stitching to you all!

22 January 2007

Happy New Year!

Well, I just got a comment on my cuffs, and I guess it's time for me to post. I was planning to sign off, but since you're still reading I'll stick with it.

I think I'll make a list...my thoughts at this moment in no particular order.

1) I thoroughly enjoyed all of the sleep I got over the holidays, but am now feeling quite sleep deprived. The break was too long. I got some cleaning done, and lots of knitting.

2) I did a little holiday knitting but not much. Luckily, all of the gifts were loved by their recipients except the brown and blue socks that went to Minnesota....I don't even know if they made it there. I guess it's time to make contact.

3) This quarter has started off swimmingly. I got an A on my first test in the lecture, but there are some concepts I didn't completely grasp and I need to know them for the future so this is going to be a little extra work for me.

4) My pc died the weekend school started. I have a new Dell Dimension E520, which I can't afford, but can afford even less not to have. I didn't realize how much of a research tool the pc was until it died and I got too busy at work to do my homework there.

5) It's my cousin's birthday. He was my stand-in after my brother stopped speaking to me. We moved to LA about a month apart in the same year. He used to tell me he would miss me when I left. He got out before I did and will probably be back before I can leave.

6) I'm cold. It's really cold in LA these days and my office can't seem to regulate the air. It's either way too hot or way too cold. **sigh** One never knows how to dress here since it can be 40 degrees when you leave in the morning and 90 degrees by lunch time. I miss NY.

I think that's all I've got on my mind today. That and my weight, but I won't be delving into that! Oh, and I need a hair cut which I think my brother will be kind enough to give me this evening.

My UFOs from 2006:

The Lady E....I don't want to talk about it.

The Seraphim ..I hope to have this done by the time my mother arrives in April so I can gift it to her in May for Mother's Day...not that she'll appreciate it.

Those Dark Navy socks I started for my uncle. I realized I don't even know where they are! Ugh!

The Ocean colored Sockotta socks I started for my aunt but decided to keep for me.

The Cape Cod Blue afghan for Gab and Brian....I don't know why I haven't been working on this! It's 30 degrees in my apt. Having that on my lap would be a pleasure these days.

I think that's it...well, it's all I can remember. I also started a sweater for Kasan's wife out of Natural Knits for Babies & Mom. It's coming along. Doesn't make sense to me, but it's coming along. I've got the back, one sleeve and a quarter of the front done. This one I swear will be done by the end of this month....ack! that's only a week away. **sigh** the road to hell and all that.

I hope you are all well and that the new year is treating you kindly.
My good energy goes out to all of you who've had losses...It will be okay. Don't worry!

always...and thanks for reading!