Monday, April 10, 2017

Everything is coming up 'me' today!

  Yesterday was kind of lame for a few reasons.  We were working on taxes and didn't have all the info we needed, so we needed to file for an extension.  Well, the program kept trying to get us not to, but Bill finally got it to work.  We also tacked the drip that was happening from the master bedroom shower.

  Bill cut down the ceiling and then had me take video as he ran the water.  Though I don't think he necessarily had fun cutting it down, I don't think he hated it.

  We had Tank take a look at it.  He wasn't sure how to fix it, so we will have to check more sources.

  However, today was different for me.  I had a whole list of things that I wanted to try and get done and I was hoping I could before I was supposed to meet up with someone.  The first thing on my list was to get some certified mail that Bill missed signing for.  It was really funny because when I handed the lady the slip she said "Who's handwriting is this?" and then tsked at it.  I heard some yelling from the back and then she brought it out.  Turns out our carrier didn't put it with the other envelopes.

  I then headed to the auto-supply shop to get new wipers.  Mine were worn out last year when I got my car checked and I promised the guy I would get new blades.  I kept forgetting and since it has been a year, I needed to get my car looked at again.  The guy at the store looked them up for me and we got me some new blades.  I had to get two brands because they didn't have two of the same kind.  I was worried it was going to be hard to fix, but they were super easy to change.  You push on a little button and the old blade slides off.  The first blade just had an adapter that I had to pop off before it fit.  The second one had an adapter on it that I had to take off and then put the one that worked for me on.  Also pretty easy.  I felt super accomplished.

  I had downloaded some Netflix movies onto my phone so I would have something to do while I waited my turn to get my car inspected.  I drove up and I was first in line!!  So I only had time to take that picture and then the guy was walking over to take my car to the bay.
  I had finished everything I was hoping to get done before 2pm before 11:30am!!  This meant that I had time to get some other stuff done.

  We have been without a working air filter for a while now.  The one that was in there had fallen over.  Today I decided to try and slide it out of the way and put a new one in.  That didn't work because there wasn't enough room.  I then got a flashlight and some tongs and dragged it out.  It took a lot of pulling, but I win the battle.  You can see it is properly gross.  New one is in (hopefully in the correct direction) and hopefully we will have nicer air in the house.

  Look who is done and dry and getting some screen time!  My shrug is finally done!  It is in the bag to take to knitting on Sat to get donated.

  Here is my my first hat done!  I can't believe how fun it looks.  Everyone who saw me knitting it was super impressed.  I even had to give some demos how I was doing it, especially since I wasn't going to the very end of each color, but I stopped two stitches before so I could keep the tension on each color and not worry about putting it too tightly at any point.

  Since I was doing the tension trick I was worried that the top was going to get messed up.  I was worried that there was going to be mostly one color and only one stitch of the other colors.  Seems I was being silly because it turned out perfectly.

  I thought that this was going to happen on the first hat, but you can see where I ran out of the blue yarn.  That one kept getting over spun as I worked with it, so I wasn't too bummed.  I was also planning for it, so I liked that it did happen.  You can also see that is is possible to pull the new color a bit too tightly as you go if you don't pay enough attention.

  I was thinking that I was going to have enough yarn to make one hat.  Well, I made two hats and even had some left over.  I made these from a crochet bow pattern I found on Pinterest.  I think I will give these to Carola to add to monsters.

  On Sat we had someone new join us.  She usually works at Nature's Yarn on Saturdays, but they didn't need her that day so she decided to come to Wegmans and have lunch and knit.  She didn't even know we were going to be there!  She was making those crochet octopus critters for Cancer Kickin' Critters.  She knows the people who run it and everything.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

I got it!

  I was really nervous about when I got to the part where I knew I was going to start decreasing.  I had never done it before and I was treating each row differently than I was in the beginning.  I was stopping each color two stitches before it reached the new one.  I found it was easier to keep the tension more even.  I knew I would have to do it while alone so I could concentrate.

  Here is what it looked like right before I started decreasing.  I mostly took this picture so I could put it off for another minute or two.  I hadn't needed to be worried, because it all turned out great in the end.  I did a 8 stitch decrease, so the top might be a bit more pulled in than I had originally planned, but that is okay.  I think I even have enough yarn to do another one.  So I will be casting that on later.

  This is fun to see.  I know they just put random things on these and you just randomly get them, but I feel this one really does apply to me.  Like how I like knitting and it isn't a big deal to me to make something, but when someone who needs it gets it, they get a lot of joy out of it.  At least, I hope they do.

  Hopefully I will be able to show pictures soon of the finished shrug and hat.  The hat is soaking now, but I know it won't take long to dry.  The shrug is dry, but it has been raining like crazy in my area, so that isn't the best for pictures.  It says rain tomorrow too, but I'm hoping to get some moments of sun and no more tornado warnings.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

This didn't work as I thought.

  So I thought I was being all smart the way I was figuring my rows.  I at least knew that since I cast on with each color that each one has its own row beginning.  I didn't, however, pay attention to the row stacking and how the stripes were laying down.  I had wanted to do four rows of each color and then move to the body of the hat.
  I was super confident that I knew what I was doing and that I didn't need to really pay attention to the rows and how they looked.  This has resulted in me knitting about two thirds of each bonus row in ribbing and the last third in stockinette.  So this means that each rib section doesn't have a last full set of stripes and that my band is a bit larger than I wanted.

  My choices are to live with it, or tink back and fix it.  I'm close enough to the problem that tinking wouldn't take me too long, but I'm also pretty sure that I am the only person who would notice.  I mean, hey, I didn't even notice at first.  I'm thinking it is something that I can live with and will just have to remember for another time.  The general knitting is fun enough that I think I will do this again.
  Ribbed color work is tricky.  You have to consider the future in the present.  If I knew that the next section of red needs to become stockinette, I can't just knit with the red.  Even though I am using the red yarn, I am really manipulating the white row under it.  The next row is where I have to knit with the blue because it would make the red stitches all appear as stockinette.  Next time I will have to just take each section as I come to it.

  Even though it requires more thought, I really like this style of one row stripes because it just flows so nicely.  If I had just cast on with one color and knit a row, then moved to the next there would be jogs, or little steps.  People have come up with ways to minimize it, but it is still there.  Knitting in the round is a spiral.  This version if it uses the spiral to my advantage.  This doesn't work if you want bigger stripes unless you use more than one ball of any color.  It is also a bit slower since you only work in partial rows with each color every time you go around.
  I've also been thinking about how I was going to be doing the decreases.  While it would make sense to do a row of blue with all decreases, a row with the white straight, a white decrease row, then the colors would do the opposite. This would make sense if all the colors had the same starting point for their rows.  Since they do not, I have been thinking that each color will get a third of a row decreasing, and then a plain third.

  In less confusing news, the grey shrug is off the needles, and getting a soak before I semi-block it.  Acrylic doesn't take a blocking as well as animal fibers, but I does listen some.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

April Fools!!

  I spent most of yesterday trying to think of something funny to post for April Fool's Day.  The only thing I could think of was to try and tell people I had given up knitting.  The only problem with that is that anyone who really knows me would have seen through that before they finished reading and would have started laughing.  Some may have laughed so hard that they would have hurt themselves.  Since I didn't want that, I didn't post anything.

  I did, however, go to knitting.  See?  No one would have believed that I would have given up on knitting.  Because of when Easter is and when we meet, we didn't go to the Church on the second Sat, but the first.  These are some of the items dropped off for donation.  So many lovely things!!

  I've also not be sticking to my own plan.  Instead of bringing the grey shrug to work on, I started this hat.  Andrea and I agree that it looks like a Rocket Pop and then we both wanted one.
  Since getting home I have switched back to the grey shrug.  The cat is helping me.

  Are you wondering if that FAQ page is new? Nah, it's been there for months...just kidding, April Fools!  Did I get you?  No?  Well, I was amused.  I had asked friends to send me questions since I don't want people to get confused, but feel free to ask if I have made anything more confusing or didn't answer your question.

Monday, March 27, 2017

I'm glad I can read my knitting!

  I am done with the knitting section of the Combo Corset-T I vaguely showed before.  Now I have to decide if I want to add the crochet edging or if I want to use frogs to close it.  It was started about 13-14 years ago, so a little more of a wait won't hurt anything.

  I wasn't sure what to work on at K&CC last week, so I whipped up a water bottle holder.  There is a funny story about those.  Many years ago a lady brought a ton of them that her church had made for Claire to bring to TAPS.  She had no idea what she was going to be doing with them, but people loved them and all got taken home.  Now people expect them ever year.
  We don't manage numbers in the hundreds, but we keep making them.  Someone said that they even gave theirs away when they were in Africa.

  I have been watching the vlogs by SV Delos on YouTube recently.  One of the main crew members, Karin has this really cool bracelet that I sometimes see.  Since the focus of the videos is sailing and not so much jewelry, it has been hard to get a really good look at it.  These were my attempts.

  I also have altered a large t-shirt to act like one of those pillowcase dresses.  I cut the sleeves and collar off, then I hemmed the raw edges and made a casing.  Now I need the cord to hold it on.  I have not found any pre-made cord I like, so I decided to make some with kumihimo and chunky yarn.  Still working out how I want to finish the edges.  I'm thinking of gluing some ribbon on.

  Here is the next project from my pre-Ravelry/pre-blog life.  I wanted to make a shrug with a braid cable going down the shoulder/sleeve.  I also added a standard cable on both front edges.  I wasn't sure at that point how I wanted to finish it, so once I added the sleeves to the body I stopped.

  I wanted the fronts to be more narrow at the top than the bottom, V-neck style.  So I did some math (or maybe guessing) and came up with a plan.  I decreases on two right side rows in a row, then one plain front side row.

  I also didn't want the braid cable all the way up the shoulder, so I started this section to form a triangle at the top.  Without being able to read my knitting and figuring out what I was doing before, I would have been lost.  I would have had no idea why I had stopped the braid cable, or how to tell how much to decrease.
  I was also scared that I wasn't going to have enough, but I went rooting around in the box I had all the other projects and found another skein.

   There was also this scarf.  Someone had started it at the Homespun Yarn Party.  Though they started it on size 6 needles.  Way too small.  The project was left to let people come and work on it as they wanted.  Some people did a few rows of stockinette where it had been garter before.  This is normally fine, but at some point someone had dropped a stitch and it had run back.  Then when someone else had also dropped a stitch they tried to pick up back up, but they did it incorrectly.  Claire ended up taking it all out since there were some huge holes and it was way too tightly knit.  She brought the new scarf with her to K&CC this last Saturday and let all of us work a few rows if we wanted.  It was fun.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Road Trips are usually better for knitting.

  My mom is a huge fan of the Free section of Craig's List.  She has found a ton of good deals.  One listing was for a bunch of yarn.  The owner just wasn't finding herself using it as much as she had pictured.


  Both those bags are filled with yarn that she brought to us.  The handy thing about her living where she was is that she was really close to where we meet on Mon nights for knit-group.  She got to see it and we mentioned that it was an every week thing.  Hopefully she gets the crafting bug and stops by.

  Right next to where we meet on Mon nights had been a Handcock Fabrics.  We were all sad to see that they had closed since it was easy to pop over for some buttons or a yarn needle when in need.
  It was really exciting when we heard a few months later that there was going to be another fabric shop moving in.  They missed their projected open date by a few months, but they finally got all settled in.  In fact, The Fabric Place Basement actually opened before we knew it.  Turns out they are only open until 7pm and we usually got there after that.  So it looked like it had not opened yet, when really, we missed their business hours.
  We made a special effort to stop by when they were open one day.  That lovely picture above is their massive button bin.  I want to jump in and swim around.  I also really want to go through and organize them into dozens of tiny bins.

   Last weekend a friend and I had heard that the Richmond Home and Garden show was going to have a tiny house in it.  We are both obsessed with them.  She wants to own one, and I just think the whole concept is super amazing.
  Richmond, in general, is about a two hour drive south of me.  I figured it would give me lots of time to work on a project that I can't show you.  I am testing for a mystery knit-a-long.  It is so darn cute, I really want to show it off, but I've promised to keep it a secret.  We wouldn't want any future knitters to get spoiled on the end surprise!  The funny part is that on the way there and on the way back I didn't knit a single stitch!  I didn't even have anything cast on for it!   There are two things I can show you though.  The first is a link to these really cool crocheted octopi for premature babies.  Reading through the articles makes them make a lot of sense to have.  You can't really explain to a premature baby that their various tubes aren't their umbilical cord and it isn't safe to move around.  I think I will have to make a few.   The other thing I can show you is the video I made from the first half of our Richmond adventure.  The next half will be up next week!  Make sure to watch on YouTube so you can make it nice and big.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Treats and Monsters

  Yummy snacks and fun monsters? Sounds like a fun Saturday to me!  Isn't the bear just the cutest?

   So you might be wondering if this is a bag of finished things I needed to have remembered to take with me to donate.  You might then wonder that if that were true, why was there no mention of them on the blog?  Well, they are very old things that never got finished for one reason or another.  The one on top I started in college, then realized I didn't really like how the yarn felt or how it looked on me.  Since I didn't know about charity knitting at that point, I was stuck.  Now I can finish it and donate it, I'm sure someone will love it.
  The grey thing under it, that you can't see, was started back when I worked at InkStop. I was trying to half follow a pattern I saw on TV and half make one up. I wasn't sure how to finish the top then, but I think I do now.  It was the one I went looking for that started this.
  The dark blue thing in the larger bag was the beginning of a draped neck sweater.  The only problem is that I'm pretty sure I don't have enough yarn.  Since I am pretty far along, I think I will make it into a vest.
  This will be nice since it means that I will be getting more things out of the house.  I need to remember that even though I start a project and use yarn, it still doesn't count as using it until I am done and it is headed off to its new home.