January 30, 2015

The Boat Sweater: Project #2

I can wear sweaters in the dead heat of summer. I always need one when we are on the beach in Panama City every summer. I play in the sun all day and by nightfall I am usually pretty cold. Sunburns will do that to me every time.  Then there is nightfall on the water. Out on the boat. There is always a cool breeze on the water and when I have been out in it all day, I get a chill when the sun goes down, yes, even in August. 
My husband thinks I am nuts, but I never leave the house without a sweater, no matter what time of year it is. 
And this sweater just has Boat and Beach Sweater written all over it.

Tho that is not the name of the pattern, I look at it and I think about cool spring nights and weekends on the boat fishing and hanging with friends. 
Isn't that what you see?


I decided this would be perfect for all that extra Pure Wash Merino I ended up with from the Stonewall sweater.  It is the softest yarn once it is washed and if I'm going to end up with a sunburn, soft is always a good thing.

I really love this sweater and couldn't wait to cast on and get started yesterday. There's just one small problem. 
Reading this pattern is the very definition of muddling through. 
I always try and go through a pattern one good time before I cast on. Just so I know what is coming up before I get there.  Even that didn't help. 
You really have to have a clear understanding of top down knitting and sweater construction or don't even bother starting this project. There is nothing about this pattern that allows for a new knitter. 
Maybe that was the authors plan, I don't know. 

I have read lots and lots of patterns that have way to much (in my opinion) technical information. Turning a 3 page pattern into a novella. 
That is not the problem with this one. 
I think the pattern is well written, it just jumps all over the place. 
So if you have never made a top down sweater. Don't make this one your first. 
By all means, after you knit a sweater or two and have a feel for the process, make this sweater. It's bound to become your favorite.

I am not saying this pattern is not doable, it is. And I think once I am finished it will quickly become one of my favorites to wear.
Maybe not to re-knit, but to wear. 

On the good side, she has the King Charles Brocade written out as well as charted, which saved me some time, because I would have had to write it out myself. 

Once I muddled through the beginnings of the pattern, it started flying around the needles. 
It really is going to be a nice sweater!

Dealing with all this wool has really dried my skin out. Especially on the finger that the yarn runs across. My skin actually cracked and started bleeding last week. 
This has now become a huge part of my nighttime regimen.  We won't even talk about what age is doing to my skin. It's the wool!  

January 26, 2015

FO: No More Stonewalling!

I am finally finished with the Stonewall sweater. 
I absolutely love how this sweater turned out. Tho I did have a few "OMG" moments when I was putting the sweater back together again.
And then there were the dropped side stitches that ran back for about fifteen rows that had to be picked back up again. 
All in all, I LOVE IT!
These are the first pics. They aren't the best, and when Brat #1 gets off of work today, I will have her get some better pics.
This was an easy to follow pattern. If you are looking for a great looking sweater, with easy instructions, I highly recommend that you make one of these!

January 21, 2015

Second Sleeve Syndrome

We have all heard of, and had, second sock syndrome.  But now I have been afflicted by another kind of syndrome. Second Sleeve Syndrome.
Didn't know that was a thing did ya?
Apparently it is. 
As you can see in the picture 34 sts, even on the shortest needles, has to be stretched around the needles for a few rounds. 
By the time I had finished the first sleeve, my finger was so sore from forcing the stitches around that I had to take a day off to let it stop throbbing. 
I know I could have used dpns but where would be the fun in that?
The first sleeve was actually done on 16" needles so it took allot more effort to get the first 24 rows of stst on. 
I finally found these 12" needles and it has made a huge difference in the first few rows. I'm still struggling, but not half as bad. 
By the time I was up to the second increase row, 24 rows in, the stitches finally started moving smoothly around the needles. 
Once I did get past the struggle part, I am happy about knitting this again. 
Yesterday, when I had to force myself to pick up the needles to start the second sleeve, I was seriously afraid that I had developed a bad case of sss and this sweater was going to end up in the WIP pile for a while. 

January 16, 2015

Stonewalling At It's Best

With it all wet and rainy and cold yesterday I decided that would be a good time to sit down and get some serious knitting done on the Stonewall sweater.
I fired up Hulu, found the first season of American Horror Story, put it on auto play and plopped in front of the t.v for the rest of the day, and night. And as you can see, I did get quite a bit of knitting finished. 
The first picture shows the detail in the pattern and the second is is the actual color of the yarn.
I think once it is finished and blocked, the purl pattern will pop out a little better. Right now it is just a pile of bumps all willy nilly looking throughout the sweater.

I am a totally intense knitter. When I am watching t.v. while I knit, the more intense the scene, the faster I can knit. And let me tell you, anytime you see Dylan McDermott's naked body running all over the screen, it's intense!

The obligatory "process" shots below were not all done in one night. Though I am moving right along. This is two nights of work. 
I am really excited about wearing this. 
And the pattern is really straight forward and easy to follow. 
I know allot of you like all the techie info that turns two pages of a pattern into, like 20, I do not. Give me straightforward with a few tips here and there and I am one happy camper.

I did actually force myself to put this down last night about midnight. I had to order the shorter needles for the sleeves and they will not be here until Wednesday. 
I don't know what I am going to do with myself until then, I think when I get home today I will tear apart every closet to see if I can find some shorter needles I may have stashed away somewhere. 
If I can't...........I guess it's back to linen stitch cloths until next week.

January 14, 2015

Stash Diving Pays Off

As soon as I had a spare moment yesterday, no small feat with kids and cleaning, I went stash diving. I have a military foot locker full of yarn. That seemed like the most logical place to start. 
Digging through that thing for about fifteen minutes, I came to the realization that I have a lot of different yarn, but not enough of any one kind of yarn. 
I really did go over board during the Great Stash Enhancement of 2011. I mean like, REALLY!
Luckily that is not the only place I have yarn stashed.  (really? did you think it was)
Unfortunately when we cleaned out the bedroom to make room for the new furniture some of my yarn I know I had was put somewhere that I can not find in my house. I searched every closet and open corner and could not find what I was looking for. 
Somewhere in my house is a full bag of Knit Picks Swish, which I think would be perfect for this sweater, but I'll be damned if I can find it.
But, tucked in the very dark corner of the very last closet I looked in, I found this!! 
I bought this yarn about three years ago when I got the grand idea that I was going to design myself a new sweater for work. Of course you see how far my ideas get sometimes.
But it all works out in the end doesn't it.

I didn't get a lot of time yesterday to work too much on this. 
I did however make a pretty good start with what little time I had.

On a funny note, after two solid months of linen stitch,everything, guess what the first two set up rows of this pattern are??? 
K1, sl1 wyif! I had to LOL while I was doing it.
Then, once again after two solid months of the linen stitch, it took a huge amount of concentration to switch over to k1,p1. 
My fingers kept slipping 1. 
After about two dozen rounds I finally worked the memory out of my fingers and the ribbing started flying by. 

I did manage to get a pretty good bit finished before bedtime last night. Once I untangled and retrained my fingers it went fairly smooth.

January 13, 2015

No Reason Not to Stonewall

I know everyone is tired of listening to me complain about not being able to find a project interesting enough to me to start.
Well I have good news for you..........I FOUND IT! 
My next project, the one that has me searching online and hunting around for the perfect yarn! 
I just can't explain how happy and excited this makes me. 
I love doing my cloths, and towels and scarves, but I want something a little challenging without being so irritating it ends up in the WIP pile until I don't feel guilty about ripping it apart. 
I know you all will find this hard to believe, (on top of all this wonderful news) but I purchased the pattern! 
It just hit me as something I just really want to make. And I am sure I could have hunted half the internet to find a free one that was pretty close. And I am sure half of you will, but I like THIS pattern. And if I like it and the price is not so out of this world, I don't mind paying for it. And this was only $6 so, I jumped in and bought it.

The Stonewall Pattern

Doesn't it look absolutely cozy, comfy, jeans and slippers warm?
I love it! 
Now I just have to find the absolute best yarn for this project.
It calls for worsted/10ply 9WPI yarn.
I was almost set to buy some online then I decided to take the reasonable route and wait until I get home and check the stash.
I want to take this project nice and easy, not rush in with all these grand ideas, as I normally do. That's how it ends up in the WIP pile for so long.
So, until I dig in the stash this is as far is this goes for right now..................
Give me an hour and a half and things will change ;0)

January 9, 2015

Let Me Inspire You: LOTD

Since I have absolutely no idea what I want to start on next, I thought I would just look at a lot of different patterns until one finds me.
Then I thought, I might as well share some of the cute patterns here. 
So here is what I have been looking at today.

Fancy Ribby Hat: An adorable ear flap hat

Eveliina: These actually might make me check the stash. Cute boot slippers.

Contiguous Method: for set in seamless set in sleeves

Mini Sampler KAL: for learning the contiguous method

Ambiente: using the contiguous method

Seelie Cardi: nice garter stitch cardigan

On The Beach: name says it all

Driftwood: another great water wear sweater

Flappy: a tailored vest top down

Sweet Reflections: Cute kids sweater

A very long list of patterns that use the contiguous method some free all awesome!
Ravelry Patterns Made Using The Contiguous Method For Set In Sleeves 

I think I have just made a bigger problem for myself. 
I want to knit them all!!!

January 8, 2015



I am lost. Like seriously.
I have no clue what I am going to start knitting. I want to make the sweaters for the babies. But I don't want to start a project that big. (BIG?)
I want to do more dishcloths, and I have one half done on the needles, but surely this will eventually get boring. Well, it kind of already has. But the thought of starting anything that might take longer than a great night of t.v. has me all ....uuuugggggghhhhhhh!

And with all of this wandering around in my brain (what little there is) I am getting to the point where I just want to put the needles down again.
I do have to whip out about 6 more dishcloths.
Yeah, I'll just stick with that, and maybe by the time I am finished I will have figured out what I am going to do next.

January 7, 2015

Interesting LOTD (Links Of The Day)

I have basically been surfing around the internet, entertaining myself and posted a few links over at the  Knittinfun Facebook Page but I didn't want to bomb everyone with all the nifty things I am looking at today, so I am going to post some here.
My little list of "oohhs and ahhhs"

Audrey Hepburn
Boot Slippers
Braided Cuffs
Cornflower Gloves
Easy Knitted Fingerless Mitts 
Forest Park Cowl
Mostly Lazy
Oh handsome Cabled Sweater (men)
Owl Wings Stole
Phrygian Cap
Party Bottle Cozy
Reversible Snowflake Hat
Seamless Soap Sweater
Tri-Colour Slouch Hat

Not Another Dishcloth, Towel or Scarf!

I have been so busy with all the cloths and cowls and scarves and towels that now, with no particular thing in mind, I am at the moment when I think "What the heck am I going to knit now."
The door is wide open, I don't HAVE to knit anything specific. It's kind of a weird feeling. And at this moment I don't think I care for it.
Not enough structure.
Too many want to knits bouncing around in my head.

So after all those cloths and cowls and scarves and towels, I decided I wanted to knit something, anything that wasn't flat or linen stitch.
Don't get me wrong, I am still in love with the linen stitch and for t.v. knitting I still have a few more cloths to get on the needles to fill requests from the "non-recipients"
I want to knit something that doesn't wash a dish, or hide inside a jacket.  Something that can bee seen and appreciated right out there in public.
A sweater!
But OMG it takes so long to finish an adult sized sweater. I would eventually get bored and it would end up in the wip pile for months and months. The answer?
Baby sweaters!
I have two new grandsons who I haven't knit anything for yet. And it is actually, finally, getting cold here on the Gulf Coast.
I went messing around on the net and found this cute little sweater from Tricksy Knitter
WALA! My  next project! No linen stitch, a little bit more involved then my last two months of mindless knitting without being so complicated that I have to lock myself in the bedroom to concentrate on what I am doing.
I actually have the perfect yarn in mind for this project. KnitPicks Swish and I think the colors are and exact match to the picture. ;0)

Click on the picture to get the pattern

January 5, 2015

Pattern: Linen Stitch Cloths

The linen stitch cloths are all finally handed out! 
Six baskets with four cloths a piece. 
Great t.v. watching knitting 
The pattern was easy and fast. 
Just a basic linen stitch, but I will post it here just in case you would like to make some of your own.
These cloths come out very dense and in my opinion are perfect for dishwashing, and probably kid scrubbing too. 

Linen Stitch Cloths
Size 8 needles (I use circulars for everything.)
4 ply 100% cotton of your choice
CO 38 sts
R1: (ws) P1, sl1 wyib (with yarn in back) across row
R2: (rs)  K1 sl1 wyif (with yarn in front) across row
Repeat these two rows 30 times
The easiest way I have found to keep up with row count is the on the wrong side row you count out 30 bumps and there you have it!
I cast off on the following right side row with a very tight CO, I didn't cast off in pattern, but if that is what you would like to do it will look fine. I just found it easier, and looked just as good doing a straight cast off.
I have already had a lot of requests for more of these from people who did not receive them as gifts this year, so beware if you will be handing these out.
Everyone wants some!
I have already made 10 more since these.

Getting back in the groove

It's been so long since I have wanted to knit anything.  I knit so many socks when I started knitting back in '99 that I was comp...