Thursday, August 31, 2006

Less Buying, More Knitting!

First, here are the pictures of my crochet scarf, described in the last post (which I guess was just yesterday, I must be getting blog-happy).

Yay for finished projects!

Second, my credit card is feeling some heat from more yarn purchases. I decided that I never use birthday money on exciting things, so this year, I bought sock yarn! I bought a skein of the Fred Flinstone colorway of Socks That Rock, though I am still debating if I should have bought the Seal Rock colorway. Maybe I'll try to dye my bare Merino in similar colors (if I have time for that).

But Oh! the purchasing does not stop there. I ordered two handpainted skeins from Spunky Eclectic ; a skein of Green Gables for me and a skein of Soylent to make socks for Andy. I hope that the two colorways aren't sold out, so we'll see if I actually get those skeins (crossing my fingers). Sigh. Will someone please hide my credit card, because the birthday money is now gone...

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

She's On A Roll...

Yes, more crochet! I knit--I mean crocheted--a quick scarf this weekend out of some cotton yarn frogged from a previous attempt at a scarf. I like how the project turned out, but I learned a valuable lesson from it: My chain stitches need to be looser, especially because my chain edge was the long side of the scarf. It put a slight curl in the scarf, but it's still super cute!

[Pictures here soon!]

I'm trying to determine what to make next, though I'm pretty sure it's about time I got back to knitting. I've been listening to back-episodes of the Lime and Violet podcast, and they're sock obsession is rubbing off on me. I'm now thinking about knitting a pair of socks for Andy out of the Merino fingering wieght yarn I just bought from Knitty (see last post, it's one of the undyed skeins). He doesn't read either of my blogs, so this should be a surprise for him. My birthday is this Friday, so I was also thinking about buying some sock yarn with birthday money. Not that I need more yarn, but I really like to knit socks.

However, not everything I want to make is socks. I came across this amazing pattern for a Coco Channel-type sweater in Greetings from Knit Cafe, which I would really love to make. But first, I have to get through the 'Green Monster'. One big project at a time, otherwise I won't get anything done!

I'd like to cast something on soon, but I'm pretty busy this week. Plus, I've got a pile of library books backed up on the nightstand, so who knows when I'll put something on the needles. Hopefully it won't be too long before I have something new to report here!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

I've gone to the dark side...

Here are the words that no true knitter really likes to admit: I enjoy crocheting.

Since my last post about my initial attempt at this needle art, I decided to learn exactly how crochet works and its advantages/disadvantages compared to knitting. So, I went to my local library and took out the new Stitch 'N Bitch Crochet book. Just like her knitting book, Deb Stoller provides clear instructions and interesting patterns. I also discovered that my first crochet project was 'hybrid crochet', and that I did not create any of my stitches in the correct way. I have since learned to do it correctly and have even finished my first project--a bag to use at the farmer's market. As it was my first project, I used a cheap acrylic yarn and a very open mesh stitch just to get the feel of hookin'. The result is a large, over-the-shoulder bag that will definitely come in handy for my frequent trips to the farmer's market. As an added bonus, it only took me about 4 nights to complete!

Even though I crochet now, I am still a knitter, which means I have unfinished knitting projects stuffed in all corners of my room. In fact, I've had one big one on the needles since I started this blog--my knitted wrap. It's made of an olive green alpaca-silk blend from KnitPicks done in a honeycomb stitch, and it will be really nice if I ever finish it. The design is basically a large panel that wraps around my back, crosses in front and has sleeves for the lower part of my arms. I'll have to model it when it's finished so you can see how it works. Here's what it looks like so far:

Anyway, the real reason I am bring this up (besides that fact that I haven't shown pictures of it yet) is that I realized that I do not have enough yarn to finish it. Which naturally leads to every fiber-obsessed person's two favorite words: stash enhancement. Normally, I would just buy the amount of extra yarn I need and not deplete my poor graduate student's budget any more. But I bought this yarn at Knitpicks, which has free shipping on all yarn purchases over $40 (and you can buy A LOT of KnitPicks yarn for $40). With the yarn I needed, I was already half-way to the magic number, so I figured, why waste money on shipping when I can buy more yarn instead? Yes, I will use any excuse to buy more yarn.

The last thing that is happening on the fiber front is that I have recently discovered knitting podcasts! You can find them for free on the iTunes store and subscribe to get semi-weekly updates. I've tried out 'Lime & Violet' and 'CastOn' so far and have been pleasently surprised. These two podcasts are very different, but I really like hearing people talk about knitting, yarn, etc. Plus, is gives me time to relax and knit for a while. This could be addicting...