On hold

30 March, 2008 at 8:19 am (caturday, knitting)

I finished the body on the still unnamed sweater jacket and then realized that I messed up a part of the increases, namely, I increased a bit too much for the bust section. It’s not a big deal, since it still fits me correctly, and I’ve fixed the error in the pattern, but it’s annoying to discover that my whole thought process about something was flawed.

Then I cast on for a sleeve,
sleevestart

but it’s headed for the frog pond. I think I want to go in a slightly different direction with it. Also, I don’t like how I was handling the faux seams:
sleeveseam

which are kind of necessary because the pattern, when knitted in the round, creates a kind of weird looking seam that I’d rather not have on this particular garment. I’m not sure yet how to fix that and have it still look nice and neat. I have an idea or two but I think I might have to swatch to get it all sorted.

So in the meantime, I’ve been working on something else.
bsjwip

This pattern is so addicting. I’m getting a bit bored with the garter stitch at this point but I can’t put it down because I want to see which direction it goes in next. And I’m using some LL shepherd worsted and it is like butter. So deliciously soft. I think I should have this finished by tomorrow, considering how much I’m working on it.

Here’s some late Caturday for you.

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On making choices

24 March, 2008 at 6:42 pm (knitting)

I am the most indecisive person I know. I can never decide what to eat, what to wear, where to go, what to do when I get there, or when I should return.

Obviously, this is a problem. I have been known to spend so long trying to decide on something that I miss the opportunity all together. But, I’m trying to change.

Starting with… button choice. Or clasp choice, in this instance, for the sweater of unknown name. (Name choice is another problem, but I’m taking baby steps here.) I have a fair number of options out there, and although I can certainly choose what I like and what I don’t like, I have a hard time figuring out what I like and what would be perfect on this sweater.

The sweater in question looks like this, currently:
quarterway
(my panicking about whether or not this whole design will even work will be saved for another post, I think.)

And my clasp choices so far are thus:

These gorgeous clasps would be perfect, except for the fact that buying enough for my sweater would mean the clasps costing potentially twice what the yarn for the sweater itself cost.


These are a good deal cheaper, and gloriously plain, but perhaps they are too plain.


These are SUPER cheap, and rather pretty, even if I can’t figure out how they close… and I’m not sure how good they would look on the sweater.


I also like these, but I can’t remember where in the hell I got this picture from.

I suppose what I really need to do is to drag myself and my sweater to a button shop and see what they’ve got. And try not to get distracted by the rest of their buttons. Ooooh, buttons…

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a slight delay…

23 March, 2008 at 5:52 pm (knitting)

I have a post almost ready to go, but it needs pictures, of all things, and my camera batteries are dead and I can’t get more, of course, because everything is closed on Easter (nevermind that some of us are Jewish.)

I should have it up by tomorrow (I hope!)….

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Starting all over

19 March, 2008 at 9:32 pm (knitting)

Yes indeedy, that’s what I did. What was I thinking? Actually, I was mostly thinking that my gauge had changed, and my decreases weren’t working. No photos of the new and improved jacket, since it looks the same, but smaller. I do have a video, though, of the i-cord cast on that I use.

And by the time I publish the pattern I’m going to try to have videos of all the weird techniques that it will have up. There are a lot of them.

I also cast on for some pretty lacy knee socks, during the couple of days of indecision over frogging or not. They’re an excellent travel/class WIP, because the lace pattern is nice and easy and repetitive.

DSCN5146

I just have to try not to get distracted by them when I should be working on the jacket. Ahem. Not that that’s happened, or anything.

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One step forward, twelve steps back

15 March, 2008 at 3:24 pm (caturday, FO, knitting)

So I’m really going eleven steps backwards. Which is why there has been no blogging, because I am getting nothing done.

I did whip up a hat for my mum’s birthday:
t
(here on Ravelry)

and she likes it quite a bit. It matches the mini clap I made out of malabrigo ages ago, which I never wear, so I gave that to her as well.

I also spent a couple of hours putting these adorable things together.
saartjesseamlessstickybooti
They just need buttons now.

But what’s really causing me agony is my sweater jacket.
toripornottorip
I have ripped and reknitted this thing so many times by now. And I still think I may need to frog the whole thing and start again. Or maybe cast on for something new while I try to figure out what the hell I’m doing.

Whatever, you’re here for the Caturday, right? 😉 Well, we have a new member of the family, and it looks like she’s sticking around for a while.


This pretty little kitty (who is actually huge–she should weigh 15-20 pounds once we get her up to a normal weight) is technically still our foster kitty, but my mum has fallen in love with her, and we may not be able to give her up again. She doesn’t have a name at the moment, although it seems everyone has an idea: mum likes Inertia, dad likes Velocity. I’m all for calling her Velociraptor. All suggestions welcome.

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A gluten free pizza

6 March, 2008 at 8:45 pm (food)

I’m not gonna lie; this recipe is ridiculously time and effort intensive. But oh, is it ever worth it.


Ingredients:
1/4 c butter
1 c milk
1 teaspoon salt
2 c tapioca starch (laugh all you want but my cock brand starch is super cheap)
2 medium or large eggs, beaten
3/2 c parmesan
3 tablespoons all purpose gluten free flour mix (preferably rice based)
seasonings (basil, oregano, etc.) if desired
pizza sauce, cheese, and toppings of choice

Directions:

Heat milk, butter, and salt over medium heat until it begins to boil. Remove from heat, stir in tapioca flour very quickly, using a fork, not a whisk, unless you want to spend a while removing dough from the whisk with a fork. Whatever knits your stitch. Transfer to a mixing bowl and let cool. Seriously. Walk away. Go knit or something. You don’t want to burn your hands trying to knead too-hot dough. Ask me how I know this.

Once it’s cool enough to handle, slowly knead in eggs and parmesan until the entire mixture is smooth. I usually alternate bits of egg and bits of parmesan to make it easier to handle. Think it’s smooth enough? Keep kneading. No really. It needs to be completely lump free.

After it’s completely smooth, add the flour and any seasonings you might like in your crust. Knead again until the flour is incorporated. Stick the dough in the fridge for half an hour or so. It needs to be chilled through, and DO NOT skip this step unless you want a gummy crust, which I learned the hard way. Now would probably be a good time to turn your oven on to 400F, and lightly (lightly!) grease one 12″ circular pan.

Spread dough into pan carefully, then puncture with a fork a couple times to prevent big giant air bubbles from forming. You don’t need as many fork marks as I have, it was just very satisfying to stab the dough that had taken up half my afternoon. Bake the crust for 20 minutes or until lightly browned on top, rotating your pan around at the halfway point if your oven’s like mine and things cook faster toward the back of the oven than they do toward the front.

Add sauce, cheese, and your toppings of choice (I put my toppings under the cheese so that it melts better, also so that the unsuspecting are assaulted by the flavor of pepperoni) and stick back in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is bubbling and browned a bit.

Slice, fend off friends and family who may try to steal some from you, and enjoy.

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Complex cookie

4 March, 2008 at 2:19 pm (food, knitting)

… or maybe just a cookie complex. Before anyone jumps on me I don’t have a recipe for the cookies above–I used the standard chocolate chip drop cookie recipe from The Joy of Cooking, replacing the flour with some stuff (tapioca flour, rice flour, chickpea flour, a bit of kinnikinnick bread mix I found) I kinda threw together. But let me tell you something, they were incredible. And, if you’re ever looking for a wonderfully complex tasting cookie, add some almond meal to it. It was such a subtle thing but it really made the cookie.

Also complex is this wonderful jacket that I’ve started knitting.

i-cordcaston
It’s my own design, so I’ve given myself license to come up with the most challenging things I can think of, and then throwing them in there. I-cord cast on? Sure.

i-cordcorner
A tricky little turn to continue the i-cord up the side? Hell yeah.

Then I got about an inch into the pattern, went to calculate my row gauge (which, thanks to the compact nature of brioche, was a freaking 44 rows to 4″), and… hey, that’s strange, this is several inches smaller than it should be, widthwise. I know I cast on enough stitches with that @(!@#%$ing i-cord cast on which took me more than an hour… Grabbed my swatch and–huh.
differentfabrics
Why the hell is my swatch fabric so much looser and fluffier than what I’m getting now? Surely blocking can’t change it that much?

Well, no. Using a different needle size might, though. Wow, how stupid am I, to use 6s when my notes clearly say, ‘knit swatch on 8s’? Or, how stupid am I to knit the swatch on 8s when I use 6s so often? And when I don’t even have 8s in the right length for a jacket? At this point I’m not convinced I have a brain.

So I’ve ordered the right size tips from knitpicks, and now I’ll sit here and quietly try not to mess up some stockinette socks
swseetsocksstart
while I wait for the tips to arrive.

(I am perfecting my pizza recipe tomorrow. Prepare to be amazed by what turns out.)

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