But I spent most of my day pondering pattern math, both for a new cowl that will be released next month:
(That’s assuming I like it enough when it’s done. Currently we are in the ‘heck yeah, it’s awesome!’ phase. After another repeat I’ll be in the ‘what the heck was I thinking?’ phase.)
And also to work out the troublesome details on my Ravelympics sweater, which I’m going to design myself. Problem is, what started out as a simple stockinette pullover has now gained tricky shaping and neckline gathers and applied i-cord and sleeves that need to be worked from the top down and seamless set-in shoulders and all kinds of, well, mathiness. Not that I mind math (math is delicious!) but… I’m awfully anxious to get started on this thing to see if I can actually make it work out properly. Is it the 12th yet?
(Please note that tomorrow, the 31st, is the last day that I’ll be donating 100% of my pattern sales to MSF/doctors without borders, so if you’d like to donate some money and get a pattern in return, now would be the time to do so!)
I also want to take a moment to thank all of you who have bought from me and the other designers who are donating percentages of pattern sales this month; your purchases have raised more than $700 from my patterns alone. Since I’ve sold so many patterns (way more than I ever expected!), ALL pattern sales for the remainder of the month will be donated to MSF/doctors without borders. I’m hoping that plus the continued generosity of my anonymous donor (who is matching 100% of all of my sales until Valentine’s day) might push us over $1000. If you’re still looking for something else to buy, I’m planning a big shop update for Monday, including a bunch of new spindles as well as fiber and some handspun laceweight yarns:
That sound you hear is the sound of the last two weeks rushing past me in a whirl of swatches, carding, spinning, knitting, and twenty thousand cups of coffee. I’m looking forward to some quiet time next week just so I can breathe a bit!
I’m planning some exciting new stuff for the shop, including but not limited to new spindles, a whole batch of batts, and even some handspun yarn. I think I’m most excited about the batts:
I spun one the other day and I’m not sure I ever want to spin from a combed prep again! Carded fiber produces such a fluffy, lovely yarn, and I’m really pleased with the ones I’ve been turning out. Smooth, soft, and a lovely heathery blend of colors.
Work also continues on the test knitting, although it’s not going terribly fast—
the cabling is a bit intense! But I’m almost done with the right front and I can’t believe I’m saying this but it’s actually kind of nice to be able to slow down a bit and enjoy the pattern and yarn a bit longer. Sometimes those short-lived ultra fast projects just, well, whoosh on by too fast for me to appreciate them.
You all know how much I love and adore these mittens, and now I’m pleased to be able to share the joy with you. You can find Skeuomorph’s official home here, or purchase and download directly from Ravelry.
Doing my best to enjoy the post-holiday peace and quiet before embarking on a bunch of new ventures in the new year. We’ll see how long the serenity lasts.
The east coast is getting snowed in, and although it hasn’t started here in northern New Jersey yet, I’m already preparing to spend the rest of the weekend indoors with lots of cocoa and some new pattern math.
Heh. Just kidding. It’s actually… a mitten.
A sideways mitten. I don’t know what I was thinking when I decided that regular up and down mittens just weren’t good enough, but now that I’m working on this idea I’ve found that I really can’t leave it alone. Still waffling back and forth on whether or not there will be an official pattern, since these are so tricky and the specifics of how to shape them can vary widely depending on hand width, finger length, and other factors. Still, I figure if I take good notes (see above re: pattern math), then I’ll have something to show for it, either way.
This is my dad.
He’s a little… strange. He also reads this blog. (Hi dad!)
Without a doubt, he is the most difficult person in my immediate family to gift shop for. My mom will present me with an itemized list of what she wants, how much it costs, where to get it, how to wrap it. My brother is usually happy with a funny t-shirt or video game. But my dad… well, his usual response to “what do you want?” is “I don’t really need anything.”
Well yeah, dad, but what you do want?
Recently I’ve taken it as a bit of a personal challenge to try to find gifts that will amaze and delight him, like the Hamlet bow tie he received for his birthday this year. It was perfect because he teaches high school English and, in addition to spending a lot of time covering Hamlet, he only ever wears bow ties to school. (I’m sure he also spends a lot of time cringing at the grammar on this blog.) In fact, it was almost a little too perfect; I knew I had to go far above and beyond to improve on that. I knew I would have to… knit a sweater vest.
It was nearly impossible for me to keep this a secret. Every time I struggled with something (like running out of yarn) or managed something clever (like the 320 stitch tubular bind off around the button and neckbands, no I’m not kidding, yes it took me four hours, no I never want to do another tubular bind off again), I desperately wanted to blog about it. But—see above about my dad reading this blog. (Hi dad!) And saying anything would’ve ruined the amazement and delight, I think. So I kept my mouth shut. Er, mostly. And I’m glad I did. He was, in fact, speechless, and with luck he’ll get many years of wear out of just a few days of work. There’s nothing better than that.
Actually, wait, there is something better: it’s superwash.
Pattern: Professor Vest by Elizabeth Morrison
Yarn: Plymouth Encore Worsted in charcoal, 4 skeins
Needles: US6/4mm and US8/5mm Knitpicks Options
Notes: Do not be like me and try to attempt tubular bind off on all the ribbing. Save your sanity. Don’t. Do it.
On Ravelry here.
My resolve to get some spinning done lasted exactly no point two seconds before I gave in and cast on for some lace.
Of course since it is a) lace and b) silk, it’s going to look like yarn barf ’til it’s done and blocked. Fortunately, it’s knitting up quite quickly, so hopefully I’ll have it finished and blocked in a few days.
Gift knitting means I can’t show you what I’ve been working furiously on all week, because someone reads this blog and I don’t want to give away the surprise. But I have a few other tidbits I can share with you…
Pattern: Shiver Cowl by Danido Crafty
Yarn: KnitPicks Gloss DK in Woodland Sage, 1 skein and a bit of a second
Needles: US6/4mm KnitPicks Options
Notes: I made a handful of small mods, mostly because my yarn choice was a little thicker than the one specified in the pattern. I only worked the cabled band to 16″ (small neck!) and then, since the pattern doesn’t specify the ratio at which to pick up stitches, I just picked up one stitch in every slipped stitch, and worked the ribbing on the same US6s to keep it from being too snug. I used four buttons rather than three, because these pretty thrifted ones were just a smidge too small to keep it closed without that extra one.
Here on Ravelry.
There’s also a big, huge, GIANT spindle sale which ends tomorrow—15% and free shipping on all orders. Which means that this spindle:
could be in your hands by the end of the week for less than 25 dollars. Really.