Monday, June 18, 2007

Cute Overload

Warning: The following blog post contains images that may considered be too cute for some knitters. It contains scenes babies and yarn, all at the same time. Viewer discretion advised.

Nyron and I had a wonderful time meeting the twins on Saturday. They are absolutely adorable. Without further ado, here is the long-anticipated picture of them wrapped up snug in their new blankets:

Need I say, I'm in love? They are just absolutely precious! I didn't get to hold Amelia (right) because she was a bit fussy and stayed with her mom, but I spent a good portion of the evening with Colin (left) in my arms. I can't wait to knit entire wardrobes for them! Luckily, their parents are Harry Potter fans because I just happened to own a copy of Charmed Knits. Of course, I'll have to wait until their old enough to be sorted into houses...
Until next we knit!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

This sweater is kicking my ass!

This is getting to be a bit much. On Tuesday Nyron drove all the way to the East End to get a single ball of yarn from the one yarn shop in the city who carries it in the colour I need. This now makes 3 dye lots represented in one sweater, but luckily they all match exactly - I really must stop playing fast and loose with dye lots, it's going to come back to bite me one of these days. I spent all of Wednesday doing the shapping on the sleeves and noticed that the yarn isn't colourfast; it left a blue line of dye along my index finger where I wrap the yarn to keep tension while I'm knitting. I'll have to wasth the sleeves with vinegar before sewing them on.

Of course, it'll still be a while before it comes to that. When I had knit the sleeves until about an inch from the end of the shaping I decided to try them on Nyron's arm to see if they fit. They're way too long. They go past his knuckles.

I was so upset that I haven't been able to touch the stupid thing since Wednesday. But it's my final remaining WIP for the Stashalong June challenge, so I have to have it finished by the end of June. However, I'm happy to say that ignoring this cursed sweater gave me the chance to finish the second twin blanket.

Just in time, too, since we're seeing the twins for the first time today. I hope they like them. The next picture I have of these blankets they'll be wrapped snugly around their recipients.

Until next we knit!


Sunday, June 10, 2007

Isn't this a cliche by now?

Ok, it's happened; made all the more frustrating because I'm in a challenge to finish the argyle sweater by the end of the month and don't want to contend with any hold-ups. I'm part way into the shoulder shaping of the sleeves and I've run out of yarn. The only yarn shop that currently has this yarn and colour in stock is on the completely other side of town. What is it exactly that I have done to so anger the knitting goddesses? Or are they just bored and having a little fun? I tried to go to the yarn shop on the street car this afternoon, but it didn't arrive at my stop until 3:45, which meant that there was no way I could get all the way to the East End before the shop closed at 5.

Oh well. Today was the day when Nyron and I went to the World's Biggest Bookstore to get a last shopping spree out of his employee discount card. His last day as a book drone for Heather Reisman is this Thursday. I spent almost exactly $100 which was my self-appointed budget (I have to have some limit!) and got 4 books. It was harder than I thought it would be to find books that I wanted to buy, as I'm not that interested in pattern books. I much prefer technique books, or pattern books that will teach me something that I don't already know. So I got a book on finishing techniques, a book on hand-dying self striping yarn, a book on hand spinning, and Mason-Dixon Knitting, just because I've had my eye on it for a while.

On Friday I went to the knitter's pub night and got to meet the lovely Stashaholic (see the blog link on my side bar). I've been linking to her for years; I think I originally linked to her back when I first started this blog because I was a bit homesick while living in England and wanted to read a blog from home. It was great to finally meet her and have a drink (even though it wasn't Keith's) and a laugh and a reminisce about Nova Scotia. I also found out that she still hasn't sold her beginner's spinning wheel, which I may buy from her in the near future. I plan on taking the spinning course at Lettuce Knit to see if I like it and if I take to it I'll see if Stashaholic still has Lilith to sell. I'm getting excited about the idea of spinning and dying my own yarns. I bought David Attenbough's Planet Earth recently and all the colour combinations are making me think of socks. Mmmmm, Planet Earth socks.

Unit next we knit!


Thursday, June 07, 2007

My last new yarn for a long time

Just before joinging Save Cash! Use Your Stash and the Stashalong which has effectively put me on a yarn diet, I placed an order on Knit Picks. I've been listening to their podcast lately and I am walking proof that a podcast is excellent advertising for a yarn store. I bought 2 books, I Can't Believe I'm Knitting Socks by Cindy Guggemos and The Sweater Workshop by Jacqueline Fee, as well as some Memories Merino sock yarn in the Rocky Mountain Dusk colourway. I've never been to the Rockies (I've never been west of Alberta) but I'm kind of into purples right now and it looks nice and cozy. Here's a picture of all this, which just arrived in the mail today (after being shipped on May 31, so that was quite quick!).

To be honest, all I'd really wanted was the sweater book. It was described on the podcast as a book that would take you through all the techniques required to knit a sweater by having you knit a knid of amorphous sweater sampler in the round. I have a lot of pattern books already so what I'm really interested in are books that focus on technique and will help with my designing. I bought the sock book because I've knit one pair of socks already and would like to expand my skill set in that area as well. My only excuse for the yarn was that I figured I could use it to work on the bounty of sock knitting skills I am sure to learn from this book. And it was on sale. I hope I like working with it becuase I'd love to go back and buy some more at that price in the different colourways before they are all gone.

In other news, I've joined abouther blog group. This time it's Craft for a Cause. At least, this is the name right now, they are in the process of changing it to something that isn't already taken. I've always loved charity knitting (in fact it's what got me back into knitting after a haitus of a few years) and I plan to do a lot of it as part of my upcoming destash, so now I'll have a place to post about it. Speaking of posts on other blogs, I'm going to post my progress on the 3 WIPs I mentioned in a previous post on the Stashalong blog. I've entered them into the June KAL within a KAL challenge where participants have to post regular updates for their designated WIPs and have them done by the end of the month. Wish me luck! Now I'm going to go curl up with that sweater book!

Until next we Knit!


Monday, June 04, 2007

Knitting in the Rain

No, this isn't a fibre artist's Gene Kelly fantasy. This is what I was doing this morning on the side of the road an hour late for work. But more on that later.

This has been a very frustrating week, and it's only Monday. Things started to get hairy on Saturday. I greatly appreciate my weekends because I really don't like my current job. I rely on my weekends to be relaxing and recharging so that I can face the work week ahead. On Saturday I took a trip to the North End of Toronto to teach knitting, an appointment I'd set up weeks ago. I got all the way to St Claire West station (an hour's sojourn on public transit from my house) only to realize that I got the day wrong. June 3 was, in fact, a Sunday and not a Saturday as I had previously believed. So another hour long trip home again. Of course, it meant 2 hours of knitting, but I would have much rathered spend those 2 hours curled up on the couch.

Later that night Nyron had a date to play basketball with his highschool buddies and I got to come along (a rare treat). While I was (generously) invited to play, I have no delusions about having game, so I sat on the grass and knit. When Nyron subbed out of one of the games, I decided to have him stretch out his arm and test the fit. I'm usually fanatical about fitting because I don't trust patterns and always knit to my own gauge. But for some reason I was almost half way through the sleeves before I thought to check the fit. And, of course, the knitting goddesses laughed. It just barely fit around his wrist, which might be fine for another man, but Nyron tends to roll his sleeves up so they need to fit at half way up his forearms. So I spent the last half hour of game play frogging both sleeves and rolling them into balls. I think the guys must have thought I was insane. They'd just spent 2 hours watching me knit and then in the last half hour I pulled everything out again.

On Sunday I managed to get to the knitting lesson on time; or so I thought. I arrived at the subway station with 20 minutes to spare and waited for the bus that I was told would take me to the organizer's house. But the bus didn't come. It wasn't until a very nice person came over and told the half dozen of us standing on the platform that the bus wasn't coming. It was re-routed to Bathurst station (a stop on another line) due to construction. There was no sign or information to let any of us know that. The TTC ticket seller was decidedly unhelpful and I ended up having to take a taxi.

The class itself was wonderful! There were 5 people, 2 teenage girls, a woman and her 9 and 6 year old daughters. I got a knitting spool for the 6 year old to keep her occupied while I taught knitting to the rest of the group. Luckily, the 9 year old was the only one who was completely new to the art, so I could give some basic guidance to the others and focus my attention on Marin. She was really sweet and very upset to see me go at the end of the 2 hours. I'll definitely be doing another lesson with that group!

Which brings me back to why I was knitting in the rain this morning. There was a passenger emergency on the subway which halted all service between Keele and St. George stations, which is a significant length of track. They ran a shuttle bus, but it always left Keele Station full to the brim, so the only time they would actually stop at the corner where I was waiting (which was only 1 subway stop from Keele) was if there was a red light, and then they never opened the doors. I tried to get a cab, but of course they were all occupied with other people left stranded by The Better Way. I stood in the rain for over an hour, knitting furiously to try and calm my fraying nerves, until a cab finally stopped and picked up myself and 2 other women who were also going downtown. Very thoughtful of this cab, seeing as most other cabs were taking advantage of the glut in need for their services by saving just one stranded commuter at a time. I got to work at 10:30, which meant I had to skip lunch and work until 6:00 to make my hours for the day. Needless to say I kept my knitting hidden under my desk so that I could do a few rows when I needed to take the edge off.

And that's just it. All through this ridiculous weekend my knitting is what has kept my sanity. And continues to do so.

Until next we knit!