Tuesday, April 22, 2014

I'm currently immersing myself in satisfaction

My previous post, Blanket of Doom, spoke of my utter determination to make a few skeins of Bernat Baby Coordinates into something awesome. Its taken over a year, a ton of annoyance, frogging, and freaking out but lo, it is DONE!

Its pretty and turned out alright. Its def crib length but I'll always think I should have done another swapped pattern repeat so there would be a total of 4 as opposed to 3. I think I'm just a big old symmetry person. I'm considering doing a border and stitching it on because I really really hate picking up stitches and hey, who knows I may prefer to sewing on a border. Or I'll hate it, it really can go both ways!

I also managed to get other stuffs done!

I finished BBs Easter Dragon and it turned out super cute! I'm already thinking of changes to the pattern for future dragons!

And I finished a basic hat for my mom to give to coworkers for Christmas. I didn't care for the yarn, its warp was way off. Its also really wooly so its hard to see the cabling, but I feel better knowing that its not just blah and boring! 

So YAY! Stuff done ^_^

Monday, April 14, 2014

Obsession at least results in beauty!

For the last week and a half I have been totally obsessed with the Layering Shrug. My dearest, most darling friend, Chelle, who has put up with me for about 14 years, heard my call for knitters block. She had a need for something to cover her shoulders and go with her strapless dress for an upcoming wedding. We spent a few days going through options, choosing one, and then the week wait for the gorgeous Bamboo Pop bamboo/cotton blend in cream. I figured I would have 2 weeks to get it done in order to mail it out on time. I sort of had another one of those moments where I didn't realize what I was getting into. Hubris is apparently my sin.

I am definitely learning quite a bit about realistic time management. I did use my wait time appropriately, learning how to do a provisional cast on and buying the needles, practicing the elastic cast off. I was feeling pretty confident. Then in comes the yarn, and out come the circs and promptly the first problem. The instructions did not state that I'd have to use the Magic Loop technique so I hadn't practiced it. This caused multiple froggings, having to recast on etc. It sucked. Even when I did sort out how to do it and how to work, the ladders were so ridiculous that I couldn't conceivably call it acceptable. Darn... I wish I'd taken pictures. Finally I tossed the circs and got out my trusty old DPN's and in quick order turned out the cuff

I've never been so happy for 2 inches in my life
Even though I misread the pattern and omitted the purl rows I was happy enough with it that I continued on! I had to rip back once or twice because I misread the patterns and did that stupid thing where I tell myself, oh its no big deal and I can fix it. I sort of mess up awesomely and have to back track. I did wise up and put in safety lines after having to pull back a little more than I preferred. Things eventually evened out and I worked at a fair clip with no more mistakes.

I am still totally in love with the pattern

I'm fairly certain that if I hadn't had so much issue with the first bit I wouldn't have had to bust butt so much later. I worked on it about 2-3 hours a day the first 4 days. After that I bumped it up to about 5 or more hours. I still took Butter Bean to the library 2 days a week but the days we didn't I was working on it when I wasn't cooking or doing mandatory cleaning etc. All but the necessities were put on the back burner. Little bit didn't seem to mind as that meant she got to sit and watch movies. It definitely wasn't quality time and talk about super parental guilt!

A few pattern repeats short of the second sleeve

I worked and worked and was not disappointed at all by what came of it. I was done with the body before I knew it, I was all "WOOHOO the border will go super quick" of course picking up 300 stitches and an additional 20 rows to do. I stayed up til 2 am, and spent another 5 hours the following morning knitting and knitting and knitting and finally, it was done! I got that thing out 2 days before I expected which meant it would def be in on time.

I was thrilled with how it turned out, it looked beautiful and fit like a glove. The pictures are unblocked and I knew my gf would prefer a little bit more give and it would open up the pattern more. It blocked beautifully but because it was a 50/50 blend the cotton didn't let it have as much give as it could have. I'd consider a different fiber blend or add another pattern repeat across the back for a more relaxed fit.

 I'll post pictures once I get them from her. But yeah, it consumed my every waking moment, exclusively for a week. It was worth it and this is the first clothing item I've made that was what I would consider intricate. It gave me a serious wake up call though on the difficulty level of making things that are a little more involved than a hat. When I decide to go all crazy and try intarsia and fair isle you can bet I'll do it on something small, like a cup cozy 0.o

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Magic my a$$

Right now, I'm sitting here watching My Little Ponies, eating a serving size of pseudo cookie dough I made up and finishing my daily coffee. My day warranted it.The beginning started off with a grumpy kid at story time, so our morning was a total bust. Thank god for nap time, then I can get to work on the shrug my friend needs by the 16th. I have plenty of time!

This whole project has already been an ordeal. I didn't have the 24 inch size 6 circs and I had to go to 3 different places before I finally found them. I had never done a provisional cast on and that took forever. Then I had a ton of problem with my first round, of course that would be because the pattern NEVER SAID IT CALLED FOR THE MAGIC LOOP METHOD! I have never ever used this technique. If I had known I was going to have to do it I would have looked into it while I waited for the yarn to ship.

I've learned something. I hate the magic loop. I hate it so much I have literally thrown things. This is the most impractical method of actually knitting that I have ever experienced all for the sake of not having to switch to straights. It took 3 different explanations/videos before it made sense to me. I tried and failed, frogged, tried again, frogged, decided to start all over (considering I've only done 2 rows tops it shouldn't be a big deal right?), over over over over! I will have 2 big ladders at the beginning and middle because if I pull tight I cant transfer my stitches back onto the needle. If its loose the ladder only gets bigger.

If I could afford it I'd just go buy anther set of needles that are smaller but no, instead I'm gong to have to sit down and do this stupid thing with this stupid method, swearing, ranting, throwing, and being an overall pain in the behind for the next week......

Screw you magic loop