Welcome to my blog. This blog is simply talking about my knitting and spinning adventures. I will talk about different yarns and fibers I have used and review patterns. Please don't forget to subscribe to my blog, it's greatly appreciated.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

I bammed it up a notch!

Welcome Everyone,
this past week me and my fiance both quit drinking sodas and only drink water now. We also started working out every other day. It has been a difficult transition and I am glad that I have my very best friend doing it with me. We both want to be in the best shape we can be in for our wedding. Other than that we just been going to work and nothing spectacular going on.

Works in Progress - WIP's
Friday was the start date of the 3rd and last camp loopy project. The requirements are that the project has to be 500+ yards, use two colors, and a pattern I have never done before. As I mentioned before I am knitting Elfe by Astrid Schramm in madelinetosh tosh merino light in the cobalt and maple leaf colorway on size 4, 3.5 mm needles. So far I love the pattern, it's top down, but you don't separate the sleeves you knit them with the top body and then bind them off and bam finished sleeves. I absolutely love the yarn, even that it's a single ply. The colors are very vibrant and the yarn feels very soft. I heard that madelinetosh washes up nicely, so I guess I have to wait for my final say on the yarn till I am done.
Also on Friday the Olympics started and with that the Ravellenics began. Yesterday, I casted on Terence the Tap Dancing T-Rex by Rebecca Danger. I am using some Red Heart Soft that I had in my stash and for his belly I will use left over I have from Basil the Boogie Woggie Brontosaurus. I like the pattern so far, since Rebecca Danger is an awesome designer. The yarn well I bought it for a granny square blanket, since it was cheap and so far one granny square is done. The pink yarn is the scrap yarn for the after thought tail.
Finished Objects - FO's
Well, I had to kill time and the wait till Friday was kinda difficult for me, so I started and finished a couple little things. Yes, I could of worked on my socks, but what can I say?! In order to prevent my yarn balls from collapsing I knitted a ball sack *giggle* There have been a lot of ball and ball sack jokes in my house, because of this. I had some random Knit Picks Comfy Fingering in Marlin colorway. I will add a string to the top to tie it.
Next, I was going to knit a cable beanie for my fiance. I used the Vicki Howell pattern in Knit Simple Fall 2012 issue (no link on ravelry yet). Well, I knitted it in the Large/X-Large size and it won't even touch his upper ear. It barely even fits me, I definitely recommend making the slouchy version unless you are knitting it for a child. I used Cascade Pacific that I had won from somewhere (I think it was craftsy.com)

Lastly, you might remember that I said for the Ravellenic games I would try to knit as many Monster Chunks as possible. Well, I knitted one and said that's to easy, so I decided to cast on the T-Rex for a bigger challenge and Basil is lonely. I used left overs to knit the only chunk. I will gift him to the puppy, Charlie, at my local yarn shop.
For some odd reason I finished the second half of my Three Waters Farm braid much quicker then the first half. I got 210 yards, not a specific weight since I am still all over the place. I still have to wash and thwack it. I used the left overs on my bobbin, to practice chain plying I got the hand motion down and just have to work on getting better at it.
Now I am spinning an ...into the whirled English Shetland Combed Top braid in the Ambercrombie colorway, I bought at the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival. I am spinning this fractal, which means I split the braid in half lengthwise and spin the first half normal, then the second half I will split again either once or twice and spin those all from the same end. I just started the first half today. I absolutely love the colors and it's pretty easy to spin.
I found a cute pencil case at Walmart today for just $4. I am using it for my DPN's (double pointed needles). I made a case myself a while ago, but I mistakenly bought some knit picks dpn's that are really long (meant to buy the shorter ones). Well those don't fit in my self made case. Now I can use that case for some other notions.
Magazine Review:
I bought the new issue of Knit Scene Fall 2012. I just want to point out the patterns that I liked. Again the magazine is set up in categories: Zipped, Forever Knits, and Ethereal. I just noticed that all the patterns I like are from the Forever Knits section.
First pattern I can see myself knit is the Rhonda Cap by Brenda K. B. Anderson.
Next I really like the Agnes pullover by Ruth Garcia-Alcantud. The only reason I am hesitating to knit this is you knit it in pieces and seam it all together.
I also like Amherst Kerchief by Marjorie Dussaud. I like the colorwork and even the tassels, normally I am not a fringe or tassel kinda girl, however they work for this.
Last but not least, I like the Frances Cardigan by Amy Polcyn. However, again it is knit in pieces. I absolutely don't like the colors they chose for it, I think the red gets lost in the orange. There is no picture on Ravelry yet.
I also received my subscription for Knit Simple Fall 2012. I am not going to review it, since the only pattern I liked was the cable beanie I already knit.

Next week I am going to the Spinning and Weavers guild meeting and besides that just my usual working and knitting.

Thanks for reading and Happy Knitting,

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Finished Objects Paluza

Welcome Everyone,
An update on my exam results, sadly I failed by 1 question. I will have to wait 30 days to re-take the medical coding and billing exam. Other than that I just went to work and came home to knit or spin. Today I have the whole house pretty much to myself besides the cats, which it's the first time that my fiance will be gone all day. He went to Maryland with some friends to meet another friend to go and watch Batman at the Imax. 

Works in Progress - WIP's: 
Something that hasn't been touched in a little over a month has made a comeback. I have a HO (half finished object). Yes, I worked on my Harvest Dew Socks and finished one of them. I am knitting those out of Uschi Universal that was graciously gifted to me from my aunt, who lives in Germany. I have not casted on the 2nd sock, since I am working on a gauge swatch. However, once I finish swatching I will cast that on. So far I am very happy with the sock and it fits great.

That's the only WIP. 

Finished Objects - FO's:
Like the title says this week was FO Paluza. I finished 3 things this week, that might be a new record. First I finished my Westwood Blouse for Camp Loopy Project #2. I had a minor panic attack when I went to try it on my head didn't fit through the opening. The opening was as big as the pattern told me too, anyway I had to rip the shoulder seams an inch on each side. It turned out a little bit shorter than I expected even that I had gauge (I did block the swatch). 

Second, I finished the TGV for the Knitabulls July KAL. This morning I received a message from the Designer, Susan Ashcroft, asking if she could feature my picture. *Squeel* She is featuring the picture with boogie. I took the picture with him, since the Knit Girllls Stash Dash 2012 checkpoint 4 price is for featuring your pet in the picture, even if I don't win that price my picture is featured on the pattern site.
The second picture shows how much yarn I had left.
I am more a handkerchief person, here is a picture of how I wear mine.
Then lastly I finished the TTL Mystery Shawl 2012 by Kirsten Kapur. When the last clue came out the beginning of July, I thought it said I had to knit 46 more rows. So I decided to work on Camp Loopy and Knitabulls KAL first. However, when I picked it back up Friday night, I realized that there is a shorter version, which is only 6 rows. Well, I ended up knitting the shorter version and if I would of known about that this shawl would of been done 3 weeks ago. The first picture is of the whole shawl and the other 2 of the detail.

Soon to be on the needles:
Friday July 27th is the cast on date for the last Camp Loopy project. I will cast on Elfe and actually that's what I am gauge swatching for right now. 
Also on Friday the Ravellenics Games start, I am joining Knitabulls in the Toy Toss category and I will be casting on Monster Chunks on Saturday. My goal is to try and finish as many as possible. 

I am still working on the Three Waters Farm BFL. I finished the first 2 oz yesterday and will start the second half today. I am getting more consistent and thinner, it definitely is a learning process. 
I bought 2 skeins of Madeline Tosh Merino Light the blue is cobalt colorway and the greenish color is maple leaf. Those are for my Camp Loopy project. I also bought from The Loopy Ewe the Camp Loopy bag, they include the camp loopy measuring tape. 

The second package I received this week was a very special one. I received my custom order from Unique Sheep. Laura was very very helpful and patient with me, to come up with the perfect color for my wedding shawl and bouquet. I must of driven her crazy, first I wanted off white, then I changed to burgundy, well now it is teal. I don't have a David's Bridal close by, so she was so generous to drive to her local one to pick up a color swatch and she matched the yarn perfectly. Left is Ling lace (70% merino and 30% silk) for my shawl, middle is the David's Bridal color swatch (Bridesmaids dresses), right is Wild Thing (Merino/Tussah Silk) for some of the flowers in my bouquet.
I will still have to order some Hiya Hiya Sharps for the shawl, but other than that enabling will only consist of my into the whirled club fiber.
Next week will once again be consisting of working, knitting and spinning. 
Happy Knitting!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Camp Loopy Knitting Frenzy

Welcome Everyone,
this week was pretty uneventful. Go to work come home, knit/spin, repeat. Saturday, my fiance was so gracious and volunteered to drive me to Richmond for my big medical billing and coding test. I will find out the results on Tuesday, I think I did ok, but I don't want to get my hopes up.

Last week I got a minor panic attack regarding my Westwood Blouse for Camp Loopy #2. I thought that there was no way I was going to finish and I might as well give up. Well, once again I underestimated my skills of being relatively fast. Yep, I am pretty much finished. I finished the back and the front. It's is now blocking and once it is dry I can seam up the shoulders. Right now all the knitting I have left to do is the I-cord belt, which will be done today. I took the picture before I soaked it and pinned it out to dry. I love the pattern, it was really easy to understand. The only complaint I have is the lace requires to do a Purl 3 together every other stitch and with it being cotton (cotton has no give) it really hurt my wrists after a while. I had to take frequent breaks, which I would either study or spin. The yarn is really nice too, it is pretty soft for being cotton and supposedly it gets softer the more you wash it. It had one knot in one skein, but that's no big deal. 
This was the only knitting I did this week. Not bad considering that I work full time and had to study for the test.

Again nothing, but that will change next week.

I finished spinning the Romney fiber. I love the way it turned out, much better than my first. It is between a heavy worsted and chunky, but also has some spots that are more a dk.
Now I am spinning BFL (blue faced leicester) that I bought at the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival. It is from Three Waters Farm in the Santa Fe colorway. This is taking me way longer then the other two I have spun, since I got much thinner.
Soon to be on the Needles:
July 27th is when the 3rd and last Camp Loopy project starts. The requirements are to knit 500+ yards, use more than one color, and it has to be a pattern we never have knit before. I will be knitting Elfe in Madeline Tosh Merino Light. I have never used that yarn (I own two skeins, just haven't knit them) so I am excited to use it. I picked two colors that are bold and not my usual colors.

I finally received my Ho Bag. If you watch the Stockinette Zombies Podcast, you will know what I am talking about. Amy came up with the term HO for a Half finished object, for example if you finished just 1 sock or 1 mitten. You can't really call it a FO, since you need two so she called it HO. Then it went so far they had HO bags made and how could I resist. They also were so gracious to include a "I'm a zombie" button and a sticker.
I also received a 4 oz merino braid I ordered from Spun Right Around on etsy in the Playtime colorway. Sorry I couldn't take it out of the package, since my cat was ready to attack the fiber.
The last thing I ordered was a Wraps per inch tool from Tangerine Designs on etsy. It is in the shape of the Tardis in Doctor Who, which is my absolute favorite TV show, if you couldn't tell from my tardis bag I got a couple weeks ago. She also included a button, which is already on one of my project bags. 
 Next week I will have some enabling again. I am waiting on the yarn I bought for Camp Loopy #3 and on the yarn for my Wedding Shawl and Bouquet. After that, my only enabling will be my once a month club shipment from ...into the Whirled, since we have to save for our wedding. 

Next week will be very uneventful, since there are no plans of any kind. That means lots of knitting and spinning time just the way I like it. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I got bit by the spinning bug.

Welcome everyone to my blog,
this past week was Independence day and me and my fiancee were off work that day. We went to Ferry Farm, which is George Washington's boyhood home and seemed fitting. They had lot's of little booths that had demonstrations, such as leather working, spinning, weapons, and Indian jewelry. Also, there were a ton of reenactors, which I felt really bad for in that heat. We actually didn't stay very long, because it was way too hot. I mentioned last week that I emailed the Wedding Venue to reserve my date. It is official that we will get married on June 1st, 2013. I am extremely excited and anxious.
There will be a small change to my segments, "on the needles" will now be WIP's (works in progress), and "off the needles" will be FO's (Finished Objects). Let's move on to the knitting among other things.

I been trying to focus most of my knitting time towards the Camp Loopy project, Westwood Blouse. I finished the main body today and started the lace on the back part.
My second wip is the knitabulls podcast KAL, that I am knitting together with my friend Pam. We are knitting both the TGV and I am behind. Pam already started the ribbing and I am still on the garter section. Like I said I really tried to focus on the Camp Loopy project.
Nothing :(

I absolutely got bit by the Spinning bug. I got the hang of things and don't get frustrated on the wheel anymore. I had bad luck and a piece broke off the wheel, I received the replacement yesterday. However, while I was waiting on the replacement  I wanted to continue my Tour de Fleece goal to spin everyday for 15 minutes, so I used my spindle and even got the hang of it. Like I mentioned last week I had finished the 2 oz of Corriedale, it is definitely super bulky and a practice piece. I used Boogie as my photo prop to make the yarn look better :)

After I finished that I started spinning some Romney fiber that I bought from The First Draft on etsy. I posted a picture of the braid last week. I finished spinning the singles and they are resting right now, tomorrow I will ply them. I spun one from pink to turquoise and the other from turquoise to pink. The first one I spun had some very think at the beginning, but then it clicked and no more super thick.

While I was waiting for the piece to come in I spun some undyed Alpaca I bought at the local Alpaca Farm. I love this fiber, it is extremely soft.
That is it for this week, I am taking a big test to become a medial coder on Saturday and am extremely nervous. I hope you will join me again next week. Happy Knitting :)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

I am a Frog "Rip it Rip it"

Welcome to my blog everyone,
this week was pretty uneventful again. The weather has been acting crazy, it's been in the 100's and we had a pretty bad storm Friday night. Luckily we only lost power for a minute, unlike millions of other people. Saturday I stayed up till midnight to email the wedding venue coordinator to reserve my date, she did say that she can't accept reservations till July 1st,  so 12:01 am July 1st I reserved it. Now on to the knitting stuff.

On the Needles:
Too much stuff. I currently have 7 projects, holy cow. I obviously didn't work on all 7 projects this week, even that I have one for each day of the week.
Well first up I finished the 4th clue for TTL mystery shawl  by Kirsten Kapur. The 5th and last clue came out last Wednesday, but I haven't even started that yet and you will find out here in a second why.
My next WIP (work in progress) is the 2nd Camp Loopy project. The requirement for this is to knit 800+ yards and the yarn has to be a shade of a color in my country's flag. I am knitting the Westwood Blouse and I am using Kollage Riveting in the Lava denim colorway on size US 4 - 3.5 mm needles. I am past the belt loops and just knitting a long till I get to the lace section, which I have a ways to go. I love the yarn it is pretty soft for cotton, but it does hurts my wrists if I knit on this too long.
Today the July KAL for the knitabulls podcast started and I casted on at 8 am. I am making, along with my friend Pam, the TGV using the GnomeAcres Merino Nylon Fingering in the Franklin colorway on size US 6 - 4.0 mm and US 5 - 3.75 mm (for the ribbing) needles. I can't say enough about this yarn, it is so soft and squishy and the colors are very vibrant.
Off the Needles:
So, you might of wondered where the Wendy Knits mystery shawl was in the above segment and why my title is called I am a frog. Well, I got simply overwhelmed with all my projects and 1 simply had to bite the dust. I decided to frog (to none knitters to frog something means to rip it off the needles) that shawl, because I made the 3 stitch nupps, which you could hardly see and I think my yarn was too dark for the pattern. I might knit it in the future with different yarn, but right now is not the right time.
Also, I got buttons for the Pedestrian Crossing Cowl and will gift this to my friend Pam on Tuesday.

I have a new segment called spinning. A few months ago I decided I wanted to learn how to spin my own yarn. I went on etsy and bought a couple onces of fiber and two spindles, a top whirl and a bottom whirl. I soon realized spindles were not my thing I wanted a wheel, however with us having a wedding summer next year there is no way I can afford the wheel I want right now at least not till the end of next year. My friend Pam was so gracious to lend me her mothers Louet S10 wheel. Her wheel is a single treadle and I really want a double treadle, but I can't complain since I get to use her wheel. I bought some really nice fiber back in May at the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival, but I also bought some undyed Corridale to practice spinning. Now with the tour de fleece event through ravelry, I joined knitabulls team and made my goal to spin everyday for 15 minutes to get better. The event started yesterday and I spun for 3 hours total so far. I had bought 4 oz of Corridale and ended up with 2 oz as yarn, the rest well ended in the trash. I finished plying the yarn today and it is definitely very very thick at some spots and thin at other spots. Right now the yarn is drying and I will post a picture next week. I also want to learn how to dye yarn, so I decided to dye my handspun using Kool Aid. I probably will knit a small monster, since I didn't get a lot of yards and its so chunky and unpredictable.

I received my yarn for the Knitabulls KAL for the Ravelympics, ops I mean Ravellenic games. It's the Dancing Dog Dyeworks Waltz Worsted in the Maisy & Bella colorway. I am not sure if I will use it during the KAL tough. The way she packaged the yarn was just too cute and she included jolly rangers and a stitch marker.

Also for the Tour de Fleece I needed some inexpensive fiber, since everything I bought at the festival is very pricey and I don't want to spin it till I am good. I bought some Romney fiber from The First Draft on etsy in the And I am all out of Bubblegum colorway. I will start spinning that tomorrow. She also included a cedar block to keep moths away and a stitch marker, which was very nice of her. I can almost guarantee I will order from her again, since it's a very good price and until I get good that's what I am looking for.
  That is it for this week and I hope you will join me again next week. Happy Knitting!