Friday, December 02, 2011

It's the most wonderful time of the year!



From bottom left corner: My favorite thrift store sweater, my recently completed Hemlock Ring Blanket in Berroco Ultra Alpaca (LOVE!) in Pea Soup Mix, and last but not least, last year's Fiber Trends Felt Clogs in aforementioned Ultra Alpaca with a side of some discontinued Knit Picks yarn in Graham.

The Florida "winter" is upon us and I couldn't be more delighted. The only dilemma here is now I am REALLY wishing I had been more diligent about my oft neglected, but so coveted Stonewall in Wooly Wonka Fibers Celestial in the Dryad Moon colorway. This is another remarkable example of a designer really just making a phenomenal and super appropriate choice for their sample/design. I am in absolute love with this yarn and I promise someday I will get pictures with a good camera because mine will never do the color or pattern justice, IOU on that one. Sadly, I don't even think I'm halfway through the first 400-yard hank. :/ So much crafting, so little time!

Hoping everyone is having a fantastic winter season! (or in my case "winter" season, very different :P)

Saturday, October 22, 2011

I made this and I love it!

Thanks to some re-inspiring from John (HAI JOHN!), I decided to try out the pattern I bought over a month ago (link above). Thanks to the always supportive and encouraging knitter girls, I now love it even with the terribad mistakes that I am always prompt to point out to everyone. So yeah, thanks lovely knitter friends! :) Oh yeah, here:



One of my favorite things about it, the lining:



Side view so you can better see my other favorite thing about it, the handle:



and as you can sort of see from the above picture



Kitteh helped!

Just some side notes for anyone that might be interested in the pattern, it is intended to be quilted, as is apparent in the link. I do love this aspect of it, but as an overzealous beginner, I really just didn't want to yet, so I instead opted for some fusible fleece (thanks, Carolyn!) and I'm very pleased with the result, although I forgot I had bought a yard of fusible batting from Stitchcraft (formerly known as Three Crafty Quilters) in Boca, so next time, assuming I skip the quilting again, I am going to give that a shot, although no complaints on the fusible fleece at all, just want to use up the stash. I also sort of forgot the lovely ribbon accent, which gives it a nicer finished look, imo, but will catch that next time also! While I'd say these bags require a fair amount of work (maybe not if I wasn't so remedial) the pattern was really well written and I'm very happy with it!!!! Oh and this was the "as is" size in the pattern, requiring a fat quarter of each fabric, which worked for me since I'm a FQ whore. Fabrics are Robert Kaufman Ready Set Go in Bermuda (which I didn't even realize was organic, score!) and Michael Miller Dino Dudes, both purchased at the aforementioned Stitchcraft, which I mad heart, btw.

Oh, yeah, knitting and stuff! The item receiving the most attention on the needles is my second Hemlock Ring Blanket. Here's an atrocious picture of it!



I'm actually pretty close to done aside from the fact the last dozen rounds ahead of me are the biggest and most time-consuming. :P After that, I think I'm ripping my very-near-complete Earnshaw from last "winter" and redoing it in my actual size but on needles 2 sizes smaller instead of the intended needles and 3 sizes too small just to get it to fit. :P I just don't like the sleeves. Oh, all this because I super epic failed at Tour de Sock On the other hand, I made two donations to Doctors Without Borders and I'm pleased about that! And at least one person on our team has been successful! teehee. (don't be menaceful!)

And that's that. I just wanted to blog really because it's been a terribly long time. And truly, there are many things I love about having a local knitting group. Aside from the obvious things like inspiration, camaraderie, not having to KIP in solitude, and an excuse to drink frappuccinos, the people I am so fortunate to know (including you guys out there in blog land!) are consistently the most supportive when it comes to all avenues of crafting, and it's something I am deeply grateful for. While there is always room for growth in my skills and I still have so much to learn, I sometimes need to be reminded that my hands and brain aren't computerized and perfection really isn't what crafting is all about. If it were, we could all just go buy $1 socks and $10 sweaters and call it a day, amirite? :P So, I *will* be proud of my accomplishments, thanks to some special people. Love your fellow crafters! I love mine!

P.S. I BLOGGED!

P.S.P.S. I FREAKIN LOVE these stitch markers from AG mode!!!!!!!! If not for the atrocious pic, you'd see that I'm tickled to be using this very set to mark the lace patterns. LOVE! They're my #1 favoritest markers ever! (I added some pics because I love them that much!)



And look, a contrasting, yet coordinating beginning-of-round marker! /love

Monday, June 20, 2011

squeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

OMG LOOK!!!!!!



I'm dying to try Socks that Rock and see that, GUESS WHAT THE COLORWAY IS CALLED! GUESS! Amélie!!!!!!!!!!! In a unisex colorway!!!!!!!!!!! It looks like they nailed her red sweater color and the whole film was so green, it's brilliant! SO getting it. :-D

That is all. :P

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

just because

I'm making a Haruni for no particularly good reason with no intended recipient, but the coolest thing ever is that I made it ONE HUNDRED ROWS without frogging!!!!!! 100 rows!!!!!!!!!!! and then Chart B happened. But it's all good because I realized I really enjoy smashing my knitting on a scanner bed:

 
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Sunday, March 13, 2011

I bought $32 needles....

And I really don't know why. I've long lusted over the Signature Needle Arts Needles but why I suddenly ordered them, I couldn't tell you. I was talking to a dear friend about Lizard Ridge from Knitty and it seemed like a good rationalization. I have to make 24 squares! I'll get my money's worth (never mind the fact I have at least 5 sets of size 8s in varying materials)! Anyway, here they are in action:





I went with US 8 Stiletto points with the Spiral top. I am still debating whether to keep them or return them. I do like them, no question about that, but for one thing, I'm having a real hard time with the $32 price tag especially given the fact that I am always very pleased with my interchangeables from KnitPicks. Aside from that, I am finding straight needles *extremely* awkward, particularly in this intended pattern with all the turning and 2 working yarn ends. In trying to recall the last time I used straight needles for more than a few minutes, I can't come up with anything. When I first started knitting, I quickly fell in love with Addi circulars and not long after that, the interchangeable came out from KP and I've been a loyal repeat consumer of those ever since and I truly, truly love them. I did have a pair of Susanne's ebony straights that were a delight to use, but for some reason I bought 14" ones, and they were quite clumsy so I rarely touched those. These also feel quite heavy compared to circulars, although I don't think in the scheme of things they are heavier than most metal needles, but, again, awkward. They are absolutely beautiful in person, though, (although I wish 8s weren't that gold color) and the stiletto points are dreamy, and it is clear the craftsmanship is impeccable. They are plenty slick to knit with, but not overly so and not as much as the nickel-plated KP ones, but that's working with Kureyon too, might be a little more slippery with a softer yarn, but it seems like the "just right" amount of slip. The points seem just as pointy as the KP ones, only without the sharp ouch factor. (I had to wear Band-Aids on my pointer finger until I adjusted to how sharp the points were on the KPs LOL)

So, we'll see. Going to at least try to finish a square with them before deciding. And speaking of Lizard Ridge squares and interchangeable needles, that one in the picture used to be this:



but when I showed it to someone with another completed square, they were like, hey, why is this one so much bigger and looser? And I was all, oh, blah blah, this one is blocked, blah blah, whatever. But, no. I was using a size 8 needle on one end and a size 10 on the other, and managed to do the entire square with that setup without noticing. Needless to say, I rebooted it.

In other news, the Kenobi Jacket was finished a few months ago and I have yet to get a good picture of it. Here's a crappy one just for giggles:



My start date in Ravelry was 05/2007, I don't know if that's even accurate, but I'm sure it was no less than 3 years to complete. :P Note this post dated 10/11/2007 (with a much better depiction of the color, btw) with the first piece finished... so I'm thinking 05/2007 might be right LOL.

Anyway, it was Kenobi Jacket originally featured in Spring 2007 KnitScene made out of Berroco Ultra Alpaca in Pea Soup Mix. Bad news, took over 3 years, good news, I freakin LOVE IT AND IT FITS!!!!!!!! LOL. Except the sleeves, anyway, they're a bit long. The only mod I made to it was the edging of the two fronts, it called for sort of an applied I-cord, and I just didn't like it, but it was operator error. I just don't think I was doing it consistently and it bugged the living crap out of me, so I changed both edges to a 3-stitch seed instead of the 3-stitch I-cord. Sadly, I was not capable of finishing it myself either, but the folks at Knitters Nook did an absolutely gorgeous job for a very reasonable price, and I don't regret it. It was sort of funny, though, when I tried it on in the store and they're all wow, those sleeves, and I rolled them up, no biggie, I tend to like too-long sleeves anyway, but they were like Sean, why did you make them so long? And I was like, what do you mean, I followed the pattern! And they're like, but didn't you measure? And I'm all, measure???? I followed the pattern! What is this "measure"?! ahahahahaha. Anyway, I really love it, I don't care. I'll try to get some better pics soon. Here's the back:



Anyway, must get back to work! Hope everyone is doing well!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Schaefer Anne, how I love thee!

Some time ago, I'd speculate 2 or 3 years, I dragged BFF to Uncommon Threads in Palm Harbor. I had *just* started working on socks, and BFF fell in love with a hank of Schaefer Anne, as did I, and so 2 hanks were purchased. This photo was taken around that time, (uploaded 06/2007 so maybe that gives me a better idea of purchase date.) The hank on top was for me, and bottom for BFF, just to clarify. :P


I promised BFF I'd make her a pair of socks out of it *right away!* (teehee) Needless to say, she received her very plain anklets (her request) September 2010. :P Here's a crappy photo:


Now, one of the reasons it took me so terribly long to complete her socks was because I disliked the yarn (or so I thought.) It was SO FINE and I felt like it required a #000 needle to work properly. While I wouldn't describe it as "splitty" really, there can be some splitting too. Along with that, sadly, my sock zeal waned for quite a long time. I started TONS of socks, but actually finishing any, not so much.

Several months ago, I believe around the time of the very first cold evening in Seminole, I all of a sudden has this urge to make socks, and make socks I did. As of writing this post, I've completed somewhere around 6 pairs, and a few of those pairs were cast on and bound off in a matter of days. Here's another pair I made, sharing only because I have a nice picture of them. :-P (I don't know why it's so tiny, it's actually a HUGE picture, maybe clicky will make biggy.)

Pattern: Monkey by Cookie A.
Yarn: Rune by Barking Dog Yarns in colorway Ain't No Prom Dress

I made these for Beff just because, the yarn was a joy to work with and she says they're delicious.

I digress. So, I was bound and determined to complete BFF's socks prior to moving, which I did, and based upon the recommendations of the lovely folks at the Sock Knitters Anonymous Group on Ravelry, I used a larger needle than I had suspected to allow the yarn to bloom, which they assured me would occur with washing. Not having access to laundry facilities in time to give BFF her socks, I just did a typical soak in, well, Soak, and presented them to her. (I typically hand-wash even washable knit socks anyway.) They were nice enough and BFF is happy enough with them, no fireworks or anything to my knowledge.

Fast forward to now-ish, I came upon my hank of Anne and decided it was gorgeous and I MUST do something with it IMMEDIATELY. Originally, it became a Haruni thanks to the Barking Dog Yarn folks on Rav, but I decided the yarn colorway was just too busy and cast on for yet another pair of Teosinte Socks by Anne Hanson of KnitSpot. Chris turned me onto this pattern FOREVER ago. Coincidentally, this was another one in her aforementioned "man lace" series. I had completed one pair back in June during a train ride, which I wound up giving to my mom. I don't recall when I started this current version, several weeks ago, though, and I put them down and decided to frog them for reasons unknown to me. Yesterday, though, I happened upon the Yarn Harlot and noticed her 01/28 post about her recent diagnosis of "finishitupitis." I can't say whether or not it was her intention, but I suddenly had the urge to finish SOMETHING ANYTHING OMG PLEASE NOW. I picked up Earnshaw that has mere inches left of the sleeve I had to redo (/sadface) and messed up because I forgot it was in garter and not stockinette since I left it so long ago, and had a temper tantrum and stuffed it back in the bag. I started a very small coaster, got bored. I cast on for Stonewall (yes, you talked me into it, thank you very much :-)) but too daunting (and awaiting needle tips from KP, my aged and icky Inox aren't doing it for me,) and so off I went into the basket for UFOs and came across my Schaefer Anne Teosinte Sock, entire foot and heel done, just patiently waiting for me to finish the cuff and me perplexed as to why I abandoned it in the first place.

With the end in sight, I knit frantically until I had completed (alas, just one) the Teosinte Sock, which brings me to the whole point of this post. I had laundry to do anyway and decided the completed sock was reason enough to start a load. I had a brief debate with myself as to whether or not I REALLY wanted to wash and dry this washable yarn, and I was able to convince myself. When I was transferring the wash to the dryer, already, I was astounded at the difference in the yarn and I simply could not wait for the dryer to finish, but I managed. The moment I retrieved it from the dryer, I would swear I heard angels singing. The transformation that takes place in this yarn from a single laundering was overwhelming, to say the least. I definitely wouldn't call this a soft and smooshy yarn pre-laundering, but afterwards, total nummy deliciousness. The halo from the mohair is simply delightful, and the stitches, which may or may not have been subjected to some foul language in the knitting process due to their inconsistency and separating, were now perfect, tiny, cohesive little friends playing together in harmony. The sheen (source, I am unsure of, maybe the mohair) was not adversely affected by the washing in the least, and the colors look even more rich and beautiful than before, which I didn't think possible. As if this weren't enough, after folding the laundry as quickly as I possibly could, I plopped down to slip it onto my foot, and I realized, instantly, that I had a new (or not so new) #1 favorite sock yarn EVER. It feels just glorious on my foot, the only thing I can compare it to is a terribly overpriced men's dress sock with some silk content. Naturally, I cast on for sock #2 expeditiously, but I haven't been able to resist petting and fondling sock #1 long enough to make much progress. As such, I decided to write about it, since I had been meaning to come on to thank you for your opinions on Stonewall. :)

I'm already plotting the next pair and I'm thinking colorway Julia Child, what do you think?



Sunday, January 30, 2011

man lace?

I'm such a huge fan of Anne Hanson of KnitSpot and I love how she offers so many unisex designs.

There is a particular one, Stonewall that I have been coveting for a very, very, very long time. A yarn came into the LYS and I grabbed a ball to swatch it out and here's the result of that:

 


Keep in mind, that's KBLicious blocked, otherwise known as badly blocked, but you get the idea.

I have received at least one disapproving frown regarding the unisex-ness of this pattern. Really, I don't care. In all honesty, I love the pattern, like the yarn enough, Anne's David certainly did a gorgeous job modeling it, I agree with Anne that it has a unisex appeal, and I'm probably going to make it anyway, but a question to any of my dear readers that might still exist (sorry again I'm a fail blogger,) what constitutes "man lace" in your mind?
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Monday, October 25, 2010

just a rant.... (with F words, sorry)

I can't fucking block. Period. Most recently, I finished a Hemlock Ring Blanket and after attempting to block it for HOURS and getting absolutely nowhere, I sort of threw it at Beff and told her she could keep it as her prize for blocking it. I *LOVED* that blanket, I *LOVED* the yarn, I *LOVED* the pattern, but blocking is just THAT MUCH of a nightmare to me, I was willing to just discard it to not have to deal with it. She offered to block it for me and return it and I refused because some day I'd want to wash it and then what!?!?! THEN WHAT, I ASK YOU!!!!!

Here's a horrid picture of it:

So then, I finish the knitting on my bastard Kenobi Jacket that I've been working on for, how long? MAY OF *2007*!!!!! That's right, THREE AND A HALF YEARS!!!!!! (interesting side note here, if you go to images.google.com and do a search for "Kenobi Jacket" in quotes just like that, an alarming number of the images are of me and my knitting from this very blog LOL THAT'S HOW LONG IT'S BEEN! The lapse in time has altered Google itself!) As one might imagine, this induced a well-deserved feeling of knitting bliss and accomplishment, albeit a brief moment, since I then diligently soaked my pieces and laid them out to block, and guess what? I'm a fucking moron with 10, count them, 10 thumbs! I have some sort of handicap when it comes to blocking ANYTHING. I've researched websites (good ones too!), viewed videos, read books, and what's most fucked up about it is I TOTALLY understand it. I comprehend the concept, the steps involved, EVERYTHING and yet, I still am 100% incapable of doing it.

Now the true question: What the crap am I supposed to do about it? I feel like I've gone against some odds here, picked up knitting late in life, taught myself with the aid of Knitting Help and the web and did lots of stupid things like making one of my first real projects FiberTrends Felt Clogs and shawls involving many pages of charts and tiny needles (those never came to fruition, of course, but many hours were lost.) Years later, I feel like quite a proficient knitter, I've taught classes in some intermediate techniques (even those f'in clogs,) fellow knitters have often looked to me for guidance, I've taught lots of people to knit from the start (those poor unsuspecting people) and I don't seem to be satisfied choosing a project unless it is at least 8 pages long, 5 of those pages being obnoxious charts, and I *LIKE* it. But what good is all that if I can never *truly* finish a damn thing and WHAT DO I DO ABOUT IT?! I have never stuck with anything this long, loved anything this much, or spent this much of my money on anything EVER in my life, and I'm ready to set it all on fire. I am SO angry and frustrated by this and I know it's not right.... BUT WHAT DO I DO?! LOL. Seriously, though. Help.

P.S. Pamela, I am sure whining isn't what you were hoping for, but HI! :-D It was great seeing you, hope all is well! If it wasn't apparent, my "balls" are in an uproar. :-((((

P.S.P.S. I went to the recently re-built Delray Beach library tonight and can you believe I happened across Sock Innovation by Cookie A.?!?!?! SQUEE!!!!!! Seems awesome so far, but have to delve futher. kbai.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

I couldn't let it be 2 full years

LOL. Wow. I just really haven't been crafting a lot, have had a lot going on, but just starting to get back into things again and missing my blog and my old bloggy friends. I'm actually in the middle of a round of Hemlock Ring Blanket, the middle of round 45. My printer has been broken forever and then I spilled something smack in the middle of the pattern so had to write out the last few feather and fan repeats and I looked and was like WOW! Only 20-some-odd rows remain, I can finish it in like a MINUTE! Except for the part where it's over 400 stitches per round at the moment. I knit entirely through my first cake of Cascade Eco Wool a bit ago and that is always such a feeling of accomplishment for me. I'm a chronic starter, so rarely see the end of yarn cakes. Anyway, sadly, my digi cam has been broken forever also, but I have some crappy camera phone progress pics I can share:
Here's the center "doily" part












And then some of the feather and fan bit:














I really just love how it's coming out. I cast-on around January and it was just sitting, but then I was re-inspired to start working on it again thanks to noticing Gnat's KAL for Jared Flood blankets, although not participating, but Gnat is flying through hers last I saw. I still love this yarn SOOOOOOOOOOOOO much, I want to make EVERYTHING with it, and pre-blocking and actually seeing it off circulars, I am really proud of how the center part looks anyway LOL. I seem to have a problem with uneven yarnovers, and that irritates the crap out of me, but at least the middle is pretty. I haven't tried the colors yet, but I'm sure they're just as wonderful.

Also OTN is the Kenobi Jacket yes, still, going on THREE YEARS. However, I am THRILLED to say I am REALLY close to being finished with it. I just got a hair up my ass a couple weeks ago and finished the right front and am halfway through the left front and that's pretty much it. Blocking, seaming, and picked-up collar after that. I really can't believe I've been working on it for SO LONG. (sigh)

And that's about it. I've got a trip planned to mom's in a couple weeks and have some Knit Picks Stroll Tonal in Foliage coming to start (again) Teosinte Socks, which I've long been wanting to finish and also some of their lace yarn to restart Adamas Shawl which I've started on at least 17 different occasions. Really been itching to work on some "real" lace with that nightmare gauge yarn so hopefully it will stick this time. Needed some small portable projects for the train ride to fit in my little knitting bag that I HATE. Been lusting over this baby for a few weeks, hope to get it soon, or might FINALLY get the Jordana Paige messenger I've been ogling for what feels like a decade. Haven't 100% decided yet, but almost definitely one of those.

and that's about it. If any of my old blogger buddies happen to see this, not expecting anyone too really since it's been forever, I really have missed you!!!!!! I've stalked around your blogs here and there over this time, but have lots of catching up to do and I'm looking forward to it! Hope you all are well!

Oh, P.S., totally off-topic, but someone shared this amazing and beautifully done seatbelt ad with me and I want to share that too. Please pass it on!

KB out

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

What ever happened to KB Licious?

yeah... 2 whole months! If anybody still reads this, COME JOIN HAT ATTACK! It's another knitting blood fest!!!!! but even better because it's not socks! lol.

Hat Attack Official Site (Enlist for battle here.)

and then

Ravelry group

Hurry, now! Go! You actually have until September, but don't forget!

Am I really going to let that be my entire post after a 2-month absence? I'm afraid I am... I am working, but just wanted to spread the word. I hope everyone is doing well!!!!

xoxoxo

-kb out