Wednesday, November 20, 2019

spinning my way through 2019

I am so happy that I have managed to spin more in 2019. I have mostly stuck to the mantra of spinning for 15 minutes every day. It doesn't feel like I am making a lot of progress at the time but when I look back at what I've been able to finish this year compared with the previous year I can really see the results. One of my main realizations has been that I just don't have as much free time or energy as I used to so being able make sure that I am spinning without taking up a huge chunk of my day has been really helpful.

This skein is superwash targhee from Knitty and Color that I bought at either Rhinebeck or MDSW. The original fiber was eye-searingly bright and I always find it fascinating how the colors blend and dull slightly when you spin fiber into yarn. I ended up with 485yds/114g of a light fingering weight 2ply. This skein has already gone on to a new home.

This yarn, which I'm calling "Witch, please" is from Hello Yarn Fiber Club. I have a second braid of this fiber but I decided to spin this one as a worsted weight and save the second for a finer spin later on. I ended up with 243yds/116g of 2ply polwarth/silk. This one is in the shop.

Disclaimer: I always round down on the yardage I list in my shop in case my counting isn't 100% accurate. The yardage listed above is what I counted while the yardage in the shop is a lower estimate.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

first yarn purchase of 2019

Well I didn't quite make it through 2019 without buying yarn. I've been wanting to knit my husband another sweater but I didn't have any appropriate yarn in the stash in sufficient quantities. The last time I knit him a sweater was 2014 so he's due for a new one. I had also been wanting to knit him a lighter weight sweater as all of the others I've made him so far have been worsted or aran weight. I was hoping for sport, but was unable to find this particular color of madelinetosh in sport, so I settled for twist light instead.

Then it was time to pick a pattern. Originally I was thinking I would just wing it but I happened to find this sweater during a ravelry search and realized that I have this pattern book in my stash. It's such a lovely design so I decided to go for it. I swatched last night (who am I?) and will block my swatch before proceeding. I'm hoping to finish by Xmas but that is probably too ambitious. we'll see how it goes.

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

October 2019 wrap-up and goals

October was super productive. yay!

Stash Check

  • Yarn Used: 2797 yds / 790 g
    Yarn Added: 0 yds / 0 g
    Difference: +2797 yds / 790 g
  • Fiber Used: 4 oz
    Fiber Added: 0 oz
    Difference: +4oz
  • Fabric Used: 0 yds
    Fabric Added: 0 yds
    Difference: -

I've used over 7 pounds of yarn this year and almost 3 pounds of fiber without buying anything new.

FOs

  • frasier fir socks
  • handspun planner pouch
  • magnolia cardigan
  • cake pop socks
  • rhinebeck rainbow socks
  • clarity mitts
  • knitty and color superwash targhee

WIPs

  • Sock Yarn Blanket
  • Hello Yarn Slumber

Goals

2019 goals

  1. Keep yarn/fiber/fabric additions to a minimum: No stash bought this month.
  2. Knit from previously purchased pattern: Finally finished my Magnolia Cardigan, so yes.
  3. Make what I feel like: I did.
  4. Spin 15 minutes a day: Yes!
  5. Knit more handspun: I crocheted a handspun planner pouch.
  6. Shop less: No purchases in October.
  7. Brush lettering/doodling: no, but I made a pledge to pick it up again in November.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Happy Halloween

I'm not normally big on holidays and Halloween is no exception, but I fell in love with this pastel artwork and used it for my October cover and notes pages. This particular kit is from Print Petticoat Bandit. I absolutely love the way the pastels look with holographic foil. October will be my first month actually using the notes spread. In all previous months I had just taped those pages together.

I decided to give up my classic happy planner memory planner b/c it was just too many planners to keep up with. Also most of the time I don't take that many photos every week and I did not have a lot of interesting stuff to document. Instead I'm trying to condense the memory planning to this 2-page spread in my Erin Condren. The right hand page will be for tracking the movies/tv I watch and books/podcasts I listen to over the course of the month as well as tracking my goals. The left hand side will be for listing important happenings for the month and adding in a few pictures. I also migrated my monthly memory spread to the EC because I wasn't using my monthly for anything useful.

I decided I wasn't done with the Halloween artwork so I purchased a kit from Paper Crown Planner and added foil accents from Beayoutiful Planning and Print Petticoat Bandit to use for Halloween week. I am actually using the same kit in my Hobo Weeks as well. I bought some new sticker paper from amazon which I do NOT recommend. For starters it's very yellow and stands out noticeably against bright white (though it does blend pretty well with Hobo Weeks paper). it's glossy and the ink does not permanently dry if you run it through an inkjet printer only. If you foil it, the laser printer does dry the ink but it wrinkles the backing paper. on the plus side it does foil beautifully and you can write on it with gel pen even though it's glossy. i'll probably use it for foiled scripts and icon stickers and for foiled kits that are darker in color and use my regular removable matte paper for everything else.

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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Finally.

well, i finished my Magnolia Cardigan. I had finished the knitting and blocked it by early October but I left it for several weeks before I snipped the ends and added patch pockets.

For the pockets I put the cardigan on and placed markers around my hand on one side to determine pocket placement and size. I then picked up stitches for the bottom row and knit back and forth, matching the stripe sequence on the sweater body. then I ran some waste yarn up the sides of the picked up stitches on the body so I could easily see where to seam. Then I seamed the sides of the pocket and did it all over again for the other side. This took longer than I wanted it to and I really should have made the placement slightly higher or made the pocket deeper but whatevs, it's close enough.

I did a sewn tubular bind-off for all of the edges which was a giant PITA. I am a glutton for punishment, i guess, because every time I do this I swear that it's the last time. and then I do it again on the next sweater. it does look nice but honestly it's one of those things that the average person would never notice.

oh yeah the process took so long that I forget my cardigan does not much resemble the original design. i started off using the pattern but after the switch to stockinette on the body i pretty much never looked at the pattern again.

I do think that this is a very wearable sweater and I'm hoping to get a lot of use out of it. Did I need another grey cardigan? not really. but this one has a little bit of variation with the colorblocking and it's still neutral enough to go with most of my wardrobe.

I cannot decide what I want my next big project to be. I want to knit another sweater for my husband but I'm not sure I have enough yarn in the stash for a sweater his size in colors he would like. I might have to get creative.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Socktober

This time of year I always get bit by the sock knitting bug. I do not need more socks. My husband does not need more socks. and yet I keep knitting them.

First, I finished my September socks out of Hedgehog Fibres. This is the Frasier Fir pattern.

Next, I cast-on for October socks out of my coveted Rhinebeck Rainbow colorway from White Birch Fiber Arts. I wanted to play with short-rows so I chose the free Tipsy Toe Socks 2.0 pattern. I've finished the first sock and just cast-on for the second. This one is my lunch break project so it mostly stays in my office at work.

Finally, I needed a sock to work on when I'm at home as well so I pulled out a long-hoarded skein of Cake Pop Opal yarn with sparkle. For these I'm using my 10" addi circs and knitting a plain vanilla sock. I even continued the heel flap without breaking the yarn so my pattern is broken up across the front of the leg. It makes me die a little inside, I admit it, but I was feeling lazy and didn't want the extra ends to weave in that would have resulted by using contrasting heel yarn or pulling from the other end of the skein. I think it looks fine and I'm trying not to be overly dramatic about it.

One of these days I will get my act together and finish my Magnolia Cardigan so that I can cast-on for another larger project but for now I'm content with all the socks.

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