Monday, January 29, 2007

Officially Finished with January Goals!!

I was so excited over how well the striped on the U-Neck Fair Isle sweater lined up on the sleeves and body until I saw the photo! LOL It makes me look like I put on a few pounds eh? Maybe I'll get a better one next time I wear it.

Pattern: U-Neck Fair Isle, Vogue Knitting Fall 2006
Yarn: Dale Heilo
Started: Octoberish 2006
Finished: 1/21/2007

The silk Sheldon from Knitty is done and is now on my desk at work. This really was a fun and quick knit project. I might have to make a few more using leftovers in my stash.

Pattern: Sheldon, Knitty Winter 2006
Yarn: 100% silk (can't remember brand)
Started: 1/14/2007
Finished: 1/27/2007

Now tell me if this isn't about the most impractical and silly thing you've ever seen knit! Paul loves it LOL. You know, when I decided to knit this thing, I really wasn't ever planning on wearing it. It was more a "because I can" kind of knit project. Of course, since Paul seems so turned on by it, I'm gonna have to cave and put it on. There will be no modeled photo of it though haha. Moral of this story? .... If you want to turn on a certain member of the male species, simply offer to cover the "girls" in fun fur!

Pattern: Fembot, Naughty Needles
Yarn: Patons Glitterlash, Patons Lacette, Lion Brand Fun Fur
Started: 1/13/2007
Finished: 1/24/2007

The last item on my January Goals list is the Bell Sleeve Jacket from Vogue Knitting Holiday 2006. I've made quite a bit of progress on the sweater, as you can see. Both sleeves are now done, and all that is left is the shawl collar pieces and the belt. I see no problem getting this "bonus" project completed by this weekend.

Since I officially finished all of my January goals, and am almost done with the "bonus" project I was allowing myself to cast on, I turned my attention to February and what projects I wanted to complete that month. Of course you all know exactly what happened. Yep, I wound up casting on every single one of them!

First up, I am making myself a scarf from Victorian Lace Today. The yarn is beautiful isn't it? Check out this store. Laughingrat has great yarn. And, she does custom dye jobs. I'll have to post some photos of my recent purchase from her. Hubby loves the colors in his manly sock yarn!

Next up on the February goals list is to finish up the Sanquhar gloves I started for Paul before it gets too warm to wear them! These are being made with the yarn I have left from the arch shaped stockings I finished in January, and I sure hope I don't run out. Oh well, if I do, I'll just order some more and he'll have different dye lots on each glove.

I've been wanting to try out the linen hand towels from Mason Dixon Knitting, and bought myself some linen last week. Sure doesn't look like much yet does it? If I like this, I'll probably make more, and maybe some washcloths too.

I've had several skeins of Microspun in my stash for about a year now. I don't remember in the least why I bought it, but I have enough to make myself a Fiery Bolero from IK. This will be a nice addition to my spring wardrobe.

Last up on the February goals list is a pair of Anemoi Mittens (Eunny Jang). I had some Elann Baby Cashmere left over from another project, so got some in a nice teal color to go with it. I really like this pattern. It's knitting up much faster than I thought.

I haven't decided yet what my "bonus" project will be for February, but I have plenty of time for that. My goals for February are a bit more aggressive than they were for January since almost all of the projects are just now being cast on. Since I got so far in the "bonus" project for January, and the Feb projects are on a smaller scale, I figured I could get more done. We'll see!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Just in time for the snow ....

Woohoo!! Just in time for the snow, I've finished the mittens from "Magnificent Mittens" by Anna Zilboorg. They are still a bit damp, but I'm hoping they will be completely dry by tomorrow morning so I can wear them to work.

If you recall the photo I posted earlier of the first finished mitten, you'll notice that the cuff is different in this photo. Following the pattern in its entirety, using the alpaca, resulted in a cuff that was just too big and floopy (for lack of a better word). The alpaca is too drapey for what I wanted so I modified the pattern a bit. I went down a needle size to give a firmer fabric, and completed 2 less rounds of each color band. The length of the cuff is now just right to cover the cuff of my coat and keep out drafts. Also, originally I had done a fringed border on the first one, but ran out of yarn and couldn't complete that border for the second. I chose to use a knit-on i-cord border instead.

I really like the technique used to knit these. They are knit from the tip down to the cuff. A bit like toe up socks. The cast on and first several rows are a bit fiddly if you don't have very short dpns, but with some practice it becomes comfortable. I see myself making more of the mittens from this book, and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys colorwork and fanciful mittens.

Pattern: Large-Patterned Mitten #15, "Magnificent Mittens" by Anna Zilboorg
Yarn: Misti Alpaca Worsted
Started: Novemberish 2006
Finished: 1/19/2007

I've also done some work on Fembot and Sheldon over the past few days. The project I've shied away from is the U-neck Fair Isle sweater. Sure I've woven in a few ends, but there is no real progress on the thing. This has to stop! I've vowed not to touch anything else today until every one of those gazillion and one ends is woven in and the sweater is blocking. If I put my mind to it and give it my all (instead of finding other things to occupy my time so I don't have to look at it), I should be able to finish up Fembot today too.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

In which I say Yay!! for Me

Two down, five to go. So far, I'm not finding my January goals too aggressive. I'm on track to finish another couple of the projects this weekend.

First up on the "started in 2006, finished in 2007" project list are the Arch Shaped Stockings. I really love these socks and hope that they don't stretch out and fall all willy nilly around my ankles. Once I find the right skirt and shoes to go with them, I'll have to get a modeled shot.

Pattern: Arch Shaped Stockings from Vogue Knitting Fall 2006 (check for errata as there are a couple of mistakes in the magazine)
Yarn: Gloss from KnitPicks
Started: Octoberish 2006
Finished: 1/10/2007

My very first 2007 FO is the Shocking! Jacket. It only took me 2 weeks to finish this up. I guess you can knit something the second time faster. All I can say is if something happens to this one, I will be Shocking!less for the rest of my life. I so did not enjoy reknitting the intarsia sleeve, and for some reason it took me forever to do the embroidery and beadwork on the sleeve this time around.

Pattern: Shocking! from Interweave Knits Winter 2004
Yarn: Wool of the Andes from KnitPicks
Started: 1/1/2007
Finished: 1/15/2007

Since I knew I would finish Shocking! up in the next day or so, and I needed a more portable project to work on, I went ahead and started the Bell Sleeve Jacket from Vogue Knitting Holiday 2006. I'm really enjoying the pattern and it's a much quicker knit than I first thought. I may just get it finished before the end of the month along with the other projects I'm working on.

Monday, January 15, 2007

New Year, New Blog

I gave serious consideration to jumping on the "Knit from your Stash" bandwagon, but stopped myself when I realized that I would fail miserably and then feel awful about myself. I know myself too well to ever think I could quit buying yarn. Actually putting in print that I cannot do it will make me want to even more than I already do. I have no willpower and would wind up with a stash that I could never knit up.

Instead, I have decided to set goals for my knitting for each month and see how I do. I am allowing myself to start one new major project at the beginning of each month. If I get that finished, then I can start another one. Small projects such as socks, hats, mittens do not count as major projects and can be started at any time.

For January 2007 I plan to:

- do the finishing work on the U-Neck Fair Isle Sweater from Vogue Knitting Fall 2006 ... I finished the knitting and seaming of this sweater during my vacation between Christmas and New Year's. There are just so dang many ends that I've been avoiding the weaving in. See? At the moment it resembles a knitted feather duster!

- finally finish up the Arched Shaped Stockings from Vogue Knitting Fall 2006 ... the first of this pair has been done for quite some time. I put them away to knit the socks for Kris, then Trondheim took up all my knitting time.

-knit myself a Sheldon from Knitty ... this is a stash buster project. I am using the leftover silk yarn from the tie I made Paul last year. I don't have enough of it to do much else, but it will make a cute turtle!

-knit the second mitten for myself from Magnificent Mittens ... again a stash buster project. I am knitting these using the yarn I have left from the tam I made about a month back. It's really not leftover yarn if I'm honest. I just purchased way way way too much of it, and mittens to match the tam seemed like a good idea.

-knit my second Shocking! Jacket from Interweave Knits Winter 2004 ... yes second. The first met with a horrible death after I had only worn it once. Let's just say that no one in this house will touch my laundry again! This is the major project I started at the beginning of January. After finishing the sleeves, all I have left is the collar/button bands, seaming, and embroidery. I think this will be done next weekend!

-knit myself something fun from my newest book purchase. Fembot from Naughty Needles. Yes it's impractial and silly, but it's so darn cute and fun I can't resist!

-Bonus: If I do finish the Shocking! Jacket before February, I plan to start on the Bell Sleeve Jacket from Vogue Knitting Holiday 2006. I purchased the yarn for this during my vacation and would really like to have it done in time to wear this year.

Hopefully I haven't set myself unattainable goals. It seems like too many projects for one month, but most of them are just a day or so of finishing up, or they are quick knits.

Stay tuned, and wish me luck!!!