April 21, 2008


Recently when hunting for knitting information online I would hear vague whispering about ravelry.com. I would see it mentioned quietly and without fanfare, without much detail, without anything that would make me want to track it down and see what it was about.


Until I was bored a couple weeks ago. I decided to search for this mysterious website. And I found it (funny that). I looked around and was instantly excited. It's a knitter's paradise, and it's an exclusive one right now too.


First thing I did was put myself on the waiting list, which took a couple weeks to move up to my name. And when that happened yesterday, all hope of not spending large amounts of time on the internet vanished with the harmless little email they sent.


This site is amazing. I can: look at patterns (free, non-free, in books, anywhere) sorted by type, yarn weight, difficulty, popularity with other knitters, designer, or difficulty. I can manage my projects from in progress, scrapping, or finished. Rate them, rate the yarn, find others with the same project. I can manage my yarn stash, see what I have, find suitable projects for it, and possibly even get rid of the stuff I don't like. I can manage my needles to see what I actually have, what I need, and print it out to take with me. I can manage my books in the same way. I can talk to other knitters anywhere based on any search criteria you can think of, and affiliate myself with knitting groups and yarn stores.


This is absolutely wonderful and terrible at the same time. For while I am an organizational fiend, I am obsessive and don't have this much time to spare! Hopefully after the initial set up phase I will be able to sit back and use it when I need it, but right now it is consuming all my free time.


This is possibly the best knitting related thing to happen to me since I finished my first project. Now . . . back to describing my yarn stash . . .



April 6, 2008

A Plethora of Projects

I haven't been posting much, but I have been knitting up a storm. I have a ton of very recent;y finished items to post in this one. I am also working on a few news ones, or thinking about starting something new.

I think the thing I finished longest ago was a new sweater for Charlie. He needed something a little more distinguished. So I quickly knit this up for him. It's knit with Paton's Classic Wool Merino in Rich Red on size 7 needles. The buttons were scavenged from an old pair of cargo pants.

Then I resumed working on socks. The last pair were particularly involved with two color stranded patterning and small needles. They took awhile, but I finally finished them on the roadtrip north while we were in Port Angeles, Washington. Hence the name I gave them. I LOVE these socks, they are warm and comfy and pretty. Knit on size 2 dpns with Koigu Painter's Palette Premium Merino and Wildfoote in Black orchid from a pattern in Sensational Socks by Charlene Schurch.

On the trip I brought yarn I didn't feel like starting, so when I found a yarn store in Seaside, Oregon on the way, I grabbed some new yarn and knit a drop-stitch scarf which I intend to give to Jenn. It's a wonderfully soft handspun in orange, green. and soft cream. Lovely. Knit on size 7 needles in Magallanes wool.

Since that finished up in no time, I was forced to knit the pink yarn I'd brought along too. I knit the same drop-stitch patterned scarf in it and actually became extremely fond of it during the process. So now I have a similar scarf to the one I'll give Jenn. Knit on size 7 needles in Crystal Palace Fjord wool, Brandy.

After I got back, with new yarn books in tow from Powell's Bookstore in Portland, I began a few other projects. One which I will be continuing is knitting farm animals from an adorable book by Hannelore Wernhard called The Knitted Farmyard. So far I have knit a chicken which I love.

Then I began Brighton from Knitty. I used Borroco NaturLin in a pretty copper color. It is currently blocking on the kitchen table and when it is dry I will be constructing the rest of the bag. I need to find a nice lining fabric and some handles. I'm excited about this project, the first serious bag I've tried. Pictures to come.

February 24, 2008

Sock Bonanza

Finished the pretty pink socks with the complicated pattern. Very happy with them and have worn them a couple times.

Also finished another pair tonight. Have been working on them off and on for awhile but overall they went very quickly because they are a plain pattern. I intend to give them to Kassie, though it will be hard to part with them because they are warm and soft and stretchy.

January 27, 2008

Mid-Sock Happiness

So I did just that. I unraveled them, switched to size 0 dpns, switched to a 12 stitch sock pattern, and recalculated the cast on. And I have the most pretty socks in progress! I am very pleased with them and I think they will be gorgeous when finished. The pretty yarn looks good in the pattern because it's not too complicated or lacy. I hate to see a busy variegated yarn used in an equally busy pattern. So it's simple but elegant. The only worry is the tightness of the pattern and whether it will fit over my foot. I tested last night and it seemed to work with a little pulling and it's always harder when on the needles still, so it should work. I have a few more pattern repeats before I start the heel.

I love socks!

January 26, 2008

New Project: Socks

I started socks with my pretty yarn last night. I'm not sure I'm happy with them so far though. I chose to knit with size 2 dpns, but they might be too big for the yarn. I like a nice tight sock fabric and it's not coming through. I might rip it back and start again with smaller needles, maybe size 1 or even 0. It will take longer, be more tedious, but look better. But 'll also have to recalculate the cast on number, which is always tricky because I'm not great at working out my gauge. So far I haven't had many problems leaving it mostly to chance with a little measuring though.

The finished socks are great, but the real enjoyment for me is the knitting, so I want them to be perfect.

January 25, 2008

Start Keeping Track

I think I let too many knit things slip by without documenting them. I feel sad that I can't recall them all or pull up pictures of past projects when I want to repeat them or do something similar. I am going to attempt to end that problem by blogging them here.

I don't know if I will be any more efficient at it here, but I can try. I have finished several things recently, some of which are gone to their new owners already. So I can't possibly get pictures. But I'll start with things I have just finished this year so I have a set beginning and don't try to overwhelm myself thinking about all the other things I've finished previously.

Starting with the first thing I finished:

A Jayne Hat for Derek
Made from the kit. It was super fun and easy and quick. Her directions were perfect and even encouraging. I whipped it up in a couple days after the New Year's craziness here. I still have it and will be sending it on it's way soon. It is the extra large size to accomodate Derek's enormous noggin. I think he'll love it. Pattern is Heather Hill's Jayne Cobb Hat, knit in Brown Sheep Lam's Pride bulky, wild honey, red baron, and blaze, on 10.5 dpns.

Baby Socks for Catie Belle Newland
I don't have a picture of the one's I knit for her because I hurriedly finished, wrapped them, and gave them all in a couple days. They Are a beautiful little pair. Pattern is the from Hunca Munca Socks. They are knit in Rowan wool cotton, coffee rich, on size 2 dpns. The new mommy seemed to really like them and the fact that I had not chosen to knit her something pink!

Baby Tart Hat for Catie Belle Newland
Finished this one less than 30 minutes ago. I had serious doubts on my ability to not mess it up after I continually managed to increase without meaning to. But I corrected myself as I went and it turned out alright. Not perfect, but I think the extra care means a lot. It's too large for the tiny baby girl right now, but I think the parent's will appreciate something for her to grow into. I chose it to represent Mike, who is a superb cook and baker and often makes tart-like desserts for our functions. Yum! Knitty's Baby Tart pattern. Knit in Rowan wool cotton, bronze and coffee rich, size 3 dpns.

Now I need to decide what comes next. I am thinking about another sweater for Charlie. I also promised Kassie and Jenn fingerless gloves. Those knit up so quickly and I'm very familiar with the pattern, having knit 5 or 6 pairs already. I also have some lovely new sock yarn I bought in Berkeley a couple weeks ago and am dying to use it. So I will have to decide, though I'm sure I will work on at least a couple of those at the same time.