Warmth, in this incredibly Warm Winter

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So after the large winter storm passed by here, it got warm.

Like really warm. There were some people wearing shorts. Winter, even around here, should not be that warm.

So its a fitting time to be knitting with wool, right?

In reality, both of these projects were conceived earlier in the month/last year.

Knowing that its supposed to be winter, I had decided that I needed a warm hat. I’m not a hat person, really, but I walked home (about 2 miles) one night when it was near freezing, and I only had a thin scarf and my “fall” coat (because its lighter than my winter coat, but still normally warm enough), and I’m pretty sure that I nearly died. It took me about 45 minutes to warm up enough to function like a human being, and then another hour past that to eat and drink enough hot stuff to warm up enough to fall asleep.

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The next day I started this hat. I had this orphan skein that I got on sale when I was looking for sock yarn. I couldn’t find any on-sale sock yarn, but even with my full-price sock yarn, this still fit into my hobby budget. It may have been 4 dollars, and I’ve got a couple of yards left.

So the pattern is Helios, free on Ravelry. It’s a pretty good pattern, though I stuck with the size 7 needles throughout, since I don’t have a slightly bigger needle. It makes it more of a globbular slouchy hat, instead of a beret/tam kind of slouchy hat. The one thing I’m afraid of is blocking it, since it’s a tad big, and I don’t want to stretch it out any. My other green knit hat was too small, so I gave it away to my cousin, so I guess I overcompensated with this one, and made it too big.

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Oops! Its still wearable, which is perfect. Because I was not going to admit defeat and try again.

And the second knit project is this pair of socks! This project can be described in three words:

Second Sock Syndrome.

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Yes, this time I fell prey to SSS hard. Really hard. There was a thought in the back of my head that I should somehow work both socks together, and my circular needle collection does not include a skinny enough needle with a long enough connection. So I planned it that once I got to the ankle of the first sock, I’d put it on stitch holders, and start the second. Which worked perfectly.

Yarn-wise this is an alpaca merino blend that I intended to use for socks for my dad… last year. Meaning 2014. Sorry dad. It’s also not machine washable, so perhaps its best that I made them for me, since I’ll be more likely to remember that…

The pattern is ish-designed by me. Meaning, I used this book I got, Socks a La Carte 2 Toes Up to plan it out, with a rotating rib leg, technically a double picot cuff that I’m too lazy to fold over and seam. But once I made the toes of the first sock, I realized that I would get super bored doing a simple stockinette for the foot, so I found this.

lace-diamond-knitting-motif-chartTo be honest, I’m not sure where I found it, but I think it was on a Russian stitch pattern website, and since this was before I started the sock, so I never anticipated needing to cite the source. If you know who’s this is, please let me know! Because its a beautiful lace pattern, and I’d definitely suggest it!

So after finishing both feet of the socks, I started in on the rotating rib of one of the socks, and I got a long way through when I realized that I should weigh out the yarn so I could maximize the height of the sock. Once I double checked that, I ribbed until I got to the cuff, made the double picot cuff, bound off, and then the socks sat there. For months. And months.

What I haven’t  told you yet, is that these socks were started over the summer. July or August.

Oh yes.

These took me about 6 months.

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When I went home for the holidays I brought these with me, and didn’t even make it a row. So once I got back I vowed that I would finish before the semester started. Which also didn’t happen. I made progress, but didn’t finish it.

It was during the first week of the semester, and I told myself that I couldn’t start any new projects until I finished these. Trust me. These got finished really quick after that. I even took them with me to the movie theater when I saw Star Wars the second time. I had the whole row to myself, so I didn’t even feel (too) self conscious about KIPing. There are some advantages to itsy bitsy theaters.

And then I started on the hat! So a happy ending finally. Plus, the hat got done in less than a week. All that pent up knitting energy I guess!

Got any SSS, or longtime knitting projects?

Green Gable Hat

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My main reason for naming this was because it was green… and cables rhyme with gable.

Do you remember this hat? Fluffy looking and blue where you couldn’t see the design or shape?

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I almost don’t since I can’t actually find it.

I made that pattern again, the Aran Tam from 101 One Skein Wonders, but this time in wool so I could block it. And it came out so much better!

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Unfortunately it is a bit small, and I couldn’t make it grow bigger at the end, since you start with the brim and work inwards, so it’s a little small on me. But I like it, and if I’m going to wear a hat, I’ve got to like it!

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Now if only the weather hadn’t suddenly realized it was spring, and not the time for warm hats!

Next year, this hat and I will get along well!

Stashbusting Kree!

So I may be on a bit of a Stargate kick, but who can say no to Teal’c? And don’t forget the apostrophe.

In other news, after my sock-high I was interested in doing some stashbusting. After all, those sock cost about twelve bucks, and the cowl an additional 6, which I’m totally not regretting, but there’s something about the subject of free that I love.

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Granted, free means I’ve had this yarn for so long that although I know exactly where I got it, there’s no way of knowing how much it cost. It may have ended up a birthday gift. I’m a picky gift-receiver, which my family knows well, so I tend to end up picking out gifts knowing I’ll receive them all trussed up for a “surprise” a few months later.

In this case, the deep blue yarn, Sirdar Snuggly Domino DK, was bought at a Superbowl Sunday sale about 6 years ago. Maybe even 7… I think I even deigned to watch 10 minutes of the game, before I gave up and ran downstairs to hide out until the snacks were served.

The Schachenmayr nomotta Baros, otherwise known as the aqua yarn, was bought in Germany on my second trip to visit family there. It was on sale, which was good because I had a limited number of euros to spend. Souvenir yarn is often too difficult to part with, so this was stashed for 5 years.

Definitely high time to make something. On both counts.

Both of these projects had basis in a one skein book, 101 Yarn Shop Favorites.

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My new hat is technically the Aran Tam. I say technically… I should have followed directions and knit the beginning on smaller straight needles, but I was confused, and it was my second go, having tried a bulky yarn first which would have made a monster sized hat. So I trudged ahead. Then I moved on, and managed to get some kind of counting wrong, resulting in a messed up pattern. You can’t tell with the surprisingly busy yarn, but I think I’ll have another go at some point. Also, the band is too wide, due to the aforementioned needle issue, so I’m considering threading some elastic through the ribbing. Still have another ball… Now what to make? Maybe some wristlets…

 

The wristband had basis in the Cabled Headband. I say had basis… I took the starting point and just knitted without increases or decreases wristuntil I made it tightly around my wrist. Sewed it up with my handy knitpicker, and I got a lovely wristband! Handy when my wrists decide they hate knitting. Or typing. Or cooking. Or moving. Darn that violin playing from an early age! Messing up my wrists forevermore.

The wristband yarn is soon to be finished in a yoke for a shirt capacity… I misplaced a piece, and once I locate it, you’ll hear about it!

 

Catching up!

Last time we spoke, I was making socks.

Scratch that, I succeeded at socks. And actually right now I’m working on another pair.

I’ve been working on stuff since then, but slowly. And at the same time quickly. I seem to have made a lot of stuff, but for some reason it just seemed to come out of nowhere. Blog posts, however, did not.

Individual posts should be coming up soon for these, but here’s a snapshot of what I’ve got:

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And a few more that aren’t quite completed or photographed yet.

I’ve also begun Christmas presents early… as in the aforementioned socks. I know that most people say that and then promptly fall off the wagon, but I’m a woman on a mission… Objective: finish gifts before November, or at least before December. That really means before finals season. I wish I could show you what I’m working on, but then I run the risk of ruining what little surprise they’ll have left.

Cooking has also come up recently as a thing. I’ll admit, I love to cook and bake and candy-make, but rarely do my concoctions turn out pretty, or appetizing to people other than me, or at all. For instance, the last bit of bread I made turned out tasty, I guess, but dense… Having now watched the video on how to actually make a round bread loaf, I think I’ll do better next time.

Knowing that I’m not a food blogger, and that I have no interest in becoming one, I think I’m going to start occasionally highlighting recipes that I’ve used or want to use. Making food can be cheaper than making clothing and yarn stuffs. And therefore I’ve been doing quite a bit of that this summer, so I’ve already got plenty of fodder for these posts.

Well then… talk to you soon! Err… sooner than the last time I posted.