Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Curly Fool & John Show

I am a big fan of Sherlock. I read someplace that in China, he's known as The Curly Fool. I like that. Anyway, I was watching it tonight. One of our PBS stations showed the last episode of Season 2.

I was knitting away on a pair of Spilly Jane's Police Box Socks. I was knitting them to avoid working on the last pair of Tour de Sock socks. Why avoid them? They are double knitting. I joined the Tour to avoid working on my double knitting scarf. Yes, I see that I have a problem sticking to a project. I think half the reason I allow myself to get distracted is because I can. Nobody's going to take my needles away from me and make me stick to one project. Well, Jasmine the cat might swipe the needles, but I have extras. But I digress.

I was watching and knitting and I got a glimpse of the wallpaper at 221B Baker Street. lightbulb on. I queued a mitten pattern last week called Johnlock. As the designer says, it has Sherlock, John, and the wallpaper that had it coming. The designer, Therese Sharp, is the same person who did the Inevitable Betrayal Firefly mittens. I thought I started those. I wonder where they are? I got the pattern and starting hunting through my stash. What do you know, I have the perfect main color. It just happens to be one of the colors in the dreaded doubleknit Tour socks.

Guess what I'm frogging and not finishing? Say goodnight, doubleknit Tour socks. I'll let all those speedy Finns finish you while I'm knitting wallpaper for 221B.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Finished Object Friday

I've enjoyed the British craft magazine Mollie Makes. The subscription rates are a bit of a splurge for me, so I dropped it last year. I was pleased to find out that there's a U.S. edition that's about half the cost of the original. It doesn't come with the little craft kits, which is okay with me. The only other difference I noticed was that the advertising section in the back has American companies. That's also okay with me. My first issue arrived this week. When I saw the pattern for Medusa and her mini monster, I had to do it right away.
See all the little snakes? Maybe you don't. I need to take a better picture when there's more daylight and fewer rain clouds.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

New-to-me Books

I've been sick. I think I'm better. That's mainly why I haven't posted anything. The only things missed were a couple of fever-induced rants about a yarn color and another about pattern instructions. Here's the mini version of that:
If the instructions tell you to work a chart 8 times, you work it 8 times. If the instructions tell you to repeat a chart 8 times, you work it 9 times. To repeat something you have to have done it once first.
I'm officially done with both of those topics. Moving on, I got a couple of new books in the past few weeks. Coronation Knits by Susan Crawford is "A Hand Knitted Celebration for the Diamond Jubilee". Susan Crawford does some wonderful things with vintage patterns here. The Diamond Jubilee refers to Queen Elizabeth II's rein. The book's got a variety of patterns: men, women, and kids are all covered. They manage to look equally current if you were in 1953 or 2013. I've only done one pattern so far, the Crowning Glory beret. See the little crowns?
I'd like to do more in the future. The Lion and Unicorn sweater looks fun. So does the Coronation Sleeveless Pullover.

Pin Loom Weaving by Margaret Stump is my other new book. Pin looms are little hand looms. Let me go find a picture:

My grandma gave me one, a Weave-It, when I was a little kid. You can find them on eBay, buy them new from several sources, or make your own with instructions from the book. I used to love making little squares on the loom with yarn Grandma gave me. As an adult, I wanted to do more with patterns and to have something to do with all the little squares. Pin Loom Weaving addresses both of those things. Instructions are supplied for making a half-dozen different patterns beyond the plain over under over under weave. There are patterns for bags and cases, gifts and home decor, blankets, and toys. Instructions are included for various ways of joining the squares. I'm itching to sit down with my little loom and play with this book.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Projects update

UILI (use it or lose it)
I was working on a pattern I didn't like with some yarn I didn't like and had an aha! moment. I've got tons of patterns I want to try and tons of yarn I want to use. There is no point in doing anything with things that don't fit in those categories. I chucked out two balls of yarn. They couldn't have been sold or traded. I am happy and up to date with this project.

MOCKs (mystery socks)
I finished the ones I was working on and am cured of doing more. I'll go back to my queue or favorites next time I need a new project.

Tour de Sock
I finished the fourth sock and the fifth starts on Thursday. I think I finished a little lower than I did with the third sock. I think I'm close to the top 10%.

Tour de Loop
This started today. I've got more than an hour in already, so I'm good to go so far.

WIPs (work in progress)
Almost all the backlog have been cleared out. The Name of the Doctor scarf has been designated a long-term project. Double knitting on laceweight is a slow process for me. The Hopsalot bunny slippers only require felting/fulling and assembly. I may actually do the rest of the felting tonight. That leaves only The Birth of a Star socks. I grabbed them from my queue and started them last night. Oh, I forgot the Doctor Who embroidered and quilted messenger bag. got I need to review how to do paper piecing. I'll probably start that back up after Tour de Sock completes.

Monday, June 23, 2014

That's more like it

I'm up to #30 on this round of Tour de Sock. It would've been even better, but I was not careful about reading instructions and had to frog most of the first leg. Ribbit, ribbit = pay attention! It'll be fun to find out how far up I moved on the leaderboard.
This was an exceptionally cool pattern. You make some paper dice and your pattern is set by rolling them. Roll the dice, knit 10 rows, roll again. The designer was so clever in how she got all these little pieces to fit together. No two of us will have exactly the same socks.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Tour de Loop

I'm joining another Tour. Nope, I haven't lost my mind. Tour de Loop requires you to knit or crochet for a minimum of an hour a day. ::snicker:: Unless I'm sick, I never knit or crochet only an hour a day. This runs parallel with the Tour de France bike race. It's July 5-27, with rest days on the 15th and 21st. There's a group on Ravelry where you post your hours. I imagine that I'll end up admitting that I may have an obsession with fiber crafting. No surprise there.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Tour de Sock update

I'm 167th out of 244 on the leaderboard. It's nowhere near what I did last year. There are many more players this year and I suspect a bunch of the new people are Finns. I can't believe how fast those people can knit! I did finish the first two socks.

Round 3 starts tomorrow night. I've got a sneaking suspicion that it'll be argyle. Or as those of us dreading it, arrrrrgh-gyle.

I'm caught up on both of my Mocks and am past the 75% mark on my Fruity Oaty Scarf. I'm waiting for new yarn to come from Biscotte & Cie before I restart the Little Flowers socks. That watermelon yarn needs to be used for something designed to be stripey.