Friday, November 30, 2007

Wash's Sweater

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I've been working on a copy of Wash's sweater. Firefly fans can see the back of it at the end of The Message. I've graphed and re-graphed it. This is my second try to knit just the cable the goes down the center of the sweater. It is worsted weight wool . I think that it would work better in a slightly heavier Aran wool.

I have two problems. I haven't seen a picture that shows the entire sleeve. The pictures show enough that it looks like the cable's a bit different from the body center panel. The other problem is the yarn. I really can't allow myself to buy the yarn for the sweater right now.

I think the project's going to have to go on hold. Sigh.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

More from The Unique Sheep

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I didn't expect the Doctors Without Borders yarn to show up this fast. I usually don't like red at all, but I like this yarn. It makes me think of peppermint.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


Originally uploaded by Paula knits
A couple of times I've been on trips where I went down to the beach to see the sunset. In Key West and Carmel, people gathered at a spot and applauded Mother Nature's work as the sun disappeared into the sea. I think that was the appeal of this colorway, called Beach Sunset. The yarn is called Tinsel Toes and is 50% superwash merino and 50% tencel.

The yarn comes from The Unique Sheep. I bought this and another skein that's on the way. The second skein is a special colorway based on the Doctors Without Borders logo. The Unique Sheep is donating a chunk of the money paid for that yarn to Doctors Without Borders. That's why I bought this stuff with a relatively clear conscience. Can I have some applause for The Unique Sheep, please?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Banana Blossom Lace Socks

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
It's a little hard to see the cool pattern in these, but I still like them.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Click at your own risk

Followers of Lime & Violet are no doubt aware of one of Miss Violet's Christmas projects. She knits her FIL a hat each year. This year's hat is quite possibly the strangest thing I've ever seen made using yarn. You've been warned. You may want to gouge your eyes out afterwards.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Project 365 catchup, day 19

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
These are the completed Banana Blossom socks, as seen by the toy camera. I'll post a real picture when they are dry.

Project 365 catchup, day 17

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I took my toy camera with me at Thanksgiving. It does take pictures, but you never know exactly what you're going to get.

This is a picture of what was left of the Lenore yarn when I finished the Lenore socks.

Peety, 10/13/07-11/25/07

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I'm dead. Leann killed me with these purty purple Sock Wars socks and a generous bunch of goodies. The sock book is especially nice. I want to alter the penguin pattern to make socks for my brother.

The little things that you can't see include some soak fiber wash, two sheep needle protectors, and a button that says I Color Outside The Lines.

How did you know, Leann? :)

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Grandma's yarn stash

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
When I was a little kid, my grandmother taught me to crochet. I used to go through the patterns in the Learn How Book (I think this is still being published, by the way). My family used to go to Grandma & Grandpa's house for Sunday dinner. Sometimes Grandma would go down into the cellar and come up with a skein of yarn for me. When asked what I was making, I usually said I was just playing, and that's usually all I was doing. I don't know what she bought or where she stashed it (other than in the cellar). I can't help but wonder if my one-skein-at-a-time habits came from my one-skein-at-a-time childhood.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Wash's sweater

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I'm attempting to do a copy of this sweater. I've worked out a rough draft of the cable here, but will have to check it against the Firefly DVD to see how close I've actually got it. I'll also have to knit it to see if what I've got is a close enough match.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Another boring progress post

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
These are the socks that made my only kill in the previous sock wars. They have nothing to do with anything, except that I can only post to this blog via Flickr and this picture was there.

I'm have one and one-third Banana Blossom socks completed. I expect to run out of knitting projects before the weekend's over, which is sort of a good thing.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Turkey Day

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I finished Lenore. I'll be working the redo of the Banana Blossom socks while the turkey cooks.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

War's almost over

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I got the email I expected: my death socks are on the way. There were 30 people between my assassin and me. That's better than I expected to do.

This is the bag I made with the recycled silk yarn. I would've liked to have made it a little deeper in the middle, but there's not a whole lot of yarn left. It was fairly quick and fun.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Recycled silk yarn

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I like the yarn made of recycled silk saris. I just had to have a couple of skeins. I didn't think about what I could or could not use it for, so it's been sitting in my stash for quite awhile. After reading some Ravelry posts about the yarn, I decided to make the Unbiased bag pattern (you can find it on Knitty).

The balls were bought at different times and are not much alike in color or weight. I've been knitting two rows, switching colors, knitting twor rows, and switching back. The color changes in each yarn eliminate much in the way of stripes.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Look, shiny!

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I finished one of the Banana Blossom socks. It looks good. The fit is terrible. The foot's too long and the leg part needs to be shorter. I didn't have the heart to do the waltz with Sir Frogsalot, so I just didn't knit at all.

Instead, I picked up this little packet some nice person sent to me as part of a swap. It was a bit of purple roving, a bit of turquoise roving, and some Angelina fibers. She knew I was learning to spin so she sent it to me to play with. So I did. I freely admit that I don't know what I'm doing with that drop spindle. It is quite possible I've been using it upside down. Even someone unfamiliar with spinning can see that it has WAY too much twist in it. You wouldn't belive how much it stretches out. I am getting better, though. The thickness is much more consistent than it has been and there are practically no slubs in it at all.

It's darker than what shows on my screen and the Angelina sparkles in it. Dunno what I'll do with it, except maybe play with it and pet it. See? I made it all by myself.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Owl has landed!

day13 copy
Originally uploaded by micenrats99

My Hogwarts owl flew in today, and what an owl it is. Hopefully everything ended up in the picture so I can describe it all.

  • a-Knit Picks dpns, the pretty colored ones that I have been drooling over. If that's all the owl brought, I would've been a very happy girl. However, there's a LOT more.
  • b-Black Sheep tape measure. This is the cutest darn thing. You pull the sheep's tail to get the tape to come out.
  • c-Handmade necklace and earrings in Slytherin silver and green. Melissa noted that I didn't need more stitch markers (a swap requirement) and sent these instead. I like them a lot.
  • d-Soak wool wash. I've been wanting to try this. It's lavender scented, one of the few scents I really like.
  • e-a bar of all-natural unscented soap. I like bars like that and so rarely find them without scents. Yay!
  • f-very nicely done project bag. It's the perfect size for socks.
  • g-Argyle socks pattern. It's two color and knit in the round. I'm a bit intarsia challenged, so anything that keeps ten zillion little bobbins out of my work is a Good Thing.
  • h-Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock yarn in Pine and Pewter. I've been wanting to try Lorna's Laces and now I can. It's really nice.
  • i-a bowl of candy. The eagle-eyed will notice a box of Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans (now with Pickle and Sausage). My inner child has been wanting these.
  • j-Jasmine, who had to see what I was making such a fuss about.

Thank you, Melissa, it was well worth waiting for.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Banana Blossom socks

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I was originally going to make them out of some miscellaenous sock yarn. The pattern didn't show up in any of them. I pulled this Socks that Rock lightweight out of my 2008 Sock Club yarn. I've got four skeins of sock yarn on the way, so I'll replace this in my sock club with one of them.

The colorway is Grandma's Flower Garden. It's been very entertaining to see the way the colors are coming out.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Maybe not a guru

I gave up on the Mystery Socks. I could not get from the chart to what I know the parttern's supposed to look like. I'm usually too stubborn to give up on something like this. I knit and frogged several times and just got fed up. I don't like the look of the pattern all that much and I don't like the boring sock yarn I was using.

I found another pattern to use for the November challenge. It's called Banana Blossom Socks, by Maia Discoe. It's probably more complex than the Mystery Socks, so I don't feel quite so much like a quitter.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

What Kind of Knitter Am I?

What Kind of Knitter Are You?

You appear to be a Knitting Guru. You love knitting and do it all the time. While finishing a piece is the plan, you still love the process, and can't imagine a day going by without giving some time to your yarn. Packing for vacation involves leaving ample space for the stash and supplies. It can be hard to tell where the yarn ends and you begin.
Take this quiz!

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Red Heart nostalgia

Poor Red Heart. It takes such abuse. Whenever anyone thinks of scratchy, grotesque-colored, artificial-fiber-based yarn, they think of Red Heart. Many knitters aren't old enough to remember Red Heart in the way it used to be.

When I first learned to crochet and knit, Red Heart was one of the nicer yarns you could get at the dime store. (Dime stores were the previous incarnation of discount stores, only smaller. Kresge's was a dime store chain where I grew up, and it turned into K-Mart.) Back in those days, Red Heart was wool. Acrylic fiber may have existed then, but nobody had gotten the twisted idea to turn it into yarn that people could use. It was nice because it came in a pull skein instead of a hank of yarn you had to wind into a ball. You didn't have to hunt for the end of the yarn to know where to start it pulling from the center, either. That yarn end had a little red heart-shaped foil tag folded over on it.

I actually enjoy using my ball winder to turn hanks of yarn into pretty little cakes. But I sometimes miss those little red hearts.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Purple project

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
Note to self: Next time you do a bag like this, wait until felting is complete to attach the straps. I think I'll sew buttons over the four spots where the straps meet the bag. It won't make up for the straps not lining up, but you know what they say: if you can't fix it, feature it.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Projects, updated

  • Sock Wars: my assassin has changed about three times in the last three days. I really need to get over my obsession with this, because I think the current one is the assassin who's gonna get me. I might be able to take one more person out before she does. Getting any farther than that would require ammo to be in the northern hemisphere right now, and I don't think it is.
  • Purple project: all done, felted, and drying. Picture will be posted in a couple of weeks.
  • Mystery sock: I know what it is supposed to look like, but I can't get from the graph to that point. When I'm more in the mood, I'll sit down and make myself a new graph that will work with my strange brain.
  • Lenore: I think I'm on the foot of the second one. I needed the dpns for something else, so I have it on stitch holders. Feet are boring to knit.
  • Backup socks: I've been listening to old Lime & Violet podcasts and knitting these. I might need them for something, so they are being knit as backups for something else. I should have one done and the second started by the end of the evening.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Mail Call

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

Woohoo, my Ravelry beta shirt arrived today! So did this set of buttons. What did not arrive was the Sock Wars ammo. If it doesn't show up in the next mail (Tuesday), I'm going to ask if I can continue with my own yarn. It's been in the mail for over two weeks. If it hasn't shown up somewhere by now, I really doubt that it will.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Purple funk

I'm already tired of working on the purple project. It's all knitting. I have to get it done so I can felt it and get it into the mail by the middle of next week. My head hurts, I don't wanna work on it. ::stomping feet and sulking::

Last night I switched over to working the next clue on the November Mystery Sock. I knit and frogged, knit and frogged, and still didn't want to go back to the purple project. Fortunately, someone posted their project on a blog. I could see what the thing is supposed to look like. I'll make myself knit a few more inches of purple and reward myself with another frog and reknit.

No new Sock Wars ammo yet. I'm beginning to think that it's gotten lost.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Purple Project

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I'm in the middle of something I'm calling the purple project. This yarn is Cascade 220 Heathers which I will use to make something to finish the purple project. It's a semi-secret project. I'll post the resulting something when the time is right.

I bought the yarn at Cast-On Cottage & Needlepoint Garden. It was chaos, but much better than it used to be (paying took a few minutes, but not because there was no one anywhere near the cash register). I got to meet the sweetest little dog named Jack. Jack's going to be the shop dog.

Sock Wars update: my most recent assassin was killed today. She was not ready to kill me, so my socks move on to someone else. I do not know where my ammo is. I know where it should be by now. Maybe it got sent on and it'll be in my mailbox tomorrow. I can dream, can't I?

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Raven? Nevermore.

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

Lenore (1 of 2) just did not want her picture taken. I'd hoped the lace on top would've shown up better. Oh, well. My first attempt was solid black sock. The weight of this yarn is listed as Lightweight on Ravelry. I'm not sure that's correct. This feels more like Mediumweight to me.

I admire the skill and artistry that went into creating Blue Moon's Raven series of yarns. I'm not one of the folks who are in credit card meltdown trying to buy all the colors, though. They just don't appeal to me.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Tuesday Update

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I made two more Daleks. One is part of a swap and the other I am going to felt.

These are the tops of a pair of mystery socks. I think I've finally got them big enough. It should be just a few days until the next clue.

I'm about to start up again on the Lenore foot. I'm a little bit nervous, because I took it off the needles when I was trying to find the right size needles for the mystery socks. I am not totally sure I put them back on the right size. I imagine in an inch or so it should be obvious.

Today's projects involve sewing: a couple of catnip mice and take 2 on the eyeglasses organizer I keep meaning to get done and other things keep distracting me. (Sorry, Dad, you'll have it soon).

Monday, November 5, 2007

War is Heck

Since I expect my most recent Sock Wars target to be killed today, I've been trying to track down some ammo for a new target. This is why banging my head against a wall sounds like more fun than doing any more of it. This is what my section of the list looks like:

  • My new assassin: Her assassin made noises about a week ago indicating that my new assassin was going to die soon. My new assassin has posted nothing in a couple of weeks. Is she alive? Is she about to kill me?
  • 3 dead people: what there are between my original assassin and my new assassin. Any or none of them may have the ammo required to kill me.
  • My original assassin: dead over a week. Has she sent her ammo to someone?
  • Me.
  • My first target, dead.
  • My second target, dead.
  • Second target's target, dead.
  • My third target, probably dead as I type this.
  • 3 more dead people.
  • A dying person, who was waiting for ammo. (see below)
  • 2 more dead people.
  • A dead person who was waiting for the ammo to send to the dying person (see above)
  • A dead person. (This is where the ammo turned out to be.)
  • A dead person who may or may not have the ammo that I need.
  • A live person who may really be dead and may have the ammo I need.

I'm going to take some asprin.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Mystery Sock, take 2

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I frogged. I cast on again with bigger needles. Even stretched, this isn't going to work with mega-legs. There's a Dr Who marathon on in a little while. I'll be taking a dip in the frog pond while I watch. Take 3 will involve one or two sizes larger needles and the largest size choice in the pattern. At least it'll give me a chance to do the K P K a little differently. The pictures I've seen look a lot better than this does.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Sock Stash

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I'm stalled on the Lenore socks. I've decided I need yarn of all one kind to do the Ravelry sock. I'm almost done with the mini Dalek, but I didn't note where I stopped on the pattern. It will require counting and thinking and I'm in no mood for it. I saw a mystery sock pattern on Ravelry yesterday and decided that I must start it immediately.

The mystery sock requires a solid or almost completely solid yarn. I didn't think I had any. I started digging through the pictured box and discovered I was wrong. I found a whole 100 gram ball of blue sock yarn in this mess. I can't tell you where or when or why I bought it. It is really plain boring yarn. I did cast on and did almost one row. I was counting wrong which requires careful frogging. I was in no mood for careful frogging, so I put it down.

Today I think I'm in the mood to tackle this mess. The majority of it is little bits left from various socks. I have a pattern that will use up some of those bits. I'm going to get the ball winder out and make a bunch of tidy little cakes out of them. The big stuff will be photographed and added to my stash on Ravelry. Next time I need to find some yarn, I can look there first.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Paula's 2008 Sock Club

Paula's 2008 Sock Club
Originally uploaded by micenrats99

Rather than ask Santa to sign me up for the Rockin Sock Club, I've chosen to do a DIY sock club. I cleaned out a lidded bucket that cat litter comes in and filled it with a dozen projects. Much of the yarn's been posted here at one time or another: one of a kind hand dyed, a couple of big company yarns in colors I liked, and yarns from smaller companies. I had no trouble coming up with a dozen patterns I wanted to try. Some of the bags have an actual pattern, others have a card in them with the book and page number. All of the books are on a shelf together where I will be able to find them. (Hey, stop laughing!)

It was well worth the effort to do this. I found some yarn I'd forgotten I had. I still have plenty of sock yarn to use if I just have to start a sock at some random time.

I also found that ball of glow-in-the-dark yarn I wanted to use for something two months ago. It was in the bottom of a bin filled with wool. Why? I was probably cleaning up and tossed it in there.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Bluefoot blues

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I finished the next pair of war socks. The bad news is obvious: the original assassin did not supply enough yarn. She supplied the name of the yarn but not the ball band. It's not something that I can pick up at my LYS. I might be able to track it down on the Internet. However, I don't want to go to the time and expense of doing that.

If the person who will soon receives these happens by here, you have my sincere apologies, even though the yarn amount had nothing to do with me.

Mostly waiting week

Sock Wars: I haven't knit anything in two weeks. My new ammo was sent to California, possibly deliberately, and I've been waiting for it to arrive. I'm hoping it'll be today, but I'm not counting on it. I don't know if my new target has figured out that I'm her assassin. She's waiting for ammo also. My new assassin doesn't yet know I'm her target. I have no idea who has her ammo. All of this confusion seems to be the case for the majority of the the remaining players. We're down to 25% of the original number. I'm keeping something I call a guess list. I'm predicting that we will go to the Kill the Monkey round on December 1. I'm also predicting that I won't quite make it to that round. The best I can do between now and then will put me shooting at Australian targets. I'm likely to be taken out by US assassins, even slow-knitting ones, while waiting for the mail.

Swaps: I've sent the two that are currently in progress and am waiting patiently for stuff to come back. I've got two new things in progress, but neither is specifically knit-related.

WIP: I'm crocheting another Dalek. It's made from sport-weight wool. It is not as small as I'd like it to be, so I'm thinking about felting it. I'm stalled on the Lenore foot. I get bored with the foot part of nearly any sock.

I've been doing what I call a Ravelry sock. It's got the yarn ball logo on each side and the word ravelry on sole of the foot. I have two problems with it. I started out using the graph that's posted on Ravelry. The yarn ball part of the graph is too big for what I want to do with it. With the help of a program I've got for Animal Crossing designs, I made a new graph. I'm not totally happy with how it came out. The graph needs tweaking. The sock needs frogging and re-knitting. The other problem is yarn. I promised myself that I'd only use yarn I already had. Trying to match weight, fiber content, and needed colors has been a challenge. I considered dyeing some of the white yarn. However, the color(s) I need are red, which I've yet to dye successfully.

Sigh. Maybe I'll go clean the house.