WIP Weds ~ in which there is good news and bad news

Let’s start with the good news: I finished the second Circle of Love lace cowl! This is the beaded one, and I knit until I ran out of beads. Fortunately, I had just enough beads to (almost) finish a round. I was missing a bead for the very last double-decrease, which was much better than trying to figure out how to deal with, say, only 3 beads remaining when I needed 9.

Circle of Love lace cowl #2

Anyway, I’m really pleased with how it turned out, and now I just need to wait until it’s cool enough again to actually wear it. A mohair cowl is not something I’m going to wear with the weather getting warm again.

Circle of Love lace cowl #2

And now for the bad news.

Remember my Hedera sock? I was enjoying it, but working on it sporadically in between projects that I’ve decided are Christmas gifts. Well, those projects have both gotten just a little too big to take places, so the Hedera sock got to come along as travel knitting. And that’s when I discovered something unhappy.

Hedera sock blues

Something has been snacking on my yarn. Or at least, that’s my assumption. I went through the project bag, and didn’t find any bugs or corpses or larvae casings. No evidence of who was snacking on my yarn. Also, the ends are generally very smooth, so it also looks like it could have been an accident with scissors. But since no one at home messes with my yarn except me, who would have been having scissor accidents with this yarn? And I wound it into a ball just before casting on, so I know that the yarn was intact when I started the sock.

The realization that my yarn was in more pieces than it was supposed to be led me to look at the sock itself. And that showed an even unhappier thing:

Hedera sock blues

There is a big hole in my sock, too. And unfortunately, this is not in the stockinette section which would be easier to fix.

I’ve thought about all of the options I have for this, but I’m leaning toward frogging the sock and re-winding the ball of yarn to try to assess the damage. I’m not happy about it, but I think I would be even less happy trying to repair the sock before it’s even finished. I think I might cast on something new in the meantime to make myself feel better. (Yarn therapy. It helps.)

For today’s give-away entry (or just to be a nice person), please leave me a comment with some happy thoughts or sock suggestions.

(Reminder: the give-away is for journal-related stuff, details in this past Monday’s post. Pictures of the items being given away should be in next Monday’s post, provided I take the pictures before then. You can enter up until 8am Pacific Time on Sunday, 4/30/17. Each blog post you comment on will get you a new entry, unless you don’t want to enter the give-away. In that case, your comments just make me feel better.)

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WIP Wednesday ~ in which I am *that close*

I am so close. So close I can practically feel it. Close to what, you ask? Close to being done with crocheting squares for the Babette blanket! I still have a small handful to make, and yes – then I have to sew in starting ends and assemble the blanket – but I AM SO CLOSE!

For proof of progress, here are the squares I’ve made since my last photo update:


I’m not going to take a photo of all of the squares until I have finished making them. But still, this is definite progress. I really can’t wait until I’m done with this project, and this is a really good start to being done.


(another glamour shot of the squares)

I have also been knitting the second Circle of Love Cowl. There has been less progress on it, though, because the weather got warmer and it’s hard to think about knitting a mohair cowl on my lunch break when it’s in the 70’s. Also, I really have too large a crochet hook in the project bag, so while it works for getting the beads on the yarn, it’s not always easy. I need to remember to swap out hooks to speed the knitting along again.


There is the progress on the cowl, at any rate. I love the way it looks laid out, and am looking forward to trying it on once it’s done to see how the beads fall on the finished fabric. Well… I’ll try it on once it’s finished and the temperature gets back to something resembling cool weather. I might need to stand in front of the open freezer.

Have a great rest of the week!

WIP Weds ~ in which I knit for me

Most (not quite all, but most) of my knitting has been for me this week. One of the big exceptions to that was the cowl I showed you on Monday, but since that one is finished now, it’s not included in this week’s WIP Weds.

As I indicated then, I have also started a second version of that cowl, and this one is for me:

I do love the pattern. It’s easy enough without being boring. And adding the beads has worked out as well as I’d thought it would – once I found the right beads. I first tried with some lovely garnet chips, but those beads weren’t big enough for my crochet hook (in order to place the bead onto the knitting) or to hold their own individually against the mohair yarn. The strand of garnet beads laid on top of the ball of yarn looked great; one single bead nestled among the knitting got lost. So, new beads were found in the stash, and on we went!

So much fun. I do think I will limit myself to 2 of these cowls, though, or at least 2 for now. They are such a quick knit even with lace weight yarn that I will keep them in mind for a quick knitted gift option.

I have also been working on the Babette blanket. While that one is crochet, not knitting, it is also for me, so it counts.

I’m still in the square-making stage, though soon I will have all of them finished and can start joining them together again. (You may recall that I started joining them at one point in order to keep myself interested in the project. I stopped because I was not focusing well on the project and figured the best way to focus was to break it down into easy-to-identify steps.)

There has been a little other knitting, but no other pictures, so we’ll stop here for today. Happy March!

Misc Monday ~ in which I have already started the Christmas knitting

Well, I already told you that I have started the Christmas knitting. However, I have also now already finished the first of the Christmas knitting projects.

Circle of Love Lace Cowl

That is the Circle of Love Lace Cowl, and it took me just over a week to finish it. I loved this knit! I am going to be making another one ASAP. This one is going to be a gift, but the next one will be for me. I modeled this one, and love the way it fits, so when I make the next one for myself I won’t be changing anything about the size. (I’ve got another color of the same yarn which I will be using, so my gauge should be the same.) The only difference will be that I will be adding beads to the one for me.

Circle of Love Lace Cowl

The true color is somewhere between these two pictures. It’s a very nice chocolate brown, but the halo of the mohair makes it a little too shiny to really capture well in sunshine.

And since we’re talking about yarn stuff today, here’s what I brought home from Stitches West this past weekend:

Stitches West 2017

I only picked up three skeins, but they are three perfect-for-me skeins. What we have here are: Greenwood Fiberworks Luscious Lace (“Blue Eyes” colorway), Hedgehog Fibers Skinny Singles (in “Boombox”), and the special Saturday show exclusive colorway (“Unprecedented”) from Space Cadet on their Lyra base.

I’m looking forward to knitting these up. However, I’ve also decided that I must finish one of my other two Christmas knitting projects currently OTN before I cast on something with one of my new yarns. I think the Space Cadet might end up as mitts (I’m thinking of finding a pattern where I start at the palm and knit up the arm until I run out of yarn so that I can use all of the pretty without wasting any). The Greenwood Fireworks will be a shawl of some kind, since it’s a lovely lace weight and yet not enough for the Featherweight Cardigan (which I still want to knit eventually). And the Hedgehog Fibers will be either a shawlette or a scarf, because I can’t see making socks out of singles yarn and the color combination doesn’t say mitts to me.

And that’s all for the last Monday in February. Hard to believe that we’re already this far into the year, isn’t it? But you know what? I think this will be a good week. And if the universe disagrees with us, let’s do what we can to make it one.

WIP Weds ~ in which I have startitis

Those of you who are knitters (and possibly also those of you who love knitters) will be familiar with the term “startitis”. Basically, it means the urge to start a new project even though you haven’t finished any of your existing projects. Sometimes this is cured by starting one new project, and sometimes it requires many new projects to conquer.

In my case, this time, I was able to cure my startitis with a single new project. I suspect this has something to do with the fact that the new project is lace (which I love), easy to memorize (which is extremely convenient), and uses a soft fuzzy pretty mohair yarn.

This is the Circle of Love Lace Cowl by Evelyn Clark.I’m using Crystal Palace Yarns Kid Merino yarn, and LOVE IT so far. I have completed 4 of 9 repeats, so I’m nearly halfway through, and I’m still going strong. Given that I started this cowl on Friday late at night (when I finally gave in and decided that the urge to start a new project wasn’t going away) and I’m writing this post on Tuesday afternoon, I think that’s some darn good progress. Granted, almost the entirety of last weekend was spent either knitting or playing video games*. But still.

I love this project. And I think this is one of those patterns that I will make at least twice, because it’s so fun and simple. (If I do, I intend to add beads to the next one. There’s a double decrease on the 1st and 5th pattern rows which would be a perfect bead placement location.)

Come to think of it, I think it’s partly the weather which had me wanting something new. It’s been gray and rainy lately – which has been great for the drought, but not so great for recharging our batteries. (Californians are solar-powered, in case you weren’t aware.)

I hope you’ve been having a great week so far! Let me know if you have any antidotes for next time I get startitis…

* California has been hit hard by an atmospheric river. Lots of rain, wind, and flooding. We weren’t going ANYWHERE that we didn’t have to last weekend.

WIP Wednesday ~ in which we start a new year with an old project

So here we are in a New Year! And I have started to work on… a very old project of mine.

This week I have been working on the Babette Blanket. I started this project nearly seven years ago in April of 2010. I haven’t worked on it in a long while, but I really do enjoy the project. It’s my only current crochet project, but that’s neither why I enjoy knitting inter why I stopped working on it. It’s just a really large project and I have a bad habit of getting bored of big projects before I finish them. However, I intend to finish this blanket this year. (It’s on my 101 in 1001 challenge list, too.) To that end, I have decided to finish crocheting all the rest of the squares before I assemble any more of them.

(Since it’s been ages since I posted about this: I had been crocheting the squares. Then I thought maybe assembling them would keep me interested in the project longer. So I put some of them together. That was fun, but I still let the project slip away. This time around I’m going to finish the rest of the squares, since I really don’t have that many left to make. Then I will assemble the rest of them all at once.)

In any case, here are the squares I finished making on New Year’s Day. (We binge-watched MST3K shows while I crocheted.) I haven’t taken pictures of the rest of the squares I crocheted this week.

IMG_2253

I can also show you something else that I finished recently but haven’t posted on the blog yet: the finished Leaving Cowl. I had to get it in the mail as a present, but since it should have been delivered and opened by the date this is published, I can post a picture of it now:

IMG_2251

This was enjoyable enough to knit, but the picot edging was tedious. It looks good, but if I make this cowl again I’ll probably knit the other edging. I used Cascade 220 Sport for this cowl, and that yarn was lovely to work with. I’ll happy to work with it again, though I don’t have any projects in mind at present.

Happy 2017! May you have many fun projects to work on, regardless of what your hobbies are.