It’s time for me to admit it:

  1. I haven’t been knitting my KAL socks because I made a mistake some rows back and I’m not sure I can rip it back to the right spot without just having to rip the whole thing.
  2. I haven’t been knitting anything else out of a sense of guilt/commitment.

Yeah, this is a great plan. I don’t even think the mistakes are super obvious, but apparently I can’t handle keeping it.

Here’s the offending sock:

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So I’m going to take an official breather and then I think I’ll just start over, with a better understanding of the pattern and how it’s supposed to look. I think I need to start respecting my own instincts about when to think back a few rows because if I get too far in after errors that are too glaring I can’t handle it.

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I’m knitting Cookie A’s Cusp along with my friend Erin and boy, is this pattern kicking my butt (in kind of a good way). I think I’ve gotten past most of the tricky parts, but I’m so glad we’re doing this in KAL format so we can alert each other to confusing bits.

This particular style of pattern is definitely helping me grow as a knitter while also making me scratch my head a fair bit (literally more often than not; I am one fidgety knitter). If anyone reading this doesn’t read the Yarn Harlot blog (which would be baffling), well, you should, and this post is relevant. Cookie A. spells out a lot of things really clearly, has cool color-coded schematics, and generally writes an awesome pattern. On the other hand, a few parts of the pattern seemed like they could use a little warning text when you have to cross-reference between written directions and charts (like “it may look like you have an extra stitch when you finish the chart but you’re supposed to, don’t fear!”) and there was one sidebar explaining how to keep an increase section in twisted rib that seemed far more confusing to me than “keep increases in twisted rib” would be.

What I think I’m saying, really, is that it’s really unlikely that any pattern will be written to the style guide in my head. Sometimes that’s a good thing that teaches me flexibility and research skills and sometimes I spend 5 minutes stating at a sidebar trying to figure out what in the world it means. Even the second case can teach me something, like that sometimes stating the goal of a particular action can be more enlightening than spelling out an algorithm. If I ever start designing myself, I’ll know for sure how I want my patterns to look! (I think there will be a lot of instructions that read something like “It’s important to use a stretchy bind-off. Here’s how I do it, but any stretchy bind-off will do!”)

Some more pictures of the progress I made between starting the draft of this post and now:

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This post is to announce that I fixed the dumb little setting that broke this blog over a year ago (I switched hosts in a fit of disgust with GoDaddy and, well, I was a month or two into my first real job and… yeah).

Some knitting things!

  • I knitted at least several things since we last spoke. I promise. I haven’t been abducted by aliens and replaced by a Pod Lisa. I just didn’t have a blog going so I posted them to twitter or entirely didn’t take a picture at all THE HORROR.
  • I knit 4 of the same item, a new record. I managed to rather dull the exitement, though, by losing #2 before casting on for #4, and I still dearly miss my madelinetosh tosh DK (is that how they intend you to write out their yarns? seems repetitive) Windschief. The other 3 are for people who aren’t me, so this is a tragedy of near-unprecedented proportions. This disaster is in no way diminished by the fact that I knitted the thing during one supremely lazy and simultaneously productive Sunday.
  • I’m on a weird, self-imposed project to read all of The Yarn Harlot’s blogs from day one. Somehow I was inspired by her anniversary post. I think I might be kind of crazy.

Okay, let’s see what pictures I can turn up by going through my twitter photo history.

Icelandic yarn bundle from Schoolhouse Press

Okay that picture is absolutely huge but I am not going to do something silly like allowing enormous pictures to stop my “blogging on a roll-ness” which is a phrase that I am pretty sure the Coke Zero made me invent. The story of the yarn bundle involves a lot of reading comprehension issues and the fact that I have two others of similar size is totally not my fault. I blame reading comprehension and the fact that colors look different on the Internet. Anyone want to knit sweaters with me? Like, multiple for each of us?

Anyone…?

Kate Davies' Donegal gloves which are the sort of very standard no-frills pattern that I needed.

Oh god they’re all going to be huge. FORGING AHEAD! No time for links; I’m sure all of the patterns are available on Ravelry anyway and I must continue with my MAD BLOGGING EXPERIMENT.

Looks like I gave away Windshief #3 with only a picture of the ribbing. Good job, me!

Looks like I’ll have to stalk my knitting to its new owner. This is knit with madtosh sock held double because I’m a crazy person and NEEDED THAT COLOR. THAT EXACT ONE. I also have a fixation on madelinetosh at the moment permanently.

The lost Windschief :(

How beautiful was this hat? It was SO BEAUTIFUL. I hope whoever has it now is really enjoying it. I called the restaurant I probably had it in last. No dice. No way to get in touch with the cab driver after…

The first Windshief, knitted for my boyfriend, which started this whole knitting jag. Yes, also madelinetosh WHO'S KEEPING TRACK?! And can you blame me, really?

I knitted the above two FROM STASH like someone who doesn’t buy more yarn than is clinically advisable.

In the process of an attempt at the Lopapeysa I've really wanted to make, I (1) determined my back-and-forth gauge is MUCH LOOSER than my in-the-round gauge. Also, the two greys I ordered were too similar to show the pattern. NOT ENOUGH CONTRAST. This set off a quest to knit more loosely.

I’m going backwards in time with these photos because that’s easiest. I’ve since learned to knit continental/yarn-in-left-hand and loosened up my overall knitting. I no longer do an extra little gratuitous tug on each and every stitch. Not only is that uncalled-for, it is  BAD FOR MY KNITTING. And prevents making sweaters that I really, really, REALLY want. Turns out that I’ll fix any knitting thing for an item that I want that badly.

This is how big those bundles are. Yeah.

Maybe I’ll knit some kind of super bulky blanket with the yarn held quadruple or something super normal like that. This hobby sure makes people do super normal things. Normal.

Peerie Flooers

I almost forgot about this hat, somehow. This is an amazing hat. Peerie Flooers, Kate Davies. I want to make mitts for it.

I don’t want mittens, though, so the above fingerless-glove thing was an experiment into making fingerless gloves to learn how to make more pretty fingerless gloves and also because it has been COLD in San Francisco (yes, this means I am weak and no longer allowed to consider myself an East Coaster at heart, I think). I really want to do the gloves with the two-color corrugated ribbing on each finger, which probably means that I hate myself and secretly want punishment.

ONWARDS!

More of the same

In which I try to make a pretty face instead of a silly one!

Proof that I weaved in the ends instead of just hiding them and hoping they don’t slip out, which, I will tell you, was EXTREMELY TEMPTING:

One of my self-imposed knitting tasks is to learn to love knitting socks because I really, really, really like to wear hand-knitted socks. I haven't touched this sock in weeks, naturally.

Gyllis, Stephen West. Lots of progress during Jury Duty. Actually finished this one, too. I do finish knitting from time to time!

Picture of it finished though? HAH. That’d take foresight.

As we travel BAAAACKWAARDDSSS IN TIMEEE (eerie voice) we discover — terrifying — the pre-woven-in-ends state of that hat (avert your eyes):

See? Understand my temptation?

Okay, that is as far back as Twitter’s memory goes. I’ll poke through photos on my phone for the next one or, what? Maybe generate new content? Speak in depth about something I’m currently working on? Resurrect some long-abandoned projects from the terror that my yarn closet has managed to become in the less-than-a-year I’ve been living in my current apartment? Who knows. I’m going to go with the “start typing and see where it goes” method for (theoretically) reliably producing posts.

Also, It’s 5:30, not 8:30. Dunno how to get this thing on California time.

I’ve been absent for too long. To break the ice, here are some photos of things I’ve made since I was last here. There’s a bit more, but it’s not easily convenient and I’m posting this right away so it actually happens.

So that’s what I’ve been working on.  I’ll dig up some more or maybe even do some more detailed posts soon.  I’m taking a weaving class on Wednesdays now, which is extremely fun.  I also finished school.  I’m supposed to be studying for my boards which is… challenging.  I want to learn all crafts.

I haven’t!  Not entirely, anyway.  Life has been… well, see the last entry for an idea of how life has been lately.  I’ve been bringing my knitting around with me like a security blanket, but not knitting a whole lot.  At the moment, I’m in the middle of a 12-day long stretch of workdays.  I’m knitting a bit at night  but a lot of time by the time I get home (often late) I’m usually too tired even for that.  On the other hand, I made a big chunk of progress visiting my grandfather in the hospital (he’s okay, but yes, that is the sort of thing that’s just par for the course lately).  Pathetic fact: I discovered that I can keep knitting at full speed while crying a little.  But, progress.

Um, right, I should try for some content that’s , um, positive, unlike the above.  Well, I just ordered a big old bunch of yarn because the Yarn Harlot posted about sweater I just couldn’t refuse, and I’m working on getting a massive other quantity of yarn so I can start on my crochet journey.  I also delved into the exciting world of yarn arts on TV with Knitting Daily and Knit and Crochet Today.  I have my DVR record them and then watch themwhen I think David isn’t bored enough when David isn’t interested in watching TV and I am.

So I’ll post pictures of the giant piles of yarn when they show up, and since I’m getting some enthusiasm for knitting back (as I’m getting some enthusiasm for life in general back) I’ll be posting more in general.

Oh, yeah.  Yarn diet?  Over.  I made it since December! So, between that and all the stuff that’s been going on lately, I thought I’d try to make up the lost time STAT.

  • Today I ran out of my building with a finished-but-not-blocked (and questionably needing it) scarf to give to my mom before she pulled away to her trip to Boston.  It’s cold there.  She said she wants to block it herself earlier this week.  I thought she might want it before her trip, anyway, since it’s cold there.  (At least in my mind.  It’s North!  North places are cold!)
  • I signed up for the Knitting Olympics.  Um.  Oh no.
  • Seriously I am going to use it as motivational for knitting David’s massively overdue scarf.  It should be possible…marginally.  If nothing goes wrong.  If my rotation isn’t as bad as I fear.  Um.  If.  So I think I get the spirit of the thing?
  • I am so tired you guys.  I couldn’t sleep well, I had an exam earlier today, it was extremely nerve-wracking and I’ve got other things on my mind and I got stuck (for about 90 seconds) in an elevator twice today and I almost passed out having my blood drawn because I was fasting and the NP who was drawing blood was not really doing a stellar job and kept fishing.
  • My goals for today include napping, waking up, watching the beginning of the Olympics, and casting on a scarf.  I’m thinking of doing the latter part of my plan in the neighborhood bar, if they’re showing it.  Yeah, that’s right guys, I lead a life of adventure and intrigue.

The ends are defeated! I finished the ends on the second of David’s hats, a green and black Botanic (Ravelry link), inspired by juniperjune’s, (the first one was black and green since I bought twice the yarn I needed). I also finished defeating the enormous (for me) number of ends on a scarf I started knitting for myself but turned out to be for my mom (the Bumble Up Scarf, similar to the picture but with a nice grey as the main color). I’ll try to post pictures tomorrow, but more likely on Thursday when I’ll be home during the sunny hours.

A large number of hours of Legend of the Stupid were watched during this weaving-in extravaganza.

I know this is one of the most disjointed posts I’ve written lately.  I’m sorry, really.  I’m preoccupied with a number of school and life things that knitting is just not enough to completely soothe.  It helps, but… there’s still a lot on my mind.  I’m really looking forward to graduating and possibly having a chance to actually settle into a more routine existence where my biggest hurdle is actually how big my stash is or how many projects I still have on the needles.  (I can hope, anyway…)

I knitted during my rotation!  This is big news.  I can’t believe I made it happen.

I know, this sounds like an overreaction.  But it’s kind of a big deal for me that I pushed myself out of the rut.  I am so awful at changing habits in general so it’s really good when I can make myself do something that I’ve wanted but struggled to do.

You can basically follow the story over in the twitter box I just stuck in the sidebar.  But to be more bloggy about it, I took a lunch hour to go to the libray and do some knitting.  I wanted to find a place where I didn’t feel like too many people would be looking at me (my knitting confidence has taken a bit of a hit from my first teacher-asks-me-not-to-knit experience, which I’ll post about another time).  I went to the top floor and checked out the periphery of the library and I found the perfect knitting/napping area.  This place has reclining nap chairs (yay medical school library?) which could hardly be better for knitting if they were designed for it.  They face windows (natural light!) and are secluded from other library areas by bookcases.

My spot
The chair
Chart, I missed you.
Warm lapful of knitting (this is going to be a great throw!)
I still know how!
The sunlight was so perfect!

Enough gratuitous pictures for you?  It’s a real knitting blog, now!

I brought my knitting with me to school.  I brought my knitting to school in a hopital. Yeah, that’s right (um, bitches?  I’m supposed to say “bitches,” here, I think?), I’m on rotation and I am going to freaking find some time to knit, already.

I’ll try to snap some iPhone shots of myself hiding in the library with my knitting later.  Yes, that is my plan.  Me, medical library, knitting, and possibly a library-approved drinking container of coffee.  I am a wild woman.

N…no.

There just didn’t seem to be enough time. I think I kind of ended up trading my knitting time for exciting new food available at the new local bar. It was worth it, I think, but..

But…

I really really want to break this pattern. I want to churn out the finished-ends-weaved-in-perfect-in-every-way-except-for-whatever-mistakes-that-are-totally-forgiveable objects. I want to wear a different hat every day (when it’s cold enough). I want to make every pair of exciting gloves with transformation power that I see. I want to cover my apartment in throws and cabled pillows. I want to be a knitter again!

…I also want a nap. Is that going to win today? (Well, after I get home in a few more hours…)

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