Friday, March 23, 2012

Knitting While Away

Given I was traveling to Arizona, I took lots of knitting.  I wanted plane knitting and conference knitting.  Conference knitting has to be something super simple that I can knit under the table.  Plane knitting can require more attention and focus.

Of course, I was winding yarn at 12:30 am Friday night into Saturday morning I was leaving. I had to be up at 3:30 am to get to my 6:30 flight.  Whee...  I know...not my brightest move...  *laugh*

I decided to go with the Holden Shawlette by Mindy Wilkes (rav link) for the Unique Sheep Luxe in the Tudor gradient colorway.  I was leaning towards the Aeolian Shawl by Elizabeth Freeman but I think the yarn will be too busy and you will end up loosing the details which seems silly for the pattern & yarn.  The beauty of the Holden is that I can repeat the edging as many times as I have yarn for.  So that helps.

It calls for a size 6 needle. So I brought a size 6 with me.  Not a 5 or 7.  Just a 6.  I started it on the plane.  And it looked too loose for my liking.  I kept trying.  I knit some more.  I stopped.  I decided that I would try to get a size 5 while I was out with a friend that day.  But I didn't.  So I tried to knit a bit more, seeing if I could convince myself that it would block out well and look good.

So I knit some more.  And stared at it.  Pulled it a bit.  Tried to justify it on the size 6 needles.  Thinking maybe the yarn will plump up when I block it...  *laugh*  Yeah, I know...

I knit on the vest for the Little Guy (rav link) for a while, hoping letting it sit would convince me it was the right thing to knit it on the 6s.  But the more I thought about it, the more I knew, I wouldn't be happy with it.  It just needed to be ripped out and knit on a smaller gauge needle if I would be happy with it.  *sigh*

Of course after finally committing to the Holden, I was looking for something else and found the Bitterroot pattern.  Now I am wondering if that wouldn't be a better fit. *laugh*  Decisions, decisions...

I did a lot of the vest under the table at conference.  It was going well.  And then...  I realized that I copied the same side of one sheet twice!  So I didn't have the last quarter of the pattern!!  *laugh*  Okay...  Thank goodness I brought more to knit right?!

So I cast on the Phoebe Sweater for my Eldest Munchkin.  It is a bottom-up seamless cardigan.  I *love* seamless sweaters.  *smile*  It is a super simple knit and ideal for conference knitting.  So I put a pretty good dent in that.

I decided I wanted to cast on my socks that I brought as well.  I decided to go with the Midnight Sky pattern - non-rav link with really large pic if you click on it  (Ravelry Link).  I got the pattern from the Decadently Dark club I was in a while back.  I couldn't lay my hands on the pattern and the designer was sweet enough to send me a new copy which is very cool of her as it is a pay pattern.  It is a beautiful pattern and I always think that it is good to support patterns that haven't been done to death.  It says three projects on Ravelry.  One the test knit.  The other says in progress with the yarn from the club (which I got in Aug. 2009). The last the one I started.

Posting mine is probably a bit of a joke.  Why you ask?  Because I have cast on the stitches for 1 1/2 socks.  Yes.  Not even all the stitches yet.  *laugh*  Mind you, when I am doing the two socks on two circs I always seem to have trouble getting the cast-on right!  *laugh*  I generally end up sliding one set of stitches on to something else because I have cast on the second one incorrectly.  Which I hate to admit is what is holding up the progress.  And since I wasn't at home I didn't have other needles to put it onto. Though I did have some stitch holders, so honestly, I could have done it...  Though I think what added to my procrastination is that I don't think two socks on two circs are great plane knitting.  Too many needles to make the person sitting next to you nervous.

Though if I had realized the seat between me and the other person would be open, I would have finished casting them on so I could knit them on the plane.  But with my luck, if I had them in my carry on, I would bet someone would have been in that middle seat.  *laugh*  So better left in my checked baggage!  *grin*

So as things stand, I have about 75% of the vest done for LG.  About 40-50% of the Phoebe sweater done for EM (it is the project I have been knitting on since getting home).  0.005% of the socks for me done.  0% of the shawl done.  Whee.

Much to my joy, I got a little spinning done last weekend...  A very little.  But I am so thrilled I got any done at all!  I pulled out a sample I got from an order I placed to test out my skills.  I am happy to report that muscle memory is a wonderful thing.  After only a bit of trial, it was looking about as good as my spinning ever looks.  I am not an expert spinner by any means.  But it was fairly decent.

So I pulled out the Bullseye Bump I got.  It is so wonderful to spin.  I am still debating if I will just knit this as a single or if I am going to Navajo ply it.  I *never* knit with singles I have spun.  I am not that strong a spinner so my singles are uneven in tension.  Plying helps balance that out.  But since I am planning to make a simple scarf for Elanor with this, it might be okay.  Some odd bias to it could be fun & funky.  We will see when I get the single spun how thick it is.  Because the bump has various fibers mixed in like recycled sari silk and such, it is unpredictable.  But I think Elanor will love the colors and the sparkle in it.

I am hoping to have some knitting time in the car this Sunday.  *crosses fingers*  As always, that will all depend on the kids...  But with any luck, maybe I can take a second try at the shawl.  Let's hope.  *smile*  Though I will also see if I can finish casting on my socks as they might also be nice car knitting.  But who knows...  I do wonder if trying to get two pairs of socks done in a year isn't a rather grand idea.  *laugh*  I recall knitting a pair of socks every month to two.  What a laughable idea these days... *chuckle*

I was just looking at my WIPs and realized I really should pick up the Flora Dress (rav link).  Because if I don't finish that quickly, it isn't going to fit Eldest Munchkin and I will just have to frog the whole thing.  I should check that it even fits her anymore.  I checked a couple months back but she has this nasty habit of continuing to grow.  *laugh*

In a Ravelry thread I read about updates for a yarn dyer I love, someone mentioned not having knitting time with kids which definitely seems true.  But she also said that she built her stash to save for retirement.  It seems like a fine idea to me.  Though to contrast that, I also caught up on the Yarn Harlot's blog.  And her post about how she only keeps things if she really loves them seems like a good policy.  But then again, I don't get given yarn or fiber as she does.  *laugh*  So 95% of the stuff I bought.  And the gifts I got I love.  There are some things I bought because they were cheap.  Like some acrylic I got for trying up yarn when I was dyeing my own what seems like ages ago...  Some is about it being cheap.  Which with the kids...  So I don't think I need to love all my yarn.  But I do need to think it is useful.  Mind you, there are more things I find useful these days with the kids.  So I suspect I won't be doing much culling should it ever actually get the time to do it.

I have a ton of work to do.  It has been a crazed week.  I have been up til 1 or 2 twice this week with work.  *sigh*  Best I get some done though I really just want a nap.  Ah well.  No rest for the wicked...or at least want to be wicked.  *chuckle*

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