Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Monkey FO

Let me excitedly proclaim, I finally got some knitting done!!
I really pushed myself to get some knitting done this last weekend, and ended up knitting the entire gusset, foot, and toes on sock #2. I was very concerned that I was going to run out of yarn and modified the pattern before starting, to make sure I wouldn't run out. I finished sock #2 with about 5-6 yards left, so it worked out perfectly.
My apologies for the crappy pictures, but I was so excited I didn't wash/block them yet. I will be taking some better ones this weekend after they go through a wash.

I have now started on an improvised vanilla-ish sock pattern that I'm calling Black Rainbow Stripe Socks, made from KP Chroma black and lollipop yarn. This first pair is going to be for Dixon, but I will have enough left over to make another pair for myself I believe.
It's weird.. I've been knitting nothing but socks for about two months now (two pair of baby socks, a 4-sock set of cat socks, thick boot socks for Julie, my monkeys, and now the black rainbow socks), and I kind of just want to keep knitting them forever. I know this feeling will wear off eventually, but I'm digging it right now. Maybe 2013 is the year of the sock, god knows I've got enough yarn for that to happen.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Got the Blehs..

I haven't knit in awhile. A week, maybe two weeks. I'm still struggling with getting over my illness and most of my 'down time' is spent trying to nap or under the influence of cold medication so I'm not entirely miserable. It's frustrating, because I dislike being so idle, but I'm going to force myself to get some knitting done this weekend. Even minor progress is progress.

As far as the VR went last weekend, I did make minor progress, but obviously not on the knitting front. I organized the table section of my craft/computer room. Everything got put away (yarn, paper stuff, craft tools, garbage, etc) except all of the power tools, because I have to get into the shed to put them back in their place. However, it's much better already and I'm hoping to finish putting everything away and move the table out of the craft room this weekend.

Let's look at my January goals and where I am, with 6 days left of the month:
  • Sock KAL with the Stash Knit Down Group from Ravelry. My Monkeys are about 70% done. I am on the gusset decrease of sock #2. I would really love to finish these up before the end of the month.
  • One baby item. I still have not decided on a pattern, and found out that almost all my friends are having girl babies, which of course I have no suitable yarn for. I hope they don't mind boy colors! That being said, if I can't decide on anything else, I'm going to try to find some red/orangey wool ease (its the girliest color I have) and make some more baby socks. My biggest issue with baby stuff is that I want it to be washable, and my washable supplies are just not great. This is the reason to reduce the stash!!! Because instead of buying some yarn in girl colors, I feel guilty that I'm not using what I have. Must remember this for future.
  • Felted Christmas trees. Did not touch these. Did not even think about these. Maybe I'll push these out to be a summer project.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Monkeys and a VR

I've been sick for the last two weeks, including a full week long vacation in which I was heavily medicated (on cold meds). Getting sick is never fun, but getting sick always kills my knitting mojo. It's a combination of just feeling tired and low-energy and also being kind of foggy in the brain due to cold medication. As a result, the progress on my Monkeys has been next to nothing. Here is the last WIP picture I took, in the car ride to Oregon.
I actually finished this first sock and CO for sock #2 before leaving Oregon. Since then, all I've managed is to get to the gusset decreases. I signed up for a Virtual Retreat (VR) with one of the Ravelry groups, for this weekend, and I'm going to push myself to finish sock #2. I'm also going to try to finish up a number of projects that have been languishing for too long. Namely the following:
  • Finish sock #2, or at the very least, make decent progress on it. I'm starting to come out of my sickness-funk, so I'm hoping I have a bit of motivation to get through it.
  • Finish felting my silly French Press slippers. These have been through 3 felt cycles and they're still only about 80% done. I need to shrink them another 3 sizes.
  • Wash/block my One Row Handspun scarf that was finished in MARCH OF 2011Ugh. It's literally just sat there waiting for almost two years, and it's gorgeous. Bad!
  • Clean up my craft table in the yarn room. I started papercrafting on it last summer, so there are scraps all over, scissors, glue, etc. On top of that is yarn, as this is also my "processing" table, where I put yarn that is going out or coming in (to be photographed, added to Rav, etc). Lately it has also been serving as a landing pad for all of my power tools as well! So it has random drills and hammers and all kinds of things on it. Ideally, I'd like to move this table out of the room and into the shed, as it severely cramps the space.
I've certainly given myself an ambitious set of goals. Hopefully I can update next week with how much I got done! 

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Hello 2013! (And 2012 FOs)

The Husbeast socks, a WIP from my last entry, finished! Sorry for the icky picture, hoping to take a better one once I give them to their new owner! These were made with Wool-Ease (gold) and Bernat Simply Solid (I think?). Wool-ease is always a good thick-sock go-to yarn, but I HATED working with the Bernat in such a small gauge. It was like rubbing plastic together with every stitch, yech.
I also knit a bunch of baby socks, for my friends that are all seemingly pregnant at the same time. These are such a quick knit, I'm planning to do at least two more pairs in January. These were made with Wool-Ease in gold and avocado, just mirrored from each pair.
I also knit my bff a set of Kitten Mittens (mittons!), improvised pattern based on a baby-mitten. This was with Caron Simply Soft, and the end result is pretty awesome. For those that aren't aware of what Kitten Mittens are, I suggest watching this video.
The last few years haven't been great knitting years, in terms of yardage used, but 2012, I'm happy to say was a good one. In 2012 I used 3634 yards of yarn, which is literally more than I used in both 2010 and 2011 combined. It's still a very small amount, compared to some people, and hell, even compared to what I used to knit (2009 was my best year, with nearly 8000 yards knit), but I'm getting back in the swing of things. I want to continue to hammer away at my 2013 goals, but not stress myself out about it. Knitting is a relaxing thing for me, and with a very stressful life and job outside of the knitting world, I need to remind myself that if I don't want to knit after working, it's okay.

That being said, I had a good knitting day yesterday (Happy New Year!) and wanted to share a picture of my current WIP, my first pair of Monkey socks (!!) in KP's Stroll Glimmer (in Potion, which is a true green, but looks very blue in the picture). I am modding the pattern a bit, mainly just to save yarn (trying to get a pair out of a 50g ball). Yesterday I got all the way past the gusset decreases for sock #1, and am very much looking forward to finishing them.