The Weaving Inn

Home to the knitting world's anti-Finisher. Kind of like the anti-Christ, but with a smaller following.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Coming Soon ...

... to a theatre near you ...

"Goats In A Pen"

"Goats In A Trunk"

"Goats In A Tree"

"Goats In A Tree - The Sequel"

Sunday, January 28, 2007

I'm Just Sayin'

That there is no fun involved in trying to knit a sock pattern that involves 55 stitches, an 11 stitch pattern repeat over 4 needles when it involves a lot of CABLES and YO's. Because invariably you're gonna have to shift stitches when you've got 3 stitches for the cable on one needle and the other three stitches on the other needle. So you know what I say?

Fuck it.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

So Close

And yet so far. With five rows and a thumb to do I have run out of yarn. Sigh. If it was just the thumb I would have taken Valerie's suggestion and knit it in a different color. Then I could simply tell people I did it like that so I would know which hand was left and which was right. But five rows of the hand as well? Nope. It's back to Yarndogs to get another ball. Poop.

It's almost February 1st ...

"Hey did you hear April's running some month long contest over at The Weaving Inn?"

"Hmm, I think I heard a rumor about that. Something to do with sock yarn?"

"Yeah, I heard she's giving away 28 skeins of sock yarn."

"28? What, did Red Heart come out with sock yarn?"

"I don't think so. I think it's gonna be decent stuff."

"That's just nuts."

"Well she was never quite right to begin with, ya know."

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Periodes Pourpres Deux

Don't you love Babelfish? I know I do.

There is high drama happening at Chez Insanity. The tension is mounting. There is much wringing of the hands. With only eight rows and a thumb to go, will April run out of the yarn necessary to complete her second pair of Fetching fingerless gloves? After all, the pattern did state that it was "possible" to knit a pair from one ball of yarn so there shouldn't be a problem, right? Yes? Aren't the phrases "may be possible" and "most definitely" interchangeable? And if they're not, umm, does anyone know where the ball band for this yarn went?

By the way, I'm totally addicted to making these. If anyone would like a pair please let me know so I'll have an excuse to make more. Thank you.

More of the purple yarniness. This is a terrible picture of the first of the three Elizabeth I scarves - "Dainty Bess." I love the way the pattern looks, I just wish it was a bit more challenging to knit. I'm using Cabin Cove Mercantile's fingering weight yarn in 50% wool, 50% silk. I really like using fingering weight for lace and the stitch definition with this particular yarn is perfect. Of course you'll either have to take my word for it since I suck at taking pictures or buy some yourself. I'd recommend alternative #2.

And arriving in the mail yesterday ...

"Violets By The River" by Hazel Carter. I've been wanting to do this pattern ever since I saw it on someone's blog about eight months ago. It's ever so whimsical with it's little bumblebees along the top but I can't decide what color to do it in. Maybe a pale green? I need four ounces of laceweight which is 113 grams but how many yards is that? I have no idea.

Last but not least, I'm still working on the Forest Canopy Shawl but I hate hate hate circular needles so it's going far too slowly for my liking. I'm using Addi Naturas with their nice flexible cable in a 28" length. I thought circs were supposed to be more comfortable to use than straights but I am constantly wrestling with these damn things. Wanna win a skein of sock yarn? Leave me a comment and tell me how to bring these damn circs under control. I'll love you forever. And you'll get some yarn.

Monday, January 22, 2007

A Santa Cruz Saturday

It was an absolutely gorgeous day here on Saturday so nothing would do but a trip to the beach. In January. Try not to hate me too much. Remember, one day a giant earthquake will strike the Bay Area and wipe us off the face of the map. In the interim we go to the beach. In January. Ha.

Santa Cruz is a relatively small college town, very liberal and very laid back. One brewery we stopped at had a Bush Countdown Clock included on the Daily Specials page. Santa Cruz has a lot of cute little beach cottages like this one, built in 1892. This tiny home is included in the National Trust for Historic Preservation as a "traditional beach cottage." That's the blue National Trust plaque on the far right.

This elderly gentleman was uhh ... skiing on the sand. He was holding cross country ski poles and kind of whooshing down the beach. I'm not sure if sand skiing will ever become an Olympic sport but he seemed to be enjoying himself. The blur in the background is fog which didn't start to burn off until around 3:00. Santa Cruz is a VERY foggy place.

Here is our obligatory lighthouse shot. This lighthouse had a very disappointing horn, it sounded like something from a Honda Civic. It's a fairly new lighthouse, having only been completed in 2001. Obviously they don't make 'em like they used to.

This picture is for the Samurai Knitter,, aka Julie, who knows everything. Well nearly everything. I want to know what these big concrete things are. Obviously they're now the breakwater for the lighthouse but what the heck were they before? Here's another picture ...


Monday, January 15, 2007

Just Follow The Pattern, Stupid

The too small "Fetching" fingerless gloves found a new home with the House Of Torture's V.P. of Marketing today. She's one of the few people I know who actually appreciates handknitted items. I gave her my version of "My So Called Scarf" about two months ago and not a week goes by that she doesn't wear it. So she was quite thrilled to find out that I had fat hands while she had petite. She wore them all day. Can't ask for much more than that.

And I am extremely happy to report that actually following the pattern will result in a pair of gloves that fit. I'll try to get a better picture of the stitch detail once glove #2 is finished. However, allow me to go on record as saying I adore this pattern. I can see a number of pairs of these in my future. I may even follow the pattern again.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Knitting 101 - Yarn Weight

If you were to take a pattern written for worsted weight yarn knit on US 6's, would it come as a surprise to you that the end product might be a *tad* bit small if you used sport weight yarn on 5's? And just to add insult to injury, might you take the instructions about binding off loosely on the thumb as a mere "suggestion"? Would you mutter about damn pattern writers? Would you make catty remarks about anorexic glove wearers?

Or would you just suck it up and hope to find someone at work tomorrow with petite hands?

A little snug ...

But as we say in the knitting world, "If at first you don't succeed, cast on again."

We're using the correct weight yarn now on the recommended needle size. This would be Karabella Yarn's "Marble" in the 35353 colorway. It's 45% alpaca and 55% wool and yes, there's definitely a difference between it and a sport weight yarn.

Andy says ...

Don't blame me, I didn't do it.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Here We Go Again

According to my calendar, there's only 18 more days until February. Some of you, like maybe one or two, may recall that I went a bit off the rails last February. It's my birthday month and I figured it would be as good a time as any to hold a GRAND SPECTACULAR CONTEST! And I did. Check the archives if you don't believe me.

Well it's a new year and it's time to raise the bar. A little. Time to focus on a new charity.

What that new charity is though will remain a secret until the 1st of February. Because it's my contest and I get to make the rules.

Last year's contest was geared primarily towards crowshitters because I'd been bitten by the crowshit bug and so there was a lot of giving away of hooks and crowshit books and umm ... acrylic. It was Simply Soft central around here.

This year's gonna be different. This year we're focusing on the sock knitters.

So you diehard sock knitters might wanna mark February 1st on your calendar to check back here to see what you need to do to win this contest. Because there will only be ONE winner.

ONE winner.

TWENTY EIGHT skeins of sock yarn.

We're keeping it simple this year.

Friday, January 12, 2007

The Queen Is Pleased

I know this may come as a shock to some of you, but perhaps you have already begun to suspect this. I am the living reincarnation of Elizabeth I. Or so I like to think. This realization did not come overnight. It was only after reading many, many historical tomes that the similarities became incredibly obvious. For one, my middle name is Elizabeth. Indeed. For a number of years I had red hair. Of course this was through the skill of my lovely stylist but let's not nitpick. I occasionally speak in the third person. I have been to England. Need I carry on? I thought not.

Anyway, the Queen (that would be me) was most pleased to come across these three patterns.

These scarves were designed based on Elizabeth I's life. This is truly an honour (notice British spelling of "honour", another clue). Of course I must make all three. And naturally nothing would do for their creation other than Cabin Cove Mercantile fingering weight yarn, 50% wool, 50% silk. In the colorway Orchid. "Dainty Bess" looks very beautiful knit in this yarn. I know this because I knit 30 rows and THEN remembered something about a "garter stitch border." Oops. This yarn frogs nicely. The Queen is pleased.

The Queen is also pleased about this recent gift from her loyal subject, trek.

Lots of lace weight yarn. Lots. The blue will be used for Evelyn Clark's "Flower Basket Shawl", the red yarn for Knitspot's "Orchard Plume Scarf". Thank you, dear trekster.

The Queen would also like to thank her loyal subjects at Yarndogs in Los Gatos for having such delightful things to purchase, not the least of which was a Crystal Palace circular needle. And Frog Tree alpaca sportweight for socks. It gets rather chilly in the castle.

Yes, the Queen is pleased.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Knitting Ennui

The knitting, she no go so good. The Forest Canopy Shawl is on hold, pending the purchase of a circular needle. I thought I'd be able to get away with straights but the extra long ones I'm using are too much of a pain in the butt. I feel as though I'm knitting with 2 X 4's or something.

The Oak Leaf And Acorn scarf is also on hold, pending divine intervention from the Yarn Gods. Next time I'm undoing a provisional cast-on I'll umm ... go a bit slower. So that I actually wind up with the 41 stitches I'm supposed to have instead of the oh ... 26 I have now. I'm not really sure where the other 15 stitches have disappeared to. However I think it safe to say that it would be rather obvious an error had occured if half the scarf was knit with 41 stitches and the other half 26.

So in the last two or three days I've cast on for umpteen socks, scarves and shawls. And frogged all of them. Sigh.

Or perhaps I'll cast on for Evelyn Clark's Flower Basket Shawl with this -

Hmm. Crap. I thought I'd uploaded that picture. Well hold that thought and I'll get back to you.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Not A Resolution

Apparently posting to my blog on a regular basis was NOT one of my New Year's resolutions. Sigh. And yet I expect everyone else to post to their blogs on a regular basis. This may be why I'm "relationship challenged." Ya think?

OK, so even though there hasn't been any blogging, there has been knitting. Really.

These are almost done - a pair of "Fetching" fingerless gloves from Knitty. I just need to take out the lovely orange yarn and knit a couple thumbs. But I want to use a circular needle to do that and alas, no US 5 circular needles in the house. Back burner until payday. I used Knit Picks "Andean Treasure" (100% Baby Alpaca) in Wild Rose and I'm quite enamored of this yarn. They're for a friend at the barn to wear while she mucks out stalls. Doesn't everyone wear baby alpaca while they're scooping manure?

Here we have the Forest Canopy Shawl, version 3. This does not mean I have done three of these. It means this is the third attempt. I love this pattern. I do. I think everyone should make a Forest Canopy Shawl. And I hope to God you all find yarn that works from the get go. The first yarn I tried would not cooperate. It clearly wanted to be knit into something else.

The second yarn was ... well ... can we all just agree that no one does denial like me? Especially when it comes to yarn? I cast on this particular yarn (which will not be named or photographed) thinking, "Aha, the *perfect* yarn." The colors were reminiscent of a forest and there was actually enough of it in my stash. And as I was knitting I ignored the voice in my head that suggested that perhaps this yarn was too fine, that maybe the fabric even before blocking was looking a little airy. I managed to bypass the fact that sometimes a wildly variegated yarn is not suitable for a lacy project. But finally I had to accept the most blatant fact of all - that no one in their right bloody mind would ever wear a shawl knit from brown, purple, yellow and green yarn. The horror.

So here we have boring hunter green. In Alpaca With A Twist's "Baby Twist." It does have excellent stitch definition however and is softer than soft. Let's all hope third time's a charm.