Sunday, September 23, 2007


Mr. Strange and I were sitting in a bar last night catching up on the past couple of days when this sweater walked in. Instantly, my focus shifted as I tried to absorb every detail. Raglan sleeves, waffle rib bodice, stockinette on the lower body, tiny rib on the cap sleeves, 3 large buttons to close the bodice, oversized ribbed collar. It was all I could do to keep myself from walking over to her to get a closer look. Would the wearer think I was weird if I asked her where she got it and if I could touch it, maybe take some measurements and make some sketches? Yeah, I'm sure she would have. Instead I cast furtive glances her way at every opportunity, wondering if a sport weight wool and cotton blend would be the best choice...

Ahh. But I digress. You want pictures? I give you pictures!!


The V-neck cardigan!

The Classic Collar Cardigan!

And last, but not least...

Drumroll please...rrrrrrrdddddddddddddd ...


All finished since my Labor Day Inventory. The other night I had a dream that I looked down at my hands to see that I was knitting so fast that I couldn't see my fingers move. It only lasted for a few seconds because as soon as I realized what I was doing, I messed up. It figures! Mr. S and I went out for the massive photo shoot today. It was nearly 80 degrees out and I was roasting in that scarf and my new sassy hat (makes me feel like a movie stah). We took 93 photos, and I chose several of each garment that I liked, so for more pics and all the details, visit the newly updated gallery, which includes the pattern for Bailey.

Only one UFO left to go, Ariann, and then I can start lots of new projects without guilt!


I leave you with a "strange" story...

Mr. S's mother (Mrs. Strange, not to be confused with me, Ms. Charm), believes that Mr. S gives me a "long leash" (she is nearly 85 and, although a feminist, has some definite ideas about how a woman should be spending her time). While visiting her this past week, he happened to mention that I went to Quilting group on Mondays, Pilates class on Tuesdays and knitting group on Wednesdays. Mrs. S asked him if these women I hung out with were married. He told her that for the most part, they were. She then asked him "Are they out looking for men?".

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Pillow Talk

I came home tonight after working late and took a bunch of photos of the sweaters I've finished recently, but I realized that pictures of sweaters on hangers just doesn't do them justice. So, I'll just have to wait until Mr. Strange and I can coordinate our schedules with the light and weather. In the meantime, here's a few sneak peaks.

Tiny shell buttons that I really like.

Big Necco wafer buttons that I thought I'd like, but changed my mind (they look like UFO's - the spaceship, tiny green men kind).

Much better buttons.

Ariann sleeve in progress. I really need an extra dpn because this is getting ackward, but I only have 4 in size 7. I wonder where the other one is? Under the couch maybe? Ewww. Not going to look. I'll have to suffer. Why did I pick this color? I really wish it were a nice heathered oatmeal instead.

Frances. An accident waiting to happen? I committed one of the deadly knitter sins "Thou shalt not knit without proper gauge". This is supposed to finish 34.5 inches. Uh oh. If I block it to fit, those lovely cables will stretch across my bosom in a most unflattering way.

Such nice cables they are . Too nice to distort. I've decided to start increasing. You would not believe the conversations I've had with myself over this. Mostly late at night, in bed, when I should be sleeping. They go like this:

Good Me: "I really should gauge that yarn on a larger needle to see if I can get the right gauge".

Lazy Me: "But Ive already knit so much already! Just think of all that work."

Good Me: "Yeah, but if it comes out too tight, then I'll have to frog the whole thing and do I really want to finish it and then find out?"

Lazy Me: "I might run out of yarn if I knit a larger size. I only bought one extra skein and it was months ago in a shop far, far away"

Good Me: "It doesn't look like the picture. I like the way it looks in the picture. I want it to look like that on me"

Lazy Me: "As if it ever does! Those increases will work out fine. I can always bind some off at the underarm"

Good Me: "If I increase too much, I'll look like Blair on Facts of Life, wearing one of those 80's sweater vests"

Lazy Me: "It wont look anything like that! It will be fitted!"

Good Me: "Nope. I'm going to stop and knit a gauge with larger needles and see how it comes out."

Lazy Me: "Am I really sure I want to do that? The cables probably won't look as good. They'll be loose and less defined. Think of how nice they look"

Good Me: "Yeah, they do look really good. I don't think I've ever knit such nice cables. Oh, what should I do? I want it to fit!"

Lazy Me: "I'll just think about it tomorrow. In the meantime, just keep knitting"

Good Me: "Well, OK, but just a few more rows. Maybe I should increase every 8 rows instead of 6..."

Lazy Me: "Now that's the spirit! Maybe every 10 rows!"

Good Me: "Hmmm. Maybe so, but what if ....."

Lazy Me Evil Me: "Stop thinking about it. Think about that Rowan Felted Tweed in stash, or maybe some socks? Oh! I could make the Einstein Coat with some of that yummy rust colored Lion Brand Thick'n Quick!"

I scare myself sometimes.

Sunday, September 16, 2007


Thanks for all the nice comments on Fifi. I have to admit that it feels a bit too sexy to wear to work. Every time I put it on, I feel like a pin-up girl and it doesn't really go with the "professional" look I try to project at work. I should start a new KAL: "Not too sexy knitters club".

My blog manners have gone to the dogs, so if you've left comments lately, thank you very much for taking the time. In the past I would have hunted down your blog (if you have one), and sent you a personal e-mail or at least left a comment on your blog. I have been visiting your blogs (I know who you are), but I haven't been commenting. I have no excuse other than terminal laziness and a case of manic knitting.

My friend Dee is one of those thoughtful people who always sends thank you notes. I want to be one of those people. I have stacks of lovely cards (some were even gifts that I never sent thank you notes for), but even if I do take the time to write one, I carry it around in my purse until the envelope becomes ratty and the price of postage goes up and then it's too late to send it without adding a $.01 stamp.

OK, so I've been rude blogger, but I've been a good knitter. Not only did I finish Fifi, but I also finished Ginger and the v-neck cardigan from Louisa Harding's Modern Classics. I'm nearly finished seaming the cardigan from Paton's Next Step 3, have started the first sleeve of Ariann and started Frances from the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Collection that I posted about earlier. I also frogged my Monkey socks. But I have no photo's to show! Tonight I made some fabric trading cards for my quilting group (nope, not one photo). I had this idea that I'd try to entice people into participating in a swap. As usual I procrastinated and then had to whip up some samples. Why do I do these things? I should have a personal assistant. Not someone to hold my umbrella or shopping bags, but to smack me up side the head whenever I come up with these ideas.

You probably know that the new Knitty is finally up. I want to like Mr. Greenjeans and Cherie Amour, but they're just not what I'm looking for these days. As a matter of fact, I don't like many of the new patterns I see out there. I waited forever for Veronik Avery's new book, but when I finally saw it, there wasn't anything in it to justify buying the whole book. Ditto with Fitted Knits and Knitting Nature. The new issues of Interweave and Vogue both left me wanting too. Sigh. I want to knit this and this. I want to stay home all day and knit.

I'm going to go limp along now. Photos soon. Thanks for reading. Really. I mean it.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The F Word

is Finally


Forgive me

For the lousy


Mr. Strange couldn't wait and went off to play in his shop, so this is the best I could do.

There's a reason why this sweater was chosen by the Sexy Knitter's Club. Can you say Boobylicious?

Monday, September 03, 2007

Labor Day Inventory

I don't know about you, but when I go on vacation, I adopt a gluttonous attitude, throwing all discipline out the window. Potato chips? Sure, bring 'em on. Beer? Lots please. French fries, chocolate, burgers, pizza, Chinese food? I'll take the lot. Bedtime? When I feel like it. Tired? Drink more coffee. Wound up? Have a drink or two - why not three? The problem is that it's hard to gain control over the reckless abandonment when it's over. My vacation ended weeks ago, but I have been wallowing in debauchery ever since. Each day, I have been telling myself that I need to get control over things and go back to a structured, disciplined life, and each day, I've succumbed to one temptation or another. As Labor Day approached, I decided that it was the perfect opportunity to start fresh. I have decided that my first step will be to take control of my knitting.

I guess you could call this a Frog it or Finish it lineup. With the exception of a few unfelted flowers stuffed in a bag in the closet, these are my UFO's:
Bailey Island scarf in Malabrigo using my own pattern. I was obsessed with finishing this scarf, even more so when I ran out of yarn. Almost as soon as I found and purchased several skeins online, I began to lose interest. Right now its about 45 inches long, and I'd like it to be about 65 inches. Since I'm so close and because I really like it, I'll Finish it.
Here and There Cables from Scarf Style with Reynold's Odyssey. Oh dear. I initially started this scarf because I couldn't find the Malabrigo for Bailey. The yarn was what I bought after I returned some Dolly Maxi that Mr. Strange bought me for Christmas as an alternative to the Malabrigo (the Dolly didn't do it for me). I'd always wanted to make something with this yarn, so it wasn't hard to switch gears from Bailey to this. Unfortunately, I hated knitting it. If I pick it up again, I will still hate knitting it, so it will be Frogged! I can always use the yarn for something else (I have 8 balls of it).
Pomatomus from Knitty, Winter 2005 in Koigu KPPPM started last November. I had good intentions, but lost interest at one point and set it aside. Fortunately, I had the foresight to write myself a little note to indicate where I left off. I still doesn't make me want to finish it, but darn, I'm so close. For now, I'll continue to set aside as a Finish later (hey, it's my list, I can change the rules if I want to).
Just your basic Yankee Knitter sock. I started it at some point in January. I think I wanted a little color to break up CPH, but wasn't really keen on the unexpectedly large red stripes and gave up. Feh. I'm not in love, but what else am I going to do with it? Aimee, want some sock yarn? If not, I'll Finish it, eventually.
Monkey Socks from Knitty, Winter 2006 using Spunky Eclectic Skinny sock. Started and stalled in June. I decided that my gauge was too loose after one weekend of knitting this. I just haven't gotten around to frogging it yet, but I will.
Sunburst Pullover from Interweave, Summer 2002 (cover) using Reynolds Ole Ole. When I first started knitting (as an adult), I saw this sweater on the cover of Interweave and thought that it looked incredibly difficult and set a goal to make it when I was experienced enough. OK, I'm experienced enough now, but do I really want to make it? It's sat in a bag for nearly a year. In all that time, I haven't wanted to touch it. Frog!
Cardigan with Straight Sleeves from Paton's Next Step 3 using Berrocco Keltic in color Thistle. I was so close to finishing this in April, but Spring brought warmer weather and I made a mistake on the button bands and have to do them over. It's all blocked and ready to go. Now that Fall is coming, I think I'll Finish it!
Ariann from Chic Knits in Ella Rae Classic Wool. Started in April and abandoned after the Getaway in favor of the Surplice Lace Top and summer knitting. Love the color, love the pattern. It will be perfect for fall. Now, if I can just find time to Finish it...
Ginger from the Rowan Summer Tweed Collection in Rowan Summer Tweed. Started in July and dropped like a hot potato when I realized that I needed to block it before seaming. How lame is that? I will Finish it, hopefully in time to wear it before next summer!
Fifi from French Girl Knits in Rowan Calmer. I currently have a love/hate relationship with this sweater. I put it aside just before my vacation to work on the cardigan below. I picked it up again this past Thursday, realizing that it would soon be too chilly to wear. I checked my clicker and, relying on the number 5 that appeared, started on round 6 of the repeat. It wasn't until I'd finished the repeat and had worked 2 rows into the next that I realized that my last cable was shorter than the rest. Shit and shinola! Yesterday morning I forced myself to tink back to the mistake, which I had made 8 rows back. I knit until my arms hurt, and am convinced that it's fallen into the Black Hole of Knitting, because it doesn't seem to grow at all. Still, I am so close that it would be ridiculous not to Finish it.
V-Neck Cardigan from Lousia Harding's Modern Classics in GGH Linova, started August 10th. I started this thinking that I needed some easy knitting to work on during vacation. I barely touched it the whole week, but have been working diligently since then. So far, I've finished the fronts and back and am about half way done one sleeve. I want to Finish this so badly so I can wear it this season and start something new!!
Ummmm. This is an experiment I started last weekend. I can explain myself. You see, ever since this yarn showed up at JoAnn Fabrics for $2.99 a skein, I have been fondling it. The colors are beautiful (so why did I choose this color?) and the ply is very nice, for acrylic. It even knits up evenly. If I needed to make a washable garment for a child or a dog, it would be perfect; but I don't have either and there's no chance that one is going to appear. Ever. So, it's already frogged. Let's face it, no matter how nice the color is or how nicely it knits up, it's still plastic, and I have all of this beautiful natural fiber in my stash to play with:
Which brings me to the real reason for my self-imposed Frog it or Finish it mandate: I want to start something new so badly, but I won't allow myself to until I at least finish Fifi and the V neck cardigan. So far, here's what I am dreaming of (subject to change at whim):
Frances from the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Collection in Debbie Bliss Rialto...
V Neck Cardigan from Freedom Spirit 455 in color #506 Air. My friend Lori found this yarn before I did and put 5 skeins on hold at our LYS. I wanted some too, but they sold out and I just happened to find a bag of 10 skeins at another shop later. In anticipation of Lori's birthday, I set it aside until I could decide if I would: a) give her all 10 skeins; b) give her 5 skeins; or c) keep them all for myself and give her something else. As luck would have it, she just picked up her 5 balls from the LYS and, wouldn't you know, my bag had the same dye lot and, between the two of us, we have enough for each of us to make a sweater (and possibly a beret)!
Some basic socks from the Regia Design Line by Kaffe Fassett. Landscape Fire, Color #4259 (Left) and Landscape Earth, Color #4255 (Right). I! love! this! yarn!
I've decided that crochet doesn't really count, but it is yarn after all, and the Larger Than Life Bag would be really nice for the Fall. Maybe I'll Finish it in time for this fall.
In the midst of all this finishitupitis, I'm still plugging away at Brave New World. So far, all of the center blocks have been sew together.
Remember that cheapo fabric that shrunk? As I predicted, it caused some grief when I trimmed up the block, leaving less than the seam allowance to stitch. My solution? I added a sliver of the same fabric (after pre-shrinking it by pressing the bejeezus out of it).
See, it in the grand scheme of things it doesn't even show!
Now there's just those pesky borders to sew on.

If I stick to my guns, you should be seeing some finished knits very soon. Until then, I give you permission to scold me if I start another project before finishing at least one of the above! Of course, I have been known to keep secrets...