My First Granny Squares

Yes, I’m crocheting now, too. My mom taught me to chain and single crochet when I was young, but that’s all I ever learned. I made Barbie “clothes” that were all tubes essentially. I think there was a tube top, a skirt and a Russian-looking hat. All of them were very thick since they were single crocheted with leftover Red Heart.

I’m working on an amigurumi ninja. It’s the first crochet pattern I’ve ever looked at. The Babette Blanket is the second. I think the blanket will definitely be a long-term project. I need 50 of these small squares alone. I can churn them out in a few minutes each now, but then there are 4-round, 6-round, 8-round, 10-round and 12-round squares to be made as well.


Finally! A finished garment!

I’ve finished Pucker by Norah Gaughan just time to wear to my knitting group tomorrow! I’m really pleased by this final product. This is something I can wear all the time in this climate except for maybe the two months it’s actually cold here.

The fabric is very open, so I’m wearing a purple tank under this. It’s not the kind of thing you could wear without an undershirt. If I had to do it over again, I’d make the back width much smaller than the pattern suggests for my size. There’s a little waist shaping in the pattern, but I’d increase it to get the shirt to skim the hips and waist. The pattern is supposed to be big and flowy, so it turned out just as I expected. And I really do love it.

I also realized I haven’t shown you my Fraggle Squiggle Socks yet.
These are some of my favorite socks yet! The colorway fights with the beautiful lace pattern, but they striped so lovely and are fun to wear (and they match Pucker)! It’s on to this month’s sock club selection now (spoiler below). I forgot to take a picture of the yarn before winding it. I absolutely love the yarn, but I’m not so sure of the pattern yet. I’m hoping it will grow on me as I knit it. I found this month’s freebie to be another inane joke that doesn’t tickle my funny bone. Anyone want a stupid bumper sticker about poking dead things with sticks?I know they’re busy with Sock Summit, but geez.

Six months or three days?

I finished a project this week, and I’m unsure how to answer a frequently asked question. Whenever I show it to friends, they ask how long it took to knit. From cast on on to cast off, the answer is 6 months. I began this in January and finished in July. But when you look at the time I put into it (minus the worrying), I only actually touched it for three days. Three long days of dedicated work, but less than 20 hours probably.

The problem came from the gauge. This is the Aran Tam from the first “One Skein Wonders” book. It calls for one skein of worsted weight, but I had two skeins of a bulky yarn. My gauge was nowhere near what it needed to be. I had a beret that the reqestor wanted me to match for size, so I measured, did some math and cast on less stitches than required. Seemed fine, I knit the bottom of the beret in one day and ended up at the complicated cable chart where I quickly realized I did not have a good number of stitches to continue on.

This is where the six months come into play. I was a little overwhelmed when it came to modifying a chart. I’ve changed up patterns before, but a chart seemed like another language! I finally came up with a solution last week when I forced myself to sit down and figure it out. The pattern called for 5 repeats of what began as a 32 stitch pattern. I did four repeats beginning with 28 stitches. I took out some stitches in the transition triangle piece to compensate. As the pattern decreased, I skipped a decrease here and there until I was able to correctly follow the chart. The top took two days to complete.

So voila! I’m happy to have this off my needles and to be able to send it along to its rightful owner. It’s been hanging over me because I knew it would be easy to finish, it was just hard to face the gauge issue. It took just over one skein of Ironstone Harmony, so there’s plenty left for a pom pom or a tassel. I’ll send that extra skein along for the recipient to figure out. For future reference, I don’t recommend Harmony for cables. It’s loosely spun, so there’s not much give in the yarn when you’re moving the stitches around. I do think the finished product is very nice, though! It’ll be toasty warm!

What brings you to a work stoppage in your crafts? An annoying technique? Unsatisfactory progress? Irritating materials?

Is any week "normal"?

My schedule’s changed a bit this week, and adjusting is difficult. On top of that, this week wasn’t really “normal,” so it’s still hard to judge what the coming weeks will hold in way of time management. I had Monday off, but used some of that time to take friends to the airport (they’re adopting from Ethiopia) and then had Friday off but used part of that to have lunch with an old colleague. He’s actually the first person to hire me for a “real” job, so I’m particularly fond of him (on top of him being a really nice guy). We’ve both been living in Houston for years and haven’t met up until now. Saturday contained another meet-up with a former co-worker. I really had a good time catching up with everyone, but now I’m raring to go on some cleaning!

After lunch on Friday, I skipped over to the Container Store where I happened onto a big sale! For $10, I picked up this little fabric box to hide my works in progress (with updated pictures on my progress bar below right). They’re typically draped across our coffee table, which annoys both hubby and me. While I have some extra time on my hands, I’m looking forward to organizing our house a bit better, so this is one of my first steps. Goodbye clutter … or at least a little of it.

I’ve had a bit of startitis. I keep wanting to cast on new projects, but I’m trying to make myself finish a few things before I begin anything else. Trying.


Hang In There

It’s not the iconic kitteh photo, but Plato likes to stick his head through the bars in our upstairs loft balcony. It worries me, but is oh so cute.

Still knitting away on the Auburn Camp Shirt (into the sleeve shaping on the back) and Norah Gaughan’s Pucker (a few inches into the front). I think I need a little something to finish quickly (did a Swiffer cover a few weeks back, and that was a good break), but I’m feeling lazy. I think I’ll take a break for a few days and see if the mojo returns.