Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Finished Sock

Well, I finally finished my next pair of socks. This pair will be my May entry for the Sock A Month Kal - am getting it in just under the wire (It's 9:52pm Atlantic time, 8:52pm Eastern).

I used the Lichen Ribbed Sock pattern from Nancy Bush's Knitting Vintage Socks (pg. 26-28). I pretty much stuck to the pattern, except for the toe area which I did as I have done in my other sock patterns. I think it's a standard decreasing pattern. I nearly ran out of yarn for both of the socks, and when I was doing the decreasing in the toe area it didn't turn out quite right because I had adjusted the stitches on the needle as it had for the book. The result was that it was more of a "pointed" toe look which makes my big toes look really long and pointy. Trust me when I say they aren't. I have short stubby toes...Also, the socks are a little tight on my feet so they would probably fit someone with size 7 or 7 1/2 feet better. I will wash these up and put them on the mitten tree at church this Christmas.

Pattern: Lichen Ribbed Sock
From: Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush
Needles: 2.75 mm aluminum dpn's
Yarn: Knit Picks Parade
Colourway: Gumball

Saturday, May 27, 2006


One of the ladies where I work during the summer found out last weekend that she is going to be a grandmother. This will be the first grandchild for her and her husband. Needless to say, she is quite excited.

Yesterday, she asked me if I would be willing to be commissioned to do up a little layette ensemble. She wants a little sweater, a hat, pair of baby mittens (with no thumb of course) and pair of booties. She asked if I would have enough time. I should have...'should' being the key word here.

She has picked out the pattern from one of the baby pattern booklets I had in my knitting/crocheting bag, so I know which one it is. I've worked on it before, and just have to sew the arms on and do the edging. Wendy isn't sure what colour she wants though, since they don't know the gender of the baby. She is leaning towards white, but is going to ask some others what they think is an OK colour other than white. I said the typical gender neutral colours seem to be white, yellow, or green.

I'm not sure what to charge for this. I know I need to take into consideration what I pay for the yarn (unless she gets it), and I need to include my time as well. I have never made anything for payment before, so I have absolutely no idea what prices to charge - what is reasonable.

So, does anyone have any idea what a reasonable price to charge would be - especially in Canadian dollars (don't want to say $30 if it is in American, because for Canadian it would be more)...if that makes sense. So, let me know what you think I should charge for a baby's sweater, hat, mittens, and booties set.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Frustration & A New Beginning

Well, I ran into some frustration with trying to sew together my Let's Party Cardi. I think somewhere along the line I messed up in the knitting - probably on the front halves. I got the shoulders sewn together, no problem. My next step was to sew the sleeves on and then sew down the underside of the sleeve and then continue down the side of the body.

Well, here is where my problem is. I think I sewed the sleeve on wrong. I know I did at one little section and let me tell you it was annoying trying to find the end of the yarn AFTER I wove it back in through the seam. I figured I would undo the little area that I messed up on and then fix it. However, that prooved a little more difficult than I imagined.

So, I thought I would hold off and just do up the other side first and then go back. So, I sewed up the seam on the side first (the way I usually do). Then, I realized that I sewed it wrong. I put the right sides together and sewed, but when I turned it back the way it was supposed to be it didn't look right. I think I should have kept the wrong sides together and sewed and it would have been fine.

Well, then I tried to play with the other sleeve to see if I could make it fit. It didn't seem to be. Arrrgggghhhh!!!!! I am so frustrated! The party has definately ceased to exist with this item! So, I have put it down for awhile and will go back to it when I am not tempted to take scissors to's a pic for your pleasure (or lack of):

It's just a jumbled mess right now. I think if I can get it sewn together correctly, it will look nice. I even bought cute heart shaped buttons to sew on.

So, for now I will set it aside and put my focus on a couple of other knitting items. Firstly, I will need to work on my socks so that I can get them done before the end of the month. That way I will have a pair to count as my May socks for the Sock A Month KAL. Here is a current pic of the sock project:

Sorry for the picture being a little dark. I am close to starting the heel flap on the second sock. I just need to sit down and work at it. I have 8 days, but I don't want to leave it down to the last day or so and then not get it done. Once the heel is turned and I start working on the foot, it should go a little faster - you know, that "I'm nearly finished and I can't wait!" push is on.

Also, I felt like I needed a little mindless knitting to do, some garter stitch or stocking stictch...that sort of thing. So, I had got a couple of single skeins of baby yarn to make a couple of baby sweaters and would only have one 5.25 oz skein of each different colourway. I went through my patterns, but any that I had required more than what I had for yarn (I suppose I should have played it safe and got two of each, but I didn't). My next step was to turn to the net. I went to Knitty and found a cute little
sweater that I thought I would like to try. It didn't look too dificult. It's actually a cardigan, not a sweater...whatever, LOL.

The yarn is Bernat Baby Coordinates Sweet Stripes; the colourway is called Splash Stripes. It is a combination of acrylic, rayon and nylon (I know the yarn 'snobs' are cringing LOL). I've used this yarn before to make some crocheted baby blankets and I like it. It's soft and has a little shine to it.

Anyway, the pattern (see the link above) is for the sweater called Haiku, and I thought it looked so cute. The pattern says it is designed so you can use any yarn. You just do up a swatch to see how many stitches per inch you get, then do the math. The author has provided the calculations, all you do it take your number of stitches and fill in the blanks then do the math (I suggest using a calculator because it makes it faster and easier, especially if you are not good at math like me). They are really simple calculations though, so it isn't bad.

Anyway, there are only two stitches used - garter and box. The way the yarn is in the pic, you can see it it horizontal, however for the sweater, the stripes will be going verticle. I really hope this one turns out better than the cardigan! This one, from what I can see so far, only has sleeves to attach (and buttons). My understanding of the pattern, if I am reading it right, you start on one side and do 3 inches of garter stitch, cast on a certain amount to that and then do the box stitch for 2 inches, then back to garter for 2 more inches. Then you bind off a certain amount of stitches for the armhole and then work the back, bind off again for the other armhole, then cast on and do the other side of the front, not forgetting to make the button holes.

Once you make the sleeves, you just sew the shoulder seams, then sew on the sleeves and then the buttons, and voila! I really hope this one goes much better than the other one. I'm rather disappointed with my making of the Let's Parti Cardi. I mean, the pattern is fine, it is in my doing of it that got messed up...

If anyone has made the Haiku pattern from Knitty, please let me know how it turned out for you and if you had any problems.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Still No Pics

I would have thought by now I would have taken some pics of the Let's Party Cardi in progress. I still haven't blocked it, though I did go out and get the 2 buttons needed for it. The buttons go up near the top, and the rest of the cardigan is open. After the blocking I just have to seam it and add the 3 rows around the neck area and down each side of the front, then add the buttons and it will be comlpeted. Yeah, I think I've mentioned that before...and it's still not done. I had hoped to have gotten it blocked so that it would be dry by tomorrow or Sunday and I could finish it up. However, it is now Friday night and I don't have it blocked. There is a reason (or excuse if you prefer) for the laziness in getting it all together. I've been tired and on the go, somewhat, and haven't really had a lot of knitting time.

Monday evening I had my Weight Watcher's meeting, and was feeling rather tired afterwards. Tuesday evening I was rushed because when I got home from work and checked my email, I had a reminder that there was a CE Board (Christian Education Board) meeting at 7pm and at that point (of reading my email), it was after 5. Wednesday I had a BBQ to attend for the leaders of the kids mid-week program at church (it was yummy - the BBQ, not the program).

Last night I was free, but I had got some bad news when I got home from work. I found out that I did not get accepted into the B. Ed. program for next year. Needless to say I was feeling rather upset and depressed the rest of the night. Not even knitting would have dragged me out of that funk.

I'm feeling better tonight, so far - though I did have a few moment this morning that weren't all that good. I still didn't feel like handwashing the cardigan and pinning it out to dry, so instead I started a new sock. Yeah, instead of working on the one I have on the go (not too far from doing the heel flap), I decided I wanted to start a new one - but that's normal for me lol.

I'm still waiting to see if they have the adjusted sizes posted yet for the Reid sweater at Knitty, but haven't seen anything yet. I want to do this sweater up for my best friend's daughter, and from what I've read on other blogs and knitting forums, the size 4 and 6 measurements are messed up (apparently they are knitting up way to large for a normal 4 and 6). So, I don't want to start until I get the right numbers. Though I have to wonder if I were to knit the size 4 if it would be large enough to fit a 6 year old (the age of my friend's daughter).

So, sadly, again no pics of knitting. I was going to try to post another pic of Tinker Belle, but for some reason Blogger is not co-operating.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Warning: Boring Post, No Pics

Yeah, honestly it is going to be a boring post and once again no pics! Sheesh, if I want to attract people to my blog and have them leave comments I am going to have to stop making boring entries and not showing any pics... (edited to say that I decided to post a pic so the post wouldn't look so bare again)

I started back to work on Monday, and my days are longer now than they were in school this semester. I get up 6:45-7:00 and end up needing a nap after supper, which of course throws off my sleeping at night because come bed time, I am not tired!

Needless to say...ok maybe it isn't needless...anyway, I haven't felt like knitting much this week. Well, when I'm at work I feel like knitting, or writing, but once I get home my mojo is go go...I've only done about 8 rows on the second sleeve of the Let's Party Cardi this week. I'm really hoping to finish it tomorrow though and get the blocking done.

Thanks to all who left a comment on the previous post with the suggestion of blocking first and then seaming. So, with regard to the blocking, do I just soak it in water and then let it dry flat? Do I wash it? What do I use to wash it with? The yarn says to handwash, but is regular detergent (we use Tide) ok to use, or do I need something special? Man, I'm such a dunce with this LOL - though I blame it on not having done any of this before...

Ok...I couldn't stand not having a picture in the post so I have included one of my furry baby, Tinker Belle, just so the post wouldn't look so bare.

I hope to get some pics of knitting to include soon, and hopefully I'll get that cardigan finished this weekend and have pics of it to include in the next post.

Off to try to find some knitting mojo again. Happy Knitting!

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Just A Wee Update

Sorry that this isn't much of a post. I have been dealing with graduation, and it finally happened yesterday!

So, with knitting news, I've put a few rows on my second sock of the one I was working on when I was doing the red feather and fans. I'm only about an inch past the cuff, so not much progress with that. However, I finally got the first sleeve for the Let's Party Cardi completed! Woot! I don't think it quite worked out right with the pattern - if I could have added 2 more stitches it would have but oh well. I've got the first 2 rows done on the second sleeve so far. I just hope this one goes much better than the first and that I don't have to end up frogging again! Once I get that done, then all I need do is block and put together.

So, I have a question. When blocking (to be honest I've never done this before), do I block first and then sew it together, or do I sew it together and then block it? What's the best way to do it? Would appreciate your thoughts, opinions, and advice on this.

Happy knitting!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

The Horror & The Honor

Oh, the horror of it all! I can't believe this finally happened to me. I mean, I knew eventually that it would, but not just now! I bet you're wondering just what I'm talking about. Well, wonder no more for I will tell you.

I experienced the WWF for the first real time this morning!! Oh, I am in utter disbelief that I would have to experience this right now. Why couldn't it happen much later down the road instead of now? Oh, yeah, I should explain what WWF is. No, it is not the world wrestling federation (and I think I heard they actually changed their letters now to something else, but since I'm not a fan of the stuff I don't really care, lol). Is it the World Wildlife Fund? Nope, though I think their little panda symbol is so cute!

No, WWF stands for World Wide Frogging! What does world wide have to do with it? Well, nothing but I thought it might make help me create a post about my frogging experience. Yeah, I know, I'm lame.

Remember my
Let's Party Cardi that I have been working on? Well, I have the back completed, both fronts, and was nearly completed with the first sleeve - I just had maybe 5 or 6 more rows to go until I would bind off. Then I discovered it. A huge mistake. The directions said to "work in pattern, and at same time, inc 1 st at each edge..." Ok, well somehow between reading that and following the pattern to the first row (every 4th row) that required the increasing, I somehow overlooked or forgot about the "at each edge" part of it. What I ended up doing was only increasing one stitch at one edge. It said to keep doing this until you get 54 stitches, and works out 11 times. So, as I'm working away at it and am nearing 40 stitches, I somehow did the math and 4 x 11 = 44 right? Well it wasn't adding up for me. How can you get 54 stitches if 4 x 11 = 44? So I read further and it said to knit until it measured 10 inches. And I'm thinking 10 inches with 54 stitches at the rate I'm going isn't going to happen - either that or it is going to be as nearly as wide as the back. What 4 year old kid has arms that big?

So, I decided there must have been a printing error and it should have read 44 stitches instead of 54. So, I followed the pattern until I got to 44 and then knit until it reached the required 10 inches and started to do the first part of the binding off for the sleeve cap. I held the sleeve up and folded it together to see how it would look as a sleeve. Well, it looked a little thin, like it might not be big enough to go around an arm. It was at this point that I went back and looked over the directions and found where I went wrong.

Yeah, yeah, I know...all knitters experience this, but it's my first real frogging experience and it made me sad (insert sad, pathetic looking face here). At least it was on the sleeve of a childs cardigan with just knitting and purling stitches though, and not some intricate piece of lace or something. Though since I plan to try some lace this summer, I am fearing this will happen then too. Ok Shelley, suck it up and get on with it....

Now, comes the honor! If you are still reading this by this point...I checked the comments on my previous post before I started my blog entry just now, and found out Stephanie had left a comment. Lot's of Stephanie's out there right? Well, I hadn't recalled a Stephanie leaving a comment before (at least that I can think of, but I could be wrong - it's been known to happen before (case in point, see the first part of this post).

So, usually if I don't recognize a name, I click on it to go see the blog and if it is one I have visited before or not. Anyway, to my great surprise, the blog that appeard was none other than the Yarn Harlot's!!! Woot! I got a comment from the Great Yarn Harlot! I feel so privledged and...faint! Ok, maybe not faint - that would be a lie and I don't want to lie. But hey, it made for good theatrics didn't it?

Now, I am a consistant reader of the Yarn Harlot. I may not always leave a comment, but I have in the past. Anyway, I know she says that people are surprised when she tells them she reads their blogs. Well, I now know how those people feel. Woot!

I just wish I had one of those witty cool blogs, or one of those blogs that show fabulous pics of hard intricate patterns that have been made, or one of those blogs full of items designed by the blog owner/operator. Sadly, mine isn't like that. It's a blog with a few pics of mediocre items knit by a somewhat newish knitter. Now, I've been knitting for about 4 or 5 years now, but I tend to stick to the easy patterns and fear the more advanced ones. I think maybe I could move up to intermediate now though...which I think I'm starting to do in some cases. Anyway, the bulk of my knitting prior to now has been making mittens and 3 sweaters for my soon to be 3 year old nephew. But, I'm sure Ms. Harlot understands. I just hope she wasn't bored to tears...

Now I am all inspired to go back and work on the sweater sleeve of the Let's Party Cardi and hopefully get it completed (the whole thing, not just the sleeve) before I start work on Monday.

Happy Knitting!