Tuesday, April 22, 2008

WIP Update, April 2008 Edition

More than a week later and I'm finally getting around to posting about my WIPs. I've really been neglecting this thing, huh? I've also been neglecting Ravelry and other forms of communication, and I'm still behind on my RSS feed. One day maybe I'll wake up and be caught up and ready to communicate again! Hopefully soon.

Anyhow, I have a gazillion projects going right now (or at least it feels like it). I'd like to get some things off the needles, but it's been slow going. I think it's the restlessness of spring. Come to think of it, most of the abandoned WIPs were cast on during some spring or another, so maybe there's something to that!

First up, the Cherry Leaf Shawl:

Upated Cherry Leaf Shawl in Progress

The pattern comes from Victorian Lace Today, and it's being knit with laceweight merino from The Plucky Knitter. I like the yarn and I like the pattern, and the 18 repeats of the main pattern went by quickly. I just haven't felt like doing the border, partly due to needing a modification, since there's no way I'm crocheting a picot edge on afterwards (I'd rather do a knit picot cast off). I think I'll finish it pretty quickly once I pick it up again, but I'm not in a hurry (since I don't wear lace shawls that often anyway, though I'm hoping to change that this spring/summer/fall as my collection grows).

Then, a Washcloth Trio:

Washcloth Trio in Progress

Ugh. Why I ever thought knitting washcloths in cotton would be a good idea, I really don't know. These patterns come from Mindful Knitting, and while I like the final product, I don't like knitting with cheap cotton (Lily Sugar 'n Cream in this case)! I'm trying to make myself do 10 rows a day (err... most days) and so far that's yielded one washcloth and a little bit of progress on the second. I think this method will allow me to finish this very old WIP by the end of the year, which is the only goal I've set for myself. :-P

Next, some Stockinette Anklets:

Ankle Socks in Progress

I had one skein of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Baby Stripe, and since the stripey yarn doesn't really go with anything, I decided I would have to make a pair of socks out of the one skein, which meant anklets. Unfortunately, my US 1 (2.25mm) Knit Picks Harmony circs broke going through airport security a few weeks ago (I do not know how) and I've been forced to knit these on US 0s, which I don't really like. I'm going to do the second sock before I do the ribbing on the first (to make sure I have enough yarn) but I'm just not motivated to cast them on. I'm using the YO short-row heel/toe from Knitty's RPM, because I happen to like it.

Another "no pattern" project, a Continental Garter Stitch Scarf:

Continental Garter Scarf in Progress

I'm going old-skool with this one. :-P I want to do some fair-isle garments, and to make them go faster, I want to use the two-handed stranding method (where you hold one strand in each hand). Only problem is that I don't really know how to knit continental! That's where this scarf comes in. It will be knit continental to force me to really learn and stabilize my gauge. I even went back to bamboo needles (better grip) and I wound the yarn by hand! My biggest problem with continental knitting is that tensioning the yarn is totally different than when I hold it in my right hand, and I'm really struggling with the first and last stitch of each row. I'm trying to remember to do a few rows a day and I'm hoping blocking will fix the tension issues once I'm done with the scarf. I'm thinking this will make a good scarf to give away for charity (the yarn is Handpaintedyarn.com Handspun Bulky in Cardenal, but it reminds me of Carnelian stone when knit up).

And a sweater, the Notre Dame de Grace Pullover:

Notre Dame de Grace Pullover in Progress

I'm using Carodan Farm worsted weight yarn for this project, and let me tell you, it's not soft! My hands don't feel rough from using it, though, and my gauge swatch tells me that it softens up quite a bit after a nice bath. I'm hoping the tough yarn will lead to a very durable pullover. Also, if you like sheepy yarns, this one is for you, because it smells quite a bit like sheep! I think I'm a little more than halfway through (assuming I don't run out of yarn, which I'm starting to worry about), though I'm starting to get bored with the double seed stitch. Which is why I couldn't help myself and cast on for the next project last night....

Finally, the Lutea Lace Shoulder Shell:

Lutea Lace Shoulder Shell in Progress

It must be spring, because the call of the bamboo yarn was pretty strong. Also, I saw some pictures of this tank elsewear (*cough*Ravelry*cough*) that were much more attractive than the one pictured with the pattern in Interweave Knits (note that this pattern and the one above are both from the Summer 2007 issue of IK, so I must really like that issue!). Note that I didn't like the rolled edge on the bottom of this, so I'm doing a simple picot hem instead. I'm barely passed that point, and I'm going to try and focus most of my energy on finishing the above sweater before it gets too warm (this was supposed to be the big project I cast on AFTER that), so this one might only get a little bit of work in the short term. Another modification I'll make will be to adjust the decreases so that there are more of them and so that they fit my row gauge, which does not equal the row gauge in the pattern (as is typical of my knitting).

I have a couple other WIPs that are still being completely neglected, but that's okay. My goal still remains to finish all pre-2008 WIPs by the end of 2008, except for the Log Cabin Blanket (that's just to use up leftover sock yarn).

Also, thanks to the three-day weekend (yesterday was Patriots' Day here in Massachusetts), I got a good amount of stuff done around the house, including blocking two scarves and a pair of socks! So there will hopefully be some FO pictures/posts in the near future (assuming I remember to create entries here!).


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