Chartreuse Knits

Where a college student learns--and struggles with--the zen of knitting. It's the process, not the product, though the product is much more fun to wear!


Procastinating is the best way to never get anything done...

I spent three hours this morning untangling my ball of Touch Me. It got a bit mangled last night in my knitting bag, so I figured I would just hand-wind the ball, and therefore it wouldn't decide to become a mess of soft fuzziness.

There's my progress thus far. It's certainly an interesting pattern, and once you figure it out, it's quite easy to memorize. Oh how soft it is! Now off to read and study I go... and to think about my man, who's in California as I write this. I miss him so much!


It's the end of the World/School Year as we know it!

Ah! Final exams are nearly upon us! Classes end a week from tomorrow, and I'm excited... However, I've been a bad girl by knitting instead of studying hardcore.

Indeed, I have pictures to show for myself!

Here is a finished Clapotis wrapped around my head, and another picture of it draped so elegantly over my chair. The dropped stitches give it such depth and beauty (Not to mention stretchiness)! It's such a lovely scarf and it drapes in such a lovely way, either around my shoulders or around my head. It is a very elegant scarf, and I reccomend it even to novice knitters. Wow. Oh, I used 2.25 skeins of Carron's Simply Soft in Black. That yarn is so easy to knit with and oh-so-soft.

This is a version of the Marsan Watchcap I knit exactly to pattern using some gorgeous dark cerulean Paternayan Yarn. I got the yarn at a secondhand clothing store in my hometown, along with a whole bunch of cotton and two other hanks of Paternayan yarn for a mere seven dollars! I was so excited when I got it! I knit the hat to pattern, but it is MUCH too small for any adult head. I wanted to bequeath it unto my boyfriend, but his head is much larger than my own, and considering the hat didn't even fit on my head, well, you get the idea. However, my mom has a good friend with three small children. They live in New Jersey. I figure that it's high time I knit them some presents, especially since they have a new baby girl! I'm thinking Haiku from the Fall '02 issue of Knitty in cotton for the baby girl, and another hat for their other little boy.

This is a new project I started yesterday. It's Branching Out From the new Knitty. I had some Silke-Tweed from Garn Studio in a lovely chartreuse and cream. I wondered how I could combine the two in a more complex pattern than just a stockinette or garter stitch scarf. I was actually thinking of doing the Flower Basket Shawl from Interweave Knits Fall '04, but I messed up a bit on the lace early on, and decided to give up. Yet I remembered that BigGeek had done a version of Branching out that wasn't in a hazy little laceweight yarn. So, following her lead, I present my chartreuse Branching Out, and will proceed to make another one in the cream color for my mumsy for Mother's Day.

I couldn't take the siren-song of Blue Butter. I cast on for Vintage Velvet this morning and haven't looked back. It's so pretty! So soft! I can't wait for it to be wrapped around my neck in all its plush velvety goodness... mmmm.....

In other news, my friend Laura and I went on our first blocking escapade (both of us had never blocked before, though I've been knitting for about a year longer than she has). She made a nice little stockinette scarf with a garter stitch border to learn the techniques, and decided to give it to her mom for Mother's Day. So yesterday we blocked it to get it to un-curl and lay flat. It's so soft and smooth. She used some yarn that I had from a deconstructed 100% merino wool sweater, and produced something lovely. Next she's working on the Zeeby bag in a brown and cream two-ply yarn from another deconstructed sweater I had. (The sweaters cost me about a dollar each, so I don't mind passing on the yarn to her. Besides, we're college kids with limited income.... she'll pass some sweaters along my way in due time). I'm so proud of how well she's doing!

Last but not least (and alas, without pictures), I finished the Slythering Slytherin scarf for Laura. Yesterday it received the final touches of fringe and was bequeathed upon my darling friend. (Now I have five more to go... for her other three housemates, for my boyfriend, and last, one for me... I suspect lots of movie knitting in the future!). Hopefully I can get them done by the time the movie comes out in November, and then we all can Cosplay in our Hogwarts uniforms. Hooray!


Feed the Squirrels, Tuppence a bag!

On my way back home after class this afternoon, I passed over by Turtle Pond, and saw a couple of squirrels scavenging for some food. Being the freak of nature I am, I whipped out a bag of salted peanuts I carry around in my backpack expressly for that purpose (they're stale, which is why I don't eat them myself). So I fed the squirrels and relished in the glorious afternoon.

In knitting news, there is quite a bit to be said! First of all, I taught my friend Laura how to knit. She got very excited about the prospect of knitting some "naughty" apparel from Knitty's "Sex and the Knitty" issue. But as always, first things first. I tossed a ball of nice cream-colored merino her way (from a deconstructed sweater), gave her a few instructions in garter stitch, and off she went. She's got about three or four feet of the scarf done, and as she's progressed, the knitting has become much more even and with far fewer mistakes. *thinks hard about how to introduce stockinette stitch*

Secondly, I'm finished with Clapotis. It looks so elegant and gorgeous! The Caron's Simply Soft I used was so nice for the project. The dropped stitches were pretty easy to coax along, and it's so lovely to the touch! Since it's acrylic and I don't really have the means, I haven't blocked it yet. However, I may correct its shape when I get back to Brownsville. Pictures still to come, as daylight is gone, and taking pictures solo doesn't end up flattering me too well.

Third of all, I want to make the Dude's sweater from The Big Lebowski. If I can pattern it correctly, I may make adjustments for an original uber-huge one, and one that's a bit more form-blattering for females. But who knows. I have yet to make a sweater, much less design one!


In the final leg of the race....

Clapotis is almost done! I've made it through two decrease repeats, and it's only getting smaller. I love how the dropped stitches look... it's fabulous. Hopefully it'll be a little chilly tomorrow night and I can wear it out to Mt. Bonnell. Whee!

I also decided to hold my horses on the Vintage Velvet. I felt guilty about starting a new project with 3 projects still on the needles. So I've decided to finish up the projects I have, especially the Harry Potter scarves that I've promised my darling friends, (since we're going to cosplay in our uniforms when the movie comes out in November), the socks, and above all, the nearly complete Clappy. I'll work on Vintage Velvet when the need for scarves becomes more pressing in the fall. Then I'll truly be able to enjoy its plush luxuriousness. Besides, I definitely do need to increase my stash this summer whilst in Spain and on our family trip to Paris. Phildar anyone?


Blue Butter

Much as I adored admiring my beautiful blue ball of velvety goodness, I couldn't help it--I had to cast on. The yarn is so dreamy, velvety, buttery and luscious! I sit and stroke it lovingly, like I would do when we had a pet bunny when I was younger. I would just sit and stroke its beautiful softness. But I need something that beautiful and silky around my neck... and then I'll have to make more. *sigh* It's beautiful. Considering I haven't made much progress on it yet, pictures will come in a few (hours, days, weeks, who knows?).


Celebrate by buying yarn. Oh! The possibilities!

A day of zen and contemplation. Well, first of all, let me explain the title of the post. This week and next week are the dual weeks from hell. Basically, I have either an exam or a paper due in each and every one of my classes. Yesterday I had an exam first thing in the morning. Today I had a complex paper due at 2 pm. Next week, I have an exam on Wednesday, and a paper due on both Thursday and Friday. I know I should be kicking into gear and getting those papers done while I have the time... but I haven't even begun thinking about them yet. Why?

Today is the first Thursday of the month. Austin, marvelous town that it is, holds a monthly event on the first Thursday of the month, where artisans and stores on South Congress St stay open late and showcase their wares, usually at a discounted price. So, patient little girl that I am, I wait until today to make my way down to the yarn store and see if the Muench Touch Me I've been lusting after for the Vintage Velvet scarf in Pam Allen's "Scarf Style" has come in. Although they didn't have it in the rich red I so desired, they had it in this absolutely gorgeous shade of midnight blue. It is the softest thing I've ever touched. I mean, chenille is fabulous to the touch, but think of it as synthetic angora. And the beautiful thing about this yarn is that it has a slight bit of wool in it, so when I wash the scarf, as per the instructions, it will felt a wee bit.

I also got myself some lovely self-striping yarn from Lana Grossa. I can't help myself, the richness of the colors, and the absolute wonder of the socks I'm knitting now in a different colorway just spoke to me. Besides, I returned some Rowan Kidsilk Haze, because it wasn't useful for my knitting class, and was able to buy that yarn and reduce the price of the Touch Me by several dollars.

Ok, in the realm of projects:

These are the socks I'm currently knitting with Lana Grossa. I like the yarn, although the pattern has yet to grow on me. I think the grey spots mixed within the the blue and green stripes look like cow spots, and much as I like cows, I'm neither loving nor hating this yarn.

Next is the progress on the Clapotis. I only have four more repeats to do on the straight section, as I got a lot done last weekend while chilling with my gal pals.

Finally, a finished object, as promised. Here's my lovely little beret that makes me look like a Scottish golfer. Please excuse the blurriness of the picture, as it was taken in my bathroom mirror. Isn't it cute, though? I used a pattern I found online here when I was trying to find the Elsie cap from Rowan. I used Wool-ease on needles one size smaller than called for in the pattern (I only have size 4 circulars that measure 12 inches, which was a little tough to work with as I got to more decreases). I'm sure if you use what's called for in the pattern, it'll come out nice and loose. I may re-try it again in the same yarn, but just with bigger needles.

Alright. I mentioned zen, didn't I? Well, as I perused the new Knitty (slightly disappointed in the lack of variety, I must say) I read the articles on taming the stash and reducing the stash and the like, and it made me feel slightly guilty about the ever-increasing size of my stash and the ever-increasing unfinished projects on the needles. I enjoy being able to switch projects with my mood, but I'm a royal procrastinator. That means that the more projects I start, the fewer I'll be able to finish within a reasonable amount of time. As I ponder the way to best organize my stash (it's small compared to some I've seen) and finish my projects, I shall celebrate probably by buying more yarn before I leave Austin and over the summer, as well as rejoicing that the world has a new sock knitter. A woman I met at Hill Country Weavers, named Susan, was contemplating my contemplation of sock yarn, and as we got to talking, she became inspired to try self-striping yarn and double pointed needles. I hope she succeeds! Socks are fabulous, and above all, this is the year of the sock!


Way on Down South.... London Town

[mood: tired, and desirous of feeling sexy-riffic, though I don't]
[music: Dire Straits - Sultans of Swing]

Yes. I'm knitting. Not as we speak, because homework prevails upon me at this exact moment, but up until a few minutes ago, I was crankin' on a really spiffy little sock (Lana Grossa) which I began work on yesterday instead of homework. I have also gotten through the 9th repeat of the straight section on Clapotis, meaning 4 to go and then the decreases! Hurrah for no more 1-hour repeats! But anyway, I guess I'll post pictures of the objects when I finish. I will indeed have knitting time this week when there's a Sideways night with Laura! Whee!