31 March 2007

Tangerine Tonight

It's finished! I just need to weave in the ends and block it, and the Tangerine shawl will be ready to wear. *whew*

I need a nap.

29 March 2007

You Can't See Through My Opacity!

Oh. Em. Gee. I haven't laughed so much since the first time I watched Eddie Izzard's "Dress to Kill". The Tobacco Valley Stitch 'n Bitch group is so much fun! I sat with the two guys (Two! Eeee!) and spent most of the time quoting Eddie Izzard, Invader Zim, and Monty Python, making references to role-playing games, and saying things like, "sure, you can see through my transparency, but you can't see through my opacity!"

There were two slightly weird things that happened, though. First, some 4-H people I've known since I was 7 years old came in and broke my cover. So one or two SnBers know that my name isn't really Lilith. It's not a secret-identity thing, I just like "Lilith" better than my real name. The second weird thing is that the guy I shared a table with bore a striking resemblance to my David. It wasn't just the longish hair and goatee, the voice and sense of humor matched, too. And, of course, the knitting, though this guy confessed to being "teh newb" with his garter stitch scarf. Sadly, he doesn't wear kilts.

Pity. We need more kilted men in this world. ;)

I worked on Greenery v.2 for a while, then knit, frogged, and re-knit a few rows of the SuperSockeSock. The Claudia sock has been frogged because I got to the heel and realized it was too small. I'm on a lace kick thanks to Tangerine (three repeats to go), so I'm thinking of doing something lacey with the ex-Claudia yarn. I just have to figure out what. I don't think there's enough for a shawl. Suggestions? It's 420 yards (4 oz.) of Cherry Tree Hill superwash fingering weight merino.

It's so time for bed now.

27 March 2007

Sad Student

Going to trade school is exhausting. When I get home at 6 all I want to do, and pretty much all I'm able to do, is have a quick nosh and curl up in front of the TV/computer with my knitting. This doesn't match the Harlot's schedule, unfortunately. I didn't get to Represent, despite being a mere two-hour drive away. I probably won't make it to Webs for the book signing in May. This makes me sad. I have, however, found a new SnB group that meets a few miles up the road from me on Thursday nights, and I think I can muster the energy to hang out for an hour or two.

Tangerine is almost finished. Four more 20-row repeats (each of which takes me about 45 minutes in front of the TV set), and then it's just the picot edging and blocking. This will be my biggest FO, and also my most impressive, so I'm really excited. This was what it looked like a few days ago, when I had about 10 repeats to go:

Tangerine shawl

I'm also still working on Greenery v.2, SuperSockeSock #2, Claudia sock #1, and a random hat I'll call Ziggy. (Yes, Jenn, I'll write up a pattern for you when it's finished.)

Time to hit the library for a video I've been meaning to borrow, and then do another repeat on Tangerine before lunch. Oof.

18 March 2007

Ease-y Hat

This past Christmas, my sister asked for a hat. I finally finished it yesterday. It's Wool-Ease, 100 stitches on US#6, 2x2 ribbing with four evenly-spaced rows of cables.


sister's Christmas hat


sister's Christmas hat

I've been working on the shawl and on a new version of the Greenery Hat. There seem to be two things about the original pattern that need tweaking: the gauge (too tight) and the height (conehead!). The new pattern will have slightly less-chunky cables and a smaller repeat so it'll be easier to add or subtract a section as necessary, and the crown decreases will be worked a little less gradually.

So, for those keeping score, the patterns in progress are:

-Greenery Hat v.2
-Greenery Mittens
-Secret Gloves (that might be submitted to Knitty in a few months, so I can't really talk about them)

My vacation starts in 19 days. It's not nearly soon enough, and won't last nearly long enough, but it'll be wonderful.

14 March 2007

Yarn vs. Metal

I don't want to go to school.*

This worries me, because I love school. I get to play with fire and electricity and power tools, and I make stuff every day, so school lets me be creative and productive. This is a good thing, and until this week, I'd been enjoying it very much.

Some scary emotional stuff happened over the weekend that probably had something to do with my desire to ignore the world and stay home, but I think it's more of a knitting thing. I'm passionately, madly, obsessively in love with the Tangerine shawl. The first twelve inches were a brief fling two months ago, forgotten as soon as new projects caught my eye. I'd been telling myself I'd get back to it, and this weekend, I finally did.

The passion!

The lust!

The soft, smooth, brightfreakingorange beauty!

I have rediscovered my love for this shawl. It's a rectangle made in three sections: two borders and a center panel. Explaining how it goes together gives me a headache, so here's a diagram.

shawl schematic

Yeah, even the diagram is a little confusing. Start at the bottom right, casting on for the border. Work the border as long as you want the shawl to be. Bind off all but one stitch. Pick up stitches along the edge of the border and add the one stitch to that. Work the center panel (which is only about 15 rows) perpendicular to the length of the shawl. End with a RS row, and, without binding off or breaking the yarn, cast on for the second border. Work the second border as the first, knitting the last stitch of each WS row together with a stitch from the center panel (which is still on the needle). Bind off, and add a crocheted picot edging to both ends.

This is why my sister says knitting is more difficult than Neurobiology.

Over the weekend I finished the first border, got through the center panel (had to frog about four rows of it because I'm an idiot when it comes to YOs after purls), and did a few repeats of the second border. So much progress! I want to maintain that momentum, but school gets in the way. The school only lets students miss a day every two weeks, and suggests that we afternoon students come in during the morning or night sessions to make up that time. I missed Monday, stayed for an hour last night, and will stay for as long as I can stay awake tonight to make up some time because the end of the semester is fast approaching and I need to get all my work done.

Maybe I can stay awake long enough tonight to get another few repeats finished. Maybe. The rest of the week should be easier because I'll only be at school until 6 instead of 10.

Stupid school, getting in the way of my knitting. Grr.

*School is a year-long welding program at a post-secondary trade school here in Connecticut. I'll graduate at the beginning of October, 2007.

13 March 2007

Scientific Skill

Quick pic-less update:

Supersockesock #2 is almost halfway done. I'm getting really sick of k4tog, so I'm setting it aside for a little while.

The Claudia sock hasn't seen much action, and probably won't for a few weeks. It'll be a vacation project next month.

The alpaca shawl, which I've decided to name "Tangerine," is zooming along. I decided I wanted to get it finished before my vacation, so I spent all weekend (and my sick day yesterday) working on it. I might have it finished by next week. My sister looked at the construction diagram and commented, "wow, and I thought Neurobiology was hard."

Yep. Knitting is more difficult than Neurobiology. You heard it here first.

08 March 2007

Sock Shock

Spring Knitty is up! But you knew that. Most of the patterns in this issue don't really interest me, but there's one I fell in love with the moment I saw it: Clessidra.

As we all know, I'm a sock snob. Toe-up with short-row toes and heels, well, it's the only way to go. Clessidra is top-down with flap-heels and a grafted toe. I should hate it. I should turn my nose up at it. I should try to alter the pattern so it fits my sock-making style.

I want to make it as-is. I don't want to change a thing. Top-down? Fine. Flap heel? No problem. Kitchenered toe? I can do that. I just want these socks. They're so... perfect.

Maybe after I make one pair I can alter the pattern. ;)

05 March 2007

We Have A Winner!

Nobody guessed my age, but AllergicMom was only off by a year, so she gets the prize. What has she won? A set of custom ShrinkyDink stitch markers! AM, email me! And congratulations! More exclamation points!!! Yay!!!


I finished SuperSockeSock #1 last night at dinner, just after ordering. The food was really, really late (they ran out of alfredo sauce or something, but compensated for the delay by paying for our dessert and drinks), so my hands had nothing to do for forty-five minutes. Fortunately, my Cool Uncle was there (making up for missing Christmas), and he's a really fun guy, so I barely noticed my empty hands. Cool Uncle was so happy with the hat I made him for Christmas (one of the stockinette caps I was churning out in December) that he wants a sweater now. It must be red, it must be cashmere, and it must look manly. I told him I'd try to make it a 50th birthday present, so I have at least two years, I think. I should probably make a sweater for myself before I make one as a gift, just so I know what the heck I'm doing. I'll probably use this book for my first sweater, but I'd love to know what your favorite patterns are.

More good news: Rosann and Nicole have made Greenery Hats! Yay! I know I say it every time someone makes one of these hats, but... I'm so thrilled that people like this pattern. Thank you all so much. :)

02 March 2007

There's Sugar In My Head

To celebrate birthdays at Chez Parker, we usually go out to dinner. We're going out to dinner for other reasons on Saturday and Monday, so I decided to count those as my birthday dinners and make myself a cake. I flipped through Joy of Cooking and found the "Ultra-Orange Cake (Vegan)". It uses vegetable oil, orange juice, and vinegar (to react with the baking soda) instead of eggs and dairy. The result is a moist, fluffy cake that smells and tastes absolutely wonderful.

let me eat cake

This... is not a good picture. It is, however, the best I could do with the lighting and background I had. The icing, also from Joy of Cooking, is powdered sugar mixed with a little cream, a splash of vanilla, and just enough milk to make it spreadable. Diabetics, look away.

piece of orange cake

Can you see how moist it is? I'm so proud of this cake. It's all I can do not to devour it in one sitting. I promised a piece to my sister, and another to one of my instructors, so I can't eat it all, I suppose.

To treat myself, I'm going into school a few hours late today, and tomorrow I'm doing something I haven't done in ages... I'm buying sewing patterns. This month is going to be spent making cute clothes for my trip to Texas.

Now I'd like to play a game. It's called Guess Lilith's Age! Over the weekend I'll pick up something cool for a prize, and I'll pick a winner Monday morning. People who already know the answer cannot play. Ready? Set? Guess!