Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Hi. It's been a year. A year. I only knit one thing.The Hybrid/Shirt Yoke seamless sweater from E. Zimmermann's Knitter's Workshop. It was a distracted and fraught with mistakes, but in the end, good, experience. Distracted, because, out of an entire year, I didn't make proper time for it; I worked on it when I was tired, or rushed, or both. By Spring, I had managed to make one sleeve slightly wider than the other, both a bit too long, and screw up the decreases after joining the body and sleeves, then set it aside, and got on with my Summer.

This past weekend, I woke up Saturday morning, sat up in bed, pulled the book and sweater into my lap, figured out where I left off and what needed to be fixed, and knit for two days (sitting in bed watching subtitled Naruto Shippuden and eating frozen pizzas). I knit it by the book, but did add some increases along the body at the point the back begins to broaden, and made the saddles even (with the woven seam directly in the middle).

There it is. A year. You're looking at it.

The Guilty One

I declare myself guilty of never having
fashioned, with these hands I was given,
a broom.

Why did I not make a broom?

Why was I given hands at all?

What purpose did they serve
if I saw only the rumor of the grain,
if I had ears only for the wind
and did not gather the thread
of the broom,
still green on the earth,
and did not lay the tender stalks out to dry
and was not able to unite them
in a golden bundle
or attach a wooden cane
to the yellow skirt
so I had a broom to sweep the paths.

So it was:
I do not know how
I lived my life
without learning, without seeing,
without gathering and uniting
those elements.

At this hour I cannot deny
I had the time,
but not the hands,
and so, how could I aspire
with my mind to greatness
and not be capable
of making
a broom,
not one,

- by Pablo Neruda, from The Hands of Day

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

What I got for ya...

...is a whole lotta nuthin'. Man. DANG. Most of last month I was visiting friends on the weekends - even spent a week out in Denver, CO. Aaaand not a lot of knittin' happened, which has been the case for a while now. Aaaaand now I'm having some serious trouble kick-starting my knits. But hey - its Fall: my favorite seasonal kick in the arse! Time to make a Marked For Knittin' (M.F.K.) list and get ta crackin'!

Need to assess a few things:
First, some of the M.F.K.s need to happen more badly than the others, for one of two reasons: 1. fresh babies are getting squeezed into the world continuously or 2. I saddled myself with a favor (aka. boring side project) agreed to months'n'months ago, but procrastinated (aka. tried to spare myself for as long as possible).

Second, every project I have lined up lacks two very essential things - creativity and planning; I may have creative ideas, but I don't plan them well - or even worse, I have a plan, but its not creative. Right now, I've got a sock cuff which doesn't fit, the start of a sleeve which definitely doesn't fit, and am wonderin' if the body of the pullover will have a wonky shape... Fail to plan, plan to fail.

Third, the whole 'fail to plan' thing is screwing up more than just my knitting. Ouch.

So here's the M.F.K. list:
  1. Baby blanket for a kid arriving first week of January (fun times)
  2. Hat for a friend (the new kid's father - also fun times)
  3. 4 pairs of minuture mittens (gag!) as a favor (they are gonna owe me Big Time for this one...)

    and at this point, I'm realizing the stuff I had hoped to finish by now is getting relegated to the bottom of the list... (depression).
  4. EZ seamless Hybrid pullover (done with the body, but not sure of fit/shaping)
  5. a classic Rowan pullover or cardigan (got the yarn/not even gauged yet)
  6. tri-color vest (got the yarn/no plan)
  7. green socks (do-over!)
  8. thick winter socks (easy)
I am getting a notebook and planning each one of these projects from start to finish - no more muckin' up half-baked ideas or instructions. Every project has inertia; I'm tired of hitting points where I have to put 'em down and figure it out - it breaks my stride (apparently for weeeeeks at a time lol). Need to hit my knits running again - startin' with momentum I can build on.

Jotting down a few rules while I'm at it wouldn't hurt, either; worked in Zombieland!

Rule #1: Cardigans.
Rule #2: Guage Matters.
Rule #3: Fail to plan, plan to fail.
Rule #4: If it doesn't fit, you must unknit.
Rule #5: Do the sleeves first.

Okay, time to start knockin' out the M.F.K.in' list.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

I have returned.

Ya got that right. I am bloggin' 'bout knittin'. Word.

The long and short of it was that I had another surgery. An anterior ulnar nerve transposition. It is loads better - no problems, I am good to go. As soon as I could pick up the sticks and bust out some knit, I did. And here was what happened:

I finished the copper socks and gave them to my brother as a birthday present.

I finished the Jared Flood Habitat hat. I used Malabrigo (always the right choice); I knit it on US 8's to make the larger size, and it fits me noggin perfectly. I did skip a few plain knit rows here and there in the crown of it, so as to make it close up quicker, or else it would have been deeper than I prefer. (Thanks for taking the below pics, Kristen and T).

I also finished the striped vest (which I had not worked on for three months). I used Cascade on US 8 cir following Ann Budd's handy book. I really like this vest. Ya know, vests have a lot going for them: they keep you warm (but not too warm), they are incredibly easy to knit (80% of which can, and probably ought to be, done in the round), and they are economical (about half as much yarn as a sweater). There will definitely be more vests in the future (I already have the yarn for the next one).

I am very excited to have begun Elizabeth Zimmerman's seamless Hybrid sweater, from Knitting Workshop. I came across Stephen's Hybrid back in the spring when looking for sweater ideas; I wanted a basic, easily modified pattern (to allow for wider shoulders) - which is what E.Z.'s patterns are all about. I bought the yarn (an intense blue Cascade) for the Hybrid just before my elbow was cut on; I wanted something to look forward to, for when I got better - with the hope that it would be better. You know how it is:

"Knit on with confidence and hope, through all crises." - E.Z.

P.S. Here are some pics from the State Fair.

The striped vest - normal pose

Feelin' good about being finished - Hulk pose

Cool pose

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The Habitat