Sunday, July 29, 2007

Tunic trouble

I feel like maybe I'm just not destined to make that tunic. I got a few more rows into it, and I realized that it's coming out too small and I'm going to have to frog it.

I checked my gauge a whole bunch of times before I started. I tried a lot of different hook sizes. The closest I got seemed to be with a J hook (instead of an I hook), but now I don't know if I'd need an L or M; I had tried testing my gauge with both before, and it had seemed too big. *sigh* Too much work and nothing to show for it (except about 8 rows of too-small tunic, which I will be frogging--not right away, though; it's too depressing).

Friday, July 27, 2007


I just read a friend's blog, and she mentioned being in a crochet slump. Well, I have been in one lately, too. I started my tunic, and I'm only about 5 rows in (though I spent plenty of time trying to start it and screwing up--wasn't sure about the gauge at first, or about what size I should be making). No other progress made on anything.

I haven't felt much like crocheting lately. Don't know why, though my neck and shoulders have been achey, which I guess doesn't help. Also, I've been distracted by Harry Potter. ;) After having seen all the movies, I finally caved and decided to read books 6 and 7. I'm in the middle of 7 now.

I managed to get The Michaels Book of Needlecrafts the other day at a bookstore for $5. I was really happy about that, since it was on my wish list anyway, but I would still have paid more if I've ordered it from Amazon--and this way I got to look through it. There isn't too much in there that I want to make (some of it's really silly), but there's an adorable kids' hat that looks like a fruit or vegetable top (Xmas/Chanukah present! Yay!) and a really pretty tote bag made from Lion Incredible. I'll skip the furry arm warmers, though. :P

Also, according to one of the customers on Amazon who reviewed the book, there's a good article on yarn substitution in the "Knitting" section of the book (which I otherwise might not have looked at, at all!). Hmmmm.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Tunic envy ;)

Deneen made the tunic from the pattern on the Lion web site that I've been eye-ing for a while. She shortened it into a tank top instead of a tunic. It looks fabulous.

I feel inspired. I am either going to start on this or the Abydos vest tonight...

Thursday, July 19, 2007


Got 3 crochet books from the library today: "Crocheted Socks: 16 Fun-To-Stitch Patterns" by Janet Rehfeldt and Mary Jane Wood, "Cool Crochet" by Melissa Leapman, and "Easy Beaded Crochet" by Carol Meldrum. I am in big trouble now, because I want to buy all of them. :P I am especially enamored with "Cool Crochet," which I wasn't expecting myself to be. Most of the projects are either Intermediate or Advanced level, and I think I can do Intermediate at this point. They are just lovely. The patterns I would like to make are mostly for sweaters, and a few are for bags. *sighhh* :)

I am going to see how I feel when it comes time to return them all. If I can't live without 'em, I'll buy 'em. I'm a bit short on funds at the moment. Well, not exactly; but I've bought a lot of books lately, so I don't feel that the purchases would be justified!

The other day, I picked up "Amazing Crochet Lace: New Fashions Inspired by Old-Fashioned Lace" by Doris Chan. WOW. Beautiful patterns!

I can't wait to try the "Farpoint Topper" (top left) and "Abydos Vest" (both pics on the right side), among other things. I've even ordered the yarn for the "Farpoint Topper" already (Lion Incredible, purchased via ebay, of course! I got it in Copper Penny; the original was done in the Autumn Leaves colorway).

I also recently got "Crochet from the Heart: Quick Projects for Generous Giving" by Kristin Spurkland, which has a lot of really cute projects in it that promise to be quick to make (the hats are my favorites!). And I got "Stocking feet" from Annie's Attic, by Janet Rehfeldt, which I don't exactly recommend (but please click the link to see my scathing review! Muahahaaa).

Other than that, I am almost done with the cuff of my second sock (6.5" out of 8" finished). It's about frickin' time. ;P Sock progress has been soooo slooowww. I am looking forward to trying some patterns from the "Crocheted Socks" book. Socks seem to be harder on me than other crochet, though, perhaps because I need to concentrate harder due to the smaller hook size? I don't know. I'm only using a G hook, but the way I crochet, that's pretty darn small (yeah, I crochet pretty tightly). Especially with the back-loop-only cuff thing. That's annoying. My next pair of socks will not have this sort of cuff. Haven't decided yet if they'll be made from a book pattern, or an Internet freebie. :)

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Sock yarrrrrn!

I now have a decent amount of sock yarn that is not Bernat Sox. :) Whee!

Here it is:

sock yarn

Mmmm...2 different colorways of Cascade Fixation (no actual color names on the labels), and Panda Cotton in "Picnic." I LOVE the Panda Cotton. I just got it yesterday. I stopped by a local fabric store that has yarn, and was very pleasantly surprised to see that they had it in stock! I had never seen it in person before. It's nice. Soft, too! (And expensive. *gulp*) ;)

They also had it in the colorway that I recently purchased from an ebay seller who'd put it on sale, "Chocolate Almonds." I was not disappointed with what I saw! It should be arriving soon.

Also, I don't know if this link will work, but I ordered the Annie's Attic "Stocking Feet" book on ebay. The patterns look really cute.

And no, I still have not finished my first pair of socks! LOL. I finished the cuff of the second sock the other day, only to find that I'd missed a stitch started out wide and got narrower, and looked really bad. D'OH! I tried to frog it, but Bernat Sox doesn't lend itself to frogging, so I had to just start over. That's OK--it'll go quickly once I actually get a chance to sit down for a while with it. :)

My sweetheart and I are going to a music festival today. I am so excited! I haven't been to a music festival in way too long. I am really big on folk festivals. This one's not all folk, but that doesn't bother me at all! The "biggest name" who will be there is Shawn Mullins, but we're mainly going to see Jonatha Brooke and to hear some musicians we've heard of but haven't heard before.

I am halfway considering bringing my sock to work on. Heheh...I doubt I'll get a chance, though. When I am listening to live music, I don't usually want to concentrate on much else!

Oh, also, I made it to KUTI on Tuesday night! There were so many people there I hadn't met before. It was nice to meet all of them, if a little overwhelming. :) At least 3 of us were working on socks, and if I remember correctly, I think 3 of us were working on our first pairs! How cool is that?! The others were knitting, but I won't hold that against them. ;)

Saturday, July 7, 2007

the yarn cake, and things I'd like to make

I now present to you my very first yarn cake ever!
my first yarn cake ever

And a view of the top:
my first yarn cake ever - top view

*sigh* So happy. :)

Meanwhile, there is an ever-growing list of things I want to make. Among them:
--socks, socks and more socks
--more Mary Jane booties!
--adorable "Famous Designer" hat (maybe in Olive and Fuchsia? Haven't made up my mind yet)
--color-block pillow
--a very light, mesh mini-shawl or stole with special Blue Heron yarn
--Need For Tweed bag
--Seafoam Vest (still haven't gotten around to it)
--Lacy Leaf Cocoon, even though the largest size may be too small for me
--Four Seasons Bolero
--Tunic (without the pockets)

And there are a lot more in the magazines I have, but I'll be nice and stop there. ;)

Yarn cake! (And some other stuff.)

As of 2 days ago, I am "officially" back at work, which makes me very happy. :)

On to the crochet-related stuff! I got my yarn ball winder in the mail a few days ago, and finally tried it out last night. Ooh! YARN CAKE!! :D It is so exciting. I want to post a picture of my first yarn cake--perhaps I will get to it later today. I took out this skein of variegated turquoise and dark blue sport weight yarn from MCY (also a gift from my fiance--yes, he IS the best ever). I put it around the backs of two chairs, set up the new yarn ball winder, and cranked it up. ;) It was easy! What a wonderful surprise after dealing with so many tangled yarn "muppets."

I am still working on untangling my other MCY yarn (the cotton chenille one), and it seems to be coming along quicker than expected. I cant wait to make that one into a cake, too. Heheh! I am now obsessed with yarn cakes. Well, at least I won't gain any weight from it (sorry, I had to go with the bad pun there).

I found a whole lot of Lion Suede on sale the other day, including some in Ebony, which I had never seen on sale before. ♥ I bought enough to keep some, and sell some on ebay. ;) I do have yarn in my ebay store, if anyone wants to check it out. Right now, I just have a bunch of auctions for Lion Boucle (in blueberry, rose, and parfait colors) and Bernat Sox in 4 different variegated colors; but I got more Bernat Sox to sell because I was able to get it cheap, and it seems that lots of people are looking for it. Same with Lion Suede. (Heck, there are certain colors of Lion Suede I'm still looking for--I don't have any in rose, ecru, or marine blue (at least I think that's what the blue is called), and I only have one skein of taupe and am sort of fiending for more. Haven't found the right price yet or the extra money, though!)

I am debating getting some Lion Trellis in "Night Life" to sell (yes, I have a source, and I'm not telling!! LOL), since some recent auctions for it that I've been tracking have gone very well. I really don't have the money to get it in the first place, though. Argh. I don't know.

I'm enjoying this ebay "side job" of mine--can you tell? :P

Not much to tell about WIPs, since I really haven't gotten any farther than I had the last time I posted. I've mainly been concentrating on untangling the cotton chenille. It is so pretty--I can't wait to use it! It's a beautiful mixture of purples and browns. Yum.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Tangled yarn, and missing KUTI

My fiance bought me some incredible Cotton Chenille yarn from Mystical Creation Yarns a while back. As a crochet novice, having never worked with a skein like this before as opposed to a store-bought yarn ball/skein of inexpensive yarn, I totally messed up the ball winding process. Now, I am stuck with a pretty tangled skein of really gorgeous yarn. :(

I ordered a yarn ball winder the other day, so I'll have that soon; but can it help me with a tangled skein of yarn? Can anything? I've spent hours already trying to unwind it; it seems like I unwind about a foot (or maybe a yard, if I'm lucky) of yarn per hour. *sigh* I don't want to just give up, because it was a very special gift and I love the yarn so much. Buying another skein wouldn't be the same. But I can't spend forever trying to untangle it, either!

Any advice?

I've become a pretty solitary crocheter these days. My health problems have gotten somewhat better now that they've been diagnosed and I'm on meds, but that just means that I make it to work for a few hours if I'm lucky. I keep thinking I'll be able to go to KUTI meetings, and then I just don't feel well enough.

Today, I didn't even make it to work...but if I had, I probably would have been too drained and sick afterward to go to the meeting. *sigh* I miss the group. I want to be a part of it again. I am lonely. And crotchety. Wahhh.

I am still working on the baby blanket and the socks. Slow going these days. That's due to a number of things: being extremely tired, having another hobby that takes up a lot of my time, having to spend a lot of time listing things on ebay, and trying to work again. The blanket's within an inch or two of getting to its desired length, though; then I will just have the hood left to make, if I decide I even want to do that. I really like the thickness of it and think it would make a good playmat, so I'm not sure I'm going to bother with the hood. I might do some purple edging, though.

As for the socks, I'm not done with the cuff of my second sock yet. It'll go quickly when I really get down to it, though. I'm just easily distracted these days.