Slow and Steady

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Growing ever so slowly. #knitting

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I’ve been working on this shawl for many months now. It’s a semicircle, which means it has to double the number of stitches every once in a while.

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Adding in color number 3 in the shawl. #knitting

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At the end of the last doubling, it increased the time it takes to complete each row to about an hour. So this is taking much longer than anticipated.

Case in point, I took the oldest boy to jump at a trampoline park for two hours this morning, and got exactly two rows finished. But at least I’m using up some really small yarn.


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Shrug It Off

It seems like it’s been a while since I’ve knit something beginning to end. I have a lot of projects lying around in various stages of finishing. There’s a mostly done baby blanket, three mittens waiting to be embroidered at Christmas time (there were four, but one got lost and needs to be remade), and the rest of the mittens that only have ribbing started. But I haven’t sat down and finished anything in a while. Mostly because it either doesn’t need to be done for a long time, or has no deadline at all.

This shrug/cape/shawl thing does have a deadline, however. My mom needed it done for her gala at work on April 30. She decided she needed a new one around March 20, so, with shipping time for the yarn from Knit Picks, I had a bit of a time crunch on my hands. Luckily, she picked the Gloss Lace yarn which is a blend of wool and silk and therefore could be spit spliced together. Which means I only had to weave two ends, the beginning and the end.

I made up for having only two ends to weave by dropping a stitch about twenty rows from the end and only realizing it when I was on the last row. So I dropped a couple around it to give myself yarn to fix it and did a lot of this:

It worked out fine, so I was able to finish in just over a week. Now it just needs a bath and a dry before I give it to her this weekend and take a final finished picture. Which you will be able to see Sunday on my Instagram or a few days after on my Tumblr.

You can find the details on Ravelry here. The pattern is Fairy’s Shrug (Drops 119-17).

I Conquered the Triangle

This Christmas gift was a real doozie. Considering I just finished it, you can probably imagine.

I started a week or two before Christmas, so it was doomed as a gift. But I was overly optimistic as one is so close to Christmas with so many things in the works. So I cast on an amount of stitches that was close to the pattern, seeing as how I was using slightly different yarn, and got to work. Around the end of the first ball of white, I knew there was going to be a problem in how much yarn I had, so I ordered two more colors of gray to get more of a gradient.

I wrapped up the progress on the white, along with the ball of gray yarn I had and the black yarn. I tossed them in a bag with a “loading” tag and gave that on Christmas morning. Then I had to wait another week for the other colors to show up. Once I got those, I kept plugging away. But I wasn’t getting very many rows out of each color.

I ignored the thoughts in my head that told me it wasn’t going to work as it was and kept going. By the time I got to the black, I had ordered three more balls of it to make sure I would have enough. It would be very bottom-heavy color-wise, but I told myself it would work. Until I got a few yards from the end of ball 4.

I did some calculations this time and worked my way from the bottom up to make sure I would have enough yarn. You know, something I should’ve done in the first place. But, you know, hindsight and whatever. I pulled the yarn from the original attempt as I worked. That way I didn’t have to unravel the whole thing at once, or deal with all those balls of yarn again.

I finally finished it last week. Two-and-a-half months past Christmas, but who’s counting. The point is, it is done and wearable. And I may sit down and write that up as kind of pattern/tutorial. Perhaps even with some videos, since I went backward to the way entrelac is usually executed.

Coastal Starry

I made my first starry stole for one of my grandmothers for Christmas. I was hoping to have two done by Christmas time, but like most of my plans to make presents that didn’t pan out.

I bought the Oregon coast colorway of Knit Picks Shadow thinking it would be a much lighter,more neutral color from the picture on the website. I am actually very happy that it turned out darker than I expected. The color is similar to beach sand (hence the Oregon Coast name) with subtle rainbow-esque variations within the colors.

After making the first one, I decided that the rest of these (of which there will be four) should be a little longer than the pattern calls for. I did four repeats of the full chart rather than the three called for in the pattern. That gave it a bit extra length to be wrapped like a scarf:

or to actually be wrapped around the shoulders when worn as a shawl:

Unfortunately, this meant I needed more beads than I ended up with, due to quite a few beads that were unusable for the project. Either the holes were too small or they didn’t even have holes. Whatever the case, I had to improvise. Luckily, by doing both sides at once I was able to put the different beads directly in the center so they are all directly in the back and it won’t be noticeable. Though I did have some gold beads that made it less noticeable, anyway.

I really like the way it came out with the added length, so I am going to do that for the last two as well. Makes it easier to keep it on the shoulders.