WIP Wednesday: Sock it to me

The past week flew, and I think it is because my knitting mojo is back. We are getting close on the dishcloth project, so knitting them is exciting again. Each time I finish one I wonder if it was the last one we need.  My crafternoon group is getting together again on Sunday to see where we are at, and with any luck I won’t have to knit 5 dishcloths next week.  I really should think of a way to celebrate finishing the project.

This week I finished Audrey’s socks. I love how they turned out. I’m probably going to make her another pair in a smaller size soon using the same Purl Soho Pattern.

I’m making my sister Meanest Mommy Knit’s School Pickup Line Socks. I  love the pattern – it really flies and it is easy to memorize. I just made a pair for myself in February and I’m actually excited to knit them again already. I highly recommend the pattern. I’m on the foot of the first sock, and hope to finish the first sock and have the leg started by next Wednesday.  I’m using Knit Picks Stroll Glimmer. I’m usually a fan of Stroll, but the sparkle in this yarn is too subtle (which feels really weird to type). I feel like if you’re going to wear shiny socks they should really pop.

I have not touched the cardigan, and probably won’t. Or….I could make that my way to celebrate being done with dishcloths. When I’m done with dishcloths I’ll start to work on it again. Maybe.

What are you working on this week?

Stash Explosion

My resolution for the past two years has been to end the year with less yarn in my stash than I started with. I was successful last year, and this year looked OK. Until this week. This week things went a little crazy and I added too much to my stash.

It all started innocently enough. My older sister requested a slouchy hat for next winter. She was drawn to sparkly yarn, so I found some at Webs that she liked and ordered it. It is soft and lovely. Now that it is here I’m a little worried that it won’t work for the hat, so I’m going to do a gauge swatch. I usually just wing hats and don’t worry about gauge. They are so fast you can just tear it back and start over if something is off. The yarn is 60% baby fine mohair – beautiful to work with, yet impossible to re-knit.

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The second time I bought yarn this week it was also totally justified. My younger sister took pictures of our kids, so I told her I would make her socks. I was smart and did not put a time frame on when she would receive the socks. Lucky for her, the pictures she took were beautiful, so I’m excited to make her some thank you socks. It’s hard to take pictures of a 2 1/2-year-old who hates the camera and a cranky 1-year-old, but she did a wonderful job.
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I sent her to Knit Picks to look at the sock yarn, because I had a gift certificate that I wanted to use. She found three yarns for me to pick from. I couldn’t decide between the three, so I narrowed it down to two. I think I’ll use the sparkly blue yarn to make her socks as a thank you and stash the other yarn for when I feel like surprising her with socks (probably around 2047).

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I still had some money left on the gift card, so I picked up some yarn to make an Elwood cardigan for Elliot. Now that the yarn is here I’m not sure I like the colors together. I think a gray would have been better with the blue, but not of the grays struck my fancy when I was perusing them.

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While looking around on Knit Picks I discovered that they now have yarn grab bags. For $10 you get at least $20 worth of yarn. I’m not a fan of gambling, unless it is yarn related, so I went for it. I am pretty happy with half of what I got. I ended up with some bulky yarn I’m throwing in my stash to ignore. It would work for boot toppers, if I ever get around to them. I love the chroma fingering weight yarn, and will be making socks for myself out of it. There is only one skein of Felici, so it looks like Audrey is getting more socks, as I would need two skeins to make them for myself. The last item I got was crochet thread, which I will never use. If you crochet and would like it, please let me know. I’ll happily mail it to you.

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Today I justified buying yarn because one of my local yarn shops, Hill Vintage & Knits, is closing and yarn was 50% off. It is always sad to see a LYS close its doors, especially after a week of binge buying yarn on-line. I worked through my sadness by buying yarn. I picked up some yarn for yet another striped sweater for the kids and some Regia for socks for John.

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Now I’m on a yarn diet until I get a few projects completed. I keep telling myself that once the dishcloths are done I’ll fly through projects. Hopefully that happens.

Have a great weekend! Now go buy a bunch of yarn so I don’t feel like the only binge yarn shopper.

 

WIP Wednesday – Toddler Socks

Happy Wednesday! It was a stormy afternoon here. We lost power for 3 hours here. I was worried I wasn’t going to be able to post, as I’m really excited about the socks I’m working on and wanted to share them with you.

When Audrey and I were in Kansas City for our weekend away with friends I let her pick out some sock yarn. I’m finally getting around to using the yarn – Anzula Luxury Fibers Nebula in Garnet. I’m using Purl Soho’s Toddler Socks pattern, which I picked because it’s a simple sock. I’m using pink sparkly yarn, so I wanted the pattern to be basic. I’m making her to 4-5 year old size because she has big feet for a 2 1/2 year old and I don’t want to make her socks that don’t fit next winter (or only fit for one year). I’m fairly confident she will still like the yarn when they fit.

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Book for scale – without it the sock looks like a normal, adult sock

I have one sock done, and just about an inch of the leg done on the second sock. They are for little feet, so I expect the second sock to be done by next week.

I finished 5 dishcloths again this week. My group is meeting in a week and a half. I hope that we will have met our goal of one dishcloth for every apartment in the Des Moines YMCA Supportive Housing Campus. I plan to continue to knit one dishcloth a week so that there are always dishcloths for welcome baskets when people move in. After months of knitting at least 5 dishcloths a week one dishcloth will be a breeze.

I haven’t touched my cardigan. It has been in the upper 70s and 80s here, so knitting a big cardigan hasn’t really felt right. It might hibernate until winter. I haven’t decided. I’m not sure I can justify having two sweaters in hibernation, but the allure of putting it to the back of my closet and casting on a new sweater for one of the kids is incredibly tempting.

I’ve been feeling good about my knitting progress lately. I really hope that feeling continues. Being able to see the light at the end of the dishcloth tunnel has made such a difference. I can’t wait to start working through some of the goodies in my stash (said the woman who may have placed two yarn orders this week).

I hope you are feeling like you’re making knitting progress to!

5 on Friday: Ending a Knitting Funk

Happy Friday! I’ve been silent for a while over here. I have been busy planning a birthday party for Elliot, spending as much time as possible outside, and pouting about my knitting funk.

What’s a knitting funk? It is when you are depressed about what you are knitting. I’ve been working on the same projects for months and it’s bringing me down. Logically I know that things are moving slowly because I’m knitting so many dishcloths. That project is important to me, but it is tying up my precious knitting time on boring cotton squares. It’s just knitting the same dishcloth over and over again. I’m living Groundhog Day in knitting form.

So I’ve decided to shake off that funk and get back to enjoying knitting. I’ve come up with 5 things that will help me do that.

  1. Limit my dishcloth knitting. I will stick to making 5 a week instead of knitting more because I worry we will never finish the project. As of our meeting last Sunday we had knit 89 of 140 dishcloths. We’re making good progress. I don’t need to freak out about never finishing the project.
  2. Focus on finishing a pair of socks. I have two pairs of socks on the needles, one of which is slow going. I’m going to focus on the faster pair so I actually finish something. I finished the first sock yesterday and it felt wonderful to cast on something other than a dishcloth.
  3. Really focus on working on my cardigan. I am getting so close to finishing it. I just need to finish the second sleeve (I just started it), block it, and then pick up and knit the ribbing for the collar and bottom.
  4. Start daydreaming about what I’m going to knit next. I’m pretty sure it’s a sweater for Audrey, but it might be a cardigan for Elliot. If I daydream about future knitting enough it will almost feel like I’m actually starting a new project.
  5. Wind some yarn. I have several projects I want to knit this year, so I might as well get the yarn ready. I can pull out my ball winder and swift and wind up some yarn cakes. If I’m really motivated I might even start project bags for the yarn, I can include a copy of the pattern I intend to use as well as the needles. I will just need to stop myself from casting on a new project before I finish at least one of the projects already in progress.

Have you ever been in a craft funk? How did you get out of it?

WIP Wednesday: meh.

I’m in a bit of a knitting rut. I’m still knitting, but I’m not passionate about anything that I’m making. I started back with dishcloths on Saturday, and bound off my 5th today. I’m looking forward to working on other projects for a few days.

In addition to the dishcloths I actually finished the front left panel of my cardigan and started on the first sleeve! I also frogged the small sock and restarted it. I only have a few inches done, but I should make some good progress tomorrow.

I did finish a project that wasn’t a dishcloth. It felt good to get something on and off the needles in a week. When I was in Kansas City I went to a Yarn Shop and More in Overland Park. I love taking Audrey to yarn shops, because she gets as excited about yarn as me. She likes to squish it. She likes to smell it. At the shop she fell in love with a DMC Top This Zebra kit. I’m never one to turn away from a good excuse to buy yarn, so I bought it for her.

I made the puppy hat for her last year and I hate how it turned out – it is short and a little small. I made her the adult size hat so that her piggy tails will fit under the hat. She’s a fan so far.

Next week I hope to make 5 more dishcloths, turn the heel on my sock, and finish half of the panel on my cardigan. I’m ready to start thinking about what I get to cast on next.

 

WIP Wednesday: dishcloths galore

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I might be getting sick of dishcloths. I continue to make one a day, and every day I say I will stop when I finish that dishcloth. Then I decide I should just start the next days dishcloth. Then I just knit it for a little bit. Then I knit 1.75 dishcloths before I put down the cotton and pick up a project for me. I am close to 25 dishcloths, and when I get there I’m taking a week off from the dishcloth project to focus on knitting for myself.

I did get some work done on my Hermoine socks. I turned the second heel and started to work on the gusset. I hope to have it close to finished by next week. I’m probably going to knit a pair of self striping socks next, as I love knitting striped socks. I do not like the yarn I am using for my current socks, so I want to really love the yarn I use next. I don’t want to get so sick of socks that I burn myself out. The last time I did that I took a five year sock knitting hiatus.

I am about 1/3 of the way done with the left panel of my cardigan. It continues to be slow going, but I feel like I’m making progress. I thought it would fly because the yarn is bulky, but the moss stitch slows me down enough to counteract the huge yarn.

Next week I hope to be done with 25 dishcloths and focused on fun knitting. I would like to be close to the toe on my sock and on the first sleeve of my sweater. I would like to start having fun finished projects to share. I would also like to knit faster so I can get through my stash and buy new yarn without guilt.

WIP Wednesday: Dishcloths, Dishcloths, Dishcloths

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How is it already Wednesday? Having a toddler that refuses to nap takes away from my knitting time, but I have managed to do a few things this week. I have done some work on the left panel of my cardigan, and completed about one repeat of the pattern on my sock. For the most part I’ve been focusing on dishcloths this week.

For a few months now I’ve been thinking about tithing my knitting. If I spent 10% of my knitting time working on projects for charity I could make a big difference. That leaves 90% of my time to make things that I want to make for fun. I wasn’t how to get started on tithing, and then I received an e-mail from a Crafternoon friend that gave me the answer. She suggested that as a group we make dishcloths for every resident at the YMCA Supportive Housing Campus.

The Supportive Housing Campus provides affordable efficiency apartments for over 140 people transitioning out of homelessness. As the residents move in they are given a basket of items to make their apartment a home. Every home needs a dishcloth, and a handmade one will hopefully let the residents know that someone cares about them and believes in their success.

There are a lot of dishcloths to make, and I have committed to making 5 a week until every resident has one. Luckily my friends are also knitting for the cause, so it is daunting task, but doable. Hopefully by summer we will be done.

This week I’m going to continue to knit dishcloths. I’m also going to work on my socks here and there. I’m hoping all of the dishcloth knitting will inspire me to pick a new project that I’m actually excited to knit.

If you want to help us knit for this cause let me know. We will happily take help to make this happen.