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WIP Wednesday: Cthulhu Rises Again October 10, 2012

Posted by J. in Genius.
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I have a confession to make.

It’s WIP Wednesday, and technically, at the moment, I have nothing on the needles. But that’s only because I finished a pair of mittens last night and had just enough time to ball the yarn for the next project before calling it day and turning in.

All hail the mighty Cthulhu…hat! Eventually, that is. Countdown to cast on!

It’s going to be a Cthulhu hat. Inspired by the Cthulhu Cocksock pattern, a hat was requested, probably because the intended recipient doesn’t have the correct anatomy to pull of a willy warmer. Like so many of my “interesting” hats, I’ve got a basic idea of what it will look like in my head, and I’m winging the rest from there. Stay tuned on this one.

And last night I finished these pretty Norwegian mittens as a special order. They still need their moment in the lightbox to get proper pictures of them, but here’s their informal shot. A candid, as it were, just hanging out on the desk waiting to be photographed, listed, tagged, and packaged.

My own pattern, Cascade Pastaza (50% wool, 50% llama) in “charcoal” and Valley Yarns Berkshire (85% wool, 15% alpaca) in “cream”.

It’s a never-ending list of things to do here in the Empire.

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WIP Wednesday: It Came From the Deep October 3, 2012

Posted by J. in Genius, Other People's Genius, Sticks and String.
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Technically, it’s a Hexapussy, since it’s an octopus with six legs instead of the usual eight.

Here’s the deep sea critter I was working on last week. It came out even better than I had imagined it would in my head.

If there’s one thing I can say about my friend Mary, it’s that she comes up with fantastic ideas for headgear. She showed me a picture of a squid hat that someone had crocheted and asked if I could do “something like that”. Sort of a carte blanche to do with the basic idea what I will. I chose “ocean” colors and just started knitting. I kept the basic structure of a hood with a tentacle scarf, but that’s where the similarities ended. After much figuring out of things and a couple of false starts, the Hexapussy should arrive at its forever home today.

I went right from finishing the Hexapussy Hat into another dead pony hat. It’s going to look like this when it’s done:

But right now, it just looks like this:

Hanging out on top of my 12 item to-do list next to my Harrod’s knitting bag, my Hellephant picture, the Smutmaster 6000 and Leering Bill. I have my own little wonderland here.

But it’s better than what it looked like a couple of days ago when I pulled on the working yarn and instead of getting a nice, single strand, I got a pile of yarn barf.

*blllllaaaaaaaaarrrrrrgggggghhhhhhh* It’s pretty, but a bitcharooniedoonie to untangle.

I have a feeling I’m going to become known as The Broad Who Knits Weird Hats and Crochets Dead Things. I’m not complaining. I’m just saying. Though the next project in the queue is some pretty fingerless mittens, and a cute, crocheted doll that hasn’t been disemboweled or anything, and another pair of Norwegian mittens. But then there a Cthulhu hat too, just to keep me on track, I guess.

I also have a new pattern that’s a work in progress and if all goes well and the creek don’t rise I should have it in my Ravelry pattern shop and on Etsy by the weekend. I’ll keep you posted. It’s a masterpiece of fuckery indeed, but man, are my pattern-writing skills rusty. It was like pulling teeth to get it on paper!

Oh, and speaking of patterns, it seems I always forget that I have patterns for sale on Ravelry, probably because I seldom visit there. I was looking at hat patterns the other day and found one of mine in search and it stopped me short for a minute. I was all “I knit that hat!” And then I was like, OH YEAH. *facepalm* I’ll put a handy link in the sidebar later, but today is my 14th wedding anniversary and Mr. Poops has taken the day off. After the kids are all safely off to school, we’re going out to breakfast and then home to enjoy a brief stretch of a blessedly empty house to each other’s company with no little voices interrupting.

Rawr.

WIP Wednesday: Norwegian Mittens September 19, 2012

Posted by J. in Genius, Sticks and String.
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Currently on the needles is a special order pair of Norwegian mittens. She wanted a pair to match this hat:

The pattern for the mittens is my own design. As you can see, I make these a lot and my pattern has seen better days.

I’m using Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in “coal” and WOTA Tonal in “gypsy”.

They’re coming right along! Show tunes are turned up loud and the knitting progresses!

Happy Wednesday! What do you have on the needles today?

 

WIP Wednesday: The Never-Ending Sweater September 12, 2012

Posted by J. in Genius, Sticks and String.
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One of the drawbacks to being a Woman of Size is that when you knit a sweater for yourself, you realize it takes three times as much yarn as it would to knit something in, say, a size 8.

You realize once you start the task of casting on those stitches that are at the largest side of the pattern instructions that this might not work up as quickly as you thought it would.

As you burn through skein after skein of good yarn and you haven’t even reached the armpits, you begin to wonder if your summer sweater will actually be worn any time before Christmas.

WIP #1: my cotton, short-sleeved summer sweater that should be ready to wear around mid-February at this rate.

I started knitting this sweater back in…hell, I don’t even know. Me and mah Knittahs took a road trip to Webs back in May so I’m guessing it was sometime towards the end of May. I snagged a bag of this lovely Classic Elite Premiere Yarn. It’s 50% pima cotton and 50% Tencel. It is soft and has a beautiful sheen to it. I knit Buggy a sweater out of this years ago and loved it, even though it’s cotton, which is not my favorite fiber in the world.

Oh, my God. She was so LITTLE. And I had SUCH an issue with rowing out!

I wanted to make the Petal Sweater from Knitty.  I thought it would be a great summer sweater, and I hardly ever knit anything for myself. So I printed it out and began shopping for yarn. And I did the math.

Even knit at its biggest size, that’s not going all the way around my ass . So I had to add inches and stitches. And I cast on. For the life of me, I could not get the lace pattern to fall into line.  I tried. God help me, I tried. I pulled it all out–hundreds of stitches–checked my math, and cast on again. Same thing. I knit swatches. I tried starting it at the regular size, not adding any stitches.

It would NOT work. I frogged it four separate times.

I’ll admit I got pissed. I don’t knit from a pattern very often. My problem is that I usually like one element or another but not the whole thing, so I start making changes, and by the time I’m done adapting it, it seldom looks like the original. I was thinking that I liked the overall lace, but that it might be too much in my size and that I’d look like I was wearing an afghan. I wasn’t crazy about the collar because it’s kind of twee.

And then I said, well, hell. Why not just knit the sweater you want? So I did.

I started with your basic top down raglan sweater and modified it to a v-neck. I divided for the armholes and added enough stitches to make it go around my hips and generously portioned backside and picked a cable lace pattern that I really like. And there you go. I got a good way into the lace before life took over and things got too busy to knit.

A close-up of the cable lace pattern. I’m also planning on putting a cable band all around the neck and front where the button band would go. Stay tuned. I should be ready for that by New Year’s.

Well. That’s not true. I put my needles down and picked up a hook and started making all kinds of weird things with my crochet skills. The sweater has been a WIP all summer long, poor thing. But special orders come first!

First, while not a WIP, and I am talking about special orders, check this thing out.

A special order hat combining dead ponies, soft sculpture, and it’s wearable. It’s my three worlds colliding, and I think this is the best thing I’ve ever made.

This was a special order hat for my friend Mary. She loves hats and my dead ponies and when she asked if I could make her a dead pony hat, I said yes. Honestly, it was hard to send it. I knew when I was needle-felting the bullet holes that I had nailed it.

This hat makes me feel not like a knitter, or a crocheter, but a true fiber artist. Also, that blue yarn is some of my own home-spun yarn. I am ridiculously proud of this here bad boy.

But special orders have begun picking up. It’s getting colder and people are thinking about keeping warm and looking ahead to Christmas. Smart folks getting their orders in early. *hint hint wink wink nudge nudge*

WIP #2: working the thumb of a pair of fingerless mittens.

This is a pair of wool fingerless mittens that will eventually be paired with a matching slouch hat. As I work on them, I wonder why I’ve never made myself a pair of fingerless mittens. Mostly because I’m sitting here with cold hands this morning.

A basic plait or braid cable, also called a “trinity” cable in some pattern books.

Fall has arrived in NH and it’s knitting weather!