Monday, May 22, 2006

hiatus.

Things have been absolutely insane lately.
I finalized my plans to intern this summer with a Congresswoman in Washington D.C. on Capitol Hill. So, instead of knitting like crazy (as I usually am) I have been shopping and planning like crazy. If all goes to plan, I will recieve 12 credits towards my degree. Big smile....
I finished a pair of ankle socks this week. I do not have a picture yet. I also worked on my "extra credit" for Project Spectrum. It's turning out amazing - I get compliments everywhere I go...
I haven't decided what yarn will be traveling with me down to DC this summer. I am figuring my Rambling Rose sweater is a sure thing as well as my "extra credit" for Project Spectrum (it's going to be a surprise!). I researched where all the yarn stores are in the DC/VA area and am sure that I will be making routine stops at each shop this summer so I shouldn't bring too much yarn with me. But I figured some of my Koigu and other sock yarn will suffice.
I already have plans to knit on the national mall on lazy weekends. Melissa (my best childhood friend) will be interning there in the summer as well (in another office) and will be living across the street! I will have plenty of quality time with her - I am so excited.
I made a list of books to read this summer as well (although the list is short since I will be working 50-55 hours/week and writing a 25 page paper).
I leave in 6 days. I cannot wait.

Can you imagine seeing this every morning as you walk to work?

I forsee this summer as being extremely productive.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

I'm addicted.

I am. I went into Pins and Needles in downtown Princeton this morning to buy my grandmother the new copy of Mason-Dixon Knitting and couldn't walk past the "wall of koigu" without at least looking at it. Of course, I found a colorway that I have never seen before in my life, and grabbed a skein of it. ::sigh::

I've got to stop this impulsive buying of koigu. Do I know what I am going to make with this ONE skein of koigu? Yeah...riight. I don't. But I couldn't let this color sit on the shelf and not come home with me. Thank God there was only one skein left of this color or else I would have bought another to make a long pair of socks. Now, I'm limited to a short pair - if I can make it, that is.

Anywho, two nights ago at my knitting group, Andrea finally taught me how to spin:


Not bad. But not good either. I picked it up pretty quickly and kept getting better as the night progressed. I really enjoy it, but it's so freakin' tedious!

Since Mrs. Brown is away in Florida this weekend, maybe I'll work on my skills some more and spin her some of that natural brown wool I bought at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival for Mother's Day.

Oh, and guess who somehow found a way out of her cage while I was surfing knitting blogs?


Princess - the lovebird.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Maryland Sheep and Wool

God, am I satisfied.
I have the same feeling one has after eating a plentiful plate of good pasta, or a homemade chocolate chip cookie - only my craving for wool is satisfied, and not my stomach (although my stomach had its fill of good things too!). I went a little crazy (monetarily) yesterday at the infamous Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, but I think once I begin my new projects I won't feel as bad. All I wanted was a drop spindle so I could learn to spin, and I ended up getting quite a bit of rovong as well. I don't spin (yet), and don't know if I'll even enjoy it, yet I bought a grand total of 1 lb. 12 oz. of roving. Mrs. Brown had given me a little bit of roving that she had hand-dyed to try out - so it wasn't necessary to buy the amount of fiber that I did. I really should be saving. Whoops. I am completely satisfied, and that is all that matters. Heh.


I went with my aunt and grandmother, both of whom knit, as well as my mother who has absolutely no interest in knitting whatsoever. We had a fantastic time - the temperature was perfect, the parking spot was perfect, we didn't get lost on our way there (which was surprising), and we didn't get lost on our way back (which was even MORE surprising).

I even almost convinced my mother to buy an alpaca. She was gushing over this one male almost the entire day. He wouldn't have fit in our car, unfortunately.


Here are the contents of my goodie basket:

On the left: 4 oz. 50% baby Camel 50% Tussah silk from Indigo Moon Farm. Even though this roving is not for a beginner spinner, I could not help myself. And although not too apparent in the picture, the luster and sheen of this fiber is absolutely gorgeous. I am planning on making a plain scarf to match my heavy winter wool coat. It's going to look stunning.

In the middle: 1 lb. plain ol' wool from The Fold in Marengo, Illinois. It was so much smoother and creamier in color then many of the other fibers I had seen. I have no idea why, though. It's sooo super clean, but still smells of a dirty sheep. The woman told me it was from her award winning Blue-faced Leicester. I didn't care if the animal had won awards or not - the roving stuck out like a sore thumb against all of the other wool fibers I had seen. It's incredibly plush and luxuious - I wanted to jump in a huge pile of it. I couldn't resist.

On the right: 8 oz. of natural wool from I-forget-the-heck-where. The woman sold it to me for $5. Although not as soft as the Blue-faced Leicester, it's color is beautiful, and I cannot wait to get started on it. I think I'm going to spin this first.

In front: The hand-dyed roving was a gift from Mrs. Brown, and the drop spindle came from Greensleeves Spindles.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

special delivery.

Not only is tomorrow my last final (Macroeconomics - blech!) but it's Cinco De Mayo! You all best believe I'm poppin' open a Corona when I get home.
I got a 'little' surprise in the mail yesterday...

Behold, my 28 skeins of KnitPicks Merino Style. I swatched last night and I am incredibly pleased with this yarn. I was a little skeptical at first (because of the price - duh!), but was pleasently surprised once I had it in my hand. I am quite excited. I think that this is going above and beyond the call of Project Spectrum, but whatever. I am an over-achiever.

Monday, May 01, 2006

happy may!

Today is May 1st and the opening day for Project Spectrum - well, at least for me. I endered in the middle of April and thought that it would be better to start fresh in May. I absolutely adore the concept behind Project Spectrum. I, too, believe that color should be celebrated. In celebration of the first of May, and since green is the color for May, here are my completed Mountain Colors Bearfoot socks.

This yarn was amazing. I'm buying more.

I got so excited to start Project Spectrum that I went and bought 28 skeins of Knitpicks Merino Style (3,444 yards!) the other day to make a project to be revealed at the end of the summer. Where the yarn is going to go once it gets here, I have no idea. But I was so inspired by the whole idea and all of the gorgeous blooming Pear, Peach, and Dogwood trees in my backyard that I couldn't help myself. I am incredibly excited to start this project. Maybe I'll drop hints over the summer as to what it is. Maybe.


My mother, aunt, grandmother and I are going to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival this coming weekend. Needless to say, I don't know how I am going to be able to concentrate on my final exams this week. All I keep thinking about when I am trying to study or write a paper is what kind of yarn I'll buy. Sock yarn? Maybe some roving so I can learn to spin.

I am still working on my Rambling Rose sweater. I haven't made too much progress as the Mountain Colors socks took precedence only because I wanted to beat Wanda at my knitting group on Thursdays. She's been working on the same pair of socks for 4 months. And she's still not done the first.

I'm obsessed.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

My Kitchener Stitch Stinks.

So, I finished one of the Mountain Colors socks Saturday night. I decided to stay in since the Thuderstorms were pretty bad. We had some minor flooding and I didn't think my Civic Hybrid would fair well in the weather. So, I used it was an excuse to sit inside, curl up on my couch and get some knitting done. I have never been so excited about a pair of knitted socks before (probably because I've always used crappy yarn), and I wanted them to be perfect. I got to the toe, and remembered that my Kitchener stitch is really bad. It's so awkward for me. So, I am not happy with the toe too much, but otherwise, I love the way they are turning out.


I also have been knitting Rambling Rose from the new Rowan 39. I substituted the 4-ply cotton with Baby Cashmerino since I pretty much loathe knitting in cotton. It's quite sad considering that I love cotton sweaters, but I just can't deal with knitting with it. It drives me insane. It doesn't stretch, it's cold and dense, not to mention it doesn't keep its shape too well. Here is the back so far:So, I opted to go with a yarn that I have knitted with many times before, and knew. I like the way the 4-ply cotton gives the sweater an organic, handmade feel - something that the smooth Cashmerino wouldn't do. So, after many different swatches, I decided to twist my purl stitches.


That's the clearest detail shot I could get out of my camera, but I think it gets the idea across. I am happy with it so far, but I have found some mistakes already in the pattern. For the life of me, I cannot find anyone with the same problem (or that is knitting the same pattern) online. I know that it is a misprint, and not just me. The increases in the back piece are way off.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Egads!

Whoa. Almost an entire month without a single post. Honestly, I have not really had a whole lot of time to post the past few weeks - school has been crazy and I was asked to give a speech to Congress on Capitol Hill. But, there has been plenty of knitting!
A pair of Mrs. Beeton's for Shelly's birthday (sans beading)! In her favorite colors, of course. She loved them.

I started a pair of socks in Mountain Colors - I love this yarn. My mom would have stolen them already, but I threatened her with my US 4 Addi Turbos. These are mine.

My boyfriend took me to New Hope, PA last weekend. We had a romantic lunch in the middle of town under an umbrella sipping on iced tea through straws. We walked off our lunch afterwards in town soaking up the sunshine. I didn't think he could top the afternoon until he got me in his big F-150 and took me across town to The Gazebo - a hole in the wall fiber shop in New Hope, PA. His mother had been there the weekend before and told him that I would love it because they had a massive shelf of Koigu. Mrs. Brown knows me well. I told Garrett that I want my engagement ring to be made of Koigu. He told me he'd keep that in mind.


I bought a couple skeins of each. I'm set for a few short weeks. I have a hard time finding Koigu in my area - but hopefully this will hold me over until the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival!

As a result of the fabulous afternoon in New Hope staring deep into eachother's eyes over panini sandwiches under the sun, and trips to The Gazebo and The Wooly Lamb he got one of these: