Knitting Kninja: Made from equal parts WIN and FAIL

Something to ponder: If unicorns are the new ninjas, do I need to change the blog to Knitting Uknicorn?

Anyway…

WIN:

* One sock down, one to go. Looks flipping awesome. Fits great. I feel like I should add less filling, but that would just be a dirty, dirty lie. Also, don’t eat socks.

* I got a lovely birthday present from my dear friend Andrea, including the above alpaca and silk yarn (feels like butter, seriously), and a copy of Sensual Knits, which turns out to be an even better book than I had imagined it would be. I loved the cover jacket, but the inside contains many lovely surprises.

* Mr. Kninja has been wearing his new mitts almost daily, and his beloved new socks are almost done. The Malabrigo on size six needles works out perfectly for EZ’s Woodsman socks. I was terribly excited on both socks to find that I had exactly the right amount of selvage stitches at three inches on the heel, even though I hadn’t been counting. Win! They also are super warm and soft. Mr. Kninja has been rather gloaty, actually. (Gloaty being an adjective to describe someone who is gloating. If I can say what part of speech it is, surely it must be a word.)


Malabrigo for the feet. Decadent.

* Mr. Kninja finished his first knitting project! He made a scarf (in nummy cashmere/merino) for Eleanor’s doll. Eleanor has appropriated it for herself at least some of the time.


Look on the cute works, ye knitters, and despair. Or just say, “Awww!”

* We got a new computer, a fancy, fancy new computer, for Mr. Kninja, who is now working from home. It’s pretty darn spiffin’.

* I found that I’m a much faster knitter than I was this time last year, as I finished the front panel of my McQueen Knockoff sweater (yeah, remember that?) in just a couple days time.

* My boffo new sewing machine, which I got for Christmas, is all set up, and it’s a-freakin-mazing. I love it. Even a sewing dunce like me can operate this sucker.

* And finally, the fabulous Orata over at Feather and Fan gave me this:

I’ll pass it on in my next entry. Right now I just want to revel in my day-making powers. Orata certainly made mine.

FAIL:

* So. damn. cold. Feel free to laugh at me, colder climed folks, but it’s cold for here, and since I felted and ruined my Willow coat, I’m not much better prepared for cold weather than I was last year. My toes are cold, my fingers freeze on every walk to and from the children’s school, and I don’t even have a hat anymore, now that my Shedir got stretched out and had to be passed on to Mr. Kninja. (I have a toddler sized pea-head. He has a great honkin’ melon. That honkin’ melon became an advantage when Liam yanked on my Shedir until it wasn’t going to snap back to size. Well played, Mr. Kninja. Well played.)

* I cannot believe how molasses slow the Sweetheart Socks are. Good heavens! The first one took me two weeks and a little extra. Whoa. And I am only a few rounds into sock two.

* I’m much, much farther than that into the second Woodsman sock, but I discovered only after I’d finished the leg and the heel that I’d forgotten to incorporate a few small changes to the pattern that I made on the first sock. They aren’t big enough changes for it to make sense for me to rip the sock, but I’m annoyed with myself.

* Handpainted yarn can apparently vary a good amount even within the same dye lot. I’ve checked the dye lot over and over again, but Sock Number One and Sock Number Two will just have to be fraternal twins. The colors are similar, but different enough to be rather noticeable even at a distance. Since these weren’t going to be quiet, demure socks to begin with (who knew Mr. Kninja liked his socks so crazy?) we’ll just call it character and leave it at that. They’re still warm and cozy, even if they aren’t exactly the same.

* All that pride in being a faster knitter than last year has come to naught when I made a rookie mistake and washed the (100% pure baby alpaca) panels of the McQueen Knockoff, and got to see them stretch all to hell when they dried. My fitted sweater is fitted no longer, and after much deliberation, I’ve decided to rip it and start over. On smaller needles, so there’s less room to stretch, and I’m never, never going to wash that sweater. After a year of being dragged all over, the soft, soft yarn had gotten rather itchy. Washing solved that problem, but created its own quagmire. So I will just have to pledge never to get dirty when I wear that thing, because I don’t think I can take the heartbreak a second time. I briefly considered tossing the dry panels in the dryer with a damp towel, but after the Felting Disaster of ’07 that was Willow, I’m not trying anything like that again. Adios, my dear cables.

(The plus side to this tragic episode is that I can stop wavering about it and finally fix the cables I messed up on the earlier knit back panel. They were really wonky and looked sort of odd, but since it was the back, I decided to let it go.)

* Total, so far, of zippers purchased for Eleanor’s Tomten: 5
Total, so far, of zippers that are the right kind and color: 0

* Related failure: the hour spent last night trying to sew one of the wrong zippers in using my magic sewing machine of awesomeness. No matter what I did, I managed to stretch the knit material and attach the zipper all wrong, often at an interestingly jaunty angle that changed over the span of an inch or so. I spent as much time with my seam ripper, picking away at little bits of thread, as I did with the magic sewing machine of awesomeness. Sewing: 1. Kninja: 0. I’m strongly considering the purchase of clasps or frogging for the T0mten. Eleanor’s been wearing it sans a way of closing it, and it’s warm and comfy and cute, but I think being able to close it would be super plus good.

* My final failure is my ability to keep up with email. If I owe you one, send me a line and let me know. Please tell me I’m not the only one who does this. I get an email, or a blog comment, or a private message on Ravelry or something, and I read it and I think to myself, “Well, I don’t have time to answer this right now, so I’ll do it in just a little while.” I go about my business of the day, thinking about the message, and what I will respond to it. Later, when I think of the message again, I remember the response I was thinking up, and assume that I have actually written and sent said response. Only I haven’t. So I lose.

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3 Responses to “Knitting Kninja: Made from equal parts WIN and FAIL”

  1. Cyn Says:

    I do the EXACT SAME THING with emails/comments/PMs. Read ’em right away, think “I’ll reply to this later”, and then either forget about it completely or think that I already replied because I thought of a response right away.

    You’d think that once I thought of a response, I’d go ahead and send the response, but noooo. FAIL! EPIC FAIL! I’m going to put a big “FAIL!” button on my blog, right next to the email address. Well, okay, I’m probably not. Hey, “fail” rhymes with “email”. Oh god this is the most useless comment I’ve ever left, anywhere. I’m so sorry.

    I’m going to go eat a sock now.

  2. Tracy Says:

    If it makes you feel better, my first set of socks took me almost two months. Then the kitchener stitch in one of them busted the first time I wore them. I’m still trying to recover from that.

    You might have success with the Calorimetry pattern for a hat/head covering. As it stretches out, just go to the next button hole. Plus, it does not take a whole lot of yarn, so it’s a good stashbusting project.

  3. theLady Says:

    Oh man, the knitting agony – on the plus side, those Sweethearts looks AMAZING.
    I just knocked out two Urchins (Fall 07 Knitty) – they’re really quick and very warm, you might try it. I finished one in a day. You might try doing some research into how alpaca behaves, and ways to combat that. Interweave has a free article online about it, but really, it’s best to fit the project to the fiber and yarn, so perhaps you might want to re-think that pattern in that yarn… you don’t want to tempt Murphy’s law, which says you’ll get ice cream on it the first time you wear it. Washing=good.
    Good luck!

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