Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Olimpic Circles

It might not the best thing to admit...but I rarely watch sports. Not even the olimpics. I love sports as the next person, especially love doing them, but sitting down and watching it? Usually i feel they are waste of time. There are few exception of course, when Hungarians are about to win some big game, or Figure skating... Don't get me wrong, I am at awe at the champions, I admire them.
Anyway, knitting is different. I did signed up for the knitting olimpics, I've been trying to choose a good project and finally ended up choosing the Sunrise circle.
I wanted to make it forever, I remember having my heart set on some debbi bliss tweed on which I got outbid on e-bay. Because of the shaping, the width of teh sweater defines the length, the pattern does not leave much space for modifications. I was searching for a yarn that is very close in gauge to the original one... Then I looked through Ravely and saw that a few made this from Noro... Now that is an idea, so when I saw my estonian friend Marion knitting with this yarn I knew I found what I was looking for. The only trouble that the yarn is finnish, and not available in my country... I cannot thank Marion enough for ordering it for me and bringing all the way.
Knowing that I will have a ton of work in this time, some of which will have to be brought home I tried not to overcommit myself. But then I didn't counted on getting a nasty headcold/sinus infection and spending two days in bed, and trying to ignore my face feeling like I've been just punched, and knitting.
Aside from all that stockinette, the challenge of knitting this was in following the pattern word by word, stitch by stitch. Thankfully it is very well written. (I got it when Knitting Daily offered the booklet of the five most popular pattern. This is the secont thing I've knitted from it, but not the last one).

The only thing I've changed the length of the sleeves, and the point where I started increasing for the sleeves, making it straight around the wrist and lower arm.

I had very good luck in matching up the stripes, though the front edges slightly different. I loved knitting with the yarn, only two knots in the ten balls. The only place I had trouble is at the sewing up, where the yarn kept falling apart...Until I realized I should twist it between stitches (hmm being a spinner must have played in that thought.) .I Used 3.75 mm needles, which are much smaller than the suggested one. Which -once again- made me think about knitting loose, and liking the knitted fabric denser than usual... I knitted size 37.
I love the finished sweater :-)

Oh, and I kept wondering if my yarn would be enough... well I even had some leftover;-) The purple ball is 9 meters, the green one is 7 meters. None of them enough for two whole rows. The rest is just the bits I've cut off when I waived the ends in.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Spinning also fell victim to the Knitting Olimpics...
But I can show you waht is on the spindles:
BFL from Freckle Face fibers in the Peony colorway... wonder why did I choose that particular one? LOL

Did you note the color of the spindle? When I say it on etsy in this shop I just couldn't leave it, now, could I?

Speaking of spindles... I was watching a Kundert spindle on etsy which got sold, before I had the money to buy it.... I was rather dissapointed. I looked up his site, and asked about shipping internationally. He replied within a few hours and I told him what kind of spindle I am looking for (medium weight to spin sport and heavier yarn) and he made a maple one especially for me and the package was here less in than a week. I just had to try it at once with my beloved merino silk mix, and it spins so wonderfully. It is one of my very best internet-buying experience.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Raining babies

Or so it seems... in the office women keep announcing that they are expecting... This last friday we've been celebrating the last day in work, before the baby comes-day of the woman who used to be my boss in the call center... We've had a really good relationship, and I love her... so when it came to a baby shower it was obvious that I will be involved in teh organization, also that some small handknit will be in the package :

Saartje baby-booties again, this time from unidentifiable second hand cotton yarn. Needle:2-75 mm.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Knitting olympic update

A few years ago when I found the Yarn Harlot's blog and was reading older post I found out I just missed her Knitting Olimpics... I was pretty dissapointed... this year she was hesitant, so I was not all that up and ready with a project.. in fact I had this one on the needles:

It was a little bit fussy and didn't went as speedy as I wanted so in a rush decision I casted on something else and got so excited I couldn't put it down before I was done with the back:

When Stephanie announced the she would do it after all I was at loss what to do... The main challenge would be to put away what I am already working on and concentrate on something else. And what that else should be? I don't have enough yarn -yet- for the heartland shawl... Do the percy shawl? That would really strech it, because even though I knit fast (umm, faster than the average) a shawl still takes me more than two weeks...A top down sock? OK, I don't do top down socks, so it would be something new, but still a pair of socks are not as much of a challenge. Then it hit me... the Sunrise circle sweater I wanted to make forever... I hunted for the perfect yarn (I has several misses, too thin, too thick, too dark), what finally Marion from Estonia brought me last year Novita Puro, with stripes and color changes much like Noro, though not as refined, but the yarn itself is much softer, and no vegetable matter. Not to mention it costs half the price of the Kureyon... At the moment I have the back:

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The queen of second hand

Last weekend I found this...

I wonder what would a certain teenager (with goth tendencies) would think of it as an exchange for a drawing...

Monday, February 15, 2010


It's carnival time... getting into costumes... Not the scary ones like at halloween, but fun ones. Especially for the kids...
This year Christopher went as the little caroon figure on the left side...The waterspider. It is a really cute cartoon series many in Hungary about the spider who lives in a garden pond, his best friend the grumpy land spinder... what makes it really nice that though the stories are rather human (friendship, jelausy, and restarting, and lots of interesting topic) it is also biologically correct. Here are the two main characters.

Some years ago, a week before the even We had all his coustome figured out as an other eastern europian cartoon-caracter the little mole (a black overall, with hood, a dark red plastic boot and a spade, right?), when my boy announced, that he much rather would be the waterspider... umm, just look at that drawing... then I came up with this, which was used again this year:

And there was the little production, the class played the traditional winter chasing "busó-járás" when with scary masks and screaming rhymes, they chasing the winter away (Christopher is with the green ribbons:

BTW it must have worked, as on saturday when we went away, the first time in this year, I smelled spring in the air. It was still chilly and windy, which made it feel even colder, but the air... it smelled differently. There is still hope after all...for spring.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Thank you

You might remember how I struggled with decluttering and getting rid of PJ mess (umm stuff) last year. One person who helped me so much was my ex collegaue Eszter. She came, she packed, carried boxes, shipped things with her car, all the while not even excepting money for the gas she used. Without her, I would have never finished the work. I am ethernally grateful to her, in a way no word or present could tell. I knew she liked my gray vest knitted BB (before blog), so I decided knitting one for her, as a thank you.

Now, if I could only get her come here, hand it over, and do a modelled shot...

Friday, February 12, 2010

Green friday

The first finished sweater of the year.
I am trying to do the InKniSweMonDo (International Knit a Sweater a Month) thingy. Last year I thought no way I can finish this much, but when I counted my FOs at the year's end I actually had more (if I count vests and tank tops too).
So here is the first one, in the tradition of green for waiting for spring:

I casted on on jan.1th. Yarn is King Cole's merino blend DK, which has a weird way of relaxing, so knitting a fabric that will end up dense enough in the right size is tricky. To add trouble to problem, the only package of this color in the shop missed one ball, and I only had 450 gramms. It is wearable, though slightly small. Maybe it is high time for me to loose that weight I am trying to for years now?
Pattern is Girl Friday from knitty 2009 fall. 3mm needles. Only one mod: a couple of decreases and increases for waist shaping.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

What to do?

I finished the plying and skeining the turqoise lace yarn. It is 550 meters, and now I don't know what to do.I am kind of afraid it wouldn't be enough. You know I like my shawls on the generous sized side... The pattern says 503 meters DK. I think the weight of my yarn is between lace and fingering, and from that the shawl would need more yardage.. Shall I make a smaller shawl? My instincts says I should spin some more, but...Remember I used this roving, but the shipping costed and arm and a leg. And the seller was nasty . I mean I did asked beforehand what the shipping would cost. She said in an email that she could ship up to 10 ounce for 14 USD. Then I get about 6-8 ounce fiber and she charged me 25 USD!! That is a LOT.Not to mention it took a MONTH to get here. Of course I did complained and the she got snotty, saying that shipping is not safe in this god forbidden corner of the world and she can only ship insured. I didn't had a lost package in years (insured or not)...I admit that there were some problems at the beginning but not since 2008. And boy, do I order a lot of things...It is a shame because she does have some nice stuff and at a fairly good price, but I am not a masochist. I don't usually go again where once I burned my hand.

Anyway the question arose what to do now?

.. Shall I look for something similar, like this? Or this? and knit the border from a different shade? Shall I just give up and look for an other pattern? Then which one?

Fiber merino and silk blend. Spun on this little spindle... I ordered an other one from the seller and while conversing about living in Hungary, unaviability of things, shipping prices and other things I mentioned that i like this one too and maybe an other time I will order it too. Then the box arrived and I opened, unpacking the one I ordered and there was some extra fiber along. Christopher wanted to open that one to and I said, "calm down honey, that is just fiber, we'll open it later" "no mama, there is something inside, look" and just as I was starting to yell at him that "I said leave it alone" this lovely little spindle fell out... It is so cute and I loved spinning with it. Plying was done with the big star shaped spindle also bought from the same seller.

ETA: Problem solved. I found the exact same fiber at ETSY of all places. I was surprised because this was a commercially mixed and dyed fiber and I didn't expect it to turn up there, but it did. I got the amount I needed and shipping costed me 7 dollars (with some other fiber in the package). Yayyy, I can't wait for it to get here.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Maybe it is time

To review on my standpoint on my self declaration of
"I am not a socknitter".
I still do not think myself as one. Of course, I do think that handknitted socks are way superior than any storebought one, and I do knit socks from time to time. But I rarely drool over sockyarns on etsy, and a new sock pattern cannot make me want to jump out of my skin.

Then as I finished knitting on a bigger project I was looking around for something to do until the blocking dried and I found this:

Yep. Three pairs of socks. And only one is my basic 2x2 ribbed plain soled toe up thingy... The patterning on the other two is still based on ribbing, but one of them is broken rib and the other one is lacy rib... And when I saw these on the blog of teh Yarn Harlot, I found myself seriously considering making them...where the world is going?

Sunday, February 7, 2010

In the name of craftiness

With the new bed in my bedroom the old writing desk I used for nightstand and whatnot did not fit there anymore. I do a lot of things in my bedroom besides sleeping, like reading, watching TV and most importantly knit. Which means I have to put things down, so I definetly needed something there. Of course with spending all that money on the bed I could not afford anything fancy. Headed out to IKEA, bought the cheapest possible thing that would fit into the space I had, which was a raw pine shelf ... then started thinking.. .Shall I leave it raw? Shall I stain it? Warnish it? Paint it? Since the bed is white and the chiffarobe (god I like that word, even though I could easily say gardroe cabinet :-) is pine both version could have worked. Then Kim convinced me, that it would need something anyway, and if I get my hands in something it might as well be white paint.
Do remember that I live in a 69 square meter apartment on a tent floor, so the only place I could do it was the narrow floor space in the kitchen.

It dried for two days and I got out some screw drivers and put the thing toogether in the even smaller place in the bedroom:

Then put it in its place...I know I have a lot of practice to do if I want to pain perfectly something, because this is far from perfect. But I did it, it serves it purpouse perfectly.