FO: Dan’s Scarf and non-knitting faux-knitting knitting bag.

I started this when Dan and I went to a double feature in July.  JULY.  I knit through both of the movies, made some progress, and then have slowly been whittling away at it since then.  It’s a lot of scarf.

Based on the Harry Potter Scarves, it’s just a giant tube knit on a 16″ US8 Circ.  Stripes are 22 stitches long, and I knotted them together when changing colors, and tucked them on the inside of the scarf.  One end is sewn together – the other had some three needle bind off action.

Dan wraps his scarf.

 I was planning to keep on going until I had used all of four skeins of Malabrigo (2 of each color – Blue Graphite & Verdes), but Dan got cold and I got anxious, so it’s more like 1.5 skeins of each color.  Long enough to wrap around his neck, and unbelievably soft and warm.  Thanks, Malabrigo and double thick worsted weight fabric.

Dan really likes it.  I’m happy with it, too, especially to get it off my needles!  This is not a pattern I will be repeating.

The Blue Graphite is a Malabrigo True Solid, so there was no pooling or subtle kettle dyed variations.  The Verde had some pretty cool pooling going on that Dan really liked, so I just let it do its thing.

I was eager to get working on Lindsey’s chuppah wedding quilt, but I moved last week and couldn’t find me self-healing mat anywhere.  Which meant I couldn’t start cutting the fabric, which means I couldn’t start piecing.  But I really wanted to sew something.

Lindsey sent me a bunch of suggestions, and I picked out this Shoulder Bag.  I jumped into my fabric stash, and went to work!

The lining is lime-green fabric printed with a stockinette pattern.  The outside is some fabric I bought three years ago that has been wanting to be a bag for awhile.  I used some lightweight interfacing I had laying around to help make it a little more sturdy, and added a button from my new button stash.

Overall, I’m happy with it.  The tutorial was really easy to follow, and the results are awesome.  It easily fits over me, and I think will be a perfect supplementary knitting bag (i.e., in addition to a purse – so not tangled keys with yarn, and no more trying to shove my knitting projects into my purse).

My cable knit sweater is sitting there right now – all ready for a train trip up to Boston tomorrow.

Bonus Picture! Finished Koolhaas in Mineral Red Malabrigo!

I wake up when it’s dark, I get home when it’s dark…

Wintertime is not the best time for knit bloggers who don’t want to resort to using their flash.

I keep on forgetting to take pictures during my window of sunlight: the ten minutes between when I am ready to go to work and when I leave for the train.

So we have one picture to show.

The stripes are Needful Yarns Joy [on US9s, 21 sts] and the pink is Misti Alpaca Chunky [two skeins on US10.5s, 17 sts cast on – a PERFECT length and so soft!]

This is the pile of Mistake Rib that has invaded my life. Mistake Rib has always been my favorite go to non-curling stitch pattern for scarves, and I just keep on casting on and knitting long skinny scarves [Oddly enough, Crazy Aunt Purl posted recently about her new found love for Mistake Rib, too] .

My basic Mistake Rib Pattern:

CO a multiple of 4 + 1.

Row 1: *K2, P2. Repeat from * to end of row, K1.

Repeat. Every single row. Forever.

I like to slip the first stitch of every row knit-wise, for a clean edge, but that’s not required. It looks vaguely rib like, but actually reads like this across, stitch by stitch:

Garter, Stockinette, Garter, Reverse Stockinette.

Dan thinks I should be working on his scarf instead of continuing to cast on orphan scarves that have no intended owner, but I just can’t stop.

So far I’ve finished one (the pink blob in that photo), and am 1 ball in to the 3 balls of Needful Yarns Joy that will be another. They’ll make their way into the plastic tub I like to call “Christmas in a Box” until late November when I’ll thank myself for getting this knitting done so early.

I was actually going to veer away from the Mistake Rib for the self-striping scarf, and was all ready to cast on Striped Wedges from Knitting New Scarves, which Lindsey gave me for Christmas. It’s knit lengthwise, and I thought it would be really neat looking with the long stripes of the Joy. Except the Joy is kind of oddly constructed – it has a core of a very lightweight, woven wool, surrounded by lofty soft fluffy poofy wool. When I was casting on, when I got to about stitch 50 or 60 of 150, I noticed that the lofty wool had completely separated from the core, and was all bunched up and broken and bad looking.

So if you’re knitting with Joy, or planning to, the long-tail cast on for anything more than 20 stitches? Total pain in the ass. I tried to use the knitted or cable cast on, but I’m just so slow with them as opposed to the long-tail, and I wanted to start knitting! So mistake rib it is.

[By the way? Knitting New Scarves is a kind of awesome book. It shows a lot of different structures of scarves, but not a lot of stitch patterns – they’re all basically ribbed or garter stitch. It’s cool because it’s all about the technique of construction. I have a few skeins of Blue Sky Dyed Cotton begging to be this Shawl Collar and Meandering Stripes! That is, if Dan doesn’t get mad at me for casting on yet another scarf…]

[And while we’re discussing knitting books, I have to recommend The Knitter’s Book of Yarn.  I know it’s been all over the knitting blogs recently (well, a few months ago), but I got it a little bit before Christmas and it totally lives up to the hype.  Not only does it have great information on the different fibers and stuff that go into yarn, but it goes into yarn weight! and construction! And includes super cute patterns!   I love the XOX Vest, HelloYarn’s mittens (both of them!), and the Scaruffle.  So not only is it an interesting reference book, but the patterns aren’t too shabby either.]

I am still knitting…

Except apparently I’m also moving this week, and the batteries in my camera are dead.

And I think we packed the extra set of batteries.

So my Koolhaas and coordinating scarfette, knit from a single skein of Malabrigo with 13 grams left over?

Camera died before I could finish its debut photo shoot.

This is what I have so far [No Koolhaas yet.  Stay tuned.]

I used the Shifting Sands stitch pattern over 22 stitches for the little scarfette.
The buttons I picked up in Salem, MA over New Year’s.  Love the little blue roses.  I have ten, so I have plenty left.
I was thinking about a simple scalloped edging for the scarf, but I wasn’t sure about the yarn requirements and I didn’t love how it looked.  I ripped it out right after this picture. 

More pictures of the scarf as well as the Koolhaas (so much fun to knit!) coming soon.

In other knitting news, I tore up what is left of the apartment looking for the little ball of yarn left over from my Flower Basket Shawl.  I thought the Socks That Rock Heavyweight would be perfect for a little iPod cozy, and I love the color.

Of course, since the apartment is a sea of boxes, I couldn’t find it.

So what did I do?  I ripped out my Flower Basket Shawl so I could use, oh, I don’t know, 50 yards of it for the iPod cozy.

I’ve officially lost my mind.

In my defense, the Flower Basket Shawl did had a few major issues with it, AND it was too small to wear, even as a little tiny bandanna of a shawl.  So – goodbye.

Deep breathes.  Deep breathes.

419thousand stitches.

Lindsey has been wanted to do a combo-visual-crafty-picture-taking-blog with me for awhile. Since it’s the beginning of the year, we decided to go for it.

Our plan is to each take two pictures a week and post them there, to share our crafty endeavors with each other (because constant email and blog-stalking just isn’t enough for us anymore).

Lindsey does everything! She paints, knits, sews, embroiders, makes jewelry, draws, sketches, beads, crochets, makes prints, and even more! I knit, quilt, sew, and occasionally crochet. I think it’ll be a fun way to explore our craftiness through photography as well as stay in touch and share it with each other!

419thousand stitches

[We live nearly 419,000 yards (over 190 balls of Cascade 220, as I see it!) away from each other. Which is where part of the title came from.]