I’ve Swatched!!!!

I’ve finally done it…my first swatch – for Juliet!

I got 3.5 sts/inch on size 10.5 needles after wetting it and letting it dry. I was very happy about this because I did not want to have to play with needle sizes and stress myself out!

I’m using Knit Picks Cadena in Neptune. When I ordered this it looked much more blue/teal on my monitor than it really is. This is a very sea-green color. I was a bit disappointed when I initially saw it, but it’s grown on me some and I think that I will be happy with the end result. This just goes to show that you cannot trust your monitors when you order yarn online!!!

I’ve been doing a little bit of research on Ravelry about what size I should make. My measurement is right in the middle of the Medium size, but most everybody says that they wished that they’d gone down a size since it runs a little big. So…..looks like I am going to be knitting a Small. I’m a little bit nervous about this, but if it does turn out to be too small for me I can always give it to my mom and make myself another one…In another color. 😉

If anyone has any advice I would greatly appreciate it!  This will be my first sweater and I have to admit that I am a bit nervous/intimidated, but I am reassured by the fact that there will be no seaming!

Before & After

Before:

After:

There isn’t really much to say about this that I didn’t say about the first Diddy Bag that I made! I used the same yarn,2 skeins of Caron Felt-It, and an L/8.0 mm hook. The yarn must have had less yardage because I was only able to get 2 rounds finished after the handles instead of 4 like before. It’s worked out ok because the handles sort of rolled up and now they are like little i-cords. Ok with me…The measurements before felting were approximately 8″ high x 28″ around and after it was approximately 6″ high and 24″ around. I still need to do some stretching on it as in the picture it looks like it is a bit dilapidated.

This one felted a little bit wonky, and I’m glad that I checked on it when I did (during the 1st wash cycle) because it had started to felt together. I think that I must have made an error on the bottom increases because it’s a little bit warped on the bottom. This is ok with me because I just made this for fun and for the purpose to using up some yarn. It’s going to be a while before I buy yarn that’s only purpose is for felting…

I put this bag through 2 wash cycles and then put it in the dryer for 15 minutes on High Heat because it still wasn’t as firm as I would have liked. The time in the dryer seemed to do the trick.

Update on my Goals:

Last night I cast on (again) for the Ribbed Shrug and then worked mostly on the Be My Dishcloth. I hope to finish this cloth quickly this evening when I get home from work. Then I am going to work a bit on the Ribbed Shrug, hopefully to the decrease part. Then I just MIGHT swatch for Juliet! I wound up the yarn a few days ago, I have a ‘recipe’ for a swatch, so I am ready to go!

FO: Quant

I had originally thought I was going to have to report for Jury Duty today, but when I called to check my status last night it said that I no longer had to come! HOORAY!!! Now I can report about my most recent FO and upcoming projects – definitely more fun.

Over the weekend I started and finished Quant from Knitty. I think that this is actually my very first Knitty pattern!

For the yarn, I used what I had left over from my Stella’s Hat, a little less than half a skein of Malabrigo in Bobby Blue. If you are very observant, you might notice that I ran out! I think that this is probably due to the fact that my Quant is WAY-WIDE! The pattern says that it should be 5″ wide and mine, unstretched, is about 7″. I didn’t swatch, of course, but I think that when I wear this I will just fold it in half – then it will be more narrow and warmer! To finish off the i-cord where I ran out of yarn I used some leftover Lion Brand Wool in Teal. It’s noticeable, but when I am wearing it I don’t think that it will be all that much.

This pattern is very fun to knit and actually pretty quick. I get a little stressed out when I am doing a pattern and there is so much changing going on, but once I got going on it I started feeling much better about everything. I am definitely going to give Danica a try now.

Up Next:

I started the Ribbed Shrug last night, but had to rip it out because I cannot follow directions properly. I got to the decrease row and thought it said *k1, k3tog…, when in actuality it said *k3tog…, big difference! So, instead of trying to pick all of it out I just frogged it, I was not in the mood! Instead I cast on for a dishcloth! There are still a few more Valentine dishcloths that I’d like to make but February is drawing quickly to a close, so what I hope to accomplish before the end of the month is this:

– Felt Diddy Bag #2 – might do this tonight

– make some more progress on Blue Collar – I’m a little over 1/3 finished on this

– finish most recent dishcloth

– cast on Ribbed Shrug and make it past the decrease row!

– Swatch for Juliet

There are so many things that I want to knit right now so I can’t wait to finish list up and start on the one for March!!!

Dishcloths for Lovers

One of my goals for this month was to knit up some Valentine dishcloths. I sort of wanted to have them all complete by Valentine’s Day but I didn’t really have any reason for that – it’s wasn’t like I was going to be undertaking any huge dish-washing expedition that day, so….I didn’t really press myself to get them done. I found a cute dishcloth/dishtowel set on Ravelry, but I’m not quite ready to post about that one yet. That leaves me with these 2 patterns from Knitsbyrachel:

Love Dishcloth

I used Lily Sugar N Cream in Tea Rose and size 6 needles.

Valentine Dishcloth

I *think* this is Lily Sugar N Cream in Seaspray, but I’ve had it for a long time and the ballband is long gone.  This one has a mistake in the center heart, but if you don’t look too closely, you might not notice it. 🙂

Current Progress

I’ve started back working on the Blue Collar. I had to rip back about 2 repeats on Sunday night because I realized all too late that when I picked it up to start working on it again I didn’t start where I was supposed to.   I was not very happy about that because by the time I was done knitting for the night I was just about right where I was when I picked it up in the first place! So frustrating!!  I worked on it some more last night and WAS able to make some progress, so now I’m about 25% finished. I am getting faster at the short rows, but the yarn is most of my problem – so splitty. My new needles are helping with that, but they can only do so much.  Maybe if I am diligent I can have this completed by the end of the month.

All in all, I really am pretty much on target with my goals! I don’t anticipate being finished with the felted lunch bag, but that is due to the fact that I’ve not so much as picked it up to work on it. I really don’t see how so many people make so many felted bags -they are so boring!

My next two projects are going to be the Ribbed Shrug from my goals list and Quant with the leftover Malabrigo from my Stella’s Hat. Hopefully I’ll have some progress, or better yet a FO, to show off soon.

Surprise FO

A few weeks ago when the Lion Brand catalog came out my mother (who somehow happened to get a copy also) commented on how cute she thought Heather the Hippo was. I thought this this would make a nice Valentine present for me to give to her when she came to visit me for the weekend, so I set in to working on Heather Thursday night. When my mother arrived at my house on Saturday afternoon, Heather was all ready waiting on her…She loved her!

This was a super easy pattern, even though the construction was a bit different from other amigurumi that I’ve done. Instead of the head and neck meeting up with the same number of stitches for easy sewing, this one has you sew the head onto the body after you’ve already fastened up both pieces, not quite as easy I think… I finally worked it out! 🙂 Also, instead of the 4 legs being completely round at the top, the pattern has you do them to the specified length and then do a sort of flap. I think this is so you will have to sew them on more like stumps instead of movable arms and legs.

I used about 3/4 of a skein of Lion Brand Wool Ease in purple for the body and just a very small amount of Lion Brand Wool Ease in Fuchsia for the bikini. For the eyes and mouth I used some Lion Brand Wool in Cocoa and Rose. I really tried to embroider the mouth on, but it just didn’t work out. Instead I reverted back to 1st grade arts and crafts and just glued it on…you can still see the glue in the picture b/c it wasn’t completely dry yet. It did dry clear!

I think that this one is definitely my best looking amigurumi yet.  I didn’t stuff it as much as I thought I should have and therefore I didn’t stretch out the fabric as much.  I guess this is something that I will continue to do, even though everything I’ve read says ‘stuff it until you think you’ve got enough and then stuff it some more.’  Maybe they don’t have the same problem with their fabric stretching like I do!

Catching Up

I think it is safe to say that I am not going to be meeting all of the goals for this month that I set up for myself…I’ve strayed from the list just a bit, and the next two weeks are going to be pretty busy so I don’t know how much time I will have for actual quality-time knitting. (I have to report for Jury Duty on the 25th, so WHO KNOWS how that will go!) I do not anticipate getting the felted lunch bag completed or the blue collar, but I might be able to squeak out everything else plus a couple of items that were not on the list – spur of the moment things.

Here is something that I didn’t plan on making:

A Woodstock dishcloth for my dad… This yarn was so thin and crappy! UGH! Just some regular Lily Sugar N Cream in Yellow, but seriously, it was horrible. Since the yarn is so bad, the picture doesn’t really show up very well at all. I had a very hard time taking a photo where you could actually see it.

I also sent a folded potholder to my dad’s girlfriend:

These are so fun to make and a great way to use up some cotton stash. Everybody can use a potholder! This is the last remaining yarn from a cone of Spring Meadows Sugar N Cream that I bought off of ebay about a year and a half ago. I am not sorry to see it gone! A cone is a lot of yarn!!!

I did make some dishcloths for Valentine’s day but some of them are still wet from blocking. I hope to have a photo-shoot with them this weekend so I can post about them soon. I also hope to have time this weekend to finish up a few things that I’ve started and just been putting off, like the 2nd Diddy Bag. I am about 75% finished and just don’t ever seem to pick it up to do the rest!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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