Ribbit, Ribbit.

 

I could spend this time telling you about the cute little raglan pullover I started for my nephew.  It’s fall, that means tweed time.

I could rant against the designer who called it a ‘simple raglan’ but then used a highly modified version of raglan increases.  Only a problem because the pattern is so jumbled with other useless information like this gem ‘NOTE:  sl markers as you come to them’ that I didn’t bother to read the actual pattern.   The 9 other ‘NOTES’ about things such as the definition of work even and the fact that this is a top down pullover cluttered the page to the point that I didn’t bother reading any of it, until it was too late.

Sure, it might be my fault for not reading it, and subsequently assuming that a simple raglan meant 8 increases, every other row.  Obviously, I should have read the pattern and discovered that the author meant for me to do 12 increases every 3rd row with twice as many increases going into the sleeves.  On a different day, I’d be pretty annoyed with that convoluted bullshit being called ‘raglan shaping’.

That’s not actually my problem today, though.  Today’s problem is stupid wordpress.  Anyone else having a heckuva time getting photos to display in the editor properly?  I’ve been having trouble with my account for a couple weeks now.   The photos just aren’t loading properly when I need them too.  I suspect it’s because I’m at 90% capacity for my photo storage.  I can upload photos no problem but getting them from the upload stage to the posted stage is driving me crazy.

I’ll start a draft of a post, return to it a few hours later and the photos, while still in the post as they should be, just don’t appear.  Unsure if a picture is where I want it, I’ll return later hoping it shows up…sometimes it does, sometimes I’ll have to fight with it for another hour to get it to work.

I like to post a lot of photos and I use the mosaic arrangement a lot.  That’s pretty dependent on being able to see the photos.

It’s incredibly frustrating and it certainly doesn’t inspire confidence when it comes to giving wordpress more money to upgrade my account to the unlimited plan.   I’ve tried avoiding high traffic internet times, hoping that would make it easier for photos to appear as they should but nothing seems to be helping.

I’d contact wordpress help, but have you ever tried to email them?  They aren’t exactly helpful.  It seems like they copy & paste useless info that I could have found myself in the help files.  And given the email nature of it, it’s not exactly rapid communication.

So, dear readers, I turn to you, anybody have difficulty with photos appearing in the editor?  Can anyone confirm my suspicions that it’s due to being near capacity?  Anybody upgraded to the unlimited storage plan care to speak highly about it?

In the meantime, I’ll be sulking in the corner and ripping out my sweater progress.

 

FO Friday – Dragon Fade!

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My Dragon Fade shawl is finished and it’s gigantic!  I love it!  It’s been off the needles since Sunday.  I promptly wore to the park…ends dangling and all.  I don’t care.  I like it anyhow.

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I have managed to get about half the ends woven.  Yes, I’ve continued to wear it.  Fringe is in right now.  I’m going with it!  Of course, I really should get around to washing it and blocking it.  I’d draped it across a lot of Mother Nature’s offerings this week.

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Here’s a few details:  The pattern is Match & Move by Martina Behm.  I used 17 different yarns…no wonder there are so many ends to weave – those details (minus 1 mystery yarn) are all here on my notebook page.  My only modification, aside from gauge changes and the fade, was to increase the size.  I added about 10 extra rows…it’s giant.  It drags on the ground, if I don’t wrap it a couple times.  It’s definitely for cold & windy days.

That is not today.  Today appears to be a sunny day, which is good news for Hardly Strictly Bluegrass!  I’m heading to back to Golden Gate Park again so I’ll leave you with this shameless self promotion.  Just did a big fall shop update!   Check it out at www.FogKnits.Etsy.com!

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Happy Friday and Have a great weekend!


 

Yay Friday!!

Happy Friday!  It’s time to put this week to bed!  I’m ready — I feel like I’ve been focused and productive.  I got a good start on my interview prep and my pile of handmade nephew goodies has really grown!  It’s the perfect time for a weekend!

Because nothing makes one feel accomplished, quite like listing those accomplishments, here’s what all my procrasticrafting got me this week…

 

I finished up the leg warmers – two pair, one small, one large, one that matches, one that doesn’t.  The large size might become a pair of matching arm warmers for Mom.

I really liked working with this yarn, KnitPicks Felici.  It’s soft but still has a bit of structure to it.  I’m still thinking about the worsted weight version and a sweater with stripey sleeves.   Maybe my recently cast-on Newborn Vertebrae will cure me of that.  It’s grown since yesterday, I’m up to the sleeve divide already!  Baby sweaters are the best!

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What can I say, I’m a sucker for a good stripe.  I’m also a sucker for a cute animal toy, these days.  My Tubby Wubby stitch & stuff felt toy subscription has come to an end.  Mr. Giraffe is the last to join the menagerie.   I stitched him up, in about an hour, last night.  He’s extra goofy.  I couldn’t resist.

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3 Months was the perfect subscription length for these cute little kits.  They were well put together and the results are super cute but I’m ready to knit critters now.  Knitting is really my thing.  I can see myself stitching more of these Tubby Wubby kits, in the future, but for now, it’s back to Rebecca Danger cuteness.

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I whipped up this little Hippo from ’50 Yards of Fun’ for an instant gratification fix.  I love her designs.  Rather than knit pieces and sew them together, you pick up stitches on the body and knit the limbs out from there.  It can be fiddly but definitely worth it.  I’m always pleased with my critters.  I didn’t even have to fuss too much to give this guy a cute face!

And so, he join the growing pile for my next care package…

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I’ll send this stuff off when I finish his sweater.  Maybe a few more stuffies too…my goal is definitely to re-create that scene from E.T. with knitted toys!  :)

And, now, I’ve committed to doing some real work this afternoon.  Nothing boosts the confidence like putting the time in.  Back to interview prep for a few hours and then, it’s the weeeeekend!!!  Wooooo!

Enjoy your weekend, everyone!


 

A Friday Finish!

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I finally finished knitting something!  It’s a Hitchhiker.

I could tell you (again) how the Hitchhiker is the best scarf pattern ever.  I could tell you I love the color.  I could tell you about manually striping a solid and variegated yarn to break up the pooling even more.

 

I could tell you how happy I am to have frogged this yarn from a different project to reclaim it for one.  I could sing the praises of neon green.  I could tell you it’s perfect timing because Fogust is arriving in style, it’s super foggy this week.

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I could tell you it took me 15 movies to knit this.  I could even give you reviews of those movies.

Unfortunately, I’m short on time, heading to another movie.  With no knitting?!?  For my next trick, I will be crocheting in the dark!  I’ll let you know how it goes!

WIP Wednesday – All Cross Stitch Edition

Happy Wednesday!  It’s been a while.  Hope everyone is enjoying the summer and staying cool.  While much of the country has been having a heat wave, we’ve been enjoying really perfect weather here in San Francisco.

It’s pretty much always knitting weather here.  There’s no summer break because it’s too hot to even think about wool.  Despite that, I don’t have any progress to show.  I am making progress though.  It’s just that my WIPS have all grown to the point where progress is lost to the jumble of fabric crammed on the needles.   Soon though, I’m sure to have a breakthrough and get something finished.

In the meantime, I’ve turned to cross stitch for my instant gratification fix.  I love a project that only takes a couple hours.  Song lyrics are perfect for that!  From idea to execution to finishing in no time!

I’ve been watching the World Cup.  Our regular knit night takes place in an English pub so when they opened for a 7 am game, I had to go.  That was the inspiration for this piece…

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and once I’ve got a taste of instant gratification, I want more.  These two came in rapid succession, as well.

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My lettuce looks more like a pea, but he’s happy about it so I can’t be mad at him. I’m contemplating an upgrade for him, though.  In the meantime, I’ve got a jellyfish going on.

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His shading is so perfect.  I’ve finally found the ideal use for the variegated thread I’ve got.  I love him so far!  He’ll be joining his friends on the wall soon.

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It’s getting crowded…definitely making it’s way to full quickly!  I’ve still got a plenty of ideas left!

Home Again

I woke up last week and a switch had flipped!  It was time to go home.  I did manage a few more tourist stops on the way out though.  New Mexico is a terrific place to drive around.  Especially if you like avoiding interstates!  The landscape is beautiful and there’s nothing but wide open spaces.

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I really loved the drive.  There were a lot of surprisingly perfect places to stop along the way too.  Like the home of Smokey Bear.  Who doesn’t love that bear?

I still remember all the visits from the local fire department when I was a kid.  They’d bring the firetrucks to school and probably told us not to play with matches.  That’s not the part I remember.  I remember the guy in the Smokey suit.  He always said ‘only you can prevent forest fires.’  That’s the part I remember.

Whoever came up with the Smokey campaign was brilliant!  I’m not the only one who got the message…turns out Smokey Bear is the second most recognized international figure, behind only Santa Claus.   Woodsy Owl is totally jealous.  And of course, Smokey was a real bear, rescued from a forest fire after being badly burned.  The marketing campaign came before the real bear, believe it or not!

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It was the perfect little stop.  Visit the Smokey museum, stroll through the little park to stretch the legs.  They even had a picnic spot with a playground for the kids.

My next stop was another science stop.  It was a no-brainer once I saw on the map it had a visitor’s center.  The VLA…Very Large Array.

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It’s a series of 27 satellite dishes each 83 feet across that monitors deep space radio waves. You may recall seeing it in movies like Contact or Independence Day.  Of course, the VLA mission is not to look for alien life but I’m pretty sure they’d find it before anyone in Roswell.

No, their actual mission looks more like this!  They’re responsible for lots of cool deep space images.  This is a recent visualization of the Hercules A galaxy to come from the VLA.  Yay Science!!

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And just to bring it back around to knitting, I did finish my road trip WIP (mostly a WestKnits’ Dotted Rays, I put my own edging on it though).  I thought I found the prefect spot for a quick pic at the Smokey Bear park…

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Looks good, right?  I even picked a bird-poop free spot along the wall!  Turns out, I didn’t even notice the tree sap.  D’oh!  Got home and discovered two sticky spots on the back of the shawl that definitely smell like sap.  I can’t imagine where else they would have come from.  Of course, one of the spots is right in the middle of an angora stripe.  How the heck does one remove tree sap from angora??

I’m going to start with a eucalan soak.  I don’t usually use soap on my knitting but I think it might be necessary this time?

I also visited one last yarn shop, I’ll save that for tomorrow!  :)


 

Happy Local Yarn Shop Day!

Today’s calendar includes several ‘holidays’ to support your local businesses. It’s record store day so go support your local record dealer. And it’s local yarn shop day. It’s the inaugural year. I’m prone to talking smack about such made up ridiculousness but whatever, any excuse to buy yarn, yes?

Not as though I need an excuse. (First though, notice the snow. Snow!?! It’s been years since I’ve seen snow! Gonna try to avoid it for a few more years now…)

Yesterday’s trip to Purl in the Pines, in Flagstaff, Arizona was highly successful! It’s a super shop. The only thing I’d change…bring it closer to San Francisco!

It’s a clean, bright, mostly uncluttered space, loaded with great yarns. There was room for people to pass each other without tripping over piles of stuff on the floor. The displays were neat. The yarn walls looked great! I know how much work that takes to keep so tidy! It’s worth the effort though. It makes for a great shopping experience.

Anybody else love buttons? They got ’em! Once upon a time, someone told me the guy who sells those buttons is an old school traveling salesman…buttons in his trunk driving from shop to shop, peddling his wares. Clearly, this is what I aspire to. I’ve got the driving around to yarn shops down!

Here’s what I bought! From left to right, that’s three skeins of Mountain Meadow Cody, a Dream in Color Smooshy mini skein, a skein of Mary Gavan hand dyed yarn and a skein of The Croft Shetland tweed from West Yorkshire Spinners.

I’m excited about it all but the Mountain Meadow is what I’m most excited about! It’s a 100% grown & made in the USA product. A wonderful squishy merino from Wyoming and it’s a female owned company too! It’s lovely and soft, a bit more dense than say, Brooklyn Tweed. Perhaps on par with a Quince yarn. It’s rustic but not as a euphemism for scratchy. I love it.

And here’s the whole road trip pile…

Three yarn shops, three different states and a whole lot of awesome!

Happy Local Yarn Store Day! Now I’m off to Yarn and Coffee in Santa Fe! I expect more great yarns!