Me Made May Round Up

This was my first Me Made May, I started with high hopes but in the end, I agree with the ‘knitters need their own month’ sentiment out there.  For me, daily wearing of hand knits isn’t a problem.  Luckily my beloved San Francisco Fog has rolled in heavy this month!  Summer gives us plenty of opportunity to wear wool and I certainly did that this month.  I never leave the house without a knit layer.

The real challenge I set for myself is to destash anything not worn in May.  A couple pieces are going to live with Mom, so I’m calling this at least a partial success!  This sweater I never wear:

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Through no fault of it’s own.  I just don’t wear it.  It’s an open cardigan, lacking buttons/zipper/toggles/whatever so maybe that’s it.  It was a breeze to knit, I enjoyed making it.  Someone should enjoy wearing it.

Then there’s this:

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What was I even thinking?  This is nearly a decade old.  It’s lived under the bed for most of that decade.  It’s not for me.  I’m chalking it up to poor decision making skills.  I’ve gotten much better at picking projects to suit my personal style.  It’s the perfect of example of ‘if I had tried it on in a store, I never would have bought it.’  Live and learn!  Mom will give it a good home.

And then there’s the 3rd part of my personal Me Made May challenge…swatch and design one of the sweaters I’ve had on the brain for years.  I’ve got yarn stashed.  It’s just a matter of making it happen.  Turns out I did zero on this front!  I didn’t even think about pulling the yarn from the stash even once.  A realistic look at my queue tells me I won’t be knitting myself a sweater for a few months.  Meh.

Maybe by the fall, knitters will have their own month.   If I lived on the east coast, it would be a perfect Rhinebeck sweater.  Maybe that should be the goal.  I’m trying to figure out how to tell Mom I don’t want to come home at Christmas this year.  It’ll cost a fortune.  (Hi MOM!)  Maybe a fall visit, to coincide with Rhinebeck is the answer!  That would certainly soften the blow.  I’ll save money, visit the east coast around my birthday and favorite season (aside from fog season!), trek to a knitter’s paradise of epic proportions…A new sweater for the occasion would be the icing on the cake!

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Or maybe it’s just lip service…hard to tell at this point!

Stop Everything and Knit!

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Just when I think I’ve got my startitis cured and my WIPs under control…a (good) excuse to start a new project pops up!  A custom order for my Etsy shop!  It seems like this is going around…custom orders for handmade goods have been popping up all over!  It’s encouraging to see people interested in handmade!  Sometimes it seems like we’re preaching to the choir with our blogs and especially our Etsy shops, nice to know we aren’t!

(While we’re talking about handmade appreciation…anyone else enjoy the Game of Thrones scene this week where Sansa Stark mentions she sews her own dresses!  Me Made May for EVERYONE!)  Okay…back to the knitting…

This project is one of my favorites…a Giants themed Grateful Dead Steal Your Face hat!  Like previous hats I’ve done…only with extra slouch this time!  And of course, it’s hard to do anything the same twice, so I’ve tinkered with my chart to make it even better! That’s really the best part of this, a chance to improve an old favorite even more!

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Having my stainless stealie friend to help didn’t hurt either!

My Me-Made-May Challenge

If you don’t know about Me-Made-May, find more details here! 

The basic idea is to wear your handmade clothes more frequently and with pride!  It seems to be mostly people who sew their own garments.  There’s plenty of other stitchers out there taking part though!  (check out #mmmay15 on instagram for loads and loads of great photos!)

For me, it’s not much of a challenge to wear something I made myself each day, I do that anyhow.  To take it a step further, I’m going to use it as an opportunity clean the closet as well.  Anything I haven’t worn at least once by the end of the month is finding a new home.

Here’s the pile of what I worn so far…neatly folded and ready to go back into the closet.

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Here’s the unworn pile…there’s definitely some pruning to be done.

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It’s tough to part with something I made myself though.  Even tougher if it’s made from yarn mom hand dyed or a friend hand spun.  I’m committed to the purge though, so far I haven’t worn anything just for the sake of moving from one pile to the other.

I haven’t started the dreaded third pile just yet.  The purge pile.  I don’t expect that one to grow much (even though it should).  It’ll be interesting to see how things look in a few more weeks.

And, of course, there’s the pile I don’t really think of as mine…that’s the Etsy pile.  Here’s everything I’ve got listed in my Etsy shop.

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Mostly, I just like having an excuse get the knitting out and fondle it!  I love my handknits and that’s really the point of Me Made May!  I am a proud maker!

FO Friday – Batad, Me-Made-May & Periscope

Lots of things happening here at the FogKnits headquarters this morning!

First, my second FO of the week!  My latest Batad is finished!

Click here for full Ravelry details! 

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 Pattern:  Stephen West’s Batad

This is my second Batad, I barely even looked at the pattern this time around!  It’s shaped with short rows–so it becomes quite intuitive!  My favorite thing about the Batad is it’s versatility, lots of different ways to wear it!  and the cowl neck keeps it in place the whole time!

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Design Notes:

I love short row shaping!  This is particularly easy because there’s no wrap and turn.  It’s just turn.  It leaves big holes but they’re a design feature!  Not a ‘design feature’ but an honest to goodness part of the design…so clever and so easy!

I made a few modifications, I didn’t knit the entire pattern.  I stopped a few wedges short, didn’t think I need my piece to be so long!  and there’s a few places that say to cut the contrast color but I didn’t…fewer ends to weave is all.  I changed the bind off as well…I did a full welt at the bottom instead of the i-cord bind off as called for.  No big deal, just minor changes to suit my personal preferences!

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Yarn: Juniper Moon Farm’s Zooey

It’s a cotton linen blend…perfect for summer and for drape!  This piece is all about the drape!  I worked at a pretty open gauge and I haven’t washed it yet so I expect it may drape even more after that!  I’m excited for a machine washable garment but laundry day can’t be rushed!  It’s gonna be even better when it’s not so wobbly!

I’m looking forward to wearing my new Batad a lot!  I finished just in time to kick off Me Made May!  If you’re not familiar, click here to see where it starts!  Me Made May is a challenge to makers of garments–whether you knit, crochet, sew or make your own clothes in some other creative way–to wear them more.  It’s a self set challenge, your challenge may be to wear a handmade garment everyday or it may be to wear your handmade garments more often.  You may document it on social media (#mmmay15) but maybe you won’t.  It’s up to you.  The idea is just to get closer to your handmades in whatever fashion suits you.

I haven’t really decided how to ‘challenge’ myself in this regard.  I almost never leave the house without wearing something I made myself.  Maybe my challenge is to wear something different each day?  I certainly have favorites but I also have a large collection, I feel like it gets a decent rotation.  Maybe for me, it’s not about wearing but designing.  I’ve got several sweaters I’d like to design for myself.  Of course, the next few things queued up are designed by other people.  I don’t know that I’ll change up the queue but maybe I swatch this month and plan my next design.   I’ve got several skeins of Miss Babs’ Yowza, I’ve had it for a couple years now…I really want a hoodie, with cables, and pockets and a zipper!  I just need to get around to doing it.

I’ll come up with a goal for myself, eventually but in the meantime, I’m giving my handknits extra love this month!  And you should too!  That’s really the point of this all!  We spend a lot of time (and money) perfecting our craft, Me Made May is the time to show it all off with pride!

And, the last thing going on here today…live streaming via Periscope!  Yesterday Amy Herzog wrote on the KnittyBlog  about it!  It’s a new app from Twitter that allows you to live stream!  Every since Norway hit the news with it’s Slow TV movement, I’ve been jealous!  I haven’t seen anyone knitting on Periscope yet, so I took matters into my own hands and broadcast myself this morning (working on one of those secret projects no less)!  Completely silly, but fun at the same time.  Not sure Periscope is ready for realtime knitting though!  That’s why I’m spreading the word! Come watch me knit!  I’m OdessaBlue over there…

Or better yet, find Stephen West on social media and suggest it to him!  I’d way rather watch him than have you watch me :)  If we all want it, he can’t possibly ignore us, right?