Tuesday, September 30, 2008

What I've been doing instead of grading papers.

Exhibit A:

An unblocked sock. The second in my set of socks for Sarah for Christmas. This one is top-down, eye of partridge heel, very standard-issue -- but not for me, because it is only the second pair of socks I've ever made.

Nicely kitchenered toe.

Hello, world. Hello, sock.

Exhibit B:

The sleeve of my long-neglected fair isle yoke cardigan. This one has been long neglected for two very good -- and one medium good -- reasons. The medium good one is that it has a tiny gauge. The two very good ones are first, that I started knitting it before realizing that I was twisting my purl rows, and since learning this I've become a much faster knitter when doing it correctly, and it's irksome to have to keep knitting this the old (wrong) way; and second, that I made the armholes too big when I was knitting the body, and I didn't know what to do to fix this problem. I didn't want just to rapidly decrease as I started knitting them, because that would make them have a funny shape, and in my opinion the most crucial part of a sleeve is the part where it hits your shoulder -- it can make your arm look either fat or skinny. So I came up with this ingenious scheme, which I think worked awesomely. The pit:

(for some reason, this seems like an obscene angle from which to take a picture). I ascertained that there were about 10 stitches too many in the arms as I picked them up to start knitting down, so I kitchenered together four stitches from each side of the arm, leaving the last extra stitch on each side for selvedge when sewing the arms up. Here's a closer detail shot:

That kitchener stitch is executed very poorly, but it's an armpit, for cripe's sake.

Exhibit C:
A gorgeous chevron beret that is, alas, too small, I fear. This is a mid-blocking shot, and I was only able to squeeze it onto a medium-sized dinner plate -- about an inch in diameter smaller than the one on which I blocked the first chevron beret. I have plenty of Imagination yarn left over, so I can just knit a new one if it is too small, but it's a disappointment nonetheless.

Exhibit D:

The beginnings of a February Lady Sweater for my grandmother. Despite my manifold qualms, I am knitting this in Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran. Yes, it is already beginning to pill, but she is very picky about softness. It may not be evident in this picture, but I decided to make the yoke circular as in the original, and to start the lace pattern early instead of knitting garter to an inch before separating for the arms, because I'm knitting this as a bed jacket for her and I think that the circular, shorter yoke looks more like old-fashioned bed jackets.

Exhibit E:

I reorganized my yarn stash. I was beginning to fear moths, so I packaged it all up neatly in Ikea boxes and zipper bags and put it neatly in the bottom of one of my new bookshelves.

Pretty nice, eh? This project renders relatively obsolete my old system of organization:

I may have gotten a little obsessed in the process of putting everything in zipper bags. Here's my basket of UFOs:

All neatly piled in order of what's next to work on.

Yes, I really, really did not want to grade those papers.


Dr M said...

I'm new to blogging as of a couple days ago and found your blog while cruising.
Beautiful socks!!! Awesome pics.
I grew up watching the ladies of my southern born family creat wonderful gifts. Brings back a lot of memories!!! Thanks,
Dr M

Jeanne said...

Beautiful projects - love the fair isle!

Jeanne said...

Great projects - love the fair isle!

Susan said...

BOO for grading papers! Yay for knitting!! I've started going to school later to give me more knitting time!

Rachel said...

Those are some amazing projects, and what a nice job you did organizing!

Deborah said...

and to think I used to like you! I am amazed at all you got done. The work is absolutely wonderful. I just found out I twist my perl's too and am sitting on the fence about what to do with my half done sweater. It's the Everyday Cardigan from Peace Fleece and I'm pretty sure it's got to be frogged. I need to reorganize my stash too and it just doesn't seem to happen.

Stefaneener said...

You know, I have another week's worth of papers to grade. . . I bet my yarn would appreciate nice zippered bags.


The knitting looks lovely!

Susie said...

I came across your blog via Knitting Patterns Central and just had to comment. I love all your stuff! I'm new to knitting, and a NYer just like you, but hope to be able to knit some of your patterns one day. I just had to comment and tell you how much I love your patterns.

Angie said...

I love the colors of that sock - very pretty.

Susie said...

That looks like a LOT more fun than grading papers I must admit. I've added you to my list to receive a copy of an award that I just received. Please come by my blog and grab a copy of the award waiting for you!