1. My sweater. I found thissweater pattern on Knitty perhaps almost a year ago. I got the yarn for my birthday (in October). It is Adrienne Vittadini, Natasha, in Truffle. It is the yarn used in the sample on the site. In general I am squeamish about changing the yarn used in the original project for reasons which will become clear further on. The benefit of using the fancy yarn recommended by a project months after the project has been designed is that the yarn is usually on sale by that point. The lovely folks at the California Yarn Company were able to supply me the million balls of yarn needed for this sweater at ½ price. I held on to the yarn for some time, making all the socks and things that appear here. I live on the California Central Coast, so it is cold in the summer, a perfect time to make and wear my new sweater. I knit a swatch. I don't know why I do this. Invariably I'm more careful when knitting the swatch then when doing my actual knitting and the stitches come out smaller than when I'm actually knitting. What this means is that for every project for which I've knit a swatch, no joke, I've gone up a needle size to accommodate my small stitches and ended up with a giant thing that I have to frog and start over on the originally recommended needle size. Well, guess what happened with my sweater... I got the back, both front pieces, and one sleeve done. I held that sleeve up to my arm and had flash backs to the first sweater I made, a fair-isle disaster that would have fit the chimpanzee President of the United States, but not a human with normally proportioned arms. Well, that was two weeks ago. Since then, I took a short break from the sweater and then went at it again with such gusto that my wrist hurts most of the time, but, i've got a back, two front pieces and most of a sleeve. I'm on pins and needles until that first sleeve is done.
Well, a long time with no posts. This is accounted for by the lack of finished projects I've had recently and the great number of crafting failures. I don't take these failures to heart, but I also didn't really want to post about them. But what the heck, everyone has them.
2. I can't post pictures, but I've got some Christmas projects going. Let me just say that photographs are deceiving and that the photo of a Christmas thing that you think looks adorable and cute is actually going to be giant when it shows up at your home. And if you think you can solve this problem with smaller needles and smaller yarn without altering the actual number of rows and stitches, well then my friend, you are as misguided as I. Rows will have to be taken out at the very least. I'll let you know when I've had the heart to take my misshapen objects apart and try again. I hope it is before November.
3. And though I don't find it to be a failure, that had ended up a little unsatisfactory. The band never quite got how I wanted it. Again I credit needle size, changing yarn from that recommended, and not blocking. You know, you can only take a project apart so many times before you can't anymore. Its recipient claims to be pleased. I will say that if he ever decides to grow some hair, the extra room in the band might come in handy.
In a nut shell that is what I've been doing for the past two months. On the up side, I did finish my family tree. Here it is in all its full glory. Not sure when I will get it framed, or how I will contrive to get back into it as my husband and I have little additions, but I try to remind myself that a sane person wouldn't worry about that now.
Despite the number of recent failures, the future looks bright. I would like to use this forum to say that the people at Jimmy Beans Wool are wonderful. I placed an order on Friday night, Friday! And on Monday it was waiting for me when I got home! The yarn is lovely, perfect for a little baby who's gender you don't know one might say. Here is another project like the Christmas ones that I won't be posting pictures of until after it has been gifted. Also, it is a wool/cotton blend, and claims it can be machine washed, also perfect for a baby.
I have found a new love for Jimmy Beans, mostly because they are such a more plesant experience than some other jerk craft supply companies, and if you've never ordered from them in the past you will perhaps be encouraged to by the fact that they send you candy. I've seen other people post about this as well, but I just thought it was worth mentioning and documenting. The last time I ordered from them the candies were Werther's and now they are Brach's. The economic downturn effects everyone in its own way.
And just as a capper, two more projects in progress, both critters, one is a hermit crab (without a head for the moment) from Hansigurumi's Etsy shop, and the other will be a monster some day...