Knitting |Miscellaneous Musing by Judy @ 9:24 AM

Rain. Yep. It’s Oregon and Halloween alright.

Actually, I usually remember Halloween here as being fairly dry. There was that one Halloween when #1 Son was about 5 or 6 that it rained cats and dogs. All of the parents making the rounds with their kids huddled under umbrellas. #1 Son, usually an irrepressible trick-or-treater, called it quits after only one block. But it was only that one year that was so bad, as I recall.

A far cry from my own childhood. I remember working so hard on my costume each year, only to have to cover it up with a coat because it was usually about 30 degrees and sometimes there was snow on the ground. Towards the end of my trick-or-treating career, I gave up and went as a ghost. At least my coat would go under it.

Have I mentioned that my father was part-owner of a wholesale company that carried, among other things, candy? Halloween was the only time of year he brought any candy home. My brother and I were allowed to pick out a couple of things for ourselves, and the rest went to the neighborhood trick-or-treaters. Our house was very popular at Halloween.

I’ve almost finished Tilt. The sleeves are blocking on my bed. The yolk pieces and the midriff piece have been attached. I need to complete the button band and the collar and attach the sleeves. The, a little steam blocking and it’ll be ready for prime time. I hope.

Last night I was knitting away on the sleeves and had made it almost to the shoulders when I looked down and saw a funny looking spot towards the wrist of one of the sleeves. I looked closer. Oops! I’d apparently put my work down at that point, and when picking it up started off the wrong way, creating a nice short row in the middle of my work. I debated about what to do. I really didn’t want to re-knit almost the entire sleeve. I tried laddering down to the “bad” spot and then recreating the row sans short-row stitches, but after two fixed stitches I realized that just wouldn’t cut it. It was too far down and there were about 20 stitches involved. Too many.

Finally, with shaking hands, I cut the offending short row out and grafted the 20 released stitches back together as they should have been. And it worked! I have a sleeve that’s nice and straight and has all rows going the full width. 🙂 It’s not a solution that I would recommend to the faint of heart, though.

I’ve not posting the Magic Cast-On. Kalani has convinced me to submit it to Knitty. We’ll see what happens. Stay tuned. Film at 11. 😆

Knitting |Miscellaneous Musing by Judy @ 4:48 PM

Or a long drive anyway.

I had to drive to Seattle yesterday for a meeting. That’s 9 hours of driving for a 6 hour meeting. I left home at 5:00 AM. I arrived back home at 9:30 PM, tired to the bone and fell into bed. On the way up I made the mistake of stopping at McD’s for breakfast. Bad idea. Imagine driving and driving and driving, and then sitting and sitting and sitting, and then driving and driving and driving, all with a stomach that is mightily pissed off that you put such junk into it. Oh yeah, it was not a pretty sight.

All I can say is thank the universe for free coffee and Oreo cookies at all of the Washington rest areas along I-5. I’m not as young as I used to be, and I’m not sure I would have made it without those cookies. Yum.

I could have flown. But, what with airport travel time on both ends, going through security, etc., it takes 3 hours to fly to Seattle. I could have taken the train (and that would have been my preferred method) but I would have to go up the night before and I just didn’t want to. So I drove.

On the knitting front, not much progress. Clapotis #2 sits forlornly in its bag, glaring balefully at me as I ignore it. Tilt, that I had planned to have finished last weekend, is all finished except for the sleeves. I’ve made it up to the wrists and no further. The PNW Shawl… still holding at the seagulls. And the lovely Lorna Laces goldhill socks? Well… I have the toes 1/2 done. Judy’s Magic Cast-On toes, of course, and lovely toes they are. The socks will be lovely, too, if I ever finish them.

Do you know what Judy needs?

More time.

I wanted to get my sweater finished this weekend, but life in the guise of lots of stuff to do intervened. I did get to have lunch with M and coffee with K, and that’s always lots of fun.

I’ve made a few little tweaks to the PI look. In the interest of cutting down on clutter I’ve added two new links to the navigation bar at the top: Freebies and Galleries.

Freebies is a collection of recipes and patterns that I’ve posted over the years.

The Galleries page holds the finished objects gallery and the pics from our road trip in September. Other galleries will be added there.

I know that PI is more… cluttered… than some other blogs. The sidebars hold what I’m interested in, and I’m interested in a lot of things. My bookshelves are cluttered, too. I changed my college major 6 times, because so many subjects were interesting. Meh. It’s all good.

Miscellaneous Musing by Judy @ 8:15 AM

It’s always amusing to see what googlizing brings visitors to PI. Usually they’re looking for vaguely fiberish writing combined with whatever, and hopefully they find it here. But sometimes I have no clue what they’re looking for.

Jack Bog and I share the top 10 on this search, for example.

I don’t think that either of us have exactly what this person was seeking. It’s hard to tell, though.

Knitting |Miscellaneous Musing by Judy @ 2:08 PM

… and leaves me with dripping nose and scratchy throat; starting last Friday of course, so I could spend the weekend in a semi-prone position with Kleenex never far from reach.


Since I had zero energy, and therefore lots of time, I knitted.

Why must I be such a short-attention-span knitter? I had sworn an oath to the small gods of knitting needles that I would limit myself to three concurrent UFOs. But that doesn’t mean socks, right? Socks don’t count.

Wednesday, before the ick hit, I’d stopped in to Abundant Yarn & Dyeworks, having never been there before, to check it out (we cannot let any LYS go unchecked!). And they had this whole basket full of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd’s Sock. A whole basket. And a colorway called “Gold Hill” jumped out of the basket and into my waiting arms and demanded to be taken home. It’s a lovely, autumnal mix of burgundy, rust, green and gold. The nice ladies at Abundant Yarn wound it into balls for me, and I really don’t like to have yarn wound too long before I start to knit with it…

Friday evening as I sat (semi-lay) in my chair at home, my mind ran over and then discarded working on any of the current UFOs: Lace shawl? No, need a sharp mind and full faculties to knit lace without getting into serious trouble. Clapotis? No, that’s my take-away-from-home project. Sweater? Too big to contemplate. New sock yarn… and I’ve been wanting to work on that cast-on technique…

In the end, the Lorna’s called too loudly and I started working on a new sock cast-on. For some reason, when I have a cold my focus on seemingly trivial but interesting problems increases by about 100 times. Big problems or uninteresting tasks go quickly out the window.

I usually use a figure-8 cast-on for socks, but it has its draw backs: It works loose and has to be tightened up, it’s hard to keep a hold of, it makes stitches that are offset and the tail ends up at the side of the work opposite the start of the round. Other cast-ons that I’ve tried either leave purl bumps, don’t start at the very end, or require Kitchener stitch or other seaming. None of that is desirable, as far as I’m concerned. I wanted an invisible cast on that is easy to work, stays put, doesn’t require grafting, starts at the very end, and works OK into the Queen Kahuna “use the tail to increase the number of stitches” method. Her method creates a nice, round toe, but requires the tail from the cast on to be at the beginning of the round.

The reason that a long-tailed cast-on leaves purl bumps is that the first row after the cast-on is actually a wrong-side row. Although many (most?) knitting patterns ignore this, when working in stockinette stitch from a long tail cast-on, the first row should be a purl row.

But there are a gazillion other ways to cast on. So, armed with a few of my favorite knitting references, I started looking for cast-on methods having the first following row a right side row. After about 20 false starts I came up with a cast-on that’s somewhere between a figure-8 and a tubular cast on, is easy to do, stays at the right tension as the first round is worked, and leaves the tail at the start of the round. My tiny little sample appears to be completely invisible. YEA! I will post pics later if there is interest.

Having completed that task, I realized that the Lorna’s just cries out to be knit in a pattern that includes leaves, so I have tabled that project for now.

The rest of the weekend was spent on the Tilt sweater. The left and right sides are complete and have been blocked, and I’ve knit 1-1/2 of the four yokes. I decided that I did care, after all, if the stripes at least come close to matching — an interesting proposition, considering that every skein is different and most contain at least one knot. If I knit industriously this week, I hope to have it finished this weekend. We’ll see. I love the colors and can’t wait to wear it.

Miscellaneous Musing by Judy @ 11:14 AM

I’m not much into memes, but this morning I saw this one over at Stitch Marker and found it rather humerous. Google “yourname needs” and list 10 results:

1. Judy needs her morning coffee. [very true!]

2. Judy needs its maintainer field correcting. [is that why I need coffee?]

3. Judy needs help. [my nearest and dearest would probably agree]

4. Judy needs no introduction. [this must be my 15 minutes of fame]

5. Judy needs volunteers! [for what?]

6. Judy needs to speak up in class. [true when I was in school. now they’d like me to shut up during meetings. you can’t win.]

7. Judy thinks if you want to get by, you need to be tough.

8. Who needs coffee when you’ve got Judy? [Judy needs coffee — see #1]

9. Judy’s sin is pretty obvious. [hmmmmmm… didn’t think it was that obvious]

10. I think Judy needs some hard labor – that might get her lips moving. [about the sin?]

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