Knitting Centered Blog Regarding All Things Design Related

Saturday, October 28, 2006


I made my first blankie this past summer:

It has been finished for a while, but I just took a photo of it recently. As DFH and I were headed back to graduate school this fall, I was trying to get all the gifts out of the way before classes resumed. I knit this in Bernat So Soft, which is acrylic. Normally I really don't like acrylic, it feels plasticy. Probably because it is plastic. But, this So Soft is really soft, so soft, in fact. Also, this is a gift for a baby. Now, I don't have kids (yet), but I do know one thing about babies. They ooze. Food, milk, vomit, poo, pee, boogers, spit, you name it, babies ooze it. You're always laundering things with a baby. Sometimes you wash the baby, too, apparently. I made this in acrylic so it could be tossed in the washer when the baby oozes. This ain't no sissy hand-wash dry-flat reshape-by-hand blanket. This is a man's blanket! It's also blue, that's how you can usually tell. I call that low-maintenance knitting.

It is knit with 2 strands held together on a size 15 (US) circular. The border is seed stitch, then a section of stockinette, a couple rows of garter with an eyelet row and then garter again. I found the pattern online, I think if you just Google "so soft baby blanket" you could find it. I don't have the link anymore. I think it's funny that "Google" is used as a verb.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Suck Yarn

Avoid this post if obscene language gives you the vapors.

I finished my first pair of socks. I started them this summer, and figured out the heel on my own with a little online tutorial, Socks 101 (Google it-it rules!). I love the color and pattern, but the yarn sucks ass. Seriouly. It's Knitpicks Essential sock yarn. Suck yarn, really.

- SPLITTY. Loosely spun. I am currently working on Jaywalkers in Lorna's Laces shepherd sock, and that is spun SO much tighter than this bargain basement crap from Knitpicks.

- Socks don't hold their elasticity. They slouch like I'm in junior high after just one wearing. Go 1989!

- Pilled like crazy after one washing. Socks look like shit.

- Did I mention it sucks?

In this image, I am BARELY puling on the sock and it is looser than a cheerleader on prom night. (I was a cheerleader, so before I get a bunch of comments, chill out and get a sense of humor!)

I used a Knitpicks pattern. I even added extra ribbing at the top of the cuff. Compare these assy socks with the Jaywalkers:

Price Difference?
LL: $10 a skien
KP: $3 a skien
Not having your many hours of work turn into crap after one wash and wear? Priceless!
$14 I'd gladly have spent on better yarn so all my hard work didn't go down the tubes!


Lorna's Laces is like the shiny, beautiful hair on Pantene models, and Knitpicks Essential is like the fried hair on the girl who sat in front of you in study hall who had too many perms and bleachings. Known for being cheap.

Another (albeit blurry) view of the beautiful Jaywalkers.

Wave that shiny mane in her face, girl!!!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Scarf update

Well, I'm back in graduate school, so I have been a delinquent blogger, and I probably won't be blogging as often-what little free time I have, I'd rather be knitting than blogging. But, I do like posting my projects, so here's an update on the Irish Hiking Scarf.

That's Ginger, my knitting supervisor.

Tape Inspection.

It will be done in time for winter wearing. And we do get a winter here in Albuquerque-not the coldest, but still chilly.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Curse of Frankie W.

Since I was an architecture undergrad student, and even as a (semi) professional, there are two things people ask that bug the crap out of me. 1) Have you read The Fountainhead? 2) Boy! You must sure like Frank Lloyd Wright, huh?

No, I have not read The Fountainhead, and people expecting me to since I am in the architecture profession makes me not want to read it at all. Out of stubbornness, I will probably never read the damn book. I have however read this text for my professional practice seminar, which is just as good if you ask me.

And no, I sure don't like Frank Lloyd Wright. His buildings leak. I have been in many of them, some are amazing, but overall, he's not my favorite. Frankie, I'm just not that into you. However, some of his graphic designs are quite beautiful and I would love to become the expert knitter who can someday create something like this, or this.

I would be the hit at all the architecture functions. At least the ones in chilly weather. Otherwise I would just look like a suck-up.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Irish Hiking Scarf Yarn

I forgot to mention it- this one is also being knit in Patons Classic Merino, color winter white. It's so inexpensive, I love it! I swear I don't work for Patons!!!!! No, really! I don't!

Sunday, August 06, 2006

And yet another new project

I had to start another project. I've wanted to make a cream-colored long wooly cabled scarf for myself, that was one of my goal projects this summer. I had an off-white scarf that was some felty cashmere ripoff, I've had it since junior high. About 15 years, I guess. People who know me well know how cheap and thrifty I am, so this probably does not come as a surprise to them that I still wear clothes from 7th grade. Well, the old scarf was developing holes and getting thin, so I figured it was time to move on.

Here's the scarf. It's the Irish Hiking Scarf pattern from Hello Yarn, which, understandably, is a really popular pattern. I think it will be perfect as my new white scarf. And I'll probably wear it for 30 years. I made some serious mileage on it sitting in the financial aid office this past week. Not as much as I would have liked, however. :(

You know you're a knitting addict when a guy offers to trade you numbers at the financial aid office, meaning you can be out of there an hour earlier, but you are disappointed because it means less knitting time.

Yarn used for Lopi scarf

Love this pattern, but I am not, however knitting it in the Lopi Lite yarn because I don't like to wear clothes knitted out of barbed wire. For all y'all un-knitters reading, Lopi is a brassy, rough Icelandic wool that is often used in traditional (Icelandic) patterned sweaters. I guess they wear it to remind themselves that there are things that suck worse than the weather in Iceland? Ooh! Snap! I had all this Lamb's Pride superwash in my stash from a project that didn't turn out last winter (Wavy from Knitty- not a good yarn choice for it), so I figured I'd put it to good use. And it's softer than Lopi. So are hedgehogs, but that's besides the point.

Lopi Lace Returns

After going on the Knitter's Review forums, I got some much-needed help with YOs. And the scarf is turning out!

I know it's only like, .75 inches long. But still! It works!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Lopi Lace Scarf Update

Ok, I am having problems with the scarf pattern. The first half of the pattern and the second half just don't add up. And neither adds up to the 29 stitches the pattern says to cast on at the beginning, the first half of the pattern adds up to 33 and the second adds up to 35, and I can't see anywhere that you increase or decrease. I know there are yarn overs and ssk, but doesn't a yo with an ssk equal the same number of stitches you start with? If anyone who reads this has done this pattern with success, please help! I am not sure what I am doing incorrectly.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Book Review- Weekend Knitting by Melanie Falick

I purchased this book from a great little shop in Pagosa Springs - Edelweiss Needlework Chalet. It is quite the chalet, on main street in town, tiny little shop. Good yarn selection, but small.

The first thing I thought when the salesman handed the book to me was, my, what an unfortunate last name. After my 8th-grade gutter mind got over that, I paged through and was hooked, happily made my purchase to a small local business and we were on our way to the Old Fashioned Malt Shoppe, which served their machined malts in paper Coke cups and the place was full of flies. But, this is not a restaurant review, I digress.

The title of the book is highly misleading. These are not projects to be completed in a weekend, rather the theme of the book is relaxed, and weekend-y. Like, if you had a whole weekend to do nothing but knit, drink tea and relax, the book captures that essence. I am a sucker for beautiful imagery, and the book has wonderful photographs of multiple angles of each project. And the variety of projects is great. Your standard scarf and sweater fare, gloves, mittens, and then some unique items, beautiful socks, chair and cushion covers, pillowcase lace. And some ridiculous things, like egg cozies and finger puppets, for the masochists, I guess. My eggs don't need tiny sweaters, and I can't imagine knitting tiny finger puppets with insane detail with tiny needles. But those were the only two projects I deemed totally useless. Out of fifty, not bad.

The projects are really unique, and challenging, and inspiring. You won't find your standard garter-stitch scarf in here. This is not a book for beginners, but it is really great for intermediate knitters needing a challenge, and some projects I consider to still be too advanced for me. But that means I will be using the book for a while. And it has already inspired me to create some designs of my own. There are notes in each project detailing any difficult parts of the pattern, and the patterns are described pretty well. Apparently there were some errors, you can find the corrections online, I have only started one project, the Lopi Lace scarf, so I haven't encountered errors yet.

The yarns called out in the projects are ridiculously expensive. It is easy to trade out yarn, though, which is what I've already done with the Lopi scarf (even if Lopi was dirt-cheap, it feels like a potato sack). I mean, I would never buy a $200 sweater, why the hell would I knit one?

The most fun parts of the book are the extra things thrown in that really complete the weekend-y mood: cookie recipies, how to prepare a relaxing bath, list of movies that have knitting in them, quotes on knitting, how to make a gift basket for a knitter. Fluff, really, but a nice touch. Certainly would not work if all the patterns in the book sucked, but they don't, so it does.

Monday, July 31, 2006

New Project!

I'm almost done stitching up the sweater (I swear I am NEVER knitting a sweater in a million pieces ever again), and I was itching to work on another project. So I started the hat that I plan to gift at a later date. This is my first project with cables, which are really quite easy, that is after you figure out for yourself that you only twist the cable every sixth stitch because your Knitting Teacher book does not mention this fact. Bite me, Susan Bates.

This one is Patons Merino, again. I really like that yarn, it's just such a great bargain for merino wool! And this purple color is nice.

Previous projects

Here are a few things I have done in the past year.

Token eyelash scarf. I spun (spinned?) the fiber from my pet snufalufagus. Modeled by thermostat.

Another scarf. This one is just garter stitch- it's really the yarn that makes it exciting- it's not hard to knit at all. People always compliment me on it, and I tell them, it's all in the yarn. I have no idea what brand this yarn is. It's a wool/nylon/somthing else blend. It's really warm and a little stretchy.

Simple hat and scarf set. I had a bunch of Wool-Ease lying around from my foray back into knitting in college when I produced The Thing. I was planning to make a scarf and hat set, but for some reason I couldn't do K2
P2 ribbing (???????) and I gave up. So, recently I figured I would use up this yarn. I really don't like the creepy fuzz-glow that some acrylics and acrylic blends give to a knitted garment. Like, a little white halo glow. The TG&Y glow.

I first learned hats by stitching them in the back, rather than knit on a circular. I like the finished look of hats knitted in the round, but I'm pretty good at stitching now. I also need to get a shorter circular needle, because I just don't get that whole knitting tiny things on giant circular needles trick. Yet.

Another hat. To be gifted. This one is in Patons Merino. I really do like that yarn.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Booklet Review

I ordered the Patons Next Steps One, Two and Three booklets from a Canadian company online, since they are not yet available in the US. I LOVE these books, the are really well done. They are small, so they fit right in your knitting bag, and they are easy to understand, good sizing information, great diagrams and illustrations. I re-taught myself to knit a while back from another book, which I thought had good drawings, but the drawings in these little booklets are pretty great. And the sweater styles in Two and Three are really cute, they're fitted with a bell-sleeve option.

The only complaint I have is with book One, a usual complaint I have with almost every How to Knit book I come across, and that is when knitting books teach people how to knit crappy things. Nobody wants to wear headbands or boxy garter-stitch sweaters. So, please, don't teach people how to make them. And putting a plastic squiggle pin on the sweater isn't going to make it any more attractive. I learned how to pick up stitches just fine knitting something I actually want to wear. I will say, though, that some of the projects, like the hats, in book One are cute, and that is why I bought it.

Current Project

Right now I'm finishing up a cowl-neck long-sleeve sweater that I started at the beginning of June. It's the "Cowl Neck Pullover" from Patons Next Steps Two- Create Your Own Pullover. I'm knitting it in Patons Classic Merino, color Aran (I think it's Aran. Or off-white). I swear I don't work for Patons. I do love their merino, it is a real bargain. I didn't want to spend a lot on a sweater I would probably screw up on, since it is my first.

This is the sweater in pieces. I'm currently sewing it all together. Next time, I think I'll re-interpret the pattern and knit the body in the round. Sorry about the bad light in the photos.

A sleeve. I knit the bell sleeves in the book:

A close up of the end of the cuff:

And an up-close detail of beginning of stitching the sleeve in:

Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Thing

This is The Thing.

This is me modeling The Thing.

The Thing has been frogged.

I think it was garter stitch. I can't really tell. It was the nastiest, knobbiest heaviest piece of crap that snagged on everything, and I was so proud that I had made it that I wore it everywhere in the winter in college. When I told people I knitted it, I got a sympathetic "Oh, that's nice" with a sidelong look.

I have no idea what I am gong to do with all this crappy chenille. I'm not sure what fiber it is, maybe acrylic, but it's definitely something synthetic and gross, because when my knitting assistant, Ginger, plays with strings of it, and gets it all slobbery, and then it dries, it snaps like a twig. So weird.

I am currently working on my first sweater, in merino. I'll post it soon. Unfortunately, it's almost done, and I can't track the progress of it here. I have a few other projects I have completed this summer that I will post soon, as well.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Blog Name

I think silent letters are ridiculous, but nancynits sounds like I have piojos. I hope that's the way it's spelled.

Blog Inception

I have been debating whether or not to start a blog about the knitting projects I turn out. I'm not a fan of blogging in general, per se, as a hobby for myself, but I am a fan of knitting and do get a lot of tips, tricks, ideas and patterns online, and especially on the websites and blogs of other knitters. This would be a way for me to have a record of my projects and also share projects, etc. with other knitters.

I learned to knit from my mom when I was about 5 or 6, and spent years knitting various rectangles, dreaming each time that it would someday be a beautiful sweater. ha. I picked it up again in college when I knitted The Thing. Not sure if it was a shawl, scarf, or what, all I know is that I bought a ton of green chenille from Hobby Lobby and I owned one pair of size 10.5 needles, inherited from my mother. I'll post images of The Thing soon.

First Post

This is the first post to set up the template.