Gelebte Stricksucht

Lost in Austen
Saturday, July 28th, 2012, 10:10
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My desk is nearly breaking down from the weight of papers on Light Source Measurement, Global Illumination and the like, as well as notes on everything concerning Visual Effects and Simulation Algorithms. Sounds like Chinese? Yeah, well, the latter two (Visual Effects and Simulation Algorithms) are the titles of the two lectures I’m currently trying to stuff into my brain.

Having a knitting project accompany my studying has always worked for me, so even though it is summer I decided to start a new Yes-I-know-I-should-be-studying knitting project. Temperatures dropped like 10°C over night anyway, and this breezy 20 something degrees Celsius outside seem like perfect knitting weather anyway.
A German TV station with a strong focus on programs of cultural interest (they even call themselves “der Kultursender” which roughly translates to “the culture channel”) has recently featured many films and specials on Jane Austen. Not only the almost legendary and gorgeous BBC version of “Pride and Prejudice” but also the fun and witty “Lost in Austen” adaption. So practically, I have no other choice but deciding on a project from my copy of “Jane Austen Knits”. Which, in this case, is the Pemberley Slippers. So I’m going to lift my heavy yarn boxes down from my dresser to go look fo some sport weight yarn. Light Source Measurement is getting old anyway. Oh, and overrated, too.


Sing for absolution
Monday, December 27th, 2010, 18:16
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What should I be doing?
Studying. Long hours of studying for my upcoming exam. Which is in 11 days. And I still can’t guarantee I won’t get a nervous breakdown sometime around a week from now.

What am I doing?
Knitting, obviously. After frogging my Abby cowl for the second time (I didn’t like the lace pattern), I was contemplating whether to start the Copycat Lydia Cardigan or a pair of socks with this beautiful sock yarn I bought. Well… I chose the socks. We’ll see how that’ll turn out…

Sunday, March 14th, 2010, 0:48
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Oh lord, do I hate my hobby right now! When you are a knitter with friends who cherish handmade items for presents or even ask you right away to knit something for them, it’s hard to say no. At least for me it is.
So here I am, stuck with a pair of socks (did I mention that I hate to knit socks! I do! I do, I do, I absolutely do!!!) and a snowboard-hat-to-be. And several pairs of socks in my Ravelry queue. I don’t know how that happened, but I know that I will cast on every single pair and realize at some point along the way that I very probably won’t finish them. Except of course the pair I’m working on right now, because I promised almost a year ago to have it finished in about a month from now. As for the snowboard-hat-to-be, I have only about two weeks left… 😦
Luckily it’s so freaking cold that I don’t have to think of transition garments yet (at least in terms of knitting – shopping sprees however are subject to a very different logic ;)), so it’s no tragedy that I won’t be able to finish my Serrano cardigan until the end of the March.

Stripy Serrano
Tuesday, February 16th, 2010, 11:22
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Even though I vowed to behave, I couldn’t resist finishing the Owls sweater before my exam. And it’s perfect now. I think it’s going to be one of my favourite sweaters of all times. It flatters my shape in all the right ways, the yarn is supersoft and the changes I made to the neckline (I stuck to the concept of the short rows, but I used them to shape the neckline at the front) come out just great.

Being me, I couldn’t just pick out one of my already-on-the-needles-projects and finish that. No, I had to start something new and shiny. (I’m really like a little child in that way, always going for the new toys instead of cherishing the old ones…) So I cast on for my Serrano cardigan.
Serrano is a great choice for me, because my Mam’s stash (which I inherited once she stopped knitting) contains 10+ skeins of sock yarn, even though she has never been a sock knitter. I’m not a passionate sock knitter, either. In fact, if I didn’t know how to knit two socks at the same time, I’d never finish a pair of them! Unfortunately, the colours of her sock yarn skeins aren’t of that irresistible kind that seems to scream “Knit me!” (Like the one skein I just HAD to buy on Thursday – it’s teal, so I think everyone understands why I couldn’t resist…) Her sock yarn was to end up in pairs of socks that keep your feet warm but should never be seen in daylight, like muddy browns and greys. I couldn’t picture myself wearing one of these. But a careful selection proved to be the ideal choice for a slightly modified version of Serrano, a striped one. So I have four colours, an off-white, a camel-heather, a slightly brownish light grey, and a very curious shade of brown with a hint of grey and some kind of lavender. It sounds very suspicious, I admit that, but they go great together!
As for the pattern itself, I have to say that I’m completely surprised how quick it knits up! I did a few rows while still learning for my exam, so I couldn’t kickstart the project until Thursday evening, but nevertheless I’m already halfway through the waist increases! The lace pattern is easy to memorize and looks beautiful, plus its zig-zaggy notion complements the yarn very well, I change colours every 12 rows and it works great with the different directions of the YOs.
I guess it won’t take me long to finish this one 🙂

Sunday, January 24th, 2010, 13:59
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So there it was: My perfect evening. After three days of criminally neglecting the fact that I ought to learn for my upcoming exam (meaning: three days of constant knitting, because Marika kept bugging me about finishing the owls sweater so that I could wear it at least once before this winter season ends) I was finally casting off stitches.
I really tried to sew in the ends carefully, despite the growing excitement.
I could hardly bear the tension.
I tried it on.

And then I just wanted to cry. It didn’t fit me. In fact, it felt like someone had tied a string around my upper chest and pulled really tightly. Well, of course I instantly realised what was wrong with my most beloved, most time consuming (and therefore most hated) WIP to date: I had miscalculated the number of owls. Disappointed with myself and the knitting gods, I laid the sweater aside and tried not to think about this failure. Because the saddest part of it all was that everything else about this sweater was perfect. The back width, the chest, the sleeve length, the look, everything. I was determined to MAKE it fit me, even if I had to block it to death.
I soon realized that there was only one possibility, but I wasn’t ready to consider it, so I almost instantly cast on another sweater (let’s call it the Rebound Sweater). After only seven rows of knitting I came to my senses and laid it aside again. I shed a tear or two and started to undo the sewing on the owls sweater. Then I frogged the yoke until I was back to the 377 (in words: three hundred and seventy-seven) stitches on the 4mm needles. I started to calculate, and recalculate, and recalculate again, until I finally found a way to add more owls.
For the first version I did k2tog around, which left me with 19 owls. This time I repeated [k1, k2tog, k2tog] around, with an additional knit stitch every ten repeats or so. It took a long time, because at the same time I had to keep track of the [k2, p8] pattern from the cable chart (tricky!!), but I had it done by midnight.
I think it’ll take more time to finish the owls sweater now, because my exam is coming up and I can’t spend the days until the big day knitting, but at least I’ll have a fitting sweater when I’m done. SIGH!

Lace Christmas
Sunday, December 27th, 2009, 13:19
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Since we weren’t going to have a white Christmas this year (again!) I decided to make it a lace Christmas.

Well… Actually… No. This lace Christmas thing kind of evolved on its own: After I decided to knit the Seascape Stole for Conny, two things happened. Firstly, I vowed to myself to never, ever knit the same lace pattern twice again. It really bores me out of my mind! Secondly, I felt the urge to knit something intricate and lacy just for myself. We’ll have to see about the never-ever-knit-a-pattern-twice rule, but as for the intricate and lacy part, I didn’t come very far. The Swallowtail Lace Shawl (knit in Cascade Yarns Alpaca Lace, Amethyst Heather) and the Laminaria Shawl (knit in KnitPicks Shimmer, Sherry) both are undoubtedly lacy – but I wouldn’t consider them to be especially intricate. Lovely, of course, fun, sure, but not intricate.
So I’m very much hoping to find a lace project that’s going to make me want to rip my hair out – or my knitting apart, for that matter – in one of my Christmas gifts: Victorian Lace Today, Knitted Lace of Estonia and A Gathering of Lace. My parents gifted me all three of them as paperbacks (I suppose my “Give me lace books for Christmas and you’ll have loads of patterns to choose your next shawl from” remark to my mother had something to do with it ;)), so I’ll have only one problem after I’ve finished the Laminaria (which might happen today): What am I going to knit next?

It’s been a while…
Sunday, December 13th, 2009, 13:55
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I realize that I haven’t been blogging in, like, months, but little has been going on here – so what should I have been blogging about?
Ever since I knitted the Grace Lace Beret I kind of developed a thing for hats. Slouchy berets look surprisingly good on me, so now I’m knitting hats whenever I feel the urge to. Plus they’re like 24h projects, so I can challenge them whenever I don’t want to knit anything else. Also, many of my friends came and asked if I could knit a hat for them, so things have been pretty hat-ty around here 😉
And pretty stressful, I can tell you. There’ve been a lot of parties, and girls night outs, and game nights, and between studying the whole day and kind of partying all night, there’s not much room left for knitting. (Of course I’m a little exaggerating on the studying-all-day-partying-all-night-thing, but it comes pretty close to the truth and it *really* wears me out ;))
So what’s the status? I’m putting the finishing touches to Conny’s Seascape Stole where I’m halfway through Chart C. (It’s about time, since it still has to be a Christmas gift!) The Owls Sweater is at something like 80% or so, I’ll just have to finish the second sleeve and then I’ll be able to knit the owls – finally!! 😀 then there’s the Snowboard Hat I’m knitting for a friend of mine, plus all the other WIPs I don’t even dare to think about 😉 I think I’ll just return to the Seascape Stole now – I intend to have it finished by the end of the day.