Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I've been a bad little boy....

My 4 by October has slown to a standstill!

Okay… maybe not a standstill… but I feel that I’ve lost some sort of momentum…. And I’ve been a baaaad little boy in terms of destashing…

In the last 24 hours I’ve purchased 3 hanks of yarn over the internet… 1 hank from Etsy through Sarah Brown Designs… she has a line of yarn called the Bloodlust series all inspired by True Blood and the Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris (I’m a BIG fan of both… still have to read the last book that came out!)  She had a skein of sock yarn inspired by the character Quinn… one of Sookie’s upcoming Beau’s (for those of you who watch the show but don’t read the books!).  He is basically my favorite of Sookie’s non-vampire lovers… (SPOILERS! EEEK!) and he’s a weretiger… So the yarn is orange and black, natch!  With Halloween coming up, I definitely couldn’t resist!

The second hank is a hank of 80/20 Twin  from Wollmeise… I’ve been hearing nothing but good stuff about this yarn and the loopy ewe NEVER has anything in stock… so I scoured the Ravelry Destash and For Sale Boards till I found one that I could bear to purchase (at $30 a skein retail… this better be some buttery-yum yarn!)  I found a nice Red to orange colorway (colors I don’t normally wear… but I want to branch out my color palette… so oh well.) Apparently people are going nuts over this yarn… and I guess I just wanted to see what all the freakin’ fuss is about!

The third is a hank of madelinetosh Prairie in the shoreline colorway.  I recently purchased 2 skeins of this yarn at Abuelita’s and I realized that I need about 200 more yards to make the Bridgewater wrap pattern from Jared Flood’s Made in Brooklyn pattern book from Classic Elite yarns.  *sigh*  what’s a willful boy like me to do?

So it’s 2 steps forward when I finished the Springtime Bandit Last week (I've even worn it out on a night of debauchery already! see below)… and like 5 steps back over the course of the past 24 hours!

Last night I came to realize that I really needed to work on my sample for the cable workshop I would be teaching at Abuelita’s on the 18th of this month.  So I spent last night fiddling with a simple cable pattern that will work as a solid foundation for this scarf… we’ll see how it all goes!  I’ve definitely settled on an easy cowl pattern.

Sadly… the recent buying binge, and the work on the sample has put all my 4 by October projects on hold…  Hopefully I’ll be able to find some time to work on some knitting this upcoming long weekend.

We're pretty warm and toasty by this part of the night... sorry for the
The old college gang

Saturday, August 28, 2010

1 Down, 4 (or 5!) to go!

So... I've finished one of my 4 by October projects... Ladies and Gentlemen... I am proud to present my take on the Springtime Bandit designed by Kate Gagnon Osborne for Kelbourne Woolens:

Empress Wu Zhao Is A Springtime Bandit

I have to say this was an amazing and easy lace pattern... if you're good at reading your knitting it'll be a breeze.  The yarn is from Schaffer Yarn Company, and it's called Laurel- 100% Mercerized Cotton.  The Colorway is Empress Wu Zhao.  I love this colorway, and I'm sooooo glad I scooped it up- it was the last one at the shop!

The pattern is super simple, and I would recommend it for anyone who wants to start with lace knitting.  The body of the piece is not as "holey" as other lace patterns, but it's definitely a great intro to lace, especially the edging.  Don't be fooled when you finish knitting the 4 body repeats, the edging will take up almost half of the yarn. I distinctly remember sitting there and trying to decide whether I wanted to do a 5th repeat, but decided otherwise as my yardage is equal to that of the yarn originally called for.

Since it's 100% cotton, the piece is not as drapy as I would like, but I believe it will soften up a lot the more I use and wash it... I think eventually it'll turn into one of those accessories I just toss on to complete an outfit...

I currently have 3 projects to go, the Classic Socks, the Saroyan Scarf (I cast on earlier this week!), and the Hoarfrost Moebius (It's technically a knitalong with a couple of friends, so depending on when we start, I may have to choose a different project).  The Clapotis may be it...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My “4 By October” Goal…

So I have come to the crazy conclusion that I have way too much yarn, and way too many things in my queue… and that I feel that I’ve lost a lot of momentum in terms of making things this year. At one point I was churning out a project a week… albeit they were small, simple and didn’t take a lot of seaming. Seeing as the winter is fast approaching… I want to make myself a sweater (if you’re looking at my attempt for a sweater on Ravelry… I have yet to block it… but unblocked… it’s too small, I think.)
I’ve decided that I need to come up with a new goal… 4 projects to be finished by the end of September. 2 are already underway… The Springtime Bandit, and a pair of socks. These 2 projects recently fell by the wayside due to a series of unfortunate events, but I believe it’s time to pick them up again. Upcoming projects may be the new Hoarfrost Moebius from the newest Interweave magazine, I love a good stainless steel yarn! Another project is the Saroyan scarf I have in my queue. Depending on how quickly these go, I may be adding a fifth project… the elusive Clapotis… a project I’ve dreamt of making for ages, but have yet to even cast on for!
I have 5 weeks to finish 4 (or 5!) projects… we’ll see if I can keep my sanity!

If I do finish them within my timeframe, I’ll be treating myself to a sweaters worth of MadelineTosh! I’ve been eyeballing the Cobblestone Pullover by Jared flood and will be rewarding myself with 8 skeins of MadelineTosh Vintage in the Ink colorway as a Christmas sweater. Now, I cannot purchase the yarn before I finish, and will not be having it set aside… so if it sells out before I can finish… I’ll have that little tidbit hanging over my head. Will I be able to make my goal, will the MadTosh be gone before I even finish!? Tune in… and find out.

a.k.a. DeceptiveCookie

Monday, August 23, 2010

My first blog post...

So here goes post number one…

My name is Chester… I have lived in Southern California for all 26 years of my life… Born and raised in Los Angeles, I’ve moved around a bit (mostly in L.A. suburbs) but have found my way back to L.A. Proper.

I have been knitting for over 7 years now… and little did I know that 7 years ago that I had stumbled across a hobby that I would love so much.  It’s rare to find me not knitting… and when you do find me not knitting, you’ll find me crocheting (not too likely, I prefer to knit!), sewing (more likely), or even spinning my own yarn (even more likely!).

To this day, I remember the first time I picked up the needles…. I was 19… and setting out to make a scarf for the man… well, “boy” really… I loved. Working from a skein of Red Heart Super Saver in a variegated white and green (his favorite color), and red size 8 Aluminum Needles by Susan Bates. It was scratchy, and the color pooling made it look like a 60’s Ombre throwback, but the moment he saw the finished product, I knew I was hooked. Not only because of the therapeutic calm that would overtake me when I was working on the scarf, but just from the look on his face… the “oh my god, you made this?” scrutiny paired with the amazed “this is for me?” expression. I’ve been addicted ever since. The relationship between this man (boy), has long since fizzled out… but my obsession and passion for knitting has been burning brighter than ever. Although knitting is often seen as antiquated, and a female oriented activity; it has become one of the most fulfilling parts of my identity as a man, a man who knits for himself and those he loves.

So let’s get rolling, and we’ll see what tomorrow brings!

- Chester
a.k.a. DeceptiveCookie