WIP Wednesday: February 18, 2014

I started this week working on some UFOs, but later in the week cast on a couple of new projects!

MAPLE LEAF the Ninth!

Yes, really!  It’s been sitting around since December, and I finally picked it up again.  I was sick over the weekend and spent two days sitting on the couch watching tv, so I got quite a bit done.  I’ve finished the first of the five corners, and should be totally done with knitting this shawl before next Wednesday.  I’m not sure if I’ll get it blocked or not.  My new-to-me floor loom is currently sitting in the dining room, in front of the table I use for blocking.  I’m not sure if I have enough leaves in the table to block a MAPLE LEAF shawl or not.  If I don’t, blocking will have to wait until I can move the floor loom into my home office.

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Sassy Bee Cotton Candy Corriedale

I finished plying this fiber while at spinning group the first Saturday in February.  I have it wound onto the niddy noddy.  I just need to tie it and wash it to set the twist, and it will be done.

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Narwhal

This is the first new project of the week.  This is part of a narwhal-along in Ravenclaw Tower.  I cast on last Saturday, and expected to finish it that day.  Instead, I went to buy a floor loom.  I still have to sew on the flippers.  I’m also going to find something different for eyes because I think the beads I used are too small.

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Scarf

On Monday evening, our cat Pepper did not look well.  She was straining to use the litter box, but nothing was coming out.  She would get out of the litter box, rest for a while, then try again.  She also tried squatting in inappropriate places, like the cat’s toy basket.  I realized I was probably going to have to bring her to the emergency vet, and that I didn’t have any knitting that was mindless enough to work on during a midnight wait at the vet.  I quickly cast on this scarf, knit one pattern repeat, and bundled Pepper off for an enema at the vet.  I got about 4″ knit while I waited.  I knit a little more while waiting for dinner to finish yesterday.

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Crochet 365

I finished the star-rating index three weeks ago, but haven’t looked at this project since.  This week, I started looking at the 90 one-star patterns, contemplating the order in which I want to crochet them.  I made three separate lists: one of patterns that use a solid color, one of patterns that use multiple colors, and one of patterns that the author’s note identifies as a “good beginner square.”  Along the way, I made notes on the patterns, identifying stitches used or techniques, and contemplating the end uses of these 365 squares.  Some of the squares will definitely be dishcloths.  Some of the squares might be afghans or scarves.  I need to have some ideas so that I can pick out appropriate yarns.  My head was spinning a bit after looking at all the information, but it was a good start at determining the best approach, given my modest crochet skills.  I hope to make the final project list this week.

The Big Book of Granny Squares by Tracey Lord

As you may have noticed if you’ve read this blog for a while, I do not review patterns or pattern books.  The reason for this is twofold.  First, other bloggers and podcasters review many patterns and pattern books.  Second, I don’t personally purchase many patterns or pattern books.  The primary reason for that is my queue of projects to complete is always quite long.  My experience is that I frequently change my mind about what I want to knit, so I prefer to purchase patterns immediately before I plan to make them, rather than when they are first released.  By the time I buy patterns or pattern books, they’ve been well and thoroughly reviewed by many others.  In order to find books to review on this blog, I look at upcoming publications on Amazon and purchase the ones that look interesting to me.  I was excited when I saw The Big Book of Granny Squares: 365 Crochet Motifs show up in that list a few months ago, because I’ve been looking for a good crocheting stitch dictionary and this looked like it would fit the bill.  I was not disappointed.

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2015 Goals and Plans

I do not set crafting resolutions.  To me, the word “resolution” implies doing something drastically different than you had been doing before.  I’ve been a fiber crafter for a long time and that is not going to change.  Instead, I set goals and make plans.  Goals differ from resolutions in that goals are smaller, concrete, and incremental.  I already have a base of fiber crafting skills and I want to build on those skills.  There’s many things I have never done, especially with crochet, spinning, weaving, and dyeing as these are the skills that I have only acquired in the last two years.  Although I’ve been knitting for 20+ years, I spent many of those years knitting the kinds of projects where gauge is nearly irrelevant and so the list of things I have never done with knitting is longer than you might expect. I’m starting out the year by picking one or two skills to work on for each of the fiber crafts.

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