camwyn: (knitting)
Found a very, very dangerous store yesterday, on Harrison Street. It's a little over a mile from my office, and the nearest mass transit is the Silver Line, about three blocks away. If you don't take the Silver Line you walk through Chinatown and over an overpass over I-90 and past Pine Street Inn to get there.

That is not the dangerous part.

The dangerous part is that this store is Boston Bead and Fiber, and about half of it is devoted to yarn and knitting, and the other half is devoted to beading and jewelry-making. And it is open until 6 most nights, 8 on Wednesdays. Walking a mile takes me twenty minutes.

Reaching any other store that sells yarn requires me to rent a Hubway or take the Red Line out to Cambridge. Reaching any other store that sells beads requires equal rigamarole. This one may not sell Lion Brand, which is cheap enough and decent enough in quality to be my usual fibrous poison of choice, but they sell other yarns of good quality at about the price I'd expect to pay anywhere else. And they have sparklies in half the shop; I've just started getting interested in beading, and now, look, I can walk to a source....

I would say the only shop I've found in Boston that's more dangerous is the LUSH I usually go to, since they're directly above a yarn store, but the yarn store in question is Newbury Yarns and they sell things like baby alpaca/musk ox blend at prices best denominated in foreign currencies so you don't think too hard about what you're paying.
camwyn: (knitting)
So I started knitting a cat bed to felt for Shula (or whatever cat I'm going to adopt) on my way down to the beach last Thursday, as something to do on the train. Finished the knitting a few nights ago. Didn't have the quarters to do two hot water washes until yesterday. It's finally been felted- after covering the inside of the washing machine with so much blue lint that I felt honor-bound to get in there and swipe it all out two or three times over. I had to wrap my wok in plastic and then a bath towel to get something round that was large enough for effective blocking. The bed's drying out now.

Understand, Shula normally sleeps wherever he damn well feels like, and I doubt he'll change his mind for this. I did this mostly because I plan to adopt from Bide-a-Wee, and the cats there have beds in their cages, and I'd like to make sure that whoever gets adopted has at least something comfortable- that or Shula has something to move into when the new cat decides his sleeping spaces look like fun. It's also been a while since I did any knitting in general, and a project that amounted to 'knit big yarn on big needles in circles that you don't have to pay much attention to' seemed like a good place to start getting back into the hobby. I like to balance out computer learning with low-tech stuff, too. When I took my county college courses to get into the Kean master's program in MIS, I was taking one computer class and one cooking class per semester for my sanity's sake. Knitting balances out Cisco, more or less. I'll be knitting for humans soon enough, as I've got more yarn than I intended and I have the urge to do some fingerless gloves up for hands much smaller than mine, not to mention that my nephew saw me working on the cat bed and persistently asked to knit a scarf of his own. He's five and a half. I'm gonna get him a nice size 11 or larger circ (so he doesn't lose one needle or drop too many stitches off the wrong end) and a skein or two of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick and Quick to teach him on, and I'm going to find whatever documentation I can on historical Scandinavian knitting done by guys because his parents worry at times about gender roles and it's hard to beat Vikings for manly.

yeah, I know, it was more the Viking women doing the knitting than the men, but I have to start somewhere, and I don't think the rehabilitative programs where modern day male prisoners knit toys and small blankets for hospitalized children are the best example of manly men knitting. People get weird about words like 'prisoner' no matter what the guys are doing or why. And I already heard my sister objecting to Rosey Grier being held up as an example of a manly guy doing a womanly craft. Mom tried that one on her, and it didn't take. If my nephew were skilled enough to do color or pattern knitting I would have him work on something with Godzilla in it, but he's still so young that he hasn't quite figured out if he's left-handed or ambidextrous or what...

I personally don't see anything particularly wrong with a kid his age learning to do something that comes across as girly, but then I was given a copy of the Free To Be... You And Me record when I was about five, and that kind of thing does a good job of stomping on gender roles. And it's not as if I'm exactly known for being much good at social conceptions of the female gender anyway. When my nephew and his sister are older I'll see about things like model rockets and archery sets for both of them and then I suspect his parents will beg me to stick to teaching him to knit.

Anyway. I was going to say that once I get home tonight and verify that the cat bed's dry I'll take some pictures of it. The only picture I thought to take of the work in progress pre-felting is here, and most of it's under the cat anyway. Alas. Next time, perhaps.
camwyn: Me in a bomber jacket and jeans standing next to a green two-man North Andover Flight Academy helicopter. (Default)
Have acquired substitute contrast yarn. Will finish first Sock of Rassilon with the Sixth Doctor colourway. Sock two is going to be done with Koigu Painter's Palette Premium Merino in a red-based colourway. Right weight, colour that contrasts nicely with the blue. Nothing wrong with unmatched socks, when you're doing something like this.
camwyn: Me in a bomber jacket and jeans standing next to a green two-man North Andover Flight Academy helicopter. (Default)
I am well into the pattern section on the Socks of Rassilon. THe seal is not going to be as obvious as I had hoped. This is because the Sixth Doctor yarn is a rainbow colourway, with the occasionl blue or dark purple section; those bits blend right in with the blue yarn that comprises the rest of the sock. The blue yarn also features the occasional dark purple or greenish bit. Still, I shall perservere, and hopefully I will be able to produce Socks of Rassilon with a more blatant pair of colours somewhere along the line.

And yes, I do think this sort of calls for a Mitten of Omega design somewehre along the line.
camwyn: Me in a bomber jacket and jeans standing next to a green two-man North Andover Flight Academy helicopter. (Default)
*squints at chart from KnitPro* Since when does it go '1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 21, 23' or '3, 5, 7, 9, 21, 23, 25, 27, 29, 31, 33, 24'?

*mutters darkly and counts up the squares by hand*

The pattern is 36 x 48, not 34 x 60. You'd think I'd've noticed before... oh, well, not like I had started working on that part of the Socks or anything. So. Four size 0 needles, k10 rounds in Corrugated Rib, k1 round in main colour, and then divide stitches so that there are 24 stitches each on needles 1 and 2 and 22 sti-


*peers at stitch count*

92 + 4 = 96. All I have to do is add one extra stitch per needle and I can put the $&*(&) Seal on front and back.

Okay. yeah. I can do that.
camwyn: Me in a bomber jacket and jeans standing next to a green two-man North Andover Flight Academy helicopter. (Default)
Going to the knitting store at lunchtime. This is the second time I've lost track of one of my size 0 needles. I'm sure the damn thing is probably on my desk at home or something, but I found out yesterday that size 0 needles are remarkably skilled at slipping through the fabric of the tote bag I use as a purse, and I'd rather not lose any more. I'm going to get two size 0 circulars and knit the Socks of Rassilon on those.

Also I shall get some point protectors to avoid bag puncturing.
camwyn: Me in a bomber jacket and jeans standing next to a green two-man North Andover Flight Academy helicopter. (aieee)
Oh, holy cats. Um.

Annie Modesitt, a knitting goddess whose knitting group I used to be in, has just recently learned that her husband has bone cancer. There's marrow transplants at the Mayo Clinic involved in the treatment. You can imagine how much fun that might be.

She's offering one of her knitting patterns, originally designed for a friend who was going to be attending the Emmy awards, for sale on the Web to raise money to deal with the non-medical side of the cancer treatment- child care, transportation to the Clinic, etc. It's a gorgeous dress pattern and it's priced at $4.50, so if you're at all interested in that sort of thing, have a look.

camwyn: (Shakespeare pwns)
I've started on the Socks of Rassilon. I'll post the colour chart once I get it rendered into a format that'll scan properly. I broke down and used KnitPro to cough up the chart this time; yours truly is a bit of a wuss when it comes to really complicated designs. KnitPro, however, uses actual knitting graph paper proportions for its grid, and then you have to go through and decide which of the grey squares you want and which you don't, so... it'll be a bit before I get the colour chart up.

Not that it matters, because the first part of the Socks goes as follows:

1. Get your size 0 needles out. That would be the 2.0 mm needles. You want four size 0 double-points, plus a fifth to work with.

2. Get your contrasting colour yarn. This is the skein that made you go 'Ooh! Sixth Doctor!' in the store.

3. Cast on 92 stitches.

4. Divide the 92 stitches up so that there are 23 stitches on each needle.

5. Making sure not to accidentally get a twist in the sequence of stitches somewhere, because we are not knitting Moebius socks, join the stitches up...

6. ... by means of purling two in the Sixth Doctor yarn, then knitting two in the main colour yarn.

7. Do this all the way around, that is, purl two with the contrasting yarn and knit two with the main colour yarn. In fact, do it for ten rows.

I'm currently on about the start of row three. When you are working with size 0 needles it takes a while to accomplish much. But I will keep you posted.

... I'm gonna need an icon for this.
camwyn: (knitting)

92 stitches of a yarn that's 185 yds/50 gm (you are mixing your measurement systems WHY GOD WHY). Two circular size zero needles. Two skeins of the main colour, one skein each of the two contrasting colours.

I have five size zero needles. I have two skeins of the main colour yarn, which is 267m/100g. This is (267 * 39 / 36) = 289 yd/skein. 289/100 = 144ish yd/50 gm. Marginally heavier than the weight called for in the pattern, but still. 185*2 = 370 < two skeins of what I've got so NEENER NEENER.

One skein of the contrasting colour should be enough given that we are talking about a bit of bicoloured ribbing, possibly two repeats of the pattern motif (it's sixty bloody stitches across), and a little stripey around the toes and heels. Barring that, it's a hand dyed wacky multicolour colourway so sod the whole Same Dye Lot nonsense. Split the yarn distribution up a bit so that when I'm doing the pattern I put thirty stitches on each of the two needles directly involved in the pattern, and the remaining 32 are distributed with 16 sts each on the other two needles; switch this around when I do the next pattern repeat...

yeah. Yeah, I think I can do it. I'll have to do up a gauge swatch tonight to see if I'm hitting the right stitch size, but I think I have the pattern that I can adapt into the Socks of Rassilon.


camwyn: Me in a bomber jacket and jeans standing next to a green two-man North Andover Flight Academy helicopter. (Default)

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