Monday, February 26, 2007

More tea?

Today I felt very motivated to work on the UnGranny Smith sweater. I sat down and told myself, "Brianne, today you're going to finish the left front and cast on for the right front!" I figured that I was right at the point where I'd be starting shaping for the neckline and armholes. So I sat down with Friends Season 10 in the dvd player and a cup of hot tea at my side and took a look at where I was on the left front.

Imagine my annoyance at realizing that 3" back I had done the waist shaping incorrectly. I tried to drop down and maneuver my way out of it, but there was no hope! I poured myself another cup of tea, inwardly wishing that it was something a little stronger, and ripped back 3" on the left front.

I have had a few successes to share, though! Owen's sweater is done, washed, blocked and tried on. It fits wonderfully and I think that my hopes that it will fit him for the next winter too aren't in vain.
Owen's sweater:
Pattern: Generated from
Needles: Denise Interchangeables, Size 11 US
Yarn: Lamb's Pride Bulky - 1 skein Heather Charcoal, 2 skeins Ink Blue (from the stash!)
Knitted in 2 1/2 days

I've never worked with Lamb's Pride Bulky before and it was an experience. If you've never worked with it before, here are a few things you should know. 1.) This will shed all over you, your couch, your floor and whoever might be sitting within a 3 mile radius of you. 2.) This will take 10 washings to get a clear rinse, including 2 overnight soaks just to be safe. 3.) You will need to brush this sweater with a sweater stone before you let your loved one wear it for the first time and if you really love them you'll brush it out a second time even though you don't think it needs it because you will come up with more stray fibers than you thought possible.

There are two of these socks, but photographing my own feet at this time would require more stretching and acrobatics than I'm willing to do right now. So believe me when I tell you that the second sock looks exactly the same. I've had this yarn in my stash for almost a year and I really didn't want to wind it from the skein because it was just too pretty! I've opened my sock yarn bin and fondled the hank often but always chose something else to work with because if I used the yarn then I wouldn't have it anymore. Then one day I was in a funk and needed something truly wonderful to brighten my day and I decided that some beautiful sock yarn was exactly what I needed and these socks were born!

Pattern: Lacey rib cuff
Needles: size 1 dpn
Yarn: Fearless Fibers in Desert Flower - Superwash

I kept these socks in my purse and would work on them when the phones got slow at work, or while waiting in the car for the drive through teller at the bank. I tried to work on them when I was in the hospital but could only get about 3 rounds done before I had to put them down because I was even more drugged up in the hospital than I have been at home! I started the second sock on Wednesday afternoon and was wearing them all day on Sunday.

The Fearless Fibers yarn is amazing. I love the colors and the yarn is sturdy but so very soft! I have one more skein in blues and greens in my stash and I know I'll be ordering more.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Finished Stuff

Well, I'm not back at work yet. I've developed an infection in my right leg that's being treated by high dose antibiotics and my back is still a bit "wonky" (to use the correct medical terminology). So it looks like I'll be back to work later next week if I get my OB's permission at next week's appointment.

We went to retrieve our personal possessions from the car on Tuesday and it was a bit unnerving to see the car. I'm glad that I did, though, as it kind of gave me closure. We took lots of pictures for our own records and noted problems that even our untrained eyes could see. (Bent frame, 3 jammed doors that are not able to open, and severe rear end damage to name a few.) While it was painful to see the car, it was necessary because I had to get my UnGranny Smith sweater from the back seat!

In happier news, on Monday I started Owen's sweater again and finished it up last night! It's a drop sleeve sweater knitted in the round from the bottom up. Can I just say that I love the knitting in the round sweaters! The sleeves were worked by picking up stitches around the armholes and I love the way they turned out. Owen doesn't like having things high up around his neck so I changed the neckline to a boatneck and it seems to work much better for us that way.

Here's an in-progress picture from Monday afternoon. (Hello, belly!) The sweater is currently drying after much washing. It was my first time using Lamb's Pride and is it normal that it took 8 soakings and rinses before I got a clear rinse?

So right now my current works in progress are the Log Cabin blanket which measures at 16" square, my Fearless Fiber socks that I just started the second sock this morning and the UnGranny Smith sweater that I have the back done on and am about halfway done with the left front. There's a knit in at Simply Fibers tomorrow and I have no idea what project I'll be bringing with me. Bryan's boss is having a baby girl about 2 weeks before I'm due and he asked me to make a little something for her, so maybe I'll bring a new project with me to the knit in!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Drugged Knitting

Hello, friends!

This has been quite a week. As Bryan mentioned, I was in a car accident on Monday that landed me in the hospital overnight for observation. Actually, the doctors were more interested in how baby was doing and so they spent a lot of time doing ultrasounds to make sure that she was still safe and happy and that I wasn't bleeding internally. I got to preview the Labor and Delivery ward of Cox South hospital as they kept watch over us and made sure I wasn't going to do anything stupid like go into premature labor when the baby was only at 24 weeks.

I'm still quite stiff and sore, which is to be expected. My right leg is bruised from ankle to knee and somewhat numb, but I'm told that the numbness will go away after the swelling goes down. My car, though, did not fare as well. According to the police officer who came to the hospital to get my statement it seems like my 2004 Kia Sorento is a total loss, though it will need to be verified by the insurance adjuster.

Hopefully, I'll be cleared to go back to work after an appointment with my doctor on Tuesday. I've spent most of my days alternating between knitting and sleeping. The muscle relaxers that I was prescribed have really helped with the pain but also really knock me out. I've also noticed that they have done a number on my knitting. For example, I started a sweater for Owen. I'm using Lamb's Pride Bulky and so the progress is quick. I used the sweater pattern generator from Knitting Fool and am really happy with the results. I was about 7 inches up the torso of the sweater when I realized that this thing that I was knitting would be big enough for my 7 year old brother and would have swallowed alive my 3 year old son. So I've recalculated the numbers and realized that in my gloriously relaxed state, I had put in that my son had a 28 inch chest instead of a 23 inch chest. Oops!

One project that is going well is a sort of log cabin blanket that I started on for the baby. This really is some fabulous, mindless knitting. With all the sock knitting I've done in the past year I can pick up stitches in my sleep, and I've made such good progress on this thing that I wouldn't be surprised to learn that I had been doing just that! I'm using Peace Fleece worsted that I purchased from and I'm loving it. Bryan loves the colors and when I mentioned that I might rip it out and rework the coloring he begged me not to because he loves it just as it is.

For those times when even picking up stitches seems like too much work, I pulled out my therapy blanket from the stash closet. This is a garter stitch blanket that I started when we were moving from CA to MO in only 3 weeks total time and I needed something completely mindless to work on. It's on 8 US circular needles with super soft TLC Amore acrylic yarn in a light sage green. The pattern goes a little something like this: cast on 250 stitches, knit every single stitch on every single row until you've used up the yarn and then bind off. I think I've probably added a good 5 inches to this blanket since Tuesday night. It'll go back into the stash closet soon and will be unearthed the next time I need it.

A big big "Thank You!" to everyone who commented and emailed me this week. I'm sorry that I haven't replied to any of them but I appreciate all of the prayers and good thoughts. Wish me luck with all of the insurance stuff and that I'm in good enough shape to go to the Knit In at the LYS later this week!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Where's Brianne

Hey everyone! This is Bryan, Brianne's husband. She was in a really bad accident last night, and had to go to the ER. They kept her in Labor and Delivery for observation until this afternoon. She's a little high on painkillers and muscle relaxants right now, but mom and baby are fine. She'll be touching base very soon, but please feel free to email her with a comment anytime. Thanks!


Tuesday, February 06, 2007

First sweater

Not the first sweater that I've made, but my first sweater for our little girl. Knitted in just 3 days but with a lot of love!

Pattern: Pie by Berrocco, 0-3 month size
Yarn: Manos Cotton Stria, 2 skeins and a small bit of a third
Needles: KnitPicks Options, size 5 US

I like the finished product, but perhaps next time I wouldn't use the same yarn. The Cotton Stria knitted in garter stitch is very soft but difficult to seam. Also, I had wanted to do a little embroidery around the neckline but after 45 minutes and 3 restarts, I decided that it just wasn't going to happen!

I love the kimono style garment for infants and want to make another one, but I think I'll spend some time trying to find a pattern that doesn't have quite so many pieces to it. I'm sure that I can find one that has the body of the sweater knit in one piece rather than three.

Last night I finished the Clapotis that I started just a couple of weeks ago. This sure was a quick and easy knit even though I was working with silk which insisted on splitting constantly and refusing to drop easily. (I'm not bitter, though.)

While working the decrease section I started really thinking about this project. As much as I love the look of the silk yarn and the the drape that it produces and the wonderful shaping of the scarf.... I really don't think that this particular scarf is going to work for me. After all, I have a 3 year old and will soon have an infant and for the next few years having clothes and accessories that are easily cleaned is going to be essential to survival. I'd love to make the Clapotis again but maybe I'll make it for myself in a Superwash. In the meantime, I have an idea of what I'll be doing with this one!