Monday, December 15, 2014

Skills Upgrade: FAILURE

Remember last month when I learned to knit by magic loop with those chunky warm mittens?  I figured since I had that down, it was time to try two-at-a-time knitting (where you knit a pair of something at the same time using one circular needle and two balls of yarn).  And since I had a pair of fingerless mitts to make for my Mom and two full travel days going to and from a holiday in California (!!!), lets just jump in and see how it goes.

Toast and Jam Fingerless Mitts
Uh...yeah.  That was tedious.  I spent more time detangling the cables and two strands of yarn than I did knitting.

Maybe I should've used a shorter cable.  Maybe if I'd tried this with a thicker yarn than DK.  Maybe if the pattern wasn't twisted rib (AARRRGHHH).  Maybe if I'd done more research than a quick google before leaving to catch our 5:50 am flight.  Whatever the reason, this was beyond tedious and despite a 14 hour travel day, I got less than 2 inches knit.  TWO INCHES!

I'm a slow knitter, but not that slow.

Toast and Jam Fingerless Mitts
I love this yarn - so soft and pretty.  Oh superfine alpaca, you're super fine.
Anywho, I eventually ditched one of the mitts and continued on with just one, and it went so much faster.

Toast and Jam Fingerless Mitts
Toast and Jam Fingerless Mitts
Not fast enough though, because all my Mom is getting for Christmas (other than the aforementioned blanket) is a box with the two pictures above, a tiny swatch of the yarn, and an IOU note.  Oops.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

fo: Umaro Blanket for Mom (ssshh don't tell!)

Umaro Blanket
The never-ending blanket is done!!  Seriously, I only finished knitting this at noon on Wednesday, the day before I returned to camp and the last day I could possibly ship this thing out.  How people knit blankets (and full sized ones at that instead of wee lap blankies) out of anything finer than super bulky without tearing out their hair, I'll never know.

Umaro Blanket
Pattern: Umaro by Jared Flood
Yarn: 100% Acrylic Bernat Softee Chunky (super bulky)
Mods: Ran out of blue yarn, added brown stripe as "design element".  Did not do last half repeat because ran out of yarn again.

This pattern was lovely to knit, it was interesting and kept my interest.  So nice to watch the large scale stitch pattern develop.  The only downside was that this sucker got heavy on the needles.  So heavy that it sheared the metal on the connector piece of one of my knitting cables while I was knitting the last row!

Umaro Blanket
I was pretty sick of this blanket by the end, but I think that was because of my self-imposed deadline, and no knitting is fun under a crunch.  But I had to get it done, because the only knitted gifts I'd committed myself to was for my Mom, who hasn't gotten any knitted things from me.  She'd asked specifically for a pair of fingerless mitts, and aha damn they're not finished.  More on that later.  So I had to get this done just to send her something that was finished.

Although she nearly didn't get the blanket.  As soon as it came out of the dryer all soft and snuggly (can not believe how much this yarn softened up with a wash!), Darryl immediately stole it and wouldn't give it back.  Not even pictures made him relent.  So haha you guys get to see one in retaliation!

Umaro Blanket
For those who celebrate, how goes your Christmas prep?  Are you all chill and cool and done, sitting back and enjoying the season?  Or are you like me and getting a little manic trying to get everything done?  Are you crafting any of your gifts?

And more importantly, have you ever sent a picture of an unfinished gift with the promise that it'll will be done soon?