Saturday, February 28, 2009

Soothing Garter Stitch

Work is very stressful and dealing with contractors for the new-to-us condo is stressful but in a positive way. I feel like I can't deal with anything more complicated than garter stitch and it's Malabrigo to the rescue!

I have a feeling that the majority of the next few months of posts will be about knitting and the new condo, aspects of my life that are about moving forward, that are fun and exciting for me. There are so many other things that are stressing me out that I don't want to spend the time blogging about unhappy things when that time and effort could be spend doing things that make me happy.

So, here's a pic of the Sean Scully Malabrigo afghan (scroll down) to date. Instead of black and white, I'm using orange and yellow, specifically, Tigerlily and Pollen, with some KnitPicks Merino Bare. And I'm adding an off-set strip of purple and grey, specifically Purple Mystery and Pearl, to the bottom. And the rest will be big green and little blue vertical stripes. Perhaps I should sketch it out, but instead, here's picture showing roughly where the elements will be:

Close-ups of the the pieces that are done or mostly done:
Basically, I'm holding 2 strands together and knitting on size 10.5 US needles. Malabrigo is kettle-dyed and so some skeins will be more solid, and others show more variation in color intensity. You can really see that in the purple above. I ran out of the darker, more solid purple, so went to Knitch to find something comparable. (Knitch doesn't sell Malabrigo worsted, but does sell the silk/merino DK weight. The Needle Nook does sell Malabrigo worsted, but was out of the purple.) I picked up 2 skeins of Manos del Uruguay in Aster, a purple that matched very well.

Knitch has a huge selection of Noro yarns and as much as I've seen on other blogs about Noro, I've never worked with it. I've heard they're scratchy. Considering that I'm surrounding myself with the ultrasoft Malabrigo, I wasn't interested in working with anything scratchy.

An aside, on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me last week, Mo Rocha made a crack about handmade sweaters always being itchy and this week, he made an apology because the knitting community contacted them to protest (the words knitting community made the audience laugh. I swear, we get no respect). They also mentioned Ravelry.

However, I found some Noro with high cotton content and walked away with not one, but two skeins of Noro: Taiyo in color 2 (grey, green, and peach) and Furisode in color 1 (grey, orange and lime green):

Clearly, I have cast on for another project -- a center top-down triangular shawl, garter stitch, on size 9 needles. I'm telling you, I can't deal with anything more complicated than that.

The peach from the Taiyo will echo the orange from the Furisode, and the lime green in the Furisode will echo the bright green in the Taiyo. That's serendipity because I sure didn't plan that when I bought the yarn.

In other knitting news, I finished the commissioned baby blanket: Basically it's one strand of blue and one of white Cotton Tots and one strand of navy blue Cotton Classic, using size 11 needles, cast on about 100 stitches and knit stockingnette and reverse stockingnette to make a square with in a square effect. Finish with three strands of Simfonia navy blue yarn held together and single crochet the border with a size N needle until bored. Took me about a month.

I call it the commissioned blanket because it's for a client of Husband's. Today, Husband was at the office working on a case for that client and I was at the condo with the client's husband who we will most likely hire to lay down our bamboo floor. I gave them the baby blanket today for their new grandson.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


Today, we finally closed on the condo! Woo hoo!

Currently, my commute looks like this. That's the Atlanta skyline below. The exit sign says Six Flags over Georgia. That's how far out of town I live. In my commute, I start way out on the west side, drive through the city, and out the other side, to my office.

Yeah, 26 miles/45 minutes one-way.

At my new place, the commute will be only 10 miles. But I'll be using surface streets, not the freeways, so it'll still take me some time, about 30 minutes. Yay! If I choose the right route, I can easily swing by my favorite yarn shop, Knitch in Virginia-Highlands. Double yay!

And I have options for a pottery place: Callanwolde (near Virginia-Highlands), Chastain which is way on the north side, or Mudfire, which is 10 minutes from the office. Hmmm. But it'll be a while before I start pottery again. Need to figure out all the house stuff first.

The condo has a terrible mold problem, so tomorrow, we're having a mold remediation service come in. Once that's done, we'll have the HVAC people in. Then the duct cleaners. Then the flooring people. Then the painters. Then the roller blind people. Then we move in! Yay!

And at some point in there, we'll buy a refrigerator. And figure out what to do with our current house.

All that's yet to come. For now, I'm just celebrating that after 3 months, we finally, finally, actually got to close!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Sean Scully Malabrigo Afghan

I gave in. This weekend, I cast on for my Sean Scully Malabrigo Afghan. Details on my Ravelry page.

I've posted about Sean Scully before here (scroll down) just about a year ago. And I'll be using the Malabrigo yarns shown in that same post too.

The afghan is based on "10.2.93" and have started the vertical piece in a combo of yellow, white, and orange. I ran out of the yellow yarn (Pollen) and had to go get some more. Picked up a skein of Pearl while I was at it, for a purple strip that I'm going to add too.

Mmmmm. Malabrigo. Can't resist.

Friday, February 13, 2009

New fave blog (Snark-tastic!)

There's a new blog on my blogroll: Cleolinda. It's like a rabbit hole I've fallen in and haven't found the way out.

I found Cleolinda by searching the New York Times for "Twilight." Yeah, I've fallen down that hole too. So the Freakonomics guy on NYT wrote how he was at the airport with nothing to read, so got Twilight and got sucked in too. One of the commenters pointed to Cleolinda's chapter by chapter snark-tastic summaries and they are hilarious.

As much as she makes fun of them, her blog is full of Twilight stuff, so she isn't a complete hater.

She has a zillion sites online, it seems. Her Movies in 15 Minutes are gold. She also has a site called the Secret Life of Dolls, where her LOTR, Twilight, and other movie action figures have their own dramas. It is, again, hilarious.

(Note to self: must find another adjective, other than hilarious.)

Anyway, her Twilight reviews and Movies in 15 Minutes had me laughing outloud.

Apparently Cleolinda's been online for so long, there's a ton of past posts to read. Fun!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

It couldn't last

Project monogamy is just not for me. I've been working on a baby blanket that was commissioned by one of Husband's clients. She offered to pay but of course I turned that down. How would I price it? She's a gatekeeper of sorts and has the ability to keep referring cases to Husband. So it'll be a freebie (as always).

The baby blanket is all cotton and knit on size 11 US needles. It's flying by and great mindless knitting, especially when speed reading through the Twilight series of books. Now the books are done and the baby blanket is no longer enough. Plus it's too big to keep carrying around in my purse.

So last night I started a beret, using a purple varigated Manos del Uruguay yarn. This will be my portable project and will replace the beret I lost last week.

In condo news, we're a chapter 34 of the on-going saga. After some last minute revelations about a huge lien on the condo, it seems we may finally be able to close next week, about 12 weeks later than the original closing date. I'll believe it when I get the keys in my hands.