It’s That Time of the Month

No, not that time, but the apparently once-a-month occurrence of my carving out a minute or two to blog. Honestly, it’s not even a lack of time, but a sheer lack of energy. If I do get time when I’m not working or chasing my little speed-demon crawler or doing things around the house, I just want to collapse and veg out. I don’t always have enough spoons to be organized and creative and interesting. But enough apologizing! Lack of spoons has not meant a lack of yarn in my life, so let me tell you about it.

img_20170314_214842.jpg

Verdant Gryphon goodies

A couple of blog posts ago, I yammered on about Verdant Gryphon closing down. While it’s true that Gryphon herself has left VG, it appears that VG is in fact actually still producing yarn, despite word-on-the-street (a.k.a. Ravelry) being that they were not going to be doing so. Before I knew that, I made one last-ditch acquisition of my two favorite bases: Zaftig (grey, worsted weight MCN) in November Moonlight and Codex (black/green/blue, light worsted BFL/silk) in Verdant Love. For the sake of my wallet, I’m going to just go ahead and pretend like they really did shut down because I could spend entire paychecks on this stuff…

img_20170325_114447.jpg

VG Zaftig in Burying Beetle, click for project page

Guess how many years I’ve been hoarding that lovely little number in my stash? FIVE. FIVE FLIPPIN’ YEARS. I acquired it in 2012, so excited to use it, but it was too pretty, I was too indecisive, and there it sat. I finally found the perfect pattern for it, though: Sky Boat Cowl designed by Judy Marples. The cowl has so much wonderful texture, plays really well with the variegated colorway, and should be just long enough with the two skeins that I have. This I know because another cowl I knit from two skeins of Zaftig is one of my all-time favorites to wear. I’ve been monogamous to this cowl and haven’t knit anything else since I started it about 3 weeks ago. (The photo above is misleading, as I’m over halfway done now.) I’ve been working on it while I’ve thrown myself into the second season of Outlander on DVD, so it’s really felt like the perfect thing to knit lately  (the cowl was inspired by the poem adapted in the theme song to the show, as Judy blogs about here). I could watch that show and dream about a completely romanticized historical Scotland forever. Except I’d miss spending time with this toothy guy:

20170410_111219

❤  ❤  ❤

In some Sweet Sheep Body Shoppe news, a happy customer and fellow knit-blogger has featured my products in the ‘Monday Makers’ post on her blog, as one of a few excellent gift ideas for Mother’s Day. Check it out if you can. Thanks for the love, Jeannie!

Vanishing Weeks

Time, time, time. Gone, gone, gone. I suppose I should resign myself to once-a-month posts and not expect anything different for a while. My apologies, friends, I do miss sharing in this space and reading all your blogs. I will have to work on a different system now that my leisure/computer time is more limited due to this sweet 8.5 month old.

Despite the presence of a distractingly cute young fella, I have managed to finish a couple of things since the last time we spoke (6 weeks ago!). First, my fabulously simple Wine Toasts:

13-IMG_20170226_093309590_medium2

The Verdent Gryphon Zaftig, colorways Kiss of Cabernet and Russian Sage.

I played a game of yarn chicken with these suckers, and I actually won! Yay for using up leftovers. I linked them to the Toast pattern but these are literally just a stockinette tube with rolled edges. I lengthened and gradually tapered them to accommodate my larger forearms so they’d be the perfect thing to wear with elbow-length sleeve sweaters that are flattering on me but not ideal for my chilly office.

14-IMG_20170226_093339372_medium2

Stripey goodness.

I love their size, and they are knit with one of my all-time favorite yarns (VG Zaftig = worsted weight superwash Merino / chashmere / nylon). Next time, I’d skip the rolled hem and just do some ribbing. This project confirmed that rolled hems annoy the crap out of me when worn, even though they look fun.

The second thing I’ve finished lately was knit for a friend’s bridal shower: Jola Smittens.

Her sister was organizing a “seasons of love” gift basket idea so I chose the winter basket specifically so I would have an excuse to make these ridiculous and adorable conjoined mittens. (Plus, I got to fill the basket with lots of fun coffe/tea/cookies/mugs/blankets/etc. which was oh-so-cozy.) I knit this using KnitPicks Brava bulky (an acrylic yarn) held double. The yarn is quite soft and was surprisingly pleasant to knit with, except for the fact that it tangled like crazy as I worked with it. Apparently, acrylic really likes to stick to itself, especially when it’s wound too loosely. Nevertheless, they came out well and were fairly simple. The Fiasco has declared he wants a pair for us.

Now that those are finished, I don’t have much on the needles that I’m actively working on. I’ve started another Pussyhat because rage, rage forever but otherwise… I’m in project limbo. I took a Webs trip recently (details of recent yarn acquisitions forthcoming) so I have lots of ideas, and just need to pick one to commit to. (Hahahaha, one.)

I hope you’ve all had lovely Februaries and Marches thus far!

 

That’s More Like It

Happy Monday, all! I want to thank everyone who commented on my post last week. I really appreciate the words of comfort and advice offered, and just knowing that other people out there get it is a huge help. I made a concerted effort to remember the good things and enact positive changes, including taking a Kundalini yoga class, re-focusing my weight loss efforts, and just plain taking time for myself to… relax (how foreign). All told, it was a good weekend and all that relaxing meant I finished a couple of projects, too!

That's More Like It | Woolen Diversions

SG Zaftig, colorway Ghost Moth. Click for project page.

My good friends’ little girl turned 2 years old yesterday, so I thought she could use a pretty new hat. She is the only youngster that I regularly knit for since my nephews have proven to be less-than-in-love-with their woolens. The older one, Liam, refuses to wear a hat because it would ruin his gel spiked hairstyle, and he appears to have an irrational fear of vests. The younger one wore his vest when it was new, but has certainly grown out of it by now. Come to think of it, Logan might appreciate a hat… perhaps I’ll make him one. But in any case, Lyra is definitely appreciative of knitwear, as her mom is a knitter, too. I used the Troll hat pattern designed by Gabriela Widmer-Hanke and it is super adorable and straightforward. Lovely comfort knitting.

IMG_2395

SG Codex, colorway Devil’s Dictionary. Click for project page.

I also finally (finally, finally!) finished my Deep Dark Stellaria shawl, designed by Susanna IC. This sucker has been a WIP for about a year and a half (cast on August 2013). The shawl was pretty easy knitting for the most part, but I got delayed just 6 rows from the end due to a lace mishap that I didn’t have the mental energy to figure out, so it sat, and sat, and sat until this weekend when I just fudged a quick fix and moved on. I modified the shawl to be a deeper crescent shape by leaving fewer stitches between the wrap & turn instructions. This left me with 20 repeats of the edging at the end, and a butt-ton of stitches on the needle (read: 802).

Dun-dun-duuuuuuuuuhn!

So it was all the more frustrating when my KnitPicks Harmony interchangeable needle broke in the middle of the last row before bind-off. Luckily (or unluckily?) this had happened once before so I had a spare needle tip of the same size lying around that I was able to use to rescue the dropped stitches and soldier on. And then, during the bind off, I ran out of yarn. Luckily, I had some blackish-blueish scraps of the same yarn leftover, so I bound off the remaining stitches with no problem.

That's More Like It | Woolen Diversions

Not my best blocking ever, but I was out of pins.

The funny thing is, when I went to add the project to Ravelry I realized that I actually had four skeins of this yarn stashed and the shawl definitely didn’t use all four. (I need to weigh it to be sure.) Which essentially means that I have so much yarn that I stashed so long ago that I literally forgot what I had and my emergency yarn substitution was for naught. In truth, you really can’t tell the color difference in the bind-off, so that’s fine. And hey, now I have more of this yummy color to use.

So there you go, the Saga of the Stellaria shawl ends with a gorgeous piece of fabric and hopefully some proper FO photos coming soon. These projects represent the first two that I’m counting towards the Verdant Gryphon 12 in 2015 challenge on Ravelry. You can count up to 3 pre-2015 WIPs and choose to make either 12 projects or use 12 skeins. It’s a pretty laid-back KAL with no prizes or anything, just motivation to use up some of those stash skeins you forgot you even have.