Saturday, February 17, 2007


Belated valentine

AlterKnits' Lace-up Fingerless Mitts, modeled by Diana, formatter extraordinaire. Not only is she my first human model (in a previous incarnation, I was a mad knitter of dog sweaters and several dogs obligingly posed for pics wearing my creations) but she also just rocks the color red, and is my current accessories muse! Way to spark up Casual Friday, Diana!

I knit on blind faith--meaning, I get so excited about what I want to make that I don't even reason out the pattern before I'm off to the races--and invariably I end up sadder but wiser. Even though I love how the mitts look when worn, I shoulda taken the pattern for something of a test-drive before I set out to make an item for someone special. The medium size calls for only one skein of Manos. Brrrrrrp! Wrong--I had to nip over to the Bee to pick up a second skein, which thankfully was in stock. The thumbs came out a wee bit too long, and uneven, due largely to less than stellar measuring on my part. I do gauge swatches for sweaters, generally not for accessories, and I simply don't do row gauge. So if I had a number of rounds to knit rather than trying to measure 1/2" with Manos on dpns, I think I would have been happier with the result.

I live in the metro area of Portland, Oregon, where you can't swing a dead cat without hitting someone who has at least one design published in Interweave Knits. (sorry for that metaphor, cat lovers.) Hell, even the author of the book I just mentioned lives in Portland! So why, oh WHYizzit, that silk ribbon cannot be had in this town except for one place--the Button Emporium--which was of course closed Monday, the only day when it was convenient for me to go there? (I had a doctor's appointment several blocks from it.) I ended up using JoAnn polyester ribbon for Diana's mitts, but I'm determined to get silk ribbon to lace up the next pair, which I'm knitting in the baby alpaca I won in a recent contest.

Mental Health Day

I took one of those on Thursday, largely due to exhaustion from dealing with Jimmy's great bedwetting extravaganza. I stayed up very late Wednesday night working on the mitts, and when I finally dragged my weary self into bed, I found that my darling puppy had peed all over the blankets and sheets, soaked the mattress, and completely saturated one of my pillows (which I promptly threw out). By the time I'd dried out the mattress, turned it and made up the bed clean, it was well past 3 am and I knew I'd be useless for the next day.

However, I have absolutely no regrets about staying home, because I realized something--that even my knitting can sometimes feel like a job. As much as I want to plug away on my large projects and see them through to completion, the quickie-fun stuff always beckons--maybe because there's so damn much of it now! Be that as it may, my knitting has been sorely lacking a sense of play, so I attempted to make up for it by having some fun, Mason-Dixon style.

It has been a very long time since I made a warshrag! While getting the Manos I needed to finish the mitts, I picked up a few balls of Rowan Handknit Cotton, and you know, it felt a little like when I was a kid getting a box of 64 Crayola crayons in different brilliant colors. I. Made. A. Dishrag. And it was fun! And addicting! Need more colors of Handknit Cotton, must have them all! I heartily invite the Knitting Curmudgeon and her ilk to eat my shorts.

Your mitts are fabulous!! I love that colour. I had to laugh about the pee incident, only because the exact same thing happened to us with our shih tzu...TWICE!! I too know the feeling of stripping a bed at some insanely early hour and vainly trying to dry out a mattress, knowing you will never get any more sleep that night, so take heart in knowing you are not the only one!

P.S.--I LOVE the warshrag...that pattern is the best! So much fun and so satisfying to make, especially if you are stuck in the middle of some long, boring project.

Funny how our beloved dogs can seem truly evil when dealing with the aftermath of their bed-peeing in the middle of the night!
LOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVEEEEEE the mitts and that dishrag is awesome. I needto do my spectrum thing so I can knit some little things.

You are so sassy!

*swings a dead cat*
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