Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Two's a Crowd

It's the second to last week of the semester! I've been trying to study hard, but in all actuality, this just means I've been knitting like a fiend. Ever since finishing my socks, I seem to have developed a urge to knit a lot of things in pairs. I finished my Mosey leg warmers, which came out rather nicely, if a little looser than I would have liked. It was my first time doing I-cords, and while I love the look of I-cords, I really just don't like knitting them. 


These leg warmers knit up very quickly, though, much quicker than I thought they would, so they were nice. It was just the fact that I had to do it twice that made me want to drag my feet. These have been in my queue  ever since I joined Ravelry, so it was very, very nice to finally get around to knitting them. I think it really shows how far I've come in knitting!


I also just finished my Longbourn Mitts--and with these, I think I am done knitting in pairs for a LONG while. Thanks to the Lizzie Bennet Diaries webseries, I've been getting into Jane Austen's works, and of course, that meant that the last time I went to the bookstore I picked up the Jane Austen Knits fall magazine. Everything in there is gorgeous and I want to make everything...but I don't have enough yarn! I fell in love with the ties on these mitts, so I had to make them. Doing these gloves wasn't my favorite project, but I think that was because by the time I had started on my second one, I was sick of doing things that required pairs.

 I'm going to go back to instant gratification projects for a while now--I'm working on a Orient Express shawl, and a Haruni for when I'm on the plane--because I'm headed to Taiwan in exactly a week! 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Black Friday Haul

So, this is a really late post, but I wanted to wait until my Cyber Monday purchases came in so I'd have pictures to show you all. Black Friday is one of my favorite days of the year, mostly because I can spend a lot of money and feel only marginally guilty...because everything's on sale! My friends and I got up relatively late on Friday (around 8:30 AMish) and we first went to Kohl's, which is already pretty cheap.


I bought that dress there for 50% off its original price of about 42 dollars, which I was very happy about. I love dresses, but never really get around to buying them, so it was nice to mix it up and actually obtain a dress.

From there, we went to the mall. One of my friends' favorite stores is Express, which is a store I also love, but can never afford. However, Express was having a 50% off everything until noon sale, and my friend spotted this hi-low skirt and made me try it on.


It's absolutely gorgeous and I'm wearing it right now, actually. It's 72 degrees here in Williamsburg right now, and so I had to take advantage of the weather. It's also a bit windy, so the skirt billows out behind me and makes me feel like a model, haha. I'm so glad I tried the skirt on. It was literally a last-minute purchase...we were standing in line when my friend found it!



I also went to Sephora and bought this nice red-coralish lipstick (The Sephora brand in Jealous). I've been looking for a nice lipstick for practically forever, and I really, really, really adore this one. It wasn't on sale, but I think it was a good purchase regardless.



And lastly, I bought yarn! I absolutely could not resist Knitpicks Cyber Monday sale, and came away with five balls of yarn. I bought 3 balls of Stroll in Wonderland Heather, which is actually a slightly darker blue than I imagined, but a pleasant surprise, and a limited colorway by the name of Heirloom. I was going to use the Heirloom to make a Haruni shawl while I was overseas, but now I can't decide! The blue just reminds me of winter so much and it would be very fitting to work with, but the Heirloom is just so rich and deep and bold. I just can't decide!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Socks Socks Socks

I finally, finally, FINALLY finished my socks! They look great! I'm so excited! I can't stop talking with exclamation points!


In all seriousness, however, I am very excited to finally have finished those socks, not only because it's my first pair of socks, but because they were beginning to drive me crazy just sitting there on my desk, almost finished but not quite there. It got so bad that I started two more projects, a Mosey and a  198 Yards of Heaven, in the hopes that my attention would wander back to the socks...and they did!



 I love all the projects I started, of course, but these socks! I don't think I'll start another pair of socks for a while, though. They make great portable knitting, but working with DPNs gives me a lot of grief, sometimes. Also, my gauge seems to have changed halfway through the second sock, and so the heel and gusset stitches I picked up were a bit looser than the ones on my first sock. But looking at the sock, I suppose it's not that big of a problem...it just bothers me because I know.

The more I look at the color, though, the more I'm dissatisfied with it. From a distance, I guess the gray and purple is kind of an okay combination...but I don't know. There's just something about it that makes me want to go and buy a nice skein of coral yarn or something.

Speaking of yarn, I made great use of Knitpicks' Cyber Monday sale! I've got five new skeins of fingering weight heading my way, with my fingers crossed that they'll get here before the end of the semester. (They better show up! That's my airplane knitting for the holidays right there!)

Edited to add in links.

Monday, November 12, 2012

November!

The semester flies by so fast! It seems like just last week, I was moving back on campus and getting ready for my new classes. Now I've got a week and a half left before Thanksgiving break, and then really only about a week or two left before the end of classes! Wow! The holiday season is always my favorite time of year, because it always makes me happy and warm...especially because I really do have an excuse to sit around knitting all day. And boy, have I been knitting!

I finally, finally, finally started my first sock project--although I don't have pictures yet, and am about halfway done with the entire project...which means I've finished my first sock and have entered the Second Sock Slump. Is that a thing? It should definitely be a thing. I'm about halfway done with the cuff of the second sock, but it's reached that point where it's starting to get tedious. But yes, socks are very easy and portable, and I've taken to taking them to all my club meetings.

To break it up, though, I made a shawl, two cowls, and just started a pair of legwarmers!



That is the Just Knit It shawl, which is the absolute best for TV knitting--just garter stitch back and forth non-stop. Both my mind and my fingers were just so happy with it! The border is this nostalgia border, which is crochet, and also very gorgeous. It gave the shawl a more feminine quality and I just thinks it looks great! I've mentioned it before, but I got new pictures, so I thought I'd mention it again. (I'm very proud of this one!)



Both the cowls I made recently were gifts, actually! First, I made another Bandana Cowl, this one in a thinner yarn, and subsequently, a smaller size for a small friend of mine. She wears it all the time. I'm glad! 


I also got around to making this Burberry-inspired cowl, which has been on my list since I rediscovered knitting last year. It's the kind of thing that only makes sense/looks like the picture on the Ravelry page when you've finished it, and not a minute before. This was for my hallmate, who my friends and I affectionately call Mommy. It was my first time trying kitchner stitch, and it was surprisingly easy, given how confused I was the first time I saw it. It wasn't exactly even, the way it came up, but it still looked pretty good for my first time! 

Lastly, I've started on Mosey, which I have lusted over for nearly as long as that mock-Burberry cowl. It's my first time reading charts for it, too! I prefer written instructions--they're usually less confusing to me, but so far, the charts haven't perplexed me at all. Hopefully it'll stay that way.

I've got almost exactly a month to go before the end of the semester...and then, I'm off to Taiwan for a month! I'm so excited to spend Christmas and New Year's with my family in Taiwan, especially because I have no memory of having ever done so. My family has always visited Taiwan in the summer during summer vacation, but now that I'm in college, we don't have to stick to that schedule anymore! First, though, I have to get through all my classes. Ahh, I can't wait! 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Mini FO Dump

Wow, I can't believe it's already October! It's been super fast and busy, but I've still managed to find time to do some knitting, and even a bit of crocheting. I finally finished my ulzzang hat, as I detailed before. The pattern to that will be posted soon--I just really need to get around to getting good pictures for it. Sadly, I haven't gotten around to trying socks, as I've been swearing I was going to try. Instead, I've been focusing on giving my Chinese Student Organization littles a great clue week! But that doesn't mean I abandoned knitting at all. Instead, I re-took up crocheting to make my little these adorable hedgehogs.


I did not actually know Joann's sold safety eyes, but now that I know, maybe I'll take up crocheting again! The fun fur I used for the body of the hedgehogs was actually quite irritating to crochet, but I think that was to be expected. In any case, the important thing is that my littles enjoyed them.



I've also taking to watching Teen Wolf this semester to cope with all the schoolwork. It's really interesting, actually. And of course, I have to have TV knitting while watching. I just finished my Just Knit It shawl with a   crochet nostalgia border. The yarn is acrylic, but super soft. I know it'll keep me super warm this winter...but not now, because even though it's October, here in Williamsburg, we still get temperatures up to 80 degrees! It's really quite amazing. Apparently Hurricane Sandy is heading towards Williamsburg...so we'll see what happens! In any case, I've still got yarn, so if all else fails, I'll just keep knitting! 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Improvising Patterns

Now that classes have (kind of) settled down, I've gotten around to knitting again! There is a ball of yarn sitting on my desk on top of my books, and I just pick it up and start knitting away while I'm studying, if only so I have something for my hands to do. And a few days ago, I finished my first college knitting project!


I know I've been saying that I was going to learn how to knit socks, but I couldn't turn down the chance to make a pom-pom hat! I love pom-poms, especially gigantic pom poms! This hat was inspired by the hats that ulzzangs (literally, 'best face', they're sort of like amateur fashion models) wear in Korean fashion photos. I've seen hats like those go for 20-30 dollars, and I just don't have the money to spend on that...but I do have enough to buy some yarn and make one of my own!

The hat turned out a lot slouchier than I expected it to, and doesn't quite fall the way I want it to, but I've got nothing but compliments so far! The pom-pom is most definitely my favorite part, even if it's really heavy. I love making pom-poms! I may or may frog it and make it less slouchy--I'm making some more hats for my friends, and will be tweaking the pattern until it turns out just the way I want it to! And then, of course, I'll share it with you all! 

And sometime soon, I will get around to knitting those socks.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

College Snapshots

I've got a busy week ahead, but I thought I'd share some pictures before diving into classes again!

A beautiful sunset from my dorm kitchen window!
I've got yarn again! I'm currently swatching for my newest
project, which, as it turns out, is a hat, not socks. Stay tuned
for more details on the hat!

Monday, September 10, 2012

College!

I'm back in Williamsburg! I have been for a while, actually, but I wanted to get settled before I sat down and wrote. Classes started two weeks ago, and it's been busy! I'm taking 15 credits this semester, and while that's not a particularly heavy load, there's always plenty I need to do. I've finally got my room mostly in order, though, so have a sneak peek at my room (or my side of it, anyways!

Inception is one of my favorite two movies. My other favorite
is Avengers, although I haven't put that poster up yet. But then
again, that's why Captain America's on my wall!
Pardon the mess on my bed! It seems like as soon as I get to school, my things instantly settle into some sort of a mess. But that's the important part, though, that I've finally settled in, and can hopefully get some knitting in soon! I plan on making a trip to the local Joann's this weekend, but to tide me over, my friend Lily lent me some of her yarn and two double-pointed needles, and I've been working in stockinette, just so my fingers have something to do.


Luckily, I haven't forgotten how to knit, which is good. I'm just really eager to start learning how to knit socks, and I've got a design for a winter hat in the works, even though it's still fall. Better get started now, though!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Virtual Knitting

Simulated on the left, hand-knit on the
right. The difference is astounding, isn't it?!
I found this article the other day about computer-generated knitting, which instantly appealed to me because, hey, I'm going to go into Computer Science, so this is two of my favorite things combined! The results are pretty amazing, especially for me, because computer graphics is not my strong suit at all.

One of my favorite things about knitting is that the process of knitting, of figuring out how to create a garment and make it fit someone perfectly, is the same sort of problem solving as programming. The act of creation, whether it be to create an object for someone to wear in knitting or a functional program, is in my opinion the best part of knitting and programming.

And of course, both result in some pretty yummy garments!

Monday, August 20, 2012

FO Fashion Show

The countdown to school is almost over! The end of my summer hasn't really been filled with much knitting, but I thought I'd post a compilation of my projects over the summer (or, rather, the pictures of FOs I've finished and talked about but haven't really gotten around to posting!)

My Capucine hat was very easy and quick to knit up.
The tassels and pompoms are my favorite part about it!
This Quick and Thick Ribbed Cowl is for one of my good friends.
The color is perfect for her, but alas, I only had one skein of it,
 not enough to make anything but a cowl. 
Thanks to this Bandana Cowl, I've mastered short rows
much better than my first attempt with my Bow Headband.
The only regret here is that my gauge seems to be a bit off,
and it came out a bit big. 
My Summer Flies shawl is hands down my favorite project
of the summer! It's my first shawl, and I can see why people
love to make these! I only wish I had the means necessary
to block acrylic--while I love this already, it does look like it
needs a bit of blocking. 

And, as a bonus, the results of my DIY day a couple of weeks ago, and a farewell summer fun picture!

My watermark tee! The shirt originally looked a dark
maroon color when I first took it out of the dye, but after
washing it's become more of a purplish-pink. I like the
color, but I wish it had stayed that dark red. I probably
should have soaked it longer. 
Mahjong is one of my favorite games to play. Summer means
bringing out the mahjong set and inviting friends over to play
a few games and hang out, but returning to school means I'll
have to wait until next summer to play once more.
I'm heading back to Williamsburg on Sunday or Monday and classes start on Wednesday, but that doesn't mean I'm going to stop knitting. My goal for the fall is to learn how to knit socks!


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Summer Flies By

Happy August, everyone! Wow, the summer's almost over. It seems like just last week I was stuffing the last of my clothes into the car and heading home from my first year of college. In a few more weeks, I'll be starting my second year of college and heading back down to Williamsburg! I'm both excited and aprehensive. I'm really excited to see all my friends again, but leaving home again never seems to get any easier.

Well, at any rate, I've got a few more weeks! In the meantime, I'm continuing my quest to use up my stash in order to buy more yarn, and while I was digging through the increasingly meager pile, I discovered a camo-colored skein of Lion Brand Charisma. Um, I'm not sure exactly why I decided to choose this colorway. It's one of those things that is really baffling, especially because I can't think of a single person I'd use this color for anyways.

I did start making the Anthropologie Inspired Braided Headwrap with it, and while the pattern is lovely and I think it would look absolutely yummy in a solid, the headband in the camo colorway was kind of hideous, so I frogged it. Instead, I'm working on the Summer Flies shawl! This is my first shawl, but not my first experience with lacework. Still, I had to tink a few rows because my butterflies ended up with only half a wing, sadly, and my M1s looked strange. I'm making definite progress, however, and loving both the color and the pattern. My camera makes the color look brighter than it actually is, but the pattern seems to be photographing quite well!


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Food Comaaaa

As the summer comes to an end, I'm trying to spend as much time as possible with my friends before we all disperse along the East Coast, so on Thursday, my friends Cate, Miguel, and Julie and I went to our friend Vivi's house for some good Asian food! We made sushi and hung out, and generally just had lots of fun.





I felt positively stuffed afterwards. It was delicious. 


I've also finished my cowl, and am now working on a hat! The Capucine hat, to be exact. I put off doing the headband and bandana cowl I said I was going to do next, because that hat was just calling out to me. I absolutely adore those tassels. I'm using Lion Brand Homespun that I bought last year and then frogged after a particularly horrendous hat experiment, and I have to say, I don't remember Homespun being such a pain to work with. Because it is a pain to work with. It looks good so far, though, so we'll see how the finished product turns out. Homespun is extremely soft, though, and I love the feeling of it. It'll probably be my Olympics-watching project, because the way things are going in my house, it seems like we'll be tuned in nonstop to the Olympics for the next two weeks!

In other news, I'm playing around with the layout of this blog, as you can probably tell, and you can now find me on Bloglovin! Those two things aren't actually connected, except  in my mind, probably. But anyways, you can follow me on Bloglovin using that big ole' button there on the right!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

DIY Day(s)

Over the weekend, I took a break from knitting to do some DIY fashion! My friends and I got together to create watermark t-shirts and tote bags using this tutorial here. It was really fun just to hang out with my friends, as we don't go to the same school anymore or we haven't seen each other often over the summer due to being busy. There was Harper (of Thrifty Miss Harper), Rosie (of Authentically Rosie), and our friends Sam, Serena, Miguel, and Cate.

We all got together on Sunday to make these tshirts, which meant we had to go on a supply shopping trip first! We went to Michaels, and I couldn't resist--in addition to DIY supplies, I also bought two balls of yarn (Caron Simply Soft in Watermelon and Autumn Red), and 10.5 and 13 circular needles. I don't have pictures of those, sadly, as I've already squirreled away my yarn and put my needles to use...but more about that later!

My friends and I spent the most of the afternoon looking for glue, would you believe it?! We needed to use gel glue for our shirts, but both Michaels and Walmart didn't have the blue Elmer's gel glue we were looking for, which was kind of mind-boggling and frustrating! We finally bought pink and purple glitter glue and hoped it worked the same way. So with supplies bought, we retreated to my Rosie's house and started our tshirts!



Let me just say, the glue was most definitely the most difficult part of everything we did. While I was designing my shirt, my hands started to cramp from squeezing out glue, and the next day (up to now, even!) my thumb felt sore. My mother claimed that I had texting thumb, but I think that was because she had just watched a segment on texting on the news. My mother's funny like that. But anyways, I digress.



A lot of my friends had a lot more difficulty than I did figuring out what to put on their tshirts, so while they were deciding, I undertook another craft, this tshirt mod! I bought a 2X Captain America tshirt a while ago with the intention of turning it into a tanktop, and I'm happy to say that I was successful!


Even after that time, though, the glue didn't dry on our tshirts and it became apparent we wouldn't be able to dye our tshirts that day. But the great thing about being college kids is that coming back later in the week was a definite option! So I went back to Rosie's yesterday, and along with our friend Sam we finally got around to dying everything!

Dying was hands down the best part. It was so much fun, and the colors were all so rich that I couldn't help but drool. Luckily, the glue worked just as we hoped it would, although, it gave all our clothes a sheen of sparkle that we weren't expecting. It was not by any means unwelcome, however! I'm still waiting for the dye to set, but I can't wait to rinse out dye and see the final product! Straight out of the dye, however, I am very pleased. This is definitely a project I want to repeat soon, and I've already got ideas for what to put on my next tshirts!





On the yarn front, I'm so close to finishing my Noble Cowl that I can taste it! Quite literally, I have 4 rows left, and the only reason that is is because I had to go to class right then. But I will finish it as soon as I get home! My fingers are just itching to knit, sore thumb and all! I like the pattern so much that I've decided to make another one in red--the dark red I bought from Michaels on Sunday. But I'm going to give this pattern a break before I really start. I bought new needles for a reason...my next projects are this headband and this cowl! That will take care of all my new balls of yarn, actually. I have one or two more balls of frogged projects, but besides that, I've managed to cull my already tiny stash!



It was also my friend Yena's birthday last Friday, so I decided to knit her an iPhone cozy like the one she had been coveting last winter! I had the complete intention of knitting her one for Christmas then, but I was having my first programming crisis of the semester, so I never did quite get around to it. It was my first attempt at not using a pattern, and my first attempt at creating an iPhone cozy of any kind, but I think I did quite nicely for my first time! I'll try and type the pattern up in the next few days, in case anyone wants to try it for themselves.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

WIP and Workspace!

Just a quick post to show off my newest WIP! My cowl's coming along, although it feels like I've ripped out every other row and redone it! I can't really see the pattern yet, either, but I can imagine what it's going to look like, so no worries yet.

There's my workspace, too--I've basically taken up residence on the couch in front of my TV rather than find a room to work in--it helps me concentrate  better, and would explain why half the time I end up trying to take pictures at midnight!


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

FOs!

I finally finished that cardigan! And a couple of other things, so this is really me just showing off all my FOs. I don't have a good camera, so the colors are all slightly off, but that's okay! I'll invest in a good camera eventually. So, the cardigan in all its finished glory!


I took this picture late at night (which is when I do most of my knitting, to be honest), and you can tell. I should have probably employed a little patience and waited until morning when the light's better, but I was just so excited to have finished that I couldn't wait.

Overall, I'm very pleased with my work, except for that strip of mismatched color near the bottom there. I didn't realize that that had happened until I was halfway through the skein, and I really didn't want to frog it and try and figure out where I was again. That'll teach me to shrug off mismatched dye lots and not want to ask about it.

But besides that, I've also finished a hat and a headwarmer! The hat is Truly Purple by Lisa Gentry, and is my first attempt at a hat in a while. In the second half of spring semester, I was a little infatuated with slouch beanies, and so I bought the little booklet the pattern was in, intending only to look at the slouchy hat on the cover. Once summer came around, though, and I started broadening my horizons, I came back to the booklet and decided to try it, and guess what? I absolutely love this hat!

It turned out much better than my slouchy hat attempts, to be honest, and I think that's partially because all my slouchy hat attempts end up too slouchy. But I love the color, I love the pattern, and I just love this hat! I learned how to M1 from it finally, at least.

And with the leftover yarn from that hat, I made a Bow Headband. I think I'll end up alternating once winter hits Williamsburg, depending on how cold it is and what my hair looks like. The bow was my favorite part about the headwarmer. I'm a sucker for bows, and I gravitate towards anything with them! This was my first attempt with short rows, and I think I did alright for my first time. I think I might have wrapped wrong on one side, though, because the two sides ended up looking different. Anyone have any advice for me about that?

So, obviously, my hands have been very busy! And they just keep going, because I just cast on a A Noble Cowl this afternoon, and I have plans to pop down to the store and buy the right sized needles so I can make this Anthropologie inspired headwrap and this Bandana Cowl. I have all this Charisma yarn leftover that I need to get rid of, because my mother is determined that I will not develop a stash, (It's going to happen anyways, I just know it!), and told me I need to use up all my yarn before I can buy more. Those two things will be perfect to do just that!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Current Project and Thoughts

So my current WIP is Stefanie Japel's Shapely Boyfriend, in Sugar 'n Cream. Cotton. I don't know why I thought this would be a good idea, except that it was on sale (4 for $5!) and I'm a poor college student. Clearly, I have a lot to learn about yarn. It feels really nice knitted up, though, and even if it doesn't look exactly the way I want it to, I'll just use it as a cover-up at home or in my dorm room. I'm sure it'll come in handy during the mandatory fire drills and other ridiculous things that will happen on campus in the fall. I definitely know it would have come in handy during last year in Gooch Hall, when mice got into the dorm and tripped the fire alarm three times in one night, right after the other. It was absolutely freezing and rained!

Actually, now that I think about it, maybe cotton wouldn't have helped me out there either. Hm. Well, either way, I totally intend to make another shapely cardigan--this time with wool!--after I finish this one. I'm currently looking into options like Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool, or going to the thrift store when I get back to Williamsburg and snatching up a men's sweater or something.

I've only got six more rows of the ribbing and sleeves left on the cardigan. Then, pictures, because it is midnight right now and taking pictures in the middle of the night is going to do no one any favors.