I shouldn’t have to try this hard

I shouldn’t have to try this hard to love this color. It’s bright. I like bright. It’s funky. I like funky. The colorway is Blacklight. How cool is that?

But whenever I try to make an afghan with it, I just don’t like it. I’m uncomfortable. At first, I thought it was because the black yarn was a different weight than the variegated despite being the exact same species of yarn. I’ve tried using just the variegated color by itself. I’ve tried different stitches. It just never looks right despite it looking great on the skein.

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Maybe it doesn’t want to be an afghan. What on earth does this yarn want to be?

Avanyu hat update

I made the chart for the hat and knit a swatch to see how the little guy would look.

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I decided to make him bigger and to add a couple of rows before and after the avanyu. Originally, I tried to stretch him so he would wrap all the way around the hat, but I was having trouble getting his curves evenly space. I decided I would just knit him twice. I have 108 stitches in the hat and he fit really well into 54 stitches. The tail will stop just in front of the mouth on each serpent.

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Charting the fatter Avanyu.

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I started the 2 x 2 ribbing

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Pattern notes.  I hope the wings come out looking okay. I’m afraid they’re going to look like little legs.

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I added the two gray rows before starting the chart. It doesn’t look like there is going to be enough difference to see the avanyu, but the test swatch of colors looked okay so I’m going to forge along. If I have to, then I’ll make another hat with the superwash wool that had the lighter gray colorway. What translates well on a shiny pot may not look as spiffy on a wool hat.

Avanyu Hat

My family doesn’t often ask for anything knitted. Since they live in Texas this isn’t surprising. Other than the One Shawl of Doom and my mother’s addiction to hand knit dishcloths, they don’t often ask for knitted things. Oh, they’ve received knitted things, there’s been a Harry Potter scarf and a few hats, but again… Texas. They’re just not going to be worn.

Except for Daddy’s hat. I don’t know if he usually wears it during his morning walks in the winter, but he was wearing it when we visited it at Christmas. It was a simple roll brim hat in Hufflepuff colors that I gave him a couple of years ago. He asked me why I gave him a hat in Pittsburgh Steelers colors.  Muggles.

They were here for a visit in June and Daddy had a knitting request. He wondered if a hat that looked the pottery that he and Mom collect could be made. I said that I thought I probably could and pulled up a few pictures.

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The winged serpent is called an avanyu. The pottery is black on black so the actual knitting is going to be a little tricky. It’s a good thing I’m already almost blind, otherwise I’d worry about losing my eyesight on this one.

I sketched a few pictures and then transferred one to graph paper. Why do sketches look better the next day? I really didn’t like it the night I drew it. I’ve noticed that happens with tole painting, too. Maybe the crafting fairies come during the night and make things look better.

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I swatched (IKR??) with two sets of colors to see what would give me the look I was going for. The wool  The yarn is Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in Coal and the camera made the colors look a lot lighter than they really are. I’m going to have to knit in bright light.

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All because Daddy asked me for a hat.

We had a great time during Mom and Dad’s visit.

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Yarn barf and a birthday

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How can I have yarn barf at a time like this? It was my birthday. It’s supposed to be a yarn barfless day.

I think the Universe is trying to keep me humble after this happened:

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See all those little tails sticking out? This almost NEVER happens. At least not to me. But the Knitting Goddess of the Universe must have balance and alas, I’ve probably used up a lot of good will with that batch of yarn.

Yarn barf notwithstanding, it was a very good birthday. David made a fabulous breakfast, took me to lunch, and made an incredible dinner.  It was a lovely day.

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Deceive, Inveigle, Obfuscate

After several frogs, I changed the yarn from a skein to a yarn cake hoping that the yarn would be tricked into thinking it was a different yarn that wanted to be lacy arm warmers. It’s acrylic and tricking reasoning with it should be easy.

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See? Now doesn’t this look like yarn that wants to be lacy armwarmer fingerless mitts?

The Sword of Gryffindor Mitts look gorgeous but the pattern is stretching my abilities. This is a good thing, but I often wish patterns weren’t quite so vague. I know that everything can’t be explained in a pattern, there simply isn’t room, but oy… the vagueness. It burns.

Thankfully, I have a good knit group that can help me out.

This Is Very Important

I completely missed the Rep the last 2 rows 3 more times instruction on ROW TWO of the pattern. This is kinda an important step.

Frog Number Four. Or is it Five? I started to tink and thought “screw it” I’m going to go cook dinner. This is a dish I can make in my sleep. I’ll give myself some much needed self-confidence.

The chicken isn’t defrosted. I’m back to tinking. If I weren’t LDS, this would be a glass of wine instead of club soda.  Or maybe a margarita. There are days I miss margaritas.

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Pattern Reading. It’s a thing. I’m really rather annoyed at myself.

Update: Frog Five (or Six).  I don’t think this yarn wants to be this pattern. It’s acrylic. What does acrylic know?

It’s Going To Be One Of Those Patterns

First I had trouble getting started, and reading the pattern was a challenge for me. I have to read a bit of text then switch over to a chart and then switch back to text.

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I got a few rows in and Danica changed her mind about the color I was using.2016-06-01 18.59.48

I started again, which is fine since I like this other yarn better. Yes, it’s acrylic, but it’s softer than the plain wool and slightly lighter in color so easier to knit with.

I’m still struggling with switching between text and chart but I wrote down the pattern and continued on.

I got a few rows in again and had to look up a SSP. Slip, slip, purl, which is like the weirdest thing ever.

Then I had to look up how to yarn over after a purl. I’m not a novice knitter, really, but this was odd and maybe I was already frustrated, or tired, or over caffeinated and couldn’t wrap my head around it.

Thank goodness for youtube videos.

I carried on and near the end of row six, a whopping six rows, I didn’t have the right number of stitches between stitch markers.

I’ve frogged again. This is going to be another one of those patterns that takes me a really long time and where I learn a lot of new things.2016-06-03 15.26.32

No, really, I’m swatching.

I’m reswatching for this project because I forgot to note what needles I used for the swatch I found stashed with the yarn. I can’t afford to assume I used the size 3 needles called for in the pattern, I’m just not that lucky. Swatches lie anyway, I may as well try to hedge my bets. I’ve frogged the swatch and am starting again.

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This means that I have created a swatch for a project not just once, but twice.

I’m pretty sure I have to turn in my Reckless Knitter card.

 

This is a little more my style

Before

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During

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After

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I’m not sure if things match exactly like they’re supposed to but it feels more like “me”.  I may take down the top bits entirely but we’ll see how this feels for a few days. And by ‘we” I mean “me, myself, and I”.