Monday, January 28, 2008

Tats-it weekend~

I bought a Japanese Tatting book the other day, and went tatting over the weekend. (of course, a few stitches were made on the neverending wips. but i'll come to that later.)

Tatting weekend

Who knew I'd have new wips! Luckily they aren't knitting projects and are much smaller. And of course these wips are better than the 'incomplete project' pictured, because they are worked in sections, so I can just finish as section as and when I can without having to worry about remembering where i stopped. I think I'm getting the hang of tatting and it seems much easier the more I practice. I'm still not confident enough to use the pretty threads I bought but I think soon I will. This also makes me not give up on spinning as well. Practice Practice Practice.

Meanwhile yes, here are some pictures of all those in progress.

Wisp in progress
Seems like the least progress here (actually it's not, broadripple is. Then again I also haven't don't anything on my Lily of the Valley) but the pattern is really easy, and nice. I love the yarn as always. It doesn't take long to do a single repeat either.

Broadripple in progress
I have about 12 rows on the second sock left and then I will be moving on to the heels of both socks.

My So-Called Scarf
My So-Called Scarf in progress
I'm so in love with this yarn, I'm already planning to make a similar scarf for a friend. The yardage is better than I thought too.

Antrelac Part II
Antrelac Part II in progress
I love the color whooo~~~~ I can't wait to finish this so that at least I have my vday gift all done and in time.

Well tat's about all for now. Will be working on my thesis today so I don't think there'll be more crafts until late in the night perhaps.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Latest Updates on War on Startitis


Welcome to this morning's edition of Knews@ennairdaknits.

First up, Ayu's War on Startitis. In the early hours, Ayu seemed to have been blessed by the Goddess of Cast Off. She was able to finish up on the first entrelac of the pair she's been working on. Although victory on the shawl was much later than expected (since there were two occasions of mistake correction and frogging), she was able to heave a huge sigh of relief by mid-day.

Antrelac Part I

Antrelac Part I
Antrelac Part I in Rowan Tapestry's Leadmine with Clover 4.5mm.

Before Antrelac I is blocked, Ayu needs to cast on and finish up Antrelac II. "So that they are a pair, and I'll get the same length," she mused. "As some of you might have know, I've been fighting Startitis. So, I thought this would've been a good counter-attack."

Unfortunately, her casting-on of one project triggered the vengence of Startitis. And the results.

ARGH startitis
From Left: My So-Called Scarf in Hamanaka, Antrelac Part II in Rowan Tapestry (Rainbow) and Wisp in Sublime Kid Mohair Blend.

"What is there to do?" says Ayu. "It's the domino-effect."

Ayu is not available this morning for further comments. It's been reported that she's gone quite crazily addicted over the stitches in all the projects, and is hoping she would be granted an additional three pairs of hands by the Goddess of Cast Off before things go haywire. In our speculation, she's already there.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

We interrupt this program...

for an important newscast.

Ayu is fighting the urge to cast on a million projects and is losing the battle.

Stay tuned for more updates.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

as promised

the wips and progress of spinning.

As some of you have been asking, how goes my spinning? It isn't as smooth as I expected. So the very nice lady who sold me the spindles, Annie May offered some troubleshooting advice via email. And I also appreciate very much Kessa's tips in my post on spinning, thanks Kessa! I've been visiting and reading all the forums related in Ravelry, and watching all available videos online. So here, a photo.

Sigh~ :(

The thick and thin pink was my very first attempt. That means that was way before the troubleshooting and forum-visiting. It was thicker than a pencil at some points and precariously thin (until it broke - that's why it's in two bundles) at others. And the blue is the second attempt a day or so later. The second time was much better because I practiced drafting a little and got them into pencil roving, but it was still difficult to draft. It's like super bulky yarn, but I am glad it didn't break. I was also slowly getting used to the rhythm of the drafting triangle. The white yarn is Annie May's work, which is far far far far better than mine as you can see. I do have a question though, is spun yarn supposed to twist and turn like this once you've released it from the shaft of the spindle?

Anyways, I guess what's left to do now is practice practice and more practice. I think I'll try to fluff up the roving abit as Kessa suggested; I didn't do this when I practice drafting the blue roving. I love the pink roving though. Surprisingly since I'm not a pink person. But the muted, dusty shade is very beautiful, and I can't bear to waste my lousy skills on what's left of the roving. It's tencel and wool blend I think and I must get more from Annie May!

Unfortunately, I had a bad bad bad paper cut a couple of days ago, and my very dry skin didn't help. It's taking a little longer to heal than usual and I can't practice spinning now. Bah :( I guess that will have to wait...

On to my wips. My entrelac scarf apparently triggered the cast-on bug in mlc haha... Well I'm making a pair, hopefully by Valentine's Day (again I'm being hopeful). I'm calling my scarf set Antrelac for obvious reasons. I've just used up the second ball of yarn today for the first scarf so it's a lot longer than it is in this picture (which was taken when I was going to finish the first ball).


This is going a lot slower than usual because I have to knit it in secret. AS also likes to question my knitting (like 'who is this for?' or 'what is this?' etc etc) so I have a feeling I have to knit the second of the pair (which is for me) in secret as well.

What about knitting NOT in secret? I have the lily of the valley and this sock.


:D I started this to get my sock mojo back. And it is! yayy! Actually I'm also focusing on the needles in the picture... it's the Harmony needles I got for Christmas~! It's light and the tips are sharp. These are size 3.25mm and still, the tips are good! Ah I'm enjoying them a lot~~ :)

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Time to Read?

The Reading-in-Bed Shrug was completed over the weekend but I really couldn't take a good picture until today. So here's the first peek at the first FO of the year.


This shrug's made for my mum in mind, in time for her birthday. In MARCH. I know. Call me paranoid, but I think if you realize what kind of speed I have, the possibility of me finishing gifts in time ranges from 0% to 100%.


The pattern was really easy to remember but I had a problem at the end. Because it tells me to 'BO loosely' (and it didn't say CO loosely), I did exactly as it said. And then I ended up with a nice snug sleeve and a loose, squarish one on the other side. Everyone also knows what it's like to rip mohair. But I had to do it; the difference was too great to be forgiveable.


Reading-in-Bed Shawl from Interweave Knits Spring 2007 in Sublime's Mohair blend with 5.5mm Addi Turbos.

Anyways I've used much less yarn than expected so now i've got quite a bit left. I thought I'd make myself another shrug but today I was inspired by MLC's wisp... so... hint hint.

More on wips and spinning progress tomorrow.

Yin & Yang

Thursday, January 10, 2008

still stuck

i'm still bugged by the spinning. I can't thin out the roving properly.

not giving up but will only try tomorrow.

Stuff and Spins

I met Susan yesterday for lunch and a teensy little KO. Look what I received!

Matcha Tea Cake

Of course I was too distracted then to know what it is and totally missed the blinking words 'MATCHA CAKE' (or actually, cookie/biscuit) on the front. The packaging is gorgeous as usual. I can't bear to eat it! :D Thanks Susan!

She also bought me these...

Camouflage Yarn

We call them the Camouflage Yarn. And yes they are very 'me'. I haven't any clue what I'd make with them but a good Camo scarf peut-etre?

And of course I got my sock books! Yayy!! Perhaps I'll find something there to solve the sock problem I'm having.

Sock Books~~

I've already flipped through Knitting on the Road and am already queuing a number of them in my head. I think I need another three pairs of hands to finish all the socks I've queued.

Last but not least my spindles are here~!!!

More spindles! :D

I tried spinning last night but I think I'm wasting the beautiful roving. So I'm going to think of an alternative. I need to research on drafting, because I don't seem to be doing it correctly. I pinch the roving in places I'm supposed to and try to draft bits of the yarn out. But I always end up having to tug and pull really hard at the roving, which shouldn't be the case! The 'yarn' ended up being thick (like almost worsted) to precariously thin at different parts of it. I also think there's too much spin in the yarn, which makes it wind itself back when it's relaxed. Sigh! That's my start to spinning but no I'm not giving up~!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Another three

Thanks for the suggestion on the socks :) I will definitely be considering them especially ripping to the toe now. meanwhile if there are anymore ideas, keep them coming in!

I made three pairs of earrings on friday evening but didn't post them on flickr because it was Mang's birthday and it was really late. It's been so difficult to take pictures recent because of the gloomy and rainy weather. Not that I'm complaining but sometimes the few minutes of sunlight decides not to grace the day at all and my gamble ends up in forfeit.


The flower's a 'fimo flower bead' and it's the same one used in Amy. The beads are red cat's eye and I actually bought them at a much higher price than I could have gotten them. O_o Also, please don't ask my why they are Rachel. I have no idea and it just popped into my head just before I uploaded their photos.


With Russian Jade and milky colored swarovski beads in white/violet(?? I can't remember, old stash) and pacific opals, these are simple yet fitting for dailies. I love all the three beads incidentally.

Whimsical Alice

Whimsical Alice
Made with another one of my favorite colors (besides purple), the hazy pale blue cat's eye beads are wire wrapped and bunched. I really loved the look and they reminded me of Alice and her whimsical adventure.

Whimsical Alice has a matching bracelet but I have ideas and might split the set into two. I did the bracelet just so I can wear them to the musical I was going to attend on Sunday.

Whimsical Alice set

And I think I forgot to mention two other pairs I made before these so let me present Chloé and nOiR. (Note: yes and I was feeling a bit French-y that day, hence the names.)

I actually delayed posting about Chloé on purpose because I made a similar pair for a friend for our birthday so I had to wait until it was over. This is made from bronze findings (which are a little harder to work with I felt. I think it's the gauge) and turqoise beads.

I just wanted to try out the gold findings and use up the two lonely amber crystals even though I hardly wear gold. I wear two pairs of platinum earrings at the same time (three on my left and one on the right), have a silver and a platinum necklace, plus my rings are platinum and white gold. So in short, gold is not in my color scheme.

I have no idea when I will be able to wear these though but perhaps I'll need to get some gold artistic wires. But anyways nOiR is made from black glass beads and amber swarovski crystals and it's nOiR because it's noir + or. ;)

Saturday, January 05, 2008


Because there's a hash today I had the opportunity to stay home in the morning and do whatever I wanted (after Mang's bath of course). So I decided to knit the Reading in Bed shrug and got up to seven repeats. That's a good sign because it's past the 50% mark.

And then I decided I better cast on the toe for the second Elfine Socks. I have already done the first one up to the heel and just wanted to do the socks simultaneously. So I decided to put the first sock unto some waste yarn and started to cast on the second. However, I had a problem.

I suddenly decided not to lie to myself and admit that the pattern REALLY gets lost in the yarn. Consider this toe:


At first I thought that little piece isn't a good gauge, and lied to myself that it will look better on my foot, when it's a bigger piece. But now that it's done up to the heel, it's not looking much better. Just imagine the above photo times two. It doesn't help when the second ball of yarn refuses to be casted on as well, and it kept slipping off the needles when I wasn't looking. After that, I had ugly m1s.

Although I must admit I'm a bit sleepy, I really don't know what's wrong and then I just gave up trying. I think the yarn just doesn't want to be a sock. Or this particular sock for that matter.

Now I must confess that this is the first sock I am knitting from toe up. AND it's also the second sock (casted on) and knitted with the magic loop method. I have no qualms with the method but incidentally, I didn't finish the other magic loop sock as well. Before I casted this on, I thought this pattern was suitable because I wanted to try the toe-up with the magic loop. Now what's so difficult about that? I have no idea.

I actually don't know what I should do now. Should I

(a) Try again?
(b) Look for another sock pattern that uses the above methods? (any recommendations at that?)
(c) Look for another sock pattern regardless of whether it's toe-up or cuff down?
(d) Use the yarn for a non-sock project?


Friday, January 04, 2008

And now in Progress...

I've started two projects over the Christmas and New Year holidays. The first is a lace project started because I thought the Kimono was so beautiful and I wanted to make another lace shawl NOW. I looked around and while there were a number of beautiful shawls I love out there, I just couldn't find the right color from my stash. In the process, I also added a load of new projects onto my Ravelry queue. At this rate I'll take about 10 years to finish everything on that queue.

So when I saw the Lily of the Valley Shawl from Lace Style, I casted on almost immediately. (At the Starbucks where we were having coffee actually)

Muguet de Mai

(oh the blue thing there is a folder AS bought for me. Now I put my project patterns in there. :D it's a great size and I love it!)

And then I started another project because Mum says my Coquette is nice. Well. If you know my mum, she's not usually the kind who's interested in crafting and all. She doesn't stop me from doing it, but she was just never really interested in the process, the effort or the finished product. But she actually was impressed with the Coquette (and subsequently Kimono) and I thought I'd make her the Reading-in-Bed Shrug.

shrug in progress

I'm posting this actually because she doesn't use the Internet and no one in my family visits this blog. If my brother does, then he'll be quiet about it I'm sure. I chose a smaller project (than a shawl) for now because I have only 3 months to her birthday. The shawl will have to come later.

Speaking of gifts, MLC's scarf project has got me wondering if I should make some his&her scarves for us on Vday but that means I have 1 month to finish things. And then if I were to make two that would mean 2 weeks per scarf. Sounds possible but remember, you're talking about me here.

It also made me regret not planning my knitting time better because... I thought I should have made something for a friend on our birthday. That would leave me... about 20 hours to finish the project?

In the occasion of frenzy, turn to other capabilities.

And I beaded her earrings. I made two of the same pair (I want one myself) and I'll blog about them when I've gifted them so stay tuned~

PS: It's MangMang's birthday today so go ahead and wish her a happy birthday here or here.