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Sooooo hi there. It’s been a while. In my defense, I went to the Outer Banks with my boyfriend and his folks for a week and didn’t really have time for blog posting. There was way too much beaching and knitting and swimming and Scrabble-playing for blogging. BUUUT I did finish my Ravelympics Ravellenic project. Just barely, just under the wire.

 

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Pattern: Counterpane Blouse, from the Summer 2010 Interweave Knits
Yarn: 65/35 linen/cotton recycled yarn
Needles: US 4/3.5 mm
Mods: Skipped some of the skirt decreases and my pick up for the skirt was uneven to say the least so I just sort of winged it.

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WHOOOO. I just finished the crochet edging around 7pm EST which is about midnight BST, the end of the Olympic Closing Ceremonies (ope, hope I don’t get sued). So just in time. It was close. I finished the main knitting in the car on the way back from the beach but didn’t have a crochet hook so I had to hurry and finish the edging once I got home.

In case anyone is keeping up with my 12 in 12 sweater challenge, I am up to eight. So I’m right on track. WHOO.

I finished knitting around three that afternoon so of course I had to start another project, rather then work on one already started. That project is about 80% done now thanks to two hour-long metro rides today. But more on that later. : )

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YOU GUYS YOU GUYS IT’S THAT TIME. Where I challenge myself to knit a sweater and apparently five other things in two weeks! Whoo! I hear there’s some sports or something happening, but NBC apparently doesn’t want me to actually see them seeing as I don’t have cable. (Bootleg online tv is another story, however. Don’t tell the ass hats at NBC. Or do. Whatever.)

ANYWAY I’m knitting a sweater. Well, a top at any rate. I’m knitting Counterpane out of some recycled linen/cotton in a GORGEOUS teal. Here’s where I was earlier (I have since knitted a fair bit more):

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I’m knitting for Team Unravelers, where we are using recycled yarn. Whoo!

I also had to knit a Betta fish for an Etsy customer, so I guess I medaled in Toy Toss but I never actually got a picture of it before I put in in the mailbox this morning. I also had a impromptu Frogging Trampoline entry where I frogged my Lelah as it is too small. Plus side: Two skeins of my beloved Cascade Sierra to play with.

More sweater updates as they happen. I’m planning to see if I can squeeze some fingerless mitts in before the end.

Sooo I made sweater number seven for the year:

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Pattern: Accidentally on Purpose Drop Stitch Tank from Stitch and Bitch Nation. Sort of.
Yarn: Lion Brand Incredible, exactly three skeins
Needles: US 10/6mm
Mods: All of them. Based on this version in Incredible.

I quite like how this top came out. It fits well and gives me SHAPES. Like, check out that hourglass action happening there.

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Yeah. I knit this up really quickly (about two days). I intended to follow the pattern sort of, but I ended up just making it up as I went along. This resulted in a much higher neckline than intended, but I like it. Very racer back-shaped. Lovely. Have to wear a tank underneath because of the dropped stitches (which were super fun) but no matter.

Since completing this top, it’s been cast-on mania around here. I currently have seven WIPs, including two spinning projects. Also, the EFKA Ravelympics (Ravelenic WHATEVER FUCK YOU USOC) starts tomorrow, so that’ll be another thing cast on. Look for posts on that soon. I’m looking to complete a summer top (Counterpane to be exact), so we’ll see how that goes.

I made a thing:

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Pattern: Lacy Vines, a test knit. I’ll edit with a link when the pattern is up.
Yarn: Recycled wool, hand-dyed by me with Kool Aid
Needles: US 8/5mm
Mods: None, though I did use a provisional cast on.

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It was supposed to be a scarf but mine came out rather wide and shortish so it’s more of a shawl. I really do like it. I like it (and you all) so much that I suffered 90 degree (F) temperatures to snap an action shot:

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The pattern was super fun to knit and when it goes up, you should all go knit it. It works up super fast in heavy yarn and there are lots of dropped stitches, which is super fun. My yarn was really sticky so I had to tug the dropped stitches all the way down, but it’s lovely nonetheless.

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This is a pattern that really benefits from a wet block. When I had finished one half (it’s knitted in two parts and seamed in the middle unless you cast on provisionally, which I did) I steam blocked it to see how it came out, and it’s definitely more open and airy after a good strong wet block than it was with a steam.

I am currently down to two projects on the needles (we won’t talk about the scarf in hibernation): a sweater, which is a design I’ve been showing you, and some TARDIS socks, about which I am totally thrilled.

And one final note about the Ravelympics kerfuffle. If you’ve been following me on Twitter, you’ll know my opinions on the matter (and also that I’ve started watching STTNG). I’m knitting a sweater for the Ravelympics. Because that’s what it is and that’s what I’m calling it and the USOC can suck it. It’s a challenge for me and just because I didn’t sweat, I did train and it is an accomplishment.

The Ravelympics are in the spirit of international cooperation, something the USOC should know and care about it. When you piss off knitters, we band together, stronger, and speak out for ourselves. The Ravelympics is happening (though I’ll not be watching the Olympics after this PR disaster) and I, for one, will not be silenced.

Also, Twitter Knitters are fabulous. I love the community of knitters on the internet.

Whoo! I made it! I completed my sweater, steek, zipper and all, in under 17 days!

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Pattern: EZ’s Icelandic Yoke Sweater (Rav link) from Knitting Workshop
Yarn: Lion Brand Fisherman’s Wool in Oatmeal, Lion Wool in Purple and Dark Teal, and Ella Rae Classic in Navy.
Needles: US 7/4.5 mm Knit Picks Options and Susan Bates dpns
Mods: Made it me sized (more like 34″ instead of 38″ or 40″), left out the neck shaping, did a steek (only sort of a mod), added a zipper.

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So…. this sweater. It was an adventure. The knitting wasn’t especially difficult at all, although I haven’t had as much practice at colorwork as I’d like, so my floats are a little tight and it’s a little puckery. But I still love it. It was my first time doing a steek and putting in a zipper, both of which were nerve-wracking. I wasn’t sure about the tension of my sewing machine, so I was sure the whole thing was going to unravel after I cut it. It didn’t though! The zipper was also difficult. I ended up sort of basting it on and then top stitching it in place. Not the neatest job ever and it’s a little wavy, but it’s in there and it fits and it’s great.

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The sweater is still drying as I’m typing (I snapped photos while it was a little dark; I wanted to catch the light), but I think by tomorrow, it will be ready for wearing. Very exciting.

So who else got the gold?

…about this Ravelympics sweater thing. I steeked it. And it was scary. And I’m still not convinced the whole thing won’t unravel.

Before steek:

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(Nice and safe.)

After steek:

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(Holy Christ, it’s all gonna come apart.)

Hot hot steek action:

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(I shouldn’t even touch it.)

Hot hot colorwork action:

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(Awww yeah.)

Ahem. Anyway. So. Let’s snag a peek at the calendar. It’s Thursday, February 25. This sucker is supposed to be DONE on Sunday. Cast off, finished, caput. Wearable. And my thought on Tuesday, when I did the steek, was that it would be. Except for one thing.

I BOUGHT THE WRONG ZIPPER A MONTH AND A HALF AGO.

Cause I thought I could fiddle with it and make it work. I though I could fix one side of a regular zipper and make a separating zipper.

Turns out, you can’t.

So I have a sweater with an OPEN WOUND.

Fortunately, I was able to get to Walmart and get a new zipper. It’s not the color I wanted, but I suppose it’ll do. And it means I’ll still be able to get gold with my sweater. Cause that’s totally happening.

Look for a FO post on Saturday or Sunday cause this sucker is gonna be DONE.

I know all of you guys do. And I am all too willing to oblige:

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One sleeve totally done and attached and the other sleeve up to my elbow. Which means I have about 8.5 more inches of sleeve to knit and I will finally be up to the colorwork. O hai thur, gold medal. You’re so gonna be mine.

Okay, not really. But the main crafty portion of the package I sent to spolowitz gave me some hell. I claimed her for a knitting project bag and a learn to spin kit.

First, there was a spindle and some roving, part of the stuff I ordered when I was first starting to spin:

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And then there was a lovely little book of spinning instructions, which I drew and wrote by hand. The directions probably aren’t the best as I haven’t been spinning that long myself, but I tried, and I like how it came out, especially my little spindle diagrams:

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And then there was this bag.

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I tried to make a round-bottom bag with a lining and that turned out… poorly. For the sake of my sanity, we’ll leave it at that, but suffice it to say that it was bad. The finished version is cute though. I especially like the applique:

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Yay, swappage.

PS: Here’s the Ravelympics sweater:

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(I got bored with the long rounds and started a sleeve. The body is about halfway done (well, halfway to where I join the sleeves, anyway). It’s about 9″ long and I want it to be close to 17″.)

So I’ve decided that I will be participating in this year’s Ravelympics. The idea, as far as I know, started with Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (the Yarn Harlot) and involved completing some sort of fibery thing in the 17-odd days of the winter Olympics. The Ravelympics operates in the summer now too, but as the winter Olympics are what’s happening, that’s what I’m talking about.

There are various teams you can join (I’m on a team for sweater knitters) and there are a whole list of events. I’ve already decided what I’m going to attempt to finish, and it involves this pile o’ yarn:

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That’s two skeins of Fisherman’s Wool in Oatmeal and various skeins of wool in other colors. And also a zipper. I’ve decided to do the Sweaterboard Cross, the Nordic Colorwork Combined, and the Stash Compulsory Dance (some of those various other skeins I’ve had for a while). I’m making a colorwork yoke sweater using EZ’s Icelandic Yoke Sweater with a zipper. And I’m gonna STEEK IT. And it might be scary. Anyway, it’s worsted weight, so it shouldn’t take me that long and I might finish. If I do, I’m throwing my hat into the Lace Luge and the WIP-dancing and attempt to finish Featherweight. I won’t, of course, but I’m hoping the extra motivation will encourage me to get some of it done.

My cast on time was nine p.m. yesterday (Friday, Feb. 12), and I did cast on. Between last night and my post today, I managed to get all the way through the ribbing of the bottom band and begin the miles of stockinette.

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And here’s where my steek is going to happen:

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(It’s even marked off by my pretty pretty star stitch markers from the quotes swap I did a while back.)

Yes. Exciting. I’m so getting gold. : )

Oh, and also, I have a couple other things to post (a scarf I was working on, some swap things), so I’ll have non-Ravelympics stuff to post about while I’m knitting away on my sweater, but I’ll be sure to include a shot of the sweater in those posts so you can see how I’m coming along (and if I appear to have any hope of success).