Monday, January 13, 2014

Confessions of an Obsessive Project Starter

I'm really, really, trying to finish up some UFOs before starting any new projects. However, with two grandsons coming up on second birthdays, I'm under the gun to make two I-spy quilts. 
This week I started cutting out 4.5" squares for both quilts. So far, I have 31 cut for each. I need 25 more. I have fabric for a few more, but needed to find additional fabrics with pictures of everyday objects for the boys to recognize and name as they learn language. You may remember the I-spy quilt I made for Daphne:
It was backed with some Dr. Seuss fabric and a panel with The Cat in the Hat, Daphne's favorite book at the time. I managed to find an Etsy shop that had packs of 24 5" squares of I-spy fabrics, so I ordered two packs.  
I'm still making an effort to complete UFOs, though. I'm on the third panel of the Delectable Pathways quilt, and this week I finished sewing the stems down and cutting out the leaves. 
Now for the Christmas Waffle sweater for DH. Well, here's what's been happening. I've been making progress on the first sleeve, but with growing discontent. The body is worked from the bottom up. The sleeves are worked from the top down. With many motifs there isn't much difference, but for the waffle stripe (at least from close-up), there is a definite direction. I don't know if you can tell here, but the lace part makes little triangles that point down. On the sleeve, worked from the top down, they point up. Not a big deal unless you look closely, especially with such dark yarn. (I used a flash for this photo, but I don't have that much light when I'm knitting.)
Then there's the issue with the process. I haven't been enjoying working on the sleeve. My lack of enjoyment has transferred into a tighter gauge (not a huge difference, but still). It has been hard to keep track of the decreases, on the dark yarn, and hard to fit them into the pattern. It's also difficult to count sts because of the dark yarn and the YOs. In addition, the instructions for the Waffle Stripe are in one place, the Tunisian Stripe is in two additional places, and how you put it all together is elsewhere, not to mention there's a separate page for the sleeve shaping. Flipping through pages can be annoying. Even though I have the pattern pretty much memorized by now, I still like to keep track of where I am, so I don't have to find a good light late at night to "read" my knitting. All this means I haven't been enjoying it. Now this knitter isn't entirely about the process, but it's an important part of my knitting fun. Last night I finally decided I might need to REBOOT. I haven't frogged the first sleeve yet, but I started a new one from the bottom up, and I'm finding I'm enjoying it much more. It's also going faster. I already have the ribbing and three stripes done. I'm keeping track of the increases with stitch markers. I also wrote out the pattern, row-by-row, so I can keep track of where I am in the pattern without flipping through pages.
I received a Knit Picks order last week. My Christmas/birthday shopping spree included my choice of items from my wish list on Knit Picks. I decided on Wool of the Andes Bulky for rugs.
The colors are (top, from left) Avocado, Navy, Bluebird, Yonder, Cadet, Silver, (bottom, from left) Bare (2), Caribou, Chocolate, Coal (2). However, I have to finish the scarves on my loom before I can warp for more rugs. (One of the nice things about weaving is you have to finish what's on the loom before you can warp for a new project, unless you have more than one loom.)
Soren's Green Pastures cardigan is finished and ready to go into the mail.
Vintage Stitchers met at Diane's on Thursday. Joanie and I braved a blizzard to get there and back. Here are some of Diane's wonderful quilts, displayed on the walls.

Carol was there. She has continued to make Mother Bear Project bears. This one is all done except for the face.
Barbara was having knee-replacement surgery, so we missed her, but Rebecca says she's recuperating well.
While at Vintage Stitchers, I sewed the buttons on the cardigan for Soren and then worked on the Delectable Pathways appliqué quilt panel.
This week will be busy. Sundance starts on Thursday. We pick up our uniforms on Tuesday, DH works Thursday afternoon and evening, and my first shift is Friday. I should be able to take a portable project along to work on when I have a job that isn't inside the theater. I pledge to keep my nose to the grindstone to finish my UFOs. Watch this space!
What's on my needles: "Green Tea" socks for me, second sock past the gusset. Dogwood Blossoms holding, and Christmas Waffle sweater moving along.
What's on my loom: Belated Christmas present scarves, making progress. I have 18" done on the first scarf. 
What's on my iPad/iPhone: Finished The Fairy Godmother by Mercedes Lackey, then Emily Goes to Exeter by M. Beaton, and now I'm on The Gates of Sleep, also by Mercedes Lackey, all from Audible. Reading Dragonseye by Anne McCaffrey from the library on the Kindle app, checked out using the Overdrive app. Also listening to the Fiber Hooligan podcast and the Knit Picks podcast.
What's my app of the week: I have to mention The Recipe Box again, now that I've used it more. I've been adding my favorite recipes to it. I love that it doesn't turn itself off while I'm cooking. (Now, if I can get my cooking to stop turning family off....)
What's in my wine glass: Tres Pinos "Three Pines Cuvée" red wine, 2011 vintage. Very nice!

Note: This blog post was produced on the iPad and the MacBook, using the iPhone for some photos and some photo processing. No other computer was used in any stage of composition or posting, and no Windows were opened, waited for, cleaned or broken. No animals were harmed during the production of this blog post.

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