Technical difficulties

I’m having some trouble with FTP publishing on this blog, and more and more I think I may jump ship to WordPess since they seem to do a lot better with self-hosted blogs.

I have a few things I’d like to post, but I keep seeing weird errors and screwy things, so I’m going to hold off until I get that sorted out, I hope sometime this weekend.

Sorry for the (continued) delay!

An abundance of light but nary a stitch

In the winter, I complain that my knitting photos are thin on the ground because there is insufficient light or lousy weather. Here I am surrounded with gorgeous spring light and ample opportunity to photograph knits… and I’ve been too busy.

The end of this past semester was incredibly demanding. I spoke at a science & art symposium, which required weeks of preparation. I postponed my thesis and graduation until the fall. I took a trip to Boston. I got a new sailboat (early graduation gift from my parents) and I have been pretty obsessed with getting it ready to take out on the water (and learning to sail). I attended a conference for a week in Los Angeles (didn’t even bring a knitting project – what is wrong with me?!). It’s just gone on.

And now that I’m back, I’ve been taking an Organic Chemistry class at the university down the road. It’s a 6-week intensive course with lab, meeting all day every Monday through Thursday, with hours and hours of homework, reading, and lab reports every evening. It is no exaggeration when I say I’ve had barely any time for anything else. Oh, but I’m trying to stay on top of work projects and my art history thesis too. It is exhausting.

The thing is, I haven’t lost interest in knitting. Or in knit-blogging. The scarce few minutes a day I spend looking through knitting blogs are some of my most pleasant moments, and I daydream about picking back up needles and yarn.

Like many knitters, I am currently obsessed with two Hannah Fettig lightweight cardigans. First, the Whisper Cardigan from the spring 2009 Interweave Knits, which I’ve cast on in this surprisingly lovely Knit Picks Palette in Twig:

This yarn has a history, as I originally bought it to make my ex-boyfriend a Henry scarf. I decided the color was not right next to his greenish-brown coat and when I thought about it next to his neck, I opted for softer Knit Picks Gloss instead. Then we broke up, so I had 800+ yards of both yarns sitting in my stash cabinet kind of mocking me.

I decided I would quite like a slinky little fly-away cardigan to wear over spring and summer dresses, and I love the way this project is going so far. I’m just about to start the second sleeve, but I’ve been totally remiss in taking any progress photos so far. I hope I’m not lying when I say, “Soon.”

This project got me all amped up for using thin yarns to make cardigans, so I went on a rash of queuing sweater-type projects using the laceweight I’d previously designated for various shawls. Making and attempting to wear my Flower Basket Shawl was an interesting lesson for me. While I can always go for a good scarf or rectangular wrap, I feel really awkward in a triangular shawl. I’m not ready to say they’re not my style yet, but they may not be.

Part of my attraction to knitting is this idea that you can create whatever you can imagine. I often open my closet and dream about all the types of garments I’d like to have floating out of it, which is how I know I really need to learn to sew. Whenever I put on a sleeveless dress, I open the right half of my armoire (where I store the sweaters, shrugs etc), and I wish some light-weight, airy colorful little cardigans with 3/4 sleeves would spring into being. Fortunately, I can knit them! And this is wonderful!

I wound one skein of Knit Picks Gloss Lace in Aegean, in preparation for the Featherweight Cardigan, my second obsession-sweater of this summer. I’ve already bought and swooned over the pattern (such elegant construction), and I can’t wait to make it.

I finished another project, too, and predictably, not made time for FO shots.

This brings the total to-photograph and to-post list for FOs up to:
– three hats
– two pairs of socks
– two shrugs
– one scarf

The list for WIPs is staggering and ridiculous, so I’m gonna leave that one alone until I catch up around here. I even have an indigo-dyeing project and articles on mordants and natural dyeing from, well, a year ago. Yikes.

I’m going to try to make some time for knitting in this coming week if at all possible. I really, really miss it!

Oh hello there, I’m home.

I keep forgetting to come back over here to say hello, and I’ve been back from Italy over a week already!

Since I last wrote, I’ve finished two pairs of socks and started three more. I still have to photograph the two (yes, two) hats I finished before I left. I have other new projects to talk about too! This is to say, I’ve been a good knitter, but a bad blogger, and I will attempt to remedy that this weekend.

In the past 10 days, I’ve been to the opera twice (wheee!), I’ve made a major decision about my academic career, and I’ve gotten incredibly obsessed with the data I’m analyzing for a talk I’m giving later this month.

I’ve also been photographing flowers in the April sun, enjoying time relaxing with my parents and pets, and getting back into the swing of life in the good old USA.

So, I will take some photos and be back with the beginning of a parade of FOs soon!

Un altro viaggio

I think I completely neglected to mention that I am going back to Italy! And I leave today!

My research group has been invited to study an ancient mosaic in the Herculaneum, and we’ll be conducting additional research in Pompeii. From there, I travel to Venice for art history thesis research in manuscript collections and libraries. I will be spending a total of 20 days in Italy, the rest of March. I am ridiculously excited.

I finished two projects this past week, which I am dying to show you. I am close to finishing my pink socks, and I do hope to find some time to knit on planes, trains, and in what little downtime I may have while I am in Italy.

I hope you have a lovely March, and I will see you with FOs in April. Arrivederci!

How the time flies

I realize, with much chagrin, that I am becoming one of those once-a-month-or-so bloggers around here. I have never been busier with work or school, and it’s all coming to a head as I finish my second thesis (and with it, two master’s degrees) this semester. I haven’t had much time to knit, let alone think or breathe, and as such, my projects languish.

I discovered a huge error that I made in my Sunshine sweater, which necessitated frogging the entire thing and starting over. I’d just split off for the sleeves and was working my way down the body when the math wasn’t really adding up. I was supposed to have fewer stitches on the front than the back, yet I had many more. I asked the Obscuriosity KAL group on Ravelry for help, and the designer figured out that instead of increasing at the beginning and end of a RS row just two times (as is clearly indicated in the pattern), I kept doing so on every RS row, all the way along. Obviously this created many additional stitches and the wrong shape to my neckline, whoops.

I also just plain ran out of February to finish the January Sockdown challenge socks I was knitting (my pink ones). I have not yet turned the heel on the second sock, though I do love the way the first finished sock looks. I expect to have those done sometime soon.

And no, I have not touched the pile of my now long, long overdue Christmas knits, nor did I write down the modifications I made to one item that is part of what must be a matching pair.

I am very much looking forward to organizing my projects and having a big finishing party, but I fear that day is much further away than I’d like. Ah well, one stitch at a time!