What’s Off My Needles~!

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Anyone reading right now will probably know that I have been in a bit of a knitting slump recently. Even with Maryland Sheep and Wool coming up, I haven’t wanted to knit at all. So, I stopped knitting for a while and even went to spinning when I really wanted to do something but still didn’t want to put the effort into knitting. Happily, that time period is over because I knit during the weekend. I knit so much that I actually finished something!

School Spirit striped socks done! Swipe for wearing picture.

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My neon pink and green school spirit socks are complete! I am very, very pleased with them. I didn’t really use a pattern, but I did incorporate the ideas of mixing helical stripes with slipped stitches from Mylene Pijpers’ SlipStripeSpiral socks into this pair. The biggest differences is that my socks are top down and use a heel flap and gusset heel while her socks are toe up and uses (what looks like to be) the Sweet Tomato Heel.

This brings my sock total for the year up to two complete pairs in the fourth month of the year. If I want to knit twelve socks this year then I am two pairs behind, but I’m not that worried about that since I will be bringing a pair of socks to the anime convention I am going to at the end of the month. I’m going to be very busy at the end of the month with the convention and Maryland happening back to back, but it will be a very fun time.

If You are in a Knitting Slump, then Spin!

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While the knitting hasn’t been going anywhere at all, I decided to switch it up a bit and  do something else. A month ago, I got my March 2017 shipment of Nerd Girl Yarn’s Who’s Your Doctor Club. Instead of going with another batch of yarn, I decided to get some Shetland wool to practice on before I tackle my 16 ounces of white Shetland.

Who Club Spoilers! I went with fiber this time instead of yarn. Swipe for details ♡

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This colorway is called I Stole a Timelord and I Ran Away which is a reference to “The Doctor’s Wife” episode with the tenth Doctor.  The colors in the picture just don’t do it justice because the blue in the picture is more teal colored and the brown is slightly more of a taupe bronze color.

Spinning up my #nerdgirlyarns Who Club while watching NXT Takeover Orlando with my fiancé.

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After a small fiasco where I didn’t set up my wheel right and wasted a little tuft of material, I got everything up and spinning fine! I was going to make a two ply, but my impatience got the better of me and I didn’t think these colors would look very good heavily mixed together. So, chain plying it was!

I'm having a hard time capturing the color in the morning light, but the first bobbin is done!

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I am very happy with the way the first half came out. I still have two more ounces to spin and ply before I can see how much yardage I got out of this colorway. I have fallen out of practice a bit with spinning since I’ve moved to my apartment (and this is the first spin since the move!), but it looks like I managed to get a fairly consistent fingering weight on most of it. Unless it puffs up in the wash, but I won’t know if that will happen until I skein it up and give it a nice soak.

Incognito Knitter

It has been about a week or so and I just haven’t been knitting at all. I’ve been doing lots of other things and attempting to make my house spotless. I didn’t even look at the clue for the last part of the mystery shawl I’ve been knitting. Some weeks are just like that.

Luckily, something yarn related did happen this morning that was shocking enough to make me want to pick up at least one of my projects again. My Mom called me this morning and asked if I would like to go with her to Maryland Sheep and Wool! You have to understand that my Mom doesn’t really like to travel and it is a bit farther away than Rhinebeck, but she wants to go anyway.

Of course I would love to go with my Mom to Maryland Sheep and Wool! What yarn obsessed daughter wouldn’t want to spend a day yarn shopping and having fun with her mom?

I need to get a pair of socks finished so I can wear them on the trip!

Wonderfully Untitled

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marled-magicThe only thing I don’t like about springtime is bringing the clock forward with Daylight Savings Time. And seasonal allergies, but that is a special case with me since I am allergic to nearly all type of trees in the northern US. But it doesn’t feel like spring yet because we just got hit with snow that stuck to the grass and sidewalks last Friday! They are even calling for a snowstorm tomorrow that is supposed to drop 8-12 inches of the white fluffy stuff on the ground. This morning is cold enough that I just might believe them for once.

But, discussion about the weirdness of Pennsylvanian weather in March is not what you came here hoping to read about. You came here hoping that I finally updated with my knitting like I have been promising for the past half a week. If you are a regular that comes back to my blog after my weak updating habits, then thank you for coming back! Knowing that I’m not alone in the knitting wilderness is lovely to know.

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Completely Off Topic

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I’m going to go completely off topic for a while about something that is really bothering me that doesn’t revolve around any sort of knitting or crafting in general. What it does revolve around is the apparent lack of any sort of community in the lolita fashion and ball jointed doll world.

Five years ago there was a big boom in all sorts of doll blogs and lolita fashion blogs. There were forums based on them and all sorts of tutorials. They were two very different, very diverse, and very fun communities to be in. Now, the biggest communities dedicated to these are still here (EGL on Livejournal and Den of Angels with BJDs), but they are really, terribly slow with the same topic threads staying on the same page because nobody wants to make any new topics. I know with Den of Angels, creating new topics is almost against the rules because there are only so many new ways you can discuss a thing and the moderators just whoosh everything together.

Not only that, almost all of the bigger names in blogging have all but disappeared as well. I understand that times change and fashions change. We are all getting older and busier, but even knitting blogs are taking a big hit. At least with knitting we are lucky to have Ravelry, but there is no Ravelry for ball jointed dolls or the Lolita Fashion. I wish there was, because that would be amazing.

I guess I am just frustrated because I finally have the time and energy to enjoy these hobbies, but all the community that there was has seemingly dried up. It isn’t going to effect my plans of doing these things, but it would be nice to have a group of people I could join to talk about things with so my fiance doesn’t have to pretend to listen to me 100% of the time. Really, while he supports me with everything I want to do, there is only so much listening about fashion that a guy can take and I can totally understand that.

Anyway, thanks to my wonderful readers for letting me vent about something that is totally (for now) off topic. Now to go back and keep knitting on my shawl. More pictures of that to come on Friday!

Keep on Knittin’ Kitten!

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marled-magicSo, I wrote out this entire blog post only to have WordPress gobble it up completely when I had to edit one thing on it! That is really, really frustrating! If this blog post gets a little rambling, it is because I have written this out twice now. Hopefully the second time will go a bit smoother.

The first clue for the Marled Magic Mystery KAL with Stephen West was released last Friday! Surprisingly, I didn’t knit on it very much but it was also a big weekend for gamers with the release of the new Nintendo Switch and Zelda: Breath of the Wild. A new system and a brand new Zelda game to explore? How can I say no to spending a few hours with that instead of my knitting? Plus, I had a surprisingly busy weekend filled with fun, friends, and late nights. Where is my weekend so I can recover from my weekend?

In all seriousness, I’ll stop “complaining” over my fun weekend and skip to the content that I know all my readers are waiting for. WARNING: SPOILERS, SWEETIE

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What’s on My Needles?

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I love how the stripes are coming out so far. I was wondering if the pink would show up with the white.

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I have been making very slow, but steady progress with my Marled Monster Blanket. I do need to be in the mood to knit on the monster, so it might not be showing up very often unless I just want a big thing of mindless knitting going. The white and red marl section is next though and I want to see how it looks, so I might be knitting on  it more than I think I will.

 

Tastes like Mystery!

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marled-magicStephen West just announced that he  is having a wild and wonderful Marled Magic Mystery Shawl Knit A Long! Thankfully, the pattern is written for fingering weight held double and I do have a few skeins that I have either mispurchased (or not purchased enough on accident) or changed my mind about a couple of skeins. Plus I have quite a few skeins of hand spun that is the right size just sitting around with absolutely no plans for any of it. I do love working with my hand spun, but I have no idea how to use it. Especially the skeins I got out of my early spinning career when I was really focusing on getting down to fingering weight and experimenting with smaller batches. What better way to use those than in a big and wonderful shawl?

I have to admit that I don’t normally work very well with mystery patterns. I do like knowing how my object is going to look ahead of time so that I know if I would like it or not, but this is a shawl so it shouldn’t be so bad. It isn’t like a sock where I have major preferences in top down vs toe up or what sort of heel I want to use.

Gathering my palette for Stephen West's new Magic Marl Mystery Shawl KAL.

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This pattern does use a lot of yarn because you are holding it double. I have started working on choosing my palette of yarns. I have made some changes to it already since I took the picture, but not very major ones. I mostly took out the cotton yarns since they weren’t meshing very well with the overall color tone of the rest of the yarn. I am thinking about adding one of the skeins of pink and green back in to the pile though because the pink does brighten things up a bit. I am also going to go back to my stash and grab a ball of Stroll Glimmer to throw in here. I am debating between going with the spare white I have or choosing the dark grey. I’ll have to take pictures and compare the two.

Luckily for me, the official start date of the Mystery KAL isn’t until March 3. Until then, I’ll be hanging out in the Ravelry group dedicated to this KAL and becoming all sorts of inspired by everyone’s stash choices.