Friday, October 26, 2007

A Little Off My Game

Yesterday was NOT a good knitting day.

I made no progress with the Jerusalem Jaywalker because I refuse to go forward until it has been tried on. My clogs remained unfelted as well. After taking the washing machine out for a test spin and actually doing my laundry, when I went to felt there was no hot water. Had the warm/warm wash I had just done be cold/cold too? If you remember, the only reason I never felted in Jerusalem was lack of a hot water connection to my washer (most apartments are set up for European, read self-heating, machines.) I mentioned this to New Roommate last night. "What?" she said, "of course there is hot water." But alas she was running a load or two herself and I had no patience to try again. Perhaps my shower and laundry session had been too close together and I had simply used up the hot water.

And then there was Wavy.
Alas, poor Wavy, I knew him Horatio. It isn't really Wavy's fault. Wavy is a straightforward ribbed scarf that shifts its stitches to give the impressions of a wave. It only needs a counter to get it done correctly. A counter and attention. Which I guess I was lacking. Of course I didn't mark the front when I started and couldn't remember which CO I used, so the hanging tail was of no help at all. And I guess at some point I got the sides flipped which means I flipped the pattern. And of course I noticed this about 25% in. I tried to frog back but I couldn't really seem to get to the right place so I frogged it all and started again. The yarn was still too kinked and the knitting was too loose and I just had to frog it again and put it to sleep. Did I mention I was doing the pattern only knitting Continental! And I was using Andean Silk. So sad, so sad. Although honestly, I wasn't in love with the color. You may recall Elbac, knit oh, so long ago in Gedifra Cashmerino in cranberry. It was a lovely color closer to raspberry than red and I was hoping this version of Andean Silk would be of similar color. Instead it is rather red. Rather too red for me at least, and perhaps I put a jinx on the whole thing. I still want to do Wavy but I think in another color and use this yarn for something more appropriate. And so what I needed was something new to work on. Something soft and squishy and challenging yet short term and doable.

Sometime during the day a friend came over to bring me a couple of presents and made me an invitation I could not refuse. First the presents: shower scrunchies and an intensive skin therapy cream she sells (along with a slew of other ecologically friendly products.) Let's hope the cream works. Nothing has so far. Besides a nice knitting induced callous, I also have a problem with the skin cracking in that area. And with winter coming it will only get worse. The invitation: a ride to the library and chance to check out some books on her card. Again convoluted stuff. The branch we went to (in Rutheford) is on a different system so since I am a resident of Passaic I must go to the Passaic branch to get a card but the selection isn't great so everybody drives somewhere else... So I still have to get my own card and request they give me the green dot so I can check books at the superior branches on the other system. Long story short, even in this superior branch there was little to be seen in the knitting section. And this was very disappointing indeed. Because that project I needed, NEEDED to do was so not going to happen. None of the books on my list were there. Not even the ones sitting in my mom's garage like Scarf Style. I did find all of the Yarn Harlot's books and checked out Yarn Harlot, Knitting Rules! and Casts Off! They have been on my list for a while but I am holding back on all purchases while I still search for the elusive "Perfect Job" and I have many an item on my wish list that I am afraid come first. Like a swift and ball winder, yarn for Bacardi and a few pattern books. (If you really want to know which books are on the list you can click here.) Anyway, I will be having a Yarn Harlot marathon starting on Sunday. And this way I'll know which ones I can't live without! Oh and I picked up a couple of Marian Keyes books as well. Still, I returned home a bit deflated, fingers itching, and honestly, not feeling so well.

I was determined, however, and spent the rest of the evening on Ravelry looking through EVERY single scarf pattern, focusing on the free ones since I wanted it NOW. I finally found this from Kraemer Yarns. and cast on. And despite the fact that I wasn't feeling well, the soft, squishy goodness of RYC Cashsoft Baby DK and soothing and subtle challenge of the cables were a balm.

first 25 rows

side detail

And though I woke up this morning with a very sore throat, the thought of spending another Shabbos with no slippers spurred me to action. I used Ecover (ecological dishwashing liquid) to get my suds and used hot water and high agitation (aka regular wash cycle). Following the instructions I ran them through 10 minutes and checked them, then again every 5 minutes. It took about 35 minutes total washing time. I let them sit for a while in a warm place, stuffed with bags then got impatient and threw them in the dryer for a bit. Then I wore them for a while still damp, back in the dryer and now back on my feet. The picture isn't so great but the are very delicious. I'll have to have New Roommate snap a pick Sunday morning.

New picture I snapped 10/31. Still not great, but better.

Motzei Shabbos Note: Slippers were still too big and too damp to wear anyway. Ran through for another 15(!) minutes and am happy for now. This time there were many more suds - perhaps I was to economical with the soap first time out? They are now stuffed and drying. Will keep you posted...

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