mystery knit along {continued)

Well, I finished Part One of the Summer Mystery Shawl on Sunday.  I *thought* I had it finished on Saturday, but then I realized I hadn't done the last purl row of Part One. 

You can see what it looked like after I completed Part One of the pattern.  I'm so glad I chose to use my size 6 needles after all--I think it's going to be just perfect as long as I don't run out of yarn!  I really love the varied blues in this yarn too.  So pretty!  And if you're wondering what all those little purple and green thingies are--they're stitch markers to help me keep track of the pattern repeats as I knit.  I'd be utterly lost without them!

Part Two (aka the second chart) was posted to Wendy Knits Sunday and I got right to work after taking a few photos of my progress.  I made it through 8 of the 12 rows Sunday!  Doesn't seem like that's much to be excited about?  Well, consider that each row has over 200 stitches and maybe you'll see why I'm happy I got that much knitting completed.  Sadly, I haven't had any time to work on it since Sunday but I hope to get Part Two done before Wendy posts the next chart on Thursday (aaack!  that's tomorrow!).

I'd best get knitting!


mystery knit along: take 2

Part One of the Summer Mystery Shawlette has been posted on Wendy Knits (that's the next section after the Preliminary Info)!

I've been reading the Ravelry discussion board again and found that there was a mistake in the prelim.  Wrong number to cast on!  Of course, for those who have already done the prelim and don't want to start over, there's a relatively easy fix.  But for people like me, who feel that they've chosen the wrong needles (after reading those posts and seeing what experienced lace knitters say about it), it might just be better to start over.  Which is what I've decided to do.  Thankfully, I don't have much to re-do.  And I still should be able to keep up with the others in the KAL (that's the knitting abbreviation for knit-along ☺).  Going to rip it out and start over so I'm using those US6s even though my gauge was way off.  And I'm going to add another repeat.  Since I have 450 yards of my Smooshy yarn, I *think* I should have enough.  And if not, it'll be another lesson learned.

mystery knit along

I am so excited!  

Yesterday I was reading one of my favorite knitting blogs, Wendy Knits, {of knit designer/author Wendy Johnson} and found out she's hosting a mystery knit-along!  Woohoo!  Count me in! 

(Image from Summer Mystery Shawlette's pattern page on Ravelry.)
For those of you non-knitters who are wondering what on earth that is, a knit-along is when a bunch of knitters decide to knit the same project at the same time.  A mystery knit-along is when the designer only gives a little bit of the pattern at a time and doesn't post any photos of the finished project so you don't know what you're knitting (except a very basic knowledge that it's socks or a blanket or a sweater--you get the idea) and don't get to see what it's going to look like until you've knit it yourself!  I've never actually done a knit-along before, because I haven't found the right knit-along project until now.  Did I mention I'm excited?!?

Anyways, I've been following Wendy's blog for some time now and have been in love with the lace shawls she's been knitting up lately like no one's business. So knowing I love her other lace shawls, I'm confident that this summer mystery shawlette is going to be just what I need for a personal {read non-business} summer knitting project. 

[Just don't tell the 2 pairs of socks I've already got on the needles that they'll be in hibernation for the summer.  They might get jealous that I'm knitting my first lace shawl with...yup, that's right...sock yarn.] 

<<< giggles >>>

So right away I dug out some Dream in Color Smooshy that's been ever-so-patiently waiting in my stash for the past couple of years. 


I also grabbed some circular needles size US 6 and began by making a gauge swatch. 

Um.  Houston, we have a problem...

According to the pattern, we're supposed to get somewhere around 5 stitches to the inch.  Wendy admits that she tend to knit with a looser tension, so I decide I'd best go up a needle.  But my gauge on 6s was 7 stitches to the inch!!!! 

If you knit, you know that's a far cry from 5 st/in. 

How on earth does she get 5 stitches to the inch on US 5s with sock yarn????   Sorry, Wendy, but I just can't figure that one out.

Since my gauge was so far off, I went online to check out the Ravelry discussion about the project and saw that, indeed, I am not alone.  A few others out there were dealing with the same issue.  Some said they'd be okay with their shawlette being smaller, some said they changed the cast on number, and some were undecided whether or not they'd use the needle they got gauge with (size US8) or a smaller one.

So now with my US 8s in hand, I knitted another swatch and found my gauge ended up about 5.5 stitches to the inch.  It's definitely not perfect, but I'm petite and I don't mind if my shawl is a tad smaller than the pattern's.  I'm really not sure whether the 8s are going to work, but my only other choice is to cast on extra stitches with smaller needles which ultimately means the project would require more yarn too.  And I just don't know how to figure out much extra yarn it would take, so I've decided to go ahead with my 8s and see what happens. 

My version of winging it, I guess!

I cast on my stitches and and finished knitting the 2 set-up rows last night. 
I'm ready for more of the pattern now.  It's supposed to be up on Wendy Knits sometime today.  

It'll be fun to see how it turns out, won't it?!


May Treasury

It's my goal to put together one treasury list every month.  For now, the months are giving me my themes.

Here's my May collection. 

I've joined an Etsy team--Schooling at Home Etsians (SHE). Every item included in this collection is from a SHEteam member.

And I've just gotta say--isn't that a really cool Treasury widget? Don't you just love that it's click-able? Me too.

Thanks to the wonderful folks at Craft Cult!

photo props

For a couple weeks there, I really felt like I was spinning my wheels and not getting anywhere with my knitting.  I did design a couple pairs of fingerless mitts, but I need more of the same yarn before I can make them to sell.  So I did an inventory of the yarns I have and realized that there were still a few items I had planned to make and sell that I hadn't gotten around to yet.

But I can finally say there are a couple new listings in my Etsy shop!

First, we have a newborn cocoon in a tweedy brown.  Great for keeping baby warm in between shots and makes a great prop too!

Next, we have a set of 2 newborn striped elf hats--one for a boy and one for a girl.  The long-tails on these could be a potential danger to a newborn, so these aren't for every day use.  But with adult supervision they make an adorable photo prop for baby's first photo shoot!  I decided to sell them together as a set.  That way a photographer could have one of each and since they're a near-perfect match, the set would be perfect for boy-girl twins.
I'll have to go over my to-do list again and see what I can make next.  It's nice to be working again.