January 29, 2012

i do not have a problem

i am currently working on this.

i am currently also working on this.

and this.

and this.

and this.

and this.

and this.

and this.

and this.

i do not have a problem.

January 25, 2012

spinning is not hard

you can all relax now. i've found peace. i no longer feel the need to use my drop spindle for horrifying purposes such as gouging out the eyes of anyone who comes up and says "oh but spinning is not that hard". i'm now the master of myself and that demonic phallus of doom.

to recap, here's what i barfed up on my first spinning session back in november.

this is from session no. 2. not as much of an eyesore anymore, but still too snarly and completely unusable for any of my lofty purposes. few things in life are good enough for me, as you surely are aware by now.

finally at some point during the third session yesterday i managed to find my groove. and spinning actually became fun. fun, i tell you! every single muscle in my body may disagree, but fuck them and their stupid stupidness.

see how even and consistent and pretty the finished yarn is? the way things are going i might actually end up using this shit for something! sure there's still a little too much twist, and i'm still really really slow (a staggering 23 meters in four hours) but dude! i made it and i'm happy. besides, i was way faster to learn than the chick at knitty, and that's what counts.

i need to go buy more fiber now.

January 22, 2012

self-promotion sunday

in between my scheduled weekly "me first" time, a.k.a. sunday that's entirely reserved for my own nihilistic needs which somehow always seems to mean changing bedsheets, putting my hair up in odd-looking buns and drinking tea in complete silence, i'm bringing you an important news bulletin.

i've just added lots of stuff to the etsy shop, so go take a look. new prices and all!

also i forgot to show you this earlier. a little quickie i finished a while back.

boreal by milja uimonen
rowan purelife renew (100g / 7mm)

certain people at work dared me to buy this yarn and so i did, because when it comes to yarn i have no self-control. you know it as well as i do. it's not the worst yarn one could be dooped into buying, though. it looks and feels pretty good and it's surprisingly soft, but the polyamid content makes my hair stand up. literally. but of course the recycled wool part makes up for any such cosmic deficiencies.

i'd had my eye on this pattern for a while but couldn't figure out what yarn to knit it with. i had other bulky weight yarns in my stash but once i brought the renews home i wanted to try them out right away. too bad it's the tweediest yarn ever that completely overshadows the textured intricacies of the pattern. oh well. it's a great piece for work anyway. i'll probably redo it with something more solid that drapes better too later on.

apologies for the shitty pictures though. again. one day the sun will come up again and we shall all live like kings.

i will now go back and turn off all the lights and enjoy the rest of me-day. in silence.

January 17, 2012

on the kindness of knitters

the doorbell rang this morning.

having just come out from the shower, i was naked. completely, utterly naked. i cannot emphasize enough how naked i actually was, because nakedness was crucial to the unfolding of events.

i figured it was the postman trying to deliver me something that wouldn't fit the mail slot. usually i'd just open the door and see what he wants, but, as it's been established, i was naked, and getting dressed fast enough was quite impossible.

at this point i realized i was not expecting any packages, because the 80€ yarn shopping spree i had conducted two days earlier surely wouldn't have its goods delivered so soon.

for a moment there i thought whether i should just let him come back another time, or open the door in some type of "why mr. postman, do you have a package...for me?" routine.

my dirty thoughts were cut off by the sound of the package being forcibly forced through the slot. it made a horrible screeching, ripping and twisting sound as it was squeezed through inch by inch. all i could do was stand by and pray for the packaging to hold up and protect whatever was inside.

eventually it came through and i leaped like a hairless panther to open it. a very inconspicuous package it was, but my heart started to pound when i noted the sender was familiar. and that it came from canada. because nothing but nice pretty things comes from canada.

my heart began to race even faster. the contents felt soft. could it be..?


in finnish there's this word called 'ilopissa', which roughly translates as 'being so convulsively extatic with receiving unexpected free stuff in the mail that one loses control of his/her bladder, speech and consciousness'. after realizing this ridiculously gorgeous skein really was for me, and for no other reason except the giver being endlessly benevolent and the recipient having once lobbied (apparently very successfully) for the acquisition of said skein, i went ilopissa all over the place.

melissa, i love you, i will marry you, i will dress up like tinky winky and do the hula if you want me to. bob bless you and your futile attempts to rid you of your stash.

January 12, 2012

selfish bastard speaks

no i'm not dead. and yes i'm doing stuff. useful stuff, even. not the dishes though. they've waited since dec 23, they can wait another week or so. in case you're wondering i'm totally fine with being gross.

but starting seven projects (five of them sweaters) basically all at once means nothing gets finished for a long time. although, reverse the thought, when they finally do i get seven killer pieces of clothing in a short time. but again reversed, it means i have little time for anything else like, say, etsy. apologies for that. i meant to update the shop with stuff i've made right after new year, but alas, stuff has remained distinctly unmade. as you can see, being a prolific rapist of the english language takes up as much of my time as work and knitting combined.

but i'm getting there, sooner or later.

on a related topic, lately i've been thinking a lot about something called "selfish knitting". ever since christmas i've read about it in blogs and heard people talking about it at work pretty much every day. seems like this is the one short time of the year when knitters everywhere finally let out a collective sigh of relief, having finished all of their knitted christmas presents, that at the same time faintly, almost inaudibly, whispers, "is it my turn now?"

all throughout fall and winter they've knitted according to other people's wishes, working in an insane schedule, using yarn they hate, purchasing patterns they wouldn't otherwise spend their money on. which effectively sucks all the fun out of knitting. and now that all the work is done, they still feel they don't have the right to focus on themselves, but rather blog about their "selfish knittings" in an ashamed tone of voice as if they feared god himself will descend from heaven and strike them down with fire and frogs and gerbils any second now.

what i hear is people, as though in some bizarre cosmic morality tale, feeling the need to justify and apologize endlessly for doing stuff they like and not what others like. knitters by definition are a good-hearted bunch of people that finds it hard to say no, so, sadly, many find themselves never having the time to make that one scarf they've always wanted to make, or using that one yarn they've wanted to try all year, because some non-knitter always butts in with their own wishes and schedules and preferences and expectations.

a sad example being, even though this story relates to ruffle yarn (yuck), something i've heard all throughout this week and last. these awfully nice ladies knitted dozens and dozens of ruffle scarves as christmas presents but couldn't hold on to one for themselves because whenever they finished one they would be practically torn from their hands. unable to say no, they just thought they'd wait after christmas and then do a little "selfish knitting". but now all ruffle yarns are practically sold out without any chance of restocking them until next winter. even though it's ruffle yarn, which in case you haven't noticed i absolutely loathe, it just breaks my heart to see all these kind folks left completely without a scarf of their own because they kept postponing their own desire for one in favor of others.

if you're one of them saints who's genuinely happy and content knitting for others instead of yourself, i salute you. i really do. but if not, now's a very good time to stop feeling guilty about it.

and so, after being so abundantly generous with my knitting for years, making stuff primarily for others, i've decided to try being a selfish tit for a while and only make stuff i'm actually interested in making. for now i've had enough of pushing my own projects far into the future because my order book is so cramped. so no, i won't make you a pair of socks or anything else either unless the project in question has some awesome points of pleasure to offer me. or unless you're my mom, who's exclusively exempted from such restrictions because having once pushed my giant ego through her cha-cha is sort of enough to guarantee a lifetime supply of socks. but others, you get your own bloody needles.

to conclude, i hereby declare the first annual K.A.P.O.W. (knitters against pointless over-guilt & weariness), lasting all throughout the months of january, february and march. this is your time. do whatever you want. knit whatever you like. listen to your own needs and plans and not someone else's. be nice to yourself for a change.

spread the word!

and if anyone gives you any crap, poke 'em in the eye with a dpn. non-knitters won't even know what hit them.

January 3, 2012


picture july.

a girl walks into a yarn store.

she finds three gorgeous skeins of hand-dyed sock-weight yarn. on sale. and on a very generous sale too, she mumbles ecstatically to herself whilst attempting not to foam from her mouth like a rabid dog. she's been looking for the perfect fingering-weight yarn for a certain cardigan for ages, and this is it. she buys all three skeins and trots happily along.

unable to postpone the merryment of starting a new project she casts on, thinking it will be finished in a couple of weeks.

well. it wasn't.

instead, it lay practically unaffected on my (as you, my cunning reader, may already have inferred) dining table for five months after the sizing/frogging disaster that left me so emotionally drained that i wouldn't have pissed on it if it's kidneys were on fire. or something. i've been reading too much stephen fry lately. point is i didn't want to have anything to do with it. i was only able to muster up a couple of rows at a time.

but one night after christmas, having finally become sick of looking at the messy ball of fabric on my table, mocking me and reminding me how much i suck at all things unpleasant, i somehow summoned up enough willpower and stamina to knit the remaining sleeve. i just sat there watching five hours worth of TV and squeezed the thing out of me like some morbid life-to-hairy-purple-things-giver.

so allow me to introduce...

smaragd by svetlana volkova
size makeshift xs
araucania ranco (300g / 2.5-3mm)

i know i sound like a broken record here, but after all the clusterfucks this top-down cardigan put me through i'm really really happy with the result. it's a defining characteristic of my knitting to be completely unenjoyable to make but in the end satisfy me on all levels but the sexual one. and sometimes that too. why is it that i always associate woolly things with sex?

see? boobs.

i love the lace part although i couldn't find a way to block it properly to really open up the stitches. but i'm sure it'll even out in use. and the color is pretty awesome, which can only be attributed to my impeccable eye and the uncharacteristically far-sighted idea to knit alternately from all three skeins. it was pure torture all the way but in the end it produced an amazing flow of the slightly different tones that works really well with the otherwise boring stockinette. shows too how variegated the colors can be in handdyed yarns.

starting the cardigan twice from scratch was a devastating decision that resulted in me smashing stuff and swearing something along the lines of "i'll never fuckin' touch those fuckin' needles again". both times. but eventually it rewarded me like it always does because now it fits like a dream with no excess fabric in the top part. originally i was making the smallest size but it was still too big for me so i deleted one vertical lace chart repeat (8 instead of 9) and cast on 122 stitches instead of 131. it's only 11 stitches less, but just enough to turn a purple burlap sack into something that makes me look all lovely and stuff.

even the model is doing the twirl,
and only partly because i forced her to

so once again i've succeeded in making something completely awesome. i rule. i totally rule. bow down to me i'm the queen of knittingdom YE-HEARGH.

many many thanks to miss A for modeling!