by Kat | May 9, 2017 | General, Unraveled Wednesday
Welcome to Unraveled Wednesday! Today, I am happy to say, there has been no unraveling and I even have a finished object!
First up, Settler Shawl – okay, I don’t think I would actually classify this a shawl – more like a scarf or a shawlette perhaps, due to the yardage of my yarn choice. But, I only had one skein – I received Sterling Silk and Silver yarn from Kraemer Yarns and I have never knit with “sparkly” yarn because, well, sparkles are not my thing. However, this is not super sparkly, it has a very subtle sparkly-ness to it! But the hand of the yarn is really what I want to talk about – it feels very cottony, and in a very good way! There is zero itch factor at all with this yarn – so if you have someone who struggles with wool, this might be the yarn for them! However, the blend is not cotton – but rather silk. Because of the silk content (20%) I was a bit worried about how to wash and block the shawl. I did give it a good bath in tepid water (not hot and not cold) with a little bit of Soak Wash™, letting it rest in the water about 15 minutes. I then squeezed out the excess water and ran it through the spin only cycle on my washer. I did not pin this out to block it at all – I did not want to lose any of the garter squishy-ness! I just laid it flat to dry and gave it a little tug here and there to open up the crossed stitch sections. I would love to knit this again with the same yarn (this time with 2 skeins to make it be a shawl). And, yes – I would absolutely knit with this yarn again!
Now, I am back to cruising along on my “Air Soft Shawl” and I am to the point in the pattern where the repeats begin. So, the knitting is with pencil and paper to keep track of everything!
On the finished book list – nothing yet! I had hoped to finish The Lake yesterday, but it did not happen! But, oh my gosh I love this book! It is gripping from the beginning. And, I am adding Konrad Simonsen to the company of Carl Morck and Armand Gamache! He is wonderful! This is the first book I have read by Lotte and Soren Hammer, but it won’t be the last. I should be able to finish this up today, and then back to The Girl in Green.
There you have my knitting and reading for the week. What are you making and reading? Or is it an unravel week for you? Please share!
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by Kat | May 3, 2017 | General, Unraveled Wednesday
Hello and Welcome Unravelers! Happy Wednesday!
I have lots to share with you today!
First up, a book review:
I finished my first book for NetGalley and, sadly, I did not choose well. I selected The Mountain in My Shoe by Louise Beech because the title intrigued me but, for me, the book did not live up to its name! This book is set in England and it is supposed to be a mystery. I made sure I did not read any reviews before I began reading the book. However, in reading reviews upon finishing the book, I am left wondering if I somehow read a different. While I only gave it 2 stars, it has an average rating of 4.26 on Goodreads. The book starts out with a woman who is packing to leave her abusive husband – in her packing, she discovers that a book is missing. Her husband, who is never late, is late arriving home from work, and she gets a call from a friend who shares that a boy (Conor) is missing. Perhaps, it is just me – but at this point in the reading, I figured that the husband had the book and the boy. The remainder of the book is divided between “the book” (which gives background on Conor who is in foster care), the woman (Bernadette), and the husband (Richard). Outside of Conor, I found the characters extremely shallow and they did little to endear themselves to me. I wish I could say that the ending surprised me, but it did not at all. I found it a slow and difficult read as it never really engaged me.
My next book from NetGalley is a much better choice: The Lake by Lotte and Soren Hammer. Okay, I am about half way through this, and from the first chapter it has been riveting! Nordic Noir FTW! (I think you can see here the pattern of what I like to read – I do not like being able to figure out the story until the end, if I can I am so disappointed in the writer!)
Now on to knitting!
I am almost done with the Settler Shawl and I really love it. The crossed stitches are an interesting detail (which I goofed up on the second set, but I like the goof up I made, so I will repeat that error! My error? I crossed the stitches on the wrong side the second time as I miscounted the garter repeats, but I like how they go different ways – so I am going with this mistake!)
I am still moving along as well on my Air Soft Shawl and I am still loving it so much. I am not quite at the half way point, but I am close! My plan for the remainder of the week is to catch up on what is on the DVR and get some knitting done!
Oh, and I ordered the kit for the next AYOT project from those
bad enablers over at MDK. But, I managed restraint until seeing what the project is! A certain special someone I know has a birthday coming up, and this is too cute! However, casting on won’t happen until both of these things are done! (famous last words!)
What are you knitting and reading? Or crafting and reading! Or just crafting? Or maybe only reading? Really, share whatever you are doing!
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by Kat | Apr 26, 2017 | General, Unraveled Wednesday
Hello Unravelers! Happy Wednesday to you all!
I hope your week has brought lots of good reading and even more good crafting!
I am almost done with my book for the NetGalley review, I will give you the CliffsNotes next week. I do have a second NetGalley book to read, and thankfully, this one will go much quicker! And, perhaps even be more interesting!
On the knitting front – I have one project that I am knitting to review some yarn from Kraemer Yarns. This yarn is very unusual for me in that it has some sparkle to it! However, I really like it – it is wool, but it has an amazing cottony, soft feel! I am knitting Settler Shawl – and I love it! It is a great match for this yarn and will be a lovely summery shawl. The yarn is Kraemer’s Sterling Silk & Silver in Estate Green. The yarn is 63% SW Merino, 20% silk, 15% nylon, and 2% silver poly – an interesting mix of materials, but it is so soft and it is knitting up beautifully in this shawl. If you have someone who finds wool scratchy, this yarn might be a solution for them.
On top of this knitting I am plodding along on my Air Soft shawl… I really love this knit. It worries me that a new month is next week, therefore a new technique. However, my knitting basket filled with things that I have to finish – so I really need my summer knit along to begin… yesterday! LOL
And, perhaps at the same time, all necessary work can end so I can just sit and knit all day.
Someday in a perfect world…
What are you reading and making this week?
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by Kat | Apr 19, 2017 | General, Unraveled Wednesday
Welcome to Unraveled Wednesday!
I hope you will join us today and share something that you are crafting and something you are reading!
For me this week, it has been a quiet week on the knitting front! I have a sweater that got unraveled and knitting has begun again – but just barely. I am making it slightly smaller and going with the increases/decreases every 6 rows. And, really, I am not ripping it out again! This will be a lovely sweater for the fall/winter but as that weather has departed from us – there is not a burning desire to finish it.
Really, I’d rather cast on all the things… wouldn’t you? I am cruising along on my Air Soft Shawl – I got another repeat done last night. And, later today I will wind the winning yarn combination (#1 if you are wondering!!) and get ready to cast on with those MDK girls (and Mary) on Friday! If you are joining in, please let me know! I would love for us to cheer each other on!
On the reading front… I am kind of in a “reading slog” and I am not sure what to do about it. (Okay, what I’d really like to do is read something else, but I think I need to finish the book I am reading for NetGalley…) However, if you are a Department Q devotee there is a new book available for pre-order, sadly it won’t be out until September, but I am so excited for it I almost can’t wait!!
But, what are you crafting or reading today?
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by Kat | Apr 12, 2017 | General, Unraveled Wednesday
Well, it is a week where lots of unraveling is happening here. My sweater that was so close to having the body finished, has been ripped back again – good thing my yarn can take all this knitting and ripping back!
So, why am I ripping back? Simple aesthetics – I don’t like how it looks! The problem is centered around the very thing I liked about the sweater… the line of increases and decreases on the sides. The pattern for my size calls for completing them every 4 rows. However, imo, this was too rapid because I began to worry that the sides would be too big and the front would be too small. (Does this make sense?) So, I tried doing no more increases and decreases but that did not look right… at all. So, I ripped back and tried doing the increases/decreases every 8 rows (and I forgot to do them on one round and did not catch it until 5 or 6 rounds later – so that meant more ripping back.) So here I am ready to do the band at the bottom of the sweater and I look at my knitting and I am really not happy with how it looks. So, I am ripping back, again…all the way back to the point of picking up the stitches at the armholes. Yeah, that far back! It has taken me all week to get to this point, ripping out hours of work is never something to take lightly.
But, this time I have a plan. I will do the decreases less frequently, which I think will give me enough movement on the lines that I like but in a more gradual pace and hopefully the front will still be the front and the sides having some movement forward, but not too much. Does this make me happy? Honestly, no. But, I would be less happy with a sweater that I did not like (which would translate to something I would not wear). It is silly to put so much time into a project and not be happy with it. That is why, sometimes, unraveling is the best solution. It is not painless, but the finished product will be better.
My reading has been usurped by a new book, which I found via Bonny and her suggestion of Netgalley. I am reading The Mountain in My Shoe by Louise Beech. I have a deadline but I am about a third of the way though. I hope to have the book finished by the weekend (well in advance of the deadline!) I will be sharing my thoughts on the book when I have finished it – however, I can tell you this; it’s a mystery and I have no clue who “did it” yet… (which is usually a good thing!)
Some weeks the unraveling is painful – but somehow starting again never is. With determination I am moving forward, even if I had to take some pretty big steps backwards!
I hope your Wednesday will have nothing to unravel but your blog post! And, as always, I am so happy that you are joining us!
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by Kat | Apr 5, 2017 | General, Unraveled Wednesday
Welcome to Unraveled Wednesday!
Spring is whirling around Pittsburgh – it has been windy and a bit rainy. My grass is about as high as an elephant’s eye… hopefully the rain stops and the winds help it dry out enough to get the mower out soon. I fear if it does not, next week’s post could include a machete…
The winds seem very March-like and not very April-like at all. But all this windiness has me thinking of Maurice Sendak’s Chicken Soup with Rice, which is one of my favorite books ever. I love when a book lives in your brain and that something as simple as the weather brings the words echoing in your head. There is something comforting in that process and I hope it never ends!
This week’s read finds me back to Menace in Malmö by Torquil MacLeod. There are two things happening simultaneously in the book right now and these things have not crossed paths yet. However, the story is getting very interesting and my initial thoughts have been proven wrong. (I love when that happens!) The series is very good and if you like Nordic Noir I think you will enjoy it tremendously.
On the knitting front, as you can see – the sweater is now too big to photograph! And, by the time you read this, I will have begun the short rows to make the back a bit longer than the front per the pattern. Then I am on to the ribbing and then I will be on Sleeve Island for a bit. I am going to do something differently this time – I am going to knit the sleeves at the same time, which I think will greatly improve the likelihood that they match!
If you have a post to share with reading or crafting, please feel free to leave your link here!
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