Posts categorized "Butterfly"

Loving the sweater, hating the hair


Here's the lovely Butterfly.  Nice eh?  Notice my fingers poking out the sleeves?  They're still a bit long, but I couldn't rip any more out or I would lose increases and would have to change the sleeve cap.  In the end, I ripped back to one row after the last sleeve increase and took out two rows in the sleeve cap.  Beware of these sleeves if you attempt this sweater.

Like Claudia I used a frog closure instead of the hook and eye and I'm really happy with it.  There's a close up here  if you would like to see it.  I picked something unshiny and simple (which is hard for these fasteners) because I didn't want to detract from the collar (though with the size of this thing it would be difficult).

I love the collar--here it is from the back.


And here's an outside shot to show off the colours better.  (Here's the part where we get to my hair.  I decided not to cut my head off in this picture so I have a visual reminder of what I was whining about if I ever read my archives.)


I hate my haircut.  I was actually disappointed when I left the salon, but figured I was just getting used to the short hair.  I go to the Aveda Hair School and this is the first bad cut I've received.  But now, two weeks later, after much goop and styling tricks and denial, I realize: I hate my hair.  It makes me look old.  I think my student-stylist did a poor job--there are technical issues and it doesn't suit me.  And it's a bit late to go back (they have a policy on this--I asked).  And there's probably not much that can be fixed that won't involve this turning into a really really short hair cut.

It's not the sassy short cuts I've worn most of my life (the hair you've seen me with is the longest it's been since I was about 12).  So it's not a short-hair phobia thing.  It's a "I traded in a sophisticated graduated bob for an old lady cut" thing.  I want the bob back.  It could happen in less than six months I suppose.  This is all made worse by the fact that I've been housebound with a sick kid (and now two sick kids and a sick husband) and I don't have work or more important thing to fixate on.  It feels a bit better just saying it. 

And I have a fab new sweater and a opening in my WIPs!

A quiz until I shower

Butterfly is done and she's beautiful.  I however am not right now since I haven't had time to sneak into the shower since Xander is still sick at home (but on the mend and likely back to school tomorrow). 

So while you're waiting, you can see what kind of Freaky Mama I am.  I was rather happy with this result and I even answered the questions honestly.  I'll admit a Rosie the Riveter poster is over our dining room table and my Emma's favourite nightshirt has Che Guevera on it.

Activist Mama
You're an agitator! Your kids have grown up on the
front lines of rallies and pickets, and chances
are that you boycott at least one company for
its bad business practices. Your kids are
learning what matters to you and how they can
change what matters to them.

What kind of a freaky mother are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Fingers emerge

From my sleeves on Butterfly that is.  But alas, it's not finished yet.  I'm fed up with seaming, so I'm weaving in the ends with one sleeve left to sew in.  Why is there nothing good on TV when it's seaming/weaving time.  I need something to break the monotony besides the honking big Caramilk bar beside my knitting chair.

It's about the process, it's about the process...

Butterfly is still in her cocoon.  I started seaming last night and the sleeves are too long.  I shortened them by about an inch but apparently that wasn't enough.


I understand that to be "fashionable" they should cover the knuckles like the model, but I got stuff to do with these hands (that doesn't involve lounging and looking vacuous) and they need to be free. 


In an attempt to avoid any reknitting, I took Claudia's advice and a crochet hook and did a slip stitch seam at the back where it met the collar to try to pull in the back a bit (she did it on the shoulders, but the effect is the same).  I did take her other advice and tightly mattress stitched the shoulders so they wouldn't stretch, but didn't take Theresa's advice and bind of the back stitches and pick up instead of leaving them live for the collar.  It helped a tiny bit, but not enough.  So I decided to sleep on it.  Instead of throw it out the window to teach it a lesson (it was really cold last night).

Then, I was woken up at 2:30 am by a sick Alexander (yes, again--the flu this time--high fever, runny nose, cough) and we're home together today.  Poor little guy, seems that he's run down with all the demands of school and daycare and he's catching everything.  We sat together on the couch this morning watching kiddie shows while I undid the sewing and the sleeve cap and reknit the sleeve.  I'm in the process of sewing it on now and it will be much better. 

I'm proud of myself for not living with it, but a bit pissed about all the little things in this pattern that seem to need to be tweaked.  Here's a list of suggestions from my experience and those I've found in other blogs:

1. Bind off the back neck stitches and pick up those stitches for the collar--the firm edge will add stability.

2. Do NOT use a three-needle bind off for the shoulders--again for stability a firm backstitch or mattress stitch is required.

3. Unless you have very long arms, shorten the sleeves by at least an inch (mine are 19 inches from the armpit to the longest point which matches the length of my favourite sweaters).

4. Bind off the collar stitches really loosely or else the back of the collar will curl.  I redid mine 3 times (something else I did this morning), finally achieveing success by using a 6.5 mm needle.  The collar has to cover your shoulders and run along most of your back and needs a rather loose edge.

5. Cast on all pieces loosely or your points will curl.  They did block out, but the looser ones look the best.

6. Check the errata because the collar instructions are incorrect in the pattern.

That's a fair number of hints.  I really do like the sweater, but we're having some issues since there have been so many little problems.  I concede some are of my own making (I suspect my gauge on the zigzag bits was too tight which is why I needed the required 13 balls even though I shortened everything), but many are the fault of sacrificing good finishing details for expediency or some other reasons that I don't understand. 

I think I'll cast on some nice, boring, easy, familiar socks tonight. 


Lookie! I finished the collar!


I found the yarn at Romni yesterday and got to work last night (though I wonder why they told me they didn't have it when I needed that other ball last week).  I figured things were looking my way when it turned out to be the same dyelot (again, the other one was too), and I found another ball of the pink mitten yarn in the same dyelot too (wasn't so lucky with the brown, but on two different mittens, who'll know).  And, when I started the new ball on the collar, the yarn was at the exact point where my working yarn stopped--how lucky is that?

And, I the rest went without a hitch.  I have to say, it's a helluva huge collar.  Now I'm resisting the urge to blow off the day and sew in the sleeves.  I better leave the house soon before that's what happens.  Good thing the collar is still wet.


I am not happy.  The collar on Butterfly is causing me serious difficulty.  First, in my haste to get it finished (to wear to some holiday parties) I forgot about the errata page Theresa warned me about and realized the collar was backwards about 5 rows in.

Then, with that fixed, I realized that I missed some instructions (or they were missing too) and I hadn't added the garter stitch edging to the collar.  So rip again. 

Then, many rows later, I come to the realization that I don't have enough yarn to finish.  Remember how I called around Toronto looking for one more ball of Kureyon?  Well, I should have bought 2.  Desparate at 11pm on a Saturday night, I start gathering the little bits of yarn I had and spit splicing in an absolutely denial-based attempt to get the collar bound off, understanding that it was 2.5" short, but it would "be okay". 

It wasn't okay.  The collar is too short and I need more yarn.  I re-checked Theresa's blog archives and apparently I cannot read.  I took this:

"I've gone through a whole skein of Kureyon and there's still and inch or more to go."

to mean I needed one more ball.  How did I do that?  Will I ever finish this sweater?  Village Yarns is closed today (and I'm a bit embarassed to call and see if they have another ball--I'll get over it, but I would like the yarn today).  I'm trying to think if I missed any local shops or if I should open my search a bit and visit the Greater Toronto Area.  Crap.

The planning, the knitting and the never ending

I know I haven’t been around blog-land the last few days. Things have been busy around here. The kids went off to their grandparents’ cottage on Thursday and so Craig and I have been going out a bunch--because we can.

I have been knitting a wee bit though. I spent some time on Colourwork Classic tonight and it’s coming along nicely.


I also managed to get to Village Yarns to buy that last ball of Kureyon for Butterfly. I also picked up some Debbie Bliss Merino DK to make the mittens in the latest Interweave Knits.


I was inspired by Stephanie’s gorgeous mittens and with her “you can do it” encouragement, I decided some new mittens to match my new down coat were in order. (Mine’s brown, even though they don’t have that colour on the website). Now I just have to decide if I want pink with brown accents or the other way around.  I decided not to get stripey with the background colour because I couldn't come up with a combination I liked and well, buying 5 more balls of yarn seemed a bit crazy for first-time fair-isle type mittens. 


I didn’t have time to start the mittens because I was finishing the last piece of Butterfly. However, I made an annoying discovery whist laying it out to block. It’s not the same size as the other pieces. It’s too big. Crap. Something went wacky with my gauge on this piece during the chevron bit. I counted the rows of the first piece and the second one is the same number of rows, but is too long by about ten. And it’s too wide too. So I have rip the whole thing back and start this piece again. So much for having a new sweater to wear this week. I could have used one--it’s getting downright wintry outside.

Well, I'm out

First, I was starting this entry just as Lost was ending and I had to stop. It was really good.  I'm liking how this show is playing out, interesting stuff.  Must also be because I'm having West Wing withdrawal.  I don't have cable (don't like the idea of paying for TV) and my local station has stopped playing it for some reason.


Now back to the knitting.  I'm out of Kureyon and on the search for one more skein of 148.  I'll call Romni (everyone closer doesn't have it) tomorrow and see if they have it, and then try to find the time to go fetch it.  Work is crazy right now and a trip out is hard to manage.

Or, I could see if Village Yarns has it and stop by on my way to the airport to get Craig.  Actually, I wasn't planning on picking up Craig (his company can pay for a cab rather than me spend an hour in the car), but since the shop is close to the airport I might make an exception. 

The good thing about being out of yarn for Butterfly is that I can pick up Colourwork Classic again.  I'm putting the "u" back in.  I can't stand the way it looks without it.

Miso soup for the soul

The day ended up not getting any worse and not getting any better.  Somehow I lost some data I did up last week, but I was so demoralized by that point I just re-entered it and didn't give it another thought.  And, my bosses were very understanding about the whole tape thing, they said "these things happen" and we're trying to figure out what the technical glitch was so it wouldn't happen again.

I soothed myself with a rather large sushi dinner.  Those "free delivery on orders over $20" means I have to order more than I want--though the fact that I ate it all is entirely my fault.  It was yummy and so was finding out that Tommy Douglas was voted the Greatest Canadian

I even finished the second sleeve of Butterfly.  And in a smart move, I pinned it right on top of the first sleeve I blocked to make it the same.  And I did the same with the front left, pinning it on top of the back.  Aren't I clever? 


All that's left is the right front and the collar--about three balls' worth of knitting.  Now I just have to find that last ball.  And the time to run out and get it.

One other thing: I'm tired of the bob and it's looking a bit damaged (and I'm a hair-cut whore--I go every 6 weeks--I love getting my hair done) and want something shorter and layered like this (think Mandy Moore too).

Good_hair Good_hair_4

I've always worn my hair short because it's fine and even though I like getting it done, I'm lazy about doing it myself.  But whenever I contemplate the cut, my hair starts behaving and looking fantastic.  Does it know?

The lure of an almost FO

Alexander recovered nicely after a very long morning nap on Friday and attended school, oatmeal cookies in hand.  We ate our pizza and birthday cake (though the birthday boy didn't eat his usual amount) opened presents, played Thomas trains and Hot Wheels cars and had a great time.

And, we got to repeat the show at Grandma and Grandpa's on Sunday, so Alexander had a great birthday in the end.  He really liked your well-wishing and the idea that mommy's computer friends thought to wish him a happy day.


I spent the little knitting time I had working on Butterfly.  I have two pieces left to go (sleeve and right front) and I'm getting that "I want a new sweater" feeling happening.  I know I'm going to be a ball short, even though I shorted the sleeves by about two inches and the body by three, so I need to find some time this week to locate another ball (if you're a Toronto retailer and you have colour 148, lot A available let me know!)  I'm not worried about finding it, and I'll throw prudence to the wind and not worry about the dyelot either. 

Craig's gone this week, so I see leisurely nights of knitting in front of the tv ahead.  Well, after the kids are in bed and the mess is cleaned and I get organized for the next day and...being at work all day is tough.  I like it, but it really cuts into my knitting time.