Tag Archives: cardigan

picky knitting

Firstly, I have a problem:

What’s up with those holes? That’s my Paulie cardi, which is coming along nicely — I finished the body and have cast on the arms, and what you’re seeing in the picture is the armpit part. How do I fix that? That’s been my first problem so far.

Problem two is actually that I hate using circular needles for the arm part. I thought it would be fine but I think it would really be a lot faster and less troublesome if I switched to DPNs. Problem three: I don’t have DPNs in the required size. Argh! I’ll have to wait a couple of weeks before I can get them, so that just puts off finishing my sweater even farther into winter. Boo.

Well, instead, I’ll work on my garter stitch blanket. That’ll be a nice change of pace from tiny sock-weight yarn.

Aaaaand I know I haven’t had much crochet stuff going on lately, but I am pleased to announce that I’ve got some supplies coming in the mail for a new crochet project! I plan on making quite a few of these items in different colors, etc., and I can’t wait to share with you! And there was a surprise with the pattern I’ll be using: it calls for a hook size that I DON’T HAVE. I couldn’t believe it — after 9-ish years of crochet, there’s a hook size I haven’t acquired. Well, that has been rectified, but unfortunately the only kind I could get was Boye, and I much prefer Susan Bates. The hook size is between a US B and a US C. I have a hook that was .05mm too big, but I want to be exact so I don’t run out of yarn.

Well, there’s been lots of complaining in this post, so I’ll just wait to post anything else until I’m in a better mood. All the lovely rain is cheering me up, but it’s still so hot outside. I’m such a negative Nancy sometimes.

I hope ya’ll are having a good week. And of course, as always, thanks for stopping by! We’ll have updates very soon, I hope!

Paulie the hibernating cardigan

I haven’t touched my Paulie cardigan in over a year. Here’s where I was in early 2013:

The going was slow, as anyone who has tried to make a larger object with thin yarn knows, and a bit monotonous — knit a row, purl a row, knit a row, purl a row, etc. — but my desire for a sweater that I have knitted myself is still there, especially as we’re beginning to get into slightly cooler weather. So the Paulie cardigan was again picked up, and in just a couple of weeks I’ve gotten a good bit farther:

The edges are curly but it should fit once it’s straightened out and the button band is added. I feel like once the body of the sweater is done, the rest will be a breeze; the sleeves should progress a lot faster since the rows will be so much shorter. Exciting!

In other news, I’ve been doing a bit of wedding planning. While overwhelming with all of the things I need to do, I have lots of support from both of our families. We’re working on securing the dates and locations for everything and have already got ideas for everything else.

Also, our dog Zero has been doing really well except for the night last week when we had a very loud and long thunderstorm (we usually get gentle rain that doesn’t last very long). She would not leave my lap and was shaking, poor thing.

She’s back to her normal healthy and happy self and loves cuddles:


Work has been going pretty well — I’ve made a good friend and am getting my work done on time. There’s a bit of burnout due to how busy we are, but I make sure to take a day off every once in a while to recharge.

That’s really about it for now — thanks for stopping by! I’ll try to continue diligently working on both the Paulie cardigan and also my garter stitch striped blanket. I’ve been looking for some things to crochet, too! Well, see you later!

emotion minded

Do you ever refrain posting things you really want to say on your blog because you’re afraid certain people you know will read what you’ve said?  Happens to me all the time — I’ll have something that I’d love your feedback on but would like to keep private from my flesh-and-blood acquaintances.  It’s happening now, in fact, but I’m going to do my best to vent here anyway.

At my counseling internship (which in itself is frustrating because I’m not getting what I need), I help lead a group for women with borderline personality disorder.  It’s a really interesting group and I find that many of the techniques and principles could be better applied in my own life.  For instance, people with BPD typically spend a lot of time in “emotion mind.”  What is that, you ask?  Well it’s pretty self-explanatory:

A goal in our group is to be in wise mind for the majority of the time, and man is it hard!  I find myself bouncing between emotion mind and reasonable mind, although I’ll admit to being predominantly in emotion mind.  My emotions are what often guide my thinking, what I say, what I do, and how I treat others.  It can be a real problem, because many times these emotional feelings are not positive ones and can lead to me lashing out on others and on myself as well.  I’m incredibly hard on myself and I know it, but breaking the cycle is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever worked on.  Some people say that you get into wise mind more the older you get, but that’s not necessarily true — there are plenty of older ladies in my group who struggle with this too.

Another thing we try to focus on is not letting anyone/anything outside of ourselves “make us” feel a certain way.  For instance, your boyfriend didn’t make you angry, you worked yourself into anger when you reacted to your boyfriend.  You could have responded in a completely different way if you had chosen to, so really you and only you are in control of your emotions.  Once you get it, it’s really empowering, but at this point in my life I’m not doing so well at it.  I get mad and upset about things that I wish I would just let go of instead.  You have to be super-aware of your thoughts and reactions and be able to direct them in the way you want them to go.

Do any of you struggle with this?  I’m honestly amazed at how well the ladies in my group are doing with this — have you overcome something similar?  Do you have any tools or tricks you use to stay in your wise mind as much as possible?

Working to change how you think is incredibly hard and frustrating.  I just keep telling myself “you’ve had 24 years to get into these dysfunctional patterns of thinking, so it’s gonna take some time to get out of them.”  One problem is that when I’m in those emotional states, I’m definitely not thinking “oh, look, it’s happening now and I need to apply this cognitive behavioral technique.”  I wish I could just cover my arms and legs with sticky notes to remind myself of these things that I need to remember in upsetting situations.

I did do some work on my knitted cardigan today, but it’s so few rows of progress that you wouldn’t be able to tell much of a difference if I showed you a picture.  Sorry this post is so wordy and picture-less.  I could actually rant on and on about my psychological issues and all the things that make me frustrated (or I guess I should say “all the things that I react to by making myself frustrated”), but I’ll leave it at that.

I’m about to do some wing chun practice, so hopefully I can work off some steam doing punches and kicks and stuff.  This martial arts stuff is really great — I really do feel much better physically and some mentally too (although you couldn’t tell from this post, haha).

Sorry, I’ll shut up now.  Thanks for stopping by!


paulie: begin!

Thanks everyone for all of your feedback and advice!  I cast on the Paulie cardigan with the 3.50 mm needles and it’s looking pretty good so far:

pauliecastonMy increases are a little wonky but with blocking hopefully they’ll look a little neater.  I’m just so pumped to have finally started that I had to share, even though there’s not much to look at yet, haha.  You can see, though, that I’ve printed off my pattern and am carefully circling the stitch numbers for the medium size, and I’m checking off rows as I go.  The sweater looked a little big to me, but when I held it up around my shoulders and positioned it correctly, it looked right.  I can’t wait to get far enough where I’ll know for sure if I have to rip it out and start over or not…

That’s all I’ve got for today, I just had to share!  Thanks for stopping by!


gonna be toasty

I finished the cardigan!  I think it turned out pretty well.  Ready for pictures?  I must warn you, nobody was home with me so I had to take them in the bathroom using the mirror.  Sorry about that.

It fits pretty well.  I just need a big button to hold it together in the front and I’ll be ready for the cold English weather!  Or more ready than I was, at least.

I’ve also been working on my first knitted sock, and after much frogging and re-doing, I finished the provisional cast on toe:

I must say I’m pretty proud of this, considering it took me hours and hours of video watching and frustration.  Hopefully it will go smoothly from here on out, although I have some nervousness about the heel.  And as slowly as this is going, I’m not really sure if these socks will be keeping me warm this Christmas or not…

Well that’s all for today!  Thanks for stopping by!

sweater progress

As a break for my fingers from the killer blanket in progress, I started the sweater that everyone suggested after my last post.  It’s supposed to look like this:

But so far I’ve just got this:

It’s the back panel and the front 2 panels sewn together.  Now I’ve just got the sleeves and the collar/rest of the bodice.  I’m regretting using the Lion Brand Fisherman’s Wool simply because the tweedy look hides the pretty shells and little lacy panels.

It fits though (so far), so hopefully it will look really awesome when I’m done.  We’ll see.  If it doesn’t, I’ll make another sweater!  It’s coming along so fast that I figure I’ll have enough time to do something else before Christmas…

I want a sweater!

This Christmas, I’ll be joining my parents on a trip to England!  This will be my fourth trip to England, and I’m super excited about it, but I have a little problem.  When I go, it’s obviously going to be cold, and what’s better for cold weather than a cozy sweater that I made myself?  Nothing!  I need to get started on something asap, but I need to find a pattern, hopefully for free.

But I’m picky — I have some stipulations about my sweater-to-be:

  1. Must be long sleeved (or modifiable to make it so)
  2. Must not be constructed of lace (it’s for cold weather!)
  3. Needs to be relatively form-fitting (need to be able to layer over it)
  4. Would prefer a cardigan (so I can shed layers in case of warmth)
  5. No floppy sleeves (don’t want cold air going up my arms)
  6. I already have enough Lion Brand Fisherman’s Wool in my stash, so I’d prefer a pattern for aran yarn, but it is not necessary

Searching through Ravelry, I’ve found some options, and I want to get your feedback (especially any readers from England who might know about which of these sweaters would be most “in style”).  Here they are:

This one‘s not the most polished or fancy looking, but it does fit all my requirements.

 This one‘s not too lacy for me (it looks heavy enough to be warm), and maybe I could modify the sleeves to make them more fitted at the wrist?

And finally, this one could probably be made to have longer sleeves.  The pattern calls for worsted yarn, but this pattern is so pretty it might be worth the extra cash for new yarn.

So what does everyone think?  Which would be best?  Also, feel free to comment with links to other cardi patterns — I know there are plenty I haven’t hunted down yet!