Monday, January 26, 2009

After the Ball Was Over

I went to an inaugural ball. The picture was taken after the ball was over, back at my friend's house, a little the worse for wear.

At this time last week I was in Maryland celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. My best friend from high school invited me down to her house for a brunch in honor of MLK and to attend an inaugural ball in Washington, DC the next night, after history would be made with the swearing in of our 44th President, Barack Obama. I went, I saw, I conquered.

Oddly enough this blog entry will have knitting content. I drove down to MD on Sunday. I knew there would be many hours of down time, watching the before, during and after inaugural festivities on TV. I took the Tofuties Tee along to work on. I still have no socks on needles so the Tee is moving along at a good pace considering I was away for three days.

I knitted though the HBO star-studded special on Sunday at 3:00 p.m. and then again during the 7:00 p.m. replay. I knitted though all the news, weather, traffic reports and updates on Monday afternoon from Oprah to late night. On Tuesday I watched everything from 6:00 a.m. throughout the day. I saw the early morning arrivals at the mall, the traffic trying to get to Metro parking, the Obamas going to church, to swearing in and the beginning of the parade. I just love pomp and circumstance. And then it was time to get myself out into the fray.

Our limos picked us up at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday to take us to the Willard Intercontinental Hotel in DC., 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue, located just two blocks from the White House and the National Mall. It was almost impossible to get there. In the District, streets were still closed and detours were the norm. Limos, stretch and otherwise, clogged the streets. I saw many people parking their cars and walking blocks in the frigid weather in their ballgowns and tuxedos trying to get to their venues. Everybody was in a festive mood and didn't seem to mind the cold, even the women with bare legs and feet in sandals. We were lucky enough to get dropped off at a corner of the hotel and have only half a block to walk to the hotel entrance.

No, President Obama did not make an appearance at the ball I attended, but what a night! We partied like it was . . . January 20, 2009!

Bona Fide Knitter

Friday, January 2, 2009

I Hate When That Happens!

The Tofutsies Tofu Tee pattern I have has a mistake. I hate when that happens! At first I thought it was just awkwardly written. What do you think this means?

"Work in St st, knitting 1 st and last 4 sts of every row."

My first take on it was to knit 1 stitch at the beginning of every row and to knit the last 4 stitches of every row. Upon reflection (doing it once) that didn't seem right. Look at it again.

"Work in St st, knitting 1 st and last 4 sts of every row."

Okay, how about knitting the first and last four stitches of every row"? I tried it. I liked it. It puts a garter stitch edge at the seams.

Then, since I'm trying to do better at organization in the new year, I went to Ravelry to list my new project. That led to looking at other renditions of the same tee and the listing of the pattern by the designer, Joan Somerville. She has a note: " . . . should say “Work in St st, knitting 1st stitch of every row” instead of “Work in St st, knitting 1st and last 4 sts of every row.” Switch to the garter stitch edging when you start the front and back parts."

So much for my interpretation. That's why I hate when that happens! The correction seems to be to knit the first and last stitch of every row at the sleeve portion and switch to knit first four and last four stitches on every row of the body. By the time I read that I was into that part some 12 rows or so. I saw pictures of other renditions that showed the garter stitch down the sides and decided it's alright if my underarms have garter stitch at the seam. Who's gonna know? In another life I would have frogged what I had done and started over. The new me has one row with first stitch knitted and last four stitches knitted and all the rest with four knit stitches at each end of the rows. So the underarm as well as the side seams will have the garter stitch. So shoot me.

Bona Fide Knitter

Thursday, January 1, 2009

. . . In With the New

Happy New Year!

As I said yesterday, I don't make "resolutions." I plan to start anew and do better. The first thing I plan to do better is knit. My knitting itself is alright. It's my completion of projects which falls short, waaay short. A few weeks or so ago I came up with a plan that is working so far. I can start one new project after I complete one old project. I have this all figured out in my mind, but it's hard to explain unless you could see my project stash. Yes, "project stash." Those are projects I have in kits or bagged pattern and yarn combinations that I haven't started yet. Then there are the UFOs. Those are projects I have in kits or bagged pattern and yarn combinations that I have started.

Here is how it's working so far:

OLD - I finished a scarf from a pattern and yarn combination I bought from Stitches 2001 when I began a knitting comeback after a 30-year hiatus.

NEW - I started and finished a shawl, free pattern, yarn purchased November 2008. Sorry, no picture. I boxed it up and mailed it away before I thought about the camera.

OLD - I started and finished the other scarf from that long ago Stitches. I frogged the whole thing after a mishap.

NEW - I started and finished the shawl from Stitches 2008.

OLD - I reknit the long ago scarf that I frogged and mentioned above.

NEW - I started a sweater last night from Stitches 2008. Picture below.

I intend to continue working my way back through projects I have stashed in 2008 and forward from projects I have stashed since 2001. One day, in some year, I will meet in the middle and declare all UFOs finished!

Not to be too hard on myself, when I come to an unstarted project that no longer lights my fire, I will add it to my queue on Ravelry for some later time. When I come to a UFO I will give myself choices: (1) finish as is, (2) ravel and redo or (3) frog and forget. I will not agonize over getting the chronological order perfect. I have only vague memories of when some of the project stash items were purchased/acquired (a few were prizes or gifts). However, I will stick with OLD and NEW until the twain meet. I will one day put some socks on needles as well. Sometimes I just have to have a small portable project that can go everywhere. Waiting rooms are not always conducive to a big project bag.

And now off to Ravelry to get my first project of 2009 listed, the sweater I started last night. The sweater is a Tofutsies Tee made with five skeins of yarn of different colorways. Check it out.

Happy Knit Year!

Bona Fide Knitter