Long color runs, that is. Noro, to be specific.
I’m probably majorly dating myself by referencing this song, but I’m not ashamed to say that I totally dug it back in the day. Just as I am digging Noro right now.
I wasn’t born a Noro lover. At least not at first. I thought the colors were always a bit wacky. I mean, who really looks at a skein of yarn filled with lime green, turquoise and purple, and then says: Wow, this could really use some peach! You are either a color genius or higher than a kite if that combo immediately strikes you as gorgeous. But somehow, that one color that just doesn’t seem to belong, almost always finds a way to work. The other thing I didn’t love about Noro at first, was that it is positively infested with twigs and veg. For such expensive stuff, you’d expect that your fiber wouldn’t come with extra hitchhikers you didn’t count on. But after my first project with Noro Kureyon, I got over it. You just pick it out and move on (or leave it if you prefer). I expected that first hat to be scratchy and rough, but instead I was rewarded with a soft and totally non-scratchy fabric; completely unexpected considering the dead twig weight hitching a ride. And the color transitions were fantastic. I was hooked.
There are two things I still don’t love about Noro, but I forgive them because they are a small price to pay for the beauty of the finished objects and the thrill I get as each new color is unearthed from the skein. The first would be the ungodly number of knots I find in every ball I’ve ever purchased. Sometimes upwards of four knots in a 100g skein of sock yarn. Ridiculous. Not so bad if the colors are similar on either side of the knot. In that case you do a quick spit splice (Noro splices beautifully!) and you’re off again. But there have been times where the transition has been drastic and I’ve had to do some quick frogging and/or refiguring. That always stinks. The second thing I don’t love is the inconsistent thickness. You can go from practically laceweight up to DK all within one ball of sock yarn. It usually doesn’t affect the overall look of the project, but it still sort of bugs me.
But I’m addicted, well and truly. Whenever I start a project with Noro I cannot stop myself from knitting color to color, feverishly, not wanting to stop until I see what the next transition will be. It’s a blessing and a curse really. A blessing for the joy and beauty I experience while knitting, but a curse because I cannot stop myself until the fever has burned through and the yarn is gone. Take this for example:
It was supposed to be merely a pillow top. But as I crocheted I wanted to keep going; no HAD to keep going. I was completely and totally knitstoned. With twitchy fingers I scrabbled through all my leftover sock yarn partials and added them in. More! I needed more!! Then I decided this needed to be a 40th birthday gift for my closest college friend and it would no longer be a pillow, but a blanket. Then I decided I wanted one. And after that I decided there was at least one more person on my list who deserved one. When that one’s finished I’m sure I will try to find another worthy recipient. I pretty much want everyone to have one because I want to knit as many as humanly possible. Sick I tell you.
But what a ride it will be…..
September 20, 2012
Long color runs, that is. Noro, to be specific.
May 11, 2012
After 4 months of swing shift, R. Darling’s schedule has changed to day shift again and we are all trying to adjust. This means more family time (yay!) but less time for catching up with my own stuff (boo!). Summer is always a tough time for me when it comes to blogging, and apparently springtime is not much different. Though you will most likely be hearing less from me for a while, never fear. I’ll still be slugging away behind the scenes.
A two week recap on the Thinning The Nest Project:
Week 18 (May 3, 2012): Gave away another pyrex dish & lid to my Mom, using travel size contact solution, threw out some old face powder
Week 19 (May 10, 2012 – this week): Goodbye Gallon Size Bag O’ Corks!
Nothing crazy or life-altering here. A while back the makers of the contact solution we buy (Clear Care) decided to add some extras to the big Costco sized box we buy every month. One of those extras is a travel size bottle of solution. Pretty cool if you are traveling a lot, but with a 2 year old and not much extra in the bank, we aren’t going anywhere any time soon (except for maybe crazy). I decided to start using some of these before they either expire, or bust out the bottom of our “junk” drawer in the bathroom. As for the face powder, I’ve had that stuff in my makeup case for going on 9 years now. I guess because it was powder I just hung onto it, figuring I’d find a use for it someday. I try it periodically and it never seems quite right. So this time, instead of putting it back in the drawer, I just chucked it. It kind of felt good! And I’m pretty sure I won’t miss it. And the corks, you ask? They came in a vase I bought at an antique shop (which, it turns out, was NOT an antique & was made in China; not that I really cared). I wanted the vase for something else, so dumped out the corks and decided I could find a good use for them eventually. Someone on the Random Acts of Kindness Group on Ravelry was looking for corks, so they’ve now been happily rehomed.
A while back I mentioned that I was a little excited about minis. I also mentioned that if I started talking about my “tub o’ minis” and complaining that the lid wouldn’t shut, I might need you to stage an intervention. Um. Houston, we have a problem. Wednesday this week I went to Target and bought myself a bigger tub for my minis. Granted, we are nowhere near rubbermaid tote proportions, but the collection is growing at an astonishing rate. And um, there might be more to this addiction….er….situation. I started growing a little collection of orphan minis from the swaps I’ve been in. Minis in dark, crazy, stripey, boyish colors that just didn’t belong in my girly Beekeeper’s Quilt. What to do, what to do? Well, what any nutjob like me would do: Start a Sock Yarn Blanket for my sweet baby boy!! Gulp. I need another years-long project like I need more yarn, but what can I say? There’s something about minis……
May 22, 2010
Do you ever feel like you have things to talk about but nothing to say? I have things I could share, but I’m feeling kind of meh about it. I’m doing things (some of them actually knitting related) but they just don’t feel interesting enough to blog about. Which is totally weird because when I’m doing stuff that seems blogworthy, I generally don’t have trouble talking about it. It just spills out unbidden and practically writes itself. Maybe it’s just that I haven’t posted in over a week and I feel out of practice, or maybe that I’m just so tired that the words have gone into hiding in the dark and dusty recesses of my mind hoping I won’t stumble upon them and put them to work. I think they’re tired too.
I shouldn’t be this exhausted. Last night my darling little boy slept for 9 hours straight and over the past week he’s slept several other nights for 6-8 hours as well. Why is it that getting more sleep is actually making me more groggy and tired? I’m thinking that my sleep programming is all out of whack after nearly 4 months of getting up every 2-3 hours at night. And I think that I still worry something is wrong with Knittymunchkin if he sleeps through what I expect will be a feeding time. The worry makes me sleepless when I should be taking advantage of the extra opportunity to sleep. All this snooze analysis is making my brain hurt though, and it’s boring for you, so let’s talk about some knitting instead!
Do you have a baby “go to” pattern that you always make for expectant moms? I do. It’s this free ball band pattern on the Lion Brand Pound of Love Yarn (Ravelry link here). I’ve made so many of these that I lost count and it seems like all the moms I’ve made them for have really liked them. Or else they’re all lying to me, which is a distinct possibility. Anyhoo, every time I’ve made one of these, R. Darling has said he hoped I would make one of these for our baby when/if we ever had one. So, shortly after I found out I was pregnant, I started one for our baby. You should have seen R. Darling’s face light up when he realized what I was doing. It was so worth it, whether or not we’ll ever us the darn thing :) See, we received so many beautiful handmade blankies from friends and family that I don’t forsee the need to ever break this one out. But it’s the thought that counts.
- Pattern: Crochet Hooded Baby Blanket by Lion Brand (Ravelry link here; My Ravelry Project link here)
- Yarn: Less than one full skein of Lion Brand’s Pound of Love in White
- Hook: 6 mm Size J crochet hook
It kinda took me forever to finish this because when I was first pregnant I was so sick I could barely stand to knit or crochet. But I finished it eventually. The hood seems like a great feature, but honestly, I’ve never even put Knittymunchkin in it :(
My next project was made for my best college friend’s newest daughter. She has 3 other children and I’ve made something for each of them so I felt it was really important to continue the tradition with her latest addition. Her first, a boy, received a blue and white granny crochet afghan. Her second, a little girl, received a crocheted blanket made up of individually crocheted spiral motifs that were then sewn together. I had just started dating R. Darling at the time and he and another friend of ours used to tease me about all the “bellybutton covers” I was crocheting. Alas, no pics of either of those items to show. Her third child received one of the first baby items I ever knit, a February Baby Sweater. In retrospect I guess she kinda got gypped because she got the odd project out of the 4 of them. But anyway, once I knew she was expecting again I had my heart set on making a Baby Chalice Blanket. I’ve loved that pattern since I first laid eyes on it and this was the perfect reason to knit one.
- Pattern: Baby Chalice Blanket by Lykkefanten (Ravelry link here; My Ravelry Project link here)
- Yarn: Exactly 3 skeins of NaturallyCaron.com Country in “Green Sheen” (a mere yard or so left)
- Needles: Size 8, 24-inch circular
- Mods: Cast on 113 stitches instead of 83 to make a wider blanket
Really love this blanket and the yarn wasn’t bad at all for being chain store yarn. Once blocked, it draped beautifully and it wasn’t bad to knit with either. A tad splitty and I did find a few knots, but other than that it felt a lot like Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece which I like quite well. Totally happy with this project, though next time I might buy one extra ball of yarn and make the blanket even wider and longer. I like big snuggly blankies :)
And an outtake….. I couldn’t resist “testing” the blankie out on Little Mister before sending it off.
Hmmmm…. guess I had more to say than I thought!