Sunday, March 25, 2007


It's my Birthday, it's my Birthday, it's my Birthday....

Just had to say that.

1 more year to the big THREE ZERO!!!!!!!

Hope everyone is having a great weekend.

I get depressed on every birthday, but I'm not this year!!!! And I'm so fortunate.


Wednesday, March 21, 2007

I'm back!

OK, a huge apology to everyone who reads my blog. I know, I’ve been gone for about 2 months now, and I’m sorry that I didn’t even say a peep. But I truly appreciate all the e-mails and letters of concern that you all sent me. Thank you all my bloggeratis!! I missed you all!!!

Well, what happened?

In a nutshell, my life changed. Shifted would a better word. Some good things happened and some bad things happened.

Well, remember how bad my depression got in early and mid 2006? You’ve got to recall; that was all I was talking about! So, first the good news, that darn depression has finally lifted!! On a scale of 1 to 10; a 1 being totally depressed and a 10 being super happy, I think I’ve moved from a 2 to say about a 6 or 7 now! That is not a bad improvement according to my doctor. The combo of Bupropion HCl and Escitalopram Oxalate is what I think saved my life. Plus talk therapy and support from friends and all you guys. Every morning when I wake up, I don’t just want to die anymore.

Now for the bad news. The depression affected work. At the end of 2006, I got a piss poor performance review and almost got fired. They said, Kenny, there is nothing technically wrong with you, but your character needs some improvement. You have no energy, you come in late, you have no enthusiasm, you lost your spark, you can’t concentrate, you can’t prioritize, you can’t blah blah blah. I think you all get the picture.

Wake up call. I almost lost my job! So since I’m mentally better now, I’m trying hard to kick ass. I come in early and leave late. I work at home when I can and do everything to show improvement. I read self help books, time management books and all that.

But now I don’t have time to knit. :( All I can get is maybe a row in at lunch, a row in before bed and that’s about it. I miss knitting soooo much!

Well, there you have it. The story of my life now. But I still want to keep my blog and whatever little knitting that I do. So, don’t worry, The Boy Who Knits has NOT left the building!

Oh, and there was a minor set back to. It’s a sad but strange and funny story at the same time. I met someone and had this HUGE crush. So, the night before Valentine’s, I told this person how I felt and ask for a date on Valentine’s day itself. To make a long story short, I got a rejection from this person because I wasn’t “Asian” enough.

WTF?!?!? Now that’s a new one, isn’t it? I don’t want to get into the details, but it was a set back and I was worried that my depression would come back. But I prevailed. Phew!


So, no knitting pictures in this post. Sorry. But I promise you that I will have some in the next one, whenever that will be.

I ripped out part of my sampler stole which is Hazel Carter’s super complicated garter stitch lace without a life line and got the needle back in perfectly. And I want to show you all how I did it.

But next time.

Love ya’ll!!!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Not quite

First of all, I AM KIDDING!!!!!!

Ayeessh!! I can’t believe that some of you would think that I would make that robe like jacket patchwork thing. And I sure ain’t paying $35 dollars for the pattern alone!

So, I don’t really do this (talk about other people and their business), but I can’t help it with this one. This lady seems to run a legitimate knitting design business called Catirina Bonet Designs. I can see how they would be cool and chic and trendy, but I think I’ll still stick to boring one color raglans and simple lace.

I mean, that coat looked like someone went to all the Wal-Mart’s around the country, scrounged up as many colors of Red Heart Super Saver yarn as possible. Then returning home, opened up Barbara Walker’s books and piece together as many texture patterns with bobbles and what not, section after section, color after color until it can be called a coat.

It’s a very neat and innovative concept.

And I’m going to hell for being so obnoxious.

But of course, she does have some other lovely designs that you might want to check out.

I guess I’m just bored, surfing the internet.

More lace update to come soon.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Perseverance Pays

After quite a bit of hard work and perseverance, and a minor injury, I might have just tamed the beast a little. I present to you, my feeble attempts.
It’s so pretty stretched out and photographed with a flash. I tried taking some pictures in natural light and it just didn’t look good. I guess light from the flash really needs to shine through those yarn overs. That’s the whole point of lace isn’t it? A play of light on positive and negative space.

So, maybe I can talk a little bit about Jaggerspun Zephyr. Did you know that Zephyr means a “gentle breeze” or “any thing of fine, soft, or light quality”? I was just doing a spell check and clicked on the thesaurus button accidentally. Anyway, I digress.

So at first, I totally did not like the Zephyr at all. It was too thin and too fuzzy and too slippery. But of course all this was really my fault. It’s like a carpenter blaming his tools, when in fact; he can’t cut wood worth shit.

But now, when I got a little somethin'-somethin' going, the Zephyr is quite a joy to work with. I got used to its thinness. However, this is about as thin as I can go though, I can’t imagine how some people work with cobweb weight wool.

A 50-50 blend of silk and wool, it has a beautiful sheen to it. It is also amazingly durable. I must have ripped the same wool at least a dozen times and it didn’t break on me. It just fuzzed up a little.

I am really liking the density of a size 3 US (3.25 mm) needle, thanks to you all. I don’t know how it will look in a stockinette base, but it looks quite nice in garter.

So, there you have it, a little progress picture and a mini yarn review. This is definitely one of those projects like Forbes Forest where it will take me at least a year to complete.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Yarn Review - Classic Elite Skye Tweed

Swatching time again!

The yarn above is Classic Elite Skye Tweed. I’ve always wanted to try Barbara Walker’s top down method, so I bought a shit load of this to make a custom Saddle Shoulder Sweater from the Top Down and now I don’t know if I like it.

This is always the problem when buying stuff online, you can’t pet it. I’m very satisfied with the color when it arrived. I’m also satisfied with the weight of the yarn, exactly what I wanted, a little between true worsted and DK.

But the scratchiness factor is super high! When knitting up, it felt like a Brillo pad. Initially, the swatch looked like a door mat, you know, the kind with the big WELCOME on it where you clean off your shoes.

However, washing it changed it a little. My swatch bled faintly in a warm water wash with a few drops of Kookaburra Woolwash.

It definitely softened up and some of the scratchiness went away, but not completely. The stitches got more even and sort of melded together. I could see that the woolen fibers had bloomed into place, creating an ok looking cohesive fabric.

I do have to say though that this is the first time that I actually don't have to ask you all what size needle you like. I am going to knit this in a size 6 US (4.00 mm) needle. There you go, my first confident decision and my first yarn review!

Monday, January 8, 2007


I’ve been meaning to post this for a while now. Look what a fellow knitter sent me for Christmas!


No, just kidding, I think they are stitch markers. Hand made nonetheless. This knitster is none other than the famous Charles. I say famous because he’s now a celebrity since his debut on the show Knitty Gritty.

Thank you, thank you! You’re so sweet dear!

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Lace Hurts!

Hello Knitsters. A Happy New Year to all! I guess a post is long overdue since the last one.

So, look at this picture and tell me what you see.

Click to enlarge to see a very very sharp Size 3 US Knit Picks circular needle and my poor dried out, calloused, chapped finger in a band aid because this needle literally poked a hole in my finger! I’ll spare showing you the puncture wound itself, but it looks like I got bit by a snake.

Injury or no injury, these needles are AWESOME!! I’ve been in search for a needle sharp enough for lace and I think I have found it! A new favorite, and inexpensive too.

But alas, no matter how sharp the needles are, if you suck at knitting, you suck at knitting. The pictures below are shots of the bad knitting aftermath of the Sampler Stole.
Let’s just put it this way, I bought a new ball of crochet cotton as waste yarn for the provisional cast on and now I only have half a ball left! That’s how many times I cast on and ripped cast on and rip. OCD indeed!!

Anyways, it would be misleading to say that I didn’t make any progress at all. According to the spreadsheet found here, I’ve done 5% of the stole. (Check out my progress bar! I love playing with it!) But I’ll post a picture when the stole has more meat on its bones. For now, process pics.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Thank you, thank you

Thank you all so much for the overwhelming responses to my plea for opinions. I asked and you all answered. Once again, proof that the world is getting smaller, where one knitter meets another through the web of cyberspace. You all came from all over, Knit List, Lace Knitters and Knitting Beyond the Hebrides. Talent and wisdom from far and beyond.

So, enough lace for now. I’ve been dying to post another FO. This one took more than a year to finish. Just because the pattern got familiar and I knitted intermittently, to slowly finish. I present Forbes Forest.

Forbes Forest

Pattern: Forbes Forest by Kathy Zimmerman
Book: Scarf Style

Recommended Yarn Information
Yarn Brand: Jaeger
Yarn Name: Matchmaker Merino Double Knitting
Yarn Colorway: #890 Seaweed
Yarn Content: 100% merino
Yardage: 1 ball = 50g = 131 yards
Quantity: 5 balls = 655 yards

Yarn Substitution Information
Yarn Brand: Knit Picks
Yarn Name: Elegance
Yarn Colorway: #0980 Grass
Yarn Content: 70% Baby Alpaca, 30% Silk
Yardage: 1 ball = 50g = 110 yards (100 m)

Yarn Source: Knit Picks
Amount of yarn purchased: 6 balls = 300 g = 660 yards
Yarn Cost: $4.29/ball (x 6 = $25.74)

Amount of yarn used: 272 g = approx 600 yards

Needle: Size 4 US (3.5 mm) 24" (INOX)

Gauge: Who knows??!! I swatched until the cables looked right.


Project Duration: 09/28/2005 - 12/17/2006 (1 year, 2 months, 20 days) = INSANITY!!

Recipient: We'll see who...

Project Notes:
So, this is one of my very first projects when I first started knitting. Ambitious, but a great learning experience. I knew nothing about fibre content, needle size, gauge, drape etc, they were all foreign to me. But what I learnt from this project is that you need a firmer, more solid yarn for cables. This yarn is an Alpaca Silk blend and it is too soft and flimsy for cables. So, number one, wrong choice of yarn.

So, the only way I knew how to compensate for this was to knit SUPER tight. This helped and made the cables pop a little more. So, I think that strategy worked.

I realized that I don't like alpaca. I don't like the long fibers that stick out and fuzz. So, here's another lessoned learnt.

A slight modification to this pattern. I knitted an extra full repeat, bringing it up to 40 repeats instead of 35 of the frond cable and 24 repeats instead of 21 of the zig zag cable.

And here are some poor attempts at taking good pictures. I mean, the pattern is so pretty and I just can't capture it's beauty. I guess that's why I'm not a photographer.

Friday, December 22, 2006


Just in case, let's beat a dead horse.

3 different pictures, swatches unpinned in it's relaxed blocked shape. I was afraid that the pictures in my previous post do not accurately represent the drape since it's so tightly pinned out.

On the left is size 2 US (3.00mm) and on the right is size 3 US (3.25mm). A nickel is placed for scale.

Did you change your mind?

The Great Debate... (again!)

Alright ladies and gentlemen. I know that it is the holidays and everyone is busy but I do hope that you guys are not too far away from your computers and will take some time to look at this. I need your opinions.

It seems like I constantly have decision making issues. Remember? Here and here. Don’t worry; it’s something that I continuously work on in therapy. But for now, bear with me. You all have been so helpful in the past.

So, here it is. The sampler stole swatch, over size 2 US (3.00 mm) and size 3 US (3.25mm) needles. I can’t believe how much difference 0.25 mm can make in lace. Look at that!

Click to enlarge.

So, whaddya thunk?

On the size 2 US swatch, I have 2 boo boo’s (green arrow), so ignore that. I read the pattern wrong. But the size 3 swatch is fine.

So, here are my thoughts. They both look fine to me. That's why it is so hard to make a decision. The only difference is that one is smaller. They both drape fine and they both feel fine. What do I do? I guess if I want to analyze this to death, I really need to decide which one looks better. Whether garter stitch lace looks better in smaller needles or larger. I know it is a personal preference but I don't have a backbone. So, help.

Ok, cast them votes so I can start the damn thing already!!!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Interim Goodness

Ok, I could post about a couple of things, but I think I'll save them for later when I have more time.

I have a finished project that I'm waiting to take some good pictures of. I am just not very good at taking artistic pictures of fabric (unlike brooklyntweed, I just LOVE his pictures!!) but I'll ask a friend to help me this weekend.

Secondly, I want to rant and rave about Knit Picks Needles! Sharp, fast, smooth and slick. Just like the perfect man.

Third of all, I'm having lace issues. As you all know, I'm swatching for Hazel Carter's Sampler Stole with some Jaggerspun Zephyr. Being the newbie that I am, I just don't have very much experience. I have no idea how open garter stitch lace should be. So, I'm currently toying between needle sizes. Furthermore, I was totally knitting the pattern wrong. ARRGH!!! Again, a separate post on this. My biddies at work are joking that by the time I'm done swatching, I'll have no more Zephyr left to start the project.

So for now, I'll leave you with this:

BTW, Elann's shipping is awesome!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Get Ready!

First of all, thank you all so much for your kind words in regards to the accident. I guess I really need to count my blessings that no one got hurt, instead of moaning and groaning about the fact that the accident happened. As I learn in the program, I need to take it One Day at a Time and just Do The Next Right Thing that is in front of me.

So, back to knitting. Am I ready?

I guess I am. The sharp Knit Picks Classic Circulars, the Zephyr and the pattern.

While waiting impatiently for my online purchases to arrive, I decided to swatch on some Bryspun straight needles in Size 3 US (3.25 mm). They were ok, interesting tips, but I could use sharper. Here is what I got:

What do you all think?

I think that this is going to be a real OPEN pattern. Look how big the yarnovers are in comparison to the solid garter sections! I think I'm going to give my KnitPicks Circulars a test drive and swatch on size 2 US (3.0 mm) needles before I embark casting on all 99 of them stitches. Hopefully it will give a more compact and stable fabric. I "feel" (and I am no expert) that because the yarnovers are so big, it doesn't give it a very solid look, it sorta makes it kinda unsymmetrical looking. Does any of these make sense?

And what's up with the fuzziness of the Zephyr? I really don't like the way it fuzzes up when handled. Anyone of you all experience the same thing?

Well, once again, I'll rely on you experts out there to guide me. I'll swatch with the smaller needles (and also to get my mind off the accident) and compare the swatches side by side.

Stay tuned!


I had a long post prepared with pictures and stuff, hoping to post tonight, but it's 2 am and I just got home. I just got into a car accident and am pretty stressed out and shaken up.

I'm ok. It's sorta my fault. I failed to yield. But the only reason I didn't yield is because the other car had his blinkers on to turn, but he didn't and he hit me.

Oh well.

Time to go to bed.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Ene's Scarf

Pattern: Ene's Scarf by Nancy Bush
Published: Scarf Style

Yarn Brand: Blackberry Ridge
Yarn Name: Blackberry Ridge Silk Blend Lace Weight (2-ply)
Yarn Colorway: Samarkan Blue
Yarn Content: 25% Silk, 75% Wool
Yargdage: 1 hank = 2.4 oz (67 g) = 350 yards

Yarn Source: Blackberry Ridge
Amount of yarn purchased: 2 hanks (4.8 oz = 700 yards)
Yarn Cost: $9/hank (x 2 = $18)

Amount of yarn used:
4.3 oz (0.5 oz left over) = 627.08 yards

Needle: Size 6 US (4.0 mm) 29" (INOX)

Gauge: I swatched over the lace pattern. So, no numbers here.

Dimensions: Approximately 61" wide, 32" high

Project Duration: 11/10/2006 - 12/10/2006 (1 month)

Recipient: I think my mom.

Project Notes:
I knitted exactly to pattern. The only thing that I might have changed, if I knew I would have so much yarn left over is to knit with a size 7 US or size 8 US. I'm such a tight knitter.

Do you all think that it's too tight? I guess it could be looser.

All in all, the pattern was intimidating at first, but once you get the hang of it, it's a breeze. You start of with 375 stitches which is the sides of the triangle, which is a pain, but it gets smaller and smaller as you progress. That's about it.

Friday, December 8, 2006


Ok, I realized that I was such a tease in my last post. Martha from Pittsburgh calls it yarn porn. LOL!

Details. I found a secret little shop tucked away in a La Porte, Texas, not far from where I work. Disguised as a weaving shop, she does sell some knitting stuff. The gorgeous red ball you see is non other than Jaggerspun Zephyr in the Ruby colorway. A yummy 1500 yards of it. Hopefully, in delirium to make this:

Rough start you guys. I’m not even going to post the picture of my pathetic attempt. I’m running into a couple of issues that I’d like to talk about.

First of all, I’ve never knitted with yarn as thin as the Zephyr. I was assured by Laura that Zephyr is indeed a very good and popular lace yarn. For now, all I know that it is wonderfully soft and smooth to knit with. But I still need to get used to the tension and handling of such a thin thread.

The second problem is the complexity of the pattern. The stole is garter lace with true lace patterning on every row. Not easy to fix a boo boo. All I can say is life lines!

The third and main problem is needle size and needle brand. I can’t seem to find a needle that will perform these lace maneuvers comfortably, especially knitting together a knit stitch with a yarn over.

Addi Turbos are blunt as hell and totally out of the question. Don’t even get me started on Crystal Palace Circulars. The tips are average but the join totally SUCK! It’s some sort of weird ball join. The Inox was satisfactory. I actually really love my Inox, but I could use something sharper.

Being the internet whore I am, I think that there are 2 others out there that might work. The new KnitPicks circulars and the new Bryspun Circulars. What do you all think?

The problem I have with them are availability. I placed an order with KnitPicks and I CAN’T WAIT FOR THEM TO GET HERE!!! I can’t even find anywhere in Houston that sells Bryspun circulars. And where do I have to get them? Online, and I have to WAIT for them too! The closest thing that I have is some Bryspun straights. Will these tips work?

In conjunction with needle brand, is the problem of needle size. What do you use for Zephyr? I’ve read that people use anywhere from 1 US (2.5mm) to 5 US (3.75mm). I started off with 2 US but couldn’t get the lace pattern right. The 3 US are in the mail and the rest of my needles are too blunt. Looks like I’m stuck this weekend. All the yarn but nothing to knit with.

I better go to bed. Sweet dreams ya’ll.