Celestarium

Knitting speed bumps…and non-fibery things.

I am pretty sure I constantly mispronounce “Celestarium”.

Some helpful links:

Twist, yarns of intrigue (They have a very friendly staff here.)

GISHWHES

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Happy August!

Saturday, August 3rd, 2013 | blah blah blah, etsy, fiber, handspun, shawl, spinning, WIP | No Comments
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Here is that size comparison photo. It’s my completed In The Pink shawl on top of my Celestarium.

Here I am, writing first thing on on a Saturday morning from my bed while my husband shows me pictures of corgis. If I had a cup of coffee, I would feel like a real writer, but that requires actual movement. Who brings the coffee to all those writers who take pictures of their laptops while snug in their beds? My husband doesn’t even know how to use my coffee maker and my kids are out of town.

I meant to blog yesterday, but the day got away from me. I was pretty productive, but in a non-fiber way. Sometimes your hands need a break and honestly, I needed one. I haven’t been a good spinner, taking breaks when I should…and that last bobbin was a real slog for me.

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My Bunny Butt Fiber and a bobbin of blue and purple Red Fish Dye Works Camel/Silk.

How do I fix that situation? By starting another bobbin, of course! This time I am justifying it by spinning it thicker than the previous two bobbins. Plus, it’s Loki fiber from my good friend David at Octarine Fibers…so I can’t wait to see how it spins up!

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Loki fluff!

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Everything is going slowly…

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013 | blah blah blah, blocking, FO's, knitting, shawl | No Comments
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Celestarium. It’s quite large.

Crafting seems to have slowed for me. I can’t seem to stay in one place long enough to work on anything for a decent length of time. This is partly due to the kids being away. There are movies to see, parties to attend, and socializing to do!

I did, however, get the ends woven in on my In The Pink and Celestarium (Celestial Ruin) shawls. I even set a little time aside today to try and take some pictures. I kept getting interrupted by the drywall guy and having to walk next door to supervise…so I just started getting silly.

Trust me when I say this shawl is really lovely. It’s large too. I had blocked it to 52 inches in diameter, which means it is still a good size even when folded in half. I am looking forward to starting the Southern Skies Shawl at some point, but I have a few things to finish first.

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How creepy is this?

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Recovering from Comic Con…

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Guess what?

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013 | FO's, KAL, shawl, start to finish | No Comments

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::whispers:: It’sssssssss donnnnnnnnne.

I think I was the first one done. I’m afraid to ask. I just finished it and didn’t announce it or anything…because I’m sure everyone in the KAL is annoyed with me. I’m just letting it sit for now in the pile of things to be blocked. Maybe I’ll let it stay there awhile.

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Orion has his belt!

Sunday, June 2nd, 2013 | blah blah blah, KAL, knitting, shawl, UFO's, WIP | No Comments

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However, in this picture he is standing on his head.

I am almost done with the last chart! I am eager to see what this thing is going to look like. I am at that point where my cable isn’t long enough to spread it out and take a look at it fully, so that will have to wait until after I get that pesky edging done.

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Doing the math.

A friend of mine had posted this article to my facebook recently.

This got me thinking about math.

Now, math and I have never been friends. Ask my mother, who is my go to person for calculating the amount of money I am spending on sale items at the Gap…or my husband, who will always calculate the amount of money we should be leaving for tip…they will tell you that math has never been my bestie. My husband loves to remind me about the time he asked (a very sleepy) me how much a nickel and three pennies add up to and I answered “seven cents”. When it comes to numbers, I go blank.

How did I get into knitting then?

Knitting involves a lot of math…and not just the simple stuff either. Yeah, you have to count your stitches sometimes, but sometimes you have to do stuff like calculating the amount of repeats of a stitch pattern you need for the border of a Pi shawl. Yes, that’s “pi” as in 3.14…blahblahblah.

Courtney had mentioned to me last week that one row of Chart F of the Celestarium pattern took her exactly 1 period of hockey to complete (for those you of non-hockey fans, that’s 20 minutes).
So, I decided to time myself and do the math.

I used my trusty stopwatch to time my knitting speed on row 108 of Chart F of the Celestarium chart. It took me exactly 18:33.6.

So, the math looks a little like this…

Row 108 = 18:33.6 (I rounded up to 20 minutes for the purpose of this exercise)

Chart F contains 55 rows. 55 rows x 20 minutes = 1,100 minutes

1,100 minutes / 60 (1 hour) = 18.3333333 hours to complete Chart F

I don’t know if I should be happy or annoyed that I now have that information…but now I can do this:

As of right now, I am about to begin row 116. I have 41 rows left in Chart F.

(41 rows x 20 minutes) / 60 = 13.6666667 hours left to knit in Chart F.

Crap, that seems like a really long time. I guess I can safely say that I probably won’t have that chart done today.

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Taking time off.

Sunday, May 26th, 2013 | blah blah blah, crafts, KAL, shawl, UFO's, WIP | No Comments

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Sorry about that, I needed to take a little time off.

I am sure that many of you have probably been there. You are working on something you think is super great…and you feel like you are doing everything the right way…and you are positive that all the stars have aligned so you can create your project. Then something happens and you realize that maybe that thing you have been working hard to create is all wrong. Maybe you need to start over. Or maybe, just maybe, you need to completely change direction.

I’ve decided to change direction.

While I am trying not to over think the whole designing thing, I’m distracting myself with actual knitting. I’ve been hard at work on my Celestarium and I am really enjoying it despite it being time consuming (more on that in my next post). It’s helping take the sting off of the disappointment I’ve experienced over the last week. I find joy in placing my stars. I am really enjoying adding beads to my knitting. I don’t know why I don’t do this more often…maybe I should.

The distraction is good.

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Third time’s the charm!

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013 | blah blah blah, Friday Night Knitting, KAL, shawl, UFO's, WIP | No Comments

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“I really should put down the knitting and blog something.”

Yup, this is what I keep telling myself, but honestly…I’ve been on a roll.

I have been working hard on my Celestarium. As of this writing, I’m at least through Cassiopeia. It’s not the only thing I have been knitting though. I have started Stephen West’s Safety Scarf as my mindless knitting, because the Celestarium is not proper Friday Night Knitting. Too much counting and math. That’s not easy when you are chatting and watching playoff hockey!

Now my “Celestial Ruin” is on it’s third incarnation. I had to frog it twice. The first time was for my crime against the KAL and the second was earlier this week when I realized that last Friday night I had placed my stitch markers in the wrong place and was exactly one stitch off. Yup…I let ‘er rip!

Right now I seem to be back on track and I am excited to be working on it!

Of course, my other crafting has slowed down a bit, but only because my parents are in town. I had to move the ironing board and sewing machine to make room for an air mattress. I’ll be back to it soon!

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An attempt to show restraint…

I’m in trouble kids. I really couldn’t help myself. (Court, please don’t kill me.)

This past weekend I got called out for my “swatching”. I know that my friends were doing their swatches all legit like, but I know how I am. I always have to jump on the latest project. I have a reputation for pooping out projects for a reason. I’m seriously manic about it.

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I suppose I should give you the backstory.

I think it was October or November of last year. I believe I can blame David for tipping us off to the Celestarium… because he knows that some of us are crazy and some of us have a love of stars. For you lay people passing through, this pattern is a circular, beaded star chart shawl. Yeah, I’m not sure how I didn’t just die from knitting beauty overload right then and there.

Anyway, we jumped on the KAL train and decided we would try to start it sometime around Christmas, but things didn’t quite work out like we had planned and we had to push our start date. Some of us were still looking for proper yarn, or formulating plans of how to attack the thing. Maybe some of us went a little crazy pants (Courtney, with much help from David) and actually color coded beads by star classification!

I am guessing everyone might have been a little surprised when I went the easy route. I already had two skeins of Anzula Wash My Lace in Charcoal in my stash, so all I needed were beads. After a trip to San Gabriel Bead Company (one of my old haunts), I had some purple lined topaz AB seed beads and was ready to roll…except I had to wait for everyone else to be ready.

So that brings us to now, almost May.

This past weekend, while my knitters were at home, knitting up proper swatch tubes, I was knitting the first three charts of the actual pattern…because, really, it’s a Pi shawl and I could care less about gauge, I’m just looking to see what my fabric looks like. I did it up on 4’s and sent them a picture to take a look at the size of the thing…and I think I almost gave them a rage stroke. I think Courtney said she even showed it to her mom, and they all agreed…I cheated.

You think I would have learned something, right? Well, I did learn that my “swatch” was too tight, so I was going to have to go up a couple of needle sizes. I grabbed my 6’s and did another swatch. No, it’s not a proper swatch either. Maybe I should just leave it at that before someone decides to hurt me. I put it aside so everyone can get their stuff together…but I’m not gonna lie… I keep pulling it out of my project bag to look at it. I want to work on it so bad that I think it actually hurts.

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