Queue Check — July 2015

Queue Check — July 2015

It’s possible I spoke too soon about that house we have under contract. We got a not-so-good inspection report this week and now the whole thing is up in the air. So instead of marching through the steps toward closing, I’m in limbo, daydreaming about it. All I can think of when I think about that house is that it will be Fall there. It’s almost like I think that will somehow be true on the day we move in! I imagine the leaves turning on the all the big trees, and picture sitting out on the covered patio (in the rain!) when the temperatures get milder and the humidity packs its bags and shoves off. For when it gets colder, I have visions of knitting in front of the fireplace. A fireplace! Then there’s that screeching sound in my head as I remember the fireplace needs extensive repairs before that can happen. Anyway, somehow that house and Fall are inextricably entwined in my mind, and it makes me want it more than I want to want it when it may not happen.

Between all of that and the fact that Fall really is coming soon (it is! it is!), I’m rethinking my knitting queue. June mayhem didn’t allow for that summer sweater to get cast on, and now it seems too late to start. Time to start in, instead, on the sweaters I want to be done with in time to wear them on that covered patio, right? But my plans feel a little scrambled. All of this secret and required knitting the past few months has amplified my aversion to knitting that feels in any way like an obligation, to the point of making me a tiny bit allergic to my own to-knit list. Next up was supposed to be whatever that dark grey Hole & Sons is meant to become, but I haven’t solved that riddle yet. And next after that was supposed to be my Channel Cardigan, finally and again, but there too I’m on the fence about yarn. My latest theory has been that I would use the camel Shibui Merino-Alpaca I stocked up on when it was discontinued, but I fear it will be too hot and heavy with all that fisherman’s rib and textured stitch. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the past few years, it’s not to cast on a sweater before really knowing it’s right and worthy, but these past couple of months without a sweater on the needles have been agony! So for the moment, I’m enjoying my Hermaness Worsted (have you seen all the #fringehatalong hats?) and pondering the notion of turning that Merino-Alpaca into a Linda. A big cozy fringed scarf might not satisfy me in the knitting like a sweater does, but it would in the wearing.

I hope you all have a magnificent weekend! We got a fresh batch of Yarn Pyramids in this week, and there are tools allegedly arriving this afternoon — bonsai scissors and counters and crochet hooks, among other things — so if you’ve been waiting, check in later today or tomorrow morning! xo


PREVIOUSLY in Queue Check: June 2015

48 thoughts on “Queue Check — July 2015

  1. Karen, I am in the mortgage business as my alleged real job.  Since 1988, I’ve served in many capacities.  If there’s anything I can do to share any info; to aid; whatever, here’s my cell:  [EDITED]. Be glad to do anything.    Lynn

    • Thanks, Lynn, I appreciate that — the mortgage part seems to be under control. It’s the structural integrity of the house that we’re concerned about!

  2. Really want a camel sweater myself but just can’t decide on a pattern or yarn. Am knitting a child’s sweater to keep me going, Kate Davies’ new Blue Bell.

    • I’m thinking I’ll swatch Channel with Quince’s Lark in Camel and see how that feels! I haven’t seen their Camel in person but am eager to.

    • Isn’t that possibly the cutest kids’ sweater ever? Has me itching for a little one to knit for.

  3. Sorry to hear about the house :( I’m at a similar point of housebuying. The limbo stage is agony! We’re still waiting for a check to come back from our local council. Hope it perks up for you :) Look forward to seeing your future knitting projects!

  4. We bought a house built in the 1920s. Asbestos, gravity furnace, faulty electrical… We negotiated and they took care of several things, gave us a credit for the asbestos abatement and part of the furnace. We loved the house so much that we just learned to live with the smaller things and think about them as this old house’s quirks. We’ll take care of them as the money presents itself! Good luck!

    • This is a 1953 house (our last one was 1906) and there’s definitely stuff we’ll live with or fix gradually. (Like that fireplace.) But there’s an issue with pretty much all of the major components, from subfloors to attic, so we just have to see what we can work out with the seller. For now we’re waiting until a structural engineer can weigh in, next week.

  5. I think you’re right to question the choice of the Shibui merino/alpaca for Channel. In addition to being very warm and heavy, it might be tough to get gauge without making the fabric overly dense and it’s also going to drape a lot more than Shelter ever could. I’d worry it could stretch itself out of shape, especially in a stitch like fisherman’s rib. Fingers crossed for your house, whether this one or a better one that’s still out there waiting for you!

  6. The month before buying our house was just the worst. Fingers crossed that you’ll get to knit by that repaired fireplace (or another one that inspires you just as much).

  7. Karen, as always thanks. I too bought a lot of Shibui Merino-Alpaca over the last months. For me it was like discovering a whole new world in Shibui. :) The bad news is that I thought it was DK and was going to knit it together with thread, but on the web, I’m clearly the only one thinking that! lol

    At the end of the brutal 2014/15 NE winter, I ended up buying bunches of soft pinks, greens, lilacs, sherbety oranges, etc and haven’t knit on much of this yarn yet. Now we’re already speaking about Apple time and Fall on the horizon. The good news: Ravelry keeps things in queue regardless of year or season. You have a great weekend too.

  8. Hope the house situation sorts itself out soon, it’s the uncertainty that’s so draining.

    Meanwhile much like you, the calendar may indicate it’s July but I find myself drawn to bulky weight merino in anticipation of fall ; )

    • The uncertainty combined with the ticking clock! Our lease is ending and the Nashville market is so hot that every week home prices go up. And that added pressure of time is really making me nuts. But it’ll all work out in the end, I’m sure!

  9. Karen

    I’m a friend/cousin of your dad’s

    Will be traveling through Nashville the 1st of August & was curious if you had a brick/mortar shop?

    Always on the lookout when traveling

    Terri Jones [EDITED]

    • Hi, Terri! I don’t have a bricks and mortar, but you can find Fringe goods at three different fantastic shops in Nashville — Craft South, Nutmeg and Haus of Yarn. All well worth a visit!

  10. I’m at a similar stage in house buying and sweater knitting, I feel your pain! Wish I had the solace of a good sweater knit to dig into. But I wonder if the uncertainty in the home is feeding the uncertainty in the sweater knitting, they may be linked. Good luck! I’m sure by fall we’ll be snuggled up wherever we’re supposed to be with a just – right knit in our hands.

    • Definitely — at least in the sense that I don’t have the brain space to swatch and plan the way I’d like to. Best of luck with your house adventures!

  11. We bought our first home without insulation, drywall, heat source, kitchen appliances, reliable electrical and the only functional plumbing was a toilet. Ask about a 203k or a 203k streamline loan if it hasn’t already been mentioned. It folds a dollar amount for repairs into the purchase price and though it comes at a higher interest rate you can refinance after a certain level of equity has been reached.
    Meanwhile, happy knitting, whatever the project may be!

  12. Hey Karen, I know how you feel. As a kid whose dad was in the Navy and throughout my life I’ve seemed to move more than I like. We are in the process of buying some land in North Carolina and that’s a hard one too. I always seem to love something to fast and then am disappointed to the max . It’s far better to know now than after the closing and are into winter and the roof falls end. Really, it happened to us (the inspector had taken a ….well I’m sure you can figure it out. The sellers were both National Park Forest Rangers and had been re-assigned to Maine. They were in a hurry! There is the perfect place for ya’ll. It’ll just pop up in front of you and you won’t believe it. Usually happens about the time you give up on looking for awhile. Until then there is lots to Knit and so little time to Knit. When the new Brooklyn Tweed collection came out, I fell in love over and over again. But, until it cools off a bit more, it’s hats, scarves, Mitts, hand and leg warmers, cowls and Baby Cloths! My youngest Daughter and her Hubby are expecting a Little Girl in early December. The down side is they are Stationed in Italy for another year and a half. Humph! Grand motherly knitting is calling . If there are any Mom’s or Grand Ma’s that just have certain patterns that a new mother can’t do with out…please let me know. There are so many it’s daunting. I’m Kerilena on Ravelry. Happy Knitting Ya’ll!!!

  13. I find it fascinating how my knitting reflects and/or counters what is going on in my life. For the last several months I have been primary caregiver to my very sick (but now better) mom. I looked at my projects yesterday and there seems to be a plethora of perky stripes. I needed those stripes, this is now evident to me. Things are calming down now and I am wanting to knit something solid and very soft, maybe even pink. A scarf or wrap, I am thinking. Heh…

    I say knit Deb Hoss’s fabulous and uplifting scarf while your life is a bit crazy. A quicker feel-good fix is in order. The house thing will work out one way or the other and it will be okay. Good luck and thanks for the wonderful posts despite all.

    • Clare, glad to hear your Mom is doing better. I too have been knitting perky stripes and chevrons for years now. A huge color person too, I can change at the drop of a hat. Now that you mention that knitting mirrors life, what does it say about me and my health?!?!?!?! Personally, when both my parents were sick, I had to put the needles down. Thanks for sharing.

      • Thank you Lynn, for your thoughtful reply. It has been tough, but my mom is so much better now. As for loving color and stripes, methinks that says good things about you and your well-being. ;-)

  14. So sorry to hear about the problems with your house, Karen. Hopefully, the seller knows that any potential buyer will uncover the flaws in the house and you can work out a fair deal together. Or, you’ll realize the house has too many scary flaws and move on in your search. In either case, something wonderful will work out in the end, no doubt. My life is also very stressful now (health issues with two family members and a flood in our house) and I find I can only knit small items – lots of hats being knit! A sweater project would completely overwhelm me at this point! There’s so much comfort in knitting, though – it reminds me of when I was nursing my children. Nursing forced me to sit down and relax throughout the day, which was great for me as a new mom. I’m finding knitting to be the same – having a small project on my needles forces me to sit down and relax – an invaluable gift during any stressful time.

  15. Dear Karen,
    if the structural part of the house is in need of total renovation but is the house you love, go for it! We bought a house, which was built in 1680 and extended in 1820 and had to put new everything (heating, electricity walls, floors, the ceiling fell down, so new ceiling etc). Important thing is that you have a vision, you know what the end result should look like and then get the best architect you can have. One who is specialized for renovation projects. We also tried to save as much old and original features as possible ( the entrance have original floors from 1680s!!)and now after one year renovating we can move in two weeks time and I assure you, it is worth while!
    The planning part was fun and I am sure you are the right person to have the greatest ideas.
    Whatever you decide I wish you all the best

    • Karen, again there is a lot of good info being exchanged but I would welcome the opportunity to speak with you personally. It may be that we are expressing our opinions but not really getting the facts as they are for you. To renovate extensively like some folks are talking about requires a great deal of cash, time, professionals, etc. Usually if a house’s bones are not good, these are red flags all around to all parties and would be known from the get go, not surprising anyone when report results are provided. Home inspections are not usually as detailed and involved as they need to be so more will definitely show up in an appraisal – further down the line. In some States, proper Seller disclosure would have been necessary. Sometimes even, if you love the house at whatever cost, you know you’re going to save certain materials (the hall flooring, the fireplace, the cedar closet), but the rest is going to be knocked down and rebuilt. Wonder if this house falls under the National Registry for older homes?

      I too have been thinking of you and continue to do so. Am here if you need me – having nothing what-so-ever to do with the mortgage. It’s the least I can do, we’re like family.

      • Lynn, we aren’t renovating — just need some repairs by the seller. Please don’t fret about it! It’ll all get worked out, or else we’ll find another house.

  16. Karen-Have been thinking of you a lot this past week and wondering how things were progressing. Being in limbo is torture and hopefully, one way or the other, that part will end soon. Keeping good thoughts for you that a happy ending will arrive soon.

  17. Karen, like Mama told you when that first boy broke your heart… There are many more fish in the sea. Houses are just like that. YOU WILL find another.

  18. OH GOOD LUCK with the house………thinking of you and oh boy, those hats!!! Fabulous.

  19. Hi Karen – I wish I had words of wisdom about the house. We bought a “newly renovated” 1954 house and found those “renovations” weren’t all they were cracked up to be. Sometimes original, with all its flaws, is easier to correct. That said, you will know what you can handle once you get all the details. Re: the sweater – I wonder if you might consider a plant fiber yarn? I just knit a pullover in Rowan’s Creative Linen and find it plenty warm for cool damp evenings here. It was a lovely experience to knit and went really fast. That might get you into a sweater that you could truly wear in your weather. Thinking of you. Karen in Seattle (Did your hubby recover fully from his back issues?)

    • I thought I would be knitting another linen sweater this summer, but now after all the blends I’ve had in my hands the past few months, I’m ready for some good ol’ wool! And yes, Bob is doing magnificently — thank you, Karen!

  20. Just finished Linda yesterday in a chartreuse cashmere. Wearing it again tonight. Love it. Love how the fringe is created!

  21. All houses, even new ones, have things wrong. If someone was living in the house, then it must be inhabitable. You just decide what to live with and what must be repaired. As a long time home owner, there will always be things that could be done. You just ignore what you want too.

  22. Recently finished a Linda I made as a summer scarf, knit using 2 strands of Kollage’s Riveting held together (it’s a recycled denim yarn), and I adore it. The pattern is simple enough to feel meditative, but has a wonderful momentum (the alternating texture feels like a stripe) so it goes quickly. Definitely recommend!

    I made one mod I think is worth passing on: I added a row of small slip stitch crochet (using one yarn strand only) between the last column of un-dropped stitches and the first column of dropped stitches on each side. Based on swatching, I felt that this made the fringe stay more even and tidy, and gives the edge durability. (If I ever get around to updating my Ravelry, I intend to post photos but… I am terrible about procrastinating that step).

  23. Sorry about the fireplace. I suppose you could put candles in there in the mean time. We found out that our fireplace had a gas hookup that wasn’t put in with all the right safety precautions. So we had it disconnected. Wouldn’t want one of the cats turning it on by accident.

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  25. Your post reminds me how much like a person a house is and how much there is to grieve when that person isn’t well. Poor, lovely place. Something to ponder during today’s knit break. Extra mug of tea for you.

    • You know, I drove by the other day when they were working on the roof and happened to get there when it was completely stripped off. I told my realtor the attic was basking in the sun, taking huge gulps of fresh air for the first time in who knows so long, and I felt so immensely happy for it.

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