Archive for December, 2006

A new year…

In keeping with the tradition of last year (on my old blog–you can’t see, na na na na na na), I want to hint at what’s to come, and set myself some blogging and knitting-specific goals.

  1. No stash enhancement of any kind until the fleece fest in April. This means no buying yarn, needles or books (no matter how much I want a particular sock book that does not come out until February). New magazines are fine. Also, buying more yarn to finish a project is allowable, but discouraged. Also, exceptions will be made for SP9 &10.
  2. Socks will fly off my needles. I knit one of my sister’s christmas socks (size one needles, remember) in two days. I should have more mates for my socks. I should have more handknit socks to wear. I’m actually thinking of having a rule that if it’s not socks, it must be a gift for someone. Wouldn’t that be INSANE to stick to?
  3. The next sweater will be knit on size 5 needles or smaller. Ideally, it will have a fair isle yolk.
  4. I will replenish the boyfriend’s supply of dishcloths. He’s also requested some hand-towels. I’m thinking variations on this pattern, but in kitchen cotton (since I have tons of it). This fits with the nothing-but-socks-unless-its-a-gift thing too.
  5. Create a giant KAL. I have one in the works, but I’m trying to line everything up so that it goes smoothly when it goes “live” (nothing like blowing a newbie out of the water on something like this). Also, I’m going to need some other moderators. Anyone want to volunteer?
  6. Attempt publication in some knitting related publication.
  7. Knit a knee-high sock in traditional, Nancy Bush inspired style.
  8. Destash via weeding out the crap. Donate past poor yarn choices to swap boards and/or the Collins Textile Room.
  9. Offer 2 or more free patterns on the blog in 2007 (quick and dirty ones don’t count).
  10. Respond to each and every comment left on my blog.
  11. More creative/better blog posts. Still keep the good, technical info (like the tutes and stuff) but add in some creative, pseudo-lit stuff.
  12. Re-design the blog.  A new header (one that I own) and maybe, depending upon my summer employment status, my own domain.

Why, indeed! Don’t you look Fetching!

What an awesome pattern!  This was a gift for my Aunt Denise (who bought me some AmAzInG stuff for Christmas, btw) and it was quite genious to knit.

Pattern:  Fetching from Knitty
Yarn:  Knitpicks Ambrosia (20% Cashmere! and 80% Alpaca) – plently less than one ball
Needles:  US 6 dpn (Clover bamboo, my fave needle of choice, I’d say!)
Time to  knit:  About one day for each one.  The second one was finished on Christmas day, hours before it was to be opened.
Mods:  I skipped the picot cast off and just bound off in pattern.
Notes:  This is definetly going into my repertoire as being an easy and impressive knit for gifts.  I’ll be stocking up on Ambrosia here and there with my KP orders to be ready to go with some at relatively little notice.

Socks for Pops

Sooo, I know that I never finished the story of the Gentleman’s Winter Sock that I knit for my dad. You remember- this sock:

It was too big for my boyfriend (who had larger feet than my father) and I was debating what to do: Opt for denial and have a suprise, or opt for educated denial, blindfold my dad and have him try it on.

I blindfolded him. And it was huge. But even worse, he rejected them outright – didn’t even want them fixed. The problem? I picked washable wool.

Apparently, my dad had been reading my blog and thought the fact that my Redwood Forest Socks were felting to my feet was “so cool.” – and he wanted felting socks too!

But that would mean starting from scratch again. And he has big man feet! What’s a girl to do?

I used a single sock which had been in the que for a bit.

You see, I’d been planning to give this pair to my boyfriend. But everytime I worked on them, the curse would come calling. Everytime I touched the socks, we were doomed to have a giant fight and either break up (temporarily) or almost break up! They’d been sitting at the bottom of my stash pile for months because my boyfriend and I had decided that it was best that I not work on the socks any longer.

Zoom to recently. I shot the idea by my boyfriend and the sock has been “recycled” into some socks for my pops.

How they fit the criterion:

  • They’re pure wool and sure to felt. But since they aren’t merino, they’ll hold up well.
  • It’s a manly color. Grr. Brown.
  • It was on size 3 needles=fast to compensate for giant foot-ness
  • While the socks did fit my boyfriend, they were only a bit too big for me – this suggests that they will fit my dad just fine. If not, these will be far more easy to rip out than the GWS.

The DEETS- (That’s “cool” language for details!)

Pattern: My own, based on Knitty’s Thuja. Knit on 64 sts, decreasing down to 56 after the calf shaping.
Yarn: Araucania Nature Wool (2 skeins) in a brown color
Needles: Cuff, US 2 Clover DPNS. Everything else, US 3 Brittany Birch
Size: I think it fits my dad who calls himself between a size 10 and 10.5. 10.25 “if there is such a thing” he says.  My opinion says that I could have skipped the calf shaping and started with 56 stitches outright (if I’d done my magic cast on trick, explained below). Notes: I knit the first one by starting the pattern stitch immediatly and knit the sock down to the toe. I didn’t know how long the skein would go and I wanted to be able to make it taller if needed/able. After the toe, I unpicked the provisional cast on and knit the cuff, deciding it was long enough. The second sock, I knit plain, ‘ol, plain ‘ol. I knit the cuff, then the leg, etc, etc woot! Two finished socks. However, of especial notability was that for the second sock, I cast on lots of extra stitches (on purpose, silly!) and knit the first for *k2, k2tog* across and it works really, really well – I can pull on the top as hard as I can and not feel the cast on (ie: it wont’ be restricting).

My dad loves them.  But now, he wants more of them.  Maybe in two years.

Holy Socks Batman!

Adjust your monitor! Make everything dark!

Put on your sunglasses!

Quick, make one of those eclipse viewing boxes!

Save your eyes! Squint if you must!

Do not look directly at the socks!

I warned you!!!!

Ok. Enough joking. But seriously. These socks are about as obnoxious as my sister is (just kidding Jennifer! I love you!). Which made them an appropriate gift, I think.

Pattern: I made it up. It’s a 72 stitch sock with 15 rows of ribbing before everything else.
Yarn: Knitpicks Bare in a colorway I dyed up a few months ago. (75% Superwash wool, 25% nylon) – used way less than one skein
Needles: US 1 (clover bamboo)
Size: She says they are a little big for her size 9 feet.  We’re going to pop them in the dryer for a bit and see what happens.
Time: I think I started the first one back in October. I finished the second sock in 2 days.
Notes: I hated this yarn. It didn’t feel right on the needles (It JUST occured to me that I should probably have tried other needles. Duh, Nicole!) and the color is SOOOO obnoxious.


The latest:

I have 12 more rows until I can do the bottom garter stitch band on the body.

That’ll leave the sleeves, which currently look as though they’re going to be too big.

And the neckband.

And the button bands.

And sewing the buttons.

And weaving in ends.

Forget blocking.

So much for staying up till 2…

I’m dead tired and hitting the hay. 

Update on the mom sweater:  I have 11 of 20 inches on the body done.  But both of the sleeves still remain unknit. 

I may be admitting defeat.

Must. Keep. Knitting.

So.  I can’t type much right now because I’m giving my fingers a knitting break.  The story:

I had 1/2 of the back of my mom’s cardigan done when I left for work today at the yarn store I work at occasionally.

I brought with me, all the yarn I had plus the pattern I’d configured from the Knitter’s Handy Book of Sweater Patterns using the numbers I’d gotten from my gauge swatch.

The problem?  When I looked at my knitting (12 inches long) I would have had to fit 5 increases (split by 3 plain rows) into one inch (13 inches before I would have set aside for later raglan connecting.

I had to frog.

And Frog I did.

One of the ladies I was knitting with asked “do you want us to cry for you?”  Knitters are the sweetest people.

Anyway, back on track.

I’m now knitting the cardigan in a top-down raglan style.  I’ve split for the sleeves, but I’m not any further than that.  (Sorry I don’t have photos.  My parents computer doesn’t speak my camera language and I don’t feel like giving it lessons.)

I’m going to go knit now.   I’ll post another update soon.

(by the way, my family opens christmas presents on christmas eve after we go to church.  Definetly a handicap!)

Yay for Holiday Breaks!

Hola everyone!!

I’m goin’ on break for a bit – I’m on holiday vacation and because I’m gutting my computer and using computers that don’t like talking to my camera, blogging is going to come it bursts and starts until I get back the first week in January….

Plus, I have TONS of holiday knitting to work on – just check it out to the right.  Lots of knitting to get done.  Very little time.

Be back in a bit….

A Finish and a Reward

So, I finished my fair isle socks! Hellz yea I did. I’m so proud of them too! This was trophy knitting at it’s most satisfying. I had to learn 2 stranded knitting, short row heels and I did it.

Pattern: Simple Stripes Fair Isle Socks from Knitpicks
Yarn: Knitpicks Essential in Grass and Knitpicks Simple Stripes in a color that I can’t find the name for. (Note: The pattern calls for 1 ball of the Stripes and 2 balls of the Essential. I used at least 1/4 less than one ball of the stripes and around 15 yards short of one ball of the Green)
Needles: US 2 (bamboo) for the Cuff, Heel and Toe. US 3 Brittany Birch for the stranded parts.
Size: Fits me (US 8 shoe size). The cast on is a bit tight, but by no means constricting.
Time: Began in Mid- October, finished Mid-December
Mods: I kept the patterning at one color band with as little of the next color as possible. In some cases, I shortened the chart from that of the pattern and in some cases, I legthened the repeats. With the second sock, striving for perfect symetry, I tried to keep the same number of rows in each section. This meant that if I ran out of a color early, I had to pull from the other end of the ball to finish the repeat in the same number of rows. Yea. I’m only a little anal. Also, I just kind of did my own version of a star toe. ‘Cause I felt like it.

Pattern notes: I like this pattern, but some of the charted color bands don’t look as good as the others. In particular, I feel this way about the 3×3 blocks on the foot and the last brown section before the toe.

General thoughts – I’ll probably never knit these exact pair of socks again. I will DEFINETLY knit another pair of fair isle socks though. Next time, I’ll probably chart my own or use this pattern as a skeleton and change some of the charted bands.

And like she was reading my mind, my secret pal delivered the perfect reward for such tasking knitting.  Another package!  Another one!  She’s spoiling me like crazy and I don’t deserve it!  But I love it!  Anyway, look what she sent me…

Tea (my favorite flavors!), super yummy cookies, and sock yarn (Claudia Hand Painted Yarns)!  I’m so excited about the sock yarn – and since I just finished a pair of socks, that means I get to cast on for a new pair right?  Of course that’s right!  In fact, since I didn’t just finish a sock, but a pair of socks, I should really be allowed to cast on 2 socks… but I think I’ll restrain myself.

I do still have some christmas knitting to finish.  Oh.  And finals.

Who can resist these colors? I love you secret pal!

Needle Felting. A Tutorial!


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Stuff on the needles – to complete, sometime.

Christmas Gifts to Finish
Mom's Sweater (the body is done)

Socks in progress...
Grandma's Socks
Koigu Scruncher
Raindrop Lace

Lace Leaves Scarf from Scarf Style
The Behemoth Log Cabin
The Swallowtail Shawl
Stupid Ugly Mitten
Felted Clogs


December 2006

On my Ipod…Music and Audiobooks

Devil in White City heartlonely

Flickrize me!