Archive for March, 2007

Love, not infatuation

Dear Ms. Evelyn A. Clark, retro_rib_socks.jpg

You amaze me. Truly. Let me explain:

Two summers ago, I decided (rather bullheadedly) that I was going to knit some socks. Forget that I’d only been knitting for 5 months. I wanted to knit me some socks! So I did what I would normally do. No, I didn’t take a class. No, I didn’t find a pattern labeled “starter socks” or “basic socks.” I pulled out an issue of IK (winter, 2004), found a sock pattern I liked (in this case, retro ribbed socks, see right), and cast on.

I knew that the pattern was only a page long. I realized it was all text. And I knew that eventually I was going to have to knit a gusset even though I had no idea what one was or what one looked like. I had faith in you Evelyn. I had faith in my ability to knit a pattern. You did not let me down.

It was a wild success. Using only the words and abbreviations in the pattern, I knit some socks. I amazed my grandmother with my fearless conquering of needles the size of toothpicks (ok, well maybe size 2’s aren’t quite toothpicks, but still …) and I loved the slow satisfaction of knitting a pair of socks.

I knit the pair in two weeks, without error. It was an incredible introduction to sock knitting. The pattern, with it’s twisted knit stitches and blocks of purls is incredible. It was easy to memorize and looks incredible. You are a goddess, Evelyn.

Anyway, I was ecstatic when I picked up a back issue of Knits with a (new to me) pair of your socks(waving lace). It was cute, it was fun and I had the perfect skein of hand-dyed yarn in mind … And it uses a stitch pattern I’d never have thought to use on socks. The pattern turned out so beautiful on socks.

Since I knit these socks, I’ve since been on the lookout for more patterns that you’ve written. Just a few weeks ago, I bought three Evelyn A. Clark Fibertrends sock patterns.

One of which, the first I decided to knit, was Raindrop Lace. Oh, how beautiful. Simply beautiful. It’s not as simple and mindless as Retro Rib, but the repeat is only 4 rows, so that keeps things really simple. Look how the first of mine turned out:

I love the way this pattern turned out. I was unsure as I was knitting it if I like the pattern, or even the color of the yarn (my choice, not yours). When the lace is relaxed and scrunched, you don’t understand how incredible the pattern is. Finally, when I finished the pattern and fit it on my foot, I was flabbergasted by how much I loved this pattern. Look at the foot:

It’s nothing crazy – but so beautiful. The yarn, Knitpicks Gloss, just really dresses up the sock quite perfectly. The sock is snug (so the lace stretches) but not too tight.

Anyway, I write, to simply say – You rock my socks! Really Evelyn, I’m not exaggerating. And so, to that, I present, in thine honor, a button (which I’ll post on my sidebar soon). Because, really, I love your socks.  Best, Nicole


(Fellow Evelyn Sock Knitters:  Feel free to steal this button and host on your own bandwidth.)


“I was born in a small town…”


I grew up in the MOST picturesque place EVER. See this beach here – it was a 4 minute walk from my childhood home – and I swam there often. Now, I live even closer to the lake (but farther from the beach). This little community has, at most maybe 400 people living in it – and more than half of them only live there during the summer.

When you left your bike outside at night, it would still be there the next day.

Well, guess where I’m going to be this summer? Not anywhere near this lake, that’s for starters.

Here’s a hint.

Guess where that is?  You’re thinking maybe the closest large city to where I am (I go to school in Bloomington, IN, remember)… Indianapolis?

Nope.  Not Chicago either.

I’m going to be in New York City!  OMG!!!  New York City!!  I’ve never even visited there before!!!  EEEK!!!

Ok, so the details.  I’m currently an RA, right… and I want to work in colleges in the future… and now I have an internship at Columbia University!  It’s a really great internship because I’ll be getting some new, very marketable skills.  And room and some food is free – and I’ll be getting paid for this FULL time position!  I am so, so, incredibly excited!

But I’m also sorta scared.  I have only one relative who lives in the city – an uncle.  I know no one else.  But I’m also really excited!  A number of my friends are going to come and visit me!

Is anyone out there from NYC?  I’m excited to go to the awesome yarn stores (Like The Point, and Purl), but does anyone know what the closest yarn store to there is?

I am so, so, incredibly excited!

I’m going to walk for Pat and Jack

Two April’s ago, my grandfather died from a tumor attached to his tailbone. He and I had traveled around Ireland together in 2003 and I miss him.

A number of years ago, my grandmother fought intestinal cancer. She won, but the disease left her frame thin, weak and unprepared for the nutritional issues she faced until she died, this past summer, very suddenly.

This year, I’m joining the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

I’d love your support. Even a dollar would be appreciated. My personal fund raising website is below.

Spring Break Knitting, I guess.

So, I sat down today and started working on the mate for my boring, trekking stockinette sock. You remember? I knit it back in January? When I added three more singles to my collection of mate-less socks?

Well, looky, looky!

Ok – let me start by saying that when I started, I only had the cuff and maybe an inch. I knit the whole rest of this sock. In one sitting (ok, it was “The Office,” and then “Grey’s Anatomy” and then I gave “October Road” a try [eh, ok] and then “Sex and the City” and then, I was so close that I just knit right on through a rerun of “CSI Miami” and a bit of “Psych.”). I felt like Forest Gump. I started knitting and I just didn’t feel like stopping.

My mom joked that I was going to finish them tonight and I told her on three occasions that I wasn’t going to finish tonight. I thought I’d only get a few inches done (these socks have 9 inch ankle/legs) and then it would be bedtime. Then, I thought I’d get caught up at the heel. Then I figured once the gusset was done, I’d throw in the towel. And then I was so close – and I love me some finished socks.

Here’s another photo – from a remarkably different angle than you usually see (via the timer mechanism)…

Yea, it’ s fuzzy. It was my mom’s camera. Plus I’m finally starting to get tired.

Quick, let me post the details before I zonk out…

Pattern: Originally, this was going to be the Simple Trekking sock pattern from Miriam, but I got bored with the ribbing and switched it up a bit. It’s a 68 stitch sock with 15 rows of K2 P2 ribbing, one row of knitting, 10 rows of p2k2 ribbing and then tons of stockinette. Also, this eventually turned into a 64 stitch sock before the heel so that I could stick with my normal sock formula.
Yarn: Trekking XXL in color 132.  It’s superwash and so it was sorta splitty at times. I prefer the good stuff (handwash only merino).
Needles: US 2 dpn (Knitpicks dpns – much better with the sticky superwash than the bamboo I used to knit my sister’s superwash socks)
Time to knit: A couple months. The second sock was obviously pretty quick to knit.
Notes: A quick knit. I’ll use trekking again, but it’s not my favorite.

Also, as I was knitting, I looked down at my finger and noticed something peculiar.
finger mark

You see that mark there on my index finger, right where my top knuckle would be?
how I hold my yarn
That’s where I strand my yarn. Dude, I’m like a hard core knitter.

Ok. Seriously. Bedtime now.

Handknit wool socks are like warm clouds…


It’s spring break and I finished a pair of socks (ok, well one was done a long time ago). I did this sock instead of…

  • working on my 25 page senior thesis that’s due the 29th (of this month)
  • getting ahead in my other classes (which have 12 and 10 page papers due the same time) so that I can neglect them when I’m working on my thesis
  • doing one of 5 loads of laundry that I brought home
  • organizing my school stuff that I brought home
  • evaluating which grad school I’m going to go to (status: I’ve been accepted to Loyola and IU [higher ed and student affairs programs] and I have an assistantship for IU. I haven’t accepted it yet because I’m waiting to hear if I get an assistantship offer at Loyola)

But these socks felt so good to knit. Yes, its’ true, I was really, really tired of the pattern by the time I finished it. But each fiber passing though my fingers just felt so wonderful. And of course, an FO is equally satisfying.

So, the specifics you want?  OK.

Pattern:  River Rapids from Sockbug
Yarn:  Knitpicks Bare 100% Merino Sock Yarn.  I hand dyed this stuff using Jaquard Acid Dyes.  My second favorite/most proud of dye job ever (it pooled -but was pretty).
Needles:  US 2 dpn (Clover bamboo, as usual)
Time to  knit:  To long.  I knit the heel through the toe of the second sock in two days.  But I started the pair in back in September of 2006.
Mods:  When I moved from the ribbing to the chart, I moved the first stitch of the chart (a purl) to the end so that the purls would stay in nice and neat rows all the way down. I also did my normal toe and heel – I don’t remember if that different than the pattern or not.  Either way, it’s a pretty good pattern.
Notes:  The length of the ankle/leg of the sock is PERFECT – I’d say the most perfect to date.  I did 5.5 inches before I started the heel.


Did you read this?

Eunny…. you know Eunny – of the incredible talent and whatnot…

She’s the new IK editor!!!!!  Isn’t that insane!!!  I love Eunny – I long to be as talented as she.  I love Interweave knits.  It’s like the perfect thing!

Secret Pal 10 (Leopard)

So, I’m doing secret pal 10… I know it costs some cashigola, (the total cost, before shipping is 60% of what I make a month), but I just love making friends with folks – and nothing brightens my day like a random package.  Read on if you’re interested in the Secret Pal Questionairre…. (some is the same the one I did for SP 9 – but some are different…) – Oh, and I called this Leopard because I really, really want Mac OS 10 Leopard to come out – cause my parents have told me they’re buying me a laptop for graduation and I want a Mac… a shiny new mac with cool stuff….

Continue reading ‘Secret Pal 10 (Leopard)’


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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


March 2007

On my Ipod…Music and Audiobooks

Devil in White City heartlonely

Flickrize me!