Friday, May 25, 2007

And the Answer... Dobby Socks! My mind was so focused on these that I was sure someone would have guessed. Here is the beginning of my Pal's socks. I want to finish and block these socks. Colorwork always looks better after blocking. Working the Golden Snitches was a bit fiddly, but I was through with them before I knew it. I hope the broomsticks turn out well. I hope to knit more of these socks. Maybe I will make a pair for myself to wear to the movie and book parties in July. Now I am wishing that the Sockapalooza4 mailing date could be July 2 instead of August 2.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Sockapalooza Yarn

The pattern has been chosen. The needles are ready and waiting. Now, all the yarn is gathered together and ready to jump on the needles. Do you know which pattern I'm using? I told some people Saturday at the yarn store. It was nice to let out the secret. I've never knit it before, and I am trying several new things with these socks. If they turn out the way I hope, these shall be spectacular.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Sale Day Adventures

A local yarn store has a sale each May for their anniversary. Sometimes I attend, but other times I do not. Several of the Skanky Knitters had planned an outing to the sale. They began at Starbucks and then proceeded to the store. I have had a hankering for some Starbucks. Friday night was not a good one, and sleep was difficult.

When I woke up Saturday morning and saw that I would miss meeting everyone for coffee I thought I would just stay home. I rolled over and tried to go back to sleep. It just was not going to happen. I went to the store with a budget and an idea of what I wanted. My plan was fiber (if it was included in the sale), Plymouth Dreambaby DK for Chemo Caps, and maybe some sock yarn. I was unsure if the fiber was on sale. Since it was, my fibery splurge was the Lorna’s Laces Combed Wool Top in Purple Club. I also picked up a bag of Blue Faced Leicester and one of Corriedale. I tried BFL for the first time on Friday night and fell in love. Since there was only one bag left, I grabbed it up at once. I do not have any Corriedale, but decided that this was a great time to pick some up to try. Then I made my way over to the Dreambaby. As it turns out, I chose the same three colors one of my fellow Skanky Knitters purchased. Of course, he will be using his for weaving, but I thought it was nifty that we picked out the same colors. Then I turned the corner to face the sock yarn. Aloud, I asked whether I really needed more sock yarn. JJ began the list of questions that either help to enable or curb a yarn purchase. One skein of Trekking XXL caught my eye immediately, and I picked it up. There was a similar ball of Trekking Pro Natura, but I put it back and got in line. We kept each other strong by continuing a conversation and turning our backs on the wall of Koigu. We paid, and I was off to the movies to see Shrek the Third with my sister and nephew. It was a good day.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Another Star on My Chart

I finally finished my latest Shedir. Whenever I knit this hat, there is a point where my progress seems to stall. I continue working on it, and the next thing I know, I am zooming on to the end. I used Magic Garden Cotton Candy Baby DK. This is from a bag of yarn given to me years ago by a friend who was cleaning out her stash in preparation for a move. This was my first time using this yarn. It is a machine washable, 70/30 cotton/wool blend. It is soft and was nice to knit with, and I think it is a great choice for this chemo cap. I was disappointed that several times they had knotted together ends to continue the ball of yarn. That is one of my yarn pet peeves. Still, it is not such a big deal in the scheme of things.

So, how is your Shedir coming along? I have it on good authority that there is one headed my way already. There is still time. I am getting ready to package together the prizes.

Speaking of prizes, I will be sending out a little something to Becky, who spotted the mystery knit under my Arwen. I am sad to say that no one was able to correctly identify what I was wearing as the Ballet Camisole that I swatched and blogged about last year. It was a bit of a bugger to finish. I had to rip out the beginning (not easy to do) because I messed up where I joined in the second ball of yarn.
The top sat for months while I figured out how I would fix the unsightly mess. I carefully put in needles and frogged the first few inches and re-knit the bottom and ribbing. Weaving in the ends with this yarn is a major pain. It is hard to do so invisibly. I have been unable to get a decent picture of it. After that, crocheting around the neckline and armholes was a breeze. I might not ever buy this lovely, silky, cool, and wonderful yarn again. I know that I am not rushing to knit something with the leftovers.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day

I was finally able to give this to Mom. This may be too warm for her to ever wear. This is okay because she knows the love and dedication I put into this, and appreciates it and its beauty.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Home Alone

I have a greater appreciation for the quiet life we have. Our houseguest has moved on to the next leg of his journey, and now it is just the two of us. Still, we are glad to have had him down, especially since his health is not as we had expected. We had quite a time, and really enjoyed the wedding we all attended at Cheekwood Botanical Gardens in Nashville. No matter how wonderful a trip is, or how great a houseguest is, I am always relieved for things to return to the relative normal that is our life.

Before we headed off for Tennessee, I took a moment for myself to pick up a few knitting accessories. I experienced a happy surprise when I was able to purchase a new book at a nice discount. I love Sensational Knitted Socks, and More Sensational Knitted Socks might be even better. Ms. Schurch includes a chart of shoe sizes and widths with foot measurements in men's, women's, and children's sizes. She addresses issues of wide feet (the ball of my foot is quite wide), narrow heels, odd and even stitch counts on the heel and instep, and more. The stitchionary is great, too. This book is a wonderful resource. I know I will use it often as I knit socks. I hope it helps me to knit socks that fit even better. I will definitely be incorporating some of the things I have read in my latest pair of socks. It is another toe-up pair.

I am pretty sure that I have figured out what pattern I will use to knit for my Sockapalooza Pal. I am straying a bit from her two favorite colors. Instead, I am knitting socks which fit with one of her great loves. I am debating whether to show them here on the blog. I feel like they are such a great match with her, that if she were to see them here, she would know right away that they are for her.

So far, I
have not received a single guess on the mystery tidbit from my last post. Maybe it is a bit more difficult to figure out than I had thought. I will give you all a bit more time to investigate. Since it might require a bit more work to find the answer, I have added more to the prizes. Speaking of prizes, I look forward to awarding them for the Shedir contest. You have until the end of the month.

Friday, May 04, 2007


I have had some questions about how I changed the pattern to make my Arwen without a hood, and have received requests for extra photos. I am always happy to oblige, so I arranged another photo shoot. This time I braved the weather and went outside. A tiny token to whomever spots and identifies the bonus surprise.

First, however, I will tell you about my modification to make my Arwen without a hood. It was not a difficult modification. I was not sure just what I was going to do when it came time to shape the shoulder, so I followed along the directions and had my stitches for the center front in waiting on a holder. When I finished with all the other knitting of the sweater, I had decided upon an i-cord neckline. I went back and bound off the stitches on the holders. I sewed blocked and sewed everything together. After I had finished the shoulder seaming, I grabbed my dpns, and worked a three-stitch i-cord around the neckline, using a k2tog to attach as I knit. I confess that I grabbed the wrong size dpns and was nearly strangled when I tried it on the first time. It was no trouble to rip it out and work it with the correct needles. I like what I created here and the way it gave shape and structure to the neckline.

And now, to the pictures. First, we have a picture of Arwen without me. Then we have a close-up of the cabling, including a picture of some mystery cashmere/silk gift yarn. Did I ever mention that my Skanky Knitters are the best? Next, we have a couple of pictures of me wearing Arwen. These are better representations of the way Arwen looks on me. I like the way the cabling folds back naturally at the top. I do love this sweater. It is beautiful, comfortable, and an interesting knit. I enjoyed knitting it. It has inspired me to make more sweaters.

I am not getting nearly as much knitting done as I would like this week. We have a houseguest in from out-of-town. It has been an experience. Still, there have been some opportunities with the needles, and I have completed the back of my Festive and am nearly halfway through with the left front. I am considering making the sleeves a wee bit longer. The need to measure Festive makes it less suitable for on the go and in the car knitting. I need to get some socks on the needles. I have a couple of ideas of patterns and yarns to use. Whichever I choose, they are both suitable for relatively mindless knitting. I need that kind of knitting.

Speaking of socks, I have been stalking my Sockapalooza pal's blog to determine the right pattern for her. I am close to making a decision on yarn and colors. The introductions over on the Sockapalooza blog have been overwhelming. We have
1006 participants from 26 countries. I have clicked so many links, seen so many great things, and cannot remember where they all were.

While Sockapalooza has many participants, Sock Madness is down to the Final Four. The pattern will be released sometime today. This pattern sounds like it could be quite challenging. We have already been told that it is Fair Isle. It also seems like gauge could be deadly and difficult.