Archive for March, 2009

Socks, and Yarn, and Spoilers, oh my!

It’s tax time again, which means I’ve been spending more time itemizing receipts and less time knitting. Yet, amazingly I managed to finish a pair of socks in less than a month! 17 days, to be exact, which is a record for me.

Let me introduce you to my Leyburns, which I knit as part of a KAL on Ravelry.

They were my first toe-up socks, knit toe-up in lightweight Gypsum. I love the colors, and the pattern looks much more complex than it actually is. I enjoyed trying out a short-row heel, but I’m not sure I’m sold on toe-up socks… yet. I’ll give ’em another try in the future though.

I am terrible at forcing myself to knit swatches so I knit these on blind faith, hoping they would fit… and I was lucky! I did have a tighter gauge knitting the second sock so it feels noticeably more snug on my foot, but not uncomfortably so.

Knitting a swatch, however, would have been wise before I started on my Queen of Bead socks from the first installment of the Rockin’ Sock Club. I’m almost done with the first sock and I realize they’re probably going to be too small for my size 9 feet. I hate ripping out so much progress (slow knitter, remember?), but it looks like I may have to if I want to enjoy these socks by actually wearing them! So now I’m taking some of the leftover yarn from my Leyburns and knitting a swatch that I can use as reference for future lightweight projects. Sigh..

In other news I received the 2nd shipment from the Rockin’ Sock Club! The yarn and pattern are gorgeous! I’ll be posting some pics in a bit, so consider yourself warned!

Before I get to that, here’s some pics of some other lovely yarn I have acquired.

The first I was compelled to buy on St.Patty’s day (can you tell?)

It’s Socks that Rock lightweight in the colorway Lucky. I intend to make these:

Not my pic! From Knitty.com

Not my pic

Absinthe socks from the latest issue of Knitty. It looks super-complex so that will probably go on the back burner for a while, until I complete another KAL that is starting in April: Shur’tagal socks!

I’m going to knit these for my husband. But, shhh, don’t tell him that the pattern is named after dragon-riders in the fantasy novel, Eragon.

I’ll be knitting them with lightweight STR in Haida, a raven colorway.

I thought I would get my cat Rainbow to help model with the new yarn since she likes watching crows out the window.

It’s weird to call Rainbow “my” cat, because for the longest time my husband and I affectionately referred to her as “temporary cat”. Our next door neighbor was evicted and basically abandoned his cat. I took pity on her and began leaving out food. And after a while, I decided it was easier just to bring her inside until we could find her a new home. You see, we already have two dogs who do not want to share their house with a feline (They’ve tried catching her in the past, when she still lived outdoors) Plus, my husband, for as long as I’ve known him, has claimed to be severely allergic to cats…

So basically, I’ve been keeping the cat in a separate room where I ply her with many comfy sleeping spots, cardboard boxes, and toys, to make up for the fact that she can’t live in the rest of the house.

But it struck me the other day that we’ve had the cat living with us for almost a year now!! And, needless to say, I’ve gotten rather attached to her. So now she is “our” cat, but we still need to work on integrating her with the dogs. After all this time they don’t seem quite as eager to catch and kill her, but I still don’t trust them completely…As for my husband’s allergies, it seems they were a bit of an exaggeration. He’s grown to like the cat as well (even if he won’t quite admit it!).

Anway, I digress! Onto spoilers!

I think this month’s shipment is gorgeous. When I first saw photos of it online, I was a little hesitant because pink isn’t my favorite color. But seeing the skein in person changed my mind. The colors are really quite lovely, and complex. And a pattern by Stephanie Pearl McPhee! I already know these socks are going to be gifts for a special someone who I won’t name because they might lurk on this blog!

So that’s it for now… time to get back to taxes!

March 30, 2009 at 6:03 am 1 comment

Extra Extra! Slow Knitter Completes projects!

I have finally completed my jaywalkers!

I consider these my first real socks – made for me! (The practice acrylic socks don’t count) I’m not sure why these took me so long… maybe it was the method of knitting two on one circular (which was definitely awkward for the first 3rd or so, but became quite efficient once I figured out the process and became more comfortable with it). Maybe it was the pattern itself that slowed me down… I dunno, but I worked on the damn things every day and it still took me 2 months to finish them.

Well, no matter, they are done! And they fit! And they’re knit with “Long Ears”, a  colorway from Indie Dyer’s World of Warcraft sock club! I may play a horde character, but even I can appreciate the lovely night-elf inspired colors!

Well, as I said, at first I was a little bummed at how long it took me to finish these and my general slow-knitting style, but I have been cheered by the fact that I have started a new pair of socks on Tuesday and I’m already almost done with the first sock today. The socks in question are my Leyburns, knit with Socks that Rock in Gypsum. I can’t believe how fast they are flying off my needles… maybe because the sock is basically stockinette stitch with a few slipped stitches. Here’s an earlier shot of  when I first started them:

These are my first toe-up socks and I’m also trying a new technique, using two circular needles to knit one at a time (though I realized later I could have done two-at-a-time this way). Anyway, I’m not sure how I feel about toe-up socks just yet… we shall see when I’m done!

I haven’t made much progress on my Queen of Beads socks, I’m afraid. I think the problem is knitting them on one tiny circular… it hurts my hands to knit that way.  I think I just need to move it onto DPNs or an extra long circular and I’ll feel much better about it.

My insecurities about knitting slow were also put to rest somewhat by a hat I knit for my husband’s grandfather. He’s not doing so well at the moment… he’s in the hospital so I wanted to knit him something that would show him that I’m thinking of him. My husband said his grandpa likes hats and the color brown so it made sense to knit a brown hat (plus, he’s in Wisconsin where it’s still nice and chilly). My husband also stressed that grandpa has a BIG head and most normal hats don’t fit him, so I made an effort to make the hat extra large. I used big needles and double stranded the yarn (Berroco Chunky, which is so cozy and soft). I followed the Basic Cable pattern in Stitch n’ Bitch Nation and finished it in just a couple TV-watching knitting sessions! I know it was chunky yarn and fat needles…. but maybe I’m not as slow a knitter as I feared!

The problem is… it may be a bit TOO big. It was even kind of loose on my hubby’s head when he modeled for me. But either way, it should keep grandpa cozy… I hope he likes it.

In my next post I’ll be mentioning some lovely awards I was given by some of my bloggy friends and I’ll be passing them on! So stay tuned!

March 15, 2009 at 9:41 am 6 comments

Is it March already?

They say March is in like a lion, out like a lamb, but this year, for me, February was all lion.

The entire month I had something going on, so I’ve felt a little disconnected from my precious internets and have been trying to catch up on all my favorite blogs!

The reason for my absence? Well, as I mentioned previously, we had a friend visiting and my husband’s gallery show. Then, the week after that, my husband’s mom and dad came to visit and we spent the week showing them around LA. Then, following that I went snowboarding for a week with some friends. I felted my mohawk hat and rather liked how it turned out, so I was excited to wear it on the slopes…

I wore it the first day of snowboarding and it kept me nice and toasty (as well as visible!) and I received lots of compliments on the slopes. But, after falling and hitting my head, I ended up buying a helmet for the remainder of my trip. As a novice snowboarder I fall A LOT, so I’m glad I switched to a helmet even if it meant I couldn’t make as much use of my knitted hat… oh well!

I’ve been so busy I haven’t been able to get as much knitting done as I would have liked, but I did work on my Jaywalkers a fair bit during my snowboarding trip (they’re almost done!).

I also FINALLY finished my husband’s socks… I swear it felt like they would never end! They’re so big… even too big for my large sock blockers. You can see where I had to change the yarn to a new ball… one of the toes looks like it’s been left out in the sun!

But the most important thing is, my husband likes the socks and they fit him! I’m already looking forward to making him another pair!

Pattern: Mr.Pitt’s Socks (aka Dad Socks) by Kaitlyn Wong

Top Down

Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rocks Medium Weight in Beryl

Size 1 Needles

There they are, my first socks of 2009! I better get crackalackin’ on some more!

March 5, 2009 at 10:29 am 4 comments


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Rockin’ Sock Club 2009

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