Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Squeezing in some knitting stress relief

For just having 1-2 people over Christmas Day, I'm surprisingly wiped out, mostly mentally. However, it probably didn't help that I'm starting to catch a cold. I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe Christmas Day.

Pattern: Broadripple socks from knitty.com
Yarn: Socks that Rock (STR) Sock Candy in Hurricane
Needles: Size 2 (3.00 mm) Addi bamboos
Mod: 4-5" cuff/leg
These socks are a great example on how to get a fraternal pair of socks from 2 skeins of handpainted yarn. The sock on the right was started on vacation last month in balmy tropical weather. The sock on the left was knit during the week before x-mas. My tension is all over the place on the second sock. But still, I'm happy w/how they turned out. Now the test on how these cotton blend socks will wear over time begins.

I couldn't decide on what to make for my next sock, so I'm kinda/sorta swatching away. The top swatch is the Seacoast Handpainted sock yarn in Butte I got from yarn4socks. I was too lazy to knit the swatch in the round but my flat sock swatches are usually are 1/2 stitch looser so I have a good idea what pattern size will work. Now I need to figure out what pattern to make w/this yarn. The second swatch is actually the cuff of Cookie's famous (or infamous) Pomatomus socks done in the new Colinette Jitterbug sock yarn tapmouse gave me. I want to see how far I get to determine if the Jay color is right for the pattern. And the last swatch is the cuff of the Retro Rib socks from Winter 04 IK done w/my new STR X-mas Balls yarn. Heh, when I go for color, I go for color. Not sure about this yet either as it's definitely too early to tell.

In the meantime, I'm slowly chugging along w/my Simple Knitted Bodice in Brooks Farm Four Play in Brown C. I hope this turns out well as it's such a nice yarn to work with.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Trying to maintain some holiday sanity

There's nothing so soothing as knitting a simple little sweater for one's little monkey, 'cept trying to seam a garter border to the sleeves & back. I'm almost done w/this little project 'cept to tweak the seam in a couple spots, block this puppy and get a ribbon or do an i-cord tie to finish it off.

Pattern: Barefoot Knits Lace Up Cardigan
Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in Nymph
Size: 2
Needle size: US 6
Modifications: absolutely none. Way too lazy to convert the pattern to knitting in the round or to adjust the collar (mainly 'cause I didn't read the pattern all the way through and so didn't realize I'd have to knit a garter strip & then seam it to the sleeves & back. Ack.)

In the really, really minor miracle department, I found my Addi bamboos! So now I can finish my STR sock candy Broadripple socks. Now if I can only find that little mu gift I hid from the monkeys for one of my mu addict friends...

And so I don't forget, I'm sending a really big holiday hug to tapmouse for my wonderful x-mas gift! It's Colinette's new sock yarn called Jitterbug in the color "Jay." It's got absolutely divinely dark stormy sea colors. Apparently it's close to Koigu in weight. Can't wait to wind it up and test it out.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Christmas knitting? What x-mas knitting?

Last year when I was newbie knitter for only a month, I made the insane decision to knit an insane amount of eyelash scarves as gifts. I vowed never again to do any x-mas knitting, especially those remotely related to eyelash scarves. So what have I been doing? I've finished most of monkey2's Barefoot Knits Lace Up Cardigan and am in the midst of seaming it up so I can knit & seam the back collar. And I've finally started my Simple Knitted Bodice - 2 very non-sock type projects. Pics of these later.

On the sock front, I finished the Infant Fancy Silk Socks from Nancy Bush's Knitting Vintage Socks book. But now that I'm done, I realize I should've done a more normal heel decrease instead of the one in Vintage Socks for my toddler. While the heel decrease as written is great for newborns w/narrow heels, it's not so good for toddlers that as extremely mobile and have more "normal" looking heels. A good lesson learned for me. And Monkey2 loves wearing them, so all is not lost.

My STR Hurricane Broadripple sock #2 alas is in trouble. I somehow misplaced my Addi bamboo #2's and so I started knitting the second sock w/the KP #2 dpn's, since they're technically the same diameter, but of course, I'm getting a tighter gauge on the KP dpn's. They're 'causing a not-unpleasant slanted striping, but there's no matching the first sock. Sigh. So I'm afraid I've hit second sock syndrome on this pair 'til I find my Addi's or buy a new set. :( At least they're a cotton blend yarn, so I can wait on wearing them.

On a happier STR front, Purlescence Yarns got their next shipment in from BMFA and I'm now a happy owner of (l to r): Harlotty, Rocktober, Christmas Balls, and not shown: Moonlight Revel (tough decision between this and Rolling Stone) and Fire on the Mountain (which I think sold out in the first 15 min of Purlescence grand opening). Obviously my x-mas gift to myself.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

A pair of vacation socks

Well, I didn't say they'd be matching. ;)

STR Hurricane Sock Candy
size 2 (3.00 mm) Addi bamboos
Broadripple pattern from knitty.com

Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock Somerset
Size 0 Susan Bates sock set
Nancy Bush Vintage Socks Child's Fancy Silk Sock
1.5" cuff & leg
4.5" foot to fit monkey2's toddler feet

Currently in sleeve purgatory for monkey2's Barefoot Knits cardigan. I hope to finish the sweater by the end of the week making it my first non-sock project since I finished my Kyoto back in October.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Aloha Friday!

I've started working on monkey2's sock again last night and it seems to be going better. For quite awhile I'm been feeling ambivalent about this sock and I'm not sure why. The pattern is cute (though I upped the needle size from a 00 to a 0), the yarn colors are cute, and knitting w/the yarn is fine. The pooling's not too bad as it looks like really fat stripes on the cuff/leg turning into skinny stripes into the heel, gusset & foot. It seems like it'll fit too as I got it on monkey2 w/o it seeming too tight or too loose. I don't know.

And a snapshot of some b-day gifts I got from HI - Mom found the Easy Knitting book in Costco which has an amusing section called Vintage to Vogue where the yarn brands "update" a few of their vintage patterns. The craft basket is also from mom who bought it from one of her innumerable friends. The eyelash lei on the right & the scarf on the left were made by my sister's ex-bf's mom who we all still talk to. (The ex-bf, not so much. Heh.) And a new Hawaiian HK doll which I like to get on each visit home. Now I just need to keep the monkeys from stealing her all the time. ;)

Missing from the pic, but not forgotten is a lovely skein of Schaeffer Anne that tapmouse gave me before my trip. Now to figure out what pattern to knit it into.

And in honor of Eye Candy Friday, I'll end w/a Wailea, Maui sunset.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Home in the Islands in the middle of the sea

where the only good Hurricane is the STR kind. (Broadripple socks pattern by Rob Matyska in knitty.com)

Can you tell how much knitting I got done in 2 weeks? Obviously not much, though I did turn the heel on monkey2's Infant Fancy Silk Sock (Nancy Bush Vintage Socks) in Lorna's Laces Somerset. Pic of that later after I unpack and slog through all my work and personal e-mails.

Oh, and the Grand Wailea Spa is 2die4! OMG. Totally extravagant but what the heck! It's not like I go spa-ing all the time. Besides, I hit my "40 is the new 30"th birthday. Hence the trip back home to visit the family and to spend way too much money on Maui.

Monday, November 13, 2006

small Dublin Bay socks

Who knew that taking pictures of socks on someone else could be that much harder than taking them on oneself? Well, we were rushing and monkey1 really wanted to wear her socks to school today.

Pattern - Dublin Bay socks
Yarn - squeaked by w/only 1 skein of Claudia Hand Painted 100% fingering yarn (50 g/175 yd) in Carousel
size 1 (2.25 mm) Susan Bates sock set dpn's
Cast on 56 sts
gauge 8 sts/in
foot size - 7" circumference, 7.5" long
other details - 1" cuff + 2" leg

Thoughts - Monkey1 wore the first sock all over the place Sat while I was still knitting the second sock and it's pilling in the heel area already and I made these socks snug, being a tight knitter and all . I suppose I could knit the next Claudia Handpaint socks on 0's, but I'll have to be in the mood. Monkey1's next socks will be on 2 skeins of whatever yarn I pick ('cept STR 'cause they've got nice yardage). (Or if there's only 1 skein for monkey1's socks, I'll just make them w/little 1-1.5" anklets.) There is absolutely no growing room in this pair of socks. Plus I caused myself a lot of undue stress and the end of sock 2 praying I had enough.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Kew socks

It's amazing how quick a project goes when it's the only one on the needles! No footies modelled shots this morning as I had touched up my toenail polish. So I put them on some d-i-y sock blockers and took an outdoor shot. Too bad it was a tad too early in the morning.

Pattern - Kew by Polly Outhwaite in knitty.com
Yarn - Socks that Rock Nodding Violet
Notes - foot portion took 1.5 pattern repeats (rows 1-24, then 1-12) before doing the toe decreases

Monday, November 06, 2006


Put a big fork in me. My Kyoto sweater is finally finished. I was so relieved that I took this pic on self-timer (hence the chopped off head) before I washed & blocked this bugger. It's now in its final drying stages so when it starts to cool off again I can actually wear this outside the house.

Specs again:
needle size - 8 US to get stitch gauge consequently my row gauge is a tad on the long side
size 38

Yarns -
SR Kertzer Butterfly Super 10 Sage green #3715
Tahki Cotton Classic Cotton Candy #3449
Tahki Cotton Classic White #3003

Modifications -
short row shoulder w/3-needle bind-off
sleeves knit in the round
collar picked up & knit after seaming the back & sides together
picked up & knit the obi sash onto the sweater then bound off
picked up & knit the bottom portion of the sweater to get a mirrored seamed look as recommended in this knitter's blog.

Lessons learned-
1) always buy an extra skein
2) never trust someone else to calculate the yardage for you or at least double check their math- which makes lesson 1 very important
3) never knit 2 adult size sweaters at the same time or lots of boo-boos will happen or worse.
4) I probably should'nt have done the short-row shoulders as they fall to the back.

Okay then, off to finish my second Kew sock which is the only thing on the needles at the moment, making me momentarily a monogamous knitter. Up next, sweaters for the monkeys (1 at a time!) and socks for monkey1, probably Dublin Bay adjusted for her size using Claudia Handpaints Carousel (on the right in pic below). Clearly monkey1 is inheriting my taste in color.

And then probably my Simply Knitted Bodice in Brooks Farm Four Play in Brown C.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Ending Socktoberfest on a pretty note.

I didn't think I was that far along w/my first Kew sock yesterday. But it's done in time for the end of Socktoberfest! One down, one to go! Woot!

Counting my second KP Simple Stripes sock and my first Kew sock, my Socktoberfest count is 2 pairs of adult socks and one pair of toddler socks. Not bad. Not bad at all. :)

and continuing my STR list. Here are colors #151-190:
Double Dutch Canyon
Falcon's Eye
Gold Nugget
Gunmetal Gray
Heart Throb
In the Navy
Midnight Stonewash
Ms LaRock
Peridot & Periwinkle
Petrified Wood
Prickly Pear
Rhode Island Red
Rock Candy
Rock My World
Spot Rock Two

Thank you knitty.com board members and blogland knitters. Keep them coming!

Monday, October 30, 2006

Add to my Socks that Rock list!

As I told tapmouse, I had a slow moment last week and proceeded to list all the STR colors in an excel spreadsheet. (To clarify, I only own 8 of their colors.) Not being technically savvy enough to link that simple spreadsheet here, I decided to just list them. I'm sure I missed lots as there are supposedly 250+ STR colors and I've only found 111 so far. Want to help me?

24 Karat
Apple Valley Road
Atomic #6
Azure Malachite
Banded Agate
Bleeding Hearts
Blue Brick Wall
Carbon Dating
Carbon Dioxide
Chapman Springs
Cherries Jubilee
Christmas Balls
Cobalt Bloom
Cobblestone Country
County Clare
Cracked Canyon
Dust in Terra--
Dutch Canyon
Fire on the Mountain
Fred Flinstone
Hard Rock
Harvest Moon
Heavy Metal
Highway 30
Hot Flash
Hurricane Kaci
Jail House Rock
Jewel of the Nile
Jingle Bell Rock
Love In Idleness
Lover's Leap
Lucy in the Sky--
Midsummer's Night
Moonlight Revel
Moss Agate
Nodding Violet
Pebble Beach
Philosopher's Stone
Pop Rocks
Prove It All Night
Puck's Mischief
Purple Rain
Rainforest Jasper
Red Rock Canyon
Rock Star
Rocky Horror
Rolling Stone
Romancing the Stone
Rooster Rock
Rose Quartz
Ruby Slippers
Scottish Highlands
Seal Rock
Siren Song
Spot Rock One
Spring Fling
Star Sapphire
Terra Firma
Tiger's Eye
Two Can Rock
Velvet Moon
Watermelon Tourmaline
X-mas Rock

ETA: I just saw this posted on the STR KAL as their new sock club color:

112 Pink Granite

Edited (Again) to add more:

Amber Waves
Barney Rubble
Black Onyx
Blarney Stone
Blue Boo!
Blue Moon Rock
Blue Moon Stone
Cotton Candy
Crazy Lace Agate
Emerald City
Emerald Isle
Garnet Dream
Pixie Park
Plymouth Rock
Queen Rock
Rare Gems
Rock Salt
Ruby Tuesday
Smokey Topaz
Sun Drops

That's 150! Only 100 (plus or minus) to go!

(progress on my Kew socks in STR Nodding Violet)

Medium well

I didn't work to much more on my Kew socks, but I did finally finish the sash on my Kyoto sweater. Technically I am done according to the pattern, but like all other Kyoto knitters, I want to make it longer. So I'll be adding in another "panel" of the sage green after the sash.

I did have monkey1 take a pic of me modelling this sweater, but I've come to realize it could've done w/a bit of short row shaping. Apparently this sweater really looks best on those below a B cup.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Four Meme

Because I got tagged by tapmouse:

Four jobs I’ve had:
1) babysitter – and not just my much younger sister
2) errand runner for a lawyer
3) Summer Fun student aide
4) Civil Engineering student assistant

Four movies I can watch over and over:
1) Lord of the Rings trilogy (I am a LotR geek)
2) Lilo and Stitch (my children get a kick when I slip into pidgin w/the characters)
3) Pride & Prejudice (both the latest version & the A&E mini-series)
4) The Last of the Mohicans (cause I had a thing for Daniel Day Lewis & Eric Schweig)

Four places I have lived:
Quezon City, Philippines
Honolulu, HI
Oakland, CA
Oakley, CA

Four television shows I love to watch:
Project Runway

Four places I have been on vacation:
Vancouver, Canada
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Phoenix, AZ

Four of my favourite dishes:
Profiterole from a time share restaurant in Puerto Vallarta – nothing ever beat it
Linguine w/clams
Prawns anything
Prime Rib end cut

Four websites I visit (almost) daily:
Face Online board
knitty.com board
Yarn Harlot
Flickr.com (I do a lot of knitting pic searches)

Four places I would rather be right now:
yarn stores (stolen from tapmouse!)
My favorite Nars counter or Sephora
Library or book store

Four bloggers I am tagging:
a potty mouth among the puritans - a crafty jeweller & fellow mu addict
In the Shadow of Space - another crafty jeweller & fellow Nartian
and I don't know, whoever else finds my blog

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Jaywalkers are done!

The silly cutesy Jaywalkers pic:

Thank goodness monkey2's daycare likes me, otherwise they'd be thinking even stranger thoughts about me draping socks over their little traffic signs. And the modelled shot of the fraternal pair.

So now tapmouse and I are doing our own little KAL for knitty Kew. I'm doing mine in STR Nodding Violet. I like this pattern cept for the annoyance that is keeping track of yo's at the end of a needle.

But before I cast on for Kew, I decided to give the Fancy Silk Sock from Nancy Bush's Vintage Socks a try in CTH supersock solid in Turquoise. Too bad I messed up halfway through the cuff. I somehow shifted the stitches over, so I need to either frog back and start all over or tink back to the error. I'll probably frog back all the way 'cause it'll be faster than trying to figure out what repeat I messed up on and get the stitches all on the needles correctly.

And the Kyoto progresses with it's endless rows of double seed stitch. At least I'm halfway done w/the sash.

Monday, October 16, 2006

I am whack

I didn't realize how much of a spendy mood I was in when I went to the grand opening of a new yarn store, Purlescence Yarns in Sunnyvale this weekend. As you can see from the pic, I had a blue-ish theme going here. Left to right, all lightweight Socks That Rock from Blue Moon Fiber Arts 'cept the last one which is Sock Candy (cotton/Elite): Peaseblossom (seen online as the STR Club Hippy Crunchy pattern), 2 of the Midsummer's Night Dream themed colors - Nodding Violet (Purlescence owner Nathania named this one) and Love-In-Idleness (ironically I did not grab the last Puck's Mischief, tapmouse's named one), Chapman Springs (this is the first one I grabbed out of instinct), Seal Rock (a tapmouse fav), and Hurricane. And thanks to tapmouse's cool idea, here they are opened up minus Peaseblossom 'cause you can see lots of pics of it knitted up on the STR KAL.

(Heh, monkey2 won't stay still enough for me to take a pic of her in the toddler socks, but she somehow manages to sneak her hand into this pic.)

I got to Purlescence 15 minutes after they opened and a lot of the STR stock was gone already. All the Fire on the Mountain went quick. There was one X-Mas Rock left, but I didn't pick it up. If there was any Watermelon Tourmaline it was gone 'cept for the one in the Fair Isle kit. Felt up the Bambu (very soft stuff) and merino/tencel, but will wait on those 'til November as I got a 10% coupon in my bag good for the beginning of November. Hopefully, they get restocked in the Socks That Rock by then.

And to prove that I am doing something w/my sock yarn, I finished the toddler socks. It's a good thing I only made 2.5" cuff/legs 'cause I didn't have very much left over when I was done. It's still a little big for monkey2, but she ran away while trying to take the socks off when I busted out the digital camera. Apparently, she prefers the sneaking her hand in a stash shot to be more fun. (See above.)

Pattern: His, Hers, Ours toddler socks from Rainbow Knits for Kids
Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill Supersport in Winterberry (discontinued) - sold as a half hank from Trash & Treasure
2T-3T size (40 sts)
size 3 needles instead of size 5 called for in pattern, tighter gauge as a result
2.5 in cuff - using lace pattern

I also managed to finish my first Jaywalker this weekend and am gearing up to cast on the second before I get sidetracked w/all my other new sock yarn. So my thoughts so far on my Jaywalkers are:

- I may need to be one of those knitters that need to go down a needle size on my k2p2 ribbing since it's so much looser than my stockinette or other pattern stitches, 'cept maybe lace?

- I like Grumperina's pretty way to pick up gusset stitches, but I purposely neglected to pick up the extra stitches a la Charlotte Schurch's (Sensational Knitted Socks) method and ended up w/ honkin' holes in my socks. I can either call them design elements or fix them on the second sock. Still debating w/myself.

Friday, October 13, 2006

In which I refuse to answer the underlying question of how much of a sock yarn stash I have

So this week's Soctoberfest short meme is about one's sock yarn stash. Since I've slowly been posting pics of my sock yarn as I've gotten them, I've decided to go into denial about how much I really have in such a short time and not take a pic of them all together.

Do you have certain patterns planned for some of the yarns? Do you buy yarn and then choose a pattern?

I’m finding as a new sock knitter that I’m buying yarn because I find out about a sale on certain yarns that I remember having good reviews and I respond in a positive way to the colorway. Then I look for a pattern. This is very opposite of the non-sock projects I’ve made so far. Usually I see a pattern then find the yarn to go with it. The only exception has been the Elsebeth Lavold Silky Tweed I bought from the Article Pract summer sale where I went looking for a pattern (Knit & Tonic’s Not So Shrunken Cardigan).

Does a certain sock yarn you have in your stash take you back to a certain event? (where you were when you bought/received it? what was going on in your life at the time!)

I just started sock knitting so it’s too early to give a substantive answer to this question. Well, I think all the sock yarn I've acquired so far will get remembered as Socktoberfest yarn 'cause apparently that's been my excuse to get them all. ;)

Oh, and pic info:

Top right pic - progress on my Koigu Jaywalkers & a re-start on the CTH supersport toddler socks, this time on size 3 needles. This time I'm doing the lace pattern (Rainbow Knits for Kids).

Pic directly above - STR Rainforest Jasper leftovers on a mini-sock keychain. Waves to tapmouse! The sock blocker key chain was looking awefully nekkid after I frogged the STR Rolling Stone off of it. I didn't remember where I stopped so I'd have to start all over again anyway.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Medium rare

You can't put a fork in me yet, but I'm slowly getting there w/the Kyoto sweater. I finally finished the top half and seamed the sides and sleeves together late last night, obviously after I snapped this pic. I'm hoping to finish this sweater this month so I can start my Simple Knitted Bodice next month.

And because I was working on my sweater this weekend, I didn't have very much progress on my very first Jaywalkers. I will say that I absolutely love love love this Koigu 123A colorway. This colorway, more than any of the commercial ones w/"Hawaii" in it's name or theme, reminds me of all things Hawaiian. The deep blue of the Pacific, the shallower reef water, the lush colors of the tropical flowers, the lush green vegetation. Just love it.

As for the Jaywalkers pattern, it's rather fun though I'm debating w/myself if I should rip all the way back and redo the cuff on smaller needles or tink back just to the cuffs and knit the rest on larger needles since the cuff is comfortable but the leg is a wee bit snug.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Socktoberfest questionnaire

When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?
I just started the weekend of Sept 15. After petting tapmouse’s Socks That Rock (STR) WIP’s and reading a few threads on the knitty.board, I bought a copy of Sensational Knitted Socks by Nancy Bush and followed her “class sock” instructions.

What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time?
My first pair which I just finished earlier this week is made from Knitpicks (KP) Simple Stripes that I bought from their clearance sale. It’s too early to tell how they’ll hold up yet.

What would you have done differently?
Too soon for me to say yet ‘cept maybe ignore the self-striping color and stick to only a 1-1.5” cuff. 2” is a little too long for my taste. But in essence, I probably should’ve used a non-self striping yarn, despite my beginner’s luck of the stripes matching on both socks.

What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?
Well, from my little swatches so far, I love Cherry Tree Hill (CTH) Supersock, Fleece Artist, Koigu, and the STR samples/left-overs tapmouse gave me. Is it me or are the solid colored sock yarns a hair thicker than the variegated, specifically for CTH and Fleece Artist?

Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?
So far, I’ve knit them on DPN’s. But I’ll try 2 circs as soon I put in and receive my next KP order. I suppose I will at some point try the Magic Loop method but that would require adding longer circs to my KP order. (Yeah, like that's going to be a hard decision.) And despite knowing how to crochet since I was young, I currently have no desire to crochet a pair. Am not fond of having to do a lot of single crochet.

Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?)
Too early to tell yet. So far I’ve only done a flap heel, but I’m looking forward to trying the short row since a couple patterns I like have that feature.

How many pairs have you made?
Including the class sock pair (which can be considered toddler socks), so far I’m at 2.

I have another toddler sock on the needles in CTH Supersport, but it needs to be frogged. It's too tight for monkey1 and way too big for monkey2. As for adult sized socks, I think I'll start w/Hedera in Fleece Artist Lily Pond and maybe Jaywalkers in Koigu.

eta: Well, actually I've started my Jaywalkers in Koigu and may do Hedera in a different solid colored yarn.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Beginner's luck

Knitpicks Simple Stripes Snapdragon
size 2.50 mm (KP size 1) dpns
cast on 72 sts for my 9" ankle
pattern - a take off of Sensational Knitted Socks 4-stitch pattern section, but ended up going straight St st.

I finished my first pair of adult socks last night! Woohoo! Well, I kitchenered it this morning after all the made knitting I was doing last night through Heroes (only dropped 2 stitches!) and the usual background noise of the news. I didn't want to take the chance of really screwing it up when I was so close to the end. And amazingly there's almost identical twins. They're maybe 1-1.5 rows off w/the self-striping and different splotches of brown from where the dye mixed here and there. Of course, that means my sock knitting karma will now be filled w/lots of pooling and other challenges.

And in the good timing department, my second half of my Little Knits Fleece Artist order and my Brooks Farm Four Play in Brown C (pics of that later) came in last night as well. I had originally wanted Woodland but she had sold out so I chose Forest, but luckily for me I got a skein marked Woodland/Forest but it looks much more like the Woodland I wanted. Sweet. And that other skein in the pic is the very pretty Wild Flower.

So while I have tons of leafy/vine-type patterns to chose from for the Woodland/Forest, there doesn't seem to be much in the way of more floral patterns unless I pic a lace pattern and go for it. Off to inundate myself w/all the free sock patterns floating around as I now go off to swatch my new sock yarns.

Monday, October 02, 2006


To avoid the second sock syndrome, I cast on my second KP Simple Stripes sock immediately and am madly knitting away, and not just 'cause of Socktoberfest. I only have one set of size 1 dpns currently (need to place another KP order!) and am also itching to swatch up all my new sock yarn brands to figure out what my next sock pattern will be. I had knit up a swatch in KP Dancing on size 0's and got a whopping 10 sts/in! If I want to knit monkey1 a pair of socks in Dancing, I'd have to cast on 72 sts! So it's a no go there. Will need to swatch up Dancing on size 2's (the KP 3.00 mm variety) and see if I can get closer to the 8 st/in range.

I'm also continuing my Kyoto sweater w/my second sleeve and in a moment of knitters AADD, the collar trim on the body. One of these days I'll be done w/this project, but not before my second sock is done. ;)

And speaking of knitters AADD of the sock variety, I started the todder sock from Rainbow Knits for Kids called something like His, Hers, Ours, and Theirs. The pattern calls for Cherry Tree Hill (CTH) Supersport yarn on size 5 needles w/a gauge of 6 sts/in! Since the size 2T-3T instructions call for casting on 40 sts, I figured by the time I knit a gauge swatch I might as well knit the sock itself. And if it's a little big, I figure monkey1 can grow into it. Heh. And to test how much growing room I had, I had monkey2 (grudgingly in toddler of terror style) model the sock in progress w/a lot of help from monkey1.

Clearly we have a lot of growing room. And to figure out how much room, I had a more cooperative monkey2 try on the sock. Heh. So it looks like the "toddler" socks w/a 2" twisted cable cuff/leg will now be socks in the 5-7 yr child range. Since the pattern suggests a 5"(!!!!) leg for the 2T-3T size, I should have enough yarn in the half hank to make the foot part long enough to fit monkey1. Besides, the Winterberry colorway looks better w/monkey1's skintone.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


The NSSC is no more. At least for awhile. I think when I reknit this I will actually go down not just to my usual size, but one more, I think. If it doesn't work, I'll just re-knit yet again. Or if worse comes to worse, get the Elsebeth Lavold Sophisticated Lady book and knit something from there.

And there's nothing like a little retail yarn therapy to take the sting out of frogging the whole body of a sweater plus half a sleeve. I got more Louet Gems in Caribou (I was debating this w/the Tobacco on my last visit) and Pink Panther for monkey1 from Yarn in Alameda and Fleece Artist merino sock yarn from the Little Knits sale in Pinata and Lily Pond. And thanks to some cheering from tapmouse, I went ahead and also ordered more Fleece Artist in Forest and Wildflower. I was going to go back and buy Autumn, but I hesitated too long and it's sold out. As my wallet takes a momentary sigh of relief as I'm gearing up to order my Brooks Farm Four Play Yarn for my Simple Knitted Bodice. And I wouldn't be a makeup addict w/o making my favorite olive browns eyeshadows (Nars Star Sailor, Stila Golightly and La Douce) as my tools to decide on the Brown C color.

eta: Heh, monkey1 laid dibs on the Pinata Fleece Artist (left in the pic above), but I told her they have to be socks. So it's a good thing I ordered more Fleece Artist for myself.

Then I promise myself to go on a yarn buying moritorium 'til February (Stitches West) except for a couple skeins of STR in November for my birthday. Or maybe 4?

Monday, September 25, 2006

And so it begins.

Whee! I'm halfway done w/my first pair of adult socks! Gee, I didn't think it would be so awkward trying to take a pic of one's own sock-clad foot as I can see I didn't pull my socks up all the way as I was contorting my leg and digi cam around.

So now I need to cast on my second sock on my one set of size 1 KP Options dpn's before I start swatching away w/my other sock yarns and tie them up. I guess that means I'll need to order a second set. :) Anyway, the deets so far are:

KP Simple Stripes Snapdragon
KP size "US 1" (2.5 mm) dpns - 8 sts/in, forget the row gauge, need to re-measure
72 sts cast on, ~4" leg length (I have short & stubby legs),
just your run-of-the-mill basic sock pattern

This first sock will be designated as my "left" sock since my left foot is slightly larger and this sock is a little loose at the heel on my right foot. I'll be switching to my KP size 0 dpn's for the heel on the second sock and see how that works for my right foot. I do think that for my next pair of socks, I'll give the short row heel a try along w/a shorter cuff length of around 1-1.5" as 2" is a little too much for my personal liking.

And isn't the sock blocker the cutest thing! Too bad I don't have enough of the STR Rolling Stone sample to finish the mini-sock so I can either wait 'til tapmouse is done w/her socks and beg for a wee bit more or try to knit another mini-sock w/the STR cedar creek leftover she gave me. I really love the colors of the Rolling Stone though.

Hee, maybe when BMFA gets all their colors on their website (maybe?) or when I go to Stitches West next year, I can grab the colorway for myself. Unless I get sidetracked by one of their other 250+ gorgeous colorways.

I am hooked!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Frog or finish?

I guess when my Kyoto sleeve finally started going well, I would finally get out of denial about my Not So Shrunken Cardigan (NSSC) having a lot more ease and room than I realized I would be comfortable with. While I chose to knit the 38 bust size for my LBT and the Kyoto, for some inexplicable reason I chose to knit the NSSC in a size 40. I knew the body had a bit of ease in it that I thought I wouldn't mind, but it just didn't click in my head that since this pattern was top down, it made the sleeves huge, even with the decreases. So now the question is, do I frog or finish? (And pardon the pic, it actually isn't as uneven as it looks. I simply didn't place it evenly on my body.)

Well, actually my choices are 1) frog the sleeve back and decrease 3x more often at least but it would still be loosey-goosey at the top of the arm and underarm area, 2) frog the whole darn thing, or 3) finish per pattern, throw it in the dryer after washing and hope for the best (but it is unlikely it will shrink how I want it, if it shrinks at all due to the silk content) or 4) seam up the sides by an inch. It would actually need to be seamed another inch for at least 2" total but that would leave a ridiculously large seam "allowance." But since this sweater if for me, I do not have any time constraints on finishing this and since I do love this yarn knitted up (yum), the idea of frogging the whole thing and starting all over is actually palatable. Well, at least for the moment.

On the positive side, I finished 1 of my Kyoto sleeves and my first adult size sock in Knitpicks Simple Stripes Snapdragon is going along rather well. The caveat being I have made a couple mistakes that I fixed and shouldn't be too noticeable. One thing I realized though is that I am not a self-striping yarn person. I think I'm a little too fussy and anal about where the stripes are going. I made the cuff 2", probably at least 0.5" too long because I didn't like ending the cuff only partway through the purple stripe. The other thing with this yarn and probably why it's on clearance is that there are brown flecks there and there where the dye colors dripped/mixed together outside their respective stripe areas. It's definitely not as soft as the other sock yarns I've gotten but have yet to knit up. Then again, I haven't washed it yet.

And thanks to tapmouse I am now the proud owner of her leftover Socks that Rock (STR) Fairgrounds yarn in medium weight. There's definitely enough left over for toddler socks, but it's a maybe for girls socks. I was going to try a toe up pattern to see if I can get girl anklets out of them, but monkey1 doesn't want them due to the presence of the green color in them. The other STR yarn samples she gave me are a bit of Rainforest Jasper in lightweight and a bit of Rolling Stone to swath with and to may a microscopic sock for the sock blocker key chain she also gave me. This will be cute and fun to do!

And now I know why the Yarn Harlot says that sock stash doesn't count. It can grow exponentially! In a weak moment I ordered Koigu 123A (first pair of yarn on the left)from the kyarns.com sale knitty board members posted about. Very cute and tropical-y. A lot greener than the online pic though. Then another knitting friend told me about Yarn in Alameda's going out of business sale so we headed over there at lunch and got myself a pair of Loet Gems in Tobacco, Fleece Artist merino sock yarn in a pretty royal blue (Polar Seas? No color name or number on the label), and Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock in Somerset. They only had 3 skeins of the LL left, all in different colors, so I got the pink and green colorway for a pair of toddler socks for monkey2 before I found out monkey1 wasn't excited about the STR Fairgrounds colors. Oh well, I guess that means monkey2 will get way more socks than monkey1.