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.