Thursday, May 24, 2007

Sock Yarn Candy Again

Testing away in Hill Country Yarns Superfine Superwash sock yarn (4 oz, 550 yd) in Raspberry Sorbet. This yarn is nice! I thought it would be similar to the JKnits Light sock yarn I started swatching the test pattern with since JKnits is also 4 oz/550 yds. However, the HCY seems to be slightly more tightly spun.

Because I was freaking out over the gauge, I ended up knitting the test sock a little too tightly for me to get it over my heel after I knitted the gusset, so I finished it to fit Monkey1's foot length. She gave me a thumbs up on the color and the feel of the sock, so how could I resist my kid asking for one my handknit items? Of course, I still need to knit the other sock. And I'll probably make another pair for me in the JKnits I started with, but I'm waiting to see if the designer will be tweaking the pattern or not.

Did I mention I am a lemming? After seeing Glampyre, the Yarn Harlot, and Cookie A extol the virtues of Dream in Color yarn, especially Cookie on the Smooshy sock yarn, I had to order a couple. Since there are no California vendors (gasp!) and being lazy on the google-fu, I e-mailed Dream In Color who recommended one of their vendors who would be willing to take phone orders (String Theory Yarn in Glen Ellyn, IL). (Of course, they're now available at Simply Sock Yarn Co.) I ended up with their Smooshy sock yarn in Cloud Jungle & Cocoa Kiss. I love Cloud Jungle in that STR Lunasea way and Cocoa Kiss, while much darker & grayer than I had anticipated, is still lovely to me, especially since the cool dark brown/charcoal section of my color palette is severely lacking in my sock yarn stash.

I don't have much in the cool dark brown/charcoal section in my entire stash either, despite a bunch of little trips to a lys closing sale (Creative Accents in San Leandro closed last Sat :( ). I did get some browns; they're just in the warmer & lighter end of the spectrum. No stash pics of those buys since they're mostly solid colors (and the pros like Cara & Brooklyn Tweed take so much more drool-worthy pics anyway). I do need to ease up on the sock knitting and get back to my non-sock knitting since I bought enough for a sweater each for the monkeys and me, not to mention a few balls of frou-frou Crystal Palace yarns for gift scarves. Hard to beat the 70% mark down on novelty yarns (the rest were around 50%).

Saturday, May 19, 2007

What have you knit? MEME

(I didn't get tagged, but I saw this on Kel's blog and thought this would be a fun meme to do.)

Bold for stuff you've done, italics for stuff you plan to do one day, and normal for stuff you're not planning on doing.
Garter stitch
Knitting with metal wire
Stockinette stitch
Socks: top-down
Socks: toe-up
Knitting with camel yarn - blend w/lambswool
Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down
Knitting with silk
Moebius band knitting
Participating in a KAL
Drop stitch patterns
Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
Slip stitch patterns
Knitting with banana fiber yarn
Domino knitting (=modular knitting)
Twisted stitch patterns
Knitting with bamboo yarn
Two end knitting
Charity knitting
Knitting with soy yarn
Toy/doll clothing
Knitting with circular needles
Baby items
Knitting with your own handspun yarn
Graffitti knitting (knitting items on, or to be left on the street)
Continental knitting
Designing knitted garments
Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran)
Lace patterns
Publishing a knitting book
Teaching a child to knit
American/English knitting (as opposed to continental)
Knitting to make money
Button holes
Knitting with alpaca
Fair Isle knitting
Norwegian knitting
Dying with plant colours
Knitting items for a wedding
Household items (dishcloths, washcloths,tea cosies...)
Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars
Olympic knitting
Knitting with someone elses handspun yarn
Knitting with dpns
Holiday related knitting
Teaching a male how to knit
Knitting for a living
Knitting with cotton
Knitting smocking
Dying yarn
Knitting art
Knitting two socks (or other small tubular items) on two circulars simultaneously
Knitting with wool
Textured knitting
Kitchener BO
Knitting with beads
LongTail CO
Entrelac Knitting and purling backwards
Machine knitting
Knitting with selfpatterning/selfstriping/variegating yarn
Stuffed toys
Knitting with cashmere
Knitting with synthetic yarn
Writing a pattern
Knitting with linen - well, it's a cotton/linen blend, so not sure what to call this one
Knitting for preemies
Tubular CO
Freeform knitting
Short rows
Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine
Knitting on a loom
Thrummed knitting
Knitting a gift
Knitting for pets
Knitting with dog/cat hair
Hair accessories
Knitting in public

Pic details:
Above - By request, Lorna's Laces Uptown for Monkey1's second pair of Dublin Bays since her Claudia Handpainted ones are too small now.
On the left - JKnits "Light" in AC#135 & Hill Country Yarns Superfine Superwash sock yarns. Swatching for a test sock and fighting the gauge monster over it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Mitering for Hokies

Apparently after finishing my Grasshoppers, my sock knitting mojo disappeared. I met test sock gauge with my Scout BFL Indie Swag yarn, but when I started knitting the pattern, the cuff looked really tiny. I frogged it and will figure out if I need to go back to JKnits or wait for the yarn being used in the pattern to arrive.

So I decided to practice my mitered squares for the Hokie Healing project. Now I understand why Cara became obsessed. They knit fast, at least the first 6. The last 2 was more of an exercise in how many squares I could get out of 1 skein each of Plymouth Encore. I could probably get at least one more square out of the skeins, but then it felt weird having an odd one, so I'll send the leftover yarn w/the squares in case they can use it to seam the squares up.

The STR Peacock & Pisgah chevron scarf has been moving along more slowly, mainly because I haven't figured out how to knit well and watch a subtitled show (Jumong on AZN tv) at the same time. This show has become addictive. When my mom first got hooked on Korean dramas (well, the more modern soaps), I couldn't understand what the deal was. Now, both DH and I are hooked.

And actually, my sock knitting mojo hasn't disappeared entirely, it's just slowed way down. My April Y4S club sock is moving along and as it does, I'm starting to appreciate the colorway more. My initial view of the skein didn't thrill me, but the color looked better wound up and even more so when I started getting further along on the sock. I do need to finish at least this one sock because...

Y4S sent their June sock club shipment early. Check out the cute pinky goodness. The yarn is Seacoast's Panda yarn (60% merino wool, 30% bamboo, 10% nylon) in Melonballs and the pattern is Anna Bell's (My Fashionable Life) Giotto socks.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


are done!

Same details as the previous post 'cept I cast on a bit looser on the toe area 'cause I knit the first one too tightly but I'm banking on the silk to help w/the stretch sticking (the whole drapey=no "memory"). And as other sock club members noted, the toe area is a tad short. I can live with it, but I'm sure other knitters would add more straight St st rows before starting the lace section. The heel area is also on the short side, but I was too lazy to frog/tink back and re-calculate for a higher heel. Besides, it fits fine so far. I've got quite a bit left-over, so after I make a sacrificial swatch (debating if I ever want to make a sweater from this yarn), the rest will go to tapmouse who'll be making the knee high version.

eta: I haven't worn them for very long yet, so I'm not sure how much it'll slouch. However, I also have big calves, so that may counter the slouching.

I'm having a bit of overactive startitis 'cause I've already cast on for a second pair of Dublin Bays in Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock Uptown for Monkey1, started a narrow version of the linen hand towel from Mason-Dixon Knitting w/my one skein of KP Cotlin (I'm calling it my giant swatch), swatching my Scout Indie Swag Lavender Mint BFL for a test sock, and swatching some cotton for a sweater for Monkey2. I still need to finish my Chevron Scarf, my Y4S club April sock, and my Twisted Flower sock. (I've totally lost steam on the Twisted Flower despite seeing some gorgeous finished ones on And if I'm going to do some Hokie Healing squares, I need to move pronto to meet the May 31 deadline.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Rainy morning Sock P*** Friday

I'm pretty sure I'm not one of the fastest knitters in the Rockin' Sock Club, but with a little focused knitting and a relatively quick pattern, I've got my first Grasshopper done.

Details so far:
pattern size medium - In the world of BMFA, apparently I'm not very big-footed
needles - got gauge w/my KP size 1 (2.50 mm) circs which was good 'cause I didn't feel like driving to Lacis in Berkeley to see if they had some Inox circs in 2.25 mm. Beautiful things in the store, so it's not toddler-proof.

Cast on modification - Judy's Magic Cast On - 'cause I know my backward loop cast on is very uneven and based on Cece's rec. Tapmouse tells me that at sock camp, Cat Bordhi used this method.

Bind off using Denise's Grafted Cast Off found on this site. I worked off a hard copy late last night so I'm not sure if I did it correctly, but it's stretchy enough and not as "floppy" looking as the EZ sewn bind off method.

It was rainy this morning, so indoor shots of the sock it had to be.

I had to do this shot a few times before I got this partially decent one. I'm not very flexible so am limited in how I can contort my body to get a back-of-leg pic and still be able to see the camera's preview screen.

Lastly, a shot of the St st sole. I love how it feels and how it made the vertical pooling & semi-striping at the same time. The only thing that may be of concern is that if I make a sweater out of this yarn (so, so tempting!) is that there seems to be a slight biasing. I don't think it's a result of the lace pattern on the other side, but I'm not that experienced to really figure that out. I tore out my mini-swatch when I was figuring out needle sizes, so I think I'll make another swatch with the leftover yarn after and see if I'm not imagining the biasing. Someone on the sock club blog has already mentioned it, but I also want to see if the biasing will still be there if I go up to at least a 3.00 mm needle.