Saturday, April 28, 2007

Saturday Swag

So I got lucky when I entered the "lottery" for the next round of Scout's Indie Swag and am in for the months of April, May and June. I got the package last night and I love the colorway. The yarn is BFL so it'll be me first time knitting w/this type of wool. This yarn will wait however since I need to swatch it and figure out what pattern it wants to be.

And here's the obligatory opened skein pic:

And since I'm on the subject of yarn clubs, not much progress on my Y4S April sock. Still like the pattern, the yarn's okay but I've decided the color is not my favorite and most decidedly not me. I'll still finish the pair because I am a masochist, but I'm carefully considering not renewing. I am definitely in one-two clubs too many.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Okay, so I'm not panicking

But first, if you're a Rockin's Sock Club member that's stumbled upon my blog and you haven't gotten your April package yet and don't want to be spoiled, do *not* scroll down. That is all.

Second, a little YPF. On top is a non-sock yarn! It's Yarn Botanika's cashmere in Pink Sand from One Planet. Yummy, yummy. One Planet gave me a free scarf pattern so that's what it'll be. :D

Bottom is Sundara's Cherry Blossom colorway in her sock yarn. Okay, so I lied to tapmouse that I wasn't going to get the Cherry Blossom, but I had a weak moment and am finally in possession of an elusive Sundara skein. So now that itch is scratched.

And why am I not panicking despite not being short-toed? A lovely knitty board knitter had some leftover Willow she offered gratis for my Twisted Flower sock so I can finish the toes for both socks ('cause I will be repeating this folly for the second sock). Now to figure out what to give her in return as thanks. I want to give her something really cute, but I'll probably go practical and useful. But in the meantime, this sock will be temporarily UFO'd...

'cause I got my Rockin' Sock Club package. Woohoo! I love this yarn. It's already been wound and am madly swatching away. I only own one 2.75 mm 24" circular needle, a Susan Bates Quicksilver which my lys stopped carrying 'cause she wasn't happy with their quality after the company started selling product at the big box stores. The Quicksilver is also a little grabby and combined w/the 81% superwash/19% silk blend of Silkie, I may end up too loose of a gauge anyway. I hope either of my KP circulars (2.50 mm size 1 or the 3.00 mm size 2) will work 'cause then I'm at a loss on where to get metal circs that 2.75 mm locally ('cause I don't want to wait for an online order). Addi's are of course out of the question 'cause they're the same size as KP's.

But oh, this yarn feels great. I would so love to get enough for a sweater, however crazy that sounds. Okay, off to finish swatching.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Someone tell me not to panic

'cause telling myself this isn't keeping that feeling from beginning to well up.

I haven't done any weighing or other scientific methods, but I just *know* I don't have enough. It's not like I can call Yarn in Alameda to see if she has another skein in the same dye lot 'cause she closed her business. Oh, to have the foresight to realize I would need 3 skeins for a pattern I decided to knit it into.

Logically my options are:
1) Post on the knitty swap section (and KR too?) and hope someone has a spare Louet Gems Pearl in Willow and that I'll get incredibly lucky that they have the same dye lot (80-1552-5).

2) Call Article Pract and whatever other lys in my metropolitan area that carries Louet and just buy another Willow regardless of dye lot and hope Louet is really consistent. It is a solid color afterall.

3) Knit the second skein I have all the way through in the medium size and see if 1) it fits (the lace is stretchier than I thought it'd be) and 2) I can do one sock w/one skein. If it works, then frog the first sock (sob!) and re-do it.

Oh, what to do, what to do!

Monday, April 23, 2007

For the love of yarn

Since tapmouse outed me on the more yarn shopping at Purlescence (well, it's still sock yarn ;) ), I might as well show the goods:

left: Blue Moon Fiber Arts (BMFA) Seduction in Purple Rain
right: Colinette Jitterbug in Florentine

Can you tell what color mood I was in on Saturday? I have no idea what to make of these 2, but I have no doubt I'll be inspired.

And a lesson for me on the day-to-day change in my tension. I still like how my colors vertically pool at the beginning though.

And apparently, I like to have 3 WIP's. Two projects at one time is not enough it seems, even w/one being a "complex" pattern. Well, the Twisted Flower pattern isn't so much complex as requiring one's full attention.

Casted on my Yarn 4 Socks (Y4S) sock club pattern, Balance Socks by A Designedly, Kristi. The softener smell has diminished enough that I could handle it for long periods of time without fear of getting a headache.

Their 65% lambswool/35% camel down blend is rather inelastic so I'm knitting the medium size. I had initially cast on the large, but it was definitely too large. Lovely pattern though. It comes in 4 sizes (toddler, adult sm, adult med, adult large !), so I could see knitting this pattern again in a different yarn for other members of my family.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Following my lemming urges

After seeing all those STR chevron scarves (pattern in Last Minute Knitted Gifts) on flickr, I finally decided to wind up my Pisgah (Peacock already wound from the aborted Monkey sock attempt) and pull out my size 5 KP interchangeables and cast on.

I'm happy with the way it's turning out:

I also decided that the Ozark Handspun hat I made last year would be no more. I realized I am so not a hat person and I didn't really want to give the hat away, so off it went to the frog pond and came back as a simple scarf. Size 17 dpn's are so quick.

Just a pic of my Twisted Flower sock showing the Willow color better. On row 10(!) of the leg pattern second repeat. The half w/o the twists & cables isn't bad and I can crank through those, but it's the part where I double check if I'm doing a twisted 1R (or 1L) vs a cable 1R (or 1L) that slows me down. And dropping stitches on this is no fun 'cause I get all stressed out making sure I've the stitches back on the right way for each row before I can continue.

And I finally got to see tapmouse yesterday and pester her with questions about Camp and fondle not just my goodies, but hers as well. She didn't just get yarn (I love her Mystic Kelp and Socktopus is cool in that Lorna's Laces Vera way) so I got to check out the patterns she bought and other stuff. My planned buys were one lightweight (Lunasea) and one Seduction (ended up being Typhoon Tina) and when I played with all the goodies, ended up buying one of the mill ends. I think the mill end (none have color names)is one of the chicken themed colorways, but I'll have to check.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Not at sock camp

but explaining to my friend that I'd bail on her wedding in Hawaii to hang out with a bunch of knitters on Orcas Island would've been a wee bit difficult. Although the wedding won't be 'til July, my budget wasn't going to allow for both trips this year. And I shouldn't really complain 'cause tapmouse got me more BMFA yarn!

In any case, I've been stuck on what to knit non-sockwise for Project Spectrum and so I finally got around to knitting the baby hat from One Skein. (Someone I know is bound to have a baby girl sooner or later.)

Yarn: Plymouth Yarn Baby Alpaca DK
needle size: size 6 Clover bamboo dpns
pattern size: 12-18 mo

The ball band rec said size 6 needles would give a gauge of 5.5 spi and the pattern gauge called for 5.25 spi. I got 5 spi. I guess I'm getting looser in my knitting 'cause I expected to at least get ball band gauge. Then again, it could be the bamboo needles since I'm looser on them then metal. So the hat is actually a little bigger than the pattern size which is okay. (Hat modelled on a size 2 soccer ball 'cause monkey2 was less than cooperative.) I still have a bunch of yarn left over from the skein so I'll see if I can knit the newborn size too.

The hat was a nice relatively easy knit to balance out all the focus needed for my Twisted Flower sock. And it was nice to have a quickie FO since this sock is so not going to be quick. Only on row 22 for the leg chart.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

BFF socks

My belated & last Project Spectrum Feb/Mar project
pattern: Cookie A's BFF socks
yarn: Fleece Artist (FA) Polar Sea
needle size: size 1 (2.25 mm) Susan Bates sock set
size: L
- Standard Slip stitch heel (sl 1, k1, etc) instead of the St st one called out for in the pattern since I was nervous about the FA holding up in straight St st in this area
- Used the older version of pattern so cable pattern wasn't centered after the heel set up, reversed the asymmetry on the second sock to make the pair mirror each other

Thoughts - I love how the FA feels and knits up. No wonder some of the more popular colors online go in a blink of the eye. I'd knit this pattern again, especially since Cookie revised the heel set up, but I still need to go through my list of all my Cookie A patterns first. I also find it ironic that I'm tackling her less easy patterns first. Well, one day I will knit her Hederas & Monkeys, but for now I'm going to tackle her Twisted Flower pattern.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

It's been all about birthdays lately

And today's birthday people are DH and monkey1. That's right, monkey1 was my gift to DH one year. And monkey1 never lets daddy forget it either. :)

pattern: Modello Giuditta from Magknits
yarn: Inspired by this version, Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in birthday girl's choices of:
Pink Diamond
Carribean Sea
Wolverine Blue
Hunter Green
needle size: KP size 7 interchangeables
pattern size: 8
- back length ended up longer than the 20" called for in the pattern simply because I wasn't paying attention.
- crocheted edging consisted of 2 rows of sc, then the floret st row (sl st, dc, sl st).

I don't know why pattern directions in general call out for only 1 row of single crochet to stop the St st from rolling 'cause I keep finding your really need 2 rows.

And before tapmouse heads off to sock camp, I figure I better swatch up my STR Seduction before I ask her to custom buy another one for me.

Left: Yarn Botanika merino tencel in Forest from One Planet
Right: STR Seduction in Lagoon from Purlescence Yarns.

Clearly I need to expand my green spectrum a wee bit more.

And my first Yarn4Socks sock club package came in. I'm debating if I've joined one sock club too many now. I love the pattern, but am very undecided on the yarn. It's Y4S's house yarn, I assume, a wool/camel down blend in the color Hunter's Glen. Not sure about the color and the heavily fragranced softener that was used is rather potent. I'm debating if I should wash the yarn before I use it to get the fragrance out.