Thursday, April 30, 2009

Pixies, Roses & Stars

I don't mean to be all about the sock knitting, but I somehow started way too many and I'm in the mood to finish some so my WIP number is closer to my comfort level.

Did I mention Rogue Roses is a fast pattern? That and it's in medium weight. The only issue I have is because I didn't start the second sock at the "same" spot in the color progression and knowing my gauge for the second leg would be different than the first, the second leg vertically flashed, with much of the orange, even tempered with the pink, ending up in the front. It's a bit uncomfortable for me, but not so much that I want to rip it out & start over. Also, the foot patterning of the second ended up close enough to the first.

March Rockin' Sock Club Kit
pattern: Rogue Roses by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (aka The Yarn Harlot)
pattern size: medium
yarn: Socks That Rock medium weight in Gertrude Skein
needle sizes: 2.50 mm KP metal dpns (for the inside of the picot hem) & 2.75 mm KP metal dpns for the rest orf the sock
no mods otherwise

Also completed is my Pixie Park plain vanilla sock. Started on our Disneyland trip and worked on off and on since then, with a few rows of practicing the Yarn Harlot's lever method here and there. I finally got around to finishing off the toe. Since it's my only vanilla sock WIP, the second sock will also be worked on intermittently with the occasional row or 2 of lever knitting.

The Yarn Harlot's sock recipe
STR lightweight in Pixie Park
size 2.25 mm KP Harmony circs (got my replacement for the one that broke)

Part of the reason why the second vanilla sock will be done at a casual pace is that I need to pace myself with this sock.

Nebula by Cookie A - available on her website today!
Dream in Color Smooshy in Wisteria
size 2.75 mm KP dpns to get 8 spi
Left sock in the medium size
No mods as this was my test knit
test knit period for test sock: April 14 to April 19

With all the twisted stitches and cabling, the test knit period was a little tough on my hands. So to avoid hand fatigue and to try to address my other issues with Smooshy, the right sock will be going at a more leisurely pace.

Despite the lovely color palette and squooshiness of the yarn, I have a distinct dislike for knitting it into socks for some reason. I love Dream In Color's worsted weight, but the Smooshy requires a lot more work than I want to do to get the gauge or the fabric I want. Unfortunately, I succumbed to the lemming rush for this yarn when it became much more widely available and bought way too many without knitting one first. I am somewhat at a loss as to what to do with the rest of my Smooshy stash. I've got a bunch for Jeanie, but that's a stole. I seem to be okay with knitting Dream In Color Baby (uh, whenever I get back to the second half of my MS4), so I am assuming I should be okay knitting the Smooshy as a lace yarn.

I also am having an aversion to destash for some reason. I have not had a bad swap or cp (custom purchase) in either my makeup or knitting experience, but my inner voice tells me that I am due for one. So I am avoiding destashing for a long while, if not permanently, unless it's with close knitterly friends. The only option for the rest of the single skeins for now is to use them doubled to make hats & fingerless mitts instead of socks.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Roguish Rose

My knitting focus is not as it usually is, but at least I'm back to 1 sock/week roughly.

I managed to get my March Rockin' Sock Club kit the day before I headed to Camp Knitty Haha and get it started at Camp. Unfortunately, I only got to half a repeat of the pattern (1 little rosebud) before I put it down for all the Sock Camp activities and other knitting responsibilities. I even had to rip back once due to using the wrong chart. I hastily copied the pattern & didn't staple them in order.

Once organized at home, the sock flew. And except for a little bit of wonkiness in gauge due to not working on this sock for awhile, it does fit nicely.

Quick deets:
March Rockin' Sock Club Kit
pattern: Rogue Roses by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (aka The Yarn Harlot)
pattern size: medium
yarn: Socks That Rock medium weight in Gertrude Skein
needle sizes: 2.50 mm KP metal dpns (for the inside of the picot hem) & 2.75 mm KP metal dpns for the rest orf the sock
no mods otherwise

Also completed 'cept for the lack of stylish wardrobe according to Monkey1 is her Knitted Babe. And just like my Monkeys, the Knitted Babe's hair is in need of a haircut and a good styling.

Some deets:
Knitted Babe
various shades of Knit Picks Palette for the body & clothes
Patons Classic Wool for the hair
size 2.75 KP circs
eye & mouth felt pieces by Monkey1

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

C is for Cookie

I got my signed copy of Cookie A's book today!

The pattern I sample knit for Cookie:

Lindsay (Rav link)
Hand Jive Nature's Palette in Walnut - 2 skeins
size 2.50 mm KP Harmony dpns

Love the pattern. Not as simple as her Monkey socks, but with the triangular shapes, it had that certain feel. It was actually a pretty quick knit for me despite doing k4togs & ssskp's on the KP Harmony's. I would've preferred my KP nickel-plated but I was aiming for pattern gauge. For my own pair, I will definitely go with my metal dpns.

My pic of the first sock I knit for her:

Pic of the other side of the sock:

I was jamming in the sock pair for her deadline, so I forgot to take a pic of both socks. But I did remember to take a pic of the latest pair I knit from her patterns, one I can share. I have one more I can share after May 1 and another pair I can share after her second book gets published. That's right. She's working on her second sock book. Woohoo!

Hedera socks
Fleece Artist merino wool in Lily Pond
size 2.50 mm KP nickel-plated dpns

Unintentional mod: Didn't move 1 stitch on each side of the instep for the gusset decreases thinking I didn't need to decrease as much. I was wrong. So my gusset doesn't look as pretty as the pattern.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Post Camp

My super secret knitting is done, but I've had a lapse of judgement and signed up to do a rush test knit as well. At least there are others that are test knitting with me, so if I punt by the deadline, the designer's good with other feedback.

So that means I have nothing new to show except a few remaining things that are Sock Camp related. The end of Camp was my Monkey1's birthday so that day was spent knitting her a little gift, the Tutu Mouse kit from Churchmouse Yarns & Teas, the totally adorable yarn store on Bainbridge Island that we visited on the way to Camp.

The kit contained one skein of pink GGH Soft Kid, the Mouse, the matching ribbon, a set of size 10.5 straights & a tapestry needle. Marcy and I both bought the kit for our respective childrens' birthdays. However, since we didn't think we needed the tapestry needle & the straight needles, Churchmouse was really accomodating and let us switch out those items for the Night Night outfit pattern that they also wrote for the Mouse.

For Cat's new sock architecture class, I chose one of the STR Rare Gems I bought - one of a series of My Blue Heaven related experiments that got overdyed. Next time I pick a yarn for Cat's class, I'll need to pick something a bit lighter. Made for reading my stitches a little tough sometimes in the cloudy Washington lighting.

I got all the way to the leg during Camp since there are a few critical points that we needed to check in with her. I then stopped 'cause I was undecided on the pattern for the leg. I've narrowed it down to 2 elements, both coincidently from her New Pathways for Sock Knitters.

Lastly, I just finished my ipod sock that we started at Camp. It was Cat's idea that for our extra-curricular activity that we take a bit of STR heavyweight yarn provided to us (mine's Thraven) to make either a cell phone or mp3 player case using techniques we covered at Camp. It was a total blast knitting something without a pattern and just winging it.

So I started with Judy's Magic Cast On with a little refresher from Cat with a little story that somehow involved a burglar. Some practiced the Turkish Cast On that she taught us in her actual class. The case ended with an i-cord bind off that flowed into the i-cord strap. I added the pocket after Camp, but it would've been easier if I had planned ahead and did a little double knitting to start the pocket. Picking up stitches for the pocket gets to be a little fiddly, especially since once again I picked a dark yarn.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

All good things must come to an end

The view from my room on the last day. Some clouds but also some nice blue sky & sun.

On the last night, our crabs came out to play. Mine's resting next to Virginia's on her lovely little beachy quilt. Not sure whose one is on the other side. Maybe Sock Camper Kristen's?

Lastly, but not least, my 3 skeins dyed in Tina's class. We dyed 2 skeins in our comfortable colors and one in our uncomfortable color, with the uncomfortable one done second.

Can you tell which one was my uncomfortable skein? They are not in dye order. Other Sock Campers can 'cause it was a common shade of discomfort.

So that's it for this year's Sock Camp. Not many pictures taken, especially of my new and old Sock Camp friends, but the warm memories will always be there.

Off to finish laundry & decompress from all the creative fun and excitement.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Still excited

I got to dye with Tina today! OMG! And woohoo! I'll have to link to another Sock Camper who's got good pics of their lesson with Tina yesterday as I was too busy to think of pulling out my dinky little camera. So I'll show other Camp stuff.

The view from my room. So nautical!

Double eagle! Literally. On the totem pole no less. And then we saw the male later on again, but on a schooner mast.

So. New colors I acquired (all lightweight as is my wont):
Pond Bubbles, Sunkissed Sand, Claw, Beached, and Plankton Ooze

Beached again, this time in LSS and the lightweight.

Oh, and the LSS in Pond Bubbles & Sunkissed Sand at the Camp store were also equally lovely and hopefully other Sock Campers will post theirs sometime soon to share. Seriously lovely stuff.

And that's it for now!