Oh My

I’m still here, and to anyone who has visited hoping to find a new post over the past few weeks, I am truly sorry. I keep meaning to sit down and write something – anything, really – but then life (or a game on Facebook) intervenes, and I forget all about posting.

After the trauma of the first Lotus Blossom mitten, I decided to take a break from my barely started Christmas knitting to work on a project that I’d been thinking about for a while. I even started it once, but made a mistake early on and set it aside in frustration. I picked it up again a few weeks ago, and it’s been happy knitting ever since! I’m making a sweater for Penny, from the “A Cardigan for Merry” pattern from annypurls.

The front of the “Cardigan for Merry” (everything else is just flat blue pieces), knit on size 3 needles with Wool of the Andes Sport Sapphire Heather

All of the initial parts are done (fronts, back and sleeves), and the only thing left to do is knit the hood and sew the seams. This is a great pattern, but there’s one little weird thing that is bothering me, almost to the point where I’m considering frogging the 10 rows of hood I’ve finished so far so I can fix it.

The weird thing is this: the stitches left after decreasing for the armholes on the fronts and back are left live so they can be used for the hood. But the three stitches left at the top of each sleeve are bound off, only to be picked up when the hood is knit. This results in a weird little seam thing at the top of the sleeves. I’m sure it’s no big deal, but it does look strange, and it would have been easier to leave the sleeve stitches live as well.

The cables for this sweater are from Kate Gilbert’s “A Cardigan for Arwen“, and are reversible…very cool

But then again, Anny has designed many great sweaters, and maybe that little seam is there for a reason. Ok, I’m over it – it’s not bothering me any more. Back to my needles I go!

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On to Sock Summit Socks part Deux

I did a short celebratory dance on Saturday when I finished my HoarWars2010 socks, then moved on quickly to finish the Hedera socks that had been languishing sadly in a paper lunch sack since mid April (I got distracted). I just looked back thru my posts, and I notice that I haven’t even mentioned these poor little socks since April 5th, but I must have been knitting on them occasionally, because when I took them out on Saturday afternoon – seriously, mere moments after I’d finished the other ones – I only had two pattern repeats to do before starting on the toe. I completed the knitting part on Monday at lunch, but I didn’t have my darning needle with me, so I couldn’t graft the toe closed.

In fact, I still haven’t grafted the toe closed. Hold on, I’ll be right back.

…almost done…

…DONE!

Hedera socks, pattern by Cookie A, from knit. sock. love. Knit with Knit Picks Imagination Hand Painted sock yarn, Make Believe colorway.

So anyway, on Monday, at lunch, after I’d finished all but the grafting for Hedera, I started on my second pair of Sock Summit Socks. Admittedly, these ones are kind of cheating, since they’re anklets, but they have fussy little cables that, although charming and lovely, are a pain in the butt to knit.

In Season, pattern by Melissa Morgan-Oakes, from the 2009 RSC (yeah, I’m lagging a bit on my RSC kits). Yarn is Heirloom from Blue Moon Fiber Arts (sent with the kit, but not available on their site. I just checked.)

They’re further along now than they were in the photo above, but I’m going to wait to show them to you again until I’m at least done with the heel. By my calculations, I have to finish these over the weekend in order to have any hope of finishing a third pair by the end of July. Ok, I’m off to knit!

Empty Needles? Where?

As has become my habit, the completion of a challenging project (in this case, Crichton) brought about the casting on of several more, without thought or regard to anything I have already started.

First, I started in on “A Cardigan for Merry,” for which I purchased some Wool of the Andes – Sport Weight. I love cables, but the ones for this sweater (designed by Kate Gilbert originally for her “Arwen” sweater) are kicking my butt. The cables cross on every right side row, which makes my knitting super tight. If anyone has any suggestions as to how to alleviate and or cheer up my tense, angry cables, I welcome them, especially since, just three inches into the pattern I’ve set it aside in favor of some non-finger breaking, non-squint inducing knitting.

A Cardigan for Merry by annypurls, using size 3 needles and Wool of the Andes Sport from KnitPicks

Which brings me to the next project that leapt onto my needles while I had my back turned. “Rock Island” is back, this time on the size six needles the pattern requested, and my progress has been swift. I re-cast on on Tuesday evening, and when I counted last night, I had 42 of the 71 edge lace repeats completed. I promise I won’t go on and on again about what a genius Mr. Flood is, but this edge piece is so much fun to knit, I might just keep going, and end up with a very skinny scarf. Each repeat is eight rows and takes about five minutes to complete. This is important to someone who often only gets to knit in five minute intervals! Only slightly more than half done, and without blocking, the edge piece is already nearly four feet long, which bodes well for the finished dimensions.

While I was taking these photos, Max brought his knitting into the bedroom and asked that I take pictures of him and his yarn, too. And so, I present to you Sir Max and his knitting…

See you later, and have a fun and safe Memorial Day Weekend!

I can’t believe it fit!

I finished the first of Jojo’s Kilt Hose on Friday morning, and was amazed that, when she tried them on


they fit!

Lace Me Up Kilt Hose from “Think Outside the Sox”

That’s 28 inches of sock there, people! Sometimes I wish my children could have stayed short, like this one:

Max says, “HI!!”

I’ll start the second sock for Jojo as soon as I place my order for 2 more balls of yarn. Until then, I’m working on these

Hedera socks from knit. sock. love. by Cookie A. Knit using Stroll Hand Painted sock yarn in Make Believe and size 2 needles

After I post this, I swear I’ll go onto Knit Picks and order the rest of the yarn for Jojo’s socks. The first one was fun and pretty quick – as far as socks go – to knit, and I’m excited to have her wear them, although we may have to wait until next year, as summer arrived spontaneously last week (no spring for us; just a quick shift from cold to hot). I’ve had the yarn selected for days now, but never seem to have my wallet and my computer coexisting in the same spot. But I can see my wallet now from where I’m sitting…

The longest socks…

My newest project is a pair of kilt hose (knee socks) for the lovely Miss Jojo. It took me a while to build up the courage to start these; she hadn’t really requested knee socks, and knitting on something that a) might not be wanted; and b) I end up hating makes me miserable and cranky. I needed to be sure that this was really a project I was ready to take on, especially right on the heels (ha!) of three other pair of socks.


(This photo is from the “Think Outside the SOX” winning entry site)

I already had the yarn (or at least, I thought I did; it turns out I grossly underestimated how much I would need) and a pattern picked out, and as soon as I’d finished the purple socks, I cast on for these. After a few false starts where I first followed the directions, then adjusted because Jojo’s leg was skinnier than the pattern was written to accommodate, then adjusted again because the sock I was knitting was going to cut off her circulation, today I knit the heel flap and then turned the heel…and then had to stop, even though I had more than an hour of knitting time left before I had to pick anyone up, because I’d forgotten to grab another skein of yarn (as well as my badge and wallet) when I left the house this morning.

It turns out that knee socks aren’t so horrible to knit. I recently read (and I wish I could remember where I read it) that knee socks aren’t as long as a sweater sleeve, and sleeves don’t scare me. Plus, I’m using sport-weight yarn, which makes it go a little faster (the pattern actually calls for using two strands of fine sock yarn held together, but I’m not coordinated enough to do that for any length of time).

I have enough yarn to finish this first sock, and get a good start on the second one, but I need to order a couple more skeins. Luckily, if I run out before the additional skeins arrive, I have other projects already on the needles to tide me over.

Oh Yeah!

Yay! I win! I win!

These are the Windjammer Socks from “The Knitter’s Book of Wool”. I used size 3 needles and Stroll Tonal Sock yarn from Knit Picks

It was getting a little dicey there toward the end, and I wasn’t sure I’d ever finish these socks. But last night I went to the bookstore and knit and knit… I had promised myself that I wouldn’t leave until the socks were done. Then, two tragic things happened.

The first was that I’d miscalculated how many cable crosses I had left. I thought I only had to do three more. As it turned out, I had 7 left. Oops. So much for my math skills!

The second was that, after completing 5 of the cable crosses, I found that I’d knit a hole into the pad of my right index finger. Ok, that’s maybe a little bit misleading. My new needles are soooo nice and pointy, which is an advantage when doing fancy stuff with my yarn. However, after a couple thousand stitches with my right index finger pressing on the tip to help slide the work to the front of the needle, the little piece of skin that was constantly being poked finally gave up and split. Not a lot. Not enough to bleed, or even look gross. But enough that it hurt when I’d accidentally poke it again.

So after just an hour or so I returned home, sock still not finished, to apply a bandage to my poor finger. Knitting with a bandage on your finger is like trying to sing with a mouth full of red hots, or walk while wearing ski boots. It’s possible, but it just doesn’t feel right. My knitting speed took a serious hit, and even though I worked until nearly 1:00am I still hadn’t finished, and I went to bed with unfocused eyes, crampy fingers, and the toe to finish.

But this morning, after several false starts involving children who wanted to eat (again) and phone calls and laundry buzzers, I finished.

This is a gratuitous shot of the pattern, because I’m so glad they’re done

My next project will be on big, blunt needles to give my finger a chance to heal!

Single Sock Parade

In the last week (give or take a few days), I’ve finished two socks. The problem is that they’re two different patterns, so I now have two halves of two more Christmas gifts knit.

Here’s the first sock that I finished, along with its mate-in-progress:

Rogue Roses by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, knit it Trekking XXL

These socks are fun and quick to knit, but they pose an interesting problem. The pattern is designed so the panel of “roses” twists around one sock clockwise, and the other sock counter clockwise. This means that, after a sock’s worth of knitting, I don’t actually have the pattern memorized, because the second sock is almost… well, backwards.

And that, my friends, is why I opted to knit a totally different sock in between the two Rogue Roses. Check this out:

Traditional Turkish Sock by Anna Zilboorg, from Knitting Traditions magazine

These socks are knit on size 4 (!!) needles, and I used some Knit Picks Palette yarn that I’d purchased back when I was working on the Orange Shawl of Doom (isn’t it funny that I was working on my first attempt at the Rogue Roses socks when I bought this yarn?). I started this one (several times, of course) last Tuesday at Knit Night, and finished it on Friday afternoon. That’s like 2.5 days for a sock! However, since the purpose of this sock was to erase the memory of the Rogue Roses pattern from my brain, I’m afraid it might not have been enough. I’m still having problems keeping track of my rows, and have had to back up several times to correct missed YOs or decreases.

Ok, now that you know what I did last week, I’m off to work on RRsock#2. Have a lovely evening!