Monday, December 31, 2007

Knitting: My Year in Review

Projects completed, based on my Raverly projects page (I may have forgotten a hat or so when putting them in:

  • 2 colorwork hats (We call them pirates for Lo and Fish for Steve)
  • 5 lace pieces (alpine lace for Lo, stripes and torchon lace for SIL; melon for Laura, large rectangle for me, test knit for Mama Llama)—4 of them from Victorian Lace Today.
  • Husband Sweater
  • 6 pairs of socks, complete (red socks for me, STR socks for me, jitterbug for Lo, 2 pair for T, sockapalooza pal pair)
  • 3 pairs started (waving lace, claudia’s handpainted, snicket)
  • 1 secret unmentionable test-knit sock
  • Finished perfect sweater #2
  • Fetching, 1 pair for Aunt K
  • Brother sweater 60% done
  • Started Ramona from Sensual Knits

Things I’ve learned, or improved:

  • Colorwork
  • Provisional cast on
  • Magic loop (my favorite new technique)
  • Sock knitting (this is improved, rather than new)
  • Seamless hybrid/EPS
  • Russian and spit-splice joins (these are running neck-and-neck for second favorite—fewer ends to weave in!)

Projects for 2008:

Short term:

  • Finish brother sweater (Jan)
  • Lengthen husband sweater (Jan)
  • Lengthen perfect sweater #1 (Jan)
  • Ramona (Jan)

Longer term:

  • Husband sweater #2 (Feb/Mar)
  • Tangled yoke cardigan
  • Baby nephew blanket w/cables (Feb/Mar—he’s due in April, and while we’re worried he’ll come early, like his big brother, I don’t want him to not have a blanket. I’m aiming for done in mid-March, which will put him at 35 or 36 weeks)
  • Orange socks for T (done soon, but maybe given to him when his baby brother gets his blanket)
  • Honeybee stole or another large lace project, w/camel yarn

New skills I’d like to learn:

  • Cable w/o a needle

All-in-all, it’s been a great knitting year. This is the first year I’d call myself a Knitter, rather than someone who knits. I’m getting braver about trying things, and much braver about ripping them back out. I knit the collar on the husband sweater 3 times before I was happy with it, and had no trouble picking the stitches back up and fixing mistakes I’ve made. I’ve accumulated a lot more stash—I’ve probably doubled the amount of yarn I have—but most of the new yarn has a project associated with it; I have enough yarn for 3 sweaters, but plans for all of it. Some of the lace yarn isn’t really earmarked, but I’ve learned to buy enough for a good-sized shawl. I’ve tried a lot of new yarns, too, and discovered how nice it is to have a portable project for in my purse.

I’m not planning on buying any more yarn for a while—I find that when I buy more yarn
I tend to ignore the stuff I’ve already stashed in favor of the new. And I’m excited about the projects I have for the yarn I’ve already bought, so I’m aiming for finishing some of them before I make any more trips to Webs (which I must admit to having done on Friday, which is where the yarn for Ramona, Husband sweater #2, the nephew blanket, and several pairs of socks for T came from . . . ). I’m not ruling out new yarn, just trying to enjoy what I have.

I also want to be more realistic about deadline knitting; I should have started the sweater for my brother back in October when I bought the yarn. But I put it off until December and didn’t have time to finish it when I realized that I’d made a mistake.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

In which the knitting gods kick my ass

Only a few days ago, I was feeling quite optimistic about the state of my Christmas knitting.

The SIL shawl was done, the ends were woven in, and--with amazing ease, courtesy of my new blocking wires--it was pinned out to dry:

One major present: done and checked off the list. The only thing left was the wrapping.

The socks-that-come-up-to-his-knees socks for the nephew were well underway; the first one is completely done and clocks in at 9.25 inches, total. And we've got a car ride to NJ--a good four hours of knitting time--for finishing. His knees are about 10" about the ground, so they should be plenty long. I'm making the toes blue (he picked the yarn) so that when his feet grow, which they inevitably will, I can cut them out and make the feet a little longer without any hassle.

Second Christmas knitting project: well underway.

The green blob that was to be the Brother sweater was actually starting to look like a sweater. Both sleeves were attached, and I had knit about 5 inches of the decreases along the shoulders when I realized

(cue scary Jaws music indicating that makes you want to yell: don't go in the water!)

Something was wrong.

(music swells ominously)

I recounted the number of stitches on each sleeve. An EPS sweater is decreased 8 stitches every third round--two on each sleeve, and four on the body. I'd be blithely knitting along, counting the stitches on one of the sleeves, to make sure I was staying on track, but never bothering to check the other sleeve.

(music tempo increases)

I had 54 on one side.

And 64 on the other.

A two-inch difference.

(music stops, screaming begins)

I cannot, it seems, count to 82 with any reliability, even though I checked my counts on both sleeves repeatedly.

Christmas knitting project the third, and my brother's major present: disaster. There's no possible way I can rip back the five inches of the chest, remove the problem sleeve, rip it back six inches, finish the increases, reattach it, redo the chest decreases, finish the chest decreases, and knit the shoulder saddles in the 46 or so hours left until my brother opens his present.

Which, at this point, will be an empty box with a funny note in it. And a story that he'll be able to hold over my head for years to come, which may be more precious than a hand-knit sweater.

The knitting gods are definitely kicking my ass this year.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Christmas Knitting Countdown

The SIL shawl: Almost done. 95% done. Less than half a border repeat left. So why is it languishing in the basket?

The nephew socks: Not even started. These weren't really planned as Christmas knitting, but it looks like it will be Christmas before he gets them. The yarn is darker red than the photo suggests.
I need to learn how to knit socks toe-up so I can make them as long as possible, which is why they're not started yet.

The Brother Sweater: the body (all 238 stitches of it) is up to the underarms--18 inches. He's tall, and G tells me the husband sweater would be even better with a couple of extra inches of length. I started the hem of the first sleeve last night.
Right now it looks like a big green blob.

The kicker? As I was taking the points off, and putting the end caps on, I pulled one of my size 6 tips out of the collar. Knitpicks is sending me a new set--they do have excellent customer service--but in the meantime? I'm going to try some fishing glue, and see if I can manage to keep going.

There's nothing like a little pressure to make the Christmas Knitting more enjoyable!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

He likes them!

He really, really likes them!

No picture, alas. But I finished the nephew socks and mailed them off on Saturday--the arrived in New Jersey yesterday.

My parents picked T up from daycare, and told him there was a package for him at home. To which he replied: "my socks!"

My spies tell me that he tore open the package, put them on, and slid merrily around the kitchen in them. And wore them to sleep in.

He's requested another pair, also in red, but "that come up to my knees." Knee socks for three-year-olds. A three-year-old who climbs into my lap and says "My Duzan" and snuggles. So knee socks it is.

I went out and bought the yarn this morning. Now I need to learn how to knit toe-up socks, so I can make them as long as possible. Maybe I'll start with a silly color for the toes, so they're really, really long.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

December Goals

It's been a busy month--too much time spent grading and not enough knitting or blogging. My last day of classes is this Tuesday; I've had several rounds of papers to grade this month. All of my classes are writing classes and on the last day I ask my students to give me a portfolio with all their work, along with a (new) reflective essay--which is nice, because it means most of the grading is done before the end of the semester, but it also means a lot of grading around Thanksgiving.

Teaching would be so much more fun if it weren't for all the grading. :)

I've also got a cold that won't go away--I lost my voice for a few days (much to the amusement of my nephew over Thanksgiving!) and now just have a persistent cough.

I have been doing some knitting, though--no sweater for November, but the pressure to finish my brother's Christmas present in time for Christmas will just add to the fun.

The goals round up:

November goals:
  1. Finish the Stripes and Torchon scarf--or at least, finish up all the yarn I have and, if I run out, work on finding more. almost there--stay on target! I've got about a repeat of the border left; Somehow (even though I've followed the pattern!) the border has wound up not working out exactly, and--since there are 34 rows--it's a little harder to fudge and make it wind up looking even than I'd have imagined. But I should be done with it today or tomorrow, and then I'll cast on for
  2. Start and finish the Brother sweater. Not even close. So not even close I haven't even finished the maths for it, although I swatched. Two months ago, so maybe I should swatch again?
  3. Knit socks for T, who saw me knitting them and said he'd like a pair. Of course, he's three, so he may not remember, but I do. And he's got little feet, so they shouldn't take too long. Done, mailed, but not photographed. I was working on another pair of socks over Thanksgiving, and he asked me again about his socks; I showed him the yarn I had with me and he decided he liked the leftovers from my red Aracaunia Ranco socks and wanted red socks. He kept bringing me the yarn and asking about them--a totally adorable, if somewhat unrealistic, expectation of how long it would take to knit a pair of socks. The enthusiasm was nice, though! I didn't have enough yarn, even though I made the cuffs fairly short--he got red socks with blue toes.
  4. Start a chevron scarf and see if the colors I have will work. I'm saving this as a treat, since I can't wait to use the yarn. Done, here, but not successfully. I"m rethinking the colors, and what to do with my lovely Posh yarn.
  5. Learn a new technique. I'm not sure what--maybe cabling without a cable needle, since I'd also like to No new techniques, but I'm getting better with the magic loop.
  6. Knit at least one pair of Fetching mitts. One down, one to go--does the thumb gusset count as a new technique?
Stash acquisitions: Blocking wires from, which I would link to, but they don't seem to have them in stock right now. But with a 50% off coupon, they wound up being around $20 including shipping. I haven't used them yet--the Stripes and Torchon scarf will be my first project using them. I also bought some Claudia's handpainted in Blue Terra Cotta in a Ravelry Swap, along with the Sundara sock yarn.

Actual November knitting:
  1. Most of the Stripes and Torchon scarf
  2. Socks for the nephew
  3. Red socks for me
  4. Cast on for Waving lace socks from IK's Favorite Socks; they're too big, though, and I need to start over with a smaller needle size
  5. Cast on for a pair of basic socks with the Claudia's handpainted
December Goals:
  1. Finish Stripes and Torchon
  2. Start and finish the Brother sweater--third time's a charm? And, damn it, if I don't, I have to come up with another present idea.
  3. Finish the second Fetching mitt--they're a present for my aunt for Christmas
I'm limiting myself to those three. I'm sure that at least the basic socks will get a fair amount of knitting, as well--the more I knit, the more I like to have a mindless portable project that travels well.

Since the semester is almost over, and the bulk of my grading is already done, I think I can manage those three. If I get them done early, I may aim for a hat or two, and rethink the scarf for myself, as my new winter coat is a basic black wool coat that comes down to my knees, so a new colorful scarf to go with it would be great

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

2922 days ago

I married my best friend! And I love him more now than I did then. I like him more, too.

I actually married him 2923 days ago, too. Once in his church, once in mine. (We thought about going the Vegas route, instead, but realized we'd wind up getting married there twice, too, since he wanted the Shaft wedding and I wanted the Elvis one. So we figured we'd at least make our families happy!)

8 years went by pretty darn fast!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

At least I made the bed

Although I should have cleaned the mirror, too:Ravelery beta t-shirt, "Where my stitches at?"*
A very sad attempt to photograph my Perfect Sweater, since it's actually cold enough to want to wear wool.

Sundara Sock yarn, Electric Pear, purchased via the Ravelry ISO board

Knitting: basic sock in Araucania Ranco Multi.

*this is a women's size XL American Apparel shirt. The shirts are supposed to have negative ease, but I don't really like negative ease in a t-shirt, so I ordered the XL (37.5" bust, I think?) for myself and my 36" bust. And although there's been much discussion of a the "lack" of proper grammar in the "where my stitches at?" catch-phrase, as a writing teacher and a self-proclaimed grammar fan, I rather like it. I think it does a great job of conveying tone and attitude, which is more important than rigid adherence to silly and somewhat-archaic grammar rules. I think I've got to go with Winston Churchill on dangling participles.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

It's like a bad 70's flashback . . .

These two yarns, so lovely by themselves,

Combine into this:
A little too much of a seventies feather-and-fan flashback, which is a shame since the fabric feels lovely.

To the frog pond with it, then. Maybe just the greenish one by itself with the same pattern?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

November Goals

This posting of goals and accomplishments worked pretty well for me last month, so here goes take two: The November edition

First, to sum up October:
  1. Finished the Melon Scarf. Verdict: A. I gave the scarf to a friend from work, and she was (or at least acted!) thrilled. She's even worn it to a dinner party, so I think it's a success. I'm very happy with the way it came out, and I love the yarn (Alpaca Silk from Webs, hand-dyed)--I'd definitely use it again.
  2. Finished the Socks-that-Rock socks. Verdict: A+. I really like these socks--they're the best fitting socks I've ever made, and I like the yarn. I've worn them four or five times, and so far they're holding up well.
  3. Started, knit, and finished the Jitterbug socks. Verdict: A. I used these socks to practice how to do magic loop, and I love love love magic loop. I couldn't stop knitting them--it only took me ten days, start to finish, for both socks. I made the socks a little bit too long, so I mailed them off to my friend L, who is my favorite person to knit for. She's also one of my favorite persons, period, and that has nothing to do with the stash accumulation she helped me with.
  4. Started a new pair of socks using this yarn:

Araucania fingering sock wool (75% wool/25% something else), sent to me by L's mom. L's mom knits, but is gasp! allergic to wool. The break-out-in-hives kind of allergic, and evidently no amount of washing or merino-ing help. She can't even where angora, which is supersoft. So it seems to be all animal fibers. But L's mom is moving, and as she's packing, she's getting rid of things (like wool sock yarn) that she knows she won't use. So I've started another portable pair of socks:

The color is much better in the skein picture. I wasn't sure I would like the red-purple combo, but it's knitting up quite nicely.

5. Worked on the SIL Christmas shawl:
and made some real progress. Real enough that I have 26 out of 40 border repeats finished. Which, of course, has made me realize that even though I have way more yarn than the pattern calls for, as I round the last corning, I'm going to be cutting it very, very close. So close I might need to beg, borrow, or steal another, oh, 2 grams of Malabrigo laceweight in blue surf. *sigh* I can't decide if I should rush through the shawl, and see, or go slowly, and put off the inevitable. Given the fact that I've already got a huge line of demarcation in it, I'm not so worried about dye lots. Especially since the line of demarcation came when I switched from one part of the first skein to the next (there was a knot, and I made two balls out of the first skein).

6. Stash enhancement, never blogged: Two skeins of Posh sock yarn, a birthday present
from L. (this isn't why she's among my favorite persons. But it is a good reminder of it!) The yellow/green one is called Primrose, and it's a merino/cashmere/silk blend; the
other is organic merino and is called Harvest. I'm going to try a chevron scarf with them, although the primrose color has more blues in it than I thought it would. I'll see how they
look. For the moment, I've been happy just petting them.

7. Stash enhancement, continued: A Namaste executive bag. I got it about two weeks ago,
and while I love the bag itself, the corners are starting to wear in a way that makes me
sad--I've only had it for two weeks, and haven't been using it that hard. It's my new
everyday bag, but I'm being careful to not overload it. Still, it's a nice bag. If the wear gets
any worse, I'll contact their customer service department and see what they say.

Other stuff, not blogged or photographed: I did get a few more needles from Knit Picks, along with two skeins of Bare in fingering weight. I was thinking a BSJ for my new nephew, but we'll see how it dyes up.

I've made no progress on the Brother sweater--I've decided to call that intentional and say that I'm participating in National Knit a Sweater Month, and see if I get it done this month.

I didn't learn socks on two circs (or, rather, I learned it, but I'm not practicing it), but as I can do magic loop now, I'm perfectly happy with that.

November goals:
  1. Finish the Stripes and Torchon scarf--or at least, finish up all the yarn I have and, if I run out, work on finding more.
  2. Start and finish the Brother sweater.
  3. Knit socks for T, who saw me knitting them and said he'd like a pair. Of course, he's three, so he may not remember, but I do. And he's got little feet, so they shouldn't take too long.
  4. Start a chevron scarf and see if the colors I have will work. I'm saving this as a treat, since I can't wait to use the yarn.
  5. Learn a new technique. I'm not sure what--maybe cabling without a cable needle, since I'd also like to
  6. Knit at least one pair of Fetching mitts.
As for stash, I don't need anything. I might see about some longer circ in sizes 0 & 1, for magic looping socks, but other than that (and maybe some sock yarn . . . ), I'm good. I need to focus funds on Christmas presents, instead!

And I've now been working on this post for almost an hour--wow! I'm going to try and be better about posting, too--not one a day, but more than once a week. shorter ones, maybe!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Skein to Socks

Basic socks; 64 stitches on size 2.5mm needles, magic looped. Slipped-stitch heel flap.
Collinette Jitterbug sock yarn in Monet.

These took 10 days from skein to sock--I love magic loop!

They're a little long on me, and I was too lazy to rip them back and make them shorter, so I'm sending them to my darling L.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Fits and Starts

Fits and starts. That seems to sum up my whole life, lately, including blogging.

Work-wise, I'm in grading jail. I should be grading right now--I'm already behind on where I want to be--but can't motivate myself to read papers.

Students are fighting me on their new paper topics--it needs to be directed at a specific, focused audience with whom the students have credibility; they keep wanting to write to Port Authority or iTunes instead of student groups or companies they've worked for. I don't understand their resistance to listen to my suggestions, since my pushing them to focus is in their best interest. You'd think that upperclassmen, at least, would have learned that if the person grading the paper suggests they tweak their topic a bit, they'd listen. But instead, they're fighting me on it. I'm tempted to give in, let them write what they want, and then suffer the consequences when grades roll around.

On the bright side, I'm teaching a course I really want to teach this summer; I'm having a ball requesting exam copies of texts so I can decide which ones to use. I want to spend all my time on that syllabus, which I won't need until July, instead of grading the papers I need to turn back tomorrow.

School-wise, I sent my committee what is (I hope) my penultimate draft, but it's taken almost 7 weeks of me emailing, asking if we could set up a time to get anything like a concrete response. My adviser said they needed about a month to read through, since they have other commitments. So now I've emailed back with a "how about this date" suggestion; I suspect it will take a month of emails asking them to confirm before my adviser gets back to me about it. Which means we'll need another date, and that puts us up to Christmas and winter break, so I'm afraid we're looking at January to talk about a draft I sent in August. I hate it that I continually have to bug for responses--it makes for a weird power dynamic.

Home-wise, G is crazy, crazy busy--he's teaching an overload, and taking a Polish class, and trying to carve out some time to work on his own stuff. His days are longer than mine--he's in class until 8:00 tonight. I might spend all day grading and prepping, but at least I'm home today, and can distract myself with other stuff. He's so busy he missed an important lunch the other day, with a visiting scholar. I've set up google calendars for both of us; maybe daily email reminders will help. I feel like I never see him anymore, and he's so stressed that I don't want to add to it.

The apartment is a mess; most of it is G's stuff (fishing lures and reels and articles for papers, classes he's teaching, the dissertation) and he's not home enough to get organized. Or when he's home, he's frantically trying to finish prepping for a class. I can't organize for him, because then he can't find anything. I'm trying to get him to take a few minutes every day to at least organize his office enough to make it usable; currently it's not and he's slowly taking over mine as well. I'm thinking about leaving yarn everywhere to discourage this practice.

Knitting-wise, I'm done with 22 out of 40 repeats on the Stripes and Torchon Shawl for my SIL. It's going to be huge when it's done; I don't know if I should block it or not. If I do block it, I'll probably spritz it with water and pin it out, rather than soaking it. But I've slowed down on that, in part because I'm afraid I might run short of yarn on the edging. I weighed what I have left, and tried to guesstimate how many grams I'm using per repeat, but I didn't weigh how much I had before I started the border (or even before I joined this current ball of yarn), so I can only guess. And that guess looks to be a couple of grams short. I should just power through the edging, get to the end and know for certain--that way I can decide how to deal with it, and if I need more yarn have a shot at getting it before Christmas.

G's worn his seamless hybrid sweater a couple of times; he really likes it. So much that he wants one in a sort of rust color (we'll see how long it takes to find a color that matches his description--it took a long time for him to find a green he liked). I'm not even going to look for yarn until at least January, though.

I swatched for the Brat's sweater, and even washed the swatch. But that was weeks ago, and I probably should re-swatch before starting anything. I may not cast on this month; maybe I'll call it a plan, since November is National Knit a Sweater Month.

I have been knitting socks, though. I learned how to do a Magic Loop and love it. I learned to knit holding a long straight needle under my right arm, which makes for lovely even tension, but isn't at all useful when learning how to use circular or double-pointed needles. DPN, in particular, have always felt extremely awkward, and I sometimes get laddering where I change needles. With Magic Loop, no ladders. And no DPN to lose, making portable sock knitting more appealing. I finished a plain sock using the Jitterbug I bought at Knit Purl and I'm working on the second sock. (The Snicket sock, though--definitely SSS. It's odd how the thought of knitting another basic stockinette sock sounds just dandy, but following an actual pattern again brings out a strong desire to start something else.)

Stash-wise, I'm going strong. I bought the Namaste Executive bag from Webs; I was going to get it in rust, but they were sold out and it was on back order. So I asked them to send a black one, instead. So far, I really like it, although my tendency to overload my bags could be a problem--the bag is quite large. The inside is black, too, making it a little hard to see, and it doesn't have enough interior pockets for pens, etc, so I bought a couple of bright travel toiletries bags ($0.99 at Target) to keep odds and ends in.

I've also bought another skien of Socks that Rock, lightweight, in Carbon Dating (which seems to be a retired color; I can't find a picture to link to)--it should be here soon--and a skein of Cherry Tree Hill Merino Lace, in Wild Cherry--also should arrive within a few days. I bought both of them off of Ravelry, which is an evil, evil, enabling place that I cannot resist. Someone posted a link to JoAnn's last night--they have Namaste bags and a 50% off any one item coupon. The bags aren't label Namaste, but if you zoom in you can see the logo. I'm tempted to buy a messenger bag, as well. G (who is also an evil, evil enabler) suggested that I buy it, then I can say I got two bags that were 25% off each.

So fits and starts. I have a ton of things I should be doing--grading, first and foremost; laundry, dishes, reading, lesson prep, figuring out dinner--but I'm online instead. And no pictures in this post, since the light is bad--very overcast--and I can't muster up the enthusiasm to take a picture of the-border-that-will-not-end, or of one finished sock.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Knit Purl

I took a drive today, out to Sudbury MA, to visit Knit Purl (730 Boston Post Rd--no website yet!). It's a very nice store--well lit, and the owner was friendly. She let me wander around on my own but was chatty about the yarn I bought, and offered to order something I inquired about but that they were out of. There's a table for sitting and knitting, and while I was there there were four women working on projects and chatting about politics. All-in-all, a welcoming store.

I bought some sock yarn:
Colinette Jitter Bug in Monet--nice and squishy, although a little short on yardage (about 318). I don't think that will be much of an issue--I had some leftovers from my STR socks; I'll weight it eventually and figure out how much yarn each sock took.

I also finished the Melon scarf, and it's blocking:

Unblocked it was about 52" x 18"; blocked it's about 70" x 24", and I didn't stretch it very hard.
My Socks that Rock socks are done, as well:
Which puts me well on my way to accomplishing my October goals!

Monday, October 1, 2007

October goals

I've seen several bloggers (alas, I can't recall exactly who or where, at the moment) do a monthly project goals listing--I think that, with Christmas knitting looming, that I'm going to try and do the same. I like making lists. :)

So, to sum up September:
  1. Finished the Husband Sweater . Verdict: Fabulous! A great sweater that looks good on the DH, was fun to knit, and didn't take that long. I liked it so much I'm starting another one.
  2. Finished the Test Knit for Mama Llama. Verdict: I'm pretty happy with this one. The yarn was lovely, and pattern was easy enough to do but interesting enough to not get bored.
  3. Finished one Snicket sock, started and then frogged the second. Verdict: Meh. My cables are wonky and they take too much time and concentration to be good portable knitting. The finished product looks pretty good, though, and it was my first short-row heel. I'll finish the second sock eventually.
  4. Added most of the border to the Melon Scarf . Verdict: So far, so good--I've got about two repeats of the border, grafting, blocking, and end-weaving left. This should be done soon. I love the yarn I'm using for it, and would definitely get more of it.
  5. Cast on for a pair of portable socks--one down and I'm on the heel-flap for the second. Verdict: This is my first pair of basic, no-frills socks, and I love them. I'm also loving the STR yarn. This is probably the best pair of socks I've knit.
  6. Knit a swatch for the Brother Sweater and even ran it through the washer/dryer. Verdict: So far, so good--the yarn is easy to take care of, which is important, and I like the color. Now I just have to measure and do some math. If it comes out well, I may make a matching one for the nephew.
Stash accumulation:
  1. 4 skeins of Knit Picks Shine Worsted in Apple Green (for a baby sweater, most likely)
  2. 8 skeins of Plymouth Encore--7 in heathered green, 1 in heathered brown (for the Brother Sweater)
  3. 1 set of Knit Picks Harmony Options Interchangables, which I'm loving.
October Goals:
  1. Finish the melon scarf. This shouldn't be too hard, as I've only got about 16 rows of knitting left before I'm done with the border.
  2. Make a good start on the Brother Sweater. This also shouldn't be too hard, as I loved knitting my first seamless hybrid, and I can't wait to use my Harmony needles.
  3. Work on the Stripes and Torchon Scarf for my SIL's Christmas present. This will be more of a challenge, as each border repeat has taken me almost an hour, and I've got about a zillion repeats left to go.*
  4. Finish the portable socks. This should be pretty easy, as well--it's good mindless knitting.
  5. Learn how to knit socks on two circular needles. If I can find the time, and get the needles I need.
  6. Cast on for the second Snicket sock. More of a challenge, but not as hard as the S&T scarf!
As for stash, on the one hand, I don't really need anything. On the other, I have birthday money burning a hole in my pocket! I may place a small order to Knit Picks, and get a set of size 1 fixed circulars, since I want to learn how to knit socks on two circs. I'd also like a needle sizer from them to keep with my Harmony set. I've also been coveting a Namaste Executive bag and I really could use a new purse . . .

*This might be a slight exaggeration. It's more in the neighborhood of several dozen repeats.

Weekend round up!


Lunch at the Gloucester House (chowdah and lobstah)

and a walk on Crane Beach:

And a stop at Russell Orchards:

Followed by birthday cake for dinner!

Monday, September 24, 2007


A few details:The collar, because I spent much time looking for and at collar close-ups before knitting this one three times:

And the whole shebang:

Once we're out of the 90 degree forecast, I'll try and take some action shots, if I can get the DH to stand still for long enough.

I spent the weekend in NJ at my parent's house--I went down solo, as DH had too much to do. And besides, that way I could laze around and not feel guilty. :) My aunt's in the hospital, so the main purpose was to go down and visit her. I also got to go to Champions of the Grill at the Sussex County Fair Grounds, right down the street from my folks, and a pig roast. Other weekend highlights included a flea market, where my dad scored 2400 baseball cards for $3--I have fond memories of opening and organizing baseball cards with my dad. It's even more fun with a vodka tonic in hand! I also got to play with the nephew, who was (as always) a charmer, and to hang out with my brother and SIL for a bit.

I got some knitting done, too--a small hat (unphotographed) for a woman my mom knows--done in less than 3 hours--and I've turned the heel and finished the gussets on the SIP (sock-in-progress). No photos of that, either, but since that's still in my possession, there will be some eventually. ETA: The hat was for a baby--a week old--which is why the hat was small. I made an umbilical cord hat from the first Stitch 'n Bitch book.) And knittable in less than 3 hours. (I just re-read this through bloglines and realized that "a small hat" was fairly unclear and lacking in detail.)

All-in-all, a pretty good weekend. I could have done without the 5-hours-each-way drive, though!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Almost There! (Stay on Target!)

The husband sweater has been reknit from the first saddle, the back has been grafted, and all that's left is picking up the stitches on the back and knitting the collar! I'm thrilled with the way it's turning out--and, evidently, so the husband, who looked at it this morning and asked if he could wear it today. Given the pointy ends sticking out, I thought it was better he didn't, but I think it bodes well for the future use this sweater will get.

Elizabeth Zimmerman is a genius--this pattern is fantastic. I can't wait to finish the collar and see what it looks like on--I should be done just in time for the 80 degree weather we're expecting this weekend. Perfect wool-sweater weather, naturally.

The Snicket socks are in a time-out; I knit the cuff of the second sock and then realized that the pattern is purl 2, knit one through back leg and not purl 1, knit two through the back legs. So I frogged them completely and cast on for a new sock. Using new yarn.

I'm using the Harlot's basic sock recipe, from Knitting Rules!, in Socks that Rock lightweight (color: Nodding Violet). I cast on 64 stitches on size 1 needles--so far so good! The yarn is nice and squishy--this is my first time using STR, and I'm starting to see what all the fuss is about.

I'm not terribly fond of DPNs, although I am fond of handknit socks. So I've decided that if I'm going to all the trouble of knitting on the, I should only use great yarn (or a great pattern). STR definitely qualifies. Also--their color names? Awesome.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

How I learned to stop worrying and love the spit splice

I finished the husband sweater last night. Well, all except for sewing the collar hem down, and weaving in a few ends.

And then I made him try it on.

And then I realized it was a boatneck sweater. Good for the French Navy, perhaps, but not really the most flattering look with saddle shoulders.

So I ripped it back to the first saddle, and am now adding more rows to that.

That's the bad news.

The good news:

I'm reknitting using these.

The new Knitpicks Harmony Options set. Yum! They arrived yesterday morning, and I immediately started playing. The colors are beautiful--more subdued than they look on the Knitpicks site--and the joins are smooth. The needles are, too--a little bit of grab, which will be nice for lace, but no problems at all with the joins. This is my first set of interchangeable needles--the first set that I thought had everything I wanted in an interchangeable needle. I mainly knit flat, but I'm slowly starting to see the light on knitting in the round. (I'm a bit late to this party, I know!)

So I'm joining the growing chorus of thumbs up for the Harmony Options. My only complaints (and they're very small) echo the ones that Amy Singer mentioned in her review on Knitty (scroll down about a third of the way for the review): the sizes aren't on the tips, so I'll probably get another needle-sizer to keep in the Options bag. The sizes aren't on the bag, either, so I may keep them on the card until I figure out a way to put the sizes on the bag.

I would have also liked it if the length was on the cards that came in the bags with the cables--I know I'll wind up taking them all out, but it would be nice if initially I could have seen that I had all the sizes I'd ordered. (I order the 40", 47", and 60" cables to go with the ones included in the set.)

One thing that I particularly loved: When I ripped the sweater back, I picked up the stitches using a size 4 tip, to make it easier to grab the live stitches. Once they were on the cable, I switched back to the size (7) I'm using for the sweater, and voila! I was good to go.

I know this last is a feature of all interchangeable needles, and not specific to the Harmony Options, but it's a new one for me, and I really really like it.

I think that--now that I'm properly outfitted!--there will be at least one more seamless hybrid on the needles soon; maybe a Christmas sweater for my brother. And I've got the Tangled Yoke sweater from the Fall 07 IK in my queue, and the yarn I need for it in the stash. I've even got some great buttons for it!

A few balls of Knit Picks Shine also came home with me, but I haven't taken a picture yet. Apple Green, and destined to be a baby sweater.

It's not easy being green

Kristi at Fiber Fool is doing a very cool series on how color works. She's also doing some research on colors:

1. What is your current favorite color?

Green. No, wait, Blue. No, wait. Dark Red.

2. Had your favorite color changed over the years?

Yes. In fact, sometimes it changes day-to-day. Or even minute-to-minute. When I was younger, I loved yellow--bright and sunny. Now, I tend to favor richer jewel tones.

3. Is your current favorite color one that is currently trendy? (Do you see it in the fashion rags or on the clothes rack or in the linen aisle right now? How about 5 years ago?)

According to Fashion Trendsetter, I won't be trendy for Fall 2007. Next summer looks a little better, though.

4. What is your favorite color combination?

That depends on what I'm doing, I suppose. I've got a necklace that has blue topaz and peridot in it; lately that's been my favorite.

5. Is that combination a popular one? (Is it use in prints you see in the stores and catalogs and magazines now? How about 5 years ago?)

Somewhat. I think it's a little more retro than trendy.

6. What is your favorite way of using color in your knitting? (Are you a stranded knitter? Do you prefer simple stripes? Do you prefer just accents at the hems/collars?)

I don't use a lot of color changes--mainly just for accents. Lately for the insides of hems and collars.

7. What colors look good on you?

Most shades of green, dark reds, most shades of blue.

8. What colors look bad on you?

Yellows and oranges--they make me look pale and sickly. Most pastels aren't so great, either.

9. Do you wear colors that don’t look good on you just because you like them?

Not as a main color, but maybe as an accent.

10. What is your favorite neutral color? black/white/ivory/tan/brown/gray – if brown or gray do you prefer cool or warm versions of those or does it matter? And, how dark?

Warm shades of brown, not too dark.

11. Is there a sweater pattern that uses more than one color that you’d like to make, but you wish to change the colors from what is published? If yes, which one? What do you not like about the published colors?

Most of the sweaters I like, and the ones I'm planning on knitting, are one color (or have contrasting hems but no other color change). I've done some color work--hats, mainly--and I'm not against knitting a sweater with multiple color changes (although I like stranded better than intarsia), I haven't really seen any that jump out and shout "knit me!" I do like Eunny Jang's Venezia pullover, but I'm not sure I like it enough to invest the time. And I would change the colors, probably so that it had more green and less yellow in the middle, and maybe a richer brown for the collar.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Procrastinating . . .

with online quizzes. I'm a sucker for online quizzes. And this one's about books!

You're Watership Down!

by Richard Adams

Though many think of you as a bit young, even childish, you're
actually incredibly deep and complex. You show people the need to rethink their
assumptions, and confront them on everything from how they think to where they
build their houses. You might be one of the greatest people of all time. You'd
be recognized as such if you weren't always talking about talking rabbits.

Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

WIP Wednesday

First WIP: the husband sweater. We're coming up on our 8th anniversary in November, so I figure I'm safe from the sweater curse. :) He just tried it on and the fit is fine. Aside from the fact that the underarms and saddle need to be grafted, and it needs a collar, it's a sweater!

This was my first EZ pattern (and my first man sweater), a seamless hybrid inspired by the wonderfulness that is BrooklynTweed. Some time ago, he knit a seamless hybrid, and I've been drooling over it ever since.

The construction is amazing--I had a lot of trouble visualizing it (but got excellent advice and encouragement from some Ravelers--thanks!) until I actually started, when it made so much sense I couldn't believe I didn't understand it earlier. This will not be my last EZ pattern--or my last seamless hybrid!

I'm also making progress on my melon scarf--I finally started the border. I didn't have enough yarn for the border the pattern calls for, so I've substituted the narrow point border on p. 183 (a la Grumperina)
A close-up:
I really like this yarn--Valley Yarns Alpaca/Silk hand-dyed in Camilla. (I prefer to think of it as Watermelon, however, as this is a melon scarf.) The color repeats are short, so I haven't had any pooling at all--just wonderful color mixes. And the yarn feels lovely--soft, but strong enough to handle sharp tips and manipulations.

The narrow point border is moving along pretty quickly--I've rounded two corners and am about a quarter of the way down the second long side. A few more nights of knitting and it should be done.

I've also finished the test knit I was doing for Mama Llama, and mailed it off.

I haven't made any more progress on my Stripes and Torchon lace scarf, though--it's having a time out. The border is fairly complicated, and lately I've wanted knitting that didn't make me think quite so hard. Stockinette and lace with 8-row repeats is more my speed, lately.

And soon--hopefully!--I'll have another couple of checks in the FO column, so I can cast on for something new! I'm thinking about Madli's Shawl (this is a Ravelry link), from IK--I've liked the pattern for a while, but haven't been able to find a copy of it. But I purchased the issue from someone on Ravelry who was destashing, so now it's mine, all mine! I've also purchased Anne Hanson's Honeybee stole pattern, so that's high on the list of possibilities. Or maybe another seamless hybrid. Or a pair of Fetching mitts. Or . . .

I have too many things I want to cast on for now. And lessons to prep for my class, alas, that will put them on hold for at least a little while.

In my fit of "I must have it now," I also caved to the pretty colors of the new Knitpicks Harmony Options set. I'm stalking my account to see when they ship--I don't have any interchangable needles, so really, I needed them. At least, that's my story and I'm stickin' to it. :)

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

WIP-ing along

Test knitting, turning this:Mama Llama silk/cashmere laceweight

Into this:
The pattern is fairly simple, but does a nice job of showing off the colors and the yarn, which has a lover-ly drape. It's a little darker than I've managed to capture in the photos--more bronze-y. Tres sophistoque!

I think I've got about three more repeats to go. It's about 7 inches wide by 60 inches long at the moment, pinned out. So it will be a nice length when it's all done.

Monday, August 27, 2007

100 Things About Me

  1. I knew I would marry my DH within weeks of meeting him.
  2. It took him a little longer, but not too much.
  3. My mom knew it was for real when I went fishing with him on January first.
  4. Even with neoprene waders, I was cold. But I was also in love.
  5. We dated for almost seven months before we got engaged.
  6. He proposed to me on a fishing trip in NYC harbor.
  7. Fish & fishing are constant themes in our lives.
  8. At least, I thought it was a fishing trip--for stripers. I was dressed in pretty crappy clothing. But instead of tackle in the box, there was a ring. And instead of bait in the cooler, champagne.
  9. Both sets of parents knew and helped him plan the proposal.
  10. I was totally floored—he’d convinced me he wasn’t going to ask for another couple of weeks.
  11. The engagement also lasted about seven months.
  12. We got married twice—once on Friday and once on Saturday—in two churches (his parents and mine) to make both sets of the family happy.
  13. In between weddings we had a rehearsal and a rehearsal dinner for almost 80 people. And we went to Wendy's before the rehearsal, dressed in our wedding regalia.
  14. I had two dresses. And two bouquets. Only the one groom, though. J
  15. I like to tease that he’s my second husband.
  16. We got married during the school year.
  17. I did cancel my Friday classes that week.
  18. Our honeymoon was postponed until Thanksgiving because we both had to go back to school on Monday.
  19. We went to Longwood Gardens for our honeymoon. It’s one of my favorite places to go, and their Christmas display is fantastic.
  20. My DH’s first language is Russian, although he was born in NJ.
  21. I have learned enough Russian to have conversations with four-year-olds.
  22. My accent is good enough to make grown-ups think I’m being modest when I say (in Russian) that I can’t speak much Russian. I’m not, but they keep speaking at me anyway.
  23. I speak French reasonably well, and lived there for eight months after I graduated from college.
  24. I speak no Spanish, but managed to pass a language test in it anyway.
  25. I feel this proves that I know how to use a dictionary really, really well. And really, really quickly.
  26. I grew up in rural NJ. (And no, that’s not an oxymoron!)
  27. I have one sibling, a brother. He’s four years younger than me, but six inches taller. I still refer to him as my little brother.
  28. I also call him “Brat.” To which he actually answers.
  29. The Russian word for brother is “brat,” which cracks me up.
  30. He’s one of my best friends.
  31. My nephew was born prematurely, at 29 weeks. That was seriously scary.
  32. It was also when I started knitting more—he was in the NICU and needed hats made by his aunt.
  33. That was more than three years ago, in 2004. He’s doing great now. I totally adore him and the way he calls me “Duzan” ‘cause he can’t get the “s” sound quite right.
  34. I love chocolate. Dark chocolate, in particular.
  35. Once, when we had a layover in Switzerland, I made my husband go to a cafĂ© for what the guide books called “the best hot chocolate in the world.” It was good.
  36. I think the hot chocolate from L.A. Burdicks is better.
  37. I think the hot chocolate from Jacque Torres is better still.
  38. I’ve always been an avid reader. When I was little, my mom would tell me to put the book down and go outside. I’d take the book with me and climb up into a tree to read.
  39. I read very quickly—the last Harry Potter novel took about seven hours, start to finish.
  40. When I was in junior high, my favorite book was Gone with the Wind. I’ve read it at least a dozen times.
  41. My favorite poet is Alfred, Lord Tennyson. I fell for him when I was 14 and haven’t looked back since.
  42. That’s probably why I’m working on a dissertation on Victorian poetry.
  43. My dissertation is on women poets, though, and the way they use dramatic monologues. Tennyson only makes a brief cameo.
  44. I love reading bad novels. I can’t stand bad writing, but I love cheesy romances and crazy mystery / thrillers.
  45. I'm a bit of a grammar freak. I think sentences are fun. And that you can do cool things with hyphens. And semicolons. I'm very fond of semicolons.
  46. I reread all of Jane Austen most years, just ‘cause. I reading about that period. Some of the more modern authors I like in that same vein are Georgette Heyer and Lauren Willig.
  47. I also like audiobooks. They’re good for knitting, and I don’t feel guilty about “reading” popular fiction that’s unrelated to my job or dissertation. I've listened to all of Jasper Fforde's novels on audiobook.
  48. I teach writing at a local university.
  49. This is the start of my tenth year teaching at a college. I still get comments about looking too young, though.
  50. I helped develop a new version of our business writing course last year. It’s been pretty successful.
  51. I swam in high school and in college. Breast stroke, mainly.
  52. I still hold the record at my high school in the 100 yard breast stroke.
  53. I didn’t study abroad in college because I didn’t want to miss a semester of swimming.
  54. I was co-captain my senior year, when I also blew my shoulder out and had to have surgery.
  55. All-in-all, it’s not a great way to spend your last college spring break.
  56. I loved college, though.
  57. I went to a very small liberal arts school, in a lovely setting.
  58. My best friend was also my roommate for three years in college.
  59. She’s my favorite person to knit for. Even though she doesn’t knit herself, she appreciates handknits and actually wears them.
  60. One of my favorite projects to date is a hat with fish on it. I made it for my husband’s best friend, because he asked (after seeing a “We call them pirates” hat) if I could.
  61. He wears it a lot, but I still don’t have a picture.
  62. My mother taught me how to knit. She knits mainly baby blankets and buntings, even when she doesn’t know anyone who’s pregnant. She figures that they’ll come in use, eventually.
  63. My friends started having kids, and that’s why I bugged my mom to teach me to knit.
  64. My SIL felted the blanket I made for my nephew. I still love her.
  65. I even still knit for her. Machine wash and dryable only, though. (That was the problem with the blanket: machine wash, lay flat to dry.) Although for Christmas I'm making her a shawl. In Malabrigo laceweight. But she shouldn't need to wash it (and I may insist she give it back to me to wash!)
  66. After college, I spend a year living in France. I taught English in a local high school.
  67. “Taught” is a bit on an exaggeration. Really what I did was run conversation classes. And teach them how to play baseball.
  68. I’ve traveled to France, Holland, Italy, and England by myself.
  69. I’ve traveled to England, Ireland, Poland, Belarus, Russia (twice), Mongolia, China, Canada, Bermuda, and Barbados with my husband.
  70. I’d recommend all of them except for Belarus. Pretty country, nice people, archaic rules about who can go where and when.
  71. We had to drive 200 miles north to cross the border of Belarus in order to drive 200 miles south to visit the place we wanted to go, which was less the 6 miles from where we’d started.
  72. We had to reverse the process on the way home.
  73. We also had to pay a tax on the picnic lunch we brought in with us.
  74. We've been married for almost 8 years (since November 1999). We’ve moved our stuff seven times and lived in five different apartments. We also had everything in storage for two summers while we were in Russia.
  75. I hate moving.
  76. Especially in August, which is mainly when we move, since we’re both academics.
  77. My husband has three masters’ degrees. I only have one.
  78. He’s working on a dissertation, too. His is in Eastern Europoean politics. We’re trying to cover an entire wall with framed degrees.
  79. We met when he was working as the director of graduate admissions at my graduate school. He didn’t admit me, though.
  80. He’s taught me how to fish.
  81. I will even take the fish off the hook. Not all fish (some have scarier teeth than others), but I’m working on it.
  82. I’ll put worms on, too, but only for my nephew.
  83. I’d like to go tuna fishing one day. And salmon fishing in Alaska.
  84. I don’t drink coffee. I never have. I don’t like the taste of it.
  85. I don’t even like the taste of coffee ice cream.
  86. I do like tea, though, and drink several cups a day.
  87. Even when it’s hot outside.
  88. Although then I generally switch to iced tea after my first cup.
  89. My favorite type of alcohol is champagne.
  90. My favorite champagne (technically, sparkling wine) is Domaine Carnaros, which is Taittinger’s American venture.
  91. We went to San Francesco, Napa Valley, and Sonoma Valley on a trip shortly after we got engaged, and visited the vineyard. I think that’s partly why I like it so much.
  92. All of our wineglasses are from vineyards we’ve visited. And all of our drinking glasses are pints from brew pubs.
  93. We’ve gone bobsledding in Lake Placid.
  94. We like to drive up to Maine for lobster.
  95. Our traditional New Year’s Eve involves bad movies, Trader Joe’s hors d’oeuvres, and Domaine Carnaros.
  96. I love B-movies involving oversized animals, particularly those involving water. (A totally different invocation of Lake Placid!)
  97. I love flowers and plants, but have not had much success with growing things. I’ve managed to kill both mint and bamboo.
  98. I’ve also had an orchid that’s been flowering continuously for the last year. I’ve put it down to Divine intervention.
  99. My father is a wonderful gardener. He rescued my Christmas cactus last year after I thought I’d killed it.
  100. I like both of my parents a great deal, and wish we lived closer and could hang out more. I wish my brother and his family were closer, too, but that's all about the nephew.

As if there weren't already enough WIPs around here . . .

I just got this in the mail! Yummy silk/cashmere from Mama Llama (a name that makes me smile every time I say it out loud. Try it: I bet you can't say "mama llama mama llama mama llama" with a straight face!

I'm test knitting a lace scarf pattern; Catherine says it's bloggable (blogable?) and, since it's about to become my primary project, that's a good thing!

Proof that there has been knitting

Even though there hasn't been any blogging:

Exhibit 1:

One finished Snicket Sock. I ran out of yarn on the toe, so I used some leftover blue. I've started the second one, but I've only got about 10 rows done, so it's not very interesting to look at.

Exhibit 2:

Progress has been made on the Stripes & Torchon lace shawl. The border is a 34 row, 20-30 stitch repeat, filled with double yo's and slip one, knit 2tog, psso's, which is making it hard to memorize. Also making it hard to memorize is the fact that I work a repeat and then put it down for four days, 'cause I'd rather be working on something else. I'm not lovin' the lace at the moment--I want nice, easy knitting. I'm done with 8 border repeats so far. I'm a little afraid to count how many are left!

The change in color is strange, since it's from the same skein of Malabrigo laceweight. There was a knot in the skein, so when I was making balls out of the yarn, I started a new ball when I found the knot. I couldn't believe how different the colors are! But I've decided that such is the way of handknits, and that I'm not going to worry about it.

Exibit 3:

Not actual knitting, but proof of another trip to Webs. Last weekend my DH told me to pick a destination, so I picked Quabbin Reservoir. Which was absolutely gorgeous; I think another trip out when the leaves are turning is in order.

And since we were so close to Northampton, we made a short stop at Webs, where I got some sock yarn in appropriately manly colors for husband socks, yarn for a sweater for him (pictured below), and the 25th Anniversary edition of Vogue Knitting. I don't normally get VK--I like the patterns in IK better--but I bought it for the articles, I swear. :)

Exhibit 4:

Cascade 220 in a loverly heathery green, called lichen, and approved of by DH before purchase. When we started talking about a sweater for him, he said he wanted green--a lichen or moss green. We picked this out, and when I looked it up online later, I realized that even the name was perfect! He liked Webs--they have a nice lounge area with magazines and comfy chairs, suitable for knitting or for waiting for spouses.

I've started an EPS sweater with it--I haven't decided on a style yet, although I'm leaning toward a seamless hybrid. As I've only turned the hem and knit about 4 inches of the body, I've got some time to decide, though.

There is no Exhibit 5, because I'm too lazy to get the camera, but my parents came up for a visit, and bought me a ball winder for my birthday. We went to Fabric Place--my mom wanted to get some Patons Canadiana for a baby blanket, and I had a 25% off total purchase coupon. They also had ball winders (and I had a 40% off a single item coupon, too!)--I've never seen them there before--and so it came home with me. And my birthday's not for another month!

I also had a chance to visit with a cousin I rarely see--he grew up in Colorado to my NJ, and lives in the midwest, but was out for a professional conference. So he, DH and I went to Jasper White's Summer Shack for dinner on Monday night (must take out-of-towners for seafood! and we love Summer Shack), and then picked him up for dinner chez nous Thursday with my parents, whom he also rarely sees.

On top of everything else, my summer class ended on August 16, and grades were due on August 23. Right now I'm trying to get a few of my own things done before the fall semester starts after Labor Day, including coming up with course calendars! Fortunately, both classes I'm teaching I've done before, so I'll probably go with readings that I've used in the past, which makes it a little quicker to put together.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

One Sock, Two Sock (Three Sock!)

One Sock:

Sockapalooza socks--Jaywalkers in Cherry Tree Hill Superwash, from the sadly blogless Lisa in Tennessee!

Thanks, Lisa--they're terrific! I've already worn them once--the weather was a little chilly on Thursday, and I was spending some serious time in an overly-airconditioned library, making hand-knit socks an excellent choice.

Two sock:

Snicket Sock in Gjestal Silja Sock Yarn. A lovely limey chartreuse color.

and my first short-row heel. It's a little wonky--moving the stitches to a spare needle seemed pretty awkward--but it's interesting. And now I know how to do it.

Three sock:

the third sock isn't here, it's in Michigan, at my sock pal's blog: Bethtoons, of Life, Knitting, and the Pursuit of Rollercoasters . I'm so glad that they got to her safely (and that they fit! I was worried they would be too . . . something. Long? Short? Narrow? Wide? But evidently Monkeys are not only brilliant at making pooling disappear, they're brilliant for having an excellent fit. :)

Monday, August 6, 2007


Just a quick post to say that I got my sockapalooza socks, and they TOTALLY ROCK. :) Beautiful jaywalkers in gorgeous Cherry Tree Hill superwash. AND a skein of Fearless Fibers superwash sock yarn. Yum.

But my husband has the camera, so pictures later.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Off to the post office

To mail my pal's socks (with a couple of other goodies) out!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Two finished monkeys . . .

sitting on the bed!Well, on a towel that's on the bed, anyway. :)

Specs: Cookie A's brilliant Monkey Pattern, size 2 needles, Lorna's Laces in "Icehouse."

for my Sockapalooza Pal. They're almost dry--they should be ready to pack up tomorrow!