Tuesday, June 19, 2007

More sighs for the socks

Exhibit A: Socks from hell
Okay, this weekend was full of great sadness and many sighs over my sockapalooza socks. I got to my cabin Friday night dead set on finishing sock #1 and being well on my way through sock two by the end of the weekend. I get to the cabin late Friday so there's only minor knitting. Saturday I sit down and the sock is about 1/2 of the way through the instep. So like any consciencious knitter I try on the sock. Well... once it's on my foot it fits like an absolute glove. However, this involved major struggling to get it on and even worse struggling to get it off. And my pals feet are a bit wider than mine. Clearly that wouldn't do.

So being the good little sock knitter that I am I did the only right thing. I had a moment to myself and then ripped the whole thing back. Hours of work gone in a matter of seconds. I then immediately cast on again for the larger size. Undaunted I knit furiously. Sunday evening I am at about a third of the way through the instep. I try on the sock. The socks are not a single bit bigger. I can clearly tell they used more wool because of where the "fresh" yarn started but they are a fight on. The only difference I see is a slight bagging at the top of the heel flap from its extra length.

After all the trouble I went through to find this yarn I know that it won't survive another ripping. So I'm left with no choice but to abandon them as sockapalooza socks. While they aren't my colours, I do think they're knitting up gorgeously so they probably will end up in my collection.

So what to do now? Well, the plan for the ominous sky yarn (from the last entry) was to send it with the package to my pal so instead it's becoming her socks. I've done some swatching and picked an entirely new pattern from "More Sensational Knitted Socks". I am however waiting until the start of the summer of socks to cast them on. And everyone, if you could please cross your fingers for me? Perhaps I should make a sacrifice to the knitting gods... just in case.

Exhibit B: Hopefully not yarn from hell

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Yarn porn

I've been meaning to get posting for several days now but I've been feeling a bit like doing nothing in the evening lately. I've not been particularly inspired. Perhaps because I had people in from out of town the other week and I was going out almost every night (which I never do) and things were exciting and there was lots of people to spend time with. And now that's mostly died off, though I do have one last night out tonight before my last friend heads back home. So I should post before it hits even harder.

Since my last post I have acquired a considerable amount of yarn. My LYS was having a 50% off sell and it's possible that I might have bought a totally obscene amount of baby yarn to make the second baby blanket and a hooded jacket. But this is mere speculation so no need to show it until it's being knitted (and there is such a photo to follow).

Then, if that wasn't enough I got a second order from the Loopy Ewe all in preparation for the Summer of Socks KAL which I'm very pumped for. And the best part was that the yarn was shipped in an envelope so the customs people didn't charge me. Ha! Take that Canadian government, I so swindled you out of $20 :) Here's the haul:

From left to right we have:
-sKNITches Bebop Sock variegated sock yarn in "Showgirl", 440 yds 75% superwash wool, 25% nylon
-Gypsy Knits BFL Superwash Fingering Wool in "Sweet dreams", 330 yds
-Stond Barn Fibres in "Ominous Skies" 200 yds/hank, 100% merino wool
-All Things Heather in "Bubblegum", 360yds superwash merino
-Claudia Handpaint in "Carousel", 180 yds/hank, 100% merino

Like I'm sure I mentioned, I'm trying to just try as many different dyers as possible to see what I like and find out what's all out there (though Claudia Hand paint is in a huge lead at the moment). I can't wait to knit it all up. Except the Ominous skies which is going to someone else as a present.

In the world of actual knitting content, I finished my monkey socks for my friend's birthday and must now get ready to mail it off. I'm very happy with how they turned out and wish I could keep them for myself :(

It was knitted on size 2 dpn in the Claudia Hand Paint "Jill's Pink" colourway. I hope she loves them! I've also passed the gusset on my Sockapalooza Pal's socks but unfortunately I stupidly left the bag it's in at home so that'll have to wait for next update for pictures. But I assure you the sock looks just spiffy!

And then, we have the start of baby blanket #2. It's being knitted in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino in the "Cable Blanket" patten from the Debbie Bliss book "Simply Baby". I decided to knit both at the same time so that I could alternate as my attention wanes from one. And the best part of this pattern is that it's extremely simple to memorize so unlike the other one I don't need a pattern constantly by my side and can knit it in other places. Here it is:

Aww... baby blanket. Seriously, baby's get all the cool knitted stuff!

I believe that's all there's been from me. My goal is to finish the first Sockapalooza sock by then end of next week and get a good chunk of the blue baby blanket done this weekend. Hope the plan turns out. Happy Wednesday all!

Sunday, June 3, 2007

We have scarf-age!

After much anticipation, the day I've been waiting for all of May finally arrived, my ISE4 scarf arrived from the wonderful Melissa (stickchick)!!! Saturday morning I was half asleep and in pyjamas when the buzzer rang. I was totally perplexed. It was the mailman with my package. On a Saturday... Maybe Canada post is starting to feel guilty about hating me so much? *shrugs*

But, needless to say, I quickly ripped through all the tape. But I was good and left the scarf for last, looking at all the other very generous goodies my pal sent me. Minus the scarf, this is what I opened first:

(The chocolate was eaten by the time I got the camera out, that would just be the wrapper!). She really picked out excellent choices for me (my family could take a lesson from her). I've been interested in making some dishclothes and completely curious about this Peaches & Creme yarn everyone tells me about and now I have the yarn and patterns. Some excellent knitting mojo there :) And I'm also a huge stationary and hand letter writing fan so that was very special for me too.

Then came... the scarf! My pal made me a wide scarf/wrap out of some amazingly soft baby alpaca yarn. She said that her original plans were much different but she was inspired by my kittyville hat pictures to change plans. And in crazy cosmic timing, it just so happened that I was going to a fancy banquet that evening for the Canadian Mathematics Society meeting and the wrap went perfectly with my dress. (And it turned out that I really needed it because the venue was freezing!) My friend Val ever so delightfully obliged to take a picture of me fancied up with the scarf:

I absolutely love it! Thank you oh so much Melissa! I'm not entirely sure on the pattern though(care to help me out here pal?).

In the sock department I've decided to try my very first toe up sock using Wendy's general toe-up pattern. I've only gotten a few rows past the toe as most of my knitting time tonight was spent winding the yarn. Ducky, my Spanish duck, ever so graciously modeled it for me

And the other socks continue. This afternoon I was attending the university's science/education convocation. Sitting by myself, for three hours, in a ceremony where I was really only there for about 5 minutes of it, I wasn't about to sit without some socks, so my Monkey socks kept me company. Afterwards I was talking to one of the professors in attendance (they were on the floor with the graduates, I was up in risers with hundreds of family/friends) at the reception. And apparently, they not only spotted me in all that audience but were able to identify that I was knitting. And, as they seem to take my knitting as being another indication of my strangeness (in the more endearing, not crazy nut job way, I don't take offense) I think that I will be reminded of this fact...often. So, now that it's an infamous sock, here's what it looked like after the ceremony:

It's now well on its way to being done by the end of next week to ship off to one of the best friends a girl could ask for, for her birthday. I think it's been a good knitting weekend :)