Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Knitting Along

I can't believe it's been over a week since my last post! I have no excuse, I just wasn't in the mood for blogging. However, I'm feeling much better now and have much to show. (Like the purty flower on the left, what is blooming in my yard.)

I finished the first of the Embossed Leaves socks. I ended up ripping back to the correct number of repeats and then doing a slip-stitch heel. I also didn't do the toe decrease as many times as the pattern indicated, it would have made for an especially long toe. I'm really pleased with the result. I'm about half-way through the second sock.

To change things up, I decided to start working with the gorgeous Manos my honey bought me a while ago. I was originally going to make My So Called Scarf with it, but decided to go with the Snowy Triangle Scarf pattern by Iris Schreier, which appears in Handknit Holidays (love this book!).
I really enjoyed knitting this pattern. It was very easy (I had it memorized after 1 repeat) and I think it works very well with this particular yarn. It knit up super quick too, I was able to start & finish it within 2 days!
While working on the scarf, the yarn arrived for my sockapalooza pal! I had originally ordered in from an online shop, but then I received an email from them that it was back-ordered. Grrr.. Luckily, I found an Ebay seller who had it in stock AND the total cost was less than the other online shop! Whee! I was very happy with the transaction. She got it too me very quickly & sent candy!
Scarf finished & yarn in hand, I got started on the swirling lace anklets yesterday. The lace pattern is very, very easy and easily memorized. I'm half way through the 2nd lace repeat for the cuff and should start on the heel tonight.
Unfortunately my camera is not very good with the fine detail and isn't showing the sock to its best. It's much prettier in person!

I think I'm going to knit a second pair of socks for my pal. I will just have to see how long it takes me to finish these.

OH! I almost forgot to mention that I was gifted a Brother Embroidery machine by the fabulous Jill last weekend. She totally hooked me up and I am totally intimidated by this machine, but I will conquer it! I just need to get myself a stash of embroidery thread!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Interweave Knits Summer Issue: The Good, The Bad & The Fugly

Just got back from the bookstore and I picked up the new Interweave Knits. There are several nice patterns in this issue, although I still don't like the new layout. I do have fairly strong feelings on a few of the patterns and I thought I would share my thoughts.

The Good:
The Wheat-Ear Cable Yoke by Pam Allen

Well designed sweater displayed on the right model. The shaping is in the right place and the cables are not overdone. I love the neckline on this sweater. This is the type of sweater I would have loved in my late teens & early twenties (when I had the figure for it). I may just knit this for my niece.

Syncopated Caps by Kate Gilbert

I love the fair isle pattern on these! It looks like a pattern that you could knit over & over without getting bored, and the look is timeless.

Spiral Boot Socks by Veronik Avery

Feeds nicely into my sock obsession, which has lately run to the knee-sock variety after seeing Clessidra in the latest issue of Knitty. I really like the spiraling lace and the cuff is adorable. I will definitely be making a pair of these.

The Bad:
1824 Blouson by Mari Lynn Patrick

Ok. Granted, this sweater does look comfy. It also looks like it's inside out. That's what I think every time I look at the picture, and if I saw it in person I would probably be fighting the urge to tell the woman her sweater is inside out! Seriously. It's like when someone's clothing tag is hanging out... I just need to tuck it back in... this sweater is making my hands itch.

Little Smocked Cardigan By Carrie Bostick Hoge

This sweater is pretty and I understand what she was trying to achieve. However, it looks like the model has just put on a sweater that was made for her 8 yr old daughter. Either that or her husband shrunk it in the wash. One of the pictures in the magazine actually shows the model tugging down on the sweater as if it is too short. I think this sweater could have been saved by a little shaping. It's too boxy to be this short.

The Fugly:
Sleeveless Tuxedo Shirt by Theresa Schabes

Honestly I don't know what could have saved this one. All I can say is that it certainly does remind me of a frilly tuxedo shirt... that's not a good thing.

Origami Cardi By Norah Gaughan

Wow. A pattern that is unflattering on absolutely every body type, except for possibly pregnant women. The "berry" stitch looks like bobbles and quite frankly they are ugly. And you can tell that the model hates it.

Ok. So that's what I think. There are a few beautiful designs that I didn't mention (like the Montego Bay Scarf). I'd love to hear your thoughts. Which patterns did you like the best and which did you think were fugly?

EDIT: When I checked my blog this morning I noticed that somehow comments had been turned off! Oops! They are back on now. My bad.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Tag, I'm It!

Vicky tagged me, so I must comply! :)

8 Random Things About Me...

1. I am a huge procrastinator, especially when it comes to housework.
2. I played the clarinet until my junior year of high school and at one time considered becoming a professional musician.
3. I drink tea and water almost exclusively. I only drink pop on the rarest of occasions (these usually involve pizza).
4. I am totally addicted to the TV show Heroes and can barely wait for the season finale!
5. My first car was a 1979 Mercury Capri, which died a spectacular death by throwing a rod on a local freeway (I-94).
6. I'm 34 and still don't know what I want to be when I grow up. :)
7. I've always wanted to travel abroad but the only place outside the US I've visited is Ontario, Canada, which is closer to us than the next closest state. (30 min to Windsor, Ont.- 45 min to Ohio border)
8. I'm a bleeding-heart hippie liberal.

I'm tagging:

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A Repeat Too Far

I was watching a few episodes from the new season of Dr. Who last night & wasn't paying close enough attention to my knitting. This caused me to do an extra repeat of the lace pattern before starting on the heel flap. Oops! Well, I thought, it's not too tall. I will just forge ahead.

I'm really not thrilled with the design of the heel flap for this pattern. It's only 32 sts but it looks huge! I may just have a skewed opinion because I normally do a slip-stitch heel (k1, sl1), which draws the fabric in.

So I'm thinking of ripping back to the correct number of repeats & then doing said slip-stitch heel. What do you think?

Btw- The Swirling Lace Anklets pattern arrived today! Now I just need to get the yarn! Kudos to Spinning Bunny for getting the pattern out so quickly. I will definitely buy from them again!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Yet More Talk About Socks

Lately it seems like this block is all socks all the time! :)

I want to thank everyone who helped me pick the yarn for my sockapalooza pal's socks! The overwhelming winner is Sage, with 55% of the vote! I will be ordering the yarn this weekend (yippie for payday!)

In the meantime, I did a bit more Kool-Aid dyeing this weekend using 3 skeins of Knit Pick Bare fingering weight yarn. I did another skein of the blue/green stripes, but with the stripes appearing in a different order.
A skein with Strawberry, Strawberry Lemonade, & Lemonade Kool-Aid, which is self-striping as well.
And a skein of green. If you look closely you will notice subtle variations in the color. I achieved this by placing the skein in a blue-yellow mixture for 5 minutes, then removing the yarn and mixing in lime green. I'm really pleased with it. It's very subtle, but gives more depth to the knit than you would with a solid color! Very happy.
I had to start knitting it right away.
This is the Embossed Leaves Socks by Mona Schmidt from the Winter 2005 issue of Interweave Knits. The lace pattern is very easy and it is knitting up very quickly! These will mostly likely go to my mum for her birthday in July!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Need Help With Color!

Went to my lys this morning and they didn't have a single skein of solid-color sock yarn! So after much searching on the internet I think I'm going to go with Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock Yarn, but I need help picking the color. My sock pal stated she likes just about any color, so long as it isn't too dark.

So, I'll be knitting these socks...

But which of the following colors should I use?
DenimSageLilacPeachOld Rose

Personally, I'm leaning towards the sage, but I could really use a 2nd opinion!

Friday, May 11, 2007

Cutest Sock Ever!

I finished the stripey socks for my mum and still have quite a bit of yarn left over. I decided to knit up a pair of baby socks for Joanne, who could go into labor at any time now!

I'm so thrilled with how it turned out! So cute!! Will have to make more of these!!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Thank You!

I'm overwhelmed by the number of responses I received! Thank you so much for your help! Swirling Lace Anklets was the clear winner, with 49% of the votes. I ordered the pattern last night from Spinning Bunny. I've never ordered from here before, I hope there are no problems...

I also purchased the electronic version of the Japanese Feather Lace socks... I really like the pattern and I figure that I can make these for my sock buddy as well if I have enough time.

Now I just need to decide on the yarn!

btw- I finished the second stripey sock last night. The stripes are perfectly aligned! Squee!!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

I received an email from my spoilee today (yippie!). Apparently Yahoo! had decided I was spam the first time around, but it is all good now. :)

Now I need to decide on a pattern. She said that she likes lace, but without big holes. She doesn't like long socks and she likes the cuff to be loose. So, I am thinking a lace anklet pattern (or a little taller). I found two that I really like and a third, which I'm not as fond of but will work very well with a variegated yarn. She stated that she likes bright/light colors (nothing dark or earth tone).

The Patterns are:
Swirling Lace Anklets

Falling Leaves
And Japanese Feather
I also really like Thelonious, but I am worried that they will be too tall for her.

Please help me decide!

Monday, May 07, 2007

Much Ado About Socks

I've finished the first Stripey sock & have started on the second! So far the stripes are lining up PERFECTLY! Yea Me!

In other news, it's been a full week since I emailed my spoilee for Sockapalooza 4 and I still haven't received a response. She has updated her blog a few times so I know she is about. I resent my original message yesterday afternoon in case it was inadvertently deleted, not received or marked as spam. How long do you think I should give it before I contact the moderator? I don't want to be a pest, but I also don't want to wait forever to get started! It wouldn't be bad that she hasn't responded, but she didn't include any info in her profile.. no colors, no sizing, no pattern clues... nothing! (sigh)

Friday, May 04, 2007


is underway! Whee! I got a lovely email yesterday from my spoiler (Hi secret pal!) and am very excited!

Unfortunately my spoilee didn't include any specs in her profile and hasn't answered my email to her yet. :( I'm a little frustrated about this; I was really hoping to dye her sock yarn this weekend but now it looks like I will just have to wait.

I am almost done with the first stripey-sock, which I have decided will be a mother's day gift for my mum. As always, I will post a pic once I've finished.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Stripey Goodness

It's almost like I knew what I was doing!

The color is still off on the computer, but you get the idea. I'm so happy with the results of this dye, even if the results aren't exactly what I was thinking. I wanted the 3 stripes to be more distinctive, but I'm liking the subtleness of this striping much better. It gives a soft transition between the 2 distinct colors! Yippie! I will definitely be doing more with this "colorway".

I'm going to order more of the bare yarn from Knitpicks this weekend and then play with mixing flavors! Who knew dyeing could be such fun! XD