Thursday, March 22, 2007

See, there's a reason I called this blog "Scattered Knitting"

I honestly cannot believe I haven't posted since November, but the months since then have just flown by at lightning speed.

I'm at the very end of a totally all consuming phase of work, so I'll now have more time to devote to knitting. I have actually completed a couple projects after all that Christmas knitting--including a cashmere hat for Chris, and a cashmere scarf for Chris, too. (Lucky lucky Chris.) I wish I'd taken pictures before I sent them off to Ohio, but I just spaced. Now Chris wants socks. Well, he's not getting cashmere socks--he's getting a pair of Thujas and that's that. They're on the needles now and by the time I get around to finishing them it'll be much too hot for thick wool socks. C'est la vie. I've got a pair of socks for me on the needles--they're Zokni Socks. I like them a lot, but I need to really pay attention to what I'm doing to not screw up the lace pattern and I haven't had that kind of total concentration knitting time as if late.

Oh, almost forgot. I made myself a pair of Fuzzy Feet and I loved them. I loved them despite the fact that I made them out of orange wool and I don't like orange wool. I loved them so much in fact that I never took them off and I wore giant holes in the balls of both feet. And I'm a weirdo and can't bear to throw them out. Note to self- make another pair but maybe double up on the wool this time.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Far too much work, not enough knitting

November has been a crazy, crazy month. It's been all about work (the kind that pays the bills) and not too much about anything fiber related. I've managed to do a few rows here and there on two different pairs of socks, but nothing complete to show, alas.

Thanksgiving was nice--had it at Dad's house. Everyone brought side dishes, and as usual Norm carved the turkey, I made the gravy and was stationed on the oven/stove for the part where everything gets reheated and into serving dishes. On Monday night I made two practice pies---one Sour Cream Apple Pie and one Ultimate Lemon Meringue pie. (Then on Wednesday I made 2 more lemon and one more apple---the apple for David's family, one lemon to send along to my Mom's side of the family, and one lemon for me to take to Dad's). I'd never used these recipes before and wanted to make sure they were actually good ones before the big day. I can't recommend enough the apple pie and the lemon pies were delicious too. I also made all the ricotta cheese for David's mother's lasagna she makes with homemade pasta. My kitchen's had a serious workout, let me tell ya.

And...David and I are making limoncello for gifts this year. We've zested 40 lemons and he made a special trip to Rhode Island to get the Everclear (it's illegal to sell in Massachusetts.) At the moment we've got two huge jars of lemon zest soaking in the booze. It looks so pretty! With one jar we're going to make Crema di Limoncello and with the other we'll make the regular stuff. I can't wait to see how it comes out.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Sometimes I just can't he'p myself

May I present Pasha.

Pasha is a cute boy, despite the horrid bits of evil Red Heart he's composed of and his shoddy seam-job. I like him.

I've made no progress on my copycat socks. My enthusiasm has waned dramatically. I might hold off on finishing them until after Christmas. Or I might not.

On another note, what is it about the statement, "Listen, you and I have diametrically opposing political views, and you're not going to change my mind, and I'm not going to change yours, so I'd prefer to just agree to disagree and just not talk about this at all," that is unclear? It's maddening to me when someone refuses to NOT engage in a fervent pointless argument when you politely ask them not to. (Especially when the someone arrived uninvited to your home and is completely interrupting an evening where all you wanted to do is take off your god dammed bra, throw on your jammies, and do something which involves focus and concentration. Like knit lace.)

Monday, November 06, 2006

The Dishcloth and a Sock - A Tale Of Woe

Over the last couple of days I've been excitedly knitting on a pair of socks using a pattern I 'designed' which was inspired by my favorite dishcloth. I made this particular dishcloth years ago (the Lacy Mock Cable by Vauna Rae Giberson), and every time I looked at it I couldn't help but think about what a great stitch pattern it'd be for a pair of socks.

It took me a little while to turn the dishcloth stitch pattern into one which could be worked in the round and make all the necessary additions of various purl stitches so I'd have an odd number of 'cables' centered on the instep, etc. I wanted to work these socks toe up, using a turkish cast on. I wanted a toe with simple M1 increases. Also, I wanted to do a version of a heel flap since short row heels just don't fit my feet as nicely as a heel flap/gusset combo does.

So painstakingly I labored on figuring out all of this stuff, even made a chart, and proudly started knitting away. I did the feet two at a time on two circs, separated them for the flaps and gussets and decided to knit the rest of the two socks one at a time, and got many inches up the leg of one of the socks...

Here's the chart I created for the 32 stitch instep.

and then... I just happened upon Purlwise's short row tutorial. The sock she's using for the tutorial looks suspiciously like the socks I just "invented." Oh my god, no. What the hell?! So, with a sinking feeling I investigate her blog and her various completed socks, and come to the dramatic and horrifying realization that I've just re-invented the Pretty Comfy Socks.


Blurry & poorly lit progress shot, taken while I was still happy

Granted my version is done toe up and doesn't have a short row heel (features a heel flap and gusset), but still. I'm annoyed since I was feeling so innovative and creative and now I just feel sad and dumb.


Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Socktoberfest 2006 Conclusion

In the month of Socktober I managed to finish 3 pairs of socks (Moss Stitch/Cables, Aran Braid and Anastasia socks) and 1 single big ass sock (Thuja), start a sock in a fiber I've never used before, and write a lace sock pattern from scratch. Not too shabby, eh?

I've yet to actually knit an entire sock in the pattern I made, but I've swatched it in the round and I'm rather pleased with the results. It was really fun to make the lace chart for it in Excel using a knitting symbols font created by Aire River Design. I'm really quite anxious to knit the first real sock, but since they'll be for me and not a Christmas gift, I feel a little guilty about starting them when I've got so many more gift socks to churn out.

Here's the fiber I've never used before. There's a picture of Carolyn's Greenwood Fiberworks cotton\lycra sock yarn all balled up in yesterday's entry. After taking some more pictures of the yarn today, I realized why Carolyn's Great Pumpkin color is way different than mine--when this yarn is photographed with a flash, it appears exactly as it does on her site--much much brighter in color than it really is. But again, I prefer the real color anyway, so I wasn't even remotely disappointed.

It's really is weird and lovely stuff-- very very stretchy because of the filament of lycra that runs thru the middle and which makes it all scrunchy when it's unstretched. It's also very very soft, too. When it's all stretched out, it's fairly smooth. It took me a few minutes to figure out how much tension I should be using to knit this into a fabric I liked that wasn't too hole-y looking when it was stretched a bit.

I like it best at 9 spi. I'm getting this gauge using size 1 needles. It's only a little pebbly-looking--much less so than you'd think by looking at the yarn itself. Here's the beginning of a toe up simple stockinette sock I'm making for my sister. (Turkish cast on, oooh yeah.) She's got feet like canoe paddles (long and very wide), so I cast on 68 stitches. I'm not feeling much like experimenting with any fancy stitchwork on these--eyelets are probably all that this yarn would show well and I'm not in the mood for any more eyelets after cranking out the Anastasia's.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Big Honkin' Man Socks, a.k.a Thuja

This Thuja sock in progress is absolutely gigantic. The enormity of a wide size 13 men's foot is difficult to describe. Thank goodness it's Artyarns Supermerino (119) which is worsted weight, so it's knitting up relatively quickly. I can't even imagine making a pair of big ass men's socks in sock weight wool.

My little sister is obsessed with all things orange, and she can't stand having her feet feel hot (so wool is pretty much out). Therefore I'm planning to make her a pair of socks with this Greenwood Fiberworks cotton/lycra sock yarn in the colorway "Great Pumpkin." This came in the mail on Friday and the color is quite a bit lighter in real life than it appeared on the Etsy site I purchased it from. In fact, I like it's actual color better than the color it was pictured in.

I've never knit anything using a fiber that's held together with a filament of lycra so I'm definitely going to have to swatch this one to see how it behaves.


Thursday, October 26, 2006

Sock Sleeves

Being firmly of the mind that presentation is key, and inspired by ordinary commercially packaged socks as well as Carolyn's post here, today I created a sock sleeve template in Microsoft Word.

Exhibit A:

Due to the fact that evidentally I need a new color printer cartridge (note the unattractive lines going vertically thru the sheep graphic), this particular sleeve will have to be printed again before this becomes an actual Christmas gift.

I am rather pleased with the template and because it's laid out in Word (just a simple 2 column table), it'll be a snap to personalize for each pair of socks I'll be gifting.

I found the graphic in the Microsoft Clip gallery, of all places. I looked there, not really expecting to find anything so appropriate, because I wanted a copyright free image to use. How pleasantly suprising.

Here it is, just in case you'd like to use it, too. Just right click and save it. It's a 300 dpi image and prints out at 1.5 inches x 1.8 inches. It won't look jaggedy if you take it. It's just like that here because I had to compress the size a bit so it won't break my blog template.


Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Anastasia Sock - Huzzah!

So I decided the other day to start a pair of Mata Hari socks in a the lovely shade Dusk of Knitpicks Gloss. Merrily I knit along from the cuff down, row after row, never once bothering to try to slip them on over my ankle. They *looked* fine and boy, oh boy were they knitting up lightning fast. I felt such glee at the speed they were flying off my needles. Did the requisite number of rows for the heel, turned the heel, knit another couple of inches and THEN decided to try them on. Ack! I could get them over my ankle, but it was a major struggle. So I put them down. Walked away. For hours. I picked them up again. And again. Finally noticed that the heel even looked very, very short. I wracked my brain for more people I know with tiny feet that deserve a pair of handknit socks. Unfortunately I only could come up with two deserving folks with itty bitty feet and I've already made them socks.

After debating with myself all day, I finally just quickly whipped the needles out and frogged this:

Bad Mata Hari sock. Bad.

I decided to cast on another sock right away with the Gloss and chose Anastasia. And voila! Here's one completed sock.

I don't have the words to express how absolutely delighted I am with this totally simple toe up sock pattern. I knit this sock in just two evenings. (This is my record for sock speed knitting.) I did make some minor adjustments to the pattern, including using a turkish cast on, adding a couple of extra short rows in the heel, and adding a purl row after the toe. (I like how the start of the eyelets look butted up against the raised purl row.)

I love love love the turkish cast on. It's the first time I've ever tried it and now I'm a convert. I can't imagine starting a toe up sock any other way now that I've done it this way. Kudos to Fluffy Knitter Deb for posting a lovely tutorial.

Also, I'm estatic that I've finally managed short row heels without gaping holes (or even tiny holes!) AND the knit side and purl side are identical! I used Misocrafty's technique and it's freakin' brilliant.

The other day I ordered some Artyarns Supermerino for a pair of Thuja socks from Sarah's Yarns. Because I'm a first time customer, Sarah included color cards for all the yarns she carries. I wasn't expecting that and totally tickled when I opened the package. These yarns are gorgeous. Gorgeous, I say. My mother was with me when I got the package and she couldn't stop fondling the little strands of cashmere and silk. Now I've need to find a good shawl pattern and order some more from Sarah ASAP.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Completed Aran Braid Socks

Pattern: Aran Braid Socks
Yarn: Knitpicks Gloss in Woodland Sage
Needles: Two size 0 circulars
Sock Size: 4 1/2 Ladies

Pattern mods: Added some braid repeats to the leg, worked on 2 circs instead of DPNs, picked up gusset stitches using Grumperina's pretty way, and did a star toe from the Sensational Knitted Socks book.

I just ordered some Artyarns Supermerino from Sarah's Yarns for a pair of Thuja socks for my boyfriend's fabulous brother. I cannot wait for it to arrive. I've never knitted socks for a man before (much less one with big ass feet), so I figured I should probably choose a pattern with thicker yarn and less stitches so I don't want to slit my wrists before they're done.


48 Things You Could Care Less About

Ed could care less about these things as well.



3. WHEN DID YOU LAST CRY? Last month at my grandmother's funeral.

4. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? No, I never have and since I rarely write anything with a pen anymore it's getting worse!

5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCHMEAT? Roast beef, hands down. (With horseradish, naturally.)

6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? Of course. I'm a good cook and live to feed people.

7. DO YOU HAVE A JOURNAL? Just this blog, which I intend to make more journal-ish.

8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? Yes. I've never had an operation.

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Not unless I was a contestant on the Amazing Race.

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? Honey Bunches of Oats---the strawberry kind.


12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? Mentally, yes. Physically, not really, no.

13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM FLAVOR? Hagen Das Caramel Cone. (God, I'm salivating just typing that.)

14. SHOE SIZE? 8 1/2

5. RED OR PINK? Most definitely red.

16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF? My sometimes overwhelming insecurity.

17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? A close friend who moved away.

18. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU? Only if they feel like it.

19. WHAT COLOR PANTS, SHIRT AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Green pajamma top and bottoms, bare feets.

20. LAST THING YOU ATE? A very delicious individual peach upside down cake.

21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? Just the me clacking on these keys.


23. FAVORITE SMELL? Bread baking.



26. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON you stole THIS from? Oh yes, indeed.

27. FAVORITE DRINK? Coffee. Hot or iced.

28. FAVORITE SPORT? Football!

29. EYE COLOR? Blue Green

30. HAT SIZE? Small. I've got a pin head.

31. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS? Not yet, no.

32. FAVORITE FOOD? It's impossible to decide. I love food.

33. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? I'd pick well done scary over sappy happy any day.


36. HUGS OR KISSES? I can't pick just one.


38. WHO IS MOST LIKELY TO RESPOND? No one, since I'm not sending this to anyone.


40. WHAT BOOKS ARE YOU READING? The Cage by Audrey Schulman.

41. WHAT'S ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? No mouse pad.


43. FAVORITE SOUNDS? The gurgling sound my coffee pot makes when the coffee is just about ready.



46. WHAT'S YOUR SPECIAL TALENT? Rarely being at a loss for words.


48. WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? Cribbed from Cara's blog


Thursday, October 19, 2006

Tapas and Sunshine

Last night was pleasant one, indeed. Alas, no knitting to report. A good friend is in town and we went to Tapeo on Newbury Street in Boston for (what else?) tapas and then saw Little Miss Sunshine at the Lowes Theatre on Tremont. It was an oddly warm evening for October and a stroll through the Public Gardens was perfect. I always forget just how pretty it is until I'm actually standing in it.

At Tapeo the tapas were fine, but not extraordinary by any means. We weren't starving, so we picked just 4--Vieiras al Azafrán (scallops in saffron cream), Lomito al Cabrales (pork tenderloin with blue goat cheese and mushroooms), Butifarras con Brevas (pork sausage with figs) and Codorniz de Castilla (Broiled Herb and Garlic Quail stuffed with Bacon). Of the four dishes, I enjoyed the pork tenderloin the most. The sauce was so very delicious, but the pork itself was a bit overdone. I think if I could find blue goat cheese it would be easy enough to duplicate this particular dish at home. The pork sausage had a nice texture, but we agreed it could have benefited from a bit more spice. The scallops were just ok, not overcooked, but the saffron cream sauce tasted a lot like corn chowder, of all things. And finally, the quail---I was interested in that because I've never had quail and while it tasted nice enough, I think they're simply too much work for a small payoff. My friend did look fairly amusing though when he was chewing on one of their tiny legs. I thought that's how a giant would look eating a chicken leg and it made me giggle.

The very tiny pitcher of sangria was a tad weak. I'm not known for being able to hold my liquor, but I didn't even get a minor buzz. Shocking indeed. My friend had a piece of flourless chocolate cake and a glass of 10 year old port for dessert, and I had a rather awful berry crepe with chocolate sauce and a cup of old tepid coffee that I didn't feel like complaining about.

The bill came to $93 before the tip which is precisely why I don't go out for tapas more often, even though I love the concept and it's certainly fun. Two wafer thin slices of pork, two inches of sausage, 3 tiny scallops and half a quail doesn't exactly fill me up and the cost makes me feel a little guilty too. We could eat really well here at my house for a week on what that one dinner cost.

We really enjoyed Little Miss Sunshine. Go see it if you can for it's got substance to go along with it's humor. It starts out a bit slow, but the full on belly laughs you'll experience later on in the film and the excellent acting made it a totally worthwhile experience.


Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Brilliant Row Counter

I have this thing about working on one project at a time. I know how I am, and how if left unchecked, I'd start many, many things and never finish any of them. So generally I don't allow myself to start a new project until the one I'm working on is actually complete, or I decide I never want to finish it. I think though, that with all these socks I've planned to make as gifts I can actually relax my rule for myself since there is the Christmas deadline and so therefore I really do have to complete whatever I start.

So...I cast on for a pair of Hedera socks last night, on my size 1 Addi Turbos. After using the new sharp Knitpicks circulars, working with the Addis was like knitting with telephone poles. The Hedera pattern has a lot of decreases and increases within each row and it was relative torture trying to work them with the blunt Addis. So, these particular socks will just have to languish on hold until I can get around to ordering some size 1's from Knitpicks.

And now for something simple but brilliant:

This little beaded doohickey is a row counter for keeping track of pattern rows. This particular one is for a 4 row repeat. Each jump ring loop (between the seed bead sections) represents a pattern row. The red bead on the end is a heavy one and there to be an anchor. To use the row counter, you simply place it at the beginning of a row, like a stitch marker, and just slip the next loop down when you come around to it. I cannot take credit for inventing this, alas. The idea and the instructions for putting one together are here.

As soon as I saw this post I had to throw one together. It took all of 5 minutes, and that included the time it took me to find the tools and parts.

Labels: ,

Monday, October 16, 2006

One Aran Braid Sock complete

I've finished one of the Aran Braid socks, and have made a little progress on the second sock, too. The giftee of these socks has a women's size 4.5 foot, so they're teeny tiny.

I'm knitting these on two size 0 circulars with a gauge of 10 stitches per inch. I've done 15 braid repeats on the leg (the pattern calls for 11) and 16 cables on the instep. I use Grumperina's method for cables without a cable needle. I find this method to be much easier to work than the usual one where you rearrange the stitches and then knit them.

I'm debating whether or not to abandon my Christmas plan of socks for everyone who's worthy, which neccesitates lots of plain stockinette. The other option is to knit as many pairs of fun and interesting to knit socks as I can, and when I run out of time, just purchase non-homemade gifts for whoever is left on the list. The second option makes me a little sad though.


Friday, October 13, 2006

Autumn in New England

This is the view from my front porch and just one of the reasons I love living in Massachusetts in autumn.

I'm notorious for taking on hobbies. Most of the time I get intensely interested in some hobby and once I'm good at it, my interest wanes. Then I'm left with the supplies which I keep since I never know when I'll feel like starting it up again. There are exceptions, of course, knitting and cooking being two.

Last night I made these mind-blowing latkes. I served them with homemade applesauce, sour cream, and kielbasa. If you're a potato/comfort food fan and not watching your weight, I highly recommend. They're not like any latkes I've ever made before, but they were 'oh my god' delicious.


Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Aran Braid Socks

Last night I started a pair of Aran Braid Socks.

Continuing on my Knitpicks Gloss kick, they're in Woodland Sage. I have to say that this particular color is not particularly sage-like. It's definitely more teal, and rather lovely, actually.

I haven't decided who'll be receiving them for Christmas yet. I chose this pattern because it's wicked speedy and practically mindless. Considering the large amount of folks on my gift list, fast knits are freakin' key.


Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Surprise, surprise....

You Are 60% Evil

You are evil, but you haven't yet mastered the dark side.
Fear not though - you are on your way to world domination.

This past weekend was interesting one for me indeed. It included my very first time at the Topsfield Fair AND my very first time in an IKEA store.

Having never been to a real country fair, I wasn't quite sure what to expect. We spent most of the time checking out the various animals (including cows, goats, sheep, rabbits, chickens, ducks, an elephant and camel and various ponies, and some really impressive birds of prey, too.) I wondered how people could visit with cows for 20 minutes and then walk right out of the barn and over to the hamburger stand and order one up. I won't be able to eat a steak again until I can forget how sweet their eyes are.

Watching a woman spinning angora right off her rabbit caused me to briefly toy with the idea of buying one, until I remembered my very jealous cat. I should probably wait until he's no longer with us to even think about it at all.

I had a panic attack in the middle of IKEA. It was horrifying. I was with my mom and our friend Renee and we'd been browsing for hours. Both Mom and Renee had specific things they wish to purchase there in the future, but I did not, so it stopped being fun for me after about 2 hours, and we weren't even halfway through the place. All of the sudden my heart felt like it was going to beat right out of my chest and I told my companions I just had to get outside and get some air. And then I fled. Unfortunately it took me about 10 minutes of brisk walking to even get to the exit. I was fine again after sitting outside on a bench for a while, but it was still not something I expected to happen and very embarassing, too.


Cable and Moss Stitch Socks

Last night I finished these socks for Socktoberfest.

The intended recipient of these socks has little feet and I sure hope they fit. The pattern is from Sensational Knitted Socks and it's cables with moss stitch between, done in Knitpicks Gloss in Concord Grape. They're very cushy and soft and I'll definitely be knitting this pattern again. It was so easy and mindless.

I've been looking at yarn winders and swifts and trying to figure out what the best combination to order would be. In my quest I stumbled upon what seemed like a really great idea to try while I make up my mind -- I had no idea one could use a Kitchenaid Mixer and a lamp to wind up a hank of yarn.

Here's what I did: For my 'mock swift' I took the finial off the top of a rather large table lamp so the shade would spin freely. Then I draped the hank of yarn over it and gave it a test spin to make sure it wouldn't fall over and crash to the floor when pulled upon. Shockingly enough, it didn't fall over and I was satisfied enough to proceed with the experiment. I then took my dough hook and basically put on it a piece of cardboard that I'd cut, folded and taped around it. I had to wedge inside a felted coaster in order to keep the cardboard from slipping. I then put the dough hook onto the mixer, wound the yarn around it a couple of times and turned on the mixer to the slowest speed, and voila...the yarn began winding around the cardboard. Incredible! It took me a minute or two to figure out how to hold the yarn so it wouldn't spin up over the cardboard and onto the top of the hook, but once I got the tension right, it worked amazingly well. The resulting yarn ball doesn't look as tidy as the kind you can apparently make with a real yarn winder, but it certainly beats having to wait around for someone to hold the hank for me while I wind it into a ball by hand.

I'm thinking now that the lamp shade worked well enough that I won't even bother buying an actual swift, especially since I've been working so hard lately to declutter my home and a swift is just another large item I'll have to find space for. I do think I will probably buy a real ball winder at some point though since dealing with the cardboard around the dough hook was a little bit cumbersome.


Friday, October 06, 2006

Socktoberfest Questions Answered

When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?
I started making socks over a year ago when I discovered that it wasn't necessary to use DPNs. I saw Cat Bordhi's "Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles" in my LYS and couldn't resist buying that, along with 2 sets of Addi Turbo size 1's. I taught myself from the book.

What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time?
Sadly, the selection of sock yarn carried by my LYS is/was meager and I wound up with some Regia Cotton Surf in a fairly clownish colorway (5412 incidentally). I made a pair of silly looking ankle socks. I still wear them, and while they're sort of stretched out looking, they're comfy when it's too warm to wear wool but cool enough that you feel like you need something on your feets.

What would you have done differently?
I would have been less impatient and ordered some better and more attractive sock yarn from the internet.

What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?
I really love KPPPM, Lorna's Laces Shephard Sock and I'm totally digging Knitpicks Gloss. I'm just dying to get my hands on some Socks that Rock.

Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?
I did crochet one sock. Notice I didn't say 'pair.' I did it in Woolease and it was just horrid. I actually found it the other day when I was doing a major decluttering and just tossed it unceremoniously.

My method of choice is definitely 2 circulars. I'd been partial to Addi Turbos, but I did recently order some of the new Knitpicks circs in size 0 and I love love love the pointier tips and the cable is lovely, too. Since I somehow managed to dent one of my size 1 addi's by running it over with my desk chair (don't ask--I have no idea how it ended up on the floor), I'll be replacing my 1's with the Knitpicks needles.

Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?)
I've tried all kinds of methods for doing short row heels and I just can't seem to make them look neat, so I definitely prefer heel flaps. At the moment, I'm partial to the Eye of Partridge Heel with a 3 stitch garter border.

How many pairs have you made?
Not really sure, but I hope to complete about 6 or 7 more pairs by Christmas!


Thursday, October 05, 2006

Inaugural Post

I've just joined the Socktoberfest 2006 and barring any difficulties with my flaky digital camera batteries and my ever elusive USB cord, I intend to post a photo of my first completed socks for the 'fest by the end of the weekend. I'm working on a pair of cabled/moss stitch socks from a pattern in Sensational Knitted Socks done in Concord Grape Knitpicks Gloss and I've just completed the heel turn on the second sock. I've got company coming this weekend, but there should be plenty of sitting around time, which translates into plenty of knitting time. Woo freakin' hoo!

In the meantime, here's another pair of socks (that doesn't count for Socktoberfest since I finished the pair at the end of September) from Sensational Knitted Socks. The pattern is called Ribbed Lace, and these were done in Knitpicks Essential in Grass. The color is more accurate in the detail photo. I have to say I did not enjoy this pattern at all. It's a 24 row repeat and I had to constantly refer to the pattern which made it tough to knit and do anything else at the same time. (Like talk, or watch a film or daydream.)

I'm not a huge fan of the Essential. It feels pretty scratchy to me. I admit it did soften up quite a bit after blocking, but not enough to make me want to order any more. But it was cheap, so worth the experiment, I suppose. On the other hand, the Gloss I'm using for the pair I'm working on now is marvelous. So soft, so shiny, and for $3.99 a hank, I had to instantly order more. I wish they had a much larger color selection.