Tuesday, September 30, 2008

First Toe Up Socks!

I thought they'd never get done, but here they are... my first ever toe-up socks!

Here they are from the front...

...and here on blockers...

...and here sideways without flash, so you can see the pretty pattern. I, too, can knit toe-up socks!

Pattern details:
Pattern: Feet First from Simply Knitting, Issue 39 (Spring 2008)
Yarn: Panda Cotton
Color: Roses
Needles: US #0
Modifications: I knit the medium width, which turned out to be a mistake in this slippery yarn. It's beautiful but has too much drape -- I'd use it again for a shawl, but not for socks. Anyhow, medium width, foot length as per the small size, everything else medium... extra repeats of the lace pattern for a longer cuff, plus 10 rows of ribbing. I'll knit these again -- in the small, in a sproingier yarn.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Birthday Yarn

My birthday yarn came! I would love to show it off, but I know what's going to happen if I start taking it out of its little baggies and taking pictures: I'll have cast on some new projects before you know it, and then, my current WIPs will never get done.

Merlin loves the box the yarn came in, though! He would like to thank the nice people at Little Knits for his new toy.

I will be taking at least 2 WIPs to Cleveland on Monday. If I take nothing else to knit, I'll have to finish them, right? Anyhow, I'll be back on Thursday. And by then, I should be ready to break out the new yarn!

Monday, September 15, 2008


It's late, the lighting is crummy, but I wanted to share these pictures. Why? Because I love these socks. They're so bright, they'll burn your eyes if you look at them too long. I may take better pics later (the auto-adjust feature of my cheapo editing software doesn't really do the colors justice). Click on the pictures for the full, big picture impact!

Yes, that's an eye of partridge heel. Because just the circles and stripes weren't enough.

Pattern: Circles by Anne Campbell (on ravelry)
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock
Color: Childplay
Needles: US #0
Mods: I decreased the gusset an extra 2 stitches for a better fit, then didn't have the right number of stitches for a star toe. So what did I do? I just knit my regular toe instead! But that's it. The pattern was very well-written, and these socks were so much fun to knit. No Second Sock Syndrome, not a trace of it.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Yarn Choice Advice?

I don't just usually stop everything I'm doing and cast on yet another project. But I saw Anne Shirley in the Fall issue of knitty, I immediately thought, "There is this Louet Gems Fingering/Sportweight yarn I bought instead of their thinner version. I wonder if it goes with that Claudia's Hand Painted stuff?"
So now I need some color help. Would this be great, or would the resulting scarf be an eyesore? I can't quite decide. The Gems is more of a cool-toned red, and the Claudia's has more of a warm/peach-y pink to it.

Here are the candidates, picture taken with flash.

A closeup, still with flash. I was hoping that the Gems would be a lot thicker than the Claudia's, but as you can see, the difference is pretty much negligible.

And here, the two yarns without flash. I'm baffled by the similar weight. The Gems is labeled as a Fine/Sportweight yarn, while the Claudia's is simply called a fingering weight. They look to be about the same thickness to me. The scarf calls for medium and thin sock yarn, but even if they're both the same thickness, I think the end product would be pretty -- if the colors don't clash. What do you think?

Speaking of matching colors, the cats have this down to an art form. Note my camo cats, with Morgana on the dark blue blanket and Merlin on the sheet that's closer to the color of his coat.

They're being so cute in this picture. I was sick and both of them kept me company. It's the most wonderful thing -- they really can tell when their human is not OK.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


I've been pretty good about my yarn diet, but I did order some birthday yarn. Because birthday yarn doesn't count, right? Anyhow, my order shipped, I received the e-mail with my tracking number, and it says the box weighs 4 pounds. Eeeep!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Sock Mania

Thank you all for your kind words about my Circle Socks. I have talked to my sister, and she says she wants socks that are so bright your eyes hurt. The more I look at the socks she's getting, the more I'm convinced they're exactly right. But those are not the only socks I have around the house right now.

For one thing, here is my second Feet First sock. The Panda Cotton is a lovely yarn, it is soft, it has great stitch definition, the colors are pretty, and it has incredible drape. But herein lies the problem. It's more drapy than elastic, and I think I'd rather use it for a shawl rather than a pair of socks. Don't get me wrong, these are going to be very pretty socks. It's just that I like stretchy, tightly-spun sock yarn. Also, it's cotton. Very soft cotton, but it still doesn't have a lot of give. Part of the reason these are taking so long is that my wrists hurt after I knit more than 8 rows.

Because one pair of socks in a yarn that has no give isn't enough, I had to get the August kit from the Tofutsies sock club. I'm usually a process knitter, but when I saw the socks in the picture, I just had to have them. I also ordered some Rosewood Sox Sticks because you can never have enough sock needles, and these are very pretty. I'll let you know how they feel when I try them.

This is not a new picture, but it occurred to me that I had never shown you a shot of my vegan chocolate-chocolate chip muffins. OK, they're more cupcakes than muffins. Still, they're amazing, they're incredibly chocolaty and moist, and they have better texture than anything I've ever made with dairy. Repeat? You bet!

Something else I never showed you is our newly-painted dining room. As you can see, it's a dark burgundy color, and I love it. It's elegant. It has that Victorian bordello touch. I think it's the prettiest room in the entire house now.

Oops, I have to run down to the kitchen to stir the pizza sauce. More knitting content next time... probably more socks. I'll work on my sweaters eventually, I swear I will!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Crazy Colorful Sock

When I asked my sister what kind of socks she wanted next, she said colorful. I really hope she means it! This is most of the shaft of a Circle Sock, in crazy colorful Shepherd Sock, no flash so you can see the texture. The pattern is loads of fun to knit, I haven't been able to stop knitting since I cast on. I don't know if it's the circles or the colors or a combination of both.

Same yarn with flash, which is closer to the real color. I hope she likes them!

And, because no blog post is complete without cat pictures... here is me playing with Merlin.

And here is him going berserk over the cat teaser. He's a fun cat and we love him, even though he's figured out how to disassemble his cat fountain and the hose that leads from our portable AC to the water tank. Yes, we love him even though he's a crazy cat genius!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Momma Monkey Memorial Socks

It's been a long time coming, but here is a yarny memorial to Gigi Silva -- a fabulous knitter and designer with a generous heart and a flair for the fabulous. I own 3 of her sock knitting bags, and every once in a while, I'll look at them closely and think of the person who made something so pretty and useful.

She also designed these socks, and I know she loved Orange.

I love the way these socks turned out. They make me very happy.

Pattern: Fawkes by Gigi Silva
Yarn: 1 skein Celestial Merino Dream by Lucy Neatby, bought during a Halifax trip
Color: The tag simply said "orange" -- and boy, are they!
Needles: US #0
Modifications: One extra gusset stitch picked up. I decided not to modify the pattern, but to knit it exactly as written.