Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Success and Failure

It seems to be a time for mixed results. Irish Girlie Knits came out with a great cowl pattern, Summer Wind, and that one is an unqualified success. Easy to make yet so fun, it's addictive. And I loved working with Tosh Sock, lovely drape for a cowl.

Pattern: Summer Wind
Yarn: Tosh Sock, color: Kale
Needles: US #5/3.75mm
Comments: This is the small size, but my gauge was slightly larger because I was using bamboo needles. Such a fun knit! I highly recommend it.

I won't give you the info on the following creation, because, seriously... have you ever seen a less llama-like object? I don't think I'll ever finish this one. There's a reason all these amigurumi are crocheted.

If you try to knit a llama, you might end up with the llamaduck. Not good.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The '80s Are Back

You can take the girl out of the '80s but you can't entirely take the '80s out of the girl. I think the following are a direct result of two trends I loved when I was at my most impressionable: legwarmers and, shortly thereafter, those awful neon colors -- those awful day-glo shirts and socks and... I had an entire day-glo sweater when I was 14.

I never had leg warmers, though. So now, as I officially approach middle age, I have decided it's time to make up for it. Warmies! For me!

So far, only one is done. Look, I made it extra long, for days when it's really cold out. It scrunches down or it stretches out. Rad!

Something about my color palette at the moment is strange. It's all bright, in-your-face colorful. My first Kells sock from Janel Laidman's sock club last year. She is responsible for the lovely pattern. I'm responsible for the bright tomato red.

Even the heel is cabled.

There is more blocking upstairs and I have to finish a gift. It's been busy around here!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Gray, Icky Day

My camera has batteries again! It's been a gray, icky day, but I managed to get the new batteries popped in as the sun was coming out. Now the neighbors are going to think I'm weird for taking pictures of handknits on the deck in the heat and humidity. But I don't mind.

I'm too excited about these socks to let that stop me. They're awesome. I love the fit, the colors, the yarn... everything.

The decreases are on top of the foot. Here's a closer look at the side. Pretty neat, huh? And this is officially my favorite sock yarn ever.

The details:
Pattern: Haleakala, February pattern from the Cookie A. sock club
Yarn: String Theory Caper Sock. mmm, has cashmere in it!
Size: s
Needles: US#0/2 mm
Comments: Knit as written, with the exception of one extra decrease I had to hide because I picked up 2 extra stitches at the gusset for my high instep. These fit like a dream and I loooooove the yarn! I bought more in spite of my yarn diet. It's dreamy.

There is more knitting, but I also want to share these... black bottom cupcakes. Chocolate bottom, cream cheese with chocolate bits on top. Very yummy. Very attractive.

Here's the action shot, with a bite missing:

My only complaint is that they don't taste quite as chocolaty as they could. I think it's the cocoa I'm using. Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa is higher in fat but has a much milder flavor than Hershey's natural cocoa. I'd make chocolate milk or pudding from the Ghirardelli. It doesn't have quite enough of a punch for baking -- it's not very intense and has no bitterness to it at all. I think there's a reason Hershey's has been the standard for a hundred years or so.
Next time I use the Ghirardelli's, I'll try adding some instant coffee granules. That might help intensify the flavor.