Knitting the Light Fantastic

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Archive for the ‘summer of socks’ Category

Lace – Tragic No More

Posted by notthatkat on September 17, 2007

So I went to my LYS on Saturday and bought a replacement needle:

addi Turbo Lace

I decided to splurge (a whole extra dollar) and try out a set of Addi Turbo lace needles. I wasn’t having trouble with the regular Addi Turbos, but the pointier tips do make working lace easier. I like the tips on my Options set for lace also, so I doubt I’ll be picking these up in many sizes, but I do like these needles as well.

TOFUtsies

While I was there, I picked up a skein of TOFUtsies in a lovely semi-solid pink (Light Foot). This was the first time I’d run across it in person and I’ve been wanting to try it for a while. I resisted the siren call of the other yarns there including Trekking in a lovely autumnal colorway that is totally outside my usual color palate but called to me none the less; or adding another skein of Paca-Paints to my collection.

Transferring stitches

The next task was getting the live stitches transferred from the old needles to the new ones. I decided the needle end was too mangled, so I trimmed the jagged end off the cord end so as to not snag my yarn. Then came the long task of moving the stitches, one at a time. 605 stitches total. Yes, I counted them. 41 edging stitches, 24o on the partially completed side, 324 on the full side. Since I started my edging with over 1300 live stitches not counting the edge stitches, 564 stitches left seems not so bad.

The puppies were indicted, tried, and convicted for crimes against Addi Turbo, but the sentence was suspended because – puppies will be puppies.

State of Lace

I’m now halfway done with the third side (53 done, 31 to go) and I laid it out today as best I could. There are still too many live stitches left on the needles to show it off well, and the corners won’t look right until it’s blocked (as if lace ever looks right before it’s blocked) but I’m excited about how it’s all coming together.

Cable-Down Raglan

While the blanket was on hiatus, the Cable-Down Raglan saw some action, getting a couple inches added to its length. I just barely working the waist cables, although you can’t tell from this picture. I enjoyed working on it again and it was a bit tough to put it away again once the blanket was ready to go again. I had hoped to have this ready to put in the fair as well, but the blanket is the first priority.

Solstice Slip Socks

Between lace knitting and cabling, I managed to finish my Solstice Slip Socks. These came out great! This was the June offering for the Rockin’ Sock Club, and for anyone in the club, the pattern and yarn should be available to the general public sometime next year from Blue Moon.

I posted the comment a while back that I found the stitch pattern a bit fiddly. I realized the irony of that statement, given the nature of many of my other projects, about two seconds after I posted that blog entry. What I meant was it was a bit fiddly in a way didn’t thrill me. While it got more enjoyable as I became more familiar with it, I did find it hard to find my rhythm. The resulting sock is quite attractive however.

Solstice Slip Toes

This sock used the same garter stitch short row heel and toe as the Inside Out sock from the February club kit.

Leftovers

This was all the yarn I had left after I had bound off and woven in my yarn ends.

I wasn’t sure I wanted to start another sock right away, considered another small projects like a hat or gloves, but it didn’t seem right to see Stephanie without a sock on the needles. I’ve decided to knit up one of the yarns I dyed last month, but I haven’t settled on a pattern yet.

Off to knit a repeat or two of lace, and perhaps cast on a sock or two….

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Posted in Cable-Down Raglan, christening blanket, rockin' sock club, summer of socks | 1 Comment »

FO – Silk Socks

Posted by notthatkat on August 20, 2007

I finished them Thursday night, but I’m just now getting around to blogging them.  As Con time is rapidly approaching, things are getting pretty crazy between getting ready for Con and getting ready to be away from home/work on top of the usual insanity that is my life.   As such, I probably won’t be able to post here very often for the next couple weeks.  Don’t worry, I’m not knitting very much either, so you won’t be missing much.  I do have some ideas banked up including a partially written soap tutorial, so if I can finish up the last part, I’ll post that starting later this week.

Silk Socks

Pattern: None, as such.  A pair of simple stockinette socks knit over 64 stitches with 1X1 ribbing, hourglass heels and wedge toes.

Yarn: Regia Silk Color #0189 aka Nairobi

Needles: 2.75 mm (US2) 16″ circulars (2 socks/2 circs per usual)

Started: August 1, 2007

Finished: August 16, 2007

Solstice Slip

I started a pair of Solstice Slip socks – these are the June Rockin’ Sock Club offering.  My delay in getting my RSC socks knitted should be taken in no way as ambivalence or  indifference for the yarn or the patterns sent.  I just have been busy with other projects.  Words can not express my love for this yarn – the pattern is a bit fiddly, but the resulting sock so far is coming out nicely.

My CDR, alas, has gotten very little attention.  I’ve done a round here and a round there, but not enough to post a progress photo.

Posted in FO, socks, summer of socks | 1 Comment »

Wrecked

Posted by notthatkat on August 14, 2007

As in – my shoulder.  My anything-that-can-go-wrong-will streak that started on Sunday decided to continue into Monday.  Let me tell you, only I could manage it like this, too.

Yesterday morning, I was in an exam room working on a patient.  As is often the case with the bigger ones (this one was a 110 lb Lab), I sat down on the floor to do my thing (routine annual exam and vaccinations)  The exam went fine; the shots were given without any fuss; and I drew blood for some additional testing I discussed with the owner (got up to get tubes and needle to draw blood, then back down on the floor, because no way was I lifting her onto a table)  Once we were all done, I placed my right hand flat against the floor and pushed up to get up, a maneuver I perform all the time, only to feel something go zing in my shoulder.  This was closely followed by pretty significant pain.

I immediately took some Alieve (my NSAID of choice), applied an ice pack, and put a call in to my physical therapist/sister to get her input.  After describing the initial injury and what arm movements seem to cause me the most pain (abduction – raising my arm to the side above about a 70° angle) we have come to the conclusion that I probably have a rotator cuff impingement/tendonitis/bursitis.  We don’t think I have a tear, as I don’t have any weakness, but the first problem can result in the second one, so this is not something to mess around with.

I am currently on a course of regular NSAID’s, ice packing, pendulum exercises and  the “if it hurts, don’t do it” approach.  If I’m not significantly better in a week, I seek a doctor’s care (my first question to my sister was, do I need to go see a doctor immediately).  If my symptoms have improved, we will start a program of stretching and strengthening exercises designed to help avoid re-injury.

I am somewhat encouraged by the fact that I did not have trouble sleeping because of the pain (a common occurrence with shoulder injuries), and when I got up this morning, I did not have significant pain until after I had been up a couple hours going about my usual routine.  I’m hoping this is a good sign.  Also, so far the pain doesn’t seem to be exacerbated by knitting like my elbow tendinitis of this spring.  (I tell you, I’m falling apart!)

Cable-Down Raglan

I managed to get finished with the yoke of my Cable-Down Raglan and separate the sleeves from the body.  The white cotton is from where I put the stitches on waste yarn to try it on at the first size option I was considering.  I decided to go up a size, but kept the yarn in to serve as a lifeline in case I change my mind later.

Cable-Down Raglan

Here’s a shot of the sleeve section.  Both sleeves are patiently waiting their turn on waste yarn while I work the body.

Silk Socks

My silk socks are moving right along, and the color repeats decided to behave themselves and line up nicely after all.  I’m not sure how or why, but I was about an inch past the heels when I looked down realized that rather than being about a round off, the were within about 8 stitches.

Black Kitten

This is the kitten I took to her new owners in Georgia on Sunday.

Red and White Kitten

This kitten, the one from under the boat, also left us this weekend to go to his new home in Charleston.

Butch still needs a home if anyone is interested.   He’s very sweet and loving and would make a great pet.

Posted in Cable-Down Raglan, misc, summer of socks | Leave a Comment »

Spoiled Rotten

Posted by notthatkat on August 9, 2007

A box arrived today from Jennie, my Sockapalooza pal, and boy did she spoil me.

Sockapalooza Goodies

The first thing that greeted me upon opening the box was fiber in the form of dyed locks. I read Jennie’s lovely card and carefully unpacked the contents of the box.

Sockapalooza Goodies

There was fiber – dyed locks on the left, coopworth roving in maroon, orange and gold in the middle, and an undyed silk hankie on the right.

Sockapalooza Goodies

There was pottery – made by Jennie! Unbeknownst to her, I found her site a few months ago and fell in love with her yarn bowls. Now I have one of my very own. The wee pieces at the top are magnets. So cute.

Sockapalooza Goodies

There were yummy treats. I haven’t tried the chocolate yet, as it was a bit melty (the heat wave continues – we hit 106°F today), but it’s in the fridge and solid again, and will still be yummy, I’m sure. The ginger chews are quite tasty – sweet and spicy all at the same time.

Sockapalooza Goodies

Last but certainly not least, there were the socks. Pretty socks with cable and ribbing, made out of Cascade Fixation perfect for my southern climate.

Sockapalooza Goodies

The fit is perfect and after taking pictures, I continued to wear them the rest of the day, and in fact they’re still on my feet. (This decision was influenced a bit by the fact that I had just finished a particularly bloody surgery and had blood on the socks I was wearing. But mostly it was the desire to wear these pretty, comfy socks.

I can’t thank Jennie enough for her generous gifts. They are loved and appreciated and will be put to good use.

From the other direction in the Sockapalooza stream, I heard from my pal Rachael. Her package arrived on Monday, but she’s been out of town so she just got it today. She loved her socks as well as all the other goodies I sent her.  I didn’t take pictures of everything else before I sent it off.

Silk Socks

My silk socks now have heels.  The length of color run in one skein is a slight bit longer than in the other, so that althogh they match at the cuff, they are now about a round off on each color change.  By the time I reach the toe, they may not match very much at all.  On one hand, it doesn’t bother me (much) but on the other, this self striping yarn is not hand-painted.  Both skeins are from the same lot.  The color repeats should be the same length.  But it is slight, and by the time it becomes noticeable by anyone but me, they will be hidden in shoes.  I can deal.

Cable-Down Raglan

The Cable-Down Raglan looks like this now.  I haven’t worked on it since I posted yesterday, but I braved the sweltering outside to get you a picture.

Posted in Cable-Down Raglan, sockapolooza, summer of socks | 1 Comment »

Dish Rags, Raglans, and Jumping off the Bandwagon

Posted by notthatkat on August 6, 2007

The Dish Rag Tag boxes were sent out on Wednesday last.  My team’s arrived in the mail on Friday.

Dish Rag Gppdies

Besides the ball of yarn I used for Nicole’s dishrag, the box contained a neat short row square dishcloth, a ball of cotton for me to keep, a recipe for shortbread, and a couple of cookie cutters.  I didn’t get a picture of Nicole’s dishcloth in yarn form, but here it is upon completion:

Dish Cloth for Nicole

I went for speed over substance, but I like how the cloth came out.  I really like garter stitch for dishcloths, as the texture gives good scrubbing action.  It’s a dishcloth…I came up with the pattern  (such as it is) on my own…  and it’s mitered!  Ann and Kay would be so proud.  Neither of the two yarns in my package did much for me (although both are pretty good neutrals – maybe that’s the problem – I like color in my dish rags!), but I used the one I liked best to make the cloth I sent on.  Wasn’t that selfless of me?

Alongside the dishcloth for Nicole, I sent two new balls of dishcloth cotton (purple and yellow, and a dark variegated – hope they work for her and Colleen), a box of SweetTarts (’cause sending chocolate through the mail in South Carolina in August is a Bad Idea) and a couple bars of my hand made soap.  The box was pretty much full to the brim with all that (in case any of my team mates are trying to gauge box capacity), but I didn’t get pictures of the extra goodies because I was rushing around like a mad woman trying to make it to the post office before they closed on Saturday.  All told, I had the box in my possession for all of about 20 hours.

Now my role is relegated to cheerleader and coordinator for my team, which suits me fine, as my workload to get ready for Dragon*Con is starting to pick up steam, and the last two weeks in August will probably be crazy beyond belief.  I’ve already started requesting necessary information knowing it might not be available yet, but I’ll probably have to push, prod, and nag to get what I need from some people.  Part of the problem is that much of what I need to get done before the convention other than “staff recruitment and management” cannot be done until the guest list and programming has been finalized (at least as finalized as they ever are, these things change up to and during the convention).  As long as I’m not wading through huge amounts of superfluous information to get the relevant stuff like last year, I’ll be happy.  And if I am… I won’t be happy, but I’ve done it before, I can do it again.

Christmas Dishrag Project

In keeping with the dish rag theme, I decided to make a bunch of dishcloths for  office Christmas presents.  The one on the left is a basic bias knit garter dishcloth. For the one on the right, I exercised my Google-Foo and found the pattern for the cloth Emily sent me.  It is done but for the grafting, and weaving in the ends.  Two down, tons to go.  I figure if I get a couple of these knocked out a week, I’ll have no problem making enough by early December.  These will also be gifted with handmade soap (they just seems to go together, ya know) with a holiday appropriate scent that I have yet to pick out, let alone procure (I’m thinking pine, but I might very well change my mind.  The only things I know for sure is I want something Christmas-y and it must be unisex.)

Cable-Down Raglan

I got a bit more done on my Cable-Down Raglan over the weekend between all the dish rag knitting.  I am about half way down the yoke, depending on what size I go with (either the 41 or the 44 – probably the 44 but I’m delaying making a decision until I get to the point where the sleeves separate from the body, then I’ll try it on and decide).  I still love the pattern, and think it’s coming out great, but at the moment, it’s a bit of a slog.  I have a lot of stitches on the needle, and am increasing by 8 every other round.  I get to the second sleeve after doing the back in stockinette, and I have to remind myself what pattern row I’m on, because it feels like it’s taking me forever to finish a round.  In reality it’s like 10-15 minutes depending on whether it’s a round with cabling or not.

Diamond Cable

I love the main cable motif.  I’ve done half a repeat of the other motifs on the sleeve sections, but they’re not complete enough to show up well yet.   There is published errata having to do with how to work the increases, but I think I’ve found an error in the chart that isn’t listed there.  See the four little crosses in the center of the diamond motif?  According to the chart, I should be knitting the stitch on either side of each of those crossings.  It doesn’t look like that was done on the actual garment, and I opted to purl those stitches to make the cable crossings pop more.  I’ve contacted Interweave to try to find out if this is indeed an error and if so try to get it added to the errata  Looking at the KAL site everyone else has done the same, at least of those I can clearly make out the cable.  If you back track through the older posts, there are references to errors in the charts, which IMO must be in reference to this, but no actual corrections are listed.  I’m going with my gut, which says this way is “right.”

Silk Socks

Why do plain old stockinette socks seem to take longer to get anywhere on than ones with a stitch pattern?  Or is it just me?  Realistically, I know these have only been on the needles since last Wednesday and didn’t get much love until the Hokie Jaywalkers were done.  I typically knit a pair of socks up in about 2 weeks, unless I am obsessively knitting nothing but the socks.  Still, it seems like I should have  more than 4 1/4 inches of leg done by now.  I think it’s the lack of landmarks on the way.  Sure, I have the stripe sequence, and I can always pull out a tape measure, but it’s not the same as 2 pattern repeats done, 3/4 of the way through the pattern repeat…  And maybe the lack of variety.  Even the Jaywalker socks, with their simple two row repeat and absence of milestones, seem to knit up quicker to me than stockinette.  I guess I should keep a pair of socks in a yarn best suited to stockinette (I’m trying to use up my stash of these and not add too many new ones) for times when I need dead simple portable knitting on top of my usual “in rotation” pair, but then, I’d have to buy another set of circulars and how many pairs of socks going at one time can I have before my head explodes and sock yarn comes pouring out.

Last, but not least, in the knitting quandary category, I am not so sure I’ll like the Mystery Stole as it was revealed on Friday.  It is asymmetrical, with the second end of the stole being wing shaped.  Now, I am not opposed to asymmetry on principle, and often find myself drawn to such items. But in this case, I’m not sure it is something I will like or use.  However, I’m not sure I want to just reject it out of hand.  To that end, my plan is to knit to the “put in a lifeline in case you want to rip back when you see where I’m going with this” point and then put it on hold until I see some finished shawls.  Plan B is to stop at that point and knit the exact same pattern again, then graft the two together.  This is how I’m leaning at the moment.

The corrollary to this is that once I get to my designated stopping point with this, and done with the yoke of my raglan, I’m casting on the Bee shawl.  The yarn is already wound and ready to go.

Posted in Cable-Down Raglan, Dish Rag Tag, mystery stole 3, summer of socks | 1 Comment »