Monday, January 21, 2008

Smitten, bitten.

To celebrate Martin Luther King Day, I decided to take a break from knitting and do a little sewing. As it turns out, the kitties had other ideas. Mr. B held down my fabric squares so they wouldn't blow away in the non-existent wind.

Missy Miss brought her new fur ball upstairs and said "Play with me!"

After some time (and lots of petting), I managed to finish this little ditty:

The pattern is "Abby's Treasure Box" by Little Scraps from This & That, purchased a few weeks ago at Cotton Weeds in Freeport. The fabric is part of Anna Maria Horner's Chocolate Lolipop collection, bought online at Fat Quarter Shop last spring.

It was a quick and easy project, and is so cute!

I was so happy with how it came out that I decided to make another one with the rest of my squares. By this time, however, the Kitties had enough of all my sewing and no playing.

How could I resist such attention?

Eventually, I did finish the second one. This time using the "warm" colors from the same collection.

It's the perfect size for carrying a sock in progress!

As I mentioned in my last post, I've been jonesing to knit sweaters again. Did I start with one of those I already had yarn for? Heck no! I went out craft store trolling on Saturday and found that A.C. Moore was having a sale: 25% off all yarn!! Yes, I bought yarn (6 skeins of Cotton Ease in Taupe at $3.73 a skein), buy I also bought the new issue of Knit Simple. I'd rejected it when it first came out, but this time, I fell in love....

You know how it happens. That "OhmygodImustknitthatrightNOW" feeling. I left the store and wolfed down a naughty meal at Wendy's (just to make sure that it wasn't low blood sugar talking) and headed straight for my LYS that carries Manos. Yep, came home with 8 skeins in the exact same color as the one in the magazine. I almost never do that, but I can so see myself wearing this sweater!!!

The love grew a little cold after a while, as I grumbled to myself that size 8 needles were too small for the yarn and that there was no way it was going drape like it does in the photo, and

"Hey! How many times am I supposed to repeat the rib before I remove the sleeve stitches?"

In the photo, it looked like the sleeves were separated in the middle of the reverse stockinette rows in the second repeat of rib rows.


I took out my magnifying glass and looked for the tell-tale bumps indicating "kfb" increases.


According the pattern, the sleeves aren't separated until after the third repeat!

"Aren't my armholes going to be GIGANTIC?"

I obsessed over this for hours, but kept on knitting. I checked the magazine website, thinking that there MUST be a correction. Although convinced that there were clothes pins holding that sweater in place (unless that woman is an amazon, I can't believe that a size 38 inch chest fits her like that), I kept knitting.

This photo was taken at the height of my obsessive conspiracy fit. Shortly before going to bed last night I finally removed my sleeve stitches (4 rows earlier than it says to in the pattern), knit a few rows, and tried it on. So far so good. At this point, my theory is that the person who wrote the pattern is not the designer, and that the one on the model was not knit using the pattern (impossible I say!). Stay tuned to see if this is going to be a winner or a loser. (I really really really want it to be a winner!)

I finished something else today, but it was supposed to be a Christmas gift for someone. Oops! Maybe I'll keep it. Heh heh. Here's a tiny peek:

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Sock Vomit

I am in a hell of sorts. One of my own creation. It all started this fall when I decided to start knitting socks again. I was off to a great start when I made this pair with Kaffe Fassett's Landscape Fire. If you are one of those people who click on photos for a closer look, you'll notice that they are a little ratty. Yes, I dug them out of the laundry hamper to take the photograph (say Yuk if you want to). I've also worn (and washed) them about 15 times since I finished them.

The day my mom was in surgery, I started another pair using some Cherry Tree glitter sock yarn that she bought me for Christmas last year. I can't remember the color and am too lazy to look for the label. One of these days I'll update my Gallery, and post all the specifics.

A close up showing off the glittery goodness.

A week before Christmas, I was working on another pair for myself, complaining that I found the colors a little boring, when Mr. S remarked that he would really like another pair for himself. Well, being the crazy person that I am, I really thought that I could knit him a pair by Christmas. You can laugh. Of COURSE it was impossible. Not only because I used size 1 needles and worked with 72 stitches, but also because his feet are MUCH larger than mine. At least I finished one of them. Last week.

Since it was too late to finish them in time for Christmas (Maybe Valentine's Day?), I went back to the "boring" sock I'd been knitting. The yarn is Kaffe Fassett's Landscape Fog. I am in love with this yarn. I just finished this last night - nearly finished, still need to kitchener the toe and weave in the ends.

It wouldn't have taken so long if I hadn't messed up the heel twice. I decided to try a honeycomb heel flap from Sensational Knitted Socks. It isn't as pronounced as I thought it would be, but I like the results well enough to try it again. By the way, I don't think it's boring anymore.

With 2 single socks under my wing, I thought I should finish up at least one of the pair I started last year....

Completely ignoring, for the time being, the sock I cast on last weekend. Using some NEW sock yarn!

Which finally brings me to the label of this post (I bet you've been wondering). The yarn is Noro's Sock Yarn. I bought it for the color, despite the fact that it feels pretty gnarly on the skein. It knits up like the Kureyon, but in a tinier gauge. By that I meant that some sections are as thin as thread, while others are poufy. I have also pulled out a tiny twig (how completely Noro. At least they are predictable). Being a single ply yarn, I've worried at times that it would break, but I tested it by ripping off a piece of the cast-on tail, and the 20% nylon made it strong enough to withstand quite a bit of pressure before breaking.

The post label. I'm getting there..

Here's the lesson I wish to impart: No matter how much a skein tempts you to center pull, DON'T DO IT! Resist! This skein came with a cute little tail peeking from the center. It was so neat and tidy that I ignored all of my experience and pulled. At first it worked, but by the time I'd already knit 3 rows, there was resistance. I gently tugged and pulled and out popped


What you see here is the second and third hurl. I gave up after that and decided to finish some other socks first.

Which is why I am in sock hell. I want to knit some SWEATERS for a change!! I just bought Beryl and the Tree Jacket. Any bets on how long it will take me to abandon the socks all together?