Tuesday, May 30, 2006


i'm going to do it. i'm going to commit to something larger than a sock. i'm going to try my damnedest to do this!

click me!

Saturday, May 27, 2006

toe bound

it's all downhill from here .... i have passed the heel and am toeward bound! my socks do not match, as that's not the most important thing to me, but, both my heels will be only one color! that's what was important to me with this pair of socks.

which socks will be next? how about the socks i started twice already?! ... third time's a charm, right? recap: liked first sock, but the gauge was too large. gauge right on second sock, but hated toe (experiment).

i have two goals this weekend ... finish the chameleon socks and to finish my orange crochet shawl. both are (almost) certain.

last round

i am still on my last round of crochet for the shawl. before i finish, i want to steam the ferengi to see if they're going to behave. at this point, they still look like a mass of crazy worms.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

knitterly ramblings

oh, where to begin? let's begin at the beginning ... last night. last night, i was soooo tired. but, before bedtime, i wanted to catch up on some blog reading. i read this post by ms. saunshine, and it got me thinking about my blogiversary coming up in the next month. so, it being late, and i'm soooo tired, i started to page through my archives, looking at almost a years' worth of knitting and crocheting. i found a post from october (?) mentioning some girly koigu. i have girly koigu? where?! and that's how it all started ... so, there i was, in the wee hours, digging through boxes of yarn to find this long lost love. and, i found koigu #p511 !

koigu color # p511

see, it's a senseless spiral ... i did go to bed, and get up, and had things to do. and i carried around my knitting bag, just incase i had a free/waiting moment. and i didn't. and i worked on my sock. and i (soooo seduced by the short row heel, got a little frazzled ....) messed up my first attempt at my regular normal sock toe. so, i'm at it again ....

on the toe, again

but, after this sock is conquered! i will know what to do the next time i have a new heel thing going on. i even pondered the idea of making a short row toe. but no! wait! don't do that until i'm doing it toe up! so, though i'm on sock #1, and am ready (mentally) to cast on (again) for my elfine lace socks, i am already thinking about sock #3. i need a pattern that is toe up, short row heels and toes, and ... a really gooood bind off for the cuff. where is such a pattern?!

and now, a special word from crochet ....

crochet and vodka, on the rocks

see the coaster? ummmmmm ... and greyhound? yep, it's another fiber related rambling. first of all, i threw away my nasty sponge today, and put the dish cloth into service ... it's about time, as it was crocheted last july! i just thought it was too pretty to use. GHAAAA! and, in the spirit of cleaning house today, i had a grapefruit that was ready to go. but, it was good for squeezing, and i squeezed enought juice out of it for a greyhound. yum-city!

oh, and just for a bit more rambling ... i've seen lots of dish rags on the net, inspired by the ladies of mason-dixon. do you have their new book?

Monday, May 22, 2006

there's a new book out ...

of course i had to have it ...

who could resist such cuteness?

(almost) ready for the toe

and i'm almost to the toe of this opal sock! i couldn't knit on my elfine lace socks, as i had to wait until today to get a 40" size 0 turbo needle ... and i couldn't be sockless. and though i might end up working on two different socks, i considered this one a "test" for elfine. the test is/was the heel. i have finally knitted a short row heel, without holes, with the help of this tutorial. and it works! see ....

short row heel details

no holes! yippy!

one last round

this, on the other hand, is nothing but holes. and it is whole. i have finished crocheting the motifs, all are joined, and i am on the last round of the border.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

tools of the trade ....

knitting bag contents ... needles, tape measure, chibi, scissors, pattern, book, yarn, needle gauge, strawberry martini and flashing ice cubes .... oh yeah ! dearest schmutzie sure knows how to entertain her knitting guests.

gotta love the flashing light ice cubes ! i think i might need some for my knitting bag .... that's schmutzie sipping her concoction.

and another sock. i have to wait until monday to get my hands on a 40" size 0 turbo. in the meantime, i just can't be sockless. i started these last night, and am contemplating my heel options. i want to try out shortrow heels, without holes. so, here's 8" of leg, just waiting for the next step. the yarn is chameleon, from opal's rainforest collection. i think i'm going to need some fish, flamingo, and parrot too !

Thursday, May 18, 2006

short stack

is it wrong to love your newest project over your other projects? i suppose it's just a crush, because i know that as soon as the next project presents itself, my fishes will end up in the backseat. but, in the meantime, i'm really diggin' these fish! i'm also pleased with the project because it is a stashbuster. (almost) all this cotton classic was purchased years ago to knit a striped dress that i had seen in vogue knitting magazine. what was i thinking? so, i already had 5 very caribbean shades of teals, greens, and blues ... and i added the orange to the mix yesterday. i don't know how large my blanket will end up. i was thinking this morning that it has the potential to weigh a ton just because it is cotton. i'll worry about that later.

toe up elfine lace sock

i have cast on for the elfine lace socks. i used the crazy eight (?) wrappy method to cast on the toe. i'm knitting these using the singular circular method, with size 1 addi turbos, 40". but, i had a slight rude realization yesterday ... addi size 1's are not the same mm size as my crystal palace size 1's. the addi's are 1/4 mm larger, and i think that has made a big difference in the size of my sock. it seems to be a bit baggy. i think a lace sock should hug the foot. what to do? i'm going to cast on, from the other hank of yarn, on size 0 turbos.

each time i've picked up this project, i feel like i'm all thumbs, learning again the best way to hold the needles and keep the loops from aggravating me. once i get going, it's smooth sailing.

by the way, just look at the colors in that yarn! it's painter's palette by hand jive knits. it seems very koiguesque, but it has 10 more yards per hank than koigu, and doesn't have as much stretch and spring. it actually reminds me more of cherrytree hill's supersock yarn.

and in the backseat, we have ...

need to bridge the gap

... only 5 more motifs to bridge the two sections together! how long will this take? hmmm ... go ask the fishes.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

go fish

little swimmer

yes, i know i said i would start my socks, but ... i got sidetracked. corbett is so excited about knitting and crochet, that every day he sends me links of cool things he's found on the net. we had a semi-virtual conversation the other night, sending each other links, and ooohing and ahhhing over various images on the web. well, we were both excited about this and this! it just happens that i have the knitter's magazine #51 from which the first sample was knitted ... and as requested, i knitted up a sample this morning. i used tahki cotton classic on size 5 short clovers, and one fish weighs about 12 grams. in theory, i could get 4 fishes from one hank of cotton.

Monday, May 15, 2006

happy feet

whooo hoooo !

i should be brushing my teeth. i should be getting ready for bed, in bed, reading or something. but, i had to finish these socks ....

and ms. pea, don't be too impressed that i cleaned house before crochet, because i didn't really do a great cleaning job (i couldn't help myself! the yarn was calling).

Sunday, May 14, 2006

nearly finished ....

ten more motifs and the main body will be finished! the gaps represent where the last motifs will go, five on each end. i took the pattern to bed with me last night, and i think i understand how to crochet the border. if i hadn't promissed myself to clean house today, i think i would try my best to get the last of the motifs crocheted.

i also had another goal for today, and that was to finish my embossed leaves socks. i have finished one, and am on the heel of the mate. often times, before i start out on a project, i like to surf the net to see who else has knitted this, what it looks like, and did they encounter any problems with the pattern or fit. i found this interesting question and comment section during my research .... what are my thoughts on the socks? i love them! i used the regular tubular cast on i've been using lately on all my other socks, i couldn't squeak out the 15 stitches i was suppose to pick up along my heelflap, so i knitted 13 stitches instead and decreased down to the required number of stitches for the foot, and i did not knit the foot as long because i was afraid i would run out of yarn, and the foot looked long enough for me. i love the toe! it has such a nice stitch detail ....

what's going to be next? i'm all for trying out something new and different, as that's what keeps the sock knitter interested. next up, anna's elfine lace socks! these will be a challenge to me because i've yet to knit a toe up sock that i liked, i will be trying the singular circular method, and i get to knit with my fresh nature's palette! but i have to be good and finish the blue koigu first ....

Saturday, May 13, 2006

knitter boy!

last week, before heading out to maryland, an old friend and i spent part of an afternoon sitting on my porch knitting. corbett has recently been sucked into the vortex! he has made this transition with amazing grace and verve. no acrylique for this boy, only the best will do .... he even has all the colorcards for habu.

we had all the supplies at hand, including my favorite sock knitting book, nancy bush's folk socks. knitter boy is knitting socks .... i think that's fabulous! my first knitting project was a sweater, and his is socks. it's amazing the things we can do when we don't have someone to tell us that we can't or shouldn't.

because i constantly rave about a tubular cast on for my socks, corbett wanted to try it out. all the yellow is the provisional cast on. we were following the directions outlined in lucy neatby's cool socks warm feet.

this is the second pair of socks he has completed. the yarn is queensland collection's kathmandu dk, a mix of merino, silk, and cashmere. i get frequent phone calls from corbett, asking about gauge and yarns and books. i can talk endlessly about such things. inspiration works both ways, as he even has me considering crocheting with black cotton! it's hard to resist when you see something like this ...

i don't know where this beauty is from, but this is what corbett had to say about it ...

I've seen this in person.
It's black and really really cool.
I wonder what happens when you felt crocheted coasters....

it was a great visit. hopefully he'll set up a knitting blog soon so i can see the things he's working on, knit & crochet-wise.

he and his partner are making things everyday at their business variegated. they both already have the fiberbug, and while corbett's new love is knitting and crochet, his partner jim has fallen for stitching on canvas .... i imagine we'll be seeing some pretty cool bedding and pillows in the near future with subtle embellishments.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

the haul

happy socks!

first, before i show off all the goods from msw, i am happy to show off my finished socks! whoooo - hooooo ! i am so happy to be finished with these, so i can now devote more time to these ....

new koigu sock

this latest sock is the embossed leaves socks from interweave's winter 2005 issue. i started these at msw with fresh indigo koigu. i haven't made much progress, as it's not exactly a conversation knitting pattern. i haven't messed up (yet), but i will tell you that if i'm knitting this in your company, i am concentrating more on my sock than the words from your mouth. what can i say?

the haul

i think that's all of it. i can't say that i went there with a gameplan. i didn't know what to expect. i just hoped to find yarns that i could not find locally at home. i have been knitting a lot of socks this year, so of course sock yarns were on my mind ... especially the handpainted variety.

this is called celestial merino dream by lucy neatby. it's a 100 gr. skein at 310 yds. i think the yardage is a bit short for a pair of socks, so i'm going to try to knit them a la lucy and do something toe up. there was another skein available to purchase, but at $22 a pop, i will get by with shorter socks!

next up, nature's palette by hand jive knits. it is naturally dyed, fingering wt, and 100% merino wool. i have two hanks for a pair of socks. this color is called odd duck #4. i had seen ads for this yarn, but had never seen it in person. let me tell you, all the colors are beautiful! (and each hank has 10 more yards than koigu!)

claudia's hand painted yarns ... in chocolate cherry! this too is a fingering wt. merino, destined to be a pair of socks. i've had my eyes on this colorway for awhile now ... it's been sitting in my virtual shopping cart at kpixie for months. and now it's mine!

i really enjoyed knitting the egg-yellow opal, and i love opal's rainforest collection. but, i only allowed myself one ball of opal, and that was the chameleon colorway. whenever i think of it, i think lizard lizard.

koigu. i love koigu, and i hate koigu. i love the colors and the twist, i hate that it can be so stinkin' hard to get your hands on it. when i picked this color, i thought i was getting a nice icky pea soup green. instead, i got a bronze icky pea soup. that's what happens when you shop for yarn under the hue of incandesent lightbulbs. it's more golden than green, but it's still wonderfully icky.

this is something i had not seen before, kidlin pixie by louet sales. it's a lace wt. linen, kid mohair, nylon mix at 50 gr. and 250 yds. i have four hanks, plenty for a shawl of some sort. the color just sucked me in, and the mix adds a lot of color depth.

this is brooks farm's riata, a blend of wool, mohair, silk. this is destined to be a clapotis. i was inspired by jenna's beautiful blue clapotis. go and take a look at hers. brooks farm has beautiful yarns, and by the time i got to their booth, they were rather picked over. i had in mind a slightly variegated yarn, but somehow fell for this semi-solid gunmetal gray. being a blend, each fiber is ever so slightly a different shade of gray.

chocolate! this is 100% merino wool and the color is natural ! chocolate sheep! i bought enough of this to knit a rowan sweater, and am substituting it for yorkshire tweed dk. oops, this is greenwood hill's dk wt. merino.

i still have more pictures from msw, but they will have to wait until later, as i've spent too much time infront of my monitor this morning.

dancing mouse

even the little felted mouse is doing the happy dance!

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

what a ride!

on the road

what's a roadtrip without proper signage? we must let everyone know where we're headed. you never know when your local law enforcement officer will be a llama-kisser too!

besides the obvious (touching and smelling fibers and yarns and shopping), msw was a great opportunity to hook up with people we only read about on the net. there was a meetup organized by cara of january one.

knitblogger hillside

i'm not the best in the world at rubbing elbows, but my partner in crime made the event less overwhelming. i have been known to drive to a big halloween party, and turn around to go home because i couldn't find a parking spot. but, my butt found a space to park on the hillside and whip out the knitting for a bit.

i was soon recognized by my sock, and once the ice was broken, i had a very good time!

i met some lovely ladies such as mistress stash enhancer, who, lived true to her name! holy sheep dung! go check out her loot! then, there was jenna of pink monkey knits ... who was clapotis-free that day. seeing hers on her blog inspired me to give that project a whirl again. i also met lolly for the first time, as she's one of the few bloggers that doesn't hide behind her yarn in photos. thank goodness!

there's more to share and tell, but like yesterday, i am tired ... though probably not as tired as miss pinky here on the drive back yesterday ....

she shopped 'til she dropped

more to come ... tomorrow ... i'll have pictures of the yarns i brought home with me. and, here's a sneak peak! a kit to make needle felted mice!

needle felted mice!

Monday, May 08, 2006

home and tired

i got home around 5ish this evening ... and i am spent ... physically, mentally, financially. i'm having a lovely evening of a roasted vegetable dinner, some wine, and some knitting.

tomorrow, sometime, i will post pictures and update, and talk all about maryland. baaaaa ....

Friday, May 05, 2006

gone to kiss llamas

i have not packed yet. somewhere i have my list. and i'm playing on the computer instead of doing things i should be doing. nothing new here, no unusual behavior. and, sometime around noon i think someone is going to pick me up and whisk me away ....

oooh, i should go make some maryland sheep & wool or BUST signs!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

more than 1/2 there ....

this may be as far as i get with this until i return from maryland. at this point, i have 37 joined motifs out of a total of 66 motifs when it's finished. the current measurements are 18.5" x 33". it's fun to see it get bigger. there are some instructions in the finishing that can't visualize yet, but, i'm not going to worry about that until i get there.

almost to the toe

the sock is lucky to be small enough to travel, so i hope to finish this pair soon. i feel like my sock knitting is just getting tighter and tighter, so i'm thinking on moving up to the next needle size for my next pair. maybe.

i think i'm ready for some textured/patterned socks next. two patterns i'm enamored of are ellen's stockings from nancy bush's folk knitting in estonia (note: this stocking was knitted by saartje) and ...

interweave knits embossed leaves socks as shown knitted here by coleen.

speaking of socks, i emptied a box the other day and found these socks!

meida's socks

these are called meida's socks designed by (duh!) nancy bush from interweave knits spring '97. i knitted them with cashmere from hunt valley cashmere. i washed them in the shower yesterday, and made these coat hanger sock blockers following instructions from needletrax, and hanged them to dry outside on the porch.