Sunday, August 12, 2012

What to do... What to do...

When I finished the socks  I had so many ideas of what I wanted to do next. I found myself at something of a stand-still.  The time I have for quiet concentrated knitting is very limited.  I try to have two projects going one that is easy to put down when Em needs attention and one that challenges my skills. And I was in between on both projects.

I went to my stash picked something and started swatching.  My hands were idle and didn't like it very much.  I finally landed on Green Mountain Spinnery Sock Art in a reddish brown color way. Which I think is Sumac  I had two choices for the project.  I was thinking of doing a shawl or another pair of socks.  

One of my New Year's Goals was to get involved site Craftsy.  I purchased a couple of classes when they were on sale a few months ago.  Knit Original Toe Up Socks  given by Donna Druchunas and Mastering Lace Shawls given by Laura Nelkin.  After getting into the specs of the projects for the class there wasn't enough yardage for the shawl.  I decided to go with socks.

I wanted to get going so I decided to do the Dead Simple Lace socks again.  Plain Jane socks were not for this yarn.  This time I decided try new version of  short row toes and heels.

 I started with Donna Drachunas' short row toe.  This toe looks to be very sturdy.  But it is very fiddly.  On the return side of the short rows there are triple decreases.  On the purl side it is a Purl 3 through the back loop.  I started the toe 3 times but kept dropping stitches.  I tried to complete the toe and when I finished there were 3 dropped stitches.  I have no idea how I did it but  this is when I ripped it out and went back to a basic short row toe.  I never had issues with the short row toe.  It's the heel with the giant hole that I have an issue with.

Here's what I have so far with my sock

I've gotten past the heel on the first sock.   And for the heel I used a  short row heel tutorial I'd seen on Knitting Blooms. It's based on the Pricilla Wild short row heel.  I admit that I didn't look past this tutorial and it seemed logical to me.  I don't think I actually did it right as every time I tried to work this heel during my lunchtime knitting session I was interrupted with something. But it is pretty close. And on my test fit the heel seemed to be pretty good with the fit.  I am currently at the second heel and am trying to find a way to have an hour of quiet time to concentrate on figuring out the heel.  I will conquer the short row heel.

I love my daughter but to get any knitting done in the house I need it to be simple and easy to put down.  I also have a huge collection of t-shirts.  Nearly every show I have worked has had some kind of t-shirt to commemorate.  And so I have a lot of shirts that I'm just having issues with getting rid of.  It just seems so wasteful.  It's all about recycling... Right?

After looking at several websites on how to do this I have decided to convert shirts into Tarn.  It's all about converting a circle into a straight line.  It's surprisingly east to do.  The cool thing about the knit cotton is that when stretched it makes a lovely and sturdy yarn.  Below is a pic of a small area rug that I'm making to put in front of the kitchen sink.  As of today there are 6 T's in this project and probably another 2 more are going in.  

I took pics of the shirts whole so that somewhere I still have an image of the shirt I go when I visited the space center in Houston or worked Riverdance when it came to Flint's Whiting Auditorium (ages ago) or that I got to visit Bishop Museum in Honolulu on a job. Which means I got paid to be in Hawaii.

The  idea is that every time I step there I will remember and at it will be good and if I  ever want to see what the shirt looked like whole.  I have a pic of it. 

We are in need of a new rug for in front of the kitchen sink.  I thought this would be a perfect use of the tarn.  I think I will stitch that nubbly, rubbery shelf liner on the bottom so that it doesn't slip.  The dark stripe is a blue and black combo. Probably the Bishop Museum shirt and a U of Mich that I grew out of. The grey and black are the aforementioned Riverdance, as well as a grey Houston Space Center and U of Mich shirt.  I have a lot of t-shirts that I just don't wear anymore and frankly need the room for my burgeoning Wonder Woman shirt collection. :)

Friday, June 22, 2012

I have socks

I finally completed my third pair of socks. The pattern is Dead Simple Lace Socks and the yarn is Knit Picks Stroll in City Lights(discontinued).

This is the first pair of socks that I really paid attention to the construction of the sock.  The goal was to follow a pattern.  I followed the patterns pretty well that is until I got to the ribbing of the second sock.  

It was lunchtime at work... I didn't have the first one with me.... I didn't have my notebook with me ...

The ribbing on the first sock (on the right) is a k1p1.  The ribbing on the left is a k2p2.  *Sigh*
For what it's worth I like the k2p2 better.

And then there is the elephant in my socks.  The pooling for the second sock did not turn out quite so well as the first.  I'll admit I'm a control freak when it comes to the colors.  I started the second sock at the same point of the pattern or so I thought.  But the pooling just didn't work out.  

Nor did the heel.  I had huge gaps at the end of the heel.  I couldn't find a good way to fix it, so I  decided to sew them up.But then I couldn't find good instructions on how to do that.  It seems that on the internet only perfect short row heels can be created.

 I'm not fond of the socks particularly but they are soft and warm. The little ridge at the heel turn from sewing it up is not big deal. I'm going to be wearing these around the house come fall.  There is something to be said for soft and warm.

Wicca seems to like them.

All of my knitting must pass the harsh inspection from our Iron Lady. :)

Sunday, May 20, 2012

I have a HO! And a half... And a deadline

I've been pretty productive couple of months.  One of which was on a bit of a deadline the other of which went on the back burner but I'm finally enjoying.

First off, there is the HO.  And a half...

This is my third pair of socks.  The yarn in Knit Picks Stroll in the discontinued "City Lights" color way.  The pattern is Wendy Johnson's "Dead Simple Lace Socks."  It's a fun pattern when I can remember to do the yarn overs.   When I forget, it's a pain the butt to tink back  because I'm not smart enough to work my way down on this pattern. Just not that smart yet. 

This is the first sock where I truly tried to do the math to make it fit.  It mostly fits.  It's a little long but it's all a learning process.  I now know where to adjust the length for the next pair.  I'm currently on the second cuff and hope to be done soon.  I'm thinking before fall is a good time to be done.

As a step closer to my New Year Goal of knitting more socks and spending more time in knitting communities I purchased a workshop on Craftsy.  It's Donna Drachunas' Knit Original Toe Up Socks.  I just got thought the introduction and have the patterns downloaded.  I'm ready to go on the next set of socks.

And then there is the project that was on a deadline.  A good friend from work was expecting a grand daughter.  I told her that we would go to the yarn store, she would pick the yarn and I would knit a blanket.

Here it is blocking.

The blanket is  pretty pink and someone was pretty jealous.

 The pattern was based on Tiger's Blanket with a crochet picot edge.  I was informed that we needed to take a picture with Tiger

The yarn is Cascade 220 Superwash Sport.  The color is 901- Cotton Candy.  It is a very pleasant yarn to knit and is crazy soft.  I found myself stroking the blanket quite often. I will use this yarn again.  I don't think my little girl will give me the choice.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

I think It Hates Me...

Is it possible for yarn to not want to be knit? To go kicking and screaming into a baby blanket? I swear this one ball of Cascade 220 sport did not want to be part of a baby blanket that I am making for a friends daughter.

I am making a larger version of Tiger's Blanket. I tried some other patterns but I was having such trouble getting the stitch count to work and I gave up and went back to a pattern I knew. I thought it would go a little more smoothly as I had done the pattern and most of the math already.

No such luck. I was three repeats into it when I found a small mistake. It seemed ok. I just had to fix it. I drop stitches and work my way down trying to save time. It just wasn't working. I had to frog back to my garter row

For the next three days stitches would drop, yarn overs would twist. I would forget a psso and not catch it until onto the next pattern repeat. I gave up on dropping stitches to fix mistakes. I kept losing track of the pattern. A whole lot of tinking was going on. I truly tinked as much as I knit.

I frogged back one last time and after every single row I counted every single stitch. I finally finished the skein. I'm half way through the second and its been smooth sailing.

I'm thinking that the skein was mad that it had to be so many swatches and it just wasn't going to take any more. I'm just sad that it took a week for me to figure out. I'm on a serious deadline now. I think it will be done in time. I hope it will be done in time.

Here is what I have so far.  The pic is a couple of days old. I just finished the 4th skein and am going a couple of rows of garter.  I plan on doing a crochet edge in a picot kind of thing.  I hope to cast off this evening and have it blocked.  Here's to hoping...

Friday, March 16, 2012


During my blog-break since the beginning of the year I have become obsessed with my goals for knitting this year.  I haven't been very successful in the knitting but I have been doing a lot.

I decided to start with socks.  My first project is Wendy Johnson's Dead Simple Lace Socks made with Knit Picks Stroll Heather in Sprinkle color way.  It went pretty well for a while there.

I even got as far as the heel but as I started up the ankle. I hit a fubar with the all around pattern. I just couldn't fix it.  I got so frustrated that I just had to frog it.  The yarn is a little splitty and it was just pissing me off trying to fix the pattern and get to a good place. I just couldn't get there.  I soaked the yarn to work out the kinks and start over.  While I was waiting for it to dry I started a new one with another ball of stroll I had in the City Lights color way.

I've had to tink back a couple of times but I've been able to see the pattern and pick the stitches up in the right order without splitting.
Below is a small gallery of my meager accomplishments in the last two and a half months.


There are a few dish cloths as well as a few UFO's.  And then there is the new baby project.  The daughter of a friend from work is having a baby and I've begun a blanket as a set of baby leg warmers. I want to do something lacy for the blanket and the hard part is picking the pattern.  I went to the library and checked out a couple of books on lace type patterning.  More on that later.  There is some pink fiber calling my name.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Goals for 2012

I am finally starting to feel like I'm getting the hang of this knitting thing and I think it would be nice to set some goals for this new year.  I'm not going to call them resolutions because they are never really kept. I think if I call them goals I'll be more likely to do something about them.

#1  Knit another one of these but in a larger size.

I had no idea she loved this sweater so much.  When we were getting ready for this visit to the zoo she hunted down this to wear.  This is really the last year to wear it.  As soon as she lifts her arm the sleeves are up to the elbows.  I haven't knit a sweater yet.  I think starting small would be good. The pattern is Wonderful Wallaby By Carol Anderson.  The original was made by my friend Margaret.

#2  To Make This!

I absolutely love this!  The shape and the color is perfect.  The pattern is called  Through the Woods by Kalurah Hudson.  I am beyond words to describe how much I want to do thisit looks so cozy warm and just a little bit creepy.

#3 To Make More Socks
It's a very mild winter here in Oklahoma but my tootsies are cold.  My store bought socks will not last another season.  I don't know if I'll do these socks in particular but I do like one or two of them.  The start to the plan is to get in depth on Wendy Johnson's book Socks From the Toe Up.  There are so many techniques in this book I know I'll find something I like.  I have a few balls of sock weight yarn to get started.

Image Source

#4 To make clothes from this book

My daughter got her first Barbie this year.  As she insisted I play with her and her dollies I remembered how much I loved making clothes for my dolls.  I got this book from the library and looked through it pretty thoroughly as I was totally intrigued by the concept. I wasn't very good at knitting at the time I didn't even consider that I could do this.  Now that I feel comfortable with needles in my hand I need to get this to make clothes for my fashion conscious child.

Knits for Barbie

#5  Spend more time in crafting communities

 For the most part I do my knitting and crafting by myself.  My work schedule doesn't really allow me to go to a regular knit night.  I don't get to spend a lot of time in the company of like minded folk.  I know there are many on these sites.  I really need to explore them more.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Vacation Knitting

Now that my dear child is out of school for the holidays I am on vacation. Woohoo!  While I like my job at the big Orange Box.  There is a need every so often to not go into work for a week and I am fortunate to work for a company who understands the need for vacation time.   So, I'm hanging with the kidlet for a week +.  It's all good because it's going to be a creative week.  I purchased a couple of tubs about double the size of a shoe box and threw in a bunch of kid crafty stuff.  You know, ribbons, beads, buttons, pipe cleaners, etc.  I can put the tubs out for her and I can do my crafty things at the same time.  To get started we did a combo project.  Created by Em. Arranged by Mommy.

While Em was exploring her new tools for making things Mommy spent time knitting some very girly things for Em's bath time. 

Em, is very fond of pink.  I have heard on more than one occasion that,"I love pink in my heart, Mommy."  To say I am not a girly girl is a massive understatement.  My child is a girly girl.  I will support this girliness even if it is not my style. I am slowly working my way into this.  And so there are the washcloths for the bath.  The patterns are very basic but she is all excited to use them.  I tried to go all pink but I just couldn't do it.  Easing my way into it, remember?  Honestly, she's into the pink and black.  She is my child and has been surrounded by the color black her entire life.

Also, on the needles is a project for Gramma.  It is the KISS Triangle Shawlette.  The pattern calls for a fingering weight yarn.  I'm doing it in Caron Simply Soft in the Soft Blue Colorway.  I want it to be a full out shawl.  Mom has been talking about how her shoulders get cold in the winter.  She said she wanted something basic like the grey one I had worked previously.  Well, I had done that and wanted to do something pretty as well.

This photo is a few days old and it now fills the needles.  It's a fun knit and I can't wait to see it blocked.  

I started this during a lunch break at work the Monday or Tuesday before Xmas.  I had been about a week without a project and was anxious to get going.  I had everything ready in my project bag with one little exception. 

As I reread the pattern I realized that I need stitch markers.  I haven't used them in the past too often because I haven't done a pattern so complicated that I need them.  This pattern is simple enough but keeping track of where I am makes a difference in this one. I'm a lone knitter at lunch and instead of spending 40 minutes bored out of my mind I venture out into the Orange Box to see what kind of substitute I can find.  There were only two departments where I thought I could find something.  Hardware was a bust. The only thing they had were key rings but they were way too big. Then I remembered the o-rings in plumbing. That's it!  They are little black rubber rings that keep water from leaking from faucets.  We have various sizes. I wasn't smart enough to bring the needles with me but I settled on a #7 o-ring from Danco.  I will probably go to a smaller size in the future but for $2.27 I am perfectly happy.

This is also a pattern where I am for the most part following the pattern with the exception  of adding a couple of repeats.  I want this to be big and snuggly.

This is all for now.  Next up, my wishes/resolutions for 2012.