Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Sock news

I've finished two pairs of socks this week. Firstly, my Spinning Around pair I was making from the fuschia Zauberball. I used a pattern from Knitty, RPM. It was a very easy pattern, and gives the knitter a choice of heels and toes. I had another go at the short row heel, but I'm still not that tidy, especially at the very edges of the heel where it joins the main body of the sock. Whilst I love the colours of the yarn, I'm not a big fan of its splitty nature, or the unspun bits. I shall be very interested to see how well it wears - I have a sneaky feeling that it may go very fluffy with use. Once it gets to being sock-wearing weather again, I'll report back.

Spinning Around 005

I've also finished a plain vanilla pair for Wolfgang, using the Violet Green sock generator pattern. I like this pattern - it always gives me a well-fitting pair of socks. The yarn is a Regia Kaffe Fassett one, given the manly seal of approval by Mr Josiekitten. We'll be hand delivering them on our travels round Germany during August.

Wolfgang's stripy socks 001

I feel duty bound to give you an update on the progress of my July sock challenge sock. Take a look........

July sock update 002

I was hoping to make Jaywalkers. Well, this yarn just did not want to be Jaywalkers. The pooling looked awful and I just couldn't get the size right. So I have abandoned that idea for this month, and today cast on for Rib Fantastic from a great sock book - Knitting Socks with Handpainted Yarn by Carol Sulcoski. I gave snoopydog a copy for her birthday recently, and liked it so much that I bought myself a copy too! The pattern tells you to cast on 66 stitches on 2.75mm needles, so I dutifully followed the pattern, only to find that the socks were way too big, even for my huge feet! Luckily I'd only done one pattern repeat, so ripped it off the needles. I'm going to make myself a nice cup of tea and settle down to try once more. And no, I'm not panicking yet. I know that there are only 9 days left in July, but I'm feeling confident! Watch this space.

PS The sock yarn blankie rocks!

blankie day2

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

The tale of the sock yarn blankie

Once upon a time there was a knitter who was addicted to knitting socks. But this knitter had a problem - she didn't know what to do with all the left over sock yarn. So one day, she searched high and low through Ravelry, looking for inspiration. The first pattern she found needed too much yarn for each square. The second pattern was really for a baby's blanket. But the third pattern she found was just perfect. So she printed off the pattern, sorted out all her little balls of spare sock yarn and went to see her friend snoopydog for a sock yarn blankie knitting day.
The first square was an easy choice, as she used the yarn from her first ever sock - the start of a very slippery slope indeed.

sock blankie first square

The second square was knit, followed by a third to join them together, and so the blankie was born.

sock blankie moves on

All day long, the knitter and her friend sat knitting, chatting, unpicking and reknitting little squares. They feasted well and quenched their thirst with mugs of steaming tea. They wound little balls of yarn to share with each other.

sock blankie skein swap

The hours passed, and the blankie grew bigger (although not as big as the knitter hoped!), and the knitter returned home happy at a day well spent.

sock blankie day 1

And she is still knitting the blankie to this very day.

Saturday, 18 July 2009

A summer of great expectations!

Yesterday evening was one of my most favourite times of the year. School broke up for the summer holidays, and Mr Josiekitten and I celebrated the end of the school year with our traditional Chinese takeaway! I'm a creature of habit so I had my usual beef with green pepper and blackbean sauce (which was extremely garlicky, so I have been told by Mr JK this morning!!), along with some rather yummy chow mein. We had a total blot-out in front of the TV for once, and I relished the weeks ahead - 6 weeks of glorious knitting time! I have been planning my holiday knitting for some time, and have come up with a list, so I thought that I'd share it with you at the start of the holidays, and then look at it again at the beginning of September. OK then, here goes! Deep breath........................... in no particular order we have.........
  1. Wolfgang's stripy socks
  2. Spinning Around Zauberball socks
  3. July sock challenge socks (not yet started - yikes!)
  4. Lizzy cardigan
  5. Secret Phoenix Knitting Forum project
  6. Felted pig for the pub that we knit in each week (The Pigs)
  7. August sock challenge socks
  8. Lizard Ridge blanket to start
  9. Innocent Smoothie hats to make for this year's Big Knit
  10. Various knits for school knitting club inspiration
  11. More socks for Michael
  12. Baby Yeti hoodie for Gabriella
  13. Socks for Isabelle
  14. Fetchings for Brigitte
  15. Scarf for Catherine
  16. Scarf for Beryl
  17. Manos del Uruguay shawl
  18. Ishbel number 2
  19. Natural Dye Studio mini-skein crochet scarf
  20. Feather and fan scarf to finish (currently hibernating)
  21. Kitty cat to finish (ditto)
  22. Wormy scarf to finish (ditto)

Phew! I'm exhausted just reading this list! You'll have to pop back soon to see how I'm getting on. I'll be posting regular updates. I'm off to snoopydog's this Tuesday so that we can both make a start on our sock yarn blankies! So that'll be one thing ticked off! Anyone care to suggest how many things I'll be able to tick off by the end of the holidays?

No knitting related photos today. Instead, a bunch of sweetpeas. They've been growing in abundance this year, and we have vases and jugs all around the house. I love them!

sweet peas

Monday, 6 July 2009

An odd pair of socks

I thought that I'd better bring you up to date with my sock knitting. I've finished a 'pair' of socks this week, but they don't go together! I've knit one from each of my current pairs. Firstly, my Spinning Around socks using the Zauberball yarn. I'm not quite sure how I feel about this yarn. I love the colours, but am not so keen on the splitty nature of it, or the unspun bits. I had a couple of big tangles whilst knitting. The way that the ball is wound - in colour chunks - looks lovely, but can be a real pain if you're not paying attention to what's going on in your knitting bag! A whole section of one colour came off the ball, and got in a huge knot! And becaues the yarn has a bit of a halo on it, I ended up with a big tangled mess. The only way to sort it was to bring out the scissors! So I'll be on the lookout when I'm knitting sock 2.

Spinning Around WIP 001 (2)

The other sock in the 'pair' is the first of Wolfgang's stripy Kaffe Fassett socks. I never tire of knitting simple plain vanilla socks, especially when there's a pattern in the yarn. The colours in this sock are really earthy. Mr Josiekitten (he of the 'only ever wears black socks' fame) was even heard to mention that he liked the colours and would wear a pair of socks knitted in said yarn!

Wolfgang's Stripy Sock WIP

Finally, a glimpse of my Noro Silk Garden reknit. Remember my frogged Sea Breeze cardigan? Well, I'm reknitting it as Lizzy, another Jane Ellison design. It's a simple cardigan with frills round the cuffs and up the fronts. Doesn't sound simple when I describe it like that, but it is, honest! I haven't got very far with it yet as you can see!

Noro Lizzy WIP

It's only two weeks now until the end of term, and I can't wait! I'm busy compiling a 'short-list' of holiday projects, and I think I've reached 20 already!!! I'll let you know what's in the offing next time.