Saturday, June 16, 2007

Road Trip almost here

Today I am going to make all final preparations for 2 weeks away. So I will have to put down the knitting for a bit. Tomorrow we celebrate Father's Day and my Birthday (which is actually on Monday).

As you can see I have started a pair of socks from More Sensational Knitted Socks. I really wanted to do a pair of the Six-Stitch Tessellated pattern with 4 balls of cotton yarn I have to match. But after reading about 100% cotton socks I decided that maybe I ought to try to mix in some wool. I decided on using left over sockotta and one ball of cotton to hopefully increase the elasticity. Then I picked a Ten-Stitch Mosaic pattern. I have to say I don't like the way they are coming out. It must have to do with the patterning in the sockotta yarn. It seems to mess up the eye in seeing the lovely Simulated Basket Weave Pattern.

And of course I am glad I am not doing this with 4 strands. As you can see I am working 2 pair simultaneously. Running yarn each from outer and inner strands and boy have I got a tangle that seems impossible to get out. The strands are still feeding OK, but when the tangle gets too bad, I will have to cut and restart somewhere. I always seem to be learning. Next time I will take the time to split the balls before starting a multi-yarn sock.

The texture is created on these socks by doing the even rows all purled. This is a real adventure for me, as I really dislike purling. But it is not too bad. Just slowing me down a bit. And unlike large items, the slightly looser purls don't seem to be causing a problem. I was going to take it all out (to the ribbing) and do something simpler, but as I progress I don't "hate" the socks, they just don't look as nice as the picture. I will still wear them though. Which reminds me, this is my first "real" pair of socks for me! The cotton ones don't fit in shoes, and do stretch alot, so are more like bed socks. The last 3 pairs of socks I made for my girls were all done toe-up, which worked GREAT for me, these cuff-down will be a new adventure.

Speaking of adventure, we plan to start out Monday at 5:00am to get to NJ before rush hour traffic. Pick up Grandma and head to Hershey. A few hours of Hershey fun and a night at a farm house. Found a really cool website for farm style places to stay in PA ( We are staying at the Stone Haus Farm B&B. Then we travel to Kentucky to check out Kentucky Down Under. From there to Nashville and our final stop in Horn Lake, MS. We'll stay visiting cousins and family for 6 days and then venture back. No plans yet for the return trip. Mostly winging it with the hopes to stop in DC on the way. Have a great June and I'll be back early July!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

More Sensational Knitted Socks

It's here!!!!!!!!!!!
I planned this perfect playdate with the girls and a friend. We were to go to Davis' Farmland. A great place where the kids play and play and I just sit and knit and knit. But as it turned out, it is SOOOO cold out there today. I got only 2 rows done and finally I said, "Girls, we must go I am simply frozen". Feeling a bit down about my plans going awry, I saw at my door a sock book arrived! Yeah! Now while the kids destroy my clean home (cleaner was here today) I am going to read my book and pick out a pattern to do on my trip! Yahoo! Just had to share this.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Getting ready for vacation

Since we leave on a 2 week driving holiday on June 18th I am trying to get a few "travel size" projects ready to take along. I started a white cardigan, which I think I will enjoy when it is done. It is quite different than anything I have done to date. It is all with an interesting ribbing, and I am actually working it back and forth. But I still had to make a few changes. Why would anyone write a pattern than is 60% purl when all you have to do is reverse the knits and it can be 60% knits and still looks exactly the same? And much more pleasant to work. Especially since I really dislike purling at almost all costs. But this patter is fun. It switches around often enough to not be annoying. I could never knit a whole row of purls (that's why I have taken a liking to steeking).

I haven't decided yet what I am going to do when I get to the arm hole shaping. Should I just continue as one piece and steek the arm holes, or when I get to the arm holes just bite the bullet and work the rest as 3 separate pieces? Any suggestions? I really can't decide.

Here are 2 pics of my girls first finished knitting projects. Both with help from Mommy and both as gifts for new babys. They like to give gifts!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Back to Mom's sweater

I have finally picked up the sweater that I am making for my mother once again. On the left you can see the cable in the front which will run on either side of the zipper (steeked in). On the right you can see the cable patter I placed running down the back. This sweater (although large) has been alot of fun. I am using Neck Down Jacket #201 by Knitting Pure and Simple. I added the cabling and started a few experiments. One is to steek the zipper. Which I know will work just fine. The other was to work the sleeves and body together. This was really cramped and did not work as smoothly as I would have liked. And as I was so concerned with doing this, I forgot to start the sleeve decreases after an inch.....Oops. But I am not one to rip out unless it is a terrible mistake, so I will just have to do more vigorous decreases starting now (I am about 8 inches into the sleeves). If it looks awful, then I will rip it out.

Next, I have been searching high and low for a spring cardigan for me that would look nice in a white mercerized cotton. I think I found one. I just did a small swatch and like the way the ribbing looks. Although I am not sure how to measure the stitches per inch in a rib. With it squashed together, stretched apart or somewhere in between? I chose in between and the numbers are the same as the listed gauge for this yarn (Reynolds Saucy). I am using a pattern that I printed out a while ago, but can't seem to find it on-line anymore. (need to run, be back soon).

The pattern is called Katia Twist Jacket and is not online anymore. Supposedly the Katia Twist is a bulky (4/in) and I am using a worsted (5/in). So I will do the modifications, as well as working it in one piece rather than 3 (and then the sleeves), and we'll see how it comes out. I love trying new things.

And I ordered a copy of More Sensational Knitted Socks as it looks like great fun! It will be my second book purchase......Oh no am I hooked? Better get myself a job.....but then when would I knit????? I really am enjoying this new hobbie!

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Socks are a lot of work!

I have finished a couple of pairs of socks for my girls. They are small and went relatively fast, but still I felt it was a lot of work for something so small. The girls love them! I finished 2 pair of sockotta. 1 with a short row heel and another with a nicely worked heel. It looks nice and fits well. Thanks to Pat who led me to these instructions:

I was a bit dissapointed in the sockotta yarn, as the first time they were washed, the colors got washed out. They look much less vibrant. I don't know if you can see that in the photo, but it is obvious. And notice the different heels. The ones on the right look more "finished" I think.

Then I made a pair using Lorna's laces sock yarn that I found at the Fiber Loft in Harvard, MA. The yarn felt wonderful to work with, so soft. And made a lovely pair of socks. Wish they were mine!
I discovered something else dissapointing. I had purchased a size 2 needle (addi turbo) for too much money, but I wanted to try socks, so it didn't matter. Then when I bought the Lorna's yarn, I bought another size 2 needle (Inox). Well, I discovered that the Addi is actually a 3mm and the inox is a 2.5mm. Although I preferred making the socks on the 2.5mm I like the addi needles better (because the yarn slides around easier). My dissapointment lies in that I thought a 3mm needle was a us size 3 needle. Oh well. live and learn and remember to read the fine print!