Sunday, September 30, 2007

I knit a scarf, they want socks.

Isn't it always the way, you knit one thing, they want something else? I'm knitting (or should was, as I just bound off the last stitch mere moments ago) a scarf for my Beloved's mom. It's a perfectly lovely seed stitch scarf in Noro's Kochoran. It's a nice blend of wool, angora and silk and the colours are pretty too. I chose this yarn because the colours reminded of me of a watercolour painting - which the Beloved's mother does. So I put some thought into the way the stitch pattern played up the colourway, adding a bit of texture and interest without distracting from the way the colours blend into eachother (the main attraction for me) and picked something I thought was somewhat luxurious. All of that only to be told that what she wants is a pair of socks. Sheesh. Well, the scarf is done, it's pretty and I am not reknitting it (a surprise for some of you I'm sure. For the record, I do not always knit then promptly unravel my projects. Sometimes they get to continue existing. But only sometimes.) or knitting a pair of socks to make up for it.

Today I had a little help in the homestretch from Stella, the proximity cat. Generally she is content to sit close, but not too close, and to love from afar. Today she opted for the lap, not the whole lap, but enough of it test out the scarf's cosy factor. From the purring I heard, I think it passed the test.
So the score for christmas knitting stands at 2/4 or 2 out of a possible 7. Next up are the sock's for Kelly. This will be the third and final attempt. I swear, knitting socks for tiny feet with fat yarn and big needles just shouldn't be so difficult. I guess it would help if I knit the right size this time. Well, happy knitting, I'm goingto go try that cast on again so I don't have to ask J. to show me again. Cheers.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Fresh and Tantalizing

These are my Tantalizing socks, fresh off the needles. I had a heck of a time trying to photograph these silly things (which I choose to blame on my camera rather than my photogrpahy skills). While the pictures may not be fab, the socks are pretty nice.

I did declare a moratorium on knitting for myself so I could get that dreaded Christmas knitting underway, these were an exception as they were already in progress. Besides, I was struck by a bad case of knitterly ADD and couldn't settle on a pattern I liked for the christamas socks and finishing these helped me focus - and conveniently cleared my only pair of 2.5mm dpns. Funny how that works out.

On an unrealted note, I went to the Windsor Exhibition yesterday. I have always made a point 0f checking out the craft displays, especially now that I can knit. The item that was selected best overall knit item, a lovely pair of burgundy kneehigh socks, was lovely and deserved the recognition. The rest should be burned - I mean melted, as it was mostly acrylic in colours nature never intended. Not a good scene. It inspired some ranting and strengthened my intense disliek of honeycomb mittens. I hate those. HATE those things, especially when knit in mustard and maroon. Yick. Of course it was suggested that if I think I can do better, I should enter my knitting. To that I say, no thanks. I don't want to be responsible for whatever happens when I get beat out by that old lady and her acrylic maroon and mustard mitts.

Friday, September 21, 2007

I had briefly abandonned my fledgling blog (hopefully not driving away any readership I might have had), but today I return. With a picture of a freshly completed Christmas knit. This is for an arty and creative designer friend of mine who I thought might enjoy a specially created, one-off item for her winter wardrobe. This was my first encounter with Malabrigo. I love it. It's so soft and light. My only reservation is the colour transference whilst I knit, resulting in pinkinsh fingertips and splotchy pink additions to my towels. A little white vineager in the rinse will hopefully take care of that. This was knit on 6mm circular needles in a simple 3 row repeat of k1, p1, knit 2 rows. I felt that this created a nice texture and was well suited to the gradual colour variations in the wool. At 4'' wide and approximately 70'' long, it's just right for a wrap or two aroud the neck to keep the chill off. Overall, I'm pretty happy with it and think that my friend will be too.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Let the Christmas knitting begin!

Christmas knitting season is upon us, well, okay, it's upon me. I've decided to do a little knitting this year for a few folks on my list. The lucky reciepients you ask? In no particular order, they are: The mom, the BF's mom, friend and BF's sister, and perhaps one or two others, completely contingent on what I actually get accomplished. Not to say I don't love the two contingents on my list - I do, they're great people and they're also knitters. They will understand if their knitted gifties come sometime in february.
My mom's been after me for ages to knit her some socks - probably because I started a pair for two years ago and never got around to finishing them (because I thought they were ugly), so I feel it's about time I got off my butt and made her some darn socks. I'm thinking that the Trekking (XXL) would make a nice pair of Simple Socks with A Slant for Cat Bordhi's latest book. It is purely coincidence that the yarn I chose looks so similar to the one in the photograph. I liked the muted colours and thought they'd suit her and I liked the simplicity of the pattern. My mother would wreck a pair of lace socks in about 4 minutes. She's a one woman hurricane of disaster most of the time.

The BF's mom is getting a classic seed stitch scarf in the Noro Kochoran, Col. 41. There have been hints dropped like mad on this front too. I'm reasonably confident that it won't take too long to knit this one up.

Next up? Another pair of socks, this time for the BF's sister. And just know, looking at the picture, I realize that I did it again - photo and real life yarns are matchy matchy! His sister is a pretty colour sort of person and I wanted to choose something that would be interesting to knit, but not overly precious or fussy. I think this fits the bill. Besides, I've knit a few pairs of Grumperina's Jaywalkers (I'm in the gallery! Mine are the closeups!) and I like her patterns. Now that I've publicly declared that I will knit 2 pairs of socks for Christmas gifts, I hope that SSS doesn't set in.
The last one on my list is the Malabriggo merino for a friend. It'll transform itself into a scarf as soon as I decide waht stitch pattern to use. Any suggestions out there? I'd love to hear them.

Friday, September 7, 2007

A lament for Pacafiesta

I love alpaca. Alpaca is my crack. I am hopelessly addicted to it's wonderful softy goodness. I am, for some reason, especially fond of Garnstudio's Drops alpaca. Maybe it's the colours? The deliciously squishy skeins? I don't know, but I own several colours and always buy them in multiples of 7. I am odd. Odd, but consistent. I'm not alone in my love of the alpaca. Among the knitters of my acquaintance, like the lovely and talented Miss A. or knitter extraordinaire Miss J., alpaca is the new cashmere.
My current WIP is the Bird Nest Shawl from Cheryl Oberle's Folk Shawls, worked, in you guessed it, Drops alpaca. Like my unabiding love of the sock book, I'm also pretty fond of shawl patterns for reasons that are completely beyond me. I'm not a lacy girlie girl, they don't really suit my everyday wardrobe and I often consider them way too fussy for everyday wear, but yet, I love them. I chose the Bird Nest pattern because it's lacy without being too busy and the geometric quality of it really appeals to me. Mine will be in one of my favourite colours, a fabulous heathery lavender. I've dubbed it my new "sweater" project as it will take me just as long and require just as much commitment - but without the sewing in of ends. Sweet.
All of this brings me to Pacafiesta. Where have you gone Pacafiesta? I heart you, please come back. Miss A. and I went last year and bought some pretty kick ass yarns and were really looking forward to this year's event. We met some strange - I mean, interesting - people and were super psyched for a return. But it is not to be apparently. No Pacafiesta is listed this year at Exhibition Park. No new postings are to be found. Maybe it's a travelling fiesta? In any case, I guess I'll have to get my alpaca fix somewhere else this year. I'll only hope they too have fibres "straight off the animal".

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

I figured it was about time that I post at least one photo of my knitting - as this is a knitting blog afterall, so here is my latest FO. From Last Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson, I knit my Hourglass sweater using O-Wool's Balance (50% organic wool , 50% organic cotton) on 4.5mm bamboo circular needles, Pony 4.5mm dpns and used a slightly tighter gauge. I hadn't used this particular yarn before, but after knitting with it, I will definitely search it out again. It has a nice papery feel to it and softens beautifully with handling. Hourglass is a great casual sweater, nice and cosy and flattering too. The pattern directions left a little something to be desired as I ended up with an enormously wide neck that slipped off when I shrugged my shoulders and perhaps a bit of attention could have been paid to the whole attaching the arms business, but that's what trial and error are for I guess. In the end, I'm pleased with how it turned out, even if my self-portrait makes me look moody and pretentiously arty. I tried.
I'm in the process of taking photos of my stuff, so in the days to come I'll post a few more pics, including a better one of this sweater.
Until then, happy knitting.