Friday, August 21, 2009

rainbow-y love

FO: Trekking socks

Hooray, new socks! These are knit in Trekking 100 -- 2x2 rib over 72 stitches on US 2 needles. These are definitely my new favorites. The yarn seems like it will wear well, it was quite pleasant to knit with, and boy did I love seeing the colors knit up.

FO: Trekking socks

My only regret is that I didn't make them a little taller. I had 23g of yarn left when I was done! I weigh the yarn laboriously, but I clearly need to get bolder in my predictions of how much the foot will take.

Since I last blogged, I started another Simple Yet Effective shawl:
WIP: Simple Yet Effective Shawl no. 2

It's yarn I got at MDS&W last year - fingering weight blend of alpaca, merino and bamboo. It's super, super, soft, and I'm knitting it on US 8 needles, so it should be lacy and airy when it's all done. When I bought it, I thought it was blue, but the more I look at it, it appears to be grayish blue. It's hard to capture in a photo!

I have had some knitting Drama-with-a-capital-D lately. I'm working on my Ishbel, and I'm very quickly running out of yarn. I weigh the yarn at the end of every row, but it becomes clear that I'm going to run out of yarn with about a row or two left. I turn to the magic of Ravelry, and someone who's knit socks in the same yarn is going to send me her scraps. Whew -- crisis averted.

This drama was supplanted by this, however -- I'm buzzing along on the shawl, I've got about four rows left, and my Knit Picks cable falls out of the join (where it meets the metal part that screws into the interchangeable needle bit). This was the damage:

Eff you, Knit Picks.

About 50 stitches popped off the needles. GRR ARGH. I had to frog it back to a lifeline about four rows back -- erasing a few hours' work. Now, it's back on the needles (a new cable, of course), I have nine rows left and I've set it in time-out because I'm angry at it. (Though today, since I'm off work, I'm probably going to try to get back to where I was before the needle broke.

Oh! I gave the Baby Surprise Jacket to my pals who are expecting a baby next month. I think they really liked it.

Angie and Luis

I can't wait to meet their little one!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I've got socks on my mind!

I've been a busy knitter lately and have three pairs of socks (and one single!) to show for it. I can't believe I've finished so many socks in a few weeks' time.

First up is my first pair of socks for my boyfriend:

Josh's Hiking Socks

I knit these out of contrasting colors of Knit Picks Swish DK -- an enjoyable yarn to knit with. I hope they hold up well. I'm hoping these socks come in handy on our trip to the Pacific Northwest in a few months!

The second pair looks a bit like these -- same yarn, different colors. I won't show them here because they're a Christmas gift for my mom, and she reads this (hi, mom!).

The next pair is one for me -- woohoo! These have been on the needles for an embarrassing length of time -- 19 months. I started them in December 2007 on a trip to Pittsburgh. Oof. The yarn (Brown Sheep Wildfoote) was not pleasant to work with - I found it to be very splitty, so I always put these at the bottom of my knitting to-do list. Since they took so long to finish ... you can see I had some gauge issues:

FO: Uneven socks

Oh well! They're just socks for me, and I don't mind how "unique" they are. The yarn got a bit softer after a soak in wool wash, so I'm hopeful they'll become part of my regular rotation

Last, but definitely not least, here is something hot off the needles:

FO: Trekking sock

I knit this Trekking 100 sock in five days. YIKES. That is a record for me. I love, love, love rainbow-y yarns, and this is no exception. It's really thin, and I was afraid it would be splitty, but I haven't found that to be the case at all. Its mate is already on the needles. I don't think I'll finish it in five days' time, but I hope to have another finished pair to show soon!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

yarny update

Finally! A knitting update! I know you all are shocked and amazed, just as I am.

FO: Baby Surprise Jacket

FO: baby cap

I finished these a month ago, but it took me a while to get around to blocking it, buying the buttons and, um, buying needle and thread. It was my first button-sewing experience, what can I say? I don't know why I dawdled because I'm really pleased with how the sweater turned out. I'll definitely be making more of these in the future -- I love all the garter stitch. I will mention that I found this spreadsheet to be super, super helpful for keeping track of the rows. Elizabeth Zimmermann's patterns are more like "vague directions" that can be tricky for a gal like me who tends to overthink things. This chart really helped.

The sweater and hat are for my co-worker Luis, who's going to be a dad in September. A co-worker and I are organizing a shower for Luis and his wife. A co-ed baby shower means no silly games. Since he is a designer (and so many of us are, too), we are providing people with onesies and Tees -- and iron-on stuff so they can make a shirt for the baby. The shower's in a week and a half and I can't wait to see their faces when they open the package!

I am on the fence about whether to continue knitting for co-workers. This is the first time I've upped my game beyond baby socks and hats. A month ago, I showed off this sweater in progress to my co-worker who had a baby in November and is pregnant again, due in February. I didn't know she was pregnant then -- only found out a few weeks ago. And now I feel obligated to make her a sweater. (She got a hat and a bib last time.) What should I do??

Last week, when I was feeling down about my granddad, I realized I had $35 sitting in my PayPal account from various destashes on Ravelry. So I hopped on over to my favorite yarn retailer and spent that money! I got STR mediumweight in Crabby McHappypants:

STR mediumweight: Crabby McHappypants

I just love that name. It makes me think of eating steamed crabs by the beach ... so I will need a lovely pattern to make a pair of crabby socks.

I also got STR mediumweight in County Clare:
STR mediumweight: County Clare

I have finished three pairs of socks in the past month (that will wait for another post), but I can show a picture of my current sock in progress:

WIP: 2x2 ribbed sock

A 2x2 ribbed sock in Trekking 100. I am digging how it's working up -- and my fear was that the thin yarn would be splitty, but I have not found that to be the case at all. Yay!