Knitty Keen

Knitting, knitting, and some more knitting

Sweaters and Socks March 3, 2013

And fluffy mail too (which is for socks).  I succumbed to KnitPicks sock yarn sale and bought way too much yarn, but it’ll keep me in socks for some time to come.

sock yarn

The first three are Stroll Tonal in Canopy, Kindling, and Wine Tasting.  The Kindling I am planning to use for Salted Caramels from the Knitter’s Book of Socks.  I don’t have plans for the other two skeins although I may try Veil of Rosebuds in the Wine Tasting.  A friend of mine is sure it will be stretchy enough to fit my feet so I’ll have to wait and see.  I also got 4 balls of Felicic Self Striping in Cochineal to make myself a pair of stockings.  I’m hoping I can get them done in enough time to wear them this spring while it’s still on the chilly side, but if not there’s always next fall/winter.

I also got two 40″ fixed circulars in a US Size 2.5 (3.0mm) and US Size 3 (3.25mm).  I’m using the 2.5s on my current project and I’m only seeing a slight difference between it and my Addi size 2.5.  The cable is a bit more flexible on the KnitPicks needle and the stitches slide a bit better (but that’s because it’s not worn like my Addi needles).  While there is a definite difference between the Addi size 1.5 and the KnitPicks Size 1.5, the 2.5s are much closer.  I’ve heard tell that Addi has come out with dedicated sock needles.  I’m going to try and pick up a set when I go to New York City next week to I can test them out.

Oh, and did I mention I’m going to New York City?  I’ve had the trip planned for almost a year as a birthday present to myself.  My husband will be tagging along while we got to different yarn shops in Manhattan.  Our first stop will be Knitty City for hopefully a sweater’s worth of Tosh Merino Light.  Then we’ll hit The Yarn Company, swing down to Korea Town for lunch and walk over to School Products Yarn to see if I can score a cone of their Provence Lace Merino for another sweater and maybe a shawl too.  After School Products, we’re headed down to the Village to hit a few shops and Purl Soho.  Hopefully the husband won’t be too bored by the end of the day, but he has his e-reader and will just find a corner to read a book while I shop.

Onto WIPs!

Green Sweater

Here’s my sweater.  I picked up a 16″ US Size 9 (5.5mm) HiyaHiya needles to use for the sleeves.  I know I could have done the whole thing using magic loop, but I tend to pull the end stitches a little too tightly and I don’t want a line of tight stitches running down the whole length of the sleeve.  I started decreasing the body stitches and am almost at the end of my third ball of yarn.  I think I’m going to do the sleeves 3/4 length because I’m really afraid I’m going to run out of yarn on this one.  I don’t think that I will, but I’d rather be safe than sorry.  The reason why I don’t have at least one sleeve done is because I’ve been working on a sock.

Swirly Sock

Swirly Sock

This is the Rick sock pattern by Cookie A from Sock Innovation.  I wanted to do something different from a standard lace sock and this yarn is too colorful to really do any of the patterns I liked from The Knitter’s Bock of Socks so after much debate, I chose Rick.  The yarn is Manos Alegria and I’m really liking the way it’s knitting up.  The yarn has a great feel to it and a nice sheen.  I’ll definitely be using it again.  I altered the pattern by adding another repeat to bring the total stitch count up to 72.  I’ve found several other people who have done that on Ravelry in the project pages so I have some guidance on how to do the heel and the instep.  I’ve just finished the leg and am getting ready to start the heel flap.  Depending on my mood, I should have this finished by the end of the week or my sweater may have sleeves.

Advertisements
 

Shopping! (and some knitting too) February 8, 2013

I have not been in a LYS for such a long time, probably more than a year.  I went out on Saturday to check out a new place opened by one of the members of my knitting group called Hidden River Yarns.  It’s a bit off the beaten path for me but worth the trip.

Hidden River Yarns

I ended up with a skein of Dream in Color Smooshy sock yarn, some miniskeins for my sock yarn blanket, and some stitch markers for a yarn swap I’m doing.  They had some cashmere blend sock yarn that I was sorely tempted to by as well as some gorgeous handspun.  I’ll be heading back up there on the 17th to work on my long hibernating sock yarn blanket, so I may succumb yet.

This afternoon, I hit two stores closer to home.  My first stop was Loop.  It’s always been one of my favorites, bright and airy with a nice selection of sock yarns which is what I always look for first.

Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light

 

This is a skein of Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light in Vanilla Bean.  I wasn’t planning on getting this particular color.  I am planning on making a shawl with it and needed to coordinate with another skein of Tosh Merino Light that I got as a gift two years ago.  I’ll be doing the Stella Luna shawl in a wonderful deep purple and the Vanilla Bean.

Stella Luna ShawlMadelinetosh Tosh Merino Light

The purple in the Vanilla Bean isn’t the same as the purple in the other yarn, but it’s close enough to be able to pull it all together.  I’m hoping to be able to cast-on for this by the end of the month, once I can get some new cables and needle tips for my interchangeables.

My second stop today was Rosie’s Yarn Cellar.  It’s nice and cozy and again has a wonderful selection of sock yarns.  I have been very interested in checking out the new Manos sock yarn, Alegria, and was not disappointed.  I wasn’t brave enough to get one of the neon blends, but there is always next time.

Yarn

 

I like the colors in the skein I picked a lot and am thinking about trying out one of the patterns from the Knitter’s Book of Socks if it’s not too much trouble to alter it to fit my foot.  The top skein is some Noro Iro, their bulky wool/silk blend, that I bought for my swap along with the Soak samples.

Enough about yarn, no onto some knitting.  I have not been working on this anyway near enough, but here’s my progress on my new green sweater.  It’s a top-down raglan using the Incredible Custom-Fit Raglan Pattern.  I’m about to start my third ball and am a few inches away from breaking off for the sleeves.  I’m worried about running out of yarn on this one so I’m going to put in a lifeline at 3/4 length for the sleeves and then knit the body and see if I can get away with long sleeves or not.  Here’s the progress I’ve made so far.

DSCF2479

 

I’m using School Products Provence Merino Lace, doubled on US Size 8 (5mm) needles.  I need to have it finished by March 9th when I go to New York so I can wear a sweater I made myself (something that’s only happened once before).

 

 

 

Foreign Concepts January 5, 2013

I’ve heard of Norwegian purling before but never went any further to investigate it.  I found a YouTube video tutorial for it on one of my knitting groups and since I was doing some 1×1 ribbing I decided I would give it a shot.  I’m sure it’s because I’m new at it, but I’m not seeing any time difference over bringing the yarn forward.  It also may have been the yarn I was using (Noro Kureyon Sock), but my Norwegian purls seemed looser than my regular purls.  Again, it could totally be the yarn, Kureyon Sock is by no means smooth and it was from a frogged project so it was a bit wavy to begin with.  I’m going to wait and try it with some worsted weight yarn and see how it goes, until then the jury is still out.

My No Purl Monkey socks are moving along nicely.  I’m into the instep on the first one and I’m loving the way the Colinette Jitterbug is working up.  The yarn is nice and springy and the colors are fantastic.  Here’s a picture of it before I finished picking up the heel flap stitches.

WIP No Purl Monkey socks

I haven’t made much progress on the socks because I’ve been cheating on it with the Sock Yarn Slouch Hat.

Sock Yarn Slouch Hat

 

I’m using some Noro Kureyon Sock that I’ve had in my stash for ages and doesn’t match anything I own, but I like the colors and I need a hat in the worst way.  I’ve made a few changes to the pattern.  I’m using a size 3 (3.25mm) needle because that’s the smallest 16″ circular that I own.  I changed the cast on to 150sts to accommodate my gigantic head and changed the increase to 50sts so I got a nice even number.  I have about two more inches to go before I start doing decreases.  If I can keep up the pace, I should be able to be done with it by Monday or so at the latest.

 

 

 

To knit a sock December 30, 2012

Firstly, I wove in all the ends of my dad’s Joe Schmoe Fingerless Mitts, so I’ll be able to get pics of them today and post the pattern later this week.  Secondly, I’ve been having a doozey with some socks I’ve been trying to knit.

DSCF2391

This once represented a skein of the old Colinette Jitterbug (tells you how long I’ve had it).  There was a weak spot in the yarn while I was doing the cuff and I prayed it didn’t mean what I thought it meant.  I moved on and by the time I got to the fourth repeat of the No Purl Monkey socks, my fears were realized when I had two more weak spots within a couple of rounds — moths had gotten to my yarn. Granted, this was old yarn — I have no idea how long ago I even bought it and it was back when Jitterbug came in about 320m skeins, not the handy 400m skeins it comes in today.  I’m lucky.  I got two 30g balls, a 21g ball, a 17g ball and some odds and ends — more than enough to do a simple pair of fingerless mitts out of for myself (probably just the female version of the Joe Schmoe Fingerless Mitts pattern).

DSCF2393

This one hurts a little bit more.  I’m just finishing the fifth repeat of the No Purl Monkey socks in the new Colinette Jitterbug 400m yarn in lilac and I have made the decision that they are indeed too small for my feet.  I can get the cuff on, but just.  I’m going to have to frog it and start over again with 72sts to the 64sts I have here.  I did this for my mom’s socks, so I’m familiar with the change up.  It adds a stitch on each side of the first row of the chart (you have 4sts before and after the decreases as opposed to three) and it add two rounds to the chart, so not a huge change.  This should fit my foot so much better.  It’s hard to frog it, but at least it’s an easy pattern and works up quickly — I did the above yesterday afternoon and last night.  I’m bringing it with me to my mom’s this afternoon so I should be able to get some work done on it there.

 

Needles December 26, 2012

DSCF2359

I made my first call to Knitpicks customer service today for my bent and cracked needle.  You can definitely see the bend in the needle, but I couldn’t get a shot of the hairline crack.  The customer service representative I spoke to sounded a little dubious that the needle had bent and cracked in regular use but they are going to send me a replacement needle.  I’m hoping I can loosen my grip a bit so this doesn’t happen again but my Addi needles all have similar bends in them so I’m not too hopeful.

I love the pointy tips on the Knitpicks needles, so much nicer for increasing and lace work than the blunter Addi needle tips.  I dread doing the thumb gussets on the Joe Schmoe Fingerless Mitts because a M1L is doable, but a M1R is a massive PITA with a blunt tip needle and there are ten of those suckers.  I have a 36″ size 1.5 Addi lace needle but it’s too grippy and I don’t like the way the brass smells when I’m using it.

As long as I’m griping about Addis, I will also add that I hate their new cables.  The nicest thing about Addi needles was the gold cable.  Now they all seem to have monofilament cables and they just aren’t as supple as the old gold cables, another thing the Knitpicks needle has going for it.  For sock yarn, I have two hanks of Colinette Jitterbug, a hank of Madeline Tosh and one of Malabrigo in my stash to be used.  I’ll be using my Addi size 2.5’s for all but the Malabrigo, so I don’t have to worry about the Knitpicks needles for a bit.  I want to replace my 40″ Addi sock needles with Knitpicks needles but I’ll have to wait and see how this second needle holds up before I make a decision.

 

Finished Objects at long last! December 18, 2012

I started winding the yarn for this pair of socks back in March of 2011 and last night I kitchnered the toe on the second one and wove in all my ends and they are now on my feet.

ImageThey are made with Three Irish Girls yarn on size 2.5 needles.  Nothing fancy, just plain stockinette socks using my own pattern to fit my freakish feet.

This pair I also finished last night and are to be gifted to my mom for Christmas.

ImageThey are the No Purl Monkey socks done up in Knitpicks Stroll Tonal using a size 1.5 needle.  I actually cracked the needle knitting these and unlike addis, the kintpicks needles don’t bend.  I’m going to be calling customer service to see if I can get a replacement, but I don’t have high hopes of it holding up any better than the first one.

Right now, I’m swatching for a pair of plain stockinette socks for my dad, who even with his size 10 feet the socks will be smaller than the ones I make myself.  I have a ton of appointments this week so I’m going to have to really buckle down if I have any hope of finishing these by Christmas.

 

Lace is in the air May 23, 2010

Filed under: dyeing,Estonian Lace,Knitting,Lace,Shawl,WIP's,Yarn — knittykeen @ 11:42 am
Tags: , , , ,

After all the work I poured into making the Aeolian Shawl, I did not learn my lesson and have decided that making 7 stitch nupps is THE BEST THING EVAR.  So I decided that I would use Estonian lace patterns in Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Pi Shawl because my regular knitting and two small children just isn’t enough.

Pi Shawl Lace Swatch

This is the swatch I made using some Arauncania Ranco on size 6 (4.0mm) needles.  It looks very pretty and gave me a good idea on how the patterns worked with the pi increases, but I needed a larger needle for the nupps to stand out.

I had 3 skeins of Knit Picks Gloss Lace set aside for the project and I dyed them up on Thursday.  I need to make new dye stock solutions because there has definitely been some fading and it took two goes to get the color that I really wanted.

Hand dyed Gloss Lace

I used my crock pot and Jacquard dyes and couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome even if I did have to mess about with the colors more than I usually would.  So I finished charting the lace on Friday night and cast-on.  I’ve just started the 24 round section.

Lacy Pi Shawl, In Progress

In other knitting news, I made a lot of progress on my Giselle sweater.  I’ve made a big dent in the lower portion of the sweater and since I’ve hit the point of decreasing every other row, it’ll go even faster.

Provence Merino from School Products

This is what is left of my 2lb cone of Provence Lace Merino from School Products.  It may not look all that small, but the diameter of the cone is at least half of what it was.  I figure that by the time I’m done Giselle, I should have about 800yds left which should be just enough to make a pair of stockings.  If you have the chance to go there, I highly recommend it – I paid just over $50 for this cone and I’m getting a large lace shawl, a size 3x sweater (with yarn doubled) and (hopefully) a pair of lace stockings or at least lace knee highs.

I don’t have it with me, but a dear friend treated me to some sock yarn this weekend in a lovely brown/gray colorway and for the life of me I can’t remember just what it’s called so that will have to wait for the next post.

TTFN and I promise that I’ll get the camera dug out so I can get proper pictures of things up.