Good News, (Not Very)Bad News

I finally had a window of opportunity to borrow a 4WD SUV large enough to transport the new washer, and was able to drive up my hill, and a neighbor was available to wrestle it into the house, and I got the old one loaded and off-loaded at the transfer station. The good news: IT WORKS! The first load of laundry was run through it on Friday. It has more capacity than my last washer, but doesn’t do quite as good a job of spinning out the water – although that could be operator inexperience.

What’s wrong with this picture?

If you’re not a knitter, you won’t see it – but should be the same number of stitches on the needles right and left, but there are 8 on one, and 11 on the other! Knit group was spent knitting back to where I started the back of the heel of that sock, and starting it again. Second time was fine. Guess that’s the problem with knitting in company while watching British cooking shows!

Completed Socks

With the weather on the warm side, it got too hot to continue working on the heavy wool sweater that’s 2/3 done; I completed these socks instead. Pattern: my go to generic toe up sock, this time on smaller needles (size 1, instead of 2) up through the heel, then when a point broke, changed to size 2. It was my first venture doing two at a time on one circular needle; once I got going it was really easy. Yarn: something anonymous, gifted by a friend, soft and woolly – and in spite of the purple in it, I like the colors. It was completely unlabeled, but divided neatly in two in more or less the middle when I wound the skein into two balls, so it was probably intended to be sock yarn. The design was a combination of patterns from The Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible, my go to when I want something not boring to knit. I played yarn chicken, not wanting to have yarn left over – and had to find something in stash that was close enough in color to finish binding off the last two inches!

Now I’ve started knitting a monster for the great-grandson, small enough to not overheat me.

Roadtrek Roadtrip: Socks Completed Today

Saturday, September 18: I finished these socks today. It has been a very knitterly few days – I’ve been helping my wonderful 95 year old aunt clean out her yarn stash. If she finishes the sweater she’s currently working on, I’ll be very pleased; she can still knit, but it no longer seems to bring her joy, and it’s unlikely she’ll take on another sweater. On the other hand, she’s invested in a lot of yarn – there is yarn set aside not only for her, but for some of my cousins. It will be my pleasure to knit up some of those sweaters. I’m very glad I have the camper with me – it has absorbed probably 25 – 30 cubic feet of yarn. Most of it is phenomenal quality – she could afford the best, and it will be a joy to knit up. (And she reads the blog – I hope my love and appreciation for her come through!)

But I digress. The socks are knit from the generic concepts in Cat Bordhi’s “New Pathways for Sock Knitters” – my go to, toe up sock. The yarn, gifted to me by a friend, is

The feet are made plain; I didn’t want to detract from the stripes. But I opted to slip every fourth stitch where the colors met for the top of the sock, to make it a little more visually interesting, and more interesting to knit, as well.

These should keep my feet awake this winter!

Convention Socks

These socks were knit over the past two weeks, largely while listening to the Democratic, and then Republican, conventions. Knitting keeps me from wanting to slap silly a bunch of politicians and their shills! The yarn is Lion Brand Magic Stripes, from my stash – and with a price on it of $1.50!!

Made In Maine, Mostly

I’d started the toes, but mostly these socks were knit sitting on the porch on the Maine coast. I finished the last inch or so after I returned home, and wove in ends camping this past weekend. The yarn is Kangaroo Dyer hand dyed Franklin from Webs, bought by my loving husband, and knitted out of stash.

Knitting Ravens Purple Socks

The whole family wondered – knowing my aversion to pinks and purples – why my nephew was giving me a skein of purple yarn for Christmas! It turns out that, Baltimore Ravens fan that he is, he had an ulterior motive – he wanted me to knit him Ravens purple socks to go with the Ravens purple hat I’d just given him for Christmas. That’s what I’ve been working on for the past week – fastest I’ve ever made a pair of socks, too. Not having him here to try them on, I may end up re-knitting them – and what I thought was black for the top stripe is actually a very dark navy blue, so I may end up redoing that anyway. But until he can try them on, I’m going to call them finished.   Ravens purple socks

Knitted Socks

Sock twins(Yes, photo taken before washing socks and trimming yarn!)   sock twins closeup, lt

Design: my generic toe up sock, based on Cat Bhordi’s “New Pathways for Sock Knitters”

Pattern: adapted from Hitomi Shida’s “Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible”. Twisted stitches, cabling, lace – enough to keep me interested!

Yarn: Sock Twins Mouliné, from Estelle Yarns, the souvenir from my trip last fall to Prince Edward Island. It comes as two balls of yarn with a gradient, light to dark, and they were very precise.

Old Toes, New Toes

I’ve been wearing hand knit socks – a lot! I wore through the toes of this pair, which I’d made a couple of  years ago. I’ve removed the contrasting gray ones, and reknit using yarn from the body of the socks – hopefully stronger. If  you are very observant, you can see that the texture is different. The socks had felted some; I hope the same happens with the toes as well!  Old toes, new toes

Roadtrip Knitting

I’ve been asked to post the finished knitting project – a sock to replace one of a pair I knit years ago, but then lost. It was a challenge to reverse engineer the design, as I no longer can find the pattern – don’t know why not, as I really like how the sock works, and wouldn’t have thrown it out! New sockThe first pair matched colors better, and it certainly isn’t the same dye lot – but as one of my knitting friends said, “A sock is probably a good thing to fake. People probably aren’t going to stare raptly at your socks.” One of the things I like best about the pattern is that it contracts the front a bit, with the cables and twisted stitches and seed stitch – all of which it makes this a fun and interesting sock to knit. New sock closeNow on to the sweater I had to stop working when I ran out of the yarn, which I hadn’t taken on the trip.

If You Don’t Care About Knitting, Or Socks, Don’t Read This!

Because this is about the pair of knit socks I just completed. The yarn was purchased by my late husband; the pattern was one that caught my eye years ago. It is “Traveler’s Socks” by Stefanie Bold, from the Fall 2012 issue of Interweave Knits. I figured that with my insatiable wanderlust, that was appropriate! But the pattern is top down, and I prefer toe up; I had to get brave enough to just go for it, and turn the pattern around. Gee, why do things the way they’re designed?? Different yarn, knit bottom to top instead of top to bottom, different gauge… But they fit perfectly, and I love the traveling cables, and the color – something variegated would have gotten the stitch pattern lost in the yarn colors. I’ll send a thought about Cat Bordhi’s New Pathways for Sock Knitters,  which gave me the courage and skills to tackle something like this redesign.Traveler's socks 1Traveler's sockBy the time I’d photographed the socks, my sister was practicing cello downstairs: Morning cello practice