26 August 2007

We do need steenkin' badges

So I stumbled across The Illustrious Order of Cast On Knitting Scouts. I resemble some of these remarks. In my header, from left:

The “Proselytize Knitting” Badge -- I blog about it (sometimes). I have Rockin' Sock Club mini-skeins on my desk at work. I knit in public. I will explain at length to anyone who will listen (this is an admittedly small list).

The “MacGyver” Badge (Level One) -- I rigged a tube-shaped row counter to hang from my needle by a loop (instead of sliding the needle through the tube) with some wire and a washer bolt some square metal thingie with a hole in the center.

The “Knitting Has Forced Me to Seek Medical Attention” Badge (Level One) –- See here. Do Internet articles possibly written by "alternative healthcare professionals" count?

The “I Will Impress You With My Math Prowess” Badge -- I grok basic knitting math and am reasonably good with substituting yarns.

The “I Will Crush You With My Math Prowess” Badge -- I'm knitting a Moebius shawl and once went on a browsing spree for math-based knitting and explanations of the concepts behind them. I know what the Fibonacci sequence is. I have thrilled at the notion of using binary to encode something in a scarf.

The “Knitting Whilst Under the Influence” Badge -- It was only a novelty yarn scarf, but it was aided by a lot of Chambord and a viewing of the MST3K episode "Pod People."

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27 July 2007

Unmentionables worth a mention

The new Rockin' Sock Club colorway?

IMG_2334

STR + my undies = OTP.

I'm telling you, it's FATE. Maybe I should knit a bra.

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06 July 2007

Still knitting.

On the needles ... one hat that was supposed to be LAST Christmas' present. The mate to my first sock. A tiny sock for my niece. A dishcloth in greens, yellows and pinks that I began on a flight to visit my family.

More to come, including a curious coincidence involving Rockin' Sock Club yarn.

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15 February 2007

RS = repetitive stress = really sucks

I seem to be having repetitive-stress problems. Feh. So the knitting has not been going as planned, exactly.

I have had recurring problems with this over the years, but it generally was nothing that some ibuprofen and a few days of taking it easy couldn't cure. This? It's been frequent over the past couple of weeks.

I'm trying to be more aware of how I'm mousing, in hopes that it's not just the knitting that's causing me grief. I'm also watching how I knit, to avoid tight hands or tight stitches or other situations that can aggravate the problem. And, of course, I'm making sure to avoid marathon knitting sessions, and to vary the size of the needles I'm using.

I don't want to have to give up knitting. Or to give up knitting on tiny needles.

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18 November 2006

Socktoberfest recap

Socktoberfest is over (well, sort of; it looks like the Socktoberfest group on Flickr will be kept open throughout the year), and what do I have to show for it?

One sock. Part of another. I cast on for a third sock, inspired by the orange-and-purple Socktoberfest colorway from Scout's Swag (see the skein on the far left here). It was going to be a worsted-weight, slouchy sock with big stripes of orange, purple and black, but the pattern I was working with had some weirdness around the heel and I goofed up the jogless jog to hide my color changes. I was going to restart the sock using the formula from "Knitting Rules! The Yarn Harlot's Bag of Knitting Tricks", but then I got an actual skein of Socktoberfest and my enthusiasm kind of waned. I'm sure I'll find another use for the Halloween-y wool.

And I acquired a ton of sock yarn. That oughta keep me busy.

So what's next? A pair of Knucks for the Beloved, once I get that purple sock off my size 3 circs. (Figures I'd have to go up a size for the socks and down a size for the gloves so that they require the exact same needles at the same time.) I also want to do a Moebius cowl (scroll down) or shawl. I know someone who has Cat Bordhi's "Treasury of Magical Knitting" and can help me with the cast-on, and if I borrow the book from her, I can try before I buy.

In anticipation of doing the Moebius cast-on, I bought some loooong cables for my Denise set and some Knit Picks Options needles in appropriate sizes and lengths. (Yes, I know I could just join a bunch of Denise cables together to get the really long needle, but I didn't want to tie up all my cables in one project.) The upshot is, I can now make a needle that is about as long as I am tall (longer, if I go crazy with the Denises).

I got all my new toys yesterday and couldn't resist giving the Knit Picks needles a spin on a scarf I'm doing for a colleague. I did notice that the stitches seemed to slide a little more smoothly to the tip of the needle, and the flexibility of the cable was nice. Will I be trading in my Denises for a full set? Probably not. But I'd definitely buy more sizes/cable lengths from Knit Picks if the need arises. (I note that Knit Picks has size 4 tips available; the smallest Denise is a 5. I do have two pairs of 24" size 4 circs, but if I ever had need of a different length of cable, I'd probably get the Knit Picks needles.)

My little progress bars are hopelessly outdated. I'll have to fix them soon ...

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10 October 2006

Socktoberfest!

Socktoberfest is here, and lookee what I did:

sock_wavylace_full

Said sock is actually finished; I just haven't taken a fresh picture of it. (A close-up of the lace is here.) Pattern is Waving Lace Socks by Evelyn A. Clark from Interweave Knits Spring 2004; yarn is Lang Jawoll Color Superwash, in color 820164; needles were size 1, and I used the included reinforcing thread on the heel (at least until the instep) and toes. One skein was an almost perfect amount of yarn, with a smallish ball left over for any mending that may need to be done down the road.

I feel like I've reached a milestone. (Although I've really only reached half a milestone -- the sock needs a mate.) But it's the first time I stitched a heel, and it was magical to watch it all take shape. The more I do things like this, the more I feel that, if I shy away from a knitting technique I want to try because it intimidates me, I'm missing out on something important.

To borrow from my LiveJournal:

This is not to say that the experience has been without problems, oh, no. I had to unravel the sock completely at one stage (thankfully, very, very early in the process) and had to cast on (i.e., put the starting row of loops on the needles) a bunch of times before I was really happy. On more occasions than I care to remember, I grabbed not the stitch-free working needle from my hand, but one of the other needles that you see sticking out from the sock, and suddenly had one-fourth of my stitches flapping in the breeze, threatening to unravel. Many's the time I had to un-knit several rows to fix an error, and then un-knit several more because I took apart one of the more complex stitches incorrectly.

[The Beloved] asked me, at one point, "Why do you do things that frustrate you so much?" I reminded him of the fits he throws occasionally while playing video games. He fell silent. (The Mario Kart games? They cheat, horribly. So does his poker-simulation video game. At least, that's how he tells it. He's not at Phil Hellmuth level with his rants yet, but just you wait. :-) )

With this being my first pair, I'm not going to have much to say in response to the sock history questions posted by Lolly, the Socktoberfest host. But here goes ...

  1. When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?

    Last month; self-taught.


  2. What would you have done differently?

    Grafted the toe a little better. It's a bit pointy, and probably not Kitchener-stitched right ... Cat Bordhi talks about slipping the stitches on each side to make a more tidy toe. Perhaps with the next sock, I'll plan to do that.


  3. Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?

    I used DPNs for these socks, but the next pair I'm contemplating is worked on two circs, a technique I've used for a couple of projects and which I like. Just waiting for the circs to arrive -- I ordered sets of sizes 0 and 1 for just that purpose, and I already own 2 sets of size 2.


My friend Liz has said, "Walk softly and make loud socks." Would this yarn do? (I am sorely tempted to get some, if she reopens the offer.) There's some other loudness in the sock stash, too. Pix forthcoming.

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22 September 2006

Talking points (and double-points)

Ah, my poor neglected blog ... but I have a few status reports:
  • Mom's Sophisticated Scarf -- finished!
  • Knucks -- not yet embroidered, but otherwise finished! They've been keeping my hands toasty at work, as promised.
  • Booga Bag -- I need to felt the handle and assemble it, but the knitting is done! It came out better than I could have hoped, and yes, the Cascade DID enable me to use only two skeins of Noro Kureyon. The base and 2-3 rows of the sides are Cascade, along with the handle; the rest of the body of the purse is 2 skeins of Noro. Details and pix to follow.
  • I've started my first socks and joined Socktoberfest 2006. I'm finally using some of those tiny sock needles I gushed about here (although not the tiniest of that lot -- they're size 1s.
  • I've also made a sort of bowl-ish thing that I need to felt. I began it at ...
  • ... the knitting retreat I attended a week ago.
So much time and so little to blog about ...

(... strike that. Reverse.)

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