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  • knitting1105 9:50 am on August 7, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    I have gotten a bit behind in my sock club knitting the past couple of months.  I hope to rectify that shortly, but first let me show you what arrived in mid-July, a beautiful blue yarn by Dirty Water DyeWorks, color : Fathom, along with another project bag, and a Sock Report clear bag.  Dirty Water  also carries the cutest project bags from Three Bags Full, I think that they may be ones that I spotted with CookieA when I was in her classes.  Definitely have to put those on my wish list!

    Instead of casting this on for socks first, I opted to go with the mystery KAL scarf project.  I am using some of my own handspun, Blackberry Jamble pencil roving from Fiber Optic:

    It is knitting up so incredibly nice.  I love spinning this pencil roving, this was my third hank of it, and the first thing that I spun on my new Jensen wheel, I got 496 yards, so I am hoping it is enough-otherwise the edging will be bound off with another fiber.  My spinning is not as even as I am able to get just a couple of months later, but beautiful non-the-less.  I would highly recommend this fiber for beginning knitters, as it is easy to draft out.  I have almost finished with Clue #2 of 3, having had a very bad false start where I knit garter stitch instead of stockinette well into the second clue.

    And finally from the CookieA 2012 sock club, this gorgeous green sock yarn from Enchanted Knoll Farm (color: Genmaicha), and looking at her webpage I see lots of luscious fiber.  This is the good/bad thing about these sock clubs, I am introduced to fibers and vendors that I would not otherwise find, the bad news is that I am introduced to new sources of wool and yarn.  My difficulty with this month will be which of the 2 sock patterns to knit with, they are both so cute.  One however is a different type of sock knit, so I will most likely attempt that one.

  • knitting1105 10:57 am on August 1, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Plucky Knitter,   

    Barely Enough 


    I finished these socks from the CookieA sock club.  After getting to the toe on the first pair, I was concerned about having enough yarn to finish both socks, so put that one on holders and knit the second sock from the other end of the skein.  Up until the end, I was not sure that I would have enough yarn to finish the socks, let alone the toes.  Turns out I did knit the toes, with only 2 yards left.  The yarn, Plucky Knitter’s Primo! has only 385 yards, that alone would make me question purchasing this yarn in the future.  It was very nice to knit with though, and the color is beautiful.

    Pattern: Solfar
    Pattern Source: CookieA 2012 Sock Club, June pattern & yarn
    Yarn: Plucky Knitter’s Primo!, Color: Vintage Icebox
    Needles: US 1
    Date Started: 7/15/12
    Date Finished: 8/1/12
    Finished Dimensions: Women’s size medium





    • thewooleryguy 10:12 pm on August 2, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Wow, 2 yards to spare…that’s crazy! Glad you had enough to finish your socks, they are GORGEOUS!


  • knitting1105 11:06 am on June 12, 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    Socks and Spinning 

    It seems that all I have been working on lately is spinning and socks. Having a new sock yarn and patterns come every month does not help the issue any.  And now I want to add basketry to the mix…

    First off, spinning.  I finally finished plying this yarn.  The fiber is from Into the Whirled, and was part of the February/March SAL.  I am a bit behind on this spin-along thing as you can see.  Those 2 months were a blur to me, and I just could not get much done.  This is a 3-ply with 2 plys of the color Delectably Delicate, polwarth/silk and one of the coordinating blue.  I have a bit of the variegated color left, and a braid of the pink coordinate to spin up.  I will ply the remainder of the main color with 2 plys of the pink, and then have a 3 ply pink coordinate also.  There are 880 yards of 3-ply here, and with the other coordinates, I do think that I have enough to make a simple sweater!!!!

    And on the sock front I am still working on the February socks, Hibernia, from Knitterati sock club, yarn from.  There are a massive amount of cables and many directions happening in these socks, so it is taking FOREVER.  Kelly green is not my color, but with the amount of work that has gone into them thus far, I will not be gifting these.  It is Mad Color by Fiber Arts, the color is Emerald Green (80% Superwash Merino, 20% nylon), 420 yards, 4 oz.

    Clue #2 on the May Mystery socks is finished, and I hope to complete the rest within the next day or two.  I love this pattern, just not sure that it is my color.  These will probably be added to the gift pile, and I will reknit a brighter pair for myself.  This yarn is from  Little Red Bicycle (80% BFL, 20% nylon), color: Heliotropium, and is proving to be yet another great sock yarn.

    As if I did not have enough sock knitting to do, the June installment from the CookieA club came today.   I love this month’s patterns, both of them.  I will make one out of this colorway for myself, and the second pattern will be perfect for socks for Dan using some brown handspun that I made specifically for him.  Yet another yarn base that I have not tried from Plucky Knitter, it is Primo which is merino/cashmere/nylon; colorway is Vintage Icebox.

  • knitting1105 6:18 pm on May 29, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    After a hard days work… 

    The Nanaimo Socks are finished and gifted to Dan even though he will not be wearing wool socks in this heat.  These were the April installment for the CookieA sock club.   The color was perfect for Dan, so I chose the simpler pattern this time, as I knew he would not like tons of cables and traveling stitches and yarn overs.  It was a very quick knit, and I love this yarn, it is a 100% superwash Merino, and with a nice tight spin.  Not too thick either, so makes perfect socks for him to wear to work.

    The pattern is extremely generous, I made the Medium size for Dan, and would make the small size for myself.  Also, making the medium with a longer foot meant that I had very little yarn left over.  I did not weave in the ends of the first sock’s toe until the second was finished just in case I needed to knit the toes with a different yarn.

    Project Specs

    Pattern: Nanaimo Socks, size Medium
    Pattern Source: CookieA Sock Club April 2012
    Yarn: Soctopus Sokkusu Original; 100% merino wool
    Needles: US 1
    Date Started: 5/6/12
    Date Finished: 5/56/12
    Finished Dimensions: Mens large

    • Diane 10:52 pm on May 29, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      I agree it is the perfect color for Dan and he is quite the model too!


  • knitting1105 9:28 am on May 8, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    I am almost done spinning the gradient bump from Loop.  I am going to try leaving this as a single and “fulling” it, which if I understand correctly, really means letting the fibers in the single strand felt to each other, and then the twist relaxes itself.  Seems like the advice I am reading has you let the singles rest on the bobbin for a few days.

    And, I have started a new pair of socks from the CookieA sock club, Nanaimo.  When I saw the yarn, I knew that my husband would love the colors, and was happy to find that one of the patterns included was a “manly” one.  Made more progress last night, and I am almost to the heel on the first sock.

  • knitting1105 8:16 pm on May 4, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    Finally finished socks 

    It seems like I have been working on these socks for so very long.  They were a fun knit, but unfortunately interrupted by a new spinning wheel and a Haapsalu shawl kit.  Fun and funky is a good way to describe them.

    I love these colors, they are so ME (although I think that they are being saved to be gifted).  And the yarn is wonderful, too bad this company split up.  Look at how the pattern continues along the front of the foot, and the gusset decreases are accomplished by blending the pattern portions of the sock together.  Cookie genius as usual!

    Project Specs

    Pattern: Dragon Crystal
    Pattern Source: CookieA Sock Club 2011
    Yarn: The Sanguine Gryphon Bugga!
    Needles: US 1
    Date Started: 3/22/12
    Date Finished: 5/4/12
    Finished Dimensions: Women’s large

    • kathytny 6:29 am on May 5, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Been following your progress on these and am tickled to see them done! Still love the color and the pattern (with those cool little dragon spikes on the sides). I have reclaimed my “put on hold” love of socks and am working on finishing two I started. I am side tracked right now with a baby hat for a baby that is not going to wait, and then back on my sock finishing quest.

      One thing I hope to accomplish is learning to knit two at a time…….I hate the dreaded second sock syndrome!

      Great job!


      • knitting1105 8:37 am on May 5, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        Two socks at a time is not something that I think I want to do. I am afraid that I would get confused, loose my rythmn, make mistakes. I know that some like them, but I do not seem to have a problem wanting to finish the second sock. Good luck with it! As you know, I love socks, and they make the best gifts.


  • knitting1105 11:16 am on April 20, 2012 Permalink | Reply

    While waiting… 

    So as not to miss the UPS guy delivering my much anticipated new spinning wheel, I am sitting at home all day.  To occupy my time (in between some real work), I am spinning up this footnotes unspun from Fiber Optic.  This has to be my favorite fiber to spin, it is pencil roving and easily splits right down the center.  No predrafting is required, and I swear that it spins up faster.  The color is Black Coffee, and it is a wonderful blend of darks, very subtle and deep.  The yarn is destined to become some handknit socks for my husband (superwash merino + silk).  This is for the April Sash busters on the Fiber Optic group on Ravelry.  I think that I will make the deadline.

    I finally finished the singles of this multi-colored fiber from IntoTheWhirled that was part of Feb/March SAL, and that deadline missed.  I am really debating plying these 2 together or plying one with it’s coordinating pink singles, and one with the coordinating blue singles.  I worry about the yarn becoming muddied if the variegated is plyed with itself.

    And, I pulled the Greta Garbo shawl off the blocking boards and am weaving in ends.  In theory I should only have the beginning and end threads to weave in (spit-spliced the 2 skeins during knitting), but if you remember my row of shall we say “wine induced nupps”, I had to catch several of those and that gives me many additional ends to weave in.

    Remember my post from the CookieA weekend?  She wrote a wonderful post on her blog about our group, and I got a double shout-out!

    • Lisa 11:55 am on April 20, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Okay, I am dying to know….what wheel did you buy? I bought my Lendrum and after trying all the ones Fiber Garden had at our class, I am so happy with my purchase. I love my wheel. Don’t spin enough but I will soon…..


      • knitting1105 12:27 pm on April 20, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        Check in to morrow and I will have photos! Hopefully it will not take me too long to put it together.


    • kathytny 12:47 pm on April 20, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      I am very excited for you and look forward to see it up and running. I just got my Wonder Washer for felting and I can hardly wait to get home and felt some things in it!!!! (I had it delivered here at work.)


  • knitting1105 11:06 am on April 17, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    CookieA classes 

    Friday, Saturday and Sunday I spent the whole day taking classes with CookieA through the Windy City Knitting Guild.  The lessons were divided up among 3 1/2 day sessions, and originally I was going to piecemeal different classes together.  However, the drive out to Skokie is not a pleasant one, and I decided to stay the full-time each day.  I am glad that I did, as I learned something new in each class, and had a fabulous time.  I cannot say enough good things about what a great teacher she is, good sense of humor and genuinely nice.

    Friday Morning: Sock Innovation: Top Down Sock Design  Loved this class!!!  Taking this class has given me the confidence to tackle designing a sock, that is when I have the time, finish UFO’s and have some needles free.

    Friday Afternoon: Flat to In-The-Round and Back Again This was one of the classes that I was waffling on, and it turned out to be my favorite of all the weekend.  Sometimes the descriptions and titles do not really convey what you will get out of the class.  Cookie is fabulous with breaking down problems into manageable math solutions, and gives great handouts that clarify what she is talking about in the classes.  This was one of the classes that I was going to skip, and am happy that I did not, as it turned out to be one of my favorites.  Learning how to take a written pattern and chart it, how to take a pattern written in the round and transcribe it to flat and visa-versa. She had a great whiteboard to write on, and filled it up with very clear diagrams.

    Saturday Morning: The Perfect Rib  Another great class, and one that will help me to get that seamless rib into pattern look that Cookie is so well-known for on her sock design.  This was very well thought out and the handout, as usual, was superb.
    Saturday Afternoon: Cable Suckage Factor Don’t be turned off by this name.  The purpose of the class was to come up with our own personal cable “suckage factor”, so that we could both modify patterns for fit and design those that would fit.  We knit a plain sample swatch, and then knit 2 different cable pattern swatches to see how much pull-in we were getting as a percentage factor.  Then learned how to apply that suckage % to designs to make sure that our fit is good.  Suckage factors can be anywhere from 25-50%, mine was 42%.
    Sunday Morning: Toe-Up Socks with Gusset  I am not a fan of toe-up socks and while this was a good class, it did not change my mind.  We did, however, get good worksheets for figuring out the required widths and how to gauge when and how much to increase for the gusset.  This is always the part that poses problems for me with toe-up socks, and I do not like the short row heel with no gusset.  It just does not fit a person with a high instep like myself.
    Sunday Afternoon: Traveling Stitches.  This class did not give me much new information, as I had already completed many of Cookie’s socks and she loves to use traveling stitches.  This class combined with the cable suckage class really gave me lots of designing tools to use for socks and sweaters.

    Here are my weekend swatches.  Starting at the upper left and going clockwise:

    • (gold) perfect ribbing sample
    • (gold) flat to in the round and back again
    • (pink) traveling stitches
    • (purple) top down sock design
    • (green) 2 samples of cable suckage factor, plus gauge swatch
    • (white in center) toe-up sock design

     And some of my classmates:
    Including cute Mimi who for some unknown reason does not like her photo taken:
    I had my photo taken with Cookie, but it is not press worthy (totally on my part).  I will post it on my refrigerator for inspiration…
    • kathytny 12:46 pm on April 17, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Wow, your blog made me feel like I was right there! I have never gone to any kind of class for knitting etc. though I have dreamed of it. I would love to take a Cat Bordhi class! Everyone looks like they are having so much fun!


    • Stefanie 9:08 pm on April 18, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Oh wow, I’m so jealous you got to take all of the classes! Thanks for sharing – She really was a fantastic teacher! I only got to take the toe-up socks class on Sunday, but totally would have taken a few more if time and money hadn’t been an issue. Also your swatches from all of the classes are gorgeous!


      • knitting1105 9:11 pm on April 18, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you so much. I enjoyed all of the classes, and you can attest to what a great teacher she was!


  • knitting1105 10:37 am on April 10, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Basket, Easter   

    Eco Easter and more socks! 

    My son came home from college with 2 friends so I said that I would make Easter baskets for all of  them.  I think that they thought I was kidding.  My daughter of course, knew that I was serious.  I had a fun time thinking of toys and candy to entertain them at school (including a potato gun).  In looking for an alternative to the ubiquitous plastic Easter basket I came up with the idea of using clay pots, and adding a potted herb to each basket that they could use in their apartments.  The end result was very pleasing.

    And, yesterday my next installment of yarn for the CookieA sock club came in the mail.  That was a pleasant surprise as I had not received the shipping notice.

    This color will be perfect for my husband so I am hoping that one of the patterns will be “male friendly”.

    • alice 1:27 am on April 11, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      you’re such an artist!


    • Kathy 9:17 am on April 11, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      You are such a good Momma! Those were just stunning!

      I think that yarn will work up to be lovely manly socks! A lucky man indeed!


  • knitting1105 7:53 am on April 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    Dragon Bumps 

    I finished the first of my Dragon Crystal socks by CookieA.  The pattern is definitely 3-dimensional.  They are fun to make, and will be funky to wear.  Marilyn from my knitting group was concerned that the bumps would show through my pant legs (not with jeans), and my friend Michelle thought that they would be good for bunions if you strategically placed the bumps.  These are definitely for me, I love the color, and others might be put off by the bumps.  Look at the unique gusset, all of the decreases took place on the top of the foot.

    Last week I took a friend to the Garfield Park Conservatory.  They have most repairs finished on the main spaces from the horrific hail storm last summer.  The fern room in particular took quite a hit on the plants, and it is being replanted, so sparse in some locations.

    And we saw a Peregrine Falcon outside in the gardens.  Beautiful bird.

    And on our way to a wonderful lunch, just down the street, at Inspiration Kitchen (highly recommended, local produce and a unique training program + helping feed the hungry), we saw this produce bus, Fresh Moves, that goes from different food desert areas in the city to get fresh produce to residents.  What a fabulous idea!

    They retrofitted an old Chicago Transit bus.

    • kathytny 10:54 am on April 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      What a wonderful entry – wish I was there with your girls! And I love the fresh produce on the bus being delivered to people!

      I really love many aspects about your socks: the color of the wool, I LOVE that heal, but I still don’t think that I would like the bumps…… I guess the real test will be when you wear them and you see if those bumps make them not stay in place.

      Lovely job!


    • knitting1105 11:27 am on April 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks! I need to finish the other sock now, since I mostly wear them around the house the bumps will just be a bit of fun. The yarn is very nice.


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