Tag Archive | knit your library challenge

FO: My Own Best Friend Socks

My Own Best Friend 3In keeping with the idea of using all that sock yarn I own on actual socks, the sock-making binge continues.

Pattern:  Friendship Socks by Amy Palmer, from Interweave Holiday Gifts 2011

Yarn: Chelsea Sock by Nooch Fibers, colorway Arizona (caveat: that colorway name is a best guess based on the colorways that were available at the time; when I bought this yarn, the tag did not name the colorway; and, incidentally, it’s no longer available on the website, so we may never know)

Needles: Knitter’s Pride Karbonz, US 1 1/2 DPNs.  I bought these DPNs sometime last year, and they languished unused until I started knitting socks again.  Now I won’t use anything else.

My Own Best Friend 4Satisfaction with end product:  They’re gorgeous, they’re soft, and they fit.  I’m a little concerned that the cashmere content in the yarn may make them not quite durable enough for regular wear, but I can always use them as house socks.  I’m wearing them as I type this blog entry, and love how they feel on my feet.

The pattern itself was easy as pie; the lace pattern at the cuff is charted and easy to follow.  After that, it’s just straight stockinette all the way down, so this would make a good first sock pattern for a newbie.  The flap for the heel featured a somewhat different slip stitch pattern that I like much better than any other flap I’ve made — it looks kind of like a honeycomb, and that makes me smile.  I’ll be adapting future flap-and-gusset sock patterns to use this flap.

84df2-knit-your-library_2016This project is part of the Knit Your Library Challenge, although Snapdragon Crafts seems to have gone dark and hasn’t provided a link up recently.  Regardless, you can click that badge over there for more details.

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A blanket for Liam

Stripes and Hearts 10I have a new grand-nephew on the way. And, of course, I made him a blanket.

Pattern:  I Got You Babe-y by Marty Miller, from the Jan/Feb 2012 issue of the now-defunct Crochet Today.

Yarn:  Bernat Gloucester Sport, 2.8 skeins (308 yds), colorway “French Blue”; Mirasol T’ika, 4 skeins (364 yds), colorway 502 “Light Blue”.

Hook:  H for body, I for borders.

Mods: Did not do the lacy attach-as-you-go border between panels. Rather, did single crochet edging around each panel and sewed them together. Three rounds of single crochet in alternating colors around entire blanket for the edging.

84df2-knit-your-library_2016Satisfaction with end product:  I think it’s lovely.  The 100% cotton yarn makes it soft and absorbent, besides making it an easy-care baby item; I’m sure my niece-in-law will appreciate that.

You can see more project pics at the Ravelry project page.

Still “knitting” my library.  Please join us!

Socks! And a shawl.

While I was off work in January recovering from surgery, I went on a bit of a sock binge.  Results below.

temperance-2 First up, the Temperance socks (Ravelry project page).

Pattern: Temperance by Liz Abinante

Yarn:  Footprints by Blue Ridge Yarn, colorway Secret Garden.  Per Webs, this yarn’s total weight for the full put-up is 108 grams. That means it’s 81 grams for the 300 yard skein and 27 grams for the 100 yard skein. When I was finished, I had 18 grams and 8 grams left, respectively.

Total yardage used: 304 yds.

temperance-1Needles:  US size 2 DPNS.  Pattern calls for using US size 1 1/2 needles. I need size 2 to achieve gauge.

New techniques? Yes!  First toe up socks, first short row heel, first time using different colors for different parts of the sock.  I discovered  I don’t like toe up socks.  The cast on and first couple of rows are really REALLY fiddly and annoying.  That was with DPNs.  I may try again using two circs.  Maybe.

Satisfaction with end product:  Pleased!  They fit pretty well, and I’ve worn them several times since completing them.  In fact, I’m wearing them as I type this blog entry. The yarn is soft and warm and comfy, especially after having been washed a couple of times.  The socks come through the washer and dryer just fine; I wash them inside a mesh bag so they’re protected from rubbing against other clothing, and I use the gentle/delicate cold water wash cycle and a low heat dry cycle.

Next, Hummingbird Spring (Ravelry project page).

hummingbird-4Pattern:  Hummingbird by Sandi Rosner

Yarn: Stardust by Magic & Moonshine, colorway “Crocus”. I love this yarn. It’s soft on the hands, comfy on the feet, and has a hint of sparkle when the light catches it just right.

Total yardage used: Roughly 293 yards

Needles: US size 1 1/2 DPNs

hummingbird-1New techniques? Short heel sock #2.  Progress, not perfection.

Satisfaction with end product:  Good enough, even with the following hiccup.  According to the pattern blurb in the book (The Knitter’s Book of Socks), this pattern was written specifically for a “highly-variegated colorway”. They must not have meant THIS highly-variegated because the lace pattern is virtually invisible.  Still, it’s a nicely written pattern, and fun to make. I may try it again in yarn with less contrast in color values.  The completed socks are machine washable (on gentle, in a mesh bag, as explained above) for ease of care.

Finally, Dragonfly and Rosebud (Ravelry project page).

dragonfly-rosebuds-1

You may notice that this photo employs sock blockers.  Yes, I finally bought some.

Pattern:  Veil of Rosebuds by Anne Hanson

Size: Medium

Yarn:  Skinny Bugga! by Cephalopod Yarns, colorway “Dragonfly Tattoo”.  This yarn is amazing. It’s too bad Cephalopod Yarns closed up shop and took down its shingle.

Total yardage used:  274 yds.

Needles:  US Size 1 DPNs

Mods: Medium size called for casting on 56 stitches at the cuff. That’s too small for me, so I cast on 64, knit the ribbed cuff, and then decreased by 8 stitches in the first row of the lace.

New techniques? Still working on perfecting that short row heel.  This technique has entailed a bit of a learning curve but I’m getting better.

pussy-hat-1Satisfaction with end product:  I love how these turned out!  Excellent match of yarn and pattern.  The lace pattern is gorgeous and highly visible in this colorway.  The only issue has to do with the short row heel.  I need to remember to knit the foot a teensy bit longer than I do with a flap-and-gusset heel to make sure the heel turn fits on my actual heel instead of getting pulled under.

Somewhere in the middle of all the sock knitting, I made three PussyHats. Two were dropped off at a collection point for the January 21st march that took place in Atlanta and worldwide, and one I kept for myself for future marches.  You can visit my Ravelry project page here.  Bet you can guess my politics now!

I finished the Cadence Shawlette (Ravelry project page) a couple of weeks before surgery in December.

cadence-4Pattern:  Cadence Shawlette by Emily Straw; 5 full repeats and 1 partial repeat (up to row 21) before the garter stitch edging and the bind off.

Yarn:  Brisbane by Queensland Collection, colorway “Coral Trout”.  This colorway name tickles me:  I can’t see it without thinking of Pete Dexter’s novel, Paris Trout.

cadence-5Total yardage:  288 yds, plus a little extra (see notes below)

Needles: US 9 circs

Satisfaction with end product:  Love it.  It’s warm and cozy and colorful, just right to brighten up drab winter days.

Notes: I wanted to use every inch of the Brisbane, so I essentially played yarn chicken and kept knitting until I thought I had just enough for the bind off. As it turned out, I got 3/4 of the way through the bind off before I ran out of yarn. Luckily, I had remnants of another worsted wool (Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted) in a colorway similar to the color section of Brisbane at the bound edge, so I was able to finish the bind off instead of tinking back 200+ stitches.

I’m knitting my library.  Well, mostly.  Maybe you can join us!

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FO Friday: The Wildflower Cardigan

100_4655Hurray, it’s done! After all this time, it’s done!

Well, to be totally truthful, it was finished at the end of June.  But it wasn’t until  two weekends ago that spouse and I managed to coordinate our schedules for a photoshoot (my head is cut off in the photos because I hadn’t yet taken a shower that day and my hair was a mess;  spouse said “Either we take these pictures now or they don’t get done,” so we took the pictures); and then it wasn’t until this past weekend that I found the time to write this blog entry and schedule it for publication.

Pattern:  Wildflower Cardigan by Alana Dakos; available as a download or in the book, Coastal Knits.

Yarn:  Silky Wool by Elsebeth Lavold, colorway Acorn; roughly 8 1/2 skeins, totaling 1575 yards

Size: 43″ (bust measurement)

Needles: US 1, 2, and 3 — I used Hiya Hiya Sharps circulars.

Mods:  None, except adding a few more rows to make the button band wider and adding one more button.

Satisfaction with end product:  I love it.  It fits just right; it has the three-quarter sleeves that I love; it can be dressed up or dressed down.  Now I’m just waiting for the weather to turn so I can wear it.

You can click on the big pic up there to go to my Ravelry project page.  Here are some more pictures for your enjoyment.  Click each of the pictures to view it larger.

To knit this, you must be prepared to face endless endless endless stockinette. A lot of Alana Dakos’s designs are like that. Her cardigans tend to be very simple in structure, with one or two special design features (like the tiny pocket and the scalloped detail at the hem and sleeve edges on this one) that stand out against the acres of stockinette. The good thing is this makes her cardigans perfect for television knitting.

This post is part of the Knit Your Library Challenge. Click the badge to see what other folks participating in this challenge have done.

FO Friday Avantaknits Badge (2)Because I’m scheduling this entry ahead of time, I’m not linking with any other Finished Friday blogs. Feel free to link with this one, if you so desire!

WIP Wednesday: Wildflower approaching harvest time

Wildflower Blocking 2Sunday evening while watching Game of Thrones, I finished the main knitting on the Wildflower Cardigan — finally! — and now have it all laid out for blocking before assembly.  Once the sewing is done, I need to pick up stitches around the neck and front for a ribbed edging and button band.

Speaking of buttons, while we were in New York, I dragged spouse to a nifty vintage button store my friend Annie mentioned:  Tender Buttons.  Oh my gosh, I thought I had died and gone to button heaven.  Unfortunately, I didn’t have the camera with me and my phone battery was dead, so I have no pictures of the inside of this utterly charming little store.  Lucky for you, their website has a virtual tour, so take a few minutes and go visit.  I’ll wait.

[waiting . . . .]

Wildflower Buttons 1Isn’t it fabulous?  I want to go there every single time I need buttons.  I found the perfect buttons for Wildflower, and cast a covetous eye upon many others, but this store takes cash or checks only and my cash was limited.  Probably a good thing for the American Express bill that they don’t take plastic.

It’s doubtful Wildflower will be done for FO Friday this week, but look for it soon.  Next project will be a present for an upcoming great-nephew:  The Tree of Life Baby Afghan in Bernat Handicrafter Cotton.

This post is part of the Stitch-Along Wednesday Round-Up, hosted by Gracey’s Goodies.  And, of course, the Knit Your Library Challenge, hosted by Snapdragon Crafts.  Click the respective badges below to see other posts more or less like this one.

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WIP Wednesday: The never-ending Wildflower Cardigan

Wildflower 12Don’t look now but this yarn and book blog has actual yarn content today.

I’m still plugging away at the Wildflower Cardigan. The right and left fronts are finished, and now I’m working on a sleeve.

Progress is slow but steady.  Mindless stockinette makes for easy television knitting, but I do get bored after a while.  I’m glad to be working on the sleeve because, hey, increases and counting rows!  Something to pay attention to.  And soon, the shaping of the sleeve cap, woo hoo!

In looking at this picture, I see how the tweedy silky texture in the Silky Wool gleams in the flash from the camera.  I really like this yarn, even if it does contain the occasional twig.  And it’s a good thing, too.  That I like this yarn, I mean.  Because I have, um… * counts * … four other colorways of Silky Wool in stash.  You can thank one of the vendors at Stitches South for that.

This post is part of the Knit Your Library Challenge hosted by Snapdragon Crafts.  Click that badge down there — the one that says “knit your library”, of course — to learn more about it.

And while we’re posting badges — yes, we have to show you these stinkin’ badges — you can click the other badge to see who else had something to show for the Stitch-Along Wednesday roundup.

knit-your-library_2016Stitch Along Wednesday(I don’t think these badges stink at all, by the way. I just couldn’t resist making the movie reference…)

WIP Wednesday: Wildflower progress

Wildflower 10I took the Wildflower Cardigan with me to California over the weekend.  With all the time spent waiting around in airports and in the air, plus the evenings filled with chitchat with the girls, you’d think more would have been accomplished.  But there were books to read and movies to watch and photographs to share…  Still, it’s almost to the point where I can start binding off/decreasing for the armhole.

Knitting around non-knitters is eye-opening.  They think it’s magic.  Several of my girlfriends marveled at the tiny stitches.  “It’s tiny yarn and tiny needles,” I explained.  (This pattern uses sport-weight yarn and size 3 needles — while that is small, it’s not excessively tiny to a knitter.  Had I been using lace- or cobweb-weight and size 0 needles, they might have thought I was a sorcerer.)

This post is part of the Stitch Along Wednesday and Knit Your Library round-ups.  Click the badges below to see what everyone else has been doing.

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Knitting My Library: Advance Planning #1

Craft Room 1Have I shown you this?  It’s my library of knitting/crochet books and magazines (with a few extra books spilling over from the “regular” bookshelves).  Unused yarn lives in the woven bins; leftovers from previous projects live in the plastic bin on the table.  This photo was taken a couple of years ago, and the collection of books AND yarn has only grown since then.  As you can see, I have ample selection from which to choose for the Knit Your Library Challenge.

One of the suggested ways to handle this challenge is choose a particular book and knit your way through it.  While I have a couple of books I’d be willing to choose for that method, my other focus this year is to knit from stash as much as possible.  My process will be to choose yarn in stash and find a pattern that works with it.  Here’s what I’ve picked out so far.

Footprints 2Stashed yarn #1: Blue Ridge Yarns Footprints, 300 yards of a main color and 100 yards of a contrast color, perfect for making socks with contrasting toes and heels.  I bought this yarn while in Florida a few years ago for a family event.  I needed to escape the family for a little while so I found a yarn shop.  (Yarn therapy + retail therapy = miracle cure for family stress.)  This project will help me achieve another goal, learning a short row or afterthought heel.  The pattern that appeals to me most right now for this yarn is Dumbledore’s Warm Socks from The Unofficial Harry Potter Knits 2013 magazine.

Baby Camel SilkStashed yarn #2: Wild Orchids Fiber Arts Swiss Mountain Baby Camel and Silk, 437 yards of fingering weight gorgeousness I bought at Stitches South shortly after moving to Atlanta.  This yarn is so special, I’ve had a dickens of a time finding just the right pattern for it.  It’s too delicate for socks; besides, this shimmering sheen deserves to live in the light.  Last summer I bought Interweave’s Warm Days, Cool Knits, and there it was, the Emmylou Shawl. Pretty and feminine and just right to show off this skein of fibery goodness.

Needles 3Stashed yarns #3 & 4:  The marvelous yet discontinued Rowan Plaid in the Lavender Mist (purplish) colorway, 1360 yards; and Moonlight Wave (bluish) colorway, 700 yards of beautiful bulky softness.  The challenge with Rowan Plaid is finding a pattern in which the details don’t get lost in the multi-hued strands.  I’ve found when using this in smaller projects that straight stockinette looks marvelous and big, simple cables work really well.  The Galadriel Cardigan from Verena Knitting Winter 2009 is perfect for the lavender.  For the blue, the yardage is pretty limited because I’ve used it for gifts several times already, including making a cardigan.  Either the Hooded Cardi Vest from Vogue Winter 2009/2010 or the Cabled V-Neck Slipover from Debbie Bliss Fall/Winter 2008 will work best.  I’ll decide between those two patterns when I get closer to actually knitting one of them.

knit-your-library_2016Okay, four stashed yarns, four library patterns.  That’s enough advance planning for one Saturday.  I still have the Wildflower Cardigan to finish, plus a couple of other long-neglected WIPs that, truthfully, may or may not get finished before I start one of these new babies.

WIP Wednesday: Hospital Edition

image

This will be a rough entry because I’m posting from my tablet and I can’t edit or format worth beans on this thing.

I also can’t take pictures worth beans as witnessed above. It’s sideways. But otherwise it’s decent for a photo taken in a hospital room in light slanting through the blinds.

That’s the right front of the Wildflower Cardigan with its pretty little pocket detail. The rest is straight stockinette, making this the perfect project for hospital knitting. I expect to advance another three or four inches today, unless I get bored and decide to read instead.

Meanwhile, I’m sitting at my husband’s bedside listening to the IV beep and waiting for the nurse to come in and fix it. I called her 15 minutes ago. Just because I think he’s the most important patient on this floor doesn’t make it so.

knit-your-library_2016I’m knitting from my library in 2016. So are a bunch of other folks. You can check out their posts by clicking the badge at the right.