Gratuitous swatching


Fall knitting has my brain all a twitter and is keeping me awake at night thinking about sweaters. (Nerd alert, nerd alert!!) Sweaters that the little girl inside of me wants to have in my wardrobe. Ones with owl cables or Scottie dogs, maybe even gold fish inserted on the yoke. I’ve been procrastinating on doing this bit of designing for myself, but then my sister said “those ideas are fun and I’d wear one too.” And it really wouldn’t be designing but plugging something into a yoke and just worrying you get the neck decreases right. That seems doable…maybe.
Which leads us to the owl swatches….
1. Red owl
Yarn: Jamieson’s Shetland and Cashmere blend in colorway Red hot.
- Pluses: A lovely heathering in the color (much better in person) and good stitch definition.
- Minuses: The yarn is very inelastic and it’s easy to split the plys making cable knitting not so much fun.
Conclusion – I don’t want knitting cables to be a nightmare so the Shetland/cashmere blend isn’t going to work for this idea. The yarn would be lovely in garder stitch or some knit and purl texture combo.
2. Green owl
Yarn: Jo Sharp silkroad DK tweed in colorway asparagus
- Pluses: Love this color and the yarn is so soft and squishy.
- Minuses: Because of the fluffiness of the yarn the stitch definition is not so crisp.
Conclusion – There was a lot of waffling going on with this one. I could go for less stitch definition in return for the tweedy color b
ut in the end another idea popped into my mind for this yarn.
3. Gray owl
Yarn: Zara Merino in some numbered color that stand for dark gray
- Pluses: Stitch definition excellent and knitting the owl cable was the easiest on this yarn.
- Minuses: Its flat color is not exactly the mood I’m looking for.
Conclusion – Maybe this will work but I’ll hold out a bit longer and look for a couple other yarns to try.
So the owls are on hold while I troll about the web looking at yarn. Green mountain spinnary looks intriguing and I might order a skein or two of something that isn’t in the stash.

And then there is just the straight knock off of a sweet sweater from the sundance catalog. Rowan felted tweed looks like
it will work, just need to pick a color.

Something finished finally


Frog says, "Nice socks, about time you finished them." It was super silly to procrastinate knitting that second sport weight sock. Once the froggin sock was rotated into work commute knitting it only took 3 days to finish. So nice to have something off the needles! Which gives me an excuse to bring the frogs out for a little photo opp.

Just one more because I think my frogs are cute.
The specifics - Woolgirl sock club 2008 with the awesome theme of tree frogs, yarn is Dashing Dachs sport weight in Froggin with the pattern of the same name.

For some odd reason I'm not much into socks at the moment, maybe perversely since a certain knitter signed up for the summer of socks. That stubborn part of my personality said, "You can't tell me what to do, I'm knitting sweaters now!" (Nothing like alpaca in your lap when your apartment is 85 degrees but it doesn't stop me) Actually there were no knitting with alpaca this week since the extra skeins haven't arrived. I impulsed on some Sublime extra fine merino with the alpaca order and the merino happened to be back ordered. So the sweater on the needles this week was Liesl out of Sundara's Aran Silky Merino.

It took a couple days to get past row number 5, apparently a certain knitter can't yarn over and count at the same time. Memories of the February baby sweater travesty came flooding back when I couldn't knit that gull stitch if a gun was to my head. However being stubborn got me through the rough patch and now there are the correct number of stitches on the needles. Shewwww. Feather and Fan stitch can the two of us make peace and complete a sweater? Remember I can always send you back to the frog pond.

Little Miss runs out of yarn


Little Miss runs out of yarn has run out of yarn in not one but two projects... the Somewhat Cowl and X and O sock.

These things wouldn't happen if Little Miss didn't cannibalize sweater yarn for last minute Christmas projects and knitted more toe up socks.
Oh well I'm ordering more yarn and hoping the alpaca silk dye lots are close enough. Sock dye lots don't matter cause sock toes go in your shoes and these babies are for me.
In the mean time finishing up the pair of Froggin socks seems like a good idea before too many tasty fall patterns show up. (Oh fall knitting I love you so!) Tomorrow I'll be running down to the bookstore near work to buy the new Knitscene. If they don't have it out I might start frothing at the mouth. The Riding to Avalon pullover must be mine but in what yarn? Maybe I'll let some of those talented knitters out there figure out what yarn subs to use.

My alpaca crop top


Are you a hardcore knitter if you don a half finished alpaca sweater in 98 degree heat (plus humidity)? It was crazy but I'm pretty excited since it finally looks like this somewhat cowl will get finished. The sweater has been on the needles since May of last year and at one point disgusted me so much that it sat in a bag for months and months. Since socks are currently the dirty word about here, the cowl is getting plenty of attention. Several more inches to go on the body and then this will look snappy with some white linen pants. (I have to make those to)

The knitter chose poorly


Frak! Gift sock knitting went wrong after several hours of knitting. Using medium weight STR turned out to be too thick in the foot area when I switched to stockinette to knit the toe. It saddens me to rip this out but it must be done.

On the X and O sock somewhere a stitch was dropped which led to hours of trying to fix it. After that was done I messed up the chart and had to rip out again. Argh, the darn thing looks the same size as it has for days. My sock mojo is gone, gone, gone.
Now I'm hiding from the evil socks working on my somewhat cowl. Better straighten up socks cause I've got other things to knit.

You know you have socks on the brain when…


…when a random person at the train station tells you Jesus is coming in three years and the first thing you think of is, “Would I be able to knit up all my sock yarn stash in that time?” Hmmmm probably not.

The other thing that is making me go hmmm right now is the yardage requirements on my newest sock. Ocean Wind knits pattern said two 185 yard skeins were needed to make their X and O socks. After reading that the legs were supposed to be 8 inches long I had my doubts. Adjustments might have been made then if the sock wasn't already 6 inches and too wide. (Not reading the pattern beforehand rears it's ugly head again but I just can't learn) Now that the heel turn is finished you can see one skein is only going to make you a summery toeless sock to show off your sexy pedicure. Guess we will look at this as an opportunity to earn more reward points at the Loopy Ewe.

My name is Heather and I'm a sock yarn addict


For a month or two it seemed like the sock yarn purchasing addiction had been kicked. I knit two sweaters one after another and it was easy to tell myself not to buy new sock yarn because the old stuff wasn't being touched. Even at the new yarn store opening the huge bin of Claudia hand paint was passed over with only a little skein squeezing. The sock yarn stash must have been waiting for me to lull myself into a false sense of security and start some socks. Then BLAM I find myself ordering from the loopyewe and woolgirl in one week, then roaming the pages of Etsy looking for more skeins to score. Oh lord how did I become a sock yarn junkie? Soon I'll sitting with the bums on the street trying to hide my skeins in a paper bag.
In an effort to stave off Etsy purchases it crossed my mind that maybe the number of already purchased skeins should be counted. After everything was pulled from it's drawer or basket the total was 49 counting the two socks currently in progress. Yes I did then think, "Why not order another skien and make it an even 50," good lord!
Since there is this pal of guilt surrounding the sock yarn stash that I'd like to be rid of a tally is going up in the side bar. By the end of the year I'm shooting for that count of skeins to be lower. How much lower is not going to be set since intermittent neck cramping makes sock knitting impossible at times. Though if that number is only 48 then I'll be a little pissed at myself.
So what's on the needles now? One Froggin sock from the woolgirl sock club shipment was finished up on Friday. My in-laws are trained now and don't blink an eye when I disappear into their back yard with camera, socks, and frogs in hand.
The second sock pattern is a pair for my mother who asked for black or gray socks from Christmas. Very sneakily one of Blue Moon Fiber Arts Raven series (Pallas Athena) was purchased because that's almost black. Many of the Jewell's Handmades patterns are in my giant ravelry queue so it seemed like time to knit one. This is Spun Gold Honeycomb socks which works well on a dark color too. These are a little further along but the 2x2 rib is a literal pain in the neck. It makes one wish for a masseuse on retainer. The finished leg, however, looks great so these are going to be a slowly finished project. Cross your fingers that my gauge holds and Mom doesn't get a pair of socks where one is longer than the other. (Like she did last year)

This, that and the other


The passage of time weighed heavily on me today. I passed the house were three years ago a women pulled a small swaddled baby from a car. Now that baby is a little girl running around the front yard sniffing flowers and babbling to her mother. Today the year is half over and there are several knitting projects completed with satisfaction but nothing else seems to have progressed. Oddly though I was filled with happiness during the walk home, enjoying all the flowers and birds. Knitting seems to be the thing to keep me sane while waiting for the new job for my husband which will start the rest of the changes we have planned.
Project monogamy has left as quickly as it came, newly started projects are littered around the house. Frog models with the new woolgirl sock club froggen socks. He is most pleased with them. I am most pleased with the sport weight Dashing Dachs yarn which is a great thickness.
There are other socks and an old WIP back from the dead but it's time to curl up with Bella Tuscany and dream of apricot houses surrounded with olive groves.

New knitscene preview looks tasty.... must stark stalking
Connie Chang Chinchio.

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