Thursday, November 30, 2006

Still inflicting 'em with knitting

Simply Soft.


I had it from a reliable Sheep that this stuff might just live up to it's name. I thought I would try it on socks. 3 colorful skeins were among a basket of generous thank-you gifts from last year's Kindergarten Letter People parents. (Letter A should have been finished this week but a sock virus seems to have taken over all reason.)

Economical: Yes.
Washable: Yes.
Very Soft: Yes.
Acrylic: Well, yes. (Acrylic fume warning right there on the label.)

These are Very Soft Socks.

7 pair of socks are now finished in about 13 days of Knit Unto Others.

I increased cast-0n stitches to 36 and followed the basic recipe of the Basket Weave pattern.
I don't really know Little People Feet proportions, being as my little people grew up! So I just knit each section a little bigger that the pattern called for. I knit until the voices in my head said to stop.

Quick consultation with designer suggests I should have told the voices to shut up and kept knitting another repeat or so. Hopefully they'll fit someone.

Simply Soft Slipper Socks. I'm making me some.

Next week, maybe.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Inflicting Knitting Unto Others - week 1

Progress report: 5 pair!

That's 10 socks. In a week.

Admittedly, they're getting smaller. And how does anyone EVER trust the dye lot on a skein of yarn? I bought 2 skeins (same lot) of the Sassy Stripes - Crayons by Moda Dea during a going out of business 40% off sale last summer. (I'm determined to use it all up this week.) I decided to use the 2nd skein for the second sock since the starting color was closer to where it would "match".

Except they didn't.

So I decided to make 2 more just like them.
And now they match nearly perfectly! 3rd pair were basic sock pattern but I like the basket weave better for their stretchiness. There should be enough for one more pair.

The color grows on you. No?

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Determined to Inflict Knitting Unto Others

5 socks in 5 days!

Yarn for 5th sock (from pattern found here) is Sassy Stripes by Moda-Dea.

I've started and aborted at least 5 different sock attempts of multiple sizes & patterns using this skein of yarn.

I've hated this yarn EVERY TIME.

5th sock cast-on at 4 am. Finished by 9 am. Perhaps the colors as they appeared down the foot redeemed it. But now I have to do another one.
Just like it? Sorry kid!

Possible sock 5 captions as they occurred to me this morning.

YISH! (inch or so past at cuff)
Mother of God. (couple of inches later)
Sweet Jesus! (at heel flap)
Mama, don't make me wear those yucky socks (at heel - looks like someone stepped in baby poop?)
ACK! My eyes...they burns.
So ugly it's cute. NOT!

Steph wishes it were bigger as it has all of her favorite colors.
Some colors just don't belong together. Is all I'm saying.

I really enjoyed the pattern and will try it again in plain or confetti colors. I think it deserves better! Did have to convert pattern from circular needles to DPN's so I may not have gotten it exactly as written.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Cat on a Pillow

The gift of weaving.

The Queen of Brooklyn sits upon her co-pilot chair.
On a cushion worthy of her presence. :)

Knit Unto Others

Knit Unto Others
Knitting for the next 2 weeks for the charity of our choice.

This will be all about socks, of course. Day 3 and I have just cast on for a third sock!

I confess the second pair will be baby socks, as 2 adult size 8 socks in 2 days may have been over doing it a bit!

I cast-on Saturday morning for Sock 1 while waiting for mom at the veterinarian's. Cast-on and did the first row before realizing the MOTHER OF ALL KNOTS had emerged from the skein of yarn. It would have been easier/quicker to cut the damn thing and start over. But no! On we went to my next location of waiting. Mom decided it would be nice if she could try a walk-in appointment to get her hair cut. An hour later I had the damn thing untangled & about an inch and a half of the cuff done.

Yarn Harlot's recent topics have been all about a SOCK A DAY. She's going to be on TV and needs them for demonstration purposes. Doubt very seriously this pace will last much longer for me. I may throw in a dishcloth or two to break up the routine. Thinking my charity will be a woman's shelter, although I'm sadly lacking knowledge about where anything local might be located.

I knit while waiting... all weekend. Every spare moment when I probably should have been doing something else. It's for charity, though. And if being charitable isn't worthy enough reason to knit all by itself, the hosts of this knit-a-long are dangling a chance at prizes before our eyes.

(And YES, I did win a prize recently. Here! You might not understand the joy of running around the house yelling "I won some Sock Pr0n!! Until it happens to you ;)

Oh. And I lust after these socks.
If I figure out how to do begins at home.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

I'm just askin'!

"Ask me about Turducken"

My grocery store moment for today: Cashier is wearing a button on her shirt just daring her customers to ask. I wonder WTF? Do I want to know. Really?

I sound it out very carefully, "Um, so what is Turd-uck-en?"

Her answer: "Well, it's turkey, duck and chicken all rolled into bones!"

I have to ask: "Have you ever had it?" No? So you don't really know?

I pause before continuing: "Yeah. Not sure I want to eat anything that starts with the word TURD. Seems like it has a marketing issue?"

She may still be rolling on the floor, but promises to mention this moment to management.

Mmm. Smells like Thanksgiving!

Time to build an ark yet?

Weaving, knitting and Letter H.

FINISHED 2 more weaving projects!
(Perhaps I should have been building an ARK?)

"Kitty Pillow" was seamed by machine at the ends, blanket stitched along the sides with matching yarn and stuffed & tufted by Steph...for her cat. (Stuffed with Letter People hair trimmings from 2 years of Letter People haircuts saved... 'cause someday I'm going to "do something with it"!)

Letter H was sent off to Kindergarten on Thursday. Seen here with one pile of hair clippings.

FINISHED socks! Designed using Barbara Walker's Treasury of Stitches book.

4 repeats, plus row 1 of Waterfall Pattern from page 151 on each side of both socks.
(Not sure if I changed row 5 correctly from her back & forth pattern to in the round. Changed P2, P2tog into K2tog, K2. Seems like it worked?!

(Link is current lowest priced book through
Seriously! $10.91 - no affiliation but one of my favorite book searches!)

And a FINISHED scarf! Another project off Dorothy.
Some might say 4 projects in 16 years.

I think prefer 3 projects in 3 weeks.
If I can get away with it?

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Let me have a moment...

Third in line for the Presidency.

Forgive my dream bubble. Lost again just for a minute with the thought of it really.
Women, unite.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Weaving: learning process continues

What's up with Dorothy?

My 3rd effort came off the loom this morning.

I don't have immediate access to some of the wonderful fibers that I would like to try weaving with and so this short sample was made from stash wool & nubby acrylic blends already on hand. I wanted to see what happens if you just weave what you own.

I experimented with threading the warp through every other space in the reed.
I experimented with the draft; threading through heddles in combinations of zig zags & pyramids: 1-2-3-4-3-2-1; 1-2-1; 3-4-3; 1-2-3-4-1-2-3-4. And so on...

(Winging it would be a good description, as you might already suspect?)

Making the design up as I went along didn't work out quite as well as I hoped. I couldn't use a 1/2 tie up without making a long weft row stretch unsecured by 7 or 8 warps in one spot.
In hand quilting terms it would be called a "toe catcher"- stitches way too long; long enough to stick your toe through if it was a quilt on the bed.
I'm thinking long stitches are not desirable traits in weaving, either?

I realized possible thread drafting problems as I was tying the ends onto the loom. I'd left open heddle wires scattered across the harness, thinking I could run a single strand of warp randomly - maybe something contrasting in color or glitzy - that might add just a touch of sparkle.
And close the toe catchers.

In the end I just started weaving to see what happens.

It's more open weave made it softer than my last effort. (The grey sample had wool so I thought it would be softer than it actually was. "Beating it" with all my might may have added to the not so soft texture, I guess.

I'm not sorry for trying this latest effort using just knitting yarn, as imperfect as it is. 3 strands of warp broke at different intervals near the end so I go to practice a warp fix as described in the Learning to Weave book. Not sure what to do with the hanging ends on back where each new spool was joined. Seems like they could be clipped since they were overlapped as they were woven in.

The learning process will continue before more dust settles on Dorothy, so I guess that's half of the battle! The gray sample may be cut down and sewed into a clutch style purse or small totebag. This project may become a kitty pillow for Steph's cat, still living back in New York with Her Boy.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Letter N and other things

"N" is for NO MORE Knitting or Weaving until Letter Friend N is finished!

This scarf was started Sunday morning.

I thought I was done with all of the N's but discovered Monday morning I was short one.

My counting issues continue even when I'm NOT knitting.

I did take time out last week to write an editorial that ran last Thursday on the OP-ED side of the Bangor Daily News.
Letter to the editor
BDN tells us to return Senator Snowe to Washington. (10/23/06) If Snowe votes with Republicans 82% of the time, how can Democrats, Independents and Others be content with 18% representation? We‚’ll have no right to complain if one-party control continues two more years with the help of Maine voters. I FINALLY get it! "Party" does matter. It’s all about the power of control; one-party control works no better in DC than it does in Augusta.
Take a chance and vote for Jean Hay Bright. If she fails to prove herself she‚’ll be easy enough to vote out. Consider it a term-limit statement until more well-known candidates find courage to run against tough odds.
Otherwise, perhaps you’re hoping voters in the other 49 states will vote for change and fix this mess?
Laurie Walton
Consider it my protest sign held proudly (if somewhat lonely) aloft. For all the good it will do. Come election day I have no doubt the same republican senator we've had for the last 16 years will return to D.C. and continue rubber stamping (nearly) every guilt ridden dumb assed idea the idiots running this country come up with.

Turns out writing editorials that actually get printed is not all that hard to do. I quite enjoy it and have had a dozen or more printed over the years. I did a search through the Bangor Public Library Marvel search engine a couple of years ago. It presented me with a every letter to the editor I had ever written.

Reading them all in consecutive order I was forced to conclude the following:
I am a cranky, sarcastic bitch.

I'm good with that.