I finished these over a month ago. I’m not usually a fan of the variegated yarn (I hate pooling with a passion) but these actually turned out pretty good…

IMG_4100

Pattern: Bloody Mary Socks by Sandra Park
Yarn: Tempted Hand Painted Good Grrl in Bordello (Rav link)
Needles: US Size 1 DPN’s
Mods: Added stitches before heel, then decreased after heel

As I was knitting this up I realized it was a bit tight and would not go over my heel, so I added 6 stitches total (3 separate increases) right before I knit the short row heel, then decreased them right after. This helped keep the spiraly striped thing happening (which I love actually). I think this pattern worked pretty well with the variegated yarn as it broke up the pooling just enough to make it an addition to the sock design. And I like how the socks match in their spiraly stripes!

IMG_4094

All in all, I give this one a thumbs up, even though the socks are a bit tight to get on. But the fear of future pooling with variegated yarn has tempted me to destash the majority of that in my stash :-)

On a WIP front, I’ve got several socks on the needles – I’m working on a mystery sock for a friend which I can’t show quite yet (I’m pretty sure she doesn’t read this but you never know!!!) – those will go up on Ravelry soon since she’s not on there! I’m also working on some Flicker’s:

IMG_4274

These are actually not as orange as they look in the picture. The yarn is Sundara Sock Yarn in the Spiced colorway – I absolutely love her yarn. The colors are just amazing!!

I’m also working on a pair of Firestarters in some Wollmeise 100% Superwash in Indisch Rot:

Firestarters

These actually started pooling on me while knitting the leg, so I abandoned the ribbing called for up the leg and decided to just continue the stockinette and cable pattern as I like how its knitting up that way (the subtle flashes of color are awesome!!!). I found this yarn to be a bit stringy, although I’ve heard that it softens up after washing so I guess we’ll see.

Why all the socks you ask? Because I promised myself I wouldn’t knit sweaters until I lost some weight. I really needed a kick in the ass and my love for sweater knitting just may do the trick. In addition, I just cleared out my entire closet due to a horrible moth infestation (luckily they were only in my closet where no yarn is stored!!!). I’ve rediscovered all these beautiful dresses and lots or slacks for work and cute tops that I haven’t been able to wear, and I’m determined to get into them by winter! So the running starts (and I’m so not a runner, but it seems like a good idea) and the healthy eating with it. I’ll allow myself to knit a sweater everytime I drop a pant size until I get to my desired size. I figured that’s pretty good motivation, right? Maybe I’ll add a pair of shoes to that too, to go with all my handknit socks :-)

This post won’t be as long as I anticipated (please see last line of this post), but here goes!

This cardi was originally inspired by Melissa of knittingschooldropout and her garter cardigan. My friend Elin pointed it out to me and we both thought it was just gorgeous! During our discussions we decided that 1) We would design a very similar cardigan for ourselves, and 2) that we would knit it together! So we ordered our yarn and started cranking out our numbers. Here’s the end result:

Garter Yoke Cardi

Pattern: Garter Yoke Cardigan, designed by me
Yarn: O-Wool Balance in Lapis, 11 hanks
Needles: US Size 1 and 3 Addi Turbo’s
Size: Large

This was my first time to ever design a garment and it was definitely a learning experience. I started out with a pretty wide collar (28″ I think), and knit a garter yoke increasing every 10 rounds or so. Once the yoke was 4 inches long I switched to raglan shaping to the armholes and from there adjusted with increases and decreases based on my measurements.

Once I tried on the finished garment I knew I had made a mistake with the collar. It was just too large and flopped around, and it gave absolutely no structure to the garment. I couldn’t even wear it unbuttoned! So I unknit the cast-on edge and ripped back an inch or so, and started re-knitting with more vigorous decreases and a bit of a longer yoke, and this made all the difference!! The cardi now has great structure and fits very well unbuttoned.

Although the knitting surgery listed above was kinda crappy, it wasn’t as bad as that which I had performed earlier. The last time I had posted in progress pictures about the cardi here on my neglected blog I noticed I had made a huge boo-boo…I hadn’t been knitting the button band in garter stitch! I knew it looked kind of off but wasn’t sure what it was. Well, I sure as shit wasn’t going to rip back 4-6 inches of knitted stitches, so instead out came the crochet hooks and safety pins. It took a few days but I was able to drop those 6 edge stitches on both sides and knit the garter edge. Whew!

Garter Yoke Cardi\

O-Wool Balance is fantastic yarn and I will totally be buying more in the future! Its a bit rough on the hands, especially the garter stitch section, but it softens up a bit after washing and is very cool when worn. I took these pictures in July during the Texas heat wave and I wasn’t even sweating!

I also had a hard time deciding what buttons to use. I found this great Etsy seller Zeldas Buttons which had lots of great vintage buttons (seriously I know the pictures aren’t fantastic there but her buttons are awesome). Plus I needed a total of 9 and its so hard to find vintage buttons in lots larger than 6 or 8, but from Zelda you can buy an entire bag! I ordered several different colors, but in the end I went with red even though I feared the “4th of July” look. LOVE how they look with the cardigan!

Garter Yoke Cardi

In the end I’m really happy with how this turned out. I learned a lot, and will definitely design more garments for me!!

I blogged about this cardi Monday night but for some reason the post has DISAPPEARED! Where oh where did it go??!! And it was so good too! I’m so pissed…

Oh, this poor, poor blog has been neglected waaaay too long! My blogiversary even came and went and I missed posting anything about it! Woe is my blog.

Things have been pretty crazy – gearing up for Ravelympics, then furiously knitting for Ravelympics, and trapped in that time frame there was a lot of traveling. But, I have a ton of FO’s to post about – Garter Yoke Cardi being one that I finished BEFORE Ravelympics even started!! – but i think it deserves its own post so I’ll hold off on that. I also really need to work on the pattern for the Knitty Twist socks – I haven’t gotten very far into it and should get it all down before I don’t understand my pattern notes!

One great thing that occurred over the last few months was my sister and her husband any my beautiful niece finally moved back to the Dallas/Ft. Worth area! Its been really great seeing them regularly, and my niece is at that age when she just wants to play all the time. She is too cute for words. I know you will agree with me – meet Dalya:

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Hello! Adorable!!!

My parents are celebrating their 35th year (!!!) Wedding Anniversary in September – I’m so lucky to have parents that are still going strong in their marriage. We are all heading up to their lakehouse this weekend to spend some time together which will be so much fun, also means more Dalya time!

I’ll be posting all of my FO’s from the past month in the next few weeks…knit on!!!

IMG_3865

Pattern:Knitty Twist Socks, my own design, ravel it here
Yarn: Dream in Color Smooshy sock yarn, In Vino Veritas
Needles: Size US1 Addi Turbo Circs

This was the first time I designed anything, but I was inspired to for the Sock Knitters Anonymous Sockdown for June where one of the themes was “Design Your Own”. I have to admit that I’ve been wanting to design socks of my own for a while, I love how these turned out! They was a lot of frogging and re-knitting involved, but the traveling stitches were fun to manipulate. I especially like the back:

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I am currently working on writing this up into a pattern and will hopefully have it out by the end of the month for a few knitters that have volunteered to test knit them for me. Oh, and Smooshy Sock is soooo yummy! I can’t wait to give the socks a nice bath (no I haven’t washed them yet – its too hot for socks here!!) so I can see how much softer the yarn gets!

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On the WIP front, I’ve almost knit up one arm of the Garter Yoke Cardi (I’ve knit this sleeve 3 times now!!!) and it finally fits perfectly, so almost finished there with just the other arm and sewing on the buttons. The Vesper socks are stalled as I’m not loving the pattern right now – may have to rip back again to the toe and just start over. And everything else has been on hold for now since I’m trying to finish the Garter Yoke Cardi. I really want to cast on for the Riding to Avalon Hoodie in the new Knitscene but I think I may try and finish all my WIP’s first then start something new (at least finish all the sweaters I have on the needles!!).

Happy Knitting everyone!

…write about my current WIP’s for a while now, but somehow life (and knitting) interfered!! (note, this is a picture heavy post)

I think I eluded to a Garter Toke Cardi that my friend Elin and I were gonna start knitting together. We are emulating Knittingdropout’s gorgeous cardi that she is currently writing a pattern for (raveled here). We couldn’t wait so we decided to go ahead and do the calculations ourselves and knit away! I’m through the waist shaping and I’m currently working on one of the sleeves (I have a fear that I’ll run out of yarn even though I still have 6 balls left).

Garter Yoke Cardi

Garter Yoke Cardi

I’m using O-Wool Balance in Lapis, and I love it! When I first got the color I liked it but didn’t love it…But as I’ve been knitting I’ve really fallen in love with this color. Such a beautiful shade of blue. And I really want to get some of the Malachite color as well. Love O-Wool! And it has been real fun designing my own sweater (I love math!!), even if I’ve erased my numbers hundreds of times (aaaand I just realized that I effed up somewhere and I have to frrrrrrrrog all the way to the raglan!!, well, maybe I can fix without frogging – we’ll see.). Its actually inspired me to design some other garments, and socks! Which is what I’ve been doing…

These are currently called the Knitty Twist Socks (raveled here). There is still some tweaking left in the pattern, but I love how they turned out. And oh my how I love Dream in Color Smooshy! This is the In Vino Veritas colorway:


Knitty Twist Socks

Knitty Twist socks

These are my V is for Vesper socks (raveled here). I might rename them once I get the design down pat. I really wanted to knit something a bit more interesting for self striping socks than just you regular stockinette, something that shows off the striping goodness and at the same time keeps the knitting interesting. Not sure if this is going to fulfill that desire, only time will tell.

Vesper Socks

I’ve also been knitting a pair of Sandra Park’s Bloody Mary socks in Tempted Good Grrl Sock Yarn in the Bordello colorway. I’m not a huge fan of highly variegated yarn as I don’t like pooling or flashing very much, but I really like how this looks:

Bloody Mary's

And lastly I started my mom’s Christmas Cardi. I decided that I wasn’t going to knit for other people unless it was requested of me, and my mom wanted a cardi, so we went through some magazines and books and she picked out a few patterns. The one I decided on was Joy by Kim Hargraeves in her new collection Nectar (this book has FANTASTIC patterns!!). I’m not using the Rowan Denim the pattern calls for, so I’m just adjusting for the Denim shrinkage (which I actually don’t have to adjust for at all as my row gauge is pretty close to Denim’s after the shrinkage)

Mom's Joy

Oh, and am I the only person in the knitting community that doesn’t want to knit the February Lady Sweater??!!

I think this turned out pretty darn good…

Sahara

Pattern: Sahara by Wendy Bernard
Yarn: Ella Rae Bamboo Silk in Mocha (or Baby Plum)
Beads: Amethyst Silver Lined Beads 6/0, about 2.5-6″ tubes
Needles: Size US4 & US6 Addi Circulars
Mods: Added some short rows, or course

Oh Sahara. The diamond rib stitch pattern is gorgeous. And I’m soooo glad I added beads. They were a bit of a PITA to thread on and knit with, but they really made a huge difference. And I love how this required practically no seaming what so ever (only needed it to seam up the center panel). Top down knits are the bomb!!

The only thing I would go back and change about this is I accidentally knit the hem in the wrong size needles. It doesn’t look bad, but I noticed that it puckers a bit when I wear it, so I may eventually go back and rip that out and reknit on US4’s. The good news is that I won’t run out of yarn! I love how the sleeves are constructed with short rows, and how you can adjust how deep you want the neckline by how far up you seam up the center panel (had to seam mine up a bit far – didn’t want the ladies poking out too much!!).

Sahara

I will say that I’m a bit worried with how much the Ella Rae Bamboo Silk will stretch. I think a little more length will be fine, but I can see how it would want to stretch a bit more, so we’ll see with wear. I was also worried about the color, but think it turned out fantastic, especially with the beads – without them the color would have definitely washed me out.

Sahara edging

All around a fabulous knit.

I also knit up aHelmet Liner for my dad’s Christmas gift while on a business trip. Its a quick knit and I think he’ll love it!!

Dad's Helmet Liner

Pattern: Helmet Liner by Bonnie Long
Yarn: Malabrigo Merino Worsted in Stone Blue #99
Needles: Size US6 & US8 Addi Circulars and Crystal Palace DPN’S
Mods: None

A scarf I will actually wear come winter….

Haruha

Pattern: Haruha Scarf by Tikru
Yarn: Colinette Jitterbug in Ginger Cinnabar
Needles: Size US5 Clover Bamboo Straight Needles
Mods: Garter rib on the edges and cables instead of twists

Another WINNER!!! I absolutely love love love this scarf. I fell in love with the Jitterbug Ginger Cinnabar colorway when I came upon it at my LYS, The Shabby Sheep. I knew it wouldn’t be enough yardage to make a pair of socks I liked (I like them long!), so I passed it up several times but then finally sucumbed to the lure of Jitterbug (ok, I just had a major case of deja vu and felt that I had already blogged about this!!! Twilight Zone!!). And Jitterbug is amazing. AMAZING! Since I knit this scarf up I have purchased an additional 6 skeins of Jitterbug, enough to make knee highs if I wanted to (most of it on sale thank goodness). I mean how can you resist more of this yumminess??

Haruha

I made a few mods to this…I followed Elin‘s lead and knit the edges in garter instead of k1p1 ribbing. I also didn’t like the left- and right-leaning twist that the pattern calls for; instead I knit left and right twisting cables and think it turned out great!

Mia likes it too:

Mimi

I’m woefully behind on posting FO’s!! I’ve knit a Helmet Liner for my dad and just took pictures of Sahara, just haven’t gotten around to blogging about them yet!! I also cast on for 2 new projects…have the pics for them too! They are both in cotton blends and my hands HURT! I will be taking a break from them for a day as I’m traveling to L.A. tomorrow for work. Socks will heal my hands, I just know they will!!

Why am I all about !!!’s tonight??

Alpaca Shrug

Pattern: Two-Toned Ribbed Shrug by Stefanie Japel in Fitted Knits
Yarn: Alpaca with a Twist Baby Twist in Cotton Candy – less than 1 jumbo hank (550 yards)
Needles: Size US4 and 7 Addi Turbo Circs
Mods: 1×1 ribbing on the collar and sleeves

This shrug turned out super cute! And very comfy and warm. I had started this way back in January but it got sidelined for several other projects. I also realized that I had knit the sleeves and started the collar on the wrong sized needles, so I had to rip both back. I finally picked it back up last month and realized after i had knit 4 inches in the collar that I had knit it in a 1×1 rib instead of the 2×2 rib that pattern called for! So I just went with it. I think it looks great, and now I don’t have 2 shrugs that look exactly the same!! My friend Jenny freaked out when she found out I had knit this shrug up as she is always looking for the perfect shrug – so I’ll probably be knitting her some soon!!

On the WIp front, I’m almost finished with Sahara – I had to buy another hank of yarn as I ran out right before the second sleeve (argh!!) – I’m just praying the dye lots aren’t too off. I’m also knitting up a pair of socks for my sock pal for the Loopy Ewe Secret Sock Swap…I’ve just got the leg to go on the second sock! I actually knit one sock previously and it was waaaay too big, so i had to rip it out and start all over.

I’m also working on a pair of socks for myself. I had originally thought I’d knit them for my sock pal then thought maybe it might be too crazy for her (not that I know her style that much but just by looking at her Ravelry page!!). here’s a look see:

Bloody Mary WIP

Pretty soon I’ll start knitting a Garter Yoke Cardi with my friend Elin in a knit-along with some O-Wool Balance.  The yarn is gorgeous! I am torn on what color buttons to use…I just ordered a bunch of Etsy so we’ll see if one matches well…

Agggh! the power just went ouGt! hopefully it will come on again ASAP!

So, I’ve been MIA lately. I’ve been knitting, but just getting back on my feel from an insane month of May. I was gone for half the month traveling, got sick from all the tree pollen in Northern California, and then woke up with a horrid crick in my neck after spending the night at my parent’s lakehouse for Labor Day. AGH!!!

There have been good times within all the insanity…I celebrated my 33rd birthday on the 9th, and along with 2 other friends who also had birthdays within a week apart celebrated all together with an evening cookout – turkey burgers, homemade oreo ice cream (OMG!!!), chocolate cake, lots of vodka and tequila shots make for a very memorable birthday!

And last night we celebrated another friend’s birthday! We had sushi (my third time for sushi in one week!!!) and went to the gay bar for some dancing. What’s better than a country gay bar, I ask??

Here’s another form of eye candy (if you like the color red…and socks):

Leyburn

Pattern: Leyburn Socks by MintyFresh
Yarn: Sundara Sock Yarn in Sangria over Garnet
Needles: Size 1 Addi Lace circs
Mods: Lots!! See below

Love these socks!! Its too hot to wear them now, but they are absolutely gorgeous. I did have a bit of a hard time getting these to fit. The first time I knit them I followed the pattern exactly and couldn’t get them over my heel without pulling and pulling and pulling.  So I ripped the sock out and instead of increasing the instep stitches to only 31, I increased to 37 stitches.

The pattern also calls for increases right before knitting the heel to make it easier to get thje sock on and off, and additional increase after the heel for the leg.  I tried this and the result was a baggy leg!!  So I simply increased the sole stitches before the heel to a total of 35 stitches and used those for the short row heel. They fit perfectly! Here’s a close up of the slip-stitch pattern:

Layburn

SOCK LOVE!!!

Otto Revised

Otto Revised

Pattern: Otto by Ysolda Teague
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Cashmerino DK in Cream
Needles: Size 2 Crystal Palace Bamboo DPN’s
Mods: Shortened Otto’s nose

This guy was a huge hit at my friends baby shower. The best part is they are naming their son Theodore, or Teddy for short, so its perfect for him!! And he was so much fun to knit! I had issues with his nose – originally he looked like he was an anteater rather than a polar bear, so I ripped back his nose to 22 stitches and decreased every row until I had 12 total, then grafted. I think it made a huge difference! (See Otto in original form below) Loved the construction of this guy, and kudos to Ysolda for writing a fantastic pattern that’s sooo easy to read.

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I also finished up my Leyburn Socks and the Alpaca Shrug (finally!!!) and I’m going to try and get pictures of the FO’s today!

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