Friday, October 10, 2008

Blimey! I Forgot About The Blarney!

So, after posting about the Bremerton Bamboo Stitch Socks, I realized that I never posted about the completed and beautiful Blarney Socks! HOW COULD I HAVE FORGOTTEN THESE GORGEOUS DARLINGS?!?!?

I worked on them during the spring grad school residency...and let me tell you, it is NOT easy to juggle circulars, yarn, and a cable needle on the bus.

I also worked on them while I had laryngitis last spring...thanks to Dad.

I am more proud of this particular pair of socks than any other pair I have ever made. In fact, I think I am more proud of them than I am of anything I have ever knit period!

Part of my pride comes from the fact that I developed the design myself. I took the pattern for the braids from my stitch-a-day calendar. I then infused it into the basic sock pattern that I got out of one of Mom's sock books. (I would give credit to the author, but I honestly don't remember...either Schurch or Bordhi...) So, while it is not an entirely original-from-scratch design, it is an original hybrid! (Kind of like rose breeders who don't try to reinvent the wheel...I cross pollinated!)

Anyway, I finished these before I moved...I think in May. Wish I had posted then. I took the pictures then.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Laughed Aloud...Literally!

So, my new local yarn shop (new to me, not to the area) emailed a video out to everyone on their mailing list. I opened it during a break from my homework and literally started laughing so hard that I slipped off my chair. How embarrassing.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did:

Monday, October 6, 2008

Parting Gifts!

I recently moved to another state. Before I left, the wonderful ladies at my church gave me a going away party...complete with parting gifts! There was definitely a, coffee, and knitting! I was very touched and loved everything.

Among other things, I received a beautiful ball of sock yarn in colors that reminded them, and myself, of the local area. It was GREAT yarn. Unfortunately...sometime, somewhere, between swifting it and moving...the ball band went the way of the dodo...I don't remember which amazing yarn it was...

I knew that it would be a pair of socks. I knew it needed to be a special pair of socks...more than just a 2x rib. At the same time, the variegation meant that an involved or intricate stitch pattern would be inappropriate. So, I went with a bamboo stitch. This stitch is very architectural and structured, so it shows up even through the color shifts. It is also one of my favorite stitches for scarves. (It is a simple YO, K2, PSSO, P2, repeat.)

I got to work on them during my first day of training at my new job. I worked on them diligently for WEEKS. (Granted, a pair of socks should not take WEEKS...but cut me some slack...I had a lot going on!) I had set a deadline. I had to have them done by the time I went back for graduate classes. And guess what? I actually made it! I wore them on the plane back! The end results were stunning! As is readily apparent from the pictures. (I only wish I had had the opportunity to show them to the ladies...but then, that is why I blog!)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Capping it off!

My friend, Sk8, wanted to learn how to knit. An admirable desire. He also wanted a beanie to wear to the skate park. (He has, I believe, a sponsorship from a local skate shop for competitions.)

I went to my stash to find circular needles and yarn. Now, here's the thing, usually when I donate yarn to people's first projects, it ends up being a skein of cotton dishcloth yarn. (Big deal, I am out $1.99...) Hats and scarves are another issue. I like using the good stuff for I usually have them buy their own. But Sk8 is a boy. And boys don't exactly rush to their nearest yarn shop or craft store. So, I was going to be providing the materials. Luckily, while I do have a lot of nice and expensive yarn, I also have a bin full of not as nice yarn. Sk8 picked out some steel grey acrylic yarn...I believe it was Caron Simply Soft...but I am not sure...the ball band was lost.

We measured his head...twice. I did a gauge swatch...which is unusual for me. I cast on for him, and then sent him on his way. But we had a problem. After he had knit several inches, and it had been several months, we realized that the hat was HUGE. It would be an ideal beanie for an elephant. So, he gave it to me to "fix." This meant I ended up ripping it ALL out. (Poor Sk8...all that work...unraveled!) I ended up re-casting on, adjusting the gauge again, and finishing the beanie.

He loved it! (And, he tells people he made it...which I won't argue...even though, technically, not a single stitch in the finished beanie was knit by him.)