Posts Tagged ‘Sock’

To change it up a bit

I have something new to share with you.  Like some other knitters, I often like to bring a little project along, and one of the easiest projects to take along is a sock.  And my kids love hand-knit socks, so what do I do?  You guessed it, I knit them socks when I have some time that my hands are not busy, and I can’t go do something else.  It was my oldest son’s turn to get a pair of socks, and I had found a really cool sock yarn for him.  He approved, and off I went, starting just after summer break.  Well, last week they finally got their toes kitchenered closed. I think they had been waiting for 2 weeks for that, because that is the only part of the socks that I do not know by heart yet.  And then they disappeared onto my son’s feet before I thought about taking a picture!  So here they are, freshly washed, and a picture taken before my son comes home and claims them again.


The pattern is just plain vanilla, 2×2 rib board, straight knitting down the leg and a slip stitch heel.  Easy to do while paying attention to other things. The yarn?  Oh of course you want to know about the yarn!  The yarn is called Naked Sock from Wisdom Yarns, a brand under the Universal Yarn Umbrella.  The color is called Trapeze, color number 101, and it is actually completely wool free.  It is however machine washable and dry-able!  Very important when making socks for kids…  The actual composition, according to the label is 93% Acrylic, and 7% PBT.  Yes, I went to find what PBT actually is, and have given you a link.  Basically it is like Lycra, kind of elastic, and this yarn has quite a bit of stretch to it. It is put up in 100 gram balls, with 430 meters (470 yards) in that one ball.  It was fun to knit with, once I got used to the stretchiness.

Of course I am still tatting, and TIAS day 6 is up, so I did my best, and got it finished.


I still have no idea what it is going to be.  I keep changing my mind, and keep remembering that 1 little bead that will be added sometime before the end! I still have no idea, especially since there is only 1 bead needed. Most of the people, including a ballgown or crinoline lady would have 2 eyes, because usually they are not created in profile… And if the zigzag chain would be a garland or belt/ribbon (as some have been guessing), it would usually go down the right front (do not ask me why…) In other words, I am totally lost too! On the other hand, it could be a surprise, be a monk, dancing belle, looking off to the side. I am having much more trouble being patient now that I am part of the TIAS. When I was just watching, I was much more patient to find out what it was.

I guess we will see what the next part brings!


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Summer Break

Summer break has started here.  For the next 2 and a half months the boys are home.  We started summer break off with a bang, which in our case meant 2 weeks of swimming lessons.  Lots of fun, but since we took them in the mornings, we had to get up early each morning!  With 4 kids at home, time for knitting, crochet or any other hobby has gotten significantly reduced, but here and there I still have a little time to my self.  The much bigger robber of my hobby time is another hobby that has been dormant for a while, but has now reared it’s head again.  Reading…  I love a good book.  The last several years I have been working my way through a series called the Dresden Files.  The author is Jim Butcher.  In the back of those books, they kept talking of another series of his, called Codex Alera, which was supposed to be very good as well.  So I convinced the library to add that series to the e-book line up.  The best decision I ever made!  Well, to be honest, I just requested the 1st book, and after they told me that they had honored my request, and added it to the selection, I discovered the other 5 were there too…  And quite amusing/annoying was that before I got a chance to check the 1st book out, someone else had already borrowed it!  At least they did not add it just for my benefit.  And I have noticed that every time I return a book there are at least 2 people in line waiting for it…  I think I started the 1st book in April, and I have made it all the way to book 5.  Needless to say, I am enjoying it, and it has usurped some of my precious hobby time.

But I still have some finished projects from a couple of months ago that I can show you.

First is the second Baby Surprise Jacket, though this is most definitely a child surprise jacket.  You might remember the first one, for my youngest.  This one is for her big sister.  I again used Pinwheel by Cascade Yarns.  This time the Grapes color way.  The needles were US 8, 5 mm.  I actually decided to use the stockinette version that Panda Man wrote up.  I had gotten a bit tired of the garterstitch version.  It was interesting, it seemed a little more tricky then the stockinette version, but definitely not terribly so.  I think it was not made any easier by the fact that the yarn was quite dark.


Some of the things I came across?

Starting with a provisional cast on will help eliminate any visible join for the sleeves.

After binding off (or putting on a stitch holder) for the neck edges, I needed more rounds then the 5 described. Of course that was for a BSJ. I had a 3.25 in gap between the 2 fronts. I much prefer a 1 – 1,5 inch front border on a children’s cardigan. Which means I needed to continue increasing after I put the 2” on a stitch holder, and add about 10-11 rounds in addition to the 5 stated in the Stockinette Stitch pattern, for a total of 16 rounds, before putting the rest of the sts outside the marked sts on a holder. Keep in mind this was for a 26” circumference cardigan, this number will change depending on what size is made. I ended up increasing to 6K.

Since I am knitting from a really big skein, I was not about to “leave the yarn dangling” as the Stockinette pattern described. I chose to follow the Zimmerman pattern instead.

When picking up sts from G to A, add sts from the holder for A to E, then turn and go back, until you have to pick up
sts for H to B, and add the sts from holder for B to F. E,C,D to F is the collar and will be done later.

Next time, I will knit the cuffs with needles that are .5 mm smaller.  They flare a bit, which was not intentional, though is kind of cute too.

My daughter loved it, and wore it regularly until it got too hot for a cardigan.  But I expect that she will still fit next winter, as it was a bit big on her.

Next off the needles was the second coffee bean socks.  The name comes from the stitch pattern, which is apparently an old Dutch one.  I have not (yet) found it in a stitch dictionary in the US, but would not be surprised if I just missed it so far.  I used Diversity by Plymouth Yarn.  A tiny bit splitty, but as a counter to that, it is fully machine washable and dryable!  This is the Plantation color way.  I used 2.5 mm needles.


You are curious about the pattern?  Alright.  In Dutch it is called koffieboontje, which is just the Dutch word for coffee bean.  It has 4 rounds.  Note, the pattern is written to be knitted in the round, as I did knit these socks in the round.  Use multiples of 4 stitches.

Round 1) k2, p2
Round 2) k1, yo, k1, p2
Round 3) k3, p2
Round 4) sl 1 knitwise, k2, pass slipped stitch over the 2 knitted stitches, purl 2

And just keep repeating!  😉

And last but not least, a blanket, for my 4 year old.


I used Country Loom by Loops & Threads .  Color way Nobility.  It is a basket weave pattern of 15 sts and 15 rows.  I used US 10, 6 mm needles.  I have to admit, the pattern almost bored me to tears.  The only reason I finished it was the happiness it created for the 4 year old.  She had chosen the yarn herself, and loves the blanket.

That is all for now.  We are almost caught up!

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What a shock

On Saturday, I finished my socks.

Oh, I don’t think I told you! Last month, the Holidaymysterygifts group had a sock knitting KAL for beginners.  They were going to do the Plain Talk Socks by Terry Morris.  It is a very well written top down (you begin with the cuff and end at the toe) pattern for beginners, on double point needles.  It is still going until the end of the month, if you want to join in.

But none of that was the shock.  I knew I was going to get the socks finished, and I even thought I would get them finished inside the 2 months that ‘officially’ composed the KAL.  The shock had more to do with the fact that on Saturday, I grafted (excellent directions in the pattern!) the toe of the last sock, wearing nothing more then a sleeveless summer dress.  The high for the day had been 81F (27C).  Windows were open, heater had been turned off, it was absolutely wonderful.  I had spend a lot of time in the yard, just enjoying it, and clearing some winter debris.  Then the next day:


Yep, that is snow/ice under the socks…  I actually think it was mostly frozen rain and hail, rather then snow, because there was not much softness to it.  Though there definitely was some some there too.  We knew it was going to get cold, but I assumed I would have time to cover my plants on Sunday, because, well, it was rather warm on Saturday.  Don’t trust the weather here.  At 9 am I was woken, en told that if I wanted to try to safe my plants, I should probably get up and outside.  It was 27F (-3C)!  And over the day we had a true wintery mix come down, and the temperature did definitely not go up…  Fortunately I was warm, inside, and happily watching disney movies and crocheting/cross stitching.  I just hope my tomatoes and some of the other plants will survive this cold snap!

The socks?  Not much to tell you about them.  They have a Dutch heel.  I was using a skein of sock yarn a good friend gave me a couple of years ago, the label was quite limited as to the information it was willing to give.  I did not use even close to all the yarn, there is quite a little ball left.  It was fun, though I don’t like the heel as much as the heel I was using when I made a sock from a Cat Bordhi book.  I think I might play with it next time, or even use a different heel all together.  But the KAL was a lot of fun, and I thoroughly enjoyed it!


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Can I catch up now?

It is the end of February.  For some the spring seems already on it’s way, but for many the winter is still in full force.  Down here in Texas the weather is very …. varied.  Somedays it is gorgeous and 70 degrees (21 Celsius) and the next day the high can be right around 50 (10 Celsius).  This is a great way to get sick, because it is very hard to predict and therefore very difficult to dress appropriately.  Layers really are a style of necessity here.  Of course my favorite way to spend this period of the year would be on the couch, with a nice fire in the fire place, knitting the day away.  Too bad there are chores, children and all kinds of other things that need to be taken care of! 😀

Alright, back to my attempt to catch you up on all I have been working on during the blog black-out of 2012… LOL  Late last year, Ted. E. Bear came to stay the weekend with my oldest son.  This is a class teddybear who goes and stays with one of the students almost each weekend.  This was very important to my son, and one of the first comments he made was:  Mom, Ted E. Bear is cold.  Could you make him something?  Sure!  I have hardly a weekend the time to figure out what I can put together, but fortunately after just a little discussion, the problem was solved.  My son wanted a scarf made of the pink yarn.  Completely his choice, not mine, but I was perfectly happy with it.  A scarf is not terribly big, and the yarn was in my stash… So here are the results:



And yes, that needle on his lap is broken…  They were old, and apparently no longer prepared to do hard work.. 😉  But the scarf got finished, and my son was very happy with it.

Around the end of the year, I really wanted to get the socks I was making for my oldest, to almost match my 2nd son’s socks which I finished in February of last year, finished.  I think I started them over the summer, but the earliest progress pictures I found was in September.  But, New Year Eve’s day they finally got finished:


I used the Master pattern for …..  You know what?  I can’t find my copy of New Pathways from Cat Bordhi, and I don’t remember for sure which one it was!  It was fun to knit though.  And my son is happy with them.  They have hardly ever made it in the drawer, he tends to pull them off the drying rack as soon as they are dry… LOL

And my newest creation was a pattern for a little doll dress.  A friend brought me a dress she knit years ago, and had lost the pattern for.  Whether I could read the dress and tell her how it was made?  Sure, no problem.  The result, in my opinion was darling.


The doll is only about 4 or 5 inches tall (around 10-12 cm).

Now I believe you are al caught up with what I have finished.  There is much more going on…. I have also been working on the squares for my crocheted sampler afghan, and have about 11 blocks (I believe) until all the blocks are done.  And I actually picked up my cross stitch again, it had been a while.  I am working on a bird feeder, but I will show this to you some other time, as they are not finished yet.  I also have started a new shawl KAL (which ended about 2 months ago, I think) and am happily knitting away on it.  And I have about 3 other projects that I have either just started or am about to embarque upon…  Who says I might get bored?



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Promised socks and more

It seems like I start every post with a reflection of how long it has been.  So I won’t do it!  There is much I want to do, and just not enough time to do everything.  I am going to start today with a picture from my yard.  I know I don’t very often speak of my yard, even though it is also one of my hobbies.  It is one I unfortunately don’t have as much time for as I would like.  But last weekend I managed to hit some end of season sales, and we finally decided what plant to plant behind our gate.  It was just a little corner, not much room, and I could just not figure out what I wanted.  Well, I think I figured it out.  I wanted something with color, something that wasn’t going to be too tall, and this is what is there (at least for now).

It is called Autumn Sage, or Salvia greggii ‘Red’.  It is supposed to like dry weather, full sun, and will bloom from mid spring well into the fall.  It is native to this area, and attracts butterflies.  These last two are always a plus to me.

This spring North Haven Gardens had a couple of tubs of different, bare-root, cannas.  While it was of course not certain that you actually end up with what you think you have, as the tubs stand close together, and someone might put a root back in the wrong place, I bought a couple of canna roots that I thought were very pretty.  After a very strange summer, in which my cannas didn’t really bloom at all, the arrival of autumn seems to have woken them up a bit, and this is one of the first gorgeous flowers.  I am pretty sure this is a Canna ‘Pretoria’, though that is supposed to have variegated leaves, and mine does not have variegated leaves.  But that is okay with me, I love the flower:

Have I sworn off knitting you ask?  Of course not.  But, it is finally cooling down a little here in Texas, and I get a chance to do some playing in the garden without being instantly sunburned and dehydrated.  Just to proof that I have not gone totally on the garden tour, I will show what I am currently working on.  My oldest wanted new socks, because his older ones, well… He sort of, kind of outgrew them.  So.. Here is a progress report:

If the yarn seems familiar, it is indeed the same yarn (the same skein even) as the yarn I used for his brother earlier this year.  It is a good thing their feet are small enough, that I can make more then one pair from a skein.  Because this yarn, Meilenweit Merino, is to the best of my knowledge not sold in the US.  I will have to get some more from Europe, when I get a chance…  It is sooo soft!  I am using the Foxglove master pattern from the “New Pathways for Sock Knitters, Book One” by Cat Bordhi.  I absolutely love this book.  It is the 3rd pair I am making from this book.  It takes a little getting used to, as the Master patterns are more recipes then patterns, but it also is one of the things I love about it.  It means I measure my son’s foot, do a very few, very well explained calculations, and look up a few numbers in a couple of tables, and I can make any of the patterns in this book for him.  I am almost ready to start the heel on this first sock, which will be the reinforced heel.  Maybe I will be able to show you next time.

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Some FO’s

While I took a little sabbatical from the Blog, I did do some more knitting.  I promised I would show, so…

First up, a pair of socks for my youngest son, DS2.  He saw this yarn, and just had to have a pair of socks.  I didn’t quite manage to make them matching, but he doesn’t care.  I hope they are big enough he can wear them next year too.  The pattern is from ‘New Pathways for Sock Knitters’ by Cat Bordhi, the Riverbed Master pattern.  The yarn is Lana Grossa Meilenweit Merino 100, as you can see that is quite a bright mix of colors.  It really is a shame that apparently Meilenweit Merino is not for sale in the USA… 😦  I love this yarn, it is sooo soft!

Next was the cardigan for DS1, a pattern I made up myself.  I think it worked out rather well, in my opinion.  He is very happy with it, which is of course the most important thing.  The yarn was a very old worsted weight Wintuk by Sears.

And last but not least, I actually made some progress on my crochet afghan with 63 different blocks.  Here are block 34:

and block 35:

As I said, there are supposed to be 63 of these, and I am making them ‘in order’, at least the way there are listed in the book.  The order in which they are attached according to the picture is quite different.  It is fun to make squares with a different pattern each time, but 63 is an awful lot…  I try to do at least one a month, but the last couple of months have not gotten quite that much done.  Oh well.

If I can get WordPress to talk to Facebook, those of you following on Facebook get an update again, but since Facebook has cancelled the link, I have not been able to show my posts on my wall.  😦  I finally found something on WordPress that supposedly worked the same way, but I can’t get them to talk together.  Yet.

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Socks are not complicated

At least that is what I think. (Apparently blog post writing is complicated. I wrote this back in March! March 17th to be exact. And somehow didn’t post it. So, here it is, a bit delayed.) Socks are not terribly complicated, no more so then a sweater or any other item that has in- and decreases. However, if you do not do due process, they may well come out different then you expect. Case in point:

This is a lovely pattern, called Andromeda. They were published in the spring of 2009 in Knotions Magazine, and I fell in love with them, enough so that I started them in early march 2009. That is right, 2 years ago. Yes, they have been languishing a bit. Not because I don’t like that pattern, because I do. Simply because I am a very polygamous knitter. There were other projects that caught my attention. Not even because I liked them better, just because they were new…. I know, shame on me. Or maybe not, I don’t know to get things finished, I knit because I like to knit. However, a week ago, this project almost had me to tears. Almost, because I refuse to let any project bring me to tears. There are better things to mourn. But, a couple of weeks ago, I had pulled this sock out, and decided it was time to spend some more time with it. I discovered that I, I hope, had put some sharp implement too close to the skein, some lovely, soft Knit Picks Stroll yarn in the color “Dusk”. There was one spot on it where several threads were either severed, or mostly severed. Quite annoying, but I hope that it was not bugs. I have not seen any additional damage in anything, and no debris either. So I have my hoped up, and have been knitting several pieces into my sock. Most of the severed pieces are long enough that I can use them and not feel completely desperate. However, sometime in the last two weeks, I took a week long trip to Atlanta, GA. This is about a 12 or so hour drive, and I took these socks along, because the pattern fits in one clear page protector, and the chart is small, unlike the pattern for Casablanca, which spreads over 4 pages. At least I need 4 pages to do one needle. But I digress.
I had almost finished the leg portion of the sock, and was hoping that despite all the planned commotion, I would be able to mostly finish this sock. Then I had the bright idea to try it on… These socks are for me after all, if I don’t fit them, they won’t be any good. I should also tell you that I did NOT do a proper gauge swatch when I started. The top border/cuff did not even make it too my heel, let alone go over it. So I decided to rip the whole thing, and since I had very few options, I decided for the heck of it to do a gauge swatch. As it turns out, I had and extra stitch over 2 inches. My needle was too small. No wonder that the sock didn’t fit me. Unfortunately I did not have any other needles with me, so I ended up going to Joann’s Fabric, in Atlanta, and bought some size 2’s. Thankfully they had them. It is not always easy to find needles that small, and without internet access I was unable to locate a true yarn store. I know, I have at least one set at home, but I wasn’t going to be home for quite some days… What was a knitter to do? I do have a wonderful and understanding husband, who didn’t even blink when I told him I wanted to get some more needles. So I did a gauge swatch with those, and finally got gauge. Then I was stuck, because I used a provisional cast on, using a circular needle instead of a piece of waste yarn, and needless to say, I didn’t bring one. I also didn’t bring a crochet hook to add the beads in just after the cuff.
When I got home that was relatively easily remedied, and after another week, I have gotten this far:

I think and hope that I have almost gotten past the section where all the breaks are, and can finally knit a couple of rows without re-attaching new yarn pieces. But I still love the pattern, despite making the wrong size, not having bigger needles, having to do 2 gauge swatches, and last but not least using yarn that somehow went to pieces.

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