Saturday, August 27, 2011

Updates

Here are a few updates on my projects:

1. I finished up my latest pair of jaywalkers last weekend - FO post to come! (You know, in like 5 months...)

2. I am almost 3/4 of the way through the main body of my baby blanket! Yay! I will be really happy when I am done with this main lace part, though I'm sort of dreading the sew-on border. I suck at that kind of stuff. Nevertheless, I shall be fearless and forge ahead! Here is a pic of my progress (sans Roxy):


3. And here is a picture of what I have done with Eric's socks so far: (Not much)


Thursday, August 18, 2011

I was right...

I was right, those socks were way too big! I finished the top ribbing and had him try it on and there was at least a good inch of slack, even around the widest part of his calf. This is a little frustrating because I took the time to do a gauge swatch and I still had fit problems! Arg! Anyway, I had trouble deciding between going down a needle size or keeping the size 2 needles and going with the pattern instructions for a smaller size. I ultimately decided to keep the needles and knit the next size down. I spent all night reknitting the cuff and had Eric try it on again and it fits much better. It is still just slightly loose but I think he will prefer a looser fitting sock. As much as it sucked to start over, I guess the one good thing is that I got to fix my cast on mistake and do a cable cast on this time. All's well that ends well, I suppose.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Socks of Love

Monday night I casted on a fresh pair of socks (more Jaywalkers!). I'm knitting these for Eric, which is kind of funny because there is a well-known hesitancy among knitters to knit something for your significant other because it could lead to the collapse of your entire relationship. (You worked really hard on it + he never wears it = he doesn't appreciate you.... and so on). Anyway, Eric was quite insistent that I make him these socks and I warned him that he'd have to wear them, so we'll see how it goes...

I'm knitting this pair on nickle plated needles instead of bamboo like all the other pairs. There is no particular reason for the switch, other than that I'm just a little bored with the bamboo needles and wanted a change of pace. I swatched it out because I was afraid I'd have a much tighter gauge on the metal needles but there was no difference.

So far I only have a few rows of the ribbing done and these look really big. I've never knit men's socks before so maybe they are really supposed to be that big? I'm going to have Eric try them on after I get a few more rows into it to make sure I'm on the right track. I already made one minor goof in that I used a long-tail cast on instead of a cable cast on, which I usually use for socks because it is a little stretchier. I considered starting over when I realized what I had done but, like I said, these look like they are running on the loose side so I'm not overly concerned about a tight cast on. Also, I might have to start over anyway if they are too big so I'm just going to let it ride for now. Hopefully I won't come to regret that decision down the road!

Monday, August 15, 2011

FO: Classy Socks #2

These are the socks from hell. I started making them back in December and I thought they were going to be a relatively quick knit. I had worked through this pattern before and didn’t experience too many difficulties. The only difference was that this time I was going to use circular needles and magic loop instead of dpns. Well, I don’t know what my problem was but I had nothing but trouble with these suckers!! Soon after I started, I was overcome with the feeling that I was knitting and knitting but I never seemed to get anywhere. Well, this is because my gauge was SUPER tight and I had to do almost double the pattern repeats as I did on my last version of these socks! The fabric is seriously so thick that they can pretty much stand up by themselves! I think that was the most frustrating thing about these socks – how slow they moved along. Plus, I was making them for my mom but it became rapidly apparent that she was never going to fit in them, so I decided they would be mine and I would give her a different pair I was working on.


I should have given up on these babies when I was ¼ way through the first sock and realized how much I hated them, but I am too stubborn for that. That is one area where I really need to grow as a knitter – to know when it is time to cut my losses. I’m not saying that I shouldn’t take on a challenge, but I often find myself knitting something I hate or that I know won’t fit, just because I’m too stubborn to quit. Lesson learned. Thank you red socks for showing me the way.





yarn details 
Knit Picks Stroll Tonal in Gypsy 
Fingering Weight 
75% Superwash Merino Wool, 25% Nylon 
dye lot 9597 
Machine Washable/Tumble Dry Low 
$9.99 per 100 g /462 yd skein


project details 
pattern: "Classy Slip-Up Socks" by Betsy Lee McCarthy in the book Knit Socks! 
size: one-size (women's large) 
needles: size 1 nickel circulars 
yarn used: 356 yards (77% of a skein) 
time span: December 14, 2010 – July 29, 2011 
notes
  • IMPORTANT PATTERN MODIFICATION: on rounds 2, 3, and 4 the pattern tells you to start with one knit or purl stitch and then slip the next stitch, etc., etc., then end the round with two knit or purl stitches. This creates an ugly jog. Instead, start the rounds with the slipped stitch and end with three purls/knits. The slipped stitch hides the jog.

FO: Jaywalkers

The knitters on Ravelry.com have knitted Grumperina’s Jaywalker socks 8,570 times… and I can see why! I love, love, LOVE the pattern. It is super easy to memorize and is no more mentally tasking than just knitting plain stockinette, but the resulting socks are so much more impressive! My favorite thing about this pattern is that it’s easy to find your place when you pick up the project so it’s really something that you can keep in your bag and peck away at a few minutes at a time on the bus, in waiting rooms, on your lunch break, etc.

The only thing that I don’t like about these socks is that I ended up giving them away!! The pair of socks that I was knitting for my mom turned into a painful lesson in swatching and so she got these instead, which I was originally knitting for myself. I thought the striped yarn might be a little wild for her, but she loves it. Speaking of the yarn, I love, love, LOVE it too! It is Knit Pick’s Felici self-striping and it is SO soft and comes in the best colors!

It is always so refreshing when you finish up a knitting project that you love. Not just love for the finished product, but love for the process as well. I really enjoy knitting, but some projects can be a real pain in the ass. Particularly, I have run into quite a few terribly written patterns lately with really confusing instructions. So I want to thank Grumperina for writing a great pattern! She has the perfect level of detail in these instructions – she doesn’t overcomplicate what is really a simple pattern, nor does she give sketchy instructions on the assumption that we can figure out such a simple pattern ourselves.



yarn details
Knit Picks Felici in Green Veggies
Fingering Weight
75% Superwash Merino Wool, 25% Nylon
dye lot 51897 Machine wash/Tumble dry low $4.49 per 50 g /218 yd ball

project details

pattern: "Jaywalker" by Grumperina, available as a free Ravelry download http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/jaywalker#
szie: small (8’’ foot circumference)
needles: size 2 bamboo dpns
yarn used:
1.7 skeins (about 370 yards) time span: January 20, 2011 – April 21, 2011

notes