January 31, 2008

Up and away

There are finished knits to be shown, but you'll have to take my word for it for a few more days. Have you seen the ticker over there? Yikes.

So I've been busy busy but regular posting will resume in a few days.

I'm off to sort out my plane knitting.

January 21, 2008

leafing out

In a small act of solidarity, I knit a couple of leaves.

And then I couldn't stop:

It's addictive, clearly. I really ought to be packing boxes or something....

January 16, 2008


I spent an evening this week going through my stash. It had to be done. What do I take with me to France, what goes into storage until we have a longer-term place to live and what gets de-stashed. It was hard.

We knitters do get a little odd about our stashes, don't we? At the end of the day it's just yarn, but in reality there seems to be a lot more caught up in the strands. After much sorting and re-sorting and gnashing of teeth I had a big box of purged yarn and 6 bins for storage. And that's all of it. Every back of the closet, stuffed in a drawer, trunk of the car (ahem) meter of yarn is accounted for.

Some surprises:

  • Most of the purged yarn was easy to part with (what was I thinking of when I bought the pastel mint green scary shiny baby yarn). Some of it will find a better home with other fiber artists, some will likely end up in the thrift shop. Overcoming that mental barrier that says "you can't get rid of that, it's yarn" needs be done only once. After that it hardly hurts at all.
  • I don't have a sweaters worth of anything. A lot of the stash is comprised of leftovers and "one off" skeins. I'm okay with that. I've been knitting lots of small things lately, so these quantities do get used up.
  • I do have a couple of shawls worth. Thought I knit less of it last year, I am surely a lace junkie. And apparently I can buy yarn for lace a little more impetuously and tuck it away out of sight. Of course this is in no small part because a shawls worth of yarn is a lot more compact than a sweaters worth of yarn (even if similar in yardage). Also I can guesstimate and buy a shawl yarn I lust after without having a pattern in mind, I would be much less likely to do that with a sweater.
  • I very little cotton. And if you subtract dishcloth cotton I have almost none. I should probably either come to terms with cotton or give up on it entirely. This should be a post in itself.

Less surprising (Zimmermaniac that I am) is that I have quite a bit of good, plain, solid wool. And there is some sock yarn. Fortunately sock yarn doesn't count.

So it's tidied and sorted and packed away. There's only one way to celebrate this sort of thing.... Buy yarn!

I know, clearly I'm past help. None of this is going into the bins though. That sock yarn on the left is for a pair of mindless striping socks for me. I suspect with all the chaos in the next few weeks I'll need a project like this. The lovely green on the right is Cascade 220 and is going to be cast on very soon. It's become colder here, will be colder still in the alps and I've been saying I need a hat for a while. That green is a reminder that spring will come.

The tweedy brown is Elsebeth Lavold Silk Wool, surely one of my top ten yarns. That one's going to France. Another hat, I think, something lighter for when the days begin to warm. Mostly (and irrationally, I know) I just want a skein to take with me.

The alpine booties are nearly ready for felting. There is a mistake in one of the heels (3 am knitting again) but nothing that will be noticeable once they're done.

Should be the first FO of 2008.

January 12, 2008


I don't know whether to notch it up to the fact that I'm moving soon and don't know whether I'm coming or going half the time or just the recent heavy use, but I came way too close to leaving the house with a cable needle in my hair. This is why.

I've been putting in some serious time on the boot socks of betrothal. I love the way they're coming out, but the cable rows are fiddly and the extra needle gets a good workout. And as always, when you're crossing stitches you lose some elasticity. I had a few hours of panic shortly after the heel turn when I convinced myself he wouldn't be able to get them over his heels. Measurements were taken and compared, and I think we're okay, though some tugging may still be required. Were I to do it all over I'd probably go with a 2.5mm needle.

Adam reports that the Alpine Clogs are proving to be well suited to their eponymous local. Our flat over there has bare floors, drafty kitchen windows and (not to put too fine a point on it) is on an Alp. Which reminded me that I'll need some feet warmers too.

So I started some booties for myself. These really are ridiculous in the pre-felted state, but they work up fast.

And just under the wire for yarn pr0n Friday:

A skein of Berrocco Peruvia, which is a new yarn to me. It's lightly spun and lovely soft. I suspect it wouldn't have the wear properties I'd want for a sweater, but that's okay as this skein is destined for a hat. I love this cognac brown colour and my LYS had some other beauties as well. Somehow saturated and subtle at the same time.

There's only so much more packing I can do before I have to really deal with the stash. That ought to be good for a post or six.

January 8, 2008


The blog is getting a bit of a face lift for the New Year so things may look a little funky for the next day or two.

January 6, 2008

New Year

New year, new projects, new stuff. Where to start? I did indeed get all of the xmas knitting finished, though the mystery project didn't come off the needles until the wee hours of the morning of the 25th.

They were felted clogs, from the (brilliant!) Fiber Trends pattern. I gifted them in their comically large pre-felted state so that I could felt them with the recipients feet present for the best fit. It took a couple of cycles to get them felted down, but the end result is excellent. I can see knitting more of these.

Alpine Clogs
Pattern - Fibre Trends Felted Clogs
Patons Classic Merino

The coffee bean socks were also finished and a big hit, though I seem to have neglected to get a photo of them in their finished form. The Somoko was a dream to work with, beginning to end and washed perfectly. All in all a successful season of gift knitting.

I got a few lumps of coal for xmas (corundum too):

Yes, I was surprised. And very happy. Spreading the news and celebrating made the rest of the holidays even busier than usual, and knitting (for once) took a back seat. After a couple of days things began to return to normal and we made a trip to the yarn store. I picked up 3 balls of Sisu on sale, which are becoming the Uptown Boot Socks by Jen Appleby from Favorite Socks.

The large size of the pattern is pretty large, so I went down a couple of needle sizes, which is also giving a really nice thick fabric. If you look carefully you can see that my Harmony sock set finally arrived from Knit Picks. Pretty no? The finish is exceptionally smooth. I may be truly converted to the non-metal school of sock needles.

So 2008 is shaping up to be a big, exciting year. Stay tuned.