Category Archives: knitting

Surprisingly On Track

I’m still plugging away on my Independence Yay! list, I promise. I actually finished the second-oldest (secret) item on the list, but I can’t show you yet. I wanted to move right on to one of the other secret projects, but that one requires some rethinking and redoing and paying attention, so I wanted to hold off for the weekend. It’s starting to feel a little chilly here in the mornings and I had a hankering for some squishy garter stitch slippers (in doubled fingering weight so they would count towards my ’15-’16:17 list instead, of course) so that’s what I did instead.

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I bought this yarn last year on one of those really terrible “this is a really terrible day, so I’m going to buy a bunch of yarn” days. It did its job of cheering me up, but I’ve had a hard time seeing the red and black one as socks. I also haven’t had any other ideas about what to do with it. Thursday night when I was looking for something quick to knit, though, I could totally see it as squishy slippers.

 

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It did not disappoint. But the best part is that when I went to find the yarn in my queue to record this on Ravelry (I had the full list of 17 yarns for the year queued up in order), it turns out this was actually the next yarn on my list. Totally without meaning to, I got myself back on track for my year of socks. Aside from the fact that this is #6 out of what should be 15 pairs by now. But other than that, I’m totally on track.

 

Pattern: JMCO 8 sts/needle, garter stitch in the round working the toe increases on the knit rounds, increase to 32 sts total, W&T short-row heel without knitting the wraps, elastic bind-off
Yarn: Vice Paradigm, color Hard Hearted Hannah, 64 g
Needles:
3.75 mm/US 5 bamboo DPNs
Gauge: 
20 sts & 40 rows in garter stitch over 4″  
Started:
8/25/16
Finished:
8/27/16

Some Kind of “Oh, Darn” Pun for a Title

My friends, today I approach you with excellent news. I have achieved a thing! One entire item knocked off my Independence Yay plan! Yay! I present to you some freshly darned socks, knocking #23 off my list. That leaves 26 to go, so at my current rate of 1 every 47 days, I should be done with the list in…3 years…4 months…you know what, how about a picture?

 

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This is some old knitting I’ve fixed up here, let me tell you. The one on top was knit in 2012, the first pair of my first year-long attempt (and failure) to knit a pair every 3 weeks. The yarn itself is 100% cormo 2-ply sport weight I bought at the 2010 NH Sheep & Wool and dyed with food coloring. I made them for squishy bed socks but I still wore them around the house enough to wear a hole in one of the heels some time in the last…Idunno, few years maybe since I put them in the mending pile. I never really had a plan for the leftovers, so I had plenty to patch them up with.

 

The pink ones are my favoritest pair of socks ever in my favoritest sock yarn ever, Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Select. These date back even further than the stripey bed socks, even further than the blog, all the way to 2009, and also to the second-ever square in my sock yarn blanket:

 

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Slight side-track to talk about this picture:

1) I knew this numbering would not last long given the scope of this thing, but it was pretty fun to keep track for a while.

2) The socks I knit with 1, 2 & 3 — these socks, these socks, these socks — have outlasted the socks I knit with 5, 6 — both DIC Smooshy — 4 & 8 — both KP Gloss — by YEARS. Granted #1 — Berroco Sox — may have lasted so long because they were mostly unwearable around the house until I fixed them, but the other two pairs have had regular wear, in shoes and around the house, for years, and #2 — Patons Kroy — still hasn’t gotten one hole or even a thinning spot.

3) 7, 9 & 10 were never socks so I can’t talk about how well they wear. Well, 10 was socks, almost. Sort of. It’s probably socks by now for all I know. 10 is Cascade Heritage, which is a beautiful yarn to look at and pet, and I am always drawn to it in yarn stores before I notice the label, and a long time ago I knit one sock out of it and it almost killed me, and I sold the finished sock and the rest of the yarn to someone on Ravelry ages and ages ago and kept back a few grams for this square and every single stitch of it was a misery I don’t really have accurate words for. You guys, I really really hate knitting with that yarn. It’s splitty and it feels like cotton and it sticks to bamboo needles way too much and oooohhhhhh it makes me angry and it all comes back to me every time I look at this square but it’s also so so so pretty that I still like having it in my blanket.

Anywho, back to the pink socks. The soles started to wear through in spots a year or two ago now, and I tucked them away the instant I noticed so they wouldn’t be completely ruined. I will never be ready to say goodbye to these socks, and I would rather have them sitting unused in a bag enjoying their retirement and at least not gaining any new holes than continue asking them to sacrifice their beautiful selves bit by bit for my comfort. I made a mental note to finally learn darning but then I was always knitting new socks and these never felt too urgent when I wasn’t staring directly at them. Eventually I got off my ass and learned. By then I had used up the rest of the leftovers in swaps, but luckily I appreciate some visible mending. All of which is to say the gray heels are actually my second go at darning these.

 

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Now that they’ve been resurrected (twice), I’m assigning these officially and exclusively to bed sock/lazing about duty while also vowing to keep mending them until there’s nothing left for the mending to grab onto, at which point I will probably cut the cuffs off and knit them new feet I love them that much.

Not gonna lie, I was kind of hoping to get out of this one.

Yesterday morning I went to grab a shirt for work off the drying rack and noticed my husband had hung up these socks too. I was a little “aw dang, I must’ve tossed those in with the regular wash” and figured they were probably shrunk but didn’t think much of it. All my shirts were all still pretty damp (WHY DID NO ONE TELL ME THE MIDWEST WAS SO HUMID?????) and that was the much more urgent issue. I grabbed the purple shirt I wasn’t overly excited about from my last Stitch Fix box and put it in the dryer on low for about 10 minutes.

The shirt’s a polyester/rayon blend. Now, I know. I know that rayon isn’t meant for the dryer. But most of my work stuff is of the hang/lay flat to dry variety, and I’ve gone years and years before with most of my clothes being of that same variety, and I’ve found that most of it can stand a little dryer time here and there, especially after several wearings and washes. And this was on low. For barely 10 minutes. Basically, this was the safest risk I could take. Also I have another polyester/rayon blend shirt that recently accidentally went through an entire dryer cycle on high and came out just fine.

Here is an artist’s rendering of how not-fine this thing came out of the dryer:

 

 

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It lost an entire foot of length. The width is still fine, and I can’t explain that, but now I have a super comfy crop top to sleep in. I had to wear a damp shirt to work and let the car a/c dry it on the way, but at least I avoided a lower belly sunburn and some weird looks around the office.

After all that, I was pretty convinced my laundry luck was just bad right now and I was for sure going to find those socks were ruined once I got home and could finally try them on. And once I had that thought, I realized it was kind of a welcome thought. My sock project has not been going very well, despite what I assure you are pure intentions, and I’ve had a hard time getting moving on my finish-all-the-things project too. The thought of these socks falling off the list due to an accident that was beyond my control (well, I mean, yes, I could have actually put them where they belonged instead of in the regular laundry basket, but let’s not dwell on particulars) felt like…absolution.

No such bad luck, though.

 

 

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The thing about ruining socks in the washing machine is it doesn’t work if the yarn is superwash, even if you entirely forget that the yarn is superwash while you are fantasizing about how great it would be if they got ruined in the washing machine. They came out a little fuzzier than after a normal hand-wash, but they still very much fit and they still very much need mates. I could, I suppose, just let it go and say they are an intentionally mis-matched pair, but the thing is I don’t really like the orange and gray yarn knit up all that much and wouldn’t so much miss having a pair of them, while I love love love the brighter, fruity colored one and definitely want a full pair. I could just knit another fruity one and call it a day, but then I’ll have this one sock I don’t even like kicking around and making me feel weird.

So, I know what I have to do. You know what I have to do. Two more ankle socks, knit at the same time, just like the first ones. This shouldn’t feel daunting; they are ankle socks! They should only take me a couple evenings! I can do this! I know I can do this! You know I can do this!

I bet we both also know I’m gonna work on the sock blanket for a while first, though.

Independence Yay!

OK, this is it. Time to declare myself free of that weird crafting guilt you get when too many unfinished things pile up for too long. This is going to feel good. Let’s do this thing. I give you the Official List of Allowable Knitting for the Foreseeable Future, in Approximate Order of On-the-Needles Time:

 

1 Life-Long Blanket

No, I don’t expect to finish this, but I am giving myself a milestone to reach; I want to fill in the pretty jagged top so that’s squared off again and fill in all the side triangles (I have the bottom done & one side complete up as far as I’ve knit rows of squares, so the triangle part of the goal is pretty doable).

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2 Secret Project #1

Almost exactly 6 years old, more than half done (though I need to recheck my gauge and see if I even can continue from where I left off or if I have to start over).

 

3 Giant Oceania Shawl

This one was still in progress when I started typing up this list last night, but honestly once I pulled it out to take pictures I just had that oh god so sick of this feeling I’ve been getting lately, and, well, here:

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It’s really hard to get accurate colors in the spare room. Why those walls? Why?

Pattern: Triangular Shawl Recipe #2: Increasing Triangular Shawl by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill Oceania, color Java
Needles: 5.5 mm/US 9 KP Harmony interchangeables for the body of the shawl, then it sat on the cord with stoppers for at least the last 3 years, judging by the date on my last Ravelry notes, and then yesterday I just grabbed 2 tips that looked big enough to bind off with but I honestly don’t know what size
Started: 8/18/10
Finished: 7/3/16

When I started this, the plan was to have a giant blanket-sized shawl to keep me warm at work. It took longer to knit than it took that job to lay me off, though, and it’s just kind of been languishing forever since then. Seeing that this only took 130 g out of 400 and it was this big has me convinced I made the right decision and I never would have knit a giant shawl out of this. Also I just knit the giant shawl of my dreams and I don’t feel the need for another one. I found a friend who will give it a good home and I think we shall all be happier for it.

 

4 Francis Revisited Revised

LOOK AT HER NOW SHE JUST NEEDS LONGER SLEEVES!

And Buddy just needs to play with her ends.

And Buddy just needs to play with her ends.

 

5 Conference Call Socks

Started September 2011; have been nothing but trouble since. The first sock was too small. Then I reknit it and it fit perfectly. Yesterday:

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Maybe I’m done with these? Maybe I give them one more chance? Maybe I try to get the same size on the second one and find someone who’s like half a shoe-size smaller than me? Maybe I don’t have to knit this list in order so I have some time to decide.

 

6 Secret project #2

Started in 2013; high chance this won’t get done; best not to get into too much detail.

 

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(There should be a pair of mittens here but I remember some horrible yarn tangles and I’m not sure if I know where one of the yarns that I need even is right now and also the hat & scarf they were supposed to match have had some stain misfortune befall them, so I’m gonna keep a place for them but not get my hopes up.)

 

8 Scrappy Scarf

Fingering weight leftovers from the sock yarn blanket. I like this but I don’t know how much, really. This one might get ripped out.

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9 Ugly Knee Socks

When last we saw them:

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I tried this one on yesterday to see how the fit was, and everything but the heel was great. I think my recent short-row-heel revelation extends to afterthought heels. Since I didn’t love the yarn anyway, I haven’t decided what to do with these. If I decide to finish, I’ll probably cut the foot off just above the heel and add a contrasting heel flap and then redo the foot. I just have to decide how much I care or how much I would wear these. My original plan was to wear them in my boots on the farm but that’s less useful to me right now. Idunno. But I’ll report back.

 

10 Secret project # 2

I can finish this. I CAN finish this. I can FINISH THIS!!!! And then you can see it.

 

11 Muriwai the Third

Big blob of green cotton. Nothing to see here.

 

12 Worsted Weight Scrap Blanket

I don’t think I ever showed you this! It’s fun.

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I’m just sort of taking leftovers and knitting 20-stitch-wide garter stitch strips. For one strip, I’m alternating 2 colors and changing one of them out every 20 ridges. For the other, I’m splitting it down the middleand knitting until each color runs out. Not sure what I’ll do with the next ones. I think this will be like a 24″x36″ lap blanket maybe?

 

13 & 14 Mismatched 2-at-a-time Socks

Haven’t started the second socks yet, but you can see that I intend to, since I actually know where both the yarns are.

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When they’re done, they’ll look just like this but on the other feet:

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Also then they won’t have to be mismatched anymore if I don’t want them to be.

 

15 Kiemurakukkaset

These don’t need much! Just the thumbs (with conductive thread) and a good blocking. Watch this take the longest of everything on the list.

 

16 NETHER GARMEEEEEEEEENTSSSSSSSSSS

Holy dang these are fun, you guys.

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So…that takes care of everything with a Ravelry project page. But that doesn’t take care of everything.

In less of any kind of order, here is what remains:

 

17 This is a sweater. I swear.

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18 This used to be a sweater.

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Back before the blog, I knit a Buttony.

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While I was super excited to knit an actual garment, I think that face I’m making there pretty accurately sums up how I have tended to feel about the thing since. Like, sure, I’m kinda smiling but I’m not like smiling smiling. It’s nice. It’s OK. It’s lived in a box for 8.5 years.

It’s gonna be a pillow now. Probably a pillow with buttons tho ’cause dang I love those buttons.

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19 Gray & Yellow Shawl in unphotographable yarn

 

20 Myrtle, which I am finally ready to swatch after like 5 years of thinking about it–in unphotographable yarn

 

21 Gray & Teal Scarf in yarn I am too lazy to photograph right now but would probably look fine if I did

 

22 Big Pile of Socks With Problems That I Should Really Fix

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23 Mending

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Not much in this category, thankfully.

 

24 & 25 Mystery Projects 3 & 4

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26 My Current Year-of-Socks Socks

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Hey, so if anybody’s having trouble getting in the right mood to knit short socks, let me recommend Iowa in July with no air conditioning. Let me also note that is the ONLY situation for which I can recommend Iowa in July with no air conditioning. Any time I think about socks lately all I can think is well there’s no point covering up too much of my legs, given that they’re about to melt off anyways.

27 Wild Card

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This meets neither of my “on the needles or significantly along in the planning stage” criteria and I don’t even care. I bought this on WWKIP day to celebrate my local store’s 20% off sale. I have no idea what it’s going to be yet but I’m putting it on this list in case something comes to me.

 

OK, folks, I…think that’s it? Like, I really really believe this is everything. I don’t see how there could be more.

 

Onward!

Make, Mend, Modify

Tomorrow I declare independence from all my works in progress. Aside from my ’15-’16:17 queue, whatever is on my needles — or significantly along in the planning or prep process, let’s say — when I get up tomorrow is the only allowable knitting until all of it is done. (I’ll wait while you finish laughing. Yes, we all know how well this is going to turn out. For the moment, let’s just pretend. A fantasy is nice in summer.) So, I’m spending today getting organized and casting on a bunch of new things just to be safe, and I’ll report in tomorrow with the full list.

I have been finishing things already tho!

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Pattern: none, just my usual approach (64 sts, cuff-down, 2×2 ribbing and stockinette, flap & gusset heel)
Yarn: Holiday Yarns FlockSock Sock, color Barnyard by Nora (there’s a story about the barnyard, the pigs —  pink — the barn — red — but I don’t really remember it anymore; it was nice when the lady who sold me the yarn told it tho)
Needles: 2 mm/US 0 Karbonz DPNs
Started: 4/20/16
Finished: 6/23/16

These were my first entry in the Grocery Girls’ Second Socks of Summer KAL. You’d think short socks would be easy enough to plow through, and yet I totally needed the KAL motivation to get these done. (We’ll talk about the rest of my planned entries tomorrow. There are either 2 or 4 depending on how I decide to live my life between now and then.)

Also, these are #5/17 for my current year of socks. That didn’t seem too bad to me, considering the rough start I got off to, until I checked the math and realized it’s been 39 weeks since October 1 and I should be at 13/17 by now. I swear, one of these years I’ll complete a “year of” project.

Also also, these weren’t even next in the queue. They were kind of an accident but it all worked out for the best. A few months ago I was looking for a new swift on Etsy. (I went with one from this shop and I’m really liking it.) I wasn’t sure what size skeins I needed it to be able to handle, and this was the first skein I grabbed to measure. It was still on the coffee table when the swift arrived, so it was the first one wound. Then it was still there when I finished my last socks, so it was the next one cast on. I’m really happy these jumped to the front of the line, though, because this is the same yarn as the Daughter of the Regiment kit, and after pushing myself through the end of that sock, it was so nice to have a good experience with that yarn.

In fact, these made me so happy with the yarn, that it brought up some ideas about how to use the leftovers from Only Child of the Regiment.

I made these socks — very quickly! — in 2009. I think they were my 3rd pair ever? They were so early in my sock knitting career that they were actually the first ever square in my blanket.

 

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But they’ve never been quite long enough. They stretch over my toes something awful. If I wear them, I wear them in shoes, but I don’t wear them often. I’ve always sort of meant to fix them somehow but never really felt like it. But then I was thinking about how much I actually like the FlockSock and realized the gray was actually kind of perfect, and, well.

 

 

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Pattern: cuff-down, 2×2 ribbing and stockinette, flap & gusset heel, from back in the days when I used to knit 60-stitch socks
Yarn: Berroco Sox, color 1435, and Holiday Yarns FlockSock Sock, which is such a perfect fit with those blues and grays I just couldn’t be happier
Needles: 2.25 mm/US 1 originally (goddamn my gauge has changed; I would never think of knitting this yarn on 2/25 mm these days; I’d probably go down to 1.75, actually), 2 mm/US 0 to knit the new the toes
Started: February 2009
Finished: March 2009 originally; June 2016 for realskies

I might still have just one more use for this yarn too, actually. I was thinking how the solid gray is pretty close to the gray in the multicolor socks, and then I was thinking how nice gray and pink are together, and then I remembered that I have some mending on tomorrow’s list.

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On Happy Street

After I finished my scrappy shawl, all I could think of was other ways I could look cute while staying warm at work. I was feeling some pretty strong Color Affection feelings, but the day I went to the yarn store I had a nasty migraine and looking at the pattern to get yarn requirements was nearly impossible. Narrow stripes are just not good for my migraine eyes, so in the end that migraine was probably really good timing. I would hate to have knit an entire shawl and then found out I couldn’t wear it when I had a migraine. Lucky for me, Veera Välimäki has lots of other shawl options.

I think I might be developing a bit of a shawl thing. This was such a fast knit and I had the pattern memorized after the first stripe repeat. I don’t know if I’m picking the right patterns or it’s just the fun of trying something new, but I feel like I’m knitting shawls right now faster than I ever knit anything.

There weren’t a whole lot of solid fingering weight options at the store that day, but I found the Frabjous Fibers Cheshire Cat section and figured I might never need another yarn as long as I live anyway, so it all worked out.

 

 

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This yarn is fantastic. That teal almost glows. And it didn’t bleed into the white at all, even though the water was pretty blue when I took it out of its bath. It also comes in some pretty generous yardage, so I have soooo much leftover and some plans for fun things to do with it all.

 

I went down a needle size for this since I tend to be a loose knitter. My gauge ended up a bit tighter than the pattern calls for, but this is still plenty huge.

 

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Side of my house for scale.

Pattern: Happy Street by Veera Välimäki
Yarn: Frabjous Fibers Cheshire Cat, 66 g of Dreamworld (purple) and 54 g of Caterpillar (teal); Cascade 220 Fingering, 61 g of 8010 Natural
Needles: 3.75 mm/US 5 bamboo circular
Finished Gauge: 23 sts & 46 rows over 4″; I didn’t take a finished measurement for width depth
Started: 4/16/16
Finished: 5/8/16

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Bits

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Thanks to the Soxcetera Blanket Blitz KAL, I’ve been working the blanket again. I’m trying to figure out the best method for taking pictures of it in segments. With the size it’s gotten to, I can capture the details or I can capture the scope.

 

Also thanks to the Soxcetera group, I’ve gotten some fresh yarns for the blanket too. I’ve added a fair bit to the supply just with my own knitting since the last time I worked on the blanket, but these trades are gonna help me make a huge dent in things. I still have one more coming too.

While I was winding up minis for these trades and sorting out what new stuff I hadn’t added to the blanket yet, I started having that feeling again. I have all these bits of yarn that are too small for swapping but have already been used in the blanket twice (just about the only rule I’m imposing on the blanket, even though I don’t think it will really make a difference in how it looks in the end) and some that were reclaimed from failed or re-knit projects and weren’t in swappable condition. I do have my scarf that I started to take care of my leftover leftovers, but I’m not really feeling scarf-y right now. Some of these yarns have been lying around for YEARS tho, like, since my second or third ever pair of socks, and they’ve been with me through 3 moves and dozens of swaps and I just felt like it was their time to be useful or be gone.

 

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And then I was like you know what? I think it’s time for some Nether Garments.

 

 

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And I was definitely right about that.

 

(Also, the Blanket Blitz KAL goes till the end of the month, and you should definitely get in on it!)

One Problem Solved

So, I’ve been having some sock issues lately, you may have noticed. I’ve always had a tendency to knit two socks of slightly different sizes, but historically that hasn’t been enough of a problem to make a pair of socks completely unwearable. Then I started my current year of socks project and suddenly it was like I had no idea what socks were and how feet worked or anything.

I’m slowly getting back on track, and I think I have most of my problems defined. One is just a plain old tension inconsistency problem. I think the longer I knit the same thing the tighter my gauge tends to get, so by partway through the second sock I’m just knitting something entirely different than what I started out with. This is compounded by the problem that I tend to try on the first sock a lot to get the fit right, but I never try the second sock on, so I’m measuring an unstretched sock against a stretched one instead of seeing if the second one actually fits my foot. Then there’s the problem that I’ve been knitting the same basic sock pattern for years without much changing even as my feet have definitely been changing. Not so much that I’m a different shoe size or anything, but spending the last few years on my feet instead of at a desk has had enough of an effect that some of my more snug pairs are actually impossible to put on now. And yet I’m still knitting the same number of stitches. I think it might be time to take all new measurements and do all new gauge swatches and treat it like I’m just learning how to knit socks for the first time.

Anyways, I think I fixed my “never the same size” problem. It just took a little wrestling with my indecisiveness problem first.

 

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I loooooove this yarn and I didn’t want it to pool, so I gave Whiz Bang a try. I was iffy on the toe shaping but the slipped-stitch pattern was looking pretty great so I was going to just deal. I tried it on and it was just way too big and the toe didn’t fit at all.

 

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I tried my usual toe-up toe and fewer stitches with the same idea. I loved how the slipped stitches made their own stripes, but something about this just wasn’t working for me either, and I decided I liked the yarn too much to make a sock I didn’t love. So, I just said screw it and went back to my usual cuff-down stockinette deal.

 

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It worked! It worked out so perfectly. I got just-about-one-round stripes and no pooling at all.

Things look a bit skewed in this photo, but I promise even my method for getting same-sized socks worked. I decided that my trying on/not trying on approach was a big part of the problem, so I took the crucial measurements – calf to ankle, heel to start of toe shaping — against my hand. A tape measure or ruler would be more accurate, to be sure, but my hand is something I always have with me when I’m knitting, so.  I also did not try either sock on even once while I was knitting it. I showed such self-restraint and was rewarded with same-size socks. In light of my recent discovery that washing something before you wear it gives you a better idea of how it’s actually going to fit (this is major news I bet you’ve never heard before! tell your friends! blocking works!), I didn’t even try them on once they were done. I gave them a soak and some time on the drying rack, and I wore them to work today and they performed quite admirably.

 

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Pattern: 64 stitches, cuff-down, 2×2 rib, stockinette, short-row heel with gusset mod* as described here
Yarn: Mad Color Fiber Arts Classica, colorway Betta Fish
Needles: 1.75 mm Karbonz DPN’s
Started: 2/21/16
Finished: a…week? or two? ago
’15-’16:17 Progress: 4/17 completed pairs

 

*I’m not sure I like this mod. Honestly, I’m not sure I even like short-row heels anymore. This was definitely the right choice for this yarn, but I don’t feel like short-row heels ever stay on my actual heel and even with the gusset I still feel like I can see the yarn pulling a bit across my instep. I think it might be time to invest in some solid sock yarns for contrasting heels in case I run into this situation again.

I’m Calling It Sculpture

It is good to be honest with yourself, particularly about yourself.

 

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I started Daughter of the Regiment in late 2012.

 

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In early 2013 she fell victim to the Great Knit Picks Needle Plague, which temporarily also infected whatever that bamboo one is sticking out on the left.

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It took until late 2014 before I had the energy to fix what was lost in the plague. But then I didn’t do a whole hell of a lot else with her for a while. I was starting to wonder if we might not be totally meant for each other.

 

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I finished her skirt and got her jacket set-up row done last fall. Then, back in the basket.

 

Yesterday I stumbled across her again, and you know how I was saying recently that I’m having this urge to clear out the things I don’t need/love/use?

 

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Yeah. I just couldn’t stand having this sock sitting around unfinished for another fucking minute. I looked at this last night and all I could feel was DONE. I rushed through the jacket. I did so much wrong, partly from not reading the pattern closely enough and partly from just not even really caring, and I shortened the whole thing significantly and I got to the instructions to switch to 1×1 twisted rib on both sides and I had a good laugh and then knit just enough regular ribbing to squeeze in the last button and called it a day. I barely wove in any of the ends. I completely ignored an entire applied braid thing I was supposed to do at the end, and that second-from-the-top contrasting band of red? I’m not even sure how I was supposed to do that, because I had actually stopped looking at the pattern by then. I just did a chain with a crochet hook and almost cried when I pulled the loose end through at the last stitch.

 

I knew the second I picked her back up yesterday that she would never have a sibling. It felt good to finally admit that to myself.

Don’t get me wrong. This is an impressive pattern. Impressive both because, well, look at it, but also because it’s written in a way that lets you recreate this thing at all. But also, let’s be honest. This is not a sock you would put inside a shoe, and me personally I just can’t see myself lounging around in socks that have both a skirt and buttons — much as the skirt and buttons were almost the whole reason I ever wanted to knit this in the first place. So I’ll need to find a way to put her on display, I guess, because as soon as I snipped that last yarn end, Only Child of the Regiment moved firmly, permanently into the realm of art.

 

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This here is absurdly mistake-ridden and nearly an insult to the pattern, the designer, the yarn, and the buttons. But whatevs. Life is short and this knitting was long and eventually you have to choose sides in that battle.

 

The DONE feeling extended to all the finishing stuff, really, which was a surprise to me. Usually I’m fine leaving ends unwoven or entire items unwashed and unblocked if I’m sick enough of them. This one I wanted to be really, truly done with so bad that I stuck her right in the sink and then played around with making a cardboard sock blocker while she soaked so I could get something like a finished photo right away. (This went about as well as everything else has with this sock, but I blame the fact that I couldn’t find my left-handed scissors.) I didn’t even wait for my husband to get home and photoshop them for me, that’s how DONE I am with this sock.

 

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Entirely done. Well, once it dries, I guess. But then, for sure. DONE.

Pattern: Daughter of the Regiment by Lisa Grossman
Yarn: Holiday Yarns FlockSock Sock from the kit
Needles: 8,000,000,000 different 2 mm needles — bamboo DPN’s that I bent, wood DPN’s that I snapped, KP circs that broke, a bamboo circ that snapped, a Karbonz circ for about 5 minutes until I pulled it for another project, and then more bent bamboo DPN’s last night because that was how few fucks I had left.
Started: 12/28/12
Finished: 5/2/16

Scrappy Shawl!

You know how sometimes you just get an idea in your head and instantly it’s all you can think about and then you CAN’TSTOPWON’TSTOP until it’s a real thing in your hands?

 

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So I was organizing the yarn bins a few weeks ago and realized I had this whole collection of neutral-ish yarns in the DK-to-light-worsted range that all looked quite nice together and yet they had gathered over the years because I did not know what (or what else, since some were leftovers) to do with them. I guess I must have been confused about their usefulness simply because I put each one away individually, because as soon as I saw them all together I knew what I had to do.

 

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I took what I knew about basic triangle shawl construction and just knit until each ball of yarn was gone or I was bored with it.

 

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At the color transitions I worked an eyelet row (yo/k2tog on one side of center and yo/ssk on the other) sandwiched between 2 purl rows on the right side. Other than that, it was all stockinette stitch forever.

 

The last stripe was the only one where I didn’t knit until I was out of yarn, because I still had like 3 full balls of that gray and I already suspected the thing was quite large, so I did the color transition pattern, a plain row or 2, repeated the transition pattern, and then did a picot bind-off.

 

Which was a good plan, since it turned out my suspicions were correct.

 

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I mean, I am not terribly big, and yet this is objectively huge, I think. I’ve taken to wearing it folded in half (so the green-ish section at the top center becomes the “point” of the triangle) because that makes it much more reasonable for being in public. Not that I haven’t already snagged it on my purse a few times anyways, but that’s a different story.

 

In conclusion: LOOK AT MY SHAWL YOU GUYS MY SHAWL IS SO GREAT AND BIG I LOVE MY SHAWL

 

Pattern: none to speak of
Yarn: from top center:

  • Mad Color Fiber Arts Superwash Merino/Bamboo/Nylon Top, color Winter of my Discontent, that I partly spun and then traded on Ravelry to get the rest spun. Leftovers from these socks.
  • Dale Garn Heilo, color 2391
  • Berroco Inca Gold, color 6415. Leftovers from these mittens.
  • Mystery yarn from a ton of yarn a coworker passed on to me years ago. No idea what it was, and there was just a tiny bit of it, but it has a bit of a halo and it felt super silky and I loved it for just those few rows we had together.
  • Knit Picks Telemark, color Mink Heather and then Dove Heather
  • Classic Elite Soft Linen, color 2292
  • KP Mink Heather again
  • CE Soft Linen, color 6572
  • KP Dove Heather again

Needles: 5.5 mm bamboo circs
Started: 4/2/16
Finished: 4/9/16. Not even joking. I. KNIT. THIS. IN. A. WEEK! Me. The process knitter.
Dimensions: 96″ wingspan, 45-ish inches down the spine. I myself am something like 61-and-a-fraction inches tall barefoot, so.