Apr 19, 2006

I'm sold.

Ok. i'm offically a magic loop convert. Now i find it "so easy!"
and when i get confused, i just divide it into multiple loops so it resembles dpns. Easy!

I recast on with the Bee Stripe for Jaywalker socks
I really like this pattern.
For one thing its ssimple enough for a relatively new sock knitter, but complex enough to be interesting, and the best part is, the combined effect of the zig zag with the bee stripe pattern creates such a test pattern effect that mistakes, if not immediately noticed, are easily ignored.

When I knit my first pair of socks, they were baby socks in dk weight on size 6 needles, and i never imagined myself even being able to use a size 2...
These socks are being knit on a size 000 addis. Triple zeros?! I'd never imagined.

Its been a year (give or take a week) since a very nice friend taught me to knit.
Sometime in the next few days I'll post about my first year of knitting, but right now, I'll just say thank you!

Apr 13, 2006

Hmmm what could I be forgetting? what .. what?

First let me thank you all for your kind words and encouragement.
I'm enjoying magic loop and as you can all see, I made it thru dividing for the heel, AND turning the heel , and the dreaded picking up of stitches (I really don't like picking up stitches. For some reason, i find it grueling.)

For some reason i've made a lot of weird mistakes with this project. I keep finding dropped stitches that have been boxed into the knitting and strange little holes.

I'm also no longer that in love with how the yarn is patterning. There are weirdnesses to how the yarn stripes up (not obvious in pics but very much so in person, and the transition points between colors is muddy - made more obvious by the contrast of the yarn.

But none of that that is my real problem.

You see, I thought this project thru well - chose an easy pattern to help ease the learning of a new technique, read up on said technique to make sure I knew what i was doing, picked a relatively easy yarn to work with etc....
And then I tried on my masterpiece (in progress)
Uh.. I forgot to swatch.
Well unless you count taking gauge at the point you see below as swatching.
And instead of the 8 stitches to the inch my pattern called for, I'm getting 7.
And my sock? er.. Huge.
Why is it, that at no point in in this process, did i realize that none of the socks I own are this size?

So these are my choices..
  • Frog it
  • Find someone with big feet and flamboyant taste
  • Put a zipper on the cuff and use for storage
  • Finish it, make the second one, and felt them down to quasi slipperage.

Apr 12, 2006

Do you believe in Magic?

Magic Loop that is.
And the answer is somewhat. Actually more like getting there.

I've spent the last couple of days playing with magic loop, and these are my findings thusfar ..
  • Casting on is DECIDEDLY easier than it is with dpns. I know this because I've cast on
    at least 22 times in the last 3 days ;) It has taken me more than a few tries to get something going with magic loop, and more than a few yarns. I'm not sure why it is that I think changing the yarn helps.

  • The first four rounds of a sock, regardless of method chosen, suck. It takes a while to get a good circular motion going and for those first few rounds, it usually is not a terribly comfortable thing. With ML, the weight of the cable tends to pull the stitches in different directions for the first few rows and its somewhat hard to tell whats going on. Plus, it becomes easy to add stitches accidentlaly by kntiting the yarn ladder (which goes away after a row or two). Once this actually turned into a tube of knitting tho, it's a lot faster than DPNS.

  • While definitely less cumbersome than dpns, I think dpns are more intuitive. I have, for instance, no grasp on what is going to happen when it becomes time to divide for the heel.. and I can't picture at all how I'm supposed to pick up stitches this way. I KNOW once I do it it will make sense, but as of right now it doesn't. (I understood how this worked with dpns from reading instructions, and before doing it, though doing it was another thing entirely ;).
Overall I think I'm leaning toward a preference for Magic Loop over dpns. I think ultimately it will be smoother and easier. But I'm very glad I learned on dpns first since it has kept me from fearing them.

I had had the Socka from my last post in mind for my first loop socks, but I also had a project in mind for that yarn that I don't want to make my first magic loop project (I figure I should stick to the easiest pattern possible the first time i'm learning a technique.) So the Socka is on hold for Hedera from the new Knitty.

Anyway. Here is the larval stage of my sock. After casting on a bazillion times making some sort of mistake and doing it again - and picking through different yarns (like i said, changing the yarn every time I cast on made me feel like I was accomplishing something ;) I finally settled on a standard sock pattern (ribbed cuff, stockinette for the rest), in the Lornas Laces Shepherd Sock in Bee Stripe, that has been burning a hole in my stash for the last 6 months.

This is a very yummy yarn, and it knits up easily and creates a simultaneously
sturdy and soft fabric. I recommend it highly.

Apr 11, 2006


Well, I'm finally on vacation :)
Two weeks off and I only needed to take 5 vacation days to get them. I love holidays.

Hopefully this will give me ample time to both knit and post.

In knitting news...

  • Clapotis has hit something of a snag. I've made it halfway through the 9th straightaway repeat when i came across a foot and a half of yarn that seems to be a stitch pulled out. I"m not sure I even understnad what happened. Its like someone tugged a length of yarn out and I suddenly have a whole length of yarn between two stitches. I'm not sure how to fix it, or why it happened but i'm going to try to pull it back in somehow. I'm trying not to panic as up until now its been gorgeous.

    Picture of Clapinprogress

    Picture of weird error- see that string hanging out? It's just in the middle of nowhere.

  • I learned Magic Loop today! I've by no means mastered it, mind you, and I've had to cast on the same sock like 12 times, but at least I have the basic idea. I'm sure I'll grow to love it, especially for its portability, but as of right this moment i find dpns less complicated.

    I plan to test out magic loop on some Socka:

  • I purchased a gigantic pile of gallon ziplocs today, with the intention of using them to organize many things, including my yarn stash.

  • Paid a visit to Knitty City today, a beautiful new store here in NY. If you haven't been, i highly recommend you go. It's a beautiful space with a great selection. I didn't buy much having gone sorta yarn-nuts lately, but I picked up a couple of 40" addis for magic loop (size 1 and 0). The owner is lovely, the salespeople are nice, and there is plenty of knitting room. It is an unusually comfy space for NYC.

Apr 1, 2006

Flash this baby :)

Ok.. I wasn't planning on participating in Flash-your-Stash day. No reason, I just didn't have it in me to organize my stash properly. (I look forward to seeing everyone elses stash though)

But today I went shopping.
Seriously shopping.
At a yarn closeout sale from a designer.
And I got a truly stupendous quantity of quality yarn for 60 dollars.
And so i'm flashing just that.
I do have a ton of lovely yarn that i'm very proud of.
And if i can get it together to flash it today - I will
but for now, here is today's incredible haul.

56 Balls of yarn.
for 60 dollars.

I will list it below:

30 (yes 30) balls of Ornaghi Filati Linea Ecologica "Agata" Pure new wool
3300 yards total, Washable. (pink, brownish and beigeish)

18 Balls of Ornaghi Filati "Luce" 14 balls of black, and 4 balls of shimmery white. Cotton/Viscose blend. 132 yards/ball

10 Balls Sesia Bilbao - 105 m each. 100 percent egyptian combed cotton. some beigy, stripey colory

6 balls of Zegna Baruffa Saxone (i think) Wool/mohair, alpaca, nylon blend)
185 yards a ball in a cool greyish blend.

Total spent? $60

Here is the whole plunder again, just cuz.

I'm not going to be around to flash my whole stash today. So I hope you all
enjoyed my new yarn! And I'll be sure to be checking out all of your stashes. :)