Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Overwhelmed by socks!

I knit a lot of socks, as you all know. I love knitting socks. I finished another pair tonight!

But lately I have been a bit overwhelmed by socks. I made a list a while back of patterns that I want to knit, most of which have stash yarn chosen for them. I have a couple of exchanges to knit for and my Rockin' Sock Club kits from last year that I still haven't finished (the shame!)

And lately it's been tough. I'm freeing up needles and I'm freaking out over what to cast on and what socks I should be working on. I need an easy pair for watching TV, I need non-secret ones to take with me to knitting groups and such, I need to finish the ones on a deadline, I need to find ones that fit with the themes of Socktopia... There are so many yarns that I want to knit next, too!

OK, I know that stressing about what socks to knit is somewhat ridiculous. Maybe it's time for bed.

Listening to: Shining ~ Amorphis, Withered ~ Amorphis

Mmm, sock yarn!

When one is on a... *ahem* Stash Reduction Plan (no, that's not the same as a yarn diet!) and a member of YFC, acquiring sock yarn must be done in creative ways.

Thus I give you:

Handspun sock yarn!

The roving is from the lovely Aija. It's superwash merino and was dyed in red and white splotches. Because of this there are a few candy cane-like areas where it's red plyed with white, but in most areas it's a mix plied with a mix. I'm interested to see how this knits up - which shouldn't be too far away since I'm going to knit these socks for my Knittyboard Sock Exchange pal, String Bean.

In other news, I realized that my plan of knitting a non-sock project for every pair of socks was rather ridiculous. Sock yarn comprises the vast majority of my stash, so doing that would result in me having to buy even more yarn!

So the new plan is this: Each month, starting in February, I will pick one of my long-standing non-sock WIPs and work on it at least 2 hours a week or until it is finished. For February it will be Hush Hush, which I now have the proper needles for.

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Monday, January 29, 2007

Sock Power

I knit socks in public all the time. At coffee shops, on the bus, on the T, occasionally while walking down the street... I get lots of weird looks and occasional questions and once in a while I meet another knitter who is nice enough to chat with me. When Lucia talked about Sock Power I knew I had to get a friend to snap a picture. This one happened to be in Starbucks, and the telltale muggles are in the background.

Yeah, I look kind silly. It was very cold and I was wearing two pairs of pants! (I don't know why that's an excuse, but I'm using it anyway.)

I also finished a pair of socks last night for my Secret Cupid, but I won't show those until they're gifted in a couple of weeks.

Another order of business is my questionnaire for the YFC Secret Pal.

What type of yarn do you knit with most often?

Sock yarn!

Is there any type of yarn that you would love to try but haven't yet, such as bamboo, banana fiber?

Hemp yarn. I've made the necklaces and such with the twine when I was younger, but I'd love to try some of the hemp yarn made for knitting.

In your opinion what is a luxury yarn?

Anything that the knitter really loves. For me it would be yummy soft hand dyed sock yarn.

Is there any type of yarn or fiber content you dislike or would prefer not to receive?

I would prefer no silk. I'm also not a big fan of novelty yarns and/or acrylic.

What type of garments do you most often knit?


What types of knitting books do you enjoy?

I love sock books, but I have quite a few. I recently got one of the Noro books and it's really neat too.

What is a color you like but rarely or never buy yourself?

None really. My favorites are blue and purple and that's what I usually buy.

If you were pregnant and had to name your baby a fiber, what would her/his name be?

Hmm... maybe Moorit for a boy and Angelina for a girl.

Do you spin?

Yep, I have a Kromski Symphony wheel.

What is one fiber you've never spun?

Some of the "weirder" wool breeds, soy silk, silk latte.

If someone in your family or a best friend had to describe you in one word, what would it be?


Please tell us one odd thing about you.

Oh, there are so many... Well, I have a spreadsheet cataloging my yarn - lots of people think that's odd.

What was your favorite cartoon when you were little.

I didn't watch cartoons, although later I like Animaniacs and Fairly Odd Parents.

Do you have animals? If so, please name them and tell us a little about them.

I have two cats (Pantalaimon and Kirjava) and an assortment of fish. Pan and Java are brother and sister tabby cats that are turning 5 in February. I adopted them about 1 1/2 years ago from a woman who had to get rid of them due to her baby being allergic, and they're great kitties. Pan is fairly normal and Java is a little snuggly cat, and also afraid of strangers. She likes to cling to me

The fish are in two tanks, one freshwater and one saltwater.

And last but not least, if you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Seattle! That's where I'm from and I miss it a lot.

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Sunday, January 28, 2007

Wearing Handknits

I often get questions about if I actually wear all those socks that I knit. The answer is yes, absolutely! Well, as long as they're for me. In fact, when the weather is cold like it has been, I wear them more often than store-bought socks.

So here's an example of how I wear my socks:

Stealth socks!

Those are my Baudelaire socks.

I also taught a friend to knit socks last week, which is good. Always good to get new sock knitters out there.


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Snowflake Socks

Yesterday I finished my snowflake socks, and just after walking home from knitting group in the snow! This was really Boston's first snow of the year - we had a little bit on 12/4, but other than that it's even the first snow of the winter.

Pattern: Snowflake Socks from Magknits
Yarn: Fortissima Socka, color 1048
Started: 1/6/07
Finished: 1/22/07

I did go down a needle size to Addi 1 (2.5mm) because I found the pattern a bit too loose both fit-wise and how it looked on size 2 as the pattern suggests.

Yesterday I also got a treat in a mail! Some sock yarn from 200sox, and a really cute charm.

I actually have plans for it already, and wound it today so I'm ready to cast on a pair of socks. :)


Saturday, January 20, 2007


Since I don't have much knitting to show and I've gotten a few questions, it's time for Q&A!

totalkyknitwit2007 asks "I love the colors of the yarn, what did you use to dye?"

I believe that yarn was dyed with a combination of Wilton's (for the purple and I think the blue) and egg dye for the green. However it could all be Wilton's, not totally sure. The dyeing I've done at Catherine's has all been with Kool Aid, Wilton's, or easter egg dyes - which is where this skein was done. I've done natural dyeing and acid dyeing too, though.

helen asks "my hush hush is going quite swimmingly. how's yours?"

Well, I needed 2.75mm needles, which I didn't have. After hoping for a while that I could find them - I really wanted the 40" length, so they could double as sock needles - at one of the many LYSs in the Boston area and being unsuccessful, I finally ordered them online. So when the needles get here I should be back in business with Hush Hush.

Hmm... guess that's all. Feel free to ask me questions to help me through this tough time of secret knitting. ;)

Speaking of which...

I finished the 2nd pair of test knit socks last night, and I cast on two pairs today - one for my Secret Cupid pal and one in the hand dyed yarn I showed previously.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Hey, look at that!

I got an email a little while ago from Lynda from Count Your Socks saying that I had knit the most socks in 2006 and I won a prize! I didn't know there was a prize, but I'll happily accept it.

Well, today the prize came in the mail!

Would you look at that? Both kinds of sock yarn (TOFUtsies and Knit Picks Gloss) are ones I haven't tried before. Plus there's a little cow tape measure - which I always need more of, I found two while cleaning my desk - and sheepy sticky notes! I already know what I'm going to knit with the Gloss - and the socks aren't for me. :)

Thank you Lynda!

Listening to: Third Eye ~ Tool


Well, I finished one of the pairs of test knit socks, which of course I can't post. But... I also finished these!

Yarn: Regia
Started: 1/15/07 (I think!)
Finished: 1/18/07

This is what happens when I go to someone's house and run out of knitting. I grab their needles and their leftover yarn and start knitting! Luckily this time a thought came into my head as I was casting on about who these little socks would be for, so they have a recipient in mind.

Of course, the secret knitting is nowhere near over! I have the other pair of test knit socks almost done (I'll probably finish them today) but then I have socks for my Secret Cupid exchange and the SSS Swap. Will the secret socks never end?

Fortunately I think I can squeeze a few pairs in there for myself so I'll have something to blog about.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

A little quiet...

Well, I've been neglecting you all since the end of 2006. Why? Then answer is that most of my knitting projects are things I can't show on the blog. I'm working on (and almost finished with!) a couple pairs of socks that I'm test knitting, and the booties were a secret until after the shower.

But here's a little something:

That's some sock yarn I dyed a while ago, and pretty soon I'm actually going to start knitting with it! I'm participating in a couple of sock exchanges (the SSS Swap and the Sock Exchange on the Knittyboard) and this yarn is going to be socks for one of those pals.

It's actually the first time I'll be knitting with my hand dyed yarn, although I've done my fair share of dyeing.

Monday, January 15, 2007


I did this last year, and I figured joining the YFC would help with my resolution to decrease the stash this year as well. :)

So, here's my ticker!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

A knitting baby shower!

Today I went to a baby shower for Alison.

There was a clothesline of booties!

And here are mine - my first pair!

Pattern: Multicolored Sockies from Socks Socks Socks
Yarn: Trekking leftovers
Started: 1/10/07
Finished: 1/13/07

I now realize that the tag is covering half the bootie, but I guess we'll have to wait for a modeled shot in a few months. ;)

Friday, January 05, 2007

Yarn, mmm... and knits in 2006

Since Friday is the official day for yarn pics, here you go:

And closer...

That's the last of my Sock Hop order, they were waiting on it from the spinner so it took a bit, but it's well worth the wait! The color is Hard Days Night.

Aside from the socks (there's no way I'm linking all of those, that's what the Flickr set is for!) here are the items I knit in 2006:


Short Row Rib scarf and "matching" hat

Red Scarf - technically this is crochet, but don't be picky


a test knit sweater (not pictured)

a hat


a bunny

Handspun Hat (bottom)

Hourglass Sweater (on me)

So, as you can see, I really did knit things besides socks this year (including 3 sweaters!)

Listening to: Hustle Rose ~ Metric, Away from Me ~ Evanescence, The End ~ Saves the Day, Before It All Ends ~ Kent, Wester ~ A.F.I.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

More Seattle Sock Yarn... and SSS questions

It's funny how I'll get on a roll with the finishing and then have no projects left that are close to completion. So instead I'll have to entertain you all with yarn!

When I was in Seattle I went to a couple of my favorite yarn stores. My first real day there I went to Weaving Works, which is a store you definitely shouldn't miss if you're ever in Seattle! Not only do they have a great selection of yarns, they also have fiber, spinning wheels, tons of books and accessories, supplies for natural dyeing, and much more (including, I'm assuming, weaving stuff.)

There I found some sock yarn that I had never heard of - Royale Hare. No, there are no bunnies involved. It's just your normal wool and nylon.

It's pretty hard to see the colors in the picture, but it's a variegated dark blue, purple, and a bit of teal-ish green. Very subtle. I'm excited to work with this one.

After returning from Oregon I spent some time downtown around the Public Market (another must-see, but not yarn related) and went for a bit of a walk to visit So Much Yarn... The last time I was there I bought the Wildfoote for my Jaywalkers, but by this time I had pretty much exhausted their sock yarn selection. They do have a HUGE amount of Claudia Hand Painted in many colors I have never seen, but since I've used that yarn already something new was a priority.

So I got this:

It's Dream In Color yarn. I had heard of it before but never seen it in person. One of the best parts was the very friendly and helpful staff. There were two guys working at the front counter and a class going on in the back. One of the guys in the front was helping a customer with her first hat, and the other one was happy to have a nice chat with me about socks he had knit with the Dream In Color.

So that wraps up my Seattle stash enhancement. Now I don't know what I'll write about! I'd better get knitting. ;)

I'm also joining the Second Sock Syndrome (SSS) Swap which is open for sign ups until the end of today, so if you're interested hop on over there right now!

My answers to the questions are below.

1. What are you favorite sock yarns?

I think my favorite yarn at the moment is Socks That Rock, but the list of yarns in the sidebar has quite a few starred and I've loved all of those too.

2. What are your least favorite sock yarns? Anything you just cannot use?

I don't really like yarns with silk, and I prefer yarns that are machine washable.

3. What method do you prefer to use (DPN's, 2 circs, 1 circ, etc.)

I knit almost all my socks 2 at a time on magic loop (1 circ).

4. Is there any method that you cannot use?

Not that I know of. I've used 2 circs, ML, and DPNs all at least once, plus both toe up and cuff down construction.

5. What are you favorite colors?

BLUE!!! I'm also a big fan of purple.

6. Are you a beginner, intermediate, or more advanced sock knitter?

Definitely more advanced. I've knit all kinds of socks, but I don't mind simpler ones either.

7. Any other info you want to share (such as other likes, dislikes, hobbies, etc)?

Looking around the blog will give you a pretty good idea. :) I really love stars (the shape).

8. Last, but not least, what are your sock measurements?

Around ball of foot: 8.5"
Around ankle: 8.5"
Foot length: 8.75"

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Holiday Yarny Goodness

My lovely Aunt bought me this at Little Knits

Wool in the Woods Twin Twist in Lapis Limits. My only yarny gift this holiday, but it sure is a good one.

Monday, January 01, 2007

New Year, New Knitting!

As a symbolic gesture I decided to cast on for a new non-sock on the first day of the new year:

Now for the ironic part, I'm knitting a couple of sock projects with deadlines (test knits, so you can't see them) so the socks are going to be the first things I finish this year.

And a little more stash enhancement that came in December:

That's Sock Hop in Midnight Hour and Chasing Rainbows Dyeworks in Iris.

Once I finish my Seattle stash enhancement photos it's going to be a bit boring for a while as Catherine and I have vowed to band together to reduce the stash in 2007. Not to say that I won't be buying yarn, but I'm going to try to only buy 1/3 of what I use - so 100g for every 300g used, etc.

Listening to: Last Chance To Evacuate Planet Earth Before It Is Recycled ~ Porcupine Tree, Time Alone ~ Arise From Thorns

Sock Yarn

    A quest to use sock yarns:

    Yarns I've had:
    * means I really liked it

    4-ply Soft
    A Piece of Vermont*
    Artyarns Supermerino*
    Austermann Step
    BMFA Sock Candy*
    Black Bunny Fibers*
    Brown Sheep Naturespun Sport
    Chinese Mystery sock yarn
    Claudia's Handpaints
    Conjoined Creations Flat Feet
    Crystal Palace Maizy
    CTH Supersock
    Dicentra Designs
    Dorchester Farms
    Fearless Fibers
    Gloss (KP)
    Interlacements Beibi Seda
    Interlacements Tiny Toes
    Interlacements Toasty Toes
    Jarbo Raggi
    Jojoland Melody
    Kona Superwash
    KP Essential
    KP Merino
    KP Palette
    Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock*
    Macek Designs
    Magic Stripes
    Mega Boots Stretch
    Nature's Palette
    Noro Kureyon Sock
    Panda Cotton
    Paton's Kroy*
    Peru DK
    Peruvian Quechua
    Regia Bamboo*
    Regia Cotton
    Regia Strato*
    Ruby Sapphire
    Socks That Rock*
    Star (Classic Elite)
    Stitch Jones
    Sunshine Yarns*
    Three Fates Cauldron Sock*
    Wool Ease
    Yarn Pirate*

    In Progress:

    Perchance to Knit
    Yarns in the stash:

    All Things Heather
    Ancient Threads
    Apple Laine
    Araucania Ranco
    Artyarns Ultramerino
    Autumn House Farm
    Baby Ull
    Ball and Skein
    Baywood Yarns
    Bearfoot (Mountain Colors)
    Briar Rose Fibers
    Brooklyn Handspun
    Cavyshops Handpaint
    C*eye*ber Fiber
    Cervinia Calzetteria
    CTH Superglitz
    Chasing Rainbows Dyeworks
    Chewy Spaghetti
    Classic Elite Alpaca Sox
    Colinette Cadenza
    Colinette Jitterbug
    Country Classic Yarn for Sox
    Crash Into Ewe
    Crown Mountain Farms Sock Hop
    Curious Yarns
    Done Roving
    Dream in Color
    Duet (A Swell Yarn Shop)
    Dye Dreams
    Ellen's Half Pint Farm
    End of the World Farm
    Fashion Trend Sportivo
    The Fiber Denn
    Fleece Artist
    The Flock Bransonas
    French Hill Farm
    Froehlich Blauband
    Gjestal Silja
    Great Adirondack Soxie
    Greenwood Fiberworks
    Jaeger Matchmaker
    Jarbo Mini Raggi
    Jawoll Cotton
    Just Our Yarn
    Knit Purl Natural Collection
    Kona Superwash
    KP Dancing
    KP Essential Tweed
    Lime & Violet
    Lisa Souza
    Louet Gems Pearl
    Mama Llama
    Merlin the Cat
    Meilenweit Cotton
    Meilenweit Trend
    Mind's Eye Merino/Tencel
    Mirasol Hacho
    Misty Mountain Farm
    The Natural Dye Studio
    Neighborhood Fiber Company
    Over the Rainbow Twinkletoes
    Pigeon Roof Studios
    Pine Woods
    Posh Yarn Lucia
    Prism Saki
    Pucker Brush Farm
    Regia Surf
    Reynolds Swizzle
    Reynolds Soft Sea Wool
    Rio De La Plata
    Royale Hare
    Roz Houseknecht
    Schaefer Anne
    Scout's Swag
    Sheep Shop Wensleydale
    Shelridge Farm
    Sockenwolle Unipo
    Spirit Trail Fiberworks
    Spunky Eclectic
    Steinbach Wolle Sockenwolle
    Sundara Yarn
    Tess Designer Yarns
    The Unique Sheep
    Universal Ditto
    Valley Yarns Franklin
    vanCalcar Acres
    White Oak Studio tvyarn
    Wisdom Yarns Marathon
    Wool in the Woods
    The Woolen Rabbit
    Yarn Botanika Radiance
    Ysolda Yarn
    Zen Yarn Garden

    To check out:

    Sophie's Toes
    The Spinning Bunny Yarns BFL

WIPs and FOs