Monday, July 30, 2007

Pretty Pebble Squares, Twist & Shout Socks II

As part of my homework for Learning to Crochet Lesson #2, I had to make 2 squares for 3 different patterns. Here's Pretty Pebble Squares:

The crochet stitches used in the squares are single and triple crochet. I used a F hook to get the pattern gauge. (The pattern called for a G hook to be used.) I'm going to block the squares before I sew them into lapghan because the edges curled alot. I've talked to some of my crocheting friends and asked them to show me how they hold their yarn. I've been experimenting with what they told me. I used the crochet technique that I. showed me to make the squares. I think if I just keep crocheting it will feel less awkward to me. I remember when I started knitting it felt weird holding the needles and the yarn.

I finished the cuff and have started the leg portion of the Twist & Shout sock. This is my first lace sock. I've only knitting lace dishcloths before. I frogged back to the cuff twice because I've made mistakes on the leg pattern. I either had too many stitches or not enough stitches. I knitting slowly so I won't make mistakes.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Charade Socks,Twist and Shout Socks, Baglove

FO: Charade Socks....... I finished T's Charade socks. I'll be able to give them to her this weekend. Hopefully she's working. I only have one little worry which is that the socks may be a too tight on her legs. Because of the herringbone pattern, the socks are not stretchy. I followed the pattern exactly and didn't make any modifications. (I made a gauge swatch in stockinette. My gauge changed when I used the pattern. Also I didn't check to see if I needed to cast on more stitches. Beginner mistakes....) If they are too tight, I do have another skein of the Prince of Tides colorway so I can make her another pair. The combination of the colorway and the herringbone pattern created a beautiful pair of socks. I'm glad that I found the sock-along at Amber's website.

For my next sock project, I'm going to knitting I. a pair of Twist and Shout Socks in the Medicine Woman colorway. Brooke created a beautiful colorway that reminds me of mix berries.

Since I'm not using the sock yarn(Opal Handpainted) that the pattern calls for, I made a gauge swatch and I'm getting a gauge of 8 1/2 st per inch with the sock yarn. I didn't measure I.'s foot circumference so I'm using a chart in Sensational Knitted Socks. I should cast on about 71 stitches for socks to fit I. I'm going to cast on 66 stitches for the cuff and leg then increase to 72 stitches for the heel, foot and toe. I'm excited about this project because I've never made a short row heel before. I've always made socks that have heel flaps and gusset decreases. I'm studying 2 tutorials to help me with the short row heel, CosmicPluto Knits! and Misocrafty. If I like the short row heel I make, I'm going to try knitting the Ann Budd toe-up socks in Interweave Knits.(those socks will be for my niece)

Last Friday, I made a Baglove Night for my new camera. I'd never made an I-cord before. It's sooooo easy. I'm able to fit the camera, my license, keys, lipgloss and some money in the small bag. I'm good to go for poker night, football games, etc. If I can find the right colorway, I'm going to knit few of these for Christmas sockingstuffers.

Crochet Wednesdays

This posting is late; just a lil(it's really 0405 on Thursday). I've had a migraine for the past 2 days, and I'm just starting to feel that it's going away. I've been taking Aleve 440mg every 8 hours and either laying down in bed in the dark or wearing dark sunglasses if I have to be up during the day. This sucks big time......

Learn to Crochet - Lesson #2
This week I've learned to slip stitch, half double crochet, double crochet and triple(treble) crochet stitches.

I also tried to crochet in the round. The various stitches were pretty easy to learn. I will have to refer back to the tutorial when I make my squares because I haven't committed them to memory yet. I had to read and make the crochet circle a couple of times (plus read another tutorial)before I could get it right. I found another really good tutorial on crocheting in the round at the Crochet Cabana. Crochet Cabana is an excellent site on how to crochet. Sandra has alot of tutorials on various stitches, links for blocking and other crochet tutorials, and pages about specialty crochet. Another website that I found in my crochet learning journey is NexStitch. NexStitch has great videos on crochet stitches, patterns and articles.

My crochet homework this week is to make 2 squares from 3 different patterns that incorporate the stitches I've learned. The patterns are Pretty Pebbles Square, Basic Granny Square, and Wheel in Valleys. I'll post the squares when I finish each pattern.

Monday, July 23, 2007

patiently awaiting my Ravelry invite........

I decided to see where I was in line for Ravelry.
  • You signed up on July 11, 2007
  • You are #15803 on the list.
  • 9226 people are ahead of you in line.
  • 3934 people are behind you in line.
  • 32% of the list has been invited so far
Maybe I'll get the invite Christmas 2008. I hope I don't forget about it and delete the email when it comes. Are you patiently awaiting your invite?

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Blocking Boards

Interweave's Knitting Daily had a piece on blocking boards. The writer of the article had just bought a new blocking board from WEBS and wanted to know what surfaces the readers used to block their knitted items. Well, I use stryofoam packing boards that I've gotten from work. I have them in different sizes. The boards are in the boxes the refrigerated and frozen reagents that we use at work. They would be thrown out, but I grab a few of them when I can. I handwash the knitted item then block it on the board with pins. The flat flower pins used in quilting make great blocking pins. They don't rust and flat flower heads are easy to handle.

I'm knitting garterlac dishcloths for my aunt's birthday in August. The variegated cotton cloths look better than the solid color one. Nichole sent me the garterlac pattern (and the pink, orange and yellow variegated cotton yarn) in my Spring into Summer Dishcloth Exchange package.

Speaking of blocking, my roommate had landscapers cut down the beautiful, old tree in our front yard on Tuesday because the tree had 3 beehives in it, and my roommates' grand-daughter got stung. Maria, the cat, is sad too. She used to climb up the tree and sit in it. The huge piles of branches and other parts of the tree are blocking part of the driveway and the front lawn. Is it possible to feel claustrophobia when you are outside?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

DDofS Contest#2 Favorite Handmade Item

Jalia crocheted this pretty potholder for me. I only use it when company comes over. Because I like it so much, it's inspired me to learn to crochet so I can make more of them.

Things I covet on other Dishcloth Exchange Swappers Blogs:

Angela's Monkey Socks knitted with Lorna's Laces Girly Stripe Yarn/ I added her blog to my list of blogs that I like. I'm going to enjoy reading her Sock-it-to-me Sundays

Isabelle's Jig-Saw Puzzle dishcloth pattern I was addicted to jigsaw puzzles in the 90s

Nichole's Sereknity Triple Scoop merino/tencel blend sock yarn pretty in pink

Priscilla's crocheted Baby Dress gorgeous

Stephanie's Orangina Top beautiful

Crochet Wednesdays

My first attempt at crocheting was 20 years ago when I was 19. I wanted to make my brother an afghan. What I created instead was a hot mess..... my tension wasn't consistent, the edges were slanted because I didn't know how to pick up a stitch when I was turning my work.... it was fugly. LOL

This summer I decided to take another stab at crochet. Crafty Daisies are hosting a 12 week course on the basics of crochet. They started the lessons back in May(I learned about the course in June). In real time, Heather, the fantastic lady who put together the tutorial, is already on Lesson#9. I got side tracked with learning entrelac so I'm behind.

In Learn to Crochet - Lesson #1, I learned how to do chains and single crochet.

I practiced making a few chains then I started making single crochet. I find it awkward holding the the feeder yarn, and the piece I'm working on. I still haven't found a way that feels comfortable to me. I'm going to ask a few of my crocheting friends how they hold their yarn and the crocheted piece. Hopefully, I'll get enough feedback that I'll find a technique that feels comfortable to me.

At the end of the tutorial, we have to make a few single crochet squares. I was able to keep a consistent tension though holding the piece and yarn was awkward. I'm really proud that the squares edges are even. (Yay!!!) Heather suggested that we use Red Heart acrylic yarn to make our squares, but I'm using Patons Classic Wool Merino instead because Red Heart feels icky in my hands. I'm looking forward to next Wednesday so I can learn how to do half double crochet, double crochet, and triple crochet stitches.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Charade Socks II

As promised here's a better picture of the Prince of Tides colorway by Unwind Yarn Co.

I'm already done with the 1st sock. I casted on the 1st sock on July1st and knitted on it for just a couple of hours each day. I completed the 1 st sock on July 4th. I started the second sock on Sunday. The color of the yarn and pattern stitches combines to make a beautiful sock. I think T will be pleased with her socks.

Rebuilding Greensburg Block by Block Charity Knitting

Greensburg, Kansas is the town that leveled by tornado storms in May. I found out about the Greensburg, KS charity knitting project at Criquette's blog. She's drumming up support for the project by holding a contest. All you have to do is knit a couple of 8x8 swatches and send them in to Laura. I have a goal of sending in 10 swatches. I half way there.....

Monday, July 16, 2007

The Never-ending Socks Story.....also known as My Dad's Father's Day Gift

I love my dad dearly and I thought that since I'm a knitter I would knit him a pair of socks for Father's Day. Well.....I thought I could just whip these out quick and I would be done by Father's Day(June 17, 2007)

I casted on the socks on May 24th. My initial plan for the cuff down socks was a 2x2 rib stitch pattern using CO 80 stitches, Lisa Souza's Mahogany Sock !and US 1 circular needles. I started out great and was already decreasing the gusset by Memorial Day. I was thinking though that I might frog the sock and change the stitch pattern if I made a mistake because I really wanted the socks to be special. Well...I did make a mistake. I dropped a stitch next to one of the decreases. I didn't catch the mistake until I was 4 rows above it. I started frogging and didn't stop until I had frogged all of the sock.

I casted on the socks again on May 30th. This time I used a pattern I found in Sensational Knitted Socks; the waffle rib stitch(rnds 1-3: k2p2, rnd 4: purl) and I CO using 88 stitches instead of the 80 because I was worried about them fitting properly. I thought it was a nice simple pattern for male socks and special enough for my dad. I worked my usual 3 day shifts and didn't work on the socks I was too busy. I felt exhausted after day 3. On Monday, I had a fever all day and I felt horrible. I barely knit on the sock that week because all I wanted to do was sleep. I finished the first sock the week of Father's Day and knew that I was going to have to do alot of knitting that week to have the second sock ready by Father's Day. I was optimistic.(I was really delusional. It took 3 weeks to knit the 1st sock... I was still sick). Anyway it took me a little over a week to knit the 2nd sock.

I started calling the pair of socks "the never-ending socks" as I was knitting them. My dad wears a size 12 wide shoe. I used almost 2 skeins of yarn to knit them. The "never-ending" had to do with the size 12. Here's a comparison picture: The blue sock is a size 7 medium and I will use 1 skein to have knit a pair. The brown is my dad's sock.

We have big, wide feet in my family. I wear a size 10 wide. I try to always think positive thoughts and have good feelings when I knit something because I share a piece of myself with the recipient. I know my dad appreciates them and will wear them for many years to come.

My New Digital Camera

It's here....... yay!!!! I'm in the process of learning to use the camera and taking pictures so you can see what I've been working on.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Charade Socks

I regularly read Amber's blog ( and she's started a Charade sock knit along. Last night, I casted on the Charade Socks by Sandra Parks. The grainy picture is of the Prince of Tides colorway by the Unwind Yarn Co(crafygirl83). No picture does this yarn justice. It's beautiful shades of blue with a touch of teal. (My digital camera grew legs and walked away. I'll be replacing it in a few days if it ever stops raining.) The four stitch herringbone ribbing pattern is "easy peasy." I have made Charade, starring Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn, my nextflix. Hopefully I'll get the dvd in time to start the second sock.

I'm making the socks for my ex-classmate, T. Her birthday is today. I've been late all year knitting birthday presents for my friends and family and I kept it up. I'm thinking that my New Year's resolution for 2008 is it knit and present to giftee their gift on their birthday.