Thursday Sock-Along: An FO and a Smooth Operator Snag

I finished my In Search of Vanilla socks! Since I’ve covered them here in detail already, I won’t go too crazy with my rundown. The basic idea is that I used the free Petty Harbour sock pattern by Rayna Curtis. I made the 72 stitch version, but as I got over 9.5 sts/”, they didn’t turn out the size large that I had anticipated! They’re closer to a medium and I’m hoping they’ll fit my mom. I used 372 yards of ONline Supersocke 100 Savanne Color that I got from my freecycle score. So, the only cost for this project was the time I put in!

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This was a cuff-down pattern that I knit on US1 dpns (apparently very tightly). There’s a subtle broken rib-type pattern that gives the socks some interest and breaks up the colors a little bit. The heel is a standard heel flap style and the toe is standard, as well. I used Tillybuddy’s very stretchy cast on to start and Kitchener stitch to finish. The only modification I made to the pattern was to pick up one extra stitch per heel flap edge and then add one extra decrease round. I found that made for a much nicer and hole-free gusset.

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The socks aren’t exactly identical, but they’re close. That’s just sheer chance, really–I wasn’t going for matching. These are definitely my best socks so far. I didn’t think I wanted to do another pair of cuff-down heel-flap socks, but I’m glad that I did! I still haven’t found the right pattern and gauge to make a pair that will actually fit me well, but I have some more ideas percolating.

So next up: new socks! Like Paula and Carol and many others, I’m making a pair of Smooth Operators by Susan B. Anderson. If you want to make some too, be sure to hop over to her ravelry group, itty bitty knits. There’s going to be an informal KAL! There’s no thread set up yet, but there isn’t an official start date or anything. So, cast on and join up! I poked through my sock yarn and decided to use these two skeins of Regia, also from my freecycle score:

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Since the pattern is written specifically to accommodate self-striping yarn, I figured I’d try to make them identical. I actually quite like fraternal twin socks, but it’s also nice to learn new things! Since I always seem to need to do things a bit differently, I decided to do these toe-up instead of cuff-down. I cast on a couple of days ago and got going. I chose to use left and right raised increases for the toes. Well, I got almost all the way through the toe increases and then decided to rip them out and start over. I think some combination of my magic loop technique (still in its infancy) and the raised increases led to holes on one edge of each sock.

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good edge

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bad edge

It wasn’t awful, but I could tell it was going to bother me. So, I ripped back and started over. I’m only a few rows in now, but I’m using m1r and m1l instead. So far, so good!

One mini rant: I tend to knit pretty tightly anyway, and with these I’m trying to keep the joins snug. So, doing a m1r one stitch in tends to be pretty tricky. I find it really hard to get the tip of the needle cleanly into the new stitch as it’s really tight, even with my Addi Sock Rockets! Anyone else have this problem? Anyone have a favorite increase to use for toe-up socks?

So far I love how the colorway is working up! I’m definitely sensing a theme: every pair of socks I’ve made so far has had either yellow or orange or both. I guess I like bright socks!

How are your sock explorations coming? Feel free to post about them on Thursdays and link up with the group! Also, you can share your projects on Instagram with the tag #thursdaysockalong. Check out my fellow Thursday sock knitters here:

Happy sock knitting!

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FO Spotlight: Baby Broadsword, Helmet & Diaper Cover

Since I made these three items as a set, I figured it would make sense to post about them all at once. I put the finishing touches on the sword last night at my fiber arts group. so it’s all finally ready to be revealed! This set was commissioned by a contact on FaceBook. It’s intended to be used for a child’s first birthday party, for props and photos. I had a hard time finding just the right patterns for everything, so I ended up modifying one and just making another up on my own.

The first piece is the Knight’s Helmet Hat. I used the Sir Knight Helmet pattern by Martina Gardiner ($5). The client wanted the blade part to come up and over the crown more than in the pattern, so I modified it. Otherwise, I made it as written for the toddler size.

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The visor has sort of an odd construction, but I think it will work out all right. It does tend to pull in pretty strongly due to the color changes. If I made it again, I would work that part much more loosely. I found the coolest buttons to use for it, though:

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I tried to get some modeled shots on this one year old cutie, but she wasn’t having much of it! Here’s the best I was able to get:

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The visor is designed to be worn either up, as shown, or across the mouth like a real helmet. Since your average toddler isn’t likely to tolerate the latter for very long, I’m glad it’s versatile! The fit in the picture isn’t great as her head is a bit smaller than the recipient’s is. Hopefully it will fit him just right!

The second piece I made was a matching diaper cover. I used the Cheeky Soaker pattern by Megan Christensen. I made size medium based on the recipient’s waist measurement but made a couple of modifications. Since this won’t be used as a soaker, it’ll probably be worn over less bulky disposable diapers. So, I made the waistband a bit shorter and erred on the shorter side when making the rise. The pattern provides a number of different options for waistband styles. I chose to do k2p2 rib and use an I cord drawstring. I added some short rows in the butt (more details are on my project page, linked above).

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I made the I cord just long enough to tie and to knot each end.

One thing I really like about this (free) pattern is the ribbing on the sides and the crotch. It looks pretty cool that way and I think it will help it fit well. Here’s a shot of the side so you can see what I mean:

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This view also shows the effect of the short rows on the butt.

I used my standard stretchy cast on (Tillybuddy’s) and bind off (JSSBO) for these.

And now, the pièce de résistance: the sword. When I searched ravelry, I did actually find a few sword patterns, ranging from free to about $6. However, none of them really had the look I had in mind. After looking through hundreds of project photos, I began to get an idea for what I wanted. I knew I wanted the center of the blade to have definition and that the edges should be distinct. I started playing around with some different options and finally decided I would come up with my own pattern.

Let me just pause here to say that I’ve never designed something from scratch. I’ve modified existing patterns, sometimes heavily, but I’ve always had a starting point and an overall concept to guide me. This was something completely different. I had a lot of respect for designers before, but now it’s been firmly cemented in place!

So, I got an idea for how to start. I cast on, worked some, thought of a better way, ripped it out and started over…several times. I kinda lost count. I gradually refined my approach until I couldn’t think of any more improvements. At each transition, I repeated the same process: work some, realize I’d made a mistake/could do something better, rip it out, start that section again. I wish I had outtake videos of this process. If I did, I could show you the scene where I finally figured out how to finish the blade. I got it all done, then realized that my awesome technique had served to sew the opening together! Since that clearly wouldn’t work (I used cardboard and popsicle, I mean craft, sticks to give it shape), I had to rip it back and come up with another way. Eventually, I figured the whole thing out, got it knitted up, stuffed with cardboard cutouts and a bit of polyfill, and sewn together. The last touch was a bit of embroidery around the join between the blade and the hilt as there was some gapping there. Here’s the finished product:

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I decided to name it “Baby Broadsword” since the blade is on the wider side. Here’s a closer view of the embroidery:

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And some fuzz

And a shot of the whole set:

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For all three pieces, I used a basic aran weight acrylic. It wasn’t my favorite yarn to work with, but I just couldn’t see using wool for a July birthday set. I used two colors of Big Twist Yarns Value Solids (medium grey and black) and it worked pretty well. I used US5, 6 and 7s. If I made another set like this, I would choose a yarn with a tighter twist. Despite the name, I found this yarn to be too splitty for the job.

I am just about as thrilled as I could be with how the whole set turned out. I can’t wait to see pictures of it on the birthday boy! If I ever get my Etsy shop opened, I plan on including things like these. I’m also planning on writing up the sword pattern and offering it for sale on ravelry. That wasn’t my thought going in, but I’m really pleased with how it turned out. I’m proud of the method I came up with, and I think it’s worth publishing. We’ll see if I can live up to my own high pattern standards!

Happy knitting!

 

Thursday Sock-Along: Kidlet Socks and Planning Ahead

Welcome to Thursday’s sock post! Someone (my esteemed mother) recently asked me, “Why socks? Why Thursdays?” So, here’s a little history to answer both of those questions. A few, or maybe several, months ago, my blogging friend Maggie at Project(s) in Progress decided she wanted to tackle the sometimes daunting world of sock knitting. She got some other bloggers interested, myself included, and we started a bit of a casual sock KAL. Unfortunately Mags had a serious injury a bit ago and hasn’t been up for blogging, but hopefully she will feel better soon. There aren’t really any hard and fast rules, and anyone can participate, whether it’s for a week here and there or over the course of several weeks or months. All you need to do to join in is knit some socks, or think about knitting some socks, and post about it on Thursdays. There’s no special significance to Thursdays…we just needed to pick a day! If you do join in, please consider linking your post to the other participants’ blogs (see the end of this post for a list). Maybe someday I’ll put together an icon of some sort, but let’s not get overly ambitious!

So, on to the socks! I have another FO to share! Yesterday, I finished up a quick pair of socks for my daughter. Here are the details:

The rundown

Pattern: Basic Child’s Gradiance Sock in Foot Prints by Laura Lough, free off-ravelry download.

Yarn: Knit Picks Parade, 110 yards. Each skein has about 137 yards, so I was easily able to get a pair out of one ball. It’s a self striping yarn but it’s sport weight instead of fingering, so the socks worked up super quickly. I got this yarn in my giant freecycle haul.

Size made: 2-4y. The pattern also includes directions for size 4-8y.

Needles: US3 dpns

Modifications: I picked up one extra stitch on each side of the heel flaps.

Techniques used: Cuff down construction, standard heel and toe (as written in pattern). I used Tillybuddy’s very stretchy cast on. I finished the toes with Kitchener stitch.

Difficulty: Reasonably easy. This wouldn’t be a pattern I’d recommend for a first-time sock knitter unless I provided a little clarification, but anyone who’s made at least one pair of standard socks wouldn’t have any trouble.

Ravelled: here.

The Pretty

I’m really happy with them and, more importantly, so is my daughter! The look on her face when I gave them to her was to die for, it was that cute. Her eyes just lit up and she started smiling like crazy.

They seem to fit well, although they look like they’d be too big. They have a little room to grow so they should fit her for a couple of years or so. It’s funny…with heavier weight yarns, I tend to knit more snugly than typical. I often have to go up a needle size to get gauge. Socks? Not so much. For sock yarn, I mostly have to use US1s or even US0s sometimes to get 8 sts/”. For this sport weight yarn, I didn’t bother checking gauge. They were such a quick knit that I would have just ripped the first sock out if it was dramatically off. The pattern gauge for these is 7 sts/” and I think I came in closer to 6. Next time, I would use US2s. I definitely wouldn’t expect these to fit a two year old, like the pattern says.

Other stuff I would change if I made socks from this pattern again: I would add two or three rows of stockinette between the cuff ribbing and the start of the heel flap. The 2×2 rib doesn’t line up with the sl1 k1 heel flap so I’d rather have a little buffer between them.

One thing I specifically like about this pattern is the toe decrease. You decrease every other round for the first several rounds, then the last two decrease rounds are done consecutively. I think it gives the sock a nicer rounded toe instead of a slightly pointy, angular one.

In all, this is a handy, quick pattern to have in my sock arsenal, and there’s a good chance I’d make them again. Best part? It’s a free pattern! Between that and getting the yarn for free, this was quite the economical pair of socks!

So, what’s next on the sock horizon, you ask? Well, if you saw my last post, you know that I have some non-sock projects I need to focus on. However, there are still ideas fermenting and plans being made! Here are my goals in a nutshell:

  • Find a good “vanilla” sock pattern that fits me well. I want to have a go-to pattern that I can just cast on and work on without having to think too much.
  • Make more socks for the kidlet! They’re really quick and gratifying, not to mention cute as stink.
  • Learn how to do an afterthought heel, short row heel, Fish Lips Kiss heel and TAAT (two at a time) socks*.
  • Make socks as gifts for two people who have expressed interest.

In order to explore my options, I started looking through some of my sock resources. I might have a few knitting books tucked away (cough, cough) so I pulled out the ones just about socks. I looked through three different books for ideas and direction, and now I have so many socks I want to make, it’s a little ridiculous. From The Joy of Sox**, I want to make Hot Waves, Warm Up Socks, and Royal Flush. From Op-Art Socks: Creative Effects in Sock Knitting***, I want to make Crest and Victor, and most of the rest of the book, too. From Toe-Up Socks for Every Body, I want to make Bob and Weave Socks, Critter Socks (with foxes), and Dainty Anklets. Clearly, I have my work cut out for me! I also have a copy of Socks by Vogue Knitting on the Go somewhere, but I’m not sure where I put it.

What about you? Do you have socks on the needles? What’s your favorite heel technique? I’d love to hear about it! Also, check out what Paula at Spin A Yarn and Hannah at unsophisticated + jejune are up to this week!

Happy sock knitting!

 

* Lots of people want to do TAAT to avoid second sock syndrome. I don’t seem to suffer from that, but I do have a hard time making both socks exactly the same, despite detailed note taking and trying really hard. Part of it is that by the second sock, I’m more confident and my gauge gets tighter. I think doing them TAAT will help.

**I actually have two copies of The Joy of Sox. If anyone wants the extra one, it’s yours for the cost of shipping.

***I got my copy of this book at Tuesday Morning for about $3! Thrifty knitting rocks!

Thursday Sock-Along: FO Spotlight!

I finished my Sock Experiment socks! Well, I haven’t blocked them…but I don’t think I’m going to. I’ll just wash them at some point after I get tired of wearing them. Considering that I’m not all that happy with several details about the socks, I’m surprisingly thrilled with them overall.

The rundown

Pattern: How I Make My Socks by Susan B. Anderson

Yarn: Knit Picks Simple Stripes, 356 yards. I like this yarn but don’t love it. The colors are fun and it seems like it will wear well, but it’s not all that soft. That doesn’t bother me much when the socks are on, but this isn’t going to be a sock yarn that I use for non-sock projects.

Size made: As written in pattern (64 sts)

Needles: US1 dpns

Modifications: I used Fisherman’s Rib instead of standard rib on the cuffs.

Techniques used: Cuff down construction, standard heel and toe (as written in pattern). I used Tillybuddy’s very stretchy cast on. Before starting the Fisherman’s Rib, I worked the first two rounds in standard single rib.

Difficulty: Reasonably easy. This pattern would be fine for a first-time sock adventurer.

Ravelled: here.

The Pretty

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They’re done! And they’re foot-shaped! I don’t mind having mismatched socks–in fact, I kind of like it–so I didn’t worry about getting the stripes to match up. I like how the cuffs and heels and toes all ended up a little different. On the next pair, I might knit the heel flap with the other end of the yarn so that the stripe pattern over the ankle isn’t interrupted, but then again I might not.

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I chose to use Fisherman’s Rib for the cuff because I wanted them to have a lot of stretch. They certainly do! After a few hours of wear, the cuffs start to scrunch down, but I expect that would be true of most any socks. I’m actually surprised at how long they stayed up. I imagine when I wash them the rib will shrink back up a bit.

Even though I made the standard size, and my gauge was pretty much on, the socks still fit me reasonably well. That’s surprising as my feet and calves are on the larger side. They’re a bit snug but once they’ve had a moment to loosen up they’re pretty comfortable. They do get very stretched with wear, though, as you can see in the pics above. The gusset and toe decreases show a lot of the stretch. For my next pair for me, I will try 68 sts and see if that’s a little better. I’ll also start the toe about an eighth of an inch later.

Some of my pics got photo bombed by the toddler!

I guess a little bit of the magic of making socks has started to reveal itself. I’m chipping away at the mystery and the hype and getting down to the actual process, and it’s very rewarding. I’m getting excited at the prospect of having a variety of fun colored, handmade, personalized socks to wear! This pair is a good step in that direction.

Next up on the sock front, I’m planning to make a quick pair for my 3 year old daughter. The next pair I make for myself will probably still be on the basic side, but I will try out a different heel and some different sizing. I’m on a quest to find my favorite “vanilla” sock recipe–one that fits me well, can be knitted more or less mindlessly, and can be customized easily depending on my mood.

Do you knit socks? If not, do you want to start? Join up and post about your sock exploits every Thursday! You can pop over to visit Paula at Spin a Yarn and Hannah at unsophisticated + jejune and see what socky mischief they are up to!

Happy (sock) knitting!

Thursday Sock-Along: Sock Experiment

I managed to wait until Thursday this time! Here’s the scoop on my Sock Experiment. To recap, this is my second pair of socks. I’m making them cuff-down using Susan B. Anderson’s pattern How I Make My Socks with a few modifications. I’m using size US1 dpns and Knit Picks Simple Stripes. I’m getting 8-9 sts/in.*

My overall goal with this project is to start narrowing down what style socks fit me best. I’d like to end up with both a functional pair of socks and more information about what direction to head in next. I think I will end up achieving both of those things.

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Look! It’s foot-shaped!

For starters, I wanted a sock that would stretch comfortably over my calf without being too large through the heel and foot. To that end, I used Fisherman’s Rib for the ribbing. I cast on using Tillybuddy’s very stretchy cast on. Then, I worked two rounds in standard single rib**. Next, I alternated these two rounds: *k1b, p1* around and *k1, p1b* around until I had 30 rounds of Fisherman’s rib (32 rounds total). The “b” refers to “below” and means to knit or purl into the stitch below the one on the needle. It was a little tricky to get used to at first, but once I figured it out it’s really pretty easy. It is a bit more time consuming than regular rib, however, and it takes two rounds to equal one row of actual knitting. The resulting rib is airy, squishy, and extremely stretchy. I then switched to stockinette for the rest of the sock. I turned the heel and worked the gussets as directed in the pattern with one small modification: I picked up one extra stitch on each bottom corner of the heel flap. On the first round, I knitted each together with its neighbor. I did this to help minimize holes, and I think it worked reasonably well.

So. Did it work? Is the top of the sock stretchy enough to fit well but still resilient enough to stay up? Well, yes and no. It’s honestly probably a little too stretchy. I like that it doesn’t cut off my circulation, but it doesn’t rebound all that well. On my next pair, I’m planning to toy around with starting off with Fisherman’s rib, then switching to standard single rib, then switching to stockinette (or whatever pattern stitch I’m using). I’m not sure how that will look, but I think it might help the top of the sock fit a little better.

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Taking pictures of one’s own foot is trickier than you’d think.

Next! Does the sock fit well through the ankle and instep? Again…yes and no. It fits, but it’s definitely on the tight side. Part of that may be due to my gauge, which tightened as I went. Part of that may be due to the fact that I chose to go with the pattern’s recommended 64 sts, even though my feet and ankles are larger than average. I knew this beforehand but decided I’d go with it and see what happened. Since this is my first pair of socks in fingering weight yarn, I just wanted to see where the standard 64 sts got me. For my next pair, I think 68 might work better. I will wear the finished pair a bit before deciding as I want to see if they stretch out after a while.

To finish up, I knit the foot to 2″ shorter than my foot, as directed in the pattern. I did the standard toe decreases and Kitchener stitch graft. How’s the fit, you ask? Well, a little snug. I think next time, if I do the same toe, I might go to 1.75″ shorter and see how that works.

While I’m on the subject of toes, does anyone else think about making right and left socks? Maybe with a slightly looser/stretchier toe it won’t make a difference. As it is now, my big toe feels a little squished! On a future pair of socks I think I might play around with that idea a bit.

I’ve managed to stave off SSS*** as I’ve started the second and gotten most of the way through the ribbing. On the first one, the rest of the sock flew by as soon as I switched to stockinette. Hopefully by the next Thursday Sock-Along, I’ll be ready to start pair #3!

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Proof that there is, indeed, a second sock!

As always, please step on over to my fellow socketeers and see what they’re up to! Paula of Spin a Yarn blogs here and Hannah of unsophisticated + jejune blogs here. Happy knitting!

*It started off as 8 but by the time I got to the foot on the first one, my knitting had tightened up some.

**I learned when I made my Color Dipped Hat that that specific cast on needs two rows of rib on top of it before the Fisherman’s Rib will work correctly. Don’t ask me details–I didn’t study it that closely! I just started to knit into the stitch below the one on the needle after having just done one round of regular rib first, and it didn’t work.

***Second Sock Syndrome: The period following the completion of the first sock during which the knitter convinces herself that the second sock isn’t really needed/will knit itself/will somehow take a fraction of the time, and so delays casting on.

Thursday Sock-Along: Friday Edition

I’m counting these as Thursday socks because I cast on yesterday. Better late than never, right? Well, I’ve been saying for a while that I wanted to make a second pair of socks. I blogged about my first pair, Rye Socks from Tin Can Knits, here.

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Photo credit to Callandra S. Cook, aka the wifey. Modelled by yours truly.

Socks #1 have turned out to be everything I expected. That is, they were a great project to learn on, they fit well, they look pretty sweet. I can only stand to wear them occasionally in the winter as they’re very, very warm and, being worsted weight, they’re not great for stuffing into shoes. So, they don’t get a lot of use…but that wasn’t the goal.

However, being appropriate for frequent use is the goal for Socks #2. A few other goals are as follows:

  • Make ’em with sock yarn.
  • They should fit my calves, which are larger than average, without having to do a ton of machinations to the pattern.
  • There should probably be two of them. Matching is not only unnecessary; it’s highly overrated.

For the Rye Socks, I switched sizes throughout the pattern to make sure they would fit my calves without being too loose in the foot. That’s okay and all but I’d like to just be able to knit some socks without going through all that. To that end, I started thinking about how to make the cuff super stretchy. That way I wouldn’t have to switch sock sizes at the ankle. I decided to knit the ribbing in fisherman’s rib instead of standard. I learned from making my Color Dipped Hat that fisherman’s rib is ridiculously stretchy. It also takes about twice as long to knit as a typical single rib, but it seemed like the right man for the job. I poked around different patterns on ravelry and settled on Susan B. Anderson’s How I Make My Socks. I knitted the ribbing longer than called for, and will probably end the stockinette section a little early, depending on how they fit as I go.

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My progress so far!

The ribbing is definitely extremely stretchy:

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I used a super stretchy cast on, too, so that shouldn’t be a problem. So far I’m really pleased with how it’s turning out! Both the yarn that I’m using and the dpns are from the amazing batch of yarn, fiber, needles, books, etc that I got recently from someone who is destashing. The yarn is Knit Picks Simple Stripes.

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Sammy very kindly modelled for me!

If you haven’t checked out my fellow Socketeers, you can read Hannah’s post here (unsophisticated and jejune) and Paula’s post here (Spin a Yarn).  Happy (sock) knitting!

Orange Passport Mitts

This is the second pair that I’ve finished. See my post about the first pair here. I’ve already cast on for pair #3!

The rundown

Pattern: Passport Mitts by Carol E. Herman

Yarn: Ella Rae Lace Merino DK in orange

Size made: Women’s small, but they came out extra little (I forgot to go up a needle size after the cuff)

Needles: US2

Techniques used: Tillybuddy’s very stretchy cast on

Modifications: I added one extra row of K1P1 rib at the beginning as that is what works best with that particular cast on. I also picked up one extra stitch on each side of the thumb gusset, then decreased it on the first thumb round.

Ravelled: here.

The pretty

FullSizeRender 93 FullSizeRender 92 IMG_4171I’m using the same yarn for another pair. I love them! I love the color, the stitch definition, the cables, everything. The yarn is pretty soft when knitted up. They’re too little for me to even try on (I have big hands) but I have a recipient in mind for them 🙂

Happy knitting!

Passport Mitts Revealed

The second FO I have to share today is my first pair of Passport Mitts! I’ve posted here before about this pattern and the designer, but I want to say a little more. Specifically, if you’re looking for an awesome and supportive group of people to “hang out” with on ravelry, please go check out the group at Carol E. Herman Designs. Carol (cehermanator) and many of the group members have been so welcoming to me that, even though I hadn’t yet knit any of her designs, I still felt comfortable just jumping in and chatting with people. There’s currently a KAL going on for the Passport Mitts. It’s the first time I’ve participated in one, and it’s been really fun so far! It just started a couple of days ago so there’s plenty of time to come join in if you’d like. There’s great chatting, camaraderie and some awesome prizes!

The rundown

Pattern: Passport Mitts by Carol E. Herman (psst–one of my photos is featured on the pattern page!)

Yarn: Classic Elite Yarns Inca Alpaca in Navy Heather, about 168 yards

incaalpacaSize made: Women’s small

Needles: US2 and 3

Techniques used: Tillybuddy’s very stretchy cast on

Modifications: Only one. I added one extra row of K1P1 rib at the beginning as that is what works best with that particular cast on.

Ravelled: Here.

The pretty

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Not only would I make this pattern again in a heartbeat, I have yarn picked out for the next pair. I’m planning to use Ella Rae Lace Merino DK in orange.

IMG_3335_mediumI haven’t decided yet if the orange will be for me or for a gift for someone else. The only thing I would do differently next time is bind off a little tighter. I know, I know, tight bind offs are the enemy! But I did these a smidge on the loose side. I will be sending these off to my mom soon but in the meantime I might have been wearing them a little 🙂 I love the way the thumb gusset is constructed–it looks so sharp and finished. The cables remind me a little of how sand ripples under the water in the Gulf of Mexico. So pretty!

I wish I had enough of the Inca Alpaca left to make a second pair. If I make the small size again and skip one cable repeat, I could probably just swing it. It’s really soft and silky but still strong and substantial and I love the colorway. I would call it more of a midnight blue than a navy. It has strands of white and turquoise in it that are really pretty and make it interesting close up.

In all, this is a great pattern to add to my repertoire! It was a quick knit and I’m hoping to make at least another pair or two this year.

Thistle Blossom Beanie Test Knit Revealed

I had the pleasure of completing a test knit for the Thistle Blossom Beanie from B.Woolens. I finished it up today and the pattern is now available, so I can share some pics! The kidlet is napping now so I haven’t gotten a chance to try it on her yet, but here’s what I’ve got:

FullSizeRender 12 IMG_3741 IMG_3740 IMG_3739 IMG_3737I think the crown decreases are really pretty. The yarn I used is kind of ancient, but worked out well. It’s Tahki Yarns Lana (older version) in teal. It’s a bulky weight 100% wool. It’s a little scratchy but feels nice knitted up. The color is a little greener than most of the pics show. It used 89 yards for the child size. The pattern is also written for infant/toddler and adult sizes. Of course, I used my favorite cast on for ribbing: Tillybuddy’s very stretchy cast on. I think the finished hat is really cute, and is definitely a pattern I would knit again

I also finished my Scarf for my Sanity that I talked about in my last post:

IMG_3743IMG_3745 This project was very challenging to photograph as the brown keeps getting washed out. But, you can get the basic idea. This was supposed to be a stashbuster. I thought I had three skeins of the Knit One, Crochet Too Tartelette, but it turns out I had four. Two of the skeins were wound up into a ball together. I used about 3 and a quarter skeins. I wanted to use it all but it would have gotten way too long for a lightweight, mostly decorative scarf. I still don’t have an intended recipient for this one, so I think I will put it aside and then offer it around at Christmas. Maybe I can make a narrow drop stitch scarf with the last of it.

I am down to five WIPs! Definitely time to cast on something new! I am torn about what to start, though. On one hand, I would like to make something sort of mindless and easy. On the other hand, it might be nice to start something big that will be for me. I’m coping decently well but I’m still working my way through a very stressful quagmire. So, putting some effort into something special, for me, might be a good symbolic gesture. Maybe I will get started on that Drachenfels after all.

A brief update on my current situation: nothing is resolved, but I’m coping and doing what I need to do. I am getting treatment for my injuries from the car accident last week, and that is getting a little better. Thank you to everyone who read, commented, sent me support or good karma. I really appreciate every word and it all helps. Thank you!