Tuesday, September 17, 2013

MUCH better, thank you.

These new socks are coming along a whole lot better than the other ones. I mean, A WHOLE LOT BETTER. The pattern is the Java socks from the Winter 2011 Knitty. I'm sure a big part of why these socks are coming out so well is that I'm actually following a pattern as written, but I think another reason is that these socks have an 84-stitch round. It's only 4 stitches more than the other socks, but there's a world of difference in how the colors are pooling. Like, almost not pooling at all. It's very subtle.

I still have a few more inches to go before I turn the heel, and the pooling will definitely change as I work on the gussets, so there's that to look forward to. I'm not especially worried about it, but I like the way the legs are coming out, and I hope the foot will look as good.

So tonight's post is a short one. I hope I'll have more to tell next time. Until then, Friends.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

These socks are fugged up.

So I'm starting over.

I had gotten the heel turned this afternoon, and when my husband got home from work he tried them on.

They were awful! The fit was poor, and I have no one to blame but myself. I noticed that the row gauge on the soles was different than the tops of the feet, but I soldiered on. I made a mistake on the gussets, but I kept going. The heel flaps were actually alright, they just didn't work. I cut my losses. I ripped them out.

The only positive about this project is that I love the colors of this yarn, so I'm just going to try a new pattern. I've cast on for the Java socks, which I hope will come out right and look good in this yarn. We'll have to cross our fingers. My husband would have worn the fugly socks, but he deserves the best socks. Ones that fit. And look good. And ones that I won't be embarrassed to admit that I made.

I hope to have better news the next time I post. Until then, Friends.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

My first attempt at beaded laciness.

I've been home from the lake for about a week, and what a week it's been. More changes at work, but at least it was only 4 days long since it's Labor Day weekend here in the US.

I took the yarn, beads and pattern to make the Hanami Stole with me to Michigan. I've had the Silky Alpaca Lace in my stash for what feels like ages (I've had it for two and a half years), and it's been intended for this project the whole time. I bought the beads for it while I was in Indianapolis in April for the Carmel Sprint Triathlon, perfectly matched to the cherry blossom pink of the yarn. Once I'd had a little time in the water, and a few cocktails, I decided the time was right to finally cast on.

The pattern called for a beaded cast on, which is something I've never done before. It also said to make sure I had a crochet hook small enough to fit through the bead. Luckily, I have my mother's set of teeny, tiny steel hooks that she brought with her from Japan when she came to the United States in 1970. Before she married, she made lots of doilies with crochet thread. I think she still has them at her house. I had to use the size 8 needle, which I understand has a .90mm hook. It looks a lot like the torture devices my dental hygienist uses when I go for a cleaning. What's even scarier is that I have two hooks even smaller, with .75mm and .6mm hooks. I'm sure I don't want to see the thread appropriate for any of them.

Anyway, I got through the beaded cast on alright, but I realized that I'd bought way more beads than the pattern called for, and that I wasn't ever going to use them for anything else. After reading the pattern through at least twice, I decided that I'd use beads in the "basketweave" section of the stole, placing one for every place that I had a centered double decrease. Adding these beads every so often certainly slows down the knitting, but I think that the stole will be prettier for it in the end. I got through two chart repeats while I was on vacation, but since I've been home I've gotten through exactly 4 rows. This is going to take awhile, I think, especially since I'm not about to work on this on my way to work. I'm just glad I don't have a deadline!

So, that's it for now, Friends. Until next time.