Sunday, May 28, 2006

One Sock, Two Socks, Green Sock, Striped Sock

The socks are finally done!

I finished the heels tonight, while most of the cuff was finished last weekend on my trip to Indiana. I am proned to getting carsick, but I found that I can knit in the car without feeling nauseated. I have been knitting for over 4 years now, so I simply rely on knitting by feel instead of looking at the fabric. Combined with a simple pattern, the technique keeps me entertained and feeling alright.

A side view of a sock

Underneath a sock

I really enjoyed making these and I'm happy with the way they turned out. It's a small enough project that I'm thinking about making another pair during my long plane ride later next month.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

The Yarn Shop Across Town

I was really excited when I moved into my house on Monroe St that I was just down the block from a Yarn Shop, The Knitting Tree. I have been there a few times since moving in, though have bought a significant amount of yarn online in the past year. I was out running errands and shopping this afternoon and I thought that I would stop by a yarn shop on the other side of town, Lakeside Fibers. They have a fairly large store, with a coffee shop in the back and space for workshops. I was impressed by their yarn selection, but I also did not see some yarns, like the Debbie Bliss yarns or lots of LambsPride (though they did have a whole wall of Cascade 220!). However, if I venture out of the house to buy yarn, I think that I will go back to Lakeside Fibers.

And, of course, I cannot leave a yarn shop without something to enhance my stash. Today, it was a baby Alpaca/silk blend. The colors attracted me, but the softness made me buy it. I'm thinking about a hat in the two colors, but I haven't decided yet.

But before I can start that, I need to finish at least one of the two projects I am currently knitting. The faster of the two projects is the pair of socks that I am making toe-up. I'm knitting them both at the same time, starting at the toe, and saving the heal for last. Here is a picture from when I started them last week,

And after a night of knitting and watching movies with friends, I am now here,

The yarn is actually self-striping, so I don't have to worry about working with multiple balls of yarn. I am about ready to do the heal, which will actually be skipped and done at the end. The process should be easier than 'turning the heal', which is the standard way of making the heal. I'll let you know when I get there. Other than that, I really like using this technique to knit socks. It's fun to start from the bottom and knitting two socks at once is doubly nice. Next time I do socks, they will be toe-up.

Monday, May 08, 2006

A New Project

I know that I already have one blog detailing the events my life, but I thought a second blog would be a good idea for my readership interested in my current crafting projects. If you aren't interested in reading about knitting (and other things Martha Stewart), stop here and return to my original blog, which will now be yarn-free. Otherwise, read on!

I currently have two projects on the needles, but I will save those for the next post. They aren't going to be finished anytime in the immediate future. As the title implies, this post will be about a new project, which actually has two meanings. The first reference is to the blog itself, and the second is to a new technique I tried out this weekend with some spare yarn--Kool Aid dying!

Of the different types of dying, using Kool Aid seemed to be a fairly easy way to experiment with coloring yarn. Plus, I frogged ("rip-it") an ugly scarf made out of white wool and wanted to do something with all of the leftover yarn. Kool Aid is actually very concentrated and works well to dye animal fibers (wool, llama, etc.) but not plant fibers (cotton, linen, etc). I got the instructions from an article on the Knitty website:

Start with yarn, a few bowls, and some packets of Kool-Aid

Empty Kool Aid packet into bowl and fill with water

Soak yarn in solution

Microwave for a few minutes. It's so easy!

Rinse and repeat

Hang to dry

It was a fun little project, and it took me only a few hours to dye the six colors shown above. The reds and yellow came out very bright, but the green and blue didn't take as well as I would have liked. Also, you can't make large batches, but I don't mind having bright colored wool to use on a small project or two. I'm already starting to daydream about the things I can make.

I hope you will enjoy my knitting exploits and stay tuned for future posts. For now, I am going to get cozy in my favorite handknit sweater. I wish you a very joyful week and happy knitting!