Friday, September 28, 2007

Fall yarns are yummy!

One of my favorite things about fall is the new fall yarns. Especially the sock yarns (aren't y'all surprised?). I may have had to buy some, and hubbo may have picked some out.

For me - new Lana Grossa.

For hubbo - new Classic Elite Alpaca Sox. Aren't you shocked at the originality of his color choice? Totally different from the grey pair I'm currently knitting him.

I haven't cast on for these yet, but they are both calling to me.

In other sock news, it seems that Socktoberfest is nearly upon us. Last year I had a great time, and ended up with two new pairs of socks finished. This year my plan is "single sock-toberfest." I've got plenty of pairs of socks that have one sock finished or nearly finished. Plus, I'm hoping that by knitting wool socks I can will fall to arrive. Think it'll work? What are your plans for Socktoberfest?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Sweater weather?

I know I really shouldn't be complaining, after the mild summer we had, but can fall hurry up and get here already? It's been over 90 every day for over a week and a half. Luckily (according to the weather idiots), we're having a "cold front" today and it's only supposed to be 86. Brrrrrr. A breeze.

However, these warm temperatures haven't prevented me from starting a few new fall sweaters (nor have they enabled me into finishing my summer sweaters, but that's a topic for another day).

Several weeks ago, when I wanted something to just go around and around on, I started Devon out of Rowan Cotton Glace. I love it. I love the colors, and the stripes, and it's taking me FOREVER. But that's OK. I don't have to knit any sleeves!

Ariann out of Ella Rae Classic. Love the yarn. Love the color. Love the pattern. Not very far yet.

Buttony out of Debbie Bliss Cashmernio Chunky. I'm a bit nervous about this one, since it's really a "wing it" type of sweater. My fingers are crossed that I can pull it off. If not, I'm sure I can find another sweater to use this yarn for.

And finally, Jarrett (from Rowan Vintage Knits), for Hubbo, out of Ella Rae Classic. I've had a bear of a time trying to get gauge for this. I originally purchased Silky Wool for this sweater, but came nowhere near getting gauge (20st/4in) with it. After much perusing of the internets (and of Ravelry), I realized that 20st/4in is WORSTED weight gauge. Not DK/Sport. I swatched with the Ella Rae, he picked a color, and I haven't looked back since.
I'm trying to knit this one in secret for Christmas. I plan to work on it at the shop on the weekends, and when he's not around here (for example, I plan to go do a few rows before he gets up this morning). It may take me until next Christmas, but I am determined to get this done. Of course, last night he told me that he really liked this sweater Monk is wearing.

Practically the same people. He's so predictable.

I do have other grand fall/winter knitting plans, but this will have to do for now. I've got to finish some projects first!

Sunday, September 23, 2007


The moment you all have been waiting for. The kitchen is (almost) done.

I apologize for the lack of pictures sooner, but we were having contractor issues (as in, he stopped showing up about the first of August), and I didn't want to rant on the blog.

More photos in my flickr set here.

If you need "before" reminders, look here and here.

We do have a big hole in the ground where the air return hasn't been moved, but the kitchen is livable. Praise God, and remind me that I don't want to remodel anything else.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Run-by Fruiting*

There has been almost zero knitting progress this week, owing to the enormous amounts of schoolwork I've been doing. However, I did run into Michael's yesterday (for cute Mary Engelbreit Christmas stuff in the dollar section), and happened to bump into the clearance aisle, where they had Lion Wool for $2.00/ball. Um? Deal? Yeah!

I may have purchased enough of the red to make the cute skirt on the cover of Folk Style (sans flowers),

and enough grey for a project TBD.

Unfortunately, having enough knitting time to complete either of these projects (not to mention any of those already on my needles) is not looking so likely these days. I did, however, have enough time to rip the scarf, per y'all's advice, but now I don't know what to do with the yarn. I didn't quite have enough for my socks last time, and I don't really want to buy another skein of yarn for each (especially at $24.00/pop), so I need ideas. If you're interested in swapping for it, let me know (via email, since I can't reply to comments - knitnlit AT gmail DOT com).

*Every time someone uses the title "Drive-by blogging" for a post, I think of this line from Mrs. Doubtfire. One of my favorites.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

How many felted bags can one knitter make?

I've finished another bag, and another Christmas present! Yay!

Pattern: Sophie, from Magknits
Yarn: Paton's Classic Merino in their new stripey colors
Needles: Clover Bamboo 10.5 circulars and DPNs
Mods: none
Dates: um, early summer until the end of July. It's been sitting around since then waiting to be felted.
Thoughts: One of my favorite patterns, and one of the few (besides socks) that I knit over and over again. I do nearly have it memorized, which is good, since I have a few more planned.

The colors are much more vibrant in real life, but it's late and dark, so this is what you get. I'm glad I have another gift for the small pile. Time to crank it into gear - after all, there are only 99 days until Christmas!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Your $.02

Time to chime in people! I started this scarf several weeks ago in the full-on chevron scarf frenzy. I wanted to not knit an entire scarf in sock yarn, so I looked for something a bit heavier. Claudia's Sport caught my eye, but since the yardage is slim (as well all know, since I have teeny socks knit out of it), I didn't want to make it as wide (and well, with a heavier yarn, it would be hyouge if I knit all those stitches across). So I did some maths (aren't y'all proud?) and decided to sort-of halve the pattern.

Now? I'm not sure about the color combo, though I'll admit that not working on it for several weeks has made me appreciate it more.

So, what do y'all think? Color combo good? Bad? OK? I'm waiting to continue until I hear from you! Vote early, and vote often!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


I may have started a few new socks. In my defense, I did rip a few out this weekend as well.

Ripped: Knee High to a Grasshopper - I was trying to change this into a top-down pattern, and my skillz just aren't up to it right now. Ripped.
Monkey - Love the pattern. Not sure it looks great in this yarn. Ripped.
P-word socks - too small. Rippppppp

Started and ripped: Wandering Cable Knee Socks. Started, and decided that they were too small. Ripped, and I hope to restart soon.

Started: Monkey socks in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Silkie - not much to look at right now, but soon....
Plain socks in Trekking, Sock-it-to-me, and Scout's Swag. Yum. Plain socks.
Smokin' Socks in Fearless Fibers. Love this yarn.
Embossed Leaves in Sweet Georgia. I've had this yarn in the stash for months, marinating, trying to save it, since you can't get it anymore (for now, hopefully), but the pull of the pattern I had purchased it for was too strong. One repeat in, and I love it. Yay!

Monday, September 10, 2007

WIPs - mini update

Just a quickie tonight....

I seem to have finally conquered the gauge monster on mom's sweater, and it is moving along. Now I just hope it fits!

Hubbo's granddad is in the hospital (he fell on Friday, the day before his 95th birthday, and they're not entirely sure what's wrong.) - and his feet are freezing. Felted Clogs (with Tech colors, of course) to the rescue! I'm hoping to get these done quickly, though I'd rather he get out of the hospital before I finish.

Why hubbo's photo thing keeps insisting on rotating photos I didn't want to be sideways boggles the mind.
And in random news, I got a cute new purse this Big Lots, of all places. I tell ya, it really is my favorite store.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

A mission from God

I'm on a mission this year. A mission to try new sock yarns. OK, at least BUY new sock yarns. I've been scouring The Loopy Ewe, snatching things up right and left. I'm trying not to buy things I've already bought, and/or used. (Except for Trekking. There has to be an exception to every rule, right?) I've been popping over to some of the smaller online sock dealers, checking out their wares, when lo and behold, I get my email update from Simply Sock Yarn, and they have the Dream in Color that the Ewe is always out of. Hmmmmmm, oooh, that's pretty, and that's pretty, and before you know it, I'm at free shipping (my favorite!).

Left to Right: Soft Touch Ultra Heathers (which I've been wanting to try for months), Dream in Color Smooshy (I can't remember the color name, but she's out of it), ShibuKnits in Peacock (this yarn is GORGEOUS), and Sleeping Dragon in Lipstick Lava (also GORGEOUS).

I was good, and tried to get mostly solids. I have a ton of varigated sock yarn, and while I love it, some of the more detailed patterns look better in solids or nearly solids. But my stash is woefully low on those. I found the remedy!

This is all lovely, and the only thing keeping me from casting on is, well, I'm not sure. I do have a few pairs of empty needles, but I'm trying to finish things up, not start new.

My credit card is all better, for now. But it may have taken a swipe today for something, but you'll have to wait about two weeks before I can show you that greatness. What's new in your stash? What's your favorite sock yarn? I need more ideas!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

FO: Swirly Socks

Pattern: Generic top-down over 72 stitches
Yarn: Madelinetosh Sock in Ginsing
Needles: ChiaGoo 2.25mm DPNs
Dates: July-September 1, 2007
Mods: n/a
For: Me!

Thoughts: I'm not a fan of the pooling. I love the way this yarn looked in the skein and in the ball, but I just don't love it knit up. I have gotten over some of my dislike of the pooling, since the socks are a) finished and b) very soft, but I wish the whole sock could have been pretty and striped like the heel and toe. Even if the swirl had continued, I would have enjoyed it.

Another pair done! This puts me at 10 pair for the year, a bit under my goal of two pair per month (OK, a lot under). But with over 10 pairs on the needles, I'm hopeful that I can catch up.

And while we're accounting, I only managed to use up 6 balls of yarn in August, and I took into the stash 11. Who am I kidding at this point?

Monday, September 03, 2007

Strange, but true

Picture this: It is 8:15 Wednesday morning. I'm standing at my Elmo (it's this really cool thing like a combo digital camera and overhead - I *love* it), going over morning work, when I hear a snap. My students hear it too. I can tell immediately that my heel has snapped off. I give them an assignment, hobble over to my desk, and examine the evidence.

It is not pretty. I happen to have a hammer in my room, so I attempt to hammer back on the heel. I am unsuccessful. I go to tell the other 4th grade teachers my story, and amazingly enough, one of them happens to have an extra pair of shoes at school. Whew! I don't have to walk to lunch barefoot. Much fun is made on my behalf, and I go home barefoot, determined to find a shoe repair place, since these were my favorite shoes, of course.

Thursday morning. 7:30. I'm walking out of my room to go make a copy, when something on my shoe feels funny. No way. I've broken the heel on ANOTHER pair of shoes, a pair I specifically picked out of my closet, thinking "there's no way I can break this heel" (these are a pair with a large, clunky heel, not a little kitten heel like the ones I was wearing on Wednesday). Stand in the hall on duty with heel sort-of attached.
Attempt to fix with Elmer's Glue once class starts. Elmer's doesn't help. That same teacher, who doesn't have an extra pair of shoes today, has a glue gun. Glue heel on, but don't wear around my room, for fear of loosening it. Put on to wear to lunch. Seems to be working well! Leave recess, standing in line at the water fountain with my class. Turn to go upstairs, something feels funny. NO WAY IN HELL. Broke my other *&*^%#$#^*& heel. The other shoe. Carry it upstairs, and fix other shoe with glue gun. Wear to dismissal. Notice upon entering the building that my shoe is crumbling as I walk.

Am laughingstock of school. I've never broken a heel before in my life. Three in two days? What are the odds?

Worse news? Since it's now "fall," I can't find brown sandals anywhere. Unfortunately, it'll be 90 here for about another month. Hate wearing closed-toe shoes when it's hot. Considering going barefoot to school tomorrow.