Friday, May 30, 2008

Speaking of color


The latest shipment of Socks that Rock certainly didn't skimp on the color. The colorway studies continue, this time in purple.

Check out my Flickr photostream for better pictures. I love this and was saddened to read in the Dyer's Notes that this is probably the last color study for the club this year.


Thanks, all, for confirming what my gut was telling me. The Chewy Spaghetti yarn didn't want to be a lace ribbon scarf. Perhaps it wants to be a pair of Monkeys?

Take 2 is knit in Gloss, a wool/silk blend fingering weight from KnitPicks. The Lace Ribbon pattern is fun to knit. I haven't exactly memorized the pattern, but it's very easy to "read" the knitting and take a quick glance at the chart to remind myself where I am. I have a feeling there are a lot of these scarves in my future: it uses up sock yarn and makes a great gift.

And it's orange! Orange has never been one of "my colors" (too close to yellow, which has never been and I can say with certainty never will be one of my colors) but recently I've been drawn to it. Has that ever happened to you? I usually go on "color jags" and pick up certain colors like a magpie (see my haul of green sock yarn, for example). This fairly recent orange (extending to pinky-orange and red-orange) binge has really surprised me.

PS: I'm sure you all have heard this by now, but if you haven't, I was saddened and stunned to hear that the Malabrigo mill caught on fire earlier this week.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Your honest opinion, please

Yellow is not one of my colors, so I'm having a hard time seeing this project objectively. Is this working for you? The pattern is a narrow version the Lace Ribbon Scarf from the current issue of Knitty (sized down because the yarn was pooling really badly with the original number of repeats). The yarn is the Chewy Spaghetti Blue Plate Special for February 2008, seen in its original condition here:

The whole point of a club, at least for me, is to work with colors and fibers that you might not have chosen on your own. I'm already breaking my personal sock club rules by not knitting the pattern that came with the yarn. This yarn up close is stunning, a silk and wool blend with a beautiful sheen and a soft hand. I love it. But....yellow.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Noro Socks

The Noro socks have been slow-going, mainly because they've been my downtime project to work on at Natural Stitches. Yesterday, though, I decided to push through so I could wear them to work on Saturday.

Forgive the bad picture on this cloudy day, but it's enough to give you an idea of the vibrance of the colors. I've read conflicting information on various Ravelry boards about the color repeats, but mine was more than enough to do a matching pair. I used 2/3 of the skein to make socks for my size 9 feet and have enough to make a third matching sock, should the mood strike me (for the record, no I don't think the mood will strike me to make a third sock, but you never know).

Overall, what is lovely about Noro is what works against it as a sock yarn. However, working with the yarn was a pleasant surprise. Part of the beauty of Noro Kuryeon is the rustic texture, but that doesn't always equal a pleasing fabric that can be worn next to the skin and it certainly doesn't have the squooshy, springy, smooshy quality I've come to love in sock yarn. While the yarn itself was rough as it went through my fingers, it knitted up into a surprisingly soft fabric. I plan to soak the socks in Eucalan before I wear them, but I honestly don't think it's necessary to do so. They do, though, need a good blocking, but that's because my inexperience with the Magic Loop technique caused the creases you see in the picture.

The biggest problem I had with this yarn was the extremes of the thick and thin, to the point where the yarn verged on slubs. I had one unfortunately placed slub on the heel turn of my first sock; in retrospect, I should have just cut the yarn, but I was worried about disrupting the color repeats, and I hate weaving in extra ends, particularly on socks.

Really, though, these socks are stunning. I plan to make another pair for my mother, and I'm excited to see the Noro Silk Garden Sock when it comes out later this year. Martha has already ordered bags and bags of it, and I'm looking forward to getting my hands on it!

Friday, May 16, 2008

I finished the Christmas Knitting!

Christmas 2007, that is.

Actually, I didn't even make my Mother's Day goal. But it's done. The Clap is finished!

As for my other "goal," you may have noted that I wore nothing hand-knitted to Maryland Sheep and Wool. My Flair is languishing in my knitting basket. I'll finish it, really, I will.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Maryland Sheep and Wool Wrap-up

Happiness is an armload of Socks that Rock yarn.

Standing in line at The Fold was not how I planned to spend MDSW, but I finally understand what all that chatter about “yarn fumes” is about, because I was high on something when I got swept into that line. How could anyone resist the colors, the smooshiness of it all?

It’s a testament to the general good hearted nature of knitters that the line to pay for the STR at the fold went out of the barn and stretched outside down past the next barn and no one seemed to be just grabbing an armful of sock yarn and making a break for it. Instead, everyone got her yarn in an orderly fashion, took it outside, and stood patiently in line. Some people knit, other people had their arms too full of sock yarn to knit, but everybody was in good cheer and chatted pleasantly with their neighbors in line. It was a surprisingly lovely experience.

As for the rest of the haul:

From Brooks Farm, assorted colorways of Solo, their wonderful DK single ply

From Tess, well, a lot, two skeins of sock yarn, two skeins of laceweight merino (dude, I don’t even knit lace), and two absolutely divine skeins of Silk and Ivory, a gorgeous silk and merino blend.

From Just Our Yarns, some green cashmere laceweight (again, dude, I don’t know how to knit lace).

From Cloverhill, a bunch of indie dyer sock yarn

From Spirit Trail, two skeins of beautiful sock yarn

And from the Barefoot Spinner, a stunning skein of handspun, hand dyed sock yarn (and if anyone has a tag from her yarn, please weigh in on the comments, as I don’t know how much yardage I have).

It was a great time, if not a bit overwhelming. Ideally, I think the perfect day would have been to have Saturday’s selection with Sunday’s crowds, as Saturday was a mob scene, but things looked pretty picked over the next day. But in short, A++++ would attend festival again!!!