Thursday, May 31, 2007

A few stitches short...

Success! The cable has been found and the camera is cooperating once again. So here she is, the first of the Central Air socks from one of last year's Rockin' Sock Club kits (eep, and to think I still have two and a half pairs to go, clearly it'll be a while until I get to the new ones).
The fine ladies at Blue Moon sent me the yarn after my July club kit was lost then delayed. They also sent out an extra pattern in their September kit and I decided that the two would work nicely together. Many months later this is the result.
This sock turned into a bit of a knitting black hole just before the end of the leg and at some point during the foot. I knit, and knit, and knit and never gained any length. In the end it seems that I got a little carried away and it ended up being a smidge too big. Not enough that it's worth ripping out, but enough that I'll try and be more cautious with the next one.
I managed to start the second sock but let me tell you, it was tough, requiring much more will power than your average sock. I waited a very precarious three days before picking up the needles again. Perhaps I've contracted a mild case of SSS.
As much as I adore these socks, it's more than likely that they'll move to the back burner while I let Icarus rule my life for the time being. See what I mean about the startitis?

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

All things pink

Last Friday I decided to take some much needed time off from studying to attend the Yarn Harlot's Canadian book launch. In the sheer excitement of it all I completely forgot to take any pictures. Luckily, others were in better control of their faculties. The event was amazing! It was so nice to finally hear one of Stephanie's talks after having watched her blog about them these last few years.
While there, I did manage to finish the first of the Central Air socks (despite the clear ineptitude at simultaneously juggling a camera, knitting, and being awestruck by the knitter invasion). The photographic evidence of which is being held hostage by the camera until I can find it's friend, the USB cable. In the meantime, I've decided to distract you with the above. Better known as the fruits of my foray into the April/May Project Spectrum colour triad.
In making this collage, it became clear how pink-heavy things have been over here these past two months. I seem to collect yarn in colour waves. For a few months I'll find myself buying all pink yarns, then I'll move to all green or all blue yarns for a while. Most of the yarns that I've been mentioning lately came from a bit of a pink "slip and fall" I had last summer. It seems that the attraction to different colours at different times often mirrors my moods. It's an interesting way to be able to reflect and immortalize (through yarn) my differing emotional state.

Now that the first of my licencing examinations has passed, there's been a wicked case of startitis that has been spreading through the stash. There are about five active projects on the needles, all of which were started in the last month or so. Socks, tank tops, sweaters, and a burning desire to cast on for about 20 more. I'll introduce you to those once negotiations with the camera get underway.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Random Order

I have exactly six days before my licensing exams begin. Suffice to say that there are many learning objectives that have yet to be met. As my stress level slowly mounts and my available knitting/spinning time continues to dwindle, I find myself seeking some form of fibery life balance (try explaining that to a non-knitter).
Enter a relatively new niddy noddy and our heroine quickly finds herself measuring, re-skeining and tagging much of the leftover yarn in her stash.

I'm not sure what was more therapeutic: the tactile experience of manipulating the yarn, squishing and sniffing each new hank after it came off the niddy noddy; or the flexing of a metaphoric organizational control muscle with each "changed" bit of yarn as it was systematically classified and labelled.

Although I'm very diligent in all of the "mandatory" areas of my life, I'm not a colour coded sock drawer or labelled spice rack kind of gal. To be perfectly honest, about half the socks in my sock drawer are not even folded into pairs. I love frantically digging around every morning while trying to find two that match. It's refreshing to have some of the more insignificant aspects of my life be a little less regimented. It's almost like my own private social rebellion.

This quirk is what makes my organizational response to stress especially disorienting. I have no idea why a quick cupboard reorganization makes me feel like anything is possible.

On the knitting front, I managed to finish this while spending 8-hours in an under ventilated room listening to people with three years of legal education ask "What is probation?"

Project Specs: Fancy Fisherman's Cap (my own pattern)
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Swirl Chunky in Vera
Amount: 1 hank
Left over: About half
Needles: US 11 Circs
I saw a picture of a similar cap in a fashion magazine way back in October and finally decided to try a little intuitive knitting with some yarn I had marinating in the stash. While cruising around the Internet today I found a free pattern that is very similar to what I did here (it's called "The Republic" on the right-hand side if you scroll down). My version uses fewer stitches around, fewer garter stitch rows and less length before starting the crown decreases (although I didn't actually take any notes - bad habit, I know).
I also managed to find this absolutely perfect button at my LYS. Here's a close-up to capture my enthusiasm.
As per your wonderful feedback on the silk tank, I have decided to go ahead with the v-neck once I get a chance to work through the necessary math. The first sock-in-a-day sock is nearing completion as it patiently waits for a toe (scheduled for tomorrow when I bring it to part 3 of 8 of "When bad air circulation happens to good people" a.k.a. the licensing exam prep course I'm taking).
I can't wait to survive these exams and get back to knitting. I have so many great ideas running around my head that I can't wait to share!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Cold Foot

Without further ado, here's how much sock knitting a girl can get done in one day while studying, flying, and unpacking.
Enough to make her proud but still leave her with some cold toes.
I'm hoping that I'll be able to get this sock finished before the end of the week so I can get started on its mate. The ultimate goal being to reduce the unwieldy collection of unused sock yarn in the stash (the opposite of what has actually been happening since my last update).
I'm thinking that I might commit to finishing two pairs of socks per month. This works out to one sock per week. It's feasible but a little ambitious considering I keep getting distracted by things like this (a.k.a. my first real attempt at designing anything from scratch).

Ignoring the polar bear pyjama pants, this charming tube is aspiring to become a airy tank top of some description to be used for summer layering (obviously to be worn with actual pants). I've already frogged the armholes about three times and have revised the original fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants design strategy as a result.

The original plan was to do a simple boat neck that would allow the silk to drape a little and add interest to the neck. Looking at this picture though, I'm tempted to plan in a V-neck instead. Any thoughts?

And on an unrelated note, I thought that I'd share some beautiful flowers that my mom sent to congratulate me for finding my first career-type job.

They definitely help brighten the otherwise dreary weather we've been having as of late and remind me that summer's just around the corner.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Ripples n' ribs

The last week and a bit has once again been a little iffy 'round the edges. Now that school's finished I've attempted to throw myself head-first into studying for the bar admissions exams I have to write in the next couple of weeks. This has meant daily 6-8 hour study sessions and little meaningful knitting time.
The few stolen moments I have managed to find led to this:

Project Specs: Kat Coyle’s Wave Skirt (Spring 2005 IK)
Yarn: Cotton Fleece in various colours (I’ll check if you’re interested)
Amount: 2 MC, and 4 CC skeins
Left over: Almost no MC but heaps of CC
Modifications: None

I've also managed to convince myself that I should join Liz's Sock in a Day Challenge (which you may still be able to sign up for if you email her and ask nicely). My chosen day is today. Here's how far I was when waiting for my luggage at the airport earlier this morning.

Although progress has been made, I think that it's safe to say that I will not finish this sock today. Luckily, the rules mention that I have up to 18 hours to finish the pretty. Here's a close-up of the lacy rib pattern stitch that I'm going to blame for slowing me down.

Wish me luck, or speed!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Sweater, what sweater?

Things have been very busy these past few days. I finished my last exam Wednesday morning, and have been trying to reconnect with neglected friends and get some knitting done before I had to start studying for the upcoming bar admissions exams.

With the help of my new favourite knitting gadget I managed to finish these while at the DKC's Knitter's Frolic (which was a blast if you ever get the chance to go).

Project Specs: Plain Ol' Socks (my own pattern)
Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts Lightweight Socks that Rock in Jewel of the Nile
Amount: 1 hank
Left over: 25 yards
Needles: 2.25 mm DPNs
Completed: May 1 2007
Modifications: Twisted rib cuff and eye of partridge heel

And one more pic because it amuses me greatly that the dog, who ignored me all day, wouldn't leave me alone once the camera came out (and somehow ended up in every pic that I took as a result).

Here's what else has been on the needles.

Any guesses? Details next time.