Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Have you ever had the DT's when you're out of a favourite yarn?
It's very cold today, and I don't have the heat turned on. Maybe that's why I'm shaking. But it might be Koigu withdrawal.
What to work on next?
I was tooling around on the What's Cool page at Knitty and was inspired by this:
The reason I didn't do the open toes...my open tubes - such as in my fingerless gloves - have a bit of a curl at the end. This is a nice decorative touch (IMHO) but would be a real pain with a sock if you wanted to put a shoe on.
I've got my thinking cap (such as it is) on, pondering a curl-less open foot.
I loved my Koigu binge, but after several weeks of hard production knitting I needed to take a creative detour, and I think these knee socks fit the bill.
The socks are size Medium +, knit with the 72 needle cylinder on the Verdun 47.
Since I had the black and red going, I ventured into the world of unsocks...
They are meant to go with these:
Thursday, September 24, 2009
My main colour is P702, and the heels/toes are P132. My rainbow stripes are: Red P622, Orange P831, Yellow P712, Green P525, Blue P416, Purple P142. The main colour is one of the newer spackle yarns, and the other colours were 'one-ofs' that I picked off the showroom shelf at Koigu.
The pattern is the same as my Lorna's Laces Rainbow socks:
Koigu version is more subtle.
I've made many dozens of the Lorna's version, and we'll see if the Koigu version is as popular.
The Koigu Rainbow pair above is size Large, knit with the 72 needle cylinder on the Verdun 47.
Another Koigu colourway:
Koigu KPPPM P706, and it may be my favourite of all the Koigu colours I've knit in this binge.
I like it so much I knit the whole bag (1 kilo) in one sitting.
The pair in the photo is size Medium.
As with any 100% wool, I add woolly nylon to the heels and toes for added durability. This adds a little time to the sock making, and you know it adds frogging time when I forget to put it in....but I've got a good routine established so the extra time is marginal.
The Koigu yarn has a tight twist and the colours can be intense, both of which have tension implications, so I've been knitting at about 1/4 turn looser tension.
The skeins are ideally suited to my size Medium standard pattern (1 skein per sock). They are just a hair short for my size Medium + - have to splice for the last row or two. And I'm well into a thirds ball for a pair of size Large or XL. This isn't an issue when buying by the bag, but is food for caution when buying by the skein.
Today we still didn't see Snappy, but it looks like he's been present.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
I've long been a fan of the Arial font... IMHO one of the crispest to see and least tiring to read.
My main browser is Windows Internet Explorer 8, and my fonts, Arial and others, have looked pretty good to my tired eyes. But when I use Mozilla Firefox for browsing, the fonts always look a little fuzzy, even my beloved Arial.
Firefox is oft touted as superior for working on web sites and that's why I keep it around. But I don't use it as my primary browser because it has crashed on my a number of times and scattered any bookmarks to that place where lost emails go.
Anyway, I've spent hours and hours looking for a solution to the fuzzy-fonts that plague me in Firefox, and finally stumbled on a solution in an obscure forum somewhere in the depths of googledom.
I share it with you, in case you too suffer from FFS (fuzzy font syndrome).
In Windows XP, click on: Control Panel; Display; Appearance; Effects. The second menu item is "Use the following method to smooth edges of screen fonts"...click the little box to enable, and choose "Clear Type" form the choices.
This made an outstanding difference to both Firefox and Internet Explorer. It's like HD tv!
And meanwhile, back in my knitting world:
I'm still on my Koigu Binge. Here are a few more samples.
These are both size Large, knit with the 72 needle cylinder on the Verdun 47. The top pair is Koigu KPPPM P800 and the lower pair is P448. I used Woolly Nylon to reinforce the heels and toes, as I do with any 100% wool sock yarn.
That ended a week of Koigu Size Large knitting, and this week I have shifted to a Kogiu Size Medium binge.
You know, they don't always turn out....
Here's a Monday Morning Special!
I took the 60 cylinder off my Legare 400 (from my Welsh Country Stockings effort), and put back the 54 cylinder.
First, I forgot to re-adjust my tension accordingly. So half way through a size Medium sock that looked like it would be 8 feet long, I stopped, frogged and began again.
Then, just as I was getting to the toe I realized I forgot to add the Woolly Nylon to the heel.
So I frogged it AGAIN.
Only to discover that I hadn't forgot the Woolly Nylon at all. So when my frogging got to the heel it turned into a woolly mess. For some reason WN tangles and knots when frogging.
Sometimes Mondays really suck!
Thursday, September 17, 2009
And to be more specific, a Koigu size Large binge.
Here's a few samples:
Koigu KPPPM colour P142
The fall craft shows are but a scant few weeks away, and I'm in OD mode. (That would be Over Drive, not Over Dose... though the distinction is sometimes blurred.)
RIP Mary Travers
Swayze. But the passing of Mary Travers knocked the wind out of my sails this morning.
I was totally inspired by Peter Paul and Mary as a young teenager with a guitar slung over his back.
I loved their music.
I loved their politics. They were right up there with Dr King in Washington, and at the forefront of the anti war movement.
I, like countless others, was positive Puff the Magic Dragon was a secret marijuana song.
And I loved that they introduced young upstarts to the world, like Bob Dylan and Gordon Lightfoot.
In the mid 80's PPM did a concert in Toronto. I took DS. The place was packed with middle-somethings'. It was such a hoot. They would strum a one chord intro to a song and the entire audience would know exactly what song was coming and join in right on the very first word. And sing every word of every song! DS couldn't figure out how we all 'knew'.
What a sad passing for us now-past-middle-somethings.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
They are all Welsh Country Stockings, sock machine pattern adapted from dpn pattern by Nancy Bush, and using Jenny Deters' fair isle technique for the detail.
There are size Medium. Recall that I normally knit size medium on 54 needle cylinder, but switched to this cylinder to accommodate the 4 stitch pattern repeat in the detail.
The yarn is my own 1 ply woollen spun 70/30 Wool/Nylon, fingering weight.
I like working with 60 stitches (even if that means 6 extra stitches to kitchener) and I can see it would be more versatile for pattern work than the 54 due to simple math.
The fair isle work was quite different on the 60 cylinder, compared to the 72 cylinder, but I figured out a working rhythmn after a couple of pair and it was off to the races.
It seems each machine, and each cylinder have their own personalities, and it takes a bit of time to develop a working relationship ;o)
(Akk...does anyone know what happened to the spell checker on blogspot....it seems to have vanished!)
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Yesterday was the beginning of the new school year. Grandkids #3 and #4 are excited to be heading out on their new adventure.
While I was looking for a particular scrap of yarn, I opened a plastic bag and found this:
This was the beginning of my life as the Soxophone Player! The very first 'sock' that came off my sock machine. Be it ever so humble....
And this is another beginning for me on the sock machine. It is a 60 needle cylinder that I have placed on the Legare 400, temporarily replacing the 54 needle cylinder. This cylinder solved the dilemma of the 4 stitch repeat on the Welsh Country Stockings for a size medium.
The cylinder is a new manufacture from New Zealand and has been, um, sitting in the
For some reason doing fair isle on the 60 needle cylinder is much more pernickity than on the 72 or the 54. I can do it, but it's slower work as the secondary yarn wants to do its own thing...jumping under the latch hooks, riding over top of the primary yarn when it shouldn't, and all the naughty things that yarn like to do.
I am enjoying the Fair Isle work. But I also still love to work with self patterning yarns, especially predicatble ones like Fortissima #9048, from stash.
Size Medium, knit with the 54 needle cylinder.
Monday, September 7, 2009
In sock yarn making, the bottleneck is skein winding.
At the moment....both bottlenecks are in effect!
In any event, the dye work on this colourway is almost complete. I dyed an extra batch of pale Clay that I am going to over-dye.
And the rest, you can see above: from left to right: Island Blue, Mulberry, Golden Pear, Clay, and Mouse Grey. Laying cross ways are the painted versions combing the 5 colours. The top skein laying across was vat dyed in left over Island Blue after hand painting in the 5 colours.
One of the reasons I'm behind in my skein winding....
Here are two of the, um, several more pairs of Welsh Country Stockings I've been knitting (adapted for the sock machine from Nancy Bush's dpn pattern and using Jenny Deter's fair isle technique).
I knit both these pairs the Verdun 47, 72 needle cylinder. The top pair, Natural and Cranberry -looks a bit like the Mulberry skein in the top photo, but next to one another you'd see the Cranberry has different undertones - in size Medium +.
The Natural and Evergreen pair is size Large.
I haven't knit any size Medium socks in this pattern yet.... I have to sort out how to do it first. You know I knit my size Medium socks on a 54 needle cylinder, but the little Fair Isle pattern has a 4 stitch repeat, so won't work with 54 stitch sock.
Contemplation is another bottleneck!
Friday, September 4, 2009
unexhausted. The resulting paler version of the Island Blue will do for some heels and toes.
And also from the dye pot:
Both are in my 75/25 Wool/Nylon fingering weight. I think these two colours will work well together:
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Such a strange year in the garden. Everything is pretty much two weeks late this year due to the non summer. In addition, my Beefsteak Tomatoes have a lot of deformity.
Nevertheless, I've had a few giant beauties and nothing beats a one-slice tomato sandwich.
I saw a panini recipe on tv which we tried....thick slice of french bread lathered in tapinade, then a layer of mozarella (the real stuff, not the fake brick stuff), tomato slices, fresh basil, another layer of mozarella and topped with the second tapinade laden slice of bread. Put on the panini press for 4 - 5 minutes - just until the cheese is starting to melt but the tomato is still room temp.
In the pasture I'm lookin' over
a giant puff ball. There is no doubt a 'real' name for these, but I don't know what it is. A member of the mushroom family to be sure.
In this little section of pasture there are three puff balls. I sometimes find them in the bushy rough pastures and this is the first time I've found them on 'improved' land.
If you capture these early enough (I did) you can eat them. Slice them up and prepare them as you would eggplant. DW marianates thick slices and does them on the BBQ.
And in town I'm lookin' over
sock numero uno produced by my very good friend on her Verdun 47.
The machine is an eBay find, and from the description, it sounds like it was from Elsie. It is an excellent machine, rock solid, holds its settings, knits like a charm. It is, in fact, better than my own Verdun 47 ;o(