Once Upon a Sock: April 2018

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Hi All!

First, thank you to Stefanie for creating three new logos to choose from for our monthly sock talk. Is it awesome? So pretty! You may see different ones on each of our blogs and it will be fun seeing which ones appealed to each person. Second, it’s sock time and I’ve got a beautiful pair to show off!

Earlier last month, I completed the Mina’s Vanilla Sock Recipe pattern. Thank goodness I did because I spent most of the month packing, when I wasn’t working, and I wouldn’t have anything to show you today. My husband and I bought a new construction house (check out my Instagram for pics!) and closed in mid-March. We moved in 9 days ago and moving in comes with unpacking. Between going back to work, unpacking, and living in the dark ages (no phone, internet or tv until April 30th…fingers crossed), it’s been a challenge to get up the energy to knit in the evening. I think I’ve knit a total of four rows on my new socks since we’ve been here.

So, anyhow, I am in love with how the socks turned out. Blocking them made them so soft and I’m quite pleased with the way the yarn pooled within the stitches themselves. Here’s the information, in case you are curious.

Ravelled Here: Mina’s Vanilla Sock Recipe

Started / Finished: October 29, 2017 / March 11, 2018

Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm)

Yarn: Yarn Carnival High Wire 3-Ply in the colorway Equinox (53 grams or 259.7 yards or 237.5 meters…or just a little over half the skein) 🙂

Notes: Knit one at a time, cuff down. I went with the 64 stitch pattern; however the next time I would either go up a needle size or switch to the 72 stitch pattern. These are a bit snug going over my heel; however I’m sure will loosen up as I wear them. If so, then I would leave as is. I might also try her modification for higher arches (hence the tightness across the heel) the next time.

 

 

 

Aren’t they gorgeous? I may be a little biased 🙂 So, after I finished this pair, I was wondering what to knit next as all my yarn had already been packed up. Low and behold, that day I went to mailbox and my Yarnbox shipment had come in! My needles were not packed (who would pack something as precious as needles? Nope…I hand carried those babies over) and I thought the pattern offered with the shipment was interesting. I think this is the first time in three years of subscribing to Yarnbox that I’ve actually made one of the patterns that was written for the yarn. Go me!

The designer, Lorna’s Laces, hasn’t made the pattern available on Ravelry, but it is called Hygge House Socks. Perfect for the chilly new floors downstairs in my new house! It is knit with size US 4 (3.5 mm) needles and I know if I would just get going on these, they would be super fast! I was 10 garter stitch ridges in when I realized that they were way too big. I was knitting the Large size (60 stitches cast on) and I needed to go down to the Small / Medium size (50 stitches cast on) to ensure they fit. I’m currently 5 garter ridges into the first section. This pattern also uses two different colors and weights of yarn. Color A is Mrs. Crosby Harbor, worsted, in the colorway Tempest, a deep purple that’s kind of hard to photograph. Color B is Rauma Mitu, DK, in the colorway 8141, which is a dark pinky salmon…again, hard to capture properly. Here are the skeins caked up and divided into two for TAAT construction. This photo taken at the old house.

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And here’s my progress (new house carpet…only in the bedrooms and loft!):

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I look forward to sharing more with you next month. Now, if you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you know that I link up with a great group of knitters who also like to knit socks. In the last month, we’ve grown exponentially! If you are new(ish) to the blog, welcome and thank you for following! Let me introduce you to my friends and a few new ones too (blog links will be updated as everyone posts):

  1. Kathy B of Compassionknit
  2. Kat of (updated) Felinity Knits
  3. Katherine of (updated) Fiber and Sustenance
  4. Reanna of (updated) Knit, Reanna, knit!
  5. Liz of (updated) Knitty Little Sew and Sew
  6. (new member) Lynn of (updated) Minding My Own Stitches
  7. Steph of (updated) My Making Do Adventure
  8. Stefanie of (updated) stefaniecraftswithwoolpaperfabric
  9. (new member added) Tammy of (updated) Life and Yarn or Yarn and Life
  10. (new member added) Meg of (updated) Intergalactic

Whew! Our group has grown from four to six to eleven in just a couple of months! If you’d like to join in too, drop one of us a line so we can let the others know, as well as send you the graphic for the blog post. Then, every month on the first Thursday, post about your socks and link up to everyone!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

 

 

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FO – Freedom and Cables Test Knit

Hi All! How’s your February going? It’s going pretty fast for me. Things are super busy at both home and work. I did take the day yesterday to catch up on some shows and knit on my cardigan. And this weekend, hubby and I had a picnic at one of our favorite wineries and then did a wine and chocolate pairing at another of our favorite wineries. It was so gorgeous. Being out in the fresh breeze sipping wine was nice and relaxing.

Recently I read a post by my fellow sock knitter, Kat from felinityknits, and fell in love with the hat she had knit. Come to find out that it was her own pattern. I let her know that if she ever decided to write up the pattern, I would gladly test knit it for her. Lo and behold, a few days later, she sent over the pattern. There were very minor edits and overall it was very well written and easy to follow.

There are two versions: one color and two colors and you can see both on Kat’s blog post about them. I decided to knit the one with one color. I definitely recommend going by her yardage, as the skein I picked out had about 20 less yards and I lost at yarn chicken when I only had 6 rows to go. I even deleted one of the cable repeats thinking it would be enough.

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Yarn Chicken Fail

Luckily I found some yarn that had the exact same color in it and only needed 2 grams to finish it off.

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Two grams of beautiful perfection…don’t you love how the cables continue until the very end?

Once I made the pom-pom out of the same yarn and added it to the top of the hat, you couldn’t even tell I had run out. Before I show you the finished hat, check out how much this yarn bled! It is a discontinued colorway called Cherry and the base is Madelinetosh Tosh DK. I bought it back in 2015 so it was awesome to knit from my stash. The yarn I used to finish it off and make the pom-pom is Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend. The colorway is number 3109 Woodland DK and it’s also been in my stash for awhile.

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Seriously yarn bleeding

Oh, here’s another thing. Do not aggressively block your hat! This thing was humongous on me after I blocked it and it fit perfectly before hand. Turns out you should lay it flat to dry instead of trying to stretch it over a great, big balloon or let it drag itself down on a styrofoam head. Ugh. I had to reblock, praying that it would shrink back (it shrank 1 1/2 inches both ways), and now it fits perfectly! When adding the pom-pom, use a large button to stabilize it and make sure you tie it in a bow so it’s easy to take off when you need to wash it again.

Didn’t it turn out gorgeous? I have gotten so many compliments already and it’s coming in super handy with the very cold weather the past couple of days. My project notes can be found on Ravelry here. Kat’s pattern is up on her blog (linked above) and is also on Ravelry as a free pattern. If you have never made a hat with cables, or worked with cables at all, or you love cables and weren’t sure what to make next, check out her pattern! I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

Once Upon a Sock: October Edition

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Hi All and Happy October!

I absolutely love this time of year. The leaves are just starting to change on some of our trees, although it will take a tad bit longer for the rest of them to catch up. The nights are definitely cooler and the days are too, which is a relief after an unprecedented, super hot summer. Pumpkin everything has come out…although not all of it good. Have you tried Halo Top’s Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream? I’m not a fan because of the pieces of pie crust (think soggy pie crust…not crisp and flaky) in it. Plus, I think there are some things you just shouldn’t mess with from the original flavor. Pumpkin Oreos anyone?

One of the other things I love about this time of year is getting to wear socks again! Yep…it’s all about the socks. And due to being sick last week, I was able to finish another pair, just in time for this cooler weather! I’ve talked about them many times on the blog. I actually started the first sock back in September of 2015. Socks were not really a priority at that time, even though I was blogging about them every Thursday. I finished the first sock in March of 2016 and cast on for the second. Then I put them away for a really, really long time.

Last month, while trying to determine which sock pattern I wanted to work next, I finally decided to pull out that second sock and get it done. I was tired of them taking up a pair of needles and a project bag. Plus I wanted that extra yarn for my sock yarn blanket 🙂 I also made a solemn vow to myself to finish everything in my UFO and WIP projects before starting anything new. This pair of socks is the reason why I always knit them TAAT* now as I never want to get SSS** again. I’ve even blocked them and taken pictures. Go me!!!

Ravelled Here: Hermione’s Everyday Socks by Erica Lueder

Started / Finished: 9/26/2015 – 10/3/2017

Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm) 24 inch circulars

Yarn: Madeline Tosh Sock in the colorway Spectrum (used 96 grams)

Techniques Learned: With the first sock, I learned how to do my first Heel Flap, Heel Turn and Gusset. I’ve used all of these techniques multiple times since then; however this was my first! I also learned that there are some mistakes you can live with and some you can’t. If you look very closely at the sock on the right foot, you’ll see that I got off pattern on the foot section. I decided I can live with it since I’m the only one that will ever see it.

I had to throw that last picture in there because my dog photo bombed me 🙂 Hey! Did you know that my friends and I blog about our sock knitting the first Thursday of every month? If you would like to join us, please let one of us know in the comments and we will be happy to link up with you! In the meantime, check out my very creative knitting buddies to see what they are up to this month! I will link straight to their posts as soon as they blog about them.

Katherine at fiber and sustenance

Kat at felinity knits

Stefanie at Wooly Cakes and Wooden Spoons

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

*TAAT = Two at a Time

**SSS = Single Sock Syndrome

Once Upon A Sock: August Edition

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Hi All!

Did you enjoy my posts about Baby Rainy’s homemade gifts? If you haven’t checked them out, please do! You can find the links in the menu bar to the right. I would love your feedback. This year is flying by and this past month has been no exception. I didn’t meet my goal of finishing my socks by the 1 year anniversary of starting them; however I did finish them in the same month 🙂 I absolutely adore the pattern, fit and yarn…I guess I just love everything about them!

Ravelled Here: Smooth Operators by Susan B Anderson

Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm) magic loop

Yarn: String Theory Colorworks Inertia Self Striping in the color Putnisite

Started / Finished: July 10, 2016 – July 23, 2016 (Whew!)

New Techniques Learned: Afterthought Heels…this was new to me and scary as heck when I first started taking out the waste yarn, but now I love the method and will use it for future sock patterns. Especially for self-striping sock yarn!

I knit these TAAT and they took forever; however I’m so happy to be finished with them! They are super soft, especially after blocking and I know I’ll get a ton of use out of them.

Now, I just need to decide what I want to knit next. I’m leaning very heavily towards the Rose City Rollers or actually knitting the pattern from this months Yarnbox Sock Club, Call Me Ishmael. My yarn for the sock club just went in the mail yesterday, so I don’t know what color I will receive as of yet. Maybe I’ll wait until I get it and then decide. Regardless, I will have another pair on the needles again soon!

Me, and my fellow sock knitters, link up the first Thursday of every month to talk about our socks. If you would like to join us, let one of us know and we’ll be happy to add you to the group! I know that Stefanie from Wooly Cakes and Wooden Spoons is taking a social media / blog break for the months of August and September. Katherine from fiber and sustenance is currently on a cross country road trip with her hubby and I’m not sure if she’ll have time to post about socks this month; however check out her journey! She’s got some awesome pictures and lots of knitting!!! Finally, Kat from felinity knits has her sock post up for the month and it is an absolute stunning show stopper! Check her out!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

 

FO ~ Baby Footwear

Hi All!

In my last blog post, I talked to you about the cute little headbands I made for Baby Rainy. This time, we’ll talk about footwear. Now, you know that I already blogged about her tiny little Baby Mitten Socks a couple of months ago. What you didn’t know is that I also made her a pair of booties and a pair of flip flops! Let’s start with the booties first.

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Easiest Baby Booties Ever…free pattern on Ravelry

How freaking adorable are these? I decided to use the Sparkle White yarn I used for Rainy’s headbands, which was leftover from her Rainbow Honeycomb Blanket. These are quite the cool little construction. They look like a capital T before you fold the edges over and sew them together, then you turn them inside out to get the affect shown above.

I could have sworn I took a picture before I sewed them up so I could show progress pictures; however I can’t find them for the life of me. This is a free knit pattern on Ravelry titled Easiest Baby Booties Ever! by Gina Michele. They really are quite simple; however I highly recommend watching the YouTube video where she goes over construction and sewing together.

These can easily be made into larger sizes and seem like they will be a perfect fit without falling off of Baby Rainy. I did make the newborn size, so I may have to work on another pair for when she’s a little older.

 

I was able to find the in progress pictures for these adorable little flip flops. Again, I used the Sparkle White yarn that was left over from the blanket and some leftover yarn from the Tulip Stitch Headband. I thought they would look super cute together. This was another free pattern ($2.00 on Rav but free instructions on her blog) on Ravelry called the Baby Strap Flip-Flops by Bethany Dearden and is crochet. I’m so glad that I can crochet and knit 🙂 It makes it so much more fun when I see patterns and don’t have to worry about whether it’s one or the other.

These took quite a bit more time than the knit booties due to all of the sewing together; however they were still super simple. One thing that I would change is to wait to weave in the ends until the end. I wove them in at each step and I could have hidden some of the ends better if I had waited. She also has a YouTube video that helps out with instructions that might need demonstration. That’s how I found the pattern in the first place! Again, I made the newborn size since she will be born in August.

I cannot wait to see these on Rainy’s little footsies! To keep those footsies clean, I also included The Almost Lost Washcloth by Julie Tarsha. I’ve made this before; however this was my first time making a project using the Portuguese Knitting style. I really enjoyed the technique and hope to use it in future projects that are all garter stitch. I find the Purl stitch to be relaxing when using this method. The yarn was Lily Sugar’n Cream Twists in the color Squishy Twists.

I’ve now blogged about all the gifts that I made for Baby Rainy. Sweet Mama has promised lots of pictures of Rainy wearing / using everything once she is born and I’ll update my Ravelry project pages at that time. It was so much fun making stuff for a baby girl again after the rush of boys lately; however I’m super happy to be back to knitting for myself. I have more finished objects to blog about soon!

Until next time, Happy Knitting and Crocheting!

 

FO ~ Shell Stitch Baby Headbands

Hi All,

How many times can I start the beginning sentence for this blog? Apparently 20 times. Okay…enough of that. Let’s get on with it.

Baby Rainy is going to be one styling little chickadee when she is born. In addition to her Rainbow Honeycomb Blanket, she’s got some awesome new headbands to wear. The first headband I made for her was the Tulip Stitch Headband, which I blogged about last month. I wanted to create a couple more that had flowers attached and came upon this YouTube video for a Shell Stitch Baby Headband with Flower.

You know I immediately had to pull out my scrap yarn and crochet hooks to try this. There is no written pattern; however it’s easily pulled together just by watching the video. This makes it perfect for those that don’t know how to read a crochet pattern. I wish I could write it out for you; however the designer has it written out for sale in her Etsy store.

The first one I made, I measured until I had approximately 13.5 inches (leaving 1/2 inch for stretch factor) to fit a newborns 14 inch head. I decided to make it in all white, allowing it to go with multiple outfits. It used about 12 grams of the Caron Simply Soft Snow Sparkle yarn that I used to make Rainy’s blanket, along with a 3.75 mm (F) crochet hook.

The second one, I kept the white headband and made the flower red. I increased the size to 15 inches and decided to leave the ends hanging so Mama can tie them together and it will last longer. It used approximately 7 grams of Caron Simply Soft Snow Sparkle yarn for the headband part and 5 grams of Caron Simply Soft Harvest Red yarn for the flower.

They turned out super cute and Mama (and me) are excited to see them modeled on sweet Rainy’s head! Only 23 more days until her due date! (You can click on the images below to make them larger.)

Until next time, Happy Knitting (and Crochet)!

FO – Rainbow Baby Blanket

Hi All,

Mama (aka Megan) and the family have received their package, so it’s time to start blogging about everything I made for Baby Rainbow (aka Rainy). In case you missed it, here are the Baby Mitten Socks and Tulip Stitch Headband I made for her and blogged about in the past.

Let’s start with the Rainbow Blanket. I knew that Megan might like a rainbow blanket. The first thing I did was start a Baby Rainbow board on Pinterest and send it to her to get an idea of the colors she was drawn to. She really liked the natural colors of the rainbow versus the pastel palette that I liked so I’m really happy that I sent the board to her first. I did not let her pick the blanket itself because I wanted it to be a surprise.

Next, I had to decide if I wanted to knit or crochet. Knitting takes longer; however crochet uses more yarn. After thinking about it, I knew I was starting so far in advance of her due date that I could do either. After that it was a simple agonizing choice of which blanket. Guys…there are literally hundreds of thousands of baby blankets out there! I was very attracted to the Honeycomb Throw by Red Heart just because of the way it looked. While browsing pictures of others FO’s in Ravelry, I saw a rainbow one and was immediately hooked.

I knew that I was going to have to buy yarn, even though I’m on a yarn diet, because I didn’t have all the colors of the rainbow. A lesson learned here…I had Red Heart Super Saver Solids in Lemon and Pumpkin. When I went to the store, I bought Caron Simply Soft in the other colors I needed, plus the sparkly white for the cloud appearance of the border / honeycomb pattern. Don’t do this! I repeat…do not do this! Although everything worked out in the end, the Red Heart was a thicker ply than the Simply Soft, even though it was listed as the same ply and weight. It had me really worried the entire time I was making the blanket.

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One set of rainbow complete!

I swatched and didn’t like the fabric on the recommended needle size of US 10 (6.0 mm) so I went down to a size US 8 (5.0 mm). I also knew that I didn’t want it as big as the throw size from the pattern, so I had to do a little math to determine the proper size. I wound up casting on with 142 stitches. I needed 10 stitches total for both ends (the border is knit at the same time as the honeycomb pattern) and the honeycomb pattern itself was in multiples of 8 stitches + 4. My math was correct (yay me!) and the final blanket wound up being a perfect size of 32″ x 40″. She’ll be able to use this her whole life if she wants.

Also, this…for those who do not like finishing…this would be your worst nightmare. Look away if you must. Believe me, I was not going to wait until the end to weave in all those ends. I think if I would have waited, I would have never finished it.

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Ends Galore!!!

I washed the blanket in Newborn Dreft and then steam blocked it since it’s acrylic yarn. It turned out super soft and snuggly and smells so good. Normally, I would list out all the information, however I’m going to send you to my Ravelry link this time for the project because there is just too much yarn to list and too many notes 🙂 All in all, I really loved the pattern and would definitely make this again. The honeycomb pattern itself was easy to memorize and a lot simpler than it looks.

Without further ado…the FO!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!