Once Upon A Sock – August 2018

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Hi All!

Do you knit or crochet socks? Do you like to blog about them and share your progress? The first Thursday of every month, my friends and I link up with each other and talk about our socks…the good, the bad, and the ugly. The beauty of a link up party is being able to jump in and out when you want to share….even if you’ve knit just one row or want to talk about what you are dreaming of making next. Click the link below to join in, follow the instructions, then link back to my blog so we can all share in the happiness of your gorgeous socks! Feel free to use the beautiful OUAS images Stefanie from stefaniecraftswithwoolpaperfabric created just for us. All three are included within my blog.

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Last month, I shared with you that I hoped to have my Jelly Rolls completed. Guess what? It didn’t happen 😦 However, I did make some progress and I have a couple of tips that worked for me that I’d like to share with you. First, a progress pic:

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Front of sock and side of sock…these colors make me happy!

First, I had to move these to DPN’s to work on the heel. I only have two sets of DPN’s. One set is 8 inches long and one set is 6 inches long. I decided to use the longer needles for the front of the sock and the shorter needles for the back of the sock. Since they are slightly different colors, it makes it super easy to tell where I am. That’s one trick. BTW, I also track my stitches using a very complicated technique. Pencil, sticky note, and tick marks 🙂

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Here’s another tip. See how I have the needles sticking out of one sock? That means that is the sock I work on next. Here’s how I do it.

  1. When I start a decrease row (because I’m decreasing the gusset right now), I knit across the front stitches and then place the long DPN in the cake for the second sock.
  2. I continue on with my shorter needles and work on the decreases for the first sock.
  3. Then I stick the shorter needle in the cake for the second sock and move on to the decreases for that sock.
  4. The row after decreasing is always a knit row. I know I can work on the same sock, so I stick the needles back in the cake of the sock I’m working on as I finish each needle.
  5. I knit across the first row and put the longer DPN back in the cake for the first sock.
  6. I knit across both back rows and then stick the shorter needle into the cake for the first sock.
  7. I start the process all over again with Step 1.

I hope this makes sense…If not, let me know if I need to do a photo tutorial. This has really kept me organized, especially when I have to put everything down and walk away. I always know where I am, which is super important when knitting concurrently.

I hope these tips helped you! I am 6 rows away from having the gusset decreases completed and moving on to easy, breezy stockinette. At that point, I will put both socks back on magic loop and work TAAT. We’ll see how far I get before next month! I’m not promising anything this time…:D

PS…my blog will actually post at 9pm PST on the Wednesday evening before the first Thursday of the month to allow for anyone in the world to start posting on their Thursday.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

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WIP – Sweater Coat in Grannies

Hi All,

Awhile back I told you that I was working on a couple of different projects. The baby blanket was completed and blogged about long ago so I don’t know why I waited so long to tell you about this project.

My friend, Karen, contacted me while I was in the process of moving and asked if there was any way possible for me to make her dream coat. Of course I said yes, after initially suggested she buy one on Etsy (LOL)…just to give me some time since I was moving and had a baby blanket due first. Now, I feel bad because it’s been so long. However, I think I’ve got my groove back!

It’s basically a coat made out of crocheted granny squares and then sewn together with some detail like a button band, sleeves and a folded collar. It’s 62 squares, of which I have 16 completed. Egads! I seriously need to get a move on before fall is here and she misses her chance to wear it!

Here’s Granny Square I from the pattern completed. It’s made using Red Heart Unforgettable in the colorway Stained Glass. It also uses Red Heart Soft yarn in the colorways Dark Leaf, Grape and Teal. I love how the varying colors of the Stained Glass make each square look different, even though it’s the exact same pattern. You can click on the images to make them larger.

This was the first time I have ever swatched for something crochet; however knew I had to do it since it would be worn. I found out that I’m a super loose crocheter, which I kind of already knew since my baby blankets and hats turn out so huge. The pattern called for a J (6 mm) hook or whatever size it took to make a 6″ x 6″ (15 cm x 15 cm) square. It took me 7 times, varying my hook sizes and yarn tension, to finally get gauge with an H (5.0 mm) hook.

After that it was just a matter of fitting it in between unpacking. I’ve only got one more box to unpack, besides my yarn. And my yarn is safe in plastic totes so it’s not going anywhere until I get my shelving up for it. So, onward and upward! I can do this!!!

Here’s a sneak peek at what it will look like when it is finished:

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Image via Red Heart – Link in Blog

Here’s a link to the free pattern: Sweater Coat in Grannies

 

There are three different styles, which all use different Red Heart yarns for slightly different looks and drape. This is the softest of the three. The link on Ravelry is Coatigan in Grannies and includes all three coats and links to all three free patterns.

I’ll keep you updated as I get further in. I’m excited to see what the next part of the pattern brings 🙂

Until next time, Happy Knitting and Crocheting!

 

Once Upon a Sock – July 2018

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Hi All!

Do you knit or crochet socks? Do you like to blog about them and share your progress? The first Thursday of every month, my friends and I link up with each other and talk about our socks…the good, the bad, and the ugly. The beauty of a link up party is being able to jump in and out when you want to share….even if you’ve knit just one row or want to talk about what you are dreaming of making next. Click the link below to join in, follow the instructions, then link back to my blog so we can all share in the happiness of your gorgeous socks! Feel free to use the beautiful OUAS imags Stefanie from stefaniecraftswithwoolpaperfabric created just for us. All three are included within my blog.

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Now that business is out of the way, let’s get to talking about socks! If you are new to my blog, welcome! If you’re not, welcome back and thank you for following! After last months debacle, I wanted to find a pattern to knit with the yarn I received from my sock swap partner, Reanna from Knit, Reanna, knit. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find anything that floated my boat with that particular yarn so I’ll save it for next time.

What I did find was a paid for pattern I’ve been wanting to knit since I started learning how to knit socks. It’s called Jelly Rolls by Mara Catherine Bryner. I love the construction of these and can’t wait to finish so I can wear them while Summer is still struggling to appear in the Bay Area.

I decided to knit these concurrently so I am completing one section for the first sock, then moving to the second and so on. I’m knitting a 72 stitch sock with US 1 (2.25 mm) circulars for the sock itself and US 2 (2.75 mm) DPNs for the heel flap, heel turn and possibly the gusset.

The yarn I’m using for the main color (A) is West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4 ply Self Striping in the colorway Rum Paradise. The yarn I’m using for the secondary color (B) is leftovers I received from a friend getting rid of her extra bits and is Spud & Chloë Fine in the colorway Dragonfly. I adore both of these colorways and seriously can’t wait to see what’s coming next with the self striping yarn.

I’ve messed up in a few places and had to restart sections due to my own misunderstandings of this type of construction (not the patterns fault); however have soldiered through and am falling in love more and more as I get further along. Here are pictures of my progress along the way. You can roll over each image to see what I was doing.

 

 

So, that’s where I am right now! Aren’t these gorgeous? I’ve completed the heel flap and turn on one sock and have moved on to the second. I dare say I may even have a completed set of socks by next months post!

Until then, Happy Knitting!

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Once Upon A Sock: June 2018

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Hi All! It’s that time again…the first Thursday of the month. If you are new here, welcome! If you’re not, welcome back and thank you for following! Last month we decided to do something new with Once Upon a Sock (OUAS) and created a link party. It worked out quite well and is much easier than updating links as each person posts around the world. I hope more people will join in; however the beauty of this link party is that you can hop in and out as you please. If you have something to talk about, link up! If not, skip til the next month. Also, you can crochet socks too…it’s not just knitting 🙂

The company I am using to host the link party has just come out with a beta version, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I did everything correctly this month. Also, to answer my own question from last month, apparently WordPress has some restrictions, one of which is that you cannot embed scripts or objects, thus you can only host a linkup that displays in an external page and not inside your post.

Therefore, you have to click the link from my page to see the other blogs that have linked up. It’s really easy to link up…just click the link button below and follow the directions. The only thing I ask is that you provide a link back to my blog when posting about it on your blog so that others can find me, in addition to the link party. FYI…I am on the West Coast of the US and am hours behind everyone. If there is an issue, I will find out about it when I wake up in the morning…please be patient if there are issues! I’m still learning 🙂

So, now that business is out of the way, let’s get to what we are really here for…socks!!! I really didn’t think I would have anything to talk about this month. I’ve spent most of the past month working on a crocheted baby blanket and also trying to get gauge on a commissioned crocheted granny square coat. I’ll talk more about both of those projects at a later time. I even took my socks with me on vacation and didn’t have time to work on them.

However, this past weekend I told my husband that I needed some down time. Some time where we didn’t have a single thing planned…and no picnic trips to the wineries either! Although that sounds relaxing, and it is, I still have to prep everything for said picnic and then know that I won’t get anything done once wine tasting has ended. I learned my lesson that too much wine and knitting do not mix.

So, I had a glorious whole weekend to work on my socks! I got quite a bit done and am pleased to share my progress. I have completed the leg portion of the socks and am ready to start the heels. Now, I have to figure out, do I want to knit them concurrently or one at a time until I get back to the foot? What method do you find works best for you? I’ve done both and prefer working on them concurrently because if I mess up something on one, I can mess it up on the other too…or go back and fix it immediately. If I’m working them one at a time, then the chance that they may turn out slightly different is possible and I prefer them to be the same.

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Ok…confession time. After I wrote the above, I decided to grab my socks to take some progress pictures. Remember how I said last month that I had to start over because the 60 stitch pattern was hanging off my leg? And I had to frog everything and go to the 50 stitch pattern? Well, it turns out that was a huge mistake. Also, why did I wait until now to try them on again? Do I ever learn my lesson about trying things on as you go? Argh!!! Although you see a picture of the sock on my leg, I had to fight to get it on. Socks should not be about fighting to put them on.

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I’ve also found that there are four very distinct ladders spread out evenly on each sock even though I’ve been knitting them TAAT on Magic Loop. How the heck did that even happen?

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Can I confess? I hate these socks. I think I have hated them from the very beginning. Maybe that hate bled into my knitting of said socks? I’ve decided to frog the and I don’t even know if the yarn will be reusable as I’ve cut it after every color change. I even knotted the two ends together. EEK! Here’s one last look at them. Bye socks!!!

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It’s time to move on to something that brings me joy. Life is too short to knit something you are not in love with. Ooh…that means I get to go hunt on Ravelry for a new sock pattern and decide which yarn will be perfect! Or go into my queue and try something I’ve been dying to cast on!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

Once Upon a Sock: March 2018

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Hi All! I know I say this every single month, but seriously…where did this last month go? This is two months in a row where the 1st of the month has landed on a Thursday and you know what that means? It’s sock time! For those that would like to join along, we post about our sock progress (or lack thereof) every month on the first Thursday, with the title of Once Upon a Sock. We then link up to our other blogger friends who love to knit / crochet socks. This month, we have two new bloggers joining us! If you would like to too, please let one of us know and we’ll keep adding to the list 🙂 So, before we talk about the progress on my socks, let me introduce you (all blog links will be updated throughout the day as others post their sock post):

Kat at felinityknits has super cute shorties to talk about this month, but shhhh…one set is a secret. Seriously…they are gorgeous!

Stefanie at Stefanie Crafts with Wool Paper Fabric has a new domain and blog name (so old links from posts may no longer work soon…she was Wooly Cakes and Wooden Spoons); however she’s still with us knitting socks! She has a little progress on her Harry socks, so go check them out! And if you want some serious yarn envy, check out her post on Stitches West 2018.

Katherine at fiberandsustenance has a new look and feel to her blog; however still the same link and name. I’m sure we’ll see something beautiful soon on her blog. As soon as I hit publish, Katherine’s blog post appeared! We must have been writing at the same time 🙂 She talks about her sock progress, new sock needles and is knitting with some seriously beautiful yarn.

Our newest bloggers are:

Steph at My Making Do Adventure has joined in with gusto! Her first sock post is up and they are absolutely gorgeous! Learn more as she ventures into the fun world of sock knitting.

Liz at Knitting from the hip also has her first sock post up! She talks about her sock yarn blanket, baby booties and shortie socks. And maybe a little naughty sock yarn purchasing? Tee hee!

Also joining this month is Kathy B from CompassionKnit.  I’m sure she’ll have something soon too and I’ll edit here as soon as it’s up.

Edited to add: In breaking news, we have another sock knitter joining us! Wow, this has never happened before! Please welcome Reanna at Knit, Reanna, Knit! who is bravely learning all about socks and the multitude of techniques that can be involved. She is one courageous lady! I remember trying each of those techniques…one at a time!

Ok…now on to the socks! I’ve been a busy little bee this month. I managed to complete the cuff, leg, heel and get 13 rows into the foot of the second sock. No Second Sock Syndrome (SSS) for me…Woo hoo! I really wanted to get the whole thing done and move on to a new pair; however we’ve been super busy on the home front too. I’ll tell you more about that next month. Just keep your fingers crossed for us. I know, so vague 🙂

I’m sure the rest of the sock will fly by, just like this month will and I can hopefully start a new pair or at least think about what I’m going to knit next and let you know about it. Sorry for the lighting in these pictures. It’s raining here (it’s so exciting! Seriously…I live in San Jose, CA and we received barely any rain at all this winter) and so I’ll just have to live with it.

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BTW, just a reminder. These are Mina’s Vanilla Sock Recipe by Knitting Expat Designs and I am using Yarn Carnival High Wire 3 Ply in the colorway Austin Equinox. I’m knitting them with size US 1 (2.25 mm) circular needles. I wish I would have gone up a size, 72 instead of 64 stitches, or increased my needle size as these are just the tiniest bit tight. However, I know with experience that they will loosen up while wearing them.

In other news, my poinsettia has finally decided to start changing colors! I received a humongous poinsettia as a gift in 2016. In early spring of 2017, I severely chopped it back and it has grown into this gorgeousness since then. It almost makes me sad to have to chop it back again. I also should have pinched some of those leaves; however I didn’t have the heart to do it. This is the way it grows in the wild, right? Maybe I can be a little more ruthless this year. We’ll see! Anyhoo, it seems that we’ll have another sock knitter joining up as we post on April 5th next month. If you’d like to join too, just let one of know! We’ll get the word out.

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Until next time, Happy Knitting!

Paula

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: January 2018

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Hi All and Happy New Year!

I have a little bit of progress on my socks this month, although not as much as I had wished. I fell down the rabbit hole of testing some new patterns for designers in the month of December and didn’t accomplish as much as I wished. I also messed up on my short rows and had to rip back to the leg and start over.

When we last spoke about socks, I had 20 rows of the cuff and 28 rows of the leg complete. Now, I’m happy to say that I finished up the leg with 60 rows, completed the German Short Row heel, and have three rows of the foot completed. I know the lighting is not the best on the image below; however it’s been dark and dreary here…no perfect light for photos. This is a 64 stitch sock, using Mina’s Vanilla Sock Recipe, and it was soothing to work on it while binge watching shows during vacation.

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I’m excited to see what the new year brings in terms of socks. I know I have a lot of patterns queued and can’t wait to see which ones spark my interest next. I also want to make more socks this year than last year…so I need to get knitting!

While you’re here, go check out my fellow sock knitters. Every month, we blog about our sock progress, or lack thereof, and link up with each other. If you’d like to join us, leave a comment for one of us and we’ll add you to the list! I will update blogs as they come out; however I can tell you that Kat has some awesome plans for socks this year over at felinity knits. And she just recently finished an awesome pair of Rainbow Socks too! Also, check out Katherine’s new cast on with freaking gorgeous yarn at fiber and sustenance,  and Stefanie’s  at Wooly Cakes and Wooden Spoons. She has also cast on with freaking gorgeous yarn and has some awesome progress. I can’t wait to see what they are up to! Both of them are knitting socks concurrently…I should have thought of that too so I don’t get second sock syndrome 🙂

Until next time, Happy Knitting!