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Posts Tagged ‘sock yarn’

Fibery goodness from the New Hampshire Sheep & Wool Festival

Last weekend was my second year attending the New Hampshire Sheep & Wool Festival. Last year, I came home with only 3 skeins of fingering-weight yarn, one of which has been made into socks in the past year. The other two are still safely tucked away in a plastic bag upstairs — one destined for socks, the other for a shawl. Eventually. This year, however, my purchases were quite different. Only one skein of sock yarn — which happens to be one of the colorways I was eyeing at both NHSW and Stitches East last year, and I’m still wondering why the heck I didn’t buy it until now. The remainder of my purchases consisted of A WHOLE POUND of hand-dyed fiber. Not of one type — four, four-ounce rovings. I find this quite ambitious, considering the only spinning I had done to this point was in a short class several years ago, and badly. This pound of fiber joins another four-ounce braid at home — BFL that came as part of a drop-spindling kit I ordered several weeks ago from Highland Handmades, which I finally started practicing with during Crafting Corner at the library this week. And wow, what I’ve spun so far certainly does look like hell. But I shall save the picture-taking until I have some of it plied, so you can see it in all of its craptastic glory. (Mind you, it’s the spinning that’s craptastic — Heather’s hand-dyed fiber is absolutely gorgeous!) Without further ado, here’s a closer look at my NHSW 2011 purchases:

Mad Color Fiber Arts (formerly Sereknity Yarn & Fiber)
60% Superwash Merino/30% Bamboo/10% Nylon, colorway Tempest

Mad Color Fiber Arts (formerly Sereknity Yarn & Fiber)
60% Superwash Merino/30% Bamboo/10% Nylon, colorway Passion Flower

80% Merino/20% Silk, colorway Field Of Rye
purchased from The Fiber Studio, Henniker, NH (at NHSW)

Purple Fleece BFL/Silk, colorway Embers

Holiday Yarns Flock Sock (75% superwash merino/25% nylon), colorway Embers

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KnottyGloves2_XL

Click photo to embiggen…

  • Pattern: Knotty Gloves by Julia Mueller (Ravelry pattern page is here)
  • Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill/Wool in the Woods superwash sock yarn — Lottery colorway (which is sort of a potluck dinner of all the dye colors from that particular day)
  • Needles: US 1.5 (2.5 mm) 40-inch circular (magic looping from cuff to dividing for fingers); US 1 (2.25 mm) sock DPNs for fingers and thumb
  • Started 1/21/09, finished 5/20/09
  • Link to my Ravelry project page

KnottyGloves3_XLThese were way easier to make than I ever thought they would be. Each finger and the thumb are knitted one at a time, while the remaining stitches hang out on waste yarn (or, in my case, the circular needle I used to knit up from the cuff). The celtic cabling is extremely addictive — I wanted to just keep on knitting “one more row” (which turned into one more, and one more, and one more…).

KnottyGloves_XLNow that we’re (somewhat) settled in our new home in New Hampshire, my hands are prepared for the winter well ahead of time.

I also finished a pair of socks for my cousin Jill… but no pics of those yet until I’ve given them to her. I missed my chance to drop them off in person, so I’ll have to mail them.

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I have just been dying to blog this one, but had to wait because it’s a Christmas gift for my nephew who just turned 1 year old on Christmas Eve.

billysweater_xl

Not a particularly attractive pic… hopefully I’ll have a modeled shot to add once Billy actually grows into it. This is the “Striped Top” pattern from Debbie Bliss Quick Baby Knits. I cheated a little and used a self-patterning yarn (Trekking XXL sock yarn) instead of two shades of solid yarn alternating for stripes. The whole project went a little faster than I thought it would, considering it’s a seamed sweater and I had to reknit the neck/shoulder shaping on the back because I missed the “work on these stitches for 9 rows” part… twice (left and right sides). Plus, there were times when I had to let it sit to finish up other projects. And let’s not forget that I left it on the spare bed with blocking pins stuck in it for a whole week before I seamed it up all in one afternoon/night.

This is the 24-month size. Had there been an 18-month size in the pattern instructions, I would have made that. But it went right from 12 months to 24 months. And when checking the pattern measurements (of the finished sweater — and mine matches that) against Craft Yarn Council sizing standards (actual body measurements, so you need to allow for negative or positive ease, depending on what the item is), I think this is sized a bit large for 24 months. Granted, several of the photos in the book show the various garments looking a bit oversized on the kiddie models, but this one looked more normal. Anyway, CYC states the actual chest measurement of a 24-month-old child (for clothing sizing purposes) is 20 inches. The chest measurement of this sweater is 29.5 inches. I think nearly 10 inches of ease on a toddler garment may be just a wee bit too much, no? Well, at least the bright side is that he’ll eventually grow into it. Better that than make something he’s already outgrown!

billysweaterbuttons_xlI was also very happy to find just the perfect buttons for this. It would be a great sweater with jeans or olive/tan/brown pants, and the buttons (not sure if you can see it that well in the photo) have sort of a denim-y look to them as far as color and texture.

For those on Ravelry, here’s a link to my project page for the sweater.

billyssweatersox_xlSince I had about half a ball of Trekking left over, I made a pair of socks to match the sweater. I decided to keep these on the larger side, too, in anticipation of him possibly wearing the sweater next fall/winter as well. These are just simple toe-up socks knit two at a time on magic loop, with a stockinette stitch foot, short-row heel and ribbed leg. Made the leg a bit long so they could be worn with or without a folded cuff.

Up next… I’ll be knitting a sweater (Ballerina Top from the same book as the sweater above) for a friend’s granddaughter who was just born last Friday. And I’ll finally be starting an adult-sized sweater for me as well. Hopefully that will turn out better than my first attempts at adult-sized sweaters!

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Well, I took both socks (Corn Snake Sock and the Camo Rib Sock) along to Yarns R Us yesterday morning to work on, with every intention of doing a little work on each one while I was there and only staying for about an hour and a half. I ended up staying nearly three hours and worked exclusively on the Corn Snake Sock. But that’s not the brain fart.

I continued my knitting after dinner while hubby and I watched a movie. I progressed through the heel flap and by the end of the movie I was about 10 rows into the gusset decreases. Then I realized my brain fart. After knitting the heel flap, I proceeded to pick up the gusset stitches down the side, knit across the other needle, pick up gusset stitches up the other side of the heel flap and knit the 10 or so rows as mentioned above.

I had not turned the heel.

DUH.

After uttering several expletives I shall not repeat here, I pulled out my needles, inserted them carefully through the row of stitches I needed to rip back to, and frogged to my little heart’s content. After fixing a few dropped stitches in the row I ripped back to, I redid the tail end of the heel flap, turned the heel without incident and moved on to the gusset… again.

So anyway… the Corn Snake Sock is looking lovely (and, thanks to fixing my brain fart, like it will fit a human foot). I’m really liking the Trekking XXL yarn and I’m glad I picked up a few more balls of it in different colors last weekend. I’m pretty well set for sock yarn for several months now! (In addition to those two balls of Trekking XXL, I still have two untouched balls of Cool Wool, two hanks of Fearless Fibers fingering-weight sock yarn — Thoroughbred and Sublime colorways — that I just wound into balls yesterday, a hank of Wool in the Woods, and two balls of some other sock yarn I just bought last weekend, Life Style — made by the same company that makes Trekking XXL. Plus leftovers of the Kroy from my first pair of socks, plus some more I can’t really mention yet because they’re for gifts.) Whew!

Here’s a close-up of the stitch pattern on the leg of the Corn Snake Socks. You can see the subtle striping of the yarn here, too. The stitch is called Overlay Stitch, and I found it in the stitch pattern section of The Complete Book of Knitting by Barbara Abbey. This is the book I’ve mentioned before (not by name, though) that my mother-in-law gave me. The edition I have is from 1971 (I kept thinking it was older than that, but not by much).

There are far too many knitting ideas in my head and not enough time in the day to fit all of them in!

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