Saturday, February 19, 2011

Dublin Bay redo

My Dublin Bay sock weren't going so well so I decided to start over. This time things went much better and I'm very pleased with the results. Considering it's still cold out I look forward to wearing them very soon. Maybe Monday since we're supposed to get more snow.

Keep stitchin'

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Happy Valentines Day for who?

So this is a weekend for lovers...blahhhhhhh!
Since I love me just as much as someone else day...soon I hope. I decided to make a nice breakfast for myself . Afterall, I know what I like:
  • Anything in a wine or champagne glass
  • Flowers, even artificial will do
  • Soft music
  • Nice place setting
  • Scented candle
I do these things for myself whenever the mood strikes just because I'm special. Well this morning was a bit too much for me with it being the weekend for love and all. I decided to make some simple homemade biscuits. You know the kind, 5 simple ingredients that most usually have on hand anyway; with the exception of the shortening. They came out nice and golden and with a dab of All Natural peanut butter they'll be great with eggs and coffee.

Why was this NOT a very good idea? Well I did mention the 'teary eyes'. Kinda stressful this morning watching EVERYTHING on every station revolving around lovers. I used Baking Soda instead of Baking Powdered in my biscuits. Big, big, big mistake!!! Of course I ate nearly an entire biscuit because I thought my taste buds were off since I'd just brushed my teeth. Once I walked back into the kitchen I realized what I'd done.
One of my friend mentioned not working on a good project while you're stressed because it makes a difference in gauge. Well, I think the same thing goes for cooking...just stick to knitting.
So with that said I did make another set stitch markers last night! I needed some for my crochet projects and for keeping track of needles when working with DPN's. These came out pretty good it I say so myself!

Keep stitchin'

Friday, February 11, 2011

Dublin Bay Sock

After completing my first pair of 'grown up' socks that actually fit the way they're supposed to fit, I gave myself a day to rest my fingers and then dove right into the next pair. I was hoping to find a simple cable pattern but instead I found a pattern that is absolutely lovely! It has a beautiful open lace pattern running down the left and right sides of the socks. The socks, found on raverly, are called Dublin Bay by Ryan Morrissey. For those not on rav, again WHY NOT, a pdf link can be found here as well. You have to scroll down the page, looking on the left sidebar for dublin bay socks under free patterns.

I finished all but grafting the toe on the first sock. I am now ready to start the second sock. I know I made 10 million mistakes in the sock but the open work on the sides is very forgiving! I shoved a white cup down inside of the sock to get a good shot of the lace pattern. It's a simple four row repeat, actually it's only two rows since both the even rows are knit. Not only did I make tons of mistakes but I made the mistake of not keeping track of how many repeats I did for the sake of the second sock. So once I've completed the second, or rather the first sock, I'll have to rip the 'other' sock and do it over again. At least I'll have good info on how far to go.

I also discovered through all my errors that I have a great amount of yarn leftover so I can afford to make the sock longer as well. The disadvantage of top down socks is not knowing if you'll have enough yarn to finish the socks. So messing up the first sock is looking to be not so bad after all.
Now I have to keep some better pics as well. The color of the yarn is more of a deep red or burgandy rather than purple as they are showing today.

Keep stitchin'

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I guess the paint finally dried

I finished my socks on Sunday and actually wore them to work with blue pants on Monday, everybody loved them. They fit very comfortably in my shoes and there was absolutely no binding or pinching of the calves. When I took them off after work there was ring around my calf or that itching you get after having tight knee highs around your legs all day.

The shoe below is not the shoes I wore to work, I just wanted a dressy shoe to wear for my close up, LOL. Imagine, if the socks are this comfy with a MaryJane shoe it has to be very comfortable with a loafer-type shoe.

The yarn I used to make these sock is from yarn I already had in stock from Colours the Yarn Gallery in Randallstown, MD. I haven't been there in quite some time but I presume they are still in business, guess that means it's time for a visit.

Even though the beginning was a bit intimidating because I've never worked with yarn of this weight nor double pointed needles I am so glad I was able to push on and triumph with these socks. Now the beautiful socks on my computer's background to give me inspiration/motivation are my own and I've already started a second pair!

Keep stitchin'

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Like watching paint dry

This is how I felt when I started knitting these socks with sock/fingering weight yarn. The pattern I'm using list patience as one of the needed materials for making the socks. Honestly it seemed like it was taking sooooo long just to see an inch of cuff once I finished my 10 rows of ribbing. Several times I put the sock down and knew I'd never get those socks knitted. Then, all of a sudden, I got into my happy zone and had about 3" of cuff done! After that it turned into a good book that I didn't want to put down. Suddenly those stitches didn't seem so freaking small after all.

I'm using the Silver Sock Class tutorial provided by Kristin Bellehumeur to make my socks on double pointed needles. It's so very easy and very clear following Kristin's instructions. She provides three different methods for making socks and I want to try them all! Also, her instructions provide the cast on adjustments based on yarn weight so there's no need for gauge checking!!!
So I've finished all but grafting the toe of the first sock but I was too excited to finish that part. Instead, I went on and started the second sock and didn't go through that nasty 'watching paint dry' period at all!

I only have one regret with theses socks, the length. I have big calves and ankles, better known as cankles grrrrrrr. I was concerned that the socks would not come all the way up to my knees so I stopped at 6.5" like most of my socks...big mistakes. The socks have tons of stretch in them and would have been a great pair of knee highs without strangling my legs. I chalk it up to a learning experience and look forward to making another pair. This pair will certainly be knee highs. I can't wait to finish this pair, hopefully this weekend so I can wear them soon. I now see how people get addicted to knitting socks.
Here's a tip that I came up with that served as inspiration for me to finishe this project and any other that I may be struggling with.
"When I'm working on a project from raverly, especially a slow knitted project, save a finished project to your pc's background to provide constant inspiration to continue. For some it may be easier to print a copy and hang but with trying to lower carbon imprints just save it as a background or screensaver."
Looking at all the pretty FO's on raverly lead me think it would be nice to have that motivation right in front of me as a reminder. I set a beautiful pair of socks on my pc's background at work and at home so I'm constantly looking at them. Eventually, I'll be able to replace them with my own socks!

Keep stitchin'