KA Socks Finished!

I finished the socks yesterday and they have been on the drying rack. I’ll take a picture tonight. One sock is more intense in color than the other one. You can definitely tell which was with yarn further toward the center of the skein. Next time, the turkey baster injection method.

On the needles … casted on a new pair of socks for Mom. Mountain Goat Rich Red. Wow. It is bright. Should make a wonderful present for Chinese New Year. A nice auspicious color.

Martin said that it is a red that would make Team New Zealand proud. Apparently, the entire team wears their lucky red socks for all the races. Hmm. I might need to make a pair for him before the start of The Americas Cup. Of course, if Alinghi wins The Louis Vuitton Cup he may not want TNZ colors. Yet again, this is the guy that felted is last pair of Mountain Colors socks by tossing it in the washer/dryer.

Kool-Aid Socks

I kool-aid dyed an 8 oz. skein of Lion Brand Fisherman’s Wool with very berry and grape just before Christmas. I started a pair of toe-up socks this evening. It’s my second toe-up over. The first ones were with koigu using Cat Brodi’s turned-toe method. These, I’m using the short-row toe by Wendy in the Knitty article. Strangely enough, both pairs have turquoise as the primary color. I think I’m in a rut.

Question. The stitches in the toe box area are alot looser than the body of the sock, because I was working back and forth on 2 needles. Any tips on making this more consistent with the rest of the sock (other than the obvious of knitting tigher)? I’m worried that it won’t wear as well as the rest of the sock. Of course, I plan on using a short row heel too, so that will probably be a little looser too.

So far, my favorite heels have been short row and peasant/after-thought heel. I don’t like the feel extra thickness that a heel flap has in my loafers.

Maybe tomorrow I’ll put up the pictures of my recent kool-aid experiments.

Victory, the sweetest revenge of all …

Ah, there’s nothing like whooping the you know what out of the people who try to kick you out of the competition by any means, even if it’s not the right thing to do nor if the allegations have any merit.

What am I talking about? The Louis Vuitton Cup, of course! OneWorld first knocked Team Dennis Conner (party #1 in the most recent protest) in the out of the race in the quarter final repechage, and now, Prada (party #2 in the aforementioned protest) in the semi-finals.

Unfortunately, OneWorld is now facing some really tough competition with Oracle in the semi-final repechage, and if they get there, Alinghi, the Swiss team. (Although, where would a land locked country host the America’s Cup races?) I have no beef with either of these teams, in as far as fair sailing is concerned, so there is no real need for revenge. Just something against Larry Ellison. So, this will be interesting when racing starts again later this week.

Should OneWorld win the LV Cup, I would dearly love for them to run over Team New Zealand, for their part in the latest round of protests. But there are two very good teams of sailor between OneWorld and there.

Of course, I would just love to have Seattle to be home to the America’s Cup for a while, as ugly as it is. And there’s the ever question of where they’ll actually hold the event, should Seattle hosts the next America’s Cup. I just want a front row seat.

Here’s a picture of Mark putting a hex on The Cup while he and Joelle were down in New Zealand … hoping to send it home.

Mark putting the hex on The America's Cup in New Zealand

Knitting

Oh yeah, this is supposed to be about my fiber addiction, not my sailing addiction. I’m finally finished with the back of the sweater vest, and have started the ribbing on the front. Just another inch or so and I get to start playing with the Kureyon! It’ll definitely go much faster now. Hopefully, I can finish it this weekend, so I’ll have time to wash and block it before Christmas.

The other knitted Christmas surprises are coming along fine. I’ve been relegated to knitting on the bus because it’s the only time that you-know-who isn’t around to see what I’m working on.

There have been a few disparaging remarks — “get a load of those toothpicks!” to a woman poking at me from behind with “better hurry, it’s only 10 days ’til Christmas, you know.” She didn’t believe me that it shouldn’t take long to finish that particular project and I had plenty of time. Sigh. However, the sweetest comments were from these little children on the bus asking all about what I was making, and assured me that it will be gorgeous and you-know-who would love it.

Geeking

Yes, I’m a geek at heart. I built a little perl script yesterday (honest, this is related to knitting) that will create a knit “pattern” for an increase row, based on 2 input values: number of starting stitches, and the number of stitches that you want to add.

For example, if you want to increase 12 stitches evenly across a row with 93 stitches, it will produce the following:

k2, inc 1, (k8, inc 1) 11 times, k3
Ending with a total of 105 stitches

You will, of course, substitute in your pattern into this knit row. If you are doing a k1, p1 ribbing, then instead of k2 to start, you would k1, p1 before the first increase.

I got the idea when I saw a post in one of the Yahoo!Groups Mailing Lists asking about where to find a “calculator” on the web. And I thought, how hard would it be to build one? It’s just a math equation, right?

Anyway. I think it’s pretty nifty. Now, I just need to figure out how to do some cgi programming so that I can run this via a web browser instead of needing to log into my server to run the script.

Yeah, I was the one in 8th grade who spent hours trying to create a generic BASIC program on my old Atari 600 to do my algebra homework that I could have finished in minutes if I had just done it by hand. But what would have been the fun in that? (That should also give you an idea of how old I am … who out there even remembers that Atari actually was competing with Apple for the home computer market?)

Christmas Knitting

Now that Thanksgiving dinner is done, and most of the leftover turkey have been eaten (small turkey this year), it’s time to start with the Christmas presents in earnest.

I started a scarf for Ian with some fawn colored alpaca yarn I had in my stash on Thanksgiving evening. I’m 70% finished with that already.

Sandy’s table mats are basically finished. I just need to finish twisting and tying up the fringe. I’m not looking forward to that. The first bit was pretty hard on my fingers. I know, I can spend $12 and buy a gizmo that makes the twists in the fringe, but $12 for 2 alligator clips on 2 pieces of wood? No thanks. I’ll continue to give my thumb and index fingers a workout.

Martin came along with me yesterday to the yarn store to pick out the yarn for Brian’s vest. Hopefully, it won’t take too long. I made a similar one for Martin’s birthday in about 1 week. Even with the shortened Christmas shopping/present making time, I should be okay.

Unfortunately, I remembered today that I’m supposed to have a present for the guild gift exchange in 10 days. Sigh. I think I build a little treasure bag. I got the idea from The Twisted Sisters Sock Workbook (I love that book!). I’ve got some purple tussah silk leftover from a previous spinning project. I just need to spin it and knit it up.

Yeah, right, Ann. Just when are you going to do all that?

But if I make a really small treasure bag, it won’t take that much yarn …

Dream on.

We’ll see how it goes.

I also promised myself that I would spin a bobbinful of the blue rovings that I’ve been working on (I have a whole pound to work through!) before I spin anything else. This way, I’ll slowly get through that stuff. So, I finished up the bobbin that was on there and plied up 3 bobbins of 2-ply. Whew. Now I can play with something else.

I washed the (partial) fleece that I got from Deborah. It’s my first fleece that I’ve processed. I did not enjoy it. During the final vinegar rinse, I decided that I was going to put part of it directly into a dye bath. That way, I won’t have to soak the fleece twice. (I’m lazy that way).

I dyed it in a fall color mix of burgundy, orange and gold — aiming for the fall color mix. I know, I should be thinking red and green by now, but I’m running late. Nothing unusal about that.

Now, I just have to wait for it to dry … then card it … then spin it …

You know, this just seems like a lot of work to get to the spinning part. I think I will just stick to pre-processed rovings from now on. Why do the steps that I don’t enjoy?

Maybe I’ll feel differently when I get to the finished product. Sort of like selective amnesia.

I know I’m whining and it sounds like I don’t like this fiber stuff. I really do. I just get bored really easily. Sometimes, I don’t think I have the attention span to finish projects. This is why I like socks. Short and sweet.

I wonder if I really have the attention span to dye, spin and knit socks as described in the Twisted Sisters Sock Workbook? Worth a try! Stay tuned.

Finished Object

A pair of anklets in green, yellow and white for Martin (leftover yarn from his duck socks).