Random thoughts of a fiber enthusiast - mostly fiber related, sometimes coherent

Month: January 2003 Page 1 of 4

Philosopher’s Wool!

Yippee!!!! I got a call today to tell me that a spot opened up in Ann & Eugene Bourgeois’ Philosopher Yarn Seminar for next weekend. I drove straight over from work to formalize the deal (paid for it). Go directly to the yarn store, do not pass go. I am so excited. I am doing the victory dance around the living room.

I’ve been spending the evening re-reading Fair Isle Sweaters Simplified and surfing the Philosopher’s Wool web site. Now comes the difficult decision of which pattern/kit and which colorway. Decisions, decisions.

I know, I’m gloating, but I can’t help myself. Fair Isle and steeks, here I come!

Finished Objects

I finished a fun little scarf last weekend. I made it with Anny Blatt Kid Mohair in Marine, using #6 needles over 30 stitches. I used a reversible rib pattern that I saw in someone’s weblog a while back. I’m sorry, I can’t remember where.

Row 1: k3, p3
Row 2: k1, p1

I stopped by and visited Martin’s model boat building class (sorry, not his, but a finished one) last weekend and played with another class participant’s digital camera. That does it. I’m shopping for a new camera. I can’t believe the clarity of the close up of my 2s2c in progress. Sorry, its a little big. Mike emailed it to me and I didn’t want to crop it further. And, no, your eyes are not deceiving you. I have not made much progress on this. I ended up turning the heel one sock at a time. It was getting tedious passing the turned stitches back and forth. I’m now on the foot.

2s2c Heels

I know, I’m ahead of the lesson plan, and I should probably stop and wait for Sheron’s next class. I’m 2 or 3 rows into a short row heel. I think the trick is that you don’t “turn” on the inside edge of the heel when you reach the point you normally turn. You slip the unworked stitches onto the right hand needle of both socks and continue on the 2nd sock at the previous turn. I don’t think I’m making myself clear. But it seems straight-forward. I’ll stop here and check with Lesson #3 when Sheron posts them on Friday.

I think I’ll go and start the second sock for Mom.

Tip for Gussets with 2 Circular Needles

The very first sock I made using Cat Bordi’s Socks on 2 Circulars, I followed her directions completely. But I found all that passing stitches around the needles at the gusset just so that I have exactly the same number of stitches on each needle was a pain in the butt. It felt awkward and totally unnecessary. And you also needed to have stitch markers to mark the decreases in the middle of each side. Then you move the stitches back again after you finish the gusset decreases so that you have the instep and sole on separate needles again. Yuck.

I decided that I didn’t have to have exactly the same number of stitches on the 2 needles. I picked up the left gusset with my sole needle. Knitted the instep with the other needle that has been waiting patiently during the entire heel flap and heel turning. Once I finished the instep, I dropped it again, and used the sole needle to pick up the right gusset. This way, I have my decreases all on one needle, one at the beginning and one at the end of the row. Easy cheesy. I can start the gusset anywhere, even on the bus, and I don’t have to make sure I have stitch markers with me. Eventually, I’ll have the same number of stitches on both needles again.

Anyway, it makes sense to my brain.

Another Tip

This is for battery eating digital cameras. I normally use rechargeable batteries for my digital camera, since it goes through them so quickly. I have a battery charger that checks battery level before it starts charging. I found that my camera wasn’t consuming the batteries at the same level.

So, if you are in the middle of nowhere taking pictures, or just plain don’t have spare batteries around, just take them out and change the order of the batteries. I found that I can double the life of those batteries instantly!

Try it and let me know. I have a 4 year old HP PhotoSmart Megapixel camera. (I really want it to die so that I have an excuse to buy a new one.)

Token America’s Cup Update

How about them Swiss????? Oracle is now officially out of America’s Cup. Hooray! (I’m not real fond of Larry, if you can’t tell.) Now I just want the Swiss to beat the heck out of Team New Zealand, because they were rude to my home team — OneWorld. I understand that Craig McCaw (“Mr. Nice”) got death threats nearly on a daily basis during the entire time that OneWorld was down in Auckland. Now, Craig said that he won’t mount another challenge in New Zealand. So, my hopes are for a Swiss victory so that OneWorld will race again.


Here I go again. Frogged the socks because I decided that 56 stitches would be more comfortable than 48. 48 fits snuggly, but I’m worried about shrinkage. Oh, well, I decided last night that the hardest part of 2 socks on 2 circulars is the casting on and getting it all set up. By the time that I’m through with this, I should have this part of the lesson down pat! After all, how do you learn, except from your mistakes and lots of practice, right?

When I taught computer classes, we always put mistakes (or omit instructions) intentionally into our exercises so that the students can see what mistakes look like and how to fix them. Not pleasant, but great a-ha! moments.

Other notes on the socks …

I really like the Twisted German Cast On Sheron recommended. We’ll see once I’ve finished the socks and wear them a few times.

The Kersti yarn splits very easily. My Addi Turbos keep splitting the yarn, and I consider the points pretty blunt. I definitely would not recommend using Brittany needles with them nor do “mindless” knitting when I don’t have the opportunity to keep looking at my work.

The good news is that, even after all the frogging I did, the yarn did not fuzz nor untwist. It kept its structure very well.

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