Saturday, December 30, 2006

I'm back!

We came home Thursday morning, but I haven't had the energy to blog until today. I'm still rather tired, eight hours time difference takes some time to adjust to. The kids woke at three this morning... No joke.

First we spent two days in Singapore doing mostly nothing, because we managed to eat or drink something stupid the first day so the kids got sick early in the morning. Me and M didn't feel too well either :-( So the day that we had planned to "do" Singapore was spent sleeping in a hotel room. Oh well.

Australia was fantastic of course. Friendly people, awesome nature, beautiful cities, great food. We stayed in Sydney for four days (way to short time!) and then on to Perth and the cousins for three weeks. The first of those weeks were spent 250 k south exploring wineries, beaches and such.

I must confess that I knit almost nothing even though I had packed loads of projects. At least I now have decided what to do with some of my yarn :-)

And I got my second Sockret Package! It arrived (on a Saturday no less, we don't get mail on Saturdays in Sweden) just before Christmas. My (not so) secret pal lives in Australia so she took the opportunity to save on postage. I haven't any pictures yet, but I got four balls of yarn (including one of her own hand dyed!), a handmade journal, a little pattern book from the knitting guild in South Australia and a 10" Addi Turbo! It will be interesting to try that one out! Thank you so much, Pal!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The last post for a while

We're leaving tomorrow morning on a looooong vacation. We won't be back until after Christmas. First stop Singapore, then Sydney, and last Perth where my sister lives. Internet access will be patchy. Sis doesn't even have a home computer, only her husband's work laptop. Neither M nor me are sure how we will survive without internet for four weeks. I have packed lots of knitting...

I'm bringing my two ongoing socks, M's Jaywalker and the Sockret Pal sock. And material for three more pairs. I hope that it is enough, and that it's not way too much... But as I have probably said a hundred times by now, this trip involves five long plane rides.

Speaking of socks, I finished the Opal Silk socks! Camera is packed, so no pics, sorry. I put them on immediately and they feel really nice. I haven't washed them yet so we will see how they come out after that. I must admit that I am a bit scared about machine washing my handknit socks, I always do it by hand.

Now I have to go obsess some more over forgotten things to do and to pack! Over and out.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Sockret Package

My first package from my Sockret Pal arrived yesterday. Wheee!

There was a great Australian magazine called Yarn. I have heard of it and I was actually planning to try to find it on my trip there. There was chocolate filled with crunchy honeycomb (now mostly gone, I have to admit) Cute little stitch markers that spell out Y A R N (do I see a theme here?) And they match the actual yarn I also got.

Superwash merino/nylon from Scouts Handpainted Swag! Wow! The colour is called Stormsurge and I can see why. It's not quite as bright as on these pics (still no daylight when I'm home...) but several different grays and blues, love it!

I've been busy with my silk socks. The first ones finished.

Toe-up, Judy's magic cast-on, short row heel, stockinette.

I tried the tubular bind-off for the first time. Me like!

The second one is flying along, I'll reach the cuff in another inch or so. I want these finished before I leave on vacation, and that shouldn't be a problem. The problem is to decide what projects to *bring* on the trip.

I will bring the sock for my downstream Sockret Pal. The plan is to finish both of them while gone, and maybe mail them off too. I'll also bring M's Jaywalkers. They have been sadly neglected lately, but maybe I can finish them before Christmas. For myself I'm thinking Baudelaires, but I haven't decided on the yarn yet. I also want to bring something easy and plain for car journeys and the like. I don't know how much knitting is realistic, but I do have 5 long plane trips ahead, and some car trips. Plus general loafing of course :-) We'll see. And if anyone knows of any yarn or quilt stores in Sydney or around Perth that I mustn't miss, please tell me!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Bad blogger

I've been such a bad blogger lately I feel really bad about it :-( But things are rather hectic around here, and that will continue the next two weeks, and then, bliss, four weeks of vacation. In Australia. I'm really really looking forward to it.

First we're having a short stop-over in Singapore. Just two days and one night, mainly to break up the long trip for the kids. After that we go to Sydney for five days. We'll mainly stay in Sydney except for a one day trip to Blue Mountains. Then we fly over to the other side of the continent, to Perth where my sister lives with her husband and three boys. The only thing we have really planned is a rented cottage some 200 k south of Perth for a week. I'm thinking beach, trips to the beautiful forests down there, and not to forget, the wineries!

On the hectic front, E's birthday is coming up, and he had a party last Sunday for 12 little kids, I'm glad that's over! Well, the party wasn't bad at all, but the preparations cleaning of the house... And on Saturday we're having both sets of grandparents, two of M's siblings with families, and my grandmother over. At least the cleaning is mostly done. And they're not getting dinner.

And now for some knitting content! Socks! I'm knitting socks! The sock for my Sockret Pal is coming up great. I love the yarn and the pattern and I hope she will too. I've turned the heel on the first sock.

The pooling is hardly visible at all in normal light, and the little leaves are much more visible. Apparently I suck at photography. Or can I blame the lack of daylight around here these days? I'm amazed at my progress, because the yarn is on the thin side and my pal's feet are on the wide side I have 80 stitches on each row. I think they will fit her nicely.

I'm also knitting a pair of plain stockinette socks in an Opal wool/silk blend. And talking about fast... I knit the toe on Tuesday night so I would have something to knit on the train on Wednesday. I was on that train for maybe 90 minutes total, and I actually had to stop knitting in the end because I was afraid to make them to long. I turned the heel last night. Of course it helps that 56 stitches was enough for my foot. This really surprised me, I have a rather wide foot and the yarn isn't all that thick so I had to rip out a bit of the toe because it was getting way to wide for me.

I'm not all that thrilled with the colours and pattern of this yarn, but it is so comfy! The colours are a bit more muted in real life. But is a nice sock anyway. I have not quite decided what to do with the leg. I think I'll do a short bit of stockinette and then a k2, p2 rib or something.

I tried a new way of picking up the wraps on the short row heel this time. I've always used Wendy's method but I haven't liked the look of the picked up wraps all that much. Then Lolly posted a link to a great tutorial of another way to pick up those wraps. So I tried it. It was *very* fiddly but it looks *very* nice. Maybe it gets easier next time. The idea is to pick up the wraps from the right side of the fabric, and to do it from the bottom up. Do check it out!

Sunday, November 05, 2006


Up until about five or maybe ten years ago Halloween didn't exist in Sweden. The someone realised that you could make money from it and introduced it here. I don't have to buy the pumpkins, no problem there. The thing that aggravates me is the confusion about what date it should be celebrated. In the US Halloween is October 31, right? That's All Hallows Eve or something. Here that's a moving holiday, which means that the actual church holiday is on the first Saturday of November or something like that. This means that we've had costumed kids banging on the door for a week now! Argh! And only one group actually arrived on Tuesday. Also they seems to believe that they are allowed to mess with our mailbox if they don't get goodies on the wrong day.
OK, rant mode off!

Knitting content:
I've made some hats for the kids. First a Shining Star hat for H:

It's the 'child' size, but I removed a couple of repeats to make it shorter. It's plenty big for her, maybe I should have done the 'toddler' size. But she likes it and she will grow :-)
I just love it from above!

I've also made a Pirate hat for E, for his birthday. He turns five in two weeks time. Of course it seems like he was born only yesterday.

Isn't it great? All the kids at daycare are really into pirates these days, so I think he'll like it. I took out one row of skulls, I hope it fits. I'm not blocking it until he's tried it on.
Anyway it's really warm and probably windproof too. It can stand all by itself...
It's great from above as well:
I used leftover Peer Gynt for both hats, so they where practically free (except the cost of the Shining Star pattern of course)

Friday, November 03, 2006

Day off

Today I have the day off. I'm not allowed to work because of the 24-7 standby last week. I do get paid :-) The kids are at daycare in the morning, I'll pick them up after lunch. M is home sick but he feels a bit bad about invading my free morning so he keeps quiet and away from me.

Autumn is finally here. It was very late in coming this year, but now it's cold and frosty and actually a tiny bit of snow. Beautiful weather today, I'm taking a walk in a bit! With my baby iPod and the Lime & Violet podcast I found the other day. I've listened to the first few episodes and they are *hilarious* Totally nuts and great fun to listen to!

I'm enjoying my handknit wolly socks very much in this weather. They are slim enough for my ordinary shoes and warm enough that I don't have to break out the boots just yet. And fun when I look at my feet :-) I'm wearing the RPM today, still in love with them. But I'm glad that I made the leg longer, for they do fall down the leg a bit. Probably a combination of the spiralling ribbing pattern and that my ankles are rather slimmer than my feet.

I got a bag of yarn from Astrid's the other day, sockyarns and my first Noro!

I started a Harlot Scarf with the Noro and the colour transitions are very nice the first 4 inches. Then there's a knot that makes the yarn jump from deep pink to bright green!

*Not* nice :-( What do I do? I'm thinking of winding the skein in to a ball and try to make the colour changes better.

I'm trying to decide what socks to knit for my Sockret Pal. I have the perfect yarn, Opal Smoke in browns and tans (I just got it from Astrid, see pic above) Not my preferred colours but very nice. But what pattern to make? I'm thinking some not too open lace would be nice, Fir Cone maybe. I swatched Mrs Montague but, nah, not this time.

I'm getting aggravated with the Dragon socks. I don't know if it's visible in the picture, but the second sock keep coming out smaller than the first (this is the second try) and I'm positive that I use the same needles *and* this time I've really made an effort to knit loosely. Grr.

I probably have to frog them and start over with larger needles. Other than that, I like the absolutely non-pooling of this yarn (Fleece Artist), just random little bits of different colours. Very pretty.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Round and Round

Long time, no blog. I've had so much to do the last week so I don't know where it went. And I have 24-7 standby all this week until Monday morning. The standby has been calm so far (knock on wood!) but you never know...

I finished the RPM socks yesterday.

Pattern: RPM from Knitty
Yarn: Koigu
Needles: Addi 2.5 mm 120 cm, Magic loop
Mods: I knit these toe up and made the legs as long as possible. I have maybe 10 g yarn left.

The colour is very off in these pictures. it's much clearer in real life. I couldn't find the camera while it was light outside.
One of the socks is slightly darker than the other, but not much. The colours have formed stripes that lean the other way than the purl spirals. Very nice. I'm very much in love with these socks :-) They where a fast knit too.

I got some more stash the other day, from The Loopy Ewe:

From the left: Fleece Artist in Tiger, Claudia Handpainted in Caribbean Blue, All Things Heather in Diablo. So far *all* my yarn packages from the US has been caught by customs, so the yarn gets a bit expensive, but oh so nice. I haven't tried Claudia or All Things heather before, they look very nice both. The colours are fantastic.

I'm also waiting for a package from Astrid in the Netherlands with , among other things, yarn for my Sockret Pal's socks. Hopefully it will arrive on Monday.

I have the things collected for my pal's first package, I just have to pack it up and send it.

I haven't showed my new toy:
My old iPod broke down a while ago, the hard drive crashed beyond repair. So I had to get a new, poor me :-) I would very much like to get one of the video iPods, but with the vacation coming up I had to settle for a less expensive one. This is the 4 GB Nano. It feels tiny compared to my old 30 GB one, but it is nice that it weighs hardly anything (only 40 g) and it is enough for th podcasts and books I usually listen to while driving to and from work.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Finally finished

The Leaf Lace Shawl is finished. I finally managed to block it somewhat, even though I'm not completely satisfied with the blocking. I don't have a good place to block such a large thing. Maybe install wall-to-wall carpeting in a room somewhere... I would also like a set of blocking wires, I didn't manage to bet the top completely straight. Now I blocked ot with string on my parents spare bed which is wide but not long enough. But the shawl is wearable.

Pattern: Leaf Lace Shawl
Yarn: Sandnes Peer Gynt, 7 balls @ 50 g in a tweedy grey
Needles: The ones specified in the pattern (which I can't find at the moment)
Size: The largest size of the pattern, with the thickest yarn suggested. About 90" across the top and 38" down. It's suppsed to be 45" down, I will block it better some other time.

I'm very happy with this shawl. The pattern is very well written and easy to follow. I'd say this is a great beginner pattern. I wanted a big warm cosy shawl and I got it. It's great indoors and outdoors over a jacket maybe.

Peer Gynt is a classic Norwegian yarn usually used for Norwegian style ski sweaters and such. This tweedy variety is slightly scratchy, but I put a little hair conditioner in the water when I soaked it for blocking and it came out rather softer.

When little H saw the shawl she wanted one too, so now I know how to use the two balls I have left :-) Mine has 15 leaves along the spine, I think 7 or 8 will be good for her, she is a rather small 2.5 year old.

I finished the first RPM sock! As I knit it toe-up I was able to use up almost all the yarn without running out. The leg is 9 pattern repeats instead of the suggested 6, and then I made the ribbing 20 rounds. I bound of using Elizabeth Zimmermann's sewn bind-off.

Here's a (blurry) picture where you can see the pattern a bit better. And yes, I've cast on the second sock. No second sock syndrome with this one! It helps that the weather has turned colder and I want more wooly socks.

A gratuitous picture of my cute kids, lying in the sofa watching tv! Yes, I made that quilt, very scrappy nine-patches and rail fences, tied. It was the first one I ever finished, when E was six months or so. I made it for him to play on on the floor.

H looks a bit under the weather, and she is. She has some sort of cold, fever and a horrible cough, and she's very cranky most of the time. She also sleeps more than usual and doesn't want to eat. It doesn't seem to get any better so we're calling the doctor tomorrow. Maybe she needs antibiotics or something.

I'm having much fun putting together the first package for my Sockret Pal. I have just one more thing to fix before I send it. How I'm going to remain secret I don't know, the stamps will be a big clue...
Note to my own Pal: I'm going on vacation for the whole of December (to Australia, yay!) so I won't get my post until after Christmas. It would be nice if I got the first package before I leave. Just sayin'.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Finished and unfinished

I finished the Fetching fingerless gloves.

Pattern: Fetching from Knitty
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, colour 300104, 1 ball with very little left
Needles: 4 mm dpn's
Comments: very fast knit, and fun too. I learned a new cast on (cabled) and a new bind off (picot) I like the yarn, it's very soft, almost feels like cotton. Autumn is (finally) here, so I will definitely use these (and my Knucks!) soon.

I can't keep my hands away from RPM, I just love how they are turning out. Here's a pic with the the other skein, to compare the looks of the skein, the ball and the sock. The colours are more vivid in real life. Must. Have. More. Koigu. I *have* been working on M's Jaywalkers too, I just forgot to document it. I'm almost at the heel. I'm planning short row heels on both RPM and Jaywalkers, and at least the RPM will be as long as possible, I don't want to waste any of this fab yarn!

And here's my sock yarn stash, for Socktober. Enough for some 22 adult pairs and lots of kids socks from the leftovers! Oops, quite a lot in a rather short time...

Lots of Opal and samplings of a bunch of other yarns. I have deliberately bought one of each of a number of interesting yarns to test them out. So far I have tried Regia, Opal, Cherry Tree Hill Supersock, Fleece Artist, Lorna's Laces, Koigu. I have Schaefer Anne, Trekking XXL, Interlacement Tiny Toes, Lang Jawoll, Shelridge Farm and a few others in the pile that I haven't tried yet.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

More Socks

The chanterelles are now safe in the freezer!

My subconsious (sp?) goal for Socktoberfest seems to be to cast on as many socks as possible... not quite what I intended. Anyway, I started these fantastic socks the other day:

RPM in Koigu. I love them! The colours are absolutely fantastic (way better in person than on the screen) and this patterns suits it perfect. The yarn wants to stripe in warm and cool colours. Together with the diagonal rib it gives the sock a lot of movement (fitting for a sock :-) The striping and pattern is perhaps a little more visible on this (blurry) picture:

On another Socktoberfest note: I'll try to take a picture of my sock yarn stash this weekend, when there's some daylight. I'm also going to block my Leaf Lace Shawl, so there will be finished pictures soon. I promise, Kath! I realised that my parents extra bed is rather wide, and we're going there anyway on Saturday for my Moms Birthday. So I'm bringing a wet shawl and a lot of pins to the party!

KTS2 Box and a Pot of Gold

I got a box in the mail today!!! From my Knitters Tea Swap 2 pal Mandy. I opened the box, grabbed my trusty camera to document the goodness, and *no battery* Ack! So I had to wait impatiently for the battery to charge enough for e few pics. I just poked the contents a little :-) Finally, we had power!

Here's the opened box:

It contained some very nice chocolate.

Two bars of dark chocolate with 70+% cocoa, and baggies of chocolate drops and chocolate covered raisins. Of course I had to sample everything, very yummy, especially the Dagoba bar and the raisins.

Two cute tins of tea, English Breakfast and Gunpowder Green. I haven't really tried green tea so that'll be interesting.

There's even notes on water temperature and brewing time on the tins! I admit I was a bit puzzled about the temps first, 212° on one and 180° on the other. I use Celsius, and the boiling point of water is 100 °C, so those temps are of course impossible at normal kitchen air pressure... Then, of course, pal from US = temps in Farenheit! Duh! Though I admit that I usually don't check the temperature on the water before brewing my tea. At work I get hot water from the coffee machine, and at home I take the kettle of the heat just before it boils. And brewing time... equally sloppy! I have to better my ways.

Last but not least two rolls of Lang Jawoll sockyarn in a pretty green (colour is fairly accurate on my screen).
The lot:

Thanks so much Mandy, I love all of it! I will try the green tea tomorrow, it's much too late for tea now.

As for the pot of gold... M brought home a box of chanterelles from work today. 3 kg (6-7 pounds) split with my parents made me clean chanterelles for an hour or so. But look at it! Yum!

That bowl takes 4 litres (1 litre = 4 cups). I put it in a pot with a little salt and let it simmer in its own juices a little. It has cooled down now so I will scoop it into baggies and freeze it. Soups and whatnot for the winter.

Saturday, October 07, 2006


I posted the package for my Knitters Tea Swap 2 pal today. Fingers crossed, touch wood and all that, so that it doesn't get lost but reaches its target without a hitch! But man! postage is expensive here. This package of a little more than 2 kg (maybe 5 pounds) cost more than 30 USD to send overseas. Yuk!

I have started to think about what socks to knit for my Sockret Pal. Leafing through Barbara Walkers books I found a simple lace pattern called Mrs Montague's (I think) and I'm thinking about using that. It's simple diamonds on a stockinette background. I'll have to swatch it in the actual yarn of course. And buy yarn. My pal likes earthy colours, which I don't use myself, so I have nothing like that in my stash. Woe me, having to shop for yarn ;-) I also found a nice little cable one could have travelling down the sides of the sock, maybe together with the diamond pattern, maybe not. I haven't designed socks before so this will be a first. A lot of swatching methinks, maybe I should buy some extra yarn for that?

Hey, I just got an e-mail from my KTS2 pal. She posted my package today!!! I can't wait to get it, so exciting :-)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Socktober quiz

Lolly put together some sock knitting questions, as it is Socktober! Here are my answers:

When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class? I'm not sure but I think I just found a pattern and went for it. I probably asked my Mom if I had any problems. Maybe 15 years ago? The only patterns available where for thick 'ragg' socks to wear in your rubber boots, so that's what I knit. I remeber that I had no idea how the sock pattern worked, I just followed along and voila, a sock, amazing! I knit maybe two or three pairs, but didn't really enjoy it. Grey, bulky socks with 1x1 ribbing for the whole leg isn't very fun for long...

What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time? See above. I think they where worn out eventually, and thrown away.

What would you have done differently? Dunno. I used the yarn and knowledge available to me at the time.

What yarns have you particularly enjoyed? Hmm, difficult. I restarted my sock knitting this summer and even though I have acquired ridiculous amounts of sock yarn since then I haven't had time to try it all ;-) I'm working on a sock in Lorna's Laces right now and that yarn is very nice indeed. Soft and silky.

Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method? No crochet here. I haven't decided if I like dpn's or Magic Loop the best. I tried using 2 circs but found it too fiddly.

Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?) Both are nice and have their uses. Sometimes you want the sturdier heel flap with slipped stitches and all, and sometimes you want the slimmer short row heel.

How many pairs have you made? 5 pairs recently and maybe three pairs long ago. And I have two pairs on the needles now.


I've been a bit unconcentrated and off lately, so I started a gazillion new projects at once... Here the first of a pair of Fetching from Knitty. The yarn is Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, very nice.

I restarted M's Jaywalkers.

Please disregard the messy desk. As you can see I'm going toe-up, magic loop. The double decreases are looking much nicer this time, so I hope I won't have to frog them again. I haven't decided on the heel yet, heel flap or short row. I'll have to ask M if he has any preferences (though I doubt it)

I also started a Print'o the Wave scarf (a free pattern from Eunny Jang) in Drops Alpaca. What a yarn! Mmmmm. Only problem is that the yarn is dark blue so seeing the stitches is a bitch.

The postwoman was very nice to me both yesterday and today. Yesterday I got this from Simply Socks Yarn Company:

Lang Jawoll in red, Lorna's Laces in Flames, Shelridge Farms in Gunmetal Blue, and Schaefer Anne in Azure. All very nice and soft and yummy and all for me :-)

Today I got this lot from Astrid's Dutch Obsessions:

Opal Uni on the bottom, Egg Yellow, Viola, Mokka, Azur and Camel. Trekking XXL on top, 78, 101, and Aquarell 159. One of these is for my Knitter's Tea Swap 2 pal, and one is for my Sockret Pal. The others are for me, I think.

I finally tried my hand at making stitch markers.

I like them :-) and it's fun. I'm probably going to send some of these to my Sockret Pal.

Now, off to start dinner!

Monday, October 02, 2006


I'm stupid. I've been feeling just a little sad that noone ever comments on my blog and wondering if anyone actually reads it. Then I just saw a comment somewhere today and realised that if moderation is on, you have to actually go looking for the comments, Blogger won't send a mail about them. Duh! So I checked, and there where comments! I'm thrilled that people are actually reading and commenting on my blog. And extremely sorry that I haven't answered the comments :-( I really appreciate them, thanks. So here are some answers:

Gita, I ordered the Leaf Lace Shawl pattern from Get Knitted, in physical form, not as a download. I think it's a great beginner pattern, I've enjoyed knitting it very much.

Debi, I got a mail from my tea swap pal about a week ago, the 27th. I was starting to get a bit worried at the time :-) And I heard from my Sockret Pal on the 29th.

Sockret Pal, nice to hear from you (I got your e-mail too) Good to hear that you'll find it easy to get goodies for me ;-) I must say that I have to think a bit more about my spoilees, I don't share most of their tastes. But that's part of the fun isn't it? Thinking outside the box, considering colours and other things that you usually don't.

Today I felt so sick at work that I actually went home again after a couple of hours. Nauseous and tired and stupid. I think that the stress of last week got the better of me. So I'll stay home tomorrow too and rest. I sat quietly and knitted and listened to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. I finished both the Tiger socks and the Leaf Lace shawl and a hat I started yesterday evening!

Project: Tiger Socks
Yarn: Opal Rainforest Tiger, one 100 g skein with leftovers enough for kid or baby socks.
Needles: 2.5 mm Addis, Magic Loop
Pattern: This is a mixup of two toe-up Knitty patterns, an idea from Keyboard Biologist and my own thinking. I cast on like for Widdershins but realised that the sock would be too narrow so I kept on increasing until it seemed right, 62 stitches instead of 54. Then I made the heel from Hedera. I wanted a k2-p2 rib so I increased 2 sts after the heel.
Both these patterns have heels that look like a top-down heel flap heel and I wanted to try that. It worked beautifully! The idea from Keyboard Biologist is to knit plain stockinette but everytime there's a black stitch directly above another black stitch, that stitch is purled. This gives a little more texture to the sock. I like the effect.

The only problem with these socks is that both Mum and Dad has hinted that the want them for their birthday, which are both coming up very soon (this week and next week) And they fit both of them. What to do?

Here's the unblocked Leaf Lace Shawl. It is quite large even now, very cosy. I don't know where to block it. It would fit on our queen size bed, except for the upper edge I think, but the yarn is thick and it will probably take a few days to dry. Somehow I don't think M wants to sleep on it... I think I have to do it on towels on the floor somewhere. I think I need me some blocking wires too.

And here's the silly hat I made (yes that's me). One skein of super thick yarn I got somewhere. I've tried to make a hat out of it before, but there wasn't enough of it. This hat is very slim so there were just enough. I had barely three inches left after weaving in the ends... I had intended to make this hat, but I was running out of yarn fast so I decreased faster and made no ball at the end, just a long i-cord. I have to try that pattern for real though. Maybe for the kids, or for M.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

What a week!

This has been a busy, busy week! Monday through Wednesday I took a job related class (web programming) that made me commute 1.5 extra hours per day. Luckily I could take the train, so I nearly finished my second tiger sock. Thursday night we started job related evening class after work (the first Oracle SQL certification, yes I am a geek), so I came home late.

The Swedish national quilting guild, Rikstäcket, had their annual meeting this weekend in Lund, only an hours drive from here. So of course I had to go! Friday night I took a quilting class (tumbling blocks), so I was home very late, and tired after the night drive. Saturday morning I drove down to Lund again for quilt shopping and quilt watching and another quilting class (freehand machine quilting), that continued all day today. On top of it all I started feeling really queasy on Saturday night and my stomach is still complaining. I hope it's just stress and not a tummy bug.
So I'm totally pooped, no pics today!

Today is the first day of Socktober! Have I knit any socks today? Um, no, I knit a bit on my shawl in front of the telly instead. Only two more rows and then bind off! Back to socks: I've been thinking about my Socktoberfest goals, do I have any? Well, finish the tiger socks of course, then the dragon socks. I ripped and restarted the second one but I've only done an inch or so. After that I feel that have to do the Jaywalkers for M, or maybe some other pattern. The yarn is Lornas Lace's pinstripe in black and grey (yes, he chose it himself) I want the pinstripes to show, but not plain stockinette. Maybe a k3, p1 rib? I'll look through Vintage Socks for ideas I think. Don't know if I'll be able to do anything else this month, we'll see.

Also on a socky note: I *have* to decide what yarn to get for my Knitter's Tea Swap pal! I found some great yarns at Astrid's Dutch Obsessions, but I have to decide exactly which one to get, and then maybe something for me to. She has Trekking XXL and Regia Bamboo which I haven't tried before... The other goodies are bought, well mostly. I really should send out that box this week as it's going overseas. Maybe the recipient

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Sockret Pal Questionaire

The Sockret Pal partners have been assigned so here are my answers to the questionaire:

The basics:
How long have you been knitting? About 25 years, on and off. Sweaters, hats, mittens, cables and colourwork. I started knitting socks this year and I love it!
Do you consider yourself a beginning sock knitter, an intermediate, or have you been doing this so long you could probably knit a pair in your sleep? Intermediate.

The measurements:
While your pal may ask for some additional info to ensure a great fit, please provide your shoe size, or any other fitting related info you think is pertinent. European size 39, about US women’s size 8. My feet are 9” around and 9 ¾” long. Leg just above the heel is also 9” And my calves get very, um, shapely about 9” from the ground so anything longer than that needs shaping, and anyway I don’t think my calves needs any more padding ;-) Sock toes on the blunt side fit me best.

(fiber related) Favorites:
What colors do you love? Blue is my all time favourite, all shades except baby blue but including purple, greenish blue etc. My second favourite is red, fire engine red. I also really like orange and grey.
Do you prefer solids or variegated? Oh dear, I don’t know. It depends on the stitch pattern. Lace and cables needs a solid(ish) yarn but stockinette is more fun with a variegated yarn. I have a tendency to fall in love with varegiated yarn, and then I fall in love with patterns that work best with solids…
What fibers do you most love to knit with? Wool, wool, and wool. Well, animal fibers anyway. I must admit that I have only ever tried wool, mohair (in the eighties) and cotton. And cotton is too unelastic, not fun to knit with.
Who do you consider your favorite yarn vendors? Hmm, I haven’t tried more than a couple. Simply Sock Yarn Company and Get Knitted are both nice. Or does vendor mean yarn manufacturer? In that case I’d say Fleece Artist and Opal, but I haven’t tried much fancy yarn. Peer Gynt from Sandnes is a very nice yarn for Norwegian sweaters. I have heard rave reviews of both Sundara yarns and Socks that Rock, it would be great fun to try those.
What projects (other than socks, of course *S*) do you most enjoy knitting? Lace!

(fiber related) Dislikes:
What fibers can you not stand to knit with? To wear? I avoid everything acrylic like the plague. I’m a fiber snob, sorry :-) And I hate knitting with cotton, it’s so unelastic, knitting becomes a fight for every stitch. No fun at all. So I absoultely prefer to knit with wool and wool blends. And I do live in a cold climate, so wool socks are the best anyway.
What colors would you never wear? Light pastels. Booooring.

The Tools:
Plastic or Metal? Bamboo or wood? Not plastic. Metal is nice and what I mostly use, as it is easiest to get around here. I have some sets of lousy wooden dpn’s, but it would be fun to try nice ones.
Circs or Straights? Circs! I never use straights, even for flat knitting, the ends get too heavy.
DPNs or Magic Loop? Both :-) But I prefer magic loop, less shifts between needles and easier to try the sock on as I go.
Are there any knitting accessories you don't have in your collection but would like? I only restarted my knitting very recently, so I don’t have much except some needles. And I must admit that I don’t know what’s to get. I would really like needles in those US sizes that are in between the metric ones, size 1 (2.25 mm) and 2 (2.75 mm)

The Extras:
Do you have a wish list? If so, please share the link! Haven't got one.
Do you like sweet, sour or salty? (or all of the above? *S*) Dark chocolate, and salty licorice.
Do you have any allergies your pal should know about? (Certain foods, smoke, pet hair, etc) All nuts and almonds, peanuts. And I can’t stand tobacco smoke.
Favorite scents? Scents you can't stand? I’m sensitive to strong scents, they make me sneeze. I prefer citrus, mint, spice, not sweet ones.
Do you collect anything (other than yarn and knitting toys of course)? Fabric and quilting toys! Especially batiks. I’m a quilter too you know…
When is your birthday? (month and day is fine!) May 30
Do you spin? Dye your own yarn? Nope, but I would love to try. We actually have spinning wheel at the cottage (from a relative who emigrated to America in the 1880’s, no less), but I don’t know how to work it.
Your favorite author/band/vacation spot, anything you think will help your pal know you better... Books: I have read the Lord of the Rings countless times (love the movies too), I like Harry Potter. Neil Gaiman is one of my favourite authors, and Peter F Hamilton. I mostly read fantasy and science fiction, when I have time to read that is, and don’t get caught in a knitting or quilting book or magazine. Music: Depeche Mode, Pet Shop Boys, U2 (yes I was a teenager in the 80’s :-) Rammstein, Celtic/Irish music. I love Australia (have been there twice) and we’re going there to visit my sister (she lives there permanently) and her family in December. So my pal might get an Aussie prezzie!

Monday, September 25, 2006

Commuting is Good

... at least for sock knitting! We spent the weekend at our cottage in the forest with my parents and I knitted in the car for about an hour on the way there, and a little one of the evenings. Today I commuted almost 1 hour each way by train: more knitting. This is the second tiger sock now:

I was at the stitch marker before we left for the cottage, now I have done the gusset and am about to start the heel turn. I have two more days of train riding this week, I might finish that sock!

I have eight rows left on my Leaf Lace shawl, I'm almost done! But these last few rows are s l o w. I haven't decided on my next shawl project yet, but I'm tempted by Miriams designs, maybe the Mountain Peaks shawl and really use lace weight yarn, maybe red? I have never used lace weight yarn before and I certainly don't have it in my stash. I have to search around the net for some info, I think. This town is really boring, craftwise. We do have a couple of yarn stores, but they mostly have acrylics and novelties and some very standard wools. There are a couple of shops that sell patchwork fabrics and supplies, but it's not their speciality and they don't have much. So, I *love* the internet!

I got the name of my pal/spoilee for the Knitters Tea Swap the other day! I have sent an anonymous email for reassurance. No I'm just waiting to hear from my other pal, my spoiler! I have looked through my pal's blog, and checked the presentation on the swap blog and I have some ideas. We'll see what I can come up with :-)

Monday, September 18, 2006


I have finished the first tiger sock. I love it! It is knitted toe-up and I decided I would make it as long as possible, but when I weighed it I realised that I had only used about a third of the ball and it was still plenty long. So I will have leftovers, for kids socks maybe.

And I'm on the last repeat of the Leaf Lace shawl, only 4 rows left before the edging. It's hard to determine how big it will be after blocking. The patterns says about 45" from top to bottom and I think I'm getting close to that. It should be plenty big for 165 cm me, shouldn't it?

Here is the crumpled mess hanging upside down over M's office chair.

I have also signed up for Socktoberfest! It sounds like fun.