Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Great Unwashed

Still knitting. Busy, but still knitting.

My only projects on the needles right now are the Bomb Pop Socks (see right), but I haven't been able to devote much time to them. Life has been take over by keeping the weeds out of my lovely new landscaping. So far, I've been able to keep up, but it takes time. Luckily, the weather has been cooperating and the yard is looking quite lovely. More weeds in the lawn than I would like -- but it's green, right?

I've noticed something interesting while knitting these. Readers may remember that these socks have been on the needles in some form or fashion for over a year. Some have been knitted twice. Thus, I started on this latest incarnation with quite a bit of previously knitted yarn. Non-knitters may not know this, but unraveled yarn tries to keep the loopy shape it was knitted into, which results in very kinky wool. Some of this telephone-cord action can be seen in the far right of the first picture, to the right of the ball of yarn.

I only had very little of the Bomb Pop yarn that had never been knitted -- maybe 20% of the total skein. I started with this virgin wool at the toe of the second sock. You can see it here on the right. Nice, smooth stitches for the most part -- if periodically a bit wonky in the tension department. It was really nice working with this smooth, un-kinky yarn in the early stages. Especially since this is a toe up sock, and with double wraps. I was having to K3t and P3t quite a bit. That's no fun with unruly, previously knit yarn.

Which is what we have here. This picture is from an inch or two further up the sole of the sock, after I had spliced in the kinky stuff. Can you see how the whole fabric seems to tug back and forth, to and fro, this way and that? The rows don't line up as neatly and the little "v" shapes of the stitches pucker in and out.

To be honest,this difference is only really noticeable by looking at it quite closely with the digital macro feature of my camera. It's also hardly noticeable in the 2x2 ribbing portions across the instep. And the great news is that once these socks are washed, the yarn should unlearn it's old shape and conform to it's new configuration. Ain't wool grand?

Janelle -- do you remember if this skein of wool was superwash or not? Shame on me for not remembering.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb Pop Socks

If you look in the sidebar to the right, you'll see I have only one thing on the needles -- the Bomb Pop Socks. For newer readers, a bit of history:

Back in December of 2006, my dear friends Sharon and Janelle and their boys were visiting us. We decided to try our hands at dying with Kool-Aid, and one of the "colorways" I created was dubbed Bomb Pop. Much indecision and frustration ensued, mostly surrounding finding a design that will work well with this rather striking striping. I haven't touched these in a year.

Above are the two "things" that have crept ever downward in my knitting basket over the past year. The one one the left is a completed sock, knit in the baby cable rib from Charlene Schurch's Sensational Knitted Socks. Too busy for this yarn. The one on the right is a slightly over halfway done toe-up sock with no ribbing. Too many stitches cast on, and thus too big. So I'm seeking a compromise. I ripped out the toe-up sock and started on what you see here.

Now I'm doing toe-up again, but this time with a 2x2 ribbing and four fewer stitches around. I think this is going to work better and not be so hard on the eyes.

I'm determined to get these knit up. Thanks, Sharon, for encouraging me to tackle them again!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Fried Pies!

Somewhere in the Arbuckle Mountains of Oklahoma...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Do You Need a Lozenge?

When I first read the name of this pattern, I thought, "Lozenge? A lozenge is oval-shaped, like a cough drop, right?" I didn't realize it had an older meaning, referring to a diamond (or rhomboid) shape in general. Diamond shapes in heraldry are called lozenges and are usually associated with coats of arms granted to women.

The different positions of animals in heraldry all have different descriptions -- rampant, for instance, means standing on one rear leg, all others raised. Regardant refers to looking over a shoulder. Statant means standing on all four feet. In the picture above, I was lying on my back and taking a picture upwards. I can't find what that would be called, so let's imagine a coat of arms for this pair of socks -- Knitter Supinant, Lozenge-Clad.

I can't believe I started these on Christmas Eve. They took forever. I basically abandoned them while working on the sweater, and got back to them with a vengeance one I was freed up. I like the pattern. The yarn is a little rough. And stupidly, I ran out of yarn on the second sock. It's two rows shorter than the other. But you can't tell when they're on my feet. I did take some pictures of these, but they don't look so good off the hoof. Some socks only look good on your feet.

I feel kind of edgy. I have nothing on the needles right now -- unless you count the long-languishing Bomb Pop Socks. I kind of forgot about those...