Yarn Snack and New Socks

First, the promised photos of my new Chameleon Colorworks yarn.

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That first skein is still snuggled in my stash, but the latter, in the shade mushroom, is in the process of becoming socks for Kent. These are the Garter-Rib Socks from Sensational Knitted Socks.

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I like how the yarn is knitting up. When I received it, I was a bit disappointed because it is supposed to have some variation in the color, but it doesn’t. However, it is a pleasing oatmeal color and is nice to handle even though it likes to split when I have to pick up dropped stitches.

Thus far, the width of the socks seems good. When I pull them up Kent’s leg, they are snug enough to stay up, but not tight enough to squeeze ridges. They have an unfortunate “design element” on one leg. I knit too late into the dark at a restaurant and the next day, after and hour spent trying to get everything right on the needles, I finally bit the bullet and knit a row that really should have been ribbed. Doing that made a line across the sock. Not the end of the world, but frustrating.

Only other problem at this point is that my beautiful birch KnitPicks needle that broke was giving me a tighter gauge than the metal Hiya Hiya of the same size. It is still an acceptable fabric, but not quite as nice as the original.

Thanks to comments on the Knitting Circles Around Socks group in Ravelry, I now have the two balls of yarn feeding out of the corners of a ziplock bag. This is keeping them clean and keeping the balls from getting twisted together.

When the socks are longer, I will put the balls inside the socks. At the start of a row, I pull out enough slack for the row. This way the skeins never tangle, and I can easily pick up or set down the project.

And finally, a visit from the flower inspector. Kapas was good; she didn’t eat any of them, just sniffed appreciatively.

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An FO, New Stash and a New WIP

Long time no write. That seems to be the norm on this blog! Sorry about that.

1. Magic Strip Socks are Finished! I truly mucked up the first toe as I did the knitted Kitchener stitch. I took me an hour and a half to fix it. Thankfully second toe only took about 20 minutes to finish off. I had a blast with the yarn because the color runs are so short. It was a constant delight to watch how the the different colors interacted as I knit. I mistakenly said it was dyed with Kool Aid but I was wrong– it was dyed with Easter egg dyes, which is equally cool in my opinion.

2. Chameleon Colorworks yarn from Dyeworks Fiber Studios Arrived. Adrianne ordered us great yarn from the US. I’ll post photos later because my photo app keeps crashing and I don’t want to post 2 MB photos on the blog. I used my new ball winder to convert the hank into well-mannered center-pull balls. Unfortunately, I was so enamored with the winding process that I failed to notice the hank slipping off the dining room chair. It instantly became a tangled mess and it took me hours to untangle it. That was not how I planned to spend a precious weekend afternoon. However, at looooong last I had two lovely balls all ready for my next project…

3. Began Garter-Rib Socks. I’m attempting my first 2-socks at a time project that is NOT from the book. I’m knitting the Garter-Rib socks from Charlene Schurch’s (sp?) Sensational Socks book. That amazing book gives directions for knitting them on DPNs or on a circular needle. I’m using what I’ve learned from my previous two sock projects to knit both on circulars at once. I love that her book lets me figure out my gauge and then tells me how to knit the pattern at that gauge.

I took time I couldn’t afford to start them this week rather than on my trip to Bangkok. Good thing I did; the US#1 needles were making a too loose fabric so I started over with US#0 needles. Yes, bad me for not swatching. I figure that since I’d need to knit in the round to get an accurate gauge, I might as well just start knitting. Since I was willing to start over when the first needles didn’t give me the fabric I wanted, I think this system will work for socks. I know you don’t get your real gauge until the swatch is washed and blocked, but I’m using a ribbed pattern that should be fairly forgiving, and I can keep trying the socks on Kent’s foot, so this should work.

The needles are my lovely KnitPicks circular needles that I bought in Sydney. They are so tiny I fear they will break, but I am enjoying them. Being bamboo they are a bit stickier than my Hiya Hiya needles. That is helping to keep the stitches on the needles. Only down side is that the needles themselves are so colorful that I can’t easily mark them so that I don’t accidentally grab the wrong needle. However, I’m doing okay so far, haven’t accidentally joined the two socks together by knitting with the wrong needle. And the colorful needles show up really well against this off-white yarn.

Now that I’m done with the cuff, the pattern is really easy and more interesting that just K2, P2. Instead, the first row is K2, P2 and the second row is straight st st. I like the design it makes. Hopefully it is masculine enough for guy socks. I think it is.

The yarn is a bamboo, wool, nylon mix. It feels cool as I knit it, so hopefully the socks won’t be too warm for Singapore. Men at our school aren’t allowed to wear sandals so Kent has to wear socks everyday.

Realistically, I know this pair will be a lesson it itself as I figure out what fits Kent and what he likes. However, I can dream that this pair is a big hit, quickly becomes his favorite pair of socks, and doesn’t leave nasty welts around his legs because their fit is perfect.