Socktoberfest Sock Knitting Challenge

The Socktoberfest Crocodylia  KAL has officially ended.  You can see my single sock at the link ..yes, I know.. only single so far but I have extenuating circumstances excuses.  These were my bus ride knitting project and as I was finishing up the first sock, daylight savings time changed and dark yarn, dark needles are not conducive knitting for the bus ride when the lighting on most buses is this weird bluish light that is not very bright — if you happen to get a seat on the side of the bus that is truly lit.  And I was busy on a sweater at home – but the sweater is nearly complete and the second sock has been cast on so I can work on it at home.

But check out these lovely socks that were completed by those who were up to the challenge and succeeded beautifully!

Karen Petersen

Karen Petersen

Shirley Soellner

Shirley Soellner

Priscilla Benson

Priscilla Benson

June Canders-Cloutier

June Canders-Cloutier

 

 

 

 

Thank you ladies for playing along with me (and surpassing me with completing your pair).  June said this was her first pair of knit socks ever – excellent!!

And now to the random number generator (I’ve numbered them 1 thru 4 in the order shown here) and the winner of a hank of Wollmeise sock yarn is:

CapturePriscilla is the lucky winner.  I believe she was also the first person to email me a photo of her lovely red socks which show off the stitch pattern so well.   Priscilla please email me with your mailing address.

Congratulations to all you ladies who now have a cozy pair of socks to wear.

 

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Back to work

I seriously need to go back to work because I’ve spent the last three days puttering and cleaning and while my sewing room is looking great – everything in there is where it belongs and I even got in a little quilting time – my three day weekend has gone by quickly and it was all work work work – or so it seems.

As I said, I did get some quilting got five or six more blocks of my niece’s wedding quilt quilted.  Think I only have about 4 more to go and then I can start on the border quilting.  I’d really love to have this one done by the end of the month.  Of course how that I think about it, I believe I made all the binding before I started quilting on this and in my tidying up, I don’t recall seeing the binding.  Now I have to figure out if it’s a figment of my imagination that I made it or what really safe place I put it.

As I’ve been tidying, I’ve also been watching and listening to a new Craftsy class by Amy Herzog called “Sweater Modifications for a Custom Fit.”  It is not connected to the CustomFit program she also has where you get a computer generated pattern in your size.   It IS about getting a great fitting sweater based on your own measurements and how do get to that point and alter a pattern schematic.  It’s full of great information about swatching, what your knit fabric should look like to be successful in your sweater, taking your measurements correctly and choosing your pattern size correctly.  And then how you go about altering that pattern if you need to adjust it from the original measurements to your own.  I never really had a clue how you figure out how many rows of increases or decreases you need and exactly how to space them out – but the mystery is revealed and it’s so easy.  And there’s a sweater pattern to work on to put all you learn into practice.

I haven’t finished watching the whole program yet – I think I’m up to the seaming/finishing parts – but lots of information I found really useful.  Will I alter sweaters on my own?– heck, probably not, because I do use the CustomFit program to have the magical elves generate my pattern for me and I’m happy to pay for that rather than do the math myself — but it’s very helpful to know what goes into those changes, and all the other stuff from the class will help me make even better choices in yarn, sweater style, etc.  And, if  there was a sweater making emergency and I didn’t have access to the program to generate my pattern for me, I believe I could be successful in altering a pattern  myself after watching this class.  Very empowering thought. 🙂 And, the fact that the class was on sale for just $14.99 was just a bonus.  I heartily recommend it.

Monday Mess

I’ve been puttering on the computer most of the morning but I really need to finish cleaning out that last closet.

But first things first – design wall still looks like this

wallPatchKats still on the wall and not all the sashing added yet but at least that mess of shelves and stuff on the table got back to where it belonged yesterday.  I have to figure out where I put the rest of my sashing strips tho.  Hopefully I’ll get to some sewing later this week.

 

gh

 

Last night I got caught up on Clue 3 to the Laura Aylor Sumer’s End MKAL.  One more clue to go which will come out later this week.  I have told myself I must finish this before starting on my Loopy Academy knitting but… Academy supplies may arrive before the next clue comes out so what’s a girl to do?!

I also got a bit more done on my sweater using one of my Loopy Legend yarns.

ggThis time I decided to try the tubular cast on that it was quite slick.  I can see using that again and I love the edge it gives to the cast on.  And having to only cast on half the stitches for a fingering weight sweater for me – a definite time saver.

It’s a rainy, dreary, humid day so best to stay indoors to play.  Off to do the final tidying in the sewing room – not much left to do – and then the coat closet and I might actually get to cleaning out the laundry room too…. but you know that I could quickly lose interest at any time and decide to go knit and watch movies instead. 😉

Loopy Legend – Denise’s Gannets

gannet-bird-1366x768  My Loopy Legend yarn has arrived at The Loopy Ewe!

What’s a Loopy Legend – someone who has purchased many many hanks of lovely yarn and reached the award level where you send in an inspiration photo and they have a yarn dyed based on that photo in your name and you get a free hank of it.

Here’s the photo I sent in of a Gannet – I love the shades of yellow and gold on his head and the blue/gray of his beak.

And here’s what Lorna’s Laces did with the dying of the yarn.

denisegannetsloopylegend

 

I absolutely love it!!  Yes, more yarn had to be ordered  and is on its way to me. I think I will be making a sweater out of this.  I will need to do some swatch to see how it looks knit up – will it pool or not – then again I may just wing it and if it pools so what.  But I absolutely love all the colors in it.

Do you need some Gannet yarn – check out The Loopy Ewe to get your own.

Loopy Academy Project 2

I haven’t sewn up or felted my first Loopy Academy project yet but soon.  In the meantime, I decided I’d figure out what I wanted to do for the second project – either a striped project or a slip stitch project. I opted for the project with stripes first.

I’m going to be making An Ounce of Flounce.  It’s just a short little scarf with a bit of ruffle on the edge.  It’s been in my Ravelry library for a while as something I wanted to make and now is the time.

My yarn is now ordered – Manos del Uruguay Serena in Wildflowers and Oyster.  The Wildflowers has such soft coloring – makes me think spring.  The Oyster looks like it will be a very close match to the Wildflowers so the stripes should blend a bit more rather than stand out – which is the look I’m going for.  I’m also going to use the Wildflowers for the main color (where the brown is used in the original pattern).  There looks to be a bit of pink in the Wildflowers but I’m hoping more toward purple shaded than pink (those who know me know I don’t like pink) but in any event even if there is pink in there it looks like a pretty blend.

wildflowers and oyster

The real clincher when I was looking at the patterns is that since this is a short scarf it’s held in place with a shawl pin which made me remember my lovely butterfly shawl pin I bought not long ago but haven’t worn yet.  I think the butterfly wings will look perfect against this yarn.

The yarn is a blend of alpaca and pima cotton so warm but headed toward spring with the cotton – may be just right around my spring coat collar for those blustery days.

More yarn coming in but soon there will be more yarn used up so it will all even out — and I’ll really be in the black for my knitting stash report  if I finish one or two or three or four of the sweaters that are in the works.  LOL  I pulled out my Wiggle Wrap to work on during the bus ride today since I forgot to wind more yarn last night for one of my sweaters.    The Wiggle Wrap is a great pattern you can pick up and put down and no worry about losing your place since its such an easy pattern but I’m getting ready for that to be done soon — but I want it really long so I shall continue on.  But now to wind more yarn for my purple sweater.

 

It’s a wind tunnel

in my sewing room, that is.

DSCN4056  The fronts and sleeves are blocking so I’ve got two small fans blowing on hem to make them dry faster.  Tho fingering weight yarn slows down sweater knitting progress, it definitely speeds up blocking drying progress since these pieces are nearly dried.

But between the fact that it make it cold in the sewing room with the fans going, and they are a bit annoying to listen to, and I would have had to be stepping around those blocking boards on the floor, I did not get around to laying the wedding quilt which I wanted to do today.

I did manage to get many loads of laundry done and straightened up the sewing room a bit and cleared the table so maybe I can get to quilt layering tomorrow.

Sheri at The Loopy Ewe had asked the question on the blog about what Lil’ Loopy was doing while waiting for Loopy Academy to start second semester in February.  Well here’s what he’s doing at my house —

DSCN4055 He’s perched on the rack that holds the knit swatches and I’m thinking that since I’ve got a wind tunnel doing in that room right now, he just might be wrapped up in one of those swatches – perfect blanket size for him – next time I walk into that room.

If you’re doing the Knitter’s Gifts quilt – this months’ installment was uploaded this morning so be sure to get it.  The final border will be given next month.

Now to go fold all that laundry I washed while I wait for the pizza delivery guy — well you can’t expect me to do lots of laundry, clean the kitchen and sewing room AND cook dinner (since I forgot I was going to go to the grocery store today and never got around to it and there’s not much in my cupboards).  Another evening of knitting is in order I think after that.

Deep Winter Sweater KAL

Well, yeah, I might have said I wouldn’t start another sweater until I finished one of the ones in progress.  But then I say a lot of things that seriously – how did they ever come out of my mouth since I know me better.  🙂

Actually that was my intent but I had forgotten that January 1 would start the next Customfit sweater KAL — Deep Winter Sweater — meant to evoke (at least in my mind) thoughts of comfy, cozy, warm cardigan sweater that can be thrown on with jeans as well as work pants.

DSCN4033And since this lovely  Miss Babs Yowza from her Christmas gratitude sale has been sitting on my couch since it arrived (whew – it arrived before 2015 so three days into the new year and I still haven’t purchased any yarn!) 😉  I decided I really wanted to make it into a cardigan.  I love my other sweater out of Yowza yarn so can’t wait to get started.  I’ve got one hank ready to start winding.

You can see the link to the pattern I’m using on my Ravelry page (see the notes at the bottom – that’s where the link is since it’s a CF pattern) and what I’m really excited about are the buttons I have ordered.  Since it’s a “deep winter” sweater, what could be better than “winter tree” buttons.  The link to the button site is in the notes at the bottom too.  I ordered them this morning and within an hour – maybe sooner – got the notification they were ready to mail.  Talk about speedy.

For those working on the mystery quilt – the last clue has now been posted.  I’m going to wait until the Design Wall Monday post to show what my top looks like so I don’t spoil the  “mystery” for those who are still stitching.

Socktoberfest Challenge results

 

DSCN3880   Although my own Socktoberfest socks have not progressed much beyond this last photo I took of them due to  sweater knitting mania — there are others who succeeded in the Socktoberfest Challenge and completed their pair of socks.

Here they are.

The winner of the Socks that Rocks Rainbow Reindeer yarn is Katie!  I’ve sent you an email.   Katie said this is only the second pair of socks she’s made.  Congratulations Katie!  And thank you three for  playing along on this challenge.  The weather here has turned to wooly sock wearing weather so its time for me to take them out of summer storage and fill my drawer back up with them so they are at the ready.

Katie basket weave rib soc

Katie basket weave rib soc

Mary Rs Ice Cube socks

Mary Rs Ice Cube socks

PeggyGs gravel grid socks

PeggyGs gravel grid socks

Socktoberfest Approaches – CHALLENGE TIME!!

I can’t believe it’s nearly the end of September already!   October is just days away and that means some Socktoberfest knitting to be done.  I can’t remember the last time I touched a pair of socks I was knitting.  I have one pair that stays at the office in case I forget my bus knitting  – at least I’ll have knitting to grab for the bus ride home those days.   But I finally brought that pair of socks home so I could get it finished…. soon… but in the meantime – a Socktoberfest Challenge must be made!! 🙂

If you’re a long-time blog reader, you know there have been some crazy Socktoberfest challenges in the past (crazy but fun — some successful and some not so successful). Multiple pairs of socks finished, some unfinished, lovely sock yarns purchased for the challenges, lonely socks got mated up as I finally finished those second socks, more lovely yarn purchased for challenges.  And if you’ve never tried sock knitting, perhaps Socktoberfest is the time to give it a try!

For those of you who have just been anxiously waiting to see what sort of Socktoberfest Challenge I might be making this year (you know you have you crazy sock knitters you!) ….well here it is…. and no, it does not entail making (or attempting to make) some crazy number of socks in a month.  It does not involve having to buy specific yarn (but if you feel the need to tell your spouse that I said you absolutely positively had to buy new yarn for this challenge — well I would not deny it, just don’t let them see this blog post — I’m all for enabling). 🙂    All you have to do for this challenge is knit one pair of socks using one of my favorite sock patterns – and I’ve give you several to choose from.  I shall be using my  newly arrived Socks That Rock, Rainbow Reindeer colorway,  the hank on the far right in the photo below.

DSCN3826

Here it is wound into a cake.   DSCN3830

If you want to join me in Socktoberfest knitting, and be entered into the random drawing to win your very own hank of Rainbow Reindeer, here’s what you need to do.

1) Knit a pair of adult size socks using one of my favorite sock patterns listed below.  These are my “go to” patterns and I love each of them for different reasons (the stitches, the textures, some of the heel touches that are a bit different, etc).

2) You can start on your socks as of today, 9/27/14.  The pair must be completed and a photograph emailed to me of them no later than noon CST on October 1, November 1, 2014, to be eligible for the drawing. I will post the photos to my blog.  (yes the October 1 date was obviously a typo – even I’m not crazy enough to plan to make a pair of socks in three days – or hmm…. maybe a challenge for next year!) 🙂

3) The socks must be basically knit according to the pattern with a very few exceptions:  (1) If you prefer making toe up socks and can figure out how to do that with the patterns I’ve chosen, that is fine to do.   (2)  If you need  fewer or more stitches to fit your foot, or a different needle size, than the pattern calls for,  those changes are fine.   But you cannot: (1) shorten the leg length to ankle socks and (2) if there is a stitch pattern across the top of the foot, you cannot do just stockinette stitch across the foot – the pattern stitch must continue per the pattern.

Here are my favorite patterns  in no particular order (and there’s no affiliation with any of the designers – some patterns you have to purchase, some are free downloads – they are simply my favorite patterns) and they are all available through Ravelry.  If you aren’t a member of Ravelry, you can sign up for a free account.  If you know the basics of sock knitting, I don’t believe you should find any of these difficult.  Remember I do lots of sock knitting on the bus and for that reason I generally choose patterns that have an easily memorizable pattern — I hate having to actually read lines of a pattern while bouncing along on a bus — and you know I don’t like making cables so there are none of those involved. 🙂   Links are below the photos.  If you follow the link and then click on the photos on the Ravelry page, you can see more close up images of the patterns.

tesserae

Tesserae Sock by Anne Hanson

house

House Targaryen by Avalanche Designs

ice

Ice Cube Socks by Debbie O’Neill

nine

Nine-to-Five Socks by Nicole Hindes

basket weave

Basket Weave Rib Socks by Sarah Ronchetti

porthos

Porthos by Caoua Coffee

gravel

Gravel Grid by Jessica Baird

 

So, will you be joining the challenge?  Which of the patterns do you think you’ll use?  Have you made your yarn choice?? Details I want details! LOL   Now I have to decide which one of those patterns I will use!

 

Loopy Academy Mittens

Things are going much better now that I have the needles I wanted and found a pattern I like — despite the fact that there are cable stitches in it.  🙂

Actually, the cable area knits up quickly and it’s fun to see those ridges appear and merge.  I didn’t make my cuff as long as the pattern called for — I think it said to make it seven inches long, mine’s a couple of inches shorter — but the fit around my hand is absolutely perfect.

DSCN3797