Box #2 contains…. a family legacy!

As you may remember, yesterday I left you hanging with this tantalizing picture:

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You got to see that end of the box, because the other end has a nice little label-holder with a neatly lettered label. This box contains:

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Holes! Well, socks that contain holes, as well as all my extra sock yarn bits, and my Weavette hand loom. I’m planning on darning those socks so I can have warm feet this winter, and then making a few more rectangles for my handwoven sock yarn blankie. I’m going to be working on that blanket for a long time.

Now, to darn socks you need a tool usually called a darning egg, or darning mushroom (someone told me once just to use a lightbulb, but that only works if you don’t have CFLs. For one thing, those things don’t die, and for another, if your heels are shaped like my CFLs, I don’t know how you walk!). I didn’t have one of these tools, so the socks sat languishing. See the languish?

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Luckily, there was a solution to this problem. Email mum, and ask her if she has granny’s (HER granny’s!) darning mushroom still. And the answer was….YES.

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That is my great-granny’s darning mushroom. I do have a vague memory of her showing me what it was for, when I was about 4 or so.

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Mmmmm, patina. It says Czecko-Slovakia [sic] on the underside. I’m really looking forward to using this.

Finished Vinnlands

 

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Finished Vinnland Socks, started June 24th, 2007, finished August 3rd, 2007
Pattern: Vinnland Socks from The AntiCraft
Yarn: Fleece Artist Sea Wool, 1 skein, with golf ball-sized bit left over
Needles: 2.5mm all the way through
Dimensions: for my size 8 foot (cast on for 23cm (9″) size)
Pattern Notes: Exactly as written! Well, mostly.
Would I knit it again? I really liked it, but there are so many sock patterns out there, I don’t think I ever want to repeat myself. Then again, the ribbing is so stretchy, it’d make a great gift sock.

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My first toe-up sock, and my first short row heel. I like it. I can’t say whether or not I like it better than the heel flap yet, but I like doing new techniques. I put my hand under my foot for that photo because I realised that photographing a grey sock against greyish concrete was not the best idea.

The yarn is lovely, it’s got a nice sheen and is very soft. Here’s hoping it holds up to being worn.

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It took me a while to do these, mainly because I stopped partway through the first one and took a break. Can you guess why, looking at the photo above? Anyone? Here, let me zoom in:

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Now you see it, don’t you? I use a little Post-it to mark my place on the chart, and one day I took the pattern out of the bag to find that the Post-it had fallen off. It was still early days in the knitting, and I wasn’t living and breathing the pattern yet, so as I was trying to figure out what row it was, I made a mistake. To be fair, this pattern has two rows (rows 8 and 16) that are just 2×2 ribbing. I just chose the wrong one. I didn’t notice until a few more repeats up, but I decided not to frog. It all blends, and I think the colour of the yarn helps hide it too. At least that’s what I’m telling myself. I still like them, and find it sort of neat that they’re different. Of course, the pattern ends at different points at the cuffs now, as you are instructed to stop on row 8 or 16. The first sock (with its extra half a repeat) stops at 16, the correct sock stops at 8. Oh well.

Back from a pseudo vaycay

My excuse for not posting recently is that I was at my parent’s house on the coast. I went out and stayed there for 5 days last week, then I came back to an empty and laptop-less house, because the boy was off freelancing in Banff. I just didn’t feel like blogging, or uploading my pics to his computer, just to move them over, when my laptop came back. So I didn’t. And I got stuff done! Knitting, cooking, cleaning… it was good.

Then Friday I couldn’t stand it any longer and drove out to Banff to visit for the weekend, and when I left today, I took my laptop too. He is working 12 hours today, so he won’t have computer time. mwahahha.

The good news that comes with a blogger taking a break, is that stuff gets done. Like DONE done.

I mentioned I left for my parents’ on Wednesday (the 24th). I finished my Two-Tone Shrug that afternoon, just a week after I started it! Sadly, that’s the only thing I don’t have pictures of, because I believe that if I put it on right now, I would immediately die of the heat. Tanks and shorts are too much clothing right now. I did wear it while in Victoria (blessed, blessed rain), but no pics.

I do have pics of…. A finished Vinnland!

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It’s rather hard to take pictures of your own feet. Especially when your skirt keeps getting in the shot (see not above about unbelievable heat. Skirts help.). You also get to see the anime collection (bottom shelf of the bookcase) and my humungo box ‘o M*A*S*H. (PS: would just like to point out that the Coles Notes are for conjugating French verbs, not books. I read books.)

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I like this shot best, I find it has some movement to it.

I finished the sock while at my parents’ house, but took the photos after work on my first day back here. The second sock is about 1cm away from the heel turn. I’ve only got two weeks left at my magical knit-all-day job, so I’m going to make them count. Unless they give me stuff to do. bastards.

While in the Vic, I went to my first-ever LYS, The Beehive. And of course, there was stash enhancement. Vacation yarn doesn’t count, right?

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Hand Maiden Silk Spun. It came with a ‘pattern’ for a very simple shoulder wrap, which I am going to do, as I think it’ll show of the yarn better than anything else. yum. From what I can gather from the Hand Maiden website, it is the Paris colourway. Even after going through the yarn shops here, nowhere can match the Beehive for Fleece Artist/Hand Maiden selection.

It even matches that skirt!

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As I finished the Two-Tone Shrug, I needed another project (obviously. No one mention the $1.50), so I started the Firey Bolero pattern, in some Rowan Cotton Glace. I originally bought the yarn to make Crinkle from Rowan 39, but then decided that that cardi just wasn’t for me. Now I want to do the Firey Bolero, and Orangina. It’ll be like a mod twinset-type thing. Although I don’t know that I’d wear them together ever. We’ll see. The cotton seems to be pretty good to work with, not many problems (yet), but we’ll see how that all goes. Planning on getting some knitting done tonight; the boy isn’t coming home until tomorrow, as he’s working late in Banff.

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The colourway is called ‘Hot Lips’ so I think it very appropriate that I break out said humungo M*A*S*H collection tonight for some knitting.

And yes, I did bring the sock to Banff, but I forgot my camera. Imagine more pictures like the last entry’s, but with less valley and more mountains.

K-Country

….doesn’t actually stand for Knitting Country. But it should. :)The boyfriend and I went out to Kananaskis Country for a little mid-week vacation. Well, he was sent out there for work, and I tagged along for the ride. He was working at a conference, so the conference people paid for his room, and food. The room was great because they lost the original booking, so we got put into the room of a conference delegate who canceled at the last minute. Very exclusive place, chocolates on the pillows, king size bed, etc.

While he was working I had plenty to amuse myself with. I had books, walks, and of course, knitting. :)

(click all pics for bigger!)

I brought two projects with me, for variety:

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(wonderful project bags from PiddleLoop on etsy, sitting on the fountain in the hotel’s main entrance.)

The number bag contains my Vinnland sock, and the dot bag contains the yarn for a project from:

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(sitting on a bench by the pond the above fountain feeds)

I have yarn in that bag for the Two-Tone Shrug. I decided to cast it on, knit with big yarn for a change. And oh, did I knit.

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(back at the fountain, and out in a mountain meadow with a flower of a similar colour)

I was almost finished the raglan increases by the time we left. Now I’ve just started on the first sleeve. The yarn is Classy by Dream in Color, they of the adorable baby cardis. The colour is ‘Wisterious’. I’ve got an oatmeal-y Cascade 220 for the contrast… but it isn’t superwash, it’s one of the Heathered colours. The purple is superwash, but I like the colour combo. sigh. I can deal with hand-washing I guess.

The sock felt a bit left out, as I ignored it for the whole time, so we did a photoshoot on the last day. Part of the reason I ignored it was because I’m almost done, but concerned about amount of yarn, and wanted to weigh it before I decide what to do next. I suppose I could’ve called room service for a scale….

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(looking up at the mountains)

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(and down to the valley)
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(at lookout #4, not picking flowers)

Sometimes I forget about the amazing landscape that is just an hour away from here. I need to remember that when I complain about there being no green in this city.

Goin’ slow

I haven’t been knitting too much recently, I don’t know where my spare time has been going. Actually, I do. It’s a new obsession: Stargate SG1. I’d never watched it before, but my boyfriend bought season 1 on DVD and we sat down to watch and it is SO. GOOD. We’re halfway through Season 2 now. It’s so good I don’t knit during it, because I actually want to watch it.

Still plugging away on Vinnland #1, I think I’ll finish it today. :)  I say that because I’m at work, but no one else is, and I finished my crazy (252 pages) of data entry.

This week will be a good knitting week I believe, as the boyfriend and I are going away for a couple days. He’s working out of town for 3 days, being put up at a hotel, and I’m going to tag along. I’m going to take the Vinnlands, and another project, for variety. I’m not sure if I want it to be another pair of socks, or the Two-Tone Shrug from Fitted Knits. I’ve really been itching to start that one, so I may do that.

Magic of Socks

I think Nona’s Sidewinder socks must have some sort of magic in them. Definitely the fastest sock I’ve ever knit. That said, I haven’t done the grafting yet (putting it off!), but the body of the sock was done on Saturday! I only started on Thursday! I may do the grafting tonight.

Sunday I had a boring work day, so I started another sock. Not the second Sidewinder! I was too impatient to try out the Vinnland pattern and my wonderful Fleece Artist Sea Wool. My gauge was a bit small compared to the pattern (32st/4″ rather than 29st/4″) so I cast on for a size bigger than I would normally need. It seems to be working.

People always talk about the magic of turning the heel and what an epiphany moment it is with socks, etc etc. I never found the heel that exciting. My magic moment came on Sunday, when I was doing box office for a 5 hour Chinese opera. The toe of a toe up sock… well, the one in the Vinnland pattern anyway, is just magical. I’m knitting flat, knitting flat, increasing, decreasing, OMG I HAVE A TOE POCKET! It was very cool. Yesterday I got about halfway through a repeat of the cable-y pattern at work, hoping for more today. Once I’m done this sock, I’ll do the other Sidewinder.

Saturday I went to the Summer Solistice Sale at Make One Yarns. I bought stuff. I’m a terrible person. But really, who can resist 40% off Rowan? Only certain Rowan, but I made sure I was there before the store even opened so I could get my hands on some Tapestry:

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40% off, my friends! That means I got a sweater’s worth for about $50, which is just amazing for Rowan. I also bought a pattern book/leaflet, Rowan Pure Wool Collection. Everything is simple, yet lovely in it, I had been hesitating buying it earlier, but snapped it up for 50% off. I got a couple other things as well, for smaller projects, but will leave that as blog fodder for a later date. :)

The Tapestry is going to become Sorrel, I’ve been wanting to make it for a while, but didn’t want to shell out the yarn money.

Had a job interview on Thursday that I think went well, but no news yet. Had another one yesterday that was odd. I felt happy but I was in and out of there in 5 minutes. He said he just wanted to put a face to the name, but I’ve been (obsessively) running it over, and I keep wondering if I made that bad of an impression? I don’t think so. Granted, it was pouring rain and cold outside, and yet I had summery cropped khakis and ballet flats…. It looked sunny when I got dressed that morning! So I did feel a bit absurd in my clothes, but it wasn’t like he was in a suit and tie or anything. It’s theatre, it’s casual. You get the crazy-artist types and their wacky clothes. :)

I would love to get both these jobs I interviewed for, so think positive!