Thursday, May 15, 2014

Up, Up, and Away!

That's right, I'm off to Sicily.  The Irishman has a conference, and he positively insisted that I accompany him.  (Mine is a hard life, right?)

I won't be blogging while I'm there; just knitting up a storm.  (I'm taking the Animal Crackers socks, a pair of plain socks I have in progress, and the larger version of the piece I designed for Heather.  It's not really that much, is it.  Hmmm.  Maybe I should take the Rose of England too . . .)

I'll be back in two weeks or so, with lots of fabulous pictures, I hope.  In the meantime, enjoy a view that I hope to be seeing soon:

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Greek Keys

Apparently I knit not one but two pairs of Knitspot socks in the summer of 2012 (fancy that).  These were a "training" project for the Ravelympics.

Pattern: Woodsmoke Sock by Anne Hanson.  As you can tell from the name, she thought the pattern looked like curls of wood smoke in the dark brown yarn she used to knit the original, but I thought it looked like Greek keys in my Mediterranean blue yarn.

Yarn: The Yarn Yard Cairn (80/20 merino/nylon, 437yds/100g skein), in an unknown colorway.  This yarn was a gift from Aspen, and the pictures don't really do justice to its beauty--there were all sorts of little flashes of purple in with the blue.  It was also really enjoyable to knit with.

These ended up as a gift for my cousin Kathy (she graciously hosted us on part of our cross-country odyssey).  Thanks, Kathy!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mothers' Day!

In honor of all the mothers, be they biological or spiritual, here is a picture of my own mom rocking out in her Mothers' Day present from last year:

Friday, May 9, 2014

State of the Lanafactrix: Knitting Edition

Now that you're all caught up on what I've been doing that ISN'T knitting . . . here's what is.

The Rose of England proceeds apace.  It's past where it was before I discovered my horrible error of the other day, even.  Not that you can really tell.  It's still a giant white blob.  But I have reached the final chart for the smaller size.  So "soon" (read: in another 30 rows) I'll have to decide whether I'll stop there or continue.  It pretty much depends on how much yarn I will have used, because the KAL requires a minimum of 1000 yards.  Heaven knows I have more than enough on the cone.

I haven't worked on them much since starting the Rose of England, but I do have non-blogged progress on my Animal Crackers socks to report--I'm past the heel turn.  See?  Still a nicely written pattern that's turning out a nice project.

Mostly this week I've been devoted to the piece I'm designing for Heather--everything but the very last finishing is in place, conceptually, so I've been trying to push through version one so I can take version two with me on vacation next week.  (More about that later.)  So really I'm going to be terrifically boring for the duration.  Sorry.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Ravelympic Glory!

Yeah, yeah, we're supposed to call them the "Ravellenic Games" now, but whatever.  I invite the IOC to send me a cease-and-desist, as it will only drive traffic to my tiny blog.

Anyhoo, I knit these socks for the 2012 Summer Games.  They were chosen cannily as a project suitable for knitting quickly while traveling--we drove across the country three times that summer (I don't recommend it, incidentally).  I was right to do it, they knit up easily in the allotted time and I achieved three medals, which still may be seen on my Ravelry profile.

Pattern: Sign of Four by Anne Hanson.  Easy to knit, easy to memorize, and easy to adapt to toe-up.  I subbed in my favorite toe and heel (which I pretty much always do.)

Yarn: Mountain Colors Bearfoot (60/25/15 wool/mohair/nylon, 400yd/100g skein) in colorway "Moose Creek."  Love this yarn.  It's nice and thick (verging toward sport) and cushy.

I intended to give them to my dad for his birthday that year, but (foolishly) I put them into storage and then moved, so they became a Fathers' Day present for 2013.  When he was living in Cyprus.  A place where no mohair socks are ever needed.  But now he's back in Idaho and wearing them regularly.  So knitworthy, my dad.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

State of the Lanafactrix: Non-Knitting Edition

 You may have noticed that there hasn't been much in the way of WIP updates this past week or so.  Partly this is because I am a multicraftual sort, and I have been working on things other than knitting.

Such as cross-stitch . . .

(This is a facsimile antique map of the world, my current television project.  Every now and then I get the cross-stitch bug, and it will not be appeased until I get utterly bloody sick of Old Antique Blush Rose #467 and drop the project like a hot potato for two years.)

. . . and spinning (plus dog nose cameo):

Yes, I have taken up spinning, after a too-good-to-pass-up opportunity to acquire a wheel came my way.  It is a Louet S15 (discontinued, but similar to the S10), and I am utterly terrible at using it.  Really.  So bad.  You have no idea.

But practice makes perfect, as they say, so I try to spin at least every now and again.  This is some combed BFL top from Pigeonroof Studios in the colorway "Marine," and it really came out nicely.  I still need to wash the finished product, but eh.  It turns out that, as badly as I drag my feet when it comes to finishing knitting projects, I'm even worse when it comes to spinning.

And let's not even talk about actually knitting anything with the handspun.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Lions and Tigers and Babies, Oh My

About two years ago, there was a spate of babies in the land.  I knit this little sweater with a certain recipient in mind, but after finishing it and seeing how FREAKIN' ADORABLE it was, I reconsidered.  To be frank, I was not sure the intended recipient's mother would appreciate a handknit properly.

So I sent it to my friend Catherine instead, because she rocks, and because I thought it would look awesome on her little boy.  In, like, two years, because it came out kinda big, and said little boy is still pretty little.

(I actually knit this pattern twice that summer; I made a version in the Mid Valley Fibers handspun I bought way back when and gifted it to a baby cousin.  Sadly, I don't have a picture of that one.)