Thursday, February 28, 2008

Noro Socks #3 - Finished!

Yarn: Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn, colorway S150
Pattern: My own, using the Strong Heel
Needles: #1 dpns

Comments: This might be my final Noro sock, unless they come out with some new colors. It's not that I don't like the current colors; they are fabulous. But now I need to work on something else for awhile.

I knit this sock using the Strong Heel. No, that doesn't mean that the heel is any stronger than other heels. The heel is named for its creator, Gerdine Strong, and you can find the pattern in Knitters magazine, fall 2003. I have searched for the pattern on the web and am sorry to say I haven't found it anywhere. The good thing about this heel is that there is no flap and no picking up of stitches. For those of you who dislike picking up stitches, this is the pattern for you.

How does it work? Well, instead of a flap, a gusset is made and then the heel is turned.

This allows for a minimally uninterrupted pattern on the heel which is especially nice if you are using a self-striping yarn. The down side? I find certain increases somewhat annoying and not nearly as friendly as decreases, especially when knitting on as snug a gauge as socks. That said, this is the third pair of socks I've made with the Strong Heel.Here's the next sock in the works. It incorporates an unusual cast on, a twisted rib, some lace (we'll see how long it takes me to frog that) and a star toe, which seems to be a favorable one according to some knitters.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Overdosing on Yarn--Again

We took a leisurely drive to Zandy's this afternoon and if anyone is surprised that I found sock yarn, raise your hand. That's what I thought. No hands.

The Fortissima Socka is wool and cotton with a bit of poly and elastic. It's an Italian yarn. Both the blue and the gray are flecked with black, so my plans are to accent these with the black. I can't seem to bring myself to knit all black socks. Want me to go blind?

The Soxx Appeal, which I have not knit before, is Merino, nylon and elastic.

And the Trekking is undyed sock yarn. I'm thinking it would making some very lovely cabled socks. Besides, it was fairly inexpensive, compared to the colored yarn.

And here's an early evening view peeking out my office window.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Next Generation

Those of you who have been reading my blog know that I made a scarf for my granddaughter with her future VA Tech school colors.

She sent me this photo, which I really love. And it's so amazing to me that she seems to truly like the scarf, especially since she is planning to pursue a career in the design field of architecture.

Thanks for modeling the scarf, my dear granddaughter! All my good thoughts and prayers go with you.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Noro Socks #2 - Finished!

At the Foot of the Rainbow

No, it's not Christmas again (and a good thing, too). But wouldn't they make terrific Christmas stockings?

Yarn: Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn, colorway KS-S102
Pattern: My own usual boring stockinette pattern
Needles: #1 dpns

Comments: I'm hoping the weaving on the toe holds, because the yarn broke off half an inch from the toe. I did my best to ply it together and weave in the ends, but we shall see. It did survive the first washing.

The colors on these are really bright. I'm not sure I would choose it again. However, I have more Noro sock yarn in the wings--but in a more subdued version.

Something I find really interesting about this yarn is how light it feels in the skein and to knit, but how very warm the socks are.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

From Drab to Noro Bright

It seems my knitting goes from drab to bright as whimsically as Minnesota weather changes.

Normally, in this household, certain things must match. Socks, underwear, shoes and bags, etc. Or at least they must give a congenial nod to coordination of color and design. But my Noro socks are of another realm altogether. It's not just the color that lures the eye and piques the mind. It's also the texture of the yarn that makes one imagine carefree, sunny childhood days when a box of crayons could spark a breathless masterpiece of blended hues.

The evocative power of this yarn is one reason why I don't even attempt to match the striping. It would be like insisting that a child color within the lines.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Gray Cabled Socks

More gray--gray skies and gray socks!

Yarn: Fortissima Socka, colorway 1056
Pattern: No Tears Socks, by Dee Bamford
Needles: Susan Bates Quicksilver #1 dpns

Comments: A few changes here: I did the cable only on the front of the socks, leaving off the cable on the back of the leg. Also did a Dutch heel and my own toe version. The Dutch heel is a little bulbous for my slightly skinny heels, but it's a good-looking heel anyhow. If I do this pattern again, I will change on which row the cable starts after the ribbing.

And you really don't want to know the contortions I went through to get this shot of the heel. You can click on the image to get a better look at it.

The cable is named "Eccentric Cable" in Barbara G. Walker's "A Treasury of Knitting Patterns." There are four of these books in a comprehensive series of knitting patterns by the author. My library includes all of them (slight embarrassment here at the magnitude of my knitting library). They are almost never on sale, and the last two I felt lucky to get at 25% off when my LYS had a special sale on all patterns and books.

At left is the logo for my knitting group that meets monthly at a local coffee shop. We have eight members and the small meeting room is filled when everyone attends. At the last meeting we watched Lucy Neatby's "Knitting Essentials 1." It might be the best DVD available on knitting technique. With my laptop we took a peek at Ravelry. Everyone learned something and got some knitting and chatting in, too.

We are planning field trips to yarn shops and other points of interest. With stops for food, of course!