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sOctober pair three

And these are a beauty, if I say so myself. I was planning to block them before taking photos, but last night I put them on to take a quick snap for Instagram, and ALL the cats came to help with the photos, which I love and am using, even if they show more cat than sock.

Kate Davies' Inspired by Islay was such a gift of a club. As well as (so far) knitting 4 of the 12 patterns, it inspired us to go to Islay - and got us rather more interested in whisky than we had been!

These socks are so well designed. They look lovely, but they are also cleverly designed so they will stay up, an important feature for knee high socks.

The yarn (from Kris' destash earlier this year) is lovely. A discontinued Spotlight yarn, it is allegedly cashmere, although I have my doubts. Who knows how it will wear, but the foot is knit pretty densely, and I now live in a house with floorboards, which is definitly a bonus on the longevity of house socks. 


So, another winner from Kate Davies. Now onwards to som…

sOctober pair two

For sOctober I have the broadest definition of socks, so let me present to you thrummed slippers for my mother:
I remember when I knit the first pair of these, I was quite concerned becasue they are a strange item: inches of fleece in the bottom, fluff everywhere, but she loved them.

I like this colour so much more than the brown ones I made last time, which is not suprising, since last time I knit from stash, and this time I bought the yarn specifically for the project. Something satisfying about buying yarn for a specific project, and then knitting it up immediately.

The only change I made to the pattern was to carry along some of Kate Davies Millorachy Tweed when knitting the sole. I'm hoping that adding a yarn with mohair will make these soles more resistant to wear.



A story about knee high socks

I love knee high socks. I normally wear them around the house, in winter over leggings or in cross seasons with a house dress or shorts. My favourite pair was knit in 2009, with left over yarn from the first jumper I ever made Leon. The are very comfortable, stay up, fit perfectly, but the toes always had holes where the decreases are. 

I had already decided to make Kate Davies Lord of the Isles socks (don't judge me, I haven't knit a Kate Davies pattern since September)when I found that this:




Yes, a whole lot of hole. I will  darn it, but I'm pretty glad that I'm halfway through the stunning replacement pair. 

More shopping

The other week my mother requested new thrummed slippers, because her's had worn through, and she'd already darned them once. They are knit in chunky yarn, and I started going through my stash in my head - I could hold together three strands of fingering weight, I could... and then I realised, I could buy the right yarn for the project.
So I did. The chuunky yarn on the left, and the fibre for the thrums to the right. So that was fine. While I was on the Knit picks website I saw the felici was on special. I've always wanted to try this self stripping yarn, and resisted, because I have so much sock yarn alread - and so many socks. But I was in a shopping mood, so three balls of that fell into my basket:
 For baby jumpers? sneaker liners? Who knows.


I also bought a skein of sparkle yarn, because I love sparkle yarn. a couplde of my friedns have knititng machines, so I might make a sock blank and dye it, or I might use it for heels in sneaker liners. Or I could make a baby jump…

Kris destashes again

In January Kris destashed some yarn. I took some, because it was right there. I have actually managed to knit all that yarn (except the mint "cashmere") which is on my needles right now. Then she moved house and has less storage space, so she did another destash. Now Kris has exquisite taste, so even the yarn she is getting rid of is stunning. I wish I'd taken a picture of the pile.
Initially I took these two "boy coloured" lots of yarn for socks for Leon.
And then these climbed into my bag: I keep saying "for baby jumpers" but who knows what they will be.

And then some self striping Regia, because Regia, and it was sitting on the table, and no one else wanted it, and I know it will make something nice. Like a baby jumper. I know I only need three baby jumpers right now, and I've got yarn for all of them already, but it never hurts to plan ahead, right?



Also, there 'may" be a couple more balls of yarn coming in the mail. More on that, and a to…

Socktober - first finished pair

I finished my first socks for sock knitting season - the Audrey sock yarn I was talking about earlier in the week.

It's marvelous yarn, and the rumour is that Dani will be dying us a colourway for Christmas this year too, so I look forward to that too.

The pattern uses a "strong" heel, which I think works quite well with self stripping yarn - the trick is that the heel turn is knitted in other yarn, which means the striping is not interrupted.

It also seems quite comfortable, although I'm not one of those people who finds trouble with the fit of most heels. Additionally, its pretty:

These socks used just over 60 grams of yarn - which means I have enough left over to make a pair of shorties, although I think some other yarn. Stay tuned - but first, I'm off to start some slippers for my mother.




Once apon a Socktober

Socktober, Socktober, the funnest month of the year...specially if you are an incorrigible sock knitter, like me. Last month I made two pairs of socks - a pair of shorties, where Iearned Kat Borhdi's Sweet Tomato Heel and  marvelous pair for Leon which were a test knit for our very own Katherine of Fiber and Sustenance.




This month it's going to be all socks all the time. I'm currently knitting some Black is the New Vanilla socks in "Audrey" a colourway dyed last Christmas specially for my knit group by  HalfBakedHandDyed, who is also a member of the Richmond Knitters. So far so good - a top down heel, without picking up stitches. Interesting.
Then I've got planned a pair of knee high socks with the yarn than Kris destashed in January. Kate Davies, or course, I don't think a month goes by when I don't knit a Kate Davies pattern.
her slippers had worn through, and the darns she has put in had also worn through, and it's her birthday next month, so sli…

Yarnalong - the one with Socktober

I was authoritatively informed by the Richmond Knitters last night that this month is called Socktober, and not sOctober, as I have always called it. Either way, it's the best month of the year.

Obviously I'm knitting socks! Last Christmas the talented Dani from HalfBakedHandDyed made us our own Richmond Knitters colourway! I decided, since the colours are so pretty, so make plain socks, but also to try a new heel, the Strong Heel, in the Vanilla is the New Black socks. 

So far so good. Fun, easy and the colours are just such a delight to knit with.

I'm reading Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray, partly because I haven't read it since I was a youth, and partly because I'm about to read  Creatures of Will and Temper, which allegedly "riffs"  on The Picture... I'm glad I've reread it though, it's quite a book, with some really deep themes.

I'm joining in with Ginny and the monthly yarnalong. I recommend popping over to her blog to see …

Baby jumper number 1 done

It's actually baby jumper 31 in my knitting career, but number 1 of the 3 or 4 I want to knit in the next bit, so the title will have to stand.

We went to Ballarat this weekend, which meant a reasonable amount of train knitting, although we were very busy and social (we helped make a short film about a tram crash, and saw some art and went to the sort of pub where you stand up and for a run) so not as much knitting time as I would have wanted - but there is never enough knitting time, is there?

I did have time to finish the baby jumper - partly because I made it 20 stitches smaller than the pattern. Not on purpose, I just can't count. Yes, after 30 baby jumpers, and 400 other projects you would think I'd know how to count.

I loved the Chiaogoos that Kris lent me so much that I've ordered my own set, so that was a major win.

I've put unblocked photos up here, because I wanted to get these done and documented. sOctober starts tomorrow, and it's going to be 31 days of…

Parkamoor socks - test knit

Despite life and injury slowing me down, I finished the Parkamoor socks test knit on Tuesday night. 


These socks are magnificent. Well designed by Katherine of Fiber and Sustenance they were simple to knit, with an easy to memorise repeat, but not boring. And the result is so nice looking for the effort.
I ended up with one slip stitch heel and one eye of partridge, because I don't know how to follow instructions!

The yarn is so beautiful and nuanced, and plays so nicely with this pattern.

I knit them relatively tall, and between that and the cable / ribbing these used  a little more yarn than the average pair of socks for Leon - 80 grams, rather than the more usual 70 grams.

I'm a fan, and a, hoping that Kat continues to design and publish patterns. Parkmoor has not yet been published, but I don't think it will be long, and I recommend knitting these. The pattern looks great in manly colours, but  is strong enough to show even with more variegated yarn. 

Babies and more rambling about needles

Last time I found out someone I have a work relationship with was having a baby, it was very close to her due date, and I had to get my skates on to get the jumper finished in time. After that I planned to knit some baby gifts for the gift box, just in case. Then last week I visited my old workplace, and one of my ex-colleagues is having a baby, due February. Right, I thought, 2 jumpers. And then my brand new workmate in my current role announced that they are expecting.I've wrapped up some yarn - three lots of LOSY, and some left over Pallete.
The other thing that is going on for me is that my knitpro needles are really annoying me. I wore out a pair of Karbonz while knitting Strathendrick, the joins aren't always smooth, I can never find a set, they loosen when I knit....I was just going to buy a set of Chiagoos, but I decided to try to be a bit minimalist about it and asked Kris if I could borrow a set to try, rather than just buying stuff because my job is unsatisfying. Sh…

A minor injury

I kept thinking that I would blog when I finished my socks, but they are taking a surprisingly long time, considering I'm at the (plain) foot of the second sock. I haven't had quite as much tie for knitting as I sometimes do - on Saturday we can 34 kilometres, and that rather took it out of me. 



Then  this morning I went to Crossfit  and did a workout that involved 90 kipping pullups. I didn't feel it at the time, but I got a blister, and tore the top off it during the workout. Basically there is a hole in my hand. I'll spare you a photo of the actual problem, suffice it to say that holding a small needle hurts a bit. But I've never let a bit of pain get in the way of what I want to do, so hopefully the socks will be finished in the next couple of days.

Stathendrick - the photos

This was such an epic knit, and when I finished it, I looked in the mirror, and thought "hmm, not sure". But then we took these photos and I love it. It looks (pretty much) exactly how I wanted it too, although it might be slightly larger than expected.

It's definitely a statement piece.
In this photo (below) you can see the final row, which was meant to be kitchenered in two colours. i got three stitches in and realised it was going to look like a dog's breakfast. i decided to just use the navy, and duplicate stitch the yellow in later, but now I quite like it the way it is.
I wore it on Wednesday to Elise's and, unprompted she said she liked it. I asked if she thought it was a bit big, and she said that it's meant to be.
I like to pretend we went to Provence for these photos. The sunshine was so nice - I'm pretty happy to finally be heading into Spring, even if it means my wearing blanket might not have quite as much wear until winter rolls around again nex…

Talented friends

I've said it before, I have such talented friends. This time I'm talking about Kat, who blogs as Fibre and Sustenance. She recently got married, and designed a pair of socks for Nick to wear at the wedding. When I saw them I thought "Nice socks, Leon would really like them". So when she asked for test knitters, I couldn't reply fast enough.

I'm knitting it with yarn from Little Dipper Yarns, made by my friend Ursula. She has been on hiatus for quite some time, and this is the last skein of her yarn that I have, so it seems fitting to use it on such a great design.