Saturday, December 29, 2007

Harvest Sock Swap

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
These are the Cafe Curtains socks from the Harvest Sock swap. In that swap, we knit one sock and sent the materials for the rest to our partner. I had to frog my partner's very nicely knit sock to redo it to fit my weird leg. I feel kind of bad about having to do that. Someday I may be able to do a sock that fits properly and explain to someone else how to do it. That day has not arrived yet.

My latest project is Garnstudio/Drops Design's Sideways Garter Stitch socks. It isn't toe up. It isn't cuff down. You knit the full length of the sock and sew from the toe, up the sole of the foot and up the back of the leg. There's some short row shaping for the heel and the leg. Mostly it's lots and lots of garter stitch.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas knits

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I'm almost done with the Harvest I frogged the one that was so nicely done for me and redid it. I skipped a couple of lace repeats and made the ribbing a little smaller, just to make sure I'd have enough to finish.

I got the snowflake socks done. I will not photograph them until they've been steamed. I'm hoping they'll look a little better with some smoothing. I'm doing better with the floats, but not quite where I'd like to be yet.

Santa didn't get me the needles I want, but he did give me a lovely check. I'm going to let myself have a few treats with the money, including the Knit Picks Harmony dpns. I don't think I need the Options set yet.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Rockin Sock Club

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
This is Bella Coola/Nuxaik, depending on your language. It's the final skein in the 2007 Rockin Sock Club. The pattern that came with it is by Cat Bordhi. It's another toe-up. I don't have a preference when it comes to toe-up or cuff-down. I've discovered that once the heel's turned, it always feels like it'll be forever until the sock is finished. Silly, yes?

I've got to get back to cleaning the house and packing for my holiday trip. I've got about a four ounce batt and my drop spindle set to go. There's the snowflake sock, which is coming out better after a complete frogging. I better come up with at least one more project to take with me, just in case.

Merry holidays!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Harvest Sock Swap received

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
Thank you, Jennifer. I've been wanting to try Maizy yarn and now I can.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Another pair?

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I've been like a horrible bratty kid lately. I don't want to do anything that must be done. I don't want to finish anything that I started. I've got one pair in hibernation, one on the needles, one frogged, and one that will probably be frogged. Do I restart or finish any of them? Ha! I pick up my drop spindle and turn it all into pretty pink yarn. Then I have to see if my spinning attempt has resulted in usable yarn. I cast this on and am creating my own sock pattern. I plan for them to be anklets, mostly because I don't think there's enough yarn for much more leg. The lacy pattern part is from a design book and is called Willow. It's also very similar to the pattern on one of the socks I'm avoiding.

I think I'll get through these before I start any more, but I'm not promising anything. I found a bag of roving and my spindle's calling me to play with it. There's another pattern all printed out right next to the computer. I've got yarn and needles for it. It wouldn't cost a cent and I wouldn't have to leave the house to start it. It's not calling as loudly as the spindle, but I can hear it. :)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I've been swimming in the frog pond for the last couple of days. Two of my projects are colorwork. I'm trying to improve how I do color. It's so depressing to look at all the perfect Snowflake socks other people are doing. Their socks are nice and smooth. Mine are lumpy, even with much effort. We won't discuss the mess in the picture. It's my Ravelry anklets. Or rather, it was one of them.


On the good side, Lime & Violet reported this advent calendar of knitting patterns. The site's Norwegian, but the patterns are available in seven other languages. Go check it out! I downloaded a couple of them today. With a mouse click you have them all ready to print out.

Monday, December 10, 2007


Originally uploaded by Paula knits
Everything's peppermint around here lately. I have peppermint kisses (like the chocolate ones, only these are white "chocolate" with peppermint bits). I have candy cane shower gel. I think half of the holiday cookie recipes I'm contemplating are peppermint related. I shouldn't have been surprised by the sudden urge I had to spin up the lovely peppermint-colored batts I got last month. It's nice soft merino that looks like solid pink but has little bits of nearly red in it. I bought it because it involved a donation to breast cancer research. I'm an idiot--I should've kept track of the person who did it so I could get some more of her fiber in the future. It's really nice wool.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

I couldn't wait

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
These are my Secret Santa goodies that Wendy sent me. I held off on opening them for something like a week, so it wasn't a total lack of self-control.

I especially like the sock yarn. Big surprise there. It's from Rocket Yarnand the coloway's Retrograde.

It was a thoughtful and generous gift, Wendy, thank you!

Thursday, December 6, 2007


Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I'm starting to feel a bit better after being mostly sick since Thanksgiving. That must be why I was naughty today. Cast-On Cottage and Only Ewe and Cotton Too are on the same road, about 5 miles apart. I allowed myself to go to both of them and indulged in a bit of retail therapy.

The white yarn on the far right is some Lorna's Laces. I'll use it with a skein from one of the Hogwort's swaps to make Snowflakes. It's the December Sockamania sock. I just joined, so I thought I ought to jump right in and do it. I'll do them right after I finish the crazy-colored Lavender Lace socks.

The remaining yarn is for the Ravelry socks I'm making. Or will be making, after I finish the Snowflakes.

I asked for the Knit Picks Harmony needle sets for Chrismas. I've discovered I like the harder wooden needles much more than bamboo. You should see my size 1 bamboo. All of the needles are slightly curved from use.

I'll start in on my neglected, non-knitting project tomorrow. Maybe by next week I'll have that done and can start getting myself real employment.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

I'm easily amused

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
Look at the way my new Knit Picks dpns match this yarn.

I like the dpns a lot and am going to ask Santa for more of them.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Free yarn!

I spotted this on Ravelry and thought I'd post it out here where maybe somebody else could benefit. If you live in the US or Canada, you can win a money to be spent at your Local Yarn Shop.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Blue hat, version 3

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I hand spun the yarn for this. I tried the Madge pattern twice. It was not quite long enough. This one just barely covers my ears, but it'll do. (this post is also a test, as my computer's behaving very strangely, Internet-wise)

Saturday, December 1, 2007

You're soaking in it

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I'm making the Madge hat from knittyspin. The yarn came from a batt called Nursery Rhymes. It's merino with metallic fiber. The fiber reminds me of Hologram embossing powder, a favorite when I was obsessed with rubber stamping awhile back. I got the batt when I was at SAFF last year. It's from The Tail Spinner. I'm just hoping that there will be enough yarn to do it. The batt was 1.5 oz and the hat was made with 1.25 oz of homespun. This should be enough to keep me out of trouble until the December Sockamania pattern arrives.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Wash's Sweater

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I've been working on a copy of Wash's sweater. Firefly fans can see the back of it at the end of The Message. I've graphed and re-graphed it. This is my second try to knit just the cable the goes down the center of the sweater. It is worsted weight wool . I think that it would work better in a slightly heavier Aran wool.

I have two problems. I haven't seen a picture that shows the entire sleeve. The pictures show enough that it looks like the cable's a bit different from the body center panel. The other problem is the yarn. I really can't allow myself to buy the yarn for the sweater right now.

I think the project's going to have to go on hold. Sigh.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

More from The Unique Sheep

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
I didn't expect the Doctors Without Borders yarn to show up this fast. I usually don't like red at all, but I like this yarn. It makes me think of peppermint.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


Originally uploaded by Paula knits
A couple of times I've been on trips where I went down to the beach to see the sunset. In Key West and Carmel, people gathered at a spot and applauded Mother Nature's work as the sun disappeared into the sea. I think that was the appeal of this colorway, called Beach Sunset. The yarn is called Tinsel Toes and is 50% superwash merino and 50% tencel.

The yarn comes from The Unique Sheep. I bought this and another skein that's on the way. The second skein is a special colorway based on the Doctors Without Borders logo. The Unique Sheep is donating a chunk of the money paid for that yarn to Doctors Without Borders. That's why I bought this stuff with a relatively clear conscience. Can I have some applause for The Unique Sheep, please?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Banana Blossom Lace Socks

Originally uploaded by Paula knits
It's a little hard to see the cool pattern in these, but I still like them.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Click at your own risk

Followers of Lime & Violet are no doubt aware of one of Miss Violet's Christmas projects. She knits her FIL a hat each year. This year's hat is quite possibly the strangest thing I've ever seen made using yarn. You've been warned. You may want to gouge your eyes out afterwards.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Project 365 catchup, day 19

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
These are the completed Banana Blossom socks, as seen by the toy camera. I'll post a real picture when they are dry.

Project 365 catchup, day 17

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I took my toy camera with me at Thanksgiving. It does take pictures, but you never know exactly what you're going to get.

This is a picture of what was left of the Lenore yarn when I finished the Lenore socks.

Peety, 10/13/07-11/25/07

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I'm dead. Leann killed me with these purty purple Sock Wars socks and a generous bunch of goodies. The sock book is especially nice. I want to alter the penguin pattern to make socks for my brother.

The little things that you can't see include some soak fiber wash, two sheep needle protectors, and a button that says I Color Outside The Lines.

How did you know, Leann? :)

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Grandma's yarn stash

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
When I was a little kid, my grandmother taught me to crochet. I used to go through the patterns in the Learn How Book (I think this is still being published, by the way). My family used to go to Grandma & Grandpa's house for Sunday dinner. Sometimes Grandma would go down into the cellar and come up with a skein of yarn for me. When asked what I was making, I usually said I was just playing, and that's usually all I was doing. I don't know what she bought or where she stashed it (other than in the cellar). I can't help but wonder if my one-skein-at-a-time habits came from my one-skein-at-a-time childhood.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Wash's sweater

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I'm attempting to do a copy of this sweater. I've worked out a rough draft of the cable here, but will have to check it against the Firefly DVD to see how close I've actually got it. I'll also have to knit it to see if what I've got is a close enough match.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Another boring progress post

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
These are the socks that made my only kill in the previous sock wars. They have nothing to do with anything, except that I can only post to this blog via Flickr and this picture was there.

I'm have one and one-third Banana Blossom socks completed. I expect to run out of knitting projects before the weekend's over, which is sort of a good thing.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Turkey Day

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I finished Lenore. I'll be working the redo of the Banana Blossom socks while the turkey cooks.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

War's almost over

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I got the email I expected: my death socks are on the way. There were 30 people between my assassin and me. That's better than I expected to do.

This is the bag I made with the recycled silk yarn. I would've liked to have made it a little deeper in the middle, but there's not a whole lot of yarn left. It was fairly quick and fun.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Recycled silk yarn

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I like the yarn made of recycled silk saris. I just had to have a couple of skeins. I didn't think about what I could or could not use it for, so it's been sitting in my stash for quite awhile. After reading some Ravelry posts about the yarn, I decided to make the Unbiased bag pattern (you can find it on Knitty).

The balls were bought at different times and are not much alike in color or weight. I've been knitting two rows, switching colors, knitting twor rows, and switching back. The color changes in each yarn eliminate much in the way of stripes.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Look, shiny!

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I finished one of the Banana Blossom socks. It looks good. The fit is terrible. The foot's too long and the leg part needs to be shorter. I didn't have the heart to do the waltz with Sir Frogsalot, so I just didn't knit at all.

Instead, I picked up this little packet some nice person sent to me as part of a swap. It was a bit of purple roving, a bit of turquoise roving, and some Angelina fibers. She knew I was learning to spin so she sent it to me to play with. So I did. I freely admit that I don't know what I'm doing with that drop spindle. It is quite possible I've been using it upside down. Even someone unfamiliar with spinning can see that it has WAY too much twist in it. You wouldn't belive how much it stretches out. I am getting better, though. The thickness is much more consistent than it has been and there are practically no slubs in it at all.

It's darker than what shows on my screen and the Angelina sparkles in it. Dunno what I'll do with it, except maybe play with it and pet it. See? I made it all by myself.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Owl has landed!

day13 copy
Originally uploaded by micenrats99

My Hogwarts owl flew in today, and what an owl it is. Hopefully everything ended up in the picture so I can describe it all.

  • a-Knit Picks dpns, the pretty colored ones that I have been drooling over. If that's all the owl brought, I would've been a very happy girl. However, there's a LOT more.
  • b-Black Sheep tape measure. This is the cutest darn thing. You pull the sheep's tail to get the tape to come out.
  • c-Handmade necklace and earrings in Slytherin silver and green. Melissa noted that I didn't need more stitch markers (a swap requirement) and sent these instead. I like them a lot.
  • d-Soak wool wash. I've been wanting to try this. It's lavender scented, one of the few scents I really like.
  • e-a bar of all-natural unscented soap. I like bars like that and so rarely find them without scents. Yay!
  • f-very nicely done project bag. It's the perfect size for socks.
  • g-Argyle socks pattern. It's two color and knit in the round. I'm a bit intarsia challenged, so anything that keeps ten zillion little bobbins out of my work is a Good Thing.
  • h-Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock yarn in Pine and Pewter. I've been wanting to try Lorna's Laces and now I can. It's really nice.
  • i-a bowl of candy. The eagle-eyed will notice a box of Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans (now with Pickle and Sausage). My inner child has been wanting these.
  • j-Jasmine, who had to see what I was making such a fuss about.

Thank you, Melissa, it was well worth waiting for.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Banana Blossom socks

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I was originally going to make them out of some miscellaenous sock yarn. The pattern didn't show up in any of them. I pulled this Socks that Rock lightweight out of my 2008 Sock Club yarn. I've got four skeins of sock yarn on the way, so I'll replace this in my sock club with one of them.

The colorway is Grandma's Flower Garden. It's been very entertaining to see the way the colors are coming out.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Maybe not a guru

I gave up on the Mystery Socks. I could not get from the chart to what I know the parttern's supposed to look like. I'm usually too stubborn to give up on something like this. I knit and frogged several times and just got fed up. I don't like the look of the pattern all that much and I don't like the boring sock yarn I was using.

I found another pattern to use for the November challenge. It's called Banana Blossom Socks, by Maia Discoe. It's probably more complex than the Mystery Socks, so I don't feel quite so much like a quitter.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

What Kind of Knitter Am I?

What Kind of Knitter Are You?

You appear to be a Knitting Guru. You love knitting and do it all the time. While finishing a piece is the plan, you still love the process, and can't imagine a day going by without giving some time to your yarn. Packing for vacation involves leaving ample space for the stash and supplies. It can be hard to tell where the yarn ends and you begin.
Take this quiz!

Quizilla |

| Make A Quiz | More Quizzes | Grab Code

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Red Heart nostalgia

Poor Red Heart. It takes such abuse. Whenever anyone thinks of scratchy, grotesque-colored, artificial-fiber-based yarn, they think of Red Heart. Many knitters aren't old enough to remember Red Heart in the way it used to be.

When I first learned to crochet and knit, Red Heart was one of the nicer yarns you could get at the dime store. (Dime stores were the previous incarnation of discount stores, only smaller. Kresge's was a dime store chain where I grew up, and it turned into K-Mart.) Back in those days, Red Heart was wool. Acrylic fiber may have existed then, but nobody had gotten the twisted idea to turn it into yarn that people could use. It was nice because it came in a pull skein instead of a hank of yarn you had to wind into a ball. You didn't have to hunt for the end of the yarn to know where to start it pulling from the center, either. That yarn end had a little red heart-shaped foil tag folded over on it.

I actually enjoy using my ball winder to turn hanks of yarn into pretty little cakes. But I sometimes miss those little red hearts.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Purple project

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
Note to self: Next time you do a bag like this, wait until felting is complete to attach the straps. I think I'll sew buttons over the four spots where the straps meet the bag. It won't make up for the straps not lining up, but you know what they say: if you can't fix it, feature it.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Projects, updated

  • Sock Wars: my assassin has changed about three times in the last three days. I really need to get over my obsession with this, because I think the current one is the assassin who's gonna get me. I might be able to take one more person out before she does. Getting any farther than that would require ammo to be in the northern hemisphere right now, and I don't think it is.
  • Purple project: all done, felted, and drying. Picture will be posted in a couple of weeks.
  • Mystery sock: I know what it is supposed to look like, but I can't get from the graph to that point. When I'm more in the mood, I'll sit down and make myself a new graph that will work with my strange brain.
  • Lenore: I think I'm on the foot of the second one. I needed the dpns for something else, so I have it on stitch holders. Feet are boring to knit.
  • Backup socks: I've been listening to old Lime & Violet podcasts and knitting these. I might need them for something, so they are being knit as backups for something else. I should have one done and the second started by the end of the evening.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Mail Call

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

Woohoo, my Ravelry beta shirt arrived today! So did this set of buttons. What did not arrive was the Sock Wars ammo. If it doesn't show up in the next mail (Tuesday), I'm going to ask if I can continue with my own yarn. It's been in the mail for over two weeks. If it hasn't shown up somewhere by now, I really doubt that it will.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Purple funk

I'm already tired of working on the purple project. It's all knitting. I have to get it done so I can felt it and get it into the mail by the middle of next week. My head hurts, I don't wanna work on it. ::stomping feet and sulking::

Last night I switched over to working the next clue on the November Mystery Sock. I knit and frogged, knit and frogged, and still didn't want to go back to the purple project. Fortunately, someone posted their project on a blog. I could see what the thing is supposed to look like. I'll make myself knit a few more inches of purple and reward myself with another frog and reknit.

No new Sock Wars ammo yet. I'm beginning to think that it's gotten lost.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Purple Project

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I'm in the middle of something I'm calling the purple project. This yarn is Cascade 220 Heathers which I will use to make something to finish the purple project. It's a semi-secret project. I'll post the resulting something when the time is right.

I bought the yarn at Cast-On Cottage & Needlepoint Garden. It was chaos, but much better than it used to be (paying took a few minutes, but not because there was no one anywhere near the cash register). I got to meet the sweetest little dog named Jack. Jack's going to be the shop dog.

Sock Wars update: my most recent assassin was killed today. She was not ready to kill me, so my socks move on to someone else. I do not know where my ammo is. I know where it should be by now. Maybe it got sent on and it'll be in my mailbox tomorrow. I can dream, can't I?

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Raven? Nevermore.

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

Lenore (1 of 2) just did not want her picture taken. I'd hoped the lace on top would've shown up better. Oh, well. My first attempt was solid black sock. The weight of this yarn is listed as Lightweight on Ravelry. I'm not sure that's correct. This feels more like Mediumweight to me.

I admire the skill and artistry that went into creating Blue Moon's Raven series of yarns. I'm not one of the folks who are in credit card meltdown trying to buy all the colors, though. They just don't appeal to me.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Tuesday Update

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I made two more Daleks. One is part of a swap and the other I am going to felt.

These are the tops of a pair of mystery socks. I think I've finally got them big enough. It should be just a few days until the next clue.

I'm about to start up again on the Lenore foot. I'm a little bit nervous, because I took it off the needles when I was trying to find the right size needles for the mystery socks. I am not totally sure I put them back on the right size. I imagine in an inch or so it should be obvious.

Today's projects involve sewing: a couple of catnip mice and take 2 on the eyeglasses organizer I keep meaning to get done and other things keep distracting me. (Sorry, Dad, you'll have it soon).

Monday, November 5, 2007

War is Heck

Since I expect my most recent Sock Wars target to be killed today, I've been trying to track down some ammo for a new target. This is why banging my head against a wall sounds like more fun than doing any more of it. This is what my section of the list looks like:

  • My new assassin: Her assassin made noises about a week ago indicating that my new assassin was going to die soon. My new assassin has posted nothing in a couple of weeks. Is she alive? Is she about to kill me?
  • 3 dead people: what there are between my original assassin and my new assassin. Any or none of them may have the ammo required to kill me.
  • My original assassin: dead over a week. Has she sent her ammo to someone?
  • Me.
  • My first target, dead.
  • My second target, dead.
  • Second target's target, dead.
  • My third target, probably dead as I type this.
  • 3 more dead people.
  • A dying person, who was waiting for ammo. (see below)
  • 2 more dead people.
  • A dead person who was waiting for the ammo to send to the dying person (see above)
  • A dead person. (This is where the ammo turned out to be.)
  • A dead person who may or may not have the ammo that I need.
  • A live person who may really be dead and may have the ammo I need.

I'm going to take some asprin.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Mystery Sock, take 2

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I frogged. I cast on again with bigger needles. Even stretched, this isn't going to work with mega-legs. There's a Dr Who marathon on in a little while. I'll be taking a dip in the frog pond while I watch. Take 3 will involve one or two sizes larger needles and the largest size choice in the pattern. At least it'll give me a chance to do the K P K a little differently. The pictures I've seen look a lot better than this does.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Sock Stash

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

I'm stalled on the Lenore socks. I've decided I need yarn of all one kind to do the Ravelry sock. I'm almost done with the mini Dalek, but I didn't note where I stopped on the pattern. It will require counting and thinking and I'm in no mood for it. I saw a mystery sock pattern on Ravelry yesterday and decided that I must start it immediately.

The mystery sock requires a solid or almost completely solid yarn. I didn't think I had any. I started digging through the pictured box and discovered I was wrong. I found a whole 100 gram ball of blue sock yarn in this mess. I can't tell you where or when or why I bought it. It is really plain boring yarn. I did cast on and did almost one row. I was counting wrong which requires careful frogging. I was in no mood for careful frogging, so I put it down.

Today I think I'm in the mood to tackle this mess. The majority of it is little bits left from various socks. I have a pattern that will use up some of those bits. I'm going to get the ball winder out and make a bunch of tidy little cakes out of them. The big stuff will be photographed and added to my stash on Ravelry. Next time I need to find some yarn, I can look there first.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Paula's 2008 Sock Club

Paula's 2008 Sock Club
Originally uploaded by micenrats99

Rather than ask Santa to sign me up for the Rockin Sock Club, I've chosen to do a DIY sock club. I cleaned out a lidded bucket that cat litter comes in and filled it with a dozen projects. Much of the yarn's been posted here at one time or another: one of a kind hand dyed, a couple of big company yarns in colors I liked, and yarns from smaller companies. I had no trouble coming up with a dozen patterns I wanted to try. Some of the bags have an actual pattern, others have a card in them with the book and page number. All of the books are on a shelf together where I will be able to find them. (Hey, stop laughing!)

It was well worth the effort to do this. I found some yarn I'd forgotten I had. I still have plenty of sock yarn to use if I just have to start a sock at some random time.

I also found that ball of glow-in-the-dark yarn I wanted to use for something two months ago. It was in the bottom of a bin filled with wool. Why? I was probably cleaning up and tossed it in there.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Bluefoot blues

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I finished the next pair of war socks. The bad news is obvious: the original assassin did not supply enough yarn. She supplied the name of the yarn but not the ball band. It's not something that I can pick up at my LYS. I might be able to track it down on the Internet. However, I don't want to go to the time and expense of doing that.

If the person who will soon receives these happens by here, you have my sincere apologies, even though the yarn amount had nothing to do with me.

Mostly waiting week

Sock Wars: I haven't knit anything in two weeks. My new ammo was sent to California, possibly deliberately, and I've been waiting for it to arrive. I'm hoping it'll be today, but I'm not counting on it. I don't know if my new target has figured out that I'm her assassin. She's waiting for ammo also. My new assassin doesn't yet know I'm her target. I have no idea who has her ammo. All of this confusion seems to be the case for the majority of the the remaining players. We're down to 25% of the original number. I'm keeping something I call a guess list. I'm predicting that we will go to the Kill the Monkey round on December 1. I'm also predicting that I won't quite make it to that round. The best I can do between now and then will put me shooting at Australian targets. I'm likely to be taken out by US assassins, even slow-knitting ones, while waiting for the mail.

Swaps: I've sent the two that are currently in progress and am waiting patiently for stuff to come back. I've got two new things in progress, but neither is specifically knit-related.

WIP: I'm crocheting another Dalek. It's made from sport-weight wool. It is not as small as I'd like it to be, so I'm thinking about felting it. I'm stalled on the Lenore foot. I get bored with the foot part of nearly any sock.

I've been doing what I call a Ravelry sock. It's got the yarn ball logo on each side and the word ravelry on sole of the foot. I have two problems with it. I started out using the graph that's posted on Ravelry. The yarn ball part of the graph is too big for what I want to do with it. With the help of a program I've got for Animal Crossing designs, I made a new graph. I'm not totally happy with how it came out. The graph needs tweaking. The sock needs frogging and re-knitting. The other problem is yarn. I promised myself that I'd only use yarn I already had. Trying to match weight, fiber content, and needed colors has been a challenge. I considered dyeing some of the white yarn. However, the color(s) I need are red, which I've yet to dye successfully.

Sigh. Maybe I'll go clean the house.

Friday, October 26, 2007


Originally uploaded by micenrats99
This is the only picture I got of this yarn that wasn't totally black. I tried to tweak the color a bit. This is close to what I see when I look at the yarn. The color that looks kind of cranberry is really a dark burgundy. You can see three colors when you look at the yarn, but there's not as much contrast as this shows.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

A monkey sock

A monkey sock
Originally uploaded by micenrats99

All of the yarn I'm currently crazy about has been earmarked for my homemade 2008 Sock-of-the-Month club. Someone gave me this yarn in a swap. I appreciate the effort it took for her to find it, but I'm over my self-patterning yarn obsession. I needed a project to keep me out of trouble while waiting for the latest STR club yarn and/or Sock Wars socks to arrive. Since all the cool kids are making Cookie A.'s Monkey socks, I had to give it a whirl. It's a fun pattern.

The sock's sibling may have to wait, however. A little while ago, I saw a Priority Mail envelope rubber-banded to my mailbox. Would it be the War socks that would kill me? Would it be my new ammunition in the War? Nope, it was the STR club yarn.

*****STR SOCK CLUB SPOILER ALERT***** Continue reading at your own risk. Some folks are quite cranky about such things. so they've been warned. The pattern and the yarn are both called Lenore. The pattern, which I love, is by the Yarn Harlot herself. I couldn't get a good picture of the yarn because it is dark. Maybe I'll get over my fear of the spoiler police and take it outside to photograph. It's part of the much-anticipated Raven series. The color ranges from brown to burgundy to black. The colors are not my favorites, but I like them better than any of the other 2007 yarns. The pattern appears to be well suited to them, too.

The package included plastic spiders, which have been swiped by my cats. Thanks, Blue Moon.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Harvest Sock Swap

My person received her stuff last week.

I think the person sending to me is working on my stuff.

That is all.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Originally uploaded by micenrats99
I made it out of DK weight wool I had left over from Munkeh. I think that if someone made it out of two strands of worsted and left the base off, it'd make a hilarious toilet paper cozy. this one is cuter when you can see both of the arms. They are just above the black line in the middle of the dalek.

I'm going to try it again only on a smaller scale. I've got some gray fingering weight. I'm hoping it'll be small enough for a cat toy. I'll stuff it with some fleece and catnip. I'll also leave the embroidery off and change how I interpreted a few of the stitches.

What to knit next? I stashed the bmps because I am tired of working plain black stockinette on the foot. I have a half-done sweater that I can't motivate myself to pick up yet. The newest STR yarn and pattern should be here soon. Another Sock Wars sock maybe be on its way (or not). But I want something to knit NOW (whine, whine, whine). Maybe I'll try a mystery sock I saw on Ravelry, using something out of the bottom of the knitting basket.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Sock Wars day 7

Originally uploaded by micenrats99
My original victim sent his work to me very quickly. I got one sock and the ribbing on a second this afternoon. Finishing was tricky. I had to try three different needle sizes to try and match his gauge. I wasn't as successful as I would've liked. Perhaps blocking will help. I hope it will.

I'm still listed as Alive. I have no idea what's going on with my assassin. I think I know who she is. She hasn't posted anything to the Yahoo group where all the war activity is. I guess I'll go see if she's part of Ravelry.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Quidditch ~ Round Three

Slytherin's got a snowball's chance of coming out of last place, but I'm posting anyway.
1. a. The Tales of Beedle the Bard
2. d. Grindewald
3. b. No
4. a. Deathstick
5. d. Fred
6. d. They were all white
7. a. Snape
8. b. Kelpies
9. d. Milkman
10.a. Flintwick

Bertie Botts Beans
Jelly Slugs
Chocolate Frogs
Blood Pops
Jenean's first HSKS kit
(Bonus Point: Who made the kit?) Ansley

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Sock Wars, Day 5

My target's dead. He may not be crazy about baby pink death, but somebody on Ravelry liked it. My picture of the socks is now one of the sample pictures that's displayed on the Scar pattern page.

I don't know who my assassin is or what they've been up to, knit wise. I know the name of my new target, but nothing else about her. I guess I'll go work on Munkeh's knit tshirt. I'll have a pic of him before the socks of death show up.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Sock Wars, day 4

It is highly unlikely that my target will wander by here, so I'll talk about my current status. I mailed the completed socks on late Saturday afternoon, as I think I posted earlier. I don't think they went out of the post office until 6:30 yesterday morning. They went priority, which means today's the earliest I can possibly expect them to arrive. Possible, maybe. Probable, maybe not.

At any rate, my target has posted that he's going to keep knitting until he's killed. He didn't say how far he'd gotten, but it did not sound like he was ready to mail yet. If I do get him before he finishes, the earliest I could have another pair to work on is probably Friday.

I know absolutely nothing about my assassin. All I know is that there was nothing in the mail today but junk, the FedEx truck hasn't been by, and I'm still listed as Alive in the database.

Monday, October 15, 2007

The environment, yarn, and me

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

I've given some thought to how my hobby affects the environment. I prefer to use natural fibers, which I think is helpful. Every time a new natural option is offered (bamboo, maize) I make sure I try it. I'm learning to spin and want very much to use my own yarns to make things. It seems to me that moving closer to the beginning of the yarn-making process is easier on the environment.

Anything that keeps us from having to use excessive energy seems good. I never go out to buy yarn unless I've got other errands to run in the same area as one of my LYS. Knitting itself doesn't use much, except for lights for knitting at night.

I need to learn more. Very few activities are completely harmless. How can I continue to knit and reduce the environmental impact? What kind of effect does the dye have when I use it to dye yarn? Are animals harmed in any way when their hair is harvested for our yarns? What other things am I doing that I could do differently?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Birthday yarn

Birthday yarn
Originally uploaded by micenrats99

This is what I got for my birthday. It is all sock yarn from Lime & Violet. The base yarn is called Sasquatch. I didn't get the joke until I was standing here taking pictures of the yarn. It's sock yarn. Sasquatch=Big Foot. Get it? D'oh!

The top two colors are from the faerie series. The green one is called Finvarra and the violet is called Lesidhe. The peachy color is from the dancing with the yarn series and is called Electric Slide. They look so tasty that I'd like to lick them, except they smell a little bit smoky so I won't.

I've been compulsively checking the Sock Wars database. I'm still alive as far as the database goes. My assassin could have their weapon on the way and not telling me, though. The pattern we are using for the war is called Scar. I like it. It's easy enough that a brave beginner can tackle it and interesting enough that it is fun for those of us who've already made several dozen pair.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


Originally uploaded by micenrats99
They're in the mail. My target is in the U.S. I think I'm the only person so far to post in the database that someone's dying.

I didn't know how tired I was until I got behind the wheel to drive to the post office. I think I need a nap. I'm so weary that I haven't opened the yummy box of Lim & Violet yarn that arrived today. I'd rather look at it for the first time when I have the energy to appreciate it fully.

And it looks like these pink socks are going to a guy. Hope he enjoys death by pink.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Preparing for War

Sock Wars starts tomorrow. I'm trying to take care of all of the basic tasks so that I can do nothing but knit until the socks are in the mail. I've got a priority envelope and stamp. I have the sincere hope that I won't have to mail the first pair out of the country, as I did last year. I know which local post office has the earliest pickup on Monday. You can't get anything into the mail on Sunday around here. I decided that I wouldn't go the Express Mail route because of the expense. My personal goal is to get farther than I did last year. I was one of the first people killed last year. The Yarn Monkey said that she'd try to keep all the first rounds in their own country, so I have some hope.

I'm a little concerned about the needle size for this pattern. The cashmerino I'm using calls for size 5 for gauge. I usually have to go down a needle size, but I had to go all the way down to size 1! I'm gonna swatch again just to be sure.

The Munkeh is all knitted, except for his tshirt. If I have some time after re-swatching, I'll start sewing him together.

I was reading a Ravelry discussion on whether or not to join the Rockin Sock Club again next year. Someone did the math, and for what it costs you could buy 11.4 skeins of Socks That Rock yarn. That convinced me to not join again. The people who run the club are really nice and they do a good job with it. However, I've only liked one of the patterns so far and none of the colors. I think I can find other ways of broadening my knitting horizons that will be a tad less pricey.

A woman named Ruth said that she was doing her own sock club with things in her stash. She pulled out yarn and patterns and put them in separate ziploc bags. Once a month, she pulls a bag from the bin and bingo, it's a sock of the month. I'm so going to do this. Maybe I'll start between swatching and monkey sewing. In any case, I'll be afk until the war socks are in the mail.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Harvest sock swap

Harvest sock swap
Originally uploaded by micenrats99
This is the Loksins sock I sent to my partner, along with a few other goodies. And the pattern and the rest of the yarn, of course. I hope she likes it.

I enjoyed making the pattern. It has what looks like cables coming down either side of the leg part. You don't actually twist the stitches as you might in a real cable. Then half of each pattern comes together down the foot portion.

P.S. Today's my birthday, so leave a nice comment as a prezzie. :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Knitting and laughing

I'm listening to Lime&Violet and knitting a Monkeh. They were talking about the Second Sock Liberation Group. This is a brilliant idea. If you suffer from second sock syndrome, just knit two different socks with the same yarn. I may have to do this.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

HSKS3 Trivia

Oops, sorry, Slytherins. I knew once I send my kit off, I'd forget about this part.
1. c
2. b
3. a
4. c
5. b
6. d
7. a
8. b
9. b
10. d

A Gryffindor Quidditch Uniform

A Hufflepuff Quidditch Uniform

A Ravenclaw Quidditch Uniform

A Slytherin Quidditch Uniform

A Picture of the Room of Requirement

Letter Carrier rode up on a Sheep

Originally uploaded by micenrats99

When I pulled the mail out of my mailbox today, I imagined that the letter carrier came via sheep. All of this yarn arrived today. Woo hoo! It almost makes up for no mail delivery on Monday.

The left three skeins came from The Loopy Ewe. The pastel stuff is Cotton Candy by Claudia Handpainted Yarns. It looks like if you could eat it, it would melt in your mouth like cotton candy. The skein next to it is Stone by Fleece Artist. I'm not into brown very much, but this looked interesting.

The brightly colored skeins are Knit Picks Dancing. Leslie saw a skein of yarn I had up for trade on Ravelry and swapped it for these. I like these much better. I hope she likes the Step I sent her as well.

The brown (it's actually khaki) and gray yarns are for the monkey I'm going to knit. I'm going to finish my Harvest Swap sock first, then work on the monkey until Sock Wars starts. That's the plan until some shiny object or pretty yarn distracts me.