Monday, August 25, 2008

Walking with dinosaurs and other stuff

Last night we went Walking with Dinosaurs. It was a lot of fun. I found this video link (it's probably illegal since the announcer specifically said no videos or cameras allowed). I can just imagine the number of nightmares this show caused. Lots of very young kids in the audience.

But that's not what you came for.

This is what I bought on Saturday at the Fishbowl Sale. I only got 25% off this time but it was enough to keep my purchases under $100. Some Addi Turbo lace needles, a couple of ceramic buttons, some short Brittany needles, a skein of Mountain Colors Bearfoot, the dark blue, and two skeins of Chameleon Bambino sock yarn.

It was a great afternoon, sitting around with friends, knitting and being silly. But the thing I'm most excited about is this:

A skein of Sundara sock yarn in a colorway called Bird of Paradise. The colors in the photo are not quite accurate. It's much more intense. This is going to be so much fun to knit. A gift from the fabulous and ever generous L (of L&H fame). She knows I like orange.

Gotta go.

Friday, August 22, 2008

"Fishbowl" sale

It's a yarn sale really. No fishbowls at all. Just in case you're not familiar with the concept - after you're finished shopping and all your purchases are rung up, you pull a number from the fishbowl. That number will be the amount of discount you get on your purchases.

Unraveled is having a one day only fishbowl sale. It's tomorrow, August 23. Discounts range from 20% to 75%. Last time they had one of these I got 75% off. So it does happen. The discount applies to already heavily discounted merchandise so it's really a great deal. I'm going with a friend who also happens to have some gift certificates. A sale like this is just enough to make me decide to get some yarns that I've been hesitating about buying. Store opens at 11AM.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Tuesday is laundry day. Every other Tuesday actually. So I'm all set to get started but the washer is out of order. It usually takes a couple of days for the service company to come and fix things. So, laundry delay and another day's plans are messed up.

The display on my alarm clock is acting strange. Sometimes I get nonsense symbols, sometimes it says 12:00 when it's actually 4:00 and sometimes it works just fine. Looks like a trip to Target is coming up.

The batteries in my Walkman died this morning. Make a note to buy more batteries while I'm at Target.

And now it looks like my knitting group is disintegrating. Some people have drifted away. Some rarely show up. And our hostess has been having lots of scheduling conflicts that have meant we're not meeting on a regular basis. She's already announced that we won't be getting together until sometime after Oct. 15. I've already suggested that we just make it an indefinite hiatus. This is sad because we've been meeting for about five years on a pretty much once a week basis. I've considered having it at my place but that's pretty unrealistic given the small size of my condo and the limited amount of light sources I have. Not to mention how the cat freaks out when there are "strangers" present. And other peoples' allergies. And there's almost no parking available in my neighborhood because of the community college that's near my house. Etc.

I have options at least. I get to knit with a lot of my friends when I'm at work. I get together with one or two friends on occasion. It's just hard to let go of the group though. We'll see what happens in a couple of months.

An hour later.

Now the water has been turned off so one of the condos that is being remodeled can have some work done. I think maybe I'd better just go somewhere else for the day.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Window shopping

Not much going on at the moment. I did a bit of knitting yesterday on a couple of different pairs of socks. That's about it. The humidity is taking a toll on my joints. My hands hurt too much to knit for very long. Ibuprofen helps when I remember to take it.

So. Today I'm going with a friend to a couple of yarn shops. I've been to both of these shops recently and I'm not looking for anything in particular. Just window shopping. But my friend, a fairly new knitter, is curious to see what other shops have to offer and since she has to resume her teaching schedule soon we thought this would be a good time to go. I'll also be looking for some yarn for a couple of friends who put in their requests.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Some socks

If you're on Ravelry and have looked at my projects page sometime in the past month or so, you will already have seen these socks. I made them for a friend of mine for her birthday which was a couple of months ago. We finally managed to get together this weekend at Unraveled. There were lots of other people there as there were two rather large classes in progress plus many other people who just came to sit and knit. Anyway, the socks were a hit. They fit well and she was tickled with the colors.

And, I finished the Noro Silk Garden Sock Yarn socks. I had plenty of yarn. I made the legs about half an inch shorter than usual. Next time I'll know better. This yarn is so much more pleasant to knit with than the Kureyon sock yarn. And you get to use a bigger needle.

Now that those are out of the way I will attempt, for the fourth time, to get a sock that I like using the Flat Feet yarn that I got as a gift a few months ago. Have you seen this stuff? It's fun. I'm trying to make socks for myself. So far I've made the wrong size, twice, and changed my mind about the overall length at least once. I've settled on a 2x2 rib but there's not enough to photo as yet.

Friday, August 08, 2008

It's gonna be a long day

I have no photos today. Sorry. Nothing to show you that you haven't seen already. The second Noro sock is well underway.

So why is it going to be a long day? Mostly because I didn't get very much sleep last night. Only four hours instead of my usual six or so. I got home from Thursday night knitting later than usual and the cat woke me at four, as usual. I thought I'd find time for a nap before I go to work but that hasn't worked out. I may spend part of the day standing up in order to stay awake.

I have the Noisy Ladies group first thing in the morning. That's not an official title, just an observation. And then I'm supposed to start a newish knitter on her first pair of socks, including using dpns for the first time.

Fridays are fun though. I usually see several of my peeps in the afternoon. However, a couple of people are out of town so it may be slower than usual. But I'm looking forward to going to dinner with L&H (of L&H fame).

Thursday, August 07, 2008

The Ram Club

A few weeks ago I signed up for a sock yarn club. My first. The yarns are being shipped now. I got mine on Monday. The spoiler alert is for anyone who may be in this club and who doesn't want the surprise spoiled. I don't think anyone in the sock club actually reads my blog but just in case, there it is.

The club is put on by The Unique Sheep. The owner is a member of the Men Who Knit forum on Ravelry. The designer is also a member of that group.

The premise of the club is that most sock yarn clubs do not provide enough yarn to make a pair of man-sized socks. And the patterns are usually not something most men would wear. This yarn certainly addresses the yardage part. There are 470 yards in each of the two skeins. Two skeins because the yarns are held together to make a heavy duty boot sock.

I'm not sure if I'd actually wear boots with these socks since all the patterning would be totally hidden. If I'm going to spend that much time knitting socks for me then I want to be able to show them off.

The picture that came with the pattern doesn't really show you much about how the pattern is going to look but it does give you some idea of how the two yarns kind of stripe. They're knit toe up, something I've only done once; they have a short row heel, which is my current favorite heel so I'll be okay there. I'll be making some minor changes is how the increases and decreases are done. But I'm not going to be able to start these socks for a while.

I'm still working on the Noro Silk Garden sock. The yarn is nice but not really designed for speed knitting. I hope to finish sock number one today.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Noro Silk Garden Sock Yarn

I wish I could get a better picture of this. It's actually a lot richer and more red than what you see here.

I'm really pleased with how this yarn is knitting up. So much better than the Kureyon version. It's more of a sport weight than a fingering weight. I'm using some 3mm Addi dpns. I could have probably used a 3.5mm. The label calls for a 3.6 to 4.7 mm. That's Japanese sizing, approximately US 4 to US 6. I do like the density of the fabric I'm getting.

There's silk, obviously, in the mix so the yarn isn't quite as springy as most sock yarn I've used. I'm getting ladders at all the needle change points and my usual technique of giving the first couple of stitches on the new needle an extra tug isn't working. So I'm going to rely on the old adage, time heals everything. I'm hoping the ladders will disappear when the socks are washed.

I'm still concerned about having enough yarn but I've already scheduled a trip back to the store where I bought it. I'll call and see if they still have this color and ask them to hold it until next week.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Saying no

I used to have a spinning wheel. I used to have a lot of the stuff that goes with having a spinning wheel. But I didn't use any of this stuff very often. I finally just gave up that particular craft and got rid of everything spinning related. I needed the room for the other addiction. So, you see, I really must say no.

This past Saturday I went to Unraveled where Janice Rosema was holding forth. I called my friend Thom to let him know there would be some roving available and well as a chance to view and try the Mach 1 wheel. (I don't have a link and I'm not sure there is one.) Thom has recently started spinning and has already purchased three wheels. He doesn't do things by half-measure. The Mach 1 is a fascinating wheel and has some features that would really enhance the time spent spinning.

Anyway, it was exciting to see all the rovings and batts and different fibers. Janice spins a lot of what she calls art yarns or fibers. They're imaginative and playful. She had a small drum carder with her and demonstrated how she uses it to combine a miscellany of fibers to create some very colorful rovings. She also demonstrated the wheel.

I did not give in to the temptation to try it. I don't want to get another wheel and start all over. But it was hard to say no. I finally had to walk away and go sit in another room and work on my sock. I'm just not going to spin.

But I did hear about a class for new spinners and returning spinners. It starts next month and isn't very far away and doesn't cost very much.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

The boss is away sale

Every year when the shop owner at A Stitch in Time goes on vacation we have a short sale. This year it's this week. All knitting yarns, books and needlepoint canvases are 25% off from now through the 10th. I know. We just had a sale in June but there are yarns on this sale that weren't available back then, like this Claudia Handpaint Linen Lace. There are some other yarns as well, but I didn't take the time to photo them. There's also a sale in Hodge Podge, the gift store section. There's even some stuff there that's 70% off.

And I finished the Fast Fullerton Footies. Details on my Ravelry page.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Web weirdness

Strange things are happening. There are blogs that I read almost daily and many of these use Blogger or blogspot. Almost every blog I've tried to access today that uses Blogger cannot be opened by Internet Explorer. There are a few others that don't use Blogger that are similarly "blocked", if that's the correct word.

Blogs that haven't had recent entries, say within a week, will open, even if they do use Blogger.

I have no problem viewing my blog when I'm using Firefox. I haven't linked to very many favorites or bookmarks on Firefox but I guess I will now.

Is anyone else having this problem?

A couple of hours later:

Whatever it was, it's gone away and everything seems to be working again. I'm still moving to Firefox.

Friday, August 01, 2008


One of the first pairs of sock I made were these. I can't find my photo but if you look at the link you'll see what they looked. I used some variegated Cascade Fixation (cotton and lycra) and made a few adjustments to the pattern to fit a larger foot. I've used this same pattern several times with variations. The one in the photo is the current permutation. And they really are fast. That sock was done in a day. I'm stalled on the second one because I got side tracked and cast on for a bag. The second sock is started and I'll spend some time on it today while I'm at work.

I also got some new sock yarn. Noro Silk Garden Sock. Not sure how this is going to work out since there isn't as much yardage as usual in a 100 gram skein, only 300 meters vs. the usual 400 or more.