Saturday, 28 July 2007

Horcrux socks

When DS-12 asked for a pair of red socks, as red as possible, I dyed some Trekking XXL sock yarn in red. And searched for a pattern what would be nice for a boy with solid coloured yarn. I found it in the files of Six Socks Knitalong. I joined this group some time after this pattern was meant to knit. Actually I 'should' knit the Victorian Lace Socks right now, but so far I did nothing more than print out that pattern. I like the Horcrux pattern and my son too. He is wearing the socks, the weather in England this summer is perfect for woolly socks.

I knit these socks cuff-down, two at the same time with magic loop. I have made the leg a bit longer as described in the pattern and decreased the gussets every three rounds instead of every other round. Besides those minor adjustments, I followed the clear written pattern.

The Victorian Lace socks have to wait anyway, I just started another pair of Elfine socks for a dear friend of mine.

Monday, 23 July 2007

Magic Ball swap III - the conclusion

Two pair of socks are knitted, there's some yarn left over. Not bad at all. And all the secrets hidden in the ball are now uncovered. A dream catcher (very nice), some pretty pendants, a lavender candle light, a package with those small elastics in it, what are they called (English or Dutch, whatever). You know, those tiny rubber bands one uses as stitch marker. Originally meant as hair care product.
And two felted eggs. I have to confess not to have a clue what they are. They have the form of an egg and they are felted. So my best guess is that they are for decoration.

Nevertheless, it was great fun to do this swap and I am looking forward to the next magic ball swap.
Back to the red Horcrux socks now...

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Magic ball swap II

My pair of socks are finished. Until this point I found a kiwi bath fizzy, needle protectors and a little wooden charm.
I started the first sock of a pair for DD as well, as the ball has still not revealed all its secrets.

Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Laura Ashley knitting bag

Half of the fabric used is Laura Ashley. The roses part. The solid 'old rose' is just a piece of cotton twill. This bag is a prototype and has an imperfection that is meant not to be there in the next bag of this type :). I have questioned myself if I should put the pockets inside or outside. They are on the inside now, in my experience this works better to prevent things falling out.

The bag has a circumference of 60 cm and a height of 30 cm. I am very aware I made this bag to my preferences, but what do other knitters expect in a knitting bag?

Oh, it is also very useful as a hat, LOL!

Monday, 16 July 2007

Magic sock ball swap

Because of an earlier disappointing experience with a swap, I was very hesitant to join another. But the idea of a magic ball swap was very intriguing, and the idea to narrow that down to a magic sock ball swap I liked even more. So I did not hesitate too long on this one and jumped in.
It was very nice to put a ball together for someone I don't actually know. Also very exiting: would she like what I came up with or not. Well, in the end I had to sent it out and could only hope my spoilee would appreciate it. And she did ;).
Then I had to wait for my ball. And to wait. And to wait. In the meantime I saw at our collective blog (written in Dutch), especially set up for this event, that one after another received her ball, showed the pictures of what was already found with it and started to knit in order to reveal more treats.
Finally, 4 days ago, I received my magic ball (and I can't complain, because there are still two people who did not get theirs. For the record, the deadline was the 30th of June). Sending out just before the deadline with surface mail does take a lot of time and it is difficult to wait that long when looking forward to it. But also a good thing, I have to learn to be more patience, LOL!
In the box was a big bag of liquorice, immediately confiscated by DD. She loves sweeties very much. Also a set of 5 bamboo dpn's, ribbons for decoration, candle lights and a print out of Sideway knitted socks as suggestion with this Opal Hundertwasser, the yarn of my magic ball.

I am used to knit two socks the same time on a circular. Especially for this ball I choose to knit the old fashioned way (for me) and to use dpn's. And I do not follow the suggested pattern, I am not sure if I like Sideway socks with this wool.
So I just knit toe up socks, feet in stockinette and the leg in Pine Tree. I have done one sock and a half. No photo's yet, maybe tomorrow. I see some things coming up now in the ball, all was very well hidden. I see a few little things that could be point protectors and a bath fizzy. But nothing has fallen out yet. Or am I allowed to handle it out?

Monday, 9 July 2007

Little Elfine Socks

Knitting socks for a little 3 year old girl is not very easy. I don't mean the pattern is complicated and the girl is very happy she will have a pair of hand knitted socks soon. The thing is that she insists to try them on after every 3 rows or so. And she likes the feel of the socks in progress, so she doesn't want to take them off immediately. Actually it is best to knit socks for her when she is not around.

But I managed to finish them. The fit is a bit tight in due of the lace and bobble technique. It is good to know only one hank of 100 gram Opal is enough for a pair of woman socks size 5 (EU 38) and a pair of toddler socks size 7 (EU 24).

What my next project will be? Recently I have joined three knit-a-long groups. Yes, call me crazy. The only thing I did so far is print out the patterns of what I should do this time. I started on Mystery Stole-3. Every blog reader knows there is much ado about this. I don't know if I will end this project. I'm not a scarf person, though I like lace knitting. I have got the right yarn and the right needles and knitted only to row 20 or so. The real pattern has still to start.
Another group I joined is Handknit Socks to knit one pattern a month. Not started yet.
And the third group is Six Socks. They do a pattern every two months an I thought this frequency will be doable for me.
The red Trekking XXL yarn will turn into a pair of Harry Potter's Horcrux Socks for DS-12.

Monday, 2 July 2007

Into wool

This is a Gotland sheep. Doortjes absolute favourite at Woolfest. Oh yes, there were many sheep more, but the Gotland sheep were the most attractive to her. I was allowed to see one stand at the time and then we had to head back to those sheep immediately.
For me as wool lover Woolfest was worthwhile. It is a great pleasure to feel and see all kinds of wool and the sheep who produce that particular wool. And to see all the magnificent colours of hand dyed yarn. And to see a lot of people spinning and weaving. She gave me this drop spindle and some Merino roving.

Unfortunately I was not able (in time) to attend the 'Spinning with Hand Spindle' workshop, so I have to learn it myself from the Internet. Or maybe I find myself a spinners group in the area, we do have a lot of sheep here :).
I did not only watch, but also bought some stuff. One kilo of undyed organic wool, a bar of Olive soap (one of the things I want to do in the near future is felting wool), two bars of Woolfat soap and two hanks of sock wool: one 100% BFL and one Trekking XXL (75% wool, 25% nylon).
Yesterday was 'sock wool dyeing day', I also dyed a hank of 75% BFL/ 25% nylon. One thing is for sure, superwash wool is not easy to dye. The dye secures less easy. I have used the citric acid method as well as the dihswash liquid method.
Here is the result

From left to right: BFL/nylon; Trekking yarn; BFL sockyarn
The red yarn is done with acid dyes and, for the sweet smell, some Cherry Kool Aid. That yarn is meant to be a pair of socks for DS-12, who wants socks 'as red as it can be'.
Finally: the Elfine socks are finished. They look lovely and have a nice fit.

With the leftover yarn I started the same socks for DD. I only have to convert the pattern a bit to toddler size 7.