Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Finished Uptown Boot Socks!

It was touch and go, but I managed to finish them. I only had this much left---

It wasn't until the very last minute that I knew for sure that I'd have enough yarn. Man, was lucky.They are a gift for someone later this year, but I'm not going to say who, since he may read this blog. I actually picked this yarn out especially for him, because it is the perfect color for him.


Pattern: Uptown Boot Socks from Favorite Socks by Interweave Press (the 72 stitch size).

Yarn: Socks That Rock Lightweight in Farmhouse.

Needles: 2.5mm Crystal Palace Bamboo double points.

My God, this pattern ate up yarn like no other! Make sure you factor this in if you choose to knit this pattern.

All in all, I think they turned out well, but they seemed to take forever because I've hardly knit in the last 2 weeks since work has been insane. I've also learned that I prefer cables when set on at least a small background of purl stitches. They seem so much more like magic like that.

A big thank you to Stu for modeling the socks for me, even though they're not for him. He doesn't want any, I swear.

Monday, August 20, 2007

And So It Ends...

The barbecue was a success. It didn't rain, and people even showed up. Most importantly, we didn't run out of food.

I'm still exhausted from all the prep work.

After the barbecue, Stu and I made a run for the border (the bbq location was only about 5 minutes from it). We waited in the border line up for 3 hours. The reason for this was that I really wanted to go to Marilyn's Yarn one last time before they closed for good. I guess that when you're only a week from shutting down permanently you don't have to worry about customer service or even acknowledging a customer's presence. I waited 3 hours in a line up to say goodbye to my lys away from home (not for the 60% off since I knew there would be nothing left). All I can say is good riddance! The retail world is better off having fewer cows in it.

We headed to Taco Bell for some dinner (our favorite road trip food). Ohmygod, I love taquitos.
Then we happened upon a Jo-ann craft store. I've always heard of these, but we don't have them in Canada, so I'd never been. I restocked my Lily Sugar N Cream dishcloth cotton, and picked up an orange Chibi as well.

Last stop was Bellis Fair Mall to go to Target (the most awesome store ever). I didn't get anything there, but while in the mall we went into American Eagle Outfitters (which we do have in Canada), and I found the most comfy sweatshirt ever.

After that, we headed back to the border to return home (we only waited 15 minutes to get back into Canada).

All in all, we spent the same amount of time waiting in border line ups as we did in the States.

It was good though.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

It's Been 4 Days...

This going back to school thing is time consuming, and it hasn't even started yet!

Oh, and did I mention that I'm the sole organizer for a barbeque for 150 people? And we're not having it catered? And it's this Saturday? And it's supposed to rain? And so on.

I'll be knitting tonight, but other than that I'll be back on Saturday afternoon/Sunday depending on how it goes.

Wish me luck! Have a great Friday!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Sockapalooza 4: Revealed

I got a very generous package from my super awesome Sockapalooza 4 pal of awesomeness, Jess from Boston(I don't think she has a blog, at least I don't have the addy). She knit me the most fabulous pair of Jaywalkers, out of the best colorway in the whole world. I love the oranges, yellows, and pinks. The yarn is Sockotta by Plymouth Yarn. It's 45% Cotton, 40% Superwash Wool, and 15% Nylon.This is my first ever pair containing cotton, and I have to say that I really like it. Did I mention that they fit perfectly? Jess has to be a knitting genius to get Jaywalkers to fit a foot she's never seen. She also sent me along a little Boston Red Socks tote, which I am totally loving. The Cat is too, he's currently rubbing his nose on it.Oh, and 2 postcards---One from the place that the Knitsmiths meet. That is so cool!

I'm just totally on top of the world right now! Thank you so much Jess, you are awesome!!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Weekend Update...

I've been busily working away on the second Uptown Boot Sock. It's coming along nicely, but I'm still not sure if I'll have enough yarn. I think I will, but it'll be close.

I didn't end up going to the Knit Out in Stanley Park yesterday. I think that my week caught up with me and I had absolutely no energy. My week last week was both extremely busy and stressful. Yesterday was the first day that I didn't have anything that I absolutely *had* to do.

I've realized that the thought of going back to school terrifies me. So you can imagine how I'm feeling now that it's reality. And taking business/finance/economics courses (which are all totally outside of my comfort zone), makes me want to scream and run away.

I'm trying to think of it as a good challenge though, like a new knitting technique that seemed too difficult at the start, but that ended up being achievable in the end. Jeez, if I didn't knit I don't think I'd be able to go back to school.

I've got two of the courses I want, and I'm 9th place on the waiting list for 2 more (I'm trying to pick up one more).

Thursday, August 09, 2007


I've popped in to inform you of some changes that will be going on, but I don't have any pics to represent them, so I'll make it quick!

  • I am going back to school to do a post degree program in Human Resources Management.
  • The program starts in September 2008
  • I'm beginning the qualifying courses in three weeks.
  • I let my boss know today that I'll need to work part time. It's not looking all that promising though.
  • I'm not looking forward to tomorrow when everyone finds out. They will be pissed. No, really.
I joined the West Coast Knitter's Guild on Tuesday night. Everyone is super nice and welcoming, and it's really a great group.

The group is doing a knit out in Stanley Park this Saturday! I'm totally jazzed!

Oh, and I designed a new type of toe up heel. I'm hoping to get pics and instructions written tomorrow night. This week has been insanely busy!

Hang in there, it's almost Friday!

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Cable & Rib Sock

I told you that Favorite Socks got a pretty good workout over my trip. I finished the first sock of this pair in the car on the way home.

It's the Cable & Rib Sock from Favorite Socks. If you don't have this book already, run to your book store and get it. It's totally worth having.

I used the Yarn Pirate Superwash in Malamute. This yarn is delightful! It looks really lightweight in the skein, but when I knit with it it puffed up, and didn't seem to light at all. It makes a really nice drapey fabric, that is heaven to wear.

I used 2.5mm Crystal Palace double pointed needles.

I really only started wanting Yarn Pirate yarn after I saw Baseball Knitter's Cable Rib Socks in the same colorway. I'd say it's worth stalking various sites to pick up a skein of this.

It is soft and squishy when knit up. This yarn is heavenly!

Monday, August 06, 2007

Part 2: What Yarns & Books Would I Take To A Deserted Island?

The selection process:

I actually started by going through the stash and picking out the yarns I wanted to knit with. The yarns I chose for the most part were ones I had something in mind for already, and had been meaning to start on for a while.

The first one is self striping Yarntini in Boardwalk. I haven't had this one for very long (a bought it of ebay for only $22 a few weeks ago). Part of my yarn diet has a clause that states that any new yarn that I buy must be used immediately, as to not add to the stash any further.

This is all I have left from the stripey socks I showed you two posts ago---

The second one is Yarn Pirate Superwash sock yarn in Malamute. I've had this one for a while, and I've had an awesome pattern in mind, but I just hadn't gotten started yet. I'm part way through what I'm doing with it, and I'll give a full review of the yarn once I get some project pictures up (which should be in the next couple of days.

The next one is Fleece Artist Sea Wool. I receive this in a swap a little while ago, and I figured it was appropriate to bring Sea Wool when going to stay by the ocean. I still don't really have a project in mind for this one. I'm thinking maybe another pair of Monkeys though.

I've had a project in mind for the Socks That Rock Lightweight in the Farmhouse colorway since I ordered the yarn more than 6 months ago. I'm also part way through what I'm doing with this, but I want to give it its own post to reveal it. I can't tell you who it'll be for though, because it's a Christmas gift.

To me, no vacation knitting would be complete without bringing along some dishcloth cotton. It turns out I didn't get to it, but still, I felt better knowing it was there.

Last but not least, I brought the Lotus Blossom Tank from Interweave Knits Summer 2006. I didn't end up working on it, but I thought it might be wise to bring in case I got totally sick of socks (aka. went insane). Hey, you never know what all that time alone will do to a person!

The right tools---

Because there's nothing worse than needing something you don't have and being trapped on an island.

*I made sure to bring my dishcloth knitting needles (dishcloths are the only time you'll find me knitting with straights).

*A spare set of metal 2.5mm needles (I had two sets of bamboo needles with me too).

*A tape measure (a actually got this one at a kitchen store, and it is great)

*A bunch of stitch markers (if I had looked, I would have realized that all of the small ones have disappeared from the package).

*A darning needle for weaving in ends/kitchener stitching.

*My trusty Kacha Kacha (I now have three of these, and I love every one of them).

*And the best emergency supply ever, a teeny tiny crochet hook in case I drop a stitch while reaching for my cold drink!

On to the patterns!

This first was the IK Summer 2006 issue for the Lotus Blossom Tank pattern (pictured on the cover). This did not get used.
For some nice mindless easy reading, I brought the two magazines I picked up the week before I left. Knit Simply Fall 2006 and Interweave Felt which is a IK special edition.

I also brought two awesome sock books. Favorite Socks (a compilation by Interweave Press), and More Sensational Knitted Socks by Charlene Schurch.

Favorite Socks got a good work out, as you'll see in the coming week. I was glad to have the More Sensational Knitted Socks though, because it allowed me the freedom of making socks for other people than me by using the measurements found in the book. It is also inspirational.

It turns out that I'm getting quite a bit of use out of Favorite Socks, so come on back soon to see which patterns I've been working on.

PS. I love that my stash contains yarns that are suitable to take to a desert island, and that they are yarns that I would pick even if they weren't already in my stash.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Part 1: What Podcasts Would I Take To A Deserted Island?

More accurately--- What podcasts did I take to a deserted island?

For the sake of not making a monster post, I've decided to divide up the deserted island post. Part 2 will be all about the yarn and patterns.I had just cleared out all of my old podcasts, so I didn't actually have that many with me. I did have all of the episodes of two different knitting podcasts that I hadn't listened to before.

The first is Sticks & String. I had downloaded this one a while ago, and had been downloading all of the new episodes, but had never listened to it. As soon as I started listening to it I began kicking myself for waiting so long. It was great! So organized and professionally done. David does an amazing job, and sets a great example for other knitters.

I actually listened to all 30 episodes over the few days while I was by myself at the island, and it actually felt like I had been taking my vacation with the podcast's host, David Reidy.I would highly recommend downloading this podcast if you haven't already.The second podcast I discovered is Knitters Uncensored. I think this one is one that grows on you, because when I started listening to the first one it kinda made me roll my eyes a little. They don't really end up sticking to the knitting all the time, there seems to be a fair bit of drinking, and the organization leaves something to be desired, but for some reason, I ended up liking this one.

They make you feel like you're at a small party with a couple of friends. I ended up speaking to the cats in a German accent for the rest of the day after listening to a few of these podcasts.

I think that this one has definite potential, so don't give up on listening after the first one. I just downloaded the fifth episode and I really can't wait to listen.I also did a bit of listening to podcasts I normally listen to, including Stash & Burn, and the Knitpicks podcast (this one is really great, except for that irritating dog bark at the end of each one. I'm not sure why she makes the whole thing so peaceful just to have that bark snap you back to reality in the end).

I hope I've helped you discover a few new podcasts, and I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Come back tomorrow to find out which yarns and patterns came with me for my trip.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig....

My Mom always said that when we got home from family trips as kids. Actually, it wouldn't surprise me if she still says this.

We had a great time away. We packed up the cats last Saturday, and headed up to the cabin. Stu had to work on Monday and Tuesday, so I actually spent nearly 3 days with only the cats around. I survived on hotdogs and pancakes.

I spent almost the whole time listening to podcasts and knitting. I finished a pair of plain vanilla Yarntini socks in the Boardwalk colorway. Stu saw the colors and said they were the perfect color for me. I agree. They also go with my favorite pink crocs.

I used one skein, and 2.5mm dpns. I wish I had such a beautiful setting to take pictures at home.

Interestingly, our cabin is on a small (4 acre-ish) privately owned island (luckily my in-laws are the owners), so I really did spent a few days stranded (Stu had to take the boat back to Vancouver) on a deserted island.

Tomorrow I'll share with you what I brought when planning to be stranded on a deserted island, as well as my favorite new (to me) podcasts.

Not only did I arrive home with a new pair of socks, but I also have a nice tan, and my hair is totally bleached out. I look like I've been on vacay.

PS. The cats had so much fun running around from dawn til dusk. I felt terrible having to bring them home to a one bedroom apartment. They seem to be adjusting though. Lots of sleeping (I think they're still tuckered out from all the travel).