Friday, January 30, 2015

Declan's Hat

Last November, I knit a hat for my son using yarn I didn't enjoy.  It was acrylic, but I had knit with the yarn before and liked it.  Not so much this time.  So, when my son lost his hat in school after a couple of months, I wasn't completely upset.

Old Hat - Lost Forever

I decided to just go back to the old standby of Cascade 220 wool for the new hat and he picked out the same color blue as the hat he lost.  I gave him a few options for patterns and he chose Declan's hat.

I searched for a cast-on that looked like it would flow into the 2x2 ribbing and found the Alternate cable cast-on tutorial from Woolly Wormhead.  

Other knitters noted the hat runs large, so I knit him the small on size 5 needles.  The hat fits his 12 year old head perfect and my head as well.  I also started crown decreases after the cable ended in order to provide a little more depth.

As for other knitting, I dug out my Rambling Rows Blanket last week and figured out that I had completed 15 out of 55 blocks when I put it in hibernation last spring.  The hardest part to starting again was just refreshing my mind on what decreases are used in the mitred blocks.  I cast on for a small square and I fell back in love with the back and forth of garter stitch with easy decreases.  I am 4 blocks further along and even decided to go back and weave in some old ends.  My goal is still to finish before Christmas of this year.


Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Project 365: Week 4

January 22 ~ Decor inside a favorite eatery
January 23 ~ Sculpted clay flower
January 24 ~ Spicy Bean Salsa
January 25 ~ Tree on winter evening (taken with cell phone)
January 26 ~ Homework at kitchen table
January 27 ~ Fresh thyme
January 28 ~ Abundance of tomatoes 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Project 365: Week 3

January 15 ~ Tomato Soup
January 16 ~ Crossing one of many train tracks in the area
January 17 ~ Camel Up board game
January 18 ~ Warm enough for a walk outside
January 19 ~ Thawing Fox River
January 20 ~ Sunset over our neighbor's house
January 21 ~ Zigzagular Socks completed

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Zigzagular Socks

I am quite happy with my Zigzagular Socks.

The yarn is pretty and the zig-zag cable is pretty sharp, but what makes me smile the most is a part nobody will ever see - the heels.  I tried two new things on the heels.  The first was the Double Gusset Heel by Cristi Payne.  It hugs my heel so comfortably and I will be using this gusset over and over in the future.

Double Gusset on Bottom of Foot

Second, I decided to carry a mohair/silk blend yarn with the heel for strength.  I heard about using Rowan Kid Silk Haze for this, but decided to go with a less expensive option: Knit Picks Aloft.  Carrying the second strand required a little more work when doing the heel (cutting yarn when knitting the instep), but worth it if it provides more protection against holes.

Hairy Heel, but Strong!

The Highland Handmades yarn is quite variegated, but still doesn't obscure the zig-zag cable running down the foot.  I have knit so many sock patterns, but I have found very few that I would knit twice.  This is probably one of my favorites - so easy, but not boring.  

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Project 365: Week 2

January 8 ~ Another snow/cold day off from school
January 9 ~ Playing Love Letter Card Game
January 10 ~ Texting goodnight to Dad who is camping out
January 11 ~ Doughnuts from Country Donuts
January 12 ~ Outtake from DIY audition photos
January 13 ~ Checking out his splinter under the microscope
January 14 ~ Closest we will get to ever having a Hedgehog

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Project 365: Week 1

January 1 ~ Korean New Year's Bowing
January 5 ~ Last Week for Christmas Lights
January 7 ~ No School Due to Cold Temps

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Monogamy Slows Me Down

The monogamy I refer to is with my knitting.  I rarely have more than two projects on the needles.  When I first started knitting, I told myself to finish my current item before casting on another - I knew that I would probably not go back to finish.  Is this a bad thing?  Not in my mind, but it does slow me down.  Sometimes, I just don't want to knit on my current project and so I don't knit at all.  That is when I turn to pattern surfing on Ravelry.

What is on my needles right now?  Just two projects.  First is a pair of socks that I am halfway through.  The yarn is Highland Handmades Sugar Maple Sock in the Hard Cider colorway.

The pattern I chose is called Zigzagular Socks by Susie White.  I just cast on the second sock over the weekend and would like to have the socks done by the end of January.

My second project has been hibernating since last Spring.  It is the Rambling Rows Afghan by Carol A. Anderson with Lion Brand Amazing in the Acadia colorway.  I really thought about using Noro, but felt the recipient (my son) would find the Noro too scratchy.

I was cruising on this blanket with a goal of finishing it by the end of the year, but life got crazy and knitting ceased for a few months.   Life is back on track and now the knitting must resume!