Sunday, January 29, 2006

Mr. Twisty

Just a little side note, I made a top-whorl drop spindle today in my spare time and spun the bit of fiber that one of the Guild ladies had given me. It's maybe a foot long, Z twist, turquoise and plied. I'm very proud of it. I have named this particular spindle Mr. Twisty, and he will be my carry-along friend when I want to make yarn on-campus. As I vaguely remembering someone saying on a forum somewhere, walking around with a drop-spindle totally gives you street cred.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Dichotomy Socks

(Picture forthcoming)

Gague: 8 sts = 1" on size 2.25mm DPNs in St stitch

Materials: Senso Cotton Wool (70% cotton/30% wool), 3 balls purple, 1 ball white (approx. $8 total)
Set of 4 or 5 2.25mm DPNs (I prefer 5, and this pattern is easier with 5)
Set of 4 or 5 2.0mm DPNs

Ribbing Pattern:

Twin Leaf Panel: (Barbara Walker's Second Treasury)
Row 1 and all odd rows: IIIIIIIIII--IIIIIIIIII
Repeat rows 1-8

I: Knit
-: Purl
O: Yarn-over
M: Sl 1-k2tog-psso
W: "Ssk and pass", Barbara Walker describes this as "ssk, return the resulting stitch to left-hand needle, and with the point of the right-hand needle pass next stitch [on left needle] over and offthe needle; then sl the stitch back to the right-hand needle."

Conceptual Directions:

(in white) CO 72 sts in 2.0mm needles and work in Ribbing Pattern for 2". Switch to purple, and larger needles.

The p1 on either side of the ribbing pattern acts to hide the seam and create consistancy across the rows. Starting with the K4 area, the leg will go as follows:

Odd rows:
*P1 K4 P1 K24 P1 K4 P1; Repeat from * three more times.

Even rows:
*4 stitch cable (crossing on rows 4 and 8 of lace pattern), p1, k1, one row of the lace pattern, k1, p1, 4 stitch cable. Repeat from * once.

This will continue for 6"-ish, ending on row 1 of lace pattern.

Switch to white with out cutting the purple, and do your favorite heel, starting from the purl before the third cable. At the end of that half-row, your white thread should be next to your purple. turn it and keep going :) Minimum ends! When you're done turning the heel, leave the stitches on the needles and go back to the old start-of-round with the purple thread. This should be at the start of the instep.

Instep follows the same pattern of even and odd rows, only worked in half (no repeats on even rows, one repeat on odd rows. When you do the first instep half-row, pick up whatever stitches need picking up (along the heel flap if you did one, or just the stitches on the needle if you did a short row heel) and work them in purple with your favorite gussets or lack thereof worked in stockinette or favorite sole stitch along the bottom of the foot.

Complete for length of foot minus a few inches.

Switch to white, knit 1 round, then do your favorite toe.

Written-Out Directions:


(in white) CO 72 sts in 2.0mm needles and work in Ribbing Pattern for 2". Switch to purple, and larger needles.

Row 1 (and all odd rows): *P1, K4, P2, K10, P2, K10, P2, K4, P1; Repeat from *.
Row 2: *P1, K4, P2, K6, ssk and pass, yo, K1, yo, P2, yo, K1, yo, sl 1-K2tog-psso, K6, P2, K4, P1; Repeat from *.
Row 4: *P1, K4, P2, K4, ssk and pass, K1, yo, K1, yo, K1, P2, K1, yo, K1, yo, K1, sl 1-K2tog-psso, K4, P2, K4, P1; Repeat from *.
Row 6: *P1, K4, P2, K2, ssk and pass, K2, yo, K1, yo, K2, P2, K2, yo, K1, yo, K2, sl 1-K2tog-psso, K2, P2, K4, P1; Repeat from *.
Row 8: *P1, K4, P2, ssk and pass, K3, yo, K1, yo, K3, P2, K3, yo, K1, yo, K3, sl 1-K2tog-psso, P2, K4, P1; Repeat from *.

Repeat rows 1-8 until cuff measures around 6", end on row 1. Transfer the first 36 sts to stitch holder, or 1 needle.

Heel: (feel free to substitute your own favorite heel)

Do not cut the purple, but pick up the white yarn. Remember to leave a 6" tail. Starting from the second needle (or just after the stitch holder), work 1 row in Heel Stitch as follows: sl 1, *k1, sl1; repeat from * until you reach the end of the round (you should have worked half a round in white). You will only be working with these white stitches for the rest of the heel. Turn the work, purl across. Alternate rows of slipped regular stitches until the heel flap measures your preferred height. I tend to do 2.5 or 3", but I have big feet.

Turning the Heel:

I like to continue the heel stitch pattern in the turning of the heel, but it's not strictly neccessary. If you prefer, just turn the heel in Stockinette stitch, though you should continue to slip the first stitch in the row.

Row 1: Sl1, (k1, sl1) 11 times, k1 , k2tog, k1, turn.
Row 2: sl1, p13, p2tog, p1, turn.
Row 3: sl1, (k1, sl1) 7 times, k2tog, k1, turn.
Row 4: sl1, p15, p2tog, p1, turn.
Row 5: sl1, k1, (k1, sl1) 7 times, k1, k2tog, k1, turn.
Row 6: sl1, p17, p2tog, p1, turn.
Row 7: sl1, (k1, sl1) 9 times, k2tog, k1, turn.
Row 8: sl1, p19, p2tog, p1, turn.
Row 9: sl1, k1, (k1, sl1) 9 times, k1, k2tog, k1, turn.
Row 10: sl1, p21, p2tog, p1, turn.
Row 11: sl1, (k1, sl1) 11 times, k2tog. (please note, no k1 and turn)


Round 1:
Leave the heel stitches on the needle, and go back to the instep stitches and the start of round. Remove from stitch holder if neccessary, and place on single needle (this is now needle 1). With the purple (which should not have been cut, please recall), work row 2 of cuff, without the repeat, and on a new needle (needle 2) pick up gusset stitches on left side of heel flap, and knit the gusset stitches through the back loops (to avoid holes, pick up one extra stitch between instep and gusset). Knit across heel stitches (needle three), pick up right side of gusset stitches, including extra stitch (needle four) and knit through back loops. In order to make things a little more balanced, add the # of stitches on needles 2-4 together and divide by 3, then starting at needle 2, move stitches as needed so that that number of stitches is on each needle (if 1 stitch is left over, place on needle 3. If two stitches are left over, place on needles 2 and 4). If you would prefer, you may continue working the stitches of needle 3 in Heel Stitch until the gusset is complete.

Round 2: (and all even rounds)
Work the instep in Cuff row 1 excluding repeat. On needle 2, p1, k3, ssk, knit to end of needle. Continue in Stockinette st until last 5 sts on needle 4. k2tog, k3, p1.
Round 3:
Work the instep in next Cuff row excluding repeat. p1, knit to last st on needle 4, p1.

Repeat rows 2 and 3 until you have decreased back down to 72 stitches. Rearrange stitches on needles 2-4 when needed to maintain easy knitting. At the end, there should be 12 stitches each on needles 2, 3, and 4.


Continue to work instep stitches in cuff pattern excluding repeats, and work needles 2-4 in Stockinette stitch. Continue until 2 or 3" from the ends of the toes, try to end on row 1.

Heel-Stitch Star Toe:

Switch to white, remember to leave long tail on both yarns.

Round 1 (and all odd rounds): Knit.
Round 2a: Knit needles 1 and 2. On needle 3, ssk, k4, place stitch marker. Starting from the marker, redistribute stitches so there are 19 stitches on the first needle from the marker, and 18 on the other needles. The row now begins at the bottom of the foot.

Round 2b: k1, sl1, k1, sl1, k2tog. There are now 70 stitches on the needles. *sl1, k1; repeat from * to last stitch, sl1.

Round 4: *k8, k2tog; Repeat from *
Round 5: *k7, k2tog; Repeat from *
Round 6: *k6, k2tog; Repeat from *
Round 7: *k5, k2tog; Repeat from *
Round 8: *k4, k2tog; Repeat from *
Round 9: *k3, k2tog; Repeat from *
Round 10: *k2, k2tog; Repeat from *
Round 11: *k1, k2tog; Repeat from *

14 stitches now remain. Graft toe and enjoy!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

1/10th of the way there!

That's right, folks, the green cotton Friday Harbor socks had their grand debut last today, as I wore them about town and to campus, in long jeans that didn't allow them to be seen XD However, I did stop and talk to all the folks I knew and showed them off, so they didn't feel too abandoned ^_^

Friday, January 20, 2006

Oh, Man. Oh, Man. Oh, Man.

So, I went to the Spinner's guild meeting the other day... oh, man do I want to learn to spin! And then I saw this website, that's selling spinning wheels for cheeeeeeeap...... Grah! The agony! I want to purchase one! And I'd be able to right now.... Decisions, decisions!



I did it.

I fucking did it.

I ordered a spinning wheel! It's a Babe's double-treadle production wheel, made of PVC pipe and wheelchair wheels, weighing a little over 7 lbs, and it is coming to my house!

[update] Also? Dibs on being the first one to knit a one-eyed kitten pocket warmer :) More details as they arrive.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Oh, Yeah...

I forgot to mention I made a New Year's Resolution! I like to kinda stagger these things, so that there's more of a sliding scale of resolutions than one grand mega-resolution. The scale goes as follows:

Step 1: I will bring the number of socks I've knit up to ten (counting the two I made in december).

Step 2: I will bring the number of pairs of socks I've knit up to ten, including the december pair.

Step 3: I will knit ten pairs of socks, all in this year. Baby booties totally count.

Step 4: I will knit ten pairs of socks, all in this year, for myself. Any socks or booties knit for others will not fill this requirement.

In preparation of this, I've picked up three more skeins of Opal, and about a million balls of that senso cotton that's so nice and cheap. I'm almost to the heel flap of the second sock that pair, and I'm really liking how the first one wears. If I finish by the end of this week, I'm going to have to find some kinda of pretty new shoes to show them off in :)

In other news, classes start up again tomorrow. I'm kinda iffy on this semester - I'm taking the fewest number of hours I've ever taken on purpose, nine, but they're all upper-level psych courses, and, incidentally, the LAST of my upper-level psych courses. Isn't that crazy? I mean, if I do well on these classes (and there's no reason to expect I shouldn't, I've got a 3.8 GPA in my psych classes thus far), then I've got, what, one semester to go? Make up that last english and history class? And since we're not taking the Iran trip after all (a cousin from Germany is coming to the US, and staying at dad's place, so he's staying to take care of her) I'll have plenty of time in the summer to finish that up. Could I be graduating? Like, graduating this year?

It's kinda scary, to be graduating. I haven't given any thought to grad school just yet, aside from the fact that I know I want to go. I don't really have a great, lasting relationship with any of my advisors or professors, aside from maybe Dr. Copeland, probably due in part to the fact that I've only been on this campus for almost two years now. This'll actually be my fourth semester at the main campus, since I took half a year at Blinn when my loans didn't come in, and now I've got to think of letters of recommendation and writing samples and whatnot? It's really scary. I've been toying with the idea of taking up teaching, but I'm afraid that maybe it's because I'm afraid to go to grad school, which is total crap since I haven't been accepted to any, you know, because I haven't APPLIED.

And then I have to stop and think, what about women's studies? My feminist theory prof said that I had a really good grasp of the second-wave literature, that the essays we wrote would go a long way to getting into women's studies program - into a GOOD one. And I really enjoyed it. But I really enjoy psychology, especially social psych, and I'm taking classes in how people learn, how cognition works, and it's all just so lovely and fascinating.

But if I'm graduating, I'm going to have to get a new job. I can't stay a student worker forever, especially when I'm not a student any more - that's how I GOT the job, the last guy graduated out. And I know I don't want to be a kept woman, I don't want Sweetie to have to support us both, even though I know he could right now. I'd like to get my masters. I'd like to get my doctorate. I'm the first person in my family to go to college in I don't know HOW long, I'll be the first to graduate, and I really want to see how far I can go. If I don't go, I'll regret it forever. I need to prove to myself that I can make it in a hard science (and psych IS hard science, my friend), prove to myself and to my family how smart I really am, how worthwhile I am, really vindicate me as a person. If I can do this, if I can go and get into grad school and GET my doctorate, if my last name can end "Ph. D", then I've done it. I've shown everyone that I'm worth something, and I've shown myself as well.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Ringing in the Year of the Sock

So, I'm totally in love with RoseByAny's concept, Two Thousand Socks. I mean, counting this in with my resolution to knit myself ten pairs of socks this year*, I myself could account for a whole percentage point in this baby! How awesome would that be, eh? Plus I plan to knit at least one or two pairs for Sweetie (since I kinda sorta rid him of most of his store-bought socks), and booties for J-who-is-with-child (can't wait to see the baby, should be born this semester!), so who knows? Maybe I could be a two-percenter in more ways than one :)

Ah, aggieland. If nothing else, you supply me with puns.

*Sweetie's first sock, the Friday Harbor socks out of Knitting on the Road? Yeah, doesn't fit him. But it does fit me. Yay, my first sock for the new year!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Am I Designing A Sweater?

So, I had a really awesome idea during the holiday, and I sent it to my Aunt to review. I love her taste in colors and such, and everyone I've told about it so far seems to like it, so today I hope to go get me a set of Addi Turbos and make with the crazies. It's mostly just a V-neck-ish raglan, but there should be enough texture to make it visually interesting. Here's hoping!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Goddamnit, This Shit Has Got To Stop

because I am sick and fucking tired of being sick. Seriously, the sore throat, the coughing, clogged-up sinuses, the lungs that feel like they're on fire all the time, this has gotta go. I'm missing work, I feel like shit, I can't even go to the goddamn yarn store and get the rest of my sock cotton! How'm I supposed to make socks without my fucking sock cotton, you tell me that? Fuck. Shit. And I can't bitch about it because my chest hurts, and it hurts to talk, and breathe, and drink water and all that healthy shit that's supposed to keep you from getting colds that nobody actually does until you've already got one and it's useless to do them but you do it anyway like it's going to prevent you from having gotten the cold in the first place. And then there's the run on sentances, and akward cutoffs.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Tentacle Love


Okay, so the loop stitch? Makes a loop, any size. If you use that Paton's Upcountry I've got in bunches in my stash, which is one large single, and you twist it more when making the stitch, you could get the loop to twist around itself. This would make kinda a spoke, a dreadlock, in short - a tentacle. Why couldn't you make a squod/octopus or even a Cthulhu hat this way?

Why not indeed?