WIP WEDNESDAY: Slow motion replay


So, about that shawl…I realized midway through the last pattern repeat that I had royally fucked up the lace pattern on the last leaf before the center stitch markers and the last leaf of the row.  I was unhappy with how it looked, so I ripped out fifteen rows of lace and started knitting again.

One of the “mistakes” I made in the previous iteration gave the leaves a nice curve at the top, and when I started working on this again I couldn’t figure out how I made that mistake.  So I have more angular leaves.  Next time I work a pattern like this, I’m taking notes.  #themoreyouknow

Sadly, the leaves at the ends of the rows are still ugly.

P1010475 P1010476


WIP WESNDESDAY: Balsam Hollow shawl

Almost done with this pattern repeat, oh em gee

About 75% or so done with the Balsam Hollow shawl.  Knit with Cascade Heritage in Christmas Green that I bought off someone on Ravelry.  Lace pattern the first is almost done.  Knit with interchangeable needles, one 4 and one 5 on this stockinette section.  Nothing else of note.  Nothing to see here, move along.


WIP WEDNESDAY: I will call them…Cumbersocks

A while back, Gentleman Caller surprised me with two skeins of Purple Shirt sock yarn from Pandia’s Jewels to celebrate being permanently placed at my former job.  (Really, getting those two skeins of yarn was the only good part of said job, BUT I DIGRESS.)  It’s been hanging out in my stash, waiting for the right project.  Since we had the mother of all winters here in Boston, I decided to knit myself some socks…and only got around to knitting up the Sherlock yarn once the weather got nicer.  Whoops.



My initial plan was to make the Mirror socks by Josiah Bain.  As you can tell, the yarn was a little too busy for that pattern, and even with the aid of a row counter I lost track of where I was in the pattern.  I went on Ravelry and looked for a free pattern for a pair of toe-up socks in a similar gauge.  One of the first hits was “I Shall Name Them George”, and after skimming the pattern decided to just dive in.


The smocked pattern and short-row heel are pretty similar to my previous pair of socks, but since these pull in a little more I’ve had to knit them extra long and try them on as I go.  I cast on last Wednesday and FINALLY got the right length last night.  The heel is almost entirely turned, and I should be able to start the cuff on the train ride home tonight.  After working this section, I’m almost excited to cast on for the next sock, since I know how long it should be and where to start turning for the heel.  (Possibly while listening to Molly Lambert’s guest appearances on the “Yo, Is This Racist” podcast, which I learned about as I left for work this morning, thanks guys for letting me know this now.)



I’m calling this a cheat because I actually finished the socks in question on my way into work today.


These are Sarah Wilson‘s Honeycomb Socks, a free pattern I got from Ravelry.  I love Sarah’s retro details and body-con silhouette, but until I saw this pattern I never thought to make a pair of socks.  Clearly I was missing out.  The pattern was relatively easy (more on that in a minute) and has a great texture but also allows the yarn to shine.


This is kind of embarrassing to admit, but sometimes when I’m knitting seed stitch (which this pattern resembles), I lose my place and knit two stitches in a row, rendering my work into single rib.  I made a mistake in a few rows of slipping two stitches in a row, but those were so tiny that I couldn’t pick it up on my camera.

And now, a few words about the yarn.  I knit this from Wandering Wool, a DC-area hand-dyed company whose yarn I bought at Loop DC when I went to our nation’s capitol in January.  The colorway was called Strawberries and Cream, but seeing all that crimson and white in skein form made my brain go in a different direction.

By the way, I'm writing this on my lunch break from work.  You'll just have to use your imagination.

By the way, I’m writing this on my lunch break from work. You’ll just have to use your imagination.

I kept thinking of these as the yarn dyed from blood and BRAAAAAAAINS, knit with spare bones, to celebrate the end of the zombie apocalypse.

Next on the needles: Mirror by Josiah Bain, who will be pleased to learn that I’m knitting this from yarn inspired by Sherlock’s purple shirt.

TUESDAY TUNES: In lieu of socks, a song

I cast on for Sarah Wilson’s Honey of a Hurricane socks today.  Sadly, my camera ran out of gas and I was unable to take a picture…so here’s another treat for you.

As my friends may know, I started taking ukulele lessons with Amy Kucharik in December.  I’ve been doing fairly well — if I do say so myself — and I’ve set myself a small goal: to record Straight Outta Lawndale, a ukulele tribute to SST Records.  Of the SST bands, my favorite is Husker Du, and I’m hoping to record two songs of theirs in the lab before the end of my service year.  Sadly, I can’t figure out how to embed this, but I made a little video of myself singing and playing “Flexible Flyer”.  (This is how it’s supposed to sound.)  This was my first video, and while it’s pretty rough around the edges — I struggle with the A# chord, and the phrasing can be a little awkward — I’m proud of the progress I’ve made over two months.  This can only get better from here, right?

WIP WEDNESDAY: Mad Men Mittens

Ever notice that learning a new hobby can inspire you to become adventurous in your other avocations?  Something about learning the ukulele has gotten me to look at knitting techniques that I’d previously written off as too difficult.  Case in point: colorwork.  We all have an intarsia project that took a wrong turn (at least, I hope we all do), and after my attempt at knitting a monogrammed bowling bag I had consigned all colorwork to a musty, holey shelf.  Of course, my love of Mad Men and my pile of scrap yarn made me reconsider Fair Isle.

I cast on for these on Friday morning, once I’d completed a previous hat.  By Sunday night, I’d finished the first mitten.  I definitely see some things I should have done differently with these.  I kind of almost wish I’d used the salmon pink yarn in place of the baby pink as the accent color in the middle, since the pale pink doesn’t pop against the white as much as I would have hoped.  Also, the decreases don’t line up along the sides of the mittens.  I will at least do the decreases differently on the second mitten.

The white, crimson, and baby pink yarns are Berrocco Ultra Alpaca.  The “Wes Anderson pink” is a semi-mystery Plymouth worsted alpaca that was discontinued when I bought it in 2009.  I knit these on an Addi size 3 needle.  Soon they will be Raveled.

WIP WEDNESDAY: ‘Vog On, preparing to turn the heel of

When Windsor Button had their liquidation sale a few years ago, I bought two skeins of Plymouth Happy Feet in the Reds colorway.  My intention was to use that as the accent color in what would become my Lipstick Traces socks.  Either I overestimated the amount of yarn I needed or I figured I’d stock up — since the yarns were at that point 40% off — and when I finally finished those socks, I found myself with enough yarn for another pair.

2008-01-01 00.00.00-11

Since I had three-quarters of a skein on me and a size 0 needle, why not just cast on as soon as I bound off the previous pair?  Why not, indeed.  I’m knitting these from Knitty’s Vog On pattern.  I started these on Monday night and already I’m almost up to the heel.

Fun fact: Vog On was the first pair of socks I knit for myself.  I’d made several pairs of socks for Gentleman Caller, but since I wore a lot of skirts I didn’t see the point of making socks I could wear.  Now that I’m wearing a lot of pants, knitting myself some nice pairs of socks has become a priority for me.  Plus, they’re portable and easy (ish) to knit while sitting in meetings or doctor’s appointments.