31 January 2008

On Avoiding Identical Socks

Elfine Socks are done. The cuffs look a little floppy here, but that's really because I haven't bothered to block the socks for photo styling. When I finished them last night (one day before my deadline!) I tried them on and was content.

Since sock knitting can be both peaceable activity and learning adventure, I share with you things you can do to permit even the most matchy-matchy socks from becoming completely identical.

1. Sigh over the holes left at the end of the short-row wraps on the first sock. Do nothing about them, but consider stitching them up later if they continue to offend. Knit the second sock and solve the problem in that one altogether.

2. Realize mid wrap-session that the strategies for wrestling with double wraps have distracted you from the concept of doing them consistently. Sigh over this in the first sock but avoid frogging back, as these are going to live inside shoes most of the time. On the second sock, pay attention and earn consistently directional wraps.

3. Forget to use the matching dyed and spun reinforcement yarn in the second toe. Remember when you get to the heel, sigh, and look forward to the science experiment of comparing toe wear.

4. Move on to a hat from stash.

5. Cast on the toe of a new pair of socks.

28 January 2008

Ravelry Double Dare

I have taken on a Ravelry double-dare. Mission Possible and Stash Down 2008.

Flashing Stash at Knitty was fun. Entering it on Ravelry was illuminating. Shocking. Revealing. Humbling. Embarrassing.

Has been, that is, not just was. I'm not quite done.

Decided that I rather liked the notion of tackling my own personal 12 missions for 12 months (or forfeit the yarn). Socks, I said. I have more yarn than fits into the sock boxes. And there used to be one sock yarn box. I liked even the progress of counting socks (witness the outdated challenge button I still keep updating), but last year I seemed to have fallen short. Upwards and onwards, I say!

Having taken some time to document sock stash more candidly, and having taken a severe look at the whole, I have outlined my list of 12 pairs of socks I MUST KNIT. Options for forfeit are to discard the unfinished item, have a bonfire, give it to a friend, etc. I decided that the penalty needed to be more generous donation than ritual discard. I hesitate to make my semi-finished project someone else's problem, so I landed here: I’ll have to give away the comparable yarn - especially since I do have some multiples. (Some. Sheesh. I should be smacked.)

Here's the list of monthly challenges.
1. January - a pair of second socks Have finished one (Yarrow Rib) and am past the heel on the second (Elfine)
2. Feb. - STR Petrified
3. Mar. - CTH Green Mtn. whatever
4. April - Trekking pastel
5. May - Red Jawoll
6. June - LL Jeans
7. July - Solid CTH
8. Aug. - Knitter’s Choice (can’t decide EVERYTHING now)
9. Sept. - Claudia Handpaint (any color)
10. Oct. - KPPM (any color)
11. Nov. - Bearfoot (any color)
12. Dec. - Mountain Feat (Really, it’s spelled that way.)

I’ll decide patterns as I sort out gauge. That’s the list. Sticking to it.

This mission coincides with the Stash Down. All the above have been in the stash long enough to be in the QUIT IGNORING ME category. Not to mention that most have been acquired because of some lovely gifting or some sale venture or out-of-town yarnsex. Stash Down goals will always include the Mission socks. Beyond that, I can add up my own monthly goals AND look to the group for some of their ongoing ideas. (I'm still not much of a chatterer at Ravelry. Knitty's got that spot in my heart, for all that I'm not exactly Chatty Kathy there, either.) Stash Down goals for (where was I?) for January were largely finishing. No penalty box here. I've packaged up the niece and nephew goodies, and I'll get that Tuscany blocked by Friday (as there are other things happening on the cutting tables at the moment). But mercy me! There's some work to be done.

I need to knit up and stitch up at a rate higher than my acquisition habits have been going. I'll have more to say on that another day. There are stories to tell, some habits to face up to. Today there are a few other things to do, not to mention this perfectly lovely sock I'm within days of finishing - and within days of a deadline FOR finishing. Three and half 16 row repeats and then some cuff.....sounds like a dare I can safely double and even double dog dare myself to finish.

24 January 2008

It's Simple

I finished the scarf for my niece, as I mentioned.

I've also spent a chunk of time for the past few days facing up to some truths about the yarn stash. A few things are clear.

Ravelry is an amazing tool.
I am learning more about digital photography, failing and succeeding.
I have enough yarn now.
It's simple.

Last night I started a baby hat from stash yarn.
I should use those last three words a LOT.
It's simple, right?

23 January 2008

Long Story Short

While I worked on the cold, I finished these:

Yesterday I finished the niece scarf.

I'm almost finished with the cold.

22 January 2008

Lost Weekend

I enjoyed my own peaceable private version of a lost weekend:
I had a cold, so I lived in pyjamas most of the weekend. I barely left my dwelling.
I did little of the work I carted home, but I took care of some domestic concerns and I finished some knitting.

I also took some harsh inventory of sock yarn. Heavens to Betsy. I have to get home to knit.

Only gave myself permission for an hour of recreational computer, and my time is up. More tomorrow.

05 January 2008

Holiday Breaks

On or near the Thanksgiving break I had knit this scarf for myself.

Over the December portion of this break I whipped up one for a friend, as a host gift. I didn't get it done in time, but it will be delivered tomorrow.

I zipped the Tuscany off the needles but have yet to block it.

Over the January portion of the break I started projects made to the specifications of a niece and nephew.

I think these will cure me of 1 x 1 ribbing for awhile.

And a corner of my office has broken.

AH, WINTER. It freezes. It thaws. The sky falls.

I'm going to go home and knit. I'm leaving the debris as evidence for my conversation with the appropriate Monday authorities. I'll have time to calm down. Knitting should help.