Wishing you ll the Hobbits, Bread Thieves, Snowmen, Family, and Friends that the season brings.
I figured I should post this before the end of the Christmas season. I seem to be a different kind of Christmas knitter every year. Two Christmases ago I made pairs and pairs of flip top mittens, scarves, and hats for friends. Last christmas I made 16 large knit stockings and 5 mini ones then bought gifts to fill them with and sometimes filled them with knitted items.
This year I knit nothing. It was a strange feeing to not have deadlines, lists of items to keep track of for people. But I just couldn’t bring myself to. There was no real reason for this. Every one appreciates the knits I gave them, and I had many a friend talk about pulling their stocking out again this year. But I just didn’t seem to be able to find it in myself to make another year of knit gifts, even if I had planned to go smaller. I spent most of the time I would have been knitting like made reading books on my kindle on the bus and basically chilling out.
I think this likely was because I had a lot going on near the end of this year and adding knits to it just seemed like asking for trouble. Will I knit Christmas presents next year? Time will tell, this year as late as October I still expected to start the Christmas knitting and that just never happened so who knows what will happen next year. And there are still plenty of random requests from friends I need to fill. Because at the end of the day I like knitting but even if I keep a quarter of all the items I make I will still have a ton of knits.
This is in part because I tend to make a lot of small items, and I am becoming a faster and faster knitter, which is a bit scary as my knitting groups tend to joke there is fast and there is at my pace. Maybe I should just start knitting throughout the year and see what december brings. Keep a bag of gift knits. Another reasons the stockings worked so well for me last year is I tend to shop in the stocking stuffer way naturally.
Maybe I should remind myself that this Christmas thing? Happens every year at the same time and plan accordingly. I know November is mostly allotted to NaNoWriMo every year, yet I expect to put out a ton of hand knits while writing every day… uh what? And not doing anything like 11 shawls in 2011 this year, means I have a lot of freedom on what to knit when.
So I like ending these posts with pictures. I went through the stash on the 1st and grabbed some photos. Remember how yesterday I said I should stop buying lace? Um so that’s in my stash and that doesn’t even include the 2200yds in purple, or the 1100 yards in black.
“From the west she appeared sunlight and stars in her hair
In her eyes an undying memory of home a land that is magical and fair
Where her feet came to rest deep in a canopied glade
She lifted her face and there as she danced
The realm of Lothlorien she made”
If you know where that came from I have to say weren’t the Orcs amazing? If you are wondering what on earth I am talking about, that was the opening of the song Lothlorien from the Lord of the Rings Musical. A show I was able to catch during the end of its run in West End way back in the summer of 2008. I was able to get 3 or 4 tickets for £99 and treated my hosts who were also LoTR fans and willing to see what was easily going to be a silly but still fun show. Galadriel was by far my favorite part of the show. Golden and regal despite the fact that the elves of Lothlorien were all flailing around like Circe de Soleil.
Why am I bringing this up? Well over at Sunflower Designs there is a 12 days of Christmas gifting happening. I’ve been following the blog since I discovered there was a knitter, making LotR themed patterns. I actually got to the post in my RSS feed at a decent time. Just an hour after posting and it was a gift of 1 free pattern to the first 30 respondents. Crossing my fingers (which is quite the difficult way to type) I shot off a message hoping others had not beat me to the 30 cap. The yarn my friend got for me at Rhinebeck is just under the yardage for Lothlorien so I jumped on it. This morning I opened my email and was pleased to see a pattern!
Yes I’m living a bit dangerously starting a pattern 100 yards short with no way to get more; but what’s life without some tightrope walking? And I mean really look at this cape. Perhaps I will remove a pattern repeat….
How could I not? Well I could of chosen Argonath or Galadriel’s mirror or Balrog. I’ll just have to buy those once I get the yarn for them. Perhaps at VKL in January.
By the power of
Greysk- youtube watch the staged performance of Lothlorien and/or hear the full version of the song here part of Legolas’ intro and the section in elvish seem cut out in the stage video.
I leave you with a bit of the end of the song, sung by Galadriel accompanied by the Elves of Lorien (the opening is sung by Legolas).
“Although storms may descend
Mountains and valley may quake
For the days that remain
This is the promise that I make
No Shadow fall across this land
Before the wind and fire I stand
And you my child will know no harm
Enfolded in My Arms
I’ve gotten some fun feedback on the month of posting on Twitter and on Ravelry. To the point where I think the hardship will be narrowing it down to 31 posts. But of all the problems to have I think that is a good one. I hope this means there will be interesting things to talk about all January.
This weekend we put up our Christmas tree, and we had long since decided a home with two knitters should not have a pipe cleaner star thrown together when you realize you don’t have a topper.
This year I knit an angel free hand I had a notion on what I wanted from looking at other patterns, available in books, that would not appear in my hand or in my kindle right that minute.
Now that was done I knit some wings out of yellow yarn and then I just had to stiffen them. I soaked them in a Mod Podge mix. I would say it was a 50/50 mix but I just thew in water and podge until it was the color of the podge but the consistency of water.
You can see the wings blocking as well.
Knit presents have pretty much been a no go this year. And I have to say other than a few moments of twitching when I read on the train and bus instead of knit, then remembered I had no obscene deadlines I’m okay with that. Now I just need to remedy the lack of Christmas cards.
Yesterday I took a sick day, I maybe should have taken today as well, but I’m pretty much ah ‘I’m fine, it’s just a flesh wound’ kind of gal. Or I should say I was told I was taking a sick day, no reason to argue with the boss I suppose. The fact that I actually did no knitting and spent most of the day curled up in bed or on the couch with the cat likely shows that I was actually sick.
Also I missed a cable cross about 20 rows back in two sections of Vivian and I’m trying to decide if I should frog the twenty rows or do what I did with the Seed Stitch error and just frog the section down.
I would be less worried if I wasn’t concerned about putting the cable crossings in the wrong place and having to do it on two sides and keep the symmetry. I think I will frog down the section, and see how it goes. If it fails miserably I shall just have to rip back to 20 rows and knit again.
I’ve done a few rows but it seems like a good project to make a few of and throw at people for the holidays. For Socktober, I think I will make mini stockings with all my left over yarn and throw them in Christmas cards for everyone. As I mailed out over 30 cards last year, that would be a lot of stockings. But it would be fun and I know I can pump out a few in a couple hours.
5 and 1/2 Christmas stockings knit in stripes, solids and muti colored yarn. I may make a Doctor Who Scarf themed sock; hanging out with fellow nerds is dangerous and inspiring. But I Suppose I already had the idea for a TARDIS, batman, and Slytherin sock on my own so really not that surprising.
I got a mostly Yarn Knit Picks order to help make the stockings.
There was some stocking break in October, once to make gauntlets for a friend for her Wonder Woman Costume though those only took a day.
Sadly for the second year running I have missed Rhinebeck. Some day, Someday. But I made up for it by crafting, and I suppose all the yarn I have been purchasing lately on Etsy makes it okay.
From the top Left Oh My Goth from Solstice Yarns next to it is My Favorite Thing from Llady Llama Fiber Co. And the bottom two are actually from the same seller, Nerd Girl Yarns , Weasley Wizard Wheezes (though it makes me think of Superman) , and Merpeople. Though this also meant I added an obscene number of etsy shops to my favorites, “for later”.
All lovely fingering weight yarn that I don’t actually have a clue what to do with yet. Though maybe I shall start on socks once the Christmas Knitting is done. Anyone have a favorite Etsy Dyer?
Since I last posted I have finished two socks though I may frog the brown back up to the leg. I don’t even think you can tell the entire foot is in that picture.
Also under the sock, Kindle! A very late birthday gift from my sister, but somehow I think I will work out just fine. I haven’t had much time to sit down and really play with it, but I’m sure I will be creating a Knitting category soon enough.
The purple sock came out really well. So that makes me happy as well. I just won’t think about how many more I have left to make. *whistles*
Which is great though I actually got very knitting done this weekend. Plenty of winding. Did I mention all those Skeins I bought were 400+yds?
I also created some more sets of Markers, and a couple of Pairs of Earrings.
The Markers come in Blue and Black swirled glass.
The Earrings are a new favorite.
Kryptonite earrings. Just the kind of thing Mercy Graves would wear to a fancy night out. Or that a sinister villain would send to Lois Lane.
I’ve also created some Green Goblin Pumpkin Bombs.
They will be painted and glazed and become a set of stitch markers and a pair of earrings.
So the first stocking is done!
It just needs to be blocked and have a handle added to it. It’s still in the maybe pile for gifting. But its a real sock with heel turning and everything!
It even fits on a foot over my other socks but hey. I’ve also started the next sock. It is brown and it shall be called Guinness.
I also bought three more skeins of bulky weight at La Casita to get cranking on the next few socks.
A purple tweed, pink and purple blend and a shades of blue mix. The ST is a bit boring but going along faster than my pattern of puckering, and also with my plans this Saturday to watch LoTR TTT at Radio City I might cast on a new stocking so I have enough ST for the entire move.
I ordered the yarn to make my friend’s Wonder Woman cuffs and i was assured it would arrive, before Halloween, as there are no fingers or anything I just have to make the yellow area and possibly purl in that W which shouldn’t be too hard.
Picture of the new Wonder Woman below the cut.
So I started my first heel. I worked a gusset heel, mostly because that was what my instructions said to do with a top down heel.
I also have their, quick tips and TYV: Crochet, which is the one I bought first back when I was only a crocheter.
I’ve probably had this book over a year by now, so its nice to finally be putting it to use. I still did not finish the heel but I think I am doing pretty well.
It looks like a proper sock now right? So like everyone whose ever knit a sock has said, turning a heel is not scary. I mean if i can do it while drinking high percent beer, in a semi dark bar, and on the subway/bus it can be done.
I may do an afterthought heel on the next one, but as I am off to Geek Knitting tonight I can pick up more yarn at La Casita and possibly metal DPNs. I also now have things I “need” to pick up at Comic Con, for the stockings as I get more ideas. Though I do wonder where I can get my hands on a fabric Guinness logo.
I made it to the decrease on the bus today, I may have been working on fingerless gloves on the subway. But I think this first sock should be done by tonight. It also seems to have used an entire skein of lamb’s Pride bulky.
Socks Left to knit = 15
Socks knit = 0
Did I mention that this is a tester? I dislike how the pattern turned out, and that I didn’t continue to work on it on the foot. While I am still hoping for a blocking miracle I don’t think this will be gifted to anyone.
So the first sock became a hat, its a very Christmas-y hat what with the with the ribbed brim and the bright red body. And did you notice the bobble on top? funnily enough the hat fits just fine though i have no idea what I will do with it. Wear it? Gift it? who knows.
Despite what I thought was the small size it fits me just fine if not a tad bit short.
Yes that is a bobble on top. The hat is wool/mohair – brim/bobble Lamb’s Pride Bulky and the main hat is actually a really shiny skein of Mondial red cotton I had lying around.
And there was barely any pattern, but I know if I don’t write it down I will forget.
CO60 K2P2 rib for about an inch. Switch to red, K in ST for 3 inches or so.SSK every eight stitches knit next round
SSK every seven stitches knit next round
Continue in this way until you are at SSK every 1 stitch.
Next round SSK all around Repeat until there is only one stitch left. Switch to white create bobble. I did a pretty large bobble of Kfb 8 times into single stitch, turn sl 1 P7, turn sl1 k7, turn P2tog, turn K2tog, K2tog bind off, pull through top of hat and use excess yarn to help stiffen the bobble.
But after my little adventure in hat land I have returned to the original plan. Stockings, it doesn’t help that I also suddenly want to knit dozens of other gifts. But I’m making progress.
This morning I added a couple more inches on the subway and bus despite falling asleep on the bus for a little while. I think I will be turning my first heel on the ride into the city or, at Beer and Knitting tonight.
I do seem to be getting extra shed on the red Lamb’s Pride, I have no idea why, but i may avoid it for further socks, but we shall see after blocking.
I’m free handing this first stocking pattern but we’ll see how it goes. Since this is the most traditional sock. I mean some of my other color schemes include:
2. Slytherin + Celtic cables
Did I mention the plan is to make 13/14 of these? Technically that’s only 7 pairs of socks in 2 1/2 months. Doable right? *fingers crossed* Its not like I have any large time consuming things in November like National Novel Writing Month or anything.
Maybe I should invest in some super bulky yarn at Geek Knitting on Thursday.
Here is the stitch pattern on the sock:
1. K3, p1, *k4 p1* *repeat til last stitch k1
2. k2, p1, *k4 p1* *repeat til last 2 stitches k2
3. K1, p1, *k4 p1* *repeat til last 3 stitches k3
4. p1, *k4 p1* *repeat til last 4 stitches k4
5. Purl entire round
Repeat rows 1-5