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I finished Terea's monkey socks! I'm so glad that they're done, because it's always so satisfying to finish a project, but they were fun and quick to knit, and I miss the project already! This is me modeling them, just because.

I was going to make a pair of monkeys for myself, but then I saw another pair of socks by Cookie A, Hedera, and I knew I had to make those! She's such an amazing designer. I have this lovely sea green yarn by Brooklyn Handspun, and I think it's perfect for this project. I opened my Magic Loop book and tried it out, and I really get this method! I'm sure, though, that I'll find a way to eff up these socks using this method. To make things really interesting, I'm going to try them toe up.


Easy peasy!

I'm really concerned about how little trouble I am having with my revamped Monkey socks. I had started them in September, done a lot in a little time, and then got bored with all of the purling and stopped. Good thing.

It turned out that I had been knitting them backwards; I'd pushed the right side into my the space between my DPNs, and therefore was knitting the whole thing in reverse. Stupid, but it was still okay, at least until I went and did the heel inside out, too. Then I was all messed up. I frogged the whole thing, and started over again this Tuesday. Right now, I'm about to start decreasing, and I feel so much better about my skills as a knitter, and my ability to read and understand a pattern. Also, I got to practice my short row heels again and am really getting the hang of it now, which is awesome.

I can see why people keep making these socks again and again (the other day I met a woman who has made 5 pairs of Monkeys in a very short time). They're cute, fun, and really easy, and I think I will make myself a pair soon, after I get through all of the obligatory knitting that I need to finish up.



I finished Satanski's mittens, and am really pleased with how they came out. Mittens are great! Here's the final product:

And here are the mittens with the scarf that I made.

I've enjoyed this yarn so much (and I still have so much left) that I'm going to make Satanski a hat, too.


Halfway home

I finished my first mitten! I'm very proud of myself. I nearly messed up when I got to the thumb, where I didn't pick up stitches tight enough and had left a rather noticeable hole, but I found the mistake in time to go back and fix it. This pattern is pretty much idiotproof, since I'm sure I made a bunch of boo boos that are completely invisible by this point. I love how knitting this in the round means that I get to knit the whole time (after I finish the ribbing), but that I can then turn the mitten inside out when I'm finished and see a darling knit pattern. When I finished the mitten, I picked it up to photograph it. I thought it would be fun to take pictures of the mitten at the same time as the scarf, so I finally wove in the ends on the scarf. It only took a week.

I feel like I understand mittens now, and am looking forward to starting the other hand tomorrow. Because a lot of patterns say that kid mittens can be interchangeable, I will make the next one as identical as I can to the one I finish today (might be a little better looking, now that I know what I'm doing), but the next set of mittens I do will differentiate between left and right.


Odds and Ends

I finished blocking Satanski's scarf, so all I need to do now is take a few minutes and weave in the ends. It came out really really well, and although it's not terribly hard to impress a three-year-old, I'm happy that he likes it so much. I also started on what will be the matching mittens. This is my first pair of mittens, and I'm kind of cobbling together several patterns, so we'll see how those turn out. Here are pictures of the finished scarf (undone ends and all) and the beginning of the mittens.

Today, the knitting Meetup group that I belong to had a trial yarn swap. I didn't prepare well for it at all; I brought 300 yards of a brown striped sock wool, 300 yards of a sunny yellow sock wool, and 600 yards of blue alpaca. I probably shouldn't have been so obvious about bringing things that interested me not at all! Anyway, I ended up trading the alpaca for some gorgeous light blue bamboo (cannot believe I got that), and the brown wool for some really cool blue cotton. I was also given about 200 yards of a cool white wool with flecks of yellow and orange (it's cute; definitely for babies/kids). I couldn't find any takers for the yellow wool, and although I may regret it later, since I still have several balls here and I have no idea what I'm going to do with those, I gave it away for a yarn drop. I hope that somebody can put it to good use!


All finished!

I finished Satanski's scarf, and it came out great! I love this yarn (Malabrigo Worsted, in Oceanus), and Satanski loves his scarf. That picture to the left shows what the scarf looked like last night, when I was about 60% of the way finished. I'm going to get started on matching mittens tomorrow, with a hat to follow soon thereafter. I need to block the scarf, as right now all it wants to do is roll itself back into a ball, but that means that I might as well block all the other stuff I've been ignoring for a while. Block party tomorrow!

Sorry, I'm groaning over here, too.

This is what the OpArt blanket is looking like these days. That kid is due nigh on two months from now and I still don't know when we'll be having his dad's baby shower at work, so I should definitely get the lead out and start doing a lot of work on this again. Even after I'm done knitting, I'm going to be weaving in ends forever, so I should just do it already.


Hopes, dashed

I had high hopes for the scarf that I was going to make Satanski. I sat down, thought of a pattern, and charted it. All was well, until I realized that my chart was not taking into account the two decreases I need to work on each row to even out the two yarn overs I was including. I think I tried to get too fancy, too fast, and the whole thing just annoyed me. So I decided to modify a baby blanket pattern from Debbie Stoller's Stitch and Bitch: The Knitter's Handbook and make it into a scarf instead. I've made the Big, Bad Baby Blanket a couple of times already (and I'm pretty sure I have a third one somewhere on a set of circulars), so by now the pattern is pretty much dead easy for me. I'm hoping that I will have enough yarn left over afterward to make the kid a pair of mittens, or even a hat. I can't remember what the name of the yarn is, because I bought and had it wound in Vermont, and cannot find the label at all. I just started it yesterday, but it's kid-sized and knitting up quickly, so I will upload photos once I get home from work.

My OpArt is coming along well. I'm up to 132 stitches in each section. I need to pay more attention though, because a couple of rounds ago I dropped a stitch about six rows down, and that was super annoying to fix in pattern.


Satanski's scarf

I've taken a bit of a break on my OpArt blanket. I'm up to 116 stitches in each section, and I'm still doing one or two rounds per day, but it's kind of boring me right now. This is exactly why I started four months before the baby's due. My nephew saw me seaming some booties that I made for our baby cousin, and asked me when I was going to knit him something. I have been meaning to do so for a while, and I do need a break from the blanket, so I decided to make him a scarf. At first, I was going to do something basic and maybe practice my Continental knitting, but then the stylista in me won out. I do not put my nephew in boring clothes when I'm buying them, so why would I do it when I'm making them?? Plus, I still have this idea in my head for the sweater, and I kind of want to see how my designing goes on something child-sized, before trying my hand at anything as involved as a sweater. I will get back to Continental knitting again at some point in my life, but not now.

I worked out my pattern in Google's spreadsheet program, using letter abbreviations. Then I looked online for a pattern generator and found a good one, but it didn't have all the symbols that I wanted. So I made and downloaded a printable chart from here, and entered my symbols myself. I'm pretty tired and I figure that there's no point in starting this so late and doing a bad job, so I'll get cracking on this tomorrow.



I somehow acquired a large hole in my knitting, but one that I can fix when I'm cleaning up and weaving in ends. I also somehow only had 88 stitches in one section when I should have had 90. I fixed it using an invisible increase I learned of on knittinghelp.com, but it should not have been necessary. I'm trying to decide whether I want to start using safety pins to mark 20s of stitches, so I have a better idea of how many stitches are in each section. I think I may. I'm up to 94 stitches now, and it's such slow going. I'm motivated, though, because I can now see the blanket's square shape in a way that I couldn't before.