Wednesday, December 26, 2007

come on in, the water's fine..

Today was bright and sunny, and of course we are past the hump and days can only get longer from here. Might also have been because I slept in much later than normal so there were no dark morning hours today (but will be tomorrow when I have to go back to work!). Even made it out for some vitamin D in the afternoon, enjoying the day now that the holiday rush is over (and avoiding the consumer blitz that is boxing day). But it still gets dark awfully early, and the moon peering at me through the window tells me how cold it is outside, and there is the promise of some snow before morning according to those lovely folks at Environment Canada. So maybe I won't be going to work...

But let's talk socks shall we? These are great fitting socks. I based them on knitfreak's Aquaphobia socks. I fully intended to follow the pattern, but appear to have an experimental streak and deviated some. I followed the basic slip stitch but changed the cable, and added a second cable. I used a short row heel, and started the slip stitch under the sole of the heel to add a bit of reinforcement, and used 15 rows of 2x1 rib at the top to finish it off. The colour is a bit wilder than I would normally pick, but instantly attracted me at the store. It has, however, been sitting in my pile for many months now. I tried to knit this yarn up into some Leyburns, but that didn't work out. I think this pattern is a great accompaniment for yarn like this though. Hence the blog title, if you didn't get that - try out the Aquaphobias if you get a chance.

Of course, inside lighting with flash is not very conducive to photographing the texture and detail on these socks, so please forgive me. Instead, pretend you're sitting with me watching bad tv in front of a warm fire. Breathe easy, the holiday rush is over!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


just as I finished my last post complaining about my Brittany needles, I noticed their five year replacement guarantee. I will be emailing them and if they replace my needles, that will be great!

warm hands, warm heart?

Hope everyone is enjoying the gifts of the season - and I don't just mean that in a material sense. We had our family gathering last night (Danish traditional Christmas), and are now winding down back home again. Didn't do much knitting with all the family around, but did manage to finish these up before things got going.

As mentioned before, these fingerless mitts are based on the Inga hat pattern. I pushed forward despite my doubts halfway through and think I am pretty happy with the result. My tension in stranding definitely leaves something to be desired, but they fit, and I think will even out with wear (lazy girl's blocking). Yarns used are Drops Alpaca for the red - it really shines in the sunlight with strands of purple and yellow - and the off-white is some leftover Ella Rae Classic from my Lush & Lacy cardigan. The Ella Rae held up fine, but since I was using the Alpaca held double, I ran out a few rows shy of a second mitt, and both without thumbs. I had to make a few changes, and the thumbs are a bit shorter than planned, but I think they'll pass muster. Basically I did one repeat of the Inga chart (40 stitches), on 3mm dpns, with the seam up the centre of the palm, which doesn't create a perfect join but I think it looks okay. My big concern is actually with the needles - Brittany needles. I have now broken two of the five, and am thinking my replacements will not be the same brand. I've never broken a bamboo needle, but these hardwood dpns don't seem to hold up as well.

I should have some Aquaphobia socks to show in the next day or two. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

flurries (of activity)...

Today does not look like this outside. The wind is howling once again, the rain is driving, and generally the best bet is to curl up inside. But, as I can't show you the FOs I have recently completed, I will instead entertain you with some shots from last weekend. Why no knitting? Apparently there's some sort of holiday coming up, whereby I may have made some gift-type items that must be kept safely under wraps. If you are wishing to see what I've been up to, please pop over to Ravelry.

These shots were taken at Mount Cain, where I made my very first snowboarding attempt. Sure it's only taken two and half years dating a snowboard instructor for me to try it, but let's not worry over details. To sum it up, pretty cool and will be trying it again, but that is saying that only after the pain of falling countless times on my butt onto rock hard snow has started to fade from my mind. I was told I made a good first effort, but he's required to be biased, so who knows for sure. The snow was not yet piled up to the levels I'm sure it's reaching today, but the sun was shining and on the whole it was a beautiful day.

I've got some new projects on my mind too - many socks I'm eager to cast on for, and one toe was started this afternoon. Also procured some Cashmerino in a fantastic shade of grey - destined to be the best hat ever. Hope everyone is gearing up for the holidays okay!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

definitely december...

December appeared in a flurry here, waking up to a wintry wonderland of snow where last night a cold starry night had been. Now late in the day it is still snowing, and there is over a foot on the ground. This is not our first snow of the season - earlier this week we had a few centimetres, but this is definitely out of character. Dry and powdery, no sign of warming up just yet, it does not feel like west coast snow at all. We just went for a short walk to the store, felt the bite of cold flakes hitting our cheeks, and are happy to be once again curled up in the warm house.

I have been working on a fingerless mitt version of the Inga Hat pattern, with mixed results. Here is the first one, minus a thumb (you can see the safety pin holding stitches). What do you think? I like it, but being the maker I also see the mistakes. And it is a little snugger than I would like. But I've tried to approach it as stranding practice, and not worry too much about the end result. I love the look of colourwork, and have realized I just have to suck it up and work on my technique if I ever want to see improvement, rather than sullenly avoiding it. The yarns used are Drops Alpaca held double (red) and Patons Classic Merino (off-white) on 3mm dpns.

Hope you are staying warm and cozy as we enter December!