Sunday, March 25, 2007

Needle Chatter

Reading other people's blogs is fun, interesting and sometimes educational. There has been a lot of chatter the past 2 weeks about the new Addi Turbo Lace Circular Knitting Needles. Another gimmick...well, that is what I thought. Then I read Wendy Johnson's blog Wendy Knits! which in my humble opinion is the premier knitting blog in cyberspace. There are a lot of really good blogs but I really am addicted to Wendy's...can't wait for her evening posts...just like the next chapter in a really good book.

Sorry, I digress. Well, when Wendy discussed the new lace needles and gave them a thumbs up, that was a decision maker. I was knitting the Feather and Fan shawl pictured (see new lace Addis in the photo, too) in this post and was using my lovely new Knit Picks interchangeable circular needles. They are nice needles -- I love their pointy tips. But, when I would flip around the shawl to knit the next row they would unscrew just a this maneuver a few times and wa-la, a gap that catches the sport weight yarn. I was frustrated so decided to bite the bullet and see who had the new lace needles for sale. The lace needles I needed were $15.95 and I really didn't want to spend the money. I have wooden Clover needles in that size but I don't like their join because the bump catches the yarn -- wish the company would fix that problem because I love their straight and DPNs and I had regular Addi Turbo circulars in that size. Now, if I was a more experienced knitter and didn't have the help of either 2 cats or 3 Golden Retrievers when I am knitting I could use the slicker surface.

I now have a size 5 circular in the new lace needles and I am very pleased for several reasons....the tip is as pointy as the Knitpicks; the cord is THE most flexible of any circular I have ever seen and when unrolled stayed that way; the join is smooth and the needle is still fast to knit with but is not as slick. All what I wanted so I feel my money was well spent.

My Google search for a sales location came up with one of my favorites, Angelika's in Lakeside, Oregon. I ordered them on-line on Thursday and they were in my mailbox in Pennsylvania on Saturday. Very fast service. I really like shopping with her...great and quick service.

Well, I am going to take a cleaning break and go sit in the sunshine -- we finally got some -- and knit a bit. I think socks are calling my name today! Happy Knitting everyone.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

March Socks ... and more...

Happy St. Paddy's Day to you all and may the luck of the Irish be with you throughout the year!!! I really could eat Shepherd's Pie today and wish I was in my favorite Irish Pub on Beacon Hill in Boston. But it is not meant to be this year.

I am still on pace for completing a pair of socks each month...I know, I know it IS only March but by now I am usually already behind my self-imposed schedule. These Feather and Fan socks are really nice and I love this yarn. As I said in a previous post I found it in my stash and probably have had it for 5 years. An early ebay purchase. And probably one of my last ones...I don't do ebay anymore. I got burned by two vendors and ebay wouldn't help me I'd rather pay a shop owner for yarn and know I am actually getting it.

I have fallen in love with the Feather & Fan pattern and am doing it in this oblong shawl from sport weight Frog Tree Alpacha in this gorgeous dark teal color that I bought at The Knitter's Underground in Centre Hall, PA. Molly has a lovely selection of all kinds of wools and as a very accomplished knitter she can help you make the right choice for the pattern/design you want to knit.

Once this shawl is completed, I am making another one...that information is for a later post...but I bought the yarn from Sheri at The LoopyEwe who is my very favorite on-line sock yarn merchant. Yes, the next shawl will be from a varigated sock yarn that she just began selling...Seacoast in the Autumn colorway. This yarn is a blend of merino wool/bamboo/nylon. It arrived in today's mail and has an amazing feel to it. No photo now...will save that for later.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

What Will This Be?

A pair of socks of course! Aren't the colors gorgeous?! This hand-dyed fingering weight is from Perchance to Knit and I bought it on-line from The Loopy Ewe of course. Last week was a crazy ordering time from Sheri whose head must have been spinning. She posted 5 pages of new sock yarns and most were gone within the first hour of posting. She is getting more yarns this week and will be posting them asap. She has great selections and colors for the knitters.

This yarn is called Azaleas and as a nice treat each skein comes with a cute hand-made stitch marker. Very nice touch. The yarn is soft and should knit nicely. It is in purples, raspberry, orange, light pink and a little yelllow peeking here and there.

I think I know which pattern I will use but am going to keep that as a surprise for another posting.

I do need to knit the second sock in the Lorna's Laces Sportweight that I posted in my last message but the colors in Azaleas are just calling to me. It looks like Spring! The LL socks are dark and winter. They will be wonderful and will get finished but I think tonight I will experimenet with this new sock yarn.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Mid-Winter Blahs!

I haven't been knitting much lately. Seems I have been stricken with the mid-Winter blahs or perhaps it is just some other things I need to resolve that have zapped my energy and desire to do much of anything.

But, in the past couple of days I decided to "push" myself to knit these simple socks from Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sport in colorway Baltic Sea that I bought from Loopy Ewe who is my favorite on-line sock yarn supplier. Taking a break from the usual knit, knit, knit I did a simple k2, p2 cuff for 1 3/4 inches and then switched to an equally simple k3, p1 for the leg to a total of 6 1/2 inches. As you can see I have completed the heel flap and heel and am beginning the gusset decrease...which is my FAVORITE part of knitting the sock. These will be my March socks...and I will post a photo of the finished pair soon I hope!

See this other yarn...the pretty shades of blue from J. Knits...of course also purchased at Loopy Ewe. I am going to use it for one of the nice lace patterns in the new Interweave sock book Favorite Socks which I raved about in a recent post. Perhaps I will do the cover sock, I am enticed by the picot edging and the lace design.

I have knit lace socks in multi-colored yarns but (in my opinion) a delicate lace sock needs solid or almost solid yarn to really show off the spectacular pattern.