My current work in progress:

1. "T-Rex," designed by Rebecca Danger, knit from Blue moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock in the "Lucky" colorway on U.S. size 3 needles.
2. Myriad stealth projects.

More Feather and Fan

Just can’t get enough of that feather and fan. The alpaca socks are done:

socks042306 More Feather and Fan

Imbrium comments:
Is it just me, or does the feather and fan look drastically different on this pair of socks? Did you do something different, is it a factor of the yarn, or am I just crazy? (Yeah, I’m crazy no matter what the answer is, but ignore that for a minute….)

Well, you may be crazy (oh — happy belated birthday, btw), but I agree with you — the feather and fan looks quite different on this sock then on the Lorna’s Laces socks from last month. and I constructed them exactly the same — same number of stitches, same needle size, et cetera. The difference is in the yarn.

I love how feather and fan looks in the natural alpaca. Very dainty.

Chris commented:
Those socks sound amazing – but I have a question for you, oh Queen of Answering Questions from the Comments – How do you think they’ll wear? I haven’t heard very good things about alpaca holding up to sock wear and tear…

Time will tell. icon smile More Feather and Fan I am optimistic, because this yarn is 75% alpaca and 25% nylong — I think the addition of the nylon will make them wear a lot better.

Alyson asked:
Vital question. What is your others-to-self “intended recipient ratio”? I try to keep it, at the very most, 1:1 (one or more somethings on the needles for others, one something on the needles for me) but right now I’m a bit of a sock fanatic, and many of the socks I cast on seem to be, well, intended for me. I love gifting so much…but I kind of love keeping too! Help me sleep at night – please tell me I’m not the only one toying with the idea of keeping more than I give away! Part 2: Is it okay to knit lacy pink socks, give them to my “King of All Engines”, and insist that if he doesn’t appreciate them, I’ll go ahead and wear them….you know, because I do hate to see things not getting the full use that’s intended….

I don’t think about others-to-self “intended recipient ratio” — I just knit. I knit what I want to knit, and sometimes it’s for me, sometimes for other people. I really just knit for the sheer joy of knitting. To quote Margene: “It’s the process.”

As for Part 2? That is so wrong.

I say do it!

Kerry . . .

. . . is finished.

kerry042306 More Feather and Fan

And in the mirror:

kerry042306a More Feather and Fan

Neither photo depicts the color in an entirely accurate manner, of course.

So? What Else is New?

So. I’ve started some new stuff this weekend, but I’ll talk about it tomorrow. The KOARC and I also test-drove a bottle of champagne this weekend.

champagne042306 More Feather and Fan

And Lucy practiced her kitty yoga.

lucy042306 More Feather and Fan

Whoop-de-do, It’s an Alpaca Sock

And with feather and fan, yet.

sock042006 Whoop de do, Its an Alpaca Sock

Yep, finished the first sock, and I’ve started the second.

While I haven’t exactly worn this sock for an extended period of time, it seems very comfy and warm — but not too warm. I think this is gonna be a great winter pair of socks!

sock042006a Whoop de do, Its an Alpaca Sock

It seemed to snap back nicely after I took it off my fat shapely leg, so I don’t think there are any worries there. Don’t think they’ll stretch outta shape.

sock042006b Whoop de do, Its an Alpaca Sock

Carol in Prince George, Virginia asked if I have knitted socks for the King of All Remote Controls. Yup, sure have! These. I think these were for him as well. These too. And these. And the next pair I make, which I’ll start after these alpaca socks, will be for him as well. No feather and fan, but a fun yarn!

In addition to sock knitting, I have started a swatch for Something. Ooh!

swatch042006 Whoop de do, Its an Alpaca Sock

Spinning?

Danielle asked:
Have you had much time to spin on your Little Gem yet? What are your impressions of it? Any chance of seeing a posting comparing your different wheels at some point — for example do you prefer one for spinning, one for plying, or do you just use whichever wheel suits your mood?

Funny you should ask — I just tried a bit of spinning on the Gem last weekend. And made a horrible mess! I was having a hell of a time treadling the little sucker. It seems I’ve forgotten how to spin on it.

I used to use my Kromski for plying, while spinning on the Lendrum. But for the last couple of spinning projects, I’ve both sapun and plied on the Lendrum. I do really like my Kromski, but it is rather noisy. The Lendrum is quieter, and I do think my spinning on it is better. That’s why I bought the Woolee Winder for the Lendrum.

I guess I’m a one-wheel girl at heart. Who’da thunk it?

Book Contest

The contest is closed!

Thank you so much to the 567 of you who sent me entries!

I exported all entries to an Excel spreadsheet and sorted them by subject line, so their order would be fairly random. The King of All Remote Controls was standing by at a remote location (Get it? Remote location? Hyuk! Hyuk! Hyuk!) Using the highest level of encryption possible, I emailed him the final number of contestants. He randomly selected two numbers, and I matched those numbers up to the corresponding lines in my spreadsheet.

(Yes, I am aware that this is way more than you ever want to know about how the winners were selected. Humor me, okay?)

The winners are:

Lori O. of Happy Good Luck and Penny K. Ladies, I’ve emailed you both.

And again, thanks to everyone who sent me an entry!

Lucy thanks you too.

lucy042006 Whoop de do, Its an Alpaca Sock

Who Wouldn’t Like Feather and Fan?

sock041906 Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

It’s feathers. And it’s fans.

And a shaky segue into lace . . .

Sherilan asked:
I remember you purchased a number of patterns from Heirloom Knitting last summer. Any of these on the horizon?

Nope sorry — at the moment none of them are slated for knitting in the near future. This, of course, is subject to change at my whim. icon wink Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

Kerry!

kerry041906 Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

The knitting is done. I just need to block (lightly!) and seam. I might wait until the weekend.

Jessica asked
Quick question: Is there any *good* way to increase in seed stitch? I’m working on an aran now myself that has increases in seed stitch for the beginning of the sleeves. Just wondering if there is a smoother way of doing this than knitting into the front and back loops of the stitch, which is what I’m doing now.

What I usually do is a raised increase — I think it makes less of a hole in the knitting. Anyone else care to weigh in?

The Virginia Purl commented:
I just love Kerry. If you ever get tired of wearing her, I can volunteer to come and pick her up. I love my Lendrum but I don’t have that super fast winder, Woolee Winder? Do you think it helps your spinning stay more even?

Thanks for the very selfless offer about Kerry — I’ll let you know. But just so you know, Jasmine has first dibs. icon wink Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

About the Woollee Winder. . . I confess that I’ve not used it enough to be able to answer intelligently. Not that I’d necessarily be able to answer intelligently if I had used it a lot. Just sayin’.

But I’ve spun a bit over 2 ounces of fiber with it and I dunno if it is the fiber or the Winder, but my spinning is quite even. It makes spinning a lot more enjoyable for me too — the stopping and starting for moving the thingy along the bobbin was mildly annoying to me.

yarn041906 Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

Book Contest

Don’t fergit, contest ends at 5pm EST tomorrow (Thursday). I’ll ask the King of all Remote Controls to give me random numbers within the range that covers the number of entries I received, and will choose the winner that way. Well, winners. I’ll give away two books.

I’ve received several hundred entries so far and I wanna say a huge collective thank you to you all for your support! I’ve loved reading your emails — and I’m sorry I don’t have time to answer them. That’s one of the nice things about holding a contest — it does bring some of the lurkers out of hiding, and I get to “meet” you — even if it is just through an email. icon smile Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

I’ll announce the winners in tomorrow’s blog entry! And of course I’ll be happy to sign the prize books!

Lucy says that she can’t hardly wait!

lucy041906 Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

Ooh — almost forgot — a morning sky shot for Sandy. icon smile Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

sky041906 Who Wouldnt Like Feather and Fan?

Thank You!

Thank you for all the comments and emails about my book. I am so very excited about it — I guess it is real, huh? icon smile Thank You!

I do think it’s a tad mean of Amazon not to be shipping it out yet when other places are, but no doubt there are Reasons. I’m assuming they will do next week on the 25th, as they say they will.

Psst! Wanna win a copy of my book?

Send an email (one email per person, please) to The Official WendyKnits Contest Email Address by Thursday, April 20, 2006, 5:00pm EST telling me you’d like a copy of Wendy Knits: My Never-Ending Adventures in Yarn. I will select an entry at random and send that individual a copy from my book stash.

I Turned the Heel — Alert the Media

sock041806 Thank You!

Yes indeedy, I turned the heel on my alpaca sock. So it is on to the feather and fan! Perhaps at some point I will incorporate a different lace pattern into my socks, but for now I am still feeling the feathery-fan love.

And Lookie Here!

kerry041806 Thank You!

Kerry! Comin’ down the home stretch! Wheeeee!

So there’s just a bit left to knit on this, then the blocking and the seaming and then — presto-chango — FO City, baybee.

I’ve been musing about what to knit next. Hmmmmmmm . . .

I’ve got another cabled design lurking in the mists of my brain, so perhaps I’ll swatchy swatchy swatchy for that.

I’ve also got this lovely stuff waiting to be spun.

spinning041806 Thank You!

Lucy

Today Lucy demonstrates the proper position for “kitty rug.”

lucy041706a Thank You!

She also demonstrates the positon for “Hey b*tch! Feed me!”

lucy041806 Thank You!

Book Sightings Everywhere!

Last Friday evening, Greta emailed me to report that she bought my book at Borders that day. Imagine my excitement at hearing that! My publisher had told me that stores will often put the books out on the shelf as soon as they receive them (Harry Potter this ain’t) but having solid evidence of this left me feeling giddy.

L-B found my book in her local Borders on Saturday, and Keiko left a comment yesterday, reporting buying it as well.

Then today, Jun Miyamoto in Tokyo (the same wonderful knitter who sent me lovely gifts from Japan a while back — documented in this blog entry, where I incorrectly identified the cone of cashmere yarn as wool — it’s cashmere, baby!) emailed me to tell me that the copy she had ordered has arrived! In Japan. Now I really feel woozy! Even though I’ve had my advance copies in my hot little hands for a couple of weeks now, I don’t think it really hit me that it’s a real book until now.

I might need to lie down.

Lucy, on the other hand, is busy reading her copy.

lucy041706 Book Sightings Everywhere!

Kerry Progress

I have actually made some good progress on Kerry — see?

kerry041706 Book Sightings Everywhere!

That’s the second sleeve in progress. Woo-hoo!

Carrie commented:
I am thinking about doing an aran sweater in 75% cotton/25% acrylic. I have always thought that cotton would be too heavy for this kind of sweater, so I’m wondering what, in your vast experience, you think of cotton for Arans. (thinking about Kerry and all)

Cotton can make for a pretty heavy sweater, if it is heavier than fingering weight! Kerry is not a lightweight sweater, but I don’t think it will be unbearably heavy, either. The yarn is 60-40 cotton/microfiber, so while it is heavy worsted weight, it’s not an extremely heavy yarn.

Sock Talk

A couple of you commented about snapping rosewood dpns. I did forget to mention that I snapped one of my size 0 rosewood needles last week. But, I had bought a second set of them to use as spares.

Yep, you have to be really careful with these needles — they are pretty fragile. Though I think the snapping of my needle was totally my fault — it happened while I was picking up a stitch and I was careless and bent the needle a little. These needles have been stuffed in my purse every day for the trip to and from work and have survived that with no problem. But I do stuff them in my purse carefully! icon smile Book Sightings Everywhere!

I made a little more progress on the alpaca sock.

sock041706 Book Sightings Everywhere!

Nannette asked:
Are you worried about the new alpaca/nylon yarn having enough memory/elasticity for socks?

Well, we’ll see.

I plan to do the leg in feather and fan because I think that’ll add some stability. Stay tuned. Film at eleven!