Hey, it’s actually somewhat cold in Northern Virginia today (compared to earlier this week when we had record high temperatures). It was in the 20s (Fahrenheit) this morning for my commute. But because it is in the upper 70s to lower 80s in my office, I did not go nuts with the wearing of the knitted garb. Nothing like a 50+ degree difference between the outside and inside temperatures to really mess you up.
Shortly before I got home from work today, some power lines were downed accidentally by the power company a couple of blocks from where I live. When I got home I could see that the power had been out, but it was on then, and has been since then. But I just got an email from the city stating that a “warming center” in a local rec center had been established for residents in my area who were without power due to the accident. So I am feeling really lucky right now! Brrrrr! I hope they get the problem fixed quickly so the unlucky people without power aren’t displaced for too long (the email estimated that power would be restored around midnight tonight).
ETA: A couple of you pointed out that people without electricity would have a hard time getting the email. You can sign up for email alerts as text messages to cell phones too. So people with cell phones but no electricity would get ‘em.
I subscribe to all emergency alerts in both email and cell text message formats. It’s been very useful from time to time!
I got some new toys in the mail yesterday that were timely indeed: a Knitpicks chart keeper and a Knitpicks options needle set. I had offered both these as gift suggestions (along with a lot of other stuff) to my holiday gift-givers, so waited until after Christmas/my birthday to order them. They took freaking forever to get here — but judging from the tracking information on the package, the postal service seemed to have sent it back once and it was re-shipped. Gotta love the postal service.
Anyhow, my chart for the Maltese shawl went on the chart keeper immediately. I like how you can stand it up and snap the little strap to keep the thing standing open like an easel, then unsnap it, close it and re-snap it to secure it.
While I no longer know anyone who thinks it is cute and/or funny to screw with my row counter or the magnetic row finder on my chart keeper (or to suddenly reach out and pull my needle out of my knitting, for that matter), I still like the idea of securing the chart within a portfolio. While it does not matter much for the 6-row chart of the body of this shawl, there will be other future situation where I will find this quite useful.
Ah, the options needle set. I saw Margaret’s set in person last autumn, and was quite impressed with the smoothness of the join and the flexibility of the cord, hence my desire for my own set. I ordered 40- and 60-inch cables as well, so I’d be set for large lace knitting.
As the body of the Maltese shawl is not terribly wide, I put the 4.5mm tips on a 24-inch cable and I’m happy as a clam. I had started the shawl on my Inox needle, but even after a bit of manipulation, the cable on the Inox needle was stiff enough to annoy me. I switched to a Lantern Moon ebony 32-inch circular, but the tip is a tad too blunt. The Knitpicks needle is perfect — nice flexible cable and very pointy tip. I was a tad concerned about the needle being too slippery, but the Kidsilk Haze is not what I would call a slippery yarn, so no problems so far. Ask me again if I use the Knitpicks needle with a slippery silk yarn.
Ah, the Maltese shawl! A bit more knitting on it was accomplished.
A couple of you asked if this was the project that L-B and I were discussing that requires 5 balls of Kidsilk Haze. Actually, no. While this does indeed call for 5 balls of Kidsilk Haze, this is not the project we were discussing. That’s a future “to-do.”
Carol B. asked:
Did you try the provisional cast-on from the back of the book where you tie the working yarn and waste yarn together, and pick up loops of working yarn from alternate sides of the waste yarn? It’s pretty cool, once you get the hang of it. And no unzipping of crochet loops!
Nope — I really like the crochet chain provisional cast-on. I like unzipping the crochet loops.
How do you get your two socks to match without knitting them at the same time? Do you count rows or just hold them up and compare? Do you sometimes have one come out bigger or longer than the other – what do you do to fix it?
I don’t count rows, unless I’m knitting a specific pattern, like feather and fan, for example. Then, of course, I count the number of repeats and make ‘em match. If it’s a plain stockinette sock, I measure with a ruler. Doing that, I’ve never had any problem with mis-matched sizes in socks.
I have been wondering, how much yarn does it usually take you when you make knee socks? I have a skein of 550 yards that I’d like to use, but I am afraid of running out.
Well, it depends on the yarn. And the length and girth (heh! I said girth!) of the leg you are knitting the kneesock for. I’ve only ever knit two pair of kneesocks, so I’m not what you would call an experienced kneesock-knitter. Anyone else have any guidelines?
Momma caved and turned the heat on last night. But maybe if I fluff myself up and look chilly, she’ll turn it up a bit.