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.

Crochet Inspiration

A couple of weeks ago I received a review copy of this lovely book:

BookCover101710 219x240 Crochet Inspiration

This is Crochet Inspiration by Sasha Kagan. Now, I do not crochet, apart from being able to create a chain and do a few simple stitches when required to do so for, perhaps, an edging for my knitting. But this book does look lovely.

BookA101710 240x160 Crochet Inspiration

Pages and pages of instructions for different stitches:

BookB101710 240x160 Crochet Inspiration

And some patterns in the back. I love this belt:

BookC101710 240x160 Crochet Inspiration

Who’d like my review copy? Leave a comment to this post by 4:00pm eastern time on Thursday, October 21 and at that time I’ll draw a name at random to receive my book.

Meanwhile, I am knitting along on the back of Eala Bhan.

WIP101710 240x160 Crochet Inspiration

And Lucy is doing her imitation of a muffin.

Lucy101710 240x160 Crochet Inspiration

Matchy Matchy

Yesterday was a long and tiring day so it was late when I finally settled down to knit on Eala Bhan last night. After about 6 rows I realized that cabling with tiny needles and dark yarn was just not doing it for me, so I finished the sock I was working on.

Sock101410 240x160 Matchy Matchy

I started the second sock on the train this morning and I am pleased to report that I have achieved near-perfect matching of the striping sequence.

SIP101410 240x160 Matchy Matchy

And since I don’t have a lot of knitting progress to show you, here are some of recent acquisitions.

Yarn101410 240x160 Matchy Matchy

Shelter, the new yarn from Brooklyn Tweed. This is the “Nest” colorway. I purchased 12 skeins of it with a pattern in mind — Eileen, from the latest edition of Knitty. I thought long and hard about which color to order and of course my first instinct was to go for green. But as I am knitting Eala Bhan inb green, that semeed like overkill, so I decided to go with a more neutral colorway. I think Eileen will make a nice lightweight jacket and will look lovely in this color.

Yarncloseup101410 240x160 Matchy Matchy

Another recent acquisition are these lovely pewter buttons:

Buttons101410 240x160 Matchy Matchy

I purchased these from The Rams Horn Studio, and they are for my Eala Bhan. I thought that thistle buttons were very appropriate for my Scottish sweater.

And yet another recent acquisition:

Bag101410 240x160 Matchy Matchy

A biggie box bag from another of my favorite bag-makers, Splityarn. This bag is big enough to tote a sweater project in, and I am using it to schlep Eala Bhan around.

Lucy wishes you all a good weekend!

Lucy101410 240x160 Matchy Matchy

Eala Bhan

I don’t have much time to devote to the blog today, so just a quickie. Here is the state of my new work-in-progress, Eala Bhan.

WIP1013101 240x160 Eala Bhan

Not the best of photos because the light wasn’t great, but you get the idea. If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you’ll be able to better see the detail. I am using the yarn called for, Hebridean 2-ply from Virtual Yarns, in the Bogbean colorway. This is a fingering weight yarn, similar in weight to Shetland jumperweight, which I think you could use as a substitute. The Hebridean is a bit thicker, I think, and softer.

This colorway is about as dark as I’d want to go with this design. Any darker and the cables would be obscured, I think.

I do notice that I need to knit on this in good light.

I am using the needle size called for in the pattern — a 3mm. It is at times like this when I wish Signature Arts Needles came in small sizes! But my Addi Lace needle is doing a nice job.

And I’ve made progress on my commuter knitting:

SIP101310 240x154 Eala Bhan

This is being knit from my free toe-up gusset sock pattern, I’m using the Opal 6-Ply Best of Rainforest in the Emil colorway and knitting with a 2.75mm needle. Well, two needles, because I am, as always knitting my sock on two circulars. These are Addi Lace needles as well.

I was not sure what I thought of this colorway when I started the sock — the patterning is rather strange. But the more I knit, the less I think it sucks. icon wink Eala Bhan

Lucy had a busy day today — a bird landed outside the window!

Lucy101310 240x160 Eala Bhan

Knitting Blocks

I have in my hot little hands a review copy of Nicky Epstein’s upcoming book: Knitting Block by Block: 150 Blocks for Sweaters, Scarves, Bags, Toys, Afghans, and More. This 240-page hardcover book from Potter Craft is due out on November 9, 2010.

Bookcover101210 212x240 Knitting Blocks

Shamelessly lifted from the Amazon.com page for this book, here’s a description of the contents of the book:

  • 150 original block patterns, from simple textures to embossed pictorials, intricate lace to cables, colorwork, double knit, and more, all with Nicky’s signature wit, verve, and style.
  • More than ten exclusive project designs that will make you say “I can’t believe that is made out of blocks!”
  • Detailed guidance for creating exciting pieces out of block knitting, without using increases or decreases.
  • Exclusive cut-and-paste project design pages. Simply cut out the printed blocks and arrange them to help create your own masterpieces.

The book is beautifully designed and photographed, like all Potter Craft books.

BookA101110 240x160 Knitting Blocks

There are notes at the beginning of the book about gauge and how to design with blocks, followed by the patterns for 150 blocks. You’ve got basic blocks:

BookB101110 240x160 Knitting Blocks

The patterns for each block are very clear, and some have both written and charted instructions.

BookC101110 240x160 Knitting Blocks

Here are some of my favorite colorwork blocks:

BookD101110 240x160 Knitting Blocks

I think the ones on the left look like Delft tiles — what a gorgeous afghan those would make!

I love the cabled blocks too:

BookE101110 240x160 Knitting Blocks

There are also blocks with applique and embroidered embellishments, as well “special techniques” and “eclectic style” which include some very creative and unusual blocks — the type of things you would expect from Nicky Epstein. Because I am mean I did not include a photo of any of these. icon wink Knitting Blocks

There are also patterns for 10 projects that include a couple of afghans, a couple of scarves, a shrug, sweaters, a vest, a bag, and a hat. Here’s a sweater:

BookF101110 240x160 Knitting Blocks

And possible my favorite pattern in the book — one-block animals!

BookG101110 240x221 Knitting Blocks

There’s a lot of wonderful stuff in this book and the projects are just the beginning. There are so many great things you can make from the blocks and so many ideas to get your creativity flowing.

Meanwhile back at the ranch I am deliriously happy knitting Eala Bhan. More about that tomorrow!

Lucy sez:

Lucy101210 240x160 Knitting Blocks

“Zzzzzzzzzzz.”

Love That Yardage

Yesterday I finished a pair of socks.

Socks101110 240x160 Love That Yardage

These socks are going to be a Christmas gift for a guy who wears a size 14 wide shoe, so yeah, these are really really big socks. I used Opal 6-ply Best of Rainforest in the Demian colorway, and a 2.75mm needle. This yarn comes in 150 gram skeins and is really high yardage — approximately 460 yards of sport/DK weight yarn. You can get a whole lotta sock-knitting out of one skein. I love that I had enough yarn to knit 2 good tall socks and was able to match the striping sequence for the two socks. I had 29 grams left over.

I started another sock from Opal 6-ply — this is also one of the Best of Rainforest colorways: Emil.

SIP101110 160x240 Love That Yardage

A somewhat odd look, I think, but I don’t hate it. This pair of socks will also be very large, but not as large as the Demian socks.

But this project is now delegated to commuter knitting because today I started something else:

WIP101110 240x160 Love That Yardage

In case you can’t tell from the huge amount of progress I’ve made, this is Alice Starmore’s Eala Bhan, knit in Hebridean 2-ply in the Bogbean colorway. So far, so good!

Lucy sez:

Lucy101110 240x160 Love That Yardage

“It’s my duty to inspect Momma’s knitting!”