My current work in progress:

1. pour moi, designed by Lori Versaci, knit from Wollmeise Merino DK in the "Stella Polaris" colorway on a 3.75 mm (U.S. size 5) needle.
2. Outlander MKAL Shawl, designed by Rachel Rodin, knit from Lornas Laces Shepherd Sport in the "Beauchamps" and "Fraser" colorways on a 3.75 mm (U.S. size 5) needle.
3. Myriad stealth projects.

Knitting Update

I haven’t updated on my personal knitting here for a while, so here it is.

pour moi — I have the back done.

WIPBack083114 240x200 Knitting Update

The color is WAY off in the photo — it is a much prettier blue.

I also have the two front pieces done.

WIPFront083114 240x200 Knitting Update

 

Again, the color is not accurate. I will start knitting on a sleeve today.

I finished Clue 4 of the Outlander MKAL — linking to my project page in Ravelry because there are spoiler photos there. View at your own risk!

Stitch and Pitch!

The New York Mets and Metropolitan Hospitality will host its 8th Annual Stitch N’ Pitch event at the Mets/Nationals game on Sunday, September 14, at 1:10 p.m. However, those outside of the NYC area can also participate!

Stitch N’ Pitch will welcome hundreds of knitting and crochet enthusiasts to gather and stitch 7×9 inch squares to benefit Warm Up America, a non-profit organization that collects and distributes hand-knit afghans, caps and other items to a variety of social service agencies nationwide.

Fans outside of the New York area are encouraged to join in on the fun and participate by mailing pre-stitched yarn squares (7×9) to Citi Field, 120-01 Roosevelt Ave., Flushing, NY, 11368, Attention: Carla Sanchez-Armora.

Lion Brand Yarn Company is the official sponsor of Stitch N’ Pitch and will supply yarn for the event though participants must bring their own plastic knitting needles or crochet hooks.

Meanwhile . . . 

And Loki is ready and willing to help me with chores today!

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Sock Architecture

I just received a review copy of Sock Architecture by Lara Neel.

SockArchitecture082714 185x240 Sock Architecture

This book is available as both an eBook and a printed book. It is $16.95 for the PDF version, $26.95 for the PDF and printed book, together, from Cooperative Press. Printed books will ship in a few weeks. If you just want the PDF and not the printed book and have a Ravelry account, you can buy it directly on Ravelry, here.

If you check out the Ravelry page I just linked to, you can read a very thorough description of the book and see photos of the 17 sock patterns in the book.

This is so much more than just a sock pattern book.

First off, it is beautifully written and a surprisingly fun read. The tone of the book is friendly, approachable, and humorous. One would not usually use those words to describe a book that not only is a treatise on sock techniques, but goes in-depth into the historical beginnings of sock knitting but they are totally warranted in this case. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book.

Take a gander at the Table of Contents — this is the page that links to all the different heels and toes in this book.

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Impressive, no? There are both top-down and toe-up techniques, by the way.

There are lots of great photos in this book that document every step of the sock-knitting progress.

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And there are lots of charts! Charts for everything. For example, features in different heels:

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And with each of the 17 patterns, there is a chart for customizing the sizing of the pattern.

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Cool, huh?

This is a great book for any sock knitter. I will admit to being thoroughly sick and tired of socks but after reading through  Sock Architecture for this review, my interest is piqued again. It may be time for some sock experimentation! That’s how impressed I was with this book.

Who would like to be similarly impressed?

To be entered in a drawing to receive a free copy of the eBook version of  Sock Architecture, please leave a comment on this blog post by 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time on Wednesday September 3, 2014.  At that time I’ll have the Random Number Generator select a comment and that comment will receive a free copy of this great book.

In other news, Loki took a nap last night after reviewing the new issue of Vogue Knitting (shown in the foreground, below).

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No doubt he is dreaming of handknits and how to shed on them.

Yes, Knitted Shoes

My knitted shoes are done.

Shoes082014 240x164 Yes, Knitted Shoes

To recap, I stumbled across a tutorial on how to knit your own shoes last month and couldn’t resist. I acquired a pair of Converse Chuck Taylors and jumped in with both feet. (See what I did there?)

Shoes082014a 240x190 Yes, Knitted Shoes

I created paper templates for all the pieces that I had to knit and then created charts from my templates. I won’t go into detail on how the shoes were created, because that is covered in the tutorial I purchased.

Shoes082014b 240x159 Yes, Knitted Shoes

Mods — I left the area where the shoelace eyelets are “un-knit” because several people on Ravelry who created shoes using the tutorial mentioned how difficult it was to deal with the eyelets and grommets. Because my shoes are black and my background yarn is black, I think my solution works very well.

Shoes082014c 240x240 Yes, Knitted Shoes

I did a black i-cord edging all around the knitted portion of the shoe to give a nice finish.

Shoes082014d 240x190 Yes, Knitted Shoes

And I knit i-cord shoelaces out of the foreground color, just for fun!

I used Malabrigo Sock in “black” for the background and Fiberstory Fave in “Lagoon” for the foreground color. With a US size 3 (3.25mm) needle, I got a gauge of 8 stitches and 8 rows to the inch over my fair isle chart — this is my typical gauge for fairisle knit with fingering or jumperweight yarn.

I can’t see myself wearing these on a daily basis, but I may whip them out for any future knitting events I attend. icon smile Yes, Knitted Shoes

Book Giveaway

The winner of my review copy of Sassy Knit Outfits for 18-Inch Dolls by Jeanne Kussrow-Larsen is Beth G., who has been emailed. Thanks to everyone who left a comment to be entered in the giveaway.

Loki

I made Loki a new wand toy last night — drilled a hole in a sturdy bamboo dowel and attached some heavy twine to it, with a little straw wheel at the other end.

Toy082014 240x173 Yes, Knitted Shoes

Loki pronounced it delectable, and played until he could play no more. Then it was naptime!

Loki082014 240x105 Yes, Knitted Shoes

 

Totes Adorbs

I was just sent another new booklet from Annie’s Knitting:

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This is Sassy Knit Outfits for 18-Inch Dolls by Jeanne Kussrow-Larsen. It is available for sale via that link in either hardcopy or electronic format.

As the title of this blog post suggests, this book is totes adorbs!

There are patterns for six complete outfits — these are all shown on the back cover:

BackCover081714 193x240 Totes Adorbs

For better photos of each design, you can view a larger photo of each at the Annie’s Knitting website. Click on the “See More Images” button to scroll through them all.

All outfits are knit using Caron Simply Soft Light yarn, which is a DK weight. You could, of course, sub another DK weight yarn, and if you have odds and ends left over from other projects, knitting these cute little outfits will put your leftovers to good use!

The overall skill level for the patterns is set at intermediate ad that seems about right to me. There are a lot of fiddly little bits to knit and a lot of colorwork, as well as some texture and lace. But the instructions look very detailed and even include clear schematics for each knitted item. And there is a hand “basics” section in the back of the book:

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On the front cover there is a little emblem advertising StitchGuide.com for those who need more help. That link takes you to a site created by Annie’s that has great tutorials and videos not just for knitting but for several needle crafts. Definitely worth checking out.

Because I have no 18″ dolls to knit for, I’m offering my review copy as a giveaway. Who’d like it?

To be entered in a drswing to receive my review copy of Sassy Knit Outfits for 18-Inch Dolls by Jeanne Kussrow-Larsen, please leave a comment on this blog post by noon Eastern Time on Wednesday, August 20, 2014 after which time a winner will be chosen at random.

Meanwhile . . .

I am working on my pour moi cardi — here’s the back in progress.

pourmoi081714 240x135 Totes Adorbs

And I knit the second clue of the Outlander MKAL on Saturday. There’s a photo on my project page in Ravelry.

Today I’m going to do some work on my knitted shoes — I’ve got all the main pieces knit up!

Shoes081714 240x139 Totes Adorbs

Loki says he is ready and willing to help me with that!

Loki081714 240x168 Totes Adorbs

Knitted Shoes?

As I mentioned in past blog posts, I happened across this tutorial for knitted shoes on Ravelry a little while ago. This is just the sort of project that appeals to me, so before I knew it, I had a new pair of Chuck Taylors and some sock yarn, ready to go.

I purchased black shoes because I decided to do my pattern as a fair isle with a variegated foreground and a black background. I am using Malabrigo sock yarn for the black, and some lovely Fiberstory Fave sock yarn in the “Lagoon” colorway that The Loopy Ewe just started carrying.

I measured the shoes six ways to Sunday and developed my charts for each piece to be knitted. Because of the oddly-shaped pieces I needed to knit, I settled on a relatively small all-over pattern.

At this point I have the “tongues” for both shoes done, as well as the little strip that goes up the back. I’ve completed the left side for each shoe and am working on a right side.

WIP091314 240x169 Knitted Shoes?

There will be a lot of i-cord to be knit to use as an edging around the knitted portions.

Will I ever wear knitted shoes? Unlikely. But this was a challenge I could not resist.

Another WIP

Because I didn’t want to have to schlep my shoes-in-progress to the office, I cast on for something else that is more easily transported.

pourmoi081314 240x174 Knitted Shoes?

This is the start of pour moi, a lovely cardigan designed by Lori Versaci and I am knitting it . . . wait for it . . . pour moi.

I am using Wollmeise Merino DK in the Stella Polaris colorway and went down a needle size to get gauge — to a U.S. size 5 (3.75mm).

This has been pretty much commuter knitting only, so I don’t have much progress. Yet.

As an aside, it is possible to put a whole skein of Wollmeise Merino DK into a Chic-a single yarn keeper, but just barely. A skein has 468 yards so it makes a very large ball when wound. But I successfully jammed it in there. I always have my working yarn in one of these yarn keepers if at all possible.

Loki

Here is what Loki looks like in the mornings when I am getting ready for work.

Loki081314 240x235 Knitted Shoes?

He lies on top of a dresser and oversees the process because clearly I need monitoring. I particularly like the one little arm hanging down in a casual manner.

I wear perfume every day. This morning after I applied fragrance (Chanel Coco) Loki stretched his neck out and sniffed me. Then he squinted and recoiled, looking disgusted. I guess he doesn’t like Chanel.

Seriously, though, he is not a fan of perfume. I expect that with the heightened sense of smell that cats have, it is a little overwhelming when first applied. I make a point of not getting too close to him right after I apply perfume but this morning he made the first move. icon smile Knitted Shoes?