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.

You Can Never Have Too Many Shawls

That’s my opinion.

And just to prove it, I’ve recently purchased another shawl pattern: the Brandywine Shawl, by Rosemary Hill. You can check it out on Ravelry, here, or on Romi’s blog  — read her post about the pattern here. She is donating $5.00 of the purchase price for each pattern sold to Doctors Without Borders and has set herself quite a goal for the number of patterns she hopes to sell and the amount of money she wants to donate.

So if you think it’s pretty and like me need another shawl in your life, buy the pattern!

Meanwhile, I’m still working on the Chevron Stole.

Stole030710 160x240 You Can Never Have Too Many Shawls

I am halfway done. I know this because I have just about finished the first skein of yarn, and I bought two skeins. The finished shawl will block out to at least 72″ long, I’m thinking.

Winners!

The great and mighty Random Number Generator has chosen winners to receive copies of my new book! So many of you left a comment (Yowies! 1400+ comments!) that I decided to give away three copies. The winners are Sarah, Jayne, and Kelly-Ann. I’ve emailed the three of you, so if you think one of those individuals might be you, check your email! Thanks to everyone who entered the contest!

Here are some details about the way I pick the winners . . .

I check the total number of comments on the blog post, and then have the generator pick 3 numbers within that number range. In WordPress (my blogging software) it is pretty easy for me to go in and find the comments with the winning numbers because I can display the comments for a particular post 20 on the screen at a time.

Why am I telling you this? I am telling you this because  this is the reason why I ask that entries be left in the comments and not emailed to me or sent using the “contact me” form. If one sends me an entry via email or the “contact me” form (which is also emailed to me and in fact sometimes ends up in my spam filter, for whatever reason), the entry is not assigned a number.

Okie dokie, gotta run! I’ve got a busy Sunday planned. Lucy does as well:

Lucy030710 240x160 You Can Never Have Too Many Shawls

She has to “make biscuits” on her sheepskin!

A kitty’s work is never done.

A Tale of Three Socks

The first sock tale . . .

I took a picture of the KOARC’s foot the other night, as he was wearing a pair of socks I had made for him.

OldSock011810 240x160 A Tale of Three Socks

I noticed what remarkable good shape they are in. This is the sole of the foot:

OldSockCloseup011810 240x160 A Tale of Three Socks

If you click to enlarge the pic, you’ll see there’s absolutely no sign of wear.

I went back through my blog, and found the project page for this pair, here. The yarn is Regia sock yarn (wool/nylon blend). I made this pair of socks for him in July 2003 — six and a half years ago! Since that time they have been worn regularly, machine washed in hot water, and dried on high heat. That Regia yarn wears pretty darn well, doesn’t it? Can’t ask for much better than that!

The second sock tale . . .

Remember these socks?

ThistleFront 118x240 A Tale of Three Socks

I finished them back in November — the Heather and Thistle Socks. They are knit from MacKintosh Yarns lovely lovely Iona fingering weight yarn — it’s 80% superwash merino/10% cashmere/10% nylon. The pattern is now available for sale, at MacKintosh Yarns, here.

The third sock tale . . .

My new sock-in-progress.

SIP011810 160x240 A Tale of Three Socks

This is a design from my upcoming book, Toe-Up Socks for Every Body. They are called “Manly Aran Socks” and I designed them specifically for guys. The socks pictured in the book are knit from Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock in the “denim” colorway, lighter than the colorway I’m using. I showed the pic to the KOARC and asked him if he’d like the sample socks knit for the book (he’s the same foot size as the model). He said he’d like them, but he can’t have them until after they go on tour with me this year. (Alternatively, the KOARC could come on tour with me and wear those socks at every event, but then who would take care of Lucy while I’m away from home?)

Anyhow, I figured I’d knit him a pair right now. I’m using Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock, in the “Cookie’s Deep Dark Secret” colorway.

I’m actually a lot further along than the above picture shows.

SIP012010 240x180 A Tale of Three Socks

This colorway is great to knit during daylight, but at night it turns into a dark navy, so I’m knitting blind most of the time. icon wink A Tale of Three Socks

Another thing . . .

The Argus Shawl pattern is up for sale in my Ravelry store, here (Ravelry link).

This shawlette can be knit from one 100-gram skein of sock yarn and when blocked measures approximately 54” across the top (wingspan) and 25” down the center back.

This pattern is perfect for a beginner knitter who wants to knit lace. The pattern is written in great detail and spells out everything you need to know. The lace is charted in 4 relatively simple charts that are easy to follow.

It is knit from fingering rather than laceweight yarn, which is much easier for a lace newbie to execute. The stitches used are knit and purl, and a few simple lace techniques – yarnover, knit 2 together, and ssk, and sl1 k2tog, psso (which are explained in the pattern).

Like the rest of my Ravelry patterns, I’m donating 50% of my profits through January 31, 2010 to Doctors Without Borders. Thanks to all of you who’ve bought patterns so far!

Lucy sez . . .

Lucy012010 240x160 A Tale of Three Socks

“When you go on the road, Daddy stays home with me. This is non-negotiable.”

Aftermath

I hope you all had a great holiday. Lucy and I did! Even my little Droid got a present:

Droid122709 240x160 Aftermath

A cellphone beanbag chair!

Here is Lucy’s favorite new toy:

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A tear strip from a box. Gotta love kitties!

Right before Christmas I put my Talisman Shawl pattern up for sale on Ravelry for $5.00 for a pdf download. Here is the direct link.

TalismanModeled122309 164x240 Aftermath

And I finished Ishbel. Here it is on Gwendolyn, shown draped over the Talisman Shawl, which is draped over my Exonumist’s Shawl:

IshbelModeled122709 160x240 Aftermath

A close-up:

IshbelCloseup122709 240x160 Aftermath

And a floor shot:

Ishbel122709 240x148 Aftermath

I knit the larger size and used Dragonfly Fibers Dragon Sock in the Green Riptide colorway, on a U.S. 6 needle. It used about 1.5 skeins of the yarn. I didn’t wet-block it — just steamed it with my trusty steam-iron.

And I started something new.

NewWIP122709 160x240 Aftermath

Can you guess what it is?

Lucy sez:

Lucy122709 160x240 Aftermath

“Now where is my tear-strip?”

Talisman Shawl

Anyone remember this?

Talisman121509 240x120 Talisman Shawl

This is the Talisman Shawl, which I designed and knit in 2008. I would have been highly impressed indeed if anyone had identified this as that pattern:

Here’s a close-up on the pattern stitch in the original version:

TalismanCloseup121509 240x160 Talisman Shawl

And here’s a close-up in my current version:

pat121509 240x160 Talisman Shawl

The original was knit from a laceweight handspun merino/tencel on a U.S. size 5 needle. I’m currently knitting it in fingering weight on a U.S. size 5 needle. Interesting to see how it looks, eh?

(I agree that it does resemble the Fountain Pen Shawl, but I designed and knit the original a good six months before that shawl pattern was published in IK so I wasn’t influenced by it!)

I never did anything with the pattern, apart from knitting it up. I came across the pattern a few days ago and thought it would be fun to knit it up in in fingering weight. So there you have it!

It may just be me . . .

But I think the nutcracker in this office party invitation looks rather shifty-eyed and sinister. He probably is, given who is hosting the party.

invite121509 240x186 Talisman Shawl

(Click photo to enlarge and make readable . . . and spot the punctuation issue!)

To change the subject . . .

Check out this perfect little profile:

Lucy121509 240x160 Talisman Shawl

Now Hear This

The Faro Easy Shawl pattern is now available for sale in my Ravelry shop, or from the link below, for $5.00 (delivered via pdf download):

buy now Now Hear This

Faroeasy083009 203x240 Now Hear This

An easy Faroese-style shawl knit from the bottom up that takes 600 – 650 yards of dk/light worsted yarn.

Size:
Unblocked: 54” across the top edge (wingspan), 22” down the center back
Lightly Blocked: 72” across the top edge (wingspan), 26” down the center back

On To the Shawl at Hand

lace090109 240x110 Now Hear This

Actually, I’m cheating. This is a photo from Sunday night. I’ve made a bit more progress since then.

The lace looks a bit dense, but when blocked will open up nicely. It may look complex but is pretty easy to execute — just yarnovers, k2tog, and “sl 1 k2tog psso.” The only tricky bit is that you are sometimes working a decrease into a yarnover from the previous row. If you don’t have pointy needles, it can be a bit tricky. But I am using my nicely pointy Addi Lace needles.

Needle090109 240x160 Now Hear This

My other project:

SIP090109 240x160 Now Hear This

A sock from Madeline Tosh sock yarn, in the Malachite colorway. This is my current commuter knitting. I’d have a bit more progress but this morning noticed something boneheaded I had done about 6 rounds down, so spent the morning commute dropping down and fixing it.

New Kitty!

Look at my new kitty!

SnowLeopard090109 240x160 Now Hear This

I installed Snow Leopard on my iMac yesterday. Installation went without a hitch and took a little under an hour. It’s too early for me to comment on the changes this OS upgrade hath wrought, but everything seems to be working properly, so that’s a good thing. I have noticed that things are faster all-over

Lucy Sez

Lucy090109 240x188 Now Hear This

“Huh. Some kitty.”