BB knits

A dumping grounds for all things knitting wandering through my lil' mind.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Gift Socks

Back in the summer when I was learning to knit socks, my friend Christy said "I'm a size 9!" as a joke. However, I annoyed her at work a lot over the summer, and she's been a super supportive friend.. so I made a note of her shoe size and fully intended to knit her up some socks once I knew I could do it. After 3 successful pairs, I decided it was time for Christy's Socks!

Pattern: None, really. Just used past experience and "Knitting Rules!" for reference
Yarn: Regia
Other: 2.5mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: Oct 13/06; sock 2: Oct 23/06
Cast off: sock 1: Oct 20/06; sock 2: Oct 27/06

New techniques learned: None, really. Just further fine tuned my sock abilities, and continued to develope my love for knitting socks and my confidence in being able to just do them, no pattern necessary.

Changes to pattern: Well, there wasn't really a pattern. I did the petticoat top again, and then mostly just used some guidelines from the Yarn Harlot's "Knitting Rules!", keeping in mind things I'd done with past socks.

What I would do differently if I made it again: If I had made them for myself, I might have made them taller in the leg, just because I like taller socks in my boots. Christy doesn't wear boots much (or at all), though, so it probably doesn't matter :P Oh, and it might have been nice if they could have been a finished product surprise... but someone blew my cover while I was half way through one sock! She got really excited and hugged me when she found out... but I think it would've been more fun to have had the surprise with the finished product ;)

finished christy sock
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

The finished sock! I think knitted socks look kind of funny off the foot...

gift wrapped socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

All bundled up and ready to go to their new home!

Christy models her new socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

Being modeled by the proud recipient! (seriously, she showed those socks off to everyone and anyone that day! She's the kind of person one loves to knit for, because she's so ridiculously happy to have recieved some handmade socks and she brags about them and makes sure eveyrone knows who made them for her :) )

Third Time is Charming!

This is the yarn that inspired me to finally get off my lazy arse and try knitting socks... but of course, I couldn't start with this yarn - in case something went horribly wrong :P But I figured by pair #3, I was ready to use my yummy purple yarn!

Pattern: started with "Petticoat socks" from Weekend Knitting...
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Amethyst Stripe
Other: 2.5mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: Sept 17/06; sock 2: Sept 25/06
Cast off: sock 1: Sept 25/06; sock 2: Sept 28/06

New techniques learned: Provisional cast on, to make pretty "petticoat" edge on sock. Which is pretty much now my most favourite way to start my socks. Took care of my "too tight cast on edge" issue from previous socks. It was a lot simpler than I had thought at first glance, it's actually kind of fun, and I enjoy the way it looks.

Changes to pattern: well, I pretty much threw it out the window :P See, I thought maybe I should try knitting "not plain" socks... and these socks look nice and not too hard.. but. no. It hurt my head. I was making a lot of mistakes and not enjoying how it was turning out after day 1. I loved the yarn too much to keep on with something that was frustrating me and making me unsure... so on Sept 20th, I ripped back to the petticoat edge and just knit plain. I used the pattern for guidance on the heel and toe, as well as looking back at the last 2 pairs of socks I made, and "Knitting Rules" by the Yarn Harlot.

What I would do differently if I made it again: Not have bothered trying that pattern? ;P Generally, I love the socks. They're pretty :) And very comfortable. I've washed them a few times now, and the heels are getting a bit fuzzy.. but they're still my favourites!

Lorna's Lace Socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

My pretty stripey purple socks! otherwise known as, my most favourite socks in the history of socks...

Lorna's Lace Socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

I love how hand knitted socks fit. It's so comfy. And they are so nice and warm! I walked to an engagement party quite aways away from my house, on quite a chilly night, and my toes stayed so nice and cozy! (unlike my nose..) And then it seemed so nice to have these delightful purple toes poking out under the hem of my dressy black pants :)

My second sock(lets)!

Continueing on the sock theme... my second pair of socks were more season-appropriate :)

Pattern: Alison's Ankle Socks
Yarn: Lang Yarns Jawoll Cotton Jacquard superwash
Other: 3.25mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: July 29/06; sock 2: July 29/06
Cast off: sock 1: July 29/06; sock 2: Aug 6/06

What's with the excessive amount of time on the 2nd sock? Got 3 rows of ribbing done before calling it a night on the 29th... and then there was a crazy heat wave and I couldn't even think about touching any knitting until the 6th :P

New techniques learned: Not sure that there was anything really that different for these socks versus my first socks..except the lack of much leg... It was more a matter of improving on my sock skills :) The holes around the heel were less big this time ;)

Changes to pattern: Nothing on purpose... was still too new to sock knitting to trust myself to stray from the pattern!

What I would do differently if I made it again: I will admit at this point in my knitting career, I only knew one way to cast on, really. I had tried another and didn't like it, so stuck to my trusty knitted cast on. Problem? I cast on kind of tight. I've been working on that, and generally I'm getting better... but these socks are a bit tricky to get on over my heel :P So if I were to make them again, I'd try to loosen that up a bit. Also, I still am pretty crap at judging how much yarn socks will or will not eat up... I had a good amount left over, and if I were to make them again I'd have a bit more hieght on them. They're perfect in slip ons like crocs, but I would prefer a bit more height when I'm wearing my running shoes.

Generally, these socks are awesome. I wore them a lot in the summer at work (where I'm on my feet a lot), and they've held up well with many washings. And the colours are all kinds of fun :)

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

view from the top. very comfy, and came in handy on those chillier days in the summer. they matched my hot pink croc-knock-offs nicely at work ;)

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

another view - showing off the fun heels! (and my not so fun heels..ouch... long story short, I got lost in Toronto and had to walk far to much on a far too hot day. the shoes I was wearing were sensible and comfortable, but they had their limits...)

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

My Very First Socks!

Hello! Long time no post. I have no good excuse (well, I have lots of excuses, but I won't bother you with them) Point is, I'm back.. and I have socks!

This summer I finally sat down and tried knitting socks. And I love it. Yay!
I started with the pattern, yarn, and needles my secret pal sent me in SP7 in like February.

Pattern: "His n' Her Slouch Socks" from Paton's "Pull up your socks" pattern booklet, made size medium
Yarn: KnitPicks Wool of the Andes in Violet (100% Peruvian Wool)
Other: 5mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: June 30/06; sock 2: July 9/06
Cast off: sock 1: July 2/06; sock 2: July 9/06

New techniques learned: Well, knitting socks! :) I've knit in the round before, and I've made mittens - so the toe part wasn't too new. But the heel was pretty much a completely new experience for me!

Changes to pattern: Nothing on purpose... but it's likely I misunderstood something somewhere and maybe didn't do it exactly right. but I did both socks the same, and they fit and look fine, so no big deal ;)

What I would do differently if I made it again: Maybe make the leg bit a touch longer... I had a good amount of yarn left over, and do enjoy tall socks. But really, I'm quite pleased with these socks!

Of course, July isn't a good time to wear thick wool socks ;) But it's been quite chilly this past month, so they have been worn a couple of times.. on the coldest days.. and they are SO warm and cozy!! They've been washed once now (thrown in the washing machine, cold water, hung to dry) and are very very VERY fuzzy.. and the heel is kind of felted (happened with wearing all day in my boots, before I ever washed them), but they're just that much cozier for it all :)

first sock progress
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

This is how far I got the first night. Very encouraging!

first heel turned!
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

Taken shortly after turning my first heel! Yay! That's my favourite part of the sock. And the toe. I like the toe part as well.

unfinished sock
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

My very first sock, fresh off the needles! The hole has grown on me ;) So squishy and and purple! :)

Very First Sock
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

And here is that very first sock, all nicely finished, ends woven in. Love it!

First Socks!
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

the completed pair! Yay! They fit very nicely, and are all kinds of warm and comfy!

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Something a little different....

What seems like a long long time ago, Erin was selling off a bunch of stuff, and I was feeling particularly indulgent so I bought a lot of her stuff. Including a Weavette!

I've been having a lot of fun with it ever since, and am finally sharing some photographic evidence of this fun :D

making my first square!
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

almost done my first square on the weavette, using some leftover knitpicks something or other. I love the plaidiness :)

my first square!
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

the completed square! So cute! I actually made a couple squares with this yarn (I had almost an entire ball leftover from a sweater made last year..), so I could try my hand at piecing them together and such..

silk & cashmere
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

so along with the weavette, I had bought this silky yarn and cashmerey yarn from Erin. both so pretty and soft... I couldn't think of what to do with them, but I knew I wanted to wrap myself up in them....

cashmere square
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

so I decided, why not use the weavette I bought off Erin with the yarns I bought off Erin, and make a fun plaidy quilty shawl thing?! GENIUS!

close up of silk square
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

the cashmere squares are bright and rainbowy, the silk squares are's a very fun mix :) And they both make very light gauzy squares, so the shawl is working up to have a delightful drape. It feels so luxurious...mmmm.....

The shawl is coming along nicely.. stay tuned for a "shawl in progress" picture :)

Saturday, July 01, 2006

I'm not dead!

You know, I'm not even sure how it happened that I went so long without updating.. I would think of it, but then I'd be like "Oh, I should include a picture with that", and I have like 50 million pictures on my camera waiting to be uploaded, and I couldn't seem to wrpa my head around just dealing with the important ones, and dealing with ALL of them was to big a task, so I'd put it off... and next thing you know, It's July 1st :P

Happy Canada Day :)

Anyhow, I ended up ripping back the neck shaping on my dad's sweater TWICE. On the plus side, I now am much more comfortable with ripping back my work to a certain point and redoing it... um.. yay?
The sweater is FINALLY done being knit. Now I just need to block it, and seam it (ew) and weave in ends (double ew). Thank goodness it is FAR to hot for my dad to even THINK about this sweater that was promised him 7 months ago... (I finished the knitting on Father's Day..considered arranging the pieces for a convincing photo of a finished object, but I was house sitting, didn't have my camera or net access, and was far to lazy to go home just to pretend to be actually done the sweater..)

Oh, and there's no pictures of any of this right now, because I'm at work and don't have any pictures with me here. I'm house sitting again, so who knows when I'll get on that :P

In other news.. I knit a baby sweater. In a week. I need to know more people with babies, because that was exceedingly satisfying. Especially after the never ending ribbing of hell that was my dad's sweater... I still got the thrill of a finished sweater, but in a small fraction of the time! sweet! (and it was for someone who is currently pregnant, not some crazy who wanted to sweater their baby up in July..)

Also on the needles right now is a delightful pink lace scarf made of an alpaca angora blend sent to me by a secret pal. I LOVE it. And after mucking up and ripping back too many times to admit without tearing up, I also love lifelines. A lot. A lot a lot. I'm about 20cm into it now, and the mistakes seem to be mostly done with and progress that makes me feel like it was 2 hours well spent is being made. (I was a bit discouraged the one time I worked on it for 2 hours and in the end was only really as far along as I had been before I began...)

Another thing in the works is a woven shawl. The amount of ends I'll have to deal with when it's all done makes me queasy, but I love the look and feel of it... It's silk and it's cashmere and it's so full of colours...mmmmm.

Finally, as of last night, I have finally taken the plunge and started my first ever sock. *excitement*. So far so good - I'm almost at the heel, and I can put on the progress so far and it fits nicely about my ankle.

Oh, and I finished a sweater for a friend - another much belated christmas present (also birthday - she's a december baby). That one was a quickish knit (Blackberry from Knitty. Yes, I am far too lazy to do any linking right now..), but I waited until forever (otherwise known as april) to actually start it once she picked the pattern (done in january) and I got the yarn (sometime in february). It was recieved with much joy, even if it is far to warm to wear anytime soon.

Okay, my shift is almost over... I didn't bring any knitting with me today so I'd catch up on emails, but I'm seriosuly craving my sock...mmm....

Monday, April 17, 2006

and, i'm an idiot

So, I'm working away on a sweater for a friend, and I discover that I am indeed an idiot. I fail at knitting pattern comprehension.

I finished the front panel of my dad's sweater...and ran into stitch issues, and checked the pattern math, and decided it was wrong, dealt with having a bit wider top of front compared to top of back, bound off, tra la la.

Turns out, I'm an idiot. and well normally my mistakes don't bother me much and I leave them in, this mistake translates into 10 missed rows. which about the neck may make a difference in fit for my dad.


so I will be frogging back and fixing. first time i'll ever do that :S not sure if I have the patience/eye for going back just to where the 10 rows should have been, but I'll try. Otherwise, I'll just do all the neck shaping again... and remind myself that my daddy is awesome, he buys me groceries, and he's worth it...


Sunday, April 09, 2006


school (most noteably, final exams) are sucking my soul away.
I'm still knitting lots (need to stay sane!), but clearly my ability to blog has been compromised...

had an awesome time this past Friday at the Team Canada knit night out, which soothed my soul a bit post-histology-maggie-ass-whooping.
Unfortunately, yesterday I came down with a nasty cold :(
So I would update with some progress pictures right about now on a variety of stuff...
but I need to study for tomorrow's exam....but I want to curl up with tea, movie, and kitties, and just let this cold kill me now.

only 2 weeks left! ;P

Thursday, March 16, 2006

WIP - Leo

WIP - Leo
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

Working on Leo for a belated xmas present for my dad. With any luck, I'll get it done well before next Christmas ;)

This is how far I was on the back before the Knitting Olympics. As of right now, I'm done the back panel and taking a break from the neverending 5x3 ribbing before I start in on the front panel. I'm really happy with how it's going so far - the fabric is great, really nice and heavy. Will be a nice and warm sweater for next winter ;)


All right, another pre-olympics finished object!

Pattern: Cleaves
Yarn: Jo-Ann exclusive Bellezza Collection: Cosetta
Other: 8mm DPNs, 8mm 61cm circulars
Cast on: Jan 19/06
Cast off: Feb 3/06 (in a fit of laziness, left the ends to be woven in the next day..)

New techniques learned: Well, definitely the biggest thing I've done with DPNs! Also, it was my first time joining things all up together in the round (the two sleeves and casting on for the cowl..). Wasn't to hard to figure out, though, and I really don't like seaming at all - so avoiding that was a plus :D
Not a technique, but something I learned... my gauge changes a fair bit when I switch from DPNs to circulars. Gauge was bang on for the cuff and sleeve, but for the cowl my tension got a lot looser.

Changes to pattern: Well, I only made the cuffs about 7 inches. Partly because that was plenty long for my hands, but mostly because I did a lot of the initial knitting on the plan to Saskatoon and didn't have my measuring tape... so I used my DPN to guess length, and since they're 7 inches long, that was an easy number to work with ;) Total length of sleeve: about 21 inches.

What I would do differently if I made it again: I think I wouldn't mind a little less loosey-goosey-ness about the cowl - while it is cozy comfy, it's oversized-ness gets in my way on occasion. So if I were to make another, I'd probably try a smaller size needle for the circulars, to compensate for my looser tension.

The yarn was fun, I really enjoyed the colours :) (the yarn was a gift from a friend down in California). The pattern is pretty straightforward, and the sleeves were pretty good airplane knitting. I really appreciated the lack of seams to do up!

I've worn it a couple times now, and it is very cozy and snuggly. I'd probably wear it more often if I was just staying at home more, and didn't have to worry about it matching the tshirt i'm wearing that day ;)

onto the pictures!

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

Here's the finished thing spread out on my bed. I love verigated yarn and it's stripiness.

Cleaves - cowl
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

close up of cowl - good representation of the colour. So pretty and shiny! :)

Cleaves - sleeve
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

close up of sleeve, and nice shot of the pretty colour stripes along the sleeve :)

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

This is how it's worn in the pictures with the pattern... but as soon as I put my arms down, the cowl falls to an akward and not as cozy spot, and it just gets in my way :P so....

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

...I wear it this way! Nice and cozy about the back of my neck, the sleeves stay up, and it's just all kinds of goodness :)

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

And this is what it looks like from the back :) When I wear it over a tshirt, it nicely covers up all the exposed bits to give me some extra warmth! yum.