It’s all about the socks once again

Hi there, how are you doing today? Fine I hope. For once it is a sunny day here in Normandy. We had begun thinking that spring was not actually going to come this summer but today it’s really sunny and nice so we are crossing our fingers the nice weather is here to stay.

Now I haven’t finished telling you all about my last travel and the yarn shops I visited. There is one shop left on my list, Yarn Cake in Glasgow Scotland and I’ll be telling you all about that one next week if all goes to plan. Today I thought I should tell you about my latest sock knitting as that is mostly what I’m knitting on these days.

A while back I told you that I had joined Sock Madness for the second time and that this time I was way to enthusiastic (fast) knitting on my qualifying socks and so was put into the fastest team! And boy are those ladies fast!

So as of round 2 I got disqualified. Not only because of speed but because I misunderstood the colorwork chart. I finished my socks in time and got the confirmation email that I was qualified for round 3 and then the next day I got a second email saying that I had misunderstood and thus knit the pattern wrong and so I was disqualified. Re-knitting both socks was not an option as my teammates are so quick so I forfeited. What a deception! I was so very sad and just generally angry with myself for being so stupid and actually knitting two whole socks without realizing my error! But what is done is done and colorwork (this year’s theme) is not my forté. So now I’m a cheerleader and as such I’m knitting the patterns along with my teammates but I no longer have the stress of finishing in the blink of an eye. I admit I was so disappointed at first that I thought about just forgetting all about Sock Madness but I got a lot of heartwarming encouragements from fellow knitters and so decided I had to keep going and I’m really happy I did.

So here is a picture of the pair that got me disqualified.

sock madness round 2

Instead of the pattern repeat being always the same like I did, it should have been like a mirror image. You may have seen pictures of these knit the correct way and they do look nicer than mine. Another issue I had with these, as these are stranded throughout, even though I used a bigger needle than the pattern called for, they still came out small and rather stiff. I clearly need to work on my tension when doing all over colorwork.

Then there was round 3 and I finished that pair within the 2 week period (most of my teammates finished in 2-4 days I think). I’m very happy with the end result and the colors I had chosen for this pattern. I was very careful this time around about my tension. I did use a bigger needle for the sock and the tension was much better this time.

 

Currently we are on round 4 and this time it’s not a colorwork pattern but a beaded sock. I really love this one and so far I have only done one repeat on sock one but I’m hoping I’ll be able to finish again within the two weeks. As a cheerleader I also have the luxury of not exactly following the pattern and I took advantage of that and instead of using two colors of beads as the pattern calls for, I’m only using one and I really like how that looks.

I’m knitting with my SPARKLES yarn and I really love how it is knitting up.

I have also subscribed to the New York Sock Club that Mina Philipp of the Knitting Expat is doing and she issues a pattern a month and so far I have kept up with those. Here is the pair from April, The Grand Central socks and I knit those using sock yarn from Knit Cosmic String in their Chai latte colorway.

I have only just cast on for the May sock, Union Square socks, and I’m knitting those in a self striping yarn from the Yarn Enabler.

I’m also doing a sock test knit for Dana Gervais and I really love this new pattern. I’m knitting it on my SPARKLES base and it is gorgeous even if I say so myself. The pattern has not been released yet but I’ll be sure to post pictures on IG when it is.

I was somewhat naughty and bought a ton of commercial sock yarn some time ago and when it arrived last week I of course had to cast on for a pair immediately. I cast on using a new to me yarn. It’s a cotton sock yarn from Regia and I knit a pair of shorty socks for my youngest. The pattern was just something I came up with and I really love the outcome and as spring and summer is getting closer I have this urge to knit shorty socks so I think you will be seeing more of those here.

IMG_7857

She doesn’t like her socks very short so I knit a longer cuff than I had expected but that’s ok. She has the option of rolling it down as I show on the second sock.

Phew that’s a lot of sock knitting! I was intending on finishing my Ramble shawl by Andrea Mowry before the Starting Point mystery kal by Joji begins this Friday. Only problem was that as I had put the shawl down for a while, once I picked it up again I was just off and yesterday I ended up ripping back the brioche section. I had done just over one repeat so quite a lot but it just didn’t look like it should and I would never have worn it like that so I decided to rip back and begin on the brioche section later. Maybe not until the Starting Point is over but at least then it will be done correctly.

I hope you have enjoyed spending some time with me today and sharing my sock knitting. Are you also avid sock knitters or do you mostly knit something else like garments? Would you be interested in us doing a kal this summer? Maybe something from June 1st to September 1st? With a prize or two in the end? Please let me know by leaving a comment below and also let me know what you would like that kal to be about. I have ideas such as : 1) socks  (of course) 2) a shawl -either we all knit the same or we just each knit our own 3) a garment 4) or we can decide on a designer and just knit any pattern by that particular designer

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

Also I almost forgot, My -20% off everything sale is still going until May 15th so if you would like to try out my yarn for the first time or maybe get some more if you already enjoy my yarns, now’s the time! Just use the coupon code MADMAY17 at checkout and you will get a 20% discount on all in stock items. I of course ship worldwide at low prices so I hope you will take advantage of this offer. The shop you can find by clicking here

Until next time I wish you a wonderful week and hopefully lots of quality knitting time. Speak to you soon 🙂

Pattern bonanza or the Indie Designer Gift-a-long 2015

Hi there, last time I posted about the Indie Designer Gift-a-long 2015 on Ravelry which I was excited about participating in for the first time this year. Well the Indie GAL was launched last night. I had already taken a peek at the 325 designers participating this year and added a number of patterns to my cart. Some of the patterns, I realized, I had only just purchased which was a bit of a bummer as I could have waited a few days for the discount but hey… that’s what I get for being impatient! Especially when I know that I’m buying because I MUST have the pattern and not because I’m CASTING ON immediately.

Anyway, I’ve totally indulged myself these last 2-3 days because I’ve not only participated in the Indie designer GAL but I’ve also joined Curious Handmade Knitvent 2015.

And before I tell you all about my GAL patterns let me just touch on the the KNITVENT. I think this is the second year that Helen Stewart of Curious Handmade launches a Christmas collection called Knitwent where she publishes one pattern per week for 6 weeks and of course there is a KAL going on etc. Here is how Helen describes the Knitvent on Ravelry:

“The 2015 Knitvent collection is inspired by the special radiance of winter. As the days grow shorter, light becomes something precious. Imagine the dazzle of sunlight on snow and the gleam of firelight through the frosted windows of a log cabin. Think fairy lights twinkling behind a row of icicles, and the glow of candles on the dinner table. I’ve tried to capture all that glimmering brightness and warmth in this year’s designs.

Knitvent is the Curious Handmade community’s beloved holiday tradition. Together we enjoy the sweet suspense of an advent calendar and conjure up the community spirit of a mystery knit along, with a new design to discover and knit each week. All of the patterns are ideal for gifting, but chances are you’ll cast on at least one for yourself (you deserve it!)

  • The collection will feature six beautiful accessory patterns.
  • The first design will arrive on the 5th of November, and you’ll be sent updates each Thursday as each pattern is released.

There will be chatter, fun, support, and prizes in the Ravelry group. It’s really exciting, and a brilliant way to bring an extra bit of magic to your holiday knitting”

So far 3 patterns have been published, all gorgeous, and I’m going to try to knit at least one of the 6 patterns during the KAL to actually be able to say that I did join in the fun. Are any of you participating in her Knitvent this year? If so, are you already knitting on one of the patterns and would you like to share a picture with us here? That would be super nice 🙂

And now on to the Indie Designer Gift-a-long 2015. I don’t know how many designers participated last year but this year they are 325 and I find that super impressive. You have a mix of both well known and established designers as well as totally unknown (to me at least) designers. You can choose from both knit and crochet patterns and they span all possible projects imaginable. So if you are dreaming of a new pattern or looking for something special to knit this is definitely the time to check out and join this GAL. I’m going to knit some of the patterns I just bought now so I can join in the KALs and be eligible for a prize because there are a number of incredible prizes to be won and those will be drawn at random from FOs from participants in the KALs.

Now what did I buy? Hm, actually quite a lot… more than my wallet had accepted but….what’s done is done so I’m not going to scold myself and just enjoy all these gorgeous new patterns!

I bought 1 sock pattern – 5 hat patterns – 2 shawls – 1 mitten pattern – 1 pullover pattern or a total of 10 patterns.

Some of these I’m going to knit asap to gift for Christmas and at the same time join in the KALs.  I’m going to knit at least 2 hats and 1 pair of mittens before Christmas and maybe some more but not sure because I have recently bought so many incredible patterns that I’ve already got lined up and am anxious to cast on for.

I’m just going to list the names of the patterns and designers I bought from and then later as I knit them I’ll share pictures with you.

Jump to the left socks by Fiona Hamilton-Maclaren

Riparian shawl

Nougat pullover

Sand bank hat   –  all three by Justyna Lorkowska

Loop shawl by Casapinka

Fernie hat

Kicking Horse Mittens by Kate Bostwick

Tempano hat

Coriander hat both by Carol Feller

And then one last hat which was actually not part of the GAL but I bought it anyway because I want to knit it for my grandmother for Christmas

Flavia tam by Beth Kling

That’s all 10 just from today! Wow! I think I have outdone myself in pattern purchases this month! So what about you? Please tell me you too have gone overboard buying patterns this month or that you are just about to. I’d love to hear if you are joining the GAL and what patterns you have purchased or are thinking of buying. So please do share 🙂

 

That’s all for today. Just one more thing before saying goodbye, the Birthday gift-a-long I’m organising, I’m going to work on preparing the questionnaires for the participants this weekend hopefully so if someone wants to join in it’s still time.

That’s all for today. Happy Friday to you! Enjoy your weekend, if you are knitting on the Doodler like I am then happy knitting clue nr 3.

Take care:)