Thursday Sock-Along: The Finished Sock

28137175102_85d8ec2d74_cBehold…a finished sock! Over the weekend I managed to complete sock number one. Once I got past the gusset, things went quickly. With the help of the YouTube videos I’d been watching, I managed the toe shaping and the Kitchener stitch closure. I anticipated problems with the Kitchener stitch as I’ve heard other people in the past dreading that step of sock knitting, but I didn’t have a hard time at all with the process.

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It’s a little loosey goosey in the gusset area, but other than that it fit my foot. At first I was afraid that I’d started the toe shaping too soon and that the sock might end up being too small, but in the end it turned out all right. However, this yarn is awful for sock knitting. It’s way too stiff and scratchy, and not at all comfortable on the foot, so I’ve decided not to bother with the second sock.

Instead I’m going to try the Rose City Rollers pattern. I’m an anklet kinda girl and these look like the perfect pair of socks to work on.

I’m linking up with a few other fellow sock knitters, so be sure to check out their Thursday sock posts, too.

Paula at Spin A Yarn

Hannah at Unsophisticated + Jejune

Alex at Alexand Knits

Katherine at Fiber and Sustenance

 

Thursday Sock-Along: My First Sock

If I had to guess, I’d say I’ve been knitting for around 15 years or so. I’m not the greatest knitter, nor am I the most knowledgeable knitter. And I’m certainly not the most adventurous knitter. The projects I’ve attempted have been wraps, afghans, scarves, and dishcloths. I’ve stayed put in my comfort zone, which evidently equates to only knitting things that are square or rectangular. I haven’t ventured too much into the realm of apparel…unless you count the sweater I made for my dog a couple of years ago.

I did attempt socks once many years ago when I was a fairly new knitter. It was my first experience using DPNs. Shortly after the cast on, I decided it would be my last experience using DPNs. However, I didn’t want to give up on sock knitting entirely. About a week ago I went on an internet search for an easy sock pattern for beginners and found  Easy Peasy Socks, a pattern that called for worsted weight yarn.

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I went through my stash and found this skein of Big Twist. I picked it simply because I had enough yards, not for the quality of the fiber. After reading through the pattern, I felt like I needed a visual on how to start, so I immediately went to YouTube and found Very Pink Knits series of how-to videos. Her instructions were pretty straight forward and it took me no time at all to get started. I quickly got through the cuff, started the heel flap, and then turned the heel.

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I got a little nervous about picking up stitches for the gusset, and I’ll admit it was not my favorite part of the sock, but I managed to get it done. Now I’m working on the foot and hopefully by next Thursday I will have at least one completed sock.

Oh, in case you’re interested, here’s a list of the videos I’m using to help with my sock:

The pattern discussed in the videos is slightly different than the one I’m using, but I think it can be purchased via her website.

Paula from Spin a Yarn was kind enough to invite me to join in on the Thursday sock party that she has with a few other bloggers. Be sure to check out Paula’s sock post as well as Hannah of unsophisticated+jejune, Alex of alexand knits, and Katherine of Fiber and Sustenance to see where their sock adventures have taken them.

Yarn Along: UFOs and Photography

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The sweater project is on a temporary hold for now.

I completed two swatches for the sweater, one on size 9 straight needles and one on size 9 circulars. My gauge was perfect on the straight needles, however, they’re too short to knit a sweater. The circulars are a hair slimmer than the straight needles and my gauge was off a bit on that swatch, so I thought I’d try a swatch on size 10 circulars.

I went on a hunt for my size 10’s and found them with an abandoned project attached to them. The bag was a little too complex for me four or five years ago when I first started, and I’d ripped it apart at least three times and re-knit it, getting to about the same point each time and screwing up the pattern. It ended up stuffed in a plastic bag, which was then stuffed into a big tote bag with several other unfinished objects.

My plans of starting the sweater this weekend were completely shot when I discovered those other projects. One thing I found was the garter stitch scarf shown above. I started it long ago and never finished. It’s a big chunky design done on size US 35 needles. I finished it up on Sunday night. I’m not really sure why I bother with scarves. I live in South Florida and have never in over 30 years of living here used a scarf, but now I have another one to add to my small collection.

The question now is – Do I work on the bag or do I just remove those size 10 needles from that project and move on to the sweater? There was also a small lap blanket found in that stash of UFOs, which is also calling my name. Decisions, decisions…

On to books.

IMG_3004I’m still reading my mystery from last week and enjoying it. I’ve been itching to get in some photography practice, so this weekend I pulled out my copy of Plate to Pixel by Helene Dujardin. I’ve been a fan of her blog for years, mainly because I have an obsession with food photography. I have no particular interest in photographing food myself, but I admire Helene’s photography skill and I’d like to learn how to become a better photographer. Hence, the reason why I bought her book. It’s been sitting on my bookshelf for over a year, and I decided it’s about time I cracked it open.

I decided to go through the book slowly and start with the basics. Right now I’m re-learning about exposure. My plan is to experiment with different exposure settings until I really understand what I’m doing and somewhat master those basic ideas. Then, I’ll move onto the next section in the book.

Over the weekend, I took quite a few practice photos, which I’ll be posting some time this week. It’ll be interesting to see how I progress.

Linking with Ginny’s Yarn Along

 

Yarn Along: A Swatch and a Mystery

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Every Wednesday, Ginny over at Small Things (a blog I just discovered the other day) has a Yarn Along, where knitters link up and share their latest knitting project as well as what books they’re currently reading. This week I thought I’d join in on the fun.

I’ve been knitting for years now, but I’ve stuck with fairly easy projects like scarves, dishcloths, and uncomplicated afghans. Sock and garment patterns have always intimidated me, but I’ve decided to take the plunge and try a sweater. Nina’s Design Your Own Sweater Class from Knit Picks is a series of video tutorials that I found on YouTube and so far they seem to be pretty easy to understand.

The yarn I’m using is Vanna’s Choice by Lion Brand. It’s 100% acrylic. I’m hoping it doesn’t end up feeling too scratchy, but I have enough balls of it to make a sweater. Since this is my first attempt at making a garment, my expectations are set fairly low as far as the outcome of this project. The goal is to actually finish and make a sweater that fits. That’s really all I care about at this point.

I’ve started by creating a few swatches to check my gauge before I proceed to the next lesson in the class. Over the weekend I’ll move on to the next step – casting on and working the hem.

The book I’m reading is The Diva Runs Out of Thyme, a mystery by Krista Davis. I’m about one hundred pages in and so far it’s a pretty good read. Sophie, the main character, keeps finding dead bodies, and she’s become one of the main suspects in the murders. I like a good mystery. It’s always fun to try to guess the real killer. Right now, though, I don’t have a clue whodunit.