Up and Away

winnerLots of little bits today, and no overarching theme. Is scattered a theme? No? Could we pretend it is?

First, some business.  Today’s lucky winner is Darcy!  She will be getting a skein of lovely yarn from Dicentra Designs in her favorite color, Opal Creek.  I’ll be in touch to work out the details.

Next, knitting progress.  I’ve actually been knitting rather a lot, I’m just keeping it secret to spite you.  All will be revealed in time, but for now I can show you these.  They’re almost done and I’m just itching to finish them so I can hurry up and wear them.  I’ve lately fallen into the terrible habit of knitting one sock, putting the pattern out, and moving on to the next project.  This lets me get out lots of patterns, but doesn’t really augment the sock drawer much.  The trend must end.  Socks are meant to be in pairs.  I must allow them to fulfill their destiny.

luxeThat won’t be much of a challenge for these socks.  The left and right socks are different, which is far more entertaining than it has any right to be.  I’d like to think it takes more than that to hold my attention, but apparently not.  The yarn is also far too tempting to put down for long.  It’s Moby DK by Liberty’s Yarn in the color Baked Apple.  The color is gorgeous, and the yarn has been a delight to work with – the perfect balance between soft enough to enjoy knitting with and tough enough to make nice sturdy socks.  With any luck at all these should be done this weekend.

Finally, I’ll be away for the next few days and will have only sporadic internet access.  I’m off to Texas to celebrate my grandfather’s 90th birthday.  I’ve not been to Texas since I was a kid and my mental picture of the place is straight out of Saturday morning cartoons and old style westerns.  I’m considering trying to find an actual cactus to hang a pair of socks on.  Somehow the idea amuses me to no end.  I should be back on Tuesday assuming I’m not eaten by a coyote.

Bedizen

bedizenBedizen is up!

These are shamelessly frilly, fluffy, girly socks — because sometimes that’s exactly what you need.  It’s hopeless to fight it.  The stitch pattern is unapologetically lacy and swirly.  It looks complicated, but it is actually surprisingly simple.  The pattern repeat is only 4 rows high, and it is very easy to memorize.

The yarn is a delicious 50-50 merino alpaca blend by Dicentra Designs.  The alpaca adds the perfect touch of luxury.  If you’re going to make a confection like these, you really should use a marvelous yarn, shouldn’t you?  And at least one lucky reader can.  Just check out Dicentra Designs’ shop, and leave a comment here with the color you’d use to make these socks.  The winner will get that yarn and a copy of the pattern.  I’ll keep the comments open till Wednesday evening, and announce the winner on Thursday.

Brrrr

bedizen2Now that it’s officially November, I’ve succumbed to temptation and turned on the heat.  Woolly socks are marvelous things, but they can do only so much once the lows dip into the 30s.  However, the cold weather does provide lovely atmospheric backdrops for photos.  Or at least that’s the excuse reason I’m using for not having raked.  Laziness has nothing to do with it.

The testers have worked their magic, and the pattern for these should be up early next week.  Once these are out, I may be a bit light on the knitting for the next few weeks, as most of my projects are secret at the moment.  Rest assured, the quiet now will lead to a flurry of fuzzy feet come the new year.

Thanks so much to everyone who got in touch and wished me well as I battled the flu.  I really appreciate your good thoughts.  I am feeling much better (knitting now seems curative rather than taxing) and might even be fully human in another few days.

Winner!

winnerAnd the winner is…Steph, with comment 52!  I’ll be emailing you later today to arrange to send you your goodies.  Thanks to everyone who entered, and thanks for all the nice comments about the socks.  I’ll be placing an order for more of the Three Irish Girls yarn some time next week, and it’s great to know what colors you all prefer.

The socks with Dicentra’s yarn are making their way through the testing process and should be out in early November.  I’ve got another pair written up and about to go out for testing, and a third pair on the needles.  At least one (and maybe both) of those should be out towards the end of November.  I’ll try to have yarn to give away for those too.

Almost Sunny

dicentraYou’ll note I said almost.  It’s been raining every day, and we still haven’t had a day that would qualify as actually sunny.  Despite these meteorological impediments, I still managed to get outside, sock and camera in hand, and get a picture of the newest socks.  In addition to being cloudy and rainy, it is also perilously close to cold.  We haven’t turned on the heat yet, and it was 48 degrees in the house this morning.  I feel I deserve some sort of  medal for hiking up my pants outside to get the shot.  Ah the perils faced by knitters.

But I digress, you’re not here for my goosebumps, you’re here for the socks, and here they are.  These are a lovely frilly feminine confection with a wavy scalloped top and a deceptively simple lace pattern.  I’m putting them up for testers over on Ravelry now, and hope to have the pattern out in about 2 weeks.  Head on over if you want to test.

Yarn Part the Second

As I mentioned earlier, when I was at Sock Summit, I had the marvelous experience of picking out yarn from several dyers who had asked me to design socks for them.  It was great fun, even if it still feels a little bit like crime.

One of the talented dyers who asked me to work with her yarn is Lisa, the force behind Dicentra Designs Fiber Arts.  After much indecision, I picked out a lovely smooshy skein of purple yarn in a lovely 50-50 alpaca merino mix.  The yarn has somehow turned into socks, which then magically turned into a pattern.  I’ll be putting a call for testers out on Ravelry early next week.  I’ll also be posting pictures early next week.  I’d have them now, but the fall has been marked by torrential downpours around here, and I need a nice sunny day to get a photo that does this yarn justice.  It will be worth the wait!