On the Value of Following Instructions

You know how that last instruction in most every pattern is something to do with blocking?  And you know how you may occasionally want to blatantly ignore that instruction?  Mmmm, yes.  Next time you’re tempted to do that?  Remember this picture.

Same yarn, same needles, same knitter, worked the same week.  One blocked and one not (yet) blocked.  Which do you think will look better on?

The goal is to have these blocked and dry for Sunday morning so The Boy and I can go traipsing around this neat half-collapsed greenhouse and take some pictures.  Should be cool, if we don’t find ourselves hassled by the local constabulary for blatant trespassing.  I’m sure they’ll understand the need for nifty backgrounds for knitting pictures, right?  Should be fine.

And in Other News

The lovely blue socks I took off to the retreat are done (and have been for a while now, I just didn’t quite manage to get them outside and snap a picture).  We’ll start with proof of concept.  See that, two legs, two heels, two toes, all tidy and done.

And then lets take a closer look at the top of the feet.  Left and right mirrored (though it would be just as cute to put a left-leaning leaf and a right-leaning leaf together on the same sock).

It’s Vice (and yes, I am trying to irritate Lizzy into finishing up her website) in Chubbie in a super secret color she made for me.  Finished pics next time I’ve got me, The Boy, the camera, motivation, and daylight all at the same time, which should be easier now that the clocks have shifted.

And After…

Quick and not-so-great snap (it is unpleasant outside, I don’t want to be outside, so I didn’t stay long) just to show you the much more relaxed shape these take on post blocking.

Compare that to the tight bunchy shape before blocking.

 

Some time I’ll get close up pics of the scallops so you can see how they’re made, they really are shamelessly cute.

Shamelessly Girly

Of course, I did manage to squeeze in a bit of knitting while I was away.  I made good progress on the blue, leafy socks.  I’m about 3/4 done with the second one and should have a finished pair to show you soon.  But I wanted to see if I could squeeze a whole project into the trip, cast on to bind off.  That meant it would need to be a small project, but I managed it.

I wanted to take pictures there (seemed only appropriate, since I knit it all there), but that meant it was unblocked.  So I’ll show you this to start, but don’t fear, it gets much much better once it’s had a bit of a wash and a stretch.

The yarn is Space Cadet Creations Astrid in one of the Department of Rocket Science colorways.  I got both cuffs out of less than 100 yards of yarn (that’s less than half of 1 skein).  I’m seriously contemplating making a matching piece out of the remaining yarn.

I can’t say enough good things about cuffs in this shape.  I find they’re one of my very favorite knitted things.  The Smidgen cuffs I made a few years ago are probably the single piece of knitting I wear the most often.  The shape just suits my hands and suits my life (they don’t get in the way of typing or knitting, and you can just shove them up your wrists when you need to wash your hands).  Love on all fronts.

The only tricky thing is blocking, but I’ve got that sorted too.  I’ll show you just how to do it next time.

The Limits of my Love

I love you all dearly, but my porch is currently a giant sheet of ice. That means I’m going to show you the crappy pick I took yesterday (before it thawed and then froze into a death slick) instead of dutifully going out there and taking a better one.  Because really, slipper ice skating is not a sport I wish to take up.  We’ll say it counts as proof that the hat is done, and we’ll call a better picture of it something in the ‘to do some time soon’ category.

Stitch Definition

The holiday weekend was productive. The Boy’s socks are finished and blocked.  I’m unreasonably pleased with how they came out.

He’s quite ready to start wearing them, but alas we must wait until the snow melts and we can get in a quick photoshoot.  For you see, I have a plan.  Those of you who have been reading here for some time will know I usually have a plan.  Actually I usually have four of five of the things kicking around in my head.  This one is a doozy though and will require a brief field trip and a little supply run to be properly implemented.  Should be fun, and The Boy is totally on board.

In the meantime, you can join with me in being amused at the impression left in the snow by the sock.  I’m taking it as a sign that yes, yes this yarn does indeed have good stitch definition and work well with cables.

Toes

The Boy’s sock is done.  Note that’s sock, not socks.  He’ll likely want both.  I’ll need to be a clever kid and take some notes while I make the second, as I think these are nifty enough to share (and they require a bit of fancy maneuvering to get things lined up just so for the toe and the heel).

Next time he’s around in daylight hours, I’ll get a pic with a foot.  But as that won’t be until the weekend, I’m taking the lazy way out and using the blocker for now.

Wee Hat the Third

I think the phase has passed.  I’ve got three hats.  The family in question has three sprockets.  I think the numbers line up pretty well.  But before they go off to live with their new owners (after all, it is still awfully warm here), I wanted to show them to you.

If I can find some heads to wear them for pattern photos between now and when it gets cold enough that the kids need hats, I may do a pattern.  I have a suspicion that might not happen though.  I sort of like the idea of having these just be something I knit to knit them, not to write them up and do the whole pattern process.  Knitting just for its own sake.  I miss it.

Wee Hat the Second

Again, not actually all that wee.  Same idea as before, glorified stripes, never more than one color on a row (because I’m lazy and not a very good knitter, that’s why).

This one was super speedy.  Cast on when I finished the first one, cast of yesterday.  Still smitten.  One more to go at least.  Once again, the texture is best seen by swinging around to the side a bit.  The little nubbly poofs amuse me to no end.  They also tempt Barry into unspeakable misbehavior, so these have to go on a nice high shelf.

 

Wee Hat the First

The first of the wee hats is done.  I’m now madly in love with this whole concept.  But really, what’s not to love.

First, hats.  Hats are more or less instant gratification.

Second, worsted.  Worsted weight yarn actually knits itself.  You just have to nudge it gently and the finished thing falls off your needles.

Third, Malabrigo.  This one requires no explanation, just look at the color.  Colors.  I’m helpless in the face of such temptation.

Fourth, stripes.  Stripes are the (or at least this) lazy person’s answer to colorwork.  I swear you never ever ever touch more than one yarn in the same row.  You’re only ever knitting a plain old boring stripe.

Fifth, and perhaps most enchanting, the top.  Look down there at the top of this hat.  Tell me you are not smitten.  It’s totally immodest of me to say this.  I should either pretend that I totally knew exactly what it was going to do from the beginning, or I should pretend not to this amused, but no.  I’ll go ahead and admit I think it’s awfully nifty.

And yes, Wee Hat the Second is on the needles already!