Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Hot Town, Summer in the City .  .  .  oh yeah, I can hear the Lovin' Spoonful singing, can't you?? You can tell it's summer out there, especially when your front door faces West. Lucky for me, I also live in a basement with cement floors. I bless those cement floors in the summer - not so much in the winter when my feet freeze but in the summer when I'm still sweating & have nothing else left to take off - yeah, they're good to have. I haven't even turned on a fan yet this year!! It's hot & dry enough that nothing hurts unless I do too many hours of data entry on the computer. And it cools down really nicely at night. I could live with this for quite a while.

I fixed my sock problem - reknit the frogged sock until it matched the unfrogged one & then put them both on the same set of circs. I'm not fond of the "Two Socks on Two Circs" method of knitting socks but this damned orange/red makes my eyes water which  makes it difficult to measure where I am. With MY luck lately, I'd end up with one that's too long as well as one that's too wide. So, not taking any chances, covering my ass & making it as easy as I can, I am knitting them both on the same circ.
I can see that the "Two Socks on Two Circs" method would be excellent for lace socks. Or very patterned socks, too. It's NOT a good method for watching TV because it's really, really, easy to knit the wrong yarn into the wrong sock or get the needles crossed if you don't keep an eye on things but it does keep the socks more or less the same. I started out loving this color but now, I'm not so sure.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Summer in the City

Whoooeee, Summer at last. It's so nice to commute to the office in shorts & tee shirt, work a couple of hours, open the door & windows to let the fresh air in, go outside & water the jungle & then come back to work again without putting on shoes. I've been up & down, in & out & really getting some production going until 3:30 when the sun comes blasting in. All I can do then, is close everything up until about 6:30 when the sun goes behind the trees. So I take a nap.  Sometimes I work after midnight until it just starts to get light & the birds start singing. I love summer.

Being semi-retired is not that bad at all. You just have to have enough money to survive it. LOL And along with being semi-retired is more time to knit.

The latest summer socks should've been done by now. Stupid me, I decided to work on both socks at the same time but on different circs. Since I use the 2 circ method, I had one sock on my Chiagoo metal 2.25mm circs & the other sock on my KnitPicks wooden 2.25mm circs. I was merrily knitting along, turned both heels & just about to the toe shaping on both when I suddenly realized one sock was bigger than the other. Almost a half inch bigger. Not longer - oh no - but wider. I had measured both sets of needles with my brass snail measurer & again with my green ruler measurer - both the same size. BUT, one set is metal & one set is wood. Apparently I knit tighter with metal & looser with wood. This has been a surprise to me. I had no idea that gauge could vary depending on the materials from which the needles were made.

Needless to say, one sock got frogged while I cried big tears & is now being resurrected on 4 DP needles.

Monday, June 15, 2015

I just wanted to show off how far I've come with the latest summer socks. I've always maintained that wild & crazy yarn knits up a whole lot faster than boring yarn. Maybe it's the excitement of discovering what that weird mishmash of colors will eventually become. All I can say is that wild yarn knits faster. And I have 26 pairs of wild socks to prove the point.

I can't remember when I bought this yarn or how long
it's been lurking in the stash but it seemed to be just right for short summer socks. This is not a color I could wear anywhere else but on my feet but it screams TROPICAL to me. After the GREEN socks - oh the combo was really nice but still dark - I HAD to knit something bright & wild.

Sock one is ready to have it's heel turned using the Queen Kahuna method. See all those little elastics?? Each one of them marks the end of a short row that I'm due to close when I turn the heel.
I couldn't SEE to pick up the gusset stitches along the flap unless I was outside at noon. So I bought "Crazy Heels & Toes" by Mary Ann Beattie to learn a new method. After kicking the instruction book across the room & a couple of desperation phone calls to my friend Gail, who learned it before me, the lightbulb finally came on.  It wasn't the method that made it difficult to learn, it was the crazy manual.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Summer in the Burbs

Yesterday, was beautiful, hot & dry in my part of the Wet Coast, but I could barely move. My hips ached, my knee wobbled & my damned hands hurt so much I couldn't knit or sign my name properly. I just couldn't believe it. The WeatherBoob said we wouldn't even get a sprinkling of rain & the temps would stay the same when the weather system went by us - it was going east & north BUT my bones knew the barometer was changing. We got a hellova big storm in the night. Now, I don't mind having a barometric TOE but why does the rest have to hurt too??? Grrrr. I totally understand why my mother packed up & moved to the desert climate in Vernon - about 260 miles inland - some 35 years ago & won't even visit the coast anymore. Today, after the storm, nothing hurts. And everything out there looks exactly the same as yesterday, except for the wind. Craziness.

So, yesterday I couldn't knit, but the day before I could, so I started a new pair of Summer Socks. Socks again, you say??? Socks are addictive. They're small. They come in wild & crazy colors. They don't even have to match your clothes or each other. And you can take them with you wherever you go. So I dug in the old stash & found some DROPS Fabel Superwash yarn - in oranges & reds. Mmmmmm HOT HOT HOT. And I think I see a little Lime in there too. It's 75% wool, 25% nylon & 205m in a 50 gm ball. I can make a pair of socks for my size 9 clodhoppers with two balls & even have a little left over for 'Puffs' for someone's blanket-in-progress. Since I'm making Summer Socks, about 3" shorter than usual, there's enough left to knit Barbie an outfit. If she'd wear it.

The Tour de Fleece is coming up very quickly so I decided I'll use it as an excuse to spin the yarn for my Color Craving scarf. I dug through the stash & found some NEON Pink & a braid of NEON Green. I have lots of grey roving & bags of the slightly felted cherry to spin so I think I'm ready to go. I forget where the Neon Pink came from but I totally love it - just think 150 times brighter than the picture. The Greens were chosen by a good Pal who's very good at picking wonderful colorways. The real color doesn't show well through the bag in the photo but that light lime green makes your eyes water. Looking at it next to the pink in the sunshine makes my eye-balls start to melt .  .  .  .  .