if wishes were horses …

trekking, originally uploaded by katie:m.

… well, okay. It doesn’t really work with yarn.

This is comfort yarn, bought to remind me that this year wasn’t only about struggling, but also about discovering some lovely surprises. I’m leaving next week and I’m not at all ready.


[clever title]

I’m out of clever titles at the moment, so I’ll just share some yarn pr0n.* I finally wound up my Tausendschön sock yarn, color Ara {ravel it} — and, boy, is it BRITE, which makes me love it even more. I’m flashy at heart. (See this post over at glampyre; it helped me embrace my inner flashy.) Right now, I’m considering the perfect pattern to pair with such eye-searing yarn.
On the other end of the flashy spectrum, exhibit 2: some lovely Rancho multi sock yarn from Araucania, color PY498 {ravel it}. It reminds me of pebbles or quartz or something earthy beachy like that. In a potentially controversial move, I decided to use this yarn for the Interweave Sockalong [blog] {ravel it} and knit some August socks in September. Hence, the Waving Lace lovelies above [interweave] {ravel it}.
So far, the pattern is pretty, simple, and quick to knit. A winner! The scalloped lace cuff was a bit too girly for me (although I wouldn’t hesitate to knit said girly cuff for my sister) but the 1×1 ribbing option was perfect. Rancho multi is a bit on the thicker side of sock weight — I’m using US2/3.00mm circs — and the pattern is very stretchy, so I’m a bit worried about fit. Yarn permitting, I might make the leg slightly longer, allowing the cuff to sit slightly higher on the leg. Still too early to tell.

for scale

Alice is not impressed. She can’t lay on socks.
* The more I think about it, the less I mind the yarn pr0n moniker. This was under discussion a while ago, on Ashley’s blog [with a follow up here] among others. I’m sure it was on Ravelry too, but I can’t be bothered to find the specific thread. My view: play and playfulness need to come back into the debate, not just the super-serious rejection or reclamation of a term usually employed to exploit, objectify, and/or pathologize women and (female) sexuality. Because surely using the term “porn” to describe a photograph of yarn is — to the wider world of (admittedly woefully unenlightened) non-knitters — already kind of silly.

big blue button

I love the big blue button.  It’s gigantor sized.  The cowl is pretty nice, too.
The cowl is just the zeebee hat without the short-row shaping: lots of garter stitch seamed up to a cosy tube.  I added the crochet button loop and the gigantic button just for fun.  My modelled shots were less than flattering — to both me and the cowl.  The Royal Tweed is soft and squooshy … perfect for fall.
I’m quite happy with the result.  Even if I did manage to place the button on the side with the seam.  Oh well.
pattern: zeebee hat by schmeebot
mods: just the tube, ma’am
yarn: Lana Grossa Royal Tweed, 2 balls (=100g/200m) (color 26)
needles: US11/8.00mm
started: September 5, 2008
finished: September 7, 2008


Last night I enjoyed a movie* (okay, two**) and finally knit up my beloved Naturwolle Michels.  This time, in color 120: Hawaii.
This resulted in my second pattern.  These patterns are just kind of silly and simple — not any kind of entree into the world of knitwear design.  But I’m taking a bit of an academic break right now … and my energy has to go somewhere.
Thus, the ucipital mapilary cowl:
“Just because there’s no such thing as the “ucipital mapilary” doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep it warm.  Screenwriter Samson Raphaelson coined the fictional phrase for the 1941 Hitichcock thriller Suspicion.  The actual anatomical term is “suprasternal notch” (fossa jugularis sternalis): the visible dip where the clavicles join the sternum.  Often regarded as a mark of beauty, Johnnie Aysgarth makes it the focus of his hill-top wooing.  Ucipital mapilary or suprasternal notch, Cary Grant can call it whatever he likes.
The flared bottom of this cowl is perfect for keeping your ucipital mapilary warm, cosy, and ready for wooing.”
Find the free .pdf on the pattern(s) page.
* Took itself much more seriously (richies!) and was somehow more incoherent than I remembered.  But I do love some Andrew McCarthy and James Spader.  Mannequin!
** So good and the perfect antidote to an over-ernest high school saga.  But seriously, Haylie Duff?

it takes two

stornoway, originally uploaded by katie:m.
I am ridiculously excited to have completed (and written up) my very first original pattern. Although these socks make no claims to innovative creativity or revolutionary construction, they are quick, easy, and warm.
“These cosy slipper-socks were inspired by a friend’s trip to Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis. Drawing on traditional aran knitting, the simple mirrored cable motif represents fishermen’s ropes. The idea being that the means to pick yourself up, haul yourself in, and keep on going are right at your feet.
N.B. The socks are knit from the toe up using the “magic loop” method. The directions assume a basic knowledge of toe-up sock construction, including casting on and short-row heel construction.”
Right now I’m trying to figure out the ins and outs of setting up a Ravelry shop and of getting the file ready to download on the blog. If you’ll bear with me, the free .pdf will be available soon.
I think I’ve gotten the .pdf posted to the blog, on the new “pattern” page above.  Let me know if there are any problems.  Happy knitting!

you got to know when to hold ’em

This is going to be a long one. I’m finally taking some time to update the blog — and not just post more pictures from flickr.

There have been quick a few upheavals, changes, obstacles, and problems keeping me occupied lately. But now that the dust has settled a bit, things are looking up. I’ve actually had to think about what I want to be doing with myself down the line and at the moment. A few tentative answers have presented themselves.

First off, I’m packing up in Germany, getting the apartment cleared out, and wondering at how I managed to accumulate so much yarn in such a relatively short period of time. The whole while attempting not to buy very much yarn. FAIL.

So deutsche post is going to be seeing a lot of me.

And speaking of post, this has been a very exciting couple of weeks for packages. In a fit of comfort seeking, I ordered up a little something from Yarnissima. Which resulted in the most awesome package ever:

yarnissima / wollmeise

Seriously. Sea shells? Stickers? Laminated EZ-reference chart? Wow. It was like a carnival in a box.

As you might be able to guess from the blue, I went with the Spina di Pesce kit: ravelled. Not only is it perfect for this iteration of Project Spectrum : Elements, but it is quite perfect in itself.

yarnissima / wollmeise

This is my first Wollmeise experience: the colors are saturated, the yarn itself is firm yet soft, the pattern is amazing. I’m excited to get started.

However, I’m trying to clear off my needles before digging in to a rather cable-rific sock project.

So on to the secondly: knitting. Strangely, most of my projects at the moment are rather Scotland-centered: a couple of wooly gifts for a friend heading to the Outer Hebrides in the winter (brrr) and the Shetland Triangle shawl (still in the blob stage).

The gifts:

Just your basic Dolores Park Cowl in some lovely blue Arya Big (color 306), a bulky wool-blend yarn so new it’s not even listed on Ravelry yet. Imagine.

Dolores Park

I don’t remember when I finished this, but I do remember that it only took one evening. Look at my Project Spectrum mojo: so blue, so purple. It is a cowl full of water-y inspiration, heading for the very watery realm of the Isle of Lewis.

The accompaniment to the cowl is a pair of wooly, watery, worsted-weight socks.


These couldn’t be a faster knit, with a cable thrown in for a bit of interest here and there.  I’m actually writing up my very first pattern for them: even though the socks aren’t anything particularly special or complicated, I thought it might be a fun way to try out pattern writing.  Initial reactions: man, it’s hard, but kind of enjoyable.  I’m just now finishing up the second sock and proofreading.

In between pattern jiggering, packing, Wollmeise lust, and the occasional stop in prospectus land, I’m also contemplating what my lovely new Malabrigo sock yarn wants to be when it grows up.  It will have something to do with September’s choices over at the Interweave Sockalong, I predict.  A whole slew of fall knitting magazines arrived in the mail (woohoo!) and the Bacchus socks look mighty tempting.

And now we’re caught up.