Category Archives: finished object: accessories

Baah. Baaaaaaahhhh.

I did enough work today so far that I am rewarding myself with blogging. And some Cheetos. Mmmm, fake cheesy orange Cheetos, mmm…

But anyway. Hey, so there’s this super cool easily customizable scarf/shawl pattern thingie. Maybe you’ve heard of it? One or two people have already knitted it. Well, okay. Maybe one or two thousand.

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I’d seen Clapotis out there in blog land for a while, but didn’t really feel drawn to it. Then suddenly something flicked on in my brain last winter when I was sitting in our chilly common room on campus and thinking, “gee, if only i had a neat little shawl/scarf thing to just cover up but look nice at the same time…” so into my mental queue it went. I always feel a little sheepish casting on for patterns that are just. so. popular, because I wonder if I’m just being, well, a dumb sheep. But then I remind myself that sometimes people do flock to things because they’re actually really awesome, aside from being really popular.


I bought this yarn (Patons SWS in Natural Plum) back in August and cast on in early October. When I got to the middle ‘straight’ section there was a while where I couldn’t look at it, it felt like it was going to go on forever. I stun myself to realize that this project was only with me for a little over a month. Pretty snappy, all things considered. And it really is a genius pattern, I see that now. You could customize for any length or width you want, any gauge or weight, whatever. In retrospect the SWS was possibly a less wise choice, since the dropped stitches were very snaggy (in this pic I had not yet dropped all of them, but I have now), but I do love the colour. And since it’s a little bulkier, I could get away with doing only 1 less repeat and still ending up with a nice shawl-sized Clapotis. I think it’ll live on my desk chair for a little bit.

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It is also kitty-cat-approved. But my next project is very much not kitty-cat safe, since it is currently attached to no less than 4 balls of wool:


This is my interpretation of the December Lights Tam. I’m still a little “hmmmmm” on the colour combination, but I think it’ll work. I am heartened that the pattern is still clearly visible and that the yarns do clearly belong to only 2 colourways. And it’ll be a nice preparatory knit while I wait to get the chance to cast on for a full fair isle sweater. (Soon. Soon, my precious).

Happy Wednesday! Pushing Daisies, anyone?


Filed under cats, fair isle, finished object: accessories

Small victories

Hey, did you know that when you cast on for small knitting projects, you can finish them a lot faster than when you cast on for big projects? Apparently I’d forgotten about that.


I finished the Endpaper Mitts last week and they have since taken up residence in my coat pockets. Then I promptly cast on for the Little Gems Mitts from the Holiday Interweave Knits over the weekend (with Knit Picks Gloss fingering weight and some leftover Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn in ‘Foxy Lady’). I’m a few woven-in ends away from being able wear these, too, although our stupid weather this season seems to be skipping right past the moderate fall in-between-ness and I might need to make a direct route for the mittens, gloves and hats. If I can find them. Maybe I’ll need to knit some more of those, too.


Sock knitting notwithstanding, I tend to forget about the extremities. I get caught up with the sweater knitting or with other big projects (aka the garter stitch blanket which although beautiful continues to eat my soul) and then forget that it is in fact possible to start a project and finish it in a matter of days and not weeks or months. And that this is not only possible but very, very desirable.

Come to think of it, I’ve even started to neglect the sock knitting lately. The madness has got to stop. Hats shall be mine. Socks too, once again. Maybe even some leg warmers if I get crazy. Just as long as I get in the writing first, the bait will be there.

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Miss Beatrice the cat has been most helpful. She patiently sniffs each new book or stack of paper that materializes around my desk in these final stages of writing and desperately trying to cobble together my chapters and then looks around as if to say, “nice to sniff at, but not so much what I’m looking for in a nap time location,” then proceeds to fall into a deep 3-hour nap a few feet away from where I am typing. Not that I’m jealous, uh, or anything like that. ::cough::

Small victories, small victories…

P.S. I am so pleased and a little bit dizzy over the response to Basic Black. Thank you all so much. I hope you like it. The comments have given me a much needed boost and I hope not to neglect my design notebook for too much longer.


Filed under finished object: accessories, real life miscellaney

Inferno Legwarmers – 2 ways

At Knit the Classics, participants are challenged to work on a knitted or otherwise crafted project to parallel the ‘classic’ novel selection of each month. It’s sort of an online book club with the option of putting your crafting skills to work at the same time. The May 2007 selection was ‘The Inferno’ by Dante Alighieri. So, naturally, I decided to make legwarmers with flames on them. You know, so the flames of Hell can literally lick at your heels. That makes sense, right? ;)

Inferno1large Inferno4

Download the free pattern here:

[EDIT]: Hey, look, now it’s a prize-winning pattern, too! Aw, shucks.

Yarn: Patons Classic Merino in ‘black’and ‘regency’. You would need 2 balls of black and 1 ball of regency if you make 1 of each version or if you make both with the flame pattern, and 1 ball of each colour if you are making both with the striped version.
Length: 16.5 ins
Size: To fit leg circumference 14-16 ins around at upper calf.
Needles: 4.5mm and 3.5mm DPNs
Cast on: May 22
Cast off: June 2
Notes: Since I couldn’t decide between the flame motif and the nine circles (one for each of the circles of hell through which Dante descends), I decided to do one of each. There are instructions for both included in the pattern. There is also a vertical band of k1, p1 ribbing at the front and back of the legwarmer to add a bit more cling and structural integrity.

I must say quite like the contrast between the black and the red/orange variegated – it’s one of the new variegated shades of Patons Classic Merino and this was a fun excuse to try it out since I’ve only ever used the solids. And since it is officially June and now in the land of red/black/metallics for Project Spectrum, I suppose I could count this as my first project for that too, right? Look at that, it’s a two-fer!


Filed under finished object: accessories, free pattern, knit the classics

Like a little sandal-sized hug




Are going to help me wear these:



Every spring I go through the same song and dance when sandals weather comes around. I rotate through the 5 or 6 pairs of sandals in my closet (all of which are comfort sandals, mind you, no high heels or flashy beach sandals or nothin’), each of which will bruise and blister my feet horribly in a slightly different location. After 3 weeks or so, my feet and the sandals reach some kind of truce and the blisters stop. But those 3 weeks make me want to whimper. And we’re talking any sandals, here, thongs, slides, wedges, buckles, t-straps…There’s some combination of the arch of my foot and the brisk pace of my walking (walking is transportation for me) that just does me in every year, for a while. I have blisters on top of blisters.

So I decided to put the knitting on it and took up some more of that leftover bit of Lorna’s Laces from the Endpaper Mitts, and made myself these little socklets. They’re stupid fast, and while I’d be willing to bet lots of money I’m not the only knitter out there to invent something like this, I’ll tell you what I did. It’s very simple:

1. Cast on 64 sts with 2.25mm needles (This # can be sized up or down depending on the best size for you – as long as you cast on a multiple of 4 sts). Join to work in round. (This is the same # of sts I would normally use in a sock foot, on one needle size smaller than what I would normally use. I get “regular” sock gauge of 8 sts/inch on 2.75mm needles, so going down to 2.25mm needles puts me around 8.5/9 sts/inch.)

2. Work k1, p1 ribbing for 5 rounds.

3. Work k3, p1 ribbing until the piece measures 2.25 ins from beginning.

4. Work k1, p1 ribbing for 5 rounds.

5. Bind off, but not so tightly that the thing won’t stretch over your foot.

I’ll likely be trying another pair or two, possibly decreasing yet another needle size and possibly doing just the k3 p1 ribbing to see how it goes. I want these suckers to be nice and clingy.


The socklets and I are spending the afternoon on campus and then heading off to represent with the Yarn Harlot at the Canadian Launch of her book. It’s gonna be super, I am sure, and my parents and several friends are coming along. Can’t wait to see all the crowds that show up.

May your knitting not be far from you today…


Filed under finished object: accessories, free pattern

Thesis before Knitting

I’m on to the 2nd of my kilt hose stockings, but I’m going to try to hold myself off from taking a photo until I’m finished both of them – I guess this is my way of trying to stave off Second Sock Syndrome ;)

But, I realized I never showed a Finished Object photo of something else I finished a little while ago:


I think I’ll wear these for the Yarn Harlot event on Friday, since most of my knits are just too warm for the weather we’ll get this week!

As I’ve been knitting the kilt hose with the Apple Laine sock yarn, I’ve developed some concerns about the yarn. Like Kelly, I encountered a skein with a significant # of joins in it – i.e. more than 3, which is enough to make me sit up and notice. However, my other concern is the consistency of colouration in the dye:


I don’t know if you can see it well enough in this photo, but the effect is as though someone has come along with a dark magic marker and drawn short lines across the sock. This has happened in both of the 2 skeins I have worked with so far. And because it’s the sort of thing that is more noticeable in the knitted fabric than in the yarn itself, I didn’t notice it fully until after I’d reached the foot and was on the home stretch of the stockinette.

When I did contact the Apple Laine people about my concerns, they said I could send them my original invoice and the offending skeins for a refund – and I would expect this kind of response and certainly appreciate it. But since that would involve ripping up an entire kilt hose stocking, I’m not sure that would ease my heartbreak at all. I’m debating whether or not to do this, but I’m leaning towards not – ripping up an entire stocking at this point would only lead to more anguish. And then I would either a) have no yarn at all, or b) have more yarn that might still be suspect.

[EDIT]: There’s an update on this; They have offered to send me some replacement skeins once new ones have been dyed. I think this is very generous and I will be happy to see how they knit up.

Moral of the story – I cannot fully recommend this yarn (at least in the solids – I don’t imagine these dyeing issues would happen in the multicoloured variants), and I don’t think I will be buying any more, which is a shame because the colours are nice and the yarn itself feels lovely and soft. It behaves more like a light sport weight which is why I chose to use it here in the stockings. I’ll knit up the stuff I’ve got and leave it at that. If you’ve got some of this yarn at home, I really recommend giving it a careful look while it’s in the unwound hank, before using it. Check for joins, check for discolouration BEFORE you knit it up, and get a refund if you think it is warranted.

That’s all for today…Must work on Thesis before knitting, must work on Thesis before knitting…


Filed under finished object: accessories, yarn review

Proof that I do still knit things

Hey look, two Finished Objects! Just in time for the holiday season (for me, me, me! Yes there’s some gift knitting, too, don’t worry.)

(Striped Hat and Scarf – Pattern and wool from Philosopher’s Wool. I did the hat in stockinette stitch instead of garter stitch.)

I may just be sabotoging myself now by even suggesting such a thing as a yarn diet, but I’m very intrigued by Wendy’s Knit-from-Stash 2007 project. While I’m sure my stash is NOwhere near the size of knitters more experienced and/or more obsessive than me, it’s gotten bigger in the last year and has plenty of projects’ worth of yarn to keep me busy for the next several months. I may just have to sign myself up. (The one exception is that we are still allowed to buy sock yarn. In the words of the immortal Yarn Harlot – it’s like methodone, right? Something to just take the edge off.) ;)

Also, give it up for Twig, who just finished an awesome Gansey sweater for her hubby, just in time for the holidays. That’s love, baby.

I don’t imagine I’ll be posting a WHOLE lot over the next week or two over the holidays, as busy-ness and preparattions (well, and a bit of laziness) collide, so allow me to wish all of you out there a very, very happy holiday season and all the best for 2007. It’s a privilege to be among so many fantastic knitters out here on the Interwebs.


Filed under finished object: accessories

Life goes on, and so does the knitting

Yep, nothing like going on a trip for a week and a half to put your life into fast forward afterwards! I am being pulled kicking and screaming back into the real world. Thank goodness I still have my knitting to cling to in the evenings.

Quick note re: Ivy yarns and substitutions. I’ve put a link in the sidebar to my previous post where I talked about yarn, and I’ll edit that post as I hear about more successful yarn subs, so do keep me updated as you knit Ivy! And for those of you who are sticking with the Quechua, I’m sure you’re in for a fuzzy treat. When I got mine in the mail I couldn’t stop picking it up, it’s so smooth and soft.

Fetching, isn’t it?

(Fetching, in Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, eggplant)

I did manage to only use one ball, but I think this was only because paranoia took over and I skipped a row on the 2nd glove. (I only did 17 rounds instead of 18 in the main ribbing part). I think I would have made it through the pattern fully if I had been more careful about minimizing the leftover tails from cast-on and cast-off (I tend to use long-tail cast-on and end up with wayyyy too much left over on the end). These really are super warm, even having them on for a few minutes for the picture was plenty for me today. I’ll save them for cold winter days in the library. I think I might be getting out some of the worsted weight yarn in my stash to make some of these as gifts as well – I could see lengthening them a bit.

September Socks

(Basic Socks, with Austermann Step, dark blue)

These are just a basic sock pattern, following the Yarn Harlot’s instructions in Knitting Rules – ever since I read that book I have never needed a sock pattern if it’s just a basic pair that I’m knitting, and it’s awesome. (I’m sure that was the point of her writing that chapter ;) ) These are my second pair in the Austermann Step yarn, which is the superwash sock yarn that has aloe vera and jojoba oil in it. So soft. I have a third ball waiting in the stash, although it’s kind of a beige-ish colour and now I’m not sure I like the colour as much, poor thing. (That won’t stop me from knitting it, of course.)

Oh yeah, and if your eyesight is really good you’ll notice that the little yellow post-it has my scribblings reminding me when to catch my fall TV shows. Nice, Glenna, you really want to admit to the world what you’re watching? At least I hadn’t written ‘Bones’ on the list thank goodness. I already have that one memorized. Well, a girl’s gotta have something to knit to, that’s what I always say ;)

Last but not least….

This is the current status of the Simple Stripes fair isle socks. I like them again now that I’ve had a break from them. (I had the 1st one half-knitted when I had to rip it out and start over. It was traumatic.) I might even be able to finish the pair this week – two pairs of socks finished in 1 month! Somebody stop me!

Happy Tuesday to all…


Filed under finished object: accessories, finished object: socks