Kids do the cutest things

Last Sunday my husband, my Mother in Law and I went to our friends house for dinner. I brought my sock project with me to work on while I was there. Now, my husband is their daughter Victoria’s Godfather and all night she referred to him as “Godfather” It was completely adorable! 

Victoria was very curious about my knitting and was watching me intently for a while. She asked if I could teach her and I promised when she learned to read (she is not quite 4 yet) I would show her how to knit. I am thinking if she really does want to try, I will buy her one of those knitting tube for kids. I kind of felt bad. I didn’t want her to think I believed she couldn’t do it but I can’t imagine teaching a 4 yr old to knit. 

After dinner we were all at the table drinking coffee and having a great time. I was sitting there with my socks and again Victoria asked me to teach her. I told her again, when you can read, I will teach you. She assured me she could read very well. She leaves the table and comes back and sits next to me. In her hands she has 2 of those twisty things you close your bread bag with and a sock from her draw. She starts making knitting motions with her hand and informs me that she has learned to knit. She is going to knit a sock for her Godfather! I thought this was the most adorable sight! Gosh was she cute! Before we left she asked me to make her some socks and a hat and I promised I would after I finished her Godfather’s socks. I  went right to Ravelry to find some cute patterns.

About the sock, I have maybe 2 more inches to go before I start shaping the toes. I really had to make it quite long to accommodate the  large circumference of Marc’s foot. I am really happy with my first sock so far.

 

Here is a picture of Victoria at our wedding and the other night with her Godfather.

 

 

Victoria at our wedding

Victoria at our wedding

 

The Godfather

The Godfather

I was victorious over the gusset!

I figured it out and didn’t even need to go to the LYS! It was pouring rain yesterday and super windy. I did not want to get in the car and go to the LYS to get this sock done. There wasn’t even a guarantee anyone that could help me would be there. So, with the help of the links below and my own common sense I gave it a try. If I messed it up then I would go to the LYS and beg for help.

First thing I did was what seemed obvious. I picked up the first set of gusset stiches with the needle end I left off with. It made sense. To complicate things, I had too many stitches. I had to backtrack a little and get rid of some yo’s that I had inadvertently done. My yarn ups cam out great and I picked up the extra stitch and left the marker. OK, it looked good.

 

Picked up first set of gusset stitches

Picked up first set of gusset stitches

Now I had to figure out what the heck she meant by ‘the distant 10’. She says to pick up with the other needle (I will refer to this as the ‘instep needle’) and it sounded like she meant the distant 10 stitches that were on the working needle (we will call this the ‘heal flap needle’). What was throwing me off was that left a big gap where the other side of the gusset stitches were waiting to be picked up. What about them? How was I to get them on the instep needle if I had these 10 stitches hanging on the end? Just to play around I put the stitches on the other needle and looked at it. It didn’t make sense. 

This is where I had the aha moment. If I knit half the instep with the heal flap needle that would give me the required stitch amount + 10 on the heal flap needle.  I would leave the distant 10 on the heal flap needle and go ahead and complete the instep with the  instep needle and then be at the right spot to knit up the other gusset stitches. After I knit up the gusset stitches, then I would transfer over the Distant 10! That made perfect sense!

Here I am after I knit up the second set of gussets. You can see the Distant 10 there ready to be transfered over. Now I have the correct amount of stitches on each needle and I am happy as a pig in $h!t

 

The Distant 10

The Distant 10

Now I could work on the gusset section of the sock. It was quite easy and now I was loving the 2 circular needle method! 

 

Gusset all knitted up

Gusset stitches all picked up

 

 

Knitting the Gusset

Knitting the Gusset

And here is the progress I made by the end of the day. Smooth sailing from here!

 

Toe here I come!

Toe here I come!

Oh happy day!

This Gusset Stuff is Driving me Crazy!

I was really making progress on my first attempt at a sock…. until I finished the heal flap. I got to the section entitled picking up the gusset stitches. I then became totally clueless. I wasn’t sure which end of the needle to use to pick up the stitches first off. Then it tells to you to pick up a stitch at the end and place a marker. A marker for what? Then she says to look at the other end of your needle to see the other stitches waiting to be picked up. Yes I see them. OK. Uh, what do I do with them? The yarn is on the other side of my sock, so I can’t pick them up. Then the directions state to transfer 10 ‘distant stitches to the other needle. What ‘distant stitches’? I have no clue what she means by this. 

I was a little disappointed, but not too worried. I just went to bed and was quite confident I could google around and find answers. Well it wasn’t so easy. There is nothing on the web (that I could find) demonstrated what Cat means by the ‘distant stitches’. What I really need is to see it done. Then I will get it for sure. I checked UTube but there was nothing demonstating the gusset. I searched the Ravelry forums and there were plenty of people stuck at the same spot as me, but no clear answers.

I did find one thread that was a little helpful here. This person was stuck at the same spot as me and he does get some excellent advise that helped me a lot too, but nothing about those ‘distant’ stitches.

What I will have to do is go to the yarn shop with my directions and hope that someone can help me figure out what this means. Otherwise I will email Cat Bordhi with the question and hope she will help me out.

Here is how it looks now:

 

The Sock

The Sock

and here is my heal turn. Not too bad.

 

 

Heal Turn

Heal Turn

On a happier note, I fixed that dropped stitch on the Mangia Shawl. It doesn’t look perfect. You can see it looks a little pulled, but I think it will settle in and loosen up a bit as I continue to work on it.

Here is picture of the fix. A big thank you to Kelley Petkun for her knitpicks podcast number 52 on how to pick up dropped stitches. It was a great help!

Here is the shawl now. Can you see the tightness?

 

dsc03160

My first pair of socks

I have started my first pair of socks. They are coming along slowly. I am just not used to knitting with such a tiny yarn. I much prefer knitting with bulkier yarn. Here is what I have gotten done so far.

 

 

Here is what I have gotten done so far

Here is what I have gotten done so far

Speaking of socks, I just got a bunch of sock yarn today. There was a LYS in Cold Spring that closed in May 😦 The owner still has lots of inventory and is selling it out of her home in Garrison. I stopped by there today and everything was half off! I got enough yarn to make 6 pairs of socks and a beautiful Wool/Silk blend of Reynolds yarn. I also scapped up some Addi Turbo needles which were priced at 40% off! Here are some pictures of her house and all the yarn she had.

 

Here is the Reynolds yarn

Here is the Reynolds yarn

 

 

 

 

and some of the sock yarn I got

and some of the sock yarn I got

 

Just some of the yarn she offered at half price

Just some of the yarn she offered at half price

 

and even more in her living room

and even more in her living room

 

all over her bed....

all over her bed....

 

The poor woman doesn't even have room for her clothes...

The poor woman doesn't even have room for her clothes...

The least I could do was relieve her of some of her inventory!

Ravelry Rocks!

Wow, what a great weekend. I got all my housework done Friday night and first thing Saturday morning because I was thinking I may finally get my Ravelry invite and I was right! I had a lot of fun setting up my account there. Found myself taking a lot of pictures of my small stash and my various projects. I already have a few friends there and joined a few groups. Would you believe they have a group for Rush fans?! Joined that one right away. They even have a Tarot group! Wow. Every kind of group you can think of, they have.

I also spent a bit of time fixing a dropped stitch on the Mangia Shawl. I went to an old Knitpicks podcast specifically about dropped stitches and it was a big help. A little scary too for sure. It went down 11 rows, so it took a bit of time and concentration, but it is fixed now and I can continue on with it. 

Speaking of Ravelry again, I found out about a yarn shop up near where my ex husband lives and decided to drop in this weekend after I dropped off my daughter. It is called Yarn Central and is located in Hopewell Junction, NY. I can not say enough good things about this store. The woman there was so friendly and welcoming. She was very knowledgeable and helped me pick out a good sock yarn for my first pair of socks. I also picked up Cat Bordhi’s book, Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles. I think this will be the perfect method for me. I can’t wait to visit this store again. It was WELL worth the trip. Even the customers were so friendly and welcoming. They wanted me to stay and knit with them and I just felt so welcome. I even met a woman that belonged to Ravelry. By the time I got home she had added me as a friend. Doesn’t get better than that. Big difference from the Peekskill Yarn shop where I felt like I was interrupting them.

Mangia Shawl

I am making good progress on the Mangia Shawl kit that I bought in Rhinebeck from Decadent Fibers. I am very pleased with it.

dsc03054My sister Kim ordered the same kit from the decadentfibers.com website and is looking forward to starting her shawl on Thanksgiving weekend when we will all be at our Mother’s house upstate. Kim will most likely be borrowing my circular needles so I must be done by then. Just 5 more inches to go and then the ruffley ends.

Once this is complete, I plan on making some hats and mittens with my alpaca yarn and work on the Fair Isle I am making for my Mother in Law. I can’t wait to give it to her! 

I am still waiting for my Ravelry invite! Boy am I getting antsy! I don’t know why, but I can’t wait to set myself up in there and join some groups and knitalongs. I know it is going to be a lot of fun.

My Knitting History Part 2

I love books. I love to read novels, but even more so, I like to read books to learn. I have taught myself a few different things from books. When they opened a Barnes and Noble store near me, I was thrilled. I would hang out there as much as possible and check out books on all sorts of topics. One day, I found a book on Fair Isle knitting by Eugene and Ann Bourgeois called Fair Isle Sweaters Simplified. I loved the sweaters in the book and decided I had to make one. I purchased the book and later a sweater kit from their website. I wasn’t very good at finishing off sweaters. I had actually never finished one, so this was perfect because the Philosopher’s Wool Fair Isle Sweaters are knit in the round. I used the Fall Colorway and knit a Color Your Own Sweater. It was so easy and fun. It took me only 3 months to finish!

Here I am wearing the Philosopher's Wool sweater I made.

Here I am wearing the Philosopher Wool sweater in the Fall colorway

 

I ordered another kit in the Night Sky colorway, but never managed to start it until just recently. I have one sleeve done so far. It is the picture in the banner of my page. 

Another project I have started as a result of a trip to the 2004 Rhinebeck Sheep and Wool Festival. I had just started dating my husband and had not yet met his Mom. I thought going to the fair together would be a great idea! Besides I wanted to make something for my new love and what better place to get some wool? I ended up buying some rather bulky, fuzzy wool and deciding I would make my own pattern. I started knitting in the round a simple cable pattern. It is now going to be a blanket because it is coming out WAY too big, not to mention fuzzy. Every time I worked on it there would be fuzz all over everything! I don’t know what to do about that.

The Way Too Big and Fuzzy Sweater!

I worked on this sporadically over the past few years. Usually only if it were colder weather due to the size of it. 

This year I went to the Rhinebeck fair again. I had gone last year, but didn’t purchase much. It was fun to walk around and check everything out, but I really couldn’t afford to spend much. I ended up buying a skein of alpacka yarn to make some fingerless gloves for my daughter. Still haven’t started those. So, this year my Aunt and Uncle were coming up to visit and when talking to my Uncle about what we could do while they were up, he mentioned the idea of maybe going to a local fair. Well what do you know. It was the same weekend as the Sheep and Wool! I really didn’t think he would care too much for a Sheep and Wool Festival, but they thought it was a great idea! Cool! My sister Kim knits too and is interested in buying some Alpachas for a farm and my sister Lisa is a little crafty too. We ended up having a great time. I purchased some mohair yarn for a shawl that I am whizzing through. 

The Shawl from this years Sheep and Wool Festival

The Shawl from this years Sheep and Wool Festival

I also picked up the itch to knit again. I started up on the Philosopher wool sweater that has been sitting in my closet for years and started this shawl. Oh no, we can’t stop there! I have bought about 6 different knitting books from Amazon and wool for 2 more projects and downloaded tons of knitting podcasts to listen to and get ideas from. I am loving it!

 

Some beautiful Lopi Wool for a sweater and some more for a shawl

Some beautiful Lopi Wool for a sweater and some more for a shawl

So here we go! I don’t think this is just a phase. I have gone to a couple of knitting meetups at the local coffee shop and have signed up for an invite to Ravelry so I can share with others. Looking forward to tracking and writing about my knitting projects here as well!

My knitting history Part 1

I am Amy and I love to knit.

I am really excited to be starting this blog so I can share my projects, nightmares and wonderful successes with anyone who would like to hear.

I started knitting when I was a young kid. My Grandma and Aunt Judy were excellent knitters and I wanted to be able to knit like them. They were able to teach me the basic stitches before I completely lost interest. This was in the 70’s. That’s ok, because the seeds were planted and the basics were learned. Years later when my son was born, my Grammy and Aunt knit numerous sets, blankets and booties for him and this got the bug going again for me. This was in the mid 80’s. My sister paid for a knitting class for me as a gift and I knit a sampler vest. This was the first project I ever completed. It came out quite good for a first project. I don’t know what happened to it, but I did wear it proudly for quite a while.

Warp ahead to the early 90’s. After my son was born, and I made the lonely vest, my time was spent working, going to school and being a Mom. No time (or money for that matter) for knitting. In 92 I graduated college and got a good paying job. As a reward, I set out to make a fisherman’s sweater. This is a sad story. I loved the cable knitting. I just loved it. I worked on it gleefully. If I had any troubles with it Grammy was there to help. It was a hooded zip up sweater. I still have the pattern book here somewhere and some day I vow to make this sweater.

What happened? I got pregnant with my daughter in ’93. This put the fisherman sweater on hold and I attempted to make a baby sweater. It came out awful. It was a sky blue with strings of mini pom poms knitted in with it. I put it on my daughter once and decided once was enough. Don’t know what happened to it and don’t think I really want to know.

Ok, back to the fisherman sweater. I am up to the front panels now and I have to shape the hood. It is not coming out well at all. Very sadly, my Aunt had passed away and my Grammy, heartbroken after loosing another child (my Dad, her oldest died when I was 11), didn’t want to knit any more. The only thing that put a smile on her face were her great grandchildren. Because of this the fisherman went on hold. Before my daughter’s first birthday, my Grandma passed away. The fisherman never was completed and recently when going through my closet, I found it. Moths had gotten to it and there were stains on it from who knows what. I decided to throw it away. I will start fresh and eventually make this sweater if I can find that pattern.