Knitting |Rockin' Sock Club by Judy @ 1:53 PM

Salish Sea Socks
Salish Sea Socks

I have finished the Salish Sea Socks. This pattern was part of the 2007 Rockin’ Sock Club. I don’t know when, or if, it will be made available to the general sock-knitting public.

I had a lot of fun with this pattern and only wish that I hadn’t gotten distracted (oooh… shiny…) and let them languish for so long.

As is her wont, Cat has come up with a brilliant pattern. I really love the way that the gusset increases are hidden inside the wavy pattern on the foot. And the traveling garter-stitch rib on the ankle was a fun knit. I actually behaved myself and followed Cat’s instructions – with one change. I modified the heel turn to use the math from the smallest size given in the pattern. I paired that with the gusset increases that were called for by my actual size. Et voilà – a sock that fits my skinny heel. I still sort of prefer my own heel turn to Cat’s, but this worked pretty well and I’m always glad to learn new techniques to add to my repertoire.

Today the sun is shining, but I have the feeling that the cold has not completely loosened its grasp on the Northwest. I will probably get to wear these a time or two before it’s time to close up the sock drawer for the summer.

By the way, if you haven’t there recently, go over to the Blue Moon welcome page. I don’t know how long it will be up there, but right now the picture shows the PDX Knit Bloggers at the Yarn Harlot event. And there’s Flat Judy right in front. 😀

The Knitters Without Borders colorway is now available on the Blue Moon site. $3 from each skein purchased goes directly to Doctors Without Borders.

The pictures of this colorway in the skein do not do it justice. I’ve already cast on toes, and I’ll have a pic soon. Until then, go over to FiberQat’s blog to see how wonderful it looks on her needles. Then go buy some. You know you want to.

The Particulars:

  • Yarn: Blue Moon Socks That Rock Medium (100% superwash merino / 5.5oz, 380yds per skein); one skein of Bella Coola with a goodly bit left over
  • Needles: a pair of Addi Lace 24″ circulars, US#2
  • Pattern: Salish Sea Socks by Cat Bordhi – one of the 2007 Rockin’ Sock Club offerings
  • Modifications: I followed the pattern pretty much as written. The only change was to use the heel width from the smallest size with the heel height from the size I was knitting otherwise. I tweaked the number of wing stitches accordingly.

Rockin' Sock Club by Judy @ 8:01 AM

Lenore has arrived
Lenore has arrived

Hurry up!

Or at least that’s what I hear it saying.

A raven landed in my mailbox a couple of day ago, courtesy of the Rockin’ Sock Club. Isn’t this just yummy? It’s a little preview of the new Raven colorways that will be available at Blue Moon starting on November 5th. This is Lenore. I love, love, love what Tina has done with these rich, dark, colors. Believe me, the picture does not begin to do justice to the rich maroon and dark gray and black.

I even like the pattern this time. 😉

The pattern is by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. It’s a top-down lace pattern. But, after perusing the chart closely, I don’t see any reason why it can’t be knit toe-up. I’m going to swatch the lace at the top of the leg to make sure. But it’s a good chance that there are a pair of Lenore in my near future.

But first I have to finish the baby sweater. And, thanks to the encouragement of the PDX Knit Bloggers at the Monday gathering last night, I’m almost there! I just have to bind off about 1/2 of the trim, and then weave the ends. Piece of cake!

The Never-Ending Clapotis
The Never-Ending Clapotis

It’s the Clapotis that never ends,
and it goes on and on my friends.
Some knitter started knitting it
not knowing what it was,
and she’ll continue knitting it
forever just because
it’s the Clapotis that never ends…

Well. You get the idea.

I really love the first Clapotis I knit. I still get tons of complements on it when I wear it. And I thought that a large Clapotis would be such a great wrap to use in the office, on those days when the air conditioner turns the place into an arctic deep freeze and I want to call Building Services to inquire if they have heard about global warming, and that maybe, just maybe, in some cases a little of it would be OK.

So I started Clapotis #2. It was a long time ago. It’s been listed on the sidebar of shame since the dawn of time, and I found a post in which I bragged (oh, if I could take back the words) of making good progress on it. Two. Years. Ago. Yeah. Real good progress, there, Judy. 🙄

Clapotis #2 is being knit in Elspeth Lavold Silky Tweed. I purchased a number of skeins. Don’t remember how many now, but enough to make a good-sized wrap. With Clapotis #1 I’d had barely enough yarn to finish — there was less than 6″ left, and I’d had to do some creative decreasing to make it. Not wanting to repeat that experience with Clapotis #2, I increased through one skein of yarn. The plan was then to knit the straight part until I had one skein of yarn left. Then work the decreases. I’m glad, now, that I planned it that way because I never would have remembered any other non-standard plan for this long. As we’ve all established, gentle reader, I’m a short-attention-span knitter.

I’m pleased to report that, after some decent knitting time yesterday, I’m down to 1-1/2 balls of yarn. I’m a mere 1/2 of a ball away from starting the decreases. There is actually an end in sight.

Dare I hope I may actually finish this puppy?

The new sock club delivery came yesterday. I have no pictures. I didn’t expect to like every single thing all year. The jury is still out on this one. While this time I do like the pattern, I’m not sure yet about the yarn. We’ll see.

I have many things on my knitting mind right now, anyway. I need to start my Sockapalooza pal’s socks really soon. Really soon. and now that it’s summer again, I’d like to knit the cotton bag that’s been in my head for about a year. I am going to attempt to knit some of those UFOs over there and get them off my list. So I can add new ones. You know how it goes.

It’s quiet around here. #1 Son is off on the road again for three weeks. I had coffee with him yesterday, served along with the usual mom-reminders: drive carefully, be cautious, wear a sweater if you’re cold, eat right, etc. He said, Mom, you’ve told me all that before. You don’t have to keep telling me. I replied that just because your kids grow up doesn’t mean that you stop being a mom, and I was going to keep telling him all that stuff until he was old himself because one of these days, who knows, he might listen. 😉

Spanish Lavender Basket Wave sock progress

For far too long I have not been able to post. Not because I’ve been too busy, although that has contributed. No… the latest WordPress upgrade rendered me incapable of actually saving anything I wrote.

If you visited over the last week or so, you may have noticed that sometimes things looked different. Sometimes there were features missing. Sometimes there were whole chunks of PI missing. Sometimes nothing worked at all. There was nobody I could call because… I’m my own webmaster. I will spare you the long, sad tale of sleepless nights spent slaving over the keyboard, frantically searching for an answer; the countless plugins deactivated / upgraded / reactivated only to be trashed; the numerous discussion groups combed for answers; the multiple configurations tried on my local desktop that worked fine, only to be hosed (technical term) when uploaded to where everyone else could see it. Late Friday night I found the answer: Move from PHP4 to PHP5 on my host’s web server. All things magically began to work again. Posts could be saved without the dreaded blank, white screen appearing (think Window’s Blue Screen Of Death, only worse). Ahhhhhhhhh … sleep

In the midst of the panicked frenzy upgrading a few new or modified features were added. Nicer Archives, the plugin that served me faithfully (with a few tweaks) since WP 1.2 days, finally gave up the ghost (RIP). There’s a new expandomatic archives listing in the History tab. Click on the years and months and it drops down. Cool, eh? Translate is once again available (click on the flags at the top of the left sidebar). Thought Of The Day and Current Weather are driven by new, and hopefully more stable, engines. How People Get Here is a new word cloud that shows what searches are leading readers here. To avoid banging my head against the wall in despair I took the opportunity to finally update the PI favicon (that’s the little icon that shows up next to the PI name in the browser address). It now actually fits into this theme rather than a very old, long discarded, quite garishly colored scheme. (I really wanted to use a ball of yarn and knitting needles to form the P and the I in the icon. It looked great at 72×72 pixels, but when reduced to 16×16 pixels it became a featureless blob that didn’t look at all like yarn and needles, much less like a P and an I.)

There are some other changes under the covers that you probably won’t notice.

I love WordPress, and certainly the price is right. But free can also be read as virtually unsupported. And sometimes the features that the authors think are really, really cool cause some issues in the general WordPress-using public who are not expecting such sudden changes. WP 2.2 was not supposed to be a major upgrade. sigh I supposed I should be happy that it forced me into a few probably much-needed updates here and there.

Thank you so much, gentle reader, for continuing to visit and comment in my supposed absence. I was listening and watching. And now I’m back.


The pictures are proof that I did get a little knitting time in.

The Spanish Lavender Basket Wave socks are up past the heels and heading up the legs. They are posing amidst my Climbing Iceberg rose. It’s nearly time for the annual Rose Festival and everything is in bloom. I really wanted to photo the socks with my Eyepaint rose. But, alas, the bright red of the rose did not add anything to the lovely Walking On The Wild Tide colors. White, fortunately, goes with everything.

Anyway, I worked the heel flap in heel stitch with a garter border. You can sort of see it on the right-hand sock in the picture. I think it fit into the basket theme quite well and looks like it’s lined up nicely with the pattern on the leg. The lower picture is a close-up of the basket weave stitch pattern across the instep. I know it seems sort of un-sockclub-ish to some to use a different pattern. But I’m really happy with the way this stitch works with this yarn. I would not be nearly as happy with the Sock Club pattern, although it is a fine pattern and one I plan to knit with a different yarn.

I am still waiting for the perfect yarn, due in at Tangle any day now, to start the socks for my Sockapalooza 4 sock pal. I have no idea what these socks are going to look like. But I know the yarn will tell me what it wants to be.

[ed 11:12 am PDT] P.S. I almost forgot to mention that there are now a couple of wonderful Magic Cast On videos available on the web. I’ve linked to them in the right-hand sidebar. One, from the kind people at Renaissance Yarns has a voice-over in English, and the other, courtesy of Calcetines Tejidos is in Spanish. Enjoy!

Sea-camo-weedy Socks
I finished the Sea-Camo-Weedy socks last night. In the end, I did not frog out the foot and start over again. Usually I’m a stickler for fixing knitting boo-boos. But this time I decided that it just didn’t matter that much. There’s so much going on with the colors that the only part of the stitch pattern that’s really visible is the wavy rib — and that I did OK. The purl stitches get lost in the shuffle.

I actually decided that I like the way it looks because the mistake-stitch seaweed on the foot has a shorter period in its wave because the purl sections are closer together as they move from right to left and back. The shorter wave fits in nicely with the whole foot-vs-leg thing. The stripes are narrower, the waves are shorter. Yeah.

Gentle reader, what are the chance that anyone would buy a story that I meant it to come out that way?

I didn’t think so.

But here is yet another reason to knit both of your socks at the same time, whether you do it from the top or the toe: You make the same mistakes in each. I would have hated to have had to try to recreate my goofs. Of course they are not consistent from one goofy pattern repeat to the next. Each repeat is unique unto itself. Until the ankle, where I actually did it right.

So here they are, posing amongst my cherry trees, in bloom right now. There was just enough good light this morning in to get this picture before the gloom descended. As I type this they are on my feet and they fit perfectly.

The particulars:

  • Yarn: Blue Moon Socks That Rock – medium ( 100% Superwash Merino/ 380yds/5.5 oz per skein) in colorway Monsoon. This was the first Rockin’ Sock Club skein of the year. I had some left over. I understand that others didn’t. I did not knit the pattern. Sometimes I don’t follow directions well.
  • Needles: Knitpicks Classic circulars, US#1 (2.5mm), and then Addi Lace circulars, US#1 (2.5mm) — vastly prefer the Addis. They rock.
  • Pattern: my own standard sock pattern. The stitch pattern is called Seaweed in Barbara Walker’s Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns.
  • Techniques used:
    • Knit toe-up, two at a time, on double circulars.
    • I used the Magic Cast On.
    • The heel flap is worked in heel stitch with garter borders.

doesn’t it look like snow?

Speaking of trees blooming, when I left Tangle on Saturday it was windy and the blossoms were blowing off of the tree. It was almost like driving through a blizzard of pink snow. It was really lovely.

I tried to get a picture, but I’m not sure if I captured how beautiful it was. Today, of course, it is raining and gloomy. Be sure to click on the pic to get the bigger version, where it’s easier to see the blossom-snow.

Some Mountain Colors Bearfoot in colorway Moose Creek started yelling at me from the stash, demanding to be knit into socks. Right now. Preferably lace socks. And it will need to be a strong lace to handle the deep, dark, rich colors in the yarn. I can tell already this will be hard to get a good photo of.

I try not to argue with my yarn. But I can’t believe it’s already almost April and I’ve only finished three projects this year — all socks. So much for my resolution.

Seaweed socks
Judging by the number of hits I’ve had the last few days (thanks, Dave, for the shout-out), most people are not concerned with spoiling their Rockin’ Sock Club surprise. (My ball band says “Sure Footed” inside. Alas, if only that were true!)

So this is what I’m doing with my skein of Monsoon.

Obviously I’m not following the lovely pattern that was included in the February shipment. There are a couple of reasons for this. As a general rule I’m not very good at following directions anyway. But I also have narrow feet with high arches. Short-row heels just don’t fit my feet very well. So I am concerned that socks that fit my feet would be pretty tight to get on with those cables on the legs.

I was going to work a stitch pattern that Barbara Walker calls Seaweed, but after seeing the yarn I discarded that idea as not what I was really looking for. My next thought was to work the Tipsy Knitter stitch pattern over the sock. But about an inch into the toe I realized that just wasn’t going to work. So I fell back on plan A. This is Seaweed. It does look sort of seaweedy, eh?

But what it really looks like is… camo. You can see as it poses with my little camo project bag that it blends right in. I will have to be careful not to lose them.

Like I lost the Tangled socks, which still haven’t shown up! I have quizzed #1 Son for a second time, and the conversation went something like this:

Mom: Are you sure you haven’t seen my socks?

#1 Son: Why would I have your socks? When would I have seen them?

Mom: Are you sure they didn’t get mixed in with your laundry?

#1 Son: Did you want me to look? I supposed I could do that

Mom: YES!!! Looking would be a good thing!

#1 Son: OK. I’ll get back to you on that.


On a totally different note, don’t forget that we (in the USA) spring forward to Daylight Savings Time three weeks early this year. I’m not really looking forward to (1) losing an hour of sleep and (2) having it dark when I wake up. But unfortunately the powers that be did not consult me when this decision was made. So remember when you wake up this coming Sunday, the time has changed and your clock needs to also.

You should also visit the web site of the operating system for your computers and hand-held devices. Apple and Microsoft have both published patches so that the hour changes automatically on the right date. And Palm covered my brain (aka Judy’s Palm), with an easily applied patch.

Download the fix directly from the manufacturer. Don’t believe the emails from unknown third parties that promise to fix all your problems. In most cases they will cause other problems that you didn’t expect, like virii and phishing. Please compute safely.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled knitting blog…

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