Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

21. October 2009 12:58
by Jobo
3 Comments

Neener Neener! Another finished Pair of Socks!

21. October 2009 12:58 by Jobo | 3 Comments

I think I may have found another favorite sock pattern… if that’s possible.  There is just something so curvy and feminine about the way the scallops work up… and they were so simple to work too!  A coworker said that the pattern looked much more complicated than my usual stuff, but honestly, I found these to be very simple and memorizable – and yet so satisfying!

 

 

1.  See that lovely scallop pattern?    2.  Pagewood Farms Yukon Hand Dyed Sock Yarn in ‘Santa Fe’    3.  Look up… wayyyy up to the ankle    4.  Gentle pooling in the stockinette stitch sole, pretty cool

The final verdict on the yarn:  so soo nice to work with!  I will actively search out this yarn again, hopefully soon if I can find a store that sells it locally.  The texture is super soft and smooth, and the bamboo fiber gives the yarn a glowing sheen.  They seem to just shine in the light.  As for color, the yarn did pool a bit in places, but was generally a nice spread out smattering of chocolate throughout the yarn.  Its difficult to know how a given yarn will react in different pattern situations, but It seems that this yarn is generally not a pooling one.

socksondeck

 

closeupheelI particularly enjoyed the heel portion of this pattern.  This was my first Wendy Johnston heel… which is a toe up traditional gusset heel that looks basically like the top-down gusset heel that most people learn to do first when they learn how to knit socks.  I haven’t really had an opportunity to wear these yet to compare the fit to other types of heels.  You can see in the closeup the neat and tidy way that the Kf&b increases look along the arch, and how tidy the slip stitch heel looks along the join to the rest of the arch.  If you haven’t tried this heel yet, I highly recommend it!  I’m not sure if all of her socks follow this format, but the next pair I tried of hers  definetly did.  This heel also resulted in a nice seamless / hole-less make up.  It bugs me the way that some types of heel construction leave little ‘holes’ at the ankle that sometimes need to be darned closed – these were no problem.

 

This sock project was my first entry in the ‘Sock Knitters Anonymous’ Ravelry Group… so Thanks to those lovely ladies for introducing me to Wendy Johnston’s patterns.  I really enjoyed my first Sockdown :)

1. October 2009 08:21
by Jobo
1 Comments

Elvish Leaves... Blocked and Ready to Rock!

1. October 2009 08:21 by Jobo | 1 Comments

Finally, last night the weather and my hectic work schedule cooperated and allowed a sock photo session before dark!

Finished!

Elvish Leaves (Elfine's Socks by Anna Bell)

JL Vinca Sock Yarn

Overall, I am quite pleased with the results.  These socks were my first pair done toe-up using Judy's magic cast on for DPNs.  If you haven't tried this technique, it was a little tricky at first but pretty reasonable.  I did find that you needed to go back and tighten up that first cast on row at the end of the toe (similar to the process of snugging up a kitchener stitch toe after the graft has been completed) but the real draw for me was no "wrapping and turning" back and forth for the toe.  The M1 increases (I did Knit Front and Back increases) made a nice clean line at the toe.

You can see it a bit in this close up - The yarn itself had some really nice colour shade progressions.  I really liked the way the 2 strands changed colour at different rates.   Several times I found myself thinking... is it changing colour?  I dunno?  and then looking back after an hours work and seeing the very gradual soft shift.  I don't know why I like this style of yarn, I just do.  It keeps things interesting :)

I really liked working on this cascading leaf style pattern.  It was very predictable, highly memorizable, and easy to pick up when put down unexpectedly.  The pattern was very clearly written and easy to follow, a "must knit" really if you are a sock-a-teer.  Before blocking the leaves were quite bumpy and lumpy, but after a warm water bath and an overnight on the blockers, things smoothed right out.  I am always amazed about how much better things look after a bath and a block.  Even the stockinette sole looked smoother after blocking.

As far as the yarn goes, I was skeptical about whether or not I would be happy with the finished product.  Some consumers have argued that no two balls of Vinca are ever the same, but I found my two balls to knit up quite predictably the same.  It seems there was a similar amount of each colour in the skeins, similar progressions, and very much alike from my experience.  I did find the yarn to be a bit thin and splitty, but for lace socks, I wasn't really concerned with thickness and warmth.  For light and lacy this style of yarn was perfect.  The next real test will come when these babies are worn and washed a few times.  There were some linty bits here and there in the skein, but I'm not sure if this has anything to do with the yarn being pilly or felty.  The yarn seemed to like the blocking bath, so who knows. I'll keep you posted on the durability of the finished socks.

This was also my first time working short row heels in contrasting colours.  I was concerned during the construction process that knitting the heel in line with the rest of the sock would perhaps interrupt my colour progression from the foot to the ankle.  So I knit the heels with a contrasting colour from the outside of the ball.  This of course means more ends to weave in, but I really like the effect it achieved.  It makes the heel stand out and sets them apart from the plain stockinette soles I think :)

Once again, another pair bites the dust... and my Nanners are coming along nicely too.  I hope to show you more about them later in the week.  Sock one is up past the heel, and I have a good 2 hour wait at the doctor's office this afternoon.  I would say the first one will be finished before I get home.  Funny how I'd be furious years ago if someone kept me waiting that long... Now I just pack knitting accordingly and I'm good to go!

 

19. August 2009 07:30
by Jobo
1 Comments

Done Monkey-ing Around!

19. August 2009 07:30 by Jobo | 1 Comments

In general, socks are a pretty quick knit for me... even in light fingering weight wool on size 1 DPNs... I'm not sure why exactly they seem to fly off the needles so fast, but it's not unusual for me ot knock off a pair of socks in a week to 10 days.  Probably a sign of my need to knit lately?  What with a new job and lots of things on my plate, those stolen moments (even 10 minutes at a time) are really necessary for my mental health - and boy do they add up too!

Here they are: 

the Pattern:

Monkeys (by Cookie A) - link to pattern if you're interested

The Yarn:

Fibranatura 100% Merino "Yummy" 

I was really impressed with the way that this yarn didn't pool or flash in any particular area.  I would have thought that since it was dyed in simple colour segments, in a fairly predictable order, that it would have puddled like crazy! Maybe part of the well behavedness was related to my pattern choice, but I'm not really all that experienced with using this kind of hand dyed yarn yet.  Once I try a few more skeins and try and predict possible behaviour maybe it will all make sense ;)

This yarn was great to work with too... not at all scratchy as some of the reviews on ravelry might lead you to believe.  Through the whole project, the plies were even and consistant, the colours behaved predictably, and the overall resulting fabric was perfect.  Not too loose on size 1s or too tight.  Had no trouble achieving the gauge called for in the pattern.  I would actively seek out this yarn again.  Plus I think I have enough yarn leftover for a pair or baby socks too!

If you are looking for a really well written, straightforward pattern, with a little interest, but mostly basic - This pattern may be for you!  I hardly had to look at the pattern for the second sock, and would probably forego using it at all if I were to cast on a second pair today.  I was able to work on them even when I only had a few minutes... which is unusual, because I often have difficulty working only a few rows of lace and then putting it down for fear of getting lost and not knowing where I am when I come back.  I'm not sure if this is just because I am getting more comfortable with lace patterns?  I am starting to be able to "read" my own work and know what point I am supposed to be at just by looking at the stitches of the previous row, which is something I have been working on improving.  I think a lot of knitters have trouble with this early on.

All in All the Month of August has been a socky one so far... with two pairs of completed socks.  My Mother-in-Law has been trying to convince me for years that I should enter some of my homemade goods in the local exhibition... and see how they fare for judging.  I just might have to do that this year and see what the judges think.  I might enter my Not-Mary-Kate-and-Ashley Jaywalkers in the Handspun category (if there is one) and maybe the Monkeys in a lace category of some sort?  She would really like me to enter a quilt, but I haven't really been working on any quilts for the last few months... so maybe next year for those.

Anyways... I have another pair on the needles to show you, but I have to take some pictures first!  These are being made with some samples of Kauni Effetgarn that I received in the mail from Estonia the other day... and are working up really well.  I am enjoying the long colour stretches (Doesn't that seem to be my favorite thing lately?)

I leave you with one more finished sock photo.... don't they look all happy outside on the patio furniture?  I don't think they even mind the humidity... sigh.  It was 38 degrees yesterday with the Humidex... it was all I could do to NOT melt.

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