Sunday, June 29, 2014

Airline travel and not knitting.

Long time, blog. Long time. When last we spoke, my first Knitty pattern had just been released. Since then, I've spent a week in South Dakota (my flat, stormy, corn-y homeland), then got six whole hours at home in Delaware due to the gem of a system that we call "airline travel." Then hubbs and I spent a week that turned into nine days (again... airline travel. Oh, the joy it is.) in Baton Rouge, where I think I might have crossed the line and finally turned into an adult, because.... we bought a house. It has two terrific kitchens, one inside and one out, space for my garden, and hardwood floors. But the best part? It has a sewing/knitting/stash room, all for me. Don't have to share, or give it up when I have a baby, or anything. I can paint it any color I wish, and I don't have to pick up the yarn off the floor. Best day ever.

I only took one knitting project with me on this epic 16-day around-the-US adventure. I wasn't sure if that was going to be a really good idea, or a really bad one, but it worked out. I knew that my right hand needed to rest for a week, and I was good and actually let that happen while I was in South Dakota. It helps that when I'm visiting my family, there are a million things to do that aren't conducive to knitting, like cook all of the food and play Ticket to Ride approximately 8 million times and tickle my 9-month-old nephew. So I rested my hand, and felt better about life. Then we got to Baton Rouge and embarked on the crazy, crazy plan of "let's buy a house in 7 days when we've never even been to this state before." The first day we saw 8 houses, then 13 the second day, and 5 the third day. Put an offer on a house on the fourth day and signed all the paperwork on the fifth. Dealt with mortgage stuffs the sixth day, then finally on the seventh day we got to relax by the pool and I got to knit. Then I got to knit quite a bit more on the unplanned eighth and ninth days, because screw you, American Airlines.


But now: home! Glorious, glorious home. Yesterday I walked around the house like, my coffee cup! My couch! My silverware! My bed! It was awesome. The weather was gorgeous so I took the opportunity to knit on the deck, with my own tomato plants, and my own lawn chairs, and my own mojito.

The pattern is Charade, and I have turned the heel and started the gusset for the first sock. The yarn is Dream in Color Smooshy in I think Wisterious? It's sort of sunset-y lilac, if that makes sense. Kind of an odd colorway, to be honest. I don't not like it, but I've liked other colors better. This is pair #5 of my goal of six pairs in 2014. I think I'll make it, don't you?

Thursday, June 12, 2014

I have a pattern in Knitty!

I cannot even tell you how excited I am that I have a pattern in the First Fall 2014 issue of Knitty. I did a lot of squealing when I got the email from the editor, saying she wanted to publish my pattern. I bet every dog for 10 miles heard me. 

The pattern is called Delaware is for Cables, and it's a hat in two styles: close-fitting beanie, or slouchy with a pompom. When I designed this pattern, I started with the antler cable, because I think that the antler cable is just about the best cable. Then I added the smaller cable and twist-stitch mock cables around it for fun and added texture. I can't resist the lure of pompoms, so once I finished the beanie version, I did a pompom version, too. The slouchy-ness is achieved simply by switching to larger needles after the first inch. Easy! 

I actually knitted the first version of this pattern in January. Then, for reasons best known to no one, I sat on it for a couple of months. When I finally got around to thinking about publishing, the call for submissions for Knitty came out, and I was like, eh, why not go for it! So I submitted, and.... success. Glorious, fantastic success. 

You don't need much yarn, and it knits up quickly, making this pattern great for holiday gifting, or for when you just need a quick, cable-y, fun project! 

Are you planning to knit your own Delaware hat? I hope so! You'll like it, I promise.  :)

Monday, June 9, 2014

The Fourth Pair of Socks

If you've been reading the blog, you may recall that my sock goal for 2014 is to knit 6 pairs. (Do other people have sock goals? We knitters are an odd bunch.) Seemed like a great, easily achievable goal when I made it back in January, and I'm doing decently well so far. I knocked out 3 pairs (Strawberry Fields socks, pink Twilight socks, and the Ice Cream socks) by mid-March, started this fourth pair (the heel is from the pattern Love Socks, but otherwise I did my own basic sock pattern, with stripes), and then they lingered for months mostly because I was knitting samples for my designs. I decided that enough was enough, so last night, during a True Blood Season 3 marathon (and by "marathon",  I mean 2 episodes, because that show is intense), I finished the second sock.

I'm pretty proud of these socks because I made them entirely from leftover sock yarn. All of it is from Knit Picks- gray Stroll, ice-cream colored Stroll hand paints leftover from the Ice Cream socks, and the pink heart is one of the repeats from some leftover Felici. I will admit that I did not pay enough attention while making these socks, and they are far, far from my best work. There's some laddering happening, and the intarsia heart is totally wonky, and there is not nearly enough contrast between the stripes, which should really be 4 rounds, not 6, but you know what? I don't mind that much. They go on my feet.

I'm leaving for a visit to the homeland of South Dakota in two days, and I'm thinking that I will start pair number 5 on the plane. I think I want to do the Charade pattern that I found on Rav, because it fits all of my sock pattern criteria: easy, no colorwork or cables, free, and a stitch repeat of 4 so I size them down. I have skinny ankles. I'm going to use this gorgeous Dream in Color Smooshy in a pretty lilac-y color.

 Really though, this all feels a tiny bit silly, since we're moving to Louisiana in August, and the coldest it ever gets there is like 50. Not sure I will need so many pairs of wool socks. I think at this point I'm knitting them solely because I like to open my sock drawer and see so much cheerful. That makes me happy enough to carry on.