The weather has been getting colder and that more than anything really puts me in a mood for knitting! When the house is freezing and you need to go find socks to discourage your toes from turning blue. That is my favourite weather, right there! I love putting on layers and being able to wear the things I’ve knitted. It really sucks to knit something that you’re really proud of and not be able to wear it.
I’ve had a few dyeing adventures in the past couple weeks. If you’re following my on instagram you will have seen the gradient I dyed!! I am going to start knitting it up to see how it turned out, right after I finish the Halloween socks I’ve been working on.
I know! I am a terrible tease to post them in black and white, but they are going to be at the Vancouver show Knit City. I am planning on taking them to Creativ Festival and Woodstock Fleece and Fibre Festival as well so don’t worry if you aren’t going to make it all the way out to BC.
That being said we are leaving for Vancouver in one week. It kind of snuck up on me. We’ve been planning this trip since March so it always seemed so far in the future. There were always other things to be concentrating on as well; writing magazine articles, blogging, preparing for the K/W show. All of the sudden we’re down to a single digit count down! I may or may not be panicking a little bit. I’ve got all the yarn in order, but no clothes or anything packed. I know you look at me like, ‘ummm, you still have a week.’ I am very Type A and have to start packing like NOW. Anytime I think of something I need to pack, I go and put it in the suitcase.
I kid you not. I started making a list just now and it significantly brought down my anxiety levels. I’ve got lots of advice for places to eat and things to do! I think I may have to go again next year to actually do all of it! I’ve heard Vancouver is beautiful and I have the instinctual feeling I won’t want to leave. Really excited! Has anyone ever been? I am always looking for suggestions for places to eat!!
At Knit City we will be in booth 14, I always look forward to meeting new people so if you’re going to that show be sure to stop by and say hi!! I was looking over the floor plan and there are a lot of people there I have been dying to meet! I am going to have to escape from the booth at some point and wander around. I’ve been looking up some of the vendors I’ve never heard of and it’s looking like it is going to be GREAT!
Super excited, but I really need to go throw a couple things into a suitcase before I have a total breakdown!
Self-Striping yarns are becoming more and more common now. They’re mostly made for things like socks, but can also be implemented in things like; leg warmers, fingerless mittens, hats, etc.
Self-striping, refers to yarn that will stripe for you; there is no need to switch colours or struggle with carrying around more than one ball of yarn. You don’t need to continually look at a pattern because all the hard work is taken out of knitting this kind of yarn. You can make a plain stockinette stitch sock, which turns out beautifully patterned.
I’ve been dyeing a few self-striping hanks of yarn and that is lots of fun, but knitting with this kind of yarn it completely addictive. You know what the next colour is going to be, but seeing how it lines up next to the previous one makes you want to do just one more stripe.
The type of yarn dyed by indie dyers is one-of-a-kind, there can be multiples of a batch and they may be close, but not exactly the same. Each hank is hand dyed by a person. Whether they are dip dyed or hand painted, there is going to be slight variations between each hank.
There are certain kinds of yarn that are self-striping, but they the patterns are computer generated. These hanks of yarn will be exactly the same every time. The computer generated pattern also means there can be a lot more intricate pattern than hand dyed yarn. The photo below is Regia yarn.
This is one of my favourite types of variegated yarn. It makes for excellent mindless knitting and there is always an exceptional finished object at the end.
What is going on indeed? There has been so much happening in the past couple weeks I feel like I can hardly keep up! Unfortunately that doesn’t mean there has been a whole lot of knitting going on. I’ve done a few rows on my Grandmother’s sweater… sleeves. I’ve also been steadily plugging away on the second sock of The Warped Porch colour-way.
This self-striping colour-way is named after my friend Lisa, or the Queen, as many know her. She gave me the colour combinations and I put them together. It’s really bright; poke you in the nose bright, but really, which one of my colours isn’t?
The June newsletter went out Monday morning announcing this new colour-way, I thought I should probably include it here to, just in case. The black and white photo was really cruel, but I will admit to feeling terribly clever with myself afterwards. How to fill a post with photos when you are working on secret projects!? Well, everything isn’t a secret, just the colour. BAM! Inspiration!
I mentioned in the newsletter that there are still a few hanks of Psychedelic Onyx (the black and rainbow) self-striping sock yarn, so if you’re in the market the shop is here.
We are also getting ready to get our dyeing game on. There are quite a few shows in the fall and it will work best if we start the dyeing now! This also means I have to pick out my samples for the next shows. Hmmmm what do I need an excuse to knit. That is possibly the downside to working in an industry you love… there isn’t a lot of time to actually participate in the thing you love.
I’m thinking about taking a weekend away sometime. I have dreams of nothing but tourist traps and knitting in the evenings before bed. I am pulling at the end of the chain trying to escape into vacation-time daydreams. What helps you focus?
If anyone is following me on Instagram or subscribed to the newsletter, you might have noticed that I finished my rainbow socks! When I was at the Creativ Festival, the finished sock was out on display and I was knitting the rest of the second sock. I had been planning on posting them eventually, but everyone loved them so much I am going to share early.
I’m going to be posting 5 skeins of this self-striping sock yarn in our Sapphire base. The listing will go up on our Etsy store May 16th at 11am. I am going to release a different colour of the self-striping variety next month. I am not ruling out future skeins of the rainbow self-striping, but I have no solid plans to repeat it in the immediate future. I’ve been playing around with a lot of colours and combinations with self-striping yarn and it is a fantastic amount of fun! Keeping me vastly entertained!
I’ve also been working on Paul’s socks. When we went to see the new Avenger’s movie, I brought them and worked on them diligently for a good two hours. After I got out of the theatre, I noticed that the colours were pooling very differently! A few people call these socks cousins instead of twins, but the colours were really different. They had to be more like 2nd or 3rd cousins on your step-father’s side.
I looked at my Ravelry notes and realized I had not only used the bigger needle size, but had increased the number of stitches as well. I usually use 64 but in this case I used 72. I had completely forgotten about this and was happily knitting along at 64 stitches. I immediately ripped out the 3-4 inches of sock I had finished in the movie and set it up so I could pick up and go when I was ready. With so little knitting time, it breaks my heart a little bit to frog so much work.
To be completely honest there were an uncommon amount of mistakes in the ribbing, but I just kept repeating the mantra ‘I REGRET NOTHING’ whenever I knew I had messed up the ribbing.
I am still thinking about what projects I want to knit as samples for the next show. I am looking for some really good one or two skein projects. I think I’ve knit a great many socks, not that anyone could tell by the blog content, so I need something different; a pallet cleanser of sorts. Usually the best patterns are the ones you hear through word of mouth, so if anyone has anything they really liked, please comment or send me an email through the link in the side bar!
I was going to write this post about the first set of ChiaoGoo interchangeables, but I thought I would break them up a bit with a yarn review in the middle! The yarn I found while searching for materials for the most recent pair of socks really surprised me. I remember buying Four Seasons Gründl: Hot Socks Diamond on a whim because I had nothing to knit while at Paul’s parents’ house. I blogged about it here.
This yarn was advertised to create socks with stripes. It’s not that I doubted they would knit up with stripes, but I guess I didn’t have high hopes about how good they would look. I expected them to knit into stripes of all different sizes and look kind of unorganized.
They turned out so well! The stripes might be kind of random, but they go together as a whole. The stripes that are all right beside one another are complementing rather than random. Now that I have them almost done, I am having a hard time parting with them.
The yarn itself was surprisingly soft, I don’t remember exactly what I paid for it, but I know it would not have been much. Since the label is not English I couldn’t decipher the composition, but with the wonders of Ravelry, I was able to pin down English instructions. The yarn is 75% wool and 25% nylon, which is about average, so I am not really sure what makes it so soft. It was really a pleasure to work with. My only issue is, each ball of yarn is 50g and 230 yards (210 meters). This means you only get one sock per ball. On one hand I could see why they would have one sock per ball. You want the socks to be matching so you would need the same colour progression throughout the ball. However, I got two balls from the same dye lot and they did not start at the same colour. I had to wind the yarn up till I reached the purple I started with. If I have to do that anyway, I would prefer just having to buy one ball and being done with it. I am actually very surprised I didn’t manage to lose the second ball.
Aside from this, I really REALLY liked the socks that this yarn produced and I would definitely buy it again. I am something of a yarn magpie, so I usually try lots of different things when I am out and about, but I liked this yarn so much I would definitely buy it again.