Friday, December 29, 2006

Year-end knits

I finished my Christmas knitting!

My brother received his socks on Christmas Day, blocked and wrapped. Here he poses with them up on his new parka:

Brother's knee socks 1 Brother's knee socks 2

Pattern: basic stockinette socks based on measurements of my bro's feet and legs
Yarn: Knitpicks Swish (Superwash!), 3 balls in Copper plus small amounts of the colors Fired Brick and Deep Ocean
Needles: size 5 bamboo circular in a length long enough for magic loop
Time: about two weeks
Thoughts: These were a lot of fun to make. And much faster with worsted weight than they would have been otherwise. My brother (as y'all probably saw in the comments a while back) liked the colors, and the socks fit him well, too. Yay! Mission accomplished. I hope the Knipicks Swish works out well. It's machine washable - a must for gift socks, I tend to think. I was a bit displeased with the yarn, though. A few times there were a lot of splits in the plying, so I had to cut the yarn and rejoin in order to prevent problems later of the whole sock falling apart on my bro's feet.

My other Christmas knit finished up just two nights ago: my mom's scarf!

Mom's boucle scarf
It's very long!

Pattern: Basic Biased Scarf
Yarn: 1 skein Lorna's Laces Grace Boucle Mohair in "Douglas Fir"
Needles: Knitpicks Options size 10.5 on the 24" length
Time: about a week and a half
Pattern for biased scarf: Cast on desired number of stitches. Knit 1 row. Next row (R1): K1, K2tog, K til second-to-last stitch, KFB, K1. (R2): Knit. Repeat til desired length. Bind off. Etc.

Mom's scarf
Tied up on a lamppost

Thoughts: Mohair yarn isn't exactly easy to knit with. Your needles poke through the little loops and pull and get stuck! Luckily the Knitpicks needles are niiice and pointy, so I eventually got better at going through the correct loop. You can use the cast-on tail to keep track of when to do the bias row, doing that row whenever the tail is on the right. I love this pattern. It's mindless knitting (so long as you keep track of which row is biased) and it works really well with multicolored or semi-solid colored yarns and creates a very nice effect when finished.

Now that Christmas knitting is done, I have a little something to show you:

Clapotis increase section

Clapotis! I've become kind of obsessed by this knit. The colors and softness of the yarn and the promise of future intentional dropping of stitches (wheee!) make for yummy knitting time. (Thank you, dear Coffeeboy, for such a wonderful gift!) I've done 5 increases so far, and i'm anticipating doing 1 and maybe 2 more, depending on quantity of yarn and desired width. My Clapster will be smaller than the original, because I'm using thinner yarn and much smaller needles (size 4 for sport weight yarn? Have I become a loose knitter or something?). I'd like it to function as both a wrap and a scarf, so I'm going for some kind of intermediate width (16-18 inches or so would be ideal).

Question: The next two skeins contain one that's somewhat darker (darker blues, darker browns) than this skein, and one that's about the same. Do I: 1) attempt to exchange it for one that's more in keeping with current colors? 2) Use it because I like the darker colors and a) put it in the middle between the two lighter ones or b) put it at the end? (I wish I'd snapped a pic of the two other skeins for you all!)

Clapotis curls
My but we're curling a lot, aren't we!

Needless to say, I'll be bringing this one on Coffeeboy and my trip to Panama.

Yes, you read that right. Tomorrow, we head off to Panama to visit some very dear family who've moved there in the last year or so. The temperatures will be in the upper 80s and very humid (say the weather websites), so I'm not sure how much knitting I'll feel like doing in those conditions. We'll be there for 10 days, though, so I plan to bring all the yarn for the Clapster, plus enough for 1-2 pairs of socks. I think that should be enough, given weather, sightseeing, and my inability to knit in a car without feeling ill. I promise to take lots of pictures of Panama! Heck, I'll have internet access and my computer, so you might even hear from me while we're away.

On that note, I think I will wish you all a happy New Year!


Anonymous said...

The scarf and socks came out great! Love the colors on the socks too. Have fun with your clapper. ;) Dropping that first stitch is fun. Have a great time in Panama too! And Happy New Year to you and Coffeeboy. :)


Sheepish Annie said...

Have a wonderful trip!! After all the hard work you've put in over the last few months, you've earned it!

Happiest of New Years and pleasant knitting should the weather allow. :)

C. said...

Nice holiday knitting. I love the kneesocks. Enjoy dropping your first stitch on the Clap. It was so much fun when I did it. Happy New Year :)

cathy said...

er... that c. was me. Silly Blogger Beta.

Danielle said...

I look forward to seeing the progress on the Scarf That Dare Not Speak Its Name. I was all ready to succumb with my fancy skein of Fleece Artist... until I realized that 200ish yds isn't enough to make more than a neckerchief.

HNY in the sunny South!

Holly Burnham said...

Your brothers socks are so fun. He's lucky to have a sister interested in keeping him warm.

schrodinger said...

Yay for getting your presents knitted. Enjoy the clap, and have a wonderful time in Panama!!!

Greta_Jane said...

Hmm. I guess that your Brother as big manly feet, to go with his big manly socks!

keri said...

Have a great trip!

Lone Knitter said...

Hope you're having fun in Panama! How exciting. The socks look great. The scarf looks great. The clapotis looks like it's coming along nicely. I just may have to try making one myself.

trek said...

Thanks for visiting - how was Panama?