Jobo Designs

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

9. May 2009 16:13
by Jobo

Finished... Self Striping Socks!

9. May 2009 16:13 by Jobo | 0 Comments

My plain vanilla, driving in the car socks are finally finished!

I had bought this yarn a few years back, since it had a combo of my favorite colors: blue/green/yellow.  I also must admit - I do have a thing for self striping and self patterning things.  I know some people don't like the randomness of this style of yarn, and I will admit sometimes there is flashing/pooling that is even too wild for me, but I like watching the pretty colors slide through my fingers.  I like being able to see a pattern emerge, whatever that happens to be.  And... I really like that there is a distinct pattern or stripes and NO extra ends to tie in.  My nemesis... the tying in of ends on knitted items.  The more ends, the more likely that I never finish it!

For flashbacks' sake:

the Yarn - Kroy Jaquards 

Honestly, Kroy has always been my standby sock yarn.  It's reasonably cheap, wears well, washes well, and is made of wool, but still not too itchy for sensitive feet.  My Grandma makes my Grandfather homemade socks every year, and always uses Kroy with satisfactory results.  I will admit, the stuff does feel like wool, and is a little itchy to work with, but it doesn't bother my feet to wear.  I think this will be my 3rd pair of socks made from this yarn, which is actually kind of ironic since it is like 20 degrees and delightfully sunny today!  I was a good little homeowner today and went and pulled the weeds out of my vegetable garden.  My chives look like a bumper crop this year already.   (Craving Baked Potatoes with sour cream and freshly snipped chives sprinkled over the top! mmmm)

Here is the finished pair!  Resting on their sock blockers

I just realized though, looks are a little deceiving.  Side by side they are identical in length, but in this pic I must have one hiked up higher than the other, because they sure look mismatched!  (grrr, will have to go inspect them later.)

I am really loving this toe up construction... I knit on both of these from opposite ends of the ball until the socks were as long as I could get.  I like my socks to be higher up, since I find in winter I am cold a lot of the time... ahem, cold enough to bring on the wool socks after all ;) wink wink  It makes me feel good also to know that I can use up the majority of each ball of wool.  Seriously, I have no idea what to do with those little 2 inch balls of leftover sock yarn.  At this point I must have a dozen of these, and no prospects on what to do with them yet.  Most of them are self striping too, or really wild colors, so they will likely end up living in the leftover yarn bin for a long long time.

Anyways folks, I'm going back to play outside!  (aka knit on my current pair of socks whilst basking in the pre-summer sun)

Hope your day is Bright and Sunny too.


4. April 2009 10:45
by Jobo

Strawberry Thrum Mittens...

4. April 2009 10:45 by Jobo | 1 Comments

dreaming of strawberries and sunshine? it may be summer where you are... but it's still snowstormy here!  You know what they say about little old Prince Edward Island... if you don't like the weather, its okay!  wait a minute... it's likely to change...

So even though spring has supposedly sprung, the 2 feet of snow in my yard has me still mad about mittens.

The latest pair - a Bright Strawberry Pink Thrum Mittens... with soft white merino thrums reminiscent of strawberry seeds.  

The yarn:
Belfast Mini Mills 3-ply Merino (100g skein)

this yarn is soft and lofty... perfect for something like mittens where you want to trap warm air next to the skin.  In this case, the thrums were also merino wool from the same mill, and equally as soft and lofty.  Some people like little thrums (i.e. my mom's mittens usually have a little but less thrum) but me?  Im all about the poof... maybe I go a little overboard, but seriously... if you are going to bother embedding such soft cotton-candy fluff inside... I think you need to put LOTS.  Hey, Go Big or Go Home.

This is the second skein of this yarn that I have used... the first being a heathered blue yarn I used to make some warm cozy wool socks for the Husbeast.  I like the overall texture and consistancy of this yarn, and find it pleasing to work with.  I sometimes find wool itchy on my fingers but not this stuff by a long shot.  There were some sections of the skein that were a tiny but thicker or thinner, but no knots in the whole thing.  I always like that when you have a continuous skein, with no big knits or sections you need to cut out.  I am a hater of weaving in ends.  I know I'm a big girl, and I should get over it, but I still do go to great lengths to NOT not not weave in ends.  I am a baby sometimes.

I think I'd like to try this yarn on something larger sometime... like a sweater perhaps?  It seems to make a nice smooth solid cloth in stockinette, and I think would make a nice warm fall jacket/sweater.  The ladies at the mill have great taste in colours too... I'll have to look next time I pop in.  They had some delicious Olive Green... one of my favorite clothing colors.

Rating 4/5 balls of yarn

The Pattern:

My motto these days has been "easy does it".  With a busy home life, travelling an hour each way to get to work, and trying to sell our house... I don't have a lot of extra brain cells to spare!  I have been making mittens since I was a kid myself, so I normally just improvise things, but I was careful this time to make some notes as I went so I could share things with you folks out in blog land.

I started by taking some measurements of my own hands, I usually make a med/large sized mitten if making for myself to wear.  Since I had planned on using a standard thrum pattern, I wanted to add some extra Girly interest - what better way than by adding a cabled cuff.  Normally I would make cuffs for anything in a standard K2P2 ribbing (I dislike working K1P1, and avoid it where I can) so I decided to cable every 5th row.

Also, to break the monotony, I decided to add my thrums alternating back and forth zigzag, rather than the standard grid pattern often seen.  I added my Thrums every 4 stitches, so all sections of the mittens had to be in multiples of 4 stitches to make things work out evenly. 

Pattern is in the works... will be up here and on ravelry soon, just needs test knitting now... which is kind of scary.  I'm still such a newbie when it comes to writing out patterns!  you should see my notes... more pictures than words.  Most projects I make, I try and make notes about what I have done so that all relevant parts match, i.e. sleeves, and things that are made in twos.  To combat the problem, I often make both mittens or both socks at the same time on two sets of needles, so I dont "forget" how I did something.

I'll keep ya posted!

22. January 2009 16:48
by Jobo

Doesn't Everybody like CHOCOLATE?... socks?

22. January 2009 16:48 by Jobo | 3 Comments

Making progress on my new socks... the photos don't reflect it, but Im past the heel on both Socks now!  I decided I should work in Tandem so that I could make the cuffs as long as possible.  I don't know why, but I find it freezing cold at work this winter, and my homemade sock collection seems to be making a difference, so the longer the better. 

The pattern I chose is This one - Salis Socks by Julia Riede, that I found on Ravelry as a free download.

Distinguishing features:

  • easy to memorize repeating "fishtails" on foot and leg (4 repeats in a round)
  • Toe-up construction, no specific instructions though, use your own method
  • Modified Short Rows Heel (very Neat!  I like the way this fits my foot!)

On another note, I managed to break 2 of my Lantern Moon Needles (GASP!)  I had been worried about the bendyness and potential breakage, and I guess within reason.  I had carried my knitting around with me in my purse for a week, but had not encountered any problems... and then doing a pattern row, maybe I had twisted my yarn tighter than I thought, but I broke 2 needles doing a single row.  I won't lie to you and tell you I didn't swear a bit (lot) when it happened...

 I was ticked off thinking that I had just broken 2 five-dollar toothpicks, but I called Lantern Moon, who very impressively - Stand by their products!  they said they would send me out a replacement for the broken ones.  Now I'm not sure if they will send a whole set, or it there will be just replacements for the 2 I broke... but either way, I was very excited that I would be able to salvage the set I have, especially since you can't buy them around here.  Now that's telephone customer service!

Work has been quite overwhelming lately, so I will gladly go home tonight, hit the couch, maybe even turn on the fireplace, and knit until I'm ready to fall asleep.  Excellent way to zone out after a hard day.

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