Category Archives: lace

Easy Peasy Lace Socks – Idlewild

I am a lazy knitter in general, but with socks I am especially reluctant to do anything that requires me to look at a pattern.  I have made enough socks that I can take some yarn, guess at the gauge, and get going.  Self-striping yarn is a real bonus, because then it looks like I did something difficult, at least to a non-knitter.

However, I am trying to knit most of the projects in Drop Dead Easy Knits, so I pulled some light blue sock yarn out of the stash and cast on for the Idlewild Socks, designed by Kirsten Kapur. (photo by Gale Zucker)

knitting, book, hand knit, models

I can’t find the yarn label for the yarn I am using.  I think it is some Periwinkle Sheep I got at Sock Summit in 2009.  So yeah, it is well-aged.  I will use no yarn before its time!

Photo Aug 23, 8 06 03 AM

Back to the socks.  I did have to look at the pattern initially, but they are really drop-dead easy. (Branding, ya’ll!) There is only one round out of four that requires attention. I even took it to a St. Paul Saints game last night, and made good progress. Photo Aug 22, 9 02 46 PM

Truth in advertising! These are named for Idlewild Airport, because they are a good design to work on while waiting, and I agree.

I generally prefer to make socks on bamboo double points. I have a routine where I cast on one cuff, then the other, and do my two-at-time on-double points. This hasn’t been working so well for this pari. One thing I learned is that bamboo knitting needles must get more brittle with age. I am using US 0 needles, and have broken 2 so far.  Granted, I am a bit careless with where and how I stash a project bag, so I cannot blame it entirely on the needles.

Photo Aug 23, 8 28 17 AM

To safeguard my remaining needles, I switched to magic loop. I bought a set of tiny Chia Goo interchangeables a couple of years ago in a weak moment, and I have never used them.  Now is the time.

Photo Aug 23, 8 05 26 AM

I do really like them.  The cord is nice and flexible, the points are pointy, and so far I have not broken them, or even bent them.  So far. I dislike doing two at a time on one long circular, so I have to make do with sequential sock knitting.

By this time of year I generally have some socks set aside for holiday gifts, but as of today I have two only pair of heavy Oxbow socks, and now 1.5 Idlewild socks. If I intend to do gift socks, I’d better get cracking.

Are you still knitting socks?  Got a drawerful yet?

 

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Gift Bag Knitting

I am well known in my family for not wrapping gifts.  I wrapped gifts one Christmas season in a jewelry store.  It ruined me for life.  (What kind of ribbon would you like on this teeny, tiny, cheap-ass ring box, sir? The oversized silver plated tray with no box, madam?) Mostly, now, I either put it in a brown paper bag or a paper gift bag with some tissue paper.  The reusable paper gift bags are perfect for me.  Sometimes I weaken if there is a child involved.  Great kid story –on his 5th birthday, my nephew had a small party.  Most of the gifts were presented in paper gift bags.  He “whispered” to his mother “I guess they don’t know how to wrap packages.”  That’s me.

The Galworthy Gift Bag, which Kirsten Kapur designed for Drop Dead Easy Knits, might be a little something to keep in my knitting-on-the-go pouch for some mindless knitting that could turn into a part of the present, as well as the gift bag.  (Hey, I see that Amazon has dropped the price of Drop Dead Easy Knits.  Not sure why, but that means it comes out to about .40 US per pattern!!  So go buy it! You won’t be sorry!

Kirsten designed the bag in Neighborhood Fiber Company Penthouse Silk Fingering for a truly luscious, special gift. Silk sure does take the color, doesn’t it?  You could use any fingering weight yarn for it, though.  Perfect for leftovers.

knitting, book, hand knit, models

I was reminded of this pattern by Barbara Benson – the clever mosaic and lace knitting podcaster in her latest episode, Favorite 5 – Knitted Market Bags (mostly).  (Although she missed the real market bag in the book, Searsport Market Bag.)

Here’s some action/detail shots of the gift bag Kirsten made before the book photo shoot:

You could even put yarn in it to give away.  Is there a word for a yarn turducken?

 

Abide with me — and my shawl.

I was working on yet another Abide, (designed by the talented Kirsten Kapur) in my regular knitting class this week. This version is my fourth, I love this pattern.  (Photo below is by Gale Zucker.)

AudKnits snowflake scraves

People in class were taken with it, but there was a lot of eye-rolling at the idea that it was at all easy.  (From Drop Dead Easy Knits, of course!)  The projects in DDE were not necessarily designed to be beginner projects, but projects that are easy to work on and follow.

What makes lace drop dead easy? Symmetry for one thing.  And no shaping on wrong side rows.  Here’s how that works in Abide. (I’m using Wollemeise Pure in the color Cassis. )

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It is a simple long triangle. Easy. Regular increases along one side. Easy.  Except “regular ” does not exempt you from knowing  what the pattern means by regular. For instance, I got careless and started increasing every right side row instead of every other right side row. (I was watching the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  This is playoff knitting.  Go see what Natalie thinks is playoff knitting — a Herbert Niebling doily!  For real.) So the class got to watch me rip it back. It is always fun to see your teacher brought low, isn’t it? I also think watching me rip out helps less confident knitters to see that every one rips back.  Every one of us.

I was initially skeptical of the long triangle look, but I really like it.  It is very wearable.   I’ve worn the version I made in Malabrigo Sock quite a bit.  Kirsten even demonstates how to make it into a cowl in our silly video.  And look how cute it is on this model, in Quince and Company Finch:

Abide_quince_medium

Abide begins at the narrow end, and you complete several of the leaf edging repeats in fairly short order, so the pattern is memorized easily, or at the very least you become really familiar with the chart in no time at all.

knitting, book, hand knit, models

Plus, the leaf pattern itself is symmetrical. You can see the shape you are making, so you know right away if you haven’t done a decrease you were supposed to. I missed a decrease the other night, too, so I know it is easily spotted.

And the picot edging? If you can cast on and bind off, you can make little picots. I don’t care for bobbles, but those picots are pretty darn cute!

I think I convinced them. I mean, other than the edging, it is all garter stitch!