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Archive for February, 2009

I have finally completed the Cable Rib Socks that I started in January before I went to DC.

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I hit a glitch on the first one with the cable as it went into the instep.  Turns out there’s a “design element” in the pattern that IS the glitch. I think I agree with some other knitters on Ravelry that I’m not especially fond of this “design element”.  

However, the socks are finished and ready to wear.  I knew the cable would not show up well with this yarn, but it seemed that the yarn would look its best only with a simple pattern ( I did try a lace pattern that did not look good) and I knew I would get bored just knitting a rib.  So I got some cable practice and I know the cable is there.

I do really like the Interlacements Tiny Toes yarn, but I’m finding it doesn’t work especially well with the kinds of patterns I like to knit.  Alas!

The pattern is Cable Rib Socks from, you guessed it, Favorite Socks.  The first of the patterns I’ve used from that book that I am not wild about.  I love all the others I’ve tried.  Great book — as I’ve mentioned ad nauseum before.

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My third row of Chicken Scratch for the Stitch Explorer Challenge is done simply with variegated Watercolours cotton.  I made a “box” of four cross stitches and then laced a single strand through the legs.  Each box was completed before moving on to the next one to get the color gradations.  

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I still like the first more traditional exploration band the best.

I think chicken scratch would be cool with beads added, but I don’t have time right now to look in my stash to see if I have any beads to work into a fourth exploration.  This will have to be it for now.  The new stitch comes on Sunday!

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Confused Cables

I was working on my Cable Rib Socks while I was in DC at the beginning of January and had decided I had made some kind of mistake because the cable didn’t seem to be working out correctly as it moved down the instep.  It didn’t match the cable on the leg.  

So I set the sock aside for a while because I wasn’t looking forward to taking it out, remembering that this is the yarn I frogged on the Pomatomus Socks.

Then I remembered that John had gotten me a bunch of extra dpns for Christmas so I decided to start the second sock, figure out where the problem was as I knitted along, and then go back and only take out what was necessary on the first sock.

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Guess what?  Same problem that I can’t figure out on the second sock.  

Soooooo.  Where else but Ravelry to try to find a solution?  ‘Turns out the cable turns out a little funky when following the pattern as written, so I’m not doing it wrong.  However, the jury is still out on whether to leave it that way or try to adjust.  Some people said they adjusted to get the cable to flow smoothly down the leg to the instep.  Some knit it the way it was written, but stated they didn’t like this little ‘design feature’.   One or two left out the cable on the instep all together.

I think I’m going to continue as written, but I’m disappointed in this design.  It’s the first that I’ve tried from Favorite Socks that I have been less than pleased with.  I guess that’s not too bad considering I’ve loved all of the others.

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Orchids

We have a new crop of orchids and they are fantastic.  These plants are amazing.  They have traveled back and forth across the country stuffed into a moving truck twice over the past 18 months and they just keep blooming.  They were left on a porch in the heat of the summer for two weeks with no attention, and the dendrobium was nearly frozen to death when we forgot to bring it in when the weather turned really cold.  But, undaunted, they have all started blossoming again. 

The dendrobium orchid:

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The phalaenopsis orchids:

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Quick Post

I’ve been fighting another bad cold and allergies on top of that, so I haven’t been doing much fiber/textile work. But hopefully I’ll be feeling better soon and back at it.

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February Quilting UFO

I have never been a good multi-tasker, and that especially applies to working on projects.  I like to start a project and work on it until it’s finished.  That means letting everything else go.

Obviously, that doesn’t work very well in my life, so I am trying to “retrain” myself by giving myself small tasks on projects that can be accomplished in short bursts.  I’m also trying really hard to keep my sewing room organized so I can work on more than one project at a time.

This week, the short burst strategy has worked well as I’ve taken a few minutes every day to work on the quilting UFO I have designated for this month from my local quilters’ guild.  I explained a couple of days ago that we were to list and number all of our UFOs and then work on the one with the number that was drawn for the month.

For me, that was a Churn Dash Table Runner that I bought as a kit a couple years ago.

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I have managed to complete the top in short bursts of cutting and sewing.  Now it’s a matter of quilting it, which I’d like to do by machine. However, that will be a crunch point because I’m still not confident with machine quilting and I have to remind myself that one of the reasons I bought this kit was so that I could practice machine quilting.

I have to fight the urge to quilt it by hand, which would mean it would take a lot longer to finish.  But only if I don’t get up the nerve to start the machine quilting.

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The next row on my Stitch Explorer Sampler is another exploration of Chicken Scratch.  I doubt anyone would recognize it as that, but I used the basic ground of cross stitches, upright this time, and placed with uneven spacing to created an elongated space for wrapping with a gold thread.

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I tried adding other stitches around these units, but found that it looked best just like this.

I’m working on one more row of Chicken Scratch variation and then I think I’ll be done with this exploration.  I like the more traditional one that I did first, in green, better than these others I’ve been exploring.  But I can definitely see the potential of this stitch.

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