Posts Tagged ‘cables’

GoT Socks?

April 2, 2019

I’m not a convert to toe-up socks, but learning several new techniques — and practicing my ripping out and reknitting skills — made the Frasier Fir Socks worth the effort.

two green knit socks hanging on sock blocking frames

The tree (or is it a branch?) detail along the leg is particularly charming. I may incorporate it into a hat some day — or maybe along the back of mittens. The yarn color is more true in this detail than the one above.

detail of pattern along leg of green knit socks

Even before I’d finished the Frasier Firs, my fingers and mind were eager to cast on something new with the lovely Game of Thrones-inspired yarn from Bumblebee Acres.

Keeping with my theme of trying new things and going full steam ahead into the GoT mode, I searched Ravelry for a similarly-inspired sock pattern. As usual, the Ravelry community did not disappoint.

Not being at all familiar with Game of Thrones, I have no idea if the yarn (Brienne of Tarth colorway) is compatible in a literary sense with the House Greyjoy pattern. But I really like the cables and twists.

All the twists and cables make it seem quite small — perhaps too narrow for the leg of the intended recipient — but I’m quite sure that it’ll fit. At least, it “fits” my arm when I’ve tried it on.

The irony is not lost on me that one of the benefits of toe-up socks is that you can try them on as you go, something that’s much more difficult with my favorite top-down socks on DPNs. I’m nothing if not consistent in my routines!

Vote One, Knit Two

September 5, 2018

A couple of years ago, I became a local election volunteer — not for a particular candidate (although I still do that) but for our city. You know, one of those people who welcomes you to the polling place, checks your name off a list, hands you a ballot, directs you to the electronic vote-counting machine, and hands out “I Voted” stickers.

I consider it a small action to support our democracy and, thanks to the detailed training involved and adherence to law and procedures, to upholding people’s confidence in the voting process.


Turnout for yesterday’s state primary election was pretty light (that is, lighter than our country’s generally low turnout), so I had time to do a bit of knitting.

You didn’t think I’d go to an eight-hour shift during which I’d be sitting and chatting with my fellow volunteer (a lovely Vietnam War vet who spent 20 years working in the State Department before taking over his father’s business) without my knitting, did you?!


I started the second fingerless mitt (Mitt Envy in Koigu KPPPM), the cuff of which looks like the start of a top-down sock. I’d finished the first one the day before while hanging out with Mom, who graciously agreed to be a hand model.


While there weren’t any major municipal races, there were a couple of big upsets elsewhere in the state. And I sure hope the ripples turn into a wave come November.





Knitting Class: Small but Fierce

December 5, 2016

After several years of having 6 to 8 knitters around the table at each knitting class, I find myself with two very small sessions this fall. I don’t know what accounts for the change, and I’m not taking the lack of enrollment personally (at least most of the time!).

What these regular Fearless Knitters lack in number, they more than make up in their creativity, persistence, good humor, and ferocity. Discover a mistake (or many) a few inches into your circular scarf? Realize that the pattern on your stranded sweater is off by a few stitches? Learn the painful lesson that knitting while drinking red wine is not for the faint of heart? (Don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about!) These knitting students tackled each project and challenge with vigor and commitment.

Christy, she of the Fox Cowl Hood, recently finished a luscious braided cable cowl. The yarn and pattern are from Purl Soho. With the temperatures dipping below freezing here in Greater Boston, you can bet this cowl will get a lot of wear.


Gillan’s half-way through a pair of chunky fingerless mitts. The pattern had both of us flummoxed for a while. (And by a while, I mean we each knitted and ripped it back two or three times!) Following it carefully resulted in two rounds of ribbing around the thumb gusset, messing up the rhythm of the seed stitch. Finally, I adjusted the pattern, substituting some PFB for KFB and some (P,K) for (K,P) repeats. Seems to have worked.


Marcia’s latest creation is a striped cardigan for a lucky baby-to-be. After finishing the neck at our last class, the only thing she’s got left to do is graft the sleeves to the body (underarm grafting, what a concept!) and add some buttons.


See the yarn near the neck? That’s all she had left — yet again, playing a high stakes game of Knitting Bind-Off Chicken.  Who says knitters aren’t risk takers?!


Knitting House Call

August 9, 2016

On a recent evening, Marcia — neighbor, friend, and knitting student (among other talents) — dropped by for a house call. She had a couple of skeins of lovely yarn that needed winding, and she needed a scarf-in-progress that was in need of rescue.

Like me, Marcia often visits local yarn stores when she travels, bringing home a souvenir of sorts with which she makes a new creation. This summer, her travels took her to London (England, not Ontario) where she bought a yummy skein of I Knit or Dye’s “At Last” silk 4 ply. It’ll probably be a shawl the next time you see it.

I Knit or Dye yarn "At Last" in Swizzel

She’s also picked up some “Extra” from Blue Sky Fibers (here in Ocean Deep), which will become a soft, cozy sweater. Stay tuned for that, too.

skein of Blue Sky Fiber's Extra yarn

Never one to shy away from a knitting challenge, Marcia had modified a cabled scarf pattern by adding an addition “twist” to her latest project. As an accountant, she’s very adept — and particular about — numbers, a very useful skill for a Fearless Knitter especially when it comes to rewriting a pattern.

However, while airplane flights are often fabulous knitting opportunities, Marcia discovered that they’re less-than-fabulous is the knitter has taken a muscle relaxant because of back spasms. It was no surprise that she got her cables in a bit of a twist!

With some careful tinking [to tink (knit spelled backwards) = to unknit, stitch by stitch) and picking up of stitches, we were able to put the scarf back on track.

cabled scarf close up

She can’t recall the name of this natural handspun yarn, but I can assure you that it is lusciously soft and squishy.


More Cables

January 17, 2011

The more I knit, the more I learn about myself. Occasionally, I’m surprised. I tend to think of myself as a generalist,
someone who likes to learn about lots of different things without going far into depth in any one particular topic or
discipline. I’ve long marveled at friends who’ve completed their doctoral degrees and dissertations, thinking, “there’s
nothing that interests me enough to spend all that time and energy.” I love to learn something new, really understand
it so that I can explain it to others, but that’s usually the extent of it.

As I approached the end of the Every Way Wrap, with its intricate cables along the length of one side, I thought I’d take
a break from cables for a while. Been there, done that; time to move on to something new. But apparently I hadn’t done enough cables because the very next project I cast one was full of cables. In response to a “what’s on your needles” question to friend Laurie, she sent me a pattern for a cabled hat. I was smitten and knew I had just the right yarn in my stash — a red wool with occasional flecks of blue, yellow, and green.

close-up of cable hat

Alas, the brand and color remain a mystery since there were no labels. No doubt they’d been lost by my niece during one of her sessions with my ball-winder. It was a relatively easy pattern to memorize and a pretty quick knit — helped by several extended sessions of sports-watching, on the couch and in the stands.

“Who’s it for?” people would ask, and I’d have to confess that I didn’t know.  Sounds ridiculous, I know, but I was knitting just for the pleasure of creating.  However, as I began the decreases, I realized that I needed to find a head
worthy of such a lovely cabled hat.  By the time it was blocked, I knew just the person: lovely niece Nora, who declared, it “fits like a dream.”

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