Christmas Come Early

Yesterday, we had a family Christmas get-together, during which I was unable to resist the siren song of my knitting, since I was so close to finishing the Feather & Fan Socks.


Feather and Fan Socks

Pattern: Feather & Fan Socks by Judith Sumner, from Socks, Socks, Socks
Yarn: Socks that Rock Lightweight in Haida (Ravens series), from Blue Moon Fiber Arts
Needles: Brittany birch dpns, size 2, set of 5, all of which are now dark blue
Modifications: Swapped out the garter stitch ridge at the beginning of the heel for another pattern repeat, did Eye of Partridge instead of ribbing on the heel flap. I also did all the decreases on one sock one stitch over, but it will never be noticed from a trotting horse.

And, they fit! Oh, glorious day, I made a pair of socks that fit on my feet!

I wore them to work this morning and made everyone admire my fancy socks.

I worked half a day today, since the library was open in the morning, and when I came home, there were two packages waiting for me. The first was full of pink and purple loveliness:


Yarny Goodness

When Miss Violet of Lime & Violet put up some her stash for sale, well, the phrase “sharks on chum” really is the best way to describe it. Several items vanished out of my cart when I went to pay for them, but a skein of Doodlebirds Swell Socks in Goth Girl, a pink and gray skein of Austermann Step, and a cotton shawl kit from Rowan made it to my house, along with a note from Adminnie and a Thank You note and candy from V. I promise to do right by your yarn, Miz V.

But that was not all, oh, no, that was not all! (Sorry, Dr. Seuss moment)


Sasquatch and Stitch Markers

A little Loopy Ewe package was also waiting for me. It held two skeins of L&V Sasquatch Sock in Connect 4 to make a scarf to go with the socks I’m working on for K, some Stitchkeepers, and a packet of Entrelac stitch markers, which are very, very pretty.

It was like my own private little yarny Christmas around here.

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One Week to Spare


Checking His List (Public Photo)


Last night, I put the finishing touches on Checking His List.  I trimmed the selvedge, hand-stitched the hem at the top of the aida cloth, braided the yarn for the loop, and stitched that onto the side.  K’s coworker had sewn up the seam for us Monday night.  It’s now hanging proudly over the fireplace.  Little Miss’ name is stitched at the top, though you can’t see it in the photo.

I think it’s fantastic, if I do say so myself.  And nobody can say anything about the appearance of the back side of the stitching, since I used the included white felt to line it and made the back out of red felt.

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Stashdown 2008

Last night, as I was outlining a candy cane in Santa’s pocket, I discovered a mistake.  Three little red stitches, painstakingly placed… one stitch to the left of where they should have been.

I adjusted the outline and moved on.  I am so not ripping out three stitches less than two weeks before Christmas Eve.  I did, however, rip out two French knots that have been bugging me ever since I did them.  They looked sloppy and wrong, and they will be redone.

While my crafting energies are focused on the stocking, I’ve also been fiddling with my Queue over on Ravelry.  I’ve been matching up projects in my Queue to yarns in my Stash, and I discovered that I already have the yarn on hand for 30+ projects, including two sweaters for Little Miss that may not go up to an appropriate size now.

Given this situation, it’s time for a Stashdown.  In the New Year, I’m going to focus on the projects I’ve lined up and the yarns I’ve got tucked away.  I’ll let y’all know how it goes.

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Progress, Progress


Checking His List Progress


I’ve been trucking along on Checking His List. The cross-stitching is done (except for several rows at the top, where Little Miss’ name goes), and I’ve backstitched the little bunnies, the bag full of toys, and Santa’s legs. My goal is to finish by Monday, including cutting out the frontpiece and the two felt pieces, so that it can be all sewn up before next Friday.

I always think the backstitching will take longer than it does.  (I hope I didn’t jinx anything now!)  As I got down into the bottom half of the cross-stitch chart, K kept saying, “You’re almost done!” And I kept saying, “No, I still have all the backstitching.”

“Skip it,” she suggested.

But now that those little yellow blobs have outlines that make them look like stars, the glory of backstitching is apparent.

While I work on this, I keep eyeing the three skeins of Smooshy that arrived earlier this week.  Lovely, lovely yarn.  But there will be no knitting until this stocking is done.

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I meant to take a picture of Checking His List this morning, I really did.  It’s coming along nicely.  I’m way down at the bottom, stitching in the toys in Santa’s bag.

I am well aware that it’s less than 3 weeks ’til Christmas.  Maybe I should have bought that little pink Baby’s First Christmas stocking I saw at the grocery store.

I’ve been so wrapped up in cross-stitch these days, in fact, that I missed the deadline to download the final clue for Secret of the Stole, but DK emailed me a copy.

I have to say that the SotS knitalong was really excellent.  The pattern was lovely, the guessing game for the theme was fun (although, man, I was way off on those first few clues), and DK has been wonderful in offering advice and support through the Yahoo! group and commenting on individual members’ blogs.  I’m already signed up for SotS-II.

But, first, the stocking.

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The Ravens Have Landed


From left to right, we have Valkyrie, Haida, and Thraven, all in Socks that Rock Lightweight.

I am currently searching for just the right sock patterns. I have a hold on Socks, Socks, Socks from another library branch, because I saw a pattern on that looks good. I’m also thinking Pomatamus would be lovely in either Thraven or Haida.

It was quite the exciting mail day, since this also arrived on my doorstep:



An Annie May spindle and green Corriedale roving, plus two ounces of fabulous rainbow dyed wool roving. Someone on (where else?) Ravelry was destashing. She also sent a copy of Spin It. Oh, yes, I am going to learn to spin yarn. Next, I’ll be keeping sheep in my back yard.

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Only This, And Nothing More

It turns out that BMFA actually does ask that Sock Club members not sell their kits during the year of the Sock Club.  So, I’ll just have to wait until next year for Lenore.  No matter.  It’s not like I have a shortage of sock patterns or yarn to occupy me until then.

Especially since I purchased my very first ever Socks that Rock after work on Monday.  Three skeins of Lightweight – Thraven, Valkyrie, and Haida – just shipped sometime today.  Yippee!

I got my order in around 6:40 Monday evening.  It would have been slightly earlier, but when I got home, I found that a package from my dad had arrived.  It contained some things my late grandmother had put aside for me, including some very old photographs, a child’s Bible given to her mother in 1904, and letters from the young man she was seeing before she met my grandfather.  Also notable were a small embroidered pennant and a silver bracelet, both personalized with her first name, which is the middle name of our Little Miss – those will be set aside for her.  I need to get a couple of archival clamshell boxes for some of the things, like the scrapbook she made (which is definitely acidic paper).

Also in the box was a copy of Abbey’s Complete Book of Knitting, which has some nice stitch patterns in it.  I’ve heard that my grandmother told people she taught me to knit, but she didn’t.  She taught me to crochet and to embroider and to do stamped cross-stitch, but I never could get her to teach me to knit.  She did give me a bunch of her straight needles a few years ago, though.  And I’ve been using one of her teeny tiny steel crochet hooks to do the beading on Secret of the Stole.

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WiP Wednesday

I had Halloween off from work, so, while Little Miss napped, I finished clue #3 of Secret of the Stole.  I seem to be falling farther and farther behind.  And I’m okay with that.


Secret of the Stole Progress

I have no idea what the theme is.  For a while, I thought the large motifs might be flowers, and then someone said they looked like spiders, and that’s all I could see for a while.  And that little X at the top looks sort of like, well, one of those guys who waves in the airplanes at the gate.  I’m pretty sure that’s not it.

Last week, something very bad happened to my lovely MacBook, and the widget that was counting down the days until Christmas Eve went with it.  (Since my iBook is still running Panther, there are no widgets on that one.)  But even without the clock, I know there’s not much time left, so all crafting efforts are currently focused on one thing:




That’s “Checking His List”, as of two weeks ago. Since then, I’ve finished the red portion of the coat and started on the trim. I might manage to finish this stocking yet.

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Since I didn’t get to go to Rhinebeck, y’all already know I’m not one of the cool kids, right? Well, I’m about to cement that with this admission:

I’m not in the Rockin’ Sock Club, either.

But I want to be. Especially since I saw the pictures of the latest shipment.


I love the yarn. I love the pattern (well, what I can see of it). I even love the name.


Say, if someone in the club doesn’t like the shipment, is there a rule or anything about not selling it to somebody else? Somebody like me, maybe?

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Not Rhinebeck

I did not go to Rhinebeck this year (or last year, or the year before that, or any year you care to name, and will not be going for the foreseeable future), since it’s all the way over on the other end of the continent. But, I too, have lovely yarn that makes me want to jump up and down with glee. So, I’m going to follow the example of Girl on the Rocks and show off a little something from my stash.

DB Cashmerino Aran

Here we have two bags of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, purchased at a huge sale at an LYS a while back. I love this yarn; it’s so soft and squishy. I have big plans to turn it into a hooded jacket for Little Miss and the Cardigan for Arwen from Interweave for me.

Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino

And here we have a little more Debbie Bliss, this time Baby Cashmerino in a pretty pretty pink. I bought this to make the Lace Edge Cardigan from Simply Baby, but I think Little Miss may have already outgrown the largest size, so I’m excited to find something new to do with this.

Woo! Stash diving!

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