Saturday, October 26, 2013

Epic Sock Project

It took me a year and a half to knit these socks. Mostly, I am just really glad to be done with them.

The technical stuff:

They are made of wool that I unraveled from a sweater that was really well made but terribly unflattering. Gauge, about 9 stitches/inch. Needles are a 000 40" circular, which I chose because I knitted them 2 at a time toe-up.

They are far from perfect, because I fall much closer to the "project knitter" side of things than the "process knitter" side.

Things I like about them:

The ribbing at the top looks nice. I learned a new bind-off technique that allows the top edge to stretch very easily.
The fit at the ankle is nice and snug. No wrinkles or sags.
They're toasty warm- 100% merino!

Things I don't like:

That lace pattern isn't very stretchy. The ankles stay snug, but the knees don't.
And I really could have thought out the calf increases better. They're a little clunky looking.

Naturally, even though I swore the whole time that I would never do such a thing again, I started thinking about how to make the next pair better the minute I got these off the needle.We'll just have to wait  and see if that really happens.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


Last night David brought home this giant-ass pumpkin.

Me: Ohmigod. Is that China? And Taiwan?
Him: It's the 'One China'.

Me: Who the hell puts China on a pumpkin?
Him: I dunno...Chinese People?
Me: No dude, not even Chinese people would China on a pumpkin.

Me: Is that the Korean peninsula?
Him: I was thinking about it then I was like, nah, that's too hard.
( It occurs to me that China probably thinks the same thing)

Him: I was paying tribute to your people!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Noodle Soup

I feel like crap today, as I have felt for about 6 days now. I'm getting right tired of it. Meanwhile, here is a bowl of soup. I did not eat this soup today; I did not eat much of anything in fact, due to the crap-feeling business, but looking at this picture of soup from some time ago makes me feel better, so here it is.

There is fried tofu, and greens, plus noodles in fish broth, and I decorated it with minced ginger, green onions, and mushroom fluff. There is nothing mysterious about it (except maybe the mushroom fluff), it's just soup. It only looks pretty for about 30 seconds before you stir it up in to a mess and slurp it up, but those are an important 30 seconds, I think.

Friday, October 4, 2013

the heck is that mess


That's my first and probably only attempt to spin my own yarn. I've been curious about spinning forever and thought I'd try it out. So I grabbed a little 1 ounce baggie of prepared wool when I was at the store the other day and spent some time trying out various home made contraptions for turning it into string. Some things I discovered are:

1. It takes more coordination than anything else. It isn't physically arduous, or complicated, but it reminded me of learning to pat my head and rub my tummy at the same time. Or rotate my arms in opposite directions.
2. There are some weird old men who like to do historical re-enactments having to do with spinning flax on youtube.
3. A drop spindle is about the most low tech thing you can get, but there are better ways to make them and worse ways. I found that a bent coathanger jammed into a rollerblade wheel was more effective than a thing made out of a CD and a chopstick. The important thing is weight. The rubber wheel had enough mass to keep the whole mess turning for a good while, whereas the CD was too flimsy and just stopped rotating.
4. Between the two iterations of drop spindle, I had the rollerblade wheel jammed under a belt that I operated with the treadle of one of my sewing machines. That was much faster, but was like learning to pat my head, rub my tummy, and rotate my arms in opposite directions all three at once.
5. One ounce of wool will not make enough yarn to make anything out of, at least not if you're a beginning spinner. I would knit a bunch of little aliens out of it, but it's so unevenly made that it would make some very misshapen creatures.

how it looks stretched out, before washing

At any rate, my curiosity is satisfied. I now know that making string is about as interesting as you'd expect it to be for about 2 hours, and then I'm pretty much done.