Knitting with friends makes everything better

So it’s no secret that I love to knit.  Love may actually be a bit of an understatement.  Knitting is central to my being, and I absolutely identify as being a knitter..  I enjoy knitting everywhere, and always keep a project in my purse, so no moment to knit a few stitches go wasted. 

My knitting bag travels with me everywhere -- even to the office.

My knitting bag travels with me everywhere — even to the office.

One of the things I love about knitting is the community that I’ve found through social media such as Instagram and Ravelry. The camaraderie is really fantastic, there is always someone who can help make sense of a question or assist with troubleshooting, and one of my favorites, there is always someone to knit with! the knit-a-longs have been really inspiring, and it all started with the Instagram-Along-Ers group on ravelry. Through that group I came to ‘meet’ Sarah from Crafts from the Cwtch who hosts knit-a-longs a few times throughout the year. When I saw that the latest project would be Martina Behm’s Miss Winkle I knew I had the perfect yarn in my stash! Candy Skein’s February colorway, Broken Heart tart. The variegated pink & black is a great compliment to the pattern, and I can’t wait to get this finished so I can wear it!

My yarn for the knit-a-long, Broken Heart Tart

My yarn for the knit-a-long, Broken Heart Tart

The knit-a-long started on March 15, and I was eager to go. As of this afternoon I’m up to 28 loops, and hope to finish some time this week! Thanks for stopping by as I get back into this, and happy knitting!

Progress on day 1

Progress on day 1

28 loops and some toasty toes in my favorite socks.

28 loops and some toasty toes in my favorite socks.

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On my needles & hook this week…

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Hi Everyone! Sorry for missing WIP Wednesday AND FO Friday last week… things got a little hectic and my week got away from me really quickly! Especially with the blizzard that hit us over the weekend in New England, which gave me lots of good time to knit 🙂 We ended up getting about 2 feet of new snow in about 24 hours, and all of the snow made me feel like I was a kid in Michigan again. Growing up near Lake Michigan we used to get tons of lake effect snow all the time. Here’s a little glimpse at my weekend.

The 'calm' before the storm

The ‘calm’ before the storm

That's my poor car buried under all of that snow.

That’s my poor car buried under all of that snow.

Needless to say, all of that snow gave me a great chance to get some knitting done. If you remember my Fiddlehead Mittens from the last WIP Wednesday, you’ll know that I only had one completed. Not the case any more! I was able to get the entire second mitten finished and even get started on the lining. I know it’s hard to tell in the picture, but all of this alpaca is so amazingly soft! I have a feeling these mittens will feel like I’m wearing a cloud!
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As part of one of my favorite facebook groups full of knitters and crocheters, I’ve recently joined a ‘littles’ swap. 12 people all across the US and UK have signed up to make knit or crochet motifs no larger than 1.5 inches to send to each other. Mine have started coming in and they are so cool! I’m thinking about putting them in a pretty bowl on my desk at work so I have something pretty when I need to fidget. I finally have gotten around to making mine in hopes of getting them in the mail on Friday — I’ve decided to go with a theme of upcoming holidays making shamrocks from Sarahndipities, and easter eggs from Fiber Flux. If you’re looking for cute little crochet projects be sure to check out both blogs, I’m thinking I’m going to make extra for me and make bunting, since anyone who knows me knows I’m a big fan of country kitch decor. Here’s what I’ve got so far on my littles, 5 down, 17 to go!

My collection of littles so far

My collection of littles so far


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Thanks for checking by to see what’s on my needles & hook this week. Be sure to click on the WIP Wednesday and Yarn Along links the top to see what others are knitting and crocheting this week. Happy Knitting!
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Miss Socks-A-Lot

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That’s right folks, it’s time for my weekly knit-a-long update! You can just call me Miss Socks-A-Lot since that seems to be all that’s on my brain lately. Sure I’ve got a whole slew of projects laying around the apartment on needles, but the cold weather has made me want enough hand-made socks to have cozy toes every day of the week. As you saw in last week’s post, I decided to make socks for Justin as I take part in the knit-a-long being hosted by Sarah at Crafts from the Cwtch. As of Saturday night I’d turned the heel on the first sock.

... and we have a heel!

… and we have a heel!

So of course I continued to knit like a crazy woman and finished the first sock before going to bed on Saturday.

When I woke up on Sunday I decided to start a pair of socks for me, in order to help avoid the dreaded second-sock syndrome (or at least that’s what I’m telling myself to keep from feeling guilty :)) Last week when I was at one of my favorite yarn shops, The Yarn Seller, where I was lucky enough to find a crazy zauberball to finish Friday’s featured shawl, I decided to pick up a pair of Addi Turbo knitting needles. As I mentioned last week, trying to knit toe-up on the double pointed needles was more than a pain, so I thought this was my perfect opportunity to try out some needles I’ve always wanted and give the magic loop technique a try.

For those who have only dreamed of the addi turbos like myself, let me tell you, these were magical! Other than my hand getting a little sore (I’ve pretty much knit only on bamboo needles for at least the last 5 years) these were incredible! I’m not sure if it was the needles or magic loop or some combination of the two, but these are the fastest socks I’ve ever made! I cast on in the morning and before bed had turned the heel! I still kind of can’t believe it. But here it is folks, my first magic loop sock.

The funky toe (increases only on one side)

The funky toe (increases only on one side)

The yarn goes so well with my purple leggings!

The yarn goes so well with my purple leggings!

Thanks for stopping by to check out my work, and be sure to click on the picture at the top to see how Sarah and the rest of the KAL crew are coming on their socks.

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Knit-A-Long frenzy

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My how the time certainly does fly.  It’s hard to imagine that we’re almost finished with January, 2013 already!  I feel like I blinked last summer and woke up 6 months later.

Since my announcement back in October that I wanted to have this blog take a turn for the crafty, I’ve been doing lots of knitting. And then I knit some more. 🙂

Through the smart-phone social networking wonder that is Instagram I have come across the most wonderful group of folks who love to knit, crochet, and spin even more than I do! Hard to imagine, I know. I’ve been so inspired by all the wonderful projects and colors, it was just what I needed to get my behind in gear! {now I just need to make my blog schedule and stick to it!} As part of this community I’ve been able to join a few Knit-A-Long projects, or KAL’s as they’re called in the knitting world.

The most recent is hosted by Sarah, the clever mind behind Crafts from the Cwtch. This project is called the “Next Step Sock” knit a long (or #NSSkal for all of you instagram junkies like myself), the idea being that everyone has either knitted, or wants to knit socks. Rather than everyone knitting the same pattern, as is the usual format for a KAL, everyone is knitting socks that challenge their current level. Some people are making their first ever socks in basic pattern to learn new techniques like gussets and turning heels, some people are making the most beautifully intricate color-work socks, and everything in between.

Because I’m taking 7 credits this semester and working full time (I’m crazy, I know), I decided to do a basic sock with a twist. I’ve made several pair of socks before, all in the standard top-down construction with little to no flair, besides the awesome color changes that happen in variegated sock yarn, so Socks on a Plane was the perfect pattern for me. It uses a toe-up construction and has a simple cable up the side. Just enough to learn something new and yet not be overwhelming. Justin has been working in one of the schools as a paraprofessional, so these are going to be his ‘congrats on the new gig’ socks. Here’s my progress so far: (sorry the cable is hard to see, I’m still trying to figure out how best to photograph dark yarn)
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For those of you out there interested in joining in on the fun, do it! You’ll be glad you did (and if you live somewhere cold your toes will thank you)! You can join our Ravelry group for lots of tips and pointers, and if you’re on Instagram be sure to tag your photos #NSSkal.

Happy Knitting! 🙂