Thursday, May 31, 2007

Those who can't do, ...

...Teach! Yes, Knitters Attic definitely wants me to teach that sock class I mentioned a bit ago. I'm very excited. I went over there yesterday to hammer out a few more details - like course outline, what materials would be included, times, etc. Mercedes and I were on the same page with a lot of stuff and it even looks like I'll be doing more classes for the shop after this one. Hooray! I think the class will start sometime around July. I've already started up some sample socks so I can demonstrate the different methods of sock knitting (DPNs, 2 circs, magic loop) in class:

Wild socks for DD1
On one of my first visits to Knitter's Attic, I noticed some very funky sock yarn that I thought might make some nifty socks for DD1 - "Super Socks Colour". When we did a whole-family trip over to the store one evening, I pointed it out to her and she said that yes, she'd like socks from it. So I bought a ball. This is going to be my demonstration piece for how to knit socks on two circular needles.

Admittedly, I've mostly been working this so far with the magic loop technique, but it's easy to switch over to 2 circs to show people that technique. Incidentally, I cannot BELIEVE how much easier it is to start this toe-up sock pattern with one or two circulars versus a set of DPNs. I will be starting all socks in this pattern with a circ or two from now on and then switching to DPNs to save myself the grief of wrestling the damn porcupine.

Sleep socks for moi
I also needed a pair of socks on which to demonstrate the magic loop technique. So I grabbed some of 75/25 acrylic/wool that I recently came into possession of (more on that in a bit), put together a really long 3.75mm circular needle out of my Denise Interchangables kit, and started it up. If I ever finish the socks, they'll be for me.

Self-patterning socks #3 for DH
I'm not going to be using this project to demonstrate sock technique to the class because by the time the class starts, these socks had better darn well be finished since I need to give them to DH this Saturday for his birthday! But I'm trying to get him to think that I'm hustling on them for the sock class in order to throw him off the scent. :) They're coming along nicely. As of this morning, they looked like this:

Now, however, the heel is done and I'm moving up the leg.

Obviously, with all this going on I need to get my energy back, and that fortunately does seem to be happening. The last four nights have given me the rather strong hint that swaddling Elizabeth results in solid blocks of sleep of 7 hours or more. (Three of those nights I swaddled, and we had sleep marathons. One of those nights I took a break from the swaddling, and she woke up about three times. I consider this pretty solid proof that I should stick with the swaddling.) I am therefore feeling much more rested and the upbeat, capable-of-coping-with-stuff me is coming back.

In other cool news, one of my best friends has given me her late grandmother's stash of knitting materials (and supplies for some other crafts). There were a ton of needles (I firmly believe you can never have too many 4mms), which is awesome, some patterns, and my favourite - a UK needle gauge (so now I have two - one for home and one for the road, yay)! Almost all the yarn is 100% acrylic - some in colours I would use, some not. There's also some 75/25 acrylic/wool which I'll be keeping because it's nice. The rest I'll give away to good causes. I haven't quite decided what yet, because I have lots of options.

  • I could knit stuff out of it myself for charity.
  • I could give the yarn to charity knitting/crocheting organizations.
  • I could give away the yarn to people I teach how to knit - DH and I went to a kindergarten orientation session last week, where it was made quite clear that they're desperate for parents to help, and I've been thinking about the possibility of volunteering to teach the kids how to knit (late in the school year when they're older). I'm sure I could put some of the extra needles from my friend's grandmother to that use, as well.

So who knows! But if you have ideas of worthy causes that could use the yarn/needles, do tell me about them in the comments.

So...onto the rest of the knitting I've been working on lately...

Muppet roadkill
Body is finished! (And boy, is it ever super-obvious where the fourth ball starts. Even taking colour differences into account, the damn thing doesn't variegate even remotely like the other three balls. Ironically, I like the way the fourth ball variegates better.) Edging has begun:

Girlfriend Shrug for DD1
When last we left this project, I was failing miserably to find more of the same yarn to have enough to finish the shrug. So lately, I've been thinking about going back to the original plan of finding some whit wool/cotton sock yarn to do the edging and some cables down the back with.

So when I went to the LYS this week, what new stock did I see? Lana Grossa wool/cotton sock yarn in solid colours, including white. HELL-o! Needless to say, I snapped it up. Now I can keep going with the shrug. I'll use the leftover white to make socks for my mom or something.

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