Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Little News

I hope to have more interesting fodder tomorrow, but for today I will just say that I am well into the gusset on the Minty Leaves socks, which are very delicate and even a bit small (that is some THIN yarn I am using), but they will fit nicely. This time I did the picking up for the gusset correctly and don't have to rearrange the stitches. I see where I messed up last time, and won't do that again!

My hands were hurting last night, so I didn't knit much. I have been reading a lot, mostly about knitting, but that doesn't make for interesting photos. I think I am percolating ideas, then a lot of writing will gush forth from me. Maybe even, dare I hope, something interesting! Even I am getting tired of daily reports on how much I have knit.

Oh yeah, one brave thing I did today was comment on the Yarn Harlot blog, which is something I try to avoid doing--so many people comment that I feel like anything I'd say would be said by someone else. But, she was SO good and didn't say something snarky to a woman who insisted that her knitting was crochet. If I was an author of numerous knitting books and someone did that, I am so afraid I'd ask them, "And how many books on knitting have YOU published???" She actually said NOTHING. So, there is some ignorant person wandering around Canada who will never get far if she plans on crocheting anything.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Minty Leaves Weekend and Silky Kerchief "Pattern"


Minty Leaves Beginning
Originally uploaded by sunasak
I didn't feel like starting much of anything this weekend, so I did what I would call "comfort knitting," which means I worked on socks the whole time. The picture shows how far along I was on these socks by Saturday evening. By last night, it was double this, plus a little. I am almost to the heel.

The socks are Leaves of Whimsy, which were in the Knitting Pattern-a-Day calendar and also are available here

Apparently you have to buy some other product to get this for free. Or you had to buy the calendar, like I did. It's a simple leaf pattern where the patterning goes all the way down the heel, so it will be good with my usual clogs and Birks. I am using a very fine 100% merino yarn from Perfect Day Yarns, called Beat Sock. It is very tightly spun, in fact, a bit too tight in spots. Near the beginning it was unwound for a bit, but it's settled into a tightly twisted consistency. It's fine to work with, just tightly spun. It's acid dyed in pale mint green that seems to be a reasonable choice for leaves. It looks great on a leg or hand, not so great all folded upon itself on the needles. It's lace and needs to stretch!

It's been nice to take a rest from knitting that involves a lot of thought. I'll have to move on to the lace top soon enough.

Silk Kerchief Shawlette Pattern

I have received a few requests for the pattern to the Silky Kerchief shawlette That's a bit easier said than done, since I rather winged it, but used printed sources. If you are dying to make one, here's the closest I can get to a recipe (I will add page number for the border when I can look it up):

Yarn: 2 skeins any color Noro Silk Garden Sock, one skein of the neutral S269. I used S87 for mine.

Main body: Silky Kerchief

This is easy as long as you know how to do a provisional cast on. Just make this but keep going until you run out of one of your skeins of yarn. Make sure you reserve a whole skein of your colorful yarn for the border--I ran out because I used a little of mine in the main body.

Once your main body is done, attach the border using standard knit-on border technique (when you get to the inner edge, knit last stitch together with one stitch from the body of the shawl).

I used a garter stitch border that made little cubes, which I found in Knitting beyond the Edge or Knitting on the Edge by Nicky Epstein. I will look that up, I promise. It is near the back of whichever book it is in.

When I got to the center, I was overjoyed to see I was at a pattern repeat end. If I hadn't been, I'd have done four rows in one shawl stitch instead of two for a few rows until I got to a good edge.

On the center sttitch, I did a series of short row wedges that each ended with a [K2tog, YO, K1] so the eyelets would continue around the corner. I just ended each row one stitch sooner until there were three stitches left, then knitted back to the end and repeated. This turned the corner. You could do any kind of wedge that you like, or simply do the 4 rows per body stitch thing for a few rows as you approach the center, then try 6 in the center, then 4 rows per body stitch for the same number as you did approaching the center, keeping the pattern going. As long as you have a reasonable amount of additional rows, it will be OK. No, I do not know how many constitute a "reasonable amount." It just needs to lie flat as it goes around the corner. Ideally, you'd have a point or a valley in the center. But, it would probably look fine if the pattern just kept a-goin', too.

When you get near the end, try to aim to have the edge be at the end of a pattern repeat. You can fudge by knitting 3 together on a couple of rows. The garter stitch has enough "give" that this won't show.

Well, that's how I did it. I winged it, what can I say? I think it looks fine, even if it wasn't very scientific.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Tie Dye Finished Hawaiian Leis


Hawaiian Leis Detail
Originally uploaded by sunasak
Here is a nice close-up of my finished Tie Dye Hawaiian Leis socks. You can see the interesting stitch pattern, the eye of partridge heel and the cute garter stitch border by the gusset. These fit perfectly and are very, very comfortable with their silk and wool content. I am wearing them today and they are warm without being clammy. I really enjoyed doing these two at a time on my new Hiya Hiya needles. The only bad thing about the needles is that I swear the finish is already rubbing off. Oh well, they still work, but I must say I wish I had a wooden KnitPicks one that was 42" instead of these.

The second picture here shows how they socks look really different on the top, but look more alike down at the foot level. The top of one has a lot more green than the top of the other. The other thing you will see in the second picture is how the pattern stops well before the toe. I am not sure why the instructions said to do that, but it probably makes them more comfortable in closed-toe shoes (which I have on today, clogs).

And, just for fun, I am also showing the socks as they look on sock blockers, all perfect and nice. The colors are most accurate in the top picture, which was taken without flash. I am really happy with these socks, especially the color. I was aiming for a look of faded tie dye, and it really comes across--the toes and bottoms of the feet bear it out very well. You never know when you are experimenting with KoolAid how it's going to come out!

The next sock project I will embark on is called Leaves of Whimsy, and it was also in the Knitting Pattern a Day 2008 calendar that I found the Hawaiian Leis in. I usually don't make too much from these calendars, so to use it on two in a row is something! I had decided I really wanted to use a particular yarn, which is the Seafoam color of Perfect Day Socks' Beat Sock yarn, a minty green semi-solid. I promised Lee I would make something less color-filled for once. I'll get those started today at lunch. I already made a chart for the pattern, because I just don't enjoy reading line by line instructions any more. The chart made the leaf pattern very clear!

Finally, as promised, here is a picture of me wearing the finished Silky Kerchief Shawlette. I hope to get a nicer photo outdoors in a more appropriate top--this picture of me about ready to go to bed with a football game in the background does not to the shawl justice. One of the ladies at the yarn shop did take a few photos right after I finished, so maybe she'll send me some of those, too. (As an aside, I had finished this shawl and people were saying "ooh" and such, but a bit later a woman came in with an immense lace shawl covered in thousands of beads--really contrasted with my rustic garter stitch! Oh well, different shawls for different purposes!) At least mine did soften slightly when washed. It will be a nice warm one to wear at the office or yarn shop. I may even keep it in my car for chilly emergencies.

So, onward and upward to new knitting projects and a fun weekend!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

When Suna's Worlds Collide

Many of you know that my other collection (besides balls of yarn) is tarot decks. Imagine my reaction when I found this on my newest deck, the Whispering Tarot, by Elizabeth Hazel. The card is the 8 of Pentacles, which usually depicts a young man working hard at some menial task (in my favorite desk, the apprentice is in a workshop churning out pentacle-shaped wooden plates). Here the protagonist is sitting with her cat and knitting a very large afghan. It's still a picture of repetitive work, and she still doesn't look totally thrilled at the task, but in the text, the author suggests she is happy with the product and glad it's almost done. I am really liking how the woman who did these cards did some interesting things without totally obscuring the traditional images in the cards (she did away with a lot of esoteric stuff and religious symbolism, which I do like--though she seems to have substituted Buddhist images for Christian ones, not sure why).

Well, I doubt you came here to read a tarot review (unless you are Jody or Tina), but if you are interested, you can still get signed and numbered copies of this deck, which is small but nice and comes with its book on CD rather than book form.

In good knitting news, happy days, the additional ball of Silk Garden Sock yarn arrived yesterday, so I was able to finish the Silky Kerchief border at Chicks with Sticks last night. When I came home, I washed it in lavender stuff and laid it out on the guest bed. I didn't use pins to block it, since it's garter stitch, but I did smooth it out. I hope washing softens it a little. As soon as it is dry, I will take a picture so you can see how it fits--it came out a medium-sized shawl that I think will stay on well with a shawl pin down by the ends of the borders. And I did get the shawl to come out fairly even. That is the best I could do!

In less good knitting news (technically, crochet news), I have decided to frog the Ocean Pearls cardigan. The back is just too small. I think I will try again one size larger, since the smaller needle fooled me by acting like it was making the right width, but it wasn't. Ugh, having to do all those bobbles will be a pain, but since I am better at them now, doing it over will look better. I am going to take a break from it, though. I will probably try to churn out the second Lace and Cable top that I said I would do for Suzanne.

At least I will soon get to start on new socks. The Hawaiian Leis are fast approaching the toe. I could either try to quickly make socks out of the remaining Silk Garden Sock, so I'd have matching socks and shawl, or do what I really want to do and make something pretty with some seafoam green yarn I recently wound.

And here's a final shocker: I even did a bit of work on Juno Regina last night. I did it sorta wrong, though, since I could not find the pattern. I am wondering if I should re-start that one...no, too much knitting in slippery silk. I'll just go back a few rows and keep plugging away at it. I need to finish that.

Monday, August 18, 2008

On a Cheerier Note


Yarn
Originally uploaded by sunasak
Yeah, so I did run out of yarn on my shawl over the weekend (and thank you to Lee for commenting and breaking my two-week comment drought, though I don't know if a comment from someone who lives at your house really indicates much reader interest). Even so, I had a good knitting (and shopping) weekend in Fredericksburg with my yarn-shop friends (as you may recall, we are known as the Methodist, the Mormon and the Unitarian--all drawn together by our being the exact same age and loving knitting).

Thank goodness the Methodist knew where the LYS was in that town, so I finally got to visit it. And what a nice visit. Most of the scenic part of F'burg is old buildings, many of which are pretty cool, but the yarn shop was in a really neat one, all wooden and rustic. It has a huge room in back for their primary purpose--hooked rug kids and spinning stuff, but the front was a fair-sized yarn display, mostly of Rowan yarns. I had hoped to find a couple of "organic" yarns there, and was not disappointed. They had all of Rowan's new natural line, and I snapped up a ball of Black Welsh sheep yarn and a nice naturally-dyed cotton (the far left two yarns in the photo). Then I found some cotton that is from Peru and certified organic, undyed. I got the brown and the green color, on the right. It is really nice to touch, so I can't wait to mess with it. Then I found local stuff. Jackpot! The two center top yarns are marketed by the shop (Stonehill Spinning, no website, but there's contact info on Ravelry), and are undyed merino, nicely colored--baah baah, you black and cream sheep! And the bottom yarn is another Texas product, this one from El Coyote Ranch (elcoyoteranch.com). It is undyed wool and llama. You don't get a lot of llama in yarn, so that's cool.

I may do some collaborating on an organic project with a coworker, which is why I got this sampler. It's all rather "rustic" but may be just what the granola crunchers (my peeps!) want.

Everyone else also got neat yarn. Both of my companions got pretty colors for what should be lovely projects. The Mormon got some very pretty scarf-wannabee yarn, while the Methodist got some very thick, soft stuff for another afghan. She loves to knit big.We did lots of knitting around the house. Both the Mormon and I made a lot of sock progress. I got the heels and gusset done on the Hawaiian Leis (photo is from before the gusset work). Mostly I worked on the shawl, until there was only one inch of yarn left and 30 rows of border left to knit. Wah. I just buckled down and ordered another ball from the Loopy Ewe, using my $25 certificate (I love those). I'll just make slightly short (and not that comfy) socks, or maybe happy handwarmers out of what is left.

I am back at work on the purple crocheted top now. I am getting close to being finished with the back. Then it should go a bit more quickly, unless I get distracted thinking up things to do with that organic yarn.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Friday, August 15, 2008

Silky Kerchief Corner


Silky Kerchief Corner
Originally uploaded by sunasak
See, I told you I'd give you a picture of the shawl edge. Ahhh, I think it is so pretty. My fingers are still crossed that I have enough yarn. It is so much fun knitting this little border. Cute little garter stitch boxes, each of them a different color. Everyone who's seen it in person likes it a lot. I am looking forward to wearing this thing next week!

I am also moving forward on the Hawaiian Leis socks. I am almost finished with the eye of partridge heel, and it's so pretty. I did hit a challenge when I had to rearrange the stitches. I had to put each sock on a separate needle to do it, so I had to wait until I was home to do it!

My friend Deana says she will teach me how to crochet with beads this weekend, so that will be a fun new project. I always want to learn new things, and I sure like beads. I just hope I don't get so "into" it that I spend a lot of money. The ones I like are the "real" jewels. I just love pretty rocks. But, I also just love shiny things, and seed beads aren't too costly. I am Suna the Magpie!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Turning the Corner


I just hate it when I have something to blog about but no picture to go with the post. So, here I am hiding my head in shame because I was too tired last night to take a picture of my shawl. At least I am hiding my head in a lovely piece of silk/cashmere lace knitting (though with no software, I could not crop the image). My shawl makes me keep missing my friend Jody. I keep wondering how she is...

Anyway, my topic is that I got to the halfway point on the border of the Silky Kerchief last night, and I successfully turned the corner. First, how amazing is it that I ran out of yarn at a stitch count that made the repeats come out EXACTLY even? There is no way I planned to have it come out a multiple of 15, but it did! I used the space in the center stitch to do a two short-row wedges that fairly successfully, far as I can tell, rounded the point of the shawl in a way somewhat (see how much hedging I have added here) keeps up with the flow of the edging. I kept the YO edge and an eyelet at the end. The short rows made the last block into a nice diamond shape, which doesn't look too bad, I don't think.

On the short rows, since it was garter stitch, I didn't do wrap and turn, but I didn't do nothing either (like I would have on a Bathtime Blossom washcloth). As I knitted back down along the row where I'd left off one stitch earlier x number of times, I picked up the purl bump from the last stitch on the row beneath each stitch that had a gap after it. That came out pretty invisible, at least on the right side. On the wrong side there is a slight ridge.

In more serendipitous good news, the half of the shawl went through exactly one repeat of all the stripe colors in the yarn. I hope, since I can see some of each of these colors in what remains, that I do indeed have enough yarn to finish the shawl. The ball of yarn seems a bit skimpy, but I do see all the colors. On the other hand, there could be some of the infamous Noro knots that will mess me up...I'll just have to see how it comes out. I'd like to finish over the weekend, but since I will be goofing off with my friends, I am not sure how much knitting will happen.

A photo of the corner will appear tomorrow, honest.

PS: Katie doesn't want one of those weird baby hats. Wah. Maybe I will make an adult size one for one of my kids. Yeah, they'll LOVE one.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Quick Humorous Ravelry Item

So, I was taking a break and browsing new patterns on Ravelry, when I found a baby hat based on the king in the Katamari Damacy video game. Oh do click on the hat link--it goes to the author's blog and has extra cute photos. The baby is precious. And the baby is just a hoot. (On the blog, the nekkid baby photo looks a lot like my first son as an infant, other than obvious equipment differences.)

I think this hat could be used to make all sorts of Halloween costumes for the little-uns. Katie, should I start crocheting on this for next fall???

This proves to me that, underneath my current aversion to being a parenting counselor due to a previous unfortunate career choice, I still really like babies.

Also, my boss is cold. I guess this calls for a shawl.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Weekend Mystery Knit


Homely Square
Originally uploaded by sunasak
We had a Mystery Knit Afternoon at the yarn shop on Sunday. I mainly went because some of my friends were coming. It ended up that only a couple were there, but there was the bonus of meeting some new people, which made it better.

There were, um, a couple of organizational issues, so things went slowly. Like the instructions got lost on a dead computer, so they had to be retyped, leading to some "interesting" products. I started knitting one patter, realized the instructions didn't work, and decided my brain was just not up to figuring out what it was supposed to be. Instead, I crocheted the last pattern, which had a pre-printed chart. Unfortunately, it required me to crochet a square in predominantly single crochet, using a variety of novelty yarns. Many of these yarns weren't really suited to that. I ended up with the thing you see here. Well, it's so ugly that I just gave up on making part 2 of the project and went back to help with the snacks (followed by eating them).

This square is supposedly the flap to a makeup bag. It's in Berroco Suede, mostly. I think I will unravel it and use the rest, plus the coordinating color I also got, to make coasters. That yarn makes a fine coaster.

I ended up leaving early, but I did enjoy the chatting aspect of the event, and was really feeling for the organizer, who was just having a bad week. Sometimes things just pile up and everything you do just doesn't seem to go right. I have a LOT of sympathy for that! So, I hope I was able to help.

Meanwhile, back at home, the Olympics have proved themselves to be their usual prime knitting opportunities. I have really moved along on the silky kerchief border. I actually think I have a reasonable plan that will make it end up balanced, and end at the end of the pattern. We will see how it goes when I get to the point of the shawl. By the way, it appears that it will be a medium-sized one, not as large as some I have, but not tiny like Swallowtail or the original pattern.

I also have gotten some work done on my Tie Dye Hawaiian Leis socks, which are almost to the heel. The colors are balancing out a bit better, whew. And while I was working on them at lunch yesterday, a woman asked me about them. She may drop by later in the week so I can help her remember how to cast on, so she can make more scarves. That will make both me and her happy--I love to help out!

I hope you are all having a nice week. My week has improved, because it rained a bit AND I survived a dental cleaning. I'll keep posting away, and hope to hear from some of you soon!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Lookee! A Border on the Silky Kerchief


Border on Silky Kercheif
Originally uploaded by sunasak
I just wanted to quickly share this picture of the progress on my silky kerchief shawl. It's really looking pretty! I love how the stripes came out, though I was getting rather annoyed at the Silk Garden yarn toward the end. After having no knots until the end, I had one toward the end of the first ball, and two near the start of the second ball of the rainbow colorway. That is the problem with this brand. Lots of knots that ruin the flow of the colors. There was no problem with the neutral colorway, though, and it also gave me four more rows. Now my fingers are crossed that I have plenty for this border.

I really like the border. It is garter stitch squares, with not a lot of ornamentation, which I hope looks rustic like the main body of the shawl. I am also hoping that the intensity of the color is not too distracting. It really blends more in person than in the photos. As Katie keeps telling me, my projects lately look way better in person than in the photos. Maybe I need a better camera. Or one of those light tents.

All rightee, I will try to write again tomorrow with more stuff. I just wanted to show you the border!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Happy 08/08/08

I don't have any photos to share, darn it. I do have a new ball of yarn, but I haven't uploaded its photo yet. I got my Loopy Ewe Second Anniversary Kit in the mail this week, and the yarn that came with it is very nice. From the Handmaiden folks in Canadia, land of knitting. It's red, black and gray to match the company theme colors. I guess I was more excited about the Loopy Ewe temporary tattoos, which I hope to wear this weekend to the LYS, bead shopping with friends, and another mystery knitting day at the LYS. I don't really care what we make, since I'm just there to chat, anyway.

I am getting near the end of my initial two skeins of yarn for the Silky Kerchief that is now a shawl. I think it will need about a three-inch border to make it the length and width I want. I'm pretty sure the other skein of the rainbow colored Silk Garden Sock will be more than plenty to do that. I will look for a nice garter stitch border with just a few YOs in it, so as to not detract from the stripey main part of the shawl. I like the way a knitted border looks, and how it helps shawls drape and flow. The shawl I am wearing now (I am chilly in an air conditioned building) has a border with some fagoting on it, and it's awfully nice, though of course that would make for a more open looking edge. I'll see if one of the books I have features a similar border, since Jody made this one.

It was nice to get my Interweave Knits in the mail. It's too bad that, since Vogue Knitting always shows up in my mailbox ten days to two weeks AFTER it arrives in stores, and IK arrives BEFORE it gets to stores, I end up getting both at about the same time most issues. As usual, they are very different, but once again I liked more of the VK patterns than in the past. I doubt I will make much, other than some mittens, from either issue, due to all the heavy fall/winter items that just don't fit in well in Texas. I will have my heavy orange alpaca sweater to wear this fall (assuming I finish that last sleeve), so I already have one. I think I could use one more heavier cardigan, though...

On my to do list: subscribe to Interweave Crochet. If future issues are as good as the summer one, I'll want them!

On my not to do list: Any Olympics-related yarn activity. Man, the Olympics just started and I am already sick of reading who has knit what. I think, for me, knitting is where I try to NOT bring out my competitive side. I don't want to beat any one else, or even compete with myself. Of course, assuming I get time to watch, I will knit through the Olympics! Just it will be on my shawl, my crocheted cardigan and the socks I need to finish!

Kudos: Huge kudos to Lime & Violet for coming up with their new series of yarns, which are advertised as perfect for prayer shawls. They put intentions right into the dyeing process, even writing words like "peace" on the yarn to be dyed. Of course, the words only show up as little dots in the finished yarn, but you can be reminded of what you are supposed to be thinking about every time you see a dot! Sheri at the Loopy Ewe has some pictures and more details. I just think this is a wonderful concept, and if you know me in person, you will realize this is right up my alley. Of course, I see myself doing a lot with this idea! I have been finding lately that intention, focus, and attitude really DO make a difference.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Loving My Crafts, Man


Kerchief Progress
Originally uploaded by sunasak
I can't help it, I just love my crafts. Both the projects I am working on right now are so pleasing to me that it's all I want to do. The kerchief that is going to be a shawl is soooo pretty that I can't put it down. Every row brings in yet another beautiful color in the main yarn, and the effect is quite rainbow-like. It will go with anything. It's about the size that the original pattern calls for, but I'm going to keep going and use up the whole skein of the neutral yarn--hoping that will be shawl sized. Then I will think, think, think about what kind of border I want to put on it. I'll do that with the rainbow yarn second skein. This will be one expensive shawl, but one that will be perfect for the office or just wandering around in the fall--it will go with anything. So far, the only color I don't see in it is orange. I wonder why there's no orange? The neutral Silk Garden Sock is very subtle, and really doesn't change colors much. I think it's natural wool colors. It just goes from natural to light tan to a very slightly darker tan and back.


I did manage to set the shawl down for a while last night and work a bit on the Ocean Pearls. The rest of the back should go pretty quickly, because I finished all the armhole decreases. I just have to make it long enough. I am starting the third ball of yarn, which bodes well, I think, for ten balls being sufficient for the project. That GGH Mystik is still a pain in the rear end compartment to work with, but is sure is nice and shiny. My pearls are going fine, though still it's hard sometimes to pull a loop through ten wraps of sticky yarn. That yarn gets caught on anything that comes near it, even little rough patches of skin on my fingers. Sigh, that's why I love natural fibers. They don't do that.

PS: I just saw that Knotions, another new online knitting magazine is now up. If you haven't seen it yet, do check it out. There is nothing there I am dying to make, but the layout is good, and they have some of the old MagKnits patterns.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Easy Kerchief Shawl


Kerchief Shawl
Originally uploaded by sunasak
I spotted this pattern yesterday while looking for something to make with my Silk Garden Sock yarn. It was just uploaded to Ravelry, too. I went to the LYS this morning and picked up the neutral shade so I could get going. It's a lot of fun and easy as pie--would be a great first shawl if you can do a provisional cast on. Here's the link to the pattern.

I knew the LYS owner would love this pattern, considering how much she loved that Brooklyn Tweed K1P1 Noro scarf pattern, and sure enough, the minute I showed it to her, she grabbed some yarn and started one too. Since the shop is almost out of the Silk Garden Sock yarn, she picked regular Silk Garden and a coordinating color of Silky Tweed. it should be nice!

My plan is to make the kerchief more of a shawlette. I have two balls of my colorful yarn, so I will either add some non-striped sections, or put on a simple border using just the colored yarn. That sounds fun, anyway.

I really didn't need to start another project, since I am still crocheting away on the Ocean Pearl cardigan. But, this looked like a nice relaxing project, so what the heck. Congratulations to the designer, Kate of Zeitgeist yarns. She did a good presentation of a simple and fun pattern for great yarn.

Friday, August 1, 2008

An Interesting Twist

I read about a new online magazine today, while perusing other people's extra-popular blogs (a thing this one will never be, due to my lack of popular book or pattern). This is the Twist Collective site, which is very pretty, and only mildly frustrating in that you can't read through the pattern instructions unless you pay $6-7 for them. Because I think designers deserve fair compensation for their work, I will not begrudge them their bucks, and I hope to buy a couple of these. I just, sigh, like to read patterns.

Among the lovely sweaters (so many cables!), shawls (drool), and socks (yum) are some good articles, and I enjoyed reading most of them quite a bit. However, I want to MARRY (sorry, Lee) the Houdini Sock article by Cat Bordhi, which details making a sock with the heel just being a second toe, then picking up at a strategic point and build up legs. So slick. It's hard to explain in my words, but makes total sense when you look at the pictures, which you do NOT have to pay for. YAY! This technique is just cooler than cool, and I can't wait to give it a whirl. Maybe with one of my lovely new yarns. I just love a new idea! It's another one of those ones that were sorta in the back of my mind but I never worked out. I am glad Cat's around to actually figure out this stuff.