Christmas 2016 – Part 2

And now part 2! Things I made for adults in my life.

So 2016 was the year I learned to knit socks. It’s silly. I don’t wear socks during the day. However I do enjoy wearing the hand knit socks I’ve received as gifts! So I started off knitting a couple pairs for myself and realized if I was going to feed my sock knitting obsession I needed to branch out to gift knitting.

It started with this pair I made for my mom. I didn’t quite have the right colors for her so I wandered down to my local yarn shop and picked up a skein of Malabrigo Sock in Anniversario. It is quite lovely with reds and purples all intermixed. It looks a little nutty in the photos, but in person the colors blend nicely. We have fairly similar feet so they it was easy to gauge the size and I hear she enjoys wearing them.

 

Next up are socks for my sister. My mom and sister are pretty forgiving gift receivers should things turn wonky. Thankfully this pair also turned out just beautifully. This time I used Dark Harbour Yarns in Bluebottle, but the color really reminded me of Elsa from Frozen and the color is a gradual fade from white with speckles to a dark blue-green. Totally stunning. Nikki creates gorgeous colors!

And then there is the cross stitching! I bought the kit from The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery. It was a mystery stitch along and their patterns are so darling. Not sure what I’m going to do with the long narrow piece, but the bonus ornament pattern was super adorable! So I made two, one for our tree and one for their cousins’ tree!

Then there were was cooking, baking ,and tea towel calendar hemming and all those little projects that fly under the radar! A busy season to be sure, but it was fun to dive into my stash of supplies and come up with some fun customized gifts for some of my family this year.

And now back to my ever growing queue of projects! On top of sewing my usual favorites we have two weddings to attend this spring and of course Easter dresses to plan. I so looking forward to making some fun things!

Speckles and Sparkles

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I’ve been toiling away on little projects lately, but just in time for cooler evenings I’ve finished my 2nd ever pair of socks.

Poor things have been on the needles since July, but I only ever worked on them during my lunch breaks. Well July is also around the time I started spending 80% of my lunch time walking. These socks were knit 5 minutes here and there!

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But goodness they are colorful and the yarn is sparkly too so they will be a joy to wear during the dark winter ahead. It doesn’t get very cold here, but our only heater is in the back of the house and I will need these coach socks.

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With each pair of socks I’ve been trying a different heel construction. These were knit from a pattern called Fleegle’s Toe Up Socks. And I like the heel construction okay. I think I still prefer the slipped stitch heel I tried on my first pair.

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The yarn is from LushKnit. I’ve known Megan through Ravelry for years and years so I have been thrilled to see her tackling yarn dying with such joy. You can tell she is inspired with each color way. This is Moonage Daydream after the David Bowie song. I kept missing her updates so she graciously offered to dye me up a custom order.

The yarn base is super soft and wonderful to work with, though the sparkles don’t photograph on the light colors. And while I’d hoped the yarn would be more speckled than pooling I will say not a speck of dye came out in the bath. That is a miracle for me. I rarely do color work because our water composition seems to make every single color bleed in the soak! But not Moonage Daydream!!!

And now back to all the other little things I’ve been tackling. I maxed out on summer clothes. I always know I have enough when I need to do laundry because of underwear instead of dresses. But soon enough I’ll need cool weather clothes and I’ll have some new makes to share here.

 

2nd Annual Anniversary Project

You may remember last year I knit a beautiful sweater in the color of my wedding dress. This year year I decided to continue the trend with my 2nd Annual Anniversary Project.

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It has been so fun working on these projects around our wedding anniversary. A time for reflection on how far we’ve come and where we’re headed next. Or how we’re maintaining our sanity while our children create chaos around us! You know, life.

What project could possibly go with a 6th wedding anniversary? Apparently this is the candy/iron/wood anniversary depending on which list your reference. Hmmm, how about socks? They were knit on carbon fiber needles…

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This is the first pair of socks I’ve made for myself and only my second pair ever (first pair being slipper socks for my husband last Christmas). I scoffed at sock knitting for many years, but I have to admit it was FUN.

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The pattern I used was Wendy Knit’s Fingering Weight Toe-Up Socks With Gusset and Slip-Stitch Heel. Long name, but it was recommended to me as a good basic toe-up sock pattern.

Can we just stop and admire the stripe matching for a moment? I suppose one advantage to knitting your first socks after becoming a fairly competent knitter means you have plenty of practice keeping your gauge consist

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I didn’t totally follow Wendy’s pattern. I decided if I was going to knit socks I was going to do everything I could to get the fit right. So I cast on for the smallest size and knit asymmetrical toes. This is my favorite feature! I did it by only working 3 sets of increases on the big toe side and all the other increases on the baby toe side of my foot. The instep of the socks were a tad bit snug, so I added 3 sets of increases just on the top half. I then decreased those 3 sets of increases out again at the ankle after discovering the ankles were all saggy.

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Lastly I worked increases every 6 rows on the back side to accommodate my muscular calves as other hand knit socks I own (generously knit by friends) are a tad tight there.

I really wanted to use up every single bit of yarn that I could, but ultimately I still have a little left over. It was a good effort for a first time. Next time I think I’ll pre-split the yarn into two even balls before I start knitting.

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The yarn is fabulous. It’s from the company White Birch Fiber Arts and the colorway is called Royal We. Perfect match to our wedding colors don’t you think? I have another skein in Release the Kraken that I’ll knit up eventually. Socks really do make perfect purse knitting! All those knitters weren’t kidding when they recommended socks as a travel project.

Next year looks like it’s the wool anniversary, so hmm…sounds like I should go big! Good thing I have a whole year to plan.