Wednesday, June 29, 2011

WIP Wednesday: Make Up & Porifera Socks

Today is WIP Wednesday!

I've hardly done any work on my socks in the last week. I had a busy weekend in celebrating my birthday. I was busy having fun and visiting with my brother and friends that I ended up not knitting much. But I did make some progress. Make Up Socks (purple) are through the heel now and Porifera Socks (red) are at the heel. You can see the first one being worked on here:

I have a deadline of finishing both of these pairs of socks by the end of tomorrow. It's not the end of the world if I don't, but I'd be really happy to reach that goal.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Adventures in Dyeing

I've been wanting to try dyeing for the longest time. It only seemed natural to know how to dye my own yarn, especially after I knew how to spin. A few months ago I received a swap package and in it was a skein of bare wool from Knit Picks. At that point, I hadn't gotten around to taking the first step to learning how to dye with Kool Aid. I was always thinking of knitting projects I wanted to do when I had money to spend on Knit Picks. Anyway, my swap person sent me a 100g skein of undyed fingering yarn from Knit Picks.

It wasn't until a couple days ago where I decided I'd go ahead and do it. Truth is, I was scared of completely messing it up. My really good friend Rachel helped walk me through it and so did a tutorial on Knitty. The first step was to soak the yarn:

While it soaked, I got out my pot and added the water and Tropical Punch Kool Aid. I'm not sure where my brain was but I actually wanted to dye the yarn blue. Somehow I got it in my head that the tropical punch was blue. It was when I poured the packets into the pot that I realized I was wrong. But... I didn't want to waste it and I love the color red too. So I decided to go ahead with the red and to do blue next time (and soon). After the packets were added to the water, I stirred it until they were dissolved, adding no sugar. Then I added yarn.

I heated the yarn to an almost boil and then let it cool until I could manage to touch it. I think that took about 4 hours at the maximum. I'd poured out the original water I soaked the yarn in before adding it to the water/Kool Aid mixture so I could use the same thing it'd soaked in before to wash it gently. When that was done, I got out as much water as I could before hanging it to dry over my shower curtain. This morning it was all dry.

And that's it. That's all it took to dye my first yarn. I can't dye acrylic or I'd try. I have plenty of white sitting around not being used for much because I don't knit with white often. The yarn needs to be made from animal fibers (ie. wool, mohair, alpaca, etc.) It still smells fruity but eventually the smell will go away and its not a bad smell. I haven't decided what to use the yarn for yet, I'm thinking maybe I'll make another Damson so I'll have a red one in addition to my blue one.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

WIP Wednesday: Make Up Socks

Today is WIP Wednesday! Over at my home in Ravenclaw Tower on Raverly, we've started posting what we're currently working on every Wednesday. I really like the idea and decided to also post to my blog about what I'm working on every Wednesday.

The project for today is a pair socks for me. They're a beautiful shade of purple and turning out to be a decently quick knit. The pattern is Make-Up Socks from one of my sock books (Joy of Sox).

Of the 5 pairs of socks I've planned to have done by the end of July, I'm nearing halfway there. I have one pair done, another at 50% and this pair is 25%ish.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

First Yarn

I'm super excited about this. I finally finished, after a long time (months - probably 4) my first handspun yarn. My friend Del in Canada sent me the roving when she send me some acrylic she was trying to get rid of. About a month ago, maybe more, I finished the actual spinning part of it but had never gotten around to plying until tonight. Now when I have time, probably August I can spin the deep red roving I bought when I bought my spindle.

I have no idea what weight the yarn is, my guess would be sport-dk but it is 120 yards. One wrap around my computer chair is 3 yards even and I have 40 wraps in the skein. The lighter is placed there for scale.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

FO: Demyx Fingerless Gloves

I don't really know where May disappeared to. I only ended up completing one knitting project and getting two others halfway or more. For months I'd be nagging my friend Rachel to fix the charts to her gloves she designed so that I could test knit them for her. I'd fallen in love with them the first time I saw them. Well she did... right before I had college exams. :(

Well, exams were over the 4th of May. So I made my gloves and I love them. It's also the first time I did partial fingers. Now nothing is stopping me from making my own gloves this winter.

Pattern: Accompanist's Fingerless Gloves
Yarn: KnitPicks Palette in Blue Note Heather
Needle: 2.75mm
Mods: Knit to pattern. Rae did hers in two colors for the cuff, I did mine in a single color.

The inspiration for these? Demyx from Kingdom Hearts. <3