This is Kat's Writing.

Following are a series of words and imagery.
Do not be too alarmed at life nor too complacent in the world. There may be alarming things here. There may not be. Have I mentioned scatological yet?



Monday, April 19, 2010

The Boyfriend Sock Saga

Sometimes I'm a bad girlfriend.

Yeah, you heard me. For example. Many moons ago I told the boyfriend I'd make him some socks. And, I kind of have. House socks in some fugly Red Heart yarn of his own choice. I didn't pick this out nor do I understand just why he seems to be drawn to the fugly Red Heart multis (my skein of neon pink and red, let me show you it. Why lord? Why!??) Now, I don't mind Red Heart in its place. It makes great blankets and hard wearing items.... and after a wash and dry or three these will be very soft and comfy for around the house. It's his color scheme I don't get.

Ah, the fuglies themselves. I started these around Xmass. I was hoping to have them done by the time I went back to home-not-near-family. Then I realized that hey, this is acrylic. It won't stretch like wool or wool blends will..and manbeast has giant manbeast feet! (my ladybeast feet are also big.. but since they are attached its easy to size them.) I had my brother try them on and I stopped making them after they came to his toe... he's two sizes smaller in manbeast feet sizing. Then I stuck this one into my bag o'shame and started on the second one.

....and then when I went home I left said second sock on the US5 brand new bamboo needles laying in my mother's bedroom... I'd been in there watching TV with the small nephew beast. (We were avoiding his crabby mother.) Major Xmass sock fail. No sock and no needles. Sad Kat.

And time passes. I get teased about the lacking socks. I make socks for others; I make socks for me. The mom keeps saying she'll mail out my needles (and his sock) and instead just keeps adding to the box to be sent out. Our deteriorating car prevents a quick trip out. Thick house sock weather is almost over anyways.

And I get a coupon for Knit Picks and an idea for fun to make manly socks. As his feet are huge.. they will be in sport weight. I picked a very nice dark green solid and a dark grey for a toe, These are both colors he likes. And, I've charted up a awesome knot for the sock. Squee. Anyways, here is the initial sketch; it doesn't look that much like this in the final form. I've finally charted it... and look forward to the knitting of it. If it looks good I'll release it as a pattern.

Yeah, I think he'll like the birthday present. *is smug*

Naturally, as soon as this idea struck me and I bought the yarn (en route) we started to plan a me and tiny dog only trip east. So, yeah, I will get my needles and he will also get his Red Heart Socks!

Thing is the nephew just had a birthday (which no one bothered to tell me about till after it happened) and my cash flow is rather not there for a nice gift...his mother would die if I thrifted him anything and she found out about it... so I'm crocheting up something.
Apparently he was given a goldfish at a party he went to. Don't ask, I don't agree with giving any animal as a gift but what is done is done. I'm thinking a golden fishie will be just the thing.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


(this was part of a prior post but I edited to expand here)

Cables. Cables are fun, cables are dandy... if you get one wrong you're in for a treat. This is a test project panel over 80 stitches wide, no repeats and no surrender. See, I've done cables before. I love the way they look on flatwork. I love them on socks. I love them on pillows and hats.

I thought to myself.. 'Kat, you love cables, you even designed a very simple X and O cabled glove (free on rav)... this lady makes awesome and awe inspiring cabled projects and well.. she needs test knitters....'


I didn't realize just how big it was. Nor did I realize that this is a non repeating pattern. And my first try was on dark green yarn. I've ripped it out and restarted more times then I care to count.

But.. I have grown as a knitter and have learned a new technique. Crocheting the mistake. You need a screwed up cable (6 or more rows down seemed to be when I noticed the problems) a number of DPNs/extra cable needles and a few small crochet hooks. (Mine were a D and an F and I was knitting with US 10 needles and worsted weight Red Heart yarn) You want to be able to have plenty of loose yarn around said hook. Oh, and a good picture or great chart of whatever you are doing is helpful!

Anyways all you do is slide the stitches to be reworked off the knitting needles. Secure the points (I stuck point protectors on mine) so no other stitches would slide off. You can unraval with the little hook pairs of stitches down to the issue and fix them pair by pair (or trio by trio) like I did with the smaller fixes.. or just yank down the entire section (as in the picture) and rework the entire piece till it looks correct. This was a 6 stitch rip down through 10 rows. I'd 4 needles holding pairs of stitches here and there as I retwisted and reworked them.
I'd miss-crossed on the first cross which was ruining the look..and forgotten to cross two others. Took almost two hours... but compared to the ten-fifteen hours it would have taken to restart the work.. Yup.

Some others reknit the ripped section. I think hooking up as for a dropped stitch is faster. YMMV.

Things I have learned about complex cabling.
(thanks to a fellow Ravelry member faeriesandpixies and others)

1. Color the different cable stitches in both your legend and the chart. Color one cable cross at a time, for the entire chart (say, starting with c2 over 2left). You will then see how that cross moves through your chart. This will be the visual representation of your pattern and will be really helpful as you knit

2. Study the differences in the cable stitches. You don’t need to memorize them, just understand them. (Hint: basically there are only two kind of cables, left- and right-leaning, or left- and right-crossing. After that, the differences are in how many stitches are crossed, what kind of stitch is crossed, and what kind of stitch is in the background. Usually the knits are crossed and the purls are in the background. And they are in this pattern.)

3. Try to use a light-colored wool or wool/blend yarn.

4. Mark off each row that you have completed. Everyone occasionally forgets what row they are on. Try to do each RS(odd #s) and it’s following WS(even #s) row in one sitting. Then look at your work to make sure it’s correct. Stopping and starting mid-row tends to make for mistakes. Knitting cables is alot about attention span and concentration (both I struggle with from time to time :).

5. Cover the rows above the working row.

6. Set yourself some goals. Do two rows, have a soda, then eight more, have a tea, then ten more.

Yeah... I'm glad I'm doing this. I'm just that much closer to writing another pattern of my own...with cables. Now I should stop procrastinating on this here blog and go finish the thing.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

My Big Gay Socks, A Travelling Woman and Ireland Forever

My Kali approves of my Big Gay Socks. Maybe. I have a theory about this. First, she is a chihuahua. Chis and gay men do indeed travel together very often. Secondly, she was brought home by one Big Gay brother (yeah, he's my baby brother but he's still well over 6 foot..and he is very very gay; like Big Gay Al gay) and in his room he had the rainbow well covered. In this rainbow-laden delight she spent her first few weeks of formative time. Third, this brightly colored thing is taking my attention from its rightful recipient...namely, her.

This dog and these socks do indeed amuse me. She normally just tries to sit on my knitting much like a cat would. These socks get little 'riff-riff's barked at them. The socks themselves are a resized Spring Forward for my size 10 US feet. Namely, I am doing them toe-up on US2s with a reworked lace stitch.
Now my Travelling Woman shawl... it's soft and warm and of course I made it just for her to rest upon or under. I cannot throw this thing on without her trying to borrow underneath it.

I mostly took this shot to show the crocheted edge I threw on the thing to stop the edge rolling up. Yes, it's worsted, yes it is killed acrylic yarn.. but no I'm not going to sit for any damned rolling. I do love this thing for late night snuggling/book reading/knitting when a blanket would be too much or get in the way.

I'm happy I made it. I'll probably make more shawls soon...

...And here is one! This is a
Multnomah with a few mods. I started it on St. Patrick's Day hence the name.

Almost finished with the plain bit. Garter gets so dull after a while. This will probably be redyed darker green or blue...the neon is too much for this white girl.
This one will probably get to leave the house when finished.

This is a skein of Malbingo lace in colorway VAA.
No idea just what that is short for...just that this is probably the softest thing I have ever personally touched. The colors are dark green, dark brown and deepest green-blue. It looks of summer.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Estonian Lace Cliffs Notes A how-to guide deconstructing lace star stitch
With a multiple of 4+1
Star: P3 tog, but leave old stitch on left needle, yo, P same 3 stitches together, removing the old stitch from the left needle.
Rows 1 and 3: Knit
Row 2: *k1, star stitch* repeat to last stitch, k1
Row 4: k1, p1, *k1, star stitch* repeat to last 3 stitches, k1, p1, k1 collection of videos and guides

Lace Lace 101 a motherlode GUIDE TO CHARTS!!!!!!

And thus concludes my tiny gathering of usefull linkage.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Man in Black..