Thursday, December 11, 2008

Knitted Christmas Stocking

Last year, before the Bean was born, I decided to make him/her a stocking for Christmas. I was going to design it and it was going to be colorful Fair Isle with a corrugated rib cuff. I got as far as the cuff before I put it down. I couldn't quite figure out what I wanted to do, so I put it down. When M. came, there wasn't a whole lot of time for silly things like knitting, and since she was going to be not quite a month and a half old at Christmas, I didn't think she'd notice.

Skip forward to this fall. I started thinking about the stocking again. This time, however, I decided to make the Scandinavian Stocking with no variations (other than yarn substitution and color). To do a really nice Fair Isle from scratch would be much easier with some sort of knitting design software, to fool about with the colors. I could knit swatches, yes, but, no, not going to happen.

So, I started knitting and I thought a bit about yarn dominance. What that means is thinking about which color pops in two-color knitting. What you want is for the pattern to show up sharply against the background color, and it's just a matter of which yarn comes from below (since one will when you are knitting with two colors). This site has a great description and even has pictures. Since I hadn't checked out that site for a while, I had gotten which yarn would be dominant mixed up in my head. The great thing is, after only a couple rows I could tell my pattern didn't look great, so I came down to the computer to check, and sure enough, my pattern color was coming over the top of the background color (the wrong way). So, I ripped the couple rounds I did (without taking pictures) and worked them again, and what do you know ... it looks so much better. It was worth a few ripped rows to see the theory in action in my own work.

She still won't have a stocking this year, but I don't think she'll notice.

Checked out the new Knitty and was impressed, there were four patterns that I immediately put in my Ravelry queue. That doesn't even include the sock patterns, which I like, but who are we kidding.

I've finished knitting the Aethelwyne mittens for M., but now I can't find my needles to sew in the ends. Silly, I know, but as soon as I can get them sewn in, I can dye them with the lemon-lime Kool-Aid I bought.

I started a pair of Knucks for myself because as I was sitting at the computer, I realized I was cold, specifically my hands. A picture will come when there is something worth showing. I have finished the fingers and joined them. The next time I make a pair (I am enjoying them) I'm going to do the joining on two circular needles instead of two double points... it's rather akward.

Oh, and here's a fun thing, I won a contest on La's blog and got the prize in the mail on Saturday. What a way to perk up a day! Not only did she send a skein of her Dizzy Blonde yarn, which is deliciously soft and beautiful, but all sorts of other goodies! Yummy lavender rosemary soap, bath fizzies, a Dizzy Blonde tape measure, and a pretty card! And last but not least, a zombie sheep! Not only are the eyes a little odd, but it has a thing in it that is supposed to sound like a sheep "baa-ing" and is really creepy and I LOVE it! M. was a little creeped out at first, but as you can see, she has overcome her aversion to the zombie.
In other M. news, her signing is just improving by leaps and bounds! Just this morning she signed "banana". And she's walking amazingly well, even in the new size 5 (which is a little big) snowboots she has. The cutest thing (ok, they are all the cutest) is that she will give air kisses... making a little fish face and smacking. I melt.

UPDATE: I found my darning needles!


sue said...

Nice to hear from you after a long break. The knitting seems to be coming along nicely and your daughter looks as though she really does like the sheep. It looks quite cute. Love the yarn you won too, it looks like a lovely color.

Anonymous said...

Ya for KnottyLa! Those are some seriously pointy mittens! I'm glad you found your darning needle - they are a crucial piece of kit.

YogaNan knits, too... said...

Oh, air kisses! I want one! Squeeze her until she squeaks for me! Love & hugs, Auntie Nan xoxo