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I have made more progress on the socks for a friend. (Pardon the mediocre photo; the sun has not quite realized that it is SPRING!)

I am really, really enjoying these socks. I wasn’t sure if I would at first, since I usually knit with wool blends, but the Panda Cotton has really surprised me. A blend of bamboo, cotton and elastic nylon, the yarn is a little splitty but has a very nice feel to it. The finished fabric is wonderfully squishy and smooth to the touch. This pattern suits the yarn nicely, and while I am kicking myself for not choosing the other pattern I was considering (which only has patterning on every 4th row), it’s very easy to remember and not difficult to work. I will have to knit myself a pair when I have finished these!

Unfortunately, my friend has quite large feet so whilst the photo above makes it appear as if I am nearly finished, that’s not quite true. I still have about 5-6″ to go. But they’ll be done in no time – well, as soon as I have some time to sit down and work on them.

The Hiya Hiya needle is still a favorite, and I have put it through its paces while working the gusset on these socks (following the Upstream “sockitecture” from New Pathways for Sock Knitters). The cable is not *quite* as flexible as the Knitpicks circs, but the join is much sturdier and the needles are nice and slick with a good pointy tip.

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I’m working on a pair of socks for a friend as part of a trade.

I’m using the Menehune Sock Pattern and Panda Cotton, since my friend is allergic to wool. I’m really enjoying this pattern, although the yarn is just a bit splitty. Instead of working the standard heel flap, though, I’ve decided to attempt a Cat Bordhi top-down technique. We’ll see how it turns out. Also, I am using my new Hiya Hiya circular and I love it! The cable is flexible enough to easily Magic Loop two socks at once!

For myself, I’m working on a Liesl using Dream in Color Classy in the Good Luck Jade colorway. It’s hard to photograph, but here’s a bad attempt:

This pattern is addictive and the yarn is just wonderful, but I’m not sure how I’ll like the finished product. However, the project is temporarily on hold while I decide whether I prefer long sleeves or a longer body – I am trying to keep it to a two-skein sweater.

I also have another sock and a sweater on hold, the sock (in Three Irish Girls’ Irish Sea on Kells) because I am working it at a tight gauge that hurts my wrists, and the sweater (in Three Irish Girls’ Fitzgerald and Spruce on Elenya Alpaca) because I need to convince myself the corrugated ribbing at the waist is too tight and needs to be ripped out.

1) Three Irish Girls, my favorite indie dyer, recently released their Spring Colors with a Lookbook, a fantastic compilation of all twenty colors – the photography is just stunning! You should definitely check it out. This yarn shop will be making an appearance at the Cloverhill Yarn Shop booth at Maryland Sheep & Wool, a fantastic yarn fair that I have never been able to go to.  Some day I will make it though!

2) I am working on several WIPs but the most exciting is a pair of fingerless mitts with yarn that a friend brought back from a farm – it was spun and dyed by the farm owner, who keeps sheep.  I’m making up a cable to go on the mitts and it’s a bit of a challenge but I am excited for the final outcome.  Here’s a teaser (that has since been ripped out):

3) I am thinking about combining blogs, putting both knitting related content and book reviews on this blog.  If there are any readers left out there, what do you think?

April 2009
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