Fastest Scarf Ever

A few weeks ago I knit the fastest scarf ever.  It was during finals and I needed a quick project to take the edge off.  Crystal Palace’s Tutu yarn was just the right thing.  In two half-afternoons I had this scarf.

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If you follow the yarn link above you can see the unusual nature of the yarn.  You knit through small openings at the top of the ruffle-y strand and the rest of the ruffle hangs down creating the texture of the scarf.
I didn’t follow any pattern, I simply cast on nine stitches and knit every round until I was out of yarn.  I followed the cast on and bind off instructions provided at the link above.  Start the finish the scarf took about 5 hours.  Lots of the ladies in my knitting group were whipping them up for holiday gifts because they go so quickly, and I decided to jump on the band wagon.  (Mine, of course, was for me and not a gift.)
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I’ll admit I should wait until my hair is dry to take pictures, but my photographer (Ryan) is, sadly, not available to take pictures for me at my every whim.
I’m not too big a fan of the variegated colorways, but I think this yarn looks really nice in solid colors and creates a unique scarf unlike most other knit projects.

Worth the wait

The last FO that resulted from my stress-filled finals studying are these beautiful socks.

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These socks are made from the amazingly simple Air Raid pattern by Emily B. Miller.  It’s a free download on Ravelry.  The pattern is well written and easy to follow.  It’s got a chart and written instructions for the lace so you can work from whichever you’re more comfortable with.  I found that after the first half of the first repeat I had the pattern memorized and didn’t need to look at the chart any more.

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As you can see these are definitely “fraternal” socks.  I thought I had the colors lined up (the pattern is worked from the top down) but I clearly did not.  The yarn comes in 50g balls so I used two.  I knit both from the outside of the ball, so it looks to me like at the mill one ball got wound with the colors going one direction, and the other in the opposite direction.

The yarn is Crystal Palace Yarns Mini Mochi in the creatively named colorway 101.  The colors really are as vibrant as they look in those photos.  I got the yarn an a 9″ Addi Turbo for Christmas/my birthday 2009 and cast on immediately.  Yes, that means these socks were on the needles for just under a year and a half.  I don’t know what it is that keeps me from finishing projects.  I just get distracted by the next new thing, then get distracted from that by the next new thing until finally I look on Ravelry and realize “holy crap, these socks have been on the needles for more than a year” and I suck it up and finish them.

I love knitting socks on the 9″ circs.  I have small hands, so the the short needle tip doesn’t bother me and I find that I can go round and round and round without thinking or stopping to move stitches or pick up a different needle.

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This is the best I could come up with when Ryan said “pose like a model”…  A life of glamor I do not have.

Over all I’m completely in love with these socks.  The yarn is single ply so I’m a bit worried about how it will hold up over the long term, but it has a healthy nylon content so I’m hopeful.  The yarn was a bit think-n-thin as most single plys are, but nothing too terrible.  The colors are gorgeous and they are super soft.  Also, Portland is still mostly below 70 degrees so wearing them is still an option.  Wool socks after it hits 70 degrees loose much of their appeal, but below 70, bring on the wooly goodness.

WIPs march of shame (part five)

So close to the end of showing you all the shameful WIPs I have stashed in my knitting basket. This next one has actually been living in my purse for the past 8 months or so. It is supposed to be my “I have to wait project” so that if I’m ever somewhere with an unusually long line or am unexpectedly delayed for another reason I have knitting with me. The problem is, I haven’t really had to do much waiting lately. I’m not at all complaining about not having to wait, it just means this project doesn’t get a lot of love.

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These are Air Raid Socks by Emily B. Miller. I have chosen to make my legs about twice as long as the sample sock because I think wool socks should be long. That is my personal preference since my legs are always freezing in the winter. The yarn I am using is Crystal Palace Yarns Mini Mochi in colorway 101 which is a rainbow.

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This blog post would have to go on for miles if I were to accurately describe how much I love this yarn. The first thing I love about it is that it is a single. I know there are some people out there who absolutely hate to knit with yarn that is not plied, but I am not one of them. I love the way stitches look so plump when the yarn is not plied. Next, this yarn is SOFT. It’s a merino/nylon blend (which makes it perfect for socks) but it’s so much softer than other sock yarns. This yarn makes my feet feel like they have gone to heaven. Finally, the color. This yarn has such deep rich colors. The rainbow is very happy, which was much needed in December when I was buying the yarn, but I must have stood over the basket of this yarn in the shop for 20 minutes trying to decide which fantastic colorway to take home with me.

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The pattern is also wonderful. I love how it adds some texture but doesn’t get lost in the colors of the yarn. It’s also very simple. I had the repeat memorized halfway through the chart. I am the tiniest bit worried that because this is a single yarn the socks won’t be as hardy as I need them to be, but that is a practical after-the-fact-type matter, and I tend not to think about those when I cast on. If there is some darning in my future, so be it.