Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Sockret Safari

My Sockret Pal is terrific when it comes to theme packages! Remember the Tropical Knitting Party? And the Froggy Christmas? Now she's gone wild! Look at this great safari-design coordinated wrapping! How cool is that? Great presentation is indeed half the fun of receiving a gift!

The other half of the fun is opening the gifts!! My safari includes: some yummy chocolate to keep up one's strength (which, once opened, didn't last long!); a civilized little tea party (2 kinds of tea and a generous package of tea biscuits); a trio of tree frog goodies (cute sox, an enameled purse holder, and a frog ball --my domesticated little cat will love this!); and a lovely-scented lavendar/oatmeal soap bar, for relaxing after a long day in the urban jungles.

There were also two balls of wildly-beautiful Noro Aurora: my Pal suggested that I haven't done a lace project for a while, and hopes this Noro will tempt me. Mischief managed! :) The moment I saw those beautiful shimmering shades of green and blue, I knew this yarn has to be a lacy scarf!

But there was one thing more in this safari package . . . something lion-ish . . .

Gryffindor sock yarn! GRYFFINDOR SOCK YARN!!! I am so excited about this yarn! I love all things Harry Potter, but have never seen this yarn before -- it's beautiful! Who knew? I can hardly wait to get it on the needles -- and then on my feet! Gryffindor socks!!

Thanks for everything, Sockret Pal -- this is one wonderful safari! :)

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Lorna's January Challenge

Our local knitting guild is fortunate to have Lorna Miser as a member. Yes, that Lorna. :) She is a very talented lady, and generously shares her creativity with us. We are so lucky!! We have been "focus groups" when she develops new classes and "previewers" for her new designs. Last year, she created a "square of the month" program for the guild: Each month she designed a 7" square incorporating a different knitting skill, and encouraged us to spread our wings while making squares for our afghan charities.

This year, she is offering "Lorna's Challenge of the Month." She finds a free pattern on the Web that uses a different skill, obtains the designer's permission to use it, then challenges guild members to take the pattern and "make it our way" — or at least learn a new technique. The January challenge is the "Fake Isle Hat" by Amy King on MagKnits.

Here is my version -- not very different, but I did challenge myself to learn a new method of knitting with two yarns in one hand. This hat is Noro Silk Garden 205 with a Galway wool for the contrast. The original pattern calls for a 3x1 ribbing, which I did not care for, so I ripped back and put in a 2x2 ribbing, which I think holds the hat better. Then, of course, I added a pom-pon, because , well, I really like hats with pom-pons. :)

While many of the guild members are creating these hats, and some have posted on the guild member site, at least one other of our guild members has posted her completed hat on the open Web: check out our Member At Sea's blog to see how far-flung Lorna's challenge has become!

At our February guild meeting, everyone will bring their hats, photos will be taken, and mutual admiration will ensue. After that, Lorna will give us the challenge for next month! Thanks, Lorna! This is really fun! :)

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Merry January

Happy New Year!

As my 2007 knitting resolution, I resolve to knit one pair of sox per month. So here's my January pair.

Whazzat you say? What's up with the jingle bells and Christmas colors in January?

Well, I had intended to knit myself a festive pair of sox all ready to jingle-in the Christmas season last year. HA!

Of course, I got so busy knitting socks and other items for gifts that my socks never made it out of the skein stage.

So, to ensure that they will be ready THIS year, I started (and finished!) my own Christmas socks early. January early. Now when December rolls around, I will be ready to don my jingly apparel and celebrate the season. :)

Hey! Maybe I should start some other Christmas knitting and get a few gifts done early this year!


I'll have plenty of time in November.