Thursday, October 26, 2006


I have hit book thrity-four and it was really good.

The Glass House by Jeannette Walls. A memoir that someone would probably have to live to fully understand and believe. It was just incredible the life this woman had growing up and it obvously made her such a tough determined person. It also took place in two places I am familiar with, New York City and West Virginia. Though her West Virginia was the poor coal-mining WV, where mine is the rowdy, prosperous, football-loving college town. Still a wonderful book.

And the knits are getting done. Two baby hats and a pink fingerless glove sitting ready to have ends wove in. I'll probably do it tomorrow. Tonight I'll swatch or start a sock. Rhinebeck inspired me to get some new things started.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

books and rhinebeck

So the reading has picked up a littl bit. I finished two books just recently with a thrid possibly following by the end of the week.

White Ghost Girls by Alice Greenway was really good. A very interesting look at Vietnam through the eyes of a teenage girl during the Vietnam War era. I have always been interested in Vietnam, maybe one day I'll have the guts to try and go there. I love their culture and of course the food.

Everyone Worth Knowing by Lauren Weisberger was good for the subway and for the tedious bus ride this weekend. It was formulaic and somewhat predictable, though I enjoyed the characters and found them very entertaining.

So the bus ride took me to Albany on Friday night and Saturday morning we headed down to Rhinebeck to the NY sheep and wool. So many famous bloggers and clapotis. Also, all the beautiful handknits. I saw at least one sweater I had thought about making. But we ignored most of this to bargain hunt. I got some great stuff. More wonderfully soft alpaca in tan from the same place I got yarn for arisaig. It's so soft and warm and such a good buy. I also got enough soft wool (i think) in a medium purple to make a lacy cardigan. There was also sock yarn to make some socks for a christmas gift and a few random skeins of lamb's pride for 2 each and a random handspun to make some fingerless gloves. I did walk away from some really gorgeous mohair and a merino wool in varigated greens just because I didn't think I could figure out what to do with them. I wished I had bought the green for a scarf now, but I think I'll get some paton's soy wool that they had at Michael's when I'm home instead. I also walked away from some wildfoot sock yarn because the line was just too long. It was almost 4 pm and I was tired and had a headache. It just wasn't worth it for yarn I can buy online or in NY.

Now I just need to start the socks and finish a baby hat. Also I have some figerless gloves I'll finish tonight, soon I will want to wear them nonstop, cause it is cold here already.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

finished sweater

I hope to have time to put a sock picture up later. I'm wearing my first pair of socks and will probably take my other socks out of wool storage this weekend. Anyway, I'm wearing another handknit today, a finished arisaig. Here's a quick shot of my arm.

Anyway, I made a few changes to this pattern and it turned out really well. I have already worn it twice and it's a perfect weight for the cold mornings and even colder office. PS I used some yummy alpaca that I got at last year's Rhinebeck. It is soo soft.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


I don't think I'll reach 50 this year. Reading has slowed a bit as my mind has been elsewhere.

#29 Prodigal Summer - Barbara Kingsolver. I reread this one and remembered how much I love her writing. Is she ever coming out with a new book?

#30 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen. Another favorite, which always makes me want to watch the movie. Maybe this weekend.

#31 Dinner with Anna Karenina - Gloria Goldreich. I picked this one at random from the library shelf out of necessity. I should really try to read Anna Karenina again.

Sockity sock

I signed up for Lolly's socktoberfest on a whim. I figure I would start by answering her questionaire. I will have to get pictures of all my socks up.

When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?
I started my first sock the summer of 2004, from a pattern I picked up at mannings in Pennsylvania and with a german cotton yarn. I think I have lost the ball band. Anyway, that sock got ripped out cause I didn't understand turning the heel at all. At some point the next spring I tried again with the retro-rib pattern from interweave knits in the same german cotton yarn. This pattern was much less confusing, though that first pair took forever. I think I was still knitting it at Rhinebeck last year. Those socks also travelled to England and Scotland with me. I think I even knit a little waiing in customs at heathrow.

What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time?
The first pair was a cotton pair in the retro-rib pattern, which I love and should make again. They have help up well. I haven't worn them that much, but I do love wearing them.

What would you have done differently?
Not started the confusing generic sock pattern in the first place. There are all sorts of easy to follow patterns online and in interweave knits.

What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?
I like any really bright colored yarn. I am making my first pair in Socks that rock and I really like that yarn, but I've had trouble finding a pattern that I think is right to show off the yarn. The colors are so great and the texture is lovely. I have thought of just doing stockinette stitch just to show off the yarn. We'll see, I'm trying a cabled sock pattern to begin with.

Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?
I like to knit my socks on double pointed needles, usually 4 needles, 5 when I pick up the gusset.
Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?)
I have only done the flap so far and really like it. I will probably try the short row at some point, but for now I like the flap, it seems like it has a nice stability.

How many pairs have you made?
I have made 5 pairs. A stripy wool pattern for Jaywalkers, a cabled pair in knitpicks sock yarn, a pair for the sockapalooza exchange, and a pink and white springy pair. I have a new pair that I'm making with the socks that rock yarn and I have some kool-aid dyed yarn to use for a pair after that.