Tuesday, July 3, 2007

WIP's & Life in Progress

What have I been knitting? I've been enjoying my first experience with Panda Cotton. As some of you may know Margie T. was a one woman cheerleading squad championing the addition of this line to the River Knits inventory. Now that I've got some on the needles, I'd have to say it was for a good cause! I am the first to admit that I don't always relish knitting with cotton. It can be hard on the hands and it can lackthe give and elasticity that wool has in abundance. With Panda Cotton they fixed this problem by blending bamboo, cotton and quite a bit of elastic nylon. This is a bouncy but soft yarn that is fun to work with. It is perfect for those who truly need to avoid wool (bless their hearts; I feel sorry for them; I really do) and for those who just want a fun lightweight yarn that will make a cool pair of socks.

Here's what I've gotten done so far:

This is the Breeze pattern. Very fun in that after you knit 5 rounds you start the heel flap. It is an astonishing feeling to get to that part of the pattern so quickly! It makes up for the cabled heel flap (which looks so nice in real life!) and the lacy instep.

If you are very observant you'll see that those are *metal* #1's in that sock. I decided to try out some new stainless steel dpn's from HiyaHiya. What a nice surprise these were! They are so light; I hardly feel their weight at all. They have a smooth but not slippery feel that is pleasing. Their pointy tips are perfect for manipulating more complicated stitches like tiny cables and ssk's. Apparently others are intrigued too because several sock knitters placed orders for these at Sock Club on Saturday. I have been waiting for my hands to hurt from working with metal dpn's, but so far they have not. I give the HiyaHiya stainless steel dpn's 2 thumbs up!

When I need a diversion from the lace pattern in the previous socks, I take out my newest pair of Joan's Socks, which are destined for the Akkol, Kazakhstan orphanage Christmas challenge.
So far the group has listed 26 pairs in the database. Goal: 250 by the end of July! This pair has Lush in the cuffs, Cascade 220 and Ultra Alpaca in the main part of the sock and Extra Stampato in the toe. I think it is a creative challenge to see how to make oddballs into something useful and attractive.

In the rest of life we have the screen room almost done and I'm spending a lot of time out there. Isn't this mild weather a delight? And in our basement we have the next wave of egg layers growing feisty and strong before they move out to their coop:

Can you find Sinead, Catalpa & Owl?


Amanda said...

I'm planning to make a pair of Breeze - they look great, and I'm glad to hear they're a fun knit, too!

tonia said...

Elizabeth- love the socks. I will be up to get the pattern and yarn. Also please order the dp's size 2 for me also. I'm knitting hemp socks and could really use them!!!

Elizabeth said...

Hi Tonia, The Panda Cotton socks are a free attern at http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEsummer07/PATTbreeze.html
The Panda Cotton is great! I think you'll love it. Hemp socks sound hard on the hands! But I bet they'll last forever. Will save you some #2 stainless dpn's. They just arrived!