Ostara Socks in Progress Friday, Feb 27 2009 

After looking at the calendar, and realizing that March has snuck up on me rather sneakily, I’ve started to get cracking on my Ostara socks.

Ostara Socks

These have been a bit tough. I was looking for yarn, and found some Paton’s Kroy in a great, spring-y purple that I had forgotten I owned. It fit with my stash-busting plans for the year, so I started swatching. A good, spring-y pattern was eluding me, so I had a couple of failed attempts before I got going.

I like the girly, springyness of this pattern; it’s very cute and girly. Which isn’t generally like me, but I admit to being charmed by the picot cuffs. It’s so cute I can’t stand it. Now, I just have to focus long enough and get going to have them finished in time! I’m hoping to avoid the whole casting-off-two-hours-before-I-have-to-leave incident from Imbolc, but I’m not entirely optimistic.

Tarot Card of the Day: Four of Pentacles

Sock Progress Thursday, Jan 22 2009 

So, I’m making some headway on my main project right now. They’re lacy  mock cable socks knit in my STR yarn, and it was quite an adventure getting there.

Lace mock cable close up

First, I had planned to knit Brigit, by  Monkey Toes. I love those socks, and they’re perfect for Imbolc. And I wanted to do them in white. (Or maybe pale pink, but I settled on white.) So I got my yarn, and based on gauge info on the website I ordered the medium weight.  And I swatched. And swatched. And swatched. I finally managed to get gauge on size US0s, but once I started the socks I realized that the fabric had moved past dense and was verging on bullet-proof.

So, onto plan B. I wandered over to Article Pract, and picked out some Noro Silk Garden Sock in a white/neutral colorway. And I swatched. And swatched. And swatched.

You can see where this is going, can’t you?

I couldn’t get gauge on either yarn! Finally, I decided to embrace the yarn and find a new Imbolc-y pattern. So, I still wanted cables because cables say Irish to me, and Brigid being an Celtic Goddess and the one I associate most with Imbolc…well, it just made sense. I finally settled on the Lacy Mock Cable socks, partially for speed (also why I didn’t design my own) and partially because I liked the little lace circles–it just feels right.

Lace Mock Cable Sock

So, I finished sock number 1. Now, all I have to do is speed through sock 2, and oh yeah, sew a skirt before the 31st. I can totally do that, right?

In other news, I’m contemplating my upcoming birthday. I am not, as it turns out, that happy about it. I feel like my social life is in quite a sorry state for turning 26, and I’m also facing my annual delemna about celebrating.

See, the thing about being born in late January? Is that your birthdays don’t generally go so well. I don’t think I’ve had a birthday party where people actually showed up since I was….I don’t know? Twelve? Thirteen? All the big birthdays–16, 18, 21–I did  pretty much nothing. It’s always, maybe 1 or 2 people that can make it. Thing is, it’s not even that people are purposefully blowing me off. It’s just this time of year. People get sick, they’re tired from the holidays, they’re busy with new projects at work.  So I can never decide–plan something and hope for the best (and be disappointed if it doesn’t work out?) or just give up and be lame and go home to watch Grey’s Anatomy with the cats?

Sigh. Who knows?

Tarot Card of the Day: Two of Pentacles

First FO of 2009! Wednesday, Jan 7 2009 

See, 2009 is totally about the finishing. Totally.

365.7 (First FO of 2009)

Pattern: Fawkes by Monkey Toes
Yarn: Gryffindor yarn from unknown Etsy seller (it was a gift)

I really liked this pattern, though my row gauge was off so the legs are a bit shorter than I’d like. I also forgot to do the toe decreases every row at the end (as oppposed to every other row) but with the row gauge difference it all worked out for the best.

Tarot Card of the Day: Seven of Cups

A few stragglers from 2008 Thursday, Jan 1 2009 

Despite my best intentions, there are a few straggling FOs that didn’t get posted to the blog before the end of 2008.

Lace Ribbon Scarf

My Lace Ribbon Scarf from Knitty in Classic Elite Aplaca Sox. This was a pretty quick knit, and is lots of fun to wear, though I only used 1 skein of yarn instead of the 2 recommended; I don’t think I could handle a super long scarf like that!

Purple Monkey Socks

I also finished my purple monkey socks. These are Monkey by Cookie A, knit in Pagewood Farms yarn. I love this yarn!! It’s super sproingy and delicious to knit with.

And, now, on to new projects in 2009! Steph 2009 is all about project completion–and less startitis.

Tarot Card of the Day: Ace of Pentacles

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas Wednesday, Dec 24 2008 

I feel relatively unfestive this Christmas Eve–I’m working from home today (alas) while watching Top Chef reruns. Since I’m not going home again this year (next year, I promise Mom!) I’m keeping everything low-key. I got some fancy appetizers from Trader Joe’s to heat up tonight in lieu of my family’s traditional fondue–Christmas Eve is not a time that should require cooking! I can always save the leftovers for snacks, though let’s face it, I can totally eat the entire tray of feta and carmelized onion bites in one sitting. AND I’M NOT ASHAMED OF THAT.

Ahem.

Later on today, I need to do some cleaning up around here, finish wrapping a few things (for cats, and one box that my Mom had shipped to me), finish making some kitty toys, and start my eggs portugal for tomorrow. If I get really adventurous, I might try making some goats milk egg nog. Then, I plan on finding something festive to watch on TV and working on my Purple Monkeys.

Purple Monkeys in progress

Aren’t the gorgeous? I started these I don’t even know how long ago, but I picked them up again after the holiday rush. I’m definitely a huge fan, and I can’t wait to finish and wear them. I also need to find the ball band for this yarn, because I LOVE IT! It has a fantastic elastic, yet firm, quality that I think is going to hold up to wear really well.

I have to say, that’s the on bonus of not going home. Everything has to be finished and shipped off early, so I get to spend Christmas Eve happily knitting on whatever project I chose, sipping eggnog, and watching movies. It’s definitely more relaxing. I even found a small prime rib at Trader Joe’s for tomorrow, so I’ll have a real Christmas dinner this year!

Whatever you’re doing or celebrating, I hope you have a fantastic holiday!

Tarot Card of the Day: Four of Wands

It is done! Monday, Dec 22 2008 

Finally, this past weekend, I breathed a big sigh of relief and shipped off the rest of my packages. (Which, for the record? 3 packages, with a total weight of 16 lbs, cost less to ship through USPS than 1 6 lb package via UPS. Bet they’ll arrive on the same day, too.)

Christmas Knitting 2008

That is (almost) all of the Christmas knitting. The thermos cozy wasn’t finished in time for this photo, and I forget to take a picture before I sent it off. Oops.

I have to say, it is a huge relief to finally have all of this done! Of course, I immediately started working on some things for me…but more on that later! It’s just nice to be free of deadlines.

Tarot Card of the Day: The Empress

WIP: Leaves of Whimsy Thursday, Dec 11 2008 

Leaves of Whimsy

Not much to say–I was busy working late last night, so I didn’t get much time to knit. I’ve been working on these Leaves of Whimsy socks for my aunt. I love the pattern and color, they’re so pretty! In fact, my Mom almost stole them when she came to visit.

Unfortunately, they require a little bit more concentration to knit, so I had to put them down while squeezing in some time to watch Top Chef. I love the show, but I have to say  that lately the  fans are rubbing me the wrong way. How come, when a guy is confident he’s a good chef, and when a woman is, she’s arrogant? Or if a guy gets angry, it’s because he’s frustrated, but if a woman shows anger or disappointment, she’s immature and bitchy? It’s people saying things like that who really get me into a feminist lather. Seriously? How are we ever going to go places if we’re expected to be sweet and self-deprecating all the time?

But that is a post for another time. For now, I leave you with socks. And a Padma cat.

Padma's throne

Tarot Card of the Day: The Empress

FO: Joanne’s Christmas Socks Wednesday, Dec 10 2008 

The first holiday FO!

Joanne's Socks

The socks are for my Aunt Joanne, and they’re just plain vanilla socks. I wove the ends in last night, making them the first official FO of Holiday knitting 2008.

Between last night and this morning, I also managed to weave in the ends on everything else that’s done or in pieces. Now I have to hit the stores for a few non-knitted things (we are not a one-gift-per-person family, we are a many gifts family), assemble both sweaters, finish the foot and toe on Joanne’s 2nd pair of socks and weave in the ends on those, and knit my Dad’s thermos cozy. Then mail it all off! Provided I don’t get distracted, I think I can make it.

Then? It’s fun knitting time again!

Tarot Card of the Day:
Ten of Pentacles

Progress: Aunt Joanne’s Holiday Socks Thursday, Nov 13 2008 

I’ve also been knitting on pair #1 of my aunt’s holiday socks. They’re coming along nicely, except that I keep losing needles.

No, I don’t know how I manage that. I just buy a new set and move on.

Joanne's Xmas Socks 08

I kind of have a love/hate relationship with these socks. I went with this yarn because it wasn’t super girly (she’s not really a pink, girly person) but also wasn’t blue or green. She likes blue and green, but it seems like everything I’ve knit her for the past few years has been blue and/or green. I was kinda feeling like a one-trick pony. (I still am, actually, since I’ve done socks for her before, and this year will be pairs 3 and 4, but she doesn’t really wear sweaters. And, really, who couldn’t use more socks?)

Anyway. Some days I look at this yarn and I think it’s gorgeous and fantastic and has this kind of southwest desert vibe going. Other days, I look at it and I just think meh. What do you guys think?

Tarot Card of the Day: Ten of Pentacles

Now Available: Cool Blue Ocean Waves Socks Monday, Oct 13 2008 

It’s Socktoberfest! Usually, I’d be starting socks with abandon to celebrate, but I got in way over my head with the holiday knitting this year.

Instead, I finished up my very first sock pattern!

Cool Blue Ocean Waves Socks

I’m calling it Cool Blue Ocean Waves, since the yarn and stitch pattern remind me of ocean waves rolling in and crashing onto the shore. It uses 2 skeins of Koigu PPPM in colorway 826, and is knit on US1 needles at a gauge of 64 sts and 52 rows equals 4″. Pattern is $5.00

The pattern is available on Ravelry, but if you aren’t a Ravelry member yet (And, um, why would that be? No, seriously. Why?) you can always send me an email at quirkyknitgirl@gmail.com and we’ll set something up.

Tarot Card of the Day: Nine of Pentacles

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