Sunday, July 20, 2008

Ummmmm, I'll Think of A Title Later

The Big, Scaly Lizard, Spying on Us


There comes a point, I find, in the making of all knitted animals when they begin to take on their own live personality, and working on them starts to get a little creepy. (Yes, we are pretending that I've been here all along. Work with me.) So it is with my first Sock Monkey. Suddenly his sprouting legs are looking like weird little stumps and that is seriously strange. Thank God I've already sewn his crotch shut. I also find that they do, at around this same point, start chasing my husband around the house, begging, 'Kiss me, Mr. Sorenson!' in equally strange voices. Bad sport that he is, he usually refuses. He runs. It's kinda funny. You have to see it.

Sock Monkey

You may recall that last winter I knitted socks as Christmas gifts for both of my sisters, and since that was a great hit, this year I am getting a head start on all that. Mind you, I have knitted almost nothing but socks this year so far. For some reason they have got a hold on me that won't quit, and since I have the sock yarn stash to match at the moment, I'm just going with it. I took out this lovely blue Auracania Ranco and the Brigit pattern by Monkey Toes, and realized that it would all work well for one of the sisters, so it became the first of my holiday gifts to be finished. Oldest sister and I discovered the Sock Monkey pattern, and we both feel that everyone needs a sock monkey for Christmas this year. So as I finish each pair of socks, the leftover yarns will go towards a sock monkey. I'm planning to personalize each one so that they look like their new owners.

I also plan to tweak the pattern for future Sock Monkeys. I think that with the large monkey there could be about 5 rows less before working the mouth (this will make him look less like a Sock Squid Head) and those extra rows can be added to the body area. Also, with the mouth I plan to work a full short-row heel. The pattern calls for an afterthought heel with decreases on nearly every row, so the mouth area isn't quite deep enough once you start to stuff him. I've Kitchenered the crotch area instead of binding off and sewing together. I'll let you know if I have other tweaks, but so far that is all. I don't mind telling you that knitting the tail, legs, and I imagine, the arms, around the pipe cleaner is a pain in the bottom, but I hate knitting anything that resembles I-cord unless it is attached. I-cord is the mindsucking knitting equivalent of drivel, if you ask me.

Brigit Socks

But the Brigit Socks are lovely fun and I really enjoyed knitting them. Patterns with texture are my personal faves, although I will often encourage a knitter new to sock weight yarns to try a plain vanilla sock pattern to start with. For myself, I have to have something happening in the pattern in order to keep my interest. And while I love knitting lace (or lace knitting, who the heck can keep track of the difference, and does it really matter?), lace in socks is like those Men Working signs at the side of the road, where you look and there is one guy down in a hole, while 4 other guys stand around the hole with their pants falling off their bums, giving the hole guy advice. Can you trust advice from men who can't keep their pants up? In other words, if you are knitting something that is about staying warm - such as socks - isn't putting holes in them a bit of a knitting oxymoron? One person told me that lace socks are air-conditioned for days when her feet are warm. I replied that on days like that, I simply don't wear socks. Hmmm...

I've also recently finished these Rivendell socks. Love the design, I did have to do a fair bit of alterations to the pattern to make them fit the normal human leg. What I settled on was to add a whole 'nother pattern repeat (which made life easier while knitting, nicely enough) and decreased like heck on the foot to make that work. Also, if you were alert by the end of the previous paragraph, you'll understand why I worked the yo's as increases instead. I kept the ridge line coming down from the leaves, and crossed the final diamond on the ankle. Not crossing it bothered me. Remember, I'm the person who has been known to straighten pictures on the walls at other people's houses when they leave the room.

Modified Rivendell Socks


Modified Rivendells in their Natural Habitat

And last but not least, I have a pillow to show you. In the time since I have been here last I have been gifted with a knitting machine, and DH gave me a needle-felting machine for my 50th birthday. I have been combining the efforts of the two, and this was my first project. I knitted up a huge swatch with the knitting machine, felted it, and then needle-felted the design onto the felt pillow-top. The pieces that I needle-felted to the pillow-top started out as roving that were needle-felted with the machine to make flat felt pieces that I could then cut the shapes out of.


I also added beading, buttons and embroidery to the surface, and love the result.


I made it with the intention of using it in our living room to replace the ugly couch cushions that we have. I've also put it up for sale in my store, Knitwise, on etsy.com, so if someone buys it, I'm happy, and if no one buys it and I get to keep it, I'm also happy.


As Arnie said, I'll be back...

2 Comments:

Blogger woolyjooly said...

Lynda -- love your pillow! how creative you are. Your Rivendell sox were modified to fit, you say. Like someone who is not a stick-calved woman, and who might wear a size 10.5 shoe? I want to make these sox, too, but afraid they'd be too tight. BTW, your sock monkey is a bit scary. Don't run off Mr. Sorensen!

10:00 PM  
Anonymous Marianne said...

I'm a little afraid of that sock monkey leg...ooo, looks painful.
Anyway, all your works looks wonderful...good for you!

9:13 AM  

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