Sunday, January 23, 2011

Icelandic Yarn, Men's Socks and a Knit Party

I was pleasantly surprised this week when friends brought back some gorgeous Icelandic Lopi yarn straight from the source on their quick jaunt to Reykjavik to see the Northern Lights.  It is a really soft Bulky Lopi by Istex and will be a delight to knit.  I will probably knit a stranded earflap-style hat out of the cream and brown, but it must wait in the project queue for now as there are many more pressing things to finish before I can start anything new.

I also finished "Mona's Jacket" and it is blocked.  Not sure if I like it as much as I thought I would.  It fits okay after extreme blocking, but the crocheted buttons seem very clownish to me.  Maybe they will grow on me.

My weekend has been spent making a large knit snack basket/container for my friend recovering from some nasty surgery and simple, cozy socks to recuperate in.  The soft basket is rather clever and is included in Joelle Hoverson's More Last-Minute Knitted Gifts.  It only took 1 1/4 skeins of Moda Dea Tweedle Dee and is just the right size for plenty of Trader Joe's snacks and the cozy socks.  I will definitely make it again in the future - maybe for yarn studio storage or another gift.

The socks really knit up fast and are in my new favorite knitting book, Knits Men Want by Bruce Weinstein (photos by Jared Flood).  They aren't kidding in the tagline either:  The 10 Rules Every Woman should Know Before Knitting for a Man Plus the Only 10 Patterns She'll Ever Need.  The 10 rules are hilarious and so true - I took the time to read the chapters before starting the socks and laughed out loud in between nodding in agreement many times over the accurate observations.  The "Thick and Warm Socks" pattern is in the chapter titled "Rule #8 - Men Can Compromise" and were fun to make out of charcoal DK wool/acrylic.

The photos are beautiful, the projects simple, yet highly useable and cover everything from hoodies to hats to pullovers.  I like the way each pattern has options for sizing each step of the way and the socks turned out great.  Definitely a book to add to your library.  You will reach for it again and again.

Meanwhile, I am readying my place for the Knit Party scheduled this coming Saturday afternoon.  I had so many requests to teach friends and friends of friends how to knit that it seemed the most logical way to accomplish that (and drink some good wine).  I'm excited to get to use my big pine IKEA table which has always looked like a knitting workroom table to me.  I expect about a dozen women and have plenty of yarn in my copious stash to teach everyone with.  

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