Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Closing in

Closing in on the end of February. A couple of last minute completions, I was about to say, but one is a completion and one is a frog.

Baby Albert is finished. Well, except for the buttons, and I'm calling it finished. A friend at work who has three children from age 7 down to 6 months says it's about a size 2. Actually I knit the 0-3 month size generally, but used worsted weight yarn (KP dye-yur-own, undyed) and size 7 needles. When it came to the "knit to inches" instructions, I overshot the 12 month size slightly. Hey, it will fit somebody. When my SOW with the sweet one-year old dd gets to come to knit night next, maybe we'll get a modeled shot.
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And the Cat Bordhi smile socks are de nada. Gone to the frog pond. Witnesseth:
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And there was a squishy package waiting for me when I got home. I ripped it open immediately and wanted to cuddle and pat my new sock yarn, but dh wanted me to help finish up dinner. Then I had to go to bell practice. Then a stop at CVS for the vitamin sale. Now home to blog but I did get to take my new yarns first pics:
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closeups later. This post is pretty graphic heavy. And there is more.

More new yarn that is. Grace shared her purple cth ebay buy from a few months ago. I think it may be "solid" for purposes of sock madness:
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And no pic of this announcement, but I just e-heard that the harlot quoted me today. I commented about an arty photo of garter which I thought I recognized as ez's ribwarmer vest. And I was right. And she mentioned me by name.

Better close for now. Lost is on and I feel the knitting needles calling me.


Monday, February 26, 2007

baby albert progress

There is knitting on baby Albert. As it starting in it's ufo bag:
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And currently, coming down on sleeve 1:
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I am preparing to make my March 1 status list and working to get this one into the finished in February column.

On Saturday, I put out some yarn snippets for the birdies. I had been saving snippets in a mason jar. That wind and dust storm that we had later Saturday may have blown these into the next county but hopefully some birds may find them to add in to their nests.
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And we have a new book, another Starmore available at a reasonable price:
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And to commemorate joining sock madness:
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I tried adding this in as a button in the sidebar but it didn't cooperate, and made all of the sidebar material fall way down to the bottom. Some resizing may be required and I'm not in a mood for it just now.

I think dh wants to play computer and I'm wanting to knit some so...

more later,

Saturday, February 24, 2007

brown socks are done!

A pic outdoors today during the ribbing knitting time:
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And after finishing knitting the ribbing, and binding off with a stretchy EZ sewn-cast-off (it took just over a yard, for the record, which you have to estimate in advance) and weaving in all the ends, of which there were extras because of the joined yarn to stripe the tops:
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For the record, there were 52 stitches around the leg. The socks were knit toe up with a short row heel. And I do like how the socks fit. They were knitted with a kp 32" circ size 1us which, like the addi circs, is really a 1.5us. The socks is k3p1 for every other row, the knit only for the other row. The ribbing is k2p2 done with size 1us crystal palace dpns until the last row, where I sized up to size 2 dpns of various kinds. Then the sewn cast-off which I really like for a very stretchy cast-off.

The yarn is by Fleece Artist and based on my experience with the drastically varying colors from one end of the ball to the other, I don't plan to knit more Fleece Artist's yarns.

more later,

Friday, February 23, 2007

10 years

Yesterday was a great day. I didn't post about it because I wasn't sure whether to come out about it or not. Most of my Sisters of the Wool don't know.

I had my annual doctor's appointment with my oncologist. On Tuesday I had an MRI (brain) and a CAT scan and blood work and a mammo. On Wednesday, I put one foot in front of the other and tried to get through the day. dh wanted to buy tickets for our trip to SF in April. I said you've waited this long, wait one more day. On Thursday, I worked a half day then headed to the clinic. I tried to knit but my hands were shaking.

You see, ten years ago, I felt fine. There was no lump. I had a mammogram and the next thing I knew, I had cancer. There was lymph node involvement. It was agressive and invasive. I had surgeries, and chemo and radiation and more chemo. Now once a year, I have tests and I worry. Until the doctor tells me I'm ok. Then I forget about it for a year.

So rejoice with me. I'm ok. No cancer this year.

I've been doing the race for the cure for 15 years or more. I did the race in 1997 just before all of this started. I did the 1 mile in 1998 with no hair when I wasn't even sure whether I could walk around the block. I wore my pink hat and cried tears of joy as I crossed the finish line and they cheered.

I'm doing the race for the cure this year too. If you would like to make a donation to help with the fight against breast cancer, click here to visit my personal page that the komen Tarrant group makes for race participants.
If the text above does not appear as a clickable link, you can visit the web address:
If you would like to walk with me, that would be great too.

knitting content tomorrow, I promise,

Thursday, February 22, 2007

brown socks out of time out

The brown fleece artists socks are out of time out:
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I am "self-striping" the leg with the dark end of the yarn ball and the lighter more variegated end of the yarn ball. If I had noticed what was happening on the feet, that's what I would have done there. I started out with 2 to 4 rows of each then decided it would be easier for all concerned (me, the knitter) with wider stripes of 6-7 rows and I like how it looks better too. I carry the unused yarn up the inside back and "twist" it in every two or three rows. If anyone wants more details on self-striping, let me know. Sock 1 is close to being ready for ribbing. Sock 2 is coming along nicely.

For posterity, the sock pattern is a modified k3p1 rib. Every other row is a plain knit row. Goes a little faster but still gives some fit advantages of the rib.

Here is the Jitterbug yarn. It may be knit in sock madness if it fits in to one of their patterns that may fit me. It won't enter the game just if the patt will likely not fit me. I'm having some reluctance to knit patterns sized to fit an average woman's foot when I have a narrow foot.

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And wound up:
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And the purple yarn from Sunday's dyeing adventure is wound up, together with some variegated singles, ready for clog knitting when the mood strikes:
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more later,

Sunday, February 18, 2007

purple yarn

That popping sound I heard yesterday... it was the lifeline. Luckily it just popped out of four or five stitches. And I was able to frog back easily and pick up the lifeline stitches and the popped out stitches. The leg is in process and the other sock has a heel too and a stockinette leg in process. Pics tomorrow of str fotm (socks that rock fire on the mountain socks).

Today we have pics of a dyeing adventure. I have some yarn in the stash that needs a carry along feltable yarn to knit another pair of clogs.. And it needs to be purple.. but I don't have purple.. but I have stash yarn, an odd skein of knitpicks elegance in a creamy color, some leftover paton's wool (label missed the pic but is now found), and a coupla skeins of tannish, light brownish shetland (there's lots in the stash):
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and I have dye, or dye substitutes:
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I used all of 2 packs of grape, 1 pack of cherry (did you know cherry and grape have different amounts of powder per the label? and per the scale) and .5 gram of the blue rit. And salt. And two glass mixer bowls full of water. Heated to near boiling. Stewed for about 20 minutes.
wvaa laa:
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And it was laundry day here in Texas. Including sock laundry. Which I have taken to doing in the washer on extra gentle. Whether the yarn is superwash, which most of them are, or not. Yup, you read that right. Socks knit from yarn that has to be handwashed is going in the washer. And they are all surviving. Witness:
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top row from left to right:
rpm cth end lot
aqua kp dancing basic socks k3p1 rib
jaywalker cth foxy lady
koigu (latest sock FO)

bottom row left to right:
kp alpaca (dk weight?) lace socks
sock bug river rapids yarn by lisa souza
mc bearfoot (or is it barefoot, I always forget) in a basketweave type pattern. Which is obscured by the mohair contents current halo
kp merino sock yarn another k3p1. In a pink discontinued colorway

And there are a couple more pair in the "collection" that didn't get worn, or at least didn't get washed.

Just wanted to mention, I really like that collapsible drying rack I bought at an estate sale a coupla' years ago.

more later,

Saturday, February 17, 2007

feather and fan :-(

Look closely:Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

because there will be frogging. Angeluna asked how elastic the feather and fan is. The answer is not very. I've been knitting on the heel so I could try it on and check the fit. and the elasticity. Because when I give it a stretch it doesn't give much. Not much at all.

You may see lots of dpns in the pic. All the size 0s I could find. I knitted in a couple extra for the try-on. We've just had the try-on and I had to pull and ease and pull and ease and pull harder. I heard a pop but don't see a broken yarn but fear I may find one. The problem was getting the feather and fan part which was to be the ankle (and leg) over my heel. Was is the operative word here as I fear I may be frogging the feather and fan.

If you look at the pic closely you'll see a green thread running through the stitches just before the start of the feather and fan. It is a crochet cotton lifeline that I placed just in case. Seems I may be saying "bless your heart" to my lifeline and my fore-thought to place it. I did increase my stitch count before starting the feather and fan and I'm not sure if I increased more whether it would work better but I'm not willing to find out. At least not now.

I will finish knitting the heel and try her on again. If the feather and fan continues to be contrary about going over the heel, it's outa here.

more later,

Friday, February 16, 2007


Some pics of my new stuff from SWAK in Guthrie:
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There's a couple of Berroco pattern booklets (I dragged the shop owner around the shop pointing at shop models, repeatedly saying, what pattern is that?. She patiently told me what was what and showed me each booklet and pattern) And a Lucy Neatby dvd, and an intarsia booklet (by the SWAK owners)
but what I may make first of these new goodies is the flip coat, also a SWAK pattern. It's garter knitting and rectangles but the way it works out is fascinating. They let me try it on and take a picture of the shop model:
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They recommend mohair but I'm not so into mohair so I'm thinking suri alpaca. I have a skein on the way to swatch and test.

Um, there's a new skein of Jitterbug sock yarn that I hadn't seen at the local shops but I hear that it is available at Yarns Ewenique.

And there are new books in the collection from a recent Amazon order:
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The Celtic Collection is one of the few Starmore books still available at retail so I went ahead and got it. Her work is beautiful and her patterns are well written but the sizes generally don't work for me. I'll have to make some adaptations but I'll do one sometime. The other book is a reprint of some articles from Threads from back when they still had knitting articles. I've just skimmed it but there are some interesting articles. And it was a heck of a deal. It is "used", purchased through Amazon from one of their book resellers but really seems in new condition.

On the knitting front, we have a bit of top on the STR socks:
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It's an adaptation from Wendy's feather and fan sock pattern free on her blog.
She does more stitches on her sock foot and increases for the feather and fan. So I increased about the same percentage, from 54 to 60. (My sock foot until the arch is 48, then a few increases brought it up to 54.) Her feather and fan is 6 yos and 6 k2tog; mine is 5 of each. Seems to be working out so far. I need to do a few more feather repeats then knit in the heel to make sure the sock fits.

Oh, one more thing. I've signed up for sockmadness. They were closing sign-ups this morning but there are a few more openings so go sign up right away if you're interested. Go to I need to review my how-to-button and add a button to the margin. I hope I don't regret it as their rules do not allow my usual pattern alterations for my narrow feet.

Gotta go knit some feathers and watch some knitty dvd,

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

knitting report

I spent several days visiting mom. Visiting hours were only 2 hours per day (with some extra on the weekend) so there was knitting time.

The koigu socks are finished. And have been worn. Here's a pic:
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There's another one of course. On the other foot.

And there is a pair of clogs. Likely for dbgf (dear brother's girl friend). Unless they felt down too small. Then they'll be for a cousin. I haven't felted the shetland before. Or this color of vm varigated singles.
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And there is yarn left:
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And another pair of socks well on the way. With the Socks that rock Fire on the Mountain lightweight that seems to have lept to the top of the sock list. How does that happen? Maybe it's one of those last-in-first-out systems of sock yarn management.

Cast on at the toe with Judy's magic cast-on from knitty. 10 stitches to start on each needle tip. Increased to 48. I stopped at 48 because it "fit". Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
And up close:
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These are being knit on size 0 knitpicks options 32" circ. because the size 1 is in another sock (the brown ones, they're living in the drawer at the office for lunch time knitting).

I took both socks up to 40 rows past the point of reaching 48, then increased 2 stitches. On the "front" needle one stitch in from each edge. A right leaning lifted increase Cat Bordhi calls a mother increase at the start and a left leaning lifted increase Cat Bordhi calls a grandmother increase at the end. Ten rows later, another set of increases, and five rows later one more set. The increases are because the stitch count is the same as Koigu and the sock toe/foot fits really well, like the koigu, and the koigu pulls just a bit over the arch. So it's a test. Seems to be working so far.

And I found a very nice knit shop in Guthrie (SWAK) and have lots of new knit-ty goodies. I better save that post for tomorrow as it is getting late.


Friday, February 09, 2007

fly by

Just a quick fly by post to let you know I'm driving to Okla to see mom. I'll be there several days so I may or may not have internet access to post.

I'm taking plenty of yarn and projects so there may be lots to show when I get back. I think I spent more time planning and packing the yarn than the clothes.
And I've looked up several oottmlys (out of town to me local yarn shops) in case I need yarn. Or want to see yarn. Or be with some knitters.

To my SOW... hope to be back for knit night.


Monday, February 05, 2007

another koigu heel

Koigu sock number two has a heel:
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I may knit up the leg some at knit night tomorrow. It's easy stockinette, easy to knit and talk and pick up and put down as needed to pay attention to show 'n tell. One of my favorite parts of knit night.

In other sock news, I didn't realize this pair had been left off of the list:
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It is being knit from two skeins of Regia sock yarn:
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I found it recently and tried it on and found it generally loose, and lost interest. However, I had a idea yesterday to have dh try it on (the toe is not closed in) and it fits him fine, but may need more leg length. As he explained, he doesn't want hairy leg showing when he sits down and may cross his leg. So I'll have to add on the the top of the ribbing or more likely, take off the ribbing and knit the leg on up some.

In mitten news, the mitt from yesterday went to work. A co-worker who has 3 from age 6 down to a baby said she thought it might fit a 9 to 10 year old. I sent it home with a co-worker who has a 10 year old though she's shrimpy (his words). I have another co-worker lined up for a fit test on his 9 year old.

more later,

Sunday, February 04, 2007

superbowl knitting

I just found out last night my mom had a mild stroke and is in the hospital. There is no paralysis, but some weakness and disorientation. Maybe a bit more "I'm old and I can say whatever I want, and if I don't want you to do something, I may not cooperate because I'm losing control of my life" which might otherwise be mis-interpreted as meanness. My sister has been told recently, more than once, "you're not the boss of me" but the power-of-attorney says otherwise. Enough personal news. Back to knitting news.

Partly because of concern for my mom, I was somewhat distracted today and wanted some easy knitting with just a bit of paying attention, so I decided to knit some mittens. I know I have enough projects started but I needed a diversion, and I gave myself permission to start something new. I used the pattern from the calendar from Friday's post where I whined about the [lack of] gauge. I used some knitpicks yarn (WOTA) from stash. I started with a full skein of tan (48 gr.) from a purchase for a not so well defined project (that didn't materialize) and a part skein of dark royal blue (18 gr.) left from clogs I think.

I measured and recorded the weights because the pattern calls for 2 100 gram balls and I thought that was more about yarn sales than requirements. Now maybe that's just me and my cynical side. But I'm just sayin'...

Now this pattern is supposed to make a women's medium, but with a cast-on of 30 and a gauge (from the website) of 5 spi, I don't think so. I used a KP options 32" circ size 6us in the magic loop method as I wasn't in the mood to find some size 6 dpns. If I have size 6. I really should do a needle inventory. But I digress...

I could knit WOTA on a size 7 but I thought mittens should be knit a bit tighter. And size 6 is just a smidge smaller than size 7. Half a millimeter by some standards, a quarter millimeter by others.

Not sure what gauge I ended up with (I'll measure and report later) but here's where I got:

I left the thumb open because the mitt looks like it will fit a middle size child and I'm not sure how long thumbs are for children of that size. So I put a yarn in the thumb stitches where the pattern wanted me to do a lot of k2togs to close in the thumb. I'm going to take the mitt to work and send it home with some coworker for a try on test.

I found a few more issues with the pattern during today's knitting. There are some increases to make a thumb gusset. Somewhat non standard as far as most of the mitten patterns I've read, but I knitted the increases where the pattern said. Then when it came time to put the thumb stitches on a length of yarn to hold them, it wasn't exactly the stitches between the increases that it wanted me to hold. I ignored the pattern and put the increase stitches and the stitches between on the yarn to hold. It was the right number per the patt.

Also when knitting the thumb, the patt said to pick up 4 stitches in the gap, but there wouldn't have been much gap, as the patt didn't tell me to add on any stitches in the hand area. (I added two unauthorized stitches; I recommend you do too). Then when it came time to do the thumb top decreases, they seem to have forgotten about those 4 picked up stitches. No big deal but I did have to look back to verify for myself that if I did a k2tog around on 14 stitches (14 is 10 plus 4) I would have 7 stitches left, and not 5 (which you would have if you had 10 stitches with no additional stitches picked up in the gap).

There was also some koigu sock knitting but the heel on sock number 2 is not yet closed in. maybe tomorrow...


Saturday, February 03, 2007

new toe decrease

I had promised Angeluna to blog this new variation on my toe decrease and neglected to do so. Sorry Angeluna . This is a variation on the double decrease I described a few days ago. I've added a yo to help prevent holes.

Place markers at the points where the decreases should happen. For example, if you have 60 stitches, knit 30, pm, knit 30, pm. The markers are at the side points of the toes. If you have an odd number of stitches, decrease somewhere, or just don't worry about it. Two stitches before the marker, yo and k2tog. Remove the marker and slip the resultant stitch from the k2tog to the left needle and k2tog through the back loop. pm and knit to the next marker, well, two stitches before, and repeat the double decrease. That is, yo and k2tog. Remove the marker and slip the resultant stitch from the k2tog to the left needle and k2tog through the back loop. pm . Knit a plain row. On the plain row, twist the yo (slip it knitwise twice) and knit it together with the following stitch. Then another decrease row, and another plain row. And so on.

Now at some point, you may want to skip the plain rows and do all decrease rows to make a rounder toe. Do this based on how fast your toe is closing in on where you want to be done. Approximately, I do this when about half of my decreases are done. For example, if I started with 60 stitches, and planned to have 10 left on each needle to kitchener, that is 20 stitches to be left at the end. So half of the decreases are done when I have 40 stitches on the needles. Actually, I would probably go to 36 in this example. Whatever you do, make note of it so you can do the second sock the same way.

This is the same decrease I use for afterthought heels.

Now if you are using magic loop or two circs, and your break point between needles is at the side points you're going to have to do some stitch shifting as it would be very difficult (I'm guessing next to impossible) to have the double decrease cross over between needles. When I'm doing toes or heels, I always switch over to dpns, but that's just me and the way I do it.

more later,

Friday, February 02, 2007

For the gauge averse

This week's pattern from the stitch 'n bitch pageaday calender is for a pair of striped tweedy mittens, though they don't look very tweedy to me. But I've been thinking about making some mittens, so I read through the pattern. For the gauge averse, note that the pattern says to use a size 7us needle or size needed to get gauge. But what gauge?? There is no gauge specified in the pattern, so this is one where you can skip the swatch without guilt.

tweedy mittens

However with a bit of research on the kpixie site (Misso for kpixie is credited with the design) and kpixie hides their free patterns pretty well, but I found the tweedy mitt pattern and they say your gauge should be 5 stitches per inch. Here is a link to the pattern available free from kpixie One more caution, the cast-on is 30 and at 5 stitches per inch your mitt will be 6 inches around and that seems a bit skimpy for the women's medium that this pattern says it makes. Just sayin'. If you make them, and they're too small, find a kid that fits them or send them to Dulaan project.

In knitting news, the koigu socks are coming along nicely. Sock number 1 has a heel and is ready to knit on up the leg until I decide to do some ribbing. Sock number 2 has it's scrap yarn for the afterthought heel (over 28 stitches) plus about one inch of stockinette.

koigu 0202

There is an issue with the heel of sock number 1 which I am a bit embarrassed to admit. And not quite ready to talk about. But look at sock number 1:

koigu 0202a

Remember that this one is being knit from a ball of yarn that had an inch or two of toe knit. And then frogged a week or two ago. Look closely at the picture above. The left half (toe end) of the picture is knit with the froggy yarn. The right half is virgin never-been-knit yarn. The tension and evenness of the knitting looks and feels markedly different to me. What this shows is that frogged yarn that is "kinky" and wiggly should be washed and dried to re-condition it somewhat before reknitting. I've heard of this. I didn't do it ( and I never have ) and I can't guarantee that it would completely fix the tension and evenness (or lack thereof). But I'll be testing this theory at some time in the future.

Now I think this sock will even out when washed and worn and washed.

And my mother used to say "you'll never know it by the time you're married twice", which may apply here, so, more later,


Thursday, February 01, 2007

Feb 1 status

One month of '07 is passed. Here's where I am on my knitting:

2007 FOs January count 13
Crystal Cove pullover Noro blossom
. . . . . .(there's a bag of 10 skeins left,
. . . . . ..anybody want a good deal on some Noro blossom?)
ribwarmer vest ...CTH twister from Taya
2 red scarves woolease & eBay red wool with viscose
bubble wrap hat
variegated Shetland scarf
rpm socks ...Grace's cth end-lot from eBay
aqua kp cottony socks
multi-color cotton warshrag
preemie hat for co-worker's preemie baby (12 1/4 inches) ..used stash leftover sock
2 fun fur hats
aqua sock baby hat

Socks: total started or planned 10 complete 2
rpm socks done
Cat Bordhi lace socks
brown socks for dh ...wool gatto
aqua kp cottony socks done
brown mis-matched socks
Cat Bordhi smile socks
koigu socks in knitting
birthday cth socks
Mountain Colors barefoot socks
STR Fire on the Mountain socks . . . yarn from KR destasher $15.00

2007 Knitting status 2/1/07 Started: count 12
Cat Bordhi lace socks
brown socks . . . wool gatto
cotton shrug 90% in knitting
knitty Grace 40% . . . Noro cotton silk
pink cotton sweater 70% . . . (yarn source attitude)
brown mis-matched socks
Cat Bordhi smile socks to document then frog
koigu socks in knitting
baby albert sweater
recycled silk bag
multidirectional scarf . . . variegated alpaca
lace shawl 1% . . . probably to be frogged

It's hard to believe that I've finished 13 projects already this year. Many of the projects were small, and many were started last year (or the year before lol), but some were more significant. Like the Crystal Cove pullover and ribwarmer vest and finishing rpm.

That's two pairs of socks done and another well on the way. One ball of STR added to the collection.

Just 12 projects in the started pile, with two well into the in knitting category, and two that will likely be knocked out of in process by frogging.

For February, I plan to finish the Koigu socks and finish the shrug. I may work on baby Albert and may be able to finish him also. I'm guessing another pair of socks will enter the in knitting arena, and hats tend to come and go quickly. There's a stash busting vest I've been reading. I'm planning a couple other major sweaters too, but plan to finish off a few more projects before they go on the needles. dh will probably get a sweater with lots of cables.

But that will be later,