December 19, 2005


Thanks for the gift-giving solutions! I think I'll take your collective advice, and give each shawl to its original recipient. And then make my escape as quickly as possible :)

A quick throwaway post- there's so much going on. I know everyone rolled their eyes when I started hyperventilating about the Austrian Knee Socks - there Eunny goes again, with her swooning and her hyperbole and her lust-at-first sight. Not so, friends. Once again: they are the alpha and the omega of handknit socks.

Still doubt me?


Edit: I see Jody has left a thoughtful comment about Heirloom Knitting to yesterday's entry. I agree with her sentiments - I absolutely believe in paying for quality, and the book (which I've gotten a chance to flip through) certainly is that. I think the confusion came because I thought it was priced at 32 pounds - still, as she says, that would be the price equivalent of buying two lighter tomes but worth a whole lot more. I think mine was just a knee-jerk reaction to a sum I'm not used to seeing next to my Interweave Press softcovers, but wouldn't blink at dropping on yarn or needles...definitely some interesting food for thought.

December 15, 2005


Is it possible for knitting to become a form of self-flagellation? A couple days ago, I realized that I would probably make my Christmas deadlines. I started wearing a poncho of unflappable serenity, calm in the knowledge that I'd be able to gorge out on cookies and eggnog without gift guilt, comfortably smug and satisfied by my foresight and timing.

So what did I do? I started another project, of course, and started the cycle of what-was-I-thinking, how-am-I-going-to-get-this-done panic all over again. Without climbing too deep into my belly button, wtf? Is there a name for this kind of pathology - lack of willpower as a tool to further self-hatred?

Or maybe, the project is just very pretty and I think knitting it is a lot of fun.


Austrian-Patterned Knee Socks from the Knitter's Magazine book Socks, Socks Socks. They are the socks of my dreams - all my thoughts of kilt hose, of fireside-knit woolens, of silk stockings presented to the Queen, begin and end with these, covered in patterns made of intricate twisted-stitch lines that cross and recross and swoop about to form the knitted equivalent of filigree.

They are the alpha and the omega of handknit socks.

I'm going to do them thigh-high, with an eyelet row inside the knitted hem for threading an elastic band. Unfortunately, the yarn I started with - my all-purpose Baby Ull - couldn't be more unsuited to the single cable crosses and very fine (9 st/inch on US0s) gauge: first, it's superwash-slippery, merrily falling out of pinched-for-cabling stitches; second, it's rather loosely twisted, prone to splitting and not conducive to showing off the stitches. What I need is a tightly spun, firm fingering-weight wool.

In case you can't tell, I'm twisting my own arm over here.