Monday, August 16, 2010

new photos FINALLY!!

I know I've been saying for months that I would have photos of my projects soon.  Yeah, well, soon is finally here.  Sorry it took so long!  I couldn't get the camera cord to work on my laptop and my PC isn't working.  Finally my friend Dawn told me that she never uses the cord, just the card reader.  Oh, DUH!  Major smack-my-forehead moment.  I forgot all about the card reader!  After downloading the 200+ photos on my camera of the last couple months, I finally got around to not only posting them here, but (you may want to sit down for this!) posting them on Ravelry too!!  My handle is iffer over there if you want to add me.  I NEVER post things over there.  It used to be because the whole upload to flickr then to ravelry was too much hassle.  I couldn't even remember my flickr login info half the time.  But I finally put these 2 projects on there along with the couple projects I've had on there since I started Ravelry.  Maybe I'll start uploading more often. . .then again, with my busy crazy life, who knows.

close up of the pattern on the Cheshire Cat Stole.  Thank you so much again to my friend TB who helped me get this yarn!  Pagewood Farms Chugiak in Plum.  Matches my bridesmaid dress perfectly!!

since I used larger yarn and needles than the pattern called for, I took out one repeat.  Measured out perfectly during blocking!  Looks great!  I used silver beads, the bride's colors are sangria (plumish) and silver.  I will hopefuly have photos of me in the dress wearing it.
my Tappan Zee cardi.  I still need to find buttons.  never would have thought that purple and brown would look good together, but they really do on this!  I'm thrilled with it.  The purple is the lovely stuff Suna gave me as a going away gift and the brown is some stash knit picks stuff.  love love love this.  Now I just need to find the right color tank to wear under it. 

OK so I hope you enjoyed the pics I finally got around to posting!  Right now I'm working on the Timeless lace stole (I think that's what it is called) in the latest Knit N Style, and the hearts and flowers socks from wendy johnsons toe up socks book.  I think I've gotten addicted to lace. 

Sunday, May 23, 2010

project excitement!

Ever create a project that you just can't wait to see finished? I'm talking about the projects that require blocking or assembling, so you dont get to really see how it looks unitl it is done and off the needles (or whatever other creating medium you may be using). 

I'm working on the Tappan Zee short sleeved cardigan from  I had 4 balls of this really lovely plum colored yarn with some sprakly stuff woven in that my friend Suna gave me as a going away present.  When I was organizing my yarn stash on my shelf as I was unpacking, I was setting it with my other DK weight yarn (I prefer to organize my yarn by weight) and happened to set it next to 2 random balls of knit picks swish DK in a chocolate brown.  I normally would never think plum and brown would go together, but these two blend beautifully.  I think the plum must have a bit of a brown undertone to it.  It looked so pretty together that I decided I'd have to make something with both of them.  I had it set aside waiting for inspiration to hit, and then the latest knitty came out.

I don't usually like knitting sweaters.  I refuse to knit any that require assembling.  Nothing with sleeves that have to be sewn in, or a back and separate sides.  Nope, too much hassle, and the one or two I've attempted were never finished because once i got the first couple pieces off the needles, I was bored.  Similar to second sock syndrome.  So, nope.  I have since decided that if it isn't some sort of seamless sweater, like a raglan, then I wll probably never make it.  I've also never really considered doing a sweater in Dk weight because I'm not a small person and don't feel like knitting a large garment in small needles.  However, the Tappan Zee sweater is a top down, seamless, cap sleeve cardigan.  I loved the pattern when I first saw it so I did what I always do when I find a pattern I like; I went to ravelry to see what others had done with the pattern.  That's the best way to see if the pattern is easy or to see what modifications people have come up with that you might like to do.  lo and behold, I saw one that caught my eye.  She had done it in 2 colors, with the top half one color and the bottom another.  I immediately thought of my 2 yarns that had formed an unlikely pair on my shelf.  This pattern is PERFECT for these yarns!  The top half is fancy, with a simple lace design worked in, and is perfect for the sparkly stuff.  The dark brown will be great for the bottom half, it is simple stockinette and the brown will (hopefully!) be slimming.  Near the bottom is on repeat of the diamond lace in each corner and then a few garter rows, depending on how far my dark brown goes I may do those in the plum.  I'm hoping to do the lace in the brown then the garter border in the plum.

The most exciting part is that I just finished the top part and bound off the sleeves, so I was able to sort of try it on.  I didn't put it all the way around because I didn't want to have to put it on scrap yarn and I didn't want to lose any stitches, but I tried on one side and it fits perfectly!  I will have to block it wuite a bit to show off the lace pattern, it scrunches a lot, but it looks beautiful.  I know, I know, I'm tormenting you by telling you how great it looks and then not showing you any pictures.  I emailed myself a reminder to take a photo tomorrow when the light is good, though.  I promise I will post one very soon. 

Off to knit on my sweater some more!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The "Ah-ha!" moment

last night I taught my first official knitting class.  I've taught informal ones before, showing friends how to do toe-up or 2 at a time socks, but never a real class at an LYS.  I had 3 students and was a bit worried when one gal said she's only been knitting for a few months, had never even done increases, and another gal was pretty new to knitting too.  The third had done socks before but not toe-up.  I know her from my knititng group, and I feel kind of bad bc she wanted to learn 2 at a time but the class is for 1 at a time and with the other two being somewhat newbies, I didn't want to confuse them.

First up was Judy's Magic cast-on, from  That's IMO the hardest part of the class, and it can be a bit disheartening since that's what they start with.  I had hand-outs, and I brought some worsted weight yarn to demo with so they could see better what I was doing.  The vetran got it pretty quickly after casting on once or twice.  The other two had some trouble, one got it cast on after a few tries but then started knitting on the wrong side.  The other gal had an awful time getting it cast on but finally about halfway thru the class, there was that AH-HA moment.  You know the one, the moment where things just CLICK, and you're like "Oh, I get it!" and it is somewhat smooth sailing from there.  All of a sudden they just got it.  It was great!  I showed the newbie how to do a kf&b increase and how to recognize if it was a row to increase on or not, even drew an example on the chalkboard!  I felt like a real teacher!  LOL.  By the end of class they were all at least halfway thru the toe!  One of them said "I'll admit, I was worried in the beginning that I was going to be dropping out of this class, but this really isn't as hard as I thought it would be!"  So that is encouraging. 

Their homework was to finish the sock thru the gusset so they could work on the heel next week.  I told them if they didn't get that far it is OK, we could work on it the following week.  It is a 3 week class, but the 3rd week is just the cuff ribbing and cast off, so they can probably handle it by themselves.  I also gave them my email addy in case they had problems. 

This is fun.  I enjoy teaching, I think I'm patient enough to be good at it, and I get to make a little extra yarn money.  WOOHOO!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Hail to the Victors!

Yay!!!  My Michigan socks are done!!!  I started these months and months ago, then stopped working on them for a while, then would work on them sporatically, you know how it goes.  When we left Texas I was about 3 inches into them, just starting the first color change.  I worked on them the whole trip here, then kept them in the car to work on whenever we've driven somewhere.  I took them to my first venture to a Michigan knitting group the other night just because they were already in the car, and everyone was very impressed.  I was kind of embarassed because I wasn't trying to show off or anything, and most of the people there were working on simple projects, but they were all really nice.  In fact, one of the ladies reccomended that I should teach a sock class at a LYS, she teaches there and told me I shold talk to the owner.  So, I stepped way out of my box, went to the LYS, introduced myself and told her that S___ said I should talk to her about teaching a sock class.  GO ME!  She was very interested, she wasn't sure if she was going to do it soon or wait until fall since a lot of people are busy with spring sports then vacations right now, but she said she'd let me know soon!  I've taught a few people how to do toe up or magic loop or two at a time so I think I'll be able to handle it.  That would be a lot of fun!  She also had tons of great yarns, including berocco metalics sock yarn.  Yeah, had to buy a ball.  I also got some heavy worsted acrylic/wool blended yarn in verigated purples (DUH!) and Im working on a hopefully very quick stole for myself.  It gets chilly here at night, even on the nice days, and hubby and I like to sit on the deck after the kids go to bed, just to unwind.  I have plans for several stoles, once I finish getting all my stuff unpacked.  I've gotten 4 boxes of yarn unpacked this week.  I *think* that is all of it.  I may be wrong.  I have too much yarn!  Actually, no, you can never have too much.  LOL.  I do promise I'm going to start working on my stash though, I have a ton of sugar and creme that I'm going to start turning into dishcloths for charity, and some acrylic that will make good baby blankets or something. 

Anyways, without further ado. . .   My U of M socks!

I purposly started one on yellow and one on blue so they'd be funkier that way I wasn't going to have to worry they would match up.  These would drive my friend Aggie crazy.  :-)

Because the color stripes were so short (about one round per color) I did a slip stitch pattern to make them a little less dizziness-inducing.  the only thing I'm not thrilled with is the ribbing at the top.  The slip stitches all the way around the leg made them snug, and I did a 2x3 ribbing at the top to show off the color changes a bit better (the purl stitches made the stripes a bit wider and they were 60 sts around so a multiple of 5 was easy) the ribbing is actually less snug than the leg, so it ruffles a bit.  Oh well.

I just did a simple short row heel so that it didn't mess up the stripe patterning.  I usually wont' do a gusset heel on a self-striping yarn because by adding stitches it shortens the stripes and makes themlook funny.  With these, I love how the color pooled and the stripes went diagonally.  I'm very happy with them.

Here's a good close up.  I think they turned out pretty well.  Hopefully they bring my team some good luck when I wear them this fall.  GO BLUE!!!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

what I've been knitting

I'm still here.  I promise!  I keep saying I'm going to blog more and then life just gets too busy.  I'm sure you understand!  :-)

We're getting settled into our new house.  Still have wayyyy too many boxes to unpack, but I did unpack some of my knitting stuff so I'm set.  My son may only have 2 pairs of pants because I haven't found the box with his clothes, but I can knit him a pair or something, right?  LOL.  We'll get the rest unpacked soon.  :)

I have been knitting when I take a break, or when I sit down by the water with the kids.  I'm not crazy enough to let them go out by themselves!  Even when i am there they do insane things like jump into the 50 degree water.  I have a feeling that this summer they will pretty much be living in swimsuits.  Not a problem for me, I love the water! 

On the way here I worked on my U of M socks, I figured it was fitting.  I got the heels done and am almost to the point where I'll start the ribbing.  I'm trying to force myself to make them longer than usual, since I tend to make them too short because I get bored.  I want these to be nice toasty socks for football season, so I'm bound and determined to not make them anklets!  After much debate and worry over stretchiness (or lack therof!) I decided to go ahead and do the slip stitch pattern all the way around the leg.  I've tried them on several times and they seem to be fitting fine, so whew!

Here's a couple other projects I've finished:

A bib for my daughter, who has yet to really master the whole sippy cup thing.  I rarely put hand knit bibs on her because I'm always afraid she'll stain them, but I put one on her the other day and was amazed at how much more absorbant it was, so I decided to go ahead and make some more, just simple easy quick bibs.  This one took me less than 2 hours.  No specific pattern, I just knit by the seat of my pants for this one.  I liked it though, so I may attempt it again and write up the pattern.

Here she is wearing it:

I've gone a bit granny-square crazy lately, with all the preemie blankets.  This started with some leftover yarn from my february lady sweater and some sparkly stuff I got at my LYS when it was closing.  The medium teal is caron simply soft that I added because I knew I wouldn't have enough of the darker color.  This is a decent size lapghan that I had intended to put on the black couch in the rec room, but my children keep taking it upstairs to snuggle with it.  My daughter made some excuse this evening as to why she needed it to sleep with.  I guess I can't complain that they like it, huh?  :-) 
a bit of a closer view.

Next up is some more bibs, and another rectangle blanket made with some yarn I had gotten for a baby blanket that I never finished.  It will go to my youngest when it is finished. 

This wednesday hopefully (or maybe the following wednesday) I'm going to go check out a local knitting group.  I miss my old knitting friends terribly but I also miss the outlet that our group gave me.  I need the one night a week for Mommy time away from the kids!  So hopefully soon I'll get to go, I've heard good things about the group. 

Happy knitting!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

It's so hard to say goodbye

Last night my wonderful, fabulous, fantanstic Texas knitting friends threw me a going away party.  I figured we'd all get together and knit like always and I'd bring a cake, but I was surprised by many sweet gifts too.  It was wonderful!  Everyone had taken time to find beautiful yarns they knew I'd like, my friend Suna even found a list of patterns that would be perfect for the yarn she gave me (and she wore purple in my honor!!) Suzanne sewed me a beautiful project bag with various purple fabrics, Aggie sewed me a sock needle holder, Susan gave me flowers, Kim even hand spun me some beautiful purple and pink fibers.  Dawn laughed and said they had to coordinate because she had almost gotten me the same colorway, and she gave me a skein of yarnorama's color of the month.  I was so touched that so many people like me enough to not only come to a party in my honor but to spend the time to make me gifts or to pick out something perfect for me.  I have such wonderful friends and I am going to miss them so much!!  I will be coming back to visit (probably for a long weekend this winter when I'm freezing my ass off in snowy MI) and I hope we can all get together when I come down. 

Keep in touch, my friends!  I will miss you all!!!!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The granny squares are taking over!

I consider myself a knitter.  I've always said I'm not that good at crochet.  Well, I have recently discovered that you don't HAVE to be very good at it to make really cute things.  I picked up a copy of last month's Knit Simple and there were a few different granny square blankets in there.  I thought, hmmmm, that doesn't look too hard.  I decided to give it a try.  WOW.  That started a whole new granny square frenzy that I don't appear to be able to end.  These things are fun.  And addicting.  

As I mentioned in my last post, I gave up FB games for Lent and have been working on charity knitting instead.  I started with the granny square pattern, then I found a rectangle pattern on ravelry and gave that a try.  Last night at "Monday Night Fibers" (the name that someone came up with for our wonderful knitting/spinning group at Dawns) Dawn showed me how to make a circle blanket out of double crochet.  So easy that I finished it in one night!  I have a bunch of yarn from Dawn that I'm going to try to get thru by next Wednesday, which is the last knitting night I'll be able to attend before I leave :-(  It is also a going away party for me.  I have such sweet friends!!

In addition to all the preemie blankets, I'm also working on 2 afghans for myself, one out of worsted weight and one out of homespun.  The homespun one is made of 6 giant granny squares (I'm almost done with the 3rd one already) and the worsted one is one giant rectangle made from a few various yarns in teals and turquoises.  OMG nothing purple, can you believe it?!?  I'm shocked, myself!  LOL. 

I feel bad that I'm crocheting so much though.  Almost guilty.  I feel like I'm cheating on my knitting.  I can almost hear it, from the bottom of my UFO pile crying softly "she doesn't love me anymore".  I do, I do, I swear I do!  In fact, I found time to do 4 more rows on my lace stole today.  Yes, I know, 4 rows isn't much, but at least I'm trying!  I was hoping to get the stole done and blocked before we leave for MI so I can use it when we get there, but it doesn't look like that's going to happen.  I thought about bringing it in the car, but I have to look down to do the decreases (VDD I can't do without looking at it) and that makes me carsick.  SO, I think I will bring my unfinished U of M socks (perfect, considering the destination!) and my mini mochi socks.  I packed most of my sock yarn already but I think I have another set I can bring with me in case I manage to finish both those pairs.  Hey, stop laughing!  It could happen.  :-)  Anyway, worse comes to worse I'm sure I can find a neat LYS to stop at on the way! 

Here's pics of some of the preemie blankets.  Dawn was nice enough to email them to me since I forgot to take photos before I gave them to her. 

Saturday, February 20, 2010

BIG news

After living in Texas for almost 10 years, my family and I are moving back to Michigan.  Hubby's company has several great job prospects for him all in the midwest, and we're homesick so after a lot of debate and discussion on it, we decided to go for it.  It is going to suck in some ways, my parents and brother are still going to be here, as are a lot of great friends, but overall it will be a good thing.  We haven't told my inlaws yet but most likely they'd move back up there too, and we still have a ton of friends up there.  Plus we can take the kids to all the places we went as children.  I'm already planning a vacation to Ludington, my favorite place on Earth.  Hubby is excited about seeing snow again, which is one of the cons in my book, but opposites attract, right?  We told the kids this morning and while I'm sure it hasn't sunk in completely, they're excited.  We're looking at a few houses on lakes, which is a dream of mine.  That's one good thing about a bad economy--houses in MI are CHEAP.  We can get a house right on the water for what we're paying now.  He'll have a dock for his boat and can fish as often as he likes, and I can sit by the water and knit peacefully.  I'm really looking forward to that!  I'm a water person, I can just sit and stare at the water all day and it just brings such a wonderful sense of peace to me. 

It's stressful and there's a lot of planning involved, and most likely we're going to have to pull our son out of school before the year is out, but it will all work out in the end.  I keep telling myself that.  He's a gregarious kid and adapts easily so I think he'll be fine. 

Knitting wise, this is good and bad.  My LYS here is closing (BOOOHOOOO!!!!) and the nearest one will be quite a distance away, so I'm losing that anyway.  Up there there's a lot more LYS's at least from what I can tell.  I'll also be able to make useful hats and scarves and mittens since it is cold a lot more.  Hubby actually said I could make him a hat and he'd wear it!  However, even though my LYS here is closing, all my knitting friends are still here and still planning on meeting, so I'm going to miss all of them horribly.  I'm hoping I can find a knitting group up there that is even half as good as my group down here. 

I will have to start knitting warm things to use.  I'm going to start a couple of shawls/stoles to use during the late spring/summer for chilly nights.  It will be nice to be able to go outside during the day without baking after 20 minutes, that's for sure.  We might be moving as soon as April, so I'll have to hurry up so I can get something done in time.  I have a couple stoles planned already, just have to get cracking.  :-)

Anyway, I will be keeping up my blog (I promise, CJ!) and I'm on facebook so I will be able to keep in touch with all my friends.  And of course when I come down to visit my folks I will have to get together with everyone. 

On other news, for Lent I decided to give up FB games (I'm hopelessly addicted to Farmville and Island Paradise!) and instead use the time for Charity knitting.  Actually I'm doing a lot of charity crochet, the newest Simply Knitting had an easy pattern for a granny square blanket so I'm using yarn scraps from my friend Dawn, who makes a ton of charity blankets on her knitting machine, and she's been combining the scraps into magic yarn balls.  They are perfect for preemie granny square blankets!  I've also been helping her finish the machine knit blankets with crocheted edging and weaving in ends.  (Dawn, if you're reading this, I have one of the big blankets completed for you already and should have a preemie blanket finished maybe today.)  in between those I'm working on my new mini mochi socks, just simple stockinette stitch.  VERY warm and soft, perfect for MI.  :-)


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

dyeing is so much fun!

Hello my dear readers, whoever you may be.  :-)  Last week I had about 3 times as many hits on my blog as I normally do, but still no comments so I really don't know why. Well, a couple of comments, but they were spam.  Unfortunately I've been getting a lot of those lately so I had to enable that weird "type this word out" security feature.  If they want you to decipher and type that word, why do they make it darn near impossible to read??  Anyway, sorry about that, but I hope it doesn't deter people from posting comments! 

I have been knitting quite a bit but not finishing much because I've had startitis lately. All the lovely yarns in my stash have been calling out to me!  I haven't made much progress on my Michigan socks, they're about halfway thru the instep.  The striping is turning out wonderfully though, they are beginning to switch to the opposite color but the color switch is going across in a diagonal pattern.  Very interesting looking.  Of course I don't have a photo, but I will take one for the next time I blog!  :-) 

These are the mittens I made for my daughter Meg.  I didn't follow a pattern, just made them like toe up socks and increased a bit for the palm.  Once I got to the point where the thumb starts I knit 2 sts, knit 7 sts onto scrap yarn, slipped them back and knit them again on the regular yarn and kept going.  I did the same for the other mitten but I started the thumb 9 sts before the end of the mitten and knit the last 2 sts.  Then I decreased the top when I got to that point the same way I do socks.  I picked up the thumb sts plus a stich on either side so that each thumb was 16 sts.  Since there is no thumb gusset, they don't fit perfectly but they're good enough for her since she rarely wears them and will outgrow them (or lose them!) by next winter.  :0)  She loves them, as you can see.  I think the yarn was berocco metalics.  A little itchy but not too bad.  Very sparkly!  Perfect for a little princess.

Now these are photos of some yummy yarn that I dyed.  My friend Kim is learning how to spin yarn and spun some very soft undyed wool.  She gave it to me so I measured it with a meter counter thingy (that I overpaid for, according to my husband.  He said it is a fishing line gauge and costs 1/4 of what I paid for it if you buy it at a sporting goods store.  However, mine came with a neat wooden thing to hold it to the table, so I don't care.  :-D ) 

Anyway, I used a mix of red and blue jaquard dyes and then added a bit more red to the mix halfway thru the dye process.  I think I used a bit too much dye because it didn't all absorb into the yarn, but it did create a very deep indigo color that I'm completely thrilled with.  There were also a couple spots on the hank that turned out more mauve than indigo, and it added a lovely effect.  Plus the 2 plys took the dye differently so you get a lot of verigation.

It is a bit darker here than in real life because it is still wet in the photograph.  In the last ohoto you can see the pink-y part in the middle of the hank near where it is gathered.  I've already started knitting this and it is turning into a very lovely, simple ribbed scarf.

You're never too young to start knitting!  Erin is 9 months old in this photo.  :-)  Of course, right after the photo was taken, she tried to eat the needles and I had to rescue my scarf before she pulled it off the needles.  LOL.

Do you see the needles?  My husband decided a few weeks ago that he wanted to start building custom electric guitars.  He loves to play and he is always tinkering with his own guitars, changing pickups etc, but he wanted to start his own from scratch.  He was talking about ways to test different wood finishes, using scrap boards etc, and I suggested knitting needles.  This developed into a whole brainstorm about ways to make knitting needles, should we sell them, how to combine knitting supplies and guitars etc.  Then I mentioned how much I love dyeing yarn, and how I wanted to make stitch markers, so now he's working on a website for me to sell hand dyed yarn and handmade stitch markers and needles.  The needles in the above photo are a prototype.  I also gave a pair, along with some stitch markers, to my friend Dawn as a birthday present and for her to test and review for me.  :-)  If it ever warms up and stops raining here, we will be able to make more needles.  He buit a spray booth out in the garage and now has all the tools etc to do different paint finishes, and he really wants to work on a paint dipping technique, but if he does them now the paint won't ever dry.  In the meantime I've been working on dyeing some more yarn (I have a lovely colorway done that I named "marigold", it is yellows and pinky-oranges, very pretty!) and making stitch markers.  I also made labels for the yarn and markers that turned out very nicely I think.  Once he gets my site up I'll put them there as well as post the link here.  I'm going to order more yarn to dye too, it is a lot of fun.  Messy, and time consuming, but a lot of fun!

OK off to do mommy stuff.  Happy knitting!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The things kids do and say make me shake my head

Sometimes I just don't understand my 3 year old. Sometimes I think she's crazy. Or possessed. Today she was hitting something with a toy, so I turned around to see what she was hitting, and it was our 8 year old golden retriever. The dog (who is a bit too passive agressive if you ask me!) was just laying there letting her. I freaked out, gave my daughter a spanking and sent her to her room until dinner is ready. Considering it hasn't even been started yet, that will be a while. She kept asking me if she could come out and I told her no the first couple times, then just started ignoring her. So she switched tactics and tried asking her older brother to ask me if she could come out. He replied "Brendan is not here right now. Please leave a message after the beep. BEEP!"

He is a hoot and a half I tell you. This morning I was driving him to school and he asked me to look at him. I said "I'm sorry sweetie, I can't right now. I'm driving." and he said "But Momma, I thought you said you have eyes in the back of your head!" Damn, he caught me! I stammered "Uh, well, I need all my eyes to drive." Nice save, huh?

So anyway, back to knitting.  Here's some recent projects of mine.  I'm making it my goal this year to get through as much of my sock yarn as possible.  So far I'm making good headway, and since my LYS hasn't gotten in any new sock yarn (that I didn't already have!) lately, I've been using up more than I've added, so that's good.

These are the Pyroclastic socks from the latest issue of knitty.  Very pretty pattern, but pretty difficult IMO.  I usually do two at a time on magic loop, had to do these on 2 circs then had to switch to one at a time once I started the decreases on the feet because I couldn't move the stitches between needles very easily.  I was a little unhappy with the final result too.  The cables for some reason made the pattern look slanted (they don't go straight up the socks without some tugging, they go off at an angle), if I did this pattern over I would do an inch of 1x1 ribbing at the top because the ribbing they use isn't tight enough, and the arch shaping doesn't fit my foot very well.  They ended up pretty, but very snug so I sent them to my Grandma as a late Christmas gift.  I think she'll like them.  I used Pagewood Farms Chugiak (sp?) in Plum.  Nice yarn, nice to work with, VERY soft after washing, but the colors bled like crazy so be careful the first couple times you wash them.

Here is what the arch shaping looks like. It is pretty, it just is too snug for my chubby feet :-)

This is the top of the foot.  I also would start the chart one stitch over so the pattern is more centered.  Right now it has 2 purls on the right side and none on the left.  But all in all, very pretty.  It is a little more purple than the photo shows.

I finished these up Wednesday night at my knitting group.  Panda Silk, I don't remember the colorway but it is LOVELY.  The yarn is soooooo soft.  Works up like a dream, and isn't too terribly hot on my feet.  This is an easy slip stitch pattern, I used these as an inspiration:
That is my friend Suna's blog, and those are some of her lovely socks.  I did a different heel, my favorite standard gusset/heel flap on a toe up sock. 

As I was getting close to finishing these up I started planning my next project, and got thinking about how this pattern worked up.  I have 2 balls of U of Michigan sock yarn left, waiting for a pattern that wouldn't make me dizzy knitting them.  The stripes are very short on that yarn, so the color changes from blue to gold each row. With this pattern, the slip stitches are every other row. . do you see where i'm going with this?  Well, I changed up the pattern a bit, did knit stitches instead of purls so that it worked better with the color changes of the U of M yarn, and did 60 sts instead of 66 since they aren't ribbed.  Then I put the starting slip knot halfway thru a blue stripe on one sock and a yellow on the other sock so that I ended up with one sock with blue vertical stripes and one with yellow.  Amazingly enough, it WORKED!

See, don't these look fun?? And no, I don't knit while driving, I was waiting to pick up my son at school :-)  These are moving pretty fast so I'm hoping to have them done in a couple weeks.

Just a random knitwear pic, my youngest wearing hand knit sweater (made my the aforementioned Suna) Meg (the insane 3 year old) wearing a chevron scarf made from sock yarn, a Windy City hat made from some random worsted I had in my stash, and my wristwarmers.  The only good thing about chilly weather is that I can enjoy dressing my family in knitwear!  I have a pair of mittens almost finished for my 3 year old, but I'm still annoyed at her so I think tonight I will work on my socks instead of her mittens.  :-)  Take that!  LOL

And these are the socks I finished for my hubby before CHristmas.  Can't remember if I shared pics of these or not and i'm too lazy to go back and look right now, so disregard these photos if you've already seen 'em!

I would have made them longer but he said he liked them this length.  I think he was just anxious to wear them, he said his feet were cold LOL.

OK, dinner is ready.  Off to deal with my crazy child and then (hopefully) enjoy a peaceful family dinner.  HA!  Like that will ever happen. . .