Thursday, November 27, 2008

Three Feet

Here's the current state of the stockings. The photo on the top right shows the stocking for my younger son. He's chosen a heraldic dragon motif. The original graph is from "The Tap-Dancing Lizard", but I have modified it slightly to fit the stocking. That means I can't see straight enough to follow the graph exactly.
On the lower right are the Binary and Claymore Stockings. Technically, these are ready for finishing, but I'm not done yet. The Binary version has a seed stitch cuff, chosen because it lies flat and stiff. I am surprised that this cuff tends to have a diagonal slant. I'll need to add a few stitches to keep the cuff in place. The Claymore was chosen by my son to highlight a new anime series. Since he's half Scottish, the claymore works very well. The Claymore has a ribbed cuff. I still want to add something to this one.
I think that I will do celtic knots on the reverse of all the stockings. TBA. There may be a fourth stocking in development.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Binary Stocking Progress

This is the binary stocking so far. The message reads Happy New Year on this side. I've added a toe and cuff. The toe is stockinette while the cuff is seed stitch (lies flat). Next I will add the heel. When seen in r4eal life, the embroidery has more "texture " than I would like. I may embroider the reverse side of the stocking in red for a low-contrast effect. The message will be in Irish Gaelic. Although my husband is Scottish, Scots Gaelic writing is too long to fit on the stocking. The encoded text will read "Pog mo thoin" which will remain untranslated. Be assured that it is appropriate for the recipient.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The No-Commitment Christmas Stocking

I've been feeling so guilty for years. When I was pregnant, I knit a beautiful, Fair-Isle, wool Christmas stocking. Then I had to go and have TWO children. I have bought stuff at craft shows, but there is such a difference between the stockings. In fairness, the Fair-Isle stocking is tucked away with the other "Thou shalt not touch" items.

In the interest of destashing...I'm making stockings. I have six non-matching skeins of red wool in my stash. I'm sure that I intended to make a red sweater at some time. This would have been a serious offense. The yarn color is labeled "Tomato" and that is exactly what I would have looked like. In wool.

The stockings are "no-commitment" because I'm figuring out the design as I go along. I knit a flat length of stockinette, with stitches reserved for Elizabeth Zimmerman's Afterthought Toes and Heels. I can duplicate stitch a message or graphic, then seam and finish. Each family member gets a say in the design on their stocking- up to a point. This one is for my husband. He is a programmer so he gets Binary code. The message is up to me. Since he is Scottish, one side will read "Auld Lang Syne'. The reverse side is, classified. If he gets me mad.... imagine the possibilities...


Still engaged with the barcode expressed in knitting idea. So far I have learned that barcode is difficult to process with human sensibilities ( obvious to everyone else, but I had to do it myself). The photo shows, from left to right, a swatch done positive/negative, the current graph, the current knit. The swatch taught me that for this pattern, it doesn't matter which color is dominant. The dominant color will will be determined later. My first graph was accurate in terms of line spacing. I was able to truncate the pattern to fit on legal paper without losing the sense of the design. Finally, to redeem myself, the actual piece is going to become a mini scarf with openings for my iPod and cellphone. The scarf is a double knit tube, which hides yarn ends and allows me to do single-row stripes. Anyone who has read this far should be congratulated. I know I'm on a hopeless tangent.

Autumn Colors

This is the Moebius that I started to use up the variegated yarn that I bought in a fit of bad judgment. As is typical with variegated stuff, it looks good on the skein and turns into schmutz once knit. Mixing it with a chocolate brown wool, seed stitch and slipped stitches really helps. This is nearly mindless knitting. It'll take me forever to finish because there are 500 stitches per round and I have more interesting things to do. Also, I finally broke down and bought a 40-inch circular needle. I have no idea how I managed to knit my first moebius without a long circular before. Maybe this approach will work when I get back to the leaf obsession.