A Small but Luscious WIP

Malabrigo worsted weight.  Brioche stitch.  Cables.  Neckwarmer.  Need I say more?
Malabrigo Brioche Neckwarmer WIP
That’s Glacier Malabrigo, which I got from Karen. It’s very soft and pretty. When knit in brioche stitch, it’s downright sqooshy. The cables are just an added bonus. The pattern is Brioche Moebius from Janet Szabo’s Winter 2006 Twists and Turns. However, I am making a narrower version (3 not 5 cables wide), and I won’t be making the moebius. Janet designed it as a moebius scarf to drape over the head in lieu of a hat–the fabric is entirely reversible. I want a neckwarmer. So, I’ve decided to knit it long enough to cross and then button in front. This means I have to learn how to make button loops at the end of the scarf (crochet a chain?), and I’ll have to find buttons. With just a small JoAnns, that could be a tough job. Any advice on button loops and online button resources I’d be happy to receive!
Brioche stitch is a blast to knit, and I love how the cables curve the edge of the scarf. This baby is thick too.
I’ll be toasty warm when back in Wisconsin and Illinois for the holidays.  Maybe we’ll even get down to freezing here one early morning in December or January, and I’ll be able to wear it with a sweater outside.  I know, that’s just unnecessary bragging.

Christmas Socks and Dragonflies

Before I get to the socks, many people wanted me to keep them updated about my family’s cat Rip.  Well, in very early October, Rip needed to be put down.  He really was not doing well.  My family misses him of course, but they are glad he is no longer suffering.  They appreciated all of your wonderful comments.

While knitting the first pair of Christmas socks in a 4×4 rib, I realized that if I didn’t get any sock blockers, I was going to have awful photos.  The socks were too narrow for my feet, so I asked Cristi, the turtlegirl, if she’d make me a pair of  blockers.  Cristi usually puts rulers on the blockers, but I didn’t need that, so she asked if I wanted anything else.  Well, I had a ladybug tape measure and a beehive pincushion (see below), so I thought something keeping with the “good bugs” theme would be cool.  Cristi did dragonflies, and I couldn’t be more pleased.
Dragonfly sock blockers
So, the first pair of Christmas socks, which I finished in August, can now have their FO pic on the blog.
Christmas Socks I 2008
The yarn is Fleece Artist Merino in Lily Pond. I knit on 2.25 mm (size 1) needles, which with my tension the FA yarn made for a very durable fabric. I don’t think I’ll do that again. Plus, on size 1 needles, the Eye of Partridge heel took 42 rows for 21 picked up stitches. I’m somewhat surprised that the gussets worked out as well as they did. But they are DONE!

I also finished the second pair of Christmas socks in a K3,P1,K1,P1 rib for the leg and a stockinette foot. These turned out nice in Fleece Artist Seawool in Burgundy.
Christmas Socks II 2008
I wasn’t enthralled with the Seawool; it felt a little artificial, but the knit fabric turned out very nice. So that’s IT on the Christmas socks. I have one hat to knit for a gift. I already knit a hat, but it is too small for the recipient, so I ordered new yarn. The too small hat should fit a grad student in lab who is a size 0 and grew up in Phoenix, so she finds northern California cold. She’s agreed to a photoshoot if the hat fits, and then she can keep it.

I have to show you my bottle cap pin cushion (the support is a bottle cap from a 2 liter soda bottle) made by Very Big Jen, which I bought at her etsy shop, Schmaltzy Craftsy. It is so cute! (and I’m usually pretty immune to cute) I haven’t been able to stick any pins in it yet. So it currently functions as a objet d’art. With the dragonfly sock blockers and my ladybug tape measure, the trio makes quite a nice little “good bugs” grouping. Good bugs, of course, are those bugs that eat the bad bugs that bite me (or provide the world with food by pollinating plants and eating crop pests–I suppose that’s almost as important as eating the bugs that bite me).
Beehive pincushion
As for bugs biting me, let’s just say that when asked what sort of insect repellent he uses, M says, “I stand next to my wife, and they are too busy biting her to bite me.” Nice.