Thursday, August 16, 2007

A Dumb Thing to Do

For a bazillion reasons why, I've been painting a lot lately. When I say a lot, I mean A LOT. Not exactly sure how many quarts or spray cans I've gone through, but yesterday's trip to the hardware store brought home another gallon of paint, and 4 more cans of spray paint. This was the 4th trip of it's kind.

Some of you might think that all this painting is the dumb thing to do, but I enjoy painting. I like taking something old and worn and giving it a new life. Thus all the spray paint. Rustoleum to be exact, to liven up some new-to-me wrought iron patio furniture. (I heart rustoleum) No, the really dumb thing to do is explained below......

Yes, for a few days now I've been painting my "new" furniture outside on huge slabs of cardboard laid out in the yard. A couple of those days have been less than ideal to be using spray paint outside so I've been walking around with semi-permanent dirty looking feet and shins, from the over spray. It rubs off eventually :-)

Today was another story.....overcast, calm, not much chance of over spray, a good day to spray paint, but other dangers loomed unbeknown to me. I had just painted the underside of a large mesh top table and was flipping it over to the paint the top. Why I didn't stop to think about what I was doing, I'll never know. I stepped on to the cardboard, first one foot then the other, and I didn't think a whit about it. Then I took 2 more steps; I had to peel my bare feet away from the cardboard as I did so. Ooooops.

Um yeah, rustoleum, it doesn't wash off!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Cat Bordhi Book One

The wait for "New Pathways for Sock Knitters" by Cat Bordhi was by all means worth it!!!

I can't tell you how much I'm lovin' this book!! I got my copy on Saturday August, 4, today is the 8th and I have done nothing but think and do socks. :-)

I'm not an expert sock knitter by any means......far from it. I enjoy knitting socks, but frankly I don't do it as often as I use to. What with the tragedies of my own personal Socktober, my enthusiasm for sock knitting has waned a bit. BUT it's been kicked, shoved, and manipulated into high gear since Saturday!!!

The book itself....beautiful layout and fabulous pictures!!! Several, many, LOTS of techniques spelled out and explained very well. A few I knew, many I didn't, which did make me do a lot of page flipping as I was working the patterns. This is purely a reflection on ME and NOT the book. I stick pretty much to the same old heel , same old toe, and same old cast on.....the book uses several that are new to me, again MY "problem" NOT the book!!! Of course this kind of learning is not a "problem" that's why I buy learn. :-) I rarely buy a book for just patterns, I buy books that will teach me and nudge me to explore new things and boy did I hit the jackpot with this book!!!!!!!

Yes, there are patterns, LOTS of them, but also included are "Master Patterns" for every type of sock architecture to blow your mind and enable you to create your own individual sock. Plus there are "Master Patterns" for every toe, heel, and cuff, used in the book, whether they are toe up or toe down. And for those of you who use dpn's no fear, diagrams and explicit direction about where you're stitches should be and what needle you should be using.

There is also an EXCELLENT chapter with lots of charts and explanations that enable you to generate your own patterns in your own gauge for whatever foot you choose to knit for!!!

Flipping through the book that first day I was nearly overwhelmed. How on earth was I going to choose which sock to make first.......I did the sensible thing......I followed Cat's suggestions. I first made the two sample baby socks and now I have begun to work my way through the other sock types working the baby sock patterns in those chapters. So here they are........btw sorry if the color combos damage your retinas, I was just grabbing stuff from the odds and ends basket as I knitted merrily along. I also didn't give a hoot about gauge and yarn weight, I worked all of these in worsted weight on #5 needles.

Socks and booties on parade.......and one who went exploring on his own.

I've got two more sock architectures to work yet, but couldn't wait any longer to expound the virtues of this book!!

Foxglove architecture and Cedar Architecture

Upstream Architecture and Riverbed Architecture

Sky Architecture and Coriolis Architecture

I'm casting on for the Sidestream and Ridgeline today....maybe pix tomorrow, but you know how those promises go! :-P

I did take a break from Cat socks last night and created my own new sock....see I told you the book was inspiring. Now with a somewhat rudimentary understanding of Cat's concepts regarding sock design, I took the plunge and made something different. something Book Two of this series is going to address and I. CAN'T. WAIT. (I've got other ideas rumbling around in my spotty grey matter too...Cat, you've unleashed a monster I'm afraid) It's a sock that begins at the heel and goes from there, no seams, no grafting. I still have some tweaking to do for my instep increases (I wasn't thinking as clearly as I thought I was, I forgot that I changed my mind about how many instep stitches I was using...sigh) but with Cat's help it's not going to be a problem!!! Here's a pic for what it's know I'm lousy at taking pix but this bright white just kicked my butt!!!

Kinda silly to even post this pic huh.

Thank you Cat Bordhi for sharing your incredible mind.