Posts Tagged ‘lorna’s laces’

What a difference a few weeks of temperatures of below 0 F / -17 C have had on The Skipper’s opinion of my yarn stash.

The man is a warm weather person. The hotter it is the more he likes it. 70 F / 21 C is what he considers cool. On the other hand, hot starts at those temps for me. I truly enjoy the cold, cold weather of winter.

So in the middle of the cold, cold spell he asked for some new socks. The man’s feet eat socks at a fast rate. Yarn Rascal and I went to the yarn vault and looked over what we had. The only yarn that seems to have endurance with the rough treatment The Skipper gives his socks is Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock. Yarn Rascal picked out a nice deep blue/black from the left overs in the Shepherd Sock horde. I’m pretty sure the name of the colorway is Peacock. I didn’t have enough to make two socks without inserting a contrasting yarn for the heel flap, heel and toe.

The contrasting yarn is Miss Babs Yummy 2 ply in Oyster.

knitted sock lorna laces yarn

No sooner did they come off the needles than The Skipper whipped them onto his feet. I wanted to block them to allow the stitches and the fiber to relax. But no, he couldn’t wait.

He’s asked me for no less than four more pairs of socks. Preferably in colors that match new turtlenecks he bought. I told him I didn’t have those colors in my stash and that I would need to order them. “Order as much as you like” was his comment! Yarn Rascal and I just gaped at him. After all, this was the man who just a few months ago complained that the stash was too big and I should think of selling some of it off.

I’d like to thank winter for restoring the man to sanity.

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What I Am Knitting

First, it’s wonderfully cold here. 19 F / -7 C. With the wind chill it is 6 F / -14 C. I love the way it makes my bare skin sting. I am probably alone in this appreciation, but it is so much better than hot and humid. I’m sure I was a penguin in another life.

The other day The Skipper came out of his man cave to show me a pair of socks I had knit for him a few years ago. He was shy at first. Holding the pair up and looking like a six year old boy who did something really bad. At first I didn’t recognize what he was holding. Then I looked closer and realized it was socks.

“What did you do to them”, I asked. They were so misshapen and large, too large even for the Jolly Green Giant.

“They were always a bit large”, he said. To which I pulled out my laptop, booted it up, and showed him the pictures of the perfect fitting socks when they were first made and on his feet. “No they weren’t”, I said.

He looked chastened.

“I’ll have to look in the stash for some yarn,” I said, remembering all the complaints he had about the size of my stash. “Maybe Yarn Rascal and I can find something.”

It was at that moment I realized that I now thought of the stash as “ours”: mine and Yarn Rascal’s. It felt right. After all, Yarn Rascal is in the stash every night, making sure everything gets rotated.

Yarn Rascal came up with a dark, dark blue partially used skein of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock. Of the various sock yarns I’ve tried with The Skipper, Shepherd Sock holds up the best to the beating he gives them. The Skipper’s feet are rather large. I only used about 100 yards of the skein for a hat project which roughly leaves me with 300 yards. I wonder if it will be enough to make a pair of sock for him.

So I have interrupted knitting the scarf I was so enjoying to play yarn chicken while knitting a pair of socks. If my luck goes as it usually does, I’ll get one complete sock and two-thirds of the second done then run out of yarn. The yarn was bought years ago. I think the colorway was Peacock. I don’t know if they still produce the colorway or not. If they do the chances of it matching unobtrusively are minimal. I have that feeling this is a doomed project, which makes knitting on it less than enjoyable. Additionally, I like working toe-up socks, but The Skipper’s need to be worked cuff down because he needs the heel flap and gusset for it to fit him properly. Yes, I can knit a toe-up sock with gusset and heel flap, but for some reason it doesn’t fit as well as the cuff down.

If this works I hope The Skipper will show the proper appreciating for the stash in the future. I don’t ask him to love it the way Yarn Rascal and I do, but I would like him to realize it’s importance. Especially now that so much yarn is on sale everywhere and there will be packages and packages of yarn arriving in the mail for the New Year.

Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and peaceful New Year.

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Catch Up

I don’t know where the time is flying to lately, but I am running full out to try and catch up. It is almost 2 weeks now since I met up with fellow blogger and friend, Salpal of What I’m Up To Today blog. It was wonderful to meet her in person and I really enjoyed the time with her. She is exactly the same nice, caring, sincere person she is on her blog. Naturally we hit a yarn store. Such a treat for me, since I don’t have any near me. To be able to see and feel the yarn before purchasing was so nice. Salpal is such a nice person I found myself wishing we lived nearer one another. I really had a wonderful time.

When I came through the door carrying the yarn in a bag, Yarn Rascal raced over to me and I thought I was going to receive a nice big cuddly welcome home. But no. Yarn Rascal ran towards me and actually dove into the bag and came up with the yarn I had bought. With yarn in mouth, he proceeded to dance around the living room like a horse performing dressage. He didn’t let the yarn get out of his sight all night long. In fact, he slept with it in his bed.

Lately, Yarn Rascal has been in an archeological mode. He’s been taking out long forgotten wips and draping them along the floor in the hallway where I can’t help but see them. All my wips are in their own canvas bags which he also leaves in the hallway. Honestly, I didn’t know I had that many canvas bags nor that many wips.

The picture below shows one of the wips Yarn Rascal dug out finally finished.

scarf knit

I started this scarf 6 years ago when my mother and father were in separate ICUs in separate hospitals. The pattern is by Anne Hanson and is called Rivolo. I remember selecting the pattern because it looked like the rain that incessantly ran down the windows of each ICU. The yarn I used was Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock in the Navy Pier colorway.

It was hard to believe we had moved on to 6 years. The trauma still seems near.

Right now I am knitting socks. It’s very obsessive compulsive knitting. I finished one pair and immediately began on a second pair. I am working from patterns of my own making. Pictures are on their way. Like I said, everything seems to be moving faster than me and I am playing catch up.



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The Skippers Socks 1

The Skipper’s sock, though unblocked in this picture, are done. As a former literature major, working socks from the cuff down, is like fine ancient Greek Tragedy. First the ship sails out from the shore and it’s all high expectation, acknowledging the pitfalls and vowing to avoid them this time around. So begins the cuff of the sock which is a one by one ribbing.

Then comes the endless days at sea. No land in sight, every day the baking sun followed by endless night. High expectation wears thin and it feels like I will never get beyond the leg of the sock. Add to this a number of rip backs because I somehow got off pattern and it can feel like sailing the same bit of water over and over again.

Skippers Socks 2

Suddenly Scylla and Charybdis loom up on either side and though I vow not to get shipwrecked again only a fool would believe it, Hence I try to thread the rocks on either side without ripping out my keel as I navigate the heel flap, heel turning and picking up gusset stitches.

With four dpns filled with stitches I begin the arduous task of decreasing every other row either side of the foot to return to my cast on number. This is Circe. On the surface everything is alright, I can do this, nothing to worry about, but below deck everything is turning into a swine trough. A missed decrease here, another there, and the foot of the sock begins to look a bit wonky. After a number of rip backs I can almost understand Medea’s level of anger.

Then comes the blessed toe. The seas are calm, the winds are fair and there’s a big rock island straight ahead that I can’t see because of some weird effect that shrouds it and bam! I’ve hit it dead on. Four stitches needed to be decreased each side not two. Rip, rip, rip.

Finally, I am done with all the decreases and am evenly dividing the sock to be Kitchener Stitched closed when I see I have one extra stitch, throwing off the even division. What difference, I reason, can one little stitch make? I see the dock from the deck of the ship. Do I want to take her back out and sail around a little more or do I want to bring this baby in and land her?

Okay, so one stitch does make a difference. But I think I hid it well.

The sock pattern is from Anne Hanson Gridiron. The sock yarn is Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock Sheridan colorway.

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When I decided to give my brain and nerves a break before they ruptured on their own, I put away all my math toys including pens, graph paper, rulers, and calculator. I needed to stop running numbers in my brain all day regarding stitches to inches to centimeters, to half the circumference of 8 different sized heads, 8 different head and neck lengths, and 8 different front to back measurements. I needed to stop chasing my tail like a crazy dog.

When the sock yarn arrived I made it my vacation away from designing project planning to follow the sock pattern in a mindless manner. This was, I thought, the easy-peasy rest my brain and nerves needed. The yarn, Lorna’s Laces was a familiar brand. I use it often. I’ve never had the colors pool poorly on me, until now.

Lorna's Laces Sock Yarn in Sheridan Colorway

Lorna’s Laces Sock Yarn in Sheridan Colorway

I’ve completed 8 inches (20) cm of the leg—I prefer to make my socks toe up, but the pattern was for cuff down and like I said I wanted to follow the pattern with my brain on auto-pilot—and the colors are pooling in a helix kind of way that I can’t stand. I can live with striping, but not this type of striping. I put the sock on and twirled. It looked just like an old fashioned barber pole. Now, I know The Skipper won’t be twirling in his socks, but the way it looks sets my teeth on edge.

And so it’s come down to this: I need to rip and calculate how to get rid of the barber pole look. In the meantime a line from Tina Turner’s cover of “Proud Mary” keeps going through my head: “We never, ever do nothing, nice and easy.”

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New yarn came yesterday. Nothing can fix a foul mood better than the arrival of new yarn and the allure of a new project. It doesn’t matter that I am buried up to my eyeballs in knitting that needs to be completed before Autumn officially arrives.

Along with the new yarn, The Yarn Rascal revealed a new talent. Out of the 3 packages that arrived yesterday, The Yarn Rascal instantly singled out the package that had the yarn, much like a bomb sniffing dog ferrets out bombs. He danced on his hind legs for it, he leaped for it, he salivated for it, he did everything but scream “give it to me”. So thanks to The Yarn Rascal I was instantly busted.


randi with yarn

Usually I can ease my package of woolly goodness upstairs before The Skipper has the chance to register that yet another package of yarn has arrived. He doesn’t understand my relationship with yarn. I tell him that when the apocalypse comes he’s going to be glad that I have stashed all this yarn. He will have socks, I tell him, omitting the issues of no gas, no food, no electricity. I can knit by candle light. I’ve done it twice during long electrical outages. The knitted fabric looked positively interesting in broad daylight. Not a distant resemblance to what it should have been. Perhaps, this is one way new stitch designs were created back then?

The yarn is Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock in Sand Ridge. It is destined to become this:


Scalloped Edge Shawlette by Tempting Ewe Designs. Her Ravelry website is here.

Have a good weekend.

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Resist much, obey little;
Once unquestioning obedience, once fully enslaved;…

Walt Whitman Leaves of Grass

Our adult purple finch actually had 5 babies in this brood. The last little one fledged yesterday. It’s a little sad to see the nest so quiet and empty after all the activity there this summer. Yet there is a good feeling too, 8 babies in one season, a wonderful addition to the purple finch numbers.

Yesterday was also a stellar day for the little Yarn Rascal. When I was a kid in elementary school and my sister was in kindergarten, Mom had a calendar she made for my sister and me. The objective was to help us be mindful of our conduct during the day and behave more. Before our bedtime, she would review our conduct and assign us a star reflecting said conduct. A red star meant bad day, blue meant I was just above being real bad and skating on very thin ice, silver meant overall I was good, and gold meant I had stellar comportment that day. I remember having more blue stars than any other color. My sister racked up the gold and silver ones. To this day I am not fond of the color gold.

This is all to say that if the Yarn Rascal kept a calendar he would have, by his standards, had a Golden Paw Day yesterday.


He managed to gain entry into one of my more serious yarn stashes. Lorna’s Laces, Dream in Color, Berroco. This stash also had patterns in it along with notes I made on adjustments to the patterns. The nice thing about the Yarn Rascal is he just can’t help but share his success with me, which means he dashes to wherever I am and ecstatically wags his tail while from his mouth hangs the yarn or in this case the yarn and a frayed piece of paper with writing on it. Immediately the chase is on, which causes him further glee.

I am debating whether there is an obedience class at Petsmart in his near future.

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