Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Soft as silk,
like the sand on a beach
grains sieving in golden droplets
through velvety hands
made for summer fun and laughter
the colour of the ocean at play

Here are the finished Jandal Socks. They look quirky and in an odd way very trendy. They are incredibly soft and comfy to wear. I am surprised at how they turned out, perhaps a bit more length in the foot would have been better but overall I think they work. They are just right for the cooler mornings and evenings of late summer, early autumn as they give just the right amount of warmth.

If you remember the Yeti sock of an earlier post you will see I have made a few adjustments. I cast on 50 stitches instead of the 60 first time round and that made a big difference. Also these socks have cured me of second sock syndrome as knitting a second sock to complete a pair is a much better option than having to frog a second sock and then knit a third.

Details, I used Sorrento by Wendy. It has 133 metres per 50g ball, so I only used one ball to make the jandal socks. It is a mix of 62% viscose and 38%
cotton. Tension is 32 rows to 24 sts and needle recommendation is 3.75 mm.
I used 3.5mm DPN preffering the four needle method to magic loop, which incidentally I love for sleeves. The pattern was from the book below.

I will definitely be knitting another pair of these nifty foot adornments, well they're not really socks are they?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The ABC of me

I found this while having a happy wander around the various blogs out there and thought I'd do my own. Enjoy.

The ABC of Me!

A - Age: I'm 41 but act 16
B - Bed Size: Kingsize
C - Chore you hate: Ironing
D - Dogs Name: Mouse, Toby, Jazz
E - Essential Start of the Day item: Coffee with two spoonfuls of condensed milk
F - Favourite Colour: purple
G - Gold or Silver: Silver
H - Height: 5ft 4inches
I - Instruments you play: None
J - Job: Naval Officer
K - Kids: 1 boy 21 3 girls 19, 17, 9 and 1 step daughter 12
L - Living Arrangements: We're going to build an extension
M - Music You Love: Easy Listening, Vanessa Mae Michael Buble
N - Nicknames: Midget
O - Overnight Hospital Stay: Fourth child spent 10 weeks in hospital
P - Pet Peeve: Last minute change of plans
Q - Quote from a Movie:
R - Right handed or Left: Left
S - Siblings: 6 brothers 5 sisters
T - Time you wake up: 6.30 am
U - Underwear: Silky and Lacy. White for work
V - Vegetables you dislike: Kale cabbage
W - Workout Style: when I really have to or someone else asks me
X - X-Rays You've had: chest
Y - Yummy Food you make: Cheese and bacon muffins
Z - The best place to Visit - France (for the Shoes)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Abominable socks

No seriously these socks must surely be intended for some behemoth of a beast such as the abominable snowman or yeti. They are huge, they are beyond huge they are hideously big. I followed the pattern exactly, no heading off down a path of I think I know better than the designer. I cast on 60 stitches as required and off we went. Some part of my brain kept trying to insist that these looked a tad large, or it may have been the comments from those watching me as they looked askance at the completed rounds and raised their voices slightly at the end of the sentence, "They're for Who?" Clearly a little concerned for my sanity or judgement or possible both. I mean secretly knitting for a creature that doesn't exist probably does constitute madness in some textbook somewhere.

Of course being an experienced knitter, and oh so knowledgeable in ways of woolly things I dispensed with the swatch or tension square. I didn't trouble myself with such a thing as gauge. Oh how the knitting Gods are laughing at me now.
You see the book used sock weight wool and 2.75 needles. I used Sirdar Sorrento which is a DK cotton and acrylic blend. As for needle size, well I'm pretty sure they were bigger than 2.75, but not as big as 4mm. Sorrento knits to 21 stitches per 10 cms and the yarn the pattern used knits to 16 stitches.

I think I see the problem. Wrong yarn tension and too large a needle size, meaning what should have fitted an average woman is now wholly suitable for your average monster foot. So the solution is either knit another one and post them off hoping the Yeti is suitably appreciative of my time and efforts or cast on using less stitches for the second sock, see if that solves the problem, and then knit a third sock the same as the second sock. Alternatively I could just bury them in the WIP pile for a millennium or two.

Be thankful I spared you a front on view or you would have had to deal with a hideous foot as well as a hideously mis-sized sock.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Socks and things

I have been busy. I have been blessed with some time off and I used it wisely to take the girls out and about and to do some knitting and reading. The reading you pretty much know about but the knitting has been quite different. I completed a pair of green anklet socks for youngest daughter. I thought I might be finished at this point but it would appear that every one in our House has developed a sock fetish and no-one is to be left out of the loop. All it would seem must be knitted a pair of socks.
New Year new challenges, I can meet this demand surely, I am a woman of some talent and knowledge, I know I can over come the dreadful second sock syndrome which I do suffer severely from, surely with two pairs under my belt it can be done. I feel vaguely confident.
I agree, rather too rapidly perhaps, that yes, everyone shall have socks! I hunt for patterns and needles and yarn. That was the fun part. I was almost lost for days in the raptures of rediscovering my stash. I re-arranged and stroked and deliberated over choices until I thought I had it all decided. I even emptied a suitcase in the process so now I have space for more yarn! Oh happy days indeed.
I emerged triumphant all ready to cast on. I showed the next recipient my choice of sock and watched her face plummet. She wanted the same sock as the other two girls. The same sock!! My face followed a similar descent to hers. Not TWO more of the same sock. What was this, Ground Hog day?

But I am a nice person and so I cast on for another sock
The pattern is Dolce
I used Sirdar Fair Isle for these which a very soft Acrylic mix. I like how they look even if I know the pattern off by heart at this stage.
To save my sanity from disappearing any further than it already has I also cast on for a nifty pair of Flip Flop socks. Yes you did read correctly, Flip Flop socks. Or Jandal socks if you're a kiwi, or thong socks if you're from Oz.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


Thanks to Some of a kind for this post.

I have managed to read a fair bit over the past few weeks, mainly due to it being summer and long lazy days on the beach.

I've read Ape House by Sara Gruen, author of Water for Elephants. I have to say it didn't seem as deep as her first book but it was enjoyable nonetheless. Sam, Bonzi, Lola and Makena are not ordinary monkeys. They are capable of reason and of carrying on deep relationships, they also know American Sign Language. When an explosion destroys their lab and frees the apes to an unknown location there begins a hunt to save them from a money making mogul who plans to make a reality TV programme with them.
There are times when the plot feels heavy and a little contrived but mostly it's an enjoyable read.

The other book I've read this month was a Christmas present from my son, Distant Hours by Kate Morton. It starts with a letter lost for over fifty years and takes us on a Gothic mystery tale as Edie tries to unravel the past and uncover the secrets that haunt all who have lived at Milderhurst Castle. The book is well written with some imaginative prose and deeply descriptive sections. The characters feel vibrant and well rounded and the book hooks you through the multiple layers of mystery and secrecy to the end.

Saturday, January 1, 2011