Tag Archives: sock

The Mystery about Mystery KAL’s or CAL’s

I love mysteries….mystery books, mystery movies, even mystery food! I just enjoy watching or reading (or tasting) to see how it ends.

That’s why I love Mystery KAL’s. A Mystery KAL (or knit-a-long) is one in which a part of a pattern (clue) is released on a regular basis. It could be released weekly, every-other-day, or even monthly, depending upon the designer’s whim. You really do not know how the final product looks until you finish the last stitch.

There are all kinds of Mystery KALs as well as Mystery Crochet-alongs. You can usually find them in the afghans, bags, shawls, socks, and dishcloth threads on Ravelry. You can even join Mystery swaps.

If you would like to join a Mystery KAL or CAL, there are a few tips that I have learned:

  1. Plan to use more yarn than the design calls for. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
  2. Some Mystery KAL or CAL patterns are free; others are for a small fee. Most designers, if they charge, often charge a bit less if you purchase the pattern before the KAL or CAL ends.
  3. Find a local buddy to follow the KAL with you. You and she/he can serve as inspiration and nearby help.
  4. Always knit/crochet a swatch before beginning the first clue to make sure that you have gauge.
  5. As each clue is revealed, wait a day or so until you begin knitting that part. While designers work very hard to to have error-free patterns, it does sometimes happen. You’ll save yourself a lot of frog-pond time if you wait.
  6. Check your KAL’s Ravelry thread often for pattern errors.
  7. If you get in trouble, go to the Ravelry thread and ask. You can email the designer, but most often someone else has had the same  problem and can help. Likewise, be willing to answer if someone else asks and you can help.
  8. Keep in mind there is a chance that you will not fit/like/need/want the final product once you have knitted it. It IS a MYSTERY knit-along after all. If that’s the case, either give it away or frog it and use the yarn for something else.
  9. Most Mystery KAL’s have two threads in their Ravelry group. One is for pictures to be posted by those who have completed the clues (a spoiler thread) and one is for no pictures (no spoilers) but just questions, comments, etc. You can choose to either peek or not to see how the product is coming along.

Have I helped you clarify the mystery in Mystery KALs?


Monkeys and Tigers and Bears! Oh My!

As many of you know, I love, love, love to knit socks. Mostly I knit what’s known as the “plain, vanilla” socks. They are the kind that have no pattern, other than maybe a ribbing pattern, but they look wonderful in the terrific colorways that are now available in just about any price range.

But, once in a while, I get the urge to knit more “fancy-schmancy” socks! Like Cookie A’s Monkey Socks. That is one of the socks that is recommended for the June Year of Stash Socks group on Ravelry. The rule is that you must knit the socks from  your stash yarn. So I’ve found some Lorna’s Laces that was dyed for The Loopy Ewe a few years back for The Loopy’s Anniversary. I’ve cast on and knitted about 1/3 of the way already.

Now I know why people rave about this pattern! It’s a lot of fun! My only complaint is that I have to knit on US Size 0 needles, because normally 64 stitch socks are too large for my dainty, Cinderella feet (size 5’s!).

So, in honor of one of my favorite movies The Wizard of Oz, I checked Ravelry’s pattern database to find Tiger Socks and, of course, Bear Socks! I may have to do all three…Monkeys and Tigers and Bears! Oh my!

(A side note, I did not find any Lion socks…but there are lots of Lion Brand Yarns in which to knit or crochet the socks! LOL!)


Four Projects—No Waiting!

Toe Up Socks Knit from Lorna's Laces

A number of knitters, myself included, like to have several different projects on the needles so that we don’t get bored with just the one project! I try to limit these WIPs (Works-in-Progress) to three or four so I don’t get too many UFO’s (Unfinished Objects)!

In my purse, I always keep a sock knitting as I can pick them up and do them for quick, short periods of time. The Rambling Rows Afghan is one that I started last fall and I am very close to finishing it; the Lucy Bag was started soon after New Year’s Day, and I recently started a red Clapotis lace wrap, which will be a birthday gift for my good friend, Andrea P.

I think that I need to come up with a plan like my friend Lisa B. does when she knits large projects: She figures out when she wants the project to be completed, then divides the total number of rows (or inches) needed to complete it by the number of days/nights she has to knit. She’ll say, “For such and such, I knit 10 rows and then I either read or knit on something else.” In fact, she sometimes designates days for each project: i.e. Monday is socks, Tuesday is sweater, etc.

Perhaps I’ll get one of the four finished this weekend! Cross your fingers for me!



MP3 Device Sock Pattern

This design was used to fit a regular iPod, although you could certainly change the size to fit an iPod Nano or other type of MP 3 Device.

Lion Brand Microspun – 1 skein of Main Color (MC) and 1 skein of Contrasting Color (CC) or you can make the sock in one color. You will probably be able to make at least 2 or 3 socks from 1 skein of yarn.

Gauge – 6 sts = 1 inch in Knit 2, Purl 2 Ribbing.

Knitting Needles – US Size 2 40” circulars; US Size 2 double point (DP) needles; or size needed for gauge. Markers

Using DP or SP needles, cast on (CO) 16 stitches in MC. Knit these 16 stitches in stockingnet stitch (knit one row, purl one row) for 3”. Keep the stitches on the needle for later.

Using circular needles and MC, CO 40 stitches. Slide the stitches to the center of the cable, pinch the cable between the center of the stitches (20 sts), and pull it out to make a large loop. Arrange the stitches so that 20 sts are on one needle and 20 sts are on the other needle, making sure that you don’t “twist” the stitches when you begin the circular knitting. Arrange the needles in your hand so that the needle attached to the yarn is in the front and the needle in the back would be your “first cast on stitches.” Place Marker (PM).

IF YOU ARE NOT FAMILIAR WITH KNITTING ON ONE LONG CIRCULAR NEEDLE, FOLLOW THESE INSTRUCTIONS: Pull the needle in the back (slide the stitches down on the cable) and looping that needle around, K2, P2 — continuing in the round as you normally would. Note that you will have a loop on each side of your work.

At the end of the row (this is half of the round completed), pull the back needle (being careful not to get it mixed up with the first needle!), and slide the stitches to the cable. Again, loop the back needle around to continue knitting circularly to the end of the row (where your marker will be).

Keeping the ribbing stitch of K2, P2 until your work measures 3”.

Next row: K2, P2 for 22 sts; Bind Off (BO) 16 sts; P2

Next row: K2, continuing in K2, P2 ribbing, transfer the 16 sts from your spare DP needle. Continue in rib pattern until entire sock measures 4”.

Change to CC and continue in ribbing (K2, P2) for an additional 2”. Entire sock is 5”. BO.

Turn over top 2” in half and sew down.

Turn sock inside out and sew sides and bottom of pocket. Sew sides and bottom of main IPOD sock. I left a small (1”) slit in the bottom so I could keep the sock on my iPod while it is connected to the computer.

Using 2 DP needles, CO 3 sts. Knit I-Cord style for 42” and BO. You may need to knit this longer or shorter to suit your need.

Beginning at the bottom of the sock, sew the I-Cord necklace around the outside of the sides and bottom of the sock, leaving a large loop as a necklace.