Thank you so much for your kind comments and e-mails about our growing family! It's been hard to keep quiet about it, as this pregnancy is such a wonderfully welcome development. I'm just so happy that everything is going well and the baby and I are healthy. I'm not nearly as tired as I remember being with James, but I don't think I have the luxury of being tired this time around. When I was pregnant with James, I had a more flexible schedule and could rest as needed. But having a super busy store and energetic four year old doesn't really allow me to collapse on the couch. Boo hoo.
I had a few questions about what the Valentine Kit will bring this year, and most related to yarn. Last year I featured Tanis Fiber Arts in a rosy granite color. This year I'm focusing on more traditional Valentine colors, and I think you'll really like Claudia's interpretation. You might remember that one of the kits for the holidays featured a speckled color designed by Claudia Handpainted Yarns. This kit sold in just a couple hours, leaving many of you without those festive dotted skeins. So I asked Claudia to dye up a Valentine-inspired dotted colorway so that more of us could snag one this time. Heck, I didn't even get any of the Christmas Cheer colorway!
The kit will also feature a sock pattern that and some awesome stitch markers, and I'll show all these to you in late January or early February. I expect to put the kits up for sale the first week of February, so you'll have a few days to look at the kit and decide if you want one before I post here and in the newsletter that they are available. It's smart to prepare to snag one because last year's Valentine kit sold out in less than 6 hours.
So as the title promised, let me show off my first project of 2012! My ability to finish a project seemed to be hampered by the busy season and pregnancy, so I decided that the way to fix that was to knit a project that I usually get finished in a timely manner. A self-patterning sock. I find self striping and patterning yarns to be addictive- watching the colors develop as I knit makes me want to just knit another row... then another.. and before you know it I have half a sock finished in just a day. Of course, nothing else gets accomplished around the house, but the sock sure looks great!
This is color 184 from Austermann Step's newest collection, Color Block. Austermann Step is infused with aloe and jojoba, and so I was interested to see if I really would notice a difference between it and a similar yarn like Opal, but one that isn't treated with those soothing oils. I don't notice a difference as the yarn slides through my fingers, but I certainly do feel a difference as I hold and feel the finished fabric. The soothing effects are supposed to last several dozen washes, so I'm looking forward to seeing how different these feel on my feet.
I'm knitting these for myself, using this pattern, and I chose the color because I don't typically choose ones with black in them. But my wardrobe is in great need of socks that I can wear with black, and I really like that black is incorporated in this sock, but not in a big way. Please note that the color is very slightly off in this photo- some of the black has a more blue tinge.