February 21, 2012

Bordhi-nized room shoes

When I first made Cat Bordhi's "Discovery" socks, I was afraid of snipping the yarn in the middle of my knitting.  After I made a couple of garments with steeks, I still have my fears.
Can I open the "mouth" without cutting ?

I have been thinking of making a pair of room shoes for warmth all along this autumn/winter, say, for three months.  I was eyeing a nice knit/crochet pattern, but I had almost used up my colorful bits and pieces of fingering yarns suitable for it (they turned into armwarmers).  And, I wanted my shoes to be practical if not fancy.  It can be in awful acrylic or anything, if it stays on my feet snugly and keep them warm.
Then, "stays on my feet" rang the bell.

What if I made just the foot part of Cat Bordhi socks, in thick acrylic?
And if I crochet them, I could open the mouth with chain loop without cutting, with a bonus of a speedy finish!

So the project began, at around 9:30 AM.
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippersCrochet Bordhi-nised slippers
1. Start circularly, making increases every other round or so, to cover your toe.
(I like slip-stitch my final sc on the first ch to finish the round, by the way.  You can spiral up the rounds if it suits you.)

Crochet Bordhi-nised slippersCrochet Bordhi-nised slippers
2. Once the circumference reaches your foot circumference, just crochet up to "leg" line, adding increases if needed.  The yarn was worsted-weight-ish thick, so I only made a 2 sts and a 4 sts increase once each.

3. Fun part made easy.  When you reach the leg line, make 1 ch st like you start every round (for sc), and add half the numbers of one round chain stitches.  I had 36 stitches, so I made (1 + 18) = 19 chain stitches.
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippers
And attach on the opposite side of the round with sc. Continue in sc like former rounds to the end of the round.

4. Crochet on the chain, 1 sc on 1 ch, for the first half and sc on for the second half of the next round.
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippers

5. Continue up to "heel" line.
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippers

6. Make decreases to finish the heel, just reversing the toe making process.
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippers

And Voila!  A shoe.
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippers

I added picot edging around the mouth, to strengthen the sides where instep and heel meets, and to make it a bit cuter.  I should have used, say, white yarn for edging to make it even cuter.
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippers
It took less than 3 hours for one shoe for me, including taking notes and ripping a round or two here and there.

Naturally, the second shoe was finished a lot faster and a bit tighter (my crochet skill is not as good as my knitting).
Crochet Bordhi-nised slippers
See the right one is a bit smaller?

Still, I'm satisfied that I finished before my daughter comes home from school at 3:00PM.  Warm feet make a happy smiling mom.

I think this is going to be one of my "no-pattern-patterns" which I can work whenever, wherever I got enough yarn and a matching needles & hooks.
(And my Personal Footprint, to make my world easy.)

So Bordhi-nized

I bought Cat Bordhi's 2nd sock constructing book almost as soon as it appeared.  The idea is fascinating, to make perfectly fitting socks by making your own footprints.  I don't know why I try the method sooner.

I started last week, made my own footprint and a sock.Discovery sock

Somehow the result was a bit loose on my ankle and heel.
Discovery sock

I added ribbings and decreased several stitches at ankle, and made another sock that way.  Now I have a confortable pair, but, it doesn't seem right. It shouldn't be like that.  But I couldn't point out where I made a mistake.

Anyway, I was satisfied enough that I took my daughter's footprint and started hers.  While I was trying the "discovery" piece on her sleeping foot at night, I had a sort of Aha! moment.  I should have made increase only once, a little longer instep, stand up and pull the piece up over my foot while my leg stands vertically.  (I was just too lazy to try it on while I sit on the floor.. warmed floor.  Shame.)

Talking about my daughter's foot,
she is growing up fast.  I'll draw a new footprint every autumn until she gets an adult size foot.

I'm definitely making another Discovery sock of my own, after making my daughter's and my husband's sock but before making them matching pair.
You don't need to make a pair of Discovery socks if you follow the book word by word.. she doesn't say "make another and enjoy" after closing the heel.  You can make just one sock for sizing and start a new pair with fun design. Nevertheless it looks that everybody on Ravelry who tries this patten (method) makes it as a pair.  I, too, did so on my first try.  That's natural, because you're just one sock away from a perfectly fitting pair, and you know the next one comes up fast now you know how things go.

I got so excited when I realized I could crochet room shoes in no time if I use this strategy.  And the idea worked.  I'll make another post for it.

February 13, 2012


After all the classes in the fall semester and related paperwork is done, I was in no mood for anything classified as "obligation. "  I knit, knit, knit, cutting housework time and sleep, on these.
cat mittens
Two pairs of Kitten MIttens by Alyssa Lynough, using stashed Hamanaka Wanpaku Dennis double-stranded.  Yellow/brown stripe brothers for me, white/brown stripe with colorful ears and tail brothers for my daughter (her pair is used only for playing, not as hand warmers).  Although double-stranded and thick, it isn't really wind-proof because they are knit single layer.  I learned that Scandinavian/FairIsle colorwork is necessary to resist the windchill.

I like this yarn.  70% Acrylic and 30% wool, machine-washable gently, colorful, reasonably priced.  It's not the softest and loveliest yarn in the market, but a good go-to yarn for school goer's garment.

donuts vest
Finished my "donut" vest.  I reinforced the steeks with crochet.  Highlight was executing the cutting while my friend was watching and making her scream (I have to mention she did so very lady-likely.)  I gave up the bottom rib (too short and too weak) and hemmed it, added a row of single crochet at the folding line.

dancing lady coffee sleeveLinked arm Coffee Sleeve
Two coffee sleeves, just to try a motif (dancing lady) and a technique (intarsia in the round).

lapwarmer roundlapwarmer round
A skirt for me, double-stranding my stashed fingering yarns.  Love the pattern. It's simple, versatile, and fun to make.  I'm literally living inside this skirt.  It's a "Mary's little lamb" lapwarmer - follows everywhere I go.

Of course, the colorful skirt made my daughter want hers, too.  It's made of Hamanaka Wanpaku Dennis, bought to make a bean-brothers toy (like this - Ravelry project link) but I was too slow to start and she has outgrown the book.  The  color reminds us of her favorite pokémon, Tsutarja (Snivy) .  She even claims herself as Grass type, because her name (written in Kanji - Chinese characters) contains the grass radicals.
(The paper under the skirt, is her homework from school.)

Just sleeves, working
These legwarmers are still in progress, but I'll finish them in a couple days or so.  The pattern  was in Kurashi-no-Techo, the bi-monthly magazine which has 60 years history.  The contents are so wide-ranged - book review, craft, cooking, to health and sometimes a hard-core educational or environmental debate.  Everything house-keeping, you know.   My mother bought December  2011/ January 2012 issue at hospital news stand, and gave me the craft page.  I wasn't really thinking of materializing it, but as usual, leftover yarns nudged me.  It's a good motif sampler design, so I can change the yarn on any round.

This weekend, my husband and I had our 16th anniversary, which means we have known each other for a little more than 20 years now.  Speechless.
We (Me, my husband and my - our - daughter) went for a two-days trip to Kinosaki Onsen to have a good time and good meal.
DinnerIcy water pond

There were good inspirations for color and texture, too.
Fish tile1

on the sheet

I feel so good.  It's about time for a Spring cleaning!

PS; About the Ambitious gansey sweater I mentioned on the last post?  I brought it for the trip and made progress, up to 8 of 10 repeats of pattern A. Two more repeats and underarm gussets starts.  Looks loose stitch-wisely, but I believe the yarn will plump up after a wet block.