fo : manta

This has been finished for quite some time, but I hadn't photographed it until very recently--after some attempts to make it a part of my wardrobe this year I decided this belonged to one of my more fashionable friends for Christmas this year.

pattern : Stingray by Evan Plevinski yarn : Lion Brand Heartland in Great Smoky Mountains needle : US 8 [5mm] size : a little too large

I don't really remember what my experience was like knitting it. I didn't encounter any glaring difficulties in the pattern itself, but I did get a little careless at one point and worked to many repeats of a few of the sections. It gave me a larger, prettier fabric but wasn't faithful to the intent of the original design.
While it's not lacework, I'm happy to say that I've made something that I didn't think I would--a shawl. Thankfully this doesn't need the intense sort of blocking a super lacy, feminine shawl would have needed, I probably wouldn't have made it in the first place if that were the case.

I hope the recipient likes this gift! She and I agree on wardrobe color palettes for the most part, and I look forward to how she makes this a part of her already nice wardrobe.

sin city knit shop, las vegas

The second LYS I visited was the Sin City Knit Shop on E. Windmill Ln. From the look of it, this shop has been around for quite some time. I think I recall being told that until Mirage Fiber Arts opened its doors it was the only one in Vegas for a while.

I had the immediate feeling that the people relaxing and knitting were all good friends, and was greeted as if I was a part of that circle too.

I can't tell you how at home I felt here! I said I was looking for some sock yarn, and everyone there sounded off with great suggestions of what was in stock! It may have been for that reason that I wasn't even entirely sure who was the owner of Sin City Knits, it was like everyone was at home, I was a guest, and there happened to be a ton of yarn around.

The atmosphere is too charming here.

I decided to pick up one of Sin City knits' own dyed sock yarns in that lovely blue-green colorway, and a sale skein of Viking Raggen for some Christmas knitting (time-willing). Oh, and some point protectors. They just keep disappearing back home.

Thanks for such an enjoyable visit, Sin City Knit Shop! If anyone's in the area and are looking for workshops, classes, events and the like, or simply a place to knit, chat and find squishy skeins to adopt, the Sin City Knit Shop is a great bet.

wip: scrap socks 2, slide

​Second sock syndrome successfully prevented. I think I made a good call on knitting these one-at-a-time. It helps me better focus on each sock's different pattern. It still feels like a bit of a waste to have just one sock being worked on a long circular needle, so, in spite of my renewed fear of snapping another thin needle while on the go... I moved these onto dpns, and...

..casted on my second pair of scrap ankle socks. Scrankle socks. These are made using Brittney Elbertson's Go to Shortie Socks pattern. She originally wrote these for a small diameter circular needle (which is a fantastic idea! Someday.) But I wanted these both knit at once for some semi-identical socks. It feels like the way to make the best look out of a random and usually horrific color scheme you often get with yarn scraps.
It thankfully took only a few minutes to learn how to start cuff-down socks with a magic loop, as the method turned out to be super simple. Definitely an easy addition to any knitter's arsenal of skills.

Brittney's pattern is very well laid out and simple to follow. She took care to make these socks easy to adapt to your favorite sock knitting method. It all is coming out to be a quick and portable knit. I plan to use these (and all of my scrap ankle socks) for exercise. Scrap socks sit in the perfect place on the spectrum between specially hand-knit, but also un-precious enough to absolutely beat up on the daily run.

Brittney Elbertson's blog and Youtube channel are very charming and entertaining, too. Pay her a visit!

Linking this post up with Frontier Dreams' KCCO.

​ mirage fiber arts, las vegas

While on my thanksgiving weekend trip to Las Vegas with Nick, I took advantage again of Ravelry's fantastic LYS finder resource and found two shops to visit.

The first was Mirage Fiber Arts on S. Buffalo drive. The moment I walked in, I was warmly greeted by the ladies knitting on those adorable rocking chairs.

Their full walls suggested a generous and well curated selection of squishy yarns. I spent most of my time there handing skeins of alpaca or mohair to Nick and insisting that he squeeze and appreciate them.

While convincable, I was mostly on the hunt for something more llcaol than the usual staples of Malabrigo or Beocco, and found what I was looking for.

A skein of Nerd Girl Yarns Swagger in "I Ain't Nobody's Bitch", and Ethereal Fibers' Dark Matter Sock, a 70/20/10 Merino/Yak/Nylon yarn, which is unfortunately not the most well catalogued yarn on Ravelry.

I'm learning, however, that the wonderful thing about picking up a yarn without an existing and well-documented record of projects online is that my project will definitely be a nice little surprise to see all knit up. I'm not entirely sure now the Swagger Yarn will turn out, so I'm probably going to let it have its say on a vanilla sock or something. (Or maybe give the Stranded Show-Off pattern another try?)
I'll share my second LYS experience with you very soon! For now, I've got an Ease sweater to finish weaving in and blocking.
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