No Mail Monday … and a CONTEST!

I don’t like No Mail Mondays and I don’t quite get it. We have President’s Day to celebrate … past presidents? Lincoln and Washington? What? And do people honestly go out and have celebrations that cause them not to be able to work today, thus giving many a day off? I can see being off for the Fourth of July – there are parades and picnics and fireworks. On Martin Luther King day there are remembrances and ceremonies and special events. But what happens on President’s Day that necessitates a no work day? (Or – more to the point – a no mail day?) I’m glad to have Knitting Daughter home, and I’m glad for all of you who get a day off today because of it, but I sure wish the mail was still going through. I have a bucketload of boxes here (ok, way more than a bucketload) that I know you’re all waiting for at your house. Alas – it’s a No Mail Monday.

So as long as you’re off work, and not getting mail today, you might want to pop on over and check out all the new yarns we put up! Wonder Husband worked on photos all weekend long, just for us. We have new Yarn Pirate colorways, new J-Knits colorways, more Cherry Tree Hill colorways in both solids and variegates, and lots and lots and lots of Lorna’s Laces in solids and variegateds. Please know, that I have more Yarn Pirate, more J-Knits, and more Lorna’s Laces on order, so if you miss a color you really wanted, it’s already in the works again. Our goal is to always have the regular “big yarn companies” in stock, and to get orders from our wonderful indie dyers as often as they can dye up big orders for us. Some of the big companies are great about getting new orders out within 2 weeks, others don’t keep as much stock and we wait anywhere from 6-10 weeks for an order. (That’s always fun – thinking, “Hmmm – what colors will we be out of 10 weeks from now, that I ought to order today?”) I do have more of all the new colors of Lorna’s Laces coming back in in a couple of weeks – so if you miss them today, watch for those to be back in stock even quicker. I also added Needle Gauges (am I the only one that needs one of these in every knitting bag?) and Circular Needle Point Protectors in the Fun Accessories section.
DSC00546.JPGI finished the first Crystal Palace Panda Cotton sock and I love it. (Note – I didn’t even knit out the skein, so this is out of just under one skein with my size 11 feet, knit on size 1 needles with 60 stitches.) It’s such a comfortable sock on my foot and this pattern knit up SO quickly. I will do this one again, for sure. You really ought to try this yarn. It’s worth it just to see the cute little skeins (someone called them skeinlets!) in person. I’ll put it up in the photo gallery as well. Did you notice that I added The Loopy Ewe Quarterly Challenge photo gallery over the weekend? I have already had people sending in their Frank and Martha photos, so it was time. Remember, it’s easy for you to add these photos yourself via your Loopy Ewe account. Who else has finished their Franks and Marthas?

DSC00545.JPGIt’s time for our February blog contest! I will draw a name next Monday, from all of the comments on this post. The winner will receive our monthly “Loopy Loot” prize. (And it’s a good prize – lot’s of fun stuff in there!) I thought it’d be fun to share knitting tips for this one. It can be an organizing idea, a stitching idea, a storage idea, or any idea that you have come up with to make knitting and/or DSC00547.JPGstashing better in your life. Here are two of my latest thoughts. I bought this over-the-door shoe holder to put on the back of our closet door, and I keep my favorite handknit socks in there where they’re easy to see. Of course you can only fit so many pairs in there, but it’s fun to keep favorites on display like that. My other tip is that I make an enlarged copy of the stitch pattern that I’m using on the cuff of my socks in progress, attach it to a piece of cardstock to make it sturdier, and then can keep that in my Zelda bag (where my current sock project always resides) without having to put the whole pattern in there. When I’m done with those socks, I tuck the card into the top-loader with that pattern, and keep them all in my pattern notebook. That way, the next time I want to use that pattern, the pattern card is already done and ready for me.

So – tell me your favorite tip, either original or a good idea heard elsewhere – and we’ll all have fun reading them! Then, pop over to The Loopy Ewe to check out the new yarns……..

Sheri thinkI’llgobackandfinishmysecondFRANKsocknow


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149 comments on “No Mail Monday … and a CONTEST!

  1. Ooh, I’m comment #101! :-D I like the idea of keeping needles in pretty vases, but unfortunately, I haven’t got any pretty vases. Instead, I use old Ball or Mason jelly jars (fits in with my decor, too). I’ve got a little half-pint jar on the shelf right next to my knitting chair, and I keep all my in-use dpns in it. (I’ve got a lovely dpn roll that I use for the needles that are just being stored, but there’s several sizes that I use ALL the time, so they just stay out in my jar.) I really prefer the KnitPicks dpns, and unfortunately, they don’t have their sizes printed on the needles, so I use tiny rubber bands to keep each set of five together in the jar. The rubber bands come in packs of a couple hundred at Farm & Fleet (in the horse & livestock section…they’re for banding or braiding manes:-D), or you can get similar ones from a dentist for braces.

    I keep my sock yarn stash in cardboard banker’s boxes (like from Office Max). They’re super cheap, which is a major requirement, and unobtrusive to look at. The two sock boxes live in my closet so they’re easy to get to, because honestly, one ought to take out one’s sock yarn to admire as much as possible! All the handpaints are stood on end in one box, so that when I lift the lid, I see each & every skein at once. It’s the most beautiful sight in the world, with all the colours jumbling together, and calling, “knit me, knit me!”.

  2. This is not really a technical tip, but probably the best advice I ever received. KNIT FEARLESSLY! Don’t be intimidated by new projects, techniques, stitches, ect. What’s the worst thing that can happen if you mess up?? No one will die. Pull it out and start over…….once I started following that advice, the sky is the limit and I
    have accomplished projects I NEVER would have considered before because they
    were beyond my ability……like SOCKS!!!!!! :)

  3. What great tips everyone is sharing! It’s hard to add to this wonderful list.

    Like many knitters, I keep a knitting journal to record pattern and yarn information, recipient measurements, yarn sample, photo of finished project, etc. The journal is simply chronological and covers my entire knitting life (only 4 years so far – we’ll see if I can keep this up).

    Recently, I created a Shutterfly (www.shutterfly.com) Photo Book of all my completed sock projects. I enjoy having all my handknit sock information in one place, uncluttered by scarf projects and sweaters and other items, and it’s so gratifying to flip through it and see all the socks in one place. Many of the socks were gifted to people I don’t often see, so I enjoy seeing the socks in the book. It was fun to review my entire sock knitting career and to set some goals about what to do next.

    So… I guess my tip is: take a photo of everything you make before it goes away from you, and then you have the opportunity to create a very professional looking book of your work!

  4. My tip is for storage of circular needles. There are over 100 comments at this point, and I haven’t read through them all, so pardon me if I’m repeating a previous tip.

    I found at my local Walmart (although I’m told that BassPro Shop carries something similar) a blue zippered bag (looks like a cd holder) with heavy-duty zipperlock pockets inside–8-10 I think. These are designed for the fisherman to store lures in–comes complete with a bass on the front. Does that bother me–nope. Function is the name of the game. Each pocket is set aside for a given size needle. My 40in circs fit easily–often more than one needle per pocket. I actually bought two of the bags and took the sleeves/pockets out of one and put them all in one bag. Cost per bag when I got them last year $5. Beats the heck out of paying $20+ for holders designed just for knitters and serves the same function. I think the ones at BassPro may be a little more expensive, but you can buy refill pages for those.

    Hope someone finds this useful. I’m off to browse the other tips now.

  5. I have been wanting to learn to knit socks for some time and I saw that cute sock and now I really want to learn. The friend who said she’d teach me sent me this site and now I’m more inspired to learn than ever. As soon as i have the money saved I’m ordering some yarn and pattern for that sock – Do you have a way to order without a credit card or paypal acct.?? Otherwise, I’ll order through my friend!
    Thanks for your spot to encourage otherwise timid newbies~!!

  6. Wow… lots of great tips! I store most of my sock yarn in pretty wicker basket so I can see it — it’s gorgeous stuff, and having it in a basket close by my desk makes it easily fondled, too!

  7. Hooray for all things socky! I also do all the knit-notebook, binder with page protectors for patterns, photocopy a working schlep-everywhere copy of current pattern, multiple projects on the go so as to have both mindless and pay-attention knitting available, zip-pocket needle storage, plastic bin yarn storage and constantly fondle stash and dream stuff. To be much more organized than that is beyond my abilities.

    I have one technical tip and one love-your-yarn tip.
    Technical: when casting on, always add one more stitch than you need. When joining the round, pass the first cast on stitch over the last, snug it up and knit on. This makes the join stronger and tidier.
    Love your yarn: stop using mechanical ball-winders! Part of my joy in sock yarn is to spend time fondling it and my LYS folk know not to offer to wind my yarn for me. My husband turned the most beautiful tulipwood nostepinne for me and built an unbreakable swift (NOT one of those flimsy umbrella types). Yes, it takes a bit longer to wind lovely cylindrical yarn cakes, but it’s extra time spent with my yarn and the end result is gorgeous.

    Hmm. Obsessed? Defiknitely!

  8. I blogged about this not too long ago…I have several of the plastic sliding pencil cases to store my DPN’s in. I keep the sets held together with the little dodads that you make eyeglass chains with. I have a BagSmith Bag that I carry my knitting around in and to keep my socks nice I keep them in the Lock n’ Lock storage containers (4 fit very cozily in my bag). And something I’ve started just this year is to keep a written record of my (sock mostly) knitting. I bought a double ring index card thingy and when I start a new project I write the start date, pattern name, yarn, stitches, how many repeats of the pattern, how many stitches I pick up for the gussets, anything that I feel is relavent. It makes it so much easier when I make the second sock or if I put the sock down for a while and go on to something else.

  9. For anyone who is wondering…I should have done this earlier with my first post…

    To put your knitting patterns on you ipod:

    put all your files into notepad(sometimes this means using the copy and paste, so copy the website or where you got the file from so if you need it later you have it)
    go to the “my computer” area of your computer with your ipod plugged in. open the ipod folder.
    open the notes folder.
    Drag the notepad files into the notes folder.
    when you disconect your ipod, your knitting files should be on your ipod.

    That’s how you do it. there is an extra step if your file is a pdf.
    go to the files section of adobe. you can save it as text.
    that should convert it into word, or into a .txt file. the .txt file will work on your ipod. but always double check your file to make sure it is correct. i would qualify this as your working copy. any notes you make you will have to make in a regular notebook, but this makes it smaller for you to carry your pattern with you in your purse with your other knitting things. and who doesn’t listen to music while knitting?

  10. Several years ago, I bought a handy tool that stores my stitch markers, point protectors, short cable needles, etc. It is a small (3 x5) plastic box that I found at Kmart in the fishing tackle isle.

    It opens on both sides, one side has two lids with divided compartments underneath. Just the right size for the rubber ring markers and fancy beaded markers. The other side has one lid with a 5″ compartment (good for a short cable needle and point protectors. This side also has a narrow compartment that I use to store split ring markers.

    I store my yarn, sorted by content/weight in large plastic containers in my knitting room. I also have some yarns stored on shelves and sockyarn in baskets. I have patterns in plastic sleeves in notebooks – one notebook for each type of design ( sock patterns, baby patterns, lace patterns, cotton sweaters, adult wool sweaters, mittens/hats, etc.). My circs are hanging from a circular solution – I tied a needle gauge to the hanger, so I am sure to get the needles back in the correct slot.

  11. My first tip is: WRITE IT DOWN! I have a small spiral notebook that I write the specifics of each sock pattern tried. Yarn, size needles, # cast-on, # rows of each section, who it was for and did it fit?! ANY CHANGES especially. Because even if I think I’ll remember, I can’t.

    Second tip: DPN tip holders can be made from 2 (Bic@) pen caps & an elastic/rubber band. The caps even come all punched with a ready made hole. Cut an elastic and knot at one end, thread thru top of one cap and into the other cap; knot the ends several times so it won’t slip back thru the hole and it will hold a sock project on the go.

  12. My fav organizer (currently!) is my “spool circ” organizer ala pieknits. It’s nice, crafty and cheap and it keeps my circ cords straight. (pics on blog)

    I am also fond of a little handheld tackle box that I keep my notions and such in. It has nice little compartments to keep stuff separated and easy to find…..including my handmade stitch markers, which are also a fave of mine!

  13. No matter how great or cute my DPN holders (longer term storage holder) are- 1 always seems to slip out. I’ve solved this by using tiny rubber bands to band each set of 5 dpns together. Slip the banded DPN’s into the pretty fabric needle roll- voila- no more lost needles… although that doesn’t mean I don’t keep buying them!

  14. My tip is a quick and dirty circular needle solution– the 4×6 or 5×7 picture albums you can buy at the drug or dollar store for very inexpensively. The ones with stuff covers work best– the needles slip in the picture holders, and have several pages so you can keep everything in one place. They’re also inexpensive enough to mark on the plastic with a sharpie (for the size and length of needle inside), helping the organization cause :)

    All of that, and I’m still dreaming of a custom fancy pants one ;) Someday!

  15. For my finished projects, especially if I didn’t photgraph them but found the yarn later, I put a bit of the yarn around a tag from an office supply store (like a sale tag with a hole in it), marked on the tag what I made with it and put it in a clear, decorative jar. The jar is colorful & I get to do some time traveling when I pull them out & recall the knitting process or how the giftee acted when I gave them the finished object.

  16. I don’t use DPN’s. I do all circular knitting using Magic Loop (one long circ) method.

    I keep all my circular needles hanging from the Circular Solution(which hangs from a hook on the wall) with a needle gauge tucked in the top slot for easy access. In addition, I have each needle tagged with Needle ID Tags (Nancy’s Knit Knacks) , and I also have them inventoried in the KnitAble software program which I synchronize to my phone/PDA so I can carry the information with me everywhere.

  17. I will make copies of my charts so that I don’t mark up the original for each pair I make and mark of each row of the chart as I knit it up. When I’m done with one sock, I know how much I have to knit so that both socks are the same.

    Also, if a pattern is written out row by row (k1, p2, k1, yo, you get the drift), I will type the pattern into an Excel Spreadsheet and use that to mark off where I am. This is especially helpful when a pattern states to repeat these 6, 7, 10 rows 22 times. Works like a charm every time :-)

  18. I have a rather meager stash, but I have recently discovered something about it! My husband bought me my very own ballwinder and swift so I would stop bugging the LYS to use theirs for yarn I buy elsewhere. (They were really very nice about it, but I don’t want to take advantage of them!) I re-wound all my skeins and hanks, and I learned they actually take up less room by being in yarn “cakes.” I thought that was surprising since skeins and hanks are rather flat by comparison. I plan to keep all my stuff wound up from now on. Splurge and buy your own, crafters! (Plus, you are then viewed as “hard-core” by all the people who don’t have their own. Just ask my husband’s admin assisitant!)

  19. I’m sure this is a repeat but—whenever I acquire new sock yarn, it immediately goes into a gallon size ziplock bag with the pattern and the needles. Weird way my mind works…..of course if I want to, I can always change the pattern. Also I take the patterns and convert them to a 5X7 index card, row by row so I can have something smaller to carry with me. And finally, because I’m such an obsessed sockknitter and have the toe I love, I have printed several copies of the toe by number of stitches for the sock…..pattern, toe pattern, yarn, needles and I’m set!!!

  20. I keep my small WIPs (like socks) in individual ziplocks in a cute, floral print fabric-lined white chipwood laundry basket. In fact, the basket is so darn cute that it’s featured in this month’s Country LIving! It’s a Simple Shabby Chic basket from Target — I highly recommend it to anyone who likes Rachel Ashwell and Cath Kidston.

  21. I keep all my dp needles in a spinning thingy that is made for kitchen utensils. It is from the pampered chef i think and is called the tool turnabout. It sits on my shelf and I can just spin it to get to whichever ones I want and they stay all nice and organized in their own little sections. I keep other knitting goodies in it too :)

  22. There are a number very good tips here. I’m afraid that mine may not be that wonderful. But here goes:
    1) I have started putting my knitting needles in those school boxes (they come in several sizes) that you can buy at Walmart & many other stores in the back to school specials, sometimes starting as low as 88ยข.
    2) Some of my stash (non-sock) is stored in duffle bags that have come as promotional items.
    3) I bought a couple of cloth handbags for less than half price at the end of the summer season, that could easily be used to hold some knitting needles & other accessories.
    4) A point of reference: I would not store yarn in cardboard boxes, as a rule, because cardboard often contains a particular chemical antioxidant (I won’t bore you with the chemistry), that can cause things (especially light colors) to yellow because of an interaction with that chemical and the fabric or paper or whatever, after they have been stored in that dark place. The one exception that I might make is if the cardboard is special, acid-free cardboard that is specifically meant for long-term storage of valuables (it would be marked as such), it might contain a different chemical antioxidant, one that might not yellow your yarn.

    I am looking forward to placing my first order with The Loopy Ewe very soon!

  23. 123 comments so far? That must be a super awesome package (well, if I didn’t think it were, I probably wouldn’t be posting).

    My tip is all about shopping for yarn. When I go on a long yarn buying trip – like to say Stitches – I’ll bring all my old clothes; that is to say things I’m getting ready to throw out. Then, as I wear them one last time, I toss them off – thus leaving more room in my suitcase for extra yarn! By the time I get home, I’m wearing most of my remaining clothes, and I have a suitcase full of yarn!

  24. I love my yarn, truly, maddly, deeply, and I love to show it off. I find unique and interesting ways of displaying it, all of it, why hide a treasure. Wonderful glass bottles, baskets, huge painted tins, vases, even a large wine tub bedeck my knitting room. I find amazing containers all over the place, anything that can hold something can hold yarn. I have little balls of left over sock yarn in old fashioned sweetie jars – they look like jeweled sweets, almost edible. Don’t hide your yarn away,show it off, it will be a constant source of creative inspiration, reveal in it, I do.

  25. Wow! I’m late to the party.
    My tip is to keep your patterns found online on a usb thumb drive. I know when I have time at work, I get to surf the net for new patterns. I don’t always want to print it out right away, so I save it to my thumb drive. I have catagories for each type of project. This makes it easy to go back and find what I am looking for. It is also a good way to take the patterns from computer to computer. As long as you have a computer handy, you can always print out a new pattern; or save more.

  26. Hi Sheri!
    My favorite tip: When I’m preparing everything to begin a new project I write IN BIG BIG BIG LETTERS the parts I think are the most difficult. Usually I use my computer to do it, so it is neat and BIG. And always have on hand pencil and paper to write down how many rows, how many times, where to begin, etc.
    xoxox

  27. Sadly, I don’t get a lot of time to knit but I try to maximize it by always keeping a little tote bag (like my Loopy Ewe tote bag) ready so I can grab it when I do get a chance (like an unexpected car trip, or a phone call). I also keep three projects on the go, only one of which requires real concentration. I have one basic stocking stitch pattern which I can do while reading or when there’s no light available, one more complicated project which I can do while carrying on a conversation, and one which requires total concentration (this one tends to be on the needles for a while!). I find people appreciate basic stocking stitch socks as much as the more intricate patterns. They just love to get hand knitted socks of any sort.

  28. Wow, I have loved reading all the comments!

    I use plastic see through bins for my sock yarn and label them with the vendor, i.e. Yarn Pirate, Sweet Georgia, etc. and a number, Bin @1, etc. Then I take index cards and write down the bin number and and vendor and colorway of each yarn in that particular bin. Um, this has helped to keep me from buying two of the same yarn…. Rather than pulling down the bin from the selves to check and see if I have a particular colorway (too time consuming if Sheri has just put up new yarn and I want to be sure I don’t miss the colors that I want…) I just go to the box on my desk where I keep the index cards and know if I have that colorway already. I don’t even want to think about what this says about how much sock yarn I have stashed…. ;-)

  29. I was working on a complicated charted pattern for a scarf and kept losing my place… I always color in the different symbols on the chart to make it easier to read, but I still couldn’t keep track of the rows. I tried post-it notes, but they lost their “stick” after moving them a few times, and I don’t have a fancy chart-keeper with a magnet to hold my place. So I improvised…
    I cut a slit lenghtwise in a piece of construction paper and weaved my chart through it so the lower rows were visible while the upper rows were hidden. That way I could see what I had done without being confused by what was ahead. I used a paper clip to keep the pieces together when I set it aside. It really helped me to see how the pattern built upon the previous rows, and it made it easier to spot a mistake before I had gone too far. Hope this helps you too!

  30. I use various project bags and totes to organize WIPs and tools. One ginormous tote that is the mother ship for everything. I use a clear plastic pouch for gadgets and multiple small project bags for the socks, etc. in progress and keep anything specific to that project in its own little tote bag. Also 3 types of needle holders for DPNs, circs and straights stay in the mother ship. if it’s a big knitting day at a friends I take the mother ship. If I am going to watch a movie at my parents house I take a small project tote only.

    The one thing I have lots of are good crochet hooks bc they are invaluable and easily mislaid (like in the sofa cushions) so I often keep one in each project tote. Though there are dozens of excellent reference books out there (and I have a lot of them) my ‘go to’ book is “The Knitting Answer Book” by Margaret Radcliffe. It is small and portable and chock full of excellent info and it stays in the mother ship at all times.

  31. A ball winding tip if you have to do it the manual way without a winder. Use a medicine bottle as the core and start wrapping your yarn around it to make a nice center-pull ball. Before I got my winder I would do that and put a nice long end inside the bottle and close the cap so it wouldn’t move. When you are done winding just take out the bottle. Voila! (I heard this somewhere else so I can’t really take credit for it.)

  32. I saw on someone’s blog how they made a circular needle holder that was really cute. Basically, you take a bunch of crafty wooden thread spools (without the thread) and string them together vertically so that they were one on top of each other with the holes pointing out to the sides. Then you just thread you’re circular needles one into each spool and hand it up on your wall. It was pretty cool looking!

  33. Not sure you need another tip! How do you find the time to read all these? I keep a copy of my needle inventory and yarn inventory in my bag when I go to a yarn shop or show, so I know what I have and how much. I list the brand, color, gauge and amount. It takes up 6 pages! A women at Stitches Midwest thought it was a good idea, but almost died when I told her it was 6 pages single spaced. She said she didn’t feel so bad about her stash! I am one of the lucky ones to have a hobby room and my husband purchased Elfa bins at the Container store for me two years ago as an anniversary gift. I have the yarn organized by fiber content except for the sock yarn. It has its own section!

  34. I keep my basic sock pattern on 3×5 cards and place those cards in a snack size zip lock baggie. It doesn’t take up any room at all in my current project bag and the zip lock baggie keeps the cards fresh and readible. I also put the instructions for the Kitchener St on a 3×5 card in the baggie. I can never remember those instructions for closing those toes!

  35. I use plastic 3 lb. Folger’s coffee cans (after cleaning and deoderizing with a used fabric softener sheet) to store yarn for a project. I also have drilled a hole in the lid so the yarn can feed through when knitting. This also keeps the cats confused.

  36. The thought of having several different sizes of each kind of circular needle plus a set of dpns drove me crazy. I want to spend my money on yarn, not needles!

    So I taught myself the magic loop method, and from then to now, whenever I need a new size needle, I buy a set of either 32″ or 40″ circular addis. I can use them on socks and baby hats on up to sweaters, shawls, and even afghans. One set of circs will do it all!

    Bonus: It keeps kitties from leaving tooth prints (metal needles) AND it keeps me from losing or breaking one needle and thereby rendering the set useless.

  37. I’m a relatively new knitter, so I’m eagerly reading all these tips but I’m not sure if I have anything interesting to share. Maybe this: I’ve been using magnetic tape to mark my place on patterns – one piece on either side of the paper.

  38. Ooooo, I love reading all of these ideas. I keep my “next up” yarns in a big wooden bowl in the middle of my dining room table–I just love to look at the colorways. Weird, but I know you all understanding. I keep my WIPs in 3 different sock bags, as I always have at least that many going on. One is always a “plain sock” with no stitch pattern, which I can grab and go anytime I’ll be going somewhere and need mindless knitting while I chat, watch something, etc. I save the more challenging ones with stitch patterns for home where I’ll (hopefully) have fewer interruptions.

  39. My favorite knitting “tip” is actually a website: Flickr. It’s invaluable for inspiration and ideas. Anytime I want to know what a yarn will look like when knit up (either as a swatch or garment), I go to flickr and see what other knitters have been doing with that yarn.

    This really helps with socks especially. Yarns that look and feel great on the skein can knit up very oddly sometimes. But If I see from another knitter’s pics that the yarn has a tendency to pool in stockinette, I can use a stitch pattern that will obscure that. And if I want to knit a particular sock pattern, I can see how it will look knit up in different colorways of different yarns, before I take the plunge and actually start knitting.

    Check out the entries for “Pomatomus” for example. By looking at Flickr I realized that the best yarn to use for that sock pattern is either highly variegated or a subtle solid. Self-striping yarns obscure the delicacy of the pattern. And yarns with a slight sheen to them are especially beautiful.

  40. I thought I’d share this idea that I’ve implemented recently (as in – last month Ha!) but I think it will be quite useful. When I finish a project, I take a digital picture of it and import it into a Word document. I’ve made a basic template of information for each project to put under the picture: Name of yarn, yarn content, color, needles used, pattern used, wash/care instructions of yarn, amount of yarn used, and any notes I’d like to remember such as number of repeats, changes to implement next time, etc. I keep a hard copy in a notebook so I can look through it for ideas for new projects or to look up the wash/care instructions if I need to. Also – as someone else mentioned, this way I’ll be able to see if I’m giving my sister too many green socks or too many out of the same pattern. Also if someone says later “I loved those purple socks and would like some in pink” I’ll have all the information at my fingertips for what size needles, the pattern, the yarn and how much to get. Thank you everyone for your great ideas – I know I’m going to use some of them!

  41. Hmm, knitting tips. Ok, well this one I had heard about before and I started doing it and it has made my life so much better–it’s the binder of knitting patterns. I am the queen of searching for free patterns on the internet, and I wanted a nice way to organize them all. So, I have them in a binder, all in plastic sleeves and I have separators dividing them into categories (socks, baby clothes, scarves, etc). Now when I am looking for a new pattern I just go to the binder. I also keep a cheap plastic folder in my knitting bag to put the plastic-covered pattern in when I am taking a project somewhere so it stays in nice condition. When I’m done, the pattern goes back in the binder. I think it’s a good system!

  42. Hmmm. As a new sock knitter I dont have alot of tips to share but this one is fun and I haven’t seen it mentioned. I knit a teensy sock with remaining bits of yarn from the socks I’ve just knit. Takes me maybe half an hour. I use it on a card or a page with all the info from the sock i.e. needle size, gauge, notes, a picture of them, etc. This way, if i’m using a varigated or striped yarn I see how the yarn worked up colorwise. I also include the recipient’s name and comments if i’m giving the socks away, as well as anything that was happening family wise or world wise while I was knitting the sock. Also, if I should develop a hole in a sock and want to darn it, I can just unravel the mini sock. Kindof doubt I’ll do that cause they’re so cute but hey, could happen!

  43. Hi, I am new to knitting socks, so I trace the foot and keep very meticiulous notes while making the sock, how many stitches I cast on, how many rows, where I made decreases and increases, etc so that when I make the mate or more for socks for that person, hopefully they will all match :>). And then maybe someday I will make some that look as gorgeous as the ones that you have. Have a wonderful day and Knit On :>)

  44. I made an Access database to keep track of all of the socks I have knitted, with information on yarn used, pattern used, needles used, any modifications I’ve made to the pattern, etcetera. There’s even a spot for a picture of the completed socks! I just created this database, so it is still a work in progress. I think I’ll add a place for noting whether the sock was a gift, and to whom.

  45. I use the tab that you get on store-bought bread bags to wrap up the loose end of my cast-on yarn. I use the magic loop method for knitting socks and the bread tab is a visual reminder of where the end of my row is.

  46. Congratulations on your first anniversary! I’m new to your website and am an instant fan. My guess for the contest is 2,682.

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