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Home Sweet Home
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Home Sweet Home

Hello!! Kris and I got back safely from Alabama around 7pm last night. Long trip, but a good one – loads of together time (singing with the radio and the mp3 player is one of our favorite past times- especially since we both got some good CDs for Christmas!) and loads of knitting time.

I have about a million things to share, so I am not sure where to start… but I know what gets everyone excited – finished knits! (First 2006 FO)

Diagonal Rib Socks
Pattern: Free online pattern Diagonal Fixation
Yarn: Cascade Fixation in colorway 5104
Needles: Takumi Clover Bamboo size 3
Notes: This pattern called for two more repeats of the diagonal rib, but I was afraid I would run out of yarn, so I cut it a little short. I have big feet (size 10) but there was plenty of yarn left, I could have done more.

I discontinued the patterning on the foot, opting for simple stockinette instead- quicker and easier for me, and no chart to follow! I do like the patterning on the cuff. Can you spot the difference in the picture above? I am not sure how I did not notice it before (well, I knit sock 1 in October and did not touch the other till the end of December – that could have something to do with it…) One diagonal rib leans to the left, and the other leans to the right. I must have been knitting it inside out the first time. This is not a big deal to me – they look very similar side by side.

This was my first short row heel, and honestly, I did not like it too much. I am willing to give it another try, but I am leaning towards heel flaps as my “heel of choice”.

About the yarn: As stated before, this Cascade Fixation takes some “getting used to” time. The cotton and elastic blend makes a very stretchy fabric, and this stretch can work against you as it knits up. It is important to knit the sock without stretching the yarn – it will cause puckering and uneveness in the fabric, and may mess up your gauge. This is a bulkier sock yarn, and provides a warm sock when complete. The size 3 needles used for this sock were not a perfect match, however. Next time I work with Fixation, I will go down to US 2s, or even 1s to avoid the “holeyness”. The yardage does not look like much in the little ball, but two balls is sufficient for small needles and large feet!

…These were one pair of Socktoberfest socks… I still have to work on the other sock (Dublin Bay #2) and then Socktoberfest will officially be over at LollyKnitting Around.

We had such a nice time in Alabama. It was a long drive down there, but it was completely worth it. We stayed with my aunt and uncle in northern Alabama (my dad’s brother and his wife) and visited several times with my grandfather who lives nearby. My aunt and uncle built a cabin near the Bankhead National Forest a few years ago, and it is beautiful to visit. It is remote, relaxing, and a million miles from the hectic life of metro DC.

My uncle keeps mules: this is Major (left) and Emily (right) at feeding time.

As Kris, my uncle, and my cousin busied themselves outside, my aunt and I stayed inside and knit away.

She has been knitting off and on for years, and recently got back into it big time. She is making some lovely scarves! This is her scrap scarf, with some leftovers from other projects, and some odds and ends she inherited and collected at the thrift shops. She is also working on a great striped scarf in Auburn University colors (blue and orange) for my cousin who is a grad student there. I showed her how to use circular needles while I was there, so she may be the hat queen next!

Bargain hunting is second nature to my family, we love us some thrift shops and flea markets! I have to share with you my auntie’s FIND OF THE CENTURY.

A few months back, I get a phone call from my aunt telling me about her big find. On this trip, I got to see it…

She found a whopping 47 balls of Anny Blatt angora and mohair – filled to the brim in a large comforter bag at the Goodwill thrift shop. The price? $3. Three dollars for yarn that would easily be appraised at over $200 – can you believe it?

The pictures don’t show all of it, just a sample – loads of beautiful yarn, lovely heathery angora that feels like feathers, and mohair/wool mix that is light and airy. I just shook my head in disbelief. What a find! She is not sure what to make with all of it yet, so if you have any ideas, let me know and I will pass them on to her!

I have too much to say, and too little time! So another blog entry will be on the way soon: more family visits, MY thrift store finds, and progress on Kris’s raglan zipper cardigan coming right up!

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42 Responses

  1. stinkerbell


    And for the record Lolly… here in France where it is cheaper…
    that bag of 47 would value at a minimum of 493 EUR! that at current exchange rates is about 597 USD!!!

    someone made off with the bank- hope she knits it up pretty :)

  2. kimberly

    Hey, those socks look great going both different ways. You shouldn’t have said anything, it doesn’t look like a mistake, rather a work of symmetrical art.
    Oh that yarn!!! Why don’t we have people giving yarn like that away around here!?

  3. Teresa

    Welcome back-sounds like you had a lovely trip!

    The yarn, the price, the amount….my head is spinning. What a find, does she know what she is going to knit with it? Looks like a gorgeous color, and sooooo soft!!


  4. Agnes

    Yay! No more lonely sock! I love Fixation … the socks made from them are comfortable.
    How come I never see such good stuff in the Goodwill Store here? Your aunt certainly has got an enormously good deal!

  5. Estee

    Welcome back!! I love car sing-a-longs, they’re the best bit of the long ride.

    What a great find. $3. I’ll close my mouth now. I’m looking forward to hearing about your thrift store finds.

  6. Folkcat

    Welcome back! So glad you had a good time.

    Must be something in the air or the water – this is the second amazing thrift store yarn find I’ve heard about today. A friend who lives in Arizona in the winter e-mailed me that a local elderly yarn shop owner near her had apparently died, and her husband donated all the remaining stock to the thrift store. Bags of a dozen skeins of things like silk-linen blends for $19!

    Maybe I should start haunting my local thrift stores…

  7. Rise

    Good to have you back! Isn’t Bankhead beautiful? I never find good yarn in the thrift stores around here. When I do run across any it’s usually acrylic.

  8. Ragan

    Wow, what a GREAT thrift store find!!! I cannot believe it! And…those are great socks! Can’t wait to see the pictures of the sweater.

  9. heather

    Wow…love the socks! They look so cute!

    Holy moley! WOW, look at that haul! Unbelievable.

  10. Amy

    I’m glad you made it back safe and sound. Your socks look wonderful. Wear them with pride.


  11. anne

    Glad you had a good trip. I too have had quite a few car-trip singalongs lately — ready to be off the highways for awhile. Congratulations on the finished socks, too.

  12. Bethe

    Sounds like you had a great time, the socks look very comfy, and WOW – what a find your aunt got on that Anny Blatt!

    I also finally finihsed a pair of Socktoberfest Socks and I share your opinion of short row heels, too!

    Happy New Year!

  13. Robin

    Love the socks. Cascade is a pain to knit with, but they are my favorite to wear. I’m so jealous of the yarn find! SWEET!

  14. Jaimi

    Was this your first short-row heel? If so, do one in a yarn other than Fixation before you decide you dislike them. My first was in Fixation too, and I hated hated HATED that one. But once I did one in a regular sock yarn, I liked it much better.

  15. Leah

    Great socks, Lolly. I have some Fixation in stash, so I may have to give those socks a whirl!

    And the yarn find of the century? OMG!!!

  16. Wanda

    Congrats on finishing the pair of socks! Now to finish the other Dublin Bay socks. That was a great find of yarn at the Goodwill Store. That literally made me catch my breath. What a deal! Yumm, angora!

  17. caro

    Happy New Year Lauren!

  18. blossom

    i can’t believe the anny blatt yarn price!! i wonder what your aunt is going to make out of that!

    cute socks. i always wonder how the stretchy yarn would work, yours turned out quite nicely.

  19. francoise

    Looks like you had a good time away and it is nice to have you back. Those socks are lovely Lolly.

  20. Rebekah

    I’m about peeing my pants I’m so freaking jealous! $3! I thought you meant $3 a ball, and I thought oh that’s not that big of deal, then I reread and realized $3 for it all! Good grief. I have to start goign to flea markets and more thrift stores again. I’m a good clearance shopper, but don’t make it to thrift stores often.

  21. kelly

    Looks like you had a great weekend!

    Cute socks!

  22. jess

    welcome home…. what a great bargain hunte she is! Lovely lot of yarn.

    And cute socks….

  23. Cindy

    OK, I live in Huntsville AL, so I need to find out which city this thrift shop is in. Those socks look heavenly!

  24. katie

    $3! I hear tales of thrift store bargans, but I’ve never found any secondhand yarn that wasn’t Red Heart. I couldn’t even find any knitting books at the used book store last weekend. :(

  25. Mindy

    Wow! 47 at $3! Again I say Wow! I really like the Fixation socks; I never would have noticed your wee mistake. I just need to finish the toe of one sock and my Socktoberfest socks are complete.

  26. Sarah

    Happy New Year! I am always curious about thrift-store finds. I never find yarn, just dirty pots and pans. What did you find???

    My father did love his scarf, I don’t think he even noticed it was black. Just that I made it, so sweet.

  27. MJ

    Holy cow, go Auntie! A shawl, of course. Or two. FBS would be lovely. A nice comfy but loose sweater. A cardi. If she wants to cut down on the angora fluffiness, pair it with another (100% wool) yarn. What a find!

    Happy new year, Lauren!

  28. elisa

    welcome home, doll!

    oh – and 47 balls for $3? that’s just nuts!

  29. Carrie

    Oh my gosh, that is bargain hunting at it’s finest!

  30. Erin

    Don’t give up on that short row heel. It might have seemed more difficult because of the yarn you were using. I absolutely love the short row heel so I suppose I’m biased, but I do think it fits your foot better.

  31. terby

    Welcome back Lolly! I like the socks, and thanks for the notes on using Fixation. I’ve wondered about knitting with it. Does it feel fairly smooth on your feet? I’m with you on the heel flap. Short rows and I are not good friends.

  32. Melissa

    Wow – that’s an amazing deal on the yarn! Glad you had a nice trip!

  33. Amy

    Nice socks! As for the yarn, $3 a ball would have been a good deal, but $3 for the lot? Craziness. I would have fainted on the spot. Glad you had a good time!

  34. Mona

    Liebe Lolly,

    erst einmal: Frohes neues Jahr!!

    Ich freue mich, daß Dir der Inhalt des Päckchens gefallen hat – I just couldn’t resist the pomegranate…

    I am glad you had a good time in Alabama – the 3 dollar bag of yarn is a hoot! I have never had much lock in a thriftstore, maybe that’s in my future? I like your socks, but I must confess that I have a love/hate relation with that yarn, love the fact that it’s cotton, hate the stretch while knitting!


  35. puppymomma

    Welcome home! We missed you! Maybe you can come knit with us on Sunday in Towson?

  36. Jenna

    Oh, I love love love the colors of that sock, I hope you can’t see the difference between them when they’re on. Since they’re cotton, are they good summer socks or are they too thick? I hope yout aunt passed some of that yarn on to you, she has plenty to spare! Glad you’re back, hope to see you soon.

  37. Jennifer

    Holy Toledo!! 47 balls of Anny Blatt for 3 dollars? I’m surprised she didn’t faint dead away in the store!

  38. Casey

    Your socks look great- the color is so pretty! I’m so jealous of your aunt’s find! ALl I ever see at the thift stores here is acrylic stuff.

  39. eyeleen

    Welcome back! your socks looks lovely.

    I’m still stunned by your Aunt’s $3 bag of yarn, OMG!! A truly awesome find.

  40. catherinekerth

    I love the progress your making on kris’s sweater… the socks are wonderful too… so all being said would you recommend fixation to people for heavier socks? thanks for the tips :) Glad ya’ll had a safe trip to alabama… that anny blatt is to dye for, why can’t we find bargins like that more often :) how she do on the circs? if you get pics of her hat be sure to blog them!

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