Monday, December 31, 2007

Fixing the Firestarter, vers. 74234589

Fixing the Firestarter, vers. 74234589
Originally uploaded by elemmaciltur

WARNING: Do NOT read the entry if you're easily offended by the F-word....


After I fucked up my Mystic Waters (still too painful to even take a photo) last week, I took time off knitting anything more complicated than a Koolhaas until yesterday when I decided to pick up my Firestarter again and knit on it. I left it off when I finished the gusset increase. I needed to make the heel extension and turn the heel and make the heel-flap then it should be smooth sailing from there.


I promptly dropped some stitches while picking up the wraps from the heel-turn. I put it away, drank a glass of Port and ate some chocolate. When the alcohol was gone, I ripped it back out (thank goodness I put in a lifeline), picked up the stitches with difficulty and re-started the last 6 rows of gusset increase and then re-knit the heel extension and turned the heel successfully.

That was 3 a.m. this morning.

Now that I picked it up and was going along the heel flap carefully, I managed to dropped a fucking stitch where I was supposed to be picking up the gusset stitches together (p2tog and then turn the work at the gusset). Of course, things had to run and I couldn't fix it (I don't even know how to explain it...the p2tog's from 3 rows below came undone and it's just a fucking mess)....

...yeah, I was holding the scissors against the whole damned thing already.

I counted to 50 (yes, it took that much) and frogged it back to when I started the heel extension (I had already pulled out the lifeline last night before going to bed - yeah, spank me) and have carefully picked up the stitches...first with the knitting needle and now I just threaded the waste-yarn through.

I'm going to call it a day...because I can't deal with this freaking thing right now...lest I might have to say: "R.I.P., dear Firestarter".....and then really set fire to it.

(Sorry about the F-words here, but you can guess how frustrated I am right now.)

Friday, December 28, 2007

Punkin Head Firestarters

Hi all! I'm finally getting around to posting pics of my finished Firestarters:

These were fun to knit and it was lovely to see all of your finished Firestarters for inspiration. More pics and info can be found here. Thanks! Tiennie

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Whew, finally a chance to post!

I finished the sock for my HSS pal a couple weeks ago -- I love how it came out! And although I was stressed that I couldn't finish one for myself first (in case I made any mistakes, etc), it's actually better that I didn't -- because now I can see what mods I want to make to my own pair. More about that later, though - here's the pic of the one I finished in STR Metamorphic:
12-16-07037 copy

I hope she loves it as much as I do!

Happy New Year, all!

Saturday, December 8, 2007


Hello everyone,
I'm glad to have join this great KAL, I had a look on your knitted Firestarters, and I wanted to knit them as well, so here I am, just the toe, I will work on it this week, and I will show you how it goes, the yarn is some regia socks yarn (I lost the label, hum in fact put it in the bin without consideration shame on me).
Have a great knitting time.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

My second pair is done, too!

I'm definitely still addicted to this pattern even though this colorway doesn't really do it for me.


I've posted a wrap up on my blog, two knits of ivory.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

My second pair are done!

I love how my Wollmeise Rhabarber knits up. It feels divine.

The only problem I had this time around is that I seemed to get some laddering when I picked up the gusset stitches (both on the p2tog & k2tbl sides) and I don't know why. I didn't have this issue with my STR medium weight pair.

usual details:
Judy's magic cast on
72 st count
extra cable repeat in the foot
size 2.25 & 2.50 mm (US 1 & "1.5") Knitpick circulars
But I'm not done w/the Firestarter! I also picked up Yarnissima's adorable XS Firestarter kit to make at least 1 mini-Firestarter ornament. The only question now is when I'll get to it.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Finally some socks to show for.

I've been slowly working away on these socks. I have to frog the first one because it's a tad to lose and long and well, the second one I made a booboo and did not pay attention to the heel flap pattern, but with some mods it fits well so I'm just gonna stick with the mistakes. So these will be my semi-firestarters. hehhe :)

Firestarter heel

Firestarter Mods
I'm sticking to it because I don't think I can take anymore frogging.

firestarter comparison
Here the two are hanging out and the left one is saying goodbye to the right one. hehe

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Fiery Rhubarb

One down, one to go.

It seems like the gusset took forever for me. Plus I kept making mistakes with the purl increases (wrong round, wrong side) and had to keep fixing them.

But it's worth it! I love how the Wollmeise feels knitted up. Love it.

Deets so far:
Wollmeise sockenwolle in Rharbarber
72 st count
size 2.25 & 2.50 mm KP circs
Judy's magic cast on for the toes
1 extra cable repeat for the foot
EZ sewn bind off at the cuff

(eta: reloaded the pics)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Started...or not...

Well, I thought I had a good start on my HSS (Harvest Sock Swap) partner's sock, but if you look at the toe...well...I'll be singin' down by the pond tonight. I decided to do the figure 8 cast-on, but neglected to read all the directions. Like the part about using the working and tail yarn. Ah well, at least you can see how great the colors are in this yarn! It's Trekking XXL in color 146. I'll definitely be buying some of this for myself at a later date (although I must admit I don't love the fuzzy look).


Hello. My name is Morticcia and it's been 3 days since I started my second pair of Firestarters.


I'm addicted. What can I say for myself? The yarn is Madelinetosh Sock in the Viola's colorway.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

What the heck?

I've finished my first sock, but somehow I'm now having a memory lapse. When I rearrange the stitches after finishing the toe, it seems like the beginning of the round will end up being in the center of one of the cables. This was not the case with my first sock. What the heck?! Can someone help me? Here's what I'm doing:

I knit to the first marker, then transfer these 4 stitches to the foot sole needle. Then knit throught to the end of the upper foot needle. Then I begin the foot sole needle, transfer the 4 stitches to the upper foot needle, and knit to the end. But when I get to the end of the foot sole needle, there are those 4 pesky stitches sitting there that have already been knitted from the upper foot needle. If I knit them again, things will be kind of askew in my instep, right? Unless the beginning of the round is in the center of the cable pattern?

Any help would be greatly appreciated, since I'm pretty stumped right now. :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

I'm a Firestarter baby!

After much ado, I present my finished Firestarters!



Once I mucked my way through the numerous difficulties I had with the pattern's syntax and finished the first sock, the second was a breeze to knit up! I have a full wrap up, including pattern changes to account for the medium weight yarn and a smaller foot size, on my blog.

Thanks Peaknit for starting the KAL and thanks to KAL members for the invaluable help I received in getting through the pattern!

Update & quick favor?

I'll probably post a pic tonight, but I started a second Firestarter for my Harvest Sock Swap Pal -- I'm about done with the toe -- I'm using the magic 8 cast on & like it a lot more than the shortrow.
Now about the favor, lol. I need a good color copy of the pattern for my pal & my printer is on the blink. I would be forever grateful (and would, of course, paypal a few dollars) to anyone who could print off a copy & mail it to me... my email is my username at yahoo. Thanks so much!!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

I´m finished

My first pair of firestarter Socks are done and I´m very satisfied. More than I ever thought. They are a little too big for me and first I want to give them away, but no no, now I want to keep them for my self. Oh my god I just love them and I´m sure I will knit more pairs of Firestarter.

Friday, November 2, 2007


firestarter3I'm just about to start the gusset! Of course, I've been just about to start the gusset for days now, I keep getting sidetracked by trivial nonsense like my children and my job. Oh, and other knitting projects.

But here's what I've got so far. Interesting: I didn't actually see the striping pattern until I saw this photo. Hmm...

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Second attempt

I ended up ripping my first attempt in STR farmhouse. I had finished the instep, but the striping of the yarn really obscured the cables. I thought, 'if I'm gonna spend time on these cables, they might as well be seen,' right?! So, my second attempt is in Schoeller+Stahl. Not happy with the yarn itself at all, but I do like how the more subtle coloring shows off the pattern: Like many of you, I decided on the magic cast-on instead of the provisional. I think it makes the toe look much neater.

Next to my first attempt, this one looks kind of boring. But they're for my sister, and she prefers more pastel-y colorways, anyway. Happy Firestarter-knitting!

Thursday, October 25, 2007


I´m not satisfied. The yarn is wrong, and they are way too big for my foot. Well they are what they are and maybe I know a bigfoot;-) who would like a pair of socks. I will finished these pair and then I´ll start on a new pair with only 4 repeats of the chart. I love the pattern and it´s not quit the challenge that I thougt of.
Happy knitting to you all.

Fire Started!

multi blue louet
Originally uploaded by wearespiraling
I don't have a photo of my progress because I'm away on business and can't upload any, but this is the beautiful yarn I've chosen. It's Louet Merino Sport Weight in Blue Multi, whch is three plies of different shades of blue. Gorgeous.

I'm in my second repeat, after realising as I finished the first that I was reading the chart from L to R. Grrr...

Anyway, I was wondering whether anyone else had knit these in Sport Weight and could tell me how long the gusset on their sock ended up? Your stitch & row guages would be helpful, too.



new too!

Hi all! Happy to be here! I'm knitting my Firestarters in Wollmeise's Campari Orange. I have the toes done, and am very pleased with how they're looking so far. I love Yarnissima's patterns, and I'm doing a little impatient dance while I wait for the Digitessa pattern to come out.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Hi everyone, I´m so excited to join this KAL.
I´m Danish and not a good writer in english, but I´ll try.
I have started my first sock. I´m using 2.5 dpn. Circular needle is just not me;-)
The yarn I use is some cheep yarn I bought in a supermarket. For the next pair of Firestarters I will buy some better yarn.
My photo is really bad and the sock is sitting on my hand instead of my foot!

Wow! Going strong!

We have had 5 more takers in the last 24 hours - way to get people curious! It's so exciting to see what people are coming up with. I still have another one to knit up - and then I got my Fratello kit - I'm a wollmeise-yarnissima-aholic, I may need a sponsor. Any takers? *giggle*

I am a mean, mean woman. So shoot me! Please!

I am a mean, mean woman because I feel so much better when I read of other people having problems with this pattern. Isn't that awful? I can't help myself.

Because I am a five year old trapped in a nearly 40 year old woman's body I've been begrudging the pattern and the beautiful yarn I've been using on this project so much so it took me over a week to do what needed to be done and that is to wipe the slate clean and begin again.

So goodbye Lorna's Laces Gold Hill.


Hello Socks That Rock Jonagold!


The STR is medium weight so I have fudged the numbers. I CO 24 stitches, instead of 30. I'm hoping that both numbers being divisible by three and six will help me fudge the heel and leg portions of the pattern.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Hi - Sheepish grin, nervous introduction

I have a confession to make.

I have been fighting with my firestarter

It's been calling my name for quite some time and I have cast on (and frogged) more times than I can remember.

I started with this yarn - and got so confused with the cable directions. I asked the wonderful Designer and she helped me a lot - but for some reason the mental blank stayed. I now think it was the length of the arrows leading up into the next box that was confusing me. I mean, I watched you all from afar - posting your progress - and kept thinking that if I had tackled the Bayerische Sock then cables shouldn't confuse me so much.

I think that written instructions really helped click it in but my confusion came from which direction the stitches ended up. I don't even know if this makes sense to you at all.

So - after swapping yarns again I am taking a little break for a couple of days....then I will pick it up again.

But I will still be checking in on you'all.

Not much to show

Firestarter: Progress
Originally uploaded by elemmaciltur

Start: 23rd September 2007, frogged and restarted 03rd October 2007
Finish: WIP
Yarn: Rohrspatz & Wollmeise Sockenwolle, colourway "Bob"
Needle: 2.5 mm / 80 cm Addi Turbos
Pattern: Firestarter by Yarnissima via The Loopy Ewe
Modifications: I need to modify the stitches to make it fit my foot. 72 stitches instead of the 60 stitches from the pattern and one extra cable repeat before the gusset increase.

So, here's my meagre progress on my Firestarter. I didn't get too far because I was hell bent on finishing my Swallowtail. Not that the Firestarter's going to get any faster because Swallowtail is finished, since I still have other stuff on the needles that I want to get off first.

Anyhow, I like the way my Firestarter is looking. And hanging out with Bockstark Knits had rubbed off the tight-knit on me again....and I have to say that I really like how the fabric's feeling knitted so tight like this.

Now I'm just praying that I won't have problems with the heel turn because I modified the stitch count.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Conflicted; size issues

Quick post, we're off to the park soon (weird fall weather here in Michigan). I'm at about 17 sts. in my gusset (supposed to go to 22 or 23, I think) and it looks like I'm already at my heel. I've never done toe-up, so I don't know how the heel is going to be. It also feels a bit loose across the top of my instep (crease of my ankle, whassat called? lol). Should I keep plugging away with the next 6 or so rows, or try to mod it somehow? I have shrimpy size 5 feet... TIA!

Monday, October 15, 2007

I decided to finish

Since I'm planning to make a second pair in my Wollmeise Rhabarber, I decided to finish my STR medium weight mill end pair. I figured that if I'm going to accept the funky things my Fleece Artist Sea Wool is doing on my other pair of socks-in-progress, I should accept all the color pattern changes going on in the leg section of my Firestarters.

Thank you Fabienne and the rest of the KAL knitters for your insight into this lovely pattern.

Pattern Dummy in the House! Please Help!

I'v gotten to the end of the "Turning The Heel" section and I am confused. (Again!) Would someone please help me get beyond where "On row 13(RS), work 1 round as follows" ends?

I think I have just finished row 18 of the heel. I have followed the directions from Row 13 five times. When I turned my work to do row 18 I had three wrapped stitches on right hand of the needle, the 1 wrapped stitch I just picked up and knit before turning my work. I then purl 14 "live" stitches and then purl the first of four remaining wrapped stitches. On my left hand needle I still have three wrapped stitches when the directions say:

Work next 4 stitches, p18 the gusset, work 30 sts, p18 the other gusset, work 4 sts, pick up the remaining 6 wrapped stitches.

WTF? Is there anyone who can comprehend my confusion and give me some kind of hint? What unwritten knitting concept(s) am I missing?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Slow going...

But it's my own fault. I have to many other WIP and I haven't focused my attention on the Firestarters. It's kind of a good thing that these are for my friend and she loves them because if they were for me I would have stopped after the ankle to change yarns. I love the yarn that I am using and the pattern I just don't really like the pooling around the ankle. I will be knitting these again but I will most likely be using Woolmeise yarn. Now I just need to order some, or take a 2.5 hour drive down to her shop. (I live in Germany) Here is a picture of the first sock done.
Flipped over
Hope that everyone is having a great weekend. Happy Knitting!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

just got here

Hello everyone!

So, I was not sure if I would be able to tackle the Yarnissima's lovely Firestarter pattern because of my avoidance of twisted stitches and cables, but here I am. ;)


This is the first sock and I am so happy with how it is working out. I should have left off one of the cable medallion repeats in order to fit me a bit better, but this pair might just be a gift for my sis, who has slightly bigger feet than I do.

The yarn is from Lime and Violet 100% merino in the Sideshow edition - Jane the Giantess. I love how it is working with the pattern, even if it is a bit thinner than the recommended STR and Wollmeise.

(Thanks for the invite, Fabz. :)



Friday, October 12, 2007

finished firestarters

thank you all for the support and encouragement, nothing like a lively kal to help speed things along!

yarn: posh yarn lucia 4 ply in colorway "rainbow"
needles: 2.5mm addi turbo circular, magic loop style
mods: cast on with magic cast on 2x16 stitches, increased every other row up to 60 stitches, knit an extra full cable pattern repeat in the foot before the gusset, did not size up needles for calf shaping, only knit 11 rows after pattern at the top.
thoughts: lovely pattern, very challenging for me in the twisted traveling stitch department, but the upside is that now i can knit other yarnissima patterns and also use the books of german patterns i have with the same cable chart notation.

happy socktober,

Thursday, October 11, 2007

heel flap the second

i am a few rows away from finishing the heel flap on the second sock. i decided not to frog back to the toe because the sock sizes are almost identical, i only added one row at the very beginning of the cable repeat after the toe. so yes, they aren't perfect but they will be gift socks since this colorway is not really something i would wear often. speaking of which, the last six pairs of socks i have knit have not been for me. i think the next pair i cast on after these will be thelonious socks for me.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

one done!


I cast off my first Firestarter today - love it. I feel like it could have been a teeny tiny bit more roomy, my first sock ever tried on anything less than a #2, but the #2 seemed a bit large - so I am so pleased. I love the cables and the "action" gusset! I have a tiny hole above the guseet - kind of like the dreaded hole when picking up stitches on the top down model. Any helpful hints for that? I am not ripping out a stitch, because I am so in love, but maybe I could avoid this next time?

I just ordered Yarnissima's Fratello kit today - more Wollmeise, more wonderful gusset architecture. I am so weak.


Basic question about the bind off

I forgot to ask in my previous post, but when you bind off with the yarn doubled per the pattern, do you go up in needle size? 2 needles sizes?

I've never done this type of bind off before (I usually do the EZ sewn bind off), so I'd like to give it a try.


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

There and Back Again

Well, I was going along really well on my sock.

Foot? check.
Heel turn? Check.
Heel Flap? Check-er.
Gusset? Check-er-oo.
Join in the round and start leg? Confusing, but checkerino.

Try sock on.

Foot too small. Well, just barely, but can't deny it. It is too small.


Good decision though. I went back to the foot, somehow managed to get the stitch pattern right and added one more repeat of the cable. Perfect! I am now back at the start of the leg and now just need to set aside some time to knit!

Also at an impasse

Whinging in this blog post.

In the meantime, I've got a couple other in-progress socks I need to finish and some Wollmeise swatching to do.

Moving right, maybe?

Last week I picked up this project again. I left my third-try toe on 2.25 mm dpns off to the side to try a new sock on size 2.75 mm dpns. The single stitch cables seemed especially difficult on this toe up pattern for me and I am not new to cable patterns at all. I was hoping it would be easier with a less tight knit.

I'm not sure if I answered that question because as soon as I had the toe done I switched to a 2 circular needle style by Cat Bordhi which I found on youtube. (She also has a great youtube tutorial on hiding wrap stitches which I may test out on my second sock. Anyone interested should look here.)

I got up to the beginning of the gusset last week and then put it down again.


Now I'm thinking the sock is too loose, but I'm gonna finish it before making that decision. It's not my best work but I'm committed to completing finishing this KAL with a decent pair of socks.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Darn it!

Is that a single or double twist within each circle? I swear my children are sucking all the brain cells I have...

20th Time is the Charm

Well, first off a big thanks to peaknits for starting up this KAL, but boy did she pick a tough sock. However all my struggles will totally be worth it, because I really like how it's turning out.
I really did the toe about 20 times and after a short row tutorial I finally got going. I'm using STR in Purple Rain, and I was a bit worried that it would hide the cables, but I think you can see them fairly well.

Firestarter, the horror

Firestarter: Horror
Originally uploaded by elemmaciltur

Last Friday, when I was knitting the Firestarter, I was in denial. I noticed that something was wrong....but kept knitting. Two rows further, I saw that I twisted the middle cable too early. I told myself that I could live with it. Seven rows further, I decided that I could not and put it away for a while.

This evening I thought that I would be able to fix it by just dropping down the cable stitches and knit them back up again....

....yeah, not fun at all. I picked up about two rows and gave up on it. The combination of braiding/cabling with the twisted stitches aren't the easiest to fix...especially not with a circular dangling down and trying to knit with two DPNs in a very confined space with small strands of yarns going everywhere.

I ended up just pulling out all the needles and frogged back...and painfully picked up and knit all the stitches again.

But alas, I picked up the stitches wrong again. And this time I decided that I definitely can live with it. Because I know that if I have to rip this back again, the sock will definitely be sent into the same pile my Vinnland's living in right now.

Just for an FYI, I frogged this sock totally once already and re-knit the whole thing. So, this is my second time knitting it up.

Sunday, October 7, 2007


I stopped talking and started my sock! After all the hemming & hawing I decided to go with my "Puck's Mischief" STR. I had considered the "Metamorphic," but I'm really liking the more muted/tone-on-tone colorways for this sock; plus I didn't feel like hand-winding 360 yards into a center pull ball without even a swift to aid the process.

I am so happy with this!! The pattern does seem to be written a little strangely at times, though. It might just be me (goodness knows I almost never follow patterns), but it really seems like you have to reread a few times & figure stuff out. I suspect I tossed an extra row in before I began the first row of the chart, but I don't think it will make much difference, and I noted it on my pattern so I would remember. I also noted where I increased from 29 to 30.

I think I'm going to crank this out asap, and if everything goes well, make one out of the Trekking for my Harvest pal after all. I'm still a little bit conflicted, but after looking at the pattern more, I realize that my biggest worry (altering it to fit her foot) is unfounded -- it's written for her shoe size. We shall see; I don't actually have to finish that sock until December! I doubt I'll take anywhere near that long to decide & knit, though. I'm too excited!

Friday, October 5, 2007

Take 2!

I frogged my first attempt on size 2.75 mm needles using the original 60 st count and casted my STR medium weight back on size 3.00 mm needles using a 54 st count. No fat pooling. I can see my twisted stitches so much better.

Once I got used to the chart notation, I could cruise through the travelling stitches. (I will however note that I've gone through the experience of knitting Cookie A's Twisted Flower pattern so a sock pattern that only has one chart can seem comparatively easy. )

Keeping my fingers crossed that I didn't just jinx myself just now and that when I get to the gusset that it all works out, especially since I don't have the same row gauge.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Ready, set...GUSSET!

I made it, I made it through those traveling stitches. It all started making sense. Now for the gusset - I am so stoked.


I am so amazed by everyone's progress. I have enjoyed the challenge of this pattern and can't wait to continue forward. I think I could almost watch TV and knit the guesset after that interesting chart - we'll see. My picture is a little wonky - I think because of the way I rearranged the stitches to center the charted rows, so I can't really wiggle it on my foot for size, since my foot is not square:) But it seems like it is sizing up nicely and I am happier with this more solid yarn to capitalize on the design. Knit on!

Finally some progress

Firestarter: Progress
Originally uploaded by elemmaciltur

Yeah...well, I could have got further than this, but this is how far I got.

You see, I've been spinning a lot more and knitting on the Swallowtail Shawl. Last night, I decided to pick up the Firestarter and promptly I made a mistake in the second repetition of the cabling, which I noticed by the time I finished the third repeat.

Of course, I could have just frogged back to the mistake and fix it but for some reasons, I wasn't happy with the looser gauge at the toe, so I frogged the whole sock last night and re-started. I knit it back today to where it was last night....but now the drop spindle is calling to me again. :-p

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


So I cast on my Firestarter using my Socks that Rock (STR) mill end (the thought now is that it's the Marbles colorway). The short row toe is okay, but it did remind me why I don't like them as my ends look messy. Next time I'm going back to my prefered Judy's Magic Cast On. (Also using 2 circs 'cause I didn't have a 2.75 mm circular that was long enough.)

Unfortunately, this colorway is starting to do that fat striping thing that can happen with STR. Normally I wouldn't mind, but I think it's obscuring the cable twists.

I guess I can call this a swatch and frog. My only problem now is that I'll have to swatch some other sock yarns first. Maybe a more semi-solid medium weight STR (but I don't want to use the colors I do have)? Dream in Color Smooshy? My Wollmeise, but then, which one? The only 2 that I think I'd want to try are Rhabarber and Raku-Regenbogen.

Sigh. Back to the drawing board.

I've finally started!

Here's my progress:

(Like my fancy-schmancy marker?) I'm using STR in colorway Farmhouse. This pattern is addictive! I'm supposed to be working on some other socks for a swap, but I can't seem to put Firestarter down. I'm definitely hooked.