The Tofutsie socks are done, and they look and feel great! The fabric is thinner than what most other sock yarns produced,which considering that they have a lot of cotton and soysilk in addition to the wool it's not surprising. I washed them in the morning and laid them on top of my dryer to block them, and was very surprised to find that they were completely dry by the time I came home from work that evening. I haven't worn them yet but anticipate that the thinness of the fabric will make them more adaptable to fitting into my shoes than most of my socks, which usually get relegated to being house socks. At least I can see and admire them that way instead of hiding them inside shoes!
I suddenly realized that it was getting to be time to start producing stuff to have for sale at the two sales I participate in each year. The earliest one is at the museum where I work; the HR department sponsors a crafts sale for employees to sell their wares to each other. I sell mostly hand-knit scarves and other knitted items, and hand-bound blank books and notepad covers. My best-selling item always ends up being fingerless gloves - my coworkers love them to keep their hands warm while typing in freezing cubicles on computers all day. The gloves are also popular with artists to help keep hands warm in unheated studios, etc.
I make them out of whatever yarn I have on hand, and especially enjoy using the limits of my stash to stimulate new ideas and styles. The versions shown here are my basic style - ribbing at the fingers and wrist, stockinette stitch for the body, and a buttonhole-like opening and a gusset for the thumb. The pairs shown here are basic sturdy tweeds in larger sizes that can fit a man or a woman with a large hand, which is why the one on my hand looks so ill-fitted - I have tiny hands so I have to remember to make a variety of sizes to suit a wide range of hand types.
The second sale I do each year is a holiday Open Studio that Thomas and I host in our live/work studio space. We first moved into this space in Vallejo in November 2002 so we hold the Open Studio each year as a celebration of another year together and in Vallejo. We are in the heart of the historic downtown district which was once a boomtown but now is slowly coming back after a serious decline precipitated by the US Navy closing the Mare Island Navy Shipyard. The shipyards were the primary reason for the town's existence for about 140 years, so the loss was significant for the community. The closure occurred before my move to Vallejo so I don't remember what it was like here prior to that but it has been very exciting to be a part of the downtown revival. So Thomas and I welcome all our friends and our now very large mailing list of people to the studio for refreshments, a showing of whatever artwork we have done in the past year, and my hand made items. This year will be our 5th anniversary in Vallejo so we're hoping to have a special celebration to mark the occasion.
By the way, I have abandoned the Einstein Coat for my niece. The gauge wasn't right for the pattern and I was having hideous problems trying to make the sizing work out for Madi, who is very tiny for her age anyway and the coat is sized as an oversize garment. So, I was juggling between the baby size and the 2-4 yr size and was just coming up with a mess. Supposedly the pattern makes the knitter feel like Einstein by making something so terrific out of very simple techniques but I was still distinctly in the raging idiot camp on this one. I yanked it out in a funk and hid the yarn back in my yarn trunk to wait until she's older to make her something out of it. Much older.