I know, I know, you want the death toll. But, I'm gonna make you wait a little bit. Two reported deaths have come in, Pam and Jennifer were struck down - both with socks and poetry! However, the full accounts have yet to arrive at Battle Command Central.
Instead, lets talk about the SPA weekend!
I had the most wonderful time, met incredibly talented people, bought TONS of fiber, and even found a few new and very cool things for the shop.
More than anything, though, I was struck yet again, by our own amazing community. Not only does your creativity take my breath away, but you all really know how to party! Thanks for a great weekend.
(Emily, Patti, and Bridget)
(Spunky Eclectic wall of yumminess)
(Beth is spinning!!!!)
(Scott made it to the party - in a way)
(Lesley and I were decked out like twins for the day, but somehow, I didn't get a picture of us together. Oh, well. Next year!)
(Me, Mary Ellen, and Terri)
(Trading shots with Mindy)
It has taken me the past few days to recover and get caught up with work. Now, the kids are in bed, I have a little time to myself, the wheel is free, and there is some Angora/Merino/Silk fiber calling my name.
Yes, it's true. Sensing that we had hit a bit of a lull in the officially-sanctioned battle activity, our good friend The Rogue Knitter has been busy, and spent the weekend killing not one, but two more members of the power structure of this game.
First, Chesley opened the shop Saturday morning and discovered a pair of Killer Zaps left on the flagpole for Peter. Now normally, one would think that a delivery at the store would not be an effective way of taking him out; his appearance at the shop is irregular and unpredictable. As fate would have it, however, he was covering the shop for a short time Saturday afternoon, so the delivery was completed, and he was cut down.
Sadly, Alec came to the shop with Peter that day, so the death took place in his presence. Fortunately, he was busy standing on his head and watching Bunnytown on the iPod, so the emotional scarring seems to have been kept to a minimum.
Why Peter, you ask. He was not a judge. He certainly did not understand the knitting aspects of the game (while some of us examined the socks for fiber and technique, his entire analysis of the socks consisted of "Mmmm. Comfy."). Rogue's note gives a hint to the devious reasoning behind the hit:
You have been assassinated with a pair of Electric Zap killer socks. Since you are in charge of all things technical and electronic, it is only fitting that your demise comes in an electric yellow zap.
The Rogue Knitter"
By seeking to remove the technical support from the game, Rogue is clearly looking to destabilize the entire thing. A clever move. Fortunately, the systems Peter had put in place largely run themselves, so his continued presence, while missed, is not required.
In a move much closer to the core of the game, word reached us from the SPA weekend in Freeport that Amy, the mastermind behind the pattern for the Zaps themselves, was also taken out by Rogue.
We imagine that Rogue is relishing the irony of Amy's demise coming from a killing object of her own design. That, combined with the sheer audacity of an anonymous in-person kill, in a very public place, provides us with some interesting personality traits to add to our profile of The Rogue Knitter.
Yes, while we know that there is rampant speculation as to Rogue's alter ego, no one is more curious than we are, and we are compiling all of our information to identify our wayward assassin. Do we know who it is yet? We do not. Do we have information? We do.
We are assuming Rogue is a Maine knitter - we doubt one of our Missouri friends is making personal deliveries to the shop.
We have analyzed Rogue's knitting technique - Peter's socks show a very nice three needle bind-off.
We have determined that Rogue's death notices are using a font called Synchro, a retro, non-standard font, which puzzled us for a while. We then discovered that it was a font which can be installed as a part of iDVD, so is Rogue a Mac user? Intriguing.
We know that Rogue, despite the killer tendencies, is also very considerate; the taunting letters included with the kills also include a pleasant P.S. with washing instructions.
So the dossier is growing. We are on the trail.
We apologize for the lack of updates on the official battle. With relatively few people left, we don't have the same frenzied activity we saw earlier on. We think that many of the remaining players are on similar stages of death-delivery, so we expect that the end will be brought closer with a flurry of activity.
We reported last time that there were 11 left alive. We regret to say that we were a bit premature in our counting and included one person who has not actually died yet, so the official count at the moment remains at 12.
We do, however, know of at least 2 deliveries which are on the way, so we should be below a dozen come tomorrow. And there are likely others on their way, so we should see some more action shortly.
We would remind you that we will only report deaths when they are officially acknowledged by the recipient, so be sure to let us know when death actually arrives for you...
In the comments from the last post, the suggestion was made that at the end of this we provide details around the paths taken by all of the socks in the game. We find this suggestion to be a good one, and will work on something to deliver at the end of the game.
Until next time...
You've been begging for an update. Who is dead? Who is still alive and knitting? Where are the sock pictures?
An update you shall have, but alas, no pictures. In their knitting/killing/dying frenzy, no one has sent me pictures since the last update!!
I'm putting out a plea... please send me pictures! Actually, how about this, whoever sends me the most creative picture related to the game gets a set of Lantern Moon Rosewood Sox Stixs. That's right. For a little creativity on your part, you could have these yummy needles all to yourself. And even our dear departed players can participate. The picture just has to be related to the game somehow. Send me your picture(s) by next friday, Feb. 29 to be eligible for the prize.
Onto the most recent killings...
Caitlin has struck down her third player when Julie opened the socks of death.
Gretchen died at hands of Danielle, who forgot to take pictures of her creativity. Danielle wrote that she " included a decapitated flamingo with a note made with newspaper clipped letters that read "Mr. Flamingo sleeps with the fishes".
Susan died at hands of Sheryl. Susan does promise pictures when her camera battery is recharged. But, she describes her death: "Well it finally came and it was a very quite death. There sitting on my table by the door was a express mail box, just waiting for me to come home (6:45 pm). So I open the box and there was a lovely pair of green socks."
11 players remain.
If you have died and still have socks-in-progress in your possession, please make sure you pass them along to your assassin as soon as possible.
And don't forget pictures. Think of the needles... the lovely needles... they could be yours...
It's time to celebrate! The Battle of the Soxes is in full swing, SPA weekend is about to start, clearly this calls for a party OR a SALE. From now until the end of February, all in-stock items will be 20% OFF both in the shop and through the online store. This includes - yarn, books, patterns, needles, and accessories.
Have fun shopping!
Things are getting closer and closer here. The past couple of days have brought us news of more deaths.
Esta thought that staying on the run might keep her safe, but her assassin, in quite the feat of prowess, managed to deliver a kill on the interstate. Esta writes:
Thanks for sharing Wendy!
And now, time for some news from the shop. You may be wondering, what the heck is Chesley knitting while we're all killing each other with these socks?
Well, I'm working on a pair of Killer Zaps that will ultimately go to the winner.
I decided that it was only fitting that I use a Spunky Eclectic yarn for Amy's pattern, plus it gave me an excuse to play with Spunky Shine, a merino/tencel blend. I love it. It is so pretty. I am going to have a very hard time giving these socks up. In fact, I'm already plotting my next pair all for me.
We got the online store updated and you'll find Spunky Shine, the Spunky Color of the Month (15% off)-Walking on the Sun in Super Nova-, Trekking, and Kid Seta all available with lovely pictures taken with the help of my two assistants.
More of the popular ball winders arrived and we'll now be carrying these swifts:
Our first shipment of the umbrella swifts sold out in 24 hours, but we'll be getting more soon.
Anna surprised me with the most adorable store sample -
Others have been knitting as well. Edie created this cuddly collection for her first granddaughter who is expected to arrive in the next few weeks.
Today, Edie was working on a Felted Hedgehog. What a lucky baby!
Jane showed off her luxurious felted mittens. She held two strands of Noro Kochoran together and the result is just incredible. They are so soft and it would be impossible for your hands to get cold while wearing them.
Sarah was trying out the Kid Seta in a beautiful lace scarf. We told her she could knit lace!
Thanks for the great weekend everyone!
Before I get into the sock carnage of the past few days, I want to wish all my lovely fiber friends a wonderful Valentine's Day. You make my world so much brighter. Thank you for being such incredible people.
While I had planned on holding Knit at Night tonight, my family has other plans. Namely, the flu. The boys have all come down with raging fevers, so we'll be staying home, drinking OJ, and I'll be cleaning EVERYTHING. So Knit at Night is cancelled today. We'll be back in full party mode next Thursday night.
And now for the Battle of the Soxes update. It has been a gory few days.
As mentioned previously, dear, sweet Mara is dead. Turns out that spending so much time next door to a yarn shop as caused her to bleed yarn.
Sharon from Missouri got quite a surprise when she was Attacked by The Killer Tomatoes.
Mindy discovered a gruesome tomato growing in her basement. It sought out the socks and hungrily demanded to be sent to Sharon.
This news comes from Pam of Missouri:
"So, today around 11:00 I was at the knitting store when I received the 'dreaded' call from my 14 year old daughter. " Mom," she said, " you're dead, and these are the most beaUTIFUL socks in the world......... and they fit me!"
If you have die, why not go out with beautiful socks, and this:
That's how Wendy took out Betsey. We hear an obit is being composed and will be shared later.
Cheryl - like any proper assassin - wanted to be sure to finish the job. Rather than pack extra socks, she lined the box with a little Hemlock and a recipe.
As predicted, it has been a busy weekend, with 6 more joining the ranks of the deceased.
We are certain that many of you have come here expecting to see continued posts from Chesley.
Despite the brilliantly unexpected attack yesterday morning that strove to remove her from the Battle of the Soxes picture, Chesley confidently proclaimed that her powers extended beyond the grave, and she would continue to be able to control the game.
Alas, we received word from her house last night that the moment she removed her socks, the remainder of her power ebbed away. So, Rogue, if that is truly your name (and we have our doubts), your task has finally been accomplished. And for that, we applaud your ingenuity. We applaud your boldness.
But we cannot applaud your understanding of the power structure of this game. Did you really think that removing Chesley would bring us to our knees? She was but the public face of this entire shadowy enterprise. We are a resilient organization, with redundancies designed to withstand even the most determined efforts to wreak havoc.
We will admit that we did not expect to see Chesley taken out by a sweater. And we do not like having to expose ourselves in this manner, so to that extent, you have dealt us a blow, Rogue. But we have overcome that momentary lapse of control, and meanwhile, the carnage we have set in motion continues.
We have reports tonight of two more deaths. This afternoon, one of the Maine contingent was brought down by one of our Missouri friends. Barbara sent along a heartfelt "SOB!" to announce that she had become Sally's first victim.
And Dead Deb writes in to report that she is "laying in rest with feet warmed by Terrible Terri."
Now for those of you paying attention, you will recall that prior to her death, Deb had killed Liz. Liz had already killed Christine, and had received the socks-in-progress from her.
Liz had to pass those back to Deb, who in fact received them the same day that she received from Terri the socks that killed her. So Deb is sending the socks originally started by Christine back to Terri.
But wait! You will also note that the same day, we reported that Terri, too, had already been killed. So she will have to pass the socks back to her killer, Jennifer.
This is but one example of the organized chaos which will only grow as the circle continues to tighten. There are other such pockets of frantic activity, and we are pleased by it. Those remaining alive should be pleased by it as well, because it may well be that the socks destined for you are the ones making their way back to your assassin. As long as they are traveling, you have time to be knitting, working your way onward. So never despair. There are too many variables in this game to ever cease your efforts.
To date, then, we have confirmed reports of 15 deaths, so there are 31 still alive, however temporarily. We know of at least 6 more Killer Zaps which are on their way, so we expect plenty of activity over the next several days. We remind you to notify us as soon as you receive the instruments of your doom. There are anxious assassins awaiting affirmation of their efforts, and we don't want to disappoint them.
The package lay tucked in the arm of the flagpole. Curious, I thought, as I opened the shop. Clearly, someone must be trying to pass along some unfinished socks to a new assassin. Or even hoping to make a kill on a regular Thursday knitter.
But, I had a sense something just wasn't right. The note inside the beautiful socks said it all,
One of your knitterly assassins has turned Rogue, Jason Bourne style. I will be taking down each of you who have trained and controlled us knitting assassins. You think you can control us, you think you can just send us our targets, and we will take them down no questions asked? Well, no more! This time it is you who has been killed. One of your minions has turned on you, and I wanted you to know the warm footed death that we have been dishing out to one another on your behest. Let this be a warning to all those who have been in cahoots with the dear commander here, I am coming for you as well!
Chesley, you have been assassinated with a pair of Killer Zap socks.
The Rogue Knitter"
This is not a test. I repeat this is not a test.
The Emergency Battle of the Soxes System has issued the following alert:
Tonight, shortly before 6pm, a vicious killer struck at the home of Bridget. With a pair of socks and a haiku, Sandy eliminated Bridget from the game. But, the knitting public beware! Bridget had already finished her Killer Zap! socks and was forced to immediately had them over to Sandy. Sandy is considered armed and dangerous. I repeat, she is armed with a pair of fully knit socks. If you see her, well, our condolences.
the passing of 5 noble knitting warriors.
Last night at 9:45pm, Liz and her accomplice Kim - a seasoned killer - struck at the home of Christine. I will let her tell the story:
Death by Needles
I hope they do fit
These socks I did knit
Special for you
For our “Battle” Debut.
Now that you’re dead
Please no tears do shed.
You deserve to be fed
Angel food instead.
May you enjoy this chocolate
I have sent you to eat
While wearing new socks
To warm your feet.
Your Knitting Sister
It is with a heavy (yet somewhat disturbingly gleeful) heart that I report the passing of two brave warriors. While valiantly knitting away, they didn't realize just how close their own assassins were to weaving in those last ends.
Both arrived to find death literally on their doorsteps.
At 9am, the entire battlefield felt the shock as Lisa of One City Market- an early fan favorite due to her boundless energy and spirit - fell to the swift hands of Caitlin. If only Caitlin had Lisa's home address, the kill would have taken place much earlier. The small reprieve allowed Lisa to see daylight one more time.
The following death notice is posted on the door of One City Market in honor of Lisa:
"Lisa, an avid knitter and competitor in the game, was assassinated by her friend and knitting buddy, Caitlin. The weapon Caitlin chose was a lovely pair of worsted-weight, green heathered, Killer Zap socks and the killing delivery was done in the cowardly fashion of taping the assassination socks to the porch of One City Market. Caitlin shall henceforth be referred to as Caitlin the Sly (aka Sly), due to the sneaky, underhanded way she constructed her weapon right in front of her unsuspecting target."
Congratulations to Caitlin who should be inheriting Lisa's target and on her way to her next kill. Good luck!
The second death happened locally and was captured by our journalists in the field. Kim, a sock knitting novice, proved her skills today as she became the third assassin in the game to successfully kill their target.
Susan, may she rest in peace, gracefully accepted her death and even nominated her killer for the most creative award! Talk about class.
A few pictures of Kim's Killer Zap! socks:
Our first kill of the game has been reported and confirmed. At 10:15pm EST, Amy took down Patti. Her strategy was simple, yet brilliant - skip the party, focus on the goal, and finish off her victim with a flourish.
Check out the socks and the coffin in which they sat in wait on the doorstep of the unsuspecting target:
Patti 2/1/08 12:30 am - 2/3/08 10:15 pm
She took down one knitter before she fell. She has fought bravely, and in her last moments she faced her death with head held high.
As of 10am EST today there have been NO reported kills. However, at least two assassins have finished their socks and are in the processing of locating their targets.
Last night, we celebrated the start of the battle by opening the boxes sent by our new friends from One City Market. I carefully removed the sealed package containing the incredible prizes donated by Lisa of OCM - prize information is released on a need to know basis only - and we all enjoyed the fun gifts sent to us by "The Show Me State."
for Battle of the Soxes
By Amy King
Sizes: Worsted (Sport, fingering) Written for worsted with Sport and fingering in parenthesis
Yarn: Worsted - 240yds Sport/DK - 320 yds Fingering weight - 400 yds
Gauge: Worsted - 6 sts/inch Sport - 7.5 sts/inch fingering - 9 sts/inch
Needles: Worsted – US 4, Sport DK – US 3, Fingering US1
Tools: darning needle for kitchenering and weaving in ends
Killer ZAP patterning:
(It seems long but once you get working it you’ll pick it up)
R1 and 7 *K4, P2 – Repeat from * around
R2 and 12 *K3, P2, K1 – Repeat from * around
R3 and 11 *K2, P2, K2 – Repeat from * around
R4 and 10 *K1, P2, K3 – Repeat from * around
R 5 and 9 *P2, K4 – Repeat from * around
R 6 and 8 *P1, K4, P1 – Repeat from * around
These 12 rounds make up your patterning.
Pattern (make 2)
CO 42 (54, 66) Join in the round being careful not to twist your stitches.
*K4, P2 – repeat this around.
Work in this manner for 1.5 inches.
Start working in the Killer Zap Patterning. Place stitch markers if you need reminders. Work until the leg measures 6 inches from the cast on edge.
Next row, start your heel (working flat). S1, K1 for a total of 22(28, 34) sts Saving the remaining. 20( 26, 32) sts unworked for the top of the foot. Turn, s1, purl the rest. Continue working in this manner until you have worked 2 inches and ending after a RS row.
S1, P12(16,20), P2tog, P1 –Turn
S1, K4(6,8), K2tog, K1 – Turn
S1 work to one stitch before the gap, P2tog, P1 – turn
S1 work to one stitch before the gap, K2tog, K1 – turn
Continue working the last 2 rows until you have worked in all the stitches.
Pick up and knit 12(15, 18) sts along the gusset. Knit across the top of the foot (If you want to get fancy you can keep knitting in the pattern as shown in the white sock), Pick up and knit 12(15, 18) sts along the gusset and half the heel stitches.
Needle one has half the heel stitches and one gusset side. Needle 2 and 3 have the top of the foot. Needle 4 has the other gusset and the other half the heel stitches Needle 5 is your working needle. The middle of the heel now marks the beginning of the round.
Knit to the last 3 stitches of needle 1, K2tog, K1. Work even over needles 2 and 3. Needle 4, K1, SSK, Knit to the end of round. Next round, knit all (unless you are keeping needles 2 and 3 in pattern then work the appropriate row).
Continue to work in this manner until you have decreased to having a total of 42(54,66) sts.
Work even until your sock measures (from heel to where you are) 2 inches less than the total length of the recipients foot.
Knit to the last 3 stitches of needle 1, K2tog, K1. Work even over needles 2 and 3. Needle 4, K1, SSK, Knit to the end of round. You now have 40(52, 64) sts and an even amount for the top and bottom. Next round, knit all. Next round Knit to the last 3 stitches of needle 1, K2tog, K1. , Needle 2: K1, SSK, knit to the end, Needle 3 Knit to the last 3 stitches K2tog, K1. Needle 4, K1, SSK, Knit to the end of round. Next round, knit all
Continue in this manner until you are left with a total of 20(26, 32) sts. After a knit all round, kitchener the toe together.
weave in all ends and go assassinate!
All contents are copyright Amy King 2008. They are for personal use only. Please do not distribute or copy in any part or as a whole without express written permission from Amy King and Spunky Eclectic.
Due to the weather forecast, we're changing the kickoff party to Saturday night. The plan is to meet at El Camino at 5pm. Anyone who wants to carpool can meet at the shop.
Hope the players are getting some rest this afternoon...