Tag Archives: Knitting

Such a Bore

I’ve been such a bore and retreated into my shell in the last few weeks.

We’ve had weeks of bad weather – bad meaning, plunging temperatures, icy rain, nighttime frost – and so, in between the navel gazing, I’ve been treated to lots of free exercise in carring potted plants in and out of the house. So often in fact, that all of the outdoor plants, including the hanging petunias, now have predetermined spaces here in the house.

This week, we’re being treated to a bunch of cold air coming from the polar circle, which is why temps this morning are just at 38F and it’s been raining elephants and hippos. Our weather for the extended Easter weekend was no better.

All that translates into extra knitting time, though I’d rather be doing things outdoors, and it enabled me to finish that blanket in what appears to be record time. However, it was knitted with a 6,5 mm (US 10 1/2) needle, so it went very fast. I did extend the size of the blanket by adding an extra row of squares at the top. I’m very pleased with the result. It was knitted with two strands (one woolen sock yarn and one alpaca) and is wonderfully soft and warm.

Incurable

I finished the “Chill Sweater” yesterday (I can’t model and photograph it yet, it’s drying on a hanger from it’s first washing yesterday evening).

I wasn’t going to start a new project, but as always, as I was getting to the end of this one, I felt uneasy not having something new in the “knitting pipeline”.

So, yeah, I checked the internet for new stuff, not really wanting to tackle another sweater, and did find a project that blew me away. I ordered the supplies for the new project and it arrived yesterday:

I always feel like a kid in a candy store when I’ve got a new stash of yarn in my hands. I love these colors.

Oh yes, the new project. Go here and have a look. I don’t NEED this but I saw it and I wanted it. It’s just too pretty not to have.

Got inspired

…by the knitting calendar yet again. While I am still in the midst of the dark blue version of this alpaca sweater, I was presented with a pink version of “fingerless mittens” (which I choose to call wrist warmers. Later in the kalender there was an egg-shell colored version of these, albeit without a thumb, so I combined and extracted from the two patterns to make the prettier eggshell version with a thumb:

The second one is about half way done. I just have to remember to place the thumb on the other side instead of going completely mindless while knitting away.

The beautiful pattern on these was designed by Clara Masessa (link to her on Ravelry.

 

 

Possible Projects

That Knitting Calendar I got for Christmas – well, I think there is another sweater in my future. It’s a take on the “boyfriend” sweater, and I think I want it. Go ahead and have a look over here on ravelry and let me know what you think.

I’m thinking of using a slightly darker blue and a very light gray for the edging though.

Back With the Needles

After an abstinence of almost six weeks, I’ve finally gotten the last of the alpaca yarn on the needles to make the third (same) sweater in dark blue this time.

One of my wonderful Christmas gifts was an actual knitting calender which is full of interesting projects and patterns, these are two of my favorites so far. One is for a blanket and the other for a scarf.

Diagonal Rib Blanket (Bernat, Listowel, Ontario, Canada)
Fiddlehead Fern Scarf by Deborah Tomasello

Ooops, I did it again

I swear at the end of the year I’m going to stack up everything I’ve knitted this year and it will say something about the therapeutic value of knitting and the (improved) state of my mind.

That blue alpaca sweater I had such a hard time with has turned into my favorite, and so I ordered the yarn in green and in dark blue to make a few more. I finished the green one yesterday:

sweatergreen
Drops “Juliana”

The original pattern can be found here. Amazingly, the second time around it was very easy and went very quickly.

My next project is for someone else. We had a person here to cut the huge hedge around our property, and he found what used to be my father’s most favorite blue cotton cardigan – ravaged by a year’s worth of weather, full of algae and generally ruined. Apparently, last year while cutting the hedge, my father took it off and placed it upon said hedge, where it stayed, forgotten and out of sight.

So, a new cotton cardigan is in order – hopefully I’ll get the yarn for it tomorrow or the next day. For now, I’m doing another scarf from all my leftover alpaca.

The cardigan pattern is quite ambitious – go have a look here. I’m looking forward to it.

Feeling Totally Invincible

In terms of  knitting, that is.

I’ve done socks, I’ve done sweaters, cardigans – even teddy bears (thanks to Margit who had a link to a book about this on her blog some years ago).

tedbear
Ted, the bear

But, I’ve never dared to even TRY knitting gloves, fearing the techniques of knitting all of those little fingers and placing them properly.

I took the plunge, because I discovered that wonderful alpaca yarn, and decided to make a pair as a surprise gift for a very dear cousin who has a birthday coming up. And guess what. It isn’t difficult – not at all.

Taadaaa *drum roll* …..my first ever finger glove: (my fingers look like sausages here, because I have larger hands than said cousin – and I sized the glove for her small, lithely fingered hand, not my own):

glove
“Vadelma” by Drops Design (Link to Pattern)

Project Finished

I think this one holds a record in the number of attempts to get it right. I’m pleased with the result except that the sleeves are just a tick longer than I’d like them (though that may be fixed by moistening the sweater and just “pulling” them wider while drying) and I seem to have knitted a bit unevenly this time around.

However, the sweater is scrumptiously “light” in terms of weight, and even though technically it is wool (baby alpaca and silk mix) it is amazingly soft and wonderful.

I may have to knit another one in a different color – it’s that comfortable.

I deviated from the pattern in the raglan decreases – I left out the lace pattern, not wanting holes along those seams.

A link to the pattern can be found here.

"Juliana" by Drops Design
“Juliana” by Drops Design

The Knitting Pattern From Hell

I started a new sweater about three weeks ago and boy, was it a struggle to get to where I am.

It’s another raglan sweater knitted in the round on circular needles with a lace pattern on the first 8 inches of the edge. The problem with the pattern is that the first 10 rows or so start with a sl-k2tog-po.

If I’d only known at the beginning of the project. I cast on 294 stitches, knit two inches and noticed the holes of the lace pattern weren’t lining up. Full of self-doubt, I unraveled  it all and started over, paying exact attention to the pattern. Again, the holes were all over the place. I repeated the above a third time. I couldn’t understand what I was doing wrong, though I knew what the end result should look like, I wasn’t anywhere near it and began to experiment which what I should be knitting to achieve the desired result. It was way off. And by this time, I was becoming unraveled. At one point I threw the whole thing at the hedge out in the garden, where it stuck, looking like some looney tree decoration.

Finally, on my fifth try, I realized what the problem was. If the sweater is being knit in the round, and the sl-k2tog-po is done at the beginning of the round, the marker for the start of the round needs to be moved one stitch to the right before doing the sl-k2tog-po. Otherwise, each row is “moved” one stitch to the left of where it ought to be. The manufacturer failed to note this fact on the pattern.

I was a thrilled little happy camper when I finally and beautifully finished the 8 inches of lace pattern, only to realize that I had become so obsessed with the lace pattern that I completely forgot about gauge.

Yes, I unraveled  it all and started over for the 6th time, casting on 294 stitches. (Am I the only one who hates casting on?)

Don’t anyone ever say that I lack perseverance.
Here’s a picture of what I struggled with:

patternfromhell
This is the one that got unraveled – it wasn’t wide enough and I restarted with larger needles.