Tag Archive | Knitty

Marching to the Finish

Even though I didn’t make it by the Closing Ceremonies of the 2010 Olympics, I was determined to finish my Greenjeans sweater. I finished the last few rows and sewed on the button this morning.

Greenjeans

I am not in love with the button after all. I need to take it off and move it inward (away from the bound-off edge) anyway, so I might replace it entirely.

I decided to try out the timer setting on our camera, with mixed results:

Mr. Greenjeans

It’s an incredibly comfortable sweater, despite the sleeves being a teeny bit too long (which was completely my own doing).

Mr. Greenjeans

Pattern: Mr. Greenjeans, by Amy Swenson, from the Fall 2007 issue of Knitty
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, about 12 balls
Needles: US8 and US7
Notes: Thank you, Amy, for writing the instructions for picking up the neck-/buttonband the way you did. If I had realized ahead of time that I was about to pick up 262 stitches, it probably would have given me more pause. Since my row gauge was off, I did extra rounds on the sleeves in between decreases, and I made the sleeves full-length. I also made the body a little longer.

This was a really nice, clear, straightforward sweater pattern.  It’s been quite a while since I made a sweater for myself.  I should make some more.

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Winter Games

Before the Ravelympics, before Ravelry, for that matter (imagine that!), there was the Knitting Olympics. A simple concept: between the opening and closing of the Olympic Games, cast on and complete a project that challenges the knitter.

Two years later, Ravelry was in full (beta) swing, and teams and events were born.

Two years after that, another Winter Olympics season rolled around, and the Knitting Olympics returned.

I have actually signed up for the Ravelympics, entering as part of Team WeHo, for the West Hollywood knitting group that I haven’t actually attended in quite some time. I’m there in spirit.

But my spirit really finds its home with the purity of the Knitting Olympics. No teams, no events, no judges but ourselves. My challenge: to turn a bagful of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran into a Mr. Greenjeans.

Stash: DB Cashmerino Aran

I chose this sweater because (a) these skeins of Cashmerino have been sitting around for a few years and haven’t yet magically turned into a Cardigan for Arwen, the pattern I originally had in mind, and (b) I want a new cardi to wear to Stitches West, which falls on the last days of the Winter Olympics.

I was off to a fantastic start, casting on around 7:00 pm PST (despite NBC’s insistence on delaying the Opening Ceremony until after 8 p.m. for the West coast of the U.S.) and trucking on through to the point where the pattern changes from stockinette to ribbing. And then… equipment failure.

Mr Greenjeans

It seems that I do not have a US7 circular needle. Learn from my example, future Knitting Olympians. Check and double-check your equipment, or you, too, may find yourself halfway through the course without the right needle to continue, with your favorite LYS – after you’ve waited three days for your non-working hours and their posted store hours to coincide – inexplicably closed. Or maybe that’s just me.

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The Deadliest… Finger Puppets?

I finished Crabby Crawl for Little Miss over the weekend, but I couldn’t resist playing with the pieces before sewing them up.

The Deadliest Finger Puppet

Creepy, aren’t they? I tried to get a picture of them curling around a door frame, but I couldn’t quite contort myself enough to get a photo of my own hand in that position. And the other members of my household may have had enough of my crab-leg-fingers after I put them on and waved them around eerily in the semi-darkness as we watched The X-Files: I Want to Believe.

Once they were stuffed and sewn onto Mr. Crabby Crawl, though, they were downright cute.

Deadliest Crab

Project Specs

Pattern: The Deadliest Crab, by Amber Allison, in the Summer ’09 issue of Knitty

Yarn: Cascade 220. The white is from a batch I bought at Stitches West a few years back; the orange is from The Loopy Ewe. It took just over half a skein of orange and about a quarter skein of the white.

Needles: Size US4 Crystal Palace DPNs. I went down to 4s, and you can still see stuffing through the stitches in some places.

Notes: The pattern is pretty easy to follow, especially now that the decrease error has been corrected. I also picked up the stitches for the bottom shell in the wrong direction – watch out for that, or you end up with a reverse stockinette belly! I don’t trust “safety eyes” in knitted fabric for the under-3 set, so I cut circles out of black and white felt and sewed them on with matching embroidery floss.

Deadliest Crab

Little Miss found him in the den on Monday morning and immediately exclaimed, “Crabby Crawl!” She proceeded to carry him around by one leg for quite a while. Ah, a girl and her crustacean. Is there a sweeter sight?

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Uncursed

I gave the orange Cascade 220 another shot after I got home from work last night. When I once again found myself short a couple dozen stitches, I finally did the math. Literally. As in, 75-34 does not equal 63. It wasn’t my mistake at all, but an error in the pattern (which had been corrected by the time I looked at it last night). With the correct instructions, I managed to make a very small legless crab.

Crab in Progress

I think he’ll be awfully cute once he gets some eyes.  And a mouth.  And legs.  Don’t you?

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Ready, Set, Wait

I’m all set to get started on Miss Honeychurch (which I keep calling Miss Honeydew - perhaps I need more fruit in my diet), except for one thing.

Just Add Yarn

My yarn is somewhere between Ohio and California. My copy of A Room with a View is also somewhere between a shipping center and my house, but I expect it to arrive today. (A year of Amazon Prime is one of the best holiday gifts I’ve gotten. It is, indeed, the gift that keeps on giving.)

But I have my pattern and a short circular needle for swatching. My plan is to read the book and knit the sweater over the course of July and August.  The sweater should will be done by Labor Day, which is still quite warm in this part of the country.

It’s not like I don’t have anything to knit in the meantime.  The Chicago Illusion Blankie is coming along slowly:

Chicago Illusion Blankie

Each charted row is actually four rows of knitting (two in each color). It’s going a little quicker now that I’ve marked every 10 columns on the chart for easier counting. And it only took ripping out two rows to get me to do it!

And my beloved blue skein of Wollmeise informed me that it didn’t really want to be socks (after I started a cabled sock not once but twice!). It wants to be the Entomology shawl. How could I argue?

The Beginnings of Entomology

250 beads down, 955 to go.

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New Knitty, New Post… New KAL?

The new issue of Knitty went up today, and it is full of cute things.

When I say cute, I mean really cute, too. Just look at The Deadliest Crab, who looks awfully cuddly for such a scary, scary name. I’m planning to knit one up for Little Miss just as soon as my orange Cascade 220 (which I ordered to make some other amigurumi knits) arrives. I’m going to embroider on the eyes, though.

Other items that made it into my queue include Annette, a sweet little short-sleeved lace cardigan that would be perfect to layer at the library, and Entomology, a beaded lace shawl in fingering weight yarn that drew me largely because of my butterfly/moth obsession.

Then, of course, there are the socks:

  • Mermaid’s Lagoon: a fairly basic lace-patterned sock
  • Outside In: a diagonal-ribbed sock with eyelets down the front that’s knitted inside out
  • Treetop: a cabled knee sock that’s one of the projects suggested for knitting in advance of winter

I almost missed Franklin Habit’s Lace Sampler Scarf, since I jump straight to the patterns and come back to the feature articles later. I really need to remember to check out the articles, especially since I love Franklin’s writing style.

And, finally, there’s Miss Honeychurch, a lovely A-line pullover with cable detailing down the sides, knitted in hemp yarn. The name comes from Forster’s A Room with a View, which I’ve never read. (I’ve never seen the movie, either.) I think this pattern is crying out for a Knit-a-long plus Read-a-long, don’t you? Are you interested? Drop me a comment!

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Pomatomi

They’re done!

Pomatomi

The specs:
Pattern: Pomatomus
Designer: Cookie A.
Source: Knitty, Winter 2005.
Yarn: FlyDesigns Monarch, Blue Grass colorway
Needles: US1.5 bamboo dpns
Comments: Cookie A. is a freakin’ genius. The socks are gorgeous, and I love certain little details she includes, like telling you to pick up an extra stitch on each side where the heel flap meets the instep when knitting the gussets, and telling you to knit those picked up gusset stitches through the back loop on the first round. It’s little things like that that leave you with fantastic looking socks and you might not even know why. (Unless, of course, you already know those tricks.) But, let me tell you, I could go for a good long while now without knitting any more 1×1 twisted rib. Crikey.

The yarn reminded me a lot of Socks that Rock Lightweight, very bouncy and stretchy. My stockinette stitches twist a little bit, looking more like -/ than like the usual / – something I also get with STR. And I really could have used a little more yardage. Not a lot, but even one more yard would have helped! I had mere inches left after Kitchener stitching, and I shortened the toes slightly from the pattern. This is why people knit socks toe-up, I know. The color is fantastic. It’s all deep and rich and the blue and green blend so very nicely, rather than pooling or flashing. Now, if it would only dip below, say, 80 degrees around here, I’d like to wear my socks.

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One Pomatomus, Two Skeins

I finished the first Pomatomus sock while watching Rachel Maddow last night, but a picture will have to wait for the weekend. I manage to finish kitchenering the toe right at the spot I’d marked as the halfway point of the ball. But when I weighed my sock, then weighed the remaining yarn (all on my trusty Weight Watchers scale; at least it’s getting some use), I seem to have used 1 more gram on the sock than I have left.

Here’s the frustrating thing: I think I’d actually prefer a shorter leg. But the idea of ripping out the first sock and doing it all over again fills me with dread. I’d rather knit up the second sock with what’s left and take the chance of having to do the last couple of rounds with a different yarn.

Speaking of yarn (and aren’t we always, really?), Stacy of Tempted Hand Painted Yarns, well, tempted me over Plurk with new colorways of Glam Grrl. I was helpless to resist, I tell you. And then these lovely things showed up on my doorstep a few days later:

Tempted Glam
Red Diamond

Tempted Glam
Destiny

One of these days, I’ll get my hands on some Branded in Glam Grrl. But that day is not today.

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Pomatomus in Progress

On Ravelry, there’s a group called Sock Knitters Anonymous, and they’re now in the second year of a challenge known as Sockdown. Every month, there is a theme, and for each pair of qualifying socks completed (cast on during the month and finished by the end of the following month), you get an entry in a drawing for prizes. This month’s theme is (a) knit any pattern in a yarn that is at least 75% orange or (b) knit any Cookie A. pattern in any yarn or (c) knit a mystery sock pattern given to the group over the course of 4 weeks in a yarn that’s at least 75% orange.

This has led to a whole lot of discussion about various yarns and whether they are Orange Enough. A search through my own stash revealed that I have no orange yarn. So, I cast on Pomatomus instead:

Pomatomus in Progress

The yarn is called Monarch, in a colorway called Blue Grass. It’s beautiful. I love it. But it’s pretty much an entire sock in 1×1 twisted rib, with a pattern that I can’t quite make stick in my head, so I have to keep a close eye on the chart. The payoff, though, is a really gorgeous sock.

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One Sock and a New Skein

I finished up the first ‘Vog On sock the other night during Palin’s speech. Yes, in this house, we watch both party conventions, although our politics are firmly left of center.

'Vog On

That picot bind-off gave me something else to focus on, at least. I’m not in love with the way it folds down at the top, but I think the sock itself is very pretty. I’m already into the gusset increases on the second sock. I like this lace pattern a lot, and I love Judy’s magic cast-on, now that I seem to have gotten the hang of it.

A couple of days ago, my second skein of Wollmeise appeared in the mail (thanks, Sandy!).

Wollmeise Fluffy

That’s the Fluffy in Wilder Mohn. The picture doesn’t quite capture the rich reds, but it was the best I could do before heading out the door this morning.

I’ve been keeping both skeins of Wollmeise (along with my 2 new skeins of Numma Numma – never fear, I will get to that entry!) on my desk where I can look at them. And pet them. And maybe squish them a little.

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