Friday, October 9, 2015

Knittus Interruptus

 This is really what is on the needles right now.  A friend - and very fast knitter - is also making it.  We want to show how the same pattern is interpreted by different yarn artists.  We are even using one yarn that is the same.  So far, she is way ahead of me.   That's OK because it is not a competition.  I've named my project Sister-in-yarn.  Because we are.

In order to work on this, (Yes, I am a tease.  More info to come when success is achieved.) I had to put aside the sample that must be ready for showing in two weeks.  And in order to do the sample the winter tube socks were interrupted.

In the midst of interrupting necessary knitting for fun knitting I found this Happy Fuzzy yarn in color Verdigris that will be the base for my new copper beads.  I only went bead shopping to seek out the perfect embellishment for the Sister-in-yarn above.  As often happens, the first thing that flashed before my eyes was not the object of the shopping but instead a tube of copper beads was sparkling and winking at me.  I grabbed. 

On a side note, copper beads are heavier than "regular" beads used for knitting so I'm quite worried about using them on the lace Verdigris yarn.    Copper.  Verdigris.  Some days I crack me up.

Anyway, I was going to put aside the Sister-in-yarn to work on the lace and a design was & is swirling in dreamland.

But then this happened.

A friend has designed a new shawl and someone begged and begged and begged to be the pattern tester.  And she got the draft pattern via email. 

Knittus Interruptus Iterum.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

If Only The Weather Would Cooperate

She is named Day By Day because she will be my workhorse daily wear sweater that replaces my much beloved and over worn Mr. Green Jeans

Paulie is the basis for her and is available free at this link.  Day By Day is knit with Woolfolk Sno (perfection in a skein) and highlighted with a random sock yarn from the stash.  Check out the current Woolfolk offerings over at this shop.

Here is  Day By Day, knit up by moi.

 I know, I know.  Poor photo.  But it shows what one goes through to make sure that a top down is gonna fit the wearer.  I am currently between sizes as the pattern is written.  So I cast on for the smaller size using a needle one size larger than recommended.  To my warped thinking, too few stitches made too large should equal something in the middle.  I did have to add a bit of no increasing plain rows to make the arm hole fit the way I like.  But all in all it was successful.

The neck of Paulie is knit  when adding the button band.  Because the neck (that being the different color in this photo) is shaped using short rows and the old wrap & turn is - well - old, I used German Short rows which are, to my fingers, much quicker and simpler.

The i-cord bind off really finishes the sweater nicely.
 Here I am, proving that the neck, worked per the pattern, is really fantastic.  I love how it fits up a bit and blocks the blowing wind from giving me a chill.  Check out the pattern and you will notice that the collar is intended to fold back like a shawl collar.

I prefer it this way.  'Nuf said.

Because I did not work stripes, I added a bit of crochet chain to finish off the sleeves, which for me are full length. 

Because I wanted full length sleeves. 

Because one day it will actually be chilly enough to wear a wool sweater in Los Angeles.

If only the weather would cooperate. . . . . .

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

And Barbara Is Her Name

The pineapple shawl wants to be called Barbara.

It was actually a blast to make.  And I already told you about the exhaustion that resulted from blocking it.  So all in all - this is a winner.

The elongated triangle construction makes wearing it kinda non-traditional.  The pointy end easily weaves into the open work so that it "closes" into a wrap and the pineapples really show up.  Or it can be work like a traditional scrunched up scarf/shawlette thing.  What ever floats your boat.

Hint:  Use the chart!  Reading the words is not the best approach.  I enlarged the chart so that it was easier to see.  Use the chart!

All of that crawling on the floor to block the thing and get the picot points in order was worth it.  Oh sure, it will get a bit wonky after a few wearings but it looks great for now and I am pleased.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Thank You Zsuzsanna Makai

Zsuzsanna Makai and the Ananas Shawl.  Loved making the project.  Thank you so much.

Side note:  Yes, the Freia yarn bleeds a bit when wet washed.  Do not panic.  I've used the stuff enough to know what happens.  And I prefer to rinse out the excess than to have it transfer to my clothing.  Cool water and no-rinse wool wash of your choosing is all that is needed.

 Look at all the little pineapples!  This pattern blocked perfectly and really opened up the stitches.  Because I added a full repeat mine was longer than the 60" of the pattern. 

And that forced me to block the thing on the floor and then I had to crawl around on hands and knees making sure that the point stayed put on the extra towel while I ran the blocking wire through the picots on the wide edge and then I had to pull the width into shape so the little pineapples opened up and the plain rows were actually straighter than in this photo and then re-pin the point and make sure the picots were evenly spaced on the wire and pinned into the mat and then I was tired and I took  a nap.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Yarn Stash To The Rescue

The new Interweave Crochet just might be the best thing of the whole season.  As soon as it arrived at the store, I bought a personal copy.   Check out the cover pattern - pineapples on a huge triangle shawl.

Please know that I do not enjoy the crochet pineapple.  My mother and her sister could whip out those "old" doilies [in thread crochet!] without looking at a pattern and faster than I could crochet a Barbie skirt.  Hey - I was only 8 or 10.  What do you expect?

Well, anyway, I put away my disdain for the pineapple stitch pattern and put my hand into the stash.  I knew exactly where the three balls were waiting.  MY COLORS in Freia were just hanging around and hoping for the perfect pattern and this was it.

A very fast hook.  Very fast.  And check out the color shift.  Green became shaded and morphed into blue.

Love it.  Must work faster and faster and faster.