Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas knits revealed

I have a couple of Christmas gift knits I can now reveal.This is the third felted bag I've made based on the booga bag pattern. I used size 11 needles. I did the bottom 34 rows with Patons SWS in natural berry double stranded, then knitted 56 rounds of the body single stranded with Patons SWS in natural plum. I added a flap then did 3 rounds of edging in natural berry. The cord was done on my icord maker with the SWS in berry. (knitted 12/2/07 - 12/4/07) The button is only decorative. There is a snap underneath
This one is a scarf version of the clapotis.
Yarn: 1.5 skeins Patons Decor in secret garden
Needles: size 7, 10" straight
Started 12/11/07, finished 12/18/07
I did 2 repeats section 2 (plus 6 rows), 15 repeats of section 3, and 3 repeats of section 4.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

finished dishcloth

I've taken quite a long break from working on the Vogue cable rib cardigan. I've mainly been working on beading projects. I also finished this dishcloth. The pattern is the Hot Chocolate dishcloth from this web site. It's knitted in Lily Sugar'n Cream color softly taupe with size 7 needles. I think I could have gone down a needle size or two but oh well. I still think it turned out pretty well.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

crafty pursuits

Just giving an update on my crafty pursuits. I've finished the left front and back of the Vogue cable rib cardigan and am working on the first sleeve. I'm starting to worry about the size and how it will block. I set this project aside to make another infamous anthropologie inspired capelet (pdf file here). I'm done with the body on that and just need to do the sleeves. I've also been working on a couple of bracelets. I've been toying with the idea of selling some of them on Etsy.

Also, for anyone who may be interested, the pattern for the macrame owl from a few posts back is
the "Mr. Owl Ornament" from a booklet titled 'Twas the Knot Before Christmas' by Judy Palmer and Lois Anderson copyrighted 1978 and published by Quality Craft Instructions. There are numerous copies for sale on ebay right now.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Vogue Cable Rib Cardi WIP

Here is my progress so far on the Vogue Cable Rib Cardigan. There is some of the sleeve, some of the back and some of the front. It's not much to look at yet. I like the feel of the Cascade 220 superwash. It seems to be quite soft.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Halloween charm

I finished this Halloween charm bracelet today
I've been working on it for several days. I really did it up big with the charms. This is the first of this type of bracelet I've made. It's got some weight to it. I made all of the dangley bead charms myself with beads and headpins. This is the first bracelet that I've made using a chain instead of a wire. I like how it turned out. I wish it would have photographed better. I used black beads, hematite beads, and amethyst bicone swarovski crystals. A couple of the dangleys are two part dangleys.
I haven't abandoned knitting. I've started the cable/rib cardigan #20 from the Holiday 2004 issue of Vogue Knitting. I've got a little of the left front, a little of one sleeve and some of the back done so far. I'm switching from section to section.

Also, I've finished the back and front of the Gypsy Mesh pullover. I plan to block those two pieces and then the shoulders get stitched together. The sleeves are made by picking up stitches around the top fronts and then knitting the sleeve down to the cuff edge. I once again have stalled out at the blocking step. I started the cable/rib cardigan instead.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

has anyone else noticed....

Cable Luxe Tunic, pattern featured in the latest Lion Brand Yarn catalog.
Victoria's Secret Cable Sweater, featured in their latest catalog and on their web site.

They are almost identical! The Cable going around the shoulders and chest is identical. The cables running down the front are exactly the same with the spacing between them slightly different. And, the VS sweater has ribbing around the neck while the Lion Brand one has garter stitch. But still.....
I really liked the Lion Brand Cable Luxe Tunic and bought the pattern for it. I was considering knitting it next. Then I saw that VS is selling practically the same sweater. I have a kind of criteria for choosing knitting projects and one of the criteria is that it needs to be something unique and not available to be bought in a store. I don't want to knit something that someone can just go out to a store and buy. Humpf.

edited to add: I guess I'm behind on this one. Evidently this same sweater was put out by Pringle of Scotland (a high end clothing company) almost a year ago. There is a knock off knitting pattern for it out in blogland and on Ravelry. The latest issue of Rebecca magazine #34 even has a similar pattern)

Monday, September 10, 2007

...and does other crafty stuff...

Here is a macrame owl I made yesterday. My mom found some old macrame craft booklets and gave them to me. I couldn't resist making this little owl.

I keep putting off starting the Vogue Silver Bell sweater because I'm not sure I like the color of the yarn I bought for it. I worry that it is too dark. I can't decide what I will do now. So, in the mean time I made the owl, and some bead bracelets and I guess I will continue with my gypsy mesh pullover.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Gypsy Mesh

I want to thank everyone who left comments regarding my Bell Sleeve Jacket. It was really nice to receive them. Thank you.
My blog is one year old now. It doesn't seem like it's been that long. I've knitted more this past year than usual. All of the great knitting sites on the internet have kept me interested.
ve been working on my Gypsy Mesh Pullover. I started this one back in May 2006 and then set it aside until recently. I picked it up again as I had finished my Bell Sleeve Jacket. I was just going to work on it until the yarn for my next project came in. But now that I've gone back to it I want to continue until it is finished. I'm about ten rows from finishing the front. Then I will block the front and backs and sew them together at the shoulders. Then the sleeve stitches get picked up along the edges and knitted down. I'm going to leave the stitches at the top edge live until it is blocked because I'm really guessing on the length. Because this is basically lace, the size will change (stretch) a bunch durning blocking and I want to be able to easily add more (or take away some) length if I need to. I'm really hoping for luck in the sizing of this thing. I really didn't do a guage swatch because of the way the pattern is, and I'm using 100% cotton yarn and it is lace, so..... we'll see what happens.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Bell Sleeve Jacket Finished!

Here it finished Bell Sleeve Jacket
Pattern: Bell Sleeve Jacket pattern #15 from Vogue Knitting Holiday 2006
Yarn: 7 skeins Cascade 220 color #8234 Pistachio
Needles: size 6 straight
started 6/16/07, finished knitting 8/13/07, last end woven in 8/18/07
I knitted the small size body and the large size armholes and sleeves. (measurements went out the window at the blocking step as they usually do)
Modifications: I changed the lower edges of the fronts and back. The pattern called for it to be a reverse st st edging. I changed it to match the edging of the sleeves and collar.
I did this by casting on 160 stitches for the back instead of 118, then I did (k4p4) for 4 rows then I did a (k4, p2tog, p2tog) row with an extra k2tog at each end to end up with 118sts. Then I purled one row (WS) before starting the [p1row, k1row]twice (RS). For the fronts, I casted on 91 stitches (instead of 66). I did 4 (k4p4) rows, then a (k4, p2tog, p2tog) row while keeping 5 sts at the front edges k3p2 (so I didn't p2tog on those). So the extra 3 k sts +2 p sts=5 stitches for the edge. Then I purled one WS row before starting the patterns [p1row, k1row] twice with 71 sts (pattern calls for 66, plus my extra 5 was 71). Then I didn't cast on the 5 extra sts called for at row 12(WS row), I just continued the rib as it was. I like this look much better and was surprised that it had been designed with a different edge.
Also, I didn't do the belt. Instead I added 6 buttons with crochet button loops attached to the edge.
Errata: I found errors in the pattern that weren't listed on Vogue's web site. My work arounds for those errors were: for the left front row 63 instead of the k5, I did k1, k2tog, k2. Then on row 65 right after the cable cross it says k2tog, k1....I did a k3 instead. Then on row 89 for the small size it says you should have 37 sts when I had 36. Also, for the left front armhole shaping next row(RS) it says to do a RC, but this didn't end up being the correct row to cable on for me so I didn't and just kept to doing my cable crosses as had been established.
Two things that are listed at their site is that for the left front right after you cast on, the [p1row, k1row]twice, is missing. And at row 39 a k4(8,12) is missing.
I like how this one turned out. I like the fit. The narrow waist part with the cables seems to sit at the right spot so that the flared bottom looks good. I think the length is just right. I was worried that the sleeves would be to long, but now that it's finished I think they are just right. It is described as a very close fitting jacket but I made mine to be a bit looser. I think it still looks nice without being uncomfortably tight. I don't like tight. That's why I made the armholes larger. The collar doesn't cover as much of the sweater as I thought it would. It kind of folds on itself and stands up around the back of the neck so as not to really cover the sweater much. If anything it pulls sweater back so that the shoulder seams pull to the back a bit. But since it is 100% wool, I think that can easily be corrected with a bit of spot blocking and stretching of the collar around the back neck area now that it is assembled. I liked knitting this. It had just the right amount of cables and details to keep my interest. I like the leaf shaped bobbles and the bell sleeves are cute without being too big.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

bell sleeve blocking

I washed and blocked my vogue bell sleeve sweater today. All the pieces are blocking except for the collar. I've got the first half of the collar done and am about to start knitting the second. It's knitted in two pieces. The pattern says to cast on for the first half, then when your start the second half you pick up stitches from the cast on edge. I just did an open cast on and then put the live stitches back on the needle for the second half. The collar gets attached to the sweater last, after the back, fronts and sleeves are already seamed together.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Loon Sweater Finished

I finally finished my loon sweater.Pattern: Bernat "ewe can knit" pamphlet #1806, (I made the adult version of the pattern)
Yarn: Plymouth Encore Chunky, yellow is Lion Brand Chunky USA
Needles: size 9
I started this one years ago and then set it aside. I recently pulled it out and finished it. It was, when I started it, my first use of different colors and is the first time I've done duplicate stitch. The yarn is mostly acrylic with a little wool and it felt quite stiff until I washed it. After washing the sweater became surprisingly soft. I was a little worried about the style of the sleeve
s being uncomfortable (as if I'm actually going to wear this much) anyways, since it has a straight armhole and straight sleeve edge. But it turned out to be quite comfortable.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Apricot Jacket finished

Here is my finished apricot jacket.
Pattern: from Rebecca #27
Yarn: 5 skeins Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece color Prarie Lupine
Needles: Size 6
started 4/20/07, finished knitting 6/7/07, seamed together in July, totally f
inished on 7/14/07.
I knitted following the pattern for the large size because my gauge was more stitc
hes per inch that what was called for. I left off the crochet edge and just did four crochet button loops. I like the look and fit of this sweater. I was very lucky to find the right size buttons in exactly the same color as my yarn.

Monday, July 16, 2007

problems and redos

I ran into another problem with my bell sleeve jacket. I did the back before the left front, the order that it is in the pattern. The problem was that the the number of rows in the body of the back up to the armhole shaping is based on measuring the length. Ok, that's fine, I keep track of my number of rows and place in the pattern by putting a tick mark on a post it note. I finished the back and then did the left front. The left front length to the armhole shaping is dictated by the pattern. There is no, knit even for a certain length. So, when I finished, I had 10 more rows in the left front before the armhole shaping than I did for the back. So, it wouldn't be possible to match the two up correctly for seaming. So, I had to rip out almost half of the back to the armhole shaping (about 60 row or so), add the 10 extra rows, then continue with the armhole shaping and on to the end. I finished up the reknitting today. At this point I've got a sleeve, the back and left front done.

Seaming together my apricot jacket took a few days. I seamed one armhole the way all of the books say. With the other armhole I kind of did a little variation on that to create a less bulky seam. Now that it's done, the by the books seam feels bulky and my modification type seam is much more comfortable. They both look good, it's just the comfort factor. I almost undid the one side in order to reseam it but that would have meant a whole lot of effort to undo the whole side up and around the armhole. I just didn't have it in me and ultimately decided to leave it as is.

I was also worried the sleeves were too long and decided to shorten them. After spending about a half hour unraveling the cast on edge of the first sleeve (because it is the cast on edge, due to the direction of the knitting you can't just pull and have it unravel, its more like undoing knots where each stitch is a knot) I decided to just bind back off using the sewn bind off to match the other sleeve's cast on edge and learn to accept them as they were. I didn't have the courage to cut them shorter with scissors and reknit the edge like I have with past projects so if the length bothers me while wearing it I'll just roll the sleeve edges back and have a sort of cuff.

The buttons and button loops were a challange also. At first I had attatched all of the buttons with one strand of yarn woven from one to the next. Then I decided it would be better if each button was attached with it's own strand of yarn knotted behind each. That way the buttons couldn't pull out and stretch out the strand they were attached to (and the knot behind them would give them a little extra support). Then getting the corresponding button loops spaced evenly and in the correct corresponding spots was difficult. I had to do, undo, redo, undo, redo etc. I finally got it all done though and it looks pretty good. I didn't do the crochet edging like the pattern called for. I only just did separate crochet button loops attached right to the knitted edge.

I got a peak at the cover of the upcoming issue of Vogue Knitting. There is really nice cardigan on the front that I've added to the top of my knits to knit list. The most recent Berroco Knit Bits has a picture of another knit from this upcoming issue of Vogue. I wish Vogue would update their web site to this issue so we can see their "sneak peak" section for it. I'm anxious to get my hands on this issue.

Monday, July 09, 2007

bell sleeve progress

I've been working on the Vogue Bell Sleeve Jacket. I've got the back done and most of the left front. I changed the bottom edge on the back and front so that it is like the sleeve edge. Problem was that I didn't realize for the front the way the pattern is written you cast on 5 stitches part way up to create a flap. Then, when you do the finishing you pick up stitches at the lower edge and around the front part way up and knit a garter stitch edge band to meet the lower edge of this "flap". I changed the lower edge and am not going to have this garter stitch wrap up the front lower edge. I didn't realize that I'd have to compensate for these 5 missing stitches until I got to the row where you cast them on. So, I had to start over, casting on these 5 edge stitches right at the beginning, then of course not casting any on at the part where it tells you to. Also, I found there is an error in the pattern at row 63 and 65 for the left front. This error is not posted at Vogue's corrections page. If you follow the pattern your stitch count gets thrown off. I figured out the correction for this though and it looks good.

I've also started seaming together my apricot jacket pieces. I sure don't like the seaming process. I wish more patterns were written to be knit in the round, with picked up sleeves knit from the shoulder down in order to eliminate so much seaming. I'm pretty slow at the seaming, so it will be awhile before it is done. I also still need to get buttons for it.

Friday, June 29, 2007


I didn't do any knitting yesterday. I made this baseball themed charm bracelet though. It's my first charm bracelet. It's the first time I've made the little beaded dangle things. I used beading head pins and needle nosed plyers. It was tricky for me at first but then I got my technique down. I'd like to make another charm style bracelet in the future with different colors of the beaded dangle things.

I also added a bunch of my old finished knits photos to my flicker pages. I've got a section there for my rose photos also. I plan on eventually having photos of each of my rose bushes there. And I've spotted another sweater I'd like to knit. It's Aguave from Knitter's Summer 2005. I'm considering joining the Tour de France knit a long and going for the green jersey by speed knitting this. I'd have to buy yarn for it thought. I like the color of the one from the magazine and would like to do it in the same yarn and color. I'd have to set aside my Vogue Bell Sleeve Jacket for awhile though. Meanwhile, my additional skein of yarn arrived yesterday so now I will be able to finish up my apricot jacket.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


Here is my progress on the Bell Sleeve Jacket. I finished a sleeve and am partway up the back.

Also, this goodie arrived in the mail yesterday:

I'm so pleased. It's a color card for Cascade 220 yarns. I've been trying to get my hands on one of these for a long long time. I have such a hard time trying to decide colors, especially from a computer screen since I don't really have a local yarn store, so I like sample cards to be able to see the colors first hand to really know what they look like.

Also, I came across this cute tank top pattern at the Berocco web site. I think it would be nice knit in the newly re-released Lion Brand Cotton Ease. I've never used Cotton Ease before but I've read a lot of good comments about it. I like the pattern and of course have added it to my collection of possible future knits.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Bell Sleeve sleeve

I started knitting on the Vogue Bell Sleeve Jacket. It's actually a sweater. I don't know why they called it a jacket (probably due to the way it closes with a knitted belt instead of buttons). Anyways, I started on the sleeve and worked quite a bit on it today. Here is my progress. I think my increases are a bit sloppy on the left side. I experimented as I went and got it to where they were better and not as noticeable but I didn't rip back and redo the earlier ones. I just want to keep going at this point. When I'm all done if it bothers me too much I guess I'll re knit the sleeve but for now I'm continuing on. The third knit rib at the cuff doesn't seem to line up in the center with the wide k6 rib and I don't think this is a mistake but I'm not sure. I wish there were more FO pics of this project on the web to look at. I doesn't seem like too many knitting bloggers made this sweater. I like the k3p3 edge and plan on using this on the lower edges of the front and back also instead of the edge the pattern calls for.

Also, I came across this cute cardigan sweater pattern at the garnstudio site. It's Drops design number 88 pattern 4. I like it enough to consider it for a potential future knit. And, I still need to block and assemble my apricot jacket. It also has some sort of crochet edging which I'm a little worried about. My history with crochet is pretty bad. I've checked out more crochet books from the library but when I actually go to do the crochet I get confused and am very clumsy with holding the hook and yarn. I wish someone would publish a good crochet edging for knitters instructional book.

Friday, June 08, 2007

apricot jacket sleeves done

I finished the sleeves for my apricot jacket. The little ends of yarn in this photo are all the yarn I have left. I completely used all four skeins to knit this sweater. The sleeves look like they are going to be about two inches too long. I realized this after knitting the first sleeve. I considered ripping back to before the cap shaping and deleting some rows there but decided to just leave it and knit the other sleeve the same. I plan on blocking it and seaming the sleeve to the body then cutting the ends of the sleeves at the appropriate spot. I'll have to be careful to do both sleeves the same way. Then I'll have to unravel and then bind off the edge. The photo of the model wearing this sweater with the pattern shows the sleeves coming down past her wrists and covering part of her hands also and this is how mine is. I don't think I will like long sleeves like that but I hate the thought of getting rid of any of the ribbing section. I don't think its long enough as it is to go along with the ribbing section of the body of the sweater. Maybe I'll leave it as is with the too long sleeves. I don't know yet for sure. I would probably need to use some of the unraveled yarn I get from the sleeve ends to do some of the seaming because I really don't have any more yarn left.

I've also started knitting gauge swatches for my next project. It's not the Nantucket Jacket like I had planned to do next. When the time comes for me to start new projects I always seem to go for something else from what I had been planning. I've decided to do the Bell Sleeve Jacket from the Holiday 2006 issue of Vogue Knitting. I bought some Cascade 220 from Webs when they had their big sale last month. I have yet to successfully knit anything from Vogue. I'm a little concerned about the sizing for this sweater especially of the sleeves. At this point I'm considering making the size small but knitting the next size larger armhole and sleeves. I'm quite thin but I like a fair amount of room around my upper arms for comfort. It seems like this should work although I've never changed a pattern that way before.

Monday, May 28, 2007

apricot fronts done

I reknitted the left front of my apricot jacket and then completed the right front. No more mistakes so far (or at least none that I've discovered). Here's a peak at them both.

I dusted off my old copy of Aran Knitting by Alice Starmore this past week. I got this book years ago when it first came out and really like the beautiful cabled St. Brigid sweater. I haven't knitted anything from this book but I get it out from time to time to gaze at St. Brigid. I've been searching the internet recently for other peoples finished St. Brigid's and it makes me want to get down to finally knitting it myself. I also discovered that this book has become quite a collectors item and that copys of it have sold on ebay for over $200. Guess I could make a lot of money selling it but I'm not going to. Anyways, I would like to knit this sweater. I'm thinking about yarns and colors. I don't want to start it next though. I think my next knit will be the Nantucket Jacket.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

apricot problems

I was all happy thinking I had finished the left front of my apricot jacket today until I realized there was a problem. I had interpreted the instructions wrong and I believe I did my decreases in the wrong spot. The instructions I have are the english translation from the original german pattern. They are very abbreviated and vague (to say the least). Actually they were the most clear on how to do the decreases but I did it wrong anyways. I was thinking that if I did them 11 sts in from the edge like it said I would be messing up the 10 stitch pattern, like it would decrease right across it and that they really probably meant to do the k2tog right before the 10 st pattern. But really, it's 11 sts away from the edge the whole way up so it doesn't merge across the pattern but creates a two stitch rib that travels up along the eyelet. So it was kind of a stupid mistake. On the back I had to rip out and redo from the beginning of the armhole shaping to the top edge as mentioned in my previous post because I didn't realize that "every second row" meant every other row (or at least that's what I ultimately decided it meant and it looks right now). Most of this project has been like two steps forward one step back (or more like one and a half steps forward one step back).

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

deja vu

Here is the second lace anthropologie inspired cape that I made. I made this one exactly like my first one, except for the button. It's really actually more of a short sleeved cardigan.
Pattern is from here
Yarn: Lion Brand Kool Wool in khaki
needles: size 11 Knitpicks options
started 4/3/07, finished 4/9/07, blocked beginning of May
I casted on 55 stitches, and divided 9 stitches for the front, 9 for the sleeve, 19 for the back, 9 for the second sleeve, and 9 for the other front. I did seed stitch for 8 rows, the pattern for 26 rows, divided for the sleeves, then did 32 rows of seed stitch. Then picked up around the armholes and did 21 rows seed stitch for the sleeves. I and gave this one to my mom for mothers day. It fit well and she seemed to like it.

I think I've become some type of pattern addict. I spend a lot of time looking for potential future knitting projects. A couple of nights ago I came across this lovely Heartland Lace shawl. The pattern is by none other than Evelyn A. Clark, who has become a favorite of mine. The pattern of the lace is buffalo hoof prints. How clever is that! I got the chart via email and am translating it onto graph paper for a chart format that I can more easily follow.

Meanwhile, I've finished the back of my apricot jacket and am now working on the left front. This photo of the back was taken May 11. I had almost finished it on the 5th but decided that I had started the armhole shaping too early, and that I hadn't done it quite right. So I ripped out 44 rows and redid it. The pattern is written in such an abbreviated manner that you really have to think to interpret it at times. I think it looks ok now. I'm a little worried that the bottom ribbing section is too long.

I really do want to stick to just knitting this cardigan until till it's done, but there are other knits that are tempting me right now like that Rowan butterfly dress, the Interweave Nantucket Jacket, and the Heartland lace shawl. I'm going to be placing a yarn order with Knitpicks soon. I can't help myself, I'm weak. I'm thinking Knitpicks Shadow in vineyard for the Rowan butterfly. I'm also going to get some of the Knitpicks Gloss for either the Heartland Shawl or some mittens I've had in the back of my head for some time now (or both). I've been curious about the Gloss for quite awhile now so I'm just going to go ahead and get some finally.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Prosperous Plum Finished

I've declared my properous plum tank finished.Yarn: 2 skeins Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in color 770 Wisteria
Needles: size 6
Pattern: Prosperous Plum Tank by Joanna
Cohen (I made the smallest size)
Started on 3/16/07, finished knitting 4/2/07.
I finished knitting this a while ago then stalled out on the crabstitch edging around the neck and arms. I started the edging a couple times then took it out, researched crabstitch edging on the internet, tried a couple more times, set it aside for awhile, checked crochet books out of the library, studied crabstitch, then tried again. It was very tedious and I was very clumsy with the crochet hook. I made myself press on. It was slow going and no fun to say the least. When I finally finished it around the first arm hole I didn't like how it looke
d. It seemed too bulky and curled out. So for around the neck edge I picked up stitches and then did a knitted bind off. Than curled out slightly also and I didn't like the look of either edging so I tore them both out. All of this stretched my previously perfectly fitting armholes and staps out of shape. So, my prosperous plum tank will be sans edging.

Also, I did
n't like how the cables on the front in the pattern were kind of parallel instead of mirror images of each other. It didn't look right to my eye. So I flipped the way the cables crossed on one side. On the patterns chart A I crossed my cables to the back (instead of to the front, on chart B I crossed them to the front like the pattern states.)

I like how it turned out (except for that whole edging thing), and I think it fits pretty well. The pattern was well written and clear and I enjoyed knitting it.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Swallowtail Shawl Finished

First I'd like to thank those who left nice comments about this shawl in my previous post. I'd also like to thank everyone else who has left nice comments on my blog. I really enjoy hearing from fellow knitters and of course enjoy the comments (and it makes me feel like maybe I'm not the only one who looks at my blog.)
And now here
is my finished Swallowtail shawl.
The pattern is b
y Evelyn A. Clark from the Fall 2006 Interweave Knits. I used size 8 needles and 2 1/2 skeins elsebeth lavold Silky Wool in Charcoal. I started it on 4/27/07, finished 5 days later on 5/2/07 and blocked it 5/3 and 5/4. I knitted it pretty quickly and would have finished even sooner if it weren't for all of the mistake fixing I had to do along the way. It seems like ever other row or so I would drop a stitch or less frequently forget a yarn over. I'd always catch it on the following row or so and was able to ravel down, fix it and ravel back up but still, I usually never drop stitches when I knit. Maybe it was the dark color of the yarn, I don't know. I ended up with a mistake free shawl in the end though despite it all.When I finished with swallowtail I wanted to knit another Evelyn A. Clark shawl or at least more lace. Then I spotted the Rowan Butterfly from Rowan 37. I think I'm going to have to knit this dress, even though I'll probably never wear it. I think I'm going to knit it just to knit it (like most of the other things I've knitted. It's nice that at least now I photograph them to document them first before I put them away in the FO cabinet). I didn't really give the Butterfly dress a second thought, or even like it when I first saw it, but then I started seeing all of the pretty ones people had made over at craftster (of course, the source of all temptation) and then I saw the one over at Knitpicks in their April catalog. That all led to my doing a search on flickr and now I'm smitten. I received my copy of the magazine with the pattern yesterday and today my KnitPicks color sample cards arrived. I don't care for the kid silk haze yarn that was used because I don't like fuzzy yarns. I'm considering using Knitpicks Shadow in vineyard. Maybe I'll get myself one of those dress forms to display my knitted creations on since I rarely wear them myself.

Friday, May 04, 2007

blocking swallowtail

Here she isI finished the knitting two nights ago and blocked it last night. It's big. Bigger than I expected. I have seen where most other people who have made this shawl and posted about it on the web have remarked that it is very small. Well, not mine. I used a dk weight yarn instead of a lace weight and that is what really made the difference. It's 63 inches across the top edge and 30 inches from top center edge to bottom point which makes it about the same width across as the shetland triangle shawl that I knitted and slightly longer from top edge to point. I used 2 1/2 skeins of the Silky Wool on size 8 needles. The shetland triangle only used 2 skeins. I almost only bought 2 skeins for this one but am so glad I got the extra.

The purl 5 togethers went pretty well. I really didn't have the problem with them that others have had. The key for me was to knit the nupps in the preceding row very loosely. I also used my knitpicks options needles which have a fairly sharp point so that helped too.

I used the silky wool for the other shawl I made, the shetland triangle, but I can't help but wish I had used a different yarn for this one. One that has some shine from a refined silk wool blend would have been very nice. Silky wool doesn't have any shine even though it has silk in it. It is a fleecy, matte, kind of soft yarn, with a slightly bumpy texture. Because of my time constraint it was the best I could do short of getting an alpaca blend but I don't like the itchiness or halo alpaca tends to have. I'd like to try Knitpicks Gloss, or JaggerSpun Zephyr dk.

Now I'm looking at the Flower Basket shawl and the Leaf Lace Shawl both also by Evelyn A. Clark. The things I like about knitting lace shawls is that you don't need to worry about them fitting, the pattern repeats are interesting, and the transformation from unblocked to blocked is so dramatic. The bad thing is I really have no place or occasion to actually wear them. Maybe I could put them on my walls as artwork lol.

Saturday, April 28, 2007


Yesterday was suddenly seized with the desire and motivation to finally knit the swallowtail shawl. I've got a deadline for it to be done though. I need to be done in the next six days. Done and blocked. Crazy? Maybe. I'm knitting it in black SIlky Wool (nothing says spring time like a black shawl, right?) Anyways, I know I said I didn't want to knit with the silky wool again but this was a sudden thing and my nearest yarn store (1/2 hour away) didn't have anything else I thought was suitable. I've just finished the 7the repeat of the budding lace 2 chart. I worked a little on it at work today (sshhh don't tell). I'd post a progress picture but no time... gotta keep knittin......

Sunday, April 22, 2007

apricot in blue

Here is how far I am on my apricot jacket from Rebecca magazine issue 27.

I decided that I wasn't happy with the cashsoft for the Nantucket Jacket so I'm going to unravel the inch or so that I have done on it. I'll stash the cashsoft for some future knitting project to be determined. I had only started the Nantucket Jacket to use up that cashsoft yarn that I had originally gotten for the Peplum jacket that I later decided I didn't like that much after all. I had never really planned on
knitting the Nantucket Jacket when I had first seen it in the magazine. And I've already had to unravel and start it twice. The thing is is that now that I have started knitting it, I've kind of gotten attached to the idea of it. So.....I'm going to break down and buy a bunch of expensive yarn (more yarn), the Karabella Aurora 8 that I've been wanting to try for so long now, and knit the Nantucket jacket .

But in the mean time, since I'll have to order the Aurora 8 and wait for it to arrive, I've started the Apricot Jacket. I actually had to start twice. The first time when I was about 11 rows in it looked like it was going to be too small. So I did a bunch of measuring, calculating and figuring and decided to start again only this time make the larger size. And yes, I know that right now it still looks like it would only fit a twig but I'm pretty sure that will fix itself during the assembly and blocking and all and end up ok least I'm really hoping it will.

Also, the summer preview of Interweave Knits is up. The origami cardigan, another Norah Gaughan design, looks interesting. Maybe I'll make that with the cashsoft yarn. It reminds me of some of the recent Berrocco designs she has done where the geometry of the design is what makes it clever.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


The knitting on Prosperous Plum is done and it is all blocked but I've stalled out at the last step. It needs the crochet crabstitch edging and I've been kind of avoiding it. I have also finished the knitting on mom's lace anthropologie inspired capelet. All it needs is a button and blocking. Knitting on my loon sweater is also complete (has been for quite a while now). It is just waiting for blocking and seaming. I'm so close to finishing all of these projects so what do I do? I start knitting another. I had been planning on knitting the Peplum Cardigan from the fall 2006 Knit It magazine. I bought 15 skeins of RYC Cashsoft Aran as a substitute from the pattern's Lion Brand Cashmere Blend and spent literally hours calculating sizes from my washed gauge swatch. I started knitting twice. The first time I was worried it was going to be too big. Then I decided that I wasn't really liking it. I wasn't liking the look of it. So I spent more time researching thru my magazines and patterns for something else I could knit with the Cashsoft. I finally decided on the Nantucket Jacket by Norah Gaughan from the winter 2006 Interweave Knits magazine (it's featured on the cover of that issue), mainly because the gauge is a match but also because I like cables. I started last night. I like knitting the pattern but worry the yarn will fuzz with time and I don't really like fuzzy yarns especially with cable designs. But, I tell myself its good to try new yarns and RYC is supposed to be a good yarn. It is machine washable but I don't think I'd have the nerve to ever really risk machine washing it after I've spent so much time in the knitting. I've read reviews of it where people generally like it and say it doesn't pill as much as the other merino cashmere blends out there. I'd really like to use Berroco Pure Merino or Karabella Auroura 8 but they are expensive and I already have the Cashsoft. I think I've thought too much about the planning of the abandoned Peplum Cardigan and now this yarn that I'm just done with thinking and just want to get to knitting.

I've also set up a flickr account. The link is on my side bar to the right. It will be for my knitting photos. There isn't much there yet though. I'm also planning on making a big yarn purchase (like I need more yarn) from Webs while they are having their big sale as soon as I decide on colors. I'd like to get some Cascade 220 for future projects including the Bell Sleeve Jacket from the Vogue Holiday 2006 issue. Besides, I'm telling myself it will be good to have extra project amounts of Cascade 220 on hand so I'm ready to go at a moments impulse.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

next up...summer knits

I've started a new project. It's the Prosperous Plum tank from this pattern. I found out about the pattern from reading thru knitting forums on craftster. There are a couple other people knitting this on a knitalong there. So far I really like how it's coming along.

I've set aside the tank top I was knitting out of the moda dea ribbon yarn. The yarn kept snagging on my fingers and was a real pain. Any little dry rough spot on my finger and it would snag. Besides, I don't see me actually wearing it when it's done (we'll see I guess).

I recently got Berroco's new pattern book L'attitude. I like the cover pattern, Napoli, and the pattern Nanette and am considering them for future knits. I also like this new free pattern they have called Wanda. You can really tell Nora Gaughan has joined Berocco. They have really improved in my opinion. I really like a lot of her patterns. You can pretty much tell by looking at Berocco's past patterns the point that she joined up with them. Their designs are more stylish, fresh and clever now.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

A finished Caprice Shrug

I finished this within the past weekIt was my second attempt at a sweater "shrug" for my mom. It was kind of a spur of the moment decision to make it. Unfortunately it's too small for her so I am keeping it myself. It fits me but it is a little tighter around the upper arms than I usually like. I think I will still wear it. I like how it looks.
I used a pattern for the Caprice Shrug from N.Y. yarns. (The pattern used to be available for free from their web site but not anymore.) I used Caron Simply Soft in country blue and size 8 needles. I substituted a seed stitch border for the lower edge and also for around the arms instead of the ruffle one the pattern called for. And I left off the ties and used a decorative pin for the front closure instead. I started on 2/16/07, finished knitting on 3/5/07, and finished seaming on 3/9/07.

When I went to deliver the Caprice Shrug, I was wearing my lace "anthropologie inspired capelet" sweater. Mom really liked it and so now I am going to knit one for her just like it. I just ordered the yarn thru ebay today.

Currently I am knitting a tank top with Moda-Dea Ticker Tape. It was on sale awhile back and I was weak and bought a bunch. It's sat unused for quite some time till last week on a spur of the moment I started on the tank top. I think I started to feel a little guilty about all the yarn I have accumulated and decided I should use it. The pattern is from the free advertising section by Tahki Yarns in the spring/summer 2003 Vogue Knitting. I've only knitted with ribbon yarn once before and that was with Lion Brand Incredible. The ticker tape yarn is quite different. It's softer and has more stretch to it. Unfortunately it has started some slight pilling and fuzzing along the cast on edge and I'm only halfway up the first side. I was disappointed to see that it's not going to hold up very well. I still want to knit the anemoi mittens, the backyard leaves scarf and several other items I've been thinking about for awhile, but these spur of the moment knits have prevented my from them so far. That's ok, I'll get to them eventually.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

two more

After unravelling that previous cable hat, I then knitted two more in a larger size.
They turned out pretty well. I used size 7 circular needles, Lion Brand wool-ease yarn in Oxford Grey, and casted on 108 stitches (instead of 96) with a cable cast on. I did a 3 inch ribbing brim on one and about a 2 3/4 inch brim on the other. For each one I did 4 repeats total of the cable pattern rounds 1-8, and I did an additional decrease round at the end for round 18. Pattern is from here.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

first try at cable hat

Here is a cable hat I just finished today. I turned out nice but it was too small. I had a feeling it was going to be too small while I was knitting it but I decided to keep going, finish and then try it on. I was right it was too small. So, I frogged it. For the non-knitters that means I totally unravelling it all back into a ball of yarn (frogs say 'rip it out, rip it out' hence the term). It's the first time I've frogged a completed knitted item. I'm going to make another one larger and see how that ends up. I got the pattern from here.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Finished wandering

I've finished my Wandering Aran Fields cape.
I used 3 1/2 skeins of Cascade 220 in color #2401 burgundy and size 6 (for the collar and button band) and size 7 needles. I started on 11/18/06 and finished 1/7/07. I made pretty quick progress thru the cable chart but when I hit the 9 inches of ribbing for the collar I slowed way down and didn't work on it as frequently. I knitted my Shetland Triangle shawl during this time. I finished it up by blocking it and sewing on the buttons this past week. It measures 17 inches from top (top button) to bottom with the collar folded down, 22 inches from top to bottom with collar folded up, the collar is a hair over 9 inches. With it buttoned up and lying on the floor the lower edge is 33 inches across (so about 66 inches around). It fits well and I like it. The yarn bled a lot when I was washing it to block it. I must have rinsed it with about 7 or so sinkfuls of water and it just kept turning the water red. I've never seen so much color bleed. I finally had to just give up. It turned my blocking towels slightly red in spots. It also seems to grab the lint and cat hair. Stuff really wants to stick to it. Other than that I liked the yarn and I especially like the yardage. The cables show up really well.

I've been working on my cross your heart gansey again. I started this back in 2001 and then set it aside (way aside) and didn't go back to it. I pulled it out again and am almost done with the back. I'm really in the mood lately to finish up all my WIP's and then just have one or two projects in the works at a time. I'm still scouting future projects though and hope to start the anemoi mittens fairly soon. I still want to make a swallowtail shawl and backyard leaves scarf at some point. The turbulence sweater from the Knitting Nature book, and berroco's free Wisteria pattern have also caught my eye.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Isabeau Purse finally finished

I finally put the finishing touches on my Isabeau Purse.
I had finished most of the knitting a few months ago, then it sat. Yesterday I added the buttonhole strap and started the lining. Today I finished the lining and added the button. I struggled a bit with the lining but it's in there and done.
I used two skeins of Knit Picks Shine Sport in violet, two strands held together, and size 8 needles. I like the feel of this yarn. It's 60% pima cotton, 40% modal. It's very soft (almost too soft) and not hard to knit with (unlike some other cotton yarns). It's a darker deeper violet color than what my photos show. I don't know that I would like it for a wearable garment though because it is a little too drapey and mushy feeling and I'm not sure it would hold it's shape very well. The pattern for the purse is from this site. I modified it slightly to make it narrower from front to back. For the bottom I did 10 rows of seed stitch instead of 16 and then for the sides I picked up 9 stitches along the bottom instead of 15.

I've also finished the knitting on my Wandering Aran Fields cape, and my loon sweater. I just need to block them both, add the buttons to the cape, and assemble the loon sweater.