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.