The pattern was a bit of a pain because I think it had some stitch count errors. Also, the lace pattern is directional so it wasn't easy to make it more or less symmetrical. It is knitted from right to left, and I did not see any instructions on how to terminate the lace pattern on the left side so I had to improvise. It's knit in a rectangle, as seen in the WIP photo. I added a row of single crochet on the underarm edge to bring it in and firm it up. I'm pretty happy with the end result though. I'll have to wait for warmer weather to see how it wears during the course of a day.
Friday, December 28, 2012
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Thursday, December 13, 2012
This is the Orbs Cowl from Knitscene Accessories 2012. My yarn is Debbie Bliss Glen. It's a bigger gauge yarn than what the pattern calls for, so I made one less horizontal repeat of the stitch pattern and I made only 4.5 vertical repeats instead of the six called for in the pattern. It was a quick knit, and it's very warm and fun to wear.
Sunday, December 9, 2012
- I found this great curio cabinet at the Los Altos ACS Discovery Shop. (That place has the greatest stuff.) See image above.
- I moved the cabinet up to SF to be used as a small liquor cabinet. It took the space formerly occupied by a very out-dated 1970's TV stand. The stand got hauled out to the street corner for free-cycling. It was picked up less than 48 hours later.
- While walking the dog at night, we saw this black chest of drawers set out for free-cycling. I drove over and picked it up and we hauled it up into the spare room. See image below. It's actually an inexpensive piece with flimsy construction, but it's good enough for my purposes. It also had some bits of paint chipped off but a black Magic Marker took care of that.
- The flimsy chest replaced a small plastic (lavender!) chest of drawers, which got hauled down to the garage.
- The plastic unit actually replaced something in the garage, which was a sturdy but very ugly small wooden chest of drawers. (Yes, it was uglier than the lavender plastic). No photos provided for either of those units. The sturdy but ugly chest was hauled out to the same street corner for free-cycling. It was also picked up less than 48 hours later.
- To complete this frenzy of furniture movement, I took an antique rocking chair (see last image) from SF to the Discovery shop as a donation.
-- My furniture count: -1
Woo-hoo! At this point in my life, any decrease in the amount of furniture is good.
-- The number of pieces that have found or will find new homes: 5!
I'm being so green, I could just die.
Friday, November 30, 2012
Sunday, November 18, 2012
I've been on the search for the holy grail of button bands for quite a while. I like button bands to be sturdy in order to prevent button band "gaposis" in fitted cardigans. Here are some of the things I've tried:
- Knitting a separate double knit band and sewing it on -- It can be almost too thick and it's a pain to sew it on, even though I don't mind sweater seams.
- Sewing a ribbon backing on the underside -- It's way too much work and I don't like the look and the band does not stretch.
- Using a linen stitch -- This is okay, but I don't love the stitch pattern on a button band.
- Using a needle size of a much finer gauge -- This is my favorite method for worsted weight yarns because you can achieve a pretty dense fabric that way.
- Using an attached I-cord and leaving gaps for the button holes -- I love this method, but it does not look good on all sweater styles. Sometimes you just need a ribbed band.
I buried my button holes in the purl stitches. I've also been on the quest for the perfect sturdy button holes. These are almost there. They look pretty good and are extremely sturdy. Here's a close-up of the button bands. You can see that the ribbing has more separation between the knit stitches and the purl stitches look slightly different. The thickness is not obvious from the photo though. Another thing I like about this band is that knit stitches at the bottom do not scrunch up and curl under like they do with the normal ribbing.
Thursday, November 8, 2012
I'm mainly a sweater knitter, and a lot of sweaters use the K2 P2 ribbing to finish necklines, armholes, sleeve openings, and front bands. I like the K2 P2 ribbing, but I was always trying to get the perfect tension while binding off. Usually I end up using a needle size that is 2 sizes larger but that's not always the best tension because it depends upon the actual needle sizes. Also, I don't really like the look of looser stitches on the bind-off.
I tried the popular Jenny's super stretchy bind-off, but I don't like the big bump caused by the yarnover, and I found it too stretchy for ribbed necklines and such, since they don't need to stretch as much as socks do. Here's a swatch of the bind-off for just knit stitches, and you can see the bumps at the top.
I knew that I needed to add more yarn to the bind-off row to give it stretchiness, so I decided to just try doing a Kf&b, because that almost doubles the yarn length. It does have a thicker look on that last bind-off row, but it's not that bad, and it stretches about the same as Jenny's bind-off if I do it on every stitch.
So then I decided to try it with every other stitch, and I found that the stretchiness is just about right. The stitches with the Kf&b don't look that different from the stitches with a K only. I used a cable cast-on for the swatch, and this stretches about the same as the cast-on.
So, for K2 P2, I do Kf&b for just the knit stitches when binding off, and I've found that it always gives me just the right amount of stretch. It does not look that different from a normal bind-off in ribbing.
Thursday, October 18, 2012
I bound off the ribbing using my own variation of a stretchy bind-off. For the knit stitches, I Kf&b, passed the first stitch over the second, then passed the last bound off stitch over that one. The purl stitches were bound off as usual.
It's one of those garments that looks more interesting in the back. I have more of this yarn in a rust color. I might make another one with some other kind of back panel pattern.
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Here's a close-up of the stitch pattern. It causes quite a bit of biasing, so it would probably not be good knitted in the round. Breaking it up with the garter stitch sections also helped cut down on the biasing.
The stitch pattern is a multiple of three, and I put one selvedge stitch at each end. Here it is:
RS: p2tog, yo, k1 tbl WS: p1 tbl, p1, k1
For the k2 p2 ribbing on the armholes and neckline, I did the same semi-stretchy bind off as I did on my last sweater. For each knit stitch in the bind-off, I did a kf&b, passed the first stitch over the 2nd, then passed the last bound-off stitch over that. I used the same needle size and I find that it gives just the right amount of stretchiness.
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Saturday, September 1, 2012
Sunday, July 29, 2012
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Friday, June 22, 2012
The next shop is Tutto A Mano, which is a very cute little store. They have their own line of hand dyed yarns, but what I liked best was their wall of buttons. Buttons are easy to pack, so of course I had to buy a few.
In Taos, I checked out a shop called, oddly enough, "The Yarn Shop". This is a small shop, and I was greeted by friendly people and 2 small dogs. They have a lot of locally spun and dyed yarn. I avoided buying anything because it would have been too pricey to buy enough yarn to make a sweater. The shop is a part of the John Dunn Shops complex, which has a lot of unique small shops, including a very nice fabric store.
The last fiber place I visited was the Española Valley Fiber Arts Center. This is a non-profit organization that promotes fiber arts in New Mexico and it serves a large regional area. They have a large space, with many weaving looms in the back rooms. They also have retail section that features a lot of local yarns. So, of course I had to buy a little souvenir yarn. I bought two skeins of New Mexico Merino worsted weight yarn from tattersall mills.
I brought only one project for the trip, and I made quite a bit of progress on the back side. It is the Strafford Tee pattern, and I divided it up into front and back for flat knitting.
I leave you with two classic tourist photos of New Mexico -- the plaza in Santa Fe, and the Taos Pueblo.
Saturday, June 2, 2012
The rest of the sweater is just your basic raglan top-down pullover. I added some short rows to raise the back neckline a bit, and the neckline is finished with a row of single crochet followed by a row of reverse single crochet.
Tuesday, May 8, 2012
The second dress is McCall's M6554, a pattern from the Fashion Star series. I don't love the show, but I like it enough to watch it. The fabric is an embroidered linen blend that I got last year an JoAnn's. I didn't want to use a tie, so I added some white piping. I sewed the pleat center for the first few inches because I didn't want so much flaring right at my stomach. I also widened the straps by about 1/2 inch towards the arms. The pattern fits well, but it is cut almost too high on the armholes -- it feels like the armholes are too confining.