Saturday, January 31, 2009

Evolution of a project

Over Christmas I started thinking about knitting the February Ladies Sweater with the Estelle Silk that I purchased at the Knitters Fair. When I purchased this yarn, I thought that I was buying 9 balls but as I can't count or read when overcome with yarn fumes there was only 8 in the bag. (This is totally my fault the bag was clearly marked when I looked at my purchases at home).

I had already printed the pattern, and thought that I might be a little short, but due to the top down raglan construction, I thought I could use some complimentary yarn as an accent and that it would work. I decided to measure my bust and check the pattern.

I was not a little short, I was 200 meters short or about 20%. I didn't even have enough of the complimentary yarn to make up the difference.

A new plan was needed. Enter Ravelry.

Using the pattern searcher, I came across the Bianca Jacket. The same yarn (different brand but basically the same), enough yarn and I liked it. I would prefer the length to be longer but with just over 800 yards that was not going to happen no matter what the pattern.
I adjusted the pattern to knit the body in one piece, I didn't see the reason to keep the side seams. After knitting the bodice, I knit the sleeves in tandem. I kept the seam on the sleeves instead of converting to be in the round for the simple reason I didn't want to re chart the lace pattern (I had messed up the lace big time in the swatch).

Here is a photo of the sleeves part done.
I have progressed now to the point that I have joined the sleeves to the body so it looks like a jumbled mass so no more photos. I have been happy with this project so far and I hope by writing that it is not going to kick me.

Note to Julia in KW:
My sock blockers were acquired at a garage sale by my step mother. I believe they were used to dry socks on them as opposed to decorative use. I only have the pair and due to the size are for men's socks. I keep thinking though that I should get some for my socks.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Koigu socks at long last

I wasn't sure if I had blogged these socks before, I couldn't recall writing about them. A check of the archives (March) has a mention that I did some knitting with the following photo (dated Feb 28). The socks are the Riverbed Socks byCat Bordhi.

I finished the one sock and then finished the pair of Hedera socks (and that took months) before starting the second sock. I was just glad that I carefully put all the magic numbers down on a postit note inside the book, otherwise, well I wouldn't have remembered what toe I did.

The heel took a couple of attempts on the second sock. I don't know what I was doing with my short rows on the first attempt but I was using 3/4 of the stitches before I looked at it closely and realized that I wasn't knitting a heel at all, but some other weird shape. Attempt #2 on the second sock went better. I then looked at the first sock and thought it looked funny - it wasn't the heel fault this time but a problem with the instep stitches.

Finishing the second heel, I ripped the first heel back (I made the sock too long and the heel too high) and then finished the socks in tandem.

I added some blue Koigu PPM that I had left over from entrelac socks to prevent these from being ankle socks. Even with that addition they aren't very tall.
This is also a case of very different skeins from the same dye lot. I bought the two skeins of black KPPPM at the same time, and they have the same dyelot number on them. I don't remember there being a huge difference in the look of the skeins. However as you can see when they are knitted up there is a huge difference in the amount of white in the two yarns. It doesn't matter they still fit Ali's feet (which is good since they were intended for him).

Project details:
Yarn: Koigu Painters Palette Premium Merino P345-33 - 2 skeins + some of a third
Needles: 2.25 mm
Pattern: Riverbed Master Sock with a whirl pool toe.
Master Numbers and such on the Ravelry page.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A New Year, A New Look and finished Christmas Items

Unless you are blind, you will see that I upgraded the template that I used. The previous template that I had been using was not compatible with the new blogger (with widgets and xml tags). Every now and then I would try to upgrade the template with no success, I would then look at the templates on offer and play around with those. I was never happy with the outcome. The other day though I decided to take the plunge and found a template, came up with a new header and the result is what you see. There is still some tweaking that I will be doing over the next little while.

As Christmas came and went I was able to knit three Christmas stockings for this family. Ali and I had never bothered with our own stockings, we have some at my Dad's house but there they remain. This year with the arrival of Ninja Baby it was time to make our own stockings. I decided on the yarn before the pattern - Cascade 220, and Village of Kirbla Estonian Stocking by Nancy Bush.
I used fewer stitches and took out a pattern repeat on the leg since I was using Cascade instead of the sport weight yarn the pattern called for. I also changed the first motif to include the name of the owner of the stocking. A corrugated rib heel sets off the colours. I must say that knitting corrugated ribbing back and forth is a PIA. More than once I had to rip back to fix where I carried the yarn on the right side. For the small amount on the stockings I think it is worth it. A whole garment worth - no way.- That is what steeking is for.

Pattern: Village of Kirbla Estonian Stockings
Yarn: Cascade 220
Needles: 3.5 and 4.0 mm ( US 4 and 6)
Ravelry link with more details