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Archive for the ‘knitting techniques’ Category

Well, well! Even a seasoned knitter can blow it. I love this new cowl I am knitting…even though I do not love doing the cluster stitch which makes the Wildcat Canyon Cowl so appealing.  But the real issue issue is…..after completing the 8 rows of the edging I discovered the infamous not-wanted mobius. How could this have happened?? I have started this beauty now going to be the 4th time. Two of the times have been the mobius issue and one was ….oh who remembers? But I think this is a blessing as I kept thinking the fabric that my size 7 needle (called for in pattern) and my fingers was producing was too tight. Here’s a snapshot of what not to do…..now I start again. Glad I love the vision of this cowl and Rios Malabrigo yarn. At least I am getting my money’s worth in knitting this wool.

Rippppppppppppp! Hey! I think I will change color now. I love the teal but I am ready to try a color (in Rios) that will show the beauty of the stitch better. Oh, yes I can dream of another pattern for the teal. I think I just renamed this cowl….”The Never Ending Cowl”!

Note: the cluster stitchP3tog, K3tog, P3tog into the same stitch before dropping them off the left needle and onto the right needle (designer’s instructions). I would change this to read…..P3tog, K3tog, P3tog into the same stitch before dropping them off the left needle. There will be 3 new stitches on the right needle when you drop the 3 being purled tog 3 times.

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No more shawls for me I’ve been to known to say……until I see another beauty. This time it was Jan’s newly purchased  “Miss Babs Yowza – Whatta Skein!” yarn to knit the Brickless shawl designed by Martina Behm. Earlier I saw someone else walking the Stitches floor wearing a beautiful shawl and I captured the name of the pattern….Brickless. It’s a popular one. Yes…..I “accosted” many walking the Stitches West floor wearing knitted garments that appealed to me.  (It was easy for me to do as I was working/retailing in MaggiKnits booth #314.) In total I collected the names of over 30 shawls.

I was going to wait a bit to start Brickless, but decided to forge ahead because one of our Friday knitting group (not Jan) came to the knitting table with questions last Friday. Deb and I also met briefly this past Monday morning to review/find a mistake in her knitting.

Now I have some tips that I’d like to share with any of you who embark on this knitting journey.

  • Brickless Swatch_2Do a gauge swatch. I know it’s a shawl and one would think….”oh, no worries – I get gauge”. In this case the label on the yarn says 4.5 st – 5.5st/in US 608. The pattern says 4mm (which is US 6) or size to produce gauge of 4 sts to inch. I thought the fabric that I saw need on 4mm was a little more dense than I would like for this shawl. Thus, I swatched on both size 7 and 8 needles. Swatching on size 8 produced the gauge of 4 st/in which is what pattern specifies and has a soft drape.

 

  •  BricklessThere are 3 pattern sets – Lace, Garter and Rib – in each repeat. My mind is such that it wanders when I knit and relax which means I do a terrible job of keeping track of the number of rows (in my head) and the “benchmark” stitches at the end of each set. Notice my green cheat notes. I mark off each row and count the number of stitches so that I know the increases are happening sequentially. I like the idea of adding the expected number of stitches at the end of each pattern set – benchmark. This system also allows to more easily help anyone in our knitting circle.

 

  •  Now onto the next repeats (5 more of 1st 3 pattern sets) before finishing with one lace set.

Happy knitting!

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Sock

Day/Date/Time/Location Learn how to knit this basic sock in this 3-wk sesson spread out over 6 weeks. Then you can move onto The Socks Forever Club

Date: Feb 27, Mar 12 and Mar 26

Noon – 2pm

First sesson: foot measurement, custom-fit, cast on, join and begin the cuff. Homework: Knit 6″ or desired lengthcuff

Second session: Heel flap, turn the heel, gusset. Homework: knit the foot

Third Session: Complete the toe! And now you will have a sock!

Fee $65.00

Here is the link to sign up.

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IMG_1002This wrap,  knit in Simply Fine yarn from Green Mountain Spinnery,  started out to be the Gillette Wrap. I saw the pattern and wrap at Stitches West 2013….loved the yarn and thought I liked the pattern. But……after casting on the needed 277 stitches and doing the short row shaping and starting the lace section, I realized this was not the design for me. First off, I read the short row W&T (wrap and turn) too literally…..I short rowed but didn’t wrap. I know better! I was past the garter  design and into the lace pattern when I decided that I had to start again. Not only was I fussing about the W&T’s , I now thought the original lace section was too froo froo for me.

There was no way I wanted to cast on 277 stitches again so I “frogged” to within a couple rows of the cast on. As long as I was that far back I could add another design element; thus eyelet was incorporated along the edge. Already I was liking the design better. I kept the short row part the same except I knit the wraps from the W&T’s as I knit across all of them. The results were much better. As long I was changing the pattern I kept dreaming….probably more fair to say obsessing about each “next” section.

I poured over Melissa Leapman’s new book “The Knit Stitch” and chose “Slip Stitch Bands (page 230). Then on to more garter with clear beads added with the crochet hook method. I poured over my books again for the last two sections of this wrap which are the Indian Cross Stitch, Garter, Eyelet and Picot Bind Off Edging. Done…….. with just a little yarn to spare. Now to the blocking board.

The Knit Stitch

Slip Stitch BandThe Picot Edge

 

 

 

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What do these all in have common? Last Saturday morning was abuzz with projects and techniques.

Betsy just finished one her gauntlets…..a bright spring green that matches her zest for taking on life’s challenges. She has decided to move back to Kentucky….she will be greatly missed. The good news is that we have the pleasure of her company through the summer. Love that gauntlet Betsy!

Recently Katie finished a beautiful scarf….the ever popular multi-directional pattern. I believe her yarn choices came from Art Fibers. This past Saturday found her making major progress on her first sweater….Noro yarn and Noro pattern. It will be lovely.

The cardi/cape/poncho knit with Cascade’s Pastaza (now discontinued) that Nina has draping from her needles is another beautiful piece….that beauty came with some pain. She began this project at a time when her time was stretched thin with work and home care responsibilities….and she knit! She was nearing the end last month when when she discovered she had one panel too many on one of the fronts…….the solutions available were to rip it all out – an option that was not okay….so we opted for the practical solution – to isolate the stitches so there would be no more knitting on that end piece/section. Then what? Steek….that means sew and cut. Nina sewed along the section…I then crocheted next to the stitching…and I cut! It was a miracle solution…Nina will be modeling the finished garment soon. By the way, I actually love to cut as a solution for knitting problems. Hmmmm…..think I’ll tell the story soon (for those who have not heard to talk about it) about cutting an elephant out of a sweater.

One more story tell from this past Saturday…..Marsha arrived wearing her stunning purple MaggiKnits Linen Sweater. Marsha was inspired by a sweater in her closet….that became the pattern. I helped her design from that model. Now Marsha has knit this sweater almost twice…she got off in the setting up in her false seams…and uhoh the fronts were off. There was not steeking option here! She and Susanne ripped it out about 6 weeks ago….and I would Marsha had that cardigan reknit in a month. We call her the marathon knitter. Notice Marsha’s matching shoes….she has the best and most interesting color coordination. Her next project is another cardigan knit with Shaefer’s Cotton Laurel (love this yarn now Shaefer is closed/retired)….the yarn is wound and is already on her needles.

It’s been a fun knitting month!

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A proud giftee - Kevin's son!

Kevin has been knitting for years….he told me the other day that he was a young boy when his mother taught him what to do with those knitting sticks. He has knitted color work for years….he showed us the vest in process for his wife (photos to be shared in subsequent post)….and then he picked up his needles to start the top-down sweater for his son. His goal is now to learn more technique and improve existing technique. He produces lovely knitted fabric…his stitch construction is good…he simply wants to learn more.

On to the body!

The yarn of choice for this sweater is Brown Sheep’s Cotton Fleece. Kevin began at the neck edge, did the raglan shaping, placed the stitches for the sleeves on waste yarn “holders”, continued knitting in the round for the body of the sweater for an inch or so and then introduced his color design…the initials of his son.

The beginning of the color design!

The Sleeve Details

The stitches on the waste yarn holders were put back on the needles, and the sleeves were knit from the armhole down to the wrist. The fitting technique here is to determine how many stitches are needed for the wrist….how many stitches are on the needles…..how many stitches need to be decreased over how many rows to create desired length. The decreases for shaping create a seam line under the arm which is where the decreases should happen. The decrease “recipe” is K2tog, k1, SSK…..this will create a symmetrical “seam” line.

Almost done!

You can now see the body and one sleeve done. The best is yet to come….the finished sweater.

The finished top-down sweater

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Mary and her Tomten Jacket

Mary is happy…happy! It was a happy evening recently at knitting workshop…she completed the knitting journey of the Tomten Jacket, a Elizabeth  Zimmerman design.

She knit this garter-stitch design in Brown Sheep Lambspride Superwash. She began this sweater for her granddaughter…..time slipped away…and now her neighbors have been gifted with this lovely sweater for their newly adopted child. As you can see Mary was overjoyed  to complete this project….she stuck with it and you can see the results.

The Tomten Jacket

The detailing that makes this Tomten unique is that Mary rolled the edging back and tacked it all around. She also created an I-cord loop for the toggle button.

Yeah Mary!

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