Archive for the ‘knitting’ Category

Casting on for Ribbing

So I wanted to cast on a project that starts with ribbing and after watching The Knitting Glossary from Elizabeth Zimmermann and Meg Swansen (that’s another post coming soon) I had a new cast on to try.  Actually, it’s long tail cast on but you do it backwards for the purl stitches.  Hmm, that might not make sense.  Here, I made a video!

And here’s what it looks like.  Can you see two little purl bumps and two knit stitches, sort of?

A cast on edge for ribbing

The Unblogged Cardigan

Silly me, I’ve had something to blog about all winter and I never thought about writing anything or taking any pictures.  Last Fall, mom and I decided to knit the same pattern for ourselves.  After looking through a lot of patterns, we decided on the Sitcom Chic spring cardigan.  It was simple and only had one button.  We both modified it to be more of a cold weather/Fall cardigan and made it out of wool with longer sleeves.  I think I made the Medium and she made the Large from the pattern, it just depends on how you want it to fit, but I think they both work.

In cotton, I suppose this would make more sense since it isn’t supposed to come together at the bottom.  In wool, that doesn’t make quite as much sense… and only one button to keep me warm.  It’s just going to be a layer and I certainly wear a lot of brown, tan, and blue so I think I’ll keep it busy this next winter.  I tried to knit a little tighter although the yarn I used was still a light worsted weight (slightly bigger than dk weight) and my needles were size 8.  One of these days I’ll make a project that uses smaller needles and finer yarn… and probably love it.  The tighter it is, the better it will wear and that is important to me.  I want things I make to last!

Mom and I model our handmade knit (and matching!) cardigans.

Mom and I model our handmade knit (and matching!) cardigans.

The Birthday Hat

I had to get a picture in here of this hat/cap mom made for me for my birthday!  It is so sweet and warm and seemed like a really quick knit.  What was the pattern mom?  You should post it in the comments.  =)  I helped her pick out the yarn over the phone but I didn’t really know what the project was going to be and we decided to go with a color that was different than what I usually wear.  It’s just an accessory so it supposed to stand out a bit.  And then I wore it over to the Brookside Art Fair (which was super great and FREE) and it kept my head toasty warm.

Thanks mom!  I love it.

Alex and I smile for the camer after our birthday cake.

Alex and I smile for the camera after our birthday cake.

Exciting times with a local alpaca herd

alpacaLittle did I know that my visit to Marcia’s alpaca farm (Orchard Hill Farms) yesterday evening was going to be as exciting as it turned out to be.  I just wanted to treat myself to more alpaca fiber and I loved that I had met her alpacas when I “helped” (read that as tried to not to get in the way) on shearing day a month or so ago.  I called her up and she was happy to sell me some fiber so I drove on up to her house in the country.   It is such a beautiful drive.  I just love getting out of town although it makes me rather homesick.  After greeting the little dogs in the house we weighed out some beautiful fiber and talked about our beginning spindling and spinning skills.  She had white and black roving from last year’s shearing so of course I bought both.

After chatting a bit and talking about the alpacas she asked if I wanted to watch a mating (at least she didn’t say I’d have to help) since she was thinking about doing it anyway.  What could I say, but “Sure!”  So out we went to watch alpacas make babies.  It was a surprising turn of events, but not one I was about to turn down, and indeed, it turned out to be quite educational.  So Marcia, her husband Joel, and I hung out with the alpacas and the dogs and then she decided to split up the babies from their momma’s since they needed to be weened.  So the little ones, Norman, Lisa, and (ohh, I forgot his name) had to go in a separate corral from their moms and it was a split they weren’t very happy about.  At least Joel’s shirt wasn’t new!  And I was in charge of the gate.  I can do that.  =)  Now I want to go “help” again!

Playing with the knitting machine

So I had the idea to whip up smaller size blankets on the (very basic) knitting machine I share with some friends and then add, not just a little crochet edge, but nice, decorative (maybe even fancy or lacy) crochet edging that could dress it up and make a neat baby or kids blanket.  I’m working on one for a friend who just had a baby Sunday (yay for Scarlett and her new baby girl Beatrice Kate) and I made the body pretty quick, about an hour, on the machine and then decided I’d better work on my sweater a little more before I started on the edging.  My idea is to complement the (rather boring) pink body of the blanket with red, orange and hot pink to give it a little more character.  Right now it’s just a curled up little ball of knitting, so no pictures until I work on the edge.

The deadline is Sunday

I think I might just get this sweater finished by Sunday… if I have until midnight, that is.  I got a lot done on the body and ended with 1×1 ribbing at the bottom after decreasing about 10% before the ribbing.  I debated that for a while and then just went with it since I have a little of the same on the neck and I figured they should match.  It’s just longer/deeper at the bottom of the sweater.  I bound off looser than I imagined I would need and… yay, it isn’t tight at the bottom at all.  That’s a big danger with ribbing.  And with these hips, I did not want it to fit weird at the bottom.  I almost used Elizabeth Zimmermann’s casting on-casting off stitch, which looks really nice, but I didn’t feel like pulling a yard or two of yarn through each loop since it always takes forever.  But if you are ever looking for a nice edging and want something different, you should check out her books and try it.  So after binding off the body, I tried it on again and it fit very nice, certainly good enough to not rip anything.

I put the sleeve stitches back on my double pointed needles, picked up along the armhole edge where I cast on with the backwards loop when I started the body, picked up an extra stitch on each end to reduce holes and started knitting on the sleeves in the round.  It’s funny.  The sleeve has so much fewer stitches, but they don’t go as fast as I think they should just because I’m always shifting the bulk of the sweater around and around and sometimes those extra points get in the way.  Oh well, I’m thinking it’s going to have 3/4 length sleeves, but we’ll see how it goes.  I’ll try to post another picture to show you how much more sweater-like it is now!  yay!!

Upper body status

Progress so farOk, finally I took a picture of my progress.  So I have a ways to go on the body to make it a nice length, and then the sleeves.  It’s really stretchy since I’m using size 10 needles.  Hmm, I think that’s what I went with anyway.