Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Rip Master

I've got no fear of ripping out mistakes. I've got no fear of ripping out if the sizing looks off for some reason. And that's just crazy!

So I've been working on Bryant's Slipover from Interweave Knits (online bonus pattern - find it here

I chose a yarn which is probably heavier than called for and I'm using a needle size between the two required. I also started the pattern in one size - and since I'm converting it from straight to circular you would think I double and triple checked when joining the sides - but alas, that's exactly what I thought I did, and didn't. So the first go around was ripped out. The benefit of doing that, though, was that I saw how large the original cast on and rows seemed. I had checked gauge - cause I learned the hard way that my knitting is often different from the pattern. So the plus side of all this was that I could restart in a smaller size - and it now seems to be coming along just fine.

I love the colors - green and pink, and i'm loving the yarn and it's ability to hold shape. What I'm on the fence about it how the pattern is actually looking - visually. I think they appear too close in range to allow the proper contrast.


Monday, August 20, 2007

Patterns and new projects

I've begun writing out the pattern for Casey's sweater - which I'm naming "hidden hearts". My hope is to have the pattern published - but it's requiring a lot more from me than I originally expected - numbers, gauging, etc. - not really a bad thing - just time consuming.

Here's a preview:
Close up of "hidden heart" on back of sweater:

I started Interweave Knits "Bryant Slipover" on the train this morning. Again, I'm converting it into the round because (like you) I hate sewing seams. I'm using a slightly heavier weight than the pattern called for but I think it's going to have a nice shape and ease to it when i'm done. I chose Jaeger's Roma in Hollyhock and Leaf (MC). Here's a glimpse so far:

I love the colors together - having some "cute" color combinations in your wardrobe that can be worn all year round (if needed) is so cheery!

My order from came on Friday and luckily (whew) the Oh My! was the same dye lot as the ones I bought from them in July.

I'm hoping my order comes today - would be an ideal pick me up from the overcast and rainy weather we've had.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The trouble with lace (and other updates)

Sooooo...where to begin

After the mittens for my sister and Casey's dress (see above) were finished I started in on a "me" project...The skirt from the Spring 07 Interweave Knits magazine.

Now, I've only ever done sweaters/tops for myself and I guess I'm a little critical of my "bottom" so the skirt both thrilled and scared at the same time. As such, I figured...if the whole things a wash when i'm done, I will NOT use good yarn...and chose Caron's Simply Soft in Dark Country Blue. Next decision - what size to make? I measured myself and picked a number...eeny...meeny. When I went to dig out my Size 6 needles to work in the round, I remembered I lent them to Liz in Vermont figuring I wouldn't need them for a while. I said, what the heck, I'll use Size 7's instead and just worked the pattern as it was. Well, I got about 7 inches into the skirt, transfered it to some waste yarn and tried it on - it fell to the floor. Ok, too big (insert boost to the ego here).

Rip Out #1 - restart - fewer stitches and smaller needles. Rework to 7 inches - transfer off needles to waste yarn and voila...magically fits!...back onto needles (all very time consumming).

Next: The pattern calls for the upper/solid section to be about 13" in length - I measured and that seemed a little skimpy for a tall girl like me - so I brought it down closer to 16" - plus, I just wasn't ready to face the lace section, I'll be honest.

Lace section #1: So as you know, lace is a whole bunch of passing over, yarning over and knitting togethers all rolled into one jolly good time. Yeah, not so jolly. The first couple of rounds went swimmingly. I thought, Gee Karen, this is a piece of cake, what were you afraid of? Jump ahead to Row 7. I'm yarning over. I'm knitting and slipping and counting. Crap...I'm short some stitches. Find beginning marker, recheck the count. Great, the mistake is near the beginning. Carefully take the stitches back one by one. Restart again. Get to end, crap, count off again. This time I count the stitches...and I'm completely short from the beginning.

Rip Out #2 - I take out all the lace I've done. Husband walks in the room with yarn all around me and says "what did you do now". I huff.

Restart Lace #2. This time I count stitches every round. This time I make sure I'm concentrating - not on a train, not watching Elmo and Sponge Bob with Casey. I am focused!

Approximately Row 7 - AGAIN! Count is off, something is terribly wrong - but a different wrong than last time. What now? More heavy sighing. And now my right elbow is strained and my shoulder is starting to hurt. I HATE LACE! LACE IS THE ENEMY!!!

Alas, I end out with...

Rip Out #3. Then I stay up until 1:00am and carefully work to Row 13 - success? I think so. If not, tough darts - no more ripping out for this darn skirt already!

I'm now around Row 25 and have laid it to rest for a few days. Seriously, it's totally screwed up my elbow! I went for a massage last night and it made a world of difference - but i think some anti-inflammatories will have to be administered soon.

In the meantime, while the skirt and I are taking a time-out from one another, I am knitting a birthday gift for a friend (no hints in case she reads this) and also working on a pull-over sweater for Casey using the yummy Plymouth Oh My! yarn I bought at Kalediscope Yarns when I visited Liz in Vermont. I still can't believe how soft it is. Maybe I'll make myself a blanket in it too.

Lastly, to update on my yarn stash additions. On their way to my home as I type are the following:

  • Cherry Tree Hill Supersock in Serengeti

  • Jaeger Roma in Leaf Green

  • Jaegar Roma in Hollyhock

  • Plymouth Oh My! in Green (for above mentioned Casey sweater)

  • Jaeger Baby Merino DK #212

  • Mondial Levante #897

  • Classic Elite Star in Cream
Why all the yarn you ask? First of all - they were ALL on sale - and who among us doesn't love a good yarn sale. Second, I DO Have projects in mind for each of them - so it's not a complete whim. Besides, a little yarn shopping makes me happy - and is (most of the time) cheaper than other vices I could have :o)

All my best until next time.