Beautiful Knitting

Where Mt.Mom knits, crochets, designs, and seeks Beauty as food for the soul.

Archive for June, 2007

Posted by mtmom on June 27, 2007

[I am so enjoying having extra blogging-time this week!]

I finished the lace test-swatch suggested by Melanie at pinklemontwist, to try out yarn and needle sizes for her upcoming Mystery Stole 3.  For the Mystery pattern I am using Mystery yarn!  This “antique gold” cashmere-silk blend 2-ply was a gift, and came on un-labeled cones.  In the swatch, I tried size 4 birch, size 5 bamboo, and size 4 metal.   I eliminated the size 5 pretty quickly, so almost the entire swatch is done on size 4 needles, but note the increasing width:  my gauge was loosening as I went along.  Still, I don’t like a sloppy feel when I’m knitting. . . .lace swatch

I haven’t much experience with lace-knitting, so this is very much an exploration for me.

And here’s a cap update.cap in progress

. . . with Columbine.  Coming along pretty nicely, I think.
I’m making it up as I go along.  As my friend and knitting teacher Julie says, “It’ll fit *some*body!”  And it’s sure to keep a head warm.

Continued good knitting to you!

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Fair Isle swatch continues to grow.

Posted by mtmom on June 26, 2007

While I’m waiting to get my photo-links working, I’ll write new post about something else.

I’m well into the 3rd pattern band on my Fair Isle tube-swatch.  The first was from Sweaters from Camp; the second from Traditional Fair Isle Knitting; the third revisits SFC.  [Note:  Schoolhouse Press will be letting this title go out of print, since so many of the Shetland wool colors used in its patterns are being discontinued by Jamieson & Smith.  See the notice at the bottom of the main “wool” page on SP’s website.] 

In pattern band 2, I made a mistake.  Can you see it?

band 2 with color mistake

Keeping in mind the symmetry traditionally associated with Fair Isle patterns, you may notice that I didn’t change the orange color to peach beneath the center line, whereas I did use peach above the center.

Here, I went back and inserted the peach using duplicate stitch.  Pretty cool, huh?

band 2 with color corrected

In this shot, you can see a bit of the third pattern band, in dark brown and sky blue.

beginnings of 3rd band  Also a view of the corrugated ribbing separting bands 2 and 3.  Next, I think I’ll try some different contrast colors in place of the blue:  cream, and then light orange.  Those would be more similar to the brown in hue, while still contrasting in value (light/dark).  [Using my color theory here.]

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Dulaan Cap-in-Progress

Posted by mtmom on June 24, 2007

Today, I am working on the 2-color cap that I intend to donate to the Dulaan project of F.I.R.E. (Flagstaff International Relief Effort) by the July 14th deadline.  As you can see (I hope) from the photos, it is stockinette on the inside. . .

inside of cap . . . as well as the outside.

                                                     outside of cap

This is accomplished by a technique known as double knitting.  While there are several styles of doing it, I am working with both colors at one time and working both surfaces together (vs one pass for each color or for each “side”).   So, for color patterning, I switch which strand I use for the front/back for each individual stitch-pair, purling the inside-stitches and knitting the outside-stitches with whichever strand I choose.  [When my picture-taking ds gets back from his out-of-town trip, perhaps we’ll be able to get some good process photos.]

This is my progress to date.  Dulaan cap, about halfway doneabout one-third done  (older camera – sorry)

Can you see the color-pattern emerging?

Not yet sure how I’ll finish it; to rib or not to rib. . . .

Yarn is Debbie Bliss “merino aran”, colors #325 and #326 (hard to read band #’s), and I’m using US size 7 bamboo circular needle (Plymouth) and dpn’s (Brittany Birch — link).  In general, when double-knitting, use a smaller needle size than you would normally use with your selected yarn — it turns out looser in the end.

ETA:  Finally got the photos to show up.  Don’t know what the problem was. . . .

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Progress, Progess.

Posted by mtmom on June 6, 2007

Tonight at Knitting Night I finished the pink/cream boucle scarf. I’m still not sure if it’s destined for keeping or for the Craft Sale.

As you can see, I have not yet tucked in the ends . . . lots of ends.

I also got to a stopping place on the Spring Break sock — I want to measure it to see if I have enough stitches yet. I’m using my new rosewood dpns from Knitting Zone.

I have been working all the way around on my ice cream sweater, both sleeves joined with the body. Having reaced 1 1/2″ since the joining round, I have begun the yoke decreases. I’ve switched my plan from doing a raglan to working saddle-shoulders or fitted shoulders, a la Elizabeth Zimmermann’s templates in Knitting Without Tears and a Wool Gathering backissue. Those latter shapes only differ at the very top, so I won’t have to decide for quite a while yet.

And here’s my Fair Isle swatch. I’m nearly done with the first post-ribbing motif. At this point, I think I’ll do some corrugated ribbing after this motif, or else a peerie pattern, and follow that with a different motif. Maybe from Feitelson?

You can also see here the new Clover thimble gadget I’m trying out. I like it. Making the needle-switching easier — not so much finger-yarn-jugglling when I get reset for each new needle’s-worth of stitches. Also easier keeping both yarns evenly tensioned.

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New Swatching

Posted by mtmom on June 3, 2007

I’m still working on  my “Mad to Dance” socks, also called — at least by me — “Dancing Dominoes”, but I’ve gotten back to doing some “Fair Isle”-style color-work. 

I’ve long intended {ahem} to knit a Fair Isle jumper or vest, so when I read of Jamieson & Smith’s decision to discontinue 70 (eek!) of their Shetland Jumperweight colors, I figured I’d better get a move on.  So I seriously poured through my books.  I’ve focused in on a few patterns/palettes from Schoolhouse Press’ Sweaters from Camp, and one from Ann Feitelson’s  The Art of Fair Isle Knitting.  And I’ve ordered lots of small, colorful skeins:  both actual J&S Shetland wool from Meg Swansen and Peruvian wool from Knit Picks.

No one individual design has struck me as “the perfect one”, so I’ve begun a swatch that I expect to become a long, narrow tube — probably end up as a sampler-scarf — in which I’ll try out several repetitive patterns in several colorways, mixing and matching and recombining as I go.  Or, I could stop after a few and make it a hat. . . or a series of hats. . . .  I don’t have to know yet.  We shall see.

This first part is based on Betts Lampers’ “Northwest Sunset Fair Isle Vest” from Sweaters from Camp, pages 62 – 65. 

The ribbing is in 2-color moss stitch.  Yarn is Knit Picks Palette:  purple, 3 greens, and 3 oranges.  Worked Magic Loop style on HiyaHiya needles in sizes 1, 1.5, and 2.  Four repeats of an allover 30-stitch motif, as used in the SFC vest.  You can just begin to see the design showing up.  I keep wanting to knit more to see more!

And here’s a view of the inside. 

(I think the ribbing looks really cool on the wrong side!)

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