Beautiful Knitting

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

Posts Tagged ‘Knitting’

Tweedy Knitting and Glove Repair

Posted by mtmom on March 20, 2011

I’ve had the treat of marathon knitting and designing this past Friday and Saturday, as DH and DDs went on a Spring Break camping excursion to someplace warm and remote.  Turning this . . .

Rowan Felted Tweed yarn, 10 balls

into this (etc.).

Swatch for decreasing in pattern

It kept me VERY busy!

And will continue to, until I get through that whole bag of yarn!

(another design project for Cast On magazine)

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In the meantime, I thought I’d tell y’all about some mending I did recently.

First request was for the thumb of a pair of Latvian mittens, bought for me by a dear friend on her trip around the Baltic, and then gifted by me to DS.

Glove, holding "hoot!", both to be mailed to DS at college.

hole in end of thumb, loose stitches stabilized by safety pin

repair made with darker brown yarn

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Second request was for several tears in a pair of Norwegian gloves well-loved by our church organist.

Charly's Norwegian gloves

Observe: Norwegian's do NOT tuck in ends -- they knot and leave them!

And unused colors are twisted and carried up at end-of-rds. Also see hole in finger end.

I do not have “after” photos, because a super-cold day came and I really RUSHED to finish these and get them back to their owner!

At least you can know that your “loss” was definitely his “gain”.

 

Posted in Design, Knitting, Mending | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Adding Button Finally Finishes Short Scarf

Posted by mtmom on February 27, 2011

Yarn-mixing Scarf fastened with button

The yarn-mixing scarf I’ve been working on (on and off) since December is now done!

double buttons

It had reached  only about 3 feet (1 meter) in length when one of the yarns ran out, and I didn’t want to join in something different.  So I decided on adding a button. . . but where and how?  The gauge is loose enough that a button can be pushed through the fabric pretty much anywhere, so I picked out 2 buttons, joined them together back to back with yarn, and the wearer can attach the scarf’s ends together as high or low as desired.

6 yarns, knit together

Almost all of these yarns, light-to-medium neutrals, came in a box of leftovers I “inherited” from a knitting friend.  The last one is a fine-gauge metallic.

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And how did I deal with all those ENDS?

One at a time!

running one end up along the side of a rib

Hey, note my right sidebar: I’ve been adding more links to instructive videos. Check out Kristin Nicholas’ series of videos on adding embroidery to knitwear!

Posted in Knitting, scarf | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Gift #2 Done!

Posted by mtmom on December 9, 2010

2 Coffee Cozies or Sleeves, in Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool

and modeled on relevant Paper Cup

This Ann Budd “Coffee Clutch” pattern was originally published in her book, Knitted Gifts, but was offered for free in the November 19, 2010 issue of Interweave’s Knitting Daily e-zine.  Don’t stretch it when you block it; you want it to keep its elasticity and “pull-in” so it’ll grip the cup.  I tried 2 different bind-offs on these:  modified traditional BO on dark, sewn BO on light sleeve.  Not sure which I like better, nor which will serve better in actual use.  I think firm edges and snug fabric might be better than extra stretchiness, to prevent the cozy’s slipping too far up the cup — you don’t need as much stretch IF you know exactly the circumference you want.

I’m also working on some temari balls for Christmas tree ornaments — maybe gifts too.  You can find the Lion Brand pattern for 3 styles here.  I had never heard of this craft before, but Wikipedia has an interesting, very short article here.

"Starburst" temari ball, in 4 colors of Vanna's Glamor yarn

Excerpt from Wiki article:  “Temari balls are a folk art form that originated in China and was introduced to Japan five or six hundred years ago. ‘Temari’ means ‘hand ball’ in Japanese. Embroidered balls may be used in hand ball games.  Historically, temari were constructed from the remnants of old kimonos. Pieces of silk fabric would be wadded up to form a ball, and then the wad would be wrapped with strips of fabric. As time passed, traditional temari became an art, with the functional stitching becoming more decorative and detailed, until the balls displayed intricate embroidery. With the introduction of rubber to Japan, the balls went from play toys to art objects, although mothers still make them for their children. Temari became an art and craft of the Japanese upper class and aristocracy, and noble women competed in creating increasingly beautiful and intricate objects.”

Posted in Knitting | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Gift #1 Done!

Posted by mtmom on December 7, 2010


I hope to get a nice photo of the headband *on* the recipient, with the ruffles coiled up into a flower. But I didn’t want to wait for that to post this — I’m SO pleased to be getting something(s) finished!

Many things are queued up and waiting. . . .

Posted in Cap/Hat, Knitting | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Lots of Texture, not so much Color this week

Posted by mtmom on May 9, 2010

Cast On’s call for submissions includes a request for Bavarian Twisted Stitch patterns, so I’ve intensified my work in that arena.  I’ve been going through my twisted-stitch book, counting stitches and rows needed for the various motifs, to see which might fit onto the back of a glove or the sides of a cap.   But, between my teen-genius, tech-guru DS coming home from college for the summer and my 4th grade DD returning to our home-school, however, I’ve cut back on knitting and designing time.  (Pleased to do it, you understand, but a cut-back nonetheless.)  And at some point this week, I noticed that almost all my current work is in undyed/natural/cream-colored yarns — hence today’s post title.

First, I’ll show you the giveaway hat I finished this week.  It probably will go to Julie’s church’s annual Craft Sale — she taught me how to knit back in 1999.

purl side out

Yarn is a JoAnn Sensations bulky yarn, Bellezza Collection “Bellissimo”, 90% thick-thin wool with 7% nylon and 3% “other fiber”, worked on needles size US 10 (6 mm).  Probably the “other” is the sparkly binder thread.  Don’t know if the photos will pick that up. . . .

I started at the top and increased until the “puffs” stopped lining up right on top of each other, then worked straight until the 50 grams of yarn ran out.  Switched to a less-textured, worsted-weight wool and US 9’s (5.5 mm) to finish with garter stitch at the bottom.  Ended up with an adult M/L size.  This project reaffirmed my conviction of a few years back, that I don’t really like working with thick-thin yarns.

knit side out

Decided I like the purl side better than the knit side, so I plan to tuck the ends in accordingly. If I can do an especially neat job of that, the hat will actually be reversible!

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As a break from the twisted stitches, I did a little bit more work today on my sampler of Gansey stitches.  Yarn is Wendy’s “Guernsey 5-ply” on US 3 (3.25 mm) needles.

Along the left side are horizontal stitch patterns and fillers (bottom to top):

1- stockinette, 2- Mary Ann or double moss, 3-Betty Martin, 4- purl band separator, 5- bird’s eye.  Next, I hope to do more moss stitch variations.

Along the right side are vertical patterns:

1- ladders (or steps? not sure at this point how they differ), 2- cable on seed stitch ground.  Lots more vertical panels to try out!

I noticed as I looked through my gansey books for cables, that nearly all are 6 stitches wide, and (at least in Gladys Thompson) cross every 7th row/round.  In back-and-forth knitting, this means every other crossing occurs on a wrong-side row!  No problem in circular knitting, though.  I also noted that almost all the cables cross to the right and are not mirrored on the other side of the chest.  Probably just to make the knitting easier.

I like working on this sampler.

My other un-colored project on the needles just now is a pair of kilt hose in DK-weight KnitPicks “Bare” (i.e. undyed) worked 2-at-a-time on one long Magic Loop circular needle.  I have made the last planned pair of increases on each sock, so now the ribbing pattern is “full” again (k3-p1, with k3 at center back) and I’ve reached the widest part of my calf.  If I decide the fabric is too stretched, I may go up one needle size rather than make 4 more pairs of increases.

(pins mark increases)

After all that off-white, this yellow swatch may seem bright!  (I made a similar one in undyed KnitPicks fingering, but can’t find it today.)

Here I’m experimenting with twisted stitches by eye, rather than following a chart or list of directions.

In traditional patterns, traveling happens on every row/round, so, in order to avoid twisting on the wrong side and repeatedly trying to peek over the top, I’m making a circular swatch by carrying the yarn across the back after every row.  I think I need to pick up the pace a bit on this, if I want to have a design more-or-less finalized and proposal(s) ready by the deadline.  I’d like to write an article, too, about different techniques to make the twists and crosses. . . .

Posted in Cap/Hat, Design, Knitting, Socks | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

“Citius, Altius, Fortius” Knitting — Part II

Posted by mtmom on February 22, 2010

Some serious knitting (and crochet) has been happening this past week at Mountain Mom’s house!

DD1 has discovered amigurumi and now has 4 creations under her belt.

#4 Polar Bear

#3 Penguin

#1 kitty-toy Fortune Cookie, #2 blue Lovebird

All of these were made from free Lion Brand downloads.

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From these, and the Crochet Workbook we had when last we were snowed in, in mid-January, she learned enough to “free-hand” this hat.

and Hat makes 5!

She now has her own Ravelry account and has earned 3 medals in the Ravelympics!

As far as my own “Olympic” knitting, since I completed the Chunky Charity Cap-in-a-Day, I have also finished the Inishturk Tam and Swatch #1 for Master Knitter Level III and am most of the way through a lopi-style cap (or cowl) where I’m using 3 colors at once in many, if not most, of the rounds.  Each of these an “Olympic” challenge!

Inishturk Tam

Swatch #1 (first go - may redo later if I can't block out that bias)

Lopi "God's Eye" Cap/Cowl

“God’s Eye” is the name given to that main motif, when used in fisherman’s ganseys.  I transferred into Icelandic-style yarn both the motif and the Channel Island cast-on.

I learned these during my study of fishermen’s sweaters for my Level III report on ethnic knitting, and I’ve been enjoying using the cast-on.

There *are* other things, knitting and otherwise, going on — even a bit of housework — but nothing post-ready yet. . . .

[Wordpress seems to be having trouble with images today!  Please check back later if they aren’t showing up just now.  Sorry!  😦  ]

Posted in Crochet | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

Finished Gansey Sampler!

Posted by mtmom on November 22, 2009

This got put on hold while doing “work” knitting, but today I got back to it and actually finished it — hurray!

This mini-sweater is the Sampler, from Beth Brown-Reinsel’s book, Knitting Ganseys.  It uses all the techniques of a traditional gansey, but on a smaller, quicker scale.

Ganseys, also called Guernseys (after the island in the English Channel) and Fisherman’s Sweaters, are native to the coasts of Scotland and England, and are related to the Irish Arans.

I used 2 yarns, because I split them between this and my proposal-swatches for the summer Cast On issue.  Deadline for those swatches to be received in Ohio is next Monday, 1 December, so I’m glad to have the swatches done and the proposals *mostly* written up.

One thing I learned from my first submission, recently photographed and edited, was that I wished I’d kept more notes on the original swatches, as to gauge and technique decisions.  I hope to rectify that this time; I’ve written down notes that I’ll KEEP.  I may even video myself handling the swatches, pointing features out to my-future-self, like, “see how I joined up these 2 pieces with ssk. . . .  I slipped these stitches (or not) after turning the short row. . . .  the slant on these decreases matches the edge better than these, see?”

I expect the selection committee will meet in the first week of December, and then let all the designers know what we’ll be spending the next 5 – 6 weeks working on.  Judging by last time, the competed model(s) and pattern(s) would be due by mid February.  It would be smart for me to proceed as if they will choose my proposals, and get started on the details of math and other paperwork in the meantime, maybe even more swatching/prototyping.  I can’t start the actual model-knitting, because they *send* designers the yarn they want used for the magazine, and it’s not always the same as in the swatch.  (More lessons from last time!)  I find the pressure can be pretty intense (!) in those weeks between selection and delivery, so the more I can get done ahead of time the better!!  (Enough on that — this is my day off!)

As far as using either Venezia (wool/silk by Cascade) or Touche (cotton/rayon by Berroco) for future ganseys, I now think that I’d rather use a nice, round, bouncy, toothy wool.  These yarns both flatten out, the strands separating along the needle as I knit, because they’re so smooth and non-grabby.

(I’m listening to the Wicked Tinkers (they classify themselves as Tribal Celtic) while writing — they can certainly perk a girl up and get her out of her mopey head!)

Posted in Celtic, Design, Knitting | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

Skye Caps with Ear Flaps; Video: Cabling without a Cable Needle

Posted by mtmom on November 8, 2009

Ohhh, what a headache I have today!  I was just having a nice conversation last night, and *crunch* went my neck.  Whatever got stuck (this happens to me often) is pinching some nerve(s) and giving me pain.  Perhaps I should move up my next chiropractor appointment. . . .

Anyway, I do have some successful knitting to report!

1_flap_cap

Front, color 106

2_flap_caps

Side, colors 106 and 111

Using Wisdom Yarns’ “Skye” bulky wool, I made 2 caps with earflaps for Monday’s toddler shower.  Some friends of ours are adopting 2 Haitian orphans and expect to be able to pick them up soon — perhaps as early as next week.  One of their grown daughters is hosting the toddler shower.  I checked before casting on as to whether the mom-to-be preferred wool or acrylic, and she wanted wool (hurray!), so I made these.  Only took 2 days per cap!

For flap placement, I used a rule of thumb from I-don’t-recall-where-I-read-it (I did the math from someone’s cap pattern in a book):  front and back are 3:1 and sides are 2:2.  In this case, 1 or 2 or 3 groups of 8 stitches each; BO 8, k16, BO24, k16.  Again used my own Top-down Square-Top Cap pattern (Ravelry links: child, adult) for the hat crown and sides.  I enjoyed making these, and hope the children will be kept warm by them — Flagstaff has got to be MUCH colder than Haiti!

I’m also moving forward on my submission for Cast On’s summer issue, but it’s still under wraps.

Found an interesting new blog today — actually she has 2: one on wordpress (Shifting Stitches link) and one on blogger (Curious Knitter link), both by Jeny Staiman.

And here’s a technique I’ve been trying out with good success lately:  a variation on cabling without a cable-needle, by Kathleen Cubley of Knitting Daily.  Link to Knitting Daily page with video.

Direct link to YouTube.  .

Posted in Cap/Hat, Design, Knitting, Videos -- made by me | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

More KAL-ing, ILL-ing, and Other-ing

Posted by mtmom on November 5, 2009

KAL = Knit-along;  ILL = Inter-library Loan.  No, we’re not sick (hurray!  Thank you, Lord).

The Schoolhouse Press knitalong (link here) has moved from Iceland to the Faroe Islands, and from lace scarf to footlets.  I began with a 2-color version, but switched over to solids to be quicker.FFootlet_1"Faroese_blue_heel

I have finished the blue footlet, edging it with gray, and began a gray foot to edge with blue (DS’s school colors).  I also plan to embroider an owl (mascot) on each toe.

His feet are bigger than mine. . . .

FFootlet_blue_edgedFFootlet_gray_heel

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I love to borrow knitting books!  When my libray doesn’t own a particular title, I can place an inter-library loan request for free.  If they can find it, and the other library agrees, they get it for me.   Recent titles include Hip Knit Hats by Cathy Carron, and Iris Schreier’s Reversible Knits.  From the former, I knit this “rose” embellishment (about palm-size).

From the latter, I hope to try some cables.knit_rose_top

Here’s another top-down cap, this time in Wisdom Yarn’s “Skye” bulky and using Judy’s Magic Cast-on.  The yarn color-changes even look good inside out!

brown_cap_onCh_profilebrown_cap_reverse_onChMost of my other knitting has been swatching for submissions to Cast On for next summer.

(I don’t want to show those yet.)

Sometimes this process is exhilarating, sometimes it’s plain frantic.  It can be rewarding! Level II of the Master Knitter program prepared me for this quite well, I’m finding.

Next is a pair of toddler hats for our friends who are adopting.

Oh, and the sweater I designed for my friend Bess to knit for our pastor is done, in time for the cold weather.  The yarn is a bit busy, so I only added a little cabling.  Simultaneous set-in sleeves — fun!!

(Sorry, the photos are both a bit blurry.)

Bess sweater for JanJan_in_sweater

Posted in Cap/Hat, Design, Knitting, Socks | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Lots of Knitting (Scandinavian and Otherwise) and Girls in a Tree.

Posted by mtmom on October 25, 2009

Before we get to the knitting, I’d like to show you my DDs in their new favorite hang-out.

2_girls_in_tree And, just how high is that?  2_girls_how_high

They’ve gotten a few scrapes and scratches, but declare the tree to be “awesome”!

On to the knitting.

As you may recall, I finished the vest for Cast On’s spring 2010 issue, just in time to join a knitalong hosted by Schoolhouse Press.  The first design was a neck-scarf in the Icelandic style.

haze_1rep_day6 In the beginning, you can see the pink diamond shapes, above the green provisional cast-on.

But as you go along, the decreases fold the piece up the middle and in at the sides, making the diamonds look like grid squares.

haze_scarf_day8

When the 2 sides collapse together at top-center, you carefully decrease/graft the final stitches together, and then pick up the cast-on to begin the border.

haze_scarf_day10 .

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The border gets pretty frilly toward the end.

I switched to a contrasting color midway through.

haze_scarf_day14.

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The Kidsilk Haze yarn knit up like a cloud on 4.5 mm needles (US size 7).

The scarf is light and, I think, oh so lovely!  Thank you Marilyn van Keppel and Meg Swansen and all at Schoolhouse Press!

haze_scarf_on_yellow_aspenIsn’t that a lovely, drapery, wispy thing?!

I’m planning to give it to my SIL for Christmas.  She loves pink.

While I was working on the scarf, I finished a 3-color spiral cap. I used my basic pattern (Ravelry link), but changed the cast-on to Judy’s Magic and began the other 2 colors right away.  I like that better  (– need to update the pattern soon!)

3-Greens Cap

3-Greens Cap

Once that was done, and once I finished the scarf, I went a bit nuts starting Too Many Things.

startitisI got hold of myself!

The green and white circlet to the left, I’ve pulled off the needles and laid aside for later.  (a cap to match the “Peek through the Windows” Cast On vest)

The gold lace cap, with the 2 green possible-yarns, I’ve returned to the get-around-to-it stack.  (I hope to write up the pattern.)

The blue is in that same stack.  (potential swatch for potential sweater)

The dark multi has progressed to half a hat, and moving quickly.  This is the first I’ve used Wisdom Yarns’ “Skye” bulky; it feels pretty good.

brown_cap

The dark Lamb’s Pride is way-way to the back of my mind, for one-day some-day nice color.

The pink is another Cast On submission in-the-making that I don’t want to show yet. . . .  The Cascade “Venezia” suits it well, I think.

Meanwhile, the second project in the Schoolhouse Press knitalong was posted on Wednesday this week.  Faroese footlets/slippers.FFootlet_1"

Another design in a Scandinavian style by Marilyn van Keppel:  first Iceland, now the Faroe Islands!  One more to go after this: modular footies (begins 2 November, 2009).

(link to the KAL)

I’m finding more slow going than the lace, and not as much chatter in the Yahoo group.

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Today, I’ve done some knitterly playing around.  Two swatches.

One, of some stitch patterns used by designers in the book, 101 Designer One-Skein Wonders.

The lower pattern was a simple lattice, but the upper pattern involved twisted-st garter stitch, an ususual bind-off that I had to see to understand, and columns of dropped stitches.  Here’s a series of photos to show the process.

Every 4th stitch left live on needle during BO

Every 4th stitch left live on needle during BO

Pull needle out of remaining stitches

Pull needle out of remaining stitches

Drop down the freed-up stitches, one at a time.

Drop down the freed-up stitches, one at a time.

All stitch-columns now dropped.  See the ladders.

All stitch-columns now dropped. See the ladders.

Blocking

Blocking

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Widens out substantially!

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In the second swatch of the day, I tried to adapt the neck-scarf’s lace pattern-stitch to a rectangle.  After several false starts, I figured that out to my satisfaction, and added on Marilyn van Keppel’s border at the top.  Perhaps this idea could become a sister-scarf to the triangle.  (I wonder how my other SIL feels about pink/purple?  She usually wears black and other “strong” colors. . . .)icelandic_lace_swatch

Busy, busy!

I also posted some new videos to YouTube.  One on washing woolen handknits, especially intended for “my” pipers with special socks, and one (in 2 parts) demonstrating a tubular bind off for circular 2×2 ribbing.  (I’ll post the former here — not sure if it’ll link or embed.)

Posted in Cap/Hat, fun, Knitting, lace, Videos -- made by me | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »