Saturday, July 28, 2007

A(nother) word on gauge...


... a s-m-a-l-l word...

So, the lesson learned here is that sometimes 2" just isn't enough.

(Ok ladies, minds out of the gutter!!)

Since I hate swatching, if there isn't a way to incorporate a swatch into the beginning of my project (i.e. I can knit 20 or so rows of the pattern width in an hour or so), I will only swatch 2" x 2" - that is usually enough given my typical yarn and needle sizes. This picture though, is obviously a good example of 1/2 the reason why sometimes 2" just isn't enough. Truth is the larger the swatch, the better your chances of measuring accurately.

Another important thing when swatching is to actually take the measurement it measures. If you don't like what the tape measure says, stretching or squishing the swatch to make it measure what you want it to DOES NOT COUNT. (THAT would be the other reason 1/2 of the reason why this attempt doesn't fit EITHER.)

SO, I guess I will be making this again - at least I like the pattern.

In response to requests, I will be teaching a sock class at our September evening San Diego Fiber Therapy group. While planning this, it ocured to me that with so many crocheters, I am not sure how much experience we all have with DPNs. SO, that being said, I decided to do a DPN primer class in August to make sure what I am teaching in September is not too much of a learning curve - the group is supposed to be fun not frustrating. It will teach the basics... handling DPNs, knitting in the round, ribbing in the round, and decreases. I will also offer an alternate 1" x 1" rib cast on for those who feel up to it. Here is a picture of the hat we will be working on:

. . . please excuse the morning picture. . .

of course, the model is pretty damn cute though, isn't he?

Saturday, July 14, 2007

A word on swatching...

Ok, so we ALL know the importance of swatching. And, truth be told I usually make a feable attempt - I don't wash and dry and block and do the hoky - poky and turn myself around - but I at least knit a 4" x 2" rectangle and make sure I am close.....
THIS, is not close. THIS is what happens when you decide to change needle size and cast on in a rage. THIS is what happens when you take your frustrations on your knitting so you aren't arrested for what you would like to do. THIS is what happens when after a very tense night of (productive) knitting you are so in love with the yarn you are using that you don't even notice that the shawl (yes folks, this is a shawl) you are working on would fit around the EARTH!
All I can say is that I am really glad that I LOVE this yarn. I have rrriiippppped, re-cast on and will finish this weekend. More (human sized) pics to come soon.
I also whipped up this...


This is Vine Lace Baby Hat from Knitting Daily

by Sandi Wisehart

I used Mandarin Petit 100% Egyptian Cotton on US #3


This was a very quick and fun knit. Yes, I know this is REALLY not my color (or size) but is am hoping I can find a cold head that will enjoy the color as much as I enjoyed making it. Also, it uses almost no yarn - I can probably get 2-3 more tiny hats out of this skein.

Well, off to finish up that shawl (again). I'll leave you with a picture of my boys at Presidio Park. --Go figure I bring them outside and all they want to do is cuddle. - But look at the smile on Franz's face! (Franz is the cute one on the left.)



Saturday, July 7, 2007

GRUMPY

So I spent the last 2 hours writing this great blog and I hit publish and it just DISAPPEARED!!!!! You will have to wait a little while longer for my new post... I think a pint of ice cream is in order first! GGRRRRRRRRRrrrrrrrrr............

FINALLY a Post!

I know that it has been far too long since I have shared. It seems I have spent much more of my time starting projects than finishing them. So many in fact, that I could no longer start any new projects because all of my needles were already in use on partially completed projects. SO, time to get some work down, clear a path through the craft room and finish some of what I have started.


In a past post I alluded to this, a birthday present for a friend:
It is a free pattern from Lion Brand Yarn.
Lacy Stole made with Lion Brand Micro Spun in Black
While it took much longer to finish than expected, it turned out soft and very appropriate for San Diego weather. I may need to make one for myself - once I have completed more of my projects of course.


I have also completed (another) pair of socks.
Embossed Leaves Socks from Interweave's Favorite Socks
The yarn is Austermann Step with Aloe Vera and Jojoba Oil
75% Superwash wool / 25% Nylon
The color is not one that I would wear but that was the only color that they hadn't sold out of - this yarn knits up so nicely they can't keep it in stock. I fully intend on getting some more... I do always try to support my LYS but if they are still out of it on my next trip, I think I will have to break down and order some online.


I DID find out that when they say 'superwash' they mean "doesn't shrink even if you wash in hot and dry on high" The Embossed leaves pattern stated that if you wanted larger diameter socks to use a larger needle set. In my rush to get "things I want to make even though I have other things that need to be done first" projects checked off my list, I forgot about negative ease. The pattern called for US 2s so I used a US 3. They fit but not really the way I would have liked. I figured if I could shrink them, even just a little bit, that they would fit nicer. A hot water wash and a trip through the dryer on high and they are still the exact same size. (If I had liked the size they would have shrunk in a cold water, gentle cycle and line dry.)


I also learned a very cool cast on. It was a 1 x 1 Rib Cast On - incredibly stretchy and very neat. Get the book. Try it.


Well, back to finishing up projects... I PROMISE it won't be so long 'til the next post. Stay out of the heat - and if you see Mother Nature, please remind her that San Diego isn't supposed be humid!!!