Sunday, June 29, 2008
Piplup and Turtwig didn't like the loud thunderstorm we were having, so they (along with the little one, Panda and Riolu) got up to help me take this picture.
Knitting looks better with friends, doesn't it?
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Okay; here's the story:
My mother was taught sewing and needlework by her Aunt Iris in the 1940's. Iris was a school teacher, botanist, grammarian, gosh knows what else, but also a truly excellent seamstress. And she drilled into my mom that if the back of your work doesn't look just as neat and nice as the front, you're doing it incorrectly. (I'd have said "wrong", but I suspect Iris would say "incorrectly" so there you go, homage to Iris.) So . . .
Here's the stars intarsia, front view. Not bad, I like it. I totally broke form this time and measured the pieces of yarn. Yup, measured how long a stitch was, and I've measured out all the bits to piece together each star (I use 2 pieces for each star and for each lining as I split each star in half to minimize carrying the yarn in the back).
And here it is from the back.
I never got to meet my great Aunt Iris, but I think she'd think this passed the test.
But I bet she'd think my color choices are gaudy beyond all belief.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Monday, June 23, 2008
Overall, I think it worked out okay. The beads and yarn are close enough so the effect is pretty calm and doesn't detract from the lace pattern, but there's enough iridescent sparkle to the beads so that they have a little eyecatching-ness to them. Even with so few beads - I really tried to restrain myself - you can feel how they add to the weight of the overall piece. It took 2 skeins of gloss and 2.5 vials of size 6 beads to complete this scarf. It isn't a long scarf, more like a wrap around your neck one time and tuck the ends into the front of your coat.
I think it blocked really nicely - I did my usual routine of gently rinsing the peice in warm water with baby shampoo, then rinsing again with conditioner (I think the silk in this yarn really liked that last step), roll in a towel and gently press, then lay flat. I don't have a blocking frame or wires to put it on, but it came out okay. Dried in under 12 hours, as well.
Anyone have any great ideas or tips about blocking? I'd love to hear 'em . . . .
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Still not happy with my idea for the hand painted.
Need to swatch it (is swatch actually a verb?) but I'm thinking hand painted background, purple outlines, dark teal stars.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
And here we have the tiny amount of progress on the shawl I've started. Oh, and look, I've taken another really bad picture. The family gift; I've got it. Anyhow, it gives you a sense of the color and pattern - wait till I have about 6 inches - getting a snap of anything shorter than that on circular needles is a bear. Shimmer is really nice - it has a glassy quality that makes the colors really luminous and it's just a little fuzzy so it's not quite stark when you make lace with it. But man, this thing is going to take over a year to complete - so many tiny little stitches! Yet I know I'd take on a sweater with just as many stitches and rows without blinking -- which is odd. I'm hoping it's one of those great things that creates an enormous sense of accomplishment, rather than months of hair-tearing.
Had another thought about Amy Rose last night - what about doing Amy with 2 strands of Shimmer instead of Bare (say Blue Glass and Turquoise Splendor, or maybe Lilac Dream and Cumulus) and dye the lace weight mohair something soft and in between. The Shimmer wouldn't have the body of the Bare, but the overall fabric might have a really nice drape.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Sunday, June 8, 2008
1. Do you knit or crochet? Knit.
2. How long have you been knitting and/or crocheting? 33 years. Ouch. Okay, I learned really young. Like, 4.
3. What’s your favorite yarn to work with? Wool with some cotton or silk in it.
4. What’s your favorite needles/hooks? Inox.
5. Do you spin? If so, spindle or spinning wheel? Yes, spinning wheel.
6. What’s your favorite fiber to spin? Merino, but my experience has been limited.
7. What’s your favorite project to make? Sweaters.
8. What’s the hardest project you’ve ever made? Kaffe Fassett's stars cardigan.
9. What’s the project you’ve had the most fun making? Same.
10. What’s the ugliest project you’ve ever made? The big blue sweater I made for my dad that looked like it was designed for an orangutan. I was 15 and I made it in under 48 hours. There have been some horrible color combonations, too.
Lori answered "My first sweater" to that last question, but I was hoping for a picture. I haven't made anything too heinous lately. Lori - what's your favorite brand of yarn/yarns???
The second picture shows this a bit better, since I've set up the beads into decending straight lines, the overall effect reminds me of Joe Pantoliano and Keanu Reeves watching the green code trickling down like rain in The Matrix. Again, I think it will be better when it's blocked. TMC has quoted me about needing 3 different projects going on varying levels - I need to get on the stick and get a dummy going, as right now I don't have anything I can not look at as I work.
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
I would have been done about 4 days ago, but I messed up on the sleeves, didn't make them wide enough, so ripped them back more than halfway and reknit them.
My wonderful and brilliant spouse once mentioned that I should be more in depth, technical I guess, when I post. Since he's right about pretty much everything else, I thought I'd include some close ups of my sleeve attaching method. I grew up sewing my knitting together and maybe I'm just bad at it, but I always ended up with weak, gap-y seems that looked like, well, crud. Whatever you were wearing underneath would peak though at the shoulders and neck, ugh, a nightmare. Ever heard of That Dorky Homemade Look?
So, whenever I can manage it, I pick up sleeves and knit down using an alternating 3/4 times two and 4/5 ratio (pick up 3 stitches of the first 4 rows two times, then 4 stitches of the next 5 rows, repeat this set of three and no matter the gauge, I find I always get a perfectly flat join). I never cast off for necks, either, I put all my decreased stitches on holders or scrap and knit my necks up.
But, competing with my love of pick up and knit sleeves is my love of working anything that has to match at the same time. I must be a lazy slob because I have a real hard time getting sleeves to match when I knit them one at a time. So . . . for this one, I combined my favorite techniques. I knit my two sleeves at once (twice, but never mind that right now) having double checked the math of stitches to rows, then once the sleeves were complete, I knitted up the stitches along my armholes and knit the two together.
Best of all possible worlds. The middle picture is the outside of my sleeve join, this last one is the inside.
Now I just need some weather that's not hitting the 90 degree mark . . . .
Monday, June 2, 2008
And this is my stab at beaded knitting, take two. A scarf, I think. I'm thinking the green and teal should go on some gray lace weight I've stalled out on . . .