Sunday, June 28, 2009

A design sees the light of day

Interweave announced the publication of Knitted Gifts. If you go to page 4 on the preview, you can see a better photo of these finger-less mitts. However, the photo has the palm side out and no photo of the back of the hand design so I'm presenting my ugly photos of the completed mittens.

Here's a photo of the back of the hand design - it is a simple Bavarian twisted st pattern in two colors. The idea is that these represent gold chains that brides in Northern India often wear on their hands. The chains are connected to a bracelet on the wrist and rings on the fingers. Click on the photo to enlarge it to see the detail better.
The palm side - which is shown to better effect in the Interweave photo - is my interpretation of traditional mehndi or henna designs. It is knitted in basic stranded knitting with some Armenian knitting techniques to handle some of the longer floats. By combining a nearly-solid with a hand-painted sock yarn (both from Lorna's Laces), you get a very complex looking design that really only takes good chart reading skills to make.
I also finished the Outback Mohair shawl last night. I washed it this morning and here it is, spread out for drying. I decided not to block it because the recipient isn't going to. She has little kids and I wanted to make sure it would look good washed gently in the machine and dried flat.
This shows the length and the width. That is 3 skeins of the Outback Mohair knitted on US size 13 needles with 100 sts. I think it is a good size to cuddle under. It is about my height (62").
Here is the detail of the st pattern. I love feather and fan. So much loveliness for so little work. I threw in the garter st row every pattern repeat to show off the wave of the fan. I'm really pleased with how this has turned out and I hope the recipient likes it.

Next up is actually my entry for the Knitting Camp contest. The theme is Recycled Knits. It has been a real pleasure looking through the historical gansey books finding a design to make for my son. So many gorgeous designs, so little time. I've narrowed it down to the 3 or 4 and now I need to decide which one I really want to make.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Shawl progress

As you can see, the shawl has grown. This is two-thirds of it as I have finished 2 out of the 3 skeins of Outback Mohair that I have. I will just keep knitting till the last one is done, finishing with 6 rows of garter st. It is an easy knit as long as I pay attention to the pattern rows and the fact that the wrong side rows alternate between a knit and a purl. I've forgotten that knit row many a time and had to fix it.

I find knitting with larger needles and yarn is harder on my hands than the smaller ones. I can definitely feel my sore arms when I work on this. I can't just keep knitting without thinking. I have to stop and stretch and give a lot of breaks. But still, it is a quick knit. I hope to finish it this week and move on to smaller and more interesting things.

Next up is a gansey for my son. I will start researching it and I think I may do a reproduction of one of the older ganseys in the historical books - Gladys Thompson, Rae Compton or the Dutch gansey book. More on that later.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A new project

Elizabeth asked which pattern and yarn I used for the modular sweater. It is P90 from Artyarns and the yarn is their Regal Silk and Beaded Silk.

It is amazing how quickly fat needles and yarn can create fabric! Especially if one's mood is in tune with the knitting. I started this on Wed at the doctor's office and am knitting it in my usual style. A few rows here and there in between other things. So it is going fast even though I make mistakes and tink back to fix them. Fortunately, I find them relatively quickly because I'm checking as I go.

It is a simple feather and fan wrap/shawl for a friend's daughter. I've been making things for the girls I've seen growing up but I am way late on this one. It is a surprise so I don't have a deadline. I missed the deadline: the wedding - so it is late in any case.

It is looking very pretty. The yarn is some Plymouth Outback Mohair I picked up from Elann years ago.
It is fluffy and light as air. I am knitting it on US size 13 needles.

I''ve been on a bit of yarn-buying spree this week. First, I bought some Rowan Calmer from Jannette's Rare Yarns in Onyx and Khaki. She has really great prices on discontinued colors.
Then I was attracted by the Knitters Review article on this mink/cashmere yarn from Great Northern Yarns. It arrived almost immediately, accompanied by a hand written note from the owner of the company!
Here's a close-up. This is the natural color. It is a bit thicker than I anticipated but will make a nice scarf or shoulder shawl. I have about 450 yds.
That is all for this week. I am busy planning my next project as I knit on this one. But more on that later.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A FO announcement!

The tank is done! I decided not to put the sleeves in because I was tired of it and wanted it to be done. It fits well even though I'm not partial to tanks. But under a jacket or sweater, it will be fine. I thought the neck would be too low but it is OK.

You can see an end in the back. I left them a little long on the inside because I was afraid they'd pop through to the front. They are all secured with duplicate stitching so I'm not worried about them coming undone but I wanted to be able to pull them back through to the back if they popped out.

Here is a close-up of the neckline. You can see how fuzzy the yarn is. It isn't exactly pilling but it is fuzzy and bits of it fly off. That is one reason I'm not terribly thrilled with it.
This is the back. It has nice lines and the yarn really shows off the modular design.
I started my next project today but it is going to be ripped out and restarted so I'll post about it next week.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Progress but no pics

I am slowly making progress on the back of the modular top but it looks exactly like the front so pics are uninteresting. I didn't finish it as I had intended last week but I hope to have the body done by next week.

Thank you for all the compliments on the Lorna's Laces sweater.

So far no suggestions for sweater storage. Keep your thinking caps on.