Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Zig Zag Jacquard

Here's another cloth pattern. This is the regular Sugan 'n Cream cotton yarn. The color is Country Twists. This was the first time I saw this yarn in the store. Maybe it's always been available but I just didn't notice it. This was knit with size 6 (4.25mm) needles.

I have another cloth pattern almost done for July in a pretty orange (Senso 100% cotton) on size 3 needles. It's another stitch pattern that has me dreaming of designing a summer tee top.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Knitting Nerd

My water bottle insulator (previous post) has earned me the label of "Knitting Nerd" by my non-knitting friends. All I can say is...."I'd like to thank all the people who have made this moment possible: My family, my sweet LYS owner and knitting pals there, and all my knitting friends on the internet that I haven't had the pleasure of meeting in person."

After a day of running errands and leaving water bottles in a hot car, my kids are longing for a "nerdy" water bottle insulator because their water was tea temperature and mine was nice and cool!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Eastern European Footlets

On to June!

We had our sock class this past Friday...p 108 of Favorite Socks.

Did you know there is a knit along blog for this book? I found it tonight looking for a picture of this sock. If you want to see what this sock is suppose to look like then click on this link. That blog entry also addresses the question on gauge for this sock...7 sts per inch with discontinued "worsted weight" yarn. I'll let you read the rest over there. (I did get 7sts per inch with Cascade 220 on size 2 bamboo dpns.)

Looking at the picture in the book, I thought these would not be socks for me. I like a cuff, sometimes a very long cuff. I like thin socks to fit in my normal shoes. Didn't figure these would fit that bill either. I was even considering not going to this class! That was until our kind teacher pointed out all the new things we'd learn knitting this sock.... Provisional Cast on, Intarsia and Fair Isle. How could I pass up on this opportunity? After doing several gauge swatches with my left over Cascade 220 I was ready to give it a try....

But my yarn was saying, I don't want to be a sock. I want to be a .........

Water Bottle Insulator!

And so I cast on 66 sts.

During class we learned the provisional cast on. And I did a short row toe...even unzipped the provisional cast on and put the live stitches on a needle again. Michele showed us how the intarsia part was done...that's the blue part. It is only done on the front. She said the box in the directions were very clear but I didn't even read them when I got home. Did I mention that Michele is an awesome teacher!

I've never done intarsia or fair isle and this first project shows that all too well. I need more practice (and classes) (and patience!) for me to do it nicely. But for a first project I was happy with it. Well, except for the 3 sts that were in the wrong color. That was an easy fix with duplicate stitch. I certainly wasn't going to back down 3 rows!

I then did the cuff with the garter ridges and added a 2 x 2 rib with some decreasing for the neck of the bottle.

I was worried I may have decreased too much for the bottom of the bottle (32 oz) to pass through but it works beautiful. I used a very stretchy crocheted bind off from the Crazy Toes and Heels book.

Then it was time for the bottom. I picked up the 66 sts from the long tail cast on and knit plain one row. Next row was knit 9, k2tog. Then a plain round. Then knit 8, k2tog. You get the picture....

The last round was knit 3, k2tog. Then with the bottle snuggly in place, I threaded the darning needle and passed it through all the live stitches and pulled it snug.

I've got two of these one quart bottles that are filled with water (that I drink each day).

So off to church I went with bottles in hand...the one dressed with a sweater, the other naked. Both bottles were with me at all times. I took the last sip of the naked bottle at about 3:00 in the afternoon and noted the temperature of the water...unscientifically. Then I took the first sip of the sweatered bottle. The water was cooler!

As for the provisionally cast on short row toe? It got frogged....but at least I know how it's done...don't think I'll be making another anytime soon!

Two-Yarn Resoleable Socks - Second Sock done!

I posted a picture of the first sock of this pair on May 29th. (p. 47 of Favorite Socks)

Instead of taking another picture of the finished socks (they look identical) I thought I'd post a close up of where the instep meets the sole. It's where the red (sole) meets the gray (instep)...looks like a chain stitch. There is a definite ridge on both sides of the foot...mostly on the inside. I'm not sure if this will be noticeable when my dh wears them or not...depends on how picky he is. But I won't know until next October or November since these are "boot" socks. These socks are the thickest I've ever made. They wouldn't fit in any of my regular shoes. I could see a pair in my winter boots though!

The technique itself was not complicated. It was a bit on the fiddily side and I'm not sure if I would resole them if they got a hole or just knit up a new pair of socks. The instructions were wordy but clear.

Overall it was a fun learning experience and I'm glad I gave it a go! And thanks to Michele for being such a great teacher!