20 November 2005

A few finished objects and a clapotis-in-progress!

Following up on yesterday's post, here are some pictures of the Clapotis I'm knitting for Emily.

Clapotis  - half finished
The Clapotis is knit in 5 different sections. The first and last sections set up the pattern; the second and fourth sections increase and decrease the pattern, and the third section determines the length of the pattern. I'm almost done with the third section and it's coming along nicely.

A closeup of the drop stitch
My favorite part of this pattern is that I get to drop stitches - on purpose! I haven't ever worked with a drop stitch pattern before and so each time I get to the row where I get to drop a stitch, I just have to stop knitting and unravel it all the way. It's so satisfying, especially since throughout this pattern I've been continously dropping stitches where I definitely should not be. Plus, even though only one stitch is dropped, the width of the dropped, um, space is wider than one stitch. This scarf is definitely going to be able to pass as a wrap or a shawl if need be, which I think makes it even more awesome - I love 2 in 1 patterns.

Clapotis detail
Another shot of the dropped stitches. I'm planning on blocking this when I'm done knitting it so that the knitted parts are flatter.

Back of mitten
The fingerless gloves I just finished knitting. This is the back of the mitten, top up. I was always nervous about having to pick up stitches from something that was already knit, but it turned out to be surprisingly easy. Jeremy is fascinated with how it's put together. I have to admit, I am too... I never thought I'd be able to actually pull off this pattern!

Front of mitten
I definitely put off the mitten flaps until after I finished both gloves. Unfortunately, I knit the first flap smaller than the second flap, and had to go back and re-knit the first flap so that they were the same size. For some reason I keep making ridiculous mistakes with this pattern - that's why these are my test run and they will belong to me and no one else!

fingerless glove
Here's the glove with the flap off. Another stupid mistake I made - the fingers on the left hand are about 2-3 rows shorter than the fingers on the right hand. At least I know the mistakes I'm inclined to make ahead of time, before I get started on knitting these as Christmas presents.

blue scarf
Finally, this is a scarf that I completed last winter while I was visiting Jeremy up in Vermont. I made it on a pair of size 9 bamboos that I love - they're shorter than the usual straights I buy and were quite comfortable to use. Even though I've since bought a set of Denise needles that I will never, ever part with... I can't let go of my bamboos! The scarf is knit in knit 2, purl 2 ribbing and using some cheap (but not itchy) acrylic yarn I picked up at Michael's doubled with a blue and green ladder yarn that I'd been eyeing for awhile. It's a narrower scarf than I usually like but I love it - the fabric is nice and floppy instead of stiff like a lot of other scarfs I've made in the past. It has a really nice weight to it and looks classy with my dark coat.

I learned how to code this morning! I'm used to LiveJournal where everything is done for you, so I had a crash-course in CSS coding today. Among other things, I added a list of knitting links, blogs, buttons, and a photo gallery hosted by Flickr which I think looks super cool - and will look cooler when I have more pictures to host.

I have to point out that I saw Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire yesterday and there was a line about knitting... "All right, all right, you can go back to your knitting now, there's nothing to see..."

Not to mention that the characters were wearing new house scarves! No longer are they large stripes of gold and burgundy but skinny gold stripes in pairs on a burgundy background. Like the true dork that I am, I took advantage of the fact that the scarves were projeected on a larger-than-life screen and I counted the rows per stripe. 4 row for the gold stripes, 9 rows in between the two stripes. I didn't catch the distance between the pairs, but I predict that some other crazed knitter will go see the movie more than once, figure it out, and post the new pattern within a week. And the Harry Potter scarf knitting fiesta will begin all over again...

19 November 2005

First post!

Christmas knitting is in full swing. I've got no less than three projects on needles right now! My current favorite is Knitty's Clapotis which will be for my very feminine, pink-loving 16-year-old sister Emily. The yarn recommended in the pattern - Lorna's Laces Lion and Lamb in Bittersweet - goes for about $30/skein, with 3 skeins needed to complete the pattern. Although I love my sister dearly, I am not about to spend upwards of $90 on yarn! Knitpicks yarn was in order. I'm using sock yarn, which is thinner than the recommended yarn in the pattern, so I had to downsize from 8s to 6s, and I decided to use my Denise circulars and knit flat instead of using my old bulky aluminums. I attempted to start the pattern on the straight 8s, but I'm just so used to circs now that I can't go back!

The yarn I'm using is Knitpicks' Sock Garden in Star Gazer Lily. I thought about using lace-weight yarn instead, because I found a color (or colors) that I love - Knitpicks' Gossamer in Caribbean. I actually ended up ordering three different colors to choose from - Star Gazer Lily, Caribbean, and another Sock Garden color, Zinnia. I chose Star Gazer Lily because it just screamed "Emily" to me. Maybe I'll make myself a Clapotis after Christmas with one of th other colors....?

No, I admit it: I'm a yarn junkie. I just like having pretty yarn around.

I don't knit for myself all that often, but I recently finished a pair of fingerless gloves with mitten flaps which are definitely for me. I have been trying to find a pattern I like for about three years and finally did this summer. This pair isn't perfect, at all, which is why they are definitely not going to anyone else! They're too big, I skipped a few rows that make a difference for a larger size, and the fingers on the left hand are shorter than the fingers on the right hand. But, they're warm! I used a gray worsted weight wool/acrylic blend I bought at AC Moore this past summer. And believe me, it's starting to get cold around here - they're going to get a lot of use this winter.