Saturday, January 22, 2005

Been outta town

I've been away the last couple of days because of a family emergency. I had to fly to North Carolina. While there, on Wednesday, it snowed! Strangely enough, snow is my only memory of the state up until now. My cousin said it hadn't snowed there for seven years so, yay! Downside was that we were stuck in traffic for more than four hours and my other cousin missed his flight.
My first day there, I did manage to get some yarn at this craft store called AC Moore. I was totally overwelmed by the aisles of yarn and tools. Then was dumbstruck by a wall of the stuff. Eventually, I ended up buying a skein of Chunky Araucania Nature Wool in a light violet and four balls of some low end "Cashmere Luxury" Aran. The content is similar to Debbie Bliss Cashmerino but the quality isn't as high. I got a ball each of navy and grey for a hat for the bro and two of purple. Also got some better stitch holders and more point protectors.
While on the plane to and from, I started another Marsan watchcap from with some turquoise Cashmerino Aran I exchanged the extra Nature Wool for. The last watchcap I made was a little short so I'm going to knit a couple more rounds for the body.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

The Saga Begins...

I've started testing stitch patterns for the first movie-inspired knit project for this year, Padme's Naboo Nightgown Robe. Maggie has amazing research about the robe on her site, The original costume was done in velvet using a technique called lattice smocking. The plan is to knit it in wool with a shiny yarn held together to give it the right amount of sheen. There are several reasons I decided to knit it instead:

1. I'm actually going to use the garment for everyday so I didn't want to have to worry about crushing the velvet while wearing and storing.
2. Smocking shrinks the fabric. With knitting, if it ends up too small after a couple of rows, I could just frog it and start again.
3. The work would be portable so I can take it with me everywhere to work on.
4. Most importantly...any excuse to knit!

Below are some pics of the test swatch. I used some leftover Debbie Bliss Merino DK and followed a pattern for woven cables (8.6) from 220 Aran Stitches and Patterns. It was knitted up on size 7 needles and are 4.5X4.5 inches.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Charty Goodness

Somebody at the Knitty Coffeeshop Forum posted about a free custom chart program, called knitPro, that converts any JPEG, GIF, or PNEG under 1 MB into a chart in PDF. Great program to play around with since I like intarsia so much and very useful for a sweater I'm planning.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Lace Done!

Woohoo! Finished knitting the lace early this morning. The bro seemed pretty impressed when I showed it to him. When I was knitting it, the capelet looked like a tangled mess but it looks a lot better once its done. I still have half of the first skein left so I can exchange the second skein. The gold yarn was really expensive so it worked out great!
The capelet still needs to be blocked before I can start on the embroidery. I also have to decide whether to follow the pattern with the ties and pompoms or use ribbon. There's a stationary store near work that has a lot of pretty ribbons to choose from so I'll try to check it out tomorrow.
In other news, Lauren Kent has her pattern for Hermione's red mittens are up. These and the matching hat are on my list for this year. They'll be my portable projects to go along with the two other movie-inspired projects for this year. I'm still looking at yarns for those two so more on them later.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Lace...Part Deux

Yep, I frogged it. Didn't have to work today so I spent the day reknitting the capelet. I'm a little more than halfway done and its looking much better, not to mention knitting up faster. I do keep getting an extra stitch on the rows 4 and 8 repeats but I can't find the mistake so I just knitted the last two stitches together. Can't wait to start the embroidery with the gold yarn. Got the idea from the autumn R2 magazine where they had this really cute pink pillow made with woven ribbon yarn that was stitched together to form flowers. Guess I'm on a flower kick lately.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

Lace Hard...minutes later

Aaaaak! Just went to and found out that those aren't yarnovers in row 4. They're yarn forward and yarn back. I was creating 7 stitches instead of 4. *sigh* Ok, I don't want to frog it again, and the pattern looks rather nice. I just need to figure out a way to reduce the number of stitches. Or I could frog it again. I have to sleep on it.

Lace Hard

With the cherry blossom scarf on hold, I decided to work on the Spiderweb capelet from Stitch 'N Bitch Nation. I went to my lys on Monday and got two skiens of Araucania Nature Wool in blue and some size 15 bamboo circs. The yarn is a nice variegated dark blue. I started working on it on Tuesday and I must say, I have a new found respect for lace knitters. I had to frog it twice because I kept losing my place on the purl one, drop one part. After getting to row 5, I decided to get some gold yarn to embellish the capelet when its done. Good thing I did! Turns out, I was knitting it wrong. Sue, the owner of the yarn shop noticed that I was dropping live stitches instead of the yarn overs. If it wasn't for her, I would have finished the project and then have it unravel on me. She also helped me pick out some really pretty gold yarn, Gatsby from Katia. Love the name! It has a nice subtle shimmer to it which was exactly what I was thinking of. I even picked it up when I first walked in the store.
After frogging the mess, I've now just finished row 8 and found I'm missing a stitch. Buggers! I decided to just knit the last two stitches. Hopefully it should work out.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

First Post!

Yay! I wanted to start this blog to help me keep track of my knitting. I keep getting inspired to create projects so here's a way to keep me organized.
Right now, I'm working on a cherry blossom scarf based on the Head Huggers pattern in Stitch 'n Bitch Nation. I got inspired by a trip I took a couple of years ago to Vancouver. We went during Spring break and the cherry blossom trees were blooming. It was so beautiful! When I saw the pics for the project online, I knew I had to make the scarf. I'm using Takhi cotton in hot pink with size 8 addi turbos. I had a happy accident when I misread the pattern, skipping rows 5 and 6. When I compared my mistake with a blossom made following the pattern, I really liked mine. The cotton made the stitches really defined and the extra stitches made a nice center for the blossom when I ran the ends through the remaining stitches twice. Now I just need brown for the branch and white for the lys was out of it last time I checked. So, this project is on hold until the yarn comes in.


Next, is my recently completed project, a baby Kittyville hat for my little cousin. I used Reynolds' Blossom in fushia and pink on size 8 dpns following the Lil' Devil baby hat pattern and adusting it. I really love how the ears turned out!