Knitting! Plus some gardening, cocktails, and whatever else strikes my fancy.

Month: February 2007

M Visits LYS: A Play in Two Scenes

M Visits LYS: A Play in Two Scenes

Cast of CharactersMe: that is IM: 6’4″ of curly-headed manlinessRebecca: Proprietress of LYSLatBTs: Ladies at the Big Table (four of them) SettingA dark and stormy lunch hour at the LYS Scene 1: Me and M enter LYS.Rebecca: Hi again! How are you? Me: Great. I’m […]

How I Spent My Sunday

How I Spent My Sunday

Lately, I have been in a sweater slump, so much so that I read with alarm Sheepish Annie’s post in which she mentions the dreaded “I Started a Blog and Now I Can’t Seem to Knit Sweaters Anymore” Curse. All my sweater issues can be […]

Good Swatch, Bad Swatch

Good Swatch, Bad Swatch

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Bad light pink swatch. Good fuschia swatch.

In good news/bad news situations, I try to get the bad news out of the way first. That way, after I survive the bad news, I have the good to brighten me up. So I’ll start with the bad swatch.

While reading one of Margaux’s posts at tentenknits last week, I realized that I wasn’t as far along in my swatching with the light pink Shelburne yarn as I had thought. I can be pretty cavalier about row gauge, but thanks to Margaux I realized that row gauge is pretty important in a V-neck. I had stitches per inch, but rows per inch was off by an entire row (4.5 rpi vs 3.5 rpi in the pattern). Not good. I also knit the swatch the way I’ve knit all other stockinette swatches: flat. The sweater is knit in the round (a new thing for me). Not good. I tend to knit tighter in the round than flat. Really not good. So I knit on some WIPs (but that’s a different post) and swatched for a fuschia scarf.

The fuschia chunky baby alpaca from Plymouth Yarns made a good swatch, a very good swatch. I used the Piecrust Basketweave from Vogue Stitchionary, Volume 1 (pattern #33). I charted the pattern because the repeat of 8 stitches plus 10 confused me. It really is a repeat of 8 stitches plus 2, the swatch in the book has wide borders which is reflected in the 10 stitches for symmetry. The Piecrust Basketweave is a narrow, horizontal basket weave. To look good in a scarf, I thought it would be best to cast on the length and then knit to the width. My lovely gauge swatch indicated that I was getting 3.5 spi, and I wanted a 60-inch scarf. My calculator told me that would be 210 stitches which is a multiple of 8 + 2. Destiny! I cast on 212 stitches so I could have a knit stitch at each end for making a picot selvage.

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I’m almost half done!

I used a cable cast on, which looks nice given that the first row of the pattern is a WS row, so the decorative look of the cable cast on shows on the right side. I need to look at some bind offs to see if there is a good one to use as the opposite of this cast on. Montse Stanley has always come to my aid before, I hope she can again. If any readers have a suggestion, I would be happy to hear it!

Right now, I need to block the Sea Silk Berry scarf from Victorian Lace Today so I can send it to Grandma Adeline. Pictures to follow soon. I’m going to make another wide-bordered scarf from VLT next. I want to do the diamond insertion (p. 90), but I can’t decide between two different wide borders (Diamond Lace border, p. 90; Clarence border, p.82). Unfortunately, both work with the diamond insertion, and both are really pretty. Decisions, decisions!

Happy Knitting!

Joinery

Joinery

M’s joinery: tongue and groove dovetails interlocking dados My joinery: knitting on the second border perpendicular to the scarf length OK, so I don’t use power tools, I don’t make a lot of sawdust, and I don’t know a nifty name for this type of […]

Landscape Shawl: Pattern Notes

Landscape Shawl: Pattern Notes

I’ve worn the Landscape Shawl a couple of times now, even though we are having unseasonably warm weather, and I am completely hooked on the whole shawl gestalt. They are so handy and pretty! Last Friday dawned a sunny day, so I cajoled M into […]

I did it. Finally.

I did it. Finally.

I finally successfully “Kitchenered” the toe of a sock (you thought I was going to talk about the Landscape shawl–that’s waiting for a nice daylight photo-op). I have grafted the toes before, but have usually ended up with some loop I can’t do anything with except hide on the inside. There was also the time I ended up with a beautiful row of purl bumps (3 attempts), when I swear I was doing stockinette grafting. This time I was determined to get it right. I went to the Knitty Kitchener tutorial and followed the big pictures for every stitch. The test subject was the first Fleece Artist Merino Parrot sock.
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Before

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After

The result isn’t perfect, mostly because I kept fussing with it, but it is grafted with no extra loops (or knots!), and the grafting is stockinette. Mission accomplished.

I usually don’t graft because I do a variety of pointed toes that I have learned from several of Nancy Bush’s excellent sock patterns. I intended that with these socks, but I knit the foot rather longer than I planned, so it was graft the toe or rip back. I have pointy feet so a pointed toe is a good choice. I also generally choose a square or Dutch heel because my heel is pretty square shaped. While the rest of me is all curves, my feet chose to be all angles.

I am eager to start my pink sweater, however, M’s parents are visiting us this weekend en route to a 10-day cruise among the Hawaiian Islands (retirement is a real killer). I need to dust, tidy, and bake a chocolate cake. This is a recipe to die for. It is very easy, and sensationally delicious. The only drawback is the requirement for 2 10-inch cake pans (no cake pan sizes are not easily interchangeable). M’s Dad has lost most of his sense of taste, but he can still taste chocolate, so chocolate he will get! However, this limits my knitting time. I think I shall concentrate on my socks and other UFOs, and I’ll cast on for the sweater next week. I also have a lot of swatching for learning purposes and my periwinkle sweater to contemplate. So much to knit!

Well, it is time here to watch House and then Boston Legal and do a little sock knitting.

Off. The. Needles.

Off. The. Needles.

It’s not blocked yet (tomorrow), or the few ends woven in, but the Landscape Shawl is bound off!!! 47,600 stitches. Bound off! Thanks to everyone who left such encouraging comments concerning this shawl! I hope to coerce M in to helping with a photo shoot […]

Pink

Pink

Only recently have I become aware that pink causes controversy among knitters. Pink’s a love it or leave it color. One meme that made its way around asked a simple question: red or pink? I thought both. But most people had a definite preference. Red […]

Green

Green

It’s all Landscape Shawl all the time here at Molecular Knitting. Well, there’s a little work on the FA parrot socks, too. I’m almost done with the first sock! Here it is relaxing on our faux black mink throw.

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Progress on the Landscape Shawl is up to 67%. Two-thirds done! It was only a little over a week ago that I had just started the moss stitch chevron. Now I am into the final stitch pattern of reverse stockinette. Because each row is one stitch greater than the previous row, I can calculate my percentage completed after each row with the formula:

R/2 x (R+1)= S
S/T x 100= percent completed
Where R=last completed row #; S= # stitches knit; T=total stitches in completed shawl (can be calculated with the first formula, using the total number of rows in the shawl for R). This does assume that you started with one stitch in row 1, so it works well for triangles. I cast on three stitches to begin, but I figure the two extra stitches won’t change any percentage value considering the entire shawl is 47,600 stitches.

All the green of the Parrot yarn in the socks, and the Green Mountain Madness of the shawl led me to determine what color green I am.

You Are Teal Green

You are a one of a kind, original person. There’s no one even close to being like you.
Expressive and creative, you have a knack for making the impossible possible.
While you are a bit offbeat, you don’t scare people away with your quirks.
Your warm personality nicely counteracts any strange habits you may have.

Hmm…I haven’t done the 6 Weird Things About Me meme, but perhaps I should.

Now I must get ready for my weekly phone call with Mom. She lives in Wisconsin. This afternoon it was 3 degrees in Oshkosh, WI (Farenheit) and 63 degrees here in Davis, CA. We also have daffodils and almond trees in bloom. I think I’ll lead with the weather.

Happy Knitting!

Turquoise

Turquoise

I’ll get to the turquoise in a moment. This weekend Karen arrived and approved her mitts, and she requested another pair. I showed her both my fingering weight screaming red mitts and the chunky baby alpaca mitts I made last summer. She really liked the […]