Saturday, March 31, 2007

My buttons picture

The Dorset buttons. You know you want to make some. They were fun to make and quite therapeutic. I'm trying to decide whether I need to make double the buttons...As you can see in this self-taken picture (or maybe you can't), I've got a set of buttons in every other hole. I'm kinda in a quandry. On one hand, these were fun to make and it would be fun to make a bunch more. On the flip side, these buttons eat yarn, I mean devour it. And on the third side of that coin(?), maybe I should make more buttons now in case I lose a set. But but what if I lose the extra ones I made, that would be a waste. And on the 4th side of the square(?), I still have enough silk yarn to make a head band or something so if I use it all up...ahhh, dilemma.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Belated pic of winnings

Sorry it's taken so long in posting, here's the picture of my winnings from Gilmore Girls KAL.

Thanks to Mandie!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Curved shawl edging done!

You may remember my dilemma about the Curved shawl from VLT -- you know, the fact that the edging looked all floppy and sloppy and such? Well, I spent some time poring through my VLT and Heirloom Lace and other lace books, only to decide that I liked the original edging for this shawl. What to do?

I decided that I'll just go down a couple of sizes in needles and see how that looks. Hey, if it looks dumb, I can always rip it out. (The wonderful part of the edging is that it's not actually connected to the body, so...if you feel the need to rip, no harm, no fowl.)

So, I went down to a US6 needle and sort of followed their pickup strategy. Since I'm now using a smaller needle, once in awhile I would join a third stitch to the body of the scarf (instead of the 2 into 1 suggested by the book). I forgot to do some simple math toward the end and didn't finish off a whole edging pattern, but it was close enough that I was totally okay with it.

Here's the finished shawl, and I think it looks purty. Did I ever give the specs for this shawl?
US9 for main lace, US6 for edging
Yarn: 70% angora 30% nylon in raspberry (amount? gee, 2 balls of yarn)
pattern: VLT curved shawl
time to finish: beginning of March to March 25 (blocked March 28)

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Buttons buttons

Thanks Sarah for the suggestion about soldering the wire so that the buttons won't snag the yarn if wire is used to put the buttons together. The funny thing is that I actually own two soldering irons. And I've been thinking about soldering the joints on my markers so that the rings don't open up and catch. So of course I could just do the same with the buttons. My only concern was that short of using glass or metal beads, the buttons may melt (I'm not very proficient at soldering).

I went to the local craft/sewing stores to look at buttons, and honestly wasn't very inspired. Then I remembered reading Craftzine and seeing this . At the time, I was thinking, 'Yeah right. Make your own buttons by wrapping thread around a plastic ring. Someone has wayyy too much time.' The other thing I was thinking reading that article was 'Hey, that's what you do with those plastic rings'. Anywhoo, yep, guessed it. I made the Dorset Buttons for my Convertible. It didn't actually take that long, it just took a bunch of my leftover silk yarn. For directions on how to make these, follow my link.

And the best part? The buttons totally match without looking dorky and they aren't too heavy. I didn't want heavy buttons that would slowly stretch out the Convertible to become kimono sleeves!

I'll get z&a's dad to take a picture of me wearing it when I get a chance. Oh, the funniest thing was that when I was done, and modeling it for him, he told me he didn't get it, and why did I only make sleeves (as in, where's the rest of the sweater?!). There was also a comment about being a spider lady, but I let that one slide.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Knitty Convertible almost ready to go

Instead of working on the edging for the curved shawl, I finished convertible instead. I have been stressing about the length of the the thing...what a cliff hanger...will it or won't it be too long? will it be too wide? should I block before I'm finished to figure out the length? oh, what to do what to do?

Yeah, right. I'm going to preblock. That would just drive me batty if it still didn't turn out properly. I decided that if it didn't block out properly (either the sleeves are too wide or long), I'll just wear it as a summer shawl. And hey, I won't have to do the fiddly buttons. How many buttons do you need?

Without further ado, here's my finished convertible.

yarn: almost a cone of dk weight navy 100% smooth silk from colourmart
pattern: Convertible from Knitty (go look it up)
needles: US6
time: 3/6/2007 - 3/20/2007
finished size: 23in X 76in (a bit larger than expected, but oh, well, that's what happens when you don't block a swatch)
modifications: cast on 77 stitches and did 5 pattern repeats.

My thoughts: this yarn is steam set by colourmart and it cost $2 more than if you just ask them to wind the strands on a cone. Is it worth it? for me, it was this time. I've got some doubled silk yarn that I'd like to try and see how that goes. The only time I split the yarn was when I wasn't paying ANY attention -- and it serves me right.

So now I've got to think buttons. I was going to connect them via Knitty's suggestion using wire, but apparently, that's difficult to do and the wire sticks out and such. Instead, I'm almost thinking some sort of frog bead closure thing. a loop that a bead can toggle through. hmmm...when I have that done, I'll of course show it off. Until then, I've got a pretty darn nice summer wrap (at least it's sunny today).

Monday, March 19, 2007

Bubby for a Bubby

This gift is already gifted. This was for a lovely boy who just turned one at the beginning of the month. He's a doll. So I knit him a bubby.
This knit was fiddly. But cute. And it hurt my fingers knitting tightly. I am not a natural born tight knitter. (sigh) Remember, I'm the loosey goosey kind of gal.

The directions were followed, except that I used doubled Woolease with US5 needles. I did add a tail and a bellybutton. For the tail, I crocheted a chain of 4 and tied a knot and sewed it on. For the belly button, I used the yarn used for putting the tail on and came out through the front, and back into the back. Put a bit of tension there so that you got a little 'insie' and that was that.

I will have to make one of these for my little girl child too. I wonder if I can knit it and felt it to get that tightness?hmmm...I've got some lovely worsted weight 100% wool in a pink that I really shouldn't use for anything but toys. I may even try to make a dinosaur, for my boy z (but maybe not in pink).

Sunday, March 18, 2007


I was reading the Gilmore Girls KAL and was inspired by Mandie's cabled purse to make this.
I followed the directions from this site after I got frustrated looking for spytastic.blogspot (this blog no longer exists?).

Anyway, here's the specs:
yarn: 100% wool doubled (LB's Fisherman's wool)
needles: US10 tight.
cable repeats: 7
time for completion: knit in one evening? Another day for lining.
dimensions: 11in width X 6in height (without the bamboo handles - small D style)
Hand sewn lining ( I am not a sewer and do not own a sewing machine*)
The handles were attached with whip stitch (I think that's what it's called)
1 yard of ribbon to finish it off.

*we have a little itty bitty one that I can't use properly.

Other than that, followed the directions. Cast on 38 stitches, etc. This was a fast knit. Reminder to self: must alternate lace knitting with instant gratification knitting.

So, I was looking for a gift for a 10 year old and couldn't find anything appropriate. I also wasn't going to knit her a sweater, don't go there. Anyway, I hope she likes it.

I still need to knit myself another purse. My Lucy is looking a bit frayed. Time for it to go back in the washer.

While looking for this cabled purse pattern, I came across some lovelies. However, I have some specific ideas. I really like to form from the doctor's bag from Knit2gether, but I want it felted. I am in the process of deciding what type of yarn to use. I may just use my old Paton wool yarn because I really like the green they have (not to mention I've felted so much with this yarn that I am finally getting an idea of the properties of the yarn. But who knows. Kinda like the one from IK, but maybe not the felted intarsia flowers. Pretty, tho'.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

I can button!

Okay, I finally figured out the button thing. I likely tried to reinvent the wheel, but oh well. I now have listed destash and vlt.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Knitting Progress

I have too totally been knitting. See!
I really liked the funky Curved Shawl, and had wanted to knit it as soon as I got VLT. Of course, it took me a while to figure out the charting, especially the instructions in red (that would be the ones about the number of repeats per row...I still don't get that, and I've got a PhD! Okay, I didn't look at it too hard). The casting on using e loops -painful. but once I got going on this sucker, it was easy peasy (especially since it's a garter stitch lace). I could totally work on it while I was tired since you totally can tell when you've messed up.

Initially, I read in VLT how this pattern can be knit using much larger needles for a much looser and yet still very lovely lace. Well, judge for yourself. I used US9 instead of US6 for this fingering yarn (70%angora).

This is not blocked, in fact, it's not finished and here's why...I stopped knitting before the end of the pattern because I did not want a huge ginormous wrap, but a nice medium sized one. I then cast on for the edging, to find that using my needle size, the edging is over 3 inches wide and very loopy and not at all attractive. Which means that I need to actually (y'all gasp now) figure out my own edging! Oh, criminy!

That is why I started and am almost finished with this beauty. This is knit with Colourmart's dk weight smooth silk (they had their lace weight steam plied by somebody). The resulting yarn is absolutely divine and scrumptious and yes, that's the other reason I started on this instead. The yarn is super. And it's much darker than the over exposed picture shows. In real life, the color is much much darker, as in blackish, as in I can wear it as black. As for working with it, it's only a slight pain because it's plied by twisting their lace weight yarn and I've accidentally pulled on a strand or two. I think that's my only worry, that upon wear, it's going to get snagged.

specs (before I forget)
yarn: Colourmart
needle: US 6
pattern: Convertible from Knitty
modifications: yes. I cast on (5X13) for pattern plus the 6X2 edging is 77 stitches (hey, I did that without calculators or paper and pencil)

Folks on the intarweb said that if Convertible is too wide, then the shrug look is way too big. So I swatched (yes, me. I swatched) and figured out the width it should be. Of course, as I'm almost finished, I'm totally stressing about it being too narrow, resulting in my arms looking like sausages encased in intestine lining (wait, there's got to be a better metaphor), resulting my arms looking like a Christmas ham (you know, with the netting?), or like play dough being pushed out of an extruder? Okay, I'll stop now.

Actually, it will be fine (unless my arms get monstrously huge like from this show The Man With Exploding Arms I watched last night. ew. again. eww.). Without blocking, there's enough room, so with blocking, it'll be awesome. And if not? well, I'm not a shrug person anyway so I'll wear it as a scarf.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

My take on the new Knitty

Boy! Am I lazy?! How many posts now don't show knitting?

Well, here's another one. I just perused the new and what to say?'s okay. If you love socks, then this one's for you. Lovely sock patterns. I really like bmp (but not enough to knit it). And if you like girl stuff, this one's for you. Yes, I probably should be more thrilled about the girly items and such, but I'm just not a big believer in knitting something very small that gets outgrown in 2 minutes. But I did like that there's a pattern made with Caron Simply Soft (or Woolease). Good for you, Knitty! But boo hiss on the $30+ toddler sweaters. (That is unless you're my 'auntie' and you've knit these lovelies for my children, then I say, wow, how beautiful! and Thank You! And they'll wear it at least once, even if I have to pin them down to put them in them -- for pictures).

As for the adult sweaters, they're okay. Cute sweater, ribena, but did they have to use discontinued yarn? There was no way to use something that could actually be purchased? I guess I'm just noticing the yarns Knitty patterns are actually knitted with. Once, just one time, I would like to a) use the suggested yarn b) not break the bank when picking out said yarn. I like More Stripes, at least the concept of the steeked vest. But I can tell you that this vest is not flattering for certain body types...okay, mine (shudder). My favorite sweater is the lace one, Isabella. How beautiful! How dainty! How insane to ask me to knit a mostly stockinette stitch sweater with US3 needles and fingering yarn. But darn, it's purty.

What I will knit is palette (without the hand spun yarn). I like the lace and I need to make a scarf for my sister. Bauble would be fun too.