Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Niebling Goldlack stole

In honor of Spring and the plum blossoms blooming (yes, this is a picture of my neighbor's tree, just highly manipulated)

I just finished this Herbert Niebling stole:

goldlack 1

As you may or may not know, I've been trying to find a nice curtain pattern for my kitchen and really wanted to do one in linen. Well...

linen thread--check
pattern--uhmm...still haven't found one

However, I did find this pretty Goldlack Niebling pattern. It's been done as a circular tablecloth and as curtains. Well, I'm not so sure I'd like these as curtains, but as a stole...yes!

So, I put on my advanced degree hat and did all the calculations...okay, 3 columns of flowers... After 30 rows of this monstrocity, ripped and restarted. Then I decided that I really would like a symmetrical stole, verses only having leaves on the one end. So, rip again, and this time, did a provisional cast-on so that I could just pick up the stitches and knit the other way.

As I'm knitting, I'm doubting my swatch and thinking it's going to be thin...then justifying to myself that I could use it as a lace scarf...then when I had it long enough, broke into the other ball and knit it going the other way (again using advanced math). I didn't want to cut the yarn on my one side because what if my calculations were off and this is too short?! And I didn't know if I liked the ending of it anyway (looked too much like curtains and since I only ended up doing 2 columns of flowers, I thought, that would look dumb...anyway, I knit and I knit, then I took a break and did the Niebling January KAL (in Feb) and then I knit and knit...

What is goldlack? I love the intarweb. 'Goldlack' translates to 'gold paint'. It is the wallflower.

The scientific name is Cheiranthus cheiri, in the family Brassicaeae (mustard plant), by the way. And did you know that Brassica plants have a natural ability to uptake heavy metals like Cadmium? One of the projects I worked on as a post-doc was to study the mechanism of metal uptake in plants and phytoremediation--with the thought that you can genetically engineer plants that you can sow at Superfund sites. Tend the garden and then just remove the heavy metals from the soil by harvesting the plant. Cool, or what!

Of course, whenever I eat some veggies, I do of course have that thought in my brain...because, folks, heavy metals accumulate.

Anyway, back to Goldlack.
Here's the specs:
pattern: Herbert Niebling Goldlack in ANNA April 1983
yarn: Yarn TreeHouse Sweet 94% merino 6% polyester in pink
amount used: less than 2 balls
start date: February 9, 2008
finish date: February 26, 2008
modifications: Many at the bottom. I decided not to do the frill, and repeated the mesh instead. Then I modified the leaves.
Cast-on 90 provisional stitches, included 4 on each side for edge. 9 flower pattern repeats. Then I picked up the provisional stitches and knitted another 9 flower patterns.
Here's some other pics:
goldlack 4
goldlack 3
goldlack 2

Friday, February 22, 2008

Stitches West recap

Hello! Back from Stitches West 2008.

First of all to Ravelry folks, Casey and Jess are lovely. Absolutely lovely! We got there relatively early and one of the girls working there was already saying they were running out of Hello buttons! oy! And she wanted to ration them out...that's just wrong. Anyway, got to say hello to Jess and Casey. If you go, you have to go check out their Ravelry Rocks!

Yes, yes, here's what I got there:
stitches west 2008

The funny part is that I almost got out of there without buying yarn. WTF?! But I succumbed to the JoJoLand that you see at the top of the picture. What else? I got a Bob pin (because I just had to), I got a 'where your stitches at' button, the cute shirt in an xl (they run really small, I promise). Gratis were the Hello pin and the passport (which I finished). That little ball of yarn is Malibrigo sample.

I saw lots of people w/ Ravelry pins and I had a Cheryl Oberle sighting and a Cookie A sighting too. But the best part (for me) was the Yarn Place display, where I was able to check out fleegle's Black Widow and her Lyra. AND Lacefreak's sampler stole. Okay, amazing work. Absolutely beautiful!

I drove down with a Ravelry friend (Jellyfish) and met up with another friend when we got down there. Hey, I just realized that we didn't eat or drink. We just shopped.

I'm very happy with my little purchase. I think I'm going to use it for a spirally stole...we'll see.

Off to Stitches West Today!

I'm looking forward to this. I don't have any plans to purchase anything, but we'll see. This is going to be fun. I'm going to carpool with a Ravelery friend and meeting up w/ 2 additional friends there.


gotta go! see you soon...

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My two new purchases

I was lucky enough to get these two OOP books.

First, Andean Folk Knitting: A pretty book. It's got amazing colorwork. I got it because of all the various shapes of ch'ullus. And I really want to learn how to knit with yarn over your neck, and I'm hoping this book has a good explanation for how to do that. I think that this way of knitting is supposed to be super fast. I also would love to venture into colorwork (someday).

Aren't the hats pretty?

The other book I got is Foroysk Bindingarmynstur (With Faroese Knitting Patterns - Knitted Shawls ). Uhmmm...what language is it in? It's not English, Danish? Faroese-ese? Apparently, there is an English translation of the book, but mine is in the original language(published in 1983). It's got some lovely patterns, but I have yet to find an on-line translator that magically transforms it into English. But this is the one I would like to make. I did notice that most Faroese shawls is primarily stockinette stitch w/ a bit of lace. (the one pictured here has the most lace pattern of the lot).

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Niebling Jan KAL finished

I'm working on another lace project too, but I got a tad bored with that since it's a stole and I've got another 1/3 of that plus figuring out border.

Anyway, so I picked up the January KAL for the Niebling Lace yahoo group and finished it. There are a couple of errors in it, but they were pretty easy to figure out. The look of this guy is odd, but it was pretty easy (there aren't any of the blasted slip 4 knit 5, slip 4 back over the 5 stitches).

The nice thing about this doily was that I was able to do 2 different k12 into 3YO and have found that I really like doing the k1-YO instead of the k1-p1.


start date: 2/17/08
end date: 2/18/08
thread: Cebelia #10 in color 519 (blue)
amount used: less than a ball
needles: US1 dpn and circs
mods/errors: there's an error on row 11 and on 39.
comments: not as boring as I thought it was going to be (there's a lot of straight knitting). Good break while working on other Niebling

This is a closeup:
holeymoley closeup

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

first ever tag

I've been tagged by fleegle to list 7 facts about myself:

1. I don't have a nickname.

2. I'm sort of double-jointed. When I put my palm flat on a table, I can lift my fingers up to ~45degrees.

3. Up until the age of 7, I got extremely car sick. But it mostly went away by the time I was 8. I still can't read while a passenger, and can only knit dishcloths in the car (yes, this is considered 'good'. Can you imagine how terrible my motion sickness was as a child?!)

4. I get lost a lot. When I was 17, I got lost when I went on vacation in Japan. To this day, I'm not sure how I got back to where I was supposed to be (especially since I don't speak Japanese).

5. I did synchronized swimming for a summer between 4th and 5th grade despite the fact that I wasn't a very good swimmer.

6. People often mistake me for someone else. I must just have that kind of face. The oddest one is that although I've never met Lacefreak, I've been mistaken for her on a couple of different occasions by different people (and I'm pretty sure we don't look alike at all).

7. When playing games that involve dice, I freakishly am able to roll a lot of doubles (and lots of double sixes).
Tagging 7 people is difficult. I'll have to ponder that a bit.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Happy CNY part II

Thanks everyone for your kind comments. I thought I'd actually type up a wee post for you in response.

I actually followed his pattern for the tail, except I knit it round. For items like this (thin tubes of I-cord), I like to add reinforcement so that they are sturdier. For example, the legs on the Shaun the Sheep mobile sheep all have pipe cleaners inserted into the legs so that they can properly stand. I suppose I could go buy flower wire, but I'm a crafty mom and I have excess pipe cleaners on hand.

Inserted is the incorrect term. I originally tried to insert pipe cleaners into I-cords knit with 4 stitches with worsted weight yarn on US2-3 needles and I found that it was frustrating and quite futile. I couldn't shove the pipe cleaner in there.

So, I now actually knit the pipecleaner into the I-cord, making sure the yarn 'wraps' the pipecleaner as I bring the yarn from the end of the knit row to the front for the next row. One hint is to keep the pipecleaner long so that you can push the base end into the animal before sewing (this allows for more stability). I then cut the tail tip end and knit the I-cord to cover the pipecleaner.

As for advanced planning on the rat...well, I don't know if you noticed, my uhmmm advance was one day in advance. And I almost didn't finish it. It was planned for my sister (who is born in the year of the rat), but my son decided he likes it and it's now his.

What else? oh, last year was the year of the Boar (aka Pig). I think that that was an auspicious year, but what do I know? I just now checked to make sure that child one is born in the year of the Ram (aka goat aka sheep) and the other is born in the year of the Dog (or as she says ' gog').

And don't get me started on astrology...the dog is a bull (and the sign completely suits her -- hee bull dog) while the goat is a aquarian (what's aquarius again? water? a water goat?)

*there's not pics (sorry) because I am tired after this weekend's festivities. My son's 5th birthday party with 18 4-6yr olds--not to mention the below 3 and the over 8 crowd.

ps. fleegle tagged me for 7 facts, I'm pondering them...

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Happy Chinese New Year! Year of the Rat

Well, I have been working on a rat for this post, and well, I just finished in the nick of time.

I was going to do a wee mouse, but decided on Cheese (of Chalk and Cheese). The arms are extraordinarily clever, done with short rows. You gotta love Alan Dart. Anyway...

Happy New Year!

rat 1

check out that tail. I'm proud of that tail. That is an I-cord w/ pipe cleaner in it so it's shapeable.

rat 2

And he turned out looking 'fluffy'. He's looking very 'Zucker' (a genetically obese rat model).

yarn: various acrylic worsted (okay, pink and white)
needles: US2 dpns
start: 2/6/08
finish: 2/7/08
mods: did the body in the round. The arms are amazing, but I think I switched them...but they worked out fine. the feet were done in the round, and the tail (w/ pipecleaner). I didn't do the 2 ear tufts and I used white crochet cotton for whiskers instead of the black.

I also chose to knit Cheese as a male lab rat (Rattus norvegicus), but he turned out to more resemble a Zucker (fafa) rat. Altho' I don't know if these rats are white...

Monday, February 04, 2008

This month's Lace knitting group

Given the rain and general inclement weather, a number of us braved the storm and attended the lace knitting group hosted by Lacis in Berkeley.

I walked in and saw that they have Hiya Hiya needles in stock now. (they just got them in). These are needles that go down to an insane size...I had to own a pair.

May I introduce my 000-000 needles (.7mm) OY!

hiya 000000 needles

I will knit some super small thread with it. Can you believe it?!

They also had the lovely book that Fleegle talked about a bit ago, Feminin Strik. What a pretty book. The sweaters are all lovely, but unfortunately, written in Danish. Mary Francis hopes that they'll translate the book into English. Wouldn't that be grand?

I brought a new little doily to work on because I want to figure out how to knit it flat. This has the hallmarks of Niebling, but is only 50-something rows. I figure I'll knit this, block it, and knit a few of the leaf elements in the flat (is that a term?) to determine whether this would work for curtains.
Kunststricken Folge 2   305_08

This doily took me a day! I finished and blocked it before we went to a Superbowl party. And guess what? It binds. I guess if you do 6 repeats instead of 4, that might not happen (that's another option for this pattern, it turns out looking quite different). See that 'corner'? That's supposed to be a sharp corner, not rounded like mine...

Kunststricken Folge 2   305_08 closeup

thread: green linen
needles: US1
start time: Saturday morning 2/2/08
finish time: Saturday night 2/2/08, blocked 2/3/08
pattern: Kunststricken Folge 2 305/08

Friday, February 01, 2008

You Make my day award

Fleegle gifted me with this:
The rules say to gift it to 10 more bloggers. So here goes:
chemgrrl because she can knit AND do research.
Renaissance Woman is just wonderful. She does it all. Socks, felting, colorwork...
Soo of course for her lacework and that Fassett jacket.
Utlinde for her amazing lace work. I just wish I could read German...
Stephaneener has these great kids and she knits for them and she spins.
Jane is an inspiration.
Diane for the 36 baby socks.
Opal because you've got to admire knitting wool in Hawaii
Supereggplant's brother Not a knitter (his sister is), but thoroughly enjoyable read
fleegle Wait, can you give it back to the person who gave it to you? Rule book please...