Thursday, August 10, 2017

Lemony is Done

Lemony is finished, washed, and ready to pack. We are visiting my daughter this week and she likes yellow. I hope it suits her.

I am mushing on with the three color fair isle mostly because I can't help myself. I used stitch fiddle to calculate proportions of colors and excel to calculate estimated ounces. There is supposed to be enough.

The back of my mind is considering options should the colors run out.

Summer road trip knitting coming up.

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Best and Final, Maybe

So many sleeves started and ripped.

The last combination was nice but part way up I measured and it was way too small. Turns out the gauge wanted to be 6.25 stitches/inch instead of my normal 5 stitches for this sort of wool. Perhaps some is the Debut which is not quite worsted but thick enough and some is the fair isle pattern which seems to look better tight.

Since I was ripping anyway, I switched out the medium blue with a lighter blue of the same type. I was not entirely happy with how the darker color read against the navy when they were together.

We have a finalist now.

I weighed all the yarn before and after the sleeve and found that each color is missing 50 grams. Strangely, the sleeve weighs 120 grams so something is off.

This is troubling, as it is a bit more than 1/6th of the yarns that I am using and my rule of thumb is 1/3 for the sleeves and 2/3 for the body.

Hmmmm.

I should go finish Lemony now.

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Better

My primary stated knitting goal this year is to work through my worsted weight yarn. I thought I was doing well, finishing about a sweater a month.

In the process of creating a stash inventory I came across some worsted that my brain had considered DK weight. So, the worsted stash is suddenly a kilo larger or 2,700 yards depending on how you count.

On the other hand, there are some nice colors to work in, one of which was a very dark navy blue.

So, while contemplating the Drops pattern with squares swatch, I thought that coral and blues could work very well.

And, they work very well indeed.

On the brown front, the turquoise and brown swatch sleeve was frogged. While the pictures looked nice enough the turquoise just did not read well against the brown in the pattern. There were way more brown stitches than turquoise. Perhaps a more even arrangement would be better.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Design Process; Next Project

As the Lemony jacket nears completion I begin contemplating the next project.

First, I played with some zig-zag patterns using three colors. The idea is to use up the two skeins of cream left from Canyonville and the left over coral from the Drops Brocade sweater. I have some nice turquoise that I know looks nice with the coral.

I used Stitch Fiddle to come up with a design, using the Grey Sparrow as a starting point.

I use sleeves for swatches when I feel confident so off I went.

Turns out, I do not like the way the coral plays against the off white. It looks better in the photograph but in real life it makes my eyes hurt.

I was also troubled by the turquoise. Not how it played but in the quantity I have on hand. There is enough of this yarn for about a half of a sweater. This application needed just shy of three skeins and I have more than four.

In the background, I have been creating an inventory of my stash. I discovered a few important things:

1) I have some Reynolds Debut, which I thought was DK, but is really worsted. I have 250 grams of navy blue which would be very nice against the coral.

2) I have a lot of brown. I may have liked browns but now this seems to be a problem.

So, the next try is inspired a bit by the Tour de France. Specifically the AG2R team that has been riding in the same turquoise, brown, and white jerseys for years. Here is Romain Bardet, who, incidentally looks like an anime character in those colors.

The next choice was to pull a two color project out of my queue. I decided on Drops 55-14. I like the pattern a lot, and I also like the pops of a third color on the cuffs.

I'm not fond of the hemmed edge that the pattern calls for, so I decided to try a slip stitch pattern in garter stitch. I'm interested these days in alternate edges and using slip stitch patterns for cuffs and collars.

So, again, I started on a cuff. I used a slip stitch pattern from Barbara Walkers's second Treasurry and the bright yellow from Lemony.

Again, it looks better in the picture but I decided that the yellow was too bright. I was also surprised that the brown/turquoise contrasted less than I expected. The idea is still good. Next try will use brown and turquoise for the slip stitch section and brown/yellow for the medallion section. Then, I will skip the third little contrast design and go straight to the main body pattern.

Good think that I don't mind ripping.


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Parts Parts Parts

Another road trip, some Tour de France viewing and Lemony progresses.

I did not like the cable down the sleeve from the model so I improvised. The cuff is a strip of cable, grafted ends and the light yellow picked up and knit from there.

The model shows a hood which I also did not like. Hard to tell from the picture but there are neck decreases for a V neck. The cable edge will extend around to the back neck. MannequinAnnie on Ravelry did something like this.

I'm trying to spend some time documenting my stash. The Ralvelry application is great for this. I'm finding that some of my vintage stuff is not listed, so I'm creating pages there as well.

So much to work through.

My plan was to begin with the worsted and work my way down in gauge.

I'm re-thinking my plan.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Road Trip Knitting

I spent a lot of last week documenting my stash. I started with the worsted weight and found that it helped me get my head around the horror that is my yarn supply. I am not nearly done but I will be offering yarn for sale or trade on Ravelry. So, if you are in the United States, please take a look.

I spent a lot of time in the car over the weekend travelling to a sailing event. Lots of car knitting. I am making a scarf with the leftover Cascade Casablanca that I used in the recently completed Drops brocade sweater. I'm using a herringbone stitch and I think it is quite nice. My husband has already claimed it.













I progressed on the swirl cable jacket enough to sew down the swirly cables. I think one needs to be adjusted a bit, but I'm still thinking about it.

I did not do the sewing in the car.








In fact, I decided to crochet the swirls in place. Here is a detail....









The car knitting was working up the right front and some of the back. I eventually became annoyed with wrestling three balls of yarn that wanted to twist together and resorted to the scarf which was the back-up project.



Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Shaggy Success

I became interested in finishing this project over the weekend, mostly to discover if I was going to have enough yarn. Almost didn't make it. The beige ran out partway through it's last repeat so I substituted the toasty color and the Lamb's Pride brown/grey was replaced with the other Lamb's Pride grey/brown. The replacements were done only on the back. Even so, I doubt that most people would notice.

I very nearly ran out of the berry color which would have been a problem. But I didn't so I call this a success.


Leftovers

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Shaggy Shaping Up

Well, Shaggy has made it to the armhole decreases and the left front is finished.

Here is a view of the finished side and a sleeve:












The pile of yarn is much smaller, but I feel that I ought to have enough to finish. Even better, the chocolate color that I used for the sleeve edges may have enough yardage for the body edging.

Hard to tell at this point. Here's to finishing the rest of the body.

We've taken some hill country road trips recently and I did not want to herd seven balls of yarn while in the car. So, the next worsted project is on the needle. Here is a peek:

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Shaggy Thinking

Shaggy sleeves are finished and I am working on the body.

The picture shows almost six pattern repeats and two button holes. I cast on using a provisional cast on and a crocheted base. That is the green yarn at the bottom. The edge is a bit curly so it will need a few rows of something to stabilize.

My scanner is not co-operating. If it was I would scan the pattern I wrote to document how my mind works. Instead, here is a description of what I plan:

My gauge is 5 stitches/inch and one ten-row pattern repeat per inch. The stitch pattern is from the "Furrow" pattern in the Jamieson's Shetland Knitting Book 2.

After the sleeves were finished, I have better than 65% of all my yarn with the exception of the milk chocolate. That makes sort of makes sense because the  chocolate was used a bit more since it was used for the edging of the sleeve.

I will want to weigh the yarn again when I get to the armhole. I'm pretty sure I have enough to finish. The point was to take a pile of leftovers and make something wonderful, not something unfinished an useless. I find that the 1/3 sleeves, 1/3 front, 1/3 back rule works pretty well. Thus, I should have just enough for the sweater. A cropped length and the "V" neck should help. It will be close.

My initial thought was to use the chocolate to edge the body in garter stitch with mitered corners at the bottom openings. This plan needs to change because it now is unlikely there will be enough of the chocolate. I think either a striped garter edge or a crocheted edge will work. I will have to wait and see what I have left when the body is done.

I want a somewhat cropped jacket with a V neck and three buttons. I want the waist to be smaller than the bust.

Cast on 212 stitches using a provisional method
. 55 for left front/1/100 for the back/1/55 for right front. The single stitches are to be knit stitches all the way up to define the side seam.

Increase on stitch on each side of the seam stitches on row 1 of the pattern on repeat 2, 3, 4, 6, 8 for a total of 20 stitches.

Make a button hole on the second row of the pattern on repeats 2, 6, and 10.

Begin armhole decreases and "V" neck decreases on row 6 of repeat 10.  Use armhole directions from the "Grand Plan" pullover by Ann Budd. V neck decreases 1 stitch each side every row 1 and 6 until the armhole measures 9.5". There should be 24 stitches left for the shoulder.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Just now Finished

The brocade sweater is finished and is taking a bath.

I did pull apart the collar and redo it and I am happy with that. I then stared at it for a week because I did not feel like setting in the sleeves. Today, I had to wait for the pest control service to come by, so I sat down and did the final finishing.

I love the way the set in sleeves fit.

I still have just over two skeins of this color left, so the project did not demolish the difficult to deal with coral yarn.

In the mean time, I had a blinding flash of the obvious regarding the Shaggy project. Since I am only working one color at at time, there is no reason to break the yarns that end on the wrong side of the work. Since I use double ended needles, I can just slide the work and work on the wrong side. So this Shaggy sleeve is considerable less shaggy.



Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Almost finished.

Well, the brocade knitting is complete. I admit that the back and forth for the front and back were tedious, but that is over now.  I like to add the collar before sewing on the arms because there is less to throw around as I knit around the neck. I tend to pick up too many stitches so right now the collar stands up like a mock turtleneck.

I'm not sure I like that. I'll sew the arms on and if I decide to change those arms will swing around as the new collar goes on.

So it goes...

When the tedium became too much I continued on with the new slip stitch project. The garter ridges and nubs work well for this combination of yarns. The first sleeve went fast and I was enchanted with the resulting fabric.



So enchanted that I did not fully realize the number of ends involved. I truly considered pulling this apart and throwing it all away. Shame on the professional designer and shame on me for not figuring out a better solution to this.

Still, it's awfully nice is a woodsy sort of way. It is much nicer looking in person.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Brocade Continues

Well, the brocade flowers pullover continues. I cast off for the armhole openings and am  now back to back and forth fair isle. Not my idea of a good time but the result is generally worth the effort. I considered doing a steek but with the shaping involved I decided that route was about as troublesome and added more effort when finishing.

This is the point of the project where my mind wanders. My goal this year is to work through as much of my worsted stash as possible and I have made a considerable dent. While working on the front of this project I began thinking of my single and partial skeins. I've been putting them into bags according to color family. My neutral/brown sack had almost enough for a sweater. The skeins are interesting. Some very vintage Harris tweed and Lambs Pride. Also, some no-name knitting worsted bits.


I'm using weight to estimate what I need for a project. Most of the stash is vintage worsted and the labels do not show yardage as a rule. I  weighed them and found that the collection was a bit light for an entire sweater. I find that 26-28 ounces or more than 6 and less than 7 four-ounce skeins is enough for a medium/large pullover.

I had another vintage Harris skein and another vintage Lambs Pride in colors that seemed like they could work in. The Harris is a bit cranberry and the Lambs Pride is sort of pistachio.This got me to 27 ounces so critical mass is attained.

I've been browsing some slip-stitch patterns and Furrow caught my eye as a potential choice. The pattern uses four colors but looking at how the colors are used, I found that it was a ten row repeat using three colors. Then, one color is removed, the two remaining shift and the fourth color is added. It seemed that this could be used for more than four colors, so I tried seven.

I'm pretty pleased with the result with respect to the color. The repeat is fifty rows, but because it is about half garter the fabric is pretty dense. So, it is asking to be more of a casual jacket rather than a pullover.


I'm thinking of V-neck cardigan with sleeves that sit just below the elbow. The fabric is busy and there is enough garter that it does not curl much so a narrow-ish garter stitch on the edge for the cuffs and waist and button band will be nice.





Monday, May 22, 2017

Brocade Progress

The body is coming along. Some car knitting over the weekend.

Not too many rows before the armhole decreases and I will be knitting back and forth again.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Brocade Leaves Sleeves

We have sleeves. The kitchen scale says they weigh just shy of 8 ounces so one skein of each color was used.
That suggests that I will need two more skeins of each color, leaving me with an extra of the multi-color Cascade and two skeins of the coral.  I would like to have gone through more of the coral but it is more important to me to make something that pleases me.

Often, once I start working with a color I find troublesome I begin to like it and then miss it when it is gone.

I think this looks great and I especially like the linen stitch edging. I'm not sure why we don't see it more often in hand knitting designs.  Perhaps because it is less elastic than ribbing, but hemmed edges are also not elastic.

Monday, May 08, 2017

Coral Development

This stash yarn has been eating into my brain. I probably acquired it during an eBay yarn binge.

I don't do that anymore.

It is not quite orange, not quite pink, not quite coral and very very bright. I have about five four-ounce skeins, so not quite enough for a sweater.

 I tried it with turquoise, but that did not make me happy. The idea was to make it the main color for a Catherine Parr, but it was clear part-way up the sleeve that there was not enough of the coral for the project..

Then, I tried with white and Barbara Walker. French weave. French weave, colors reversed, Florentine.  Good exercise, but still not happy.

I cruised by a local yarn shop, and found this lovely and coordinating  beauty in the 50% off bin. Enough for 1/2 of a sweater.
I tried some slip stitch patterns first. I liked the cuff, but the rest did not interest me.  Several others were tried and ripped. ...
Time for a time out while I browsed Ravelry projects for a while.

Well, Hello, beautiful:

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Canyonville Complete



This is the result of a weekend Breaking Bad binge.















And it fits.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Progress on Canyonville

Canyonville is starting to look like a real sweater. Between the beginning of April and now the body has progressed to the armhole decreases and sleeves have been attached.

This body picture was from last week.

That was a lot of stitches so vertical progress seemed slow.   I am taking out eight stitches every round now, so soon we will have a neck-sized opening.

I'm a bit puzzled about why the cables at the bottom edge want to curl. I expect they will settle down when blocked.



Monday, April 03, 2017

Canyonville Progress

Two sleeves completed. Better yet, the measure properly to actually fit.

The body is on the needles and I'm working my way through the cable edge section.

This one is slow going compared to the fast and friendly slip stitch sweater. I do like it and it not only keeps my interest, I collect complements from other knitters.

Enough for now.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Turquoise Swatches

I remember now how fussy the Canyonville pattern is. Many 1x1 cables to make those nice wavy ribs. I enjoy the result and am improving on the process as my hands learn the pattern again. After a week of work I am most of the way up the first sleeve.

While creeping up the arm, I thought a bit too much about the stash yarn I am working through. Some skeins irritate me. Too bright, too much, but not enough. I have quite a lot of turquoise in two dye lots that got under my skin. One lot started as 16 ounces and can be about a half of a sweater. The other is 8 ounces and is close, but not close enough.

So I swatched. I know this turquoise. It defeated me a few years ago when I was playing with brioche type stitches. Over the weekend, I tried again.

My first thought was to use the larger lot in a sweater like the Great Missowski. It is a fun false flame stitch zigzag. An extra bonus is that the three minor colors require a single 4 ounce skein. Great opportunity for my single skein stash items.

After some fiddling I came to this combination. The purple, magenta, and teal are single skeins and the orange was last seen in the recently completed Sunset Kiyomi.

I was happy with how the colors played with each other but I didn't see a sweater that I liked. This felt like "using up", which is not my goal.

Out came the Barbara Walker books and after some trials, I ended up with some combinations that make me happy.

The plan is to use either the honeycomb or the flame stitch for the body up to the armhole. The Swiss check will be on the sleeves and upper body. I'm still thinking about the edges, but will probably opt for a simple 2x2 rib.

The normal end game for this color exercise is that the irritating color becomes my very favorite. I want to put it everywhere. The orange here is an example of that evolution. It was an irritating color a few years ago and there was so much of it. Who wears orange?  I used it in the Hedera Jacket a few years ago, and I am happy with how it plays here and in the Kiyomi. This project will be the end of of it and I will miss my orange.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Sunset Colors Kiyomi Done

I started fiddling with Canyonville for a few days and put off finishing the Kiyomi inspired pullover.

I got to finishing Wednesday, and Thursday she was done and ready for a wash.

Final usage numbers are:
Dark Rose - 336 grams
Orange - 134 grams
Pink - 132 grams

A total of 602 grams, and about 1170 yards using the Bernat Sesame 4 measurements for all yarns.

I love the Ann Budd Grand Plan charts. As you can see, this one fits perfectly.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Canyonville Crash and Burn.

I am baffled.

I put this project aside because I knew there was a problem with the width of the sleeve. About a 6" problem as it turns out. Looking at the cuff, I find that it is 6" wide. Usually cuffs for adults are about 9.5 to 10 inches.

What was I thinking, then, when I continued on and knit on the second sleeve for about 9"?

This knitting cannot be salvaged, and all must be torn out.



I still want to work the project, so I will begin again with a new sleeve. Casting on 10" will go a long way towards having enough width at the end. The plan is still to modify the construction to make a knit-in-one-piece raglan.

Time to recalculate and cast on again.

Monday, March 06, 2017

Kiyomi Body Done


I've been a bit obsessed. I cast on this project last weekend and a week later I have this.

Perhaps I was a bit concerned about having enough of the pink. There was less of it than the other colors ~180 grams. I weighed the remaining skein and find I used just about half for the body. I have 94 grams left. Thus, I have plenty for the sleeves and collar.


Thursday, March 02, 2017

Silk Shell


Pictures of the newly finished silk shell.

I started with the pattern for the Purl Soho Pebble tank using a two color brioche stockinette stitch. I went rogue around the arm decreases. After some trial and error I decided to go with the slanted two stitch brioche decreases.

I used a braided edging that looks more complicated than it really is. I like how it worked out.

The original measurements for the body looked odd before I blocked the piece. I probably should have taken a picture, as it looked like a crop top. We know that silk and cotton will stretch lengthwise, so I counted on that to make the proportions work.

After a wash, I hung it on a skirt hanger by the shoulder seams and let gravity do the blocking job for me.


Friday, February 24, 2017

Slip Stitch Swatches

If I adhere to my goals list, Canyonville should be the next up. But, I don't feel like cables right now. I did go find a cable needle, so I will count that as progress. 

Instead, I did a stash dive. 

I struggle with the notion of doing a project to use up yarn stash versus creating a project that I enjoy and want to make.

I first looked at some blue yarns. I have about 300 grams of two colors and figured I could add a brown or tan sort of like Jeanie on the Berroco free pattern site. After looking at the yarns for a few days I concluded they were nice but I wasn't excited enough about the pattern. It felt like a "use up" project instead of something I really wanted to do. 

I tried a slip stitch pattern with the chosen yarns to see how they played together. I was surprised how bright the two blues read. The tan was meh, and made me think about orange. I liked the nubby texture. I liked slip stitch.
This is the next try. It is the Kiyomi pattern which I have admired. The light orange was OK, but the choices in the model worked because they were closer in shade and tone.




Well, hello, this works.  

Oh, and the color is more representative of the true color than the previous picture.

The Kiyomi model features a wide center welt of the main color yarn. I do not think I have enough yarn for that and I don't wear cardigans much anyway. So, a pullover, probably using the Ann Budd Grand Plan pattern. 

I like the slip stitch pattern from the failed blue/tan swatch for the bottom, wrist and neck edging but I will fiddle with the color order.

For the record, I am starting with 434 grams of the dark rose, 324 grams of the orange and 178 grams of the pink.