Round Peg In a Square Hole-crafts

Friday, November 09, 2007

Waaaaaaay Overdue Update

For some reason, I don't feel that I can update well if I don't have pics, and since the digital camera went belly-up a month or more ago, I've not been posting. However, I HAVE been knitting, so I finally borrowed a friend's camera and shot (most of) the things that I've been working on. So! On to the updates! (I'm keeping this post to finished items, as I didn't realize until just now how many things I've got going....)

First, the pumpkins came out fabulous, if I do say so myself.
The one in the back is the one I did with three strands of fingering weight (Knit Picks Palette) in three different oranges. The pix don't really show it, but the three different colors of yarn give the surface a lovely, mottled appearance. Also, interestingly, this one knitted up the same as the two in worsted weight, but didn't shrink nearly as much during the felting. So, I ended up with one big one and two smaller ones, which was what I actually wanted, even though I knitted three big ones. Life's funny, sometimes. Will write a more detailed post on these shortly, with a review of the pattern.

Next, we come to the next in the (seemingly endless) parade of tea cozies:
This one came out well, the pattern is good and quick, but it is a little underwhelming. Ah, well, it is the one she picked, and as close to the colors she asked for as I could get. (I even tried over-dying the blue, to get closer to what she wanted, but no soap.) The pic is before I wove the ends in or did the loop on top, but this is pretty representative.

Next is not really my project, but my Death Socks in Sock Wars II. (I felt the need to document my death.) They are lovely, well-knit, and fit great. My assassin also sent along some lovely stitch markers that I am using in Sam's Christmas sweater. Thanks so much!

Now, we come to my present for my hubby for our most recent anniversary. Oct. 13 was our 16th wedding anniversary, and when I tell you we dated for 9 years before we were married, you can understand that I'm scraping the bottom of the barrel for gift ideas. However, the Hubster is a gun nut, so when I saw this, I knew I had to do it. Good pattern (I only made two small alterations to it) and a quick knit, I was very happy with my Luv Gun.

Next up is an item that is mostly a failure. My daughter has this tiny (about 4" high) doll that she asked me to make clothes for last year. So, I took some leftover sock yarn and knitted Thumbelina up several dresses. Then I got creative, and added a sweater to one and a bonnet to another. Well, Thumbelina has been wearing the same three dresses for a year now, and she needed something new, so I tried my hand at designing a summer outfit for her. (Yeah, right before the real fall weather finally kicked in; my timing, as always, is excellent.) Honestly, in my head, these were much cuter: a pair of drawstring bell bottom pants, a camisole, and a bell-sleeved cardigan. However, the reality didn't quite match my concept. It didn't help that T went MIA while I was making these, leaving me with just a drawn outline to try to get the sizing right. Still not quite sure how I would change these to make them work, but I did explore a technique to knit a sweater with as few seams as possible: back and fronts knit together, including the button bands, sleeves knit in the round, then the whole thing knit as one piece from the armholes up (raglan), with the armpit stitches of the sleeve and the body grafted together. Leaves only some small holes under the arms to be sewn, and some fudging at the back of the neck. Am using the same technique on Sam's Christmas sweater; will say more about that in my "in progress" post.

And lastly, the list of FOs concludes with the freakin' Lobster-Pretzel scarf:

Tried to get close-ups of the various stitch patterns I used, but was not as successful as I would have liked. (This is one thing I will be looking for, when I finally replace the dead digital.) However, the important thing is that this sucker is FINALLY DONE! I finished the knitting ages ago (despite my agonies of running out of yarn TWICE), but hadn't blocked it because I didn't have a piece of cleared floor big enough to lay it out (it's quite long). But, I finally pushed enough stuff around in the sewing room (yes, it's still the sewing room; no progress made there, unfortunately) to clear enough room to block it, and now it's done. The info about the lobster is here; the rest of the scarf is basically sampler blocks, working in from the lobsters on each end: basketweave of my own design, this block, and a block from a Barbara Walker stitch treasury. Am pleased with how this came out, just hoping the wool I picked (Wool of the Andes from Knit Picks) isn't too scratchy. Am very pleased with the pretzels, though, and they're very simple: using a provisional cast on, knit an i-cord "long enough" (for worsted weight done with 5 sts and size 7 needles, this came to about 8", I think) to twist into the required shape. To attach to the edge, cast on until you get to the place you want the pretzel, knit the live stitches off one end, cast on 3 more stitches, pick up and knit the bars between stitches along the long curve of the pretzel for 4* stitches, cast on 3 more stitches, take the waste yarn out of the provisional cast on and knit those live stitches. (Sounds much more complicated than it is to do.)

So! Those are my FOs for the time being. Next, I will document several feral projects that have been plaguing me: Teo's jeans, Sam's Christmas sweater, and the Flower Basket Tea Cozy. (That post may not be suitable for sensitive readers.....)

*In the picture, you can see I picked up more than 4. In retrospect, I think picking up fewer stitches would have worked better, which is why I wrote this the way I did.

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