Tuesday, April 5, 2011

I can do whatever I want!

Okay, let's just forget blog week... there's only one more entry that I'm interested in making (where do you knit) because I want to show you 'craft land', but I don't have pictures yet... and I don't want to keep holding off updating while I try and figure out what to say about the rest of the entries, which don't really interest me. 
I am however really excited about the things I've been knitting lately!  So I'll recap (because it's my blog and that's what I feel like doing today!)... I'll do them in order of when they're probably going to be complete... unfortunately sweater will probably stay at the bottom of the list for a while... only because it's completion date is going to be further away than almost everyone else.  I'll also even be honest about what's ACTUALLY sitting in the wip/ufo area. 
1.  Vintage Silk Swim Cap Version 2
    This is a knit for my sister,  made out of Madeline Tosh DK in the Ginger colorway.  It's a pattern that I designed myself and I'm knitting it again in order to start to fulfill one of my knitting goals for the year, which is to publish patterns.  I have a terrible habit of making something up, knitting it, being really impressed with it and the forgetting all about it.  So she asked for a hat in this pattern and I needed to knit it again, and voila!  I'm one pattern repeat away from doing the decreases, so it should be finished by the end of the week at the very latest (I'm thinking closer to the end of tomorrow). 
2.  Hot Water Bottle Cover
    I'm sure I mentioned it but I have a hot water bottle cover already... sort of.  I made it out of a too big cowl by sewing the two ends together and leaving one long side open and a hole for the neck.  It works fine... I use an old sock to cover the rubber neck/head because the cowl doesn't come all the way up, and it sort of gapes on the one side, so sometimes you inadvertently come into contact with rubber... not so nice!
I found this pattern online (rav link: Winterberry ) and was so smitten that I put aside my somewhat newly aquired unwillingness to try new techniques.  I'm so glad I did because it's insanely fun to knit and I learned two new things!  First, I learned how to make a bobble!  After failing at nupps (prounounced noops), I was a little fearful of bobbles... not that it much mattered... they're not exactly my style.  Bobble: (k1, p1, k1, p1, k1) into next stitch.  Turn work and purl back 5 stitches.  Turn work and lift stitch 2, 3, 4 and 5 over stitch one, settling the lifted stitches in the BACK of the bobble.  Ktbl on the last bobble stitch (1) on your needle and voila!  What I've learned about bobbles is that they have a tendancy to try and sneak into the back of the work.  In order to somewhat prevent this, the next row you knit, you need to really pull the stitch the bobble is sitting on and the one on each side nice and tight behind the bobble.  Also, don't get discouraged if your bobble seems to still be trying to sneak off.  As you knit, the tension will automatically correct itself as you get further away from the bobble.  Or so it seems.
The second thing I learned was how to cable without a cable needle.  Apparently there are a few ways to do this, but this link is where I got my info and since I'm not going to take pictures... Go here http://bagateller.tripod.com/tips/cable.html.  I'm almost done this (since I'm obsessively knitting on it, and will do the decreases and then the neck ribbing and then the snuggles!  It's currently in a side by side tie with the hat above...  
3.  Cabbage Leaves
    This is called Miracle Grow on my project page on Rav and for good reason.  What happens when you knit a fingering/lace weight pattern with worsted yarn?  Why huge lace of course!  I'm more and more smitten with this 'huge lace' and since it's easier (in my opinion) to find non superwash yarn in heavier gauge, who knows when I'll knit lace with small yarn again.  Anyway!  This is being knit for the 3 Country Shawl Kal April-June Knit (crochet) along.  I picked the pattern this quarter and to be honest, I'm totally in love with it and can't wait till the two small (obsessive) projects above are done this week so I can get back to my shawl!  I'm knitting it out of Ultra Alpaca Worsted in the Split Pea colorway and it's gorgeous!  It's also huge and as of yet, I haven't decided how big I'm going to knit it.  I have four balls of yarn, but at this time, it looks like two will give me a great big snuggly shawl and three or four will give me an alpaca tarp.  I'm still leaning toward the tarp!  I have three months to get this done and again, in order to get to a useable size, it won't take long, so this project is the definition of 'not stressing me out'!  I love it!  It's been sitting patiently on the back of my sofa for a week now and I feel no guilt from it at all.  Only a strong desire to get back to knitting it because the yarn is butter and it's a fun knit! 
4.  The Sweater
    I don't think I need to explain what the sweater is or what it represents.  So I'll explain just how horrible the pattern is written and how my friends and I have gone about changing it.  First off, I measured and it turns out I have a 48" bust (now you can all stop wondering!).  So, big-boob-ed me is knitting the 50" size because it's either that or 46 and I didn't want it to be tight, so I decided on 50.  The first thing I did, which was smart was to knit a guage swatch!  LOL!  Kidding!  The first thing I did was ditch the gauge swatch and knit the sleeve for as far as I could get on one ball of yarn.  Epic pattern fail!  EPIC!  Just because you have big boobs, does not mean you have a 15" wrist... I'll wait while you pull out your tape measure and measure your own wrist and then measure 15"!  I mean really!  The sleeve cuff at 15" just about fits my arm all the way up to my shoulder!  Knowing that I'd be pulling that out, I got smart and actually washed and blocked the 'sleeve' to see what my gauge was, just in case what had happened was that I'm a terrible knitter.  But no.  I had perfect gauge! (I've never done a swatch before so it was very exciting to find that I had ball band gauge on the first go!) What had happened was that apparently if you have a 48" bust, you are a beachball all the way around!  Seriously!  So my friends at knitting have devised a way to get the sleeves a more proportional size to my body.  Short rows!  Well, picking up from the armholes and knitting down, using short rows to shape the shoulders and increases/decreases to get the sleeves the perfect size for my arms.  Knowing I was going to change that, I decided to consider other things I can change.  I can knit the two fronts and the back as one piece.  I WILL put waist and bust shaping in, because the bottom hem of the sweater is 54" (apparently people with big boobs also have hips and a but that add to more than the bust!) and I don't think it will look good AT ALL if there isn't some waist shaping.  I will use 3 needle bind off (which I will learn for the occassion) to join the back and the fronts at the shoulder.  And I will not be knitting a hood, but instead a 4x4 ribbed shawl collar to match the 4x4 ribbing on the sleeves and waist.  I will make a wider button placard and put three large wood toggles on from the collar to the middle bust and leave the rest open.  There will be no zipper. 
It's kind of weird that I'm making so many changes to my first sweater, but a girl needs to learn these things anyway, so why not learn it all on the first sweater!
I would like to have this completed by the middle of May. HAHA! 
5.  Girasole
    Yes, yes... this is still on the needles.  There are no problems with it, no hold ups and no reason to not be knitting on it.  Except that it's huge and I never feel that I get anything accomplished.  Perhaps it's made worse by the fact that because I don't knit on it, nothing every gets accomplished.  I have a partial E chart to finish and one F chart and then the ruffle...which I'm really excited about.  This will be on the list for a while because even if I finish the charts, the ruffle (5 times fullness I've decided) is going to be 3200 stitches around... Uh oh! 
Starting tomorrow I will have a new feature on here called 'What are you playing' and it will be games and reviews for iphone/itouch/iPad. You're encouraged to leave your comments about games you love and recommend as well.  I hate sorting through search lists and tech blogs to find good games/apps, so I figured I'd start my own... more specialized to the non-geek.


Shannon said...

Your sister is very, VERY excited about her hat and cannot wait to see it finished. Your sister is also very grateful because were it not for you, she would believe that all hats are made out of hair-do ruining synthetic material and would never have found how comforting and snuggly a nice toque can be.

Love you!