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Monday, January 20, 2014

Knitting Today: Round Dishcloth

Recently I have been using up the cotton worsted weight yarn that I have.  Today I spent the day coughing, napping, and finally,(after making and eating some chicken soup) knitting a little.

The cloth project I made today was called the Peppermint Cloth.   The pattern calls for size 6 needles and casting on 20 stitches.  In theory it knits up about 8 1/2 inches across.  Mine knit up at 11 inches across.

The pattern was a good starting place but I needed to make a couple of changes to make it work for me.

Where the pattern called for slipping one purlwise then putting the yarn to the front, I changed it to putting yarn to the front and THEN slipping one purlwise.  It worked much more smoothly for me.

The other place where I made changes was when the pattern changed colors and then called for knitting two rows.  The change I made was:  after finishing the last short row, I knit all the way from the outer edge to the inner edge of the circle with the previous yarn, then pick up the new yarn and knit one row all the way across to the outer edge of the circle.  At this point start back knitting the short rows.

Peppermint Cloth....i.e. round cloth

Friday, January 17, 2014

Knitting Today: Christmas 2014 Advent Garland Project--Started!

There is a delightful-looking mitten garland on the KnitPicks.com website.  It looks like a very do-able project.  I need to make four of these garlands...hopefully before June when I hope to start this year's Christmas Knitting!

Here are mittens 96 and 95:
First two mittens for Advent Garland
My plan is to knit up three or four per week until done.  They take about an hour each to knit, I think.  I will time the next one.

If they go really well, I might even make a garland for the old homestead....

Monday, January 13, 2014

Barbara Walker Learn To Knit Afghan Projects, Square 27 and Square 28

These squares look really complicated.  They are not.  A little attention to detail does not go amiss, however!

Square 27 is called Wickerwork.  It is worked with Right Twists and Left Twists which are quite simple.  Barbara gives two methods to knit these twists so you can choose your poison.

Cast on 48 stitches which is a multiple of 8 stitches.

Square 27:  Wickerwork

Square 28 is called Twining Rib Pattern.  This also has Right Twists and Left Twists.  They are easy.  It does help to have a row counter to keep you on the straight and narrow.

This is knit in a light blue, which does not show up well.  Cast on 48 stitches...multiple of 6 stitches this time.

When I start blocking these blocks I will show them again. I believe they will be MUCH more attractive at that time. 

This book is so useful and enjoyable.  I do recommend getting your own copy and going to work on knitting your own afghan.  A few weeks before Christmas I decided I would finish this afghan as a "gift" for my husband.  Such a great idea...but no way to pull it off.  Now I am thinking: next Christmas!

Square 28: Twining Rib Pattern

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Knitting Today: Three Baby Wash Cloths

Several new babies have been born recently and my aim to knit them each a washcloth has fallen by the wayside.  Today was a rather dreary, rainy, drizzle-y day which had no outside commitments so I sat in our nice chocolate brown recliner with my size 4 (or 6) knitting needles and some cotton yarn and went to town on these cloths.

The first one finished was the round cloth. I rather like the looks of this one.
 It came out rather large so the next time I make it for a baby, I think I will renovate the pattern somewhat...a little smaller border and smaller inner circle.  We shall see.

The next two washcloths were for preemie twin boys.  They started out to be double moss stitch cloths, but ended up straight moss stitch...it is easier for me to keep track with a very simple stitch!  I think they came out rather well.  The striped one is really attractive though the photography does not make that happen....

None of these have been blocked, and it shows

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Barbara Walker Learn To Knit Afghan Project, Square 25 and Square 26

Square 25 is named Wave. It really does look like a wave.  It was pretty easy to knit.  Cast on 44 stitches and uses a multiple of 9 stitches plus 8.

Square 25 Wave

Square 26 is called Twisted Columns and worked rather well.  You will note, yet again, my tolerance for error.  I think this sort makes the block a little bit interesting because one wonders, "How did she do that in a very simple pattern?!"  There is no good answer, but it probably has to do with trying to do more than one thing at once!

This is a two-color design.  Cast on 44 stitches, using a multiple of 10 stitches plus 4.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Knitting Today:Nine Dwindling Cables Hat...Done!

About a month ago I was sitting in the hallway at church with my knitting needles in hand waiting for my husband to be finished his work so we could go home.  A young sister asked me if I wouldn't like to knit her a hat.  Of course I would like to knit her a hat!!!  

SO...to make this project work, I suggested she go to the White River Yarns shop, look at all the beautiful hats that encircle the shop as samples, choose one, ask Karen if the one she wanted was within my capabilities, and, if so, get the yarn and pattern to me and I would make it.

Finally last week all the stars aligned and she got to the shop.  The stars REALLY aligned because our son, who lives just through the block from this young sister, was coming to our house that very night to stay over to be ready to help his father on a flooring project early in the morning. He was willing to bring the project  and she was able to get the pattern and yarn to son number three!  I love it when things go so right.

When I looked at the pattern (called Nine Dwindling Cables) I was not convinced that I could successfully complete the hat but decided that I would give it the old college try. 

That very night I began the band.  It was a bit tricky because on one row you knit through the back loop and on the next you purl through the back loop.  Well, looking at that like that, it does not seem like there would be any problem.  Who could not do those simple "through the back loops"?  Well, I could not keep track of which row I was on and which was supposed  to be through the back loop.

Since I hate to blame my ignorance or something like that for my inability to consistently knit, or purl, through the back loop, I will say that it was because I was coming down with a miserable cold.  This cold was so unpleasant that I did not knit.  I did not read.  I did not cook.  I did not even EAT!  For several days. (That last one is always a good thing....!)

Finally I picked up the needles again and went to town on the hat.  Here is is:

Nine Dwindling Cables Hat, completed.
This is the yarn that was used:
Kenzie Yarn from New Zealand
The pattern really was not hard to knit, though five-stitch crossovers meant you really did need a cable needle rather than knitting the cables without a cable needle....at least I needed a cable needle!  The cables were a bit different from cables I typically knit in that there was a five stitch knit lead in, or walk out (before or after the cable crossing in the row of the cross), which made them look a bit "off" to me at the beginning.

As the cables began to dwindle, they seemed a bit more "normal" to me.  The only glitch was that when I got to row 62, the prescribed number of stitches were not on the needle!  I do not know what happened, but it was not important enough to me to go back and see if there was a bit of pattern errata or if the error was mine. I am rather expecting the flaw was my own.

My flawed center...not as "sharp" as The Yarn Owl's version...

Having said that, the hat looks nice enough, though it probably would be better if I had blocked it strongly, but since I finished it last night and plan to deliver it today, there was not time enough for a good solid, though gentle, blocking.  If the project's conclusion does not work for the sister, I will take it back and work it some more.  Maybe I need more instruction on blocking wool projects...