Knitting the Light Fantastic

Knitting, spinning, dyeing and other crafty goodness

Archive for the ‘mystery stole 3’ Category

Dish Rags, Raglans, and Jumping off the Bandwagon

Posted by notthatkat on August 6, 2007

The Dish Rag Tag boxes were sent out on Wednesday last.  My team’s arrived in the mail on Friday.

Dish Rag Gppdies

Besides the ball of yarn I used for Nicole’s dishrag, the box contained a neat short row square dishcloth, a ball of cotton for me to keep, a recipe for shortbread, and a couple of cookie cutters.  I didn’t get a picture of Nicole’s dishcloth in yarn form, but here it is upon completion:

Dish Cloth for Nicole

I went for speed over substance, but I like how the cloth came out.  I really like garter stitch for dishcloths, as the texture gives good scrubbing action.  It’s a dishcloth…I came up with the pattern  (such as it is) on my own…  and it’s mitered!  Ann and Kay would be so proud.  Neither of the two yarns in my package did much for me (although both are pretty good neutrals – maybe that’s the problem – I like color in my dish rags!), but I used the one I liked best to make the cloth I sent on.  Wasn’t that selfless of me?

Alongside the dishcloth for Nicole, I sent two new balls of dishcloth cotton (purple and yellow, and a dark variegated – hope they work for her and Colleen), a box of SweetTarts (’cause sending chocolate through the mail in South Carolina in August is a Bad Idea) and a couple bars of my hand made soap.  The box was pretty much full to the brim with all that (in case any of my team mates are trying to gauge box capacity), but I didn’t get pictures of the extra goodies because I was rushing around like a mad woman trying to make it to the post office before they closed on Saturday.  All told, I had the box in my possession for all of about 20 hours.

Now my role is relegated to cheerleader and coordinator for my team, which suits me fine, as my workload to get ready for Dragon*Con is starting to pick up steam, and the last two weeks in August will probably be crazy beyond belief.  I’ve already started requesting necessary information knowing it might not be available yet, but I’ll probably have to push, prod, and nag to get what I need from some people.  Part of the problem is that much of what I need to get done before the convention other than “staff recruitment and management” cannot be done until the guest list and programming has been finalized (at least as finalized as they ever are, these things change up to and during the convention).  As long as I’m not wading through huge amounts of superfluous information to get the relevant stuff like last year, I’ll be happy.  And if I am… I won’t be happy, but I’ve done it before, I can do it again.

Christmas Dishrag Project

In keeping with the dish rag theme, I decided to make a bunch of dishcloths for  office Christmas presents.  The one on the left is a basic bias knit garter dishcloth. For the one on the right, I exercised my Google-Foo and found the pattern for the cloth Emily sent me.  It is done but for the grafting, and weaving in the ends.  Two down, tons to go.  I figure if I get a couple of these knocked out a week, I’ll have no problem making enough by early December.  These will also be gifted with handmade soap (they just seems to go together, ya know) with a holiday appropriate scent that I have yet to pick out, let alone procure (I’m thinking pine, but I might very well change my mind.  The only things I know for sure is I want something Christmas-y and it must be unisex.)

Cable-Down Raglan

I got a bit more done on my Cable-Down Raglan over the weekend between all the dish rag knitting.  I am about half way down the yoke, depending on what size I go with (either the 41 or the 44 – probably the 44 but I’m delaying making a decision until I get to the point where the sleeves separate from the body, then I’ll try it on and decide).  I still love the pattern, and think it’s coming out great, but at the moment, it’s a bit of a slog.  I have a lot of stitches on the needle, and am increasing by 8 every other round.  I get to the second sleeve after doing the back in stockinette, and I have to remind myself what pattern row I’m on, because it feels like it’s taking me forever to finish a round.  In reality it’s like 10-15 minutes depending on whether it’s a round with cabling or not.

Diamond Cable

I love the main cable motif.  I’ve done half a repeat of the other motifs on the sleeve sections, but they’re not complete enough to show up well yet.   There is published errata having to do with how to work the increases, but I think I’ve found an error in the chart that isn’t listed there.  See the four little crosses in the center of the diamond motif?  According to the chart, I should be knitting the stitch on either side of each of those crossings.  It doesn’t look like that was done on the actual garment, and I opted to purl those stitches to make the cable crossings pop more.  I’ve contacted Interweave to try to find out if this is indeed an error and if so try to get it added to the errata  Looking at the KAL site everyone else has done the same, at least of those I can clearly make out the cable.  If you back track through the older posts, there are references to errors in the charts, which IMO must be in reference to this, but no actual corrections are listed.  I’m going with my gut, which says this way is “right.”

Silk Socks

Why do plain old stockinette socks seem to take longer to get anywhere on than ones with a stitch pattern?  Or is it just me?  Realistically, I know these have only been on the needles since last Wednesday and didn’t get much love until the Hokie Jaywalkers were done.  I typically knit a pair of socks up in about 2 weeks, unless I am obsessively knitting nothing but the socks.  Still, it seems like I should have  more than 4 1/4 inches of leg done by now.  I think it’s the lack of landmarks on the way.  Sure, I have the stripe sequence, and I can always pull out a tape measure, but it’s not the same as 2 pattern repeats done, 3/4 of the way through the pattern repeat…  And maybe the lack of variety.  Even the Jaywalker socks, with their simple two row repeat and absence of milestones, seem to knit up quicker to me than stockinette.  I guess I should keep a pair of socks in a yarn best suited to stockinette (I’m trying to use up my stash of these and not add too many new ones) for times when I need dead simple portable knitting on top of my usual “in rotation” pair, but then, I’d have to buy another set of circulars and how many pairs of socks going at one time can I have before my head explodes and sock yarn comes pouring out.

Last, but not least, in the knitting quandary category, I am not so sure I’ll like the Mystery Stole as it was revealed on Friday.  It is asymmetrical, with the second end of the stole being wing shaped.  Now, I am not opposed to asymmetry on principle, and often find myself drawn to such items. But in this case, I’m not sure it is something I will like or use.  However, I’m not sure I want to just reject it out of hand.  To that end, my plan is to knit to the “put in a lifeline in case you want to rip back when you see where I’m going with this” point and then put it on hold until I see some finished shawls.  Plan B is to stop at that point and knit the exact same pattern again, then graft the two together.  This is how I’m leaning at the moment.

The corrollary to this is that once I get to my designated stopping point with this, and done with the yoke of my raglan, I’m casting on the Bee shawl.  The yarn is already wound and ready to go.


Posted in Cable-Down Raglan, Dish Rag Tag, mystery stole 3, summer of socks | 1 Comment »

An FO, a nearly FO and a Tour de Fleece wrap up

Posted by notthatkat on July 31, 2007

As promised, I finished my Pehuén shell this weekend.  The perle cotton was just perfect for seaming, and I will remember it the next time I’m looking for seaming yarn for cotton knits.

Pehuén shell

I think it came out rather well.  The photo below shows the colors more accurately:

Pehuén shell

Pattern:  Calling it an original design makes it sound much more elaborate that it really was.  A simple sleeveless top (shell, tank, camisole, pick your favorite fashion term) with waist shaping, a turned hem and crochet around the neck and sleeves.

Yarn: Pehuén by Araucania in colorway 8 (lavender, red, black, grey) Used almost 5 balls of the 8 in my stash.

Needles: size 6 24″ circulars from my Knit Picks Options set

Started: June 15, 2007

Finished: July 29, 2007

Hokie Jaywalkers

The Jaywalkers are almost done.  I need to bind off and put in my heels, and then they will be complete.

When Jaywalkers Meet

The other night, I was working on them and looked down and realized that I was wearing my other pair of Jaywalkers.  So they had a little meet and greet (This is the third time I’ve knit this pattern – the first pair I made went to my niece.)

Mystery Stole 3

I finished clue 3 on my Mystery Stole.  I have not actually blocked it, but it looks like it will come in pretty close to the proscribed length once blocked.  I’m gonna try to get as much of clue 4 done in the next couple days as possible, but I’m not sure I’ll be done clue 4 before clue 5 comes out.  No worries – I’m not falling too far behind.

Cable-Down Raglan

I was going to wait to cast on another sweater until I got at least one lace project off the needles, but looked what jumped on my needles before I could stop it.  In wool, in South Carolina, in August.  I am finding it enchanting so far.  The siren call of one more row keeps pulling me back.

Finally I wanted to do a wrap up for Tour de Fleece.  I am not the most prolific spinner, and will never claim to be.  I love spinning, but I am so busy, I tend to go for long periods at a time without spinning at all.  Even making an effort, there were many days when eeking out 10-15 minutes to spin was difficult.  I do think it was good to spin more regularly and I am going to try to spin on a more regular basis from now on.  That being said, in addition to this yarn (which was started before the Tour started) I didn’t finish a single yarn:

Merino tencel laceweight

I am almost through the first 2 oz merino/tencel roving I am spinning for my Spun Stitches project.  This roving, Chasing Rainbows Dyeworks colorway Purple Haze ordered from Crown Mountain Farms, is spinning up wonderfully into a very fine single.  I have a long way to go on this, as once I finish this roving I have another one to spin up for the second ply, but I’m enjoying the process, so don’t take this as a complaint.

Sock Singles

I managed to spindle spin about an ounce of superwash merino from Mama E.  The plan is to spin 2 oz, Navajo or chain ply, then repeat with the remaining 2 oz.  Hopefully when I’m done, I’ll have a credible sock yarn to show for my efforts.

So very little finished yarn during Tour de Fleece, but good progress for me.  I want to continue making an effort to spin on a regular basis, and hopefully, I might finish me some yarn in the not-too-distant future.

Posted in Cable-Down Raglan, FO, mystery stole 3, Pehuen Shell, spinning, Spun Stitches, summer of socks, Tour de Fleece | Leave a Comment »

Lace, lace, and more lace

Posted by notthatkat on July 12, 2007

Original Design Socks

The socks now have heels and I’m cruising down the foot. I’ve done one full pattern repeat, and I think it will take two and a half to get to the proper length for toe shaping. I’ve started writing up the pattern, and although it needs a bit of polishing in a few places, it is coming along fairly well also. I’m still pondering names. I’ve gotten a couple suggestions, but it’s not to late to give me yours.

I’ve managed to pull back (or is that transfer) from the obsessive knitting, because lately I’ve been captivated by lace. Yesterday, I finished Clue 2 on my Mystery Stole.

Mystery Stole 3

I think I must be the laziest blogger in this KAL, because as yet, I have yet to take a good, pinned out picture of this stole-in-progress. Next time, I promise to take a pretty picture. The beads don’t show up well in the pictures I’ve posted so far (Along with the pretty pictures, I’ll try to get some close ups that show them off), but I think they really add to the lace pattern.

While I was on a lace kick, last night I swatched (again) the edging pattern for my christening blanket and played around with what to do about those corner sections. I opted for a short row shaping, but the edging pattern is wide so the effect will be subtle and I’m hoping blocking will help shape stronger corners. If not, I think it will be beautiful nonetheless.

Christening Blanket Edging

Full of excitement over finally figuring out what to do about my corners, I decided to get started on the blanket itself. I’ve managed to complete three repeats of the edging pattern. Only 81 to go if my math is right (20 on each side, and 1 in each corner). I still have a bit of a slog ahead of me, but I like the lace pattern I came up with (my own design, took a lot of swatching and adapting to get it just as I wanted it) and find it fairly intuitive once it gets going. Since this is the first progress I’ve made on this project in many many months, I’m satisfied.

Purple Haze

Finally, lest you think I’ve been neglecting my Tour de Fleece obligations, I’ve been spinning a bit of lace weight from my merino/tencel roving. Me like! BTW, it takes me a long time to spin up a wee bit of fiber that fine. The bobbin pictured above represents about three hours of spinning time. I still have to put in a bit of spinning time tonight, and by that I mean another hour or so. Will I finish the first ounce tonight? Probably not.

I’m traveling this weekend, so I’m breaking out the spindles and some superwash roving I want to spin up into sock yarn. And I promised to teach a friend how to spindle spin this weekend, so I’ll pack an extra spindle or three and some easy to spin roving.

Posted in christening blanket, mystery stole 3, Spun Stitches, summer of socks, Tour de Fleece | Leave a Comment »

Tour de Fleece Day 3

Posted by notthatkat on July 9, 2007

Midnight Blues

I’ve gotten off to a very strong start on Tour de Fleece. I spun the second half of my Midnight Blues Roving and plied it. My love affair with this roving/yarn continues.

Midnight Blues

I got just over 500 yards out of about 3 grams of wool. I think this is destined to be a Swallowtail Shawl. I feel my spinning is improving with every skein I spin, and I am have made so much improvement in the last six months. This was supposed to be my “practice” yarn for Spun Stitches, but I’ve pretty much spun a (small) shawl’s worth of yarn in a true lace weight. Not that I won’t still do spin up the other roving I planned to use for its original intended purpose. Hopefully I can get enough yardage out of it for a bigger shawl or stole.

Original Design Socks

The socks were not neglected with all the spinning; they are getting close to needing heels. I’m still loving the pattern, both the knitting and the look of it. The curves and arcs make it look very organic.

Mystery Stole

I managed to tear myself away from my obsessive devotion to my socks to finish off the first clue on my Mystery Stole and about 10 rows on clue 2. The beads don’t show up well in the picture, but I think they really add a lot to the stole. I am trying to stay mostly caught up on this one. We’ll see if I can keep that up once things get crazy in August.

Posted in mystery stole 3, socks, spinning, Spun Stitches, summer of socks | 1 Comment »

FO – Embossed Leaves Socks

Posted by notthatkat on July 5, 2007

Embossed Leaves

(I finished them Tuesday Night, but I was not online much yesterday. Most of the day was spent at Peach Festival. Hope you all had a happy 4th.)

Pattern: Embossed Leaves from Favorite Socks (and IK before that)

Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Solid in Loden

Needles: 2.75 mm (US2) 16 inch circulars (2 socks/2 circs)

Embossed Leaves

Started: June 23, 2007

Finished: July 3, 2007

Modifications: I changed the cast on to long tail cast on. I did an extra full repeat of the lace pattern on the leg (4 1/2 repeats). I substituted my usual short row heel for the flap and gusset heel in the directions.

Embossed Leaves

Speaking of Socks

Once again I cast on my next pair almost immediately. If all goes well the pattern will be written up for my entry in the SOS design competition.

Original Design Socks

They are just barely past the ribbing, and the stitch pattern is not visible in this picture, but everyone who’s seen them loves the color. I actually didn’t immediately cast on. First I cast on some leftover sock yarn and swatched different stitch patterns until I found one that really popped. I had different plans for this yarn, but I thought this sock would look great in it, but not so much in the yarn I planned to use. And it meets the design contest criteria of being readily available from at least one of the sponsors. So the switch was made, and they’re looking great so far.

In keeping with my tradition of double purposing my KAL knitting, it is also perfect for Project Spectrum this month.

When Good Socks Go Bad

Rococo Socks

I made these socks back in February from one of Anne’s patterns. I loved them. They were one of my favorite pair of socks. I took the picture above and several others to share with Anne in mid May. A couple weeks ago, I put them on to find they were a bit on the snug side. I wondered if they might have felted a bit, but they looked fine and were made with superwash wool, so I dismissed it as a bad foot day. Until earlier this week, when I tried to wear them again. This is what they look like now:

Felted Rococo Socks

I’ve already contacted the source, and been promised a replacement skein. Apparently, I am not the first to have this happen, although the number is small. It is being attributed to a mill error. It seems lately, I’ve had a lot of problems with yarn and knitting- related products. I don’t think I’m especially picky – really. Just give me decent yarn and a nice pattern that doesn’t require an advanced degree to interpret and I’m usually pretty happy. I can go for months to years at a time without feeling the need to lodge a complaint. But lately, I feel like I’ve had one knitting product issue after another. Hopefully the end is in sight.

Non-Sock Stuff

Pehuén shell front

I’ve finished about a third of the front of my Pehuén shell. This time I’m using two balls of yarn and changing balls every 2 rows. I should have done this on the back, knew better at the time, and just didn’t bother. Lesson learned. I still don’t think the back side looks too bad, so I probably won’t rip it out and do it over. Probably.

Mystery Stole

I’m also most of the way through Clue 1 of the Mystery Stole. Turns out there is one dwarf that makes crochet hooks small enough to go through the center of my beads. His name is Leonard and he left the Lonely Mountain to seek his way in the world. It turns out a 1.0 mm hook will go through the center while a 1.3 mm hook is way too big. Go figure.

Posted in FO, lace, mystery stole 3, Pehuen Shell, summer of socks, WIP | 1 Comment »