August 2nd, 2006

Sweater Designing is a Slippery Slope!

Hey everyone! Hope your not all melting out there!!

I am desgning myself a sweater for fall. I am toying with a few different concepts (which probably means I will have more than one sweater going at a time) and I am running into a a problem, I can't figure out how to make some really wide bell sleeves. Does anyone have a link to a pattern with them that I could look at?

Thanks all!

FO - Recycled Sari Silk Mitered Square Pillows

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Pattern: Not a pattern, exactly. I got the idea from Scarf-O-Matic, but carried out the idea a bit differently. Basically, take four mitered squares, each with a base of 48 stitches, and sew them together
Yarn: Three balls of Recycled Sari Silk from
Needles: Addi Turbos, Size 9
Other supplies: Three 14" squares of fabric (pillow backs) and three 14" store bought pillow forms
Notes: My friend gave me the yarn as a gift almost two years ago, and I've been waiting for inspiration for just the right project. It was too scratchy to be a scarf or hat, I don't wear ponchos or shawls and I don't use purses (ruling out 99% of all patterns calling for sari silk). At the same time, I really wanted to use it, since it was a gift, and I felt it would be mean to trade the yarn for something else, given that she picked it out because she thought I would really enjoy it.

Mitered squares go really fast and it is kind of fun to watch them take shape and I love the look of them now that they are done, but working with this yarn was just murder on my hands. The inconsistency in the spinning was a pain – there were places where it was so thin I was worried the yarn would snap, and other places where it was knotted together and hard to pull through the loops. There were a lot of random bits in the yarn - hay, string, a fingernail, lots of dirt (had to wash three times before the water stopped turning muddy), so I didn't want to have to buy more of it in order to finish a project. The yarn sheds like crazy, and I'm sure it won't be long before my couch is covered in silk bits. On the bright side, the yarn softened up considerably in the wash (with just a drizzle of Tide), the dye ran a bit, but washing out the dirt actually made the colors seem more vibrant.

More rambling about pillows (mostly the fabric I used for the back) on my blog.

Debbie Bliss Pilar Sweater

So I've finally finished weaving in all the ends on my Pilar sweater and now I need to stitch it together and crochet around the edges and stuff. The directions for finishing are as follows:

To Make Up
Join side and sleeve seams reversing for cuff turn back. With wrong side of left front facing and 3.00 mm crochet hook work a row of double crochet (single crochet in the US) around neck edge and along top edge of wrap. Fasten off. Sew a button on underside of right neck edge and make a button loop at neck edge of left front to match. Make a 30cm/12in crochet chain and join center of chain to right side seam at waist level. Make a loop on left front edge to match.

This is my first sweater and so I have a lot of questions. First of all, which method for sewing seams do you recommend? I also don't quite understand what she means by reversing the sleeve seam for the cuff. Do I stitch down the shoulder and then when I get to the turned back part go around and stitch the seam on the other side so it doesn't show when the sleeve is turned back? How do I crochet into the edge of a knitted garment? I understand how to do single crochet when there's a chain to crochet into, but there is no chain on a knit piece of fabric. Are there any online tutorials about this? Do I sew the button on with thread or yarn? How should I make the button loop? Should I crochet a chain for it? I don't understand how the 12 inch crochet chains are supposed to work. How should I secure the center of the chain to the sweater? When I put the sweater on, do I tie them together to hold the poncho-ish part back? Has anyone here made this sweater before? Does anyone have a picture of what you're supposed to do with the crochet chains once you attach them?

edge for honeymoon cami

Last summer I made the honeymoon cami from knitty, and since then I've only worn it about twice. It all worked out very well and I was pleased with the finished product until I put it on - the v-neck is way too plunging for my taste. I saw it in the drawer the other day and decided that it's time to deal with it finally. Has anyone else had this problem and if so how did you fix it (beyond ripping it out that is)?

I was thinking I could do some sort of fancy crochet edge on the front, but my crochet skills are pretty lacking. Also, I've been searching google for crochet edgings, but I'm not sure that any of the ones I saw would work since the edge would have to make a sharp turn at the middle of the neck. Can anyone please suggest a nice (and wide) edge stitch pattern that would work for a v-neck shirt? (I know that's sort of a crochet question, but it's to fix up a knit object so I hoped it would be appropriate.)

Thanks in advance!

Knitting to avoid melting

It is too hot, plain fact. In my upstairs apartment, all I have are two fans which only make a difference if you plant yourself directly in front of them. So I decided to come down to the library, where there is air conditioning.

Question: Is it ok to knit in the library? I am not 'reading' any of their material, just using the space and the cool air. Is this wrong?

Rio de la Plata trouble.

I bought a skein of Rio de la Plata for a scarf for my boyfriends mother. I can't get it to wind at all. I think it's one strand, but it seems to all be tangled and matted together. It's confusing me a lot, and I don't really want to go back to the store and ask what I did wrong. I'm in there all the time and I think they're sick of me :\.

So, any advice?


Okay, I am officially kind of dumb. It turns out that the problem of it being tied and me not being able to work it out was temporary, and went away almost immediately. I now have a half wound ball of yarn. Thanks everybody!

yarn sub question

I'd like to make Knitty's Katja, but I was planning to do it in Classic Elite Provence instead of (the recommended) 2nd Time Cotton (by Knit One, Crochet Too).  Are there reasons that I wouldn't want to substitute mercerized cotton (100% cotton) for a cotton/acrylic blend in a child's garment? Will it stretch hopelessly, or do something else rendering it unwearable?


Stash Enabling...

For those of you that don't know, Webs is having a summer sale - including Debbie Bliss Merino Dk and Aran for $2.50 a skein(on the main page it says the aran is $3.29 but if you click on it, it says it's $2.50 like the DK). They also have closeouts on Noro Kureyon and Silk Garden...
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Yarn question

Hello, I am going to buy yarn to make the clover lace wrap in SNBN in a few days to celebrate doing well in my calculus 2 summer class. I want to use Peruvian Baby Silk from its such a good price for alpaca silk and will make a nice cardigan. My only concern is that the baby silk yarn is 2 st per 4 inches more then the yarn that the gauge of the yarn that the pattern calls for. I am afraid that if I go up a needle size or two then the fabric will be too loose. Dose anyone have any suggestion? Will going up one or two needle sizes effect the density of the fabric that much?

FO - Rambling Rose from Rowan 39

Yes, that's right... I finally finished Rambling Rose today! I'm not sure yet what I think, but I did take a couple of bad shots in front of the mirror to give an idea of how it looks. I'll try to post some better photos in my blog at a later date.

Pattern: Rambling Rose from Rowan 39
Yarn: Brown Sheep Cotton Fine in Victorian Pink
Needles: Susan Bates size 1 circulars, Addi Turbo size 2 circulars, 24 or 29"
Modifications: No intentional ones. I messed up and made the bottom ribbing about 1 cm too short (by the way, this project was great for getting me to know metric better, since everything is in cm), and I may have done the shaping wrong around the shoulders and sleeves, since the pattern was a little confusing to me... but it all worked out in the end, so I don't think I did mess that up.

I'm happy with the knitting, overall... I think my seaming should be better, and the cotton is not very forgiving, so I can tell even minor problems with the stitches, but I think the sweater looks beautiful... on me, however... I'm not so sure. I kinda feel that it may make me look heavy, and I'm still not sure about the roses on me, as much as I love them. I like this yarn as well as I reckon I could like any cotton fingering weight yarn... it is very soft, and I am loving how it feels against my skin, although knitting with it was tiring at times. I didn't really learn any new techniques with this piece, which is probably why it got boring after a while, but I am happy with the finished product, although I don't know how frequently I'll wear it... or if I'll ever get the nerve to give it a public appearance!
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Thanks to those who helped me out on my question about the sleeves. Sorry I didn't respond... I've gotten really bad about that! I had pinned it twice without success, and decided to turn to you guys, but then while waiting for a reply, decided to try once more, and it fit like a glove (or should I say sleeve? haha, I'm so corny). So I didn't have to do anything for that. Anyway, I did learn a couple of things from that experience.

PS: A hint to any wanting to knit this sweater... if you hate weaving in your ends, do it as you go along. I didn't think to do this, and ended up with sooo many ends to weave.

(no subject)

I'm in need of yarn-use guidance. My LYS is having a going out of business sale (mixed blessing) and I bought three skeins of Maggi Knits' "Maggi's Linen," a Cotton/Linen blend that knits up at a gauge of 9 sts, 11 rows/ 5 cm.

In the skein it looked like a laceweight yarn and I imagined I'd use it to knit up a dramatic drapey shawl, but when I went to knit a swatch, I realized that the yarn was actually three strands running together. The strands aren't plied, but the skein is wound so that I can pull from the center as I knit.

If I try to just knit with one strand at a time am I going to tangle the yarn up in the skein? Do I have to unwind the skein and then re-wind into three seperate balls? Should I just abandon the shawl and get enough yarn more to do a summer tank-top? Am I stuck with using what amounts to the splitiest yarn ever?

Help, fair yarn-loving friends!
Nicolas Cage

pointed end?

I'm making up a quick handbag for a friend and I'm close to the end.  I looked on a few websites to make sure I'm doing it right, but to make a pointed flap, should I just k2tog on both sides each row?  Or every other row?  Or am I completely off!  

 EDIT:   Thank you so much everyone!  Taking a little bit from everyone, I'm doing a quick decrease so it's a short, wide point and I'll do the k2tog and SSK!  Picture posting when I'm done!  Thanks again!

Yarn substitution - Rowan Wool Cotton

A question on yarn substitution...

I want to make the Circle of Friends baby blanket out of Last-minute Knitted Gifts. (The project is actually anything but last-minute. My co-worker's baby isn't due until January and she just found out yesterday that it will be a boy--yay!)

Anyway, the pattern calls for Rowan Wool Cotton, which is frankly out of my "starving writer" price range. I'm also hoping to find something machine washable that would be a little easier for the first-time mommy to take care of. And of course, something that would be nice and soft next to baby's skin. Any suggestions? Would Shine Worsted be acceptable? I've never used anything off Knitpicks. Really, I've only been knitting since Christmas so I haven't ventured out into the wild world of yarn much. I've got Michael's/AC Moore/LYS nearby, and of course the internet, so availability shouldn't be an issue.

I feel like I've left out some crucial info... but any suggestions would be very much appreciated!

ETA: The Rowan Wool Cotton is DK weight with pattern gauge of 23 sts = 4"...but since it's a blanket I don't think gauge is especially crucial as long as I knit it so it drapes well, etc.