August 5th, 2006

Eddie Izzard

FO - "Mom's Sophisticated Scarf" from Stitch & Bitch Nation

The title really says it all. Made from Cascade 220 Superwash in colorway 802 (which is really, really, seriously green) for a friend as her birthday present. It was originally going to be a "for no particular reason" present, something of an unbirthday present, cos I thought I'd make her something and the description in S&B described the stitch pattern as easy and fast. I knit the thing on size sevens (American sizing), following the instructions exactly except for that and the yarn sub (I've never made a pattern with the yarn it called for and I'm beginning to think I never will.) Sure, it was easy, but if you'd call it fast, you're probably one of those people who thinks time is relative. Time was really relative on this one. It took two skeins of Cascade. I just knit till I was out.

And in the meantime, because it was incredibly boring and I'm really bad at working on only one thing at a time, I worked on the "Jarngerd" cardigan from Elsebeth Lavold's The Viking Knits Collection and the "Liv" sweater from the same book. Both of which I'd started ages before the scarf. Jarngerd still isn't done, it's huge, and I'm on the back now and there are no interesting cables, just miles and miles of fake rib, so that thing is really going to be done when, you know, Birman Wood comes to Dunsinane Hill or something like that. Actually, that makes the situation sound a lot more hopeful than it really is. Liv, on the other hand, was just finished a few days ago, and I'll eventually do a FO post for that. Probably.

A word or two about where I bought the yarn - Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan. Seriously. They moved the gift shop, and put a knitting shop there instead. It's very small, but the people who run it are really nice. They're not overpriced. And - what I think is most important - they're nice to young knitters. The yarn for my first sweater (several years ago) was bought at a store in Bloomfield Hills. I brought the pattern book and asked the lady if she'd help me find a yarn that would work for it. She was completely dismissive of me, and pointed me in the direction of some Plymouth Encore colorspun and told me I could double it. (This was a very much a beginner's sweater, the pattern was Pronto from Irresistable Knits by Kirsten Cowan, and it was knitted on huge needles.) I pointed out that the yarn used for Pronto looked kind of stiff in the picture and asked her if she didn't think Encore would be too floppy - but her manner was enough to make me shut up rather quickly. She did have the grace to tell me to sit down and knit a little to see if I "got gauge" - but I had really no idea what gauge was, so I just knit a row or two and she measured it and told me I was fine. Not how many stitches I was getting to the inch or anything like that, just that it would do. I ended up knitting the entire sweater without getting gauge. I went on vacation up north later that year and found a knitting shop there (The Yarn Shop in Glen Arbor), and I brought in the sweater hoping they'd tell me how to sew it together. The lady running the shop not only helped me seam it, she helped me redo the too-small sleeves and make the collar. A couple years (and three sweaters) later, I've never so much as set food in the Bloomfield HIlls shop again. But every time I'm in the Glen Arbor area, I stock up from the Yarn Shop. I guess the moral of the story is: Be nice to your "kiddy knitters," because they grow up and start buying Noro.

While I'm on the topic of yarn shops, the Needling Yarn, in Granville, Ohio, is also fantastic. I'm about to enter my first year of college in Granville and the first thing I did was make friends with the yarn shop.

And here is the scarf. The specifications were "green, and long" and I just chose a pattern to suit.

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The friend loved it, so it was a success. Meanwhile, inspired by Eunny's blog* I've decided to knit as many of my Christmas presents as I can. I've planned out several hats, gloves, and like... four sweaters? two of which involve intarsia? Clearly I'm asinine. I have too many friends who like argyles.

*Which you probably all are very familar with, but you can find here. Warning: It will give you serious knitting envy. I thought I was pretty good till I saw this, and well, damn but I've got a long way to go. Another warning: Even if you think right now that argyle is cheesy, or preppy, or WASPy, or just kind of kitschy and over, tread very carefully on Eunny's website. Think before you click the Argyle Vest link. It... makes you really, really, want to wear argyle. Specifically that argyle vest. No kidding.
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A Rolled Brim Cap Success Story, or How Google Made My World A Better Place

So tonight I finished knitting a simple roll brim hat for my roommate. She is from Florida and has never seen snow before, and we now live near Binghamton NY, where the average snowfall in January is somewhere around 20 inches. Oof. Upon completing the hat, I was dismayed to find that it had, for lack of a better term, a nipple at the top of it. It puckered outward in a most unattractive way. I was all set to post here, to ask you all your advice, when I tried asking google. "Knit hat blocking" didn't get me much, but when I searched "knit hat blocking nipple", I found Grumperina's fix to a similar problem. Based on that, I was able to frog back a few rows, re-knit the top of the hat decreasing every round instead of every other, and voila - no more hat-nipple!!

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does alpaca felt?

I am knitting a baby sweater out of alpaca, and it is more of the kind of sweater that the baby wouldn't wear on an everyday basis, more of a dress up sweater. I am sure the mom wouldn't mind handwashing the sweater if necessary, but I wanted to make sure that the alpaca wouldnt felt if the sweater was washed by hand. Anyone know? Thanks.

Quick knit ideas for guys?

I have a two balls of Merino Stripes that knits up terribly for what I bought it for (hence the reason I have two balls still)...and I have a friend that had a birthday today and will be in town next week. Any ideas on what I could knit up for him? I've already given him a scarf for Christmas....

I have a ton of yarn so Merino Stripes isn't a must use for this project but it's staring me in the face every time I look at my stash.
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EDITED: No Clue What To Knit

I am almost done with my first sock. (Actually, my second. The first one I frogged because, aside from many other problems, I bound off too tightly and couldn't get it on.) It's going well. I'm having fun. So, I decided to buy some more sock yarn. I just received in the mail today 2 skeins of Gloss in Burgandy, which is delicious on my skin. I'm tempted to use it for a shawl or something, but I bought it for socks, and I want warm soft socks.

EDIT: A few people suggested not using this yarn for socks. So I thought maybe a lace wrap instead. While winding it into a nice center pull ball it felt so yummy on my skin that I decided it absolutely MUST be knit into something meant to be worn right against the skin. A light sweater, three quater/short sleeved perhaps. Maybe lace maybe not. Now I have no idea what to knit with this yarn, but at 2.99 a skein, it's a steal! (Still welcoming suggestions, but now I'm just going ga-ga over this yarn.)
Cowboy Hat


I'm putting the project down so that I can absolutely GUSH.

A friend of mine requested a shawl. FINALLY, we settled on Icarus. She ordered me the yarn (Knitpicks' Shadow, in the Jewels colorway) and the needle (one of the new Knitpicks Classic Circulars, size 3). I cast on last night. Oh my god. I'm so in awe over both the yarn and the needle. The yarn itself is glorious. Soft, not terribly splitty, and absolutely gorgeous in color. The needle, though... It's like knitting with a really pointy Addi Turbo, but with a join from the cable to the needle itself that is flawless. $5 is SUCH a great price. So worth every penny. They're perfect for lace, as far as I'm concerned.

I can't wait to get the other order I've got coming. Not only 15 balls of Knitpicks Sierra, but the Options needle set, too. *le swoon* Happy knitterguy.... Happy happy happy knitterguy...

FO: Jaywalkers.

hile in Germany, I happened to stumble into a little yarn shop that was selling Opal Rainforest for about 6 euros per skien. Which isn't bad at all. And so I set about making a second pair of Jaywalkers on the tour bus, and only just finished them up last week, while visiting relatives in Wisconsin.
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madonna not interested

Older knitting abbreviations - help!

I've googled and I've searched and I'm still confused.

I recently bought a Traditional Knitting Patterns by James Norbury. It was published in 1973 and though some of the abbreviations and their explanations make sense, others don't.

Many of the patterns I'm interested in trying out have

w.r.n. = wool round needle
w.o.n. = wool on needle
w.f. = wool forward

Now, these can't ALL be ways to say "yarn over." In at least one pattern, two "w.f."s mean that I'd end up with not enough stitches for subsequent rows (I had initially thought that "w.f." simply meant to bring the yarn forward between the needles.

Does anyone have idea what these mean?


Directions confusion.

I am making the yoga mat bag from snb nation. the directions for the strap read " with larger needles and 2 strands of yarn held together..." and then directions for the bag say "with smaller needles, CO 80 sts".

Do I make the bag holding two strands together, or just with a single strand?

(no subject)

I made (well almost done) a pair of Fetching, from Knitty, and I want to make another. I used a Cable Cotton, and didn't like it too much. Debbie Bliss doesn't really have a color I like, what else shows the cable well and works for Fetching? Or is Debbie Bliss the best?
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