August 6th, 2006

Pattern help! - Victorian Neck Kerchief

I'm working on this pattern. It's a lacy Victorian neck handkerchief, and I'm having some problems with it.

I understand the lace bit, but I can't figure out how to knit the actual kerchief bit (rows 1 and 2). Here's the instructions:
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But when I try to imagine how it all works, I can't get it to. In my mind, I'm going to end up with a very long triangle (like, base of 8 in and height of 20 inches or something), instead of a kerchief-type triangle as pictured. And where should I put my increases - before the yo make 1? Can I just knit into the slipped stitch, then slip the stich? If I do that, will it make my yos staggered like the instructions say?

Thank you so much for your help :D

(no subject)

So a while back I posted a big post of a lot of FO's on the community. I had made a headband, and a couple people had expressed interest in a pattern. Here it is, a couple weeks later. (But the weather is cooling down so hopefully you have an excuse to be knitting a headwarmer, eh?

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Tree Girl

FO: Swallowtail Shawl

Pattern: Swallowtail Shawl from Interweave Knits Fall 2006 Issue by Evelyn A Clark

Yarn: NoName blue-brown tweed 3-ply alpaca laceweight from eBay

Needles: Susan Bates All Nylon Needles- US 3

Shawl Size: 50 inches by 25 inches (larger than suggested)

Knitting Duration: 10 days from cast-on to blocked

Modifications: Used sl2 knitwise, k1, p2sso instead of sl1 knitwise, k2tog, psso for the double decreases. This helped with feeling for the double decrease while knitting and for me, makes it look more aesthetically pleasing. Also, for the nupp, I used sl2 purlwise, p3tog, p2sso instead of p5tog because it was easier to execute and it didn't make a difference in the look of the nupp.

Difficulties: The lily of the valley border was a pain in the butt to execute because of the nupps and took about a third of my time to knit. Using my modification (see above) for executing the nupps helped speed things up. Before discovering the modification, I tried using a crochet hook and a US1 needle to pull the yarn through all five stitches, however, it kept on snagging the yarn, which is still slightly noticeable after blocking but this yarn is so fuzzy it is not too bad (me rationalizing :( ).

Blocking Advice: Buy the biggest T-pins you possibly can, it makes a world of difference when pinning the shawl down. If you are looking for inexpensive blocking wires, look in your friendly hardware store for brass dowels. Blocking wires really save time with blocking. Use a check fabric as a grid under the shawl. This helps with keeping the slope consistent for the sides of the triangle. For example, I laid the neck side of the shawl parallel to the grid and I arbitrarily pinned each point 4 squares up and 4 squares over from the previous point.

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This shawl is a Christmas present for my mom but I am also submitting it to my county fair. Even though I had trouble with the lily of the valley border, I really enjoyed knitting this shawl and I would knit it again.

Noro Transitions , project ideas?

Hello all! I seek your advice and collective wisdom. Let's say, hypothetically, you somehow acquire 10 skeins, (That's right 10!) of Noro Transitions in a lovely colorway. What would be your dream project or projects? Are there any patterns that come to mind?

Thanks in advance!

ETA: Thanks for all the ideas. I now must try to pick just one garment or shawl or blanket...

Geek Knit!

I play on World of Warcraft, and one of my guildmates is currently on holiday taking a rail tour of the UK. This weekend he's in London, and since that's just a short train ride away from where I live, we made plans to get together yesterday. :o) Most of my guild knows that I knit, and I get teased about it in a good-natured way (I'm actually knitting a scarf for another guildmate, but that's fodder for another post). So, naturally, I just had to knit a little giftie for him.

Also naturally, I didn't think of the perfect idea until late Thursday night, which only gave me Friday night to actually execute it. O.o But I did it! And thus it is that which much love given to tchemgrrl's Knitting Toys: A Tutorial, I proudly present:

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Yarn: Paton's acrylic, DK weight. I've got a bunch of this languishing in shame in my stash from when I was just starting to learn to knit and didn't want to ruin any good yarn with dumb mistakes. Knitting small toys is a great way to get rid of it.
Needles: 3.75mm straights (body), 4mm DPNs (limbs) and 4mm crochet hook (hands and fin).
Techniques used: I-cord, short row shaping, duplicate stitch, single and double crochet.
Pattern details: There was no pattern, I just made it up as I went along. I did borrow a teensy bit from Knitty's Pasha, using short row shaping for the rounded tummy and to make its head. The legs are attached using a three-needle bind off for security, and for the arms I picked up stitches along the edge of the back piece. The 'hands' are single crochet. I used two rows of double crochet to make the fin after I'd finished knitting the back piece, since I couldn't figure out a way to knit it and still have it stand up without using wires (which I don't have). The eyes and facial markings are duplicate stitch, and the mouth is just a simple crochet chain done through the knitting.
Lessons learned: Do not attempt to make up your own knitted toy while watching Firefly after midnight. Sleepiness and lack of proper attention will lead to such mistakes as making one foot smaller than the other (and thereby giving it its name, Gimpy). This is not to be confused with feeding mogwai after midnight, however. ;o) Also? Making I-cords HURTS! I hatehatehatehate I-cords.

As I'm sure some of you have spotted in the photos, you can see the darker purple peeking through on its face from where I wove in the end. This was directly after stuffing, and it thankfully faded after much handling caused the stuffing to settle and allowed the stitches to relax a bit. Now it just looks like I intentionally made little nostrils, hehe. :o) Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get a good picture of its face to show off that accidental effect.

Final note: Gimpy was a total success! Much love was given to Gimpy by its new keeper. Yay!
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stealthy leik woah.

beginning a lace shawl from the center -- HELP!

Oh god. Kill me now. Yesterday, I picked up a skein of beeyootiful dove gray lace-weight wool, and the Fiber Trends Spring Blossom Shawl pattern (number S-2015) to work on. The shawl is square and worked from the center out. It starts out with 8 stitches divided between 4 dpns. I have spent three hours fighting to get the first two rows done. See, every time I try the cast-on method suggested in the pattern, the needles end up all flopped over and twisted up so I don't knot which side is up or even which order the dpns work in.

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I've never worked from the center-out on dpns before, and I am ready to burn this stupid project. If anyone has any tips or tricks or words of encouragement, I'll love you forever.

4-ply cotton?

What size is "4-ply" mercerized cotton?

I have a pattern that calls for 4-ply mercerized cotton and uses a 2.5mm needle, which the pattern say is "slightly smaller than recommended for the size of the yarn". There is no guage given. (The pattern is written by a mathematician, not a designer.)

I went to Joann's fabrics (I'm in the US) and the only cotton yarns they had were Sugar and Cream and Lion Cotton. Both of these were 4-ply yarn, but worsted weight and seemed far too thick to use with a 2.5mm needle. There was size 3 and size 10 crochet thread, but neither of these looked like they were four ply and anyway both seemed too fine.

This is a UK pattern, so is "4-ply" considered a specific thickness in the UK? I'm thinking of Rowan's four ply yarns, which I think is fingering weight.

If UK 4-ply=US fingering, then were could I find this size cotton yarn? Would size 3 crochet cotton work?

Thanks for your help!
Temari smile

Fingerless Gloves

Okay, so I've been working on "Charmed" Fingerless Gloves and it's been going pretty well, but I've hit a snag. The thumb opening.

Up to this point I've been working with double-points in the round and I've gotten to this point:
Thumb Opening: (piece is worked flat to create Thumb Opening)
Row 1: (WS) slip 1 stitch, purlwise with yarn in front; knit to end.
Row 2: (RS) slip 1 stitch, purlwise with yarn in front; knit to end.

Worked flat? Purlwise? Anyone? My mom is giving me "let me do it for you eyes," but I want to do it myself.
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Help with pattern & what's a "lifeline"?

Fellow Knitters,

I have started Branching out after reading the recent Liesel post as well as the recent Branching out  v. Liesel post.  Now, I am fairly certain I am crazy as this is my first attempt at any type of lace ever.  I mean I get the concept of a YO and K2tog and after refering to my trusty reference books was able to replicate them in practice but the chart and the pattern are conflicting for me. 

So it says:

Loosely cast on 25 stitches.

Work 5 rows in garter stitch (knit each row).

Begin working lace pattern following either chart (and Pattern Notes) or written instructions below.

I did this just fine...Then it says:

Row 1 [RS]: k3, ssk, yo, k5, [yo, k1] 5 times, yo, k5, yo, k2tog, k3 (31 sts)

Row 2 [WS]: k3, p25, k3

After the first row I didnt have enough stitches left over to Knit those last three for the garter stitch border...What did I do wrong?  And overall I had more, I guess because of the YOs than the 31 stitches  that the instructions allow for for Row 2.  

So, I figured because the chart doesnt compensate for the 6 total border stitches that would equal the (31 sts) that the pattern calls for that I would add them in myself.  As if that would solve anything..  I went back CO 31 sts and as you might expect still dont end up with enough  during the RS row to finish the K3, I think I knit 1 and end up with too many on the WS rows.   That's after finishing row 3 which reads:

Row 3 [RS]: k3, ssk, yo, ssk, k1, [k2tog, yo] 2 times, k3, yo, k1, yo, k3, [yo, ssk] 2 times, k1, k2tog, yo, k2tog, k3 (31 sts)

Please someone tell me what I am doing wrong and perhaps if Liesel would have been the better first lace project?

Oh yeah, there was reference to a "lifeline" in the Branching out v. Liesel post,  is it the crucial thing I am missing?  I know I am reaching but something has to give.

Thanks in advance.

EDIT: Thank you, I think I have it. Turns out for my YOs I was increasing by 2 rather than 1 because I thought they included a knit stitch.  All is well, I CO 25 did my 5 rows of garter and after "Row 1" ended up with the coveted "31 sts" that the pattern called for.

I am over this hurdle but rest assured I will be back!

happy yarn

Felting question

I made my first felted project last night, it's a bowl made from some wool I got from Threw it in the washing machine for 5-10 minutes till the stitch definition went bye-bye and it was the size I wanted it and left it by an open window today to dry while draped on an appropriately sized bowl from my kitchen to shape it.

It's not quite dry yet but I am impatient so I took it off my kitchen bowl to see how it was doing and it's still pretty limp. Should I let it dry completely or just throw it back in the washing machine now to make it smaller and hopefully firmer?

What would you do, my felting friends?
Worst case Ontario

Dumb question

When I have a pattern that says:
Row 1: k2, p2, k4, p6, k4, p2, k4, p6, k4, p2, k2
Row 2 & 3 Knit the knits and purl the pulrls

This means that for row 2 I do: p2, k2, p4, k6, p4, k2, p4, k6, p4, k2, p2
and for row 3 I do just the opposite?

Or, do I just k2, p2, k4, p6, k4, p2, k4, p6, k4, p2, k2 for all three row?

I'm totally blanking!
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fingerless gloves


I will be knitting a pair of fingerless gloves for a guy friend of mine soon. I would like to know your opinions on knucks from knitty especially the top down construction. I was thinking to follow a basic mitten pattern and separate the fingers like knucks. I would just like to know the pros and cons of knitting either way and if it makes a difference in how it fits or looks. Also last question, If I use a mitten pattern and add fingers would I need to add stitches between the fingers ? and if so how many? thanks in advance!

Two finished objects

I've been doing basically nothing but working and knitting for the last two weeks or so, and it's been a good opportunity to learn some new knitting skills. The first finished object is a tea cozy, and my first attempt at intarsia.

Pattern: The tea cozy from Stitch ‘n Bitch Nation, with my own intarsia design.

Yarn: Brown Sheep Nature Spun Worsted, in Pepper and Spring Green

Needles: Clover Tatami size 8 straights

Modifications: This actually began as the alien illusion scarf from SnB, but halfway into the first pattern repeat I was so bored that I knew I could never finish, so I decided to frog what I had done and use the yarn for something else. My husband is British and loves his tea, so I thought I’d make him a tea cozy inspired by the alien pattern, which I adapted from the illusion pattern into an intarsia design. The pattern also calls for size 6 needles, but I couldn’t get even close to gauge on anything smaller than eights.

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My second finished object is a present for my little brother (well, he's not so little, being 17 and six feet tall, but he loves penguins). This was my first attempt at doing short rows, and they turned out really well. The hardest thing about this pattern was the finishing--some of the seams are messier than others, but I like the way it looks.

Pattern: Pasha the penguin from Knitty.

Yarn: Brown Sheep Nature Spun Worsted in Pepper (left over from the tea cozy), Patons Merino in Denim, which I had on hand, and Patons Décor in Winter White.

Needles: Susan Bates size 7 straights.

Modifications: None, except that I used blue yarn instead of yellow for the beak, neck, and feet, because that’s what I happened to have lying around. It makes him look like he’s cold, so his name is Frosty!

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WoD - Just Frenzy

knitting 'gainst the snow.

Hi folks. I've been reading this community for ages as I work through my knitting kinks, and it's been a great help, but I finally have a question.

Are there any types of yarn that are specifically designed to be more water-resistant, such as for dealing better with snow and ice? I'm aware that wool has natural water resistance of a sort, but I'm curious if there's anything more out there in the knitting world that might be more appropriate.

One of my younger cousins caught me knitting the other week, and he was really interested in the fingerless gloves I was making for a friend. He asked if I would knit him a pair, and I'm happy to do so, but the thing is he's a very active skier, and I worry that a knitted item might get wet too easily out on the slopes. He mostly wants them for warmer spring skiing, or perhaps to layer under his ski gloves in the winter.

Thoughts or suggestions? Maybe I'm worrying too much, since I doubt he falls as much as I do when I ski, but I've never had to worry about my knitted objects seeing snow contact outside from the odd thrown snowball before.

Writing Lace Charts

A quick Google proved useless; many of you are seasoned lace knitters, perhaps you can help?

I've got a copy of Barbara Walker's Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns from the library, and I've been going through and copying the cable and lace patterns I might use in the future. My problem is that all of the patterns are written--there are no charts in the book. I prefer charts over written instructions the way one might prefer a beach vacation over prison, so I've been translating all those cumbersome words into happy little picture blocks.

For the most part, it's been fairly simple, but I'm having trouble transcribing those lace patterns that are often charted with "no stitch"--the ones where the stitch count varies row by row. I guess I'm having a hard time figuring out where, exactly, in the chart the "no stitch" blocks should be placed. I'm sure I could just knit up a swatch of each pattern and work it out stitch by stitch, but having chosen a metric assload of lace patterns I find attractive, that's daunting, to say the least.

If there's no simpler way to do it on paper, I can Just Swatch It, but maybe someone here knows more about charting-from-instructions and can share their wealth with me? I can't keep the book forever, and I'd like to have a pictoral representation of each pattern before the book (with its lovely illustrations) has to go back to its home.

First FOs

For my first knitting project I decided I wanted to make a bag. I was aiming for something I could use as a purse. It ended up being a bit too..floppy than I like my purses, so I'll probably just use it to carry a change of clothes to work when I need to. It's got some imperfections, but it's not too bad for first FO.
Pattern: Zeeby's Bag from SnB
Yarn: Lion's Brand Wool Ease
Needles: Size 8
Modifications: The only thing I changed was the diminsions of the front and back panels. Just wanted something a bit smaller than what the pattern called for.
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My second project was a pillow. Well a cover for a pillow form really, but whatever. I'm actually quite proud of it. :]
Pattern:My own, because how hard is it to knit two squares and sew them together? It's knit up in 'rice stitch', I think. Basically the finish piece looks like columns of stockinette stitch and garter stitch.
Yarn: Red Heart. I bought new bedding for my dorm this year and I wanted some cheap accent pillows, thus the cheap yarn.
Needles: Size 8, I don't remember the brand.
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