Monday, January 30, 2017

Dragon Lace Scarf Test Knit

This is my first test knit and I could not be happier with how smoothly it went. It was a lovely scarf to knit. The pattern is from Sleepy Dragon Workshop and the designer, Karen Moffett, was extremely helpful and very quick to respond to questions and comments.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Emergency Wedding Mittens Recap

Well, the wedding is this weekend. I handed over three pairs of mittens early last week to the boyfriend's mom and have heard nothing about it since. They turned out pretty well all things considered and I think I have a pretty good start of a mitten design to boot.

I was pretty worried when I was handed a bulky yarn and a worsted yarn. However, holding the worsted yarn double for the cuff worked out pretty well. It gave a nice firm fit around the wrist which I think is important in a mitten. I do not want cold air sneaking in there. The whole project was knit on size five double points. This made the fabric quite thick and stiff, but I liked it for the mittens.

The original pattern was Warm Wooly Mittens #51 by Theresa Gaffey. I kept the cuff the same, but there were a lot of changes after that point. The Gaffey pattern has a round decrease for the top. I'm not a huge fan of those so I did decreases along the sides and used the kitchener stitch to connect the top for a smooth finish. They're a little more structured, but I think they're cute.

Unfortunately the structured decrease meant I had to design my pattern for right and left hand mittens. I was super hopeful that it wasn't noticeable and I could get away with making them all the same, but even The Boy could tell. I'm just glad I thought of that before I knit all of them.

I went through two revisions of the pattern I made on these and I think it might need one more as well as figuring out different sizes. The pattern as written fit my mother perfectly so I think I'll make one more as is for her and figure out any changes I want to make.

Things I learned from this project:

  • Sometimes working with only the materials you are given can result in good things. If I had been given any say in yarn selection I probably would have just made the original pattern with no problem. However, I wouldn't have my own mitten pattern then.
  • Thumb gussets are weird and I am not sure that I'm completely happy with the one I have yet.
  • I'm a perfectionist... At least about a few things. I really wanted to say "Give me all the yarn! I'll make all five pairs!" It kind of bugs me that there are two pairs made by another person that will not match mine... If it was someone I knew getting married or I was getting paid for it I would have pushed more. 
  • Despite everything I kind of like the combination of worsted and bulky yarn in these mittens. 

5 Shawls, 5 Days Challenge Recap

Five shawls??!!?

Well, five mini shawls. The 5 Shawls 5 Days Challenge from Aroha Knits is a quick course in shawl shaping. Five shapes are presented over five days with easy instructions via email. Occasionally there are "bonus" versions and because this fell over a weekend there was a "bonus" shape on Saturday. I did a couple of the extra versions and ended up with eight shawls. The Bug is excited because they're all going to the dolls when I'm done.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Emergency Mitten Knitting

Ready for a convoluted story?

My boyfriend’s mom’s best friend’s son’s friend’s fiancĂ© wants mittens knit for her bridesmaids. She does not know how to knit. The son volunteered his mom, who volunteered her best friend, who volunteered me. The wedding is at the end of January.

Of course it couldn't be a simple project. Oh no... 

The pattern I was given was for worsted weight yarn.  The yarn I got? Two completely different yarns, one worsted and one bulky... My boyfriend's mom had made one mitten following the pattern (holding the worsted double for the cuff) and it was a wreck.  It was way too wide, too long, and the thumb was meant for an alien.  So I took the yarn and the pattern and so far I have basically written an entirely new mitten pattern.  

I made the first pair and it's a bit small so I made a few adjustments and I'm almost done with another mitten. If nothing else I guess I have a quick mitten pattern I can make a bunch of...

bonus cat picture

Monday, January 9, 2017

Makariri Shawl KAL Recap

I am so glad that I decided to follow the rabbit hole off of the Ravelry patterns page all the way to the Fiber Muse Sanctuary group on Facebook run by Francoise Danoy of Aroha Knit.  I figured I would do the Makariri Shawl KAL and probably be done, but it is such a wonderful group of supportive, helpful knitters. I can't imagine not being part of that now.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Back in the Saddle

It's going to take me a while to get into the swing of blogging. Frankly I've never been very good at it, but I think if I stay diligent I might just pull it off.

Right now all of my knitting focus is on the Makariri shawl KAL from Aroha Knits. I'm on the last section of lace and if I can finish it up by Monday I qualify for prizes. I certainly won't say no to prizes.

I'm really enjoying this pattern and I still love my colors which is a better place than I was with the Building Blocks KAL. The section I'm on is the third lace section and I really feel like I've got the hang of it now. Almost no mistakes. Go me! I feel pretty good about getting it done. 

Once that's done I will figure out what sort of format I want to follow with this blog. I think if I come up with some theme days I will have better incentive to remember to actually add thing here. I'm definitely going to do a WIP Wednesday. Maybe I'll do a monthly progress update. That might shame me into finishing up some of those projects lingering at the bottom of the basket...