Karen Clements the brilliant designer behind Knit 1 LA is up to something interesting on her blog. She has a tutorial going on with step-by-step instructions, along with photos and videos, on how to knit two socks at one time. She doesn’t use the same method that Melissa Morgan-Oakes does in her book 2-at-a-time Socks (i.e. a long circular needle). Karen knits one inside the other with traditional DPNs. I know. Pretty darn clever. Like anything in knitting, it takes a bit of practice, but this handy method can have some serious benefits in terms of speeding up the process. Just imagine how much easier the holiday gift rush can be!
Archive for the ‘Techniques’ Category
I’m back. I have been doing lots and lots of knitting, I just haven’t been talking about it. Lately I have been on a hat making craze. It was kicked off when I took a class at The Little Knittery in making a reversible hat called The Knit 1 Lid designed by Karen Clements of Knit 1 LA. Karen is a genius. Her design calls for 2-sided stockinette, but I was inspired to mess with a good thing, and do one side in stockinette and the other in a lace pattern. The photo (above) shows the Lid I made for myself out of a green kettle dyed wool from Uruguay called Rio De La Plata and black Patons Classic Wool (boring, but so practical). You can see the black lace side with the green side peeking through in the photo (left). The pattern I used in this case is based on KnitPick’s Georgian Lace Cap. The trick is to use a lace with the same stitch count as the stockinette side so that the two sides match up when tucked into each other. I like knitting this hat and I also like wearing it a lot. That rarely happens to me to be honest! I’ve also knit this hat for a friend’s birthday gift in orange yarns and a different lace pattern. In both cases the slight bell-like shape to this hat is very pretty.
Sorry, not much to say this weekend. Spending all my time knitting Amelia. Here’s an amusing photo from a tumblr called “Nick Holmes… “ (via the always entertaining blog, Neatorama). Oh, for any of you thinking about knitting Amelia and are clueless as how to Knit Through The Back Loop (K tbl) and Purl Through The Back Loop (P tbl) iknitwithcatfur’s videos should help you out.
Here’s a great online resource: Smart Knitting-Crochet. Their tutorial on How To Read Knitting Charts is super helpful (that’s a detail from it, above). You’ll find many good tips and a variety of techniques explained very accessibly. There’s an interesting piece on how to make a knit or crochet skirt that fits. A lot of new crochet info has been added recently, check this listing for info. Dina, who created the site, is clearly one of the generous people in the blogosphere.
Here’s a fun blog: Natural Suburbia. On it a homeschooling, family-oriented South Africa-based mom named Linda shows us how-to do a variety of green crafts. Lots of them involve kids, which is very cool. I like her tutorial on creating rainbow felt (detail photo above) making a God’s Eye and sun dyeing yarns. And for you serious back-to-nature types, check out Natural Suburbia’s tips on keeping chickens in your backyard! This is one resourceful and crafty mom.
Last February I blogged Myra Wood’s new book, Crazy Lace. Now you can get a peak into Wood’s ways with her Crazy Lace Cropped Cardi over at the Stitch Diva Studios website. It’s more of a knitting recipe than a traditional pattern, and teaches a knitter to use the “inherent logic” behind lace to create surface patterning for this simple cropped raglan design. Sounds interesting. The result is pretty (left), especially knit up in just one skein of Stitch Diva’s lovely lace-weight Studio Cashmere.
I always knew that knitting pattern photos could mislead you, but thought schematics were tried and true. As I’ve progressed in my knitting, I spend more and more time contemplating schematics before I choose a pattern. When I realized that I liked to knit seamlessly on circular needles, it was easy enough to spot those— look for a circular arrows in the drawings, like Pioneer by K-Bomb, and not multiple pieces as seen in Norah Gaughan’s Wedgette. Then I confirmed that I preferred top down rather than bottom up construction when I knit (badly) Soleil by Alexandra Virgiel. (Note that schematic doesn’t have circular arrows, even though it’s knit in the round. Oops.) As I was pouring over Wendy Bernard’s genius book, Custom Knits, I realized that I was looking for schematics like this one for Ingenue (above). However, not every book and magazine is depicting the top downs like this, i.e. upside down, but that’s the way they should be since you start knitting in the bottom right corner of the schematic. Or have I got that wrong?
Happy Easter everyone. Hope you are having a sunny day filled with chocolate treats. No Easter brunches or dyed eggs for me this year. I’ve had a cold for a few days, so it’s sinus rinses and antihistamines for me. Even so, I love the silly seasonal knits, like LB’s Bouncy Bunny and Coffee & Cream’s catnip ones; the knit versions of Peeps (those marshmallow blobs) and of course, the Easter eggs, like Knitvana’s. The very talented Whitney Van Nes at Purl Bee offers both Fuzzy Chicks and Mini Eggs (that’s a close up, above) made from delicious Koigu (KPM).
I’ve been working on the finer points of finishing up my cardigans. Mr. Greenjeans is all pinned down after my first attempt at blocking. Now I’m just waiting for it to dry thoroughly. I redid the button band on the little boy cardi, Keep On Truckin,’ picking up more stitches and that looks a whole lot better. Now I’m thinking about doing a buttonloop on it. The photo (left) from The Rainey Sisters’ blog shows what they look like. Ysolda and My Fashionable Life both have simple tutorials on making them.
The Spring issue of the online baby and children’s knitwear magazine, Petite Purls, is up. Although there are many nice patterns, none of the them are especially grabbing me. The Just-spring socks (left) designed by Sharon Fuller are nice, but I feel like I’ve seen a lot of these kinds of patterns before. (Maybe I have now just plain seen too many knitting patterns?) However, I’m really liking the Features in Petite Purls this time. Articles and video from Stefanie Japel on making a recycled Tshirt Yarn Bib and Vickie Howell on natural dyeing, an excerpt from her book AwareKnits, are super informative pieces.