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.
Posts Tagged ‘sknitter’s stuff’
If you are a regular reader you may know that I have 3 books coming out this year: two on managing the graphic design process and a baking cookbook. I’m pleased to tell you that Booze Cakes is now available. The publisher, Quirk, tells me it is getting a good response. That’s is the cover, above. My co-author is Krystina Castella. Check out the Booze Cakes blog if you want to read more about baking with wine, beer and spirits. There you can get our recipe for the Tequila Sunrise Cake which is one amazing Summertime cake. If you really want to knit cake, go to Bitter Sweet’s website. Maybe eat booze cake while knitting a cake? Less stitch error than imbibing.
I am coming down the home stretch on my Cropped Cardigan, a design by Stefanie Japel that is available FREE on Knitty. The sweater, in Cascade Indulgence, is super soft and fits nicely through the shoulders and sleeves, but the neckline is way way too deep and rolling-edged to be flattering on me. I need adjustments. Luckily, I found Melanie (momalmighty on Rav), who had the same issues and solved the problem beautifully. That is her cardi, above. She knitted a stockinette and picot edging, very much like the hem treatment, to create a lovely and flattering variation. Notice how she also abandoned the leaf ties in favor of a button, and used KnitPicks Shine Worsted (a cotton blend). Beauty. Thanks Melanie for the inspiration! By the way, enjoy her adventures in motherhood on her blog, Mom Almighty. Love the way she charts her daily mood.
Our delightful TSA’s own blog says that knitting being prohibited on airplanes is an Urban Legend. Their site clearly states that needles are permitted. Yet stories persist of Neanderthal TSA Agents stripping distraught knitters of their beloved Addi Turbos. Flying with needles brings anxiety. I’m off to Dallas on business tomorrow, then on to Miami to visit family until early next week. Of course I want to take my WIP, the Cropped Cardi, but am terrified of having to surrender my stuff. I’m wondering if I should just take my slightly abandoned sock WIP. I got #3 bamboo needles into LA’s storied Criminal Courthouse last Summer for Jury Duty without any issues, so I figure TSA won’t have a problem with those either. While I’m gone, I won’t be blogging. Until then, happy knitting, and feel free to search the archives for a little sknitter.com fix.
I’m busy at work on Stefanie Japel’s Cropped Cardigan with Leaf Tie, which is a Knitty pattern from some years ago. That’s Ravelery member Lolipopette’s pale blue version (above). I’ve knit this designer’s patterns before, with varying degrees of success. They are great patterns. It’s just taken me a while to get the hang of knitting sweaters that actually fit. This is the first time I’ve knit with KnitPick’s Harmony Wood Circular Needles. I am liking how pointy they are. The joins really are smooth, and the purple cables are not twisty at all. However, the jury is out on the multi-colored wood. It’s strangely distracting to me. Plus this is the first time I’ve knit with Cascade Indulgence. It’s soft, but as I knit, little tufts of angora fly away and get everywhere.
It’s clear to me that I need to go to one of those finishing school classes. I completed my purple Mr. Greenjeans, and just about finished a second Keep On Truckin’ baby cardigan (above) and have run in to the same set of problems. I suck at picking up stitches. Unless the designer spells it out for me, I apparently can’t do the math. Both sweaters have the bad puckering which I believe comes from too few stitches being picked up. The bigger issue is that these button bands are too short, again, a function of not enough picked up stitches? Maybe, but I’m not sure. In the case of Mr. Greenjeans, it may just require blocking, which I have never done. The green sweater is awful Red Heart acrylic yarn, so no blocking possible there. I also murdered the buttonholes yet again. I understand how to do this by following Euny Jang’s advice, but I just did an ugly job.
After so many months of writing and writing, I have spend the majority of this weekend knitting. How fantastic! I’ve gone back to my purple Mr. Greenjeans cardigan (above), a classic Knitty pattern from 2007. It’s a truly delightful pattern to knit. Hats off to designer Amy Swenson. I had started this sweater at the end of last Winter, but set it aside because the weather turned too warm, and started making this cotton cardigan, which ended up a depressing fit disaster. The purple yarn I’m using is a batch of Patons Classic Wool, a gift from my Mom.
Is it me, or are yarn stores kinda weird places to be? Maybe I’m too aware of the fact that they are small retail businesses, and not really little retreats for knitters. I know that there are people who have created genuinely warm friendships with certain LYS owners after being good frequent customers. I just get the feeling of fake cheeriness so often from many LYS owners. They’ll engage for a sentence or two with me, see I’m on the sale rack or only have one thing in my hand, and stop the patter (and usually the smile). This happens not just because they get busy with another customer. I go into this one store that greets me like a friend one time, then they stare blankly at me like I’m from another planet the next. Maybe I’m expecting too much from them? Maybe I really just need to drop $200 before I’m actually welcome? The photo (above) is of the beautiful, but sadly, discontinued soft Angora blend called Roma by Jaeger. Pretty palette, no?
This past Summer I learned to knit socks and promptly taught several of my friends. I’m not saying it took completely. There are several socks waiting to have their mates knit. Then again, some of my pals are making their second or third pair of socks. It’s a handy skill, sock knitting. Plus they are a cool gift. People like handknit socks, especially other knitters. That’s why Vicky was at the top of my list to get this nutty pair of turquoise striped Cascade Fixation crew socks. She loves them. It’s so great to give someone a gift they didn’t expect, and that they truly like.
Yes, it is true— sknitter.com is one year old today! Here’s my first ever post. At the risk of forgetting someone, I’d like to say thank you to all of the very special friends, some of whom I’ve never met in person, who have supported me and this blog throughout the year. OK, here goes: Gail, Naomi@ Ink Yarn & Beer, Living In An Attic, Julia @ Aalerusen, TTWCreative’s Trish, Stefan G. Bucher (my first blog roll!) Caffeine Girl, Saffron@Moon Calf Makes, Craig, Alpaca Farm Girl Katy, Hissy Stitch, Christina@ Lovely Paperie, Egret Effects, CraftGossip, Twist Collective’s Julia, WhipUp, and the amazing Vicki Stiefel of Knitting News (best knitting Tweets ever!). I can hardly believe I’ve done 379 posts this year! Thanks in no small way to the many many talented designers, artists, authors, yarn companies, and knitting bloggers I’ve covered. You are all a true inspiration and source of wonder to me on a daily basis. Life certainly would be dull without all of you, that’s for sure! I’m a better writer and knitter because of you.
That adorable tangled up kitty (above) is from Max and Mittens. Just because it’s cute.