Sunday, April 29, 2007

Felting Finally Finished

Before href=""> After
A couple of points before I get started on the knit details.

The Hawaiian shirt? It was 50's day at work. And ladies, here's one of the dangers of buying things in the men's department for 3 dollars at Old Navy. A third grader came up to me to gush excitedly, "That's a Hawaiian shirt! My dad has that shirt!"

The color in the "after" pictures is pretty accurate.

It took hours to make this post. The pictures disappearing.

I took that photo of the back of my own head. It only took 3 tries.

Felted Beret details:

Pattern: in the book, Felted Knits by Beverly Galeskas. I've knitted other berets mostly without patterns, but it takes a lot longer. I made one to felt before (w/out a pattern) and made it huge. It didn't felt. The wool label didn't say anything about superwash, but it never felted AT ALL. Grignasco Jazz Print. Frustrating. It took a few years before I wanted to try it again. There is an excellent trick to keep the band the right size. You put a line of elastic into a hem in the band. I used .5 mm beading elastic tripled, and I knotted the hell out of it, realized it was too tight and then went back in and cut some of the spare strands here and there until it eased enought to fit. I think any beret pattern knit on bigger needles would felt just as well.

Yarn: Noro Kureyon in 2 constrating colors held singly. 1 skein each. Changed color every other row.

Needles: I forgot already, but they were only 10's maybe. Susan Bates Silverado 16" circ.

For Further Felting: Kitty Pi


In the Interim

Pattern: Kitty Pi by WendyKnits from the Internet--One of the all-time great patterns. I'm planning to felt this again/some more because the sides barely stand on their own. I had to stretch them to come out to the circumference of the trim. I may remove the trim or put elastic in the edge so it can only go so far.

Yarn: Noro Big Kureyon that wasn't very big, stranded with red angora left over from bet socks, then some bits of tan light worsted from who knows where that I had in the stash and maybe something else. Who can remember? It's been a few weeks . The trim is a whole 50 grams of novelty yarn of some kind from the dollar store. The colors in the second picture are fairly accurate. The red angora passed from hot to cool, but didn't bleed in the washer.

Needles: I think I used size 11 or 13. Ah, if I only had a brain. *ponders why the ocean's near the shore.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Spring, Sprong!

Itty bitty Grape Hyacinths & touch of last year's Deadly Nightshade that I missed.

Tiny red leaves on Mr. Lincoln Rose and are you jealous of my main Thistle?

I don't know if the first pic is of infant Wood Violets (a native plant) or Creeping Charlie. The 2nd is just one of Creeping Charlies outposts.

Cushion Spurge (a native plant) and last year's Peonies covering this years peony sprouts. (No you can't see the sprouts, but that is where they start.

Creeping Charlie with moss and day lilies that seldom bloom in a shady corner between a spruce and the garage. I really, really want to grow boatloads of Russian or Japanese Irises here, but they won't grow even though they are supposedly woodland plants. Note the pinecones.

Celandine Poppy (a native plant)and Bearded Irises.

Tu Twolips.
I'm not much of a gardener, more of a live and let live person, but I have planted some of the things shown here. There are others also. I have lots of shade and a steep hill to deal with. If you have any suggestions, let me know. I prefer native species, but others are not out of the question. I don't know all which all plants here are native to Wisconsin, but I've labeled the ones that I do know.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Silky Wool Sock in Progress

Started with 64 st, had to frog & reknit thrice to come up with 52. About 1 inch from heel. Used approx. 13 grams so far. Size 2 needles.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Not My Stash

This is not my stash. This is the basket where I throw things that I've been playing around with or leftover bits from actual finished objects. It's overflowing in this picture, which was taken awhile back. It's got more in it now, some the same, some different. I post this only to impress you with the folly of flashing my stash.

But while we're here, let us examine what we see.

The large bluesy cake in the center of the picture is actually my most expensive yarn. It's supposedly about 4 or 5 hundred yards, but I don't know about that. It's Marjaana yarn by Schaefer. The colorway is Eleanor Roosevelt. I bought it to make my cousin Laura a Clapotis because she likes teal. Yes. Shall we move on? Some of the red stuff at the bottom is Lion Brand Wool-Ease. It's brother is the gray Wool-Ease is at the top. The gray was bought in a large quantity to knit N's Manly Sweater (still a wip/ufo), but I didn't like it and returned all but this skein which I had swatched. The red was bought to sew/crochet acrylic patches from my knitting club together into a baby quilt for charity. It will be used for that eventually.

On the right of the red Wool-Ease is red angora in a plastic bag. That's the leftover angora from the bed socks I made in fall 'O6. It is now knit up into the kitty pi (still to be felted) featured here.

To the right of the red angora we have KnitPicks something or other in dark brown. It looks black on my screen. It was one of KnitPicks limited, trial offerings. It's 50/50 wool and cotton. I thought it might be good for socks at the time that I threw it onto an order. I don't think it will be. It feels more cottony than wooly and too inelastic. It's partner skein is located higher in the picture.

The shiny silver and black stuff is crochet thread. I was knitting a Barbie Torch Singer/Beauty Contestant dress out of it, but it just kept intruding everywhere when I wasn't working on it, so I frogged it. I believe I saved the bottom ruffle because it came out very cool. It could be somewhere.

Between the 2 KnitPicks skeins are 2 other yarns that I got online. The purplish brownish is recycled silk. It's the same stuff as in my avatar. I washed it for about a million hours and hung it in the back yard for a week and it still smells like a damp basement, but not enough to contaminate the basket, though I wouldn't close it up in a bag with anything else. I have 2 of those big cakes. Here's a bag I made with some of it. It is what I was knitting when I met The Reluctant Blogger. To the right of silk and partly cut off is one of 2 skeins of variegated Blue Faced Leicester sport weight yarn. It's yum, yum, yummy. You guessed it: socks.

The pinkish looking ball just above and to the left of the crochet cotton is 1 ounce of vintage baby yarn. I made the entire 1 oz. skein into I-Cord on my Cool Corder machine and rolled the result into a ball. I have a couple of other skeins of that color. I may frog the I-Cord to have enough for a pair of socks. I don't know that it will be knitable, though. I knew I shouldn't use that pretty color--which is actually more of a pinky orange than an orangey pink, but I was all hot to try out the Cool Corder.

The purple stuff in the upper right-hand corner isn't yarn. It's a purple plastic gift bag that I use for stray needles until I can reunite them with their packages.

Last, but least, in the upper left-hand corner is some variegated Red Heart acrylic. That's knitting club yarn that never quite made it to school. Some of it has appeared in afghan patches and as the kind of cast-on that you take out later. I can't think of the word, but it means temporary. Provisional.

Look how many words I used up describing just this little bit of yarn in the basket. The actual stash yarns all have stories behind them, too, at least the ones I still remember.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Log House Blanket in Progress

The log cabin blanket has grown enough for it to be a Log House blanket. Right not now it's approximately 2.5 x 3.5 feet. Crib blanket size. The first picture is the front. I'm not actually following log cabin construction procedures anyway. I went around and around for a lot of it. Now I'm back to one side at a time, but I am not binding off. I'm keeping the stitches live. I have 4 needles now, one on each side. Three of them are U.S. size 5 and the other is either a generous five or a wimpy 6. I'm pretending it doesn't matter, and it doesn't. The thing feels good: sturdy and clean. If I work the ends in correctly, the owners will be able to wash the heck out of it and drag it all over town.
I want the central rectangle to parallel the shape of the bed, not cross it. I want it closer to the head than the foot. Once I meet the width requirements, I will begin adding strips to the top and bottom to meet the length requirements. In the second picture you can see a row of mitered squares going across one end. I will be repeating that motif on the opposite end with another color of variegated yarn. I think it will look nice. There may be more than one more row of these. Each edition will be a different size. The ones pictured are 10 x 10 stitches for a total of one hundred stitches. That is to say, that row is composed of ten 10-stitch squares and was 100 stitches across before I added the strip you can just about see on the right.
This isn't as monotonous a project as I thought it would be. The modular knitting of the mitered squares helped a lot. It's an in-between projects project and that helps keep it interesting, too. It's nice because I can figure out where I was when I pick it up again. Even if I couldn't tell, I could change it up anyway. It doesn't seem to look any worse no matter what I do. It has some charm, yet it's quite ugly. Coordinated colors would go a long way, but then it wouldn't be a scrap quilt. Cheap cotton yarn scraps don't come in nearly the color range that cotton fabric does. I'd be ashamed to have made this out of fabric because the colors (and dearth of planning) have caused a lack of balance in composition. It helps to hang it up in the backyard and take its picture. I can see how much the red line helps, and the large green frame for that matter. I'll have to repeat that.
Here is the back for a little end-weaving preview.