Tag Archives: patterns

A surprise, a blue ensemble, and socks

Surprise: I have a pattern in Ulla!

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Pattern: in Finnish, here

Yarn: Wollmeise 80/20 twin, leftover from a shawl I knit two summers ago

Thoughts: Not the most spectacular hat nor pattern, but pretty exciting nontheless 🙂

The blue shawl I showed last time did also get finished in time.

Snapseed

For some reason I look extremely white and annoyed. Oh, the mysteries of photography.

Pattern: Evi by Stricklust, available for free through Ravelry

Yarn: Wollmeise 100% merino, in WD Blue Curacao

Thoughts: Easy pattern, a relatively quick knit (I started on June 1st and finished last Saturday, June 16th). In the end I actually ran out of yarn while binding off, and had to finish with some random Finnish sock yarn.

The pattern is very easy to memorize, and looks impressive although it’s just knits and purls. I got less repeats than the pattern specified, so my gauge was probably off. I always use size 3.5mm needles for knitting lace with Wollmeise. For this shawl I used my new Chiagoo Lace needles that are pure love -pointy tips and a strong cord. I got mine from Villavyyhti in Helsinki.

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Despite my morose expression, I can assure you that the party was fabulous.

Finally, I have a pair of very sweet socks:

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Pattern: just my basic sock -72 sts, short-row heel. 

Yarn: Ladybug Fiber Company 400yards/100g sock yarn. This is the softest, squishiest sock yarn you can imagine! Knitting it was pure joy -it’s a very round 2-ply, a blend of 80% merino and 20% nylon. I imagine it would also be perfect for cables (this self-striping version of course is best in stockinette). 

The colourway is named “Johnny Jump Up” (google tells me it’s a flower) but I think of these as my Cupcake Socks. The colours make me think of sprinkles and frosting and all things sweet. And of course yarn this nice feels like a treat.

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A Hat and a Half

I still have one project to report from 2011. Stricly speaking I finished it this year, but since I mostly knit it during Christmas, I think of it as my “holiday project”.

gretel

Pattern: Gretel Beret by Ysolda Teague

Yarn: Katia Miski/Mirasol Miski (it’s the same yarn)

This was one of the projects I intended to knit last winter before my hands started to ache. I had bought the book Stitch ‘n Bitch Superstar Knitting, in which the Gretel pattern is included -albeit in a rather, um, condensed form. There are no charts and only one size -I’m guessing this is because the pattern (with charts and multiple sizes) is also available for purchase directly from the designer. Even I was considering buying the pdf download to get charts, but in the end was too cheap for that. Instead I just drew up the chart from the written directions and repeated certain rounds to make the hat bigger.

I do not mean to imply that the pattern in the book would be useless -the crown decreses that I’ve heard so many knitters speak highly of are indeed quite clever. I’m also very enamoured with the pattern pictures -it’s because of them that I knew I just had to make this beret, and make it in red. I don’t usually like knitting intricate cables but thought that a hat knit in worsted weight yarn wouldn’t be too bad. It’s really quite a quick knit since the cables can be done without a cable needle.

After finishing Gretel, I have also knit another hat but that was such a complete failure that I won’t even post a picture here (I’m still slightly mad). To recover from the disappointment I started another hat yesterday. Even it had a rough start (the cast on was twisted) but it’s going better now.

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The name of the colourway is “She’s so sweet” and I have found that (along with the very sweet colours) very soothing. Even though I have no idea who would wear a hat like this, I’ve been happily knitting away while eating vegan marshmellows (a gift from my mom). Perfection.

2011 in Review

After a very meh New Year’s Eve (I was at work), today the year 2012 is starting to look much brighter. It’s even snowing as I write this, finally!

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The view from our living room window, slightly enhanced with iPhone apps.

I wanted to write a short review of my knitting life in the past year before moving on, so here goes:

Projects

In the past year I knit (finished) 30 hats, 5 scarves, 2 cowls, 2 sweaters and one pair of socks. The difference between 2011 and 2010 is quite obvious then -in 2010 I knit 14 pairs of socks but only 2 hats.

Even though I have given some hats away, I still have so many now that some have been used only once. Predictably, the one lonely pairs of socks has seen a lot of use. I really should knit more, but when have I ever knit something just because I should?

The project that I’m most proud is rather hard to decide. On the one hand there’s Wondertunic -it was an old UFO that I managed to save & finish, and it also fits surprisingly well. But it wasn’t my first garment nor was there anything particularly difficult. My Dam hat (from the Urbanista pattern by Woolly Wormhead) on the other hand was my first intarsia project, and I even managed to adapt it to make it fit better. I haven’t used it much, but I am rather proud of it.

Some Big Things

There are two things that obviously affected my knitting life in 2011. Firstly, I couldn’t knit at all until March due to hand pain. Once I could start knitting, small accessories seemed the best choice since I wasn’t sure whether the pain would come back and force me to leave bigger projects unfinished. 

Becoming (nearly) vegan in 2011 also had a huge influence on my knitting. Although I have continued to knit with my stash yarns (and so am still using wool), all new yarns I’ve bought have been vegan. 

Best…

New Yarn

Now this is easy -my favourite new yarn is the vegan handspun from MaidinEngland’s Etsy shop 🙂

One of the projects I mentioned in last post was knit out of her yarn. This time the picture should work: 

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The pattern: Eriikka by Suvi Heikkilä 

Book

Weekend Hats, obviously. I was super-excited about it and have knit multiple projects out of it. The best book that I haven’t knit anything from is Scandinavian Jacquard Caps from the Japanese Let’s Knit-series. I bought it from Amsterdam on my vacation.

Knitting Technique

Cable cast-on. I’m really extremely lazy and stubborn when it comes to trying something new, and usually just use the cast-on taught to me in 7th grade. Woolly Wormhead uses the cable cast-on in many of her patterns, and finally I decided to try it. It has made my cast-on edge tidier, usually it’s way too loose (yes, I am indeed the only knitter in the world who never has to worry about edges being too tight!)

Pattern

One that I haven’t knit -Escargot hat from Knitty. Fabulous!

One that I did knit -the Aquitaine shawlette. It’s free and a very clear pattern.

Although I did also use many awesome hat patterns, the necessity of nearly always adapting the pattern to fit me is a bummer. Although there is one exception, who nearly always offers multiple sizes…

Designer

Woolly Wormhead.

Knitting Tool/Accessory

HiyaHiya 40cm metal circulars. They are lightweight, reasonably priced and don’t smell like some of my Addis. I got mine from Villavyyhti. Incidentally, the opening of that store is also The Event of 2011.

So that’s that. I’m not making any resolutions for 2012, but I’m hoping to finish at least one fair isle project and to finish/otherwise get rid of some big UFOs. We’ll see. 

Happy New Year everyone!