Saturday, February 27, 2010

Blocked Veronika

I forgot the one thing I did get done this week. I finished knitting Veronika last weekend and got it blocked last night. Ta da!

 There are some errata and clarifications, plus I made a change to the design. Elizabeth from the NieblingLaceKnitters yahoo group was kind enough to share what the blurry symbols are, as well as the "move marker" symbols seem to go the wrong way. She figured it out from trial and error, saving the rest of us some time and effort. Thanks, Elizabeth! Here are her clarifications and corrections:

Round 1- (one) make 4 from 1
R13- (one) k4tog
R15- move marker forward 1 stitch
R35- (six) make 3 from 1
R37- move marker backwards one stitch
R45- (two) k9tog
R47- (six) make 3 from 1
R57- (three) make 3 from 1, (two) k9tog, (three) make 3 from 1
R67- (two) k9tog.

For the Make 4 from 1's  I decided to do (k1, yo)2x instead of alternating knits and purls. It made the start MUCH faster and easier. Did the Make 3 from 1's as k1, yo, k1. Don't think it made much difference visually, but the ease of it sure helped my attitude, especially since I had to start over after 60-someodd rounds the first time. I decided to do all the k9tog's as slip 6 individually, k3tog, pass slipped stitches over. Very do-able.

The other change I made was in the number of repeats for rounds 77 through the end. The pattern calls for 20 repeats of a 16 stitch sequence. Since there are 8 repeats in the rest of the pattern, I changed it to 16 repeats of a 20 stitch sequence. To do that, I added one unit of hex mesh (k2tog, yo, yo, ssk) to the repeat. I wound up knitting 2 extra rounds, but I really prefer the look of it. Cleaner and more intentional, I think.

Blocked out to 20" in circumference, and it looks smashing on the dark wood table. Victory!

A Frustrating Week

Monday night I spent the evening in the emergency room getting my right pinkie and ring fingers stitched up. I was washing a glass and it broke with my hand inside. I'll spare you the pics. ;) Kevin was standing right next to me and grabbed a (handwoven by me) towel as soon as he saw what I did. I almost told him to grab a different one, but thought better of it  (for those of you who are interested, I soaked it in cold water as soon as we got home and the blood came out completely!).

The folks at North Suburban Medical Center ER are wonderful! They are friendly, enthusiastic professionals who aren't afraid to act like real human beings. Got 6 stitches in all and they're all wrapped up in gauze, splinted. No dishes for a week, I can live with that. Not until I get the stitches out. And here's the rub: no handwork for 7 days. No knitting, no spinning, no weaving. Bah!

So, I've been running errands. I've been reading A LOT. I've been catching up on movies. Went to dance practice Wednesday and Thursday and did all the dances that don't involve sticks. Danced in a gig Friday afternoon. And it's all been pretty ok until today. I'm tired of reading. I'm tired of being out and about. I want to stay home and WORK ON SOMETHING. Instead I parked on the couch and watched a Bill Maher comedy dvd and then the Olympics. Total couch potato. I don't feel like doing anything if I can't do what I want to do. I want to finish Mary's gloves. I want to spin that multicolored laceweight I started Monday morning. I want to weave off the silk noil warp and start on the towels for the guild challenge. I want to wind the towel warp. I have a fleece to wash. I have a pattern to test-knit.

I'll need a better plan for tomorrow and Monday. I just have to make it until 4pm Monday when the stitches come out.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Take 5!

Our local Border Morris team, Breathless in Berthoud, spent the better part of the last year learning to dance in 5/4 time. Took a while before we stopped feeling like we were tripping over our own feet. ;) Anyway, we did it and premiered a dance done to Dave Brubeck's Take 5 in December at Solabration. We believe we are the first American team to do this dance, originally done by Seven Champions.

Since everyone was in the dance, there was no one left to film it. We finally filmed it at practice a couple of weeks ago. Great fun to dance, now that we can step in 5/4 time. Maybe we should try Brubeck's Unsquare Dance next, that's in 7/8.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Short Row Heel Tutorials

Someone was knitting my ReSoleAble Sock pattern and had some trouble with the short row heel. In the course of trying to help her, I found this great tutorial on 2 parts.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Mohair Baby Blanket

This is my new project for community knitting at Mew Mews Yarn Shop. There were 6 skeins of Phentex Mohair in the donation bin that wanted to be a baby blanket. I heard them loud and clear, you'll just have to trust me on that. ;)
I dug out Knitting Lace by Susanna Lewis and chose pattern 4 for the main part of the blanket. This one will take me a while, but I like knitting this lace pattern so that won't be a problem. It has a nice rhythm to it.

If I have enough of this yarn left, I'll do the lace border in mohair, but I may have to choose something else. We'll see how it all turns out.

The Holes and Knots show opened today at TACtile Textile Arts Center. It's all lace! I was in heaven. Any kind of lace you can think of was there, and maybe a few you had not yet considered. I have some knitted lace in the show. I think there was only 1 other knitter. Anyway, if you're in the area between now and March 20th it's worth a peek.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Blocking a Rectangular Lace Scarf

I took a few pics when I blocked Dance of the Butterflies. You can do it with pins only, but you'd need hundreds of them to get a smooth, straight edge. It's much easier (and faster) with blocking wires.
First, soak your scarf. I usually put a dab of wool wash in a bowl of lukewarm water and let it soak for at least 30 minutes. You want the water to penetrate the yarn thoroughly. Squeeze it gently when you take it out of the bowl, then roll it up in a towel and squeeze out as much moisture as you can.

You'll need a large, flat surface to pin it to. I used our bed, but you could also use a carpeted floor or those interlocking foam squares. Starting from one end, take one of the longer wires and thread it though the stitches along one long edge.  Make sure there are at least a few inches of wire left at each end. It will probably take more than one wire to do each long edge (this scarf took 3 for each side). Do the same for the other long edge.

Now take one of the short wires and thread it through the points of a short end. Do the same for the other side. If the short ends are straight too, thread it through the stitches like you did for the long edges.

Now get your pins out. Splurge for some heavy-duty T-pins. They are long enough that you can pin into the bed through a blanket, and strong enough they won't bend. Spread one end of the scarf out to the width you want and pin that end wire to the bed. Do the same for the other end, then pin the side wires every so often. There needs to be enough pins to keep the sides parallel, but you don't need to go crazy. I wound up doing every 8-12 inches or so.

 If it's a nice day, open the windows so it will dry faster. If you have pets, you may want to close the door to that room for a few hours. Otherwise, just wait until it is completely dry. This one took about 4 hours on a 45 degree day with the windows closed. Once it's dry, remove the pins, then remove the wires. Voila!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Rainbow ZigZag Scarf


This is another domino scarf for community knitting at Mew Mews Yarn Shop. All the kid stuff goes to Clinica Campesina, and all the adult stuff is distributed to the homeless folks of Longmont. The yarn is from her donation bin, not sure exactly how much there was to start with and didn't think to weigh it before I dropped it off. It's Regia something, I saw the same yarn for sale on the shop.

Community knitting, for me, is a chance to play for free. Last time I made a domino scarf with the blocks all lined up in a row. This time I wanted to see what a zigzag looked like. This was the perfect yarn, with its bright colors and long repeat. Some kid is going to be happy. ;)

I liked knitting it and kept thinking it would be nice to finish it off with applied I-cord to gove the edges more body. Not enough yarn, though. I bought a skein of Noro Silk Garden Sock so I can try it again, perhaps knitting the i-cord as I go.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Veronika Redux


A few days ago I cast on Verokia again, this time with larger needles and thread (yes, size 20 thread and size 0 needles count as larger this time). The lighter color also helped, as did the method of increase used. I decided all the make 3's would be knit1, yo, knit1, and all the make 4's would be (knit1, yo)2x. Way easier, and way faster, than alternating knits and purls in the same stitch. Especially since the big increases start on round 1 of the chart! 

I've knitted through round 36 so far. There is errata for this pattern, but I think I'm going to post it all at once when I'm done.

Saturday, February 6, 2010



This one was a joy to knit! Very regular, no weird increases or decreases. If it was larger than it was, I would no doubt have gotten bored, but this was fine. I like how it looks, too.
There was one mistake in the chart. On round 59, you need to slip 2 stitches from the left needle to the right needle in order for everything to line up.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Dance of the Butterflies finished

I finished this one a while ago,but just recently got around to photographing it. The Dream in Color Baby was lovely to work with, and the finished scarf is light and warm. I blocked it out to 9" wide x 74" long this time (I had blocked it more severely once before, turned out 13" x 84" that time).

Now I need to test-knit the pattern in another yarn. I'm thinking either Infinity Soy Silk or a Knit Picks laceweight.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010



Here's the second loaf of pumpernickel from the current batch of dough. It's a little on the light side color-wise because I didn't have the caramel color called for in the recipe. I really like this toasted with butter, but cold and plain it doesn't quite do it for me. Still, time well spent. 

I cast on Bertel from Kunststrik 2 last week, knitted through round 52 last night. This one is a cutie!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Bent 2


This is Bent 2 by Sonja Esbensen. I used size 10 DMC cebelia and size 1 needles. It's about 12" across. There was an error in round 43. The last knit 3 in the repeat should be a double decrease. So, it should read: (yo, double decrease, yo, knit 1, double decrease, knit 1)3x,  yo, double decrease, yo, double decrease.

The sequence for grouping stitches didn't make sense, and didn't match up to the repeat length at all, corrected or not. This is what I did- knit 2 stitches, then group stitches as follows: 4-3-3-3-4-5 with 7 chain stitches between them.