Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Yes, I Knit!

After the demise of the white baby blanket, I was feeling a little frustrated with my Singer 327. When I first got my first machine, I was making 'real' things right away. Maternity tank tops! I've had the Singer since the end of March, and what have I really finished? A pair of socks. One Angel Baby blanket that still needs edging. Swatches. Suddenly it seemed that every pattern I want to do is for the other machines. Or, none of my cones of yarn seem 'right'.

Then I thought about the tank pattern at http://www.clearwaterknits.com/. The gauge is 7sts/inch, which I could have gotten in handknitting, or the LK150, or even the KnitSmart. But I have all these odd cones of fine yarn. I picked a green I didn't really like, and a very fine brown boucle. The green reminds me of old artificial Christmas trees.

Here's the amazing thing. The size large is to fit a 36" bust, finish size 38". I'm about a 39" bust right now. I TOTALLY forgot to do a test swatch! I casted on the 134 sts, and realized that I had no idea what size it would be or the tension to use. Based on my limited experience, I figured the tension in the pattern (8 1/3) would be too loose, so I went with 6 1/3.....I think, LOL. I figured the worse that could happen is that it would be see through and I'd rip it out.

It turned out to be 36" and has negative ease, but I like it. The boucle thread makes it look like it's gone fuzzy, from a distance.

but up close it's okay. I still don't care for the green, but the brown really helped to tone it down. It doesn't go with anything I bought recently (all shades of olive green), and my brown shorts are missing the waist clasp, but I MADE SOMETHING WEARABLE.

I decided to try another yarn, same pattern. I had a cone of a gold brown that I got from a Georgetown guild member who has/had knitting machines. She said it biased, so be careful what I make. I had done a swatch, and actually washed it. It did bias. The Yahoo group for machine knitting suggested running serger thread along with it. That seems to have worked!

You really can't see the thread, as the yarn had enough texture already. After washing, this yarn had fluffed up quite a bit in the swatch, but not so much with the tank. I may have also 'read' my swatch wrong and chose the wrong tension. But it still worked!

This time I added about an inch of short rows for the bust. I made the large size again, using T 8 1/3 like the pattern says. And, it's almost 40" so it's a much looser feel. Laying it here on the floor and it does not look nearly as long as it does in that picture!

I had Rob take that picture and said "Don't include my head." He asked why, and I said that knitters are headless, LOL. Lucy took the one of the first tank. The self-timer feature is tricky as the self-focus light comes on as soon as you press the button, so if you're not in position, you won't be in focus, but if you have someone there to press the button for you, why would you use the self-timer?

I have enough of that gold yarn to make perhaps a cardigan. I'm not a twin-set type, but it'd still make a nice cardigan.

It's been hard finding time to blog with the kids home. I tried to keep to a routine, and that worked the week Huey was at day camp, but it's not working now!

1 comment:

Monika said...

Your tops look like they fit you very well. Golden top, eh?!
I've been spinning since May '07, so not too long, but I love it so much, I could do it all day, if my neck would not hurt so much. ;o)