Saturday, February 14, 2009


It's been frog season here.... have you heard all the noise? RipIt....RipIt....RipIt.....

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


I am making a stealth project. Oooohh, that sounds cool. Really...I'm knitting a Thorpe hat for Rob for Valentine's Day and I haven't told him that's what I'm working on as he sits beside me. LOL.

Math. I thought the yarn I'm using would work at the same gauge as the pattern. The pattern says 14.5st/4 inches, the yarn says 12-16sts to 4 inches....after knitting to the point of 80sts, I took a gauge check....It appeared to be 18sts to 4 inches (admittedly, hard to measure on the hat). But, I wouldn't want the fabric any looser. I had thought it seemed to still fit on the double pointed needles quite well, when she says you'll have to switch to a circular! So I did the math. 18/4=4.5x22"=99sts. I check the dpn, they are really snug going in the 5mm but do go in. My 5mm circular is in the FLS; I find one that is slightly bigger than 5mm but seemed too small for 5.5mm. I knit some more, doing the increases up to 96st, then another round with only 4 increase.

I re-measure the gauge (it doesn't look any different) and it's 17st/4 inches. I measure the diameter, it appears to be 8" which makes the circumference to be 25.12"! How is it that 100st/4.25=23.5" but the actual measurements say something else? It is hard to measure the diameter though. In any regard, the increase in needle size has meant that it's now 1 1/2" too I'd have to rip back 3 rounds to get back to 93.5sts (yes, I know. I'll go back to either 88st or maybe 94sts...once you're past the increasing, you don't need to stick with a 8st repeats...I'd have to be doing math once I get to the flaps anyway). It doesn't look like the gauge changed that much....but here's the DOESN'T take much to make a change!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Hold My Hand, Pt 1

I am making a conscious effort to knit from stash this year. Really. Since the fall, I've been doing really well--the Fleece Artist thrummed mitten kit has been the exception and that was a for a gift and knitted up immediately. I had used only 1/2 the amount of roving and they were well received, so I knit another pair for our family Christmas gift exchange game. I found some yarn (Rav. link) in the stash that is 52% wool, 48% acrylic, but feels all acrylic, that I felt okay with parting. I didn't want to use the really 'good' wool (uh, right now, that would be Patons Classic Merino which would felt in a heartbeat if the wrong person washed the mitts), and I don't like Patons Decor much anymore for mitts (although, with the roving, they would still be warm!). I forgot to do the little finger slit this time. But, I did do them both at the same time on one circular needle, and boy, was that awesome! I really liked the way the thrumms showed up better on these mitts too. My cousin (or her daughter? Mmmm, it was a bit of a tossle) won them.
Then after New Year's, I got to making mittens on the KnitSmart machine. I made one pair on the LK150 (the pair in my profile picture) but wasn't totally satisfied with them. The problem is, I have been knitting all my mittens based on a very old Patons pattern (written to knit flat, but I do them in the round). I want my machine knit mitts to look the same! Lucy's new pair was up first. She chose Patons Decor in this minty green, which she calls blue.

There were some things I really didn't like about the pattern. For her size, you don't go back to the same number of sts to do the top of the hand (as for the cuff), and they are very pouffy on her. I also did the increases between sts 2 and 3 so they wouldn't interfere with sewing up, but I don't like it. The bind & tie top made a little hole. She says they're not warm enough.
Then I made a pair for Huey. More on them later as the picture is loaded. Then I started making spare mittens for Lucy's classroom. I used Patons Decor, and Headwaters Wool, and then BOUGHT some superwash merino. I bought three colours, made two pairs from two of the colours, loved them so much, I've kept the third colour for myself, LOL. Plus I bought 3 balls of natural to dye! For each mitten, I tried out different mitten patterns, ideas, recipes. These ones are the oddest by far:
I did the increasing for the thum on the outer edges, then took off the center 10 sts to continue for the thumb. Lucy said they felt okay on, but they do look odd!
I've gotten it down to two methods/patterns, depending on the size and desired finished look, and time. More on that latter (latter this week). Making the spare mittens (plus another pair for Lucy, a pair for Meg, and a pair for me) as well as some hats to show you still, and some Freecycling, has meant a significant drop in some parts of my stash bins. But none of the big bags of 'project yarn' are getting used up!