Saturday, June 16, 2018

These Don't Count

In late spring last year, I got a text from my SIL asking if she bought me a mitten kit would I knit them for her. Of course I would! She was on a road trip in Eastern Canada with her parents and had seen this thrummed mitten kit by Fleece Artist in a store in Nova Scotia.

 Her text said:
 "I may have bought wool with a mitten pattern for my amazing sister in law to make for me. Whatever is left of wool she may keep. There was mittens there for sale at like $60 a pair. But the wool and pattern were only $35. Knowing how talented you are and that they would mean more made by you. I was just hoping...please. (insert prayer hands emoji)".

How could I say no?  She sent a couple pictures of ones there, and I replied:
 "Just like the ones Auntie Pat used to make, but much more colourful!". 

She didn't know Auntie Pat (our favourite aunt) used to make (and sell) thrummed mittens from her own sheep's wool. I made her a pair for her 60th birthday, as it had been a long time since the sheep were gone and she didn't knit anymore. When Cheryl got the kit to me, I was amazed to see that it was almost the exact same kit I had knit for my aunt! How crazy! Cheryl had a variegated yarn though instead of a solid colour, but the colours were all the same.

I got started and had some sizing issues. Cheryl's hands are a little wide for their length. And, she likes her mittens snug. It's hard to know how snug with thrummed mittens though because they are so fluffy when you make them.

 Got started on a road trip one hot and muggy August day, to Kingston.
 And got re-started on that same road trip.
 Made some good progress.
 Had some fun too!
Got lots of progress done while waiting for my son to get his learner's permit, more than a year after he turned 16. It was so hot in there, smelly, and no where to sit. Miserable four hours.

Kept working on them, kept ripping out the top. The proportions just  didn't look right. I think I even took them on the cruise but didn't knit a row. Then all of a sudden we had a frigid spell in November and I madly rushed to finish them, hoping they fit the way she wanted.

 They're so fluffy, I could die!
They still looked a little off to me. However, once they stretch over the hand, the length is reduced. And they're so fluffy it's just a weird thing to size. Anyway, she liked them! Because of her size, there actually was quite a bit of both the yarn and the fleece left over. Not enough for another adult pair, but maybe if I just bought a bit more wool....

Friday, June 15, 2018

When In Doubt, Dishcloth.

Or socks.
You know, for those odd balls of yarn you just don't know what to do with.
Years ago, I had an idea to knit a cotton babywearing pouch sling on my knitting machine. Couldn't be too hard. Short rows form the pouch curve. The hard part was determining the length because you can't try it on, with a baby, until it's sewn together.  Of course, I wanted to graft the seam so it was invisible and comfortable.
This was all a bad idea. Pouch slings are tricky to size anyway.
Don't even remember if I was doing this for my own baby, who is now 12, or another.
I used a giant ball of Handicrafter cotton yarn.
Going through my bins, found it, and decided to rip it apart and make dishcloths. Because nothing else in that yarn ever works.
Did I mention I grafted the open cast on to the last raw row?
Gave up on finding that and just snipped a random row at the shoulder, unpicked it, and went to town.

I assume I did these on my SK155 as that's the only machine set up right now. Don't ask me the tension.
Wait a second. These were handknit. I started with one of the old fashioned ones. I knit them loose so that when they were washed, they'd shrink, but not get stiff. The top right, I got creative but the increases at the centre weren't quite right so it doesn't lay flat. The bottom left ended up being too big for a dishcloth. It's kind of halfway between a dishcloth  and a towel. Won't hang on my stove handle, but is a big soppy mess if used as a dishcloth.

I must have made these while sick/recovering in Feb/March. The two old fashion ones took 25gr each, the funky square was 35gr and the big one was 57gr. All total, 142gr.

Yarn In:     100gr
Yarn Out:      176gr+142gr=318gr
Balance:     218gr OUT
Costs:     $2.53/165 days= $0.015/day