Knitting

So, this is the year of the Rooster according to the Chinese calendar. For me, it’s the year of the hoodie!

Most of my 2017 projects planned for this year involve a hood or hat of some sort that I’ve never made before. I’ve already completed the Maclure bonnet by Norichan that was published in the Winter 2016 Stranded Magazine issue. A nice quick knit that I also used some handspun for! Score!

What else have I got planned this year?

Hoodie Shawl Cardigan

Edge Hoodie

Minty Fresh

Granted that’s only 3 more projects, but these three have been in my queue for quite a while and are pieces that I lack in my wardrobe. I have 1 zipper hoodie…and it’s from the kids department from Target. I have many beanies, but none that are shaped like Minty Fresh. The three knit sweaters currently in rotation will probably last me another year or two before completely falling apart. So hopefully, if all goes according to plan, I will have an awesome set of hooded items come next fall. =)

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At the end of last month I took a short trip up to Seattle via Amtrak to visit my friends. We hit up two famous places: Churchmouse Yarns and Uwajimaya. Yes, there is an Uwajimaya here in Beaverton, but holy smokes this places was about twice as big in all respects: larger grocery, larger home goods area, larger Kinokuniya bookstore.

Here are the pics of the AB products I got at Uwajimaya. I’ve already detailed them in IMGUR so I’m not going to duplicate that content here. Enjoy! Continue reading Seatle Jan-Feb Photo Dump: Cats, Food, Fun!

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Hi there! Today’s post is mini tutorial on fixing a mistake in your knitting. Specifically, fixing a textured knit. My example is a basic one where the row repeat is an offset of 3 knits and 1 purl, a repeat of 4 rows of the Talus hat by Cory Ellen Boberg of Indie Knits. The yarn I’m using is a single ply of Intrepid Otter. I don’t quite remember which one it is, but it’s awesome!

Super easy cakes, so follow a long as I have some handy tips for working a fix.

Tools: a crochet hook smaller than gauge or at least 1/2mm to 1mm size smaller than the needles you are using for the project, and a removable stitch marker. For the crochet hook, see if you can find one that has a tapered end or evenly milled without a bulky handle.

Mine shown here is a Susan Bates aluminum crochet hook size 3.25mm and 4″ short with the opposite end shaped like a needle point. Yay, dual use!

* this tutorial assumes you know how to use a crochet hook * Continue reading Mini-tut: Find mistake, drop a stitch, fix a purl

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HELLO THERE!

Welcome to 2017! I’m so excited for 2016 to be over already. Some hardcore celebrities and childhood hero’s died over the last few months that melted into the holiday season…so…I dunno, not a whole lot I can say that hasn’t already been said.

But as far as feels go. Have you seen Finding Dory? ToT Yes, that’s right. Crying text emoji. Pixar working that magic again, and me crying like a pathetic broken person in front of my husband (whom’s idea it was to rent it from Amazon to begin with). Thanks dude.

And speaking of movies, we also watched The Secret Life of Pets. That’s a fun movie that could have been better if it was pg-13. And then that infamous Rogue One. Oh yes, that movie…that Star Wars movie. THE prequel we all wanted and had to suffer 3 horrifying films, and 3 horrifying remastered upchucked splice edited originals…if you don’t know how I feel about ep. 1-3 and the 90’s edition ep 4-6…NOW YOU DO! Any time I’ve ever seen A New Hope playing on cable tv they neeever play those shitty 90’s releases, so I know I’m not alone in my opinions regarding that…stuff… Continue reading Happy 2017!

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How….how is it December already?!

We’ve made some changing at the homestead. Got a PS4 Pro for my husband’s birthday so we’ve accumulated a new tv and a new tv cabinet shelf thing for it. But that also means we’ve thrown out quite a number of things, reorganized the basement storage locker, and made space for a Christmas tree!!

This part I am particularly excited for. We haven’t had a Christmas tree in almost 2 years! Lucy doesn’t mind the tree either. Despite her being a cat she couldn’t give two dingle berries about it. Tree Tree Tree!!! Hopefully we’ll be able to grab one this weekend. I’ll also be able to put up the new stockings I made on Halloween night. Mmm….tree, stockings, new 4k HDTV where we can watch 4k log on a fire…thanks Netflix.

So what have I been doing fiber related recently? Continue reading My One and Only December

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Hey there. I spent last weekend up in Seattle with my lovely friends Izi and Rocko…I mean Noriko and Ari. =D

Izi is a mega-derp-a-licious cat. And Rocko is a haphazardly Chi puppy who desperately wants to play with Izi…who refuses to have anything to do with him besides the occasional BAP.

But anyways. I was up to assist my friends with their booth at the Fiber Fusion at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds in Monroe Washington. Yay! My people have a booth! The week leading up to it I couldn’t remember where exactly we were going. Monroe? Who’s ever heard of this place? Not me apparently. And despite my name, I couldn’t remember it in casual conversation.

So what did I come home with? FIBER!!! Fibah….FERberrrrhhhh  Continue reading My Name is What?

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Have you ever worked with lace weight yarn and found it to bring out the hater in you?
Have you ever worked with lace weight 100% mulberry silk yarn and found it to break your knitting spirit?

I think for this entire year I have a grand total of 5 FO’s compared to last years almost double digit number. Granted, a lot of them are hats and small shawls, but still FO’s!!

So here it is, the glorious lace weight silk masterpiece that I’ve been working on as a sample.

Also, my unimpressed Lucy cat.

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The Gehry Wrap consists of two sections: foundation and window.

Pro-tips:

  1. Use alternating sets of stitch markers. You really need A and B markers so you don’t get lost. Do not use all markers of the same color/type. You will get lost.
  2. When working the wrong side of the rows, that is when I would place a marker. This made it easier for me to whip through each row without having to double-triple count the number of stitches I needed before a wrap/turn.
  3. Double wrap the working yarn around your pinky. This is particular to us that throw our yarn when knitting versus those of us that knit continental style. Since it is 100% silk  it will help you not only hold the yarn, but keep tension as well without straining your wrist.
  4. The piece will block out.

With the Gehry Wrap out of the way, I plowed through the rest of the Mayu Sweater. The last parts required were the sleeves, which is my least favorite part of knitting. To circumvent the lack of size 15 dpns, I decided to do make a few changes.

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  1. Since I had messed up and somehow managed to be 2 stitches short of what I should have been at the sleeves for the size I made, I cast on 1 more on each end of the sleeve underarm. This is cast-on, not pick-up and knit.
  2. To even things out I added 1 more stitch at the end of the row. Where I should have had 30 stitches, I did 31. (3, 25, 3) Half a stitch is taken on each end of a row when seaming, so the 1 extra stitch essentially disappears.
  3. I knit stst until desired 8″ length careful to count as I go so that I could duplicate the correct number of rows for the second sleeve. After the third decrease, switched to smaller needles, purl 1 row (ws row), begin cuff ribbing (rs row).
  4. Seam up the arm from the cuff, seam the underarm, block, enjoy!

I’m currently wearing it and since it is made of a slick, yet puffy, superwash bulky weight yarn (Biggo from Knitpicks), it grew quite a bit after washing. While drying it I was almost afraid it was going to be dress length! Luckily for me, it grew just the right amount. =)

I now have a nice puffy cozy sweater for fall!!

 

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imageNarf! Pinky is one of my all time favorite cartoon characters. Sure he wasn’t all brains, like Brain, but his unique way of looking at the world and his creative intelligence, though a mouse cartoon, is just as important to embrace in society today as a PHD. So I have named my shawl made with Beachy Keen gradient kit by Fierce Fibers the Narf! Shawl.

(note: the shawl is really easy to knit, however my instructions are not detailed enough for a beginner, sorry…this is my first pattern, ever. Please bear with me! If you see anything amiss, please don’t hesitate to contact me on Ravelry.)

Narf! Shawl

Narf! Shawl:

Yarn: 1 gradient kit by Fierce Fibers in the Beachy Keen color way, or any other set of 5 colors of fingering weight yarn.

Yardage: 400-460 yards +- 10 yards depending on how full/long you want your tassels to be.

Gauge: 23 stitches and 32 rows = 4 inches in stockinette

  • Gauge is not important as the shawl is designed to use up all the yarn from the gradient kit. When a row cannot be completed, set aside the remaining yardage for the tassel. =)

Size: approximately 51″ wide x 18.5″ deep

Tools:

  • Size US 7 (4.5mm) 24″ or longer circular needles
  • the Loome tool or 3″ piece of cardboard
  • Darning needle
  • Scissors
  • Blocking supplies

Abbreviations:

  • M1R – make 1 increase right leaning (insert left needle into bar between stitches, back to front, knit into the front loop)
  • M1L – make 1 increase left leaning (insert left needle into the bar between stitches, front to back, knit into the back loop)
  • yo – yarn over
  • ssk – slip, slip, knit
  • k2tog – knit 2 stitches together
  • psso – pass slipped stitches over

Basic Construction:

Start with a garter tab. Cast on 3 stitches and work 8 rows. With 3 stitches still on the needle, pick up 5 stitches evenly along the edge and 3 at the other end for a total of 11 stitches. I went with 3 for a solid garter edge. Just my preference. =)

The main piece is a basic 6 increase shawl – 4 increases on the right side and 2 increases on the wrong side. There is 1 stitch in the center and three stitches each side for the garter edge. Check out the various shawl construction types here on Craftsy for the wide and shallow triangle shawl or if you’d like a different shape.

Row 1: Work garter edge. yo, knit to center, M1R, knit 1, M1L, knit to last three stitches, yo, work garter edge. (inc 4 stitches)

Row 2: Work garter edge, yo, purl to last three stitches, yo, work garter edge. (inc 2 stitches)

Work each color in these two rows until you cannot work a complete row. This leftover yarn will be used for the tassels.

End the 4th color after a right side row, knit row (inc 4 row). Begin wrong side row with the 5th/last color and work as a normal wrong side row (inc 2 row).

If you are using less than 5 colors, note that the lace edging section is worked with the 5th mini-skein being a little under 100 yards.

Lace Edging:

image

Set up Row (WS): Work garter edge stitches and purl to the last 3 stitches, you will no longer be increasing for the rest of the shawl. Work last 3 garter stitches.

Row 1 (RS): Work garter edge stitches, repeat (k2tog, yo) across until the center stitch. Depending on how many stitches you have you will either come to 1 stitch before the center stitch, or just the center stitch.

  • If you have 1 stitch before the center stitch: yo, slip 2 as if to knit, knit 1, psso, yo. This should give you a neat centered decrease. Repeat (ssk, yo) to the last 3 stitches, work garter edge stitches.
  • If you have just the center stitch: knit 1. Repeat (yo, ssk) to the last three stitches, yo, and then work the garter edge stitches.

So now you’ve got your first set of eyelets going. The right side should be slanting slightly to the right and the left side should be slanting slightly to the left.

Row 2 (WS): Work garter edge stitches, purl across, and then work garter edge stitches.

Repeat this eyelet pattern across again (rows 1 and 2). (total of 4 rows worked! yay!)

Row 5 (RS): Next, to create the subtle zig-zag effect, on the right side of the shawl work garter edge stitches, repeat (yo, ssk) to the center stitch. Work the center as previously noted in Row 2 depending on how many stitches you have available.

  • On the other side of the center stitch if you did the center decrease: Repeat (k2tog, yo) to the last 3 stitches, work garter edge stitches.
  • If you did not do the center decrease simply continue to repeat (yo, k2tog) to the last three stitches, yo, and then work the garter edge stitches.

Row 6 (WS): Work as Row 3.

Repeat this eyelet pattern across again (rows 5 and 6). (total of 8 rows worked! yay!)

Row 9 (RS): Work as Row 2.

Row 10 (WS): Work as Row 3.

Bind off loosely knitwise. I prefer the double knit method: Knit 1 (knit 1, slip both stitches back to the left hand needle, knit together through the back loop), repeat. This should leave it nice and sproingy for blocking the edge out to points, or giving the shawl a nice curve. Your choice! =)

Tassels:

imageI used my H Loome, you can use any piece of cardboard or pegboard you have at about 3″. If you’re not familiar with tassel making, watch this video! (does not require the Loome)

Make 3 tassels.

For my tassels I did this:

Step 1: Cut off extra yarn from the edges of the shawl, leaving a tail long enough to weave in.

Step 2: Take the two shortest pieces and cut them in half.

Step 3: Taking one of each color of the yarn you just cut in half, wrap them onto the Loom for making a tassel.

I happened to only have three usable pieces of leftover yarn to use for the tassels. If I make this again, I think I will purposely stop each color earlier so that I make sure to have a little bit of each color in all my tassels.

I also made sure to use more yarn for the third tassel and placed it as the center stitch decoration. I managed to make it a little bit longer than the other two by wrapping loosely around my H Loome.

Note about blocking:

image

For a subtle wave, I blocked out the top of the shawl as straight as I could, and then every 5 k2tog/ssk column along the bottom edge. (I really need to get my mitts on blocking wires!)

Attach tassels to the two opposite corners and the bottom center stitch, weave in loose ends. Wear and enjoy!

Narf! Shawl


*I am not sponsored to produce this blog post. All products mentioned were purchased with my own money and are things that I enjoy using. *

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