27 September 2005

Yarn Lust

My LYS had a sale recently... 20% off anything for members of their "Frequent Fiber" club. So I finally bought a skein of Fleece Artist "Lady Godiva" I'd had my eye on for months. It's a fabulously soft mix of 50% wool, 50% silk. The color is a soft heathered lavendar. They'd had it so long that it wasn't even in their computer system any longer! (Also, "Lady Godiva" is now part of the HandMaiden line of yarns, spun off (pun intended) from Fleece Artist.)

So what does one do with 500m of silky-wooly goodness? Hmmmm... possibly do "Cathy's Seaman's Scarf", a Mountain Colors pattern I picked up recently? (It calls for MC "Mountain Goat", but gee whiz... I have all this yarn just waiting for a purpose in life...) So since I wound it (see the Sept. 20 entry), I've been working steadily on it. I adore this yarn. MORE. Must... find... more... (click to enlarge photos)

20 September 2005

The right tools make all the difference.

In this case, it's winding 500m of light worsted yarn. The swift is great, but on it's own, it wouldn't stay put on the desk. And, the "arms" would drop until they were brushing against the top of the desk... not so great for maintaining an even tension. So, Paul built a big, solid stand to mount it on. Now I'm just a windin' fool...

16 September 2005

Insatiable Appetite

Meet the amazing yarn-consuming spiral scarf pattern... 'Knitmama's version of the Scarf Style spiral neck-warmer. The pattern called for two skeins of Trendsetter 'Dune', and that she used "most" of it.

So... I don't have the size 13 circulars called for, so I subbed 15s (40"). I also cast on 80 st. instead of 90, just in case the bigger size ate up more yarn. Well, I got through several rows and decided that I'd end up with way too much yarn left over... and I'm not one to waste any 'Dune'. I frogged it, and cast on 90, starting over. Good thing it's a quick knit.

I got most of the way through row 6, and only had two more to knit before I'd be done... and I just started the second skein. Silly me almost frogged again thinking I'd still end up with a lot of leftover yarn. Instead, I figured I'd make tassels with the surplus.

WELL. I got about a third of the way through the bind-off, and got convinced I was going to run out of yarn. So I went back and did some math, trying to figure out how bad the disaster would be. As luck had it, I did finish with some to spare... but geez. Two and a third rows taking up almost an entire skein of yarn? Well, see the numbers in parentheses below - and you'll see the total stitches per skein!

Knitmama's Spiral Scarf Pattern

Cast on 90 st (use either size 13 or 15 circular, at least 40"
Row 1: K (90 st this row; 180 st total)
Row 2: K into front and back of each stitch (180 st this row; 360 st total)
Row 3: K (180 st this row; 540 st total)
Row 4: K into front and back of each stitch (360 st this row; 900 st total)
Row 5: K (360 st this row; 1260 st total)
Row 6: K into front and back of each stitch (720 st this row; 1980 st total)
Row 7: K (720 st this row; 2700 st total)
Row 8: Bind off (720 st this row; 3420 st total)

Now, I got most of the way through row 6 with the first skein... or about 1700 stitches. So that left the rest of that row, and the last two, for the other skein - about the same number. Ergo the yarn-panic. Somehow, I did end up with enough for some tassels... 'splain that, Lucy!

Last details: 2 skeins Trendsetter 'Dune' color 82. Finished length: 56" without tassels.

13 September 2005

Bistro shirt is done!

May we present Oat Couture's "Bistro Shirt" pattern, done in Artful Yarns "Candy" (click photo to enlarge). I need to press the sleeve edges a bit more as they want to roll in, but otherwise, it's very comfortable:

I seriously need to work on commission. I wore this to my LYS's fall yarn sale today, and a woman not only decided she had to also do the pattern, but bought the same yarn... although in a different color, thankfully. It's bad enough when you show up to prom wearing the same dress as four other girls... but spotting someone wearing the same hand-knit sweater? I mean, what would be the odds? :-)

4 September 2005

Labor Day Weekend...

... the symbolic end to summer. Not in St. Louis, however... it's a balmy 89F here right now. We typically won't have cooler weather until October, even though sunrise keeps getting later, and sunset sooner. It's still hot while there's daylight.

Way back in early August, my parents stopped in town on their way to Florida. It gives them a chance to clean more of my stuff out of their house, and I was also able to present my mom with her Colinette shawl. A bit warm for this time of year, what with all that wool, but she'll be needing it soon in Michigan.

That's several varieties of Colinette in neutral shades, including Zanziba, Giotto, Fandango, Skye, Prism and Point Five. Cast on 1 stitch, then K into the front and back, then start increasing 1 stitch at the beginning of each row. Knit all rows (garter stitch). I just knit into the front and back of the third stitch in each row to be consistent. End when it's big enough or your run out of yarn! (Save some for fringing, if desired.)

Before I went to Colorado, I started the leaf lace shawl with the handpainted lace (see the July 20, 2005 entry.) I've about got it to where I'll need to move to circulars soon. Eventually, I'll figure out how to show some stitch detail...