Monday, January 31, 2011

My Knitting Attacked! and I get even more productive...

Sometime over the past couple of months I came across a great knitting podcast and started listening from the very beginning... I'm now all caught up and some of their common phrases have made their way into my vocabulary.  The Knitmore Girls frequently have a segment called "When Knitting Attacks" where they discuss all kinds of cases when your knitting just doesn't work out the way it should.

Yesterday while getting my purse started, I had a case of my knitting attacking me.  I was creating my own pattern and utilizing a cable stitch out of a stitch book I have.  The book has photos next to the stitch explanations so you can see what your work should look like.  I cast on 120 stitches, joined it in the round and got to work  The stitch pattern called for many rows of just knits and purls and two rows for the cabling.  I repeatedly looked back at the photo and my work and could not figure out how this was going to look the same.  I kept thinking that once I got to the cabling it would all make sense.  But I got there and it still wasn't looking the same.  Then, it hit me!  I was knitting in the round, therefore all the purls in the stitch pattern would become knits!  Ugh... the frustration!  Now the big decision, do I really have to go back 7 rows of 120 stitches to fix this?!?!  But, the Knitmore Girls save me...  their knitting had attacked in similar ways and they spoke of being able to fix it without having to undo every stitch.  So, I set to fix my attack the same way and it worked splendidly!  By working one "mistake" stitch at a time, I dropped the stitches down to get rid of all the purls and then used a crochet hook to bring them all back up at knits.  It seemed like this might not save much time at first, but once I got the hang of it I was able to get the 18 stitches back on the right way.  My cabled purse is back on the right path and looking good :-)

As I was looking through my stash and knitting supplies after setting aside the cabled purse for a break, I came across a skein of beautiful purple LBY Homespun that I'd been trying to figure out what it wanted to be.  I kept thinking mittens, but I hadn't done full mittens yet, just fingerless.  And I wasn't sure about the thumb.  I'd read plenty of patterns but it never made sense to me how I would get that thumb on there.  I finally had a thought that made it connect in my mind and decided to cast on and see what happened.  Well, what happened is a lovely purple mitten!  I finished it this morning and am fairly pleased with the result.  The thumb definitely turned out as well as a first attempt could.  I had to stitch a little around the base because I left some holey spots.  My biggest concern is actually the cuff... I don't think I made it tight enough.  I cast on 32 stitches and knit 2x2 rib and then increase my stitch number by a few once I switched to just knitting around.  I see now that I could have gotten away with 20-some stitches to create a tighter fit around the wrist.  So, I've paused before casting on the second mitt to decide if I should re-knit the wrist of the first.

With that, I'll go back to the purse for a while and I also have the striped blues hat to go to if I need a little variety.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Super Productive Sunday

Making lots of progress today... Took pics of recent knits, finally made a jewelry set, and posted all of it to Etsy and my Facebook fan page... Phew!

Now, in trying to keep with my original plan for Sunday's, I'm going to cast on another chunky cabled purse, I have a lacy cabled scarf in the works and already have the striped hat that is on the needles.

Looking forward to a custom order for hats and hoping for plenty of other business opportunities to open up!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

New Knits

I have decided to start putting all my knitting talk here as opposed to the "Knitting on the Road" blog for just personal things, because I'm no longer "on the Road" for work :-)  So... here is one of my recent personal knits:
 I had two small skeins of shades of purples yarn bought from a lovely Etsy shop,  I had been contemplating what to do with the yarn in shades I loved when I was finally struck with knit-spiration, use both for a striped hat!  It was fairly simple and I really loved the striping technique.  I hadn't done my own striping before and it really kept my interest.  It totally rocks and matches my favorite sweatshirt in a charming way :-)

I also had the opportunity to do a special request recently... a llama ear flap hat!  Wow... it is really hard to figure out how to make yarn look like a llama!  The snout/nose area was the trick part for me... I finally tried a sock heel technique and it worked!  I will post pictures later or on my facebook fan page for sure.

I've gotten a couple of cowls done that need to be photographed for sale on etsy and I'm working on another.  All my recent yarn purchases have been small amounts so cowls work great...  I would like to do more hats though because they are about the same amount of time and there seem to be a lot of cowls going on :-)

Well, back to my cushy white cowl!