Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Fussy cardigan

When I knitted the Tangled yoke cardigan it came out slightly big, but I liked the comfort and I thought I could get out something similar from the tweedy aran cardigan. I had a pack (10 balls) of yarn, from which I want to knit a vest for a dear friend, Ester, who helped so much getting rid of P's mess. Anyway The yarn is coming from a whole-sale store where one can only buy whole pack of yarns buying an other one therefore having enough for both projects seemed a good solution.
The pattern is fussy. There is the so called fancy rib, where you have to change two out of three stitches in every row, and then there are all those cables and diamond pattern and the twisted rib. For me, being a combined continental knitter, and having my stitches sitteing differently the fancy rib wasn't that bad. After that once I got into the rythm of the pattern it was even fun.

The pattern is Nora Gaughan's tweedy aran cardigan from the booklet I downloaded from knitting daily, the five most popular pattern of Interweave knitting. The description says it is a feminine version of the boyish aran sweaters, but looking through ravelry I found the finished items just that. Boyish. So, aside from the usual gauge issue (having different yarn and recalculating) I made a couple of changes. Longer body and more defined waist shaping.

Mirrored the cables on the diamond pattern on the body. Sligthly different shape of the sleeves, as narrower on the upper arms, and a bit trumety shaped at the cuff... And yes there IS a cuff as I added a fancy ribbed cuff.

The yarn is King Cole's merino blend DK, which as I already pointed out relaxes a lot, so it needed to be knit more thightly than usual. With my loose knitting that ended up using 3 mm needles.

And just to fulfill my friend's prophegy on me and glasses, I do have glasses with white frame now.

Ps.: Jenny, it was lovely to have you around again. And thank you for shooting the pictures.

Monday, November 16, 2009


This took me a while. Started in late winter, but put away may times.
The original idea was a picture in a german knitting magazine. But despite learning german in highschool, my knowledge of the language stuck at the poin when I can recite two lines of the poem "Du bist Sie eine Blume, so schön, und rein, and...".
So I checked the charts, and made up...

There is lacy diamond pattern, twisted double rib, and eyelets. And randomly spaced embroidered flowers.

Thight bodice, peplum, and trumpet shaped sleeves.

Yarn is King Cole, Merino Blend DK. 3mm needles.
This yarn relaxes. A LOT. I mean it. I knew this fact from my earlier knits (especially the yoga wrap) The pieces looked rather idiotic while I was knitting, because to offset this factor (and that I am a pretty loose knitter) I knitted it very thightly. Whoever saw did not thought the finished sweater would fit me. But it does. Perfectly.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

queen of second hand

That is what I am... as I already stated. Sometimes, I really love what I find there. So I thought his could be a more or less regular kind of post, what do you think?

Dark khaki jacket. Guess what drawn me to it? Yes, the orange fake fur lining, hehehe. What is this with me and orange?

The interesting thing that a week or so later in the same store I found an orange bag that would go perfectly. It is suede, but real leather. Look:

Friday, November 13, 2009

the dutiful sister

I was visiting my father with my son over the fall break... when my (half) sister uttered the magic words: "would you teach me to knit?" Hah, would I? But with what? We promptly dressed up walked to a "haberdashery" (everyone wondered how do I know where is the only place that sells yarn and such...) bought her a pair of needles, and three balls of the best yarn they had (remember this IS Hungary, so the best yarn was a 50% wool-50% acrylic mix) in a lovely dark purple.

Forgive the quality of teh pictures, they were shot with my phone-camera by my boy.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

assignement knitting

I am a selfish knitter. I don't like to knit for others (except for the inmediate family, and for presents, when I want to give someone something I made. Handknits are so precious, so is my time, and I think people have to deserve getting my handknits. Ok, one can achieve that just by being close to me, or being a good friend...
"Assignment knitting" to knit something for someone else because they want it I absolutely hate. Not even for money. Time to time someone at work ask me to knit something, but then I tell just how much the yarn costs, and just how much time it takes, and multiply it with the minimal wage how much would it add up to... that is usually enough to deter them.
But there was this girl in the bank, who was adamant. She kept nagging me, she kept asking me, and she didn't even pull a face when I told her just how much would it cost her. She even promised to learn how to knit if I make an other from the lacy-racy tank top. I rather like her, so I relented. It took me ages to finish, and I have no idea when can she wear it, but... here it is the pic, just for the documentation.

I used the same idea, and stich patterns, but the original, was a tad too big, and she is somewhat smaller than I am I had to figure out a different size, different stitch count. Also I couldn't find the chart for the flower I used in that one, so I made up an other one.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Fast Far

After knitting at a small gauge so much lately I wanted something thicker, something faster.
Chunky yarns, yippie. This was in my stash, coming from the second hand shop, it was about 650 grams, german, with its band, that only said Naturwolle (100% schurwolle), no manufacturer. The pattern is from IK 2008 fall, Far Afield Vest... as the nature of things with my knitting the gauge was different... As for the stitch count I went a size down, but I had to fudge the row counts. The result is sporty, and warm. Good with jeans and white long sleeved T shirt, for causal fridays.

Mama, knit me red socks!

Don't you love when your kid asks you something like that? Mine did :-)
First he said the wool socks are itchy, but I told him, just wait and get used to it for a while.
He did listen to his mom, and then he didn't want to take them off for days. Happy mama. Or am I? Now I can knit him lots of socks, and as I keep saying I am essentially not a sock knitter...
But you know what? For him... I would be.

The yarn is some USHY (unidentifiable second hand yarn)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Ornage knucks

Last winter I knitted a pair of orange knucks for myself, but unfortunately in those chaotic times I very soon lost one of them. I just cannot go into winter withouth something orange for my hands, can I? I had some leftovers from these socks, which was a surprise itself, because the socks were generously sized to beginn with.
Knucks are knit from the top down, therefore it was quite safe to start and not be afraid of running out of yarn. Speaking of the yarn, I wasn't only amazed how much I could make of the two balls that were on sale, but also I loved how it simply did not pool. No matter how many stitches I had on the needles, it did not pooled. Lovely.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

getting old, getting glasses

Umm, that is right. I am getting old and I need glasses. I always had some trouble, in my teens I used glasses. It was interesting, because the problems was caused by the shape of my eyeballs, and a simple eye exam couldn't tell. Yes, I could see perfectly when I was fresh, but after a day in school, or later a day at the sewing machine, made them really, really tired, and caused headaches. Dioptric glasses couldn't help them, so I got some other type (the one that operates NOT with the curve of the lenses, but the tickness-whatever they called in English.)
Anyway, after a while it got better and I rarely used the glasses anymore.
But lately I've been having problems. Sitting in my son's desk in his school I couldn't read what was written on the blackboard, I couldn't read the subtitles on the TV (or in the movies) and such. So at the yearly exam at work I asked for an eye exam too... And yes, the results are: to the old problem added my age, and I need glasses, not for close things like reading or knitting, but for seeing things clearly in a certain distance.
Christopher hated the idea, but I thold him he can come and help me choose a frame.
The first thing he pointed out were : "Look, mama, they have orange frames!!!" (the kids know his mother, all too well, LOL), but I told him we have to get something sensible, for everyday use, something that would go with most of my outfits. So we choose a pair of amber colored frame, with a realy good pair of lenses (UV filter, scratch resistant, extra thin, light plastic):

But the crazy in me, wouldn't let the orange frames go either. There was a great sale on, so I only had to pay for the lenses (which in this case were much simpler/cheaper).

Spinning and stories

Ok, everyone, hold onto something because a whirlwind of posting, including FO pictures will come in the next few days.
First some spinning... if you know me even a little bit, you know I have this need to match colors in my clothing... in the summer I knitted the Icarus shawl, which I love to use not only as a shawl, but as a scarf too. It is natural then that I need some purple gloves, right?
To knit purple gloves, I need purple yarn, right? (yes, of course in my very healthy (i.e.: constantly growing) stash there is purple yarn, but... as I started to spin a few months ago, the question of using the handspuns is always in the back of my head. I am not proficent enough to spin a sweater worth of yarn, but what to do with lesser amounts, especially if it is my favourite mixture of silk and merino. Then I remembered that knitting the knucks always took up surprisingly small amount of yarn, less than 50 gramms could make a whole pair... Oh, I do have some purple rowing, don't I? Dive into the fiber stash (wich is as rapidly expanding as the yarn stash, in fact since it is much younger, and still in the "growing phase" even faster), and spinning a lot while visiting my father with my boy over the fall break resulted in this:
220 meters of 65 gramms. Still need to set the twist, but you get the idea...
And speaking of spinning... I already told you how I recently found out my grandmother's spinning, now I've heard an other story from my aunt...
Back then in the early fifties, my grandma thaught the daughter of a shepherder family to spin. To thank/pay her they gave the fleece of a few sheep... My aunt still remembers how they washed it, took it to somewhere to card it, then over long winter evening my grandma spun and knit it up, then they sold the knitted items, and that extra money helped them through some really difficult times. Isnt' that a lovely story? Why didn't I know it before?
And then, it is also a proof what I though earlier. It is in my blod.
Sometimes I do wonder what would my grandma think now if she would see me with my spindle?