Thursday, November 30, 2006

Swallowtail Shawl

The Swallow Tail Shawl, from the fall 2006 Interweave Knits is now complete :) It knit up super fast in just over a week's time. If you're wondering why it looks so large, it's because it is probably the same dimensions as "full sized" shawls, measuring about 68 inches across the top and 30 inches down to the point. No pattern modifications were done other than to use a different yarn (and of course larger needles).

Yarn: Regia Bamboo Color (1063)
Amount: Approximately two and a quarter balls.
Needles: US7

Comments: The pattern is a breeze to follow, and I found I had it memorized fairly quickly - I wound up not placing stitch markers between the pattern repeats mostly because I got tired of having to shift them around - I've apparently come a long way in my knitting as I find it much easier to "read" my knitting, even in lace form, and I was able to correct mistakes often within a couple of rows without having to tink or rip back - the most common mistakes I made were omitting a yarn over or forgetting to pass the slipped stitch over.

As the case seems to be with all lace projects, the magic is indeed in the blocking. The shawl was so squinched up (as lace often is) before blocking, I was amazed at how large it wound up blocking to. Before heading into the Nupps and the Lily of the Valley sections, I was trying to decide if extra budding lace was required - thank goodness I decided not :)

Speaking of Nupps, I've decided that I love love them. A pain to execute, but they sure give the shawl that extra bit of interest. I knitted my shawl using Denise interchangeable needles - the points on the needles aren't the pointiest, but I managed to do all my nupping without having to resort to slipping stitches hither and yon onto other needles or clear all the way back to the cable - the trick, I think, was to make sure to form the nupp loosely so that on the purl row it wasn't too difficult to capture all five stitches for the purl-5-together. I will admit to breathing a huge sigh of relief once the nupping was done and I was able to move onto the border.

Unfortunately I couldn't get a good shot of the full shawl indicating what the yarn looks like - photographing shawls prove to be much more difficult than I anticipated! Outdoors, things were lit very brightly, yet harshly and with too much contrast - so I resorted to a small indoor shot near a window of the shawl folded up.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Faery Meathead

Knit for the 2006 Meathead Along which had the specific instructions of embellishing to my own liking above the left ear.

Since I have had flowers on the brain of late, and the shape of the hat reminded me of the Elven armour in Lord of the Rings, I decided to embellish it fit for a Faery Queen.

I'm pleased to present Tatiana, a Meathead Hat embellished with hand crochet flowers and curving vine (incidentally, the vine is fixed on the hat, though the flowers can be added or subtracted or shuffled around at will). If I was a faery queen, this is a hat I'd want to wear, as it is a perpetual reminder of spring.

Yarn: Reclaimed handspun super bulky from a sweater, embellished with hand crochet flower pins made from crochet cotton.

Needles: US15

Pattern: by Larissa, to be included in her new book!

Comments: Supereasy, superquick knit. A very welcome break from my current knitting madness :)

Wanna see more Meatheads? Check out the Flickr Collection!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Pushing up Flowers

I spent the weekend working as a flowermaking factory :)

Yarns range from old leftovers (again!) of CottonEase, to Plymouth Encore, to bits of handspun yarn to crochet cotton in various sizes...oh, there are some needle felted ones too (more than the lone single in this photo) made from merino wool, of course.

Patterns: none - they were made up as I was going along.

And no, they aren't all for me. I'm churning out flower accessories for sale at a craft fair :D

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Short and Sweet

I'm in love with texture and really needed a break from my latest knitting opus...This skinny scarf proved to be just the perfect entertaining sidetrack.

Closeup? Certainly ;)

I especially enjoyed myself because it's knit from my own Spritely Goods Sprite yarn! (in the Chaparral colorway, in case you are wondering) I happened to have just a smidge (about 1.6 ounces) of yarn leftover from a different project, and I couldn't figure out what to turn it into...well, Inspiration struck and it turned into this cute skinny and nicely textured scarf.

My other half argued that it wasn't long enough to be a scarf appropriate for an adult and I set out to prove that it would indeed work just fine - I scrounged up a hand crocheted flower pin that matched perfectly, wrapped it (the scarf, not the flower ;) ) around my neck, affixed the pin, and voila! Perfect for keeping the chill away without adding a bunch of bulk.

Pattern: Stitch pattern adapted from Sheep in the City's So Called Scarf (I really need to get one of those stitch pattern reference books)

Needles: US 9