28 August 2007

Success! (sort of)

I've decided it's time I finally take the plunge and try a sweater. Scary! After scouring the web for an easy-looking pattern, I decided to try the Anthropologie-inspired Capelet, which is worked top-down. Because this was really just an experiment to see if I could do it, I used cheapo acrylic yarn originally bought for a blanket. I haven't even finished the capelet, as the sleeves are still on waste yarn, but the fact that I followed the pattern and got the basic shape is encouraging. Now I have the confidence to start my first "real" sweater--one that I would actually wear.

Here's a pic of the unfinished sweater:

Pattern: Anthropologie-inspired Capelet
Needles: 11 circular
Yarn: Caron worsted acrylic, double-stranded
Notes: A very easy-to-follow pattern, and quick at that! I did this in two sittings (I never finish anything in one sitting). The cheap yarn was not fun to work with, especially double-stranded on bamboo needles. But that was my own fault for being cheap and not wanting to buy yarn for the experiment. The one thing I don't like about the sweater is that it is shorter in the back and longer in the front. If I make it again, I'll extend the back.

22 August 2007

Feather and fan scarf, for now

I've started a new scarf, just for "tv" knitting, as I call it - knitting I can do while watching a DVD or chatting with friends, etc. My "real" WIP these days is Knitty's Branching Out, which is coming along nicely, but slowly. That, however, requires my full attention, as it is the most involved lace knitting I've done yet. Pics of that later.

For now, here's the Feather and Fan I started with Patons SWS (a wool/soy blend). I love the colorway and the sheen of the yarn, but it's a bit too fuzzy. I think this might be better off as a felting yarn. It's coming along fine, but I am having some doubts. There's a chance this may end up frogged.

As you can see, I'm not too far along, so frogging wouldn't be a major headache. When I first saw the yarn I envisioned a hat, scarf, mitten set, but the striping may be too gradual for a hat. Sigh.

Interweave Knits Summertime Tunic, pt. 2

Here it is, finally complete after blocking and adding the ribbon. I'll admit it is a tad too large, but wearable. My biggest problem is with the back, which I think is a bit too wide. I may end up wearing it underneath a cardigan, because I don't think the front looks that bad, but I'm unhappy with the back. (You may need to click on the photos for them not to look distorted - I'm still getting this blogger thing).

Pattern: Interweave Summertime Tunic
Needles: Size 4 and 6 circulars
Yarn: Valley Yarns Longmeadow, 5 skeins in Lettuce
Notes: The pattern was quite easy to follow, though a tad boring (inches upon inches of stockinette). Not a bad choice for a first garment. I liked working with the yarn - it's very soft and feels nice to work with and to wear. If I made this again, I'd do the smallest size.

13 August 2007

Interweave Knits Summertime Tunic, pt. 1

Well I finally finished the tunic I've been working on for months. The reason it took so long is that I quickly got bored of the zillion rows of stockinette stitch, and I forgot about it for about a full month. Anyway, it's finally done and blocking. I can't say I'm thrilled with the result so far :( It looks a bit too big for me. I guess I should have done the extra-small version instead of small.

Maybe blocking will make a difference. I sure hope so. This was my first time knitting a garment, and it would be a shame if I end up never wearing it.

09 August 2007

Ribbed gauntlets

These were born from a need to stay warm at work while still being able to type. They were also my first bona fide double-pointed needle project (other than a hat, which had been started by a friend). The yarn was a joy to work with and the final result is much prettier than I can photograph.

Pattern: Handknit ribbed gauntlets from Capistrano Fiber Arts Studio
Needles: 2.5 dpns
Yarn: Koigu KPM fingering weight yarn

I'm sure I'll be making these again. It's a simple and basic pattern that leaves room for embellishment. Some sort of ribbon might be nice. Hmm...

Thrift scores

Not too long ago, I came across a bag of yarn in my local thrift store. The store usually has the random bag or skein of yarn, but it's typically ratty-looking acrylic that is easy to pass by. On this particular day, the bag of yarn I found looked somewhat promising. At the very least, it had some interesting yarns inside. I could see a skein of homespun mixed in with some eyelash yarn. It was $2.99 for the bag, so I figured I would take it home and see if I could use any of it.

Once home, I opened the package to see if any yarn was salvageable. Goodness! I got quite a deal! For less than three bucks I got ten skeins of yarn, including:

1 ball Sensations Bellezza Collection - Margherita in Color 3
1 skein Lion Brand Homepun in Barrington
1 ball Trendsetter Voila Print in Color 14
2 skeins Sensations Oceania in Orange Multi
2 skeins Lanna Gato Amsterdam in Color 2718
2 skeins Trendsetter Savvy in Color 4972


1 hank Noro Big Kureyon in Color 2.

The Noro alone makes the purchase well worth the money. In fact, much of the yarn had price tags of $10...$12...even $20 on them. Unfortunately I'm not much for the eyelash yarn and don't think I'll make anything with it. I'll hold onto it for now just in case.

I've already made a scarf from the Trendsetter Savvy, which I intend to donate to charity. The novelty yarn isn't my style, but maybe it will make someone else happy.

I'm in the process of making a simple shawl from the homespun, to keep at work for the extra chilly days (I swear they keep the temperatures below freezing -- I already have a scarf and fingerless gloves at my desk).

As for the Noro, well, I'll have to think of something special to make with that.

08 August 2007

Lemon Sophie

I've decided to jump right in and start posting, and I'll work on making the blog look pretty later. Otherwise, I'll obsess over aesthetics and never get to the blogging!

Here's my most recent FO, completed last night: Lemon Sophie.

Pattern: Sophie from MagKnits
Needles: 10.5 16" circs
Yarn: Cascade 220
Mods: I think I made the handles two inches shorter, but that's it.

Notes: It's my first felting project, and also my first time picking up stitches and doing i-cords. Overall, a very quick and easy knit. Instant gratification. Also, felting is fun!

07 August 2007

The first post

You know, to get started. Let's see how it looks.