Sunday, September 30, 2007

Three species of yarn

I've had a very yarny weekend. My sister bought me some yak mix yarn which I have been dying to try, and threw in some baby camel for good measure. I found out about a great yarn sale at a local shop which is sadly closing its wool section.

Yarn and plans for it are:

  • Silk wool for a jacket or jumper

  • More silk wool for a slipover for DH

  • Cashsoft DK for a crocheted stripy throw for DH

  • Soft Lux for a short sleeved shrug

My mother is not keen on knitting, but was persuaded to have a go at a neck cowl she saw in one of my books.
Edited to add: No, ended up like last Christmas i.e. the yarn she bought has come home with me to make for her...

Now that the clementine shawlette is off the needles, I've started a new project. It's the candy striped throw using the cashsoft DK I've just bought. I have to say, I love this yarn. It's incredibly soft, and machine washable too!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Lace grafting

I was right to be concerned about grafting the two sides of the clementine shawlette. A little research on Ravelry showed that the airy instruction to just graft the pieces together gives an ugly seam with a break in the pattern. It was also apparent there was no way to avoid a seam. However, Ruthless Knitting and Beautiful Things had documented how to use Lucy Neatby's grafting approach to enable you to graft somewhat in pattern, and therefore at least blur the seam a little.

I decided to work one more right side (patterned) row after the last purl ridge, then use the first colour of waste yarn to do a wrong side, mostly purl, row. I then knitted about 6 rows in the second waste yarn and threaded the yarn tail through the live stitches.

I then was able to graft together the two sides using the guide purl row in colour 1 on each side. The only trick was starting off and making sure everything was in line. I then carefully followed the path of the waste yarn on each side as it touched the main yarn, and ignored where it looped around the second waste yarn. As this was a fairly plain purl row, with no yarnovers or decreases to contend with, it was quite a clear, if slow, operation. Personally, I'd much rather do 3 simple operations in making up than one difficult one that requires judgement and discretion in matching pieces. The final seam is visible but not offensive.

Here it is blocking:

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Holiday gift list

Hmm, time to start thinking about holiday knitting. I have to finish some of my summer projects before I cast on anything new, but I can do the planning now.

Initial thoughts are:

  • a pair of men's socks

  • chunky slub tea cosy

  • sophisticated tea cosy

  • montego bay scarf

  • Irish hiking scarf

  • one skein triangular small shawl

  • aran cashmere hat

  • two colour ribbed hat

  • a pair of Fetching
In reality, I have only had one request for a knitted gift this year, so I will focus on that first, then consider whether other potential recipients would really want anything handknitted.

I did learn the lesson from last year about not knitting jumpers for Christmas - way too ambitious.

And just for fun....

smug sheep --


A person who is a master of making ravioli

'How will you be defined in the dictionary?' at

Hmm, I have no idea how that works, but can assure readers that my ravioli eating skills surpass my making skills.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Inching along

The clementine shawlette is coming along, but doesn't make exciting blog fodder, as the second half obviously looks exactly like the first...

I'm starting to think about how to graft the two halves together. Ideally I would add a lace patterned row to do this, but I've no idea how to go about it.

Evie is growing too. I added a little ribbing at the sides, but it's amazing how many times I messed up the switch between garter rib and plain rib until I added some stitch markers as reminders. I'd like to finish this before I start any new winter projects, but recognise it's unlikely to be worn until next spring.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Half a clementine

I've finished one of the halves of the clementine shawlette, and have set it aside to start the second half.

I have also frogged Della. Twinkle toes kindly came to my rescue, and I'm going to try again from scratch with her help.

No progress on the mystery stole 3.

I have knitted a couple of inches on Evie, a new summer top - rather late now though, as autumn knits seem more appropriate.

I didn't find any wool shops on holiday. It seems strange to me that to get really nice Italian wool, I have to buy it in the US - you'd think it would be easier to buy in Italy or even the UK. Still, my DH was relieved that there were no stash enhancement opportunities.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Holiday knitting

Welcome back after two weeks vacation.

I planned my holiday knitting carefully this time, and took a sock, a simple top, my clementine shawlette, and the Della shawl.
Too much.
In the end, I knit about eight inches on the clementine shawlette, and a few rows on the top. The sock and Della just languished.
I still really like the feel of the alpaca silk for the clementine shawlette, and it seemed to hold up well under exposure to the traditional holiday elements of sun cream, chlorine and water.

Photos to follow, this is just a quick checking in.