Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Sheepomania Still Going On

Sheep all over the place..
It is no secret that I am a scarf person. Since I joined Ravelry in 2010 I have knitted a huge amount of scarves - about 40... Sounds like I live in an igloo and support a village with scarves...

Well, enough about that. Right now it is 30 degrees and I am about to reach my boiling point. Simply too warm - a huge paradox since I freeze a lot during the cold period.

The sheep chart from the cardigan is on my scarf.
Anyway, this is about my new scarf. Surprise!!!

I knitted that wonderful cardigan Sheepomania and since the neck is rather wide I need a scarf. At least that is what I tell myself.

None of the 40 I have knitted before matched. So, I found the same colors as in the cardigan and made a new design.

Nothing fancy but with stripes, colors and of course sheep.

Fun to knit, not too hot right now with a tiny garment and this is going to be so cool when it is done and I can wear it with my cardigan.

So, I am off to find the switch for the heating that someone left on. Not found yet! LOL!!!

Enjoy your summer where you are.
Beginning of the scarf with rib and design as in the cardigan. Just interpreted in another way.

Monday, 7 July 2014

Diagnose: Knitters Sheepomania

What is better than a sheep cardigan, sheep buttons and a sheep tote?
Yes, I can not deny being a bit into woollen animals. And sheep are on the top of that list. This time I combine both my passion for colors and sheeps. That seems to be the most natural thing to me.

This cardigan has already become a favorite. And since the rain is poring down and summer has left us for a while I can flash this garment whenever I want. I love how this came out. I like the fit with the wide neck line, the shaped waist and the length. I did knit it a bit longer. I think that makes it more versatile in use.

Sheep buttons makes me smile :-)
I must say, I had a lot of struggle with the pattern. This is my first topdown knitted garment. And a lot of details was left out of the pattern so I got help from friends and the designer.

I think it is important to know what decrease and increase method to use in order to avoid holes.

Also it was not clear from where the measuring was done. And method for binding off should be mentioned. I had to unravel as there was no description of that. It should be in rib - a regular BO will not look good. When I got all those little details in place it went well.

I think the cardigan is too big over the back and sort of baggy. I have not washed it yet - and I believe that will help.

I knitted the largest size because a lot of knitters have pointed out that the sizes are small in the pattern. I could have gone down a size - maybe I will if I knit one more. What is genius about the pattern is the steeking. I really love the way it is done. Fast, simple and it also looks good.

In order to get this into a sheepomania I ordered some sheep buttons. It may be a little over the top but I think they should shine a bit. Kind of fun really.

In order to be an immaculate member of a flock of sheep, one must above all be a sheep oneself
Albert Einstein


The Stitch Story
Yarn: Rauma Finull
Needle: 2.5mm
My Ravelry Page: Sheepomania
Pattern: Sinnasaujakka

Thursday, 26 June 2014

How To Trick When Knitting A Scarf

One side of the scarf with my name and year of knitting it.
The butterfly scarf reached half done. I had started knitting it without thinking of a transition in the pattern. I often just start knitting and a solution will come to mind.

In this case, if I continued the butterfly pattern would have been upside down on half the scarf.

I could of course knit two parts and sew them together. That would not look good either - and sewing is not an option on a scarf to me.

Name of my scarf on the other side.
The pattern did not match when placed over one another (the one upside down) and whatever I did there would be a very visible transition.

As I am a big fan of the old tradition where knitters marked their work with their name and year of knitting I simply did just that.

Yes, the transition is visible but I like this better than a distorted pattern. And in about 100 years someone will find the scarf and post it on Facebook in order to find the history about it. Yeah, right... LOL.

Anyway, I happen to like this. I simply made the letters in excel and knitted them into the garment. Now I knit the pattern upside down on the rest of the scarf.

The butterfly pattern is from 1947 and the book Sata Kansanomaista Kuviokudinmalia by Eva Haavisto. It is a finish book. Knitting charts are thankfully international. I love it when old patterns comes to life again. Even if it can get a bit tricky.

The trick in life is learning how to deal with it
Helen Mirren

The Stitch Story
Yarn: Kauni effektgarn, Rauma finull
Needles: 2.5mm
Pattern: N:o 95, Kotka
My Ravelry Project: Butterfly
Pattern is now knitted upside down on the rest of the scarf.



Friday, 20 June 2014

Going Camping In A Knitted Tent

Open front jacket seen from the back - nearly a blanket if you ask me...
What Should I Call This? A mistake? A tent? A new apartment? Or simply too big? 

Well, this started out to be knitted on too small needles. I did not get gauge and had to unravel. I mean, this is a yarn I would normally choose 2mm needles for.

I had to knit in 3.5mm. Man, that was way out of my comfort zone. And indeed, I have this panic of not getting my knitted garments large enough. That normally ends up in tents or worse. This is no exception.

First the positive thing about it: The color and the feel of the garment. Holst supersoft yarn is wonderful - I could live in it. It sure seems that I could spent a week inside this and still find new places to hide....

The pattern was a bit unclear here and there. But the size of this is all my fault. I knitted the largest one - because the sleeves are so tight on this.

Instead of knitting the sleeves bigger I ended up knitting the whole thing too big. I wanted an open front jacket for colder days to just put over tunics and so on.

But this ends up as a tent on the back and the front is hanging on the sides. Looking at other projects on Ravelry - this seems to be the thing about it.

Open front is really the front on the sides and the back standing out like a tent.

It took some time to knit it as well. It was kind of boring. The designer had photos of a red jacket with a lot of pattern.

She simply forgot to mention that the pattern is for another garment - the gray one I did not look at.

Ending up with a jacket with less pattern on it. Very annoying.

Anyway - this weighs only 300 grams. A good thing to take on vacation or to places that turns out cold.

Would I use this? I will try - go camping inside... LOL!!

I will look for another thing like this one - only with a better pattern and a better fit.

It does not fit well on the shoulders and the short row shaping for the neck made it even worse. I think this garment will qualify as failure of the year...

But the good thing about the failures are that those are the things I learn from. If I had never made any mistakes I would not have learned so much. Or something like that.

A failure is not always a mistake, it may simply be the best one can do under the circumstanses
The real mistake is to stop trying
B.F. Skinner

The Stitch Story
Yarn: Holst supersoft
Needle: 3.5mm
Pattern: Huldan Takki
My Ravelry Page: Out In The Open
Seems like I need to grow my shoulders wider...

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Shining In Plastic

Polymer clay is really plastic of some sort. The soft clay has nothing to do with clay. Although we call it clay - it is plastic in soft form. At least until it is cured in the oven. Then you can paint, polish and do almost anything with it. Totally versatile and fun to create with.

Anyway, I have made bird ornaments, stitch markers, earrings and now a pendant. All made in polymer clay, textured, cured and painted.

Mr Shine was intended to be an ornament but I found him utterly handsome and think he needs to fly a little hanging on a leather cord. I have the word Live on the other side: Live to Shine. Just as we were all meant to do.

I use long leather cords and tiny beads on the ends. Easy to adjust the length and no clasp or something like that. Also makes it easy to make - I like those short cuts that do not take a lot of time and stop me from making jewelry.

The bird is a celebration of our uniqueness. Spreading my wings and fly into the summer which is warm, sunny and just as we like it.

Be as a bird perched on a frail branch that she feels bending beneath her, still she sings away all the same, knowing she has wings
Victor Hugo


Thursday, 5 June 2014

About A Yarn Stalker

From the hotel - I love yarn day :-)
 Just around a corner a bit out of sight and surrounded by noise from shoppers and with the smell of a thousand different spices. There she stood. With all her yarn on the biggest market in Europe situated in Riga.

I wind up the yarn outside to avoid dust. 
All the colors and the wonderful feeling of wool just captured me totally. It was like my knees gave in and I could not understand the yarn heaven I entered.

The woman in the tiny stall told me the price. One kilo had the same price as a little over 150g here in Norway.

It sort of exploded in my head and I was starting a yarn hoarding that may qualify as compulsive.

When I came back the third time she just laughed and and said: Ohhhhhhh!

I picked about 6.5 kilos. 1.5 kilo for a friend - the rest for me. I put it all in the freezer for at least 72 hours.

And then - I took it outside and apart from one hank they are all winded up.

Yarn is so much better to bring home than plastic souvenirs. I may have exaggerated a bit...

I have nothing to say in my defense other than this has the price of what I would only get a little over 800grams in Norway for.

I have read somewhere that the Latvian does not like to sell their wool yarn as they use it for themselves.

I do not know if that is true, but the yarn was nowhere to be found other than in that little stall at the market. As I mostly use wool in my knitting this is perfect.

The yarn holds no label but it is 100% wool in 2ply. It seems a lot like Finull I use so much.

I wish I could have asked the yarn seller about her stall and the yarn. But language was an obstacle but she told that it is pure latvian wool. A very nice woman. I thank her for her smile.

It is pure potential. Every ball or skein of yarn holds something inside it, and the great mystery of what that might be can be almost spiritual
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee


From the market - is this wonderful or not? 

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Breaking In With Needles

Finally there are some movement on this bird shawl.
This is not about me breaking into a bank. No, this is about breaking that code hidden somewhere unknown in a knitting project. This time it is my bird shawl.

That over expensive kit with only notes to guide me through. The main problem was the chart - or the lack of it. Two patterns were included with very small symbols. I had to put that awful chart together myself and that ended up in copying and gluing for hours. I will not even think about the words that came to mind then...

Anyway, after finishing my shining star shawl I found out that my bird shawl needed a new go. And that I had to come up with a new way of knitting it.

Sometimes the brain works in mysterious ways. This idea to remake the pattern repeats in excel made it all work. Since I worked in excel on the shawl mentioned I knew how to do it. No problem, it did not even take long to do it. The pattern was now readable without a magnifying glass and I divided the shawl into pattern repeats with stitch markers.

Original chart on left, my glued chart in the middle and on the right my excel chart.
This is just a wonderful feeling. Getting this project on tracks again made me so happy. I think I needed the experience from my shining star and from excel to do this. Making a huge chart with all the stitches in the shawl is simply a too big a job and not even needed. But I still think the pattern is far below from expected from that kit.

I have also given my carbon needles a go as I knit on 2mm. I did not like them previously because of that metal end, but now they work just perfect. Much better to knit with than ordinary 2mm needles.

I have ordered some extra colors from Holst yarn. I need more colors to choose from and I want a bigger shawl than the pattern calls for. Oh yeah, there will be birds flying out from my needles now.

No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it
Albert Einstein

The Stitch Story
Yarn: From a kit, and Holst garn
Needles: 2mm
Pattern: Bird Shawl
My Ravelry Page: Spreading My Wings
Yarn and pattern before I started.

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