Thursday, February 21, 2008

Thorpe Mini Modeled

Originally uploaded by RiverKnits
Here it is, on someone whom it fits! *Aggressive* blocking was the key.

Here is the picture of my Iro Thorpe too. It fits adults and used exactly one skein of Noro Iro. I even did the half double crochet border with the Iro, trying to use every last bit. I was only 80 inches short and used a complementary yarn in 2 strands of the braids.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Why gauge matters (reprise)

Originally uploaded by RiverKnits
It's an old, old tale, so I won't bore you with too much of it. Suffice it to say...I thought I could get gauge with Manos in a pattern calling for Malabrigo Chunky. Following the "but it's just a hat" rule of thumb I didn't swatch. And what you see before you is a hat that with any luck will fit a toddler. Bottom line, the yarn is not chunky enough, I am inherently challenged with stranded knitting being too tight, so we'll just consider this hat my first swatch. As far as the size goes, there's nowhere to go but up!

ETA: I forgot to say though, that sometimes things go right! :-)

Amanda is right--it's a lot easier to make something fit well with top down construction that you can try on as you go.

This is Knitting Pure and Simple pattern #267 Neckdown Bulky Bolero knit in Noro Iro.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Too Bad...

After hearing about the tornadoes in Arkansas last night, we had to call Joe's mom this morning...she and three of her sisters had gone to their sister in law's funeral, and we weren't exactly sure where they were in Arkansas...

Turns out they are fine...they left Arkansas yesterday and got as far as St Joe, Missouri. Then the roads iced up and they had to stop at a hotel (less than an hour from one of the sisters' houses). They asked the hotel staff what the forecast was and heard that they were expecting 8 inches of snow. Now they are snowed in at the hotel...

So it's the four sisters, ranging in age (roughly) from 58 to 77 and Jenn, Aunt Cheryl's daughter, who is in her 20's...stuck in a hotel. With only basic cable and the card game Phase 10.

It's too bad they don't knit. That sounds like a pretty good deal if you've got yarn and needles with you...and what knitter, facing a road trip like that, would not have at least 2 projects along for the ride??

Monday, February 4, 2008

Fee, Fi, Fo, Felt

If you saw this,

you might think I have a plumbing problem. But that's not it. I actually have a REALLY NICE LG frontloader that I love. It has changed my life. It saves water & electricity because clothes don't take nearly as long to dry since they get spun out so well in the washing machine. I love it. But it's not so good for felting. Contrary to popular belief, it does felt things--quite well! Too well! It puts permanent creases that I don't like in felted things. So I had to improvise another system. What you see above is it!

I thought it would be difficult and laborious to felt using my own elbow power. It was a lot easier than I thought it would be. First off I tried my Bordhi Basket that I had knit in the moebius workshop with Cat Bordhi last year at TNNA.

I used hot water in one tub, with a squirt of WoolMix. I put cold water in the other bucket. I plunged my basket in the hot water, then when I felt like a change I threw it in the cold bucket and plunged some more. Back & forth. It probably didn't even take 15 minutes in all. I think I put more hot water in the hot bucket one time. I loved the results!

Several hours later I remembered my Unspun Mittens! I quickly scanned the Interweave Felt magazine for felting directions and discovered they involved what sounded like hard work and bubble wrap. "Bah!" thought I! My pluger method worked so well before I thought I'd try it again. I threw my mittens in the hot bucket and plunged away again, alternating with dips in the cold water until I liked what I got. Now I have a really warm pair of mittens!

I am glad I've figured out a way to do controlled felting without a toploading washing machine. It was fun!