Tuesday, September 25, 2007

MS3 finished again

My MS3 is finished again -- just in time for the next stole KAL to begin this Friday. I blocked it to 87" total length and an average width of 14". -- I think I'll probably reblock it to make it a bit wider.

The pattern for MS3, the Swan Lake stole, is now for sale on the Pink-Lemon Twist blog. It's a 3 for 1. Included are three versions of the stole: an asymmetrical one (one wing, the original pattern) and two symmetrical ones (one with two wings and one with none, which came about through requests from members of the Yahoo MS3 KAL).

The version I made is the one-wing one. But I made it with a different join. I was planning to reblock my MS3 to make it a little longer when I saw a new ending to Clue 4 in the Yahoo group files. It provided solutions to 3 things that I didn't like about my original stole -- though, I would have been happy with it as it was. It had a nice ending to the scroll work on the sides; the join was less noticeable; and it provided a little more length. The join is still visible but doesn't stand out that much. But, most of all, I like how the scroll work ends. (That part is me. So, this is really an alteration of an alteration.)

I had knit most of the stole with size 5 needles. I switched to size 4 needles to work the yarn that had been frogged. Then I switched to size 5 needles again when I joined unworked yarn to the project. Coincidentally, that was where the large feathers start (the top edge of the shawl in the picture). I don't know whether it's just me, but the feathers look bigger in this version (even though I did knit those last feathers with the same needle size, I think, that I did the first time around). Even with the added length, I still had a yarn left over from the 880 yd skein of KP bare fingerweight that I bought for the project.

Here's a picture of the latest dishcloth from the Yahoo Monthly Dishcloth KAL. This is probably one I won't use. But, it's so cute.

I'm basically stuck on my newest version of Festive. I can't figure out how long to make the sleeves. But, while the back of my brain is working on that, I've started a Comfort Shawl for my mom from Knitting Daily in Wool-Ease in Rose Heather. She needs a lighter weight sweater to wear around the house, and I hope this will fit the bill.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Illusion Dish Cloth

The New Jersey knitters recently had a talk about illusion knitting -- which was very well done and made me think that maybe I could do it. Then a couple of weeks later, the Yahoo Monthly dishcloth group had a post for info on where to find a Candy Corn Illusion Dishcloth. Well, it was in the files section for 2006. Here are 2 views of the final product. The first pic is taken head on. The second is taken at an angle.

As for my other knitting, I'm almost done with MS3 again. I'm also on the sleeves on my second try at Festive. My first version is here. I'm making it in wool this time with long enough sleeves to finish off the yarn I bought. :) The first was in acrylic -- which looked really well in cap sleeves. Cap sleeves just didn't make it for the wool I was using the second time around. So, I'm at least knitting short sleeves and maybe 3/4 length sleeves this time around.

In other news, the outside of the house is painted, and we have new garage doors. The painters did a wonderful job. However, the garage doors were scheduled to arrive and be installed Monday afternoon between 2 and 5. The installer called about 12:30 and said he was behind schedule and would it be ok for him to get there around 4:30. He finally arrived around 6 and was alone. He finally got hold of someone to help out. They worked until past 10:30. We weren't able to get the second of the 2 doors to open until yesterday when it suddenly started working.

(This is the second time in the last couple of months that something mechanical has suddenly started working. The first was a Pur water filter on the kitchen sink. It kept leaking around the attachment to the sink until one morning when it suddenly started not leaking. My husband was away on business. And, I doubt that the cats had anything to do with it suddenly working.)

Friday, September 14, 2007

MS3 again

Well, I did it. I frogged my MS3 to just before the end of Clue 4. The join still was bothering me. Then, I saw a new file in the files section, which had a different join plus a nicer bridge between the sections. So, I frogged the wing portion plus and am now reknitting MS3. I'm using size 4 needles instead of the 5's I used on the first go-through since the yarn is now used yarn. I like it a lot better now.

Also, Happy Birthday to my oldest! Congratulations on getting a new job!

Also, I want to put in a good word for the new Sci-Fi Channel series Flash Gordon. I love the interaction between the female leads in the show, and I love the humor.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Friday plus Sweater #7

I forgot to say in my last post that we went to Yankee Stadium last Saturday. We saw more of the Bronx than we had hoped to see. I guess we should have expected a big turnout for a holiday weekend. We couldn't find any place to park in stadium parking. So, we finally ended up parking on the street quite a few blocks away. We passed by the first closed stadium parking area about 20 minutes before game time. We didn't get into the stadium until the 3rd inning. To top it off, they were out of pepperoni pizza -- my DS2's favorite. So, he decided on just ice cream. I had a hot dog. I don't know what my DH had to eat. We had 2 free tickets from a friend and bought one off the internet. My DH ended up sitting in the second to last row near the left field foul pole. We were sitting in the middle tier of seats near the right field foul pole.

The first picture is of my finished Festive. It's made in worsted weight acrylic with size 7 needles. And it's my own pattern. It has an i-cord cast-on neckline and a trellis yoke. I liked the pattern so well that I decided to make another one. It's pictured next to the September dishcloth KAL. I've, of course, made some changes. (I never knit a pattern exactly as written, even if I'm the one who did the writing.) Instead of a cast-on edge of 110 sts, I decided on 100. Wool (in this case, KP Swish Superwash) has more give than acrylic. I was also tired of purl sts. I changed all the purl sts into knit ones.

I've also experimented on the dishcloth. The upper right hand corner had a baking soda bath. The lower left hand corner had a vinegar bath.

I was more than pleasantly surprised by the mystery garment in the Bits and Bobs Yahoo group. It's turned out to be a capelet-- and a handsome one at that. I'm making it in Wool-Ease with size 10 needles. There's only a few more rows to go before it's done. It may take me a while to finish it. I have to decide on a button. I'd really like to knit or crochet one in the same yarn as the capelet. I like the yarn a lot. This is my first time using it.

Finally, I was feeling lonesome for something challenging to do after finishing MS3. So, even though I've already joined the Yahoo group "Secret of the Stole", I decided to join the Chrysalis Yahoo stole group, as well. However, I outsmarted myself. The actual KALs start within a week of each other, one the end of September, the other the beginning of October. Luckily, I've got some KP interchangeable needles now.

Since hardly anyone reads to the bottom of a post anyway, I might as well say that I'm feeling down. My DS1 is out of a job. The car dealership he worked for went into a slump and had to get rid of some employees. He's currently busily looking for work. My DS2 has quit graduate school. I guess we should have seen earlier that he wasn't cut out for graduate school. Math used to be a joy for him. Now, it's become drudgery. We're not sure exactly why. On the other hand, we have great friends. My DD (who is still in London) volunteered to help clear out his flat. It was a lot of hard work. She and her boyfriend did a lot of the final cleanup. A friend of ours also helped a great deal. Thank you.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


About a week ago, I didn't have anything on the needles. Then I decided to cast on for another Festive pullover -- in KP Swish Superwash instead of acrylic. I'm going to restart it in a couple of days. After blocking it on the needles, I decided that I had knit it too loosely (It grew.) and have since frogged it, rinsed and dried the yarn to get rid of wrinkles in the yarn, and wound the yarn into a ball so I can start again.

But, I did decide what to do for my next pair of socks. I was feeling guilty that I hadn't done anything with any of the mystery patterns from the Sockamania Sockalong at Yahoo. Then it came to me how to incorporate 3 mystery patterns into a sock. My only problem was that I needed a fourth pattern for the sides of the insole. Gail posted another mystery pattern yesterday that will fit the bill. I'm not sure whether or not I'll actually make a sock with 4 different patterns, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. I'm knitting from the toe up and wasn't going to use the other 2 patterns until I got to the leg.

Saturday, the Yahoo Bits and Bobs group (which I had joined to learn how to make tessellated fish and hadn't unjoined) announced a mystery pattern. It really is a mystery pattern. It wasn't even clear to me when I started making it what type of garment it was going to be. I just had the first few rows of the pattern, yarn weight, needle size, how much yarn to buy, and the fact that it needed a button. Wool-ease was on sale when I went to Michaels. And so, I'm making it with that -- which I'd never used before.

Finally, there was a discussion in another group whether a vinegar bath helps keep cotton from fading. The arguments that it doesn't sound convincing. (To set a dye on plant fiber, one uses a weak base. To set a dye on an animal fiber, one uses a weak acid.) However, I've only had 2 dishcloths fade on me. (The other 20 or so haven't.) One was a variegated pink and the other variegated dark green and purple. They were the only 2 dishcloths that I hadn't given a vinegar bath to in the step before blocking. So, I'm going to experiment on my next dishcloth -- the September one from the Yahoo Monthly Dishcloth group, which I'm knitting in orange. When I get it finished, I'm going to dip one corner in a vinegar bath and the opposite corner in a baking soda bath and see what happens.
-- I'm thinking that the fading may have something to do with vinegar being able to get soap and detergent out of washed clothes (and hair). (Soap and detergent, as well as tap water, are slightly alkaline.)