Monday, June 18, 2007

Diagonal Rib Sock

These socks, the Diagonal Rib Socks from Knitting Daily, were fun to make -- for quite a few reasons. The first reason is that they're quick -- even with the twists. The second is that they're squishy. The third is that I wanted to learn how to do twists, and this was a perfect project. Another picture of the socks is here.

The socks are knit in KP Essential on size 1 circs. I made a few changes. The pattern, as written, is too big around for my foot. (I like negative ease.) So, I ended up making one fewer repeat of the pattern around the leg and extending the diagonal ribbing panel by 2 sts -- to make a sock 30 sts around. Then, since I had only 4 twisted rib panels, I thought it would be a wonderful idea to practice left twists as well as right twists. So, the sock has 2 right twist diagonal rib panels and 2 left twist diagonal rib panels. This is a wonderful link on how to make left twists that look the reverse of right twists. (I used the method in the middle of the third paragraph in the link.)

Twists are slight different from cabling 1 st over or under another. Because of knitting 2 sts together as part of the twist, they stick out more from the background than a regular cable would.

I couldn't decide on what kind of heel to make (plain, eye of partridge, etc.). And so, I just kept working the pattern down the back of the heel. IMHO, this looks nice. Though, if I were to make it as a men's sock (which I think would be nice), I would use a plain or padded heel.

Then, I decided to experiment by making the heel flap have a knit st edge instead of a slipped st edge. So, I knit the first and last st on each row of the heel flap, which produced purl bumps on the sides of the heel flap. The picture on the right shows these bumps picked up and ready to be knit. I like this just as well, if not better than the traditional method. The seam lies flat, and there are no holes on the side. What's left are some "decorative" bumps along the right side of the seam. The inside is smooth.

Finally, I get the Lion Brand email newsletter, which had a kitty bath mitt pattern as one of the suggested projects. I couldn't resist it. Here's an in-progress picture. I didn't want to wait to order Cotton Ease and so bought some Cot'n at our local store. The circs are size 7.

It's notable since it's the first time I've ever used a stitch holder, and this one has all three of my stitch holders on it. (I bought them years and years ago but never used them.) The base of the thumb is on one stitch holder. The base of the other ear is on the other 2. I cast on 33 sts instead of 44 and made the rest of the widths as 3/4 of the suggested widths. (I'm working it in the round because I try to keep away from seaming whenever possible.)

Finally, I don't know whether or not I should be allowed in the garden. I ordered several plants mail order, including some asparagus. I couldn't decide which side was up. So, I planted them so they looked nice. After looking on the internet for pictures of asparagus (I'd never grown it before.), I discovered that it was planted upside down with the roots sticking up from the soil like the top of a decorative grass. They've since been replanted the proper way.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Shawl finished

My shawl for the Yahoo! Project of the Month KAL is finally finished. It's made with size 10 needles and HomeSpun Prairie. I've never made or worn a shawl before, and so I'm not sure if it turned out right. (I'd also never knit with HomeSpun or size 10 needles before. It was a nice change of pace.) The pattern I was using, a wave and shell shaw pattern said that the shawl should be about 24" wide and 60" long. My first effort gave a shawl about 20" wide and finishable with about 2 skeins of HomeSpun. So, since I'd already bought 3 skeins, I frogged it and made it one panel wider. It's a bit wider than 24" and a bit longer than 60". This is the result.

I thought a garter stitch edging made the shawl gather together too much on the edges, and so I modified it. On WS rows 4, 8, 12, and 16 of the pattern, I did "k1, p to last st, k1". But on WS rows 10 and 14, I changed the first p5 to k5 and the last p4 to k4.

For SAM3, I'm making the diagonal rib socks from Knitting Daily. Ever since I frogged a whole sweater in part because I didn't like how my left and right twists looked, I've been looking off and on for an easy pattern to practice on and also a good way to make the twists. There are quite a few links for the right twist. This link gave me the best-looking and easiest way to do a left twist. (I used what the author said was her preferred method for making a left twist when both left and right twists appear.) The pattern from the Knitting Daily website doesn't have any left twists in it, but I altered it so I could practice them.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Sweater 5

My fifth sweater for the year is now finished. (The picture doesn't do it justice.) It feels so nice. Patons 100% Wool merino is really soft.

This sweater is my version of the knitty.com pattern Bob. However, the only similarities between the two patterns is the final result. This one is knit from the top down and in the round. I've knit this (my) pattern twice before. The major change this time, from the last time I knit it, is to use a simple narrow k1p1 ribbing at the bottom of the sweater in order to take away interest from the hips. The bind offs are decrease bind offs, which are fairly stretchy.

I just looked at my old version of the pattern from the May 2004 archives of my aol journal. That pattern is slightly different to the pattern for the sweater in the picture (and slightly different from the pattern in the April archives of my aol journal). Here is the revised pattern. I can't believe that I've been blogging for that long. The 2004 version was the first short-sleeve sweater I'd ever made.

One time I asked my daughter why things turn out so much better when we cook/bake something together as opposed to when I cook/bake alone. She pointed out that I always change the recipe -- even my own -- and that she "forces" me not to make too many changes on the fly. With knitting, one can make changes on the fly. If it doesn't work out, there's always frogging. With cooking, the best options are sometimes to start over or to live with it.

I've already started on sweater #6, a summer sweater from another of my patterns, Summer Square. I'm using KP shine worsted in a light blue for the sweater and have finished off one skein of yarn already. The skeins are smallish.

I restarted the shawl I was working on. I decided to make it wider. So, now, it's one pattern repeat wider than it was in the picture in the last post. I still like Homespun. It's kind of fun to knit with. I'm already thinking about other projects that I might make with the yarn. (I'm also thinking about other projects to make with Patons -- probably a long-sleeve sweater.) I'll probably make a fitted shawl for my mom with Homespun next, the Fitted Shawl from KnittingDaily. I almost always end up making changes to patterns, even my own. However, I don't think I'll end up making too many changes. Though, it would be nice to add a couple of pockets. ...

The dishcloth is the midMay KAL dishcloth from the Yahoo! dishcloth KAL group. It's an interesting pattern. I haven't decided what it reminds me of in its orange yarn which I'm still deciding whether or not I like.