Saturday, November 18, 2006

When you have lots of leftovers

Make a Giant Granny! That's what I'm doing with a bunch of leftover acrylic yarn-mostly RHSS. I started out with one round of each color, now I'm just going until I run out of yarn and then attaching another color and going on, even if I run out in the middle of a round. I even have up to three colors in a round. I'll be giving it to my grandson when I'm done-babies like lots of color and this is lots of bright colors.

I tried to use the smaller balls up on the inside, working my way outside with the larger balls and skeins. Maybe when I'm done with the colors I have it'll be big enough for Joseph to be able to use for awhile-he's only 11 months old so I want to make it big enough for him to use into his toddler and beyond years.

I'll have a picture later, when I tie in some loose ends, I might wait until I finish to take a picture.

Oh yes, I'm using a K hook and it's going pretty fast.

Before I ball it up

This is my latest skein of dyed yarn. I think it's going to be another pair of socks. I'm going to use #2 DPNs this time and should hopefully get a pair out of one skein. The stitches will also be smaller, resulting in a denser fabric that will also hopefully still be soft. I have an idea for a pattern and will be trying it out as soon as I get the lilac sock off my #2 needles. I just got the heel turned yesterday and am now going up the leg-it's my version of the Seaweed sock-toe up and it seems to be working. I'm using RH baby yarn and #2 needles and the stitches are really small. I'm not sure how far I want to go up the leg, probably about like the socks I just finished-which will probably be six repeats of the pattern with the smaller gauge.

Stay tuned, the lilac sock will be lonely for awhile but I'm eager to see how this yarn will stripe. There will be splotches where colors merged but it should stripe for the most part.

Friday, November 17, 2006

I changed my mind

I said in another blog that I didn't like wrapped or YO short rows. I've changed my mind-about wrapped short rows, anyway. I figured out I was doing one side of them wrong and twisting them, that's why one side looked fantastic and the other side looked wonky. No, I did not frog back and fix them, it was a learning experience and I'm keeping it as is so I can remember what NOT to do. Wrapped short rows are my friend now. I like both wrapped and Japanese now so if I don't have safety pins with me I can still do short rows if I have to.

Now that I can do them right, they look just as good as the Japanese short rows. Now I don't have to worry about which decreases to do on the toe of a sock, I can just short row them from the bottom around to the instep and graft there. I know, more stitches to graft, but kitchener stitch is also our friend and if you remember the mantra-K, P, P, K-then you too, can have an invisible graft and having more stitches to graft together will not send you into a panic. Just remember to pull the yarn snug but not tight and no one will be able to see where you grafted. Now you can do your toes and heels any way you want and not have to worry about what the pattern says.

A little more about K, P, P, K:

You must have an equal number of sts on both DPNs. Cut yarn, leaving a long tail, this tail should be on the back DPN and to your right. Thread this end through a tapestry needle.

Insert tapestry needle into first st on front DPN as if to K, slip this st off DPN. Holding st just taken off DPN on the tapestry needle, insert tapestry needle into next st on front DPN as if to P (leave this st on DPN) and pull yarn snug, insert tapestry needle into first st on back DPN as if to P and slip this st off DPN. Holding st just taken off DPN on the tapestry needle, insert tapestry needle into next st on back DPN as if to K (leave this st on DPN) and pull yarn snug.

Note: Do not pull yarn tight, just pull it snug.

Repeat these directions until all sts have been worked off needles.

If these directions are followed then you should have a seamless join.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

It's out and drying

The yarn I just dyed. It looks like there are some light pink streaks in the yellow that are really interesting. There are also two shades of red and that purple-which looks kinda purpley-mauve now and is really pretty.

Unfortunately, my camera is at the house and I'm not so pictures will have to wait until tomorrow. It'll probably still be damp in the morning but I have it hanging in the baby's room, out of everyone's way-Joseph sleeps in their room in his crib-one day he'll be moved to his room, when Jen is comfortable with it, right now, he still coughs in the night and wakes up around 4 am so he still sleeps in their room.

More dyeing experience

I've recently discovered the fun that is creating your own yarn colorways. Since I found Lion Wool at our local W-M I've been trying it out. I had to do two balls the same to avoid SSS and I have another ball cooking right now.

I mixed Berry Blue with Tropical Punch in one jar, two cherrys in another, two lemonades in another and two strawberries in another. The first one has an interesting shade of purple that I can't wait to see how it turns out when dried. The strawberry looks like it's going to be a deep red and the cherry looks like it's going to be a bright red. There's some bleedover from the cherry and strawberry into the lemonade so there will be some orange spots there, I'm sure.

This will be pretty close to self-striping since I wound a hank about 9 feet long but with the bleedover from the jars there will also be some surprise spots-good, I like surprises and consistency scares me-most of the time ;)

Anyway, pics will be forthcoming when it's all cooked and hanging.

I can finish my socks now!

Maybe I should clarify, I don't know if I posted anything about this here but I dyed a ball of Lion Wool a couple of weeks ago just to see how hard it was-it wasn't hard at all and I got some really pretty varigated yarn to play with. I decided to do some socks but I ran out when I turned the heel of my second sock. Determined not to leave that first sock lonely I dyed my other ball of wool yesterday the same colors as the first, I even remembered the order of the dye. I just finished balling it up, making sure I balled it so that the colors came out in the same order as the first ball, and now I can finish my socks and probably have enough left over to do a hat or a scarf or something to match.

See here

This was the first ball I did, and the first sock. As I experiment with short rows I should be able to make them better, I left the mistakes and ugly rows to remind me of what not to do. Since they're for my feet I figured I could do that.

I'm definitely making more socks, they're very comfy.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

A new pattern

I had a pattern for top down wristwarmers running around in my head last week so I broke out some yarn and a hook and tried it out. It worked and now I have written the pattern out and posted it to my Pattern Blog.

I really like how fast they work up and you can play with them by using different yarns and hooks. You can also do the ribbing in different colors if you need to use up some of those pesky leftover balls of yarn that roll around in your stash. I'm working on some like that in RHSS so they'll need to be washed with fabric softener before they'll be soft enough to wear but I have a lot of that in my stash.

Anyway, enjoy the pattern and stay tuned for the knit version coming up as soon as I get the needles that I need.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Ribbed Wristwarmers

These are so easy and versatile because you can adapt them to any yarn or hook size. I like making them with WW yarn and a larger hook so they're warmer and take only a couple of hours to make a pair.

I think it's the perfect mindless project for Christmas gifts, especially if you need something last-minute.

Just remember when you use bulkier yarn and larger hooks you won't need as many stitches or rows as called for in the pattern. I'd measure around your wrist and thumb and then allow about an inch or so for stretch but no more than 2-3 ribs (4-6 rows) for thumbhole, you don't want it to be too big. For the extra stitches added on for the top, depending on the bulkiness, I would add no more than 10+1 for turning-depending on how much of your knuckles you want to cover.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Cute doggie

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I made this yesterday for our little toy pomeranian, Furby. She gets cold in wintertime and I knew it would be really chilly today and didn't want her getting cold. She hates sweaters when they're first put on her and sulks for awhile but after about a day she's ok with them. I might sit down and write down how I did it but it would only fit tiny dogs about 5 pounds or so.

I used Bernat Softee Chunky in True Yellow and a K hook.