Monday, 30 March 2015

Finished Object: Accelerating Stripes Fingerless Mitts

Pattern: based on Accelerating Stripes Gloves by Churchmouse Yarn and Tea
Yarn: Sun Valley Fibers 75/15/10
Colours: Stormy, Waterfall and Golden Harvest
Needles: 3mm and 3.5mm DPS
Start of project: March 27, 2015
End of project: March 29, 2015

On Ravelry

I did a little in between project, a pair of stripey fingerless mitts. I used part of my left over yarn from my Quicksilver.The mitts only needed about 40 grams of it.

I didn't actually buy the pattern, I decided I should be able to knit similar mitts by myself just by try and error. Most of the way that worked fine, it's really not that hard to knit mitts once you've done a few of them.

The first try turned out a bit too wide, especially around my wrists which are very thin. So I went back and started again with fewer stitches, decreased after the ribbing and picked up stitches again for my hands (you can check out my Ravelry page for the details). I was much more happy with that second try, so I repeated it exactly. Somehow I must have tried to compensate the tightness of the colour changes (I still don't manage to get that done neatly) and so the second one came out slightly bigger than the first one. I prefer the first size, but the difference is small and the mitts will probably change their shape with wearing anyway.

I guess I'll wear them on my bike today, because even though it's almost April, it's still not very warm around here.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Finished Object: Moses Hoodie

Pattern: Moses Hoodie by Amy Christoffers
Yarn: Tanis Fiber Art Yellow Label
Colours: Lemongrass and Cobalt
Needles: 3.5mm and 4mm Round Needles
Start of project: March 11, 2015
End of project: March 25, 2015

On Ravelry

After exactly two weeks I finished Antonia's Moses Hoodie yesterday. I went zip shopping in the afternoon and managed to sew it in in the evening. It went better than I expected, it wasn't that scary at all, thanks to Purl Bee. I am not a big fan of sewing but I did it slowly and the fabric of the hoodie stayed nicely flat (it was definitely a good thing I blocked it before the zip).

I also managed to do everything else that was on my to-do and to-learn list.
  • The sweater turned out the right size. It is rather fitted but that's what Antonia wanted. The sleeves are actually slightly too long after the blocking, but she can fold them over and when her arms get even longer it will still fit. 
  • The pockets came together ok. I am glad I attached the side of the pocket together with the side of hoodie and the i-cord, that looks quite neat. I found it difficult to decide on the right cast off for the pocket ribbing but after the second try that I frogged I used the Sewn Cast-Off and liked the result.
  •  I gave up on the Fair Isle pattern. It was too complicated and it looked really messy. I am not so sure about the pattern as it is now and I think the hoodie could have used more Cobalt.
  • I used Tanis' way of the i-Cord and I am very happy with it. I found it much easier to pick up the stitches in the first row and only knit the i-Cord in the third row.
Antonia is happy with her hoodie and I hope she'll enjoy wearing it.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Currently knitting: Moses Hoodie

Pattern: Moses Hoodie by Amy Christoffers
Yarn: Tanis Fiber Art Yellow Label
Colours: Lemongrass and Cobalt
Needles: 3.5mm and 4mm Round Needles
Start of project: March 11, 2015

On Ravelry

I started knitting a hoodie for my daughter
Antonia. It's going to be the first top that I won't knit for myself, so far I've only been selfish.

While we were in Tschiertschen in February, Antonia asked (nicely ;-) for a cardigan after seeing Evelyne's beautiful Fair Isle Hoodie. She decided she also wanted a hood and pockets and a zip. This made me remember the hoodie I had had on my queue (for myself) for a while and I showed it to her. She loved the concept and we started looking for colours. As the original yarn only had very calm, simple colours, we had a look at Tanis' colours and here Antonia found what she was looking for: Lemongrass for the big part with little accents of Cobalt (all the ribbing at the bottom, the sleeves and the pockets and the i-cord).

A few days ago the yarn arrived and the two colours are just amazing! I started with a swatch gauge and hoped that the smallest size of the hoodie wasn't going to be far too big for Antonia. Fortunately I needed more stitches per inch than the pattern called for and it somehow worked out. I am not totally sure yet if the finished hoodie will match perfectly but I am hopeful (which is what I always am, that's one of the things that I find quite hard when you want a rather fitted result, you never really know until you are done).

Right now I am done with the ribbing, the pocket lining and the pockets itself and am starting to increase again for the waist shaping. With the unfinished pockets and all the yarn ends hanging around it looks quite messy.

There are still many open questions, especially because I'll need to do a lot of new techniques:

  • will it really fit? It looks rather small right now.
  • how will I attach the pocket linings? In the pattern it just says to do it, but how am I supposed to do that exactly?
  • should I try to knit the subtle pattern on the sleaves, the shoulders and on the hoodie with fair isle in Cobalt instead of with purls and knits to make it pop?
  • which kind of i-Cord should I use? I don't really understand the way it is explained in the pattern yet but I found this on Berocco and I have this pattern from Tanis.
  • will I be able to add a zipper nicely in the end?

I hope I'll figure it all out - in the meantime I enjoy seeing this grow.

I'll share this blog entry on Auf den Nadeln im März.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Finished Object: Rainbow Legwarmers

Pattern: Adapted Stulpen
Yarn: mostly Lang Yarns Merino +
Colours: Grey with coloured stripes
Needles: 4.5mm DPS
Start of project: February 27, 2015
End of project: March 11, 2015

On Ravelry

While I was waiting for the yarn I ordered for my next project I tried to use up some more of my stashed yarn. I still had quite a bit of the Merino + left over from different projects and I had this interesting pattern from our handicraft teacher, which I'd wanted to try just to see how it would turn out. It took me a while to figure out how to knit the different colours for the stripes to be wavey but in the end it wasn't terribly complicated.

4 rows of k4 p4 in grey
4 rows of purl only in colour
4 rows of p4 k4 in grey
4 rows of knit only in the same colour

The leg warmers weren't very interesting to knit and I have to admit that I am not totally conviced of them. They are ok but they are maybe a bit boring. But then again, they are here to warm my legs in winter and will probably be worn on the sofa, in bed or underneath my jeans, so who cares ;-)

I also found out that neither my son nor I should consider becoming a foot model, it's just not in our genes...

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Looking back: 3rd of March

In 2007 the day brought warm winds and the first signs of spring and the night kept me awake for my first eclipse which all together might have been responsible for my headache.

In 2008 I got my first photobook from -  with 100 of my favourite photos in it.

 In 2010 the day started in pink and purple.

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Finished Object: I heart Cardigan

Pattern: I heart Cardigan by Tanis Lavallee
Yarn: Tanis Fiber Art Green Label
Colour: Sand
Needles: 4.5mm and 5mm round needles
Start of project: January 31, 2015
End of project: February 26, 2015

On Ravelry

My second try of I heart Cardigan is done. As I wrote here, I wanted to knit this cardigan with Tanis' own yarn. I really like the yarn, it's soft but feels warm and strong. I didn't alternate for the body but then when I tried to knit two arms at the same time the two skeins were very different in colour and I tried again with alternating skeins. At first it was a bit confusing and I find it hard to get the change of yarn just right (not too lose and not too tight) but I am glad I did it. I am looking forward to knitting more with that yarn, I already ordered enough for two more projects and the yarn should arrive any day...

Reknitting this cardgian showed me how much progress I've made in the time between the two versions. I am much more confident with patterns and can read them quite easily. The necessary techniques which I found very scary the first time were totally doable. I even did a few notable modifications. The first time the shoulders were too wide for my frame, so this time I decreased more stitches on the body for the armholes. I also knit sleeves from a different pattern because I wanted them to be more fitted - I really don't like wobbly fabric around my arms. I am happy that I know enough about knitting now to adapt patterns to my liking.

I am very happy with the fit. It is fitted but not too tight and has just the perfect length for me. I like the colour which will go very well with jeans and the buttons I bought at Keck look lovely. I hope there will be a few more cold days to wear it before spring arrives (which I am also looking forward to ;-) When we took the photos it started to rain quite heavily so we had to hurry to get them done and get back inside...

Reading Challenge - February

Here's my February update of my Reading Challenge. I read some books especially for this challenge when I actively looked for books to go with challenges in the right order. Right now I am looking for a good book written by someone under 30.

1. a book with more than 500 pages: "The Goldfinch" by Donna Tartt (01/24)
2. a romance: "Sweet Filthy Boy" by Christina Lauren (02/09)
3. a book that became a movie: "Wild" by Cheryl Strayed (02/13)
4. a book published this year: "First Frost" by Sarah Addison Allen (01/28)
5. a book with a number in the title:"28 Tage lang" by David Safier (02/21)
6. a book written by someone under 30: 
7. a book with nonhuman characters: 
8. a funny book:
9. a book by a female author: "Dash & Lily's Book of Dares" by Rachel Cohn (02/28)
10. a mystery or thriller:  
11. a book with a one-word title:  
12. a book of short stories:  
13. a book set in a different country:
14. a nonfiction book: 
15. a popular author's first book: "Garden Spells" by Sarah Addison Allen (01/06)
16. a book from your favorite author that you haven't read yet: 
17. a book a friend recommended:
18. a Pulitzer-prize winning book: 
19. a book based on a true story:
20. a book at the bottom of your to read list: 
21. a book your mom or dad loves: 
22. a book that scares you: 
23. a book more than 100 years old: 
24. a book based entirely on its cover:
25. a book you were supposed to read in school but didn't: 
26. a memoir:
27. a book you can finish in a day: "The Same Sky" by Amanda Eyre Ward" (01/25)
28. a book with antonyms in the title:
29. a book set somewhere you've always wanted to visit:
30. a book that came out the year you were born: 
31. a book with bad reviews:
32. a trilogy (the first):  "A Discovery of Witches" by Deborah Harkness (02/03)
33. a trilogy (the second):
34. a trilogy (the third):
35. a book from your childhood:
36. a book with a love triangle:
37. a book set in the future:
38. a book set in high school: 
39. a book with a color in the title:  
40. a book that made/makes you cry:
41. a book with magic: "Lost Lake" by Sarah Addison Allen (01/04)
42. a graphic novel:
43. a book by an author you've never read before: "Accidents of Marriage" by Randy Susan Meyers (02/08)
44. a book you own but have never read: 
45. a book that takes place in your hometown: "Hafturlaub" by Petra Ivanov (02/28)
46. a book that was originally written in another language: 
47. a book set during Christmas (or similar holiday):
48. a book written by an author with your same initials:
49. a play:
50. a banned book:
51. a book based on OR turned into a tv show:
52. a book you started but never finished: