2018, Finished Object, Knitting, weaving

I don’t need a new hobby…

And yet I picked up one. I have always been enamored with weaving. The repetitive act of throwing the shuttle, beating with the heddle was so mesmerizing to watch. I knew I will buy a loom, sooner or later. It was a question of when rather than if. And the “when” question was answered with “ASAP” when I visited the weavers at Kumaon Grameen Udyog.

After the live demonstration of weaving on her Ashford RH Loom by the lovely enabler Josie, a decision was made. I was going to buy a loom and an Ashford 24″ RH loom. My loom arrived a month ago and I have been getting my hands dirty since then.

I wove a sample with some acrylic yarn and I loved how the fabric turned out. I have a love-hate relationship with variegated yarn. The colors look so pretty when the yarn is in skeins/balls, but the moment you start knitting with it, you end up with ugly pooling. I finally found what to do with my huge supply of variegated yarn – weaving!

 

I next wove a placemat with the same multicolored acrylic yarn. My length calculation was not off the mark and I ended up with somewhat closer to the length I had planned for. This now adorns my chest of drawers and is a lovely sight!

Log cabin pattern looks difficult, but is just plain weaving with some intelligent placing of colors. After following a video tutorial and some hits and misses, I finally wove a skinny log cabin scarf. Not really long enough to wear, so it is more like a sample. Will definitely weave myself a scarf in this pattern.

After experimenting with acrylic and tasting decent success, I was bold enough to try with natural fibers. I took a huge leap and decided to experiment with two different fibers in the same scarf. I used merino wool fingering weight for warp and silk laceweight for weft.

Result is a gorgeous scarf with a lovely drape. I ended up with a shorter scarf than planned for, but the scarf is still useable.

As I said, I didn’t really need a new hobby, but I picked up a new one any way!

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2018, Baby, Finished Object, hat, Test Knitting

Instant Gratification

When your only knitting project on the needle, is an adult sized cardigan in laceweight yarn, it can take a while before the project can see the light of day. And when you start getting frustrated at the slow pace of growth and are ready to run away from knitting one more stitch, you need instant gratification to pep you up. What can give you instant gratification like a baby bonnet?

Baby bonnets are quick to knit and they are so cute, so double bonus. Somebody or the other is having a baby in the extended family and friends, so having some baby knits in the gift box helps. So, when Kelly was looking for test knitters for her bonnet pattern, I jumped at it.

I used Knit Picks Shine Sport in Orchid colorway. The yarn and the pattern are a great match. The beautiful texture shows up so well in this yarn and color. Love the attached i-cord. It took me just an evening to make this. Instant gratification at it’s best.

Ravelry Project Page

 

2018, Baby, Cardigan, Flat knitting, Knitting, Lace

Norwegian Love

I love knitting baby stuff. They are instant gratification and they turn out so cute. So, when my cousin announced that they are expecting a baby, I was thrilled. Of course, I was happy for them, but I was also happy for myself that I can knit some baby things.

I zeroed in on Norwegian Fir cardigan. Cozy garter stitch and subtle lace on the raglan – what not to love? I decided to use Nako Hoşgeldin yarn (which I have in abundance, thanks to a recent visit to Pony store). This was my first time knitting with bamboo. Yarn is soft and has great stitch definition, but it splits like crazy. Thank my stars, I did not have to frog my knitting. Frogging this yarn will be a nightmare.

The cardigan turned out cuter than I thought. Yarn and the pattern worked out so well together. I made a few modifications to the pattern. The sweater looked too wide, compared to its length, so added an inch to the body and sleeves. I added more buttonholes as well. I had bought these cute buttons from Itsy Bitsy which added the right contrast colors to the monotonous blue sweater.

If I knit this sweater again, I will cast on 5-6 sts more for buttonband. Designer has not accounted additional sts for buttonband, so the cardigan puckers when buttoned up.

Also made these quick, knit booties to go with the sweater.

Patterns:
Cardigan: Norwegian Fir Top Down Cardigan
Booties: Baby Uggs
Yarn: Nako Hoşgeldin

2018, Finished Object, Flat knitting, Knitting, Lace

Clapotis

Looks like all the knitters in the world have already knit or are knitting a Clapotis. I didn’t want to be left far behind, so picked up this gorgeous ball of Knit Picks Chroma in Pool Party colorway and started knitting a Clapotis.

While the pattern is pretty straightforward, I wanted to know how long a scarf would I get out of one ball of KP Chroma, so went digging into the bazillion projects on Ravelry and stumbled on this amazing group dedicated for Clapotis. Not only are there many helpful threads for customizing your clapotis, I found this awesome-sauce spreadsheet which gives you a row wise stitch count as well!

I started knitting mine using the spreadsheet and making sure I was on the right section and had the right count. Once I finished the increase section, the straight section was quite mindless. The part where you get to the stitch-to-be-dropped and actually drop it and unravel was super cool. I would knit away just to get to the next drop stitch section just to see the magic unravel (see what I did there?)

And I love how the Pool Party colors show up here. Bias knitting gives this scarf a cool diagonal coloring which looks wonderful. Post blocking, while I am happy with how my scarf turned out, I would have liked it better if it had been longer. Two skeins of Chroma would have given me a longer scarf.

This was a super easy and fun knit. I have another KP Chroma (in another colorway) and I know what I am going to knit with it.

2018, circular knitting, Finished Object, Summer, Tee

FO: Cap Sleeve Lattice Top

While I was spring cleaning my room the other day, I opened the cupboard which holds my yarn stash. No, I had no intention of spring cleaning this part of my room – I only planned to pet the yarn and keep it back. And as I was doing this, I realized I was wearing an acrylic hand-knit top, made ages ago. And the irony was evident – I was living in mediocre quality yarn (I love acrylic, would never call it inferior) while my softest yarn was locked away in a cupboard, wasting away. That was the time I decided to knit up some of my good yarn and actually wear them. This FO is the first outcome of that decision.

Knit Picks Shine Sport is one of the initial yarn purchases I made. I planned to knit this up into a tee or a shawl, but had kept it stashed away in a corner. Searched on Rav for FOs which people have made using this yarn and Purl Soho’s Cap Sleeve Lattice Top caught my attention. Pattern is free (unplanned bonus!) and a quick glance through it strengthened my resolve. A voice in my head kept repeating “bottom up knitting”, but I ignored it.

A quick swatch confirmed that the yarn and pattern are suitable for each other and thus I cast on. The never ending, mindless stockinette was both a boon and a bane. I loved the mindless knitting when I had to attend work related calls and I could knit away to glory without spending any brain cells on this. At times, the monotonous work got me so bored that I would shove it away for days together. The longer I knit, the longer it felt it would take for me to finish this. I also suspected some negative elves sneaking into my room at night and unraveling all my knitting. How can the tee not be done already!!??

One fine night (after a pulled an all nighter to get this darn thing over with), I was finally done with stockinette section. Compared to this, the lace section was a breeze. I was done in no time.

Thanks to my yarn choice, the lace portion was too long compared to the body, so I had to do some quick fixing there. I folded the extra fabric under the sleeve and stitched it in place. This does not show on the RS at all, so I am all good.

Remember the voice which kept saying “bottom up”? It became stronger when I realized the tee is too long than intended. It was a good 3″ long – have no idea how. End of every day, before I hung up my knitting, I would try the top and ensure it wasn’t longer than I wanted and yet, I ended up with 3 extra inches. Yes, my dear voice, “bottom up” issue it is.

If it was top down, it was as easy as unraveling the cast off end and frogging the 3 inches and casting off again. But this is bottom up. How do you even unravel the cast on edge? I did some quick fixing here too, since I had planned to wear this for my holiday at Yercaud the next day. I folded the extra fabric underneath and stitched it shut using the same yarn. This actually worked well since the thick fabric edge kept the tee in place.

I can’t live with this for sure, so need to figure out a way to fix the length.

Next time I hear my voice say “bottom up”, I am going to listen to it.

I made a lot of mods. Knit this in round to avoid seam, made the neck opening smaller and so on. All details on my Ravelry Project.

 

 

 

2017, Baby, Cardigan, hat, Knitting, socks, Sweaters

FO, after an eon!

After a long hiatus of two years (in which I almost never picked up knitting needles), my knitting mojo is back with a bang. I should thank my soon-to-be-born grandchild for that. You read that right, I did say grandchild. My niece is expecting and is going to pop any day now and I will be elevated to the much coveted grandmom (okay, grandaunt) position.

 

Sweater pattern: Little Coffee Bean Cardigan by Elizabeth Smith
Socks: Rye by tincanknits
Hat: Garter Ear Flap Hat by Purl Soho

My niece wanted a sweater in gender neutral color, so most of my baby colors in my stash were ruled out. After much consideration, I zeroed in on the Knit Picks Shine Worsted in Platinum and Willow.

While the cardigan pattern is written to knit in stripes, I had to modify the socks and hat pattern to follow that. For socks, I changed the color every two rows, but stuck with MC for the heel flap until I joined to knit in round again. For the hat, I knit the ear flaps in MC color and when I knit a plain round, I changed colors every two rows.

I noticed that things move fast when I knit in stripes. Is that true or is my mind playing tricks on me!

 

2015, Knitting, Lace, New Design, New Pattern, seamless

New Pattern: Arushi

Arushi (first rays of the sun) is a crescent shaped shawl knit from the bottom up. The pointy edges and the lace portion are worked back and forth and the stockinette crescent shaped is worked using short rows. The lace stitch is charted and written instructions are also provided.

IMG_2210_medium2

While the sample is knit in laceweight yarn, this shawl can be knit using light/fingering weight yarn also. Use bigger needles to get the right drape with heavier yarn. The finished size and yardage will vary if heavier yarn is used.

IMG_2826_medium2Arushi by Anjali M.

Arushi is available at 25% off till Sep 30. Use coupon code ArushiForWalkCollection at Ravelry check out.