Sunday, December 28, 2008
International Cat Hat: France, Le Mieux by Stacy Mar of Spindles and Spices
Debbie Bliss Cashmerino DK, 55% Merino Wool, 33% Microfibre, 12% Cashmere (120 yards / 50 g per ball), ~0.56 balls color 18011
US 5 (3.75 mm) bamboo dpns
I hope everyone is having a relaxing and happy holiday season :) What better way to celebrate than with cats in handknit headwear!
I followed the pattern except I increased more (repeating rounds 7 and 8 six times for a total of 132 sts) than specified in the pattern for a slightly bigger, floppier hat (it would have been fine with fewer repeats, too).
I actually got a few shots of Moana in this one:
As usual, Bug tolerated a somewhat longer (and less blurry) photo shoot, so here are a few more photos of him modeling Le Mieux:
I also recently finished a scarf:
Pucker Stitch Scarf by me, with the help of Vogue Knitting Stitchionary, Vol. One: Knit & Purl, stitch pattern #207, "pucker stitch"
Foxhill Farm Millspun Cormo Silk, 65% Cormo Wool, 35% Silk (255 yards / 117 g per skein), 1 skein
US 4 (3.5 mm) bamboo circular needles
I tried this lovely yarn with several different stitch patterns before finding one that I thought showed it off nicely.
The full width of the stitch pattern in Vogue Knitting would have eaten up my yarn too fast and resulted in a very wide and very short scarf, so I modified the pattern to suite my needs. The pattern I ended up using is a 22 stitch pucker stitch pattern with a 2 stitch garter stitch border on each side (as well as garter stitch border to finish the CO and BO edges).
Yarn: DK weight
Gauge: approximately 21 sts and 30 rows = 4" (blocked) in stockinette stitch
Needles: US 4 (3.5 mm) needles (I knit somewhat loosely)
Size: 49" long x 5.5" wide (blocked)
-CO 26 sts.
-Knit 2 rows.
-Begin Pucker Stitch Pattern:
-Rows 1,3,5,7,9,11,13,15,17, and 19 (RS): knit.
-Rows 2,4,6,8,10,12,14,16, and 18 (WS): k2, p22, k2.
-Row 20 (WS): k2, MP* in next 11 stitches, p11, k2.
-Rows 21,23,25,27,29,31,33,35,37, and 39 (RS): knit.
-Rows 22,24,26,28,30,32,34,36, and 38 (WS): k2, p22, k2.
-Row 40 (WS): k2, p11, MP* in next 11 stitches, k2.
-Repeat Pucker Stitch Pattern until desired length is achieved, ending with either Row 19 or Row 39 for symmetry.
-Knit 2 rows.
-BO all stitches. Weave in ends.
MP* = With yarn in front, insert right needle from top into the loop (purl bump) of the stitch 9 rows (9 purl bumps) below the next stitch on the left hand needle. Slip this loop onto the left hand needle and purl it together with the next stitch in the current row. (Note: For variety, I picked up stitches from only 6 rows down every third pucker row.)
Bug enjoyed lounging under the scarf during our photo shoot. He found it to be quite soft and warm...
...and he appreciated the fact that the yarn coordinated so well with his eyes :)
Bug, Moana, and I wish you a happy, healthy New Year filled with knitting (and spinning) and other good things!
Monday, December 8, 2008
I do have some knitting projects going, but they're either blocking (to be photographed soon) or they belong in the category of secret holiday knitting, so... here's a spinning update! I've got three new yarns for you:
Handspun Yarn I: Graphite
Fiber: SWTC Black Diamonds Carbonized Bamboo Roving
Stats: 440 yards (59 g), ~25 wpi (lace weight)
Ply: single ply
This stuff was slippery and a bit fly-away (picture little cotton candy tufts trying to escape every which way if I pre-drafted much), but lots of fun to spin.
It's so shiny!
While I decided to leave it as a single, I think it would make an excellent (and more robust) 2 ply as well.
Moana stood still long enough for me to snap this photo of her modeling the yarn:
Handspun Yarn II: Lame Duck Mallard
Fiber: Spunky Eclectic Superwash Bluefaced Leicester Roving, October 2008 Spunky Club colorway "Lame Duck Mallard"
Stats: 375 yards (115 g), ~17 wpi (light fingering weight)
Ply: 3 ply
I think Boogie was right on with her interpretation of the Mallard duck's colors:
Moana wanted me to leave this yummy fiber unspun for lounging, snuffling, and kneading purposes:
However, I prevailed and managed to steal the fiber back from her (although I had to keep an eye out for her while spinning, because she really loves this stuff). Here are the three bobbins of singles:
...And the 3 ply:
As usual, this yarn has been fully Bug tested and approved.
Here's an example of why there are fewer pictures of Moana on the blog. I got just these two photos before she jumped up and started dancing around, then fled the scene (she had been napping peacefully moments earlier):
Handspun Yarn III: Shallow Water
Fiber: All Spun Up Bluefaced Leicester Roving
Stats: 442 yards (120 g), ~16 wpi (light fingering weight)
Ply: 2 ply
This color palette reminds me of the look of shallow water over pale sand near the edge of a lake or the ocean - a lovely turquoise tinged with greens and golds.
For some reason, Bug seems to wash the color variation out somewhat with his dark-chocolatey self. He doesn't mind - it still makes a pretty decent pillow.
Have a great week :)