Slip Stitch Cowl by kismet09
Slip Stitch Cowl, a photo by kismet09 on Flickr.

My second one of these, and it's still quite a fun and quick knit. I added a couple of pops of color with some orange and some blue/magenta/purple. Full pattern details on ravelry:

i have two weeks away from work, more or less. 34 hours of that time will be spent in the car, driving maine to chicago, round trip. i am driving-averse, so probably most if not all of that time will be spent in the passenger seat. that, plus lounging about at my parents' place for a week, plus another week at a scrabble tournament, means lots of knitting time. one of the luxuries of driving is that my luggage is not limited by one carry-on - i can bring all the yarn i want. it has been a busy knitting winter for me, and i'm still itching to do more. here's what i'm considering.

burberry cowl

slip cowl

  • burberry inspired cowl (on the left) - i did one of these and love the way it sits. i think the high variegation of rios will look great in this cowl, and i'll have something to match my dashing mitts (on the right). rav project link. or is this the tuesday night cowl? now i can't remember. they seem pretty similar to each other.
  • a plain garter stitch cowl - i have russian joined a bunch of odds and ends of purples and greens together, including some berocco jasper, cascade, karabella aurora 8, random stuff i dyed when trying out some potential yarn bases, and who knows what else. i'm hoping for something along the lines of this scrap-happy scarf (ravelry link), minus the fringe.
  • slip stitch cowl (in the middle) - another one that i just did and love, and i still have more random scraps left that could easily be incorporated into another one of these. my rav project page
i guess everything i have planned at this time is for me... that isn't really intentional. i think i've made something for everyone i know in the past two months who i think might appreciate it! 

I'm trying to get some yarns done for Homespun Yarn Party - someday, I'll get ambitious and create a similar event up here on the Seacoast. 

I think it's time to really start recording how I make some of these colors. It'd be nice to be able to replicate some of my efforts, sometimes. Right now, I have a pretty good instinct for how much water to how much dye, and which colors to blend to make new ones that go together, but sometimes I'm sad when the yarns go off to sale knowing I'll never be able to make ones I like again.

These guys are springy colors, since I'm starting to yearn for spring. The bottom picture is my friend Emily's first attempt at dyeing - I love the eggplanty colors together and some of the blends that her different colors made when they ran into each other.

For those of you who haven't met her, this is Cassie. She often gets stuck modeling my knitting projects. She's a nine year old amalgam of dog breeds. In this picture, she's wearing my newest cowl project. It's based loosely on the chevron scarf in Last Minute Knitted Gifts - I love the idea of alternating a strongly variegated yarn with a solid or almost-solid yarn. I also dislike purling, so working the pattern in the round was pleasing.

Here's how I did it - I'm not a very professional pattern writer, so comment away if you want to try this at home and have no idea what I'm trying to say.

Chevron Cowl

needles: 16" circ in 3s and 5s
yarns: CC - Noro Silk Garden (the neutral one) and MC - Mini Mochi (I have no idea what colorway this is). one skein each (with leftovers of both)
one stitch marker

I didn't work a gauge, but the 5 row repeat was about 3/4” for me on the larger needles.

total length: 10”. circumference ~20”.

CO 144 sts (or another multiple of 18) in CC with larger needles (or even larger, if you cast on tightly like I do), place marker, join w/o twisting.
knit 1 row and purl 1 row in CC (to create a garter ridge, to try to keep the thing from curling up).
join MC, knit 1 row, purl 1 row, knit 1 row.
next row, begin chevron pattern below.
continue to a couple inches short of desired length (i did 15 repeats of the 5 row pattern).
change to smaller needles (i did this to change the gauge enough to make the cowl stay up around my nose when it’s cold).
work pattern twice (10 rows)
work the pattern row (row 1) of the chevron, then purl 1 row CC (this will create a row of garter stitch instead of stockinette). work 1 garter ridge of MC (k 1 row, p 1 row), another of CC, and bind off w/larger needles.

chevron pattern:
row 1: w/CC, k2tog 3 times *kfb 6 times, k2tog six times* repeat to six st rem, k2tog 3 times.
row 2: w/CC, knit
rows 3-5: w/MC, knit

[i knitted three rows of mini mochi because the yarn is a little thinner than the noro and i didn't want the color to get lost]

First of all, the main woman behind Woolarina is now plus one baby boy! congratulations, Paula!

baby Oliver means that I need to pick up the pace in carrying the weight of the wool, at least when it comes to Crafty Bastards, a fair that we wouldn't miss. I'll be flying down for the weekend, yarns in tow. I'm still in the process of dyeing, so if anyone has colorway recommendations, send them this way!

I've had the week off of work recovering from pesky medical issues, so I've been entertaining myself by knitting on very small needles. I have a whole box of odds and ends from previous dye jobs, so I started making wrist warmers. None of them match, but they do show off the yarns that I've made, and they've been keeping me company while watching season three of Dexter and some Red Sox games.


Apr. 28th, 2009 01:25 pm

Paula gifted this yarn to me for xmas, and i've been fretting about how to do it justice. it's a gorgeous handpaint from fleece artist called Suri Blue, a blend of Suri Alpaca and Blue Face Leicester, in the Midnight colorway. I finally decided on a half-pi shawl, since I had such good luck with the full pi shawl that I gifted away. Yet another mindless knit, and that's all I seem to like these days.

I'm going to have 8 or so hours on planes. I need mindless knitting. Here are the contenders:

Wisp, in sock yarn.
Storm cloud shawlette
Razor Lace Scarf
Scrunchable scarf

Thoughts? Other suggestions? I wouldn't mind starting another Pi Shawl, but I don't think I have enough yarn to support it.

pi shawl

Dec. 28th, 2008 01:04 pm
this is my favorite knit of the year. It's an Elizabeth Zimmerman Pi Shawl, with yok2tog rows every six rows, knit out of a bunch of scraps that I have from various dye projects. I love the way it looks after being blocked - it has been awhile since I've done a lace project, and I forgot about the magic that comes with blocking. It's hard to tell with this lighting, but it's mostly dark purples, blues, etc., but it has all the colors of the rainbow in it. It took a very long time, and measures about 6' in diameter. It ended up being a Christmas present for my mother. I also just finished a merino/silk Clapotis that I meant to keep for myself, but my grandmother liked it, so it went to her as a gift. That just means I get to treat myself to more of that yarn and dye it up. I'm currently in California and stopped by a yarn shop with a wall full of Schaefer yarns, and realized that I can pretty much replicate any of their colorways, if I really put my mind to it. That's pretty cool.

These were a fabulously rewarding quick knit. First off, I love this new Noro, because it's super soft. I wish the other Noros were equally soft, because the colors make me so happy. I knit the first wrister of this pair on a weekend visit to friends - most of it was knit at a bowling alley on a Sunday morning (doesn't every bowl on Sunday mornings?) The second was knit today while waiting for the power to come back on in Maine - I started it at a coffeeshop, and finished it bundled up in bed, trying to maximize the last few minutes of daylight. Happily, the power kicked back on soon after.

The mitts are just taken from the Anne Budd 'handy book of patterns' - my go-to when I want to knit thumb gussets without having to calculate anything. I started them on sixes and went down to fives to make the finger area nice and snug (a few more details on ravelry here). They took almost exactly a skein, and are fraternal twins, thanks to Noro's long color stripes - there were no real color repeats in the skein. I still have ends to weave in, but I tucked them all in and took a picture -- this is one of the few projects I can share, since so many of them are xmas gifts that have to remain under wraps for a couple more weeks.
argh. for now, a list. maybe more detail later.

+ paula and marcel! yay friends visiting.
+ Bazaar Bizarre - meeting people, making money, getting inspired to knit more.
- forgetting to eat during the craft fair and being very dizzy.
+ Oleana! including bacon brittle on my salad that made my meal.
- getting home at midnight and being exhausted.
+ taking monday off and staying in my pajamas until going to the gym.
+ getting some gifts wrapped, cards written, House watched.
+ four days at the gym in Dec so far - we should make it to the required 8 before going to Chicago.
- grandmother fell yesterday and broke thigh bone. extra stress for family around holidays. Ugh.
- back at work today - it's freezing in my office, and I have to walk across campus in the snow soon to meet with a prof about a hopeless student.
+ snow is pretty.
- I must've slept with my jaw clenched, because I can barely open my mouth right now.
+ almost done with new Clapotis. Should have enough yarn to finish.
+ found a bunch of new patterns I want to do on Ravelry this morning while multitasking.
- not enough time to knit xmas gifts.
- new Wordscraper on Facebook is v. bad.
+/- my Brandeis email acct has finally be shut off.
+/- I'm here til 9 tonight, but I get to see my students in a band concert.

My yarns are labelled and inventoried, including the merino/sea cell pictured here. All the rest are also previewed in my flickr photostream. Come visit - Sunday at the Castle in Boston!

made it to the gym two days in a row, shedding what the machines believe to be about 650 calories - that should be enough to make up for the [bacon/caramelized onion/apple] stuffing i will consume on thursday - i'll have to go a couple more times to account for gravy and dessert. also, i bought a pair of pants in a smaller size than usual today. maybe this exercise + eat in not-ridiculous ways thing is working.

almost all the yarn in my house is dyed. i did four different stock yarns today and am hoping they look different enough that i'll be able to differentiate them now that they're dyed. not sure whether that was a good strategy yet.

my muscles ache from the working out and the standing over dye pots. it was a good ache at first, but now it has devolved into a very painful one. i guess that means it's time to turn on House and sit like a lump for a few hours.


Nov. 9th, 2008 01:29 pm

Among other things, since i last updated, I:
-- sold a house, bought a house, moved to Maine
-- started a new job at the U of NH
-- broke the top 100 in competitive Scrabble
-- was accepted to Bazaar Bizarre

That last one has finally motivated me to get my dyeing back in action. We moved into the new house about 2 months ago now, and today, I finally had things more or less in order to get to work. We bought a kit to build a work bench from Home Depot, and refitted it with longer legs, which means I can do all of my dyeing without bending over and straining my back. I worked for about 2 hours today, with no soreness. This is almost a miracle. 

I threw out all of my old dye storage containers at the old house, but found some perfect tupperware-esque containers in town. I now have six stock solutions to dilute and combine to my heart's content. I'm trying to be a little more scientific so that I might be able to actually recreate colors once in awhile, but I admit that my last two skeins of the evening involved dumping small remnants of all the other colors into each other to finish things up.

No leaves on the trees yet, but nice weather, sun and a breeze - perfect conditions for hanging newly-finished handspun yarns out to dry. All of these guys - plus lots of Woolarina Handpaints - will be for sale at the Cloverhill Yarn Shop booth at Maryland Sheep & Wool next month.
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Originally uploaded by kismet09
I found my tupperware of remnants! These are little bits of almost all of the fingering to sport weight yarns that I've dyed for woolarina. They will become a pi shawl. I started yesterday, and it took me about 45 minutes to finally give up trying to start it in the round on dpns. Instead, I knitted the first couple rounds, including the first increase round, on two needles, then moved to the double points. I can fuss with it to make it look like it was joined from the beginning later. This should be a good, mindless knitting project to keep me occupied during our move. Due to timing of buying and selling, we'll be in a rental for a month, with no cable or wireless. I'm going to guess that I'll get a lot of knitting done, or possibly go crazy.

 Most of the time, the yarn that I purchase, dye, and reskein is completely perfect, no knots, no tangles - I just transfer it from one skein to another. This time, not so much. I love the colorway, browns and reds and rust, very autumny. I loved the yarn, too, at first. But, after four hours of untangling, excruciating yard by excruciating yard, I kind of hate it. I will put it in a box somewhere, and hopefully, someday, I will forgive it. It was going to go to, but after all of these hours of work, I feel like I should further tame it by knitting it myself. I don't know what it'll be yet, but it's okay - I probably won't look at it again until next fall.

I have finished three hats in the past three weeks, most recently a beanie out of Plymouth Boku, a new self-striping Silk Garden clone. It took about 2 feet less than the full skein of yarn. I'm almost done with another hat out of Plymouth Jasper, but it's going to take about 10 yards more than a full skein. Having to buy a second skein was a good excuse to spend some quality time on today.

This Cabled Newsboy Cap was a fun little knit, even though I don't love the high-maintenance-ness of using a cable needle (and haven't learned to cable without one yet). This is my own handdyed roving, which I then spun and knitted up into this Stitch n'Bitch Nation pattern. It has been a good project to work while watching Red Sox baseball.

I added a few stitches (using a k10 instead of a k9 in the plain sections) and one extra repeat, but otherwise stayed fairly true to pattern. I like the way it fits, although it's not quite a winter hat and not quite a baseball cap - I guess it's good for this in between weather time. All that's left is finding the plastic mesh to firm up the brim, and sewing everything up!


Oct. 12th, 2007 12:58 pm
fiberlove always languishes in the summer, and this one was no different. but now it's cold again, and the needles are back out. what i've worked on lately:

--hat for a trade on, which is on its way to finland
--two hats for woolarina
--a bunch of new woolarina yarns, most of which were already sold at crafty bastards, but there are nice brown and multi-wine sock skeins left, plus some rovings.
--spun 200ish yards of superwash that i dyed, which is slowly becoming wrist warmers.

i'm also starting to conceptualize xmas gifts. i'm coveting Michelle's Japanese Vines and will probably work up a bunch of handspun hats for the family.

in the rest of my life, the main themes are continued competitive scrabble (i'm the highest rated female in MA right now), much enjoyment of the vegetable season and the meat csa, and the end of the boy's dissertation in sight.

that's what i got. time for some baseball.
Part I: seeing [ profile] sharkycharming - I stayed at her house, and she graciously drove me all over creation. We had fantastic sushi at Matsuri (warning: annoying website) - I had a sweet potato tempura maki, my standby unagi/cucumber maki, tamago and inari. The rolls were huge compared to what I've grown used to here, and the tamago was perfectly sweet. Saturday, we got one game of Scrabble in, and I got to play DOVEKIE. Sunday, we drove a long, long time into DC but didn't get a chance to really hang out there. All of this was punctuated by Starbucks visits. Spending time with her was a nice counterpoint to the stress of Scrabble.

Part II: doubling my career Scrabble earnings in thirteen easy steps - okay, maybe not that easy, but still a pretty quick turnover for winning such big cash. I went 10-3 at my Scrabble tournament, with one bye (my opponent dropped out at the last minute), which was good enough for second place and $1k. I plan to buy some pants, replace all the semi-matching, old tupperware in my house with new stuff, get a tattoo, and then use the rest to play more Scrabble!

Part III: Crafty Bastards - I joined [ profile] woolarina at the fair for a very short time (thanks to the Balt-DC drive taking twice as long as I anticipated). Our yarns and goods went over well, and it was nice to just see all that energy around crafting. I miss it here. I'm not inspired to craft here like I was in Maryland.

In all that excitement, I didn't have time to eat between 9am and 7:30pm on Sunday, save for a bag of almonds I'd picked up at Starbucks, and a few bites of chocolate. By the time I made it to my terminal in the airport, I was pretty light-headed, starving and cranky. The McDonald's I had there was the best I'd had in ages, plus I didn't have to feel guilty for the calories with the lack of food intake over the course of the day. Flight home was uneventful and short, and I slogged through work okay yesterday. It's the slowest time of my academic year (especially since Spring will also bring Tim's job search, and hopefully putting the house on the market and prepping to move), so it's a good time to feed my Scrabble and craft needs.
This is the first object I've finished in an age, which is a sad thing.  This is a very simple palm pilot cozy, ribbed on one side, plain on the other, with a little ribbing at top to keep it happy.  I actually knitted it once as a straight piece with the ribbing on the sides, then sewed it up, but hated the way it looked.  So, I ripped it back, and knitted it on double points, and now it seems better behaved.  I don't even know what yarn this is, but I dyed it a long time ago and it has been languishing in my stash.  Try to ignore the dust on my plant, too :)



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