chocolate brown is really hard to photograph

Friday, July 22, 2005

So last night I cast on 34 stitches of double rib in Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran to make Jesse a scarf. This thing is nearly knitting itself, I knit the first ball last night and a ball and half tonight so I am about 75-80% done. The cashmerino is just divine to knit with. I took about 40 photographs of it this morning (after the first ball). I was outdoors, under a nicely overcast sky and not one, not a single one, of those photos is worth sharing.

Today we decided to delay our return to Sydney by three days so this is well and truly going to be done before we leave, heck I may even have a matching hat done before we leave. And you know what that means - nothing but Rogue the whole way home. Well, if I can get myself organised to get to a book store there may be a little Harry Potter distraction but I am itching to get started on Rogue. Perhaps I will swatch tomorrow, so I can actually wash my swatch for once, before starting a hat. Impatience to get started has always prevented me from washing swatches but I really want Rogue to fit perfectly and if I have something else (quick) to knit while the swatch dries perhaps I will find the patience.

So, any hat recommendations? The yarn is Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran (18 st to 10cm/4in) and the hat is to match a simple ribbed scarf.

how many times can you cast on one hat?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Sophie has gone to my mother in law’s house for a holiday as she has her fire going twenty four seven at the moment, which offers the best chance of getting Sophie dry in time to gift her on Saturday. I forgot to take a photo before sending her off but she felted quite well. Doubling the yarn for the base didn’t turn out to be be the best of ideas but after two trips through the machine and some serious stretching of the body she is proportional enough not to require cutting the bottom off and reattaching it after trimming some excess.

With Sophie done it was time to cast on for Shedir. Or at least it was time to try. I sat down with The Knitter’s Handbook and a ball of calmer and I tried valiantly to make a Tubular cast on. Then I tried the Channel Islands cast on. Then I tried the Alternate Cable cast on. Then I gave up. I actually got close with the Alternate Cable cast on, but I couldn’t be sure I was putting the new stitches on to the needle in the right direction so I ripped that out too.

This morning I went to The Needle Nook to collect the Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed I had ordered in Posie for Rogue.

Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed in Posie

At first I thought they had a fairly small range, but it was just really tightly packed. Amongst other things they had the best range of Debbie Bliss yarn I have seen so far. I am itching to make a pair of socks and there is really no nice sock yarn available locally, this store had the only colour/fiber combination I have seen so far that I could live with, which was a nice chocolate, but I am pining for something a little more feminine. They also had a Debbie Bliss wool cotton in my favourite shade of pink and I nearly bought it on the spot but I just don’t know if it would be appropriate for socks - what do you think? I was immobilised by indecision and got nowhere with the sock yarn choice. But I did buy 4 balls of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran in a nice chocolate brown to make Jesse a scarf (he doesn’t own a single scarf and had to borrow mine when we were in the snow).

Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran in chocloate brown

While I was wondering around the store I overheard the sales assistant talking to an older customer who was sitting near the counter working on her knitting (this is the first time I have seen a customer actually knitting in an Australian yarn store by the way). Just to be clear the customer was the one doing the educating in this conversation. They were discussing cast ons for single rib and I was so excited I had to butt in and ask for a demonstration. I think she was as chuffed to be asked for help as I was to find someone to help me. So pulled out my ball of calmer and she showed both of us the method she had been describing, the Alternate Cable cast on no less. It turns out that I had been doing it pretty much the right way but seeing it in person really gave me confidence. I came home and tried to start Shedir one last time. Success at last!

Shedir cast on

The calmer is oh so lovely running through my fingers. Oddly enough I seem to knit much looser on smaller needles than I do on broomsticks - I never would have guessed. Then again maybe it is just the nature of the calmer.

this explains A LOT

Sunday, July 3, 2005

The Debbie Bliss Cabled Jacket - nearly done, until I realised there was a problem

Can you see it? What about here:

The Debbie Bliss Cabled Jacket - 8 rows too many in the left front.

That extra repeat of the horseshoe pattern goes a long way to explaining why I used as much yarn the second time I knit the left front, despite going down two needles sizes. And why it seemed bigger than the right front. And why I did have the expected amount of yarn left over from the back. And why even after trying twice to line the stitches up correctly I had to ease the left side seam to get it lining up correctly at the ribbing.

Exactly how stupid can one knitter be? Quite stupid apparently. And also somewhat lacking in self control. I was supposed to start Isabelle’s travel quilt last night, but after a wonderful day where I cleaned the house, Jesse sold the old car, we went to see a friends art exhibition, to a yarn store to choose the colour for my next project (I will be using Claudia’s cardi mod), to the museum and the swimming pool I just couldn’t stop with only the collar to go, I had to keep knitting. If I knew then what I know now I probably wouldn’t have bothered.

Kristine was right, there is crying in knitting.

On the up side, in the finishing of this sweater (which I now have to un-finish) I have come to realise that I will only ever wear it when on holiday to colder places (the snow on the way home next week, Adelaide, Melbourne, Blue Mountains etc). Thinking of it as a comfy, cosy, holiday sweater has completely changed my perspective on it and I am over my arm fit issues.Though if I were going to knit this again I would probably take the middle ground and knit the whole thing on 7mm’s. Never the less, YAY for a positive note to end on…

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