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FO Friday 4: Dreambird

Seems like my posts are getting heavy on shawls. Not to break the habit, here comes another one.
Dreambird

I finished my Dreambird. I’ve been eyeing the pattern for a while and decided to go for it right before our road trip this summer. Shawl and car ride seem like a good combination. If I were smarter I would actually finish the first feather before setting on the road. The instructions were way to wordy and lengthy to attempt in the car. That poor shawl (or rather wound balls of yarn) drove with me some 6,000 miles across the United States, then flew with me to Europe, drove another 2,000 miles on our European vacation only to fly back to US without much progress being made.

In Spring we made a trip to NYC. I made my family follow me to Lion Brand Studio, where I got two balls of their LB Mohair Silk yarn. That’s what I used for the main color. For the feathers I spun FatCatKnits Merino Bamboo blend in Buster colorway.

After finishing the first feather, I found it very useful to use only the page with number of stitches for each row (pg. 16). That was I did not need to read through pages of explanations, everything was neatly on one page. My husband commented it looked like some secret code.

I am rather pleased with the result. The two balls of Mohair Silk were enough for “only” 17 feathers. But the shawl is plenty big.

Here is another picture of my Dreambird hugging a tree:

DSCF3769

 
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Posted by on October 11, 2013 in Knitting, Spinning

 

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FO Friday #2: Albuquerque Mitts

Albuquerque Mitts by kpetra
DSCF3426, a photo by kpetra on Flickr.
Happy Friday all!
These mitts were my summer project. I am usually a magic loop knitter. This time, I decided to challenge myself and try DP needles again. I don’t have many stranded knitting projects under my belt and the few I made were more or less a struggle. I am a Continental knitter, tensioning my yarn with my left hand. With stranded knitting, I tried to balance both yarns on the same finger. Not a very pleasant experience. This time I tried to get a little help with KnitPicks stranded knitting guide. That did not work much either. Definitely not KnitPicks’ fault. So I did what I wanted to try for a long time. I did combination of Continental and throwing, each hand controlling one of the colors. I am still not fully proficient, but getting better at it.
As with any stranded knitting, weaving in the ends is tedious.

DSCF3382

After finishing the mitts, weaving the ends in, soaking and blocking them, my daughter pointed out I’d goofed up. Can you see where?

Albuquerque Mitts

Yeah, I messed up the colors on the top of the mitts. Again. I made the very same mistake on the bottom, had to rip it out. Did not occur to me the mistake got ingrained in my brain. There was no way I’d be redoing the top after I proclaimed the mitts done. I call it a design element!
Stats: used KnitPicks Palette in 6 different colors:

1981 Whirpool – 19g ~ 88y
C821 Blue Note Heather – 9g ~ 42Y
6882 Sky – 4g ~ 19y
C707 Golden Heather – 5g ~ 23y
C809 Salsa Heather – 8g ~ 37y
C843 Garnet Heather – 6g ~ 28y

DP needles US1

Pattern: Albuquerque Gloves by Cailyn Meyer

Please, go over to tami’s amis and check more FOs.
 
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Posted by on September 20, 2013 in Knitting

 

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FO Friday 1: Mini Bubbles

Mini Bubbles by kpetra
Mini Bubbles, a photo by kpetra on Flickr.

Summer is technically over, kids are back to school and I am trying to get back to the swing of things. Tami’s amis is hosting FO Fridays and this is my attempt to be part of it.

We had a great summer, went on a cross country road trip and then spend half of the summer in Europe. I have a tendency to overpack my knitting and spinning supplies (forget the clothes as long as mommy has something to keep her hands busy) and as usual I did not disappoint. I did a quick math, well over 60 hours spent in the car driving should push me well into FO territory on a good number of the projects. Yeah. Not so true. I did not account for my share of driving, planning the route, demands of the kids and such.

At least my Mini Bubbles got well under way. I continued working on it in Europe, brought it back and finally finished last week. It’s a fun shawl pattern by Kieran Foley using dropped stitches.

I used my handspun in Gale’s Art colorway Scarab and Coctail on variegated BFL. It is spun as singles, slightly fulled. The finished yarn is slightly fuzzy, which made dropping the stitches major pain. Instead of goind “whoosh” and dropping the full column in no time, I had to manually go stitch by stitch and undo them. I love the final effect though.

Now hop over to tami’s amis to see what others have finished this week.

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2013 in Knitting, Spinning

 

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WIP wednesdays 1

DSCF0318 by kpetra
DSCF0318, a photo by kpetra on Flickr.

Through nothingbutknit blog, I came across WIP wednesdays hosted by tami’s amis. I though it was a great idea to get me into routinely posting and to see what other people are up to!

If I were to share all my WIPs (Work In Progress), I would be typing for a while. It can get into embarrassing proportions.

Today, I will share only one project and see how it goes. After all, this is my first WIPW!

Couple of weeks ago, I went deep stash diving. I needed a small portable project on my needles. I found 2 skeins of Claudia Hand Painted Fingering. With only 175 yards to a 50 grams skein, it is more of a sport weight than fingering. Ever since the Java socks pattern came up on Knitty.com, I wanted to knit a pair. I never had the right yarn for it.

Because of the limited yardage, I made relatively short leg – only about 4.5 inches. I kept my fingers crossed to have enough yarn for my long feet. One sock is done and I have little bit yarn left over from the first ball. Onto the sock number two.

I know people commented on going nuts from all the tiny cables. I use cabling without the cable needle method and it is manageable. Maybe not as mindless as one would wish, but it is doable even while watching TV. (If you really don’t care too much what is on TV.)

Now, check out what others are working on over at tami’s amis!

Via Flickr:
WIP Wednesday 3/20/2013

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2013 in Knitting

 

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Wurm hat

Wurm hat by kpetra
Wurm hat, a photo by kpetra on Flickr.

On Super Bowl Sunday, we decided to play along and visited two local LYS, who offered Super Sales.

As a reward, my girl got to pick a yarn. Little did I know, that she has an expensive taste. She picked possibly the most expensive yarn the store had to offer. But promise is a promise. With much grumping I bought it for her.

She wanted a hat. I love this pattern (Wurm). The brim is doubled, which comes very handy and comfortably warm in our parts of the world.

When we visited the second LYS, she found a button. I did not have the yarn with me, did not know if and how it would pool. I knitted the hat first, went back to the store and voila, the button was just perfect!

My little lady must be happy with the hat as well, as she wore it every single day ever since I finished.

Stats: Yarn – Mountain Colors Twizzle (85% Merino, 15% silk; DK to light worsted)
Needles – US 4 for brim, US 6

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2013 in Knitting

 

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Spring is here, I am still thinking winter

I see signs of spring everywhere. On Monday I saw a robin, today red-winged blackbirds. Cardinals are happily singing away. Sun is shining. Thermometer touched 50F and is still climbing.

Having lived in Buffalo for a while, I don’t get fooled that easily, though. Every year, robins come ahead of spring and then jump around dumbfounded as they try to find food under snow few days later. I am still thinking winter, snow, cold. Not having much of a winter this year only proves my case.

My husband is an avid photographer. Unlike me, he doesn’t mind getting out in the wee hours, standing in cold and waiting for the perfect light and perfect everything to take a perfect picture. I decided he really deserved decent mittens to keep him warm. I found pattern for flip-top gloves in Folk Mittens by Marcia Lewandowski.

It’s a basic pattern for gloves with a flip-top. The pattern recommends US2 needles and worsted weight yarn. With US2 needles there’s no way to get the gauge I needed. The body of the mitten is twined knit, without actually crossing the yarn in the back. In fact, it’s basic colorwork, using both ends of the yarn ball.

I had worsted weight handspun targhee in Flannel colorway. To stretch is further, I decided to use it along with black Patons Classic Wool.

I had to make several adjustments for the mittens to fit. First of all, I omitted the fingers. They were way too bulky and uncomfortable. I knit the ribbing on US2 using only the handspun. For the body of the mitten I switched to US4 and used both the handspun and the black, with the handspun being carried below the black (when doing color work, the lower floats yarn becomes visually dominant compared to the one that is carried above).

For the flip top I tried to follow the pattern directions. But it asked for the same number of stitches as were in the mitten. There is some bulk to the mittens, due to the worsted weight yarn and twining. Flip top of the same size as the mitten squeezes the fingers and makes the whole mitten very uncomfortable. Instead of fiddling with different number of stitches I decided to go up in needle size. The flip top was cast on US2 needles, then I knitted 2 rows in rib and stockinette, increased 2 stitches and switched to US6 needles.

After several false starts and much of frustration, the mittens of doom are finished. They have been field tested  and approved of. Our friend (another avid photographer) admiringly hinted that he might like a pair like that as well.

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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