30 Day Knitting Challenge – Days 7 & 8

I actually made it 48 hours without being on the computer. Let me tell you…it really helped a lot! I went and got a pedicure on Tuesday and relaxed the rest of the day; catching up on some shows on my DVR. Yesterday my husband and I went on an afternoon date to see Star Trek Beyond and grab a bite to eat. It was his last day of vacation and we wanted to do something outside of the house. The movie was great but the company was even better.

Day 7’s question piggy-backed off of day 6 and asks:

Your least favorite? (as in your least favorite project you’ve knit)

Melinda Cloth by Norma Wampler

I think if I were to knit this again, it might be enjoyable. I was only a couple of months into knitting and wanted something that was quick and easy…instant knitting gratification. The only reason why I did not enjoy knitting this was because of the yarn. It was my first time knitting with 100% cotton and I decided at that point that I would never knit with it again. It hurt my hands. Or so I thought. Now I know that I probably had too tight of a gauge and that was what was causing my hands to cramp up. I am happy to report that I am knitting with cotton again and may even attempt this pattern again at some point.

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Peaches & Creme Solids in the color Orchid

Day 8: What’s your most challenging project?

Stepping Stones Kit by Iris Schreier

If you click on that link, you will see copious notes on my Ravelry page for this project. I don’t know why I thought I was ready for short rows and lace just a few months into my knitting journey…I was being brave and adventurous, I guess. I frogged so many times that I think I could have made three of these shawls in that amount of time now. Just reading back through them makes me shudder. I still have the shawl and have only worn it a couple of times. Maybe it needs to go in my gift pile? Or maybe I should keep it for the memories? I do remember it was the first time I was ever featured as a photo on a project page and that made it really special to me and worth all the hard work.

I blogged about the project here and here.

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I had a request by Bekki from The Dartmoor Yarn Company to show my 3 Color Cashmere Cowl worn properly instead of pulled up as a tube over my head (as shown in Day 6 of the blogging challenge, so here’s your pic Bekki!

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The 30 Day Knitting Challenge is the creation of Meggiewes who blogs at Knitting in Wonderland.

And since Thursdays are usually about the socks, here’s my list of fellow sock knitters. I desperately hope to be rejoining them soon!

Check out Maggie at Project(s) in Progress and Katherine at fiber and sustenance and see what they are up to this week!

Also on our Thursday Sock Buddy list, however away on break are:

Alex – alexandknits

Hannah – unsophisticated+jejune

Jennifer – a creative yarn

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

 

 

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FO – 3 Color Cashmere Cowl & WIP

I recently shared a post talking about my 3 Color Cashmere Cowl designed by Joji Locatelli, which was at that time a WIP. It’s now finished and I’m excited to share the results! This was an absolute dream to work on and I really enjoyed seeing everyone’s color combinations and creativity with the pattern. The KAL is still going on and if you’d like to join in, head over to Stef or Julie’s Ravelry Group and cast on! The due date is 3/31 and this is a cowl that can easily be completed in that timeframe.

The yarn was so soft and luxurious and a pleasure to knit up! I know this is going to keep me super warm on cold California nights.

Ravelled Here: 3 Color Cashmere Cowl

Started 2/19/16 – Finished 3/8/16

Needles Used: US 5 – 3.75mm Circulars

Yarn Used: Color A = Curiosity (Madelinetosh DK), Color B = Sugar Plum (Madelinetosh Merino DK), Color C = Mourning Dove (Madelinetosh DK)

This was my first time using more than one color in a knit project and I learned how to create jogless stripes by using this video from Knit Purl Hunter.

My current WIP is The Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief, which is a free pattern on Ravelry. This is part of my #1year12skeins12projects for the month of March. I’ve never worked with Malabrigo Rastita before and I must say I am in love with the color saturation and the softness of the yarn. The color I’m using is called Dewberry and is a rich, deep purple with lighter hints here and there. This is going to be another well loved project and it’s so easy to knit up.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

 

FO – Miramar Shawlette

Hi All!

I can finally share the test project I worked on recently, as the pattern is now live! You might remember me mentioning it as the shawlette of forever 🙂 That’s only because of the hand issues I was going through at the time. It’s actually a beautiful cable and lace shawlette designed for a Canadian yarn company.

One thing that I love about Linda Browning‘s patterns is the ability to increase or decrease the size to what you want. I followed the pattern exactly due to my Cubital Tunnel Syndrome; however would have loved to make this larger. It’s that beautiful. If you check out the project page for the pattern, you’ll see that some testers did make it in varying sizes. This is my fourth test knit for her and I have loved every single pattern/design.

Ravelled Here: Miramar Shawlette

Started 12/28/15 – Completed 1/26/16 (would have been faster; however I was sick for a week and couldn’t knit, in addition to my CTS)

Needles: US 5 – 3.75 mm circular HiyaHiya Sharps; started with the 24″ cable and switched out to the 36″ cable when it got too long

Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Mechita in the color Teal Feather (70 grams)

Made For: Me, Me, Me!!!!

With this project, I learned how to tink cables, tink S2KP, and how to read a chart. I think you’ll agree that the effort was well worth it!

I’ve got another FO; however it’s in the process of blocking…more on that soon!

Until next time, Happy Knitting! (P.S. You can click on the images to make them larger.)

 

All three hats

FO – Three Hats for Miss Maria

I told you about my friend Gabby’s daughter, Maria, in another post earlier this week. She’s making excellent progress so far and Gabby appreciates all the prayers that have come her way for healing and strength. I’ve now completed three, yes count them, three adorable hats that I hope she will love! All three are made out of super soft yarn, so they will not hurt her head when wearing them. In addition, they are able to be machine washed and dried. I know this will make it easier on Gabby.

All three hats were easy and used less than one skein of yarn. I put a lot of love and prayers into them while knitting. Here are the details, with links to the free patterns on Ravelry:

Hat 1

Ravelled Here: Lacy Girly Fancy Hat by Alexandra Walters

Started 10/9/15 – Finished 10/14/15

Needles: US 7 – 4.5 mm 40 inch circulars using the Magic Loop method

Yarn: Caron Simply Soft in the color Plum Wine

I learned a new lace pattern that is easy to memorize and that I do not like working the first few round with this yarn. It’s kind of splitty; however worked up into a beautifully soft hat. This one may be slouchy on Maria because of the length; however the ribbon makes it adjustable and she should be able to wear this one for a very long time.

Hat 2

Ravelled Here: Barley by tincanknits

Started 10/14/15 – Finished 10/16/15

Needles: US 6 – 4.0 mm 16 inch circulars for the ribbing; US 8 – 5.0 mm 16 inch circulars for the body (switched to 40 inch circulars for magic loop to finish decreases)

Yarn: Berroco Comfort Prints in the color Sachet Mix

This was my first time working with this yarn and I love the way the color pooled differently in the garter stitch versus the stockinette stitch. This yarn was a joy to work with! This one may also be a little slouchy. as I was initially measuring the garter stitch side (6″) instead of the stockinette side (7″) and was supposed to stop at 6 inches before the decrease section.

Hat 3

Ravelled Here: Azalea Hat by Snapdragon Crafts

Started 10/17/15 – Finished 10/17/15 (This was a 2 hour project for me!)

Needles: US 13 – 9.0 mm 16 in circulars (switched to DPNs for decreases)

Yarn: Lion Brand Hometown USA in the color Phoenix Azalea

I’ve worked with this yarn before. It is so easy to knit with and works up super fast because of the bulkiness and large needles. This is the first time I’ve worked with an i-Cord and I love the pixie look of the top of the hat. When you look down on it, it almost looks like the cherry on top on top of a sundae 🙂 It was also my first time decreasing a hat using DPNs instead of the Magic Loop method.

I’ve got pictures of all three hats together, as well as individual pics. Until next time…

Happy Knitting!

All three hats

All three hats – What a joy to knit for Miss Maria!

Lacy Girly Fancy Hat

Lacy Girly Fancy Hat – I love the ribbon that makes this adjustable!

Barley

Barley – Super simple garter and stockinette come together in a simple, yet beautiful design!

Azalea Hat

Azalea Hat – I love the color and the pixie look from the i – Cord top!

Charity's Wrap - Final Pics!

FO – Charity’s Wrap / WIP – Folded Squares Cardigan

I’m so happy I can share final pictures of one my latest FO’s (Finished Objects)! I’ve been chomping at the bit to share the full project with you. Charity’s Wrap went live on Ravelry today and guess what? It’s a free pattern! Isn’t that exciting news? This was a very simple project, with a bit of easy lace thrown in for good measure. It’s meant for someone new to lace and is super easy.

You may remember some of my other posts about this project where I was just starting the project here and the blocking process of acrylic here. Those two posts really contain all the information…or you can check out my notes on Ravelry. While you are there, want to add me as a friend? I love looking at others notes, pictures and projects for inspiration!

In addition to starting my next pair of socks (more on that Thursday!), I’ve also decided to cast on for my very first Cardigan. I figured if I can knit a pair of socks, why can’t I knit a sweater? The pattern is free from Purl Soho and is called Folded Squares Cardigan. One of my knitterly friends made it and brought it to our weekly MeetUp group and it looked fantastic on all body shapes and sizes. I knew it would be the perfect start for me to begin my foray into sweater knitting.

I’m using size US 8 – 5.0 mm 40″ circular knitting needles and the yarn is Knit Picks Comfy Sport in the color Planetarium. I originally ordered the color Whisker; however they were low on stock and I wanted to start this ASAP. I’m so glad they were as the color is gorgeous and for only $2.99 a skein, how could you go wrong? The yarn is super soft and is working up beautifully! I was going to tell you how many rows I am into this; however I just updated to iOS9 on my iPhone and the app I use is not opening 😦 Looks like I’ll be counting by ridges instead of rows after all! Darn technology! You have to learn something new every day, right? Until next time…

Happy Knitting!

Charity's Wrap - Final Pics!

Charity’s Wrap – Final Pics!

Charity's Wrap - Back View

Charity’s Wrap – Back View

All snuggled up!

All snuggled up!

One more view!

One more view!

Cardigan Progress

Cardigan Progress

Close up view - Cardigan

Close up view – Cardigan

FO – Summer 2015 Knitalong Stepping Stones Shawl

I’m so excited that I finally finished this! It’s a beautiful yarn to work with (Artyarns Merino Cloud in Color 904 – Mood Ring) and a stunning free pattern, just for buying the yarn. I learned so much…my first CDD, SSK, short rows, and lace sections. At first, I thought I had taken on too much. As my Ravelry notes show, there was some frustration; however I made it through to the end. I’ll post my notes below the pictures. Do you think it’s too much and I should edit? Or maybe it would be helpful for someone else that’s a newer knitter to learn from? I also just got asked to be a featured photo on the pattern page! That’s so awesome 🙂

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5/29/15 – I completed the swatch with size 10 needles.

6/7/15 – Completed part one of the pattern. I had to frog and redo rows 1-9 three times before I finally started using a lifeline. I don’t know why I was having such trouble with it because the pattern is written perfectly. User error 🙂 I’ve decided to just do the one skein shawl, as I want to learn how to knit short rows.

6/9/15 – Onto Part Two of the pattern. I’ve gotten quite an education after reading the pattern wrong and doubling each short row (didn’t realize when it said Rows 1 & 2 that the purl back was row 2), frogged back, did it again and was successful. Now to tackle the other side! I completed the short rows; however when I got back to Row 1 of the beginning of the third repeat, I had the wrong stitch count (btw, there should be 65 stitches after you finish Row 14 of 1st set of short rows). My lifeline was at the beginning of the short row section, so frogged once again! Then for some reason, I couldn’t get the counts right – 5 times…frogged again. I finally put it away and came back to it today. Success! I’m onto the third repeat!

6/10/15 – The third repeat is complete! Fourth repeat is six rows in. I must resist the urge to continue knitting when I have to be up at 5:30am.

6/11/15 – The fourth repeat is complete; after having to frog because I missed a stitch. Onto my next set of short rows!

6/13/15 – The fifth repeat is complete; after having to frog four times because I miscounted. I really need to get better at the short rows 😦 When I make this again, I’m going to try it without short rows. I think the progress will be much faster! I just counted and need 101 stitches to start the sixth repeat. I’ve counted three times and still only come up with 100 stitches. Argh!!!! I’m going to try to see where I went wrong and if I can just increase a stitch instead of frogging again 😦 Update: I found these instructions and they saved my bacon 🙂 http://techknitting.blogspot.com/2007/05/very-nearly-invi…

6/15/15 – The sixth repeat is complete. Once again, I missed picking up a yo; however I’ve found the mistake and will be able to pick it up on the beginning of the seventh repeat. You need 113 stitches to start the seventh repeat.

6/16/15 – The seventh repeat is complete. I’m going to switch to German Short Rows for the eighth repeat and see if it’s easier to keep count 🙂 And…just like that! The eight repeat is done! German short rows are so much easier!!!

6/17/15 – I’m glad I asked, otherwise I would have continued on with the short rows! Clarification on one skein short row shawl:

Repeat 1: Rows 1-8 regular
Repeat 2: Rows 1-14 short rows
Repeat 3: Rows 1-8 regular
Repeat 4: Rows 1-8 regular
Repeat 5: Rows 1-14 short rows
Repeat 6: Rows 1-8 regular
Repeat 7: Rows 1-8 regular
Repeat 8: Rows 1-14 short rows
Subsequent repeats 9+: Rows 1-8 regular

6/20/15 – The ninth repeat is complete. I haven’t had as much time to knit the last few days due to my work schedule 😦 Hoping to get further along this weekend 🙂 The 10th repeat is complete. I probably could have had more done; however I have a sick husband and severe ADD today.

6/21/15 – The 11th repeat is complete.

6/24/15 – The 12th repeat is complete. Two more to go until I’m finished with Part 2 of the pattern 🙂

6/27/15 – The 13th repeat is complete.

6/28/15 – The 14th repeat is complete, which means Part 2 is finished! I finished with exactly 209 stitches, so the counting paid off. I have 30 grams of yarn left for Part 3.

6/30/15 – I received Part 3 of the pattern yesterday. I was finished with the first three rows and had to frog back to the end of Part 2. I’m not sure how my counting got away from me; however, I had an extra stitch at the end of Row 3. Also, I am getting 16 repeats instead of 14 as the pattern was written.

7/1/15 – I completed Rows 1-6 of the 16 rows included in Part 3.

7/4/15 – I counted my stitches in row 5 and they were perfect. I did not count in row 6 because I figured it was the same stitch count as row 5. I was at the end of row 7 and found out I had added a stitch in row 6. I’m not sure how I did it, but I did. I just frogged back to row 5 and I have the correct number of stitches. I went ahead and added stitch markers for each section just so I will know if I mess up again. Lesson learned…count after every row!!! I completed Rows 6-9 today.

7/5/15 – Frogged back to row 7 again after not putting in a lifeline on rows 8-9 and realized that I had an extra stitch at the end of row 10. Knit all the way back up to row 10 and realized that all of the middle sections of my diamonds are falling out now that I’ve removed my lifeline in that row. This is so extremely frustrating!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m going to frog back to the beginning of Part 2 and start over. Unfortunately, I don’t have a closer lifeline than that section as I’ve been removing them row by row.

7/6/15 – I completed rows 1-10 again in Part 3 of the pattern today. Yes, I’m on vacation 🙂 I figured out that I made a mistake in following exactly what the pattern said for row 8 the first time. There are yo3 times in row 7 and row 8 stated to k1, p across to last stitch, k1. You cannot complete three purl stitches in a yo3 times. This was clearly written out in Part 2 of the pattern, but not Part 3. It would have unraveled whether or not I had the lifeline in that row once I removed it. Halfway done with Part 3 again!

7/7/15 – I completed rows 11-16 today. I’m 1/4 of the way through the bind off and wanted to finish today as I started on 6/7; however, I don’t think it’s going to happen. Tomorrow morning is soon enough 🙂

7/8/15 – I completed the bind off and wove in the ends. Now to block it before the final picture! I had 6 grams of yarn left over.

7/9/15 – Final pictures are up!

Frogging, Lifelines, and Lace! Oh boy!

I have learned that when you are working on a lace project, and you have a husband who likes to interrupt your counting (or you get distracted and just lose count), it is inevitable that you will have to frog or tink backwards in your work. Luckily, I learned about lifelines from the very first knitting group that I went to through Meetup.com. If you’ve never heard of a lifeline, watch this quick demonstration showing one way of creating it. Using a Lifeline

I use either a piece of yarn that is a lighter weight than the yarn I’m working with or a piece of unwaxed dental floss. I learned the hard way that thread may break and then you have to start over.

I’m working on the Stepping Stones KAL Summer ’15 and finished Part 2 of the pattern. Here’s a pic of it after I counted to make sure I had 209 stitches and before I added the lifeline. Unfortunately for me, I only added one right here.

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I got to the end of the third row in Part 3 of the pattern and realized that I had an additional stitch 😦 I counted over and over…can you feel my pain? I tried to tink (knit spelled backwards) back across the row to find my mistake…alas, I was unable to. I put it down, walked away, and went and made / ate dinner. I came back to it again. I still had one too many stitches.

So, the frogging began. Thank goodness for that lifeline! *Pic was taken late at night, so the full beauty of the yarn is not revealed. These are the live stitches before pulling them out.

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I decided to be a little more strategic this time and am placing a lifeline in every row 🙂 It looks like a mess, but better safe than sorry! Do you use lifelines in your knitting?

Happy Knitting!