Friday, December 26, 2008


The cardigan is done!

I was warned by the daughter of a very seasoned German knitter that zippers were hell. She'd done one once -- 20 years ago -- and swore them off forever. Hmmmph.

With lots of perturbation, I pored over online tutorials here, here, here and here. I ended up with a hybrid of links 2 & 4, mostly, and remembered many things from my sewing days. First, I tacked the stripes together with small pieces of red yarn. I then whipstitch-basted the fronts together with the silver yarn, being careful to stay in the same row for an even edge.

Turned the sweater inside out, then pinned the zipper -- face down -- onto the flaps from the front pieces. I then whipstitched the edge of the zipper to the edge of the front flaps & then basted down the centers of the zipper on each side. The pins came out, I turned the sweater rightside-out again, and then came the moment of truth of removing the yarn basting.

Beautiful! The stripes matched! I spent several hours yesterday then going over the basting and backstitching the zipper in place by hand. Not going to take it near a sewing machine after all that work...

The sweater is warm and cozy, and the lengthening adjustments I made seem to have worked perfectly, albeit a little bunchy in the sleeves. It's not been blocked yet, though, so that can probably be remedied. The body, however, is bespoke!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Ok, this is good.

I can confidently say that this sweater is going to fit. One sleeve attached and seamed all the way through. It fits!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Finishing Up

Ande was kind enough to take a few photos as I joined the shoulder seams and started the collar on the cardigan. These were Sunday night -- the collar is now finished, and I'm sewing on the sleeves. Yay, mattress stitch.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

More Triumphs

After a few sloppier attempts, I'm finally getting the hang of the purled increase as I start my first sleeve. This cardigan project has been good, as each step adds one or two new challenges. As I was working through my last row, I was reading ahead in the pattern for the instructions for the collar -- in so doing, I noticed I was knitting while reading. This is progress!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Cardigan Progress

The back and both fronts are now done, started on the first sleeve tonight. Trying to reverse all the shapings mentally was tough -- the pattern didn't lay it out for me -- but I think I did ok. If not, the errors are in the armpits anyway.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I'll admit

Even I thought this blog might be dead...but cold weather is back, and so is my knitting!

Just started the right front panel tonight. The back and left front are done, sleeves and collar are not yet started. The goal? Ready for skiing.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

baked goods

While knitting, and crafting in general, had taken a backseat to all the beautiful, long-lasting and only slightly dented IKEA pieces needing to be built, I think my brand new Boston Back Bay apartment is finally set-up enough to welcome a crafty atmosphere. There are multiple projects in various states of unfinished-ness, but instead I decided to start some new and fabulous baked goods.

Yup. I've been whipping up a storm with plenty of cupcake frosting to go around.

I found a great pattern for cupcakes in One Skein (by Leigh Radford, Interweave Press 2006), modeled after the Anthropologie cover a few years back. The icing topping knits SO FAST - under 10 minutes! - that I already have four tops and counting. I still need to start the base "papers", but it reads as though they shouldn't take too much longer. It's already been a great way to get rid of extra yarn, as all I've bought so far is the novelty fluffy stuff to make the top softer and less knitted-looking.

I figure these cute little things will be a nice homemade touch to all my streamlined antiques and IKEA pieces. I just hope no one tries to eat them..


It's kind of hard to tell in this photo, but this scarf is in two different colors. The first half was done in Manos del Uruguay's French Blue, yarn that I'd bought in Oakland on the way to the San Francisco airport in anticipation of a long delay. I cast on 26 stitches in k1, p1 on 5.5mm needles (in honor of my 26th year of life, which was starting 3 days later), and ended up wanting a longer scarf than one hank created, so I had my Oakland buddy Darin go back to the yarn store for more from the same dye lot. Sadly, they were out, so over the phone, he described various other colors. We ended up settling for Juniper, which has a teal-green cast to it.

There is a straight-up swap of the two colors about halfway through the scarf (the Juniper hank ended up knitting about 6 inches longer than the French Blue), and with a wrap around the neck, you've got two shades of bright blue in front! And it's warm......

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Sock #2 has been abandoned temporarily (though it's still traveling around with me in my bag) as I enter full on SWEATER MODE!

(note also handmade hat from the pre-Christmas mega-hat-making extravaganza)

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Starting a Sweater...

So when I was in Colorado, I bought some decadent yarn (Mirasol Sulka, 60% Merino Wool, 20% Alpaca & 20% Silk) to make my first cardigan. I made a tension swatch that was one stitch too many per 4" width. I made another swatch that was far too few. Another that was far too many. I'm sticking with the first set of 6mm needles as suggested by the pattern, and if the sweater is too small, Emily gets to say I told you so.

This is what it is supposed to look like, but mine has a base color of a dark almost-black blue, with deep red and silvery-gray for the stripes.


Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A Finished Sock

I failed to inform you of my sock triumph. I completed the first one two Saturdays ago, and it fits! It's made on needles that are too big to make a dense gauge, but nonetheless, a completed sock.

The gusset (heel)

The toe (this will get better, but I conquered the kitchener stitch)

Done! Now, to block it and make a second...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Dottie's "Helping" Tonight

I made it around the bend!

The heel wasn't actually that hard, but picking up the stitches was a little tricky. I do have quite a few knit/purl mistakes throughout the sock, but WOW! I made it through the toughest part, and now I've got a fun little sock puppet with scary pointy teeth!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

All that sock!

The woman at Nha Trang (yum yum Vietnamese food in Lincoln) was impressed as I worked on my sock while waiting for my take-out.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Do Something Cool

We make things. And they are cool.

I'm currently buried in lots of knitting. Today, I got some sock yarn for my birthday. I've never made socks, or used double-pointed needles, so I started a practice pair this afternoon.

I worked the first 1 1/2 inches in a knit1, purl1 rib, and now I'm working the main part of the sock in a k3, p1 ribbing. This sock matches my cat.

Progress so far:

Other knitting projects, currently:

A bright blue scarf (Manos del Uruguay yarn, French Blue #60) started at San Francisco Int'l Airport on a 2-hour delay, without enough yarn to finish it.

A cardigan that I haven't gotten the gauge right for, partly because I need to try the needles that are currently occupied with said scarf.

The beautiful striped tube/sweater/skirt/top/who knows in the round that I started years ago and don't know how I'll finish.