Friday, September 26, 2008

News, Updates, Catching up, Overdue...

Local news: Shaw festival knitted vest. Check this article that if found on Ravelry, about the local theatre and a lovely lady who works with wardrobe there, and who I met at the fabulous (although too brief in existance) Serendity Yarns (we miss you). Thought some of you might be interested. The knitter used fingering weight yarn, and the actor is not a small man by any means, and she even steeked, although they do not use the term in the piece.

I have several projects on the go, and none completed, so here they are in their various states of done-ness...

The seed-rib raglan cotton stretch in a deep aqua colour... back done and front almost to shaping. It is a snug, stretchy fit and a colour I love.

The Noro Silver Thaw coat. Double breasted with seed stitch lower half and stocking upper, and seed stitch edging. Easy, fast and fabulously Noro.

The placemats from Debbie Bliss' Premier Issue. A beautiful book full of classic Bliss. Lots of ideas and wonderful photos and inspiration. The placemats are from 3 worsted weight stash yarn held together and it looks great. I will make one more at least, depending how deep my stash goes in these yarns! Pattern will follow for the raglan pullover.....

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Knitting Fair and new yarn!

The knitter's fair was fabulous. It has grown to almost twice the size with 70 verndors in 2 ballrooms. I spent a quick 2 hours browsing and chatting and touching and soaking in the colours and textures and patterns and ideas. I was proud of the conservative 2 purchases and delighted to present to you, the Fleece Artist Mo jacket kit, with a delightful rust blend mohair yarn....
and the huge 8 oz skein of Silken Twist (wool, and silk) in natural, that will become a hand dyed in my kitchen in the near future. Yarns Plus had some lovely hand dyed skeins of this yarn, but I have not dyed anything for a while and the urge was too great to make a one of a kind skein of wool and silk.
Here's a few candid shots of the fair, but not enough to show how immense it was and to reflect the buzz of excitement amoung the knitters.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Kitchener-Waterloo Knitter's Fair

This Saturday is the annual Knitters Fair in KW.... This is a huge event with JUST knitting, and draws vendors from all around Ontario. Check out the list here.

I will be there Saturday afternoon, and spend the rest of the weekend visiting my daughter at her house in Waterloo, where she lives while attending the University of Waterloo (6th year of 7 in the process of becoming a Doctor of Optometry). I will bring the camera and gather names and websites and of course, fabulous yarn bargains while there, so look for a post Sunday night or Monday.

These are the bits of knitting I am working on now. The Peacock Cotton is Esprit from Ram, and has a nice stretch, so I am making a fitted raglan pullover from that, the close up shows the seed stitch rib pattern, but the colour is truer in the larger piece photo.

The other is the Noro Silver thaw cardigan, with seed stitch lower half and stocking stitch upper... Lovely dusty greys and greens.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Colinette Tagliatelli Coat

Finally, I have a few moments to gather the pattern for the Tagliatelli coat. I finished knitting a couple of weeks ago, but it took me a while to finish all the ends and sew on the buttons, and of course it has been way too hot to model the coat for the camera... today it is cool, and it has just finished raining, so I get to it.
This pattern uses two Colinette yarns, one a lovely wool tape that drapes and is light and stretchy and the other a sturdy cotton bulky, both in the same colour family, but the texture is different, and the cotton adds stability and finishes the edges nicely ( I used it for the ribbings and edges and collar).

Yarn: Colinette Tagliatelli (90% wool, 10% nylon)- 4 100gm skeins, and Colinette Crysalis (94% cotton, 6% nylon) 2 100 gm skeins. Both yarns in colour Venezia.
Needles: 8mm (11US)
Finished measurements: 40 inch chest and 32 inch from shoulder to bottom edge.

Back: With 8.0 mm needles and Crysalis, cast on 48 sts. Start rib pattern; K2 P2. Work in rib for 3 inches, then switch to Tagliatelli and stocking stitch (Knit right side, Purl wrong side) Work straight as established until Tagliatelli band is 3.5 inches, then work the Crysalis reverse stocking stitch band (on right side, Purl the first row, Knit 2nd row, Purl the 3rd row, Knit the fourth row). This band will leave a ridge of cotton on the right side of the coat. Return to Tagliatelli and stocking stitch for 3.5 inches and keep alternating yarns and patterns as described until the back is 23 inches from start.
Armhole shaping; Bind off 4 sts at beginning of next 2 rows. Decrease 1 at each side once more. Continue working until piece measures 32 inches. Bind off all stitches.
Front: Make 2,[reverse shaping of 2nd front]. Cast on 24 sts, and begin 2 by 2 rib for 3 inches in Crysalis. Work as for back including same yarn changes and stitch changes, and armhole shaping, and when piece measures 28 inches shape center neckline: Bind off 7 sts at neck edge, then decrease one more on next right side row. Work until same length as back and bind off all stitches.
Sleeves:[make 2]Cast on 20 sts in crysalis, work rib, then tagliatelli and crysalis bands as for back, increasing one stitch at each end on 8th row and every 6th row , until there are 38 sts on needles. Continue until length of sleeve is 19 inches [or desired length].Cap shaping; Bind off 4 sts at beg of next 2 rows. Dec 1 sts every right side row 6 times . Bind off 3 at beg of next 2 rows , then 4 at beg of next 2 rows (4 sts remain). Bind off. Finishing; Using Circular needles (8.0 mm) pick up 90 sts up right front edge with Crysalis, and knit in 2 by 2 rib for 3 rows (right side facing) Button Band: K, P1 [P2together/yarn over loosely/P2together, P1, K2, P2, K2, P1] repeat all that is in the brakets 3 more times, then P2together/ Yarn over loosely, P2together and rib to end. Next row: Rib as established BUT Purl in the front AND back of the Yarn Over from the row below(creates 2 stitches in the yarn over) to re-establish the ribbing as before. Rib as established for 2 more rows and bind off the band in ribbing. Left side, make 2 by 2 ribbing to match the right side(without the big holes!). Collar: With Crysalis pick up 45 around the neckline and work in K1, P1 ribbing for 5 inches, bind off. Sew sleeves into armholes and sew all side seams. Put BIG buttons on left side to match the holes.

Oh, and here are my newest sunglasses. Yes I am a slave to fashion and have caved to the pressure to wear really big sunglasses with bling on the arms (all the rage with Hollywood trendsetters and middle age Canadians alike!)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Noro Blossom Turtleneck - free pattern

Yarn: Noro Blossom , 8 skeins of colour 19 *A* (burgundy, rose and pink), and 2 skeins of 20 *B*(Purple, aqua and green)
Needles: 5mm (US 8)
Gauge: 12 stitches and 17 rows = 4 inches on 5mm(US8)
Finished measurements: Chest 40 inches, length from shoulder: 24 inches
Back: With main colour (A), cast on 56. Work in K1, P1 ribbing for 2 inches. On the last row, increase 3 stitches across the row. Change to stocking stitch (Knit the right side and Purl the wrong side throughout), work 15 stitches in (A), then add a ball of (B) and knit 7, Then add another ball of (A) and knit 15, Repeat with (B) for 7 then a final ball of (A) for 15. You will work the whole piece with 5 balls of yarn, alternating A,B,A,B,A and twist the new yarn around the last yarn so as not to leave a gap.
You continue knitting in the pattern vertical stipes with these yarns for 16.5 inches, then bind off 5 stitches at the start of the next 2 rows (armhole shaping for the sleeve placement)
Work straight again until the total length is 24 inches from the start. Bind off all stitches.
Front: Work the same as the back, through the armhole shaping, until total length is 21 inches.
neck shaping: Work across until the center (A) block is reached. Bind off all these 15 stitches, and work across the rest of the row. On the next row, decrease ONE stitch at each side of the neck edge. Continue to knit both sides of the front piece until the length matches the back (24 inches). Bind off the remaining stitches on both shoulders.
Sleeve: With colour (A) cast on 25 stitches, and rib for 2 inches. Change to stocking stitch, knit with just (A) increase one stitch at each end of the row, every 6 rows, until 46 stitches are on the needles. Continue even until the sleeve measures 21 inches (or desired length - I have long arms!) Bind off all stitches. ** on my sleeves I used a bit of leftover colour (B) as a stipe in the middle of each sleeve, kind of randomly placed, just for fun (and certainly optional).

Join shoulder seams and using short circular needles (or double point needles) in 5mm (US8), pick up 58 stitches evenly around the neck. Start a K1, P1 ribbing, work around and around and around until turtleneck is 7.5 inches long, or as long as you want (1 inch would make a nice crew neck). Bind off very loosely. Sew the sleeve straight into the flat part of the armhole, and the short bit of bind off to the first inch of the sleeve. Then join from the wrist to the hip.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Cool New Stuff

I decided to sign up for the yarn sample subscription from Elann. They send once a month, 10 yard yarn samples from each of the tuesday special releases, and small snippets of all the colours available. This would allow a swatch to be knit (and played with) before a decision to order the yarn. The cost of this service is minimal AND you get all of that amount back in credits towards future purchases of yarn.... and this is what arrived today.
I like that the yarn samples are colour co-ordinated, so it all looks so nice together, and there is enough to really feel the yarn. The danger is that I will want them ALL. Even I cannot knit a new garment every week.
I also finished the Noro Blossom turtleneck and I think it is one of my favourite finished projects ever. The pattern is in the works and will arrive here in one or two days...
The long weekend was a treat for us. We spent two nights at Peak'n Peak in western NY. The resort is primarily a ski resort, at the base of many slopes and lifts. We had a one bedroom condo, overlooking the lower golf course (hole number 7) and it was quite lovely. We played golf (of course) on the lower and upper course, and the views were spectacular.....
as you can see. We had some great eats and some $1 drafts and watched fireworks, all to celebrate our wedding anniversary! (the fireworks weren't actually for OUR anniversary, that was just a happy coincidence!).

On the drive to the resort and back I started and got half way up the back of the Esprit Seed Rib pullover that is my next design. This yarn is fun to knit since it is cotton (nice to the touch) but has a bit of stretch to it, so the cotton sweater does not stretch out longer and longer, the longer you wear it! (not a big fan of most 100% cotton handknits because of that.)