Posts Tagged ‘stranded’

2 out of 4 Now Completed!

Friday, December 16th, 2011

I have finished my Christmas stocking:

Laura's Christmas Stocking

And now only two more to go!

Pattern:A NEW Mom’s Christmas Stocking by Dorene Delaney Giordano from her Ravelry Store (Note – This is a toe-up pattern)
My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): Patons Pure Merino.
Colorway(s): Purple and Gray.
Needle(s): US 3– 3.25 mm
Casted On: November 5, 2011
Casted Off: December 4, 2011
Modifications:  Like with the previous stocking, I wanted to make it bigger. I based the instep on 60 stitches (3 pattern repeats) and the sole on 40, making the total stitch count 100 and not what the pattern stated-100.

This made the fabric VERY dense so towards the end of knitting it, it was a rather rough knit! But I still like the final result:
Laura's Christmas Stocking

I just love stars so I knew this pattern had to be the one for my stocking. :-)

Laura's Christmas Stocking

I am not entirely sure I’ll get Layla and Luna’s stocking done in time for CHRISTMAS DAY but I hope to get them done within a months time. I’ve started on Ms. Luna’s:

Luna's Christ Stockin

She is a kitty that loves being in the center of attention. She has a super hero complex as well. So I found it only appropriate to use bright colors for her.

Layla on the other hand is a very gentle soul. Calm and soothing colors were required to match her personality however the combination still had to provide enough contrast for the stranded pattern to be visible. And yes, I’m sure plenty might say I was definitely over-thinking what colors I would use for her. I wanted to get it right though. I finally found it:

Cascade 220 Sport

Seeeeeeeeeeeee….soothing colors but will still provide some wonderful contrast.

Have a great weekend everyone. Knitters, getting all those handknits done for the holidays? What all are you making for loved ones?

Autumn Rose is COMPLETE!

Friday, November 25th, 2011


I haven’t completed as many finished objects I would have liked this year but I did complete one big one :-D

Autumn Rose This project didn’t take as long as you’d think. For about three months, it stayed in a box from the move. I packed it up in late July and unpacked it in our new home. It stayed in my box o’ WIPs mainly because of:

Autumn Rose Pullover

They. Never. End.

All these ends. Now I know knitters from centuries prior just tied them and let the wool felt. Great. But my control freak tendencies had an image of a hole growing when I’m away from home and then the unraveling started. So yeah. I wove them all in. As one can imagine, it took a long time.

Autumn Rose

Pattern:Autumn Rose Pullover by Eunny Jang from Simply Shetland 4: At Tomales Bay
My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): Long story. See below.
Colorway(s): Long story. See below.
Needle(s): US 2½ – 3.0 mm & US 4 – 3.5 mm
Casted On: May 8, 2011
Casted Off: November 20, 2011
Modifications: I made everything longer. Longer sleeves. Longer torso. If I were to do this all over again, I’d pull the neckline up. Kinda wish I did that. That said, I’m still quite proud of the end result. I wore it to work once but I think it’s more suitable to wear with cords at home. It’s just too warm for my office that runs a little warm anyway.

Autumn Rose

I had to pull out the neckline and redo it. But hey…as a result, I learned the importance and purpose of a neckline cuff. I picked up about 80 extra stitches along the neckline and the sweater practically fell off my shoulders. Re-did it and the new neckline helped bring the already long neckline more together. Phew!

Now colors.

I love the Knitpicks Autumn Rose Mineral version of this sweater. I even ordered the yarn in Knitpicks Pallete kit for this sweater. Turns out, I wasn’t all impressed by how thin the yarn was running. The resulting fabric wasn’t as strong as I’d like it. So I converted the Knitpicks Mineral kit and used Brownsheep Naturspun Sport. Below is a chart.

Original Pattern Color

(Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift)

Knitpicks Mineral Kit

(Knitpicks Pallete Yarn)

Brownsheep Naturespun

Sport (unless otherwise noted)

Shetland Black Asphalt Heather Pepper
Pine Forest Eggplant Plum Line
Admiral Clematis Heather Mountain Purple
Peat Huckleberry Heather Spiced Plum
Sunrise Iris Heather Mountain Lavender
Mader Hyacinth Purple Splendor
Old Gold Ash Classic Elite,  Fresco, Charcoal Black
Bracken Marble Heather Charcoal
Pistachio Silver Berrocco, Ultra Alpaca Light, Moonshadow
Yellow Orchre Mist Silver Lining
Scotch Broom White Snow

I really enjoyed knitting this sweater with this yarn. Naturespun Sport is a more full yarn resulting in a more dense fabric.

Autumn Rose
I consider this sweater to be a significant feat. First full fair isle sweater for an adult. I made significant modidifications in length and they were done well. I had expressed some issues with the sleeves and from what you can see above and below, they do, in fact match up.

Autumn Rose

While I might not be 10000% pleased with the long neckline, I’m still quite proud of myself. Gorgeous feminine sweater that fits me quite well :-D I’m very much looking forward to applying the lessons I learned with this sweater to Venezia :-D

One Down….Three more to go…

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

We adopted Layla and Luna in 2005. Back then, I was quilting more than knitting. I started picking up knitting more seriously at the weeeee end of 2006. By the time 2007 came around, the knitting bug hit hard and it became my primary craft. Then, in 2008, I said, out loud, “You know honey, it would be great if I knitted each of us a stocking for Christmas.” Cute idea right?

And naturally I didn’t actually start one till 2009:


Note: This pic was taken 8/23/09

I’m not proud. It took Jermaine and me buying our house to realize I really really wanted all of us to have a stocking this Christmas.
Jermaine’s, I knew, would be the most difficult. His name is just too long–8 letters. Why does that make a difference? I wanted our stockings all to have our names shown on one half of the stocking. Jermain’s name required about 70 stitches, so that doubled would make for a 140 stitch stocking. Depending on what yarn I’d use, sizing and shaping would vary.

So there’s that fine line between one hand where I make him a stocking out of fingering weight yarn, size 1 needles and it taking forever OR, on the other hand, I make him one that ends up so big it can fit Luna.

I then found designs by 2 Sticks and a String on Ravelry and I knew these were the patterns I wanted for our family stockings! :-) I grew up with stockings a little bigger than her planned schematic but overall, I really like the designs!

And with this, I present Jermaine’s finished Christmas Stocking:

Jermaine's Stocking

Jermaine's Stocking

Pattern: A NEW Dad’s Christmas Stocking by Dorene Delaney Giordano from her Ravelry Store (Note – This is a toe-up pattern)
My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): KnitPicks Wool of the Andes Sport
Colorway(s): Aurora Heather (green) & Dove Heather (white/gray)
Needle(s): US 1 – 2.25 mm & US 2½ – 3.0 mm
Casted On: October 7, 2011
Casted Off: November 5, 2011

  1. This pattern was based on repeats of 20. So to add some width because of my preference and because of the length of Jermaine’s name, I expanded the stocking to 120 stitches, as opposed to the 80 it called for. So for the instep, heel and “leg” portion, I used size 2.5 needles. After the border on the top, but before Jermaine’s name, I changed to size US 1-2.25 needles and increased twenty stitches evenly by making one stitch after every six stitches. I was concerned that the stocking sizing would look off but with the needle size decrease, everything coincided nicely.
  2. 120 stitches made for an awkward heel flap, so I ripped it and did a short row heel (I mean it’s not like Jermaine is actually going to wear this. It’s for stuffing present(s) in! ).
  3. I also did an i-chord bind off. This was a first time doing this bind-off for me. Sure, it’s not the quickest one in the world, but it gives the stocking a very nice edging. It’s curling over a little bit, as you can see so perhaps I should go up a needle size the next time I use it? I don’t know.  But this certainly won’t be the last time I use it.

I know this project came with a lot of false starts. (Did you notice the first pic? How there’s no gold in the final stocking? That was Jermaine’s request and I was more than happy about that. Never been a fan of golds/yellows/oranges.) But I am quite pleased with the end result.

Annnnnnnnnnnnd I’m half way done with my stocking :-D

Laura's Stocking

Can’t Stop Updating

Monday, May 30th, 2011

One of my most favorite things to do is friend stalking on Ravelry. I love seeing updates from my friends, see what projects they updated, what they’ve queued, what they’ve added to their stash.

I’m sure if any of my friends enjoy the same thing, I can’t help but wonder if they’re a little sick of the daily updates I’ve made to my Autumn Rose Pullover Project Page. I just love taking new photos of this project–the evolution has been just as thrilling as knitting it!


Autumn Rose

May 16, 2011

Autumn Rose

May 19, 2011

Autumn Rose Pullover

May 24, 2011

Autumn Rose Pullover

May 30, 2011

I’ve started the sleeves.

On 9in circular needles.

This is going to be interesting.

Life Amplified

Monday, May 16th, 2011

My friend Lindsey blogged about how it’s been a long time since she’s written a blog. That got me thinkin- How long has it been for me?

April 16!

The reasons are plenty.

  1. While interest rates are low, Jermaine and I are looking to buy a home. That’s taken up a lot of weekend time.
  2. Work’s been insane. Very busy learning new things and facilitating intramural competitions.  I work with fantastic people so no complaints there but I can’t really say I’ve been popping out a ton of finished objects
  3. Another reason, I seem to be on a sweater theme right now anyway and those aren’t completed as fast as, say, a pair of socks or a hat.

I’ve picked up my Autumn Rose Pullover from hibernation:

Autumn Rose I’m no longer using Knitpicks Palette. With this pattern’s gauge, I was knitting this sweater on 5s (when it really calls for 2s) and I was just not liking th fabric that was resulting. I used Brown Sheep Naturespun Sport for Abby’s Cardigan and it’s just great for steeks. :-) So while it took a while to find equivalents from Palette to Nature Spun Sport, I think I have a great start.

The Connie Chang Chinchio trend I seem to be on:

Like many offices in the summer, mine happens to be very cold so I want to knit Sabbatical to wear around the office. Here it is so far:

Sabbatical This is a very fun knit. I’m making it out of Madeline Tosh Pashmina, a little gift to myself for my birthday :-) This is a challenging knit because there is lace on both sides of the knitting but that’s what makes it fun.

The progress made on these two projects has been minimal but still something I’m proud of:

Apres Surf Hoodie Here’s Apres Surf Hoodie. I want to pick up the pace on this project. I was looking at finished versions of them on Ravelry and was like “WANT!”

The following was an impulse knit-my friend Sidney started faving projects of Connie’s Tie Back Shell top and I instantly wanted one for the office. (I’m the queen of solid color cotton tops. I need to change things up! ) This pattern started with knitting a 17-stitch twisted rib…rope for 68 some odd inches for the band around my ribs and tie in the back. OY! But that’s complete now and I started knitting the bottom part of the top.

Tie Back Shell

I hope to get some of these done soon to show off some finished objects because God knows I’m workin’ hard on them!

And, I’d like to end this entry with an adorable picture of Layla. She found her own personal spot in our closet on top of blankets. I swear she even closes the door. Virginia Woolf was right. A woman really does need a room of one’s own

Layla's New Hiding Place

FO or how knitters express love and support

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

This is primarily a knitting blog but I won’t hide it – I’m a pretty liberal person. Two uppity liberals raised me and I’m quite proud of that.

A thread was started in the Knitters for Barack Obama group to show our support for the Wisconsin democrats and four republicans who voted against the governor’s legislation that cut public employee’s benefits. So what did we do? We knit hats for them. It was a little funny. The original poster, Carrie, listed all the senators and representatives. As someone whose last name is listed always in the bottom, I felt so bad for the folks listed last. They were getting no love. So I asked to knit a hat for Amy Sue Vruwink. :-)

Fulled Star Hat

Pattern: Fulled Star Hat by Ruth Sorensen

My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): Crystal Palace Yarns Mini Mochi and Reynolds Soft Sea Wool
Colorway(s): 101 (Rainbow) and 103 (Cream)
Needle(s): US 6 – 4.0 mm
Casted On: March 13, 2011
Casted Off: March 15, 2011
Modifications: none

Now I hope Ms. Vruwink likes her hats with a slouch and/or she just happens to have a big head.

Fulled Star Hat

(and I'll even admit--my head is HUGE!)

I absolutely love the hat patterns in Ruth Sorensen’s book. I want to knit all of them. But I realized that these hats are knit at a way looser gauge than what is typical for me. The last hat I knit was too tight for me.  The pattern called for size 2s and I, as you can see, knit mine with 6s. And usually that’s ok, but I forgot about row gauge this time and what resulted was a taller than usual hat

And for goodness sakes, Laura. This is for a woman in WISCONSIN….they get a lot of use out of hats in that neck of the woods, no?

Fulled Star Hat

I hope you enjoy it, Ms. Vruwink. I thank you for what you did! Hope you enjoy the extra hat “to cover your ears”

FO – Icelandic Star Cardigan

Sunday, March 6th, 2011

Finally! A Finished Object! A cardigan that flew off the needles

Icelandic Star

Pattern:Icelandic Star by Sarah Hoadley, Interweave Knits, Winter 2009
My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): Cascade 220
Colorway(s): 3.7 skeins of 9474 Plum, .4 skeins of 2410 Purple, .45 skeins of 9427 Duck Egg Blue and .4 skeins of 7920 Shaded Spruce
Needle(s): US 7 – 4.5 mm (ribbing), US 9 – 5.5 mm (stockinette, non-stranded areas), and US 10½ – 6.5 mm (for stranded areas
Casted On:
February 5, 2011 (during the Super Bowl to be exact)
Casted Off: February 23, 2011
Modifications: The pattern calls for stranded knitting on the right and wrong side resulting in purled stranded areas. ummm….NO! So I added a front steek for the opening so that I was able to knit this whole cardigan in the round.

I did learn something very important with this project–the importance of fair isle blocking.

See, I often wondered what the point of it is, given that there is no ace pattern that needs to open up. Since fair isle is often so dense, I wondered what good it would do. Also I feared that colors would bleed. But…observe the before and after shots:

Icelandic Star

Note the bunchiness around the stranded knitting

Icelandic Star expanded!

Icelandic Star

I enjoyed knitting this cardigan. Its filled with my favorite colors too, which brings me to something else I realized. The original colors for this cardigan weren’t really me. So how do you pick colors that will give enough contrast but still be you. So, thanks to Ravelry, I found this color palette on the site Colour Lovers

Color by COLOURlovers

So…next time you’re stuck on rearranging, changing, adjusting colors, Google “color palettes” and you’ll be helped, immensely. Might not be instant but after some searching you’ll find a great substitute.

Here’s one more shot of the back, my favorite part :-)

Icelandic Star

And, as it turns out, the buttons from Joya Fibers in California were a great choice!

Icelandic Star

Have a great remaining weekend everyone. I hope to have some other finished objects soon too. Yaaaaaaaaaaay

FO – Two Hats

Saturday, January 1st, 2011


I didn’t fall off the face of the planet. I know it’s been a while. Things at work have been crazy busy. I then get home and the last place I want to be is in front of a computer. Then the holidays came through…yeah things have been crazy.

One of my New Years Resolutions is to blog more ;-) I might not have been writing them down but God knows I’ve been thinking a lot about future projects and the ones I’ve finished and wanted to finish.

I have some hats to show off. One is for my friend Maureen and the other is for my friend’s awesome husband Corey. He’s like a brother-in-law.

Here’s Maureen’s:

Hat With Stars Pattern: Hat With Stars by Ruth Sorensen
My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): Classic Elite, Fresco
Colorway(s): 5367 (teal) & 5322 (purple)
Needle(s): US 6 – 4.0 mm
Casted On: November 14, 2010
Casted Off: November 16, 2010
Modifications: none

I guess I was in the mood to get some fair isle done so this hat flew off my needles. It was done within 48 hours!  The yarn felt absolutely lovely too. I can see why people make lightweight sweaters out of it. I hope to use it again soon!

And here is the second hat for Corey


Not a bad photo of my husband, is it? :-)

Pattern: Koolhaas by Jared Flood
My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): Malabrigo Worsted
Colorway(s): Brown
Needle(s): US 6 – 4.0 mm, US 7 – 4.5 mm & US 8 – 5.0 mm
Casted On: November 2, 2010
Casted Off: November 20, 2010
Modifications: none

When Jermaine was modeling it, he complimented me on how much he liked it. I’m not surprised, it’s a very guy-friendly pattern with some yummy yarn! I contemplated giving him the hat at one point.

It wasn’t till after I took these pictures though, that I realized that this particular brown up against Jermaine’s skin provided little contrast! So I went to a wonderful shop in Alexandria and got some Malabrigo Rios for his hat that is a teal color.

I hope everyone had a nice New Years! Happy 2011!

The countdown begins

Friday, November 5th, 2010

At work, during lunch, I was thinking….


then uh oh…I started in on a list:

Gift tally Believe it or not, I think I’m OK with many of these handknit projects. Jermaine’s socks are almost done and the socks for both mom and Rose are thankfully patterns that fly off the needles. I’ll be making hats for the two wonderful photographers for our wedding. One of them is stranded. I seem to be in a stranded mood of late so that will fly by. I am about to start a shawl for my buddy Jess. Every time she’s in my office, she looks at my Haruni so me thinks she wants one of her own ;-) The last two are sweaters for two darling puppehs, Max and Winston whose humans are my coworkers Gina and Andrea respectively. They’re short haired pups that actually prefer to have sweaters and I’ve always wanted to make dog sweater so why not :-D . They might be Valentine’s Day presents though, if worst comes to worst…heehe

This doesn’t mean I won’t be busy. Might actually have to start taking lunch hours at work so everyone can get their presents :-D

Darling Darby Sweater

FO – Syncopated Cap

Sunday, June 13th, 2010

My office is right near our break room and I heard my coworker Iliana talking about wanting a handknit hat.

Oh Really?

I won’t go into details here but she has helped me a lot with some situations of late so OF COURSE I wanted to make a hat for her. I express my love, appreciation and thanks through handknits so this was perfect! So I made her….

Syncopated Caps

Pattern: Syncopated Caps by Kate Gilbert from Interweave Knits, Summer 2007
My Ravelry Project Page
Yarn(s): Crystal Palace Yarns Mini Mochi & KnitPicks Palette
Colorway(s): Rainbow and Steel Grey, respectively
Needle(s): US 3 – 3.25 mm
Casted On: June 6, 2010
Casted Off: June 10, 2010
Modifications: None

Syncopated Caps However, if I were to make this hat again, I’d probably lengthen it a little more. Do you notice above that the hat covers maybe a third of my ear? Well, it was the same for Iliana so I was a little disappointed about that. Next time I will lengthen this hat–There are rows where you: K2 in CC (rainbow) K1 in MC (grey) consecutively for four rows. Next time I think I’d do it for five or maybe even six rows.

Syncopated Caps Despite that, I still loved making this hat–Making something stranded with multicolored yarns is always thrilling.

Hopefully after Iliana wears this hat a few times, it stretches out a little more. She’s from Miami so she’ll use this hat if DC gets a little breeze

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