Sunday, 30 March 2014

A Lesson in Hanging on...until the time is right for steam blocking

Introducing The Freestyle Raglan Cardigan


A rather interesting project, one that's been on the needles since August 2011. At the time, I attempted my first cardigan. I wasn't following a "pattern", instead the project was knitted top - down, according to swatch and proportion.

As mentioned, no written pattern was followed as such, just basic project instructions along the lines of: 

Measure swatch, measure yourself, block swatch, calculate stitches required around collar in proportion to swatch sample, cast on equivalent number of stitches, divide stitches, place markers, memorise increase pattern, go forth and knit ...




Sunday, 23 March 2014

Substituting Rowan Kidsilk Haze (again)

Introducing the Wisp

The pattern was created by Canadian designer Cheryl Niamath and originally published in Knitty's summer 2007 edition.  The pattern instructions call for either Elann Super Kydd or Rowan Kidsilk Haze. As I have successfully substituted Rowan Kidsilk Haze with Patons UK Misty in a previous project, I decided to use Patons UK Misty for my Wisp. And once again, Misty didn't disappoint.
  
Unfortunately, Misty has by now been discontinued, but it can occassionally be found for sale on both ebay and ravelry. Misty's composition (70% Mohair, 30% Polyamide) is not as luxurious as Kidsilk's but it serves as a fantastic substitute for all Knitters, who want to work with fingering weight yarn without having to pay the price for Kidsilk Haze, which currently retails at just under £9.00 per ball.


Wisp (Yarn: Patons UK Misty, substituting Rowan Kidsilk Haze)

Saturday, 22 March 2014

There and Back Again....

Gallery of a Public Transport Knitter





Some Vital Statistics

Excluding the London Underground network, 2.5 million people commute to work by rail in the United Kingdom every day. More than a third of those commute to work to and from London. With a population of 13,614,409, the London commuter belt, which is also defined as the Southeast Metropolitan Area, is the largest in the European Union. The geographical boundaries of the Southeast Metropolitan Area are in constant flux. As the urban sprawl continues ever on and transport links are improved or created, it is expected to further expand.

My stretch of the line is operated by Southeastern. 70% of Southeastern's services transport passengers from Kent and parts of East Sussex to the major London termini. On their website Southeastern claim to be transporting 570,000 commuters to the capital every weekday morning. I happen to be one of them.




Sunday, 16 March 2014

The Garter Stitch Brain Cleanser ...or Can you Block Acrylic Yarn?


Baktus Scarf



Update: Project notes for a modified brain cleanser baktus are now available here.

Strikkelise's Baktus pattern  has been on my "to -knit-list" for quite a while, but I had never quite gotten into the right state of mind for a project knitted entirely in garter stitch until now. Knitting in garter stitch throughout can be quite a repetitive endeavour, which I highly recommend as a brain - cleansing activity. To incorporate a little more of a challenge, I decided to knit my Baktus in two colours and I wanted to use the most inexpensive yarn I could find in my cupboard (...and still achieve a presentable look).

The yarn for this project was a charity shop find. I was unable to ascertain the manufacturer and only have a vague idea on the composition. A label on the inside of the heather - coloured cone tells me that the yarn contains 30% wool, with the remainder being acrylic. I assume that the same applies to the grey cone, but I could be wrong. I also assume that  Yeoman's are the manufacturers of the yarn. (Yeoman's produce machine knitting yarn, which is sold on cones.) But I could be wrong on this, too.



Sunday, 9 March 2014

The Last of the Vintage...or an ideal yarn for beginner lace knitters

...and with a little melancholy, I note that I have used up the last balls of Patons UK Vintage. Well, never mind I'm quite happy with the finished object.


Introducing: The Oaklet, aka the Last of the Vintage

The designer is Megan Goodacre. The yarn (Paton's UK Vintage) was purchased a long time ago at Kemp's and has long since been discontinued. I have used Vintage in several projects and, even though it's not an overtly pretty yarn (in all honesty, the colourways are somewhat questionable), I feel a little sad to see it go. 


Megan Goodacre's Oaklet Shawl Pattern

The Weekly Swatch, Part 4 - The Drop Stitch

I'm currently swatching for new projects and seem to have developed a preference for the drop stitch motif. The drop stitch effect is achieved by working a succession of multiple yarn overs into the knitting. On the following row the yarn overs are simply pushed (or "dropped") off the needle, creating a rather loose fabric, which is ideal for scarves and other flowing garments.

For the sample below I used Stylecraft Kon - Tiki - a blend of 50% cotton and 50% acrylic. Kon - Tiki has a very soft feel to it and I enjoyed knitting with the yarn. That's why I was surprised to see that it has primarily been used for knitted dishcloths on Ravelry. Let's see whether I can put the balance right and find a slightly more appealing project for my stash of  Kon - Tiki.



Drop Stitch Swatch (Yarn: Stylecraft Kon - Tiki)

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Catching up with the Finished Objects...

Hane Scarf, Yarn: Rowan RYC Bamboo Soft


For the first time, I find myself in the position of having to catch up on blogging about my finished objects, as my knitting activity seems to have increased dramatically over the last six months; and there are a number of projects that deserve to be included on the blog.

On average, it appears that I manage to complete a project every fortnight. No doubt, this is a result of my rigorous knitting activity whilst going about my daily commute. (If I didn't use the needles to knit, I might feel tempted to try them out on fellow commuters...)



Hane Scarf, Yarn: Rowan RYC Bamboo Soft


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