Friday, August 08, 2014

Finale: Nymphalidea 蝴蝶

ProjectNymphalidea 蝴蝶
Pattern Nymphalidea by Melinda VerMeer, free Ravelry download
Yarn:  Socks that Rock lightweight (yellow/green) and O-Wool Classic 2-ply (white)
Yardage:  360 + 396 yards, used almost all and the shawl is not as big as I'd like
Needles: Size 6
Cast on: June 15, 2014
Cast off: August 5, 2014
Cost: About $20
Notes: Both yarns are used/recycled/discounted, retail prices would be much higher. The O-Wool Classic is very soft, easy to knit, and would bloom nicely after some washing and wearing. A few people in South Bay Knitters are doing a knit-along of this pattern, even tho I didn't have a chance to join them in the meetings but I decided to knit this pattern any way since it's so pretty. It's a very easy pattern, quite a few knit or purl all the way across rows that put me to sleep every night while I knitted in front of the TV. Since I didn't have enough yarn to knit a full 180 degree, the shawl ended up with a significant hump in the middle. It's still quite wearable, and the hump gives me a chance to play with strategic placements.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Finale: Ogee Tunic 紫山佛塔

Project:  Ogee Tunic 紫山佛塔 Zǐshān fó tǎ
Pattern Ogee Tunic from Knitting Nature by Norah Gaughan
Yarn:  Ellen's Half Pint Farm Falkland wool, 100% wool, DK weight
Yardage:  1500 yards in stash, used about 1200 yards
Needles: Size 4 & 6
Cast onMarch 18, 2014
Cast off: June 29, 2014
Previous entry: May 2
Cost: About $70

Notes: The darker picture is closer to true color. After completing the back of the sweater on size 4 needles (and getting gauge) but not happy with the tight fabric, I decided to switch to size 6 on the front after the ribbing pattern. The front turned out drapier and slightly larger than the back. Logically the front of a woman sweater should take more fabric any way, so I tweaked a bit while sewing together the pieces and now no one can tell the difference. The way the open collar is designed makes the neckline very loose. I thought about putting a big button on top, but a removable pin works much better, and I can use a different one every time. Overall I'm very happy with the supersized cable design, the shaping, and how the yarn and pattern come together. 

Happy Friday again! And if you are in US, Happy July 4th! Join the party on Andrea's blogTami's blog, and leave me a comment!

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Baby Bootees Finale; New Job; Happy 4th!

Project:  Lina Lou's Bootees
Pattern Saartje's Bootees by Saartje de Brujin (Ravelry free download)
Yarn:  Filatura Di Crosa Zarina, sport weight, 100% merino
Yardage:  used less than 100 yards
Needles: Size 4
Cast onJune 18, 2014
Cast off: June 26, 2014
Cost: stash yarn don't count

Notes: I recently picked up a contract gig backfilling a young lady going on maternity leave for her upcoming baby girl, Lina Lou. The training was intense and didn't leave me much brain power to think about anything else for two weeks. But I have been admiring this pattern for a long time so it's an easy decision to make these little bootees for the baby. They worked up so quickly, and I still can't believe a human's feet can fit in something this little!

Happy Friday eve! And if you are in US, Happy July 4th weekend! Join the party on Andrea's blogTami's blog, and leave me a comment!

Friday, May 02, 2014

Ogee Tunic 紫山佛塔

Project:  Ogee Tunic 紫山佛塔 Zǐshān fó tǎ
Pattern Ogee Tunic from Knitting Nature by Norah Gaughan
Yarn:  Ellen's Half Pint Farm Falkland wool, 100% wool, DK weight
Yardage:  1500 yards in stash
Needles: Size 4 & 6
Cast onMarch 18, 2014

Notes: The project's Chinese name means Purple Mountain Buddhist Pagoda. The yarn is very saturated red and purple, and purple is Chinese traditional royal and "larger than life" color. The main curve design in this pattern, the ogee, is often used in temples, religious or medieval architectures. I debated whether I should use such a busy variegated yarn for a cable design, but I really want to knit with this fat skein of Ellen's yarn, and I really like this Norah Gaughan design. With the logic that putting everything I like together will produce something I like even more, here is the result. I knitted the back all on size 4 needle to get gauge, but it's a little tight and I'm not completely happy with the fabric. So for the front I've switched to size 6 after the bottom band and it looks much better so far. If the row gauge comes out much different I'll have some fudging to do when I put the pieces together.

Happy Fiber Arts Friday! Join the party on Andrea's blog, and leave me a comment!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Sweater to Bag

Once upon a time my husband bought me a Ralph Lauren sweater for Christmas. It was hand knitted in heavy wool, nice and warm, and the Westie on the front is super cute. We had Macie the Westie at the time, so we collected many Westie things. The sweater was very large, and thankfully I never grew into it, but I never wanted to part with it.

A few years later I decided to give felting a try, maybe it'd shrink the sweater a bit to make it fit better. It shrank, a lot. I turned it into a pillow case and it became part of our Christmas decoration for the next few years. Then it found a place in our guest room sofabed, huddled together with a bunch of other pillows.

In the past couple of weeks Henry moved into the guest bed and I had to find a place for all the pillows. Macie Sweater was to become the Macie Bag. My friend Bethany helped me measure and cut out the shapes, hemmed the edges, and sewed up the sides and bottom. There was minimal waste on the front and back. The sleeves became tube handles. The only hand sewing I had to do was a few super thick places because of the hems and the fairisle knitting, plus sewing the handles onto the bag.

The Macie Bag is perfect!

Happy Friday! Join the party on Andrea's blogTami's blog, and leave me a comment!