Thursday, May 20, 2010

More knitting, more doggie birthdays

I finished two more helmet liners. (No pictures, this time. If you've seen one helmet liner, you've seen 'em all--especially since the new ones are the same color as the previous one.) I think I'm finished with that pattern for a while. Three times in one month...

I made a hat with the Intriguing yarn.


I invented the pattern as I went along, and the resulting product fits me nicely. Of course, the pattern is nothing but ribbing, which is nice and stretchy and hard to screw up.

With US8/5.0mm needles, I cast on 80 stitches, knitted 1 inch in 2x2 rib, increased to 90 and a mixed 3x2 x 2x2 rib.

I had 20 knit ribs, 20 purl valleys. At 5 inches, I started decreasing: decreased 10 stitches (all the 3K ribs reduced to 2K); knitted even; decreased 5 stitches (every 4th rib); knitted even; decreased 10 stitches; knitted even; decreased 5 stitches (the last 2K ribs reduced to 1K); knitted even; decreased 10 stitches (knit 1K+1P together for each decrease--much easier than P2tog for the decrease, and it looks good); knitted even; decreased 5 stitches…, etc.

The hat took less than half the ball of yarn. I'm using the other half to make a neck-warmer. (I'm making up that pattern, too.) The neck-warmer is my lunchtime-at-work knitting. Pictures and details later.

The yarn knits up nicely. It's not particularly splitty (which some wrapped yarns are). It's a bit fuzzy (the mohair), but I think it probably would frog with less trouble than one normally encounters when frogging mohair--although that's an experiment I didn't have to make. :) There's some acrylic in the yarn (77% Wool, 15% Acrylic, 8% Mohair), but I blocked the hat anyway--wanted to see if the yarn changed much. There wasn't a noticeable change (the yarn didn't "bloom," if you know what I mean), but the yarn behaved well and didn't fade or tighten up, or do anything unexpected. (Having recently seen a Cascade 220 Superwash project--not a helmet liner, but another item--gain a ridiculous 20% in size when blocked, having the hat hold its dimensions was very nice.)

With the Granny Smith-colored yarn, I've started the Traveling Woman shawl. I'm still very much in the early stages:


Jacey turned seven Wednesday (the 19th). She and Sam got to have the last of the doggie birthday biscuit (with icing) that my sister bought for Sam's birthday the week before. (We parcel treats out sparingly around here to avoid stomach troubles.) And a friend's dog, Katie (MACH Never Had Braces UD),* turned a dignified twelve years old on Monday.

*MACH = Master Agility Champion, the highest AKC agility title (Katie was the first greyhound to win that title); UD = Utility Dog, a very high AKC obedience title.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Recent and Current Knitting

I recently knitted a helmet liner. A blogger was asking for knitted helmet liners for a Marine unit that will be shipping out to Afghanistan. I decided to knit a liner, and it knitted up quickly.


And then a coworker asked for one for her friend, a soldier already in Afghanistan. So I gave her the one I knitted (she'll repay me for the yarn), and I bought a new ball of yarn today and have started the second helmet liner. It's nice yarn (has to be wool--no acrylics, and there's a limited range of acceptable colors), and the pattern is easy. I'm already an inch into the second liner. But let's not tell the Marines they're wearing a color called Doeskin Heather; Bambi-colored yarn doesn't quite sound right for the Corps.


Sam has turned 10 years old. Both dogs have coats I made for them (Jacey inherited Oreo's coats), but only Jacey has a hand-knitted sweater. Every time I've started to make a sweater for Sam, Christmas knitting has intervened, and Sam's sweater has been pushed to the back burner.

But the boy turned 10 on the 10th of this month, and I wanted him to have a sweater for the fall, so I knitted one that I finished the day before his birthday.


The turtleneck can be unrolled to stretch up his neck and give his ears some coverage when necessary.

I have yarn to knit a matching sweater for Jacey in forest green. There are changes I want to make to the pattern (I made notes in Ravelry), and I'll probably make her sweater soon, while the changes (and my notes) still make sense to me.



At the recent Stitches South convention here in Atlanta, I won a prize: a kit to make a shawl. The pattern is for Cascade's lacy Grapevine Shawl, and the yarn is a bright fuchsia cotton (Cascade Sierra). I've started the shawl and made it through one pattern repeat. The one repeat measures about two inches; just 26 repeats to go. ;) I have a high school reunion coming up in October, and a bright shawl might be just the thing for a fall evening.



The folks at SWTC are now carrying a line of yarn called Treisur. They're looking for knitting bloggers to try the yarn and blog about it. (See here for information.)

I didn't hesitate to sign up, and Monday I received a package.

In the package was one 169-yard ball of Treisur Intrigue:


It's a worsted-weight wool/acrylic/mohair blend (4 stitches/inch on US9s). This colorway shades from teal to green to gold to burgundy to purple to blue, all wrapped with an orange thread. I'm not sure, yet, but I think this yarn really wants to be a hat. I'm going hunting for patterns.

Also in the package were two 250-yard balls of Treisur Infatuation:


It's a fingering-weight bamboo/wool/nylon blend (8 stitches/inch on US2s). The yarn comes in multicolor put-ups, but this colorway is a lovely Granny Smith apple green, and has a thin shiny thread wrap. (The wrap reminds me of the shiny filament wrapped around baby pompadour yarns, only much finer and tighter, and the yarn isn't fuzzy at all.) The yarn would be suitable for socks, but I'm not sure... It's such a lovely yarn (ooh! shiny!), and it might want to be something showy--something that doesn't get tucked into shoes. I'll be hunting on Ravelry for patterns...