Showing posts with label bramble beret. Show all posts
Showing posts with label bramble beret. Show all posts

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Episode 22: A Knitter Grows in Brooklyn

Off the Needles
We finally have an FO! Two of them actually, since I haven't really talked in much detail about the February Lady Sweater.
Another FO that I have is the Bramble Beret. It was such a slog to finish that thing because I made the mistake of knitting DK yarn with size 8 needles - never again.

On the Needles
I decided to knit through a PD (professional development) meeting that I had on the Saturday of the freak snowstorm that we had on October 30 - I brought the Dionysus socks and almost got done with the first sock.

I cast on for 2 projects even though I said to myself that I will not do so unless I finish all the projects in my PhD bin. In my defense, 1 project is due to necessity and another is a test knit. The necessity project is Bella Mitts from THAT movie and before anyone asks, no it's not because Breaking Dawn is coming out in theatres next week.

The test knit is actually a test knit of yarn - Roman Hills 4 ply worsted weight yarn which is called Gruber in Toasted Marshmallow. Its very wooly in feel but knitting up in the Snapdragon Tam pattern very nicely.

Knitting Travels
Last Sunday, I headed on over to Brooklyn General for a twitter knitter meetup: Kristin from Yarngasm as well as stitchmistress, knittingknoobie and riaknits were all tweeting about a meetup and lo and behold it happened! It did make me realize something - until I became a serious knitter, I never really went into Brooklyn, especially the northwest part. I only went into Bay Ridge for the in-laws and even then never really left.
Another knitting travel comes from my dad, who went to Greece for the first time since 1998 for three weeks. I sent him on a yarn mission in Thessaloniki to Noulikas, located at Vasileos Irakleiou 15, where he picked up some Maxi-Maxi from Mallia Molokotou which is a 100% wool yarn made in Greece. He even tried looking for yarn from his hometown but said via a phone call to my mom that it wasn't that great.

Knitting Finds
Kristin from the Yarngasm podcast has started up a new knitting blog called Knitnook and I had the honor of being the first interviewee! She focuses on new knitting patterns and etsy finds as well as interviews and I had alot of fun anwering the questions.

Another knitting find is Kate Davies' website and online knitting magazine, Textisles

Thanks to the people at Potter Craft, I have The Knitter's Book of Socks by Clara Parkes of Knitter's Review to review this week for you. It retails for $30 USA and $34 in Canada.
 We also have a look at Jane Austen Knits, which I picked up at the twitter knitter meetup at Brooklyn General.
Closing song: You and Me by Zee Avi

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Tutorial: 2-1-2 Left Leaning Cable with No Cable Needles

So I have been knitting the Bramble Beret from Vintage Modern Knits for my sister for the past month or so (we won't go into too much detail as to why it entered the UFO bin for the summer).

I got the book back in January. I didn't start the pattern until May even though I had yarn specifically for this purpose.

I was afraid of the 2-1-2 left leaning cable. This is a cable stitch that goes, "slip two stitches onto 1st cable needle, hold in front. Slip 1 stitch onto 2nd cable needle, hold in back. K2, p1 from 2nd cable needle, k2 from first cable needle."

Say what. TWO cable needles?

I finally did figure it out, and then when I worked on my Sea of Japan hat, came across the same cable again. That time, I figured out how to do it with just one cable needle.

Why not no cable needles at all?

It CAN be done. First, hie thee to Grumperina's website and familiarize yourself on how to cable without a cable needle in the first place. It's a great site and this is how I learned how to do cabling - I have never used a cable needle, except for one cowl in bulky weight yarn that had a cable with 16 stitches. Yikes.

So this is what the cable looks like in terms of setup: k2, p1, k2. We need to get the k2 stitches to cross, with the p1 still in the middle.
Here is how I did the 2-1-2 LC (red boxes are to help point out what I am doing with the stitches):

1. Slip the first 2 stitches onto the right needle.
2. Bring the yarn to the front of the next stitch (the purl stitch) and slip that onto the right needle.
3. Knit the next two stitches. All 5 stitches will be on the right needle.
4. This is where Grumperina's tutorial really comes in. First we need to get that purl stitch to the left side of the 2 stitches that were just knitted. Slip the left needle behind the purl stitch. "Pinch" the first two knit stitches with your left thumb and forefinger.
 5. This is why we "pinch": slip the right needle out from all 3 of those stitches (the two stitches already knitted on the left, and the purl stitch in the middle). The purl stitch will remain on the left needle, and the two knit stitches are hanging in the air. Bring the right needle in front of the purl stitch, and insert into the two knit stitches that are floating.
6. Purl the purl stitch on the left needle. Now on the right needle, you have 1 stitch purled, two stitches knit (that were originally on the right of the 2-1-2 combo) and two knit stitches still not yet knit all the way on the right. We need to bring those two knit stitches at the end all the way to the left.
7. Take the left needle and bring it to the front. Insert into those last two unknit knit stitches.
8. Pinch again, and slip the back right needle out from the stitches. The three stitches that were originally in the front of the two knit stitches now on the left needle are in the air; catch them with the right needle behind the left.
9. Knit the two stitches on the left needle and Voila! 2-1-2 left leaning cable with no cable needles.
Hope you enjoyed the tutorial - this is the first one that I've written so it's not quite perfect, but do drop a line if you have any questions.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Episode 15: Proofreading

Need to make a minor retraction - when I reviewed Twist Collective last time, I failed to realize that when you click on the "More Information" button especially in the Paper Dolls section you can see the patters on real people. Thanks to heyfatlulu for pointing that out.

Off the Needles

Completed the Cabled Feather Cowl. Sarah loved it, and she came up with a new term to always give me a chuckle when I am cursing over weaving in ends: Proofreading. 

On the Needles

Still working on the Bramble Beret; I messed up in my stitch count in one of the cable repeats so I am debating to either fudge it, tink it or keep going - I am more of the keep going/fudge it school; Leah won't notice it too much because it's only on one of the repeats and its towards the top.

Right now it's on scrap yarn because I needed the 16" cable for a cowl I am designing; I got some yarn recently  and didn't like the patterns available for that DK weight yarn for a cowl - went to my Cables and Arans Harmony Guide and looked for a bit of inspriation. 

Stashers Anonymous

So you know how I am talking about ways to get over knitter's block? Well...getting new yarn that you normally cannot get in an update from indie dyers helps a bit too. Even though MS&W was recent and I added to the stash there as well, and was a bit overwhelmed by it there are just times when there was a yarn when you have wanted/kept and eye on  for a very long time and if you have the chance to get it, you do. It's like waiting for months and months for a pair of boots that you like to go on sale and when they do, you take the opportunity. Especially if you do have plans for it which is usually my MO.

I was able to get a skein of Leah Clearwater from Fresh from the Cauldron in a June 1 update from her new site. I really wanted it b/c the colors are lovely: plum, rose pink, brown, mint green, kelly green and also to knit something for my sister with it beacause her name is Leah - she approved.

I may be able to get two cable hats out of this - going for the very slightly slouchy look and I am going to design these as well - I looked at what was available for fingering weight hats, and they were either too slouchy, too lacy/leafy or too poofy for me. I sound like Goldilocks here, but this is also a good opportunity for me to flex my brain a bit too. Again, I think I am going to go for a dense fabric, and intertwining cables. One word about this yarn: SQOOSH.

Prior to that, I actually caught a Skein update! Skein is an indie dying company run by Kristen in New South Wales Australia. I've had my eye on her yarn for quite awhile and never seem to catch an update, and love her use of color - bright but still subtle and rich earthy and jewel tones.

I did get a skein of Super DK 100% SW Merino in Blush (deep rose pink and cream with hints of rosewood, wine and burgundy) which is what I am using for the cowl I am designing, and a skein of TopDraw Sock 85/15 Merino/Nylon in Tuscany: cream, brown, red, sienna - both of these are not my usual colors but I loved them a lot.

Tuscany reminds me of my honeymoon in Italy when we were in Florence. Stitch definition on the Super DK is excellent - the cables really pop! So I am definitely going to buy from Skein again, especially for sweaters since it would be a great investment. I definitely see this yarn knit up in either the Goodale, Larch, or cardigans.

And then...there are the Harry Potter skeins. Tri'Coterie is run by Maylin who is in France and does alot of self-striping sock yarn; every month is a theme and this month is Harry Potte, so I picked up Ravenclaw for me, Gryffindor as part of Leah's birthday gift. 

Knitting Travels

Summer in the city means outdoor knitting in beer gardens; the NY Times recently published an article about them. A few weeks ago, No Sheep Till Brooklyn met up at t.b.d., a beer garden in Greenpoint that is close by where we usually meet. Hung out at Spritzenhaus on WWKIP Day which was also the day of Renegade Brooklyn.


Did not complete my Rose Lace Stole (evil Provisional Cast On) but I had a lot of fun hosting. Congrats to phoenixfire and lapurplepenguin! They will receive stitch markers from Velvet Hippo.

I do have a prize/sponsor for a future KAL from Creatively Dyed and would like to hear from you about what you would like for us to do next.


Thanks again for your patience during the (unintended) hiatus and for this episode which is a bit of a catch-up epi.

Closing Song: "Take Back the City" by Snow Patrol from A Hundred Million Suns

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Episode 14: Beware the Ennui of May

 Off the Needles

Will talk about the Cabled Feather Cowl next week; but I did finish up the Ripley.

On the Needles

I have been battling a bad case of ennui or something similar to writer's block where you want to write something but don't know how. I think in my case knitter's block is similar but it is as if you want to knit, but then do not have the energy to knit anything at all. After MS&W I decided to spend a Sunday morning going through my stash and sorting through it which probably was a bad idea in the long run; I also decided to see how it would look when organized into the color wheel for fun - I have ALOT of blue and "neutral" colors - cream/gray/brown.

i carry ur heart was not a good project to help get over ennui - same project + same yarn = very boring. I was afraid of the Bramble Beret because of one cable stitch, but finally figured it out! Going back to the basics with the beginning of  the February Lady Sweater.

Spin Right Round

Spinning up some polwarth in the "Motley" colorway from Gherkin's Bucket using my Dyakcraft Swan Spindle. Abby Franquemont's book Respect the Spindle is really helping with perfecting my drop spindle technique. Also grabbed the DVD for 10 cents during the Interweave Special!

Knitting Finds

Focusing on Twist Collective Spring & Summer 2011 this week.

I have mentioned Slipped Stitch Studios before when they were featured in Knitty Winter 2011, but only on the Mi pattern Saver - if you check out her etsy shop, there is more for fiber artists, like really well-made project bags, one of which I received as a birthday gift.

Events and a Knit-A-Long

It does sound far off but when I mentioned I was going to Rhinebeck this fall, I made a mistake. I have to go to a wedding that Sunday. And I will be teaching Saturdays. Boo. But, there is another local fair nearby which is the New Jersey Sheep and Fiber Festival September 10-11 in Ringoes, NJ.

How is everyone doing with their Rose Lace Stole? I'm a bit behind but do plan to spend an afternoon with it sometime this weekend.


Closing Song: "Dog Days Are Over" by Florence + The Machine from Lungs
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