Tag Archives: work in progress

Bits and Pieces

I’ve hit a snag with my Swallowtail Shawl.

I’ve finished all the budding lace, and moved on to the lily of the valley lace, and it calls for K1,YO,K1, YO,K1 all into the same stitch. Which is a little time consuming, but doable. But then on the next row it calls for purling those 5 stitches back into one stitch. Now I could easily purl 5 regular stitches together, but these 5 which I just made out of one are too tight for me to slip onto the right hand needle and purl. It’s very frustrating. It’s possible that if I had pointier, better quality needles, and not the cheap ones from lincraft, then I could manage. I think the next step will be to use a smaller dpn and see if I can at least purl the five stitches with that, and then transfer the new purl onto my circs. Which would do the trick. Except that there are about 20 repeats of this stitch so far, and the pattern calls for many more rows of them.

lace weight angora

This is the angora I’m using to make the shawl. It’s so beautiful, and it’s so fine that I’m using it double stranded. It’s by fibreworks, and I got it at the fibre and textiles day at the Bus Depot Markets in 2007.

In other news, my friends H & C are giving birth in a couple of months (well, C is doing that part), so I’m going to start a baby blanket and some clothes for newborns. I wanted to try out mitered squares, so I used some of the green yarn I had left over from my tidal wave socks, and some hand spun from Anne Earyes which has been sitting around for ages, and followed the tutorials for the Sock Yarn Blanket by Shelly Kang.

Mitred Squares

They turned out okay, and were fun to knit, but I don’t have enough of those greens to make a full blanket, so I think I’ll switch to some 8ply I have in reds and greys.

I also want to make a square (or squarer) version of the Princess wrap for a lighter baby blanket. I’m thinking about using this alpaca/wool blend, but possibly something smooth, like bamboo, would be better.

Hand spun alpaca/wool.



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Little Things

I don’t have any new recipes or finished objects, but I’m in a good mood, and it’s spring, so here is a list of things which are currently making me happy.

1. That while I have many allergies of the hay fever inducing variety, I’m totally immune to wattle.

2. That stripy knee high socks are still readily available.
knee high socks

3. That even though my wood stove doesn’t work, I can store stuff on it.

4. …like fresh garlic, ginger, and turmeric.
garlic, turmeric, ginger

5. …and a bottle a friend sent me, filled with sand from my favourite beach.
glass and sand

6. That my swallowtail shawl is coming along.
swallowtail shawl

7. That the bunch of twigs by the side door suddenly erupted with waxy, yellow flowers.
yellow bells

8. …because the world is suddenly full of buds
pink buds

9…and blooms Continue reading

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When in doubt, knit socks

tidal wave 01

These are Deby Lake’s Tidal Wave socks which were available here but don’t seem to be there any more. So here’s a link to their Ravelry page.

These were lovely to knit, the stitch pattern was very easy to follow. Unfortunately, I used a slightly too heavy yarn which I bought at the Old Bus Depot Markets during the celebration of wool day in May. So I probably won’t wear them outside much, but they do make comfortable and sturdy socks to wear around the house on cold days.

Yarn: Fibreworks 70% merino 30% silk 4ply
Needles: 2.25mm dpns
Modifications: I continued the stitch pattern on the top of the foot all the way down to the toe shaping, rather than finishing at the ankle. I reversed the stitch pattern for the second stock so that they would be symmetrical.
Ravelry Project Page

Silky Doll once said that as soon as you finish the first sock, you should cast on the second. This is very good advice, and I’ve decided to extend it, so that as soon as I finish one pair of socks, I cast on another. That way I always have some knitting that’s small enough to take with me during my commute.

This time I’m using a self-striping yarn from Lincraft, and keeping it simple so that the stripes are the main feature. I’ve just started the heel flap on the first sock. The yarn is shades of grey, and I took this photo against a charcoal background. So this is not actually a black and white photo.
grey sock 01


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Making Progress

One of the problems with having several medium sized knitting projects on the go is that I don’t get that thrill of finishing things as often. However, I am making pretty good progress on the ribbed vest.

I’ve finished the tube for the body, bound off the front of the neckline, and am starting on the yoke.

ribbed vest 04

I used short row shaping to create some extra room in the bust, which I hadn’t tried before, but which worked beautifully. I followed the instructions from Jenna Wilson‘s Little Black Top in Stitch ‘N Bitch: The Knitter’s Handbook, which were very easy to follow, even though I had to adapt them a little to fit the rib pattern,
Continue reading


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Too hot to knit

Just when I was starting to admit that summer might be over, we got another week of hot days and warm nights.

It’s that dry, listless sort of heat which saps energy. I actually like this sort of weather, but it’s not at all conducive to getting things done. In fact, for the last couple of days it has been too hot to knit. Well, actually, it’s been unpleasant to do much more than sit around wearing as little as possible and engage in passive entertainment (skimming the internet, reading, watching dvds). I suppose I could have used airconditioning, but I’m opposed to doing so except in extreme circumstances, and wanting to knit on a 34ْ C degree day doesn’t seem to warrant it. ْ
I have managed to make some progress on the Jo Sharp vest during my morning bus rides, currently I’m doing the waist shaping, but it’s still basically a tube of purple ribbing. Hardly worth writing another post about it.

So instead I’ll share a project which I started at the beginning of the summer, and which I knit in obsessive spurts of energy, before I started to feel disatisfied and wanted to start something new.

Fishnet Shrug

It’s a small bolero type shrug, knit in fishnet stitch on 4mm circular needles, in Cleakheaton’s Merino Bambino 4 ply..

shrug 02

shrug 01

It’s knit across from sleeve to sleeve, in the round on the sleeves, then seperated and knit back and forth for the back. Once the second sleeve is finished, the plan is to pick up the stitches on the edges of the flat section and knit a good 5-10cm or so of ribbing to make an edge and collar. Nothing could be more simple. Right?

Unfortunately, I wasn’t paying attention a few rows back, and the stitch pattern got a bit wonky. So I had to frog back to before that happened, and put all the stitches back on the needle. That worked okay, but I can still see where I did it, as that row looks a little wider than the others. This bugs me, maybe more than it should. Also, fishnet stitch is pretty easy, but it can be a bit fiddly, which is why switching to work on the Jo Sharp pattern was probably a good move.

shrug 03

What I found last year, when I was making berets without a pattern, was that I needed to knit an object at least once just to figure out how it should work, and then make modifications and re-knit from scratch until I was really happy with the finished piece. I’m afraid that this will also be the case with this shrug. Which is a pity, because unlike a beret, this wasn’t knit in a day or two, but over several weeks. Perhaps I’ll persist, and then, if I like it enough, knit it again in a different colour, before deciding whether or not to frog the original.

On a more positive note: I threw together some ingredients which made a very successful salad the other night. I plan to re-create in the near future, on a day when I have a camera at hand.


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I blame Ravelry…

For making me want a pretty blog with pretty pictures of all my knitting. Also, for getting me motivated to take photos of finished objects and works in progress.

Jo Sharp vest

Currently I’m working on this gorgeous thing, by Jo Sharp, which has the truly imaginative name “Ribbed Vest”. It’s from her Book number 8: Eclectic, which was a birthday present from my very thoughtful step-mother. It has some lovely patterns in it.

However, I’m not using a Jo Sharp yarn, much as I love her stuff, because I got 7 balls of some discontinued Crucci DK Wool in a grape tweed for next to nothing on Ebay, and they are just perfect. I love the way the colours are knitting up.


The pattern calls for making the front, the back, and the yoke separately, and then seaming together. Ugh. Instead I’m knitting it as a tube on circs, and will split for the armholes, then knit the yoke section straight on from the back, and graft the shoulder straps onto the the neck line. Anything to avoid seaming pieces together.

I started about a week ago, and am knitting mostly during my commute to work. So I’m only just into the second ball, and haven’t started the waist decreases yet. I’m also thinking I might need to work in some bust shaping, either by adding extra stitches so that there are more ribs which act as darts, or by including short rows. I quite like the idea of adding extra ribs, a bit like Ysolda’s Snow White, but I think it might mean too much deviation from the original, whereas short rows will hard be noticable (to anyone but me).

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