Friday, October 30, 2009

Quite Fetching

Love them, and wore them to work. They were a big hit! Going to make more!

Fetching Fingerless Gloves. Free pattern on Ravelry. Used a bit more than 1 skein of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran with size 6 dpns. Will try making more with DK weight which has more yardage, a bit smaller gauge, and experiment. Nice photos by hubby...though I somehow got them on here sideways.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Fingerless Glove Shortage

This pattern was supposed to make two gloves with one skein as long as you didn't do a gauge swatch first. Alas, I am still short several rows worth of yardage, as well as one thumb! Must be the yarn I chose has less yardage per skein. Bummer...I have to get another skein of it. I did not like the way the former picot bind off appeared, so I ripped back and did a regular bind off, but did it from the inside edge of the glove. Now it looks like this:

Fetching Fingerless Gloves-Fall in Bend, OR

We rented a lovely home in Bend, OR and spent 5 days discovering the local food, coffee, mountains, sights and of course, the yarn! The home had beautiful furnishings, including a perfect corner for knitting. I am working on my first Fetching (free pattern on Ravelry)Fingerless Glove here, and using Dpn's my first time also.Knitting on Dpn's (Double pointed needles) allows you to knit in a smaller circumference with greater ease. Normally I use circular needles for this, but thought I'd try dpns and was glad to use them on this project.
Especially when I got to the thumb making portion. Shown below at the point where waste yarn is knitted in to hold the thumb stitches. Later on, you remove the waste yarn and pick up the live stitches there for the thumb.That was the hardest part for me.

Shown here after doing the picot bind off-I wasn't exactly thrilled with the look I got, somehow on the bind off. But one glove is done. On to knit the second glove. This pattern is supposed to use only one skein of yarn to do two gloves, but I am finding it hard to believe there will be enough since I am using the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran and I think the yardage is less than her DK weight. Hope I won't have to buy another skein just to complete the other glove!

Voila! One glove complete! The second one I began on the car ride home!

Our house that we rented was so beautifully remodeled and close by Drake Park and downtown Bend.
We took advantage of the great weather to do the loop drive viewing the mountains, including Mt. Bachelor, and South Sister Mountain, and Broken Top Mtn. We are at Sparks Lake here below on a perfect, crisp fall morning with nobody else in sight!

Me here, enjoying South Sister Mountain views reflected in the lake.

Shown with hubby on our scenic drive down to Bend, OR:

Our house was a block away from Drake Park. It was a lovely time of year to be there and the fall colors were really showing.

That's the Deschutes River behind us running through the park. Gorgeous!

My first yarn shop stop at the Old Mill Marketplace was Gossamer-The Knitting Place, on 550 SW Industrial Wy.
It had some yarn art tied outside to the tree branch! This was a small and quaint shop with some pretty yarn offerings. Though I didn't happen to purchase anything here, it was a friendly and fun stop!

The second stop was at the Juniper Fiberworks on NE Greenwood Ave.

Inside, the yarn was arranged primarily by color. I had to get used to this at first, but it was a fairly large shop with quite a selection. I found many familiar yarns and took alot of time here to browse. Also, alot of sock yarn available here. I found some unscented yarn wash liquid here as well.

I picked up some Mirasol wool in a new colorway for a second Baby Surprise Jacket! I could've picked out so much more...but I restrained myself.
Later on in our trip, we made our way up to Sisters, OR and stopped at the Stichin' Post on 311 W. Cascade Ave. It is predominantly a quilting shop, however....

I had looked online and discovered that it also carried YARN!

So I had to go in and peek. They had some really beautiful yarn offerings here.
I ran out of time, but tried to gaze at a few quilts on behalf of my quilting friends!

Connected to the Stitchin' Post is Twigs, a cute gift shop. They had my favorite brand of kitchen towel so I snagged one for the road!
Not far, I found Desert Charm on 123 E. Hood Ave.

This store specializes in naturally dyed and spun fibers. Many from local Oregon farms.

The women in the store were expert weavers and spinners, working on their craft in between assisting customers.

In the same building on the corner of Hood and Elm, I found Out West Designs -Jewelry and Design Studio & Bead Gallery. This store was a beautiful bead and jewelry place.

I met the owners who were so friendly and welcoming. I stumbled upon some pretty things.

Shown here is the Bead Bar with lots to choose from. Another hobby that could get very addicting!

I came away with lovely poppy jasper and unikite "doughnuts" strung on silk ribbon for my keepsake for the trip!

Of course our trip was filled with great food (and I could do a whole separate food blog on the places we ate in Bend,OR: Blacksmith, Stacatto, name just a few!)
But it was also about the coffee! And at Sisters, OR is the original Sisters Coffee Company. So we had to go in to their beautiful building and get ourselves one of our favorite lattes and a pound of Sisters Blend!

They had a spectacular stone fireplace seating area and it was very cozy.

Aah...Nothing like it!

I was very excited to be here!! :)

Another fantastic coffee we enjoyed in Bend was Thump coffee, roasted by Stumptown. I was happy to discover there is also a Thump Coffee near us in Seattle,WA on Capitol Hill. It is very good, smooth and rich!

We payed them several visits this trip and also enjoyed their pumpkin bread slabs! (big slices) and their very friendly atmosphere.

If I posted all the "foodie" pictures this would take forever...but I must say that Bend, OR is a scenic, friendly and foodie place to visit. And we hope to go back soon!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Surprise! It Looks Like a Jacket!

And here he is wearing it at about 5 mos. old! My second cousin, Miles!
Sideways view! After redoing the arm seams to make more room for a chubby baby neck!

And Voila! With buttons. Five buttonholes on the right front side. Misted and blocked out to see if I could get the neckline to stretch a bit for a little baby neck. I wonder if I pulled in too many stitches when mattress stitching up the arm seam by the neck. Overall, a very amazing pattern-Based on: The Baby Surprise Jacket, by Elizabeth Zimmerman, with a few modifications given to me. Used almost exactly 3 skeins of the Mirasol wool on size 6 circulars.
Showing prior to completion:

Next after using the mattress stitch to seam across shoulders and arms, I will be sewing on little buttons! Genius of a design for sure...This is all one piece.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Baby Surprise Jacket

Starting with this nice Mirasol wool yarn, I cast on with size 6 circular needles to make the Baby Surprise Jacket. I have seen a sample at the local yarn shop using this same yarn and it was so cute! Casting on the 160 sts. and knitting in garter stitch across the neck and to both sleeve ends. Markers are placed and increases made at either side of them.

Working your way down the sweater you begin to decrease at points and your work resembles a jellyfish in shape. Everyone who has done this sweater has said to ignore the quirkiness of the shape and trust the pattern. So I march on....

Yes, a jellyfish. It does resemble that, but I can see how genius the pattern really is when I get to this point and "fold" it into shape. I am showing the two fronts on "hold" with stitch holders while I knit downward. Next step will be knitting the buttonbands where the holders are and doing finishing rows.

There will be seams along the length of the sleeves -on top of them and over the shoulders, and the rest of this sweater is seamless. No wonder so many thousands of people have done this amazing pattern.
Will show it later on when I figure out the buttonbands and buttonholes!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Plum Top-Down Cardigan

The Plum Top-Down Cardigan is complete! I wore it to work today with this jumper. It drew a few compliments and someone asked me for the pattern. I wore it to the dry cleaners where she had me pose for these two pictures. (I am friends with the dry cleaner ladies and they are always wondering what I am knitting next!) I have renamed this "Plum" because my family voted that it is NOT eggplant in color. OK,'s plum!
Well, you get the idea of the fit. I wanted something cropped and imagined I would wear it with this grey jumper to work. This was an easy pattern. Lots of buttons. All nine of them!

It is shown below drying and prior to buttons today. I knit down to a cropped length and chose to do short sleeves. Knit using Berroco Inca Gold yarn, in what I call "eggplant" color. This pic does not reflect the true color here in natural light, strangely enough. This was knit using the Cosmicpluto Knits' free raglan pattern (see sidebar for her blog) as a model with some modifications. (shorter sleeves, shorter body length)
It is more on the side of this plum shade (below), not the fuschia looking color (above). Shown here knitting on one of the sleeves during the final knit session last night. This sweater has no seams, and is knit in the round. The sleeves I also knit in the round. I love that it has no seams, so most of the finishing will entail just weaving in yarn ends and sewing on buttons. The pattern is knit from the top down, obviously beginning at the top! Increases are made at markers for building the yoke so it fits over the upper body and across the shoulders. The sleeve stitches are placed on holders (in my case I had extra size 7 circs to hold the sleeve sts.) so you can knit down the rest of the body first. Later on, going back to knit the sleeves.

About 5 1/2 skeins were used of this yarn. It is a wool/silk blend. I used a size 7 circular needle throughout the project.