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Brewer Burns

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Gentleman's Fancy Socks, Finished

I finished these last week. I love this yarn. It is silky-soft and slightly fuzzy. Stephen tried them on last night. He actually wore them. He loves them too. These were incredibly easy to make. By the end I was suffering from some serious knitter's boredom.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

New Socks for Stephen

My husband totally supports my yarn habit. So when he asks me for another pair of socks, I oblige. The Gentlemen's Fancy Socks from Knitting Vintage Socks is really easy. It is basically 2x2 ribbing, offset every eight rounds. I am past the gusset decreases on the first sock and it is looking lovely:

I cast on 68 stitches.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Herringbone Rib Socks-- Finished

Pattern: Herringbone Rib Socks from Winter IK (book excerpt)
Yarn: Socks that Rock lightweight in colourway "love"
Needles: Size 1 dpns
Mods: Made to fit size 5 women's feet

I really love these socks. I love the yarn. It is firm, tightly twisted, and has a slight sheen to it. I love the red and pink stripe effect and I really love the way that this pattern takes good advantage of that. This pattern was a bit of a yarn suck. When I was knitting the legs of the sock it felt like it took forever before I got to the point where I needed to start the heel. Also, all of the stretch in the pattern comes from the purl stitches between the pattern repeats. Definitely something to consider when sizing these for your feet.

The pattern consists of two rows. The second row requires that you slip two stitches back onto the left needle, pass a stitch over, then slip them back to the right needle. This is a bit fiddly. I slipped the stitches at the same time and that helped. By the time I got to the end of these socks it wasn't that bad. I was in the flow of the pattern. These are really just very lovely.

I've started on another pair of socks, this time for my husband. I bought some Socrates yarn, in a cafe au lait color (#2908). I love the feel of this yarn although I'm a little concerned with its ability to hold up under regular wear. I'm making the Gentleman's Fancy Sock from Knitting Vintage Socks. I am not going to do any of the calf shaping. These socks are really pleasing me.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Bettie's Lace Stockings: Finished

Pattern: Bettie's Lace Stockings from the Spring IK
Yarn: Cherry Tree Hill in Pink
Needles: Size 1 dpn's and Size 3 dpn's

I knit these kind of as written on the first sock but realized 3/4 of the way up the leg that I needed to switch to a much larger needle size. Then I realized, once I cast off, that I needed to do that much sooner than I had. So, on the second stocking I switched to size three needles when I started the wide lace pattern. I knit thirteen total repeats of the wide lace pattern before working the cast off rows as written. Then I ripped down the first stocking and reknit it the same way. These stockings fit me perfectly. I wore them a couple of days ago. The only problem is that they do fall down once you wear them around a bit so I need to invest in some ribbon to act as a garter. If that doesn't work then I will sew some elastic in at the top. I really enjoyed making these. The lace pattern is easily memorized and not terribly fiddly. I also love this yarn. It is a really beautiful color and it shows the lace well because it's a solid.

I ordered some Socks that Rock lightweight in the colourway "love" a few weeks ago and I've been itching to use it. I just love the pink and red stripey-ness. First I cast on the baroque. This was a BAD idea. The twisted stitches and cables were completely lost in the yarn. So, I frogged it. While noodling around on ravelry I saw some Herringbone Rib Socks from the Winter IK (their book insert) and I loved them. This pattern is perfect for a multi-colored yarn. So I cast on and:

It's a very good fit between pattern and yarn. So far, I really like this pattern. It's simple. There are only two rows to memorize. The second row is slightly fiddly but not too bad. I like it.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

The Quick and Dirty on Bettie's Lace Stockings and Noro Striped Scarf

First, the scarf. Everyone has knit this scarf. I followed Jared Flood's recipe and it turned out really well.

Yarn: Noro Silk Garden, Color 292, Knitpicks Shine in Fedora
Mods: 60" long because I'm short
Needles: Size 7 straights
Pattern: Noro Striped Scarf

Then I started my Bettie's Lace Stockings. I thought about this pattern for quite a bit before I started. I decided that since the pattern is knit for a size 8 foot I needed to size down a bit (I wear a size five and have narrow feet.) I cast on using size 1 needles instead of size 2. I ended up knitting 8 repeats of the lace on the foot, and eight above the heel. Then I knit 7 repeats of the wide lace using size 1 needles. When I tried the stocking on I realized that really I needed the stocking to be wider to accommodate my calves. This is not an unusual pattern. Lots of people on Ravelry have had the same problem. Anyway, I soldiered on and knit 11 total repeats of the wide lace before working the edging as written (pretty picot!) When I tried the stocking on after casting off not only was it too narrow for most of the leg, it was also too short. Instead of ripping that stocking back I decided to cast on for the second sock and modify it, then re-knit the first.

The second sock went much smoother. I knit it the same as the first through the last repeat of the narrow lace above the heel. Then I switched size 3 needles. I knit 11 repeats of the wide lace and tried the sock on. It fit the width of my leg, but was still too short, so I knit two more repeats of the wide lace before working the top edging. It's perfect. See?

I have now ripped back the first sock to the last repeat of the narrow lace and will reknit the leg according to my mods on the second sock. If you're thinking of making this pattern I have two pieces of advice. The lace stretches a lot width-wise but not nearly as much as you would think length-wise. Even so, you will probably need to switch to a larger needle size when you start the wide lace. Second, the centering of the pattern is a little...odd and...counterintuitive. You might just want to work out your own centering method. I found that on both socks the centering instructions as written would have caused the lace pattern below the heel to not match up to the lace pattern above the heel, even though clearly that is what the designer intended. So, proceed with caution.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Finished Flutter Sleeve Pictures

And my fabulous shoes:

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Flutter Sleeve Finished

Project Stats:

Pattern: Flutter Sleeve Cardigan from Spring 08 Interweave Knits by Pam Allen
Needles: Size 3, 6 and 7 straights (and circulars for when the back got too big for straights)
Yarn: less than 7 skeins of Knit picks shine in Fedora (dark brown)
Size: 36" bust
Mods: None

I sewed on the buttons last night, and my flutter sleeve cardigan is currently soaking in a nice bath, waiting to be laid out to dry. That picture of the back that I posted? Yeah. I ripped that. It was too long. So, I knit the back twice and everything else once. I enjoyed knitting this sweater and I enjoyed the yarn too. It's soft and it doesn't catch too badly on my needles. I think the fiddliest part of knitting this was the neck and sleeve shaping on the fronts. Basically, you are supposed to do two or three things at once and ended up writing out what to do on each line so that I didn't get lost. There were some other fiddly details: the button bands are started with the fronts, then the stitches for the button bands are placed on a holder, then knit separately later and sewn on. Probably the most daunting aspect of the sweater was figuring out how long the button bands should be, when you are supposed to "stretch slightly" to get it to fit the sweater, especially since once you knit the first band, the second band with the button holes must match it. I ended up using lots of pins and trying to sew very precisely. Lastly, once you think you have finished knitting you must then knit the cuffs on and then knit the tabs for the cuffs and sew those on as well. The fiddly little details make this sweater a bit of a challenge to finish, but they also make the sweater interesting and pretty.

I tried on the cardigan last night before it was blocked and it is pretty. One of the best things about the design of the cardigan is the use of the short row shaping around the bust area. Basically, the short rows create bit of a "cup" for your breasts. This works quite well since women aren't flat in the front, but rounded. Very nice detail. I also really like the seed stitch border and button bands. I think it adds a nice, feminine, detail to the cardigan. I think this is going to be a really beautiful work cardigan for me, with a pretty camisole underneath.

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