Friday, December 12, 2014

Machine Knitted Wreath

This was a free hand knitted pattern and I wanted to do it on my machine.  I just loved the colors of the yarn. The pattern called for a garter stitch sections.  I used my garter bar to flip the knitting when I got to that section.  Mine has the texture of the purl side in place of the garter stitch section.

After I got it knitted it took a lot of thinking to turn it into a good looking wreath. I didn't like it stuffed with just filling too floppy and soft.  I got 3" Styrofoam balls and loved the firmer look, but the whole thing was still floppy and hung in an oval on the wall.  My wreath measures 15 1/2 inches.  I got some metal wreath frames, but one was too big and the other was too small.  Thought I might have to make my own metal ring.
I finally thought if I tie some ribbon firmly between the Styrofoam joints it might tighten up the wreath and get rid of the saggy floppy look.  It did just that.  I found keeping the bows small I like it.  It looks cute.  It's finally on my wall and a part of my Christmas decorations.
I got a poinsettia that I liked.  Disassembled and reassembled it a bit to meet my needs.  Then made a big bow to back it and my wreath was done.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Double Rib, English Rib, Fisherman's Rib Oh My!

My daughter asked me to make her a really warm variegated gray colored scarf.  Well, being the holidays I jumped on that.  I remember making myself a super warm scarf a few years ago using a Diana Sullivan video.  It really me got me to thinking did I make Fisherman's Rib or not.  What exactly is Fisherman's Rib.  My manual talks about English Rib and Double Rib.  I made a few phone calls and got all my knitting friends confused, but everyone got to investigating.  I watched several of Diana's videos and we all figured it out about the same time.

Double Ribbing is knitting on every needle on both beds.  Verses 1X1 ribbing where you use every other needle.

English Ribbing (or Half Fisherman's Rib is tucking in one direction on one of the beds.  Doesn't matter if it's the main bed or the ribber.  This is what I did for the scarf.  I can directionally tuck if I use my ribber on my Studio 155.  I might be able to tuck with the main bed, but I'll need to experiment with the stitch dial.  I've been told it can't be done.

Fisherman's Ribbing is tucking in opposite directions on both beds.

When I was confounding my friends with my ribbing questions they both suggested I just make a 2X2 ribbed scarf.  Though lovely in it's own right the English Ribbed scarf I made is so thick, soft and luscious comes to mind.  So, thick, soft and luscious that I don't want to give it away! 
I wondered the first time I made this scarf if a tensioning error created the different look of the knitted stitch on the back of scarf.  No that's English Rib.  Since it's tucking in one direction it creates the different look on the back.  It is quite beautiful too.
I used Red Heart Medley in the Urban color.  The scarf is all washed up and ready to be wrapped.  Every time I walk by it I pick it up and bury my face in it.  It's so soft and warm and smells so good.  If it wasn't going to my daughter I might have had to wash it again.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

49er Fever Hits Beanie on a Bulky

Using my Team Spirit yarn I've been knitting up some beanies for a 49er party at my house.  This time I wanted to experiment with knitting it in the round.  I knew the ribbing couldn't be done circularly and it reminded me that Diana Sullivan had an easy technique to get this done.  I used the method she demonstrates in her sock video. It can be found on part one of Knitting a Sock on the Standard Machine.

From there I followed the Regular Guy Beanie instructions.  It's a free pattern on Ravelry.  I've written up what I've done.  Of course the instructions make perfect sense to me.  It makes an adult woman sized beanie.  So, you guys give it a try and let me know if you have any questions.

Beanie on a Bulky circularly knit

Friday, November 7, 2014

Yarn Bomb So Good It's Art

I did a yarn bomb a month ago.  I wanted to do something that was fun and in good taste.  Something my little town would enjoy.  I just did it so well people don't know it's a yarn bomb.
I asked my knitting friends to drive by and take a look at it.  They came by for our monthly machine knitting meeting and told me they didn't see it.  I thought how could they not see it.  It's a big round orange and smiling at you.  Finally, one of the gals asked, "I did see a smiling orange.  Did you do that?"  I said, "Yes."  She asked, "Really?!  It looks so official I thought the town put it up."  Then the other gals chimed in it looks so nice we thought it was official too.  We had no idea it was a yarn bomb.  So, my daughter says it's a yarn bomb fail.  I said, "Oh no it's a success if every one thinks it's so nice it belongs there."  My intention was for it to be a work of art all could enjoy and that's what they are doing.

I used Diana Sullivan's baby blanket technique to do the orange.  All other pieces are crocheted.  I used reflective yarn.  It's kind of fun to see it light up at night when the head lights hit it.

Newest Baby in the Neighborhood!

Decided a few years ago if a new baby comes to my stretch of the neighborhood I'm making them a baby blanket.  They've all been neighbors up till now.  The latest baby though is on my route to the gym.  I walk so I get a good look.  New couple moved in and I saw she was pregnant.  I waited till I got to see an actual glimpse of the baby.  Just in case.  Then I began knitting the blanket.  My daughter thought it was strange and that they'd think I was a stalker.  Well, I didn't care.  I wish all stalkers would show up with a handmade blanket and then leave them in peace.  
I do see myself as a kindly old grandmotherly type.  I may be over estimating my appearance even though my age definitely qualifies.  I told my daughter I promised not to snap anyone like a twig with my muscularly toned thighs.  I got the eyeball roll.

Diana Sullivan's Circular baby blanket.
I have to admit I did have a qualm the day I had it all ready to deliver.  My saving grace was I could hang it on their door and they'd find it later.  Wouldn't you know it the very day I'm dropping it off is the only day before or since that their door was open with the screen door.  2 yapping dogs announced my coming and I had to talk to the mom.  I said I just lived down the street.  She said she's seen me walking by every week. So, I wasn't a complete stranger.  I handed her the baby afghan in a gift bag and said I made a little something for the baby.  On a note in the bag I had put my address, so they wouldn't think a complete weirdo had left the gift.  When things started to get a little awkward I announced I had to get to the gym for my 10am class.  Whew!  All true.  All true.  I was suited up and on my way to the gym.
Love the way this blanket turns out.  I'll never get tired of it.
A week later Eileen and baby Lily came by to say thank you for the blanket and gave me a bag of veggies from their garden.  Couldn't have been a better thank you.  Hoping I've made a new friend on the street.
Used Sandee Cherry's roping technique for the edging.  I like the neater look rather than the pie crust edging.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Quick Hat

Sacramento Machine Knitting Guild member Hugh brought in his circular knitting machines at today's meeting.  He was there to teach anyone interested how to use one.  I have never used one and thought "Hey if he's going to haul all this equipment in I'm going to learn how to use it."  Such a nice thing he did.  I really enjoyed learning how to cast on, weave the end in as one goes and cast off.  He also brought in his pom pom maker if one was interested in topping off their hat.  Of course I wanted a pom pom!  Made this adorable hat with Hugh's help in less than 30 minutes.  He says he can knit 4 hats in an hour using the circular knitting machine seen behind me in above picture. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

MK Handtowel from Knitstuff Plus

MK Hand Towel

This was adapted from a hand knit pattern I have. The towel is finished when it comes off the buttons to sew on. This was done on a bulky machine with tuck capabilities.

What you'll need...
  • Made on an Brother 260
  • worsted weight cotton
  • Tension 8-10, whatever makes the fabric feel nice

Crochet cast on 64 stitches.
Knit 90 rows in tuck stitch.
Cancel tuck, knit 2 rows.
Remove to waste yarn or garter bar.
Rehang on 32 needles, doubling stitches.
Knit 2 rows, remove to waste yarn or garter bar.
Rehang on 16 needles, doubling stitches.
Knit 1 row, move the two middle stitches to adjacent needles to create buttonhole.
Knit 1 row with all needles in working position.
Knit 30 rows in tuck stitch.
Cancel tuck, knit 2 rows, remove to waste yarn.
Pull out 6 needles, hang one stitch on the very left and ewrap the 5.
Knit 4 rows. Hang the next stitch and knit 4 rows.
Repeat until all 16 stitches are done.
Latch tool bind off and cut yarn. .

Could not get a link to this pattern to save. So, copied it to my blog. It can be found at Knitstuff Plus.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Discovering My Intarsia Carriage

It's been sitting in a box in my craft room for years calling me.  I didn't really know what intarsia was until I hand knitted a hat as a Christmas present for my daughter.  I was having trouble getting the pattern to work and sent a picture to an experienced hand knitter friend.  She sent back "Oh you're doing intarsia you need to twist the yarns."  I looked up videos on what the heck I was supposed to do and it was simpler than I thought.

When I had a bag to do out of the same book as the above hat I thought why couldn't I do it on my knitting machine.  OH!  I have that intarsia carriage let's get it out and see how to use it.  Meanwhile, looking online at a YouTube video of a machine knitting pattern done by a Russian gal I came across a video of her using the intarsia carriage to knit my arch nemesis yarn Sashay.  I was quite excited that I recognized that it was an intarsia carriage and I gave myself a V-8 forehead slap, because why didn't I think of using it myself.  It made making a Filly Scarf on the knitting machine that much easier.  I had gotten it down to 2 hours.  Greatly faster and greatly less frustrating than doing it by hand.  If I could do it faster that would be even better as I had 3 skeins of that stuff left that I was very tempted to throw it in the trash.  Yes, it's aggravated me that much.  So much so that one skein was on my craft room floor.  Every time I saw it there I didn't think "Oh I should pick that up."  I thought, "Oh that's right where you belong."

Today with the intarsia carriage I made peace with Sashay.  In one hour I had knitted a Filly scarf easy.

 I found out the weight I used was too much.  Took it off when scarf was about 12 inches long and the weight of the scarf was plenty.  The needle set up was from the video.  I could easily hang the Sashay skipping every other hole with the needles that far a part.
 Can I refind the video on YouTube?  No!  It's in Russian, so I can't even search for it.  When I come across it again I'll post it.  It gave me such a wonderful idea.

Big thank you to my commenter Misha Moon for giving me the link to the youtube video:  Video Lesson "Curly" scarf.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Just Another Reminder!

If you want a reply from me you need to include your email address.  I get <> all the time.  That is because you don't have an email address attached to your name when you email me from the blog. Essentially, you are anonymous to me.  I love answering questions and helping when I can.  So, it's not that I don't or won't answer.  It's because I can't.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Always Something New To Try!

Needles of Steel's blog pointed me toward this fascinating pattern.  Yes it's in Russian, but the needle bed is shown and I think we machine knitters can figure it out.  There is a discussion and pattern on Ravelry that I missed as I spent the last few month practicing my hand knitting and crocheting.  Anxious to get back to machine knitting when I see beautiful pieces like this.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Gossamer Tuck Lace and The Learning Curve

Believe it or not I have been doing some machine knitting, but mostly hand knitting.  I'm trying to become a better hand knitter in hopes it will help with my machine knitting.

I did do some machine knitting in December working on a pattern I thought was very similar to my favorite pattern of 2010, BUT uses the ribber.  In fact this pattern is on the same pattern sheet as my favorite pattern.  It is the pattern on the bottom of the sheet just not using the ribber.

The pattern Gossamer Tuck Lace is done on the Passap, but I found it very easy to translate to my Studio 155.  I worked up a swatch and LOVE LOVE LOVE the texture.
I did learn it needs a lot of weight and constant all across the knitting weight.  I had a lot of drop stitches and tucking that was wasn't getting... well... tucked.  I'm casting on with the cast on comb when I start the scarf. I was wondering how I was going to keep this weight going as every time I moved the weight up it was a pain in the butt and didn't work well.  Oddly, I get an email from I believe about my very problem. Tried to find a link to it and of course can't find it.  Anyhow what was done was to roll the knitting around cast on comb and rehang weights.  Keeps the constant weight across the whole piece without having to remove the cast on comb.
It also looked like I might need to adjust the tension to get my tuck to be the same size from main bed to ribber.  Although I kind of like the difference in the sizes as a design feature.