Monday, March 30, 2009

Second Glove Syndrome

I've been working on my first real color work project: Annemor #17 Glove Pattern from SELBUVOTTER: Biography of a Knitting Tradition by Terri Shea. I selected Palette fingering weight yarn from KnitPicks for the project, and it works up so quickly. (I knit the cuff to just below the fingers in an afternoon.)

I discovered a problem: I hate making fingers of gloves. The gloves fit me really well, and they look beautiful. But with each finger, there are more ends to weave in (which I also loathe!). Also, since each finger is identical, I get bored.

Therefore, I still have to finish this second glove. I guarantee that the next projects I select from this book will be mittens before I attempt another glove pair!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Selbuvotter: Biography of a Knitting Tradition

SELBUVOTTER: Biography of a Knitting Tradition by Terri Shea

This book contains history of this knitting tradition, dissects the art of mitten construction so anyone can understand it, and contains many beautiful patterns to choose from!The patterns are darling. I am itching to use this to make next year's Christmas presents!

The pattern designations are based on the sizes given:
  • Women's Gloves (Girl's Large Counts) - 9
  • Women's Mittens (Girl's Large Counts) - 15
  • Child's mittens- 4
  • Men's Mittens/Gloves- 3 (+ 9 overlap with Women's)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Rowan Colourscape Chunky

In Bristol, UK, I begged and pleaded with the boys to take me to a yarn store. (What better souvenir for a knitter than yarn? I was mostly well behaved, only getting yarn made in the British Isles. (I did buy some alpaca... but who can resist?)

This Rowan Colourscape Chunky yarn by Kaffe Fassett really excited me. I through that it would be great to use to fashion some fingerless-mitts. When winding the ball to a skein, I learned that the beautiful coloration does not repeat (see right), and if I were to make mitts out of this yarn the right and left mitts would not match.

I have enough planned scarves to knit for myself, so I was racking my brain for projects that could use a single skein (hopefully) and show off the fun colors of this yarn. On the cover of Felted Knits, there is a cute picture of a felted pillow with buttons in the middle. I will attempt to make such a pillow out of my colourscape. Pillow C in the Berroco Free Patterns is 12" square made with 100 g of wool, so I'm feeling optimistic. I'll just knit a long rectangle, and see where it ends up.

On size 10 needles, I get 4 sts/inch and 6 rows/inch, I cast on 54 sts.

Pre felting, piece measures approximately 13.5" x 24". I still think that I want to felt the piece, and finish the pillow construction with a contrast color. Wish me luck!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Beer and Wine Cozy Pattern Search

Beer cozies were such a big hit as a gift, I decided to do a search for free patterns. These are great projects for using up remnant yarn. They can also jazz up a birthday or house warming gift.

No bottom on cozies means that their function won't double as a coaster.
  • Beer Cozy - Two color, striped. Is like a wristlet for the beer bottle!
  • Round the bottle Wine Cozy - This would be more fun than just a gift bag! With a cute tie on top.
  • Felted Fair Isle Beer Cozy - This is felted with hearts, made for a can with a bottom. Was tested, and actually keeps the beer cold.
  • Game day beer cozies - Knit in you favorite team colors! These have a bottom
  • Girl Beer Cozy - This is a tiny sweater (with arms!) that you can slip your beer into. There is no bottom to the cozy.
  • King's Cozy - This beer cozy goes up the neck of the beer bottle and has cables.
  • Striped Wine Sack A simple project that could be good for a beginner who wants to play with felting. A drawstring or ribbon keeps the top closed.
  • Swirled Wine Bottle cozy Nice textured pattern. Has a tie on top.
  • Beer Huggie - Simple and has a bottom
  • Wine Felted Snuggly with a handle - it looks like the wine bottle is in a mug with the cute handle.
  • Keep your wine cozy - These are open topped, likely would work to keep your wine cool.
  • Winter Wine Cozy - Knit in chenille and would make great gift bags.
  • Wine Cozy - Plain or with embroidered stars. the ties have tassels on the end (like most patterns on, these are fantastic!)
  • Woodridge Wine Cozy - this is not super fitted, but may keep the wine warm. (They remind me of the wine coolers with ice at restaurants.)
  • Sock Yarn Beer Cozy - These go up on the neck. The self striping sock yarn makes them fun!
  • Ribbed and varied beer cozies - there are charts to include His or Hers on the cozies.
  • Knit Beer Bottle - So this isn't a cozy, but it is SUPER cute
  • Beer Cozies - Pattern is for both covering the neck of the bottle, or just the lower portion.
  • Felted Beer Can Cozy - simple and single color.
  • Cotton Cabled Wine Cozy - Two color, delicate and pretty with a tassel closure
  • Harry Potter Wine Cozies - Charts to make the different Harry Potter House Crests on a wine Cozy (using's cozy pattern)
  • Edit 5.14.09 - Beer cozy patterns by Chemknits: Knit one below beer cozy (create a vertical stripe pattern with your remnant yarn) and the Peptide Beer cozy (For the scientist in you!)
  • Edit 11.22.09 - The newest beer cozy by ChemKnits: The "Hangover" Beer Cozy has the structure of ibuprofen on one side and a scheme of alcohol metabolism on the other. Enjoy!
  • Edit 02.22.10 - The newest beer cozy by ChemKnits: The "Resveratrol Wine Cozy" which features the Resveratrol molecule on one side. This could also be dubbed the Fountain of Youth Wine Cozy
  • Edit 03.03.10 - The newest wine cozy from ChemKnits: The Drop Stitch Wine Bag. This is a fast and easy way to dress up a bottle of wine for a hostess gift, and use up some remnant yarn at the same time (as the project does not require much!)
  • Edit 4.7.10 -The newest beer cozy from Chemknits: Bacilysin Beer Cozy. This "Antibiotic" beer cozy contains the molecular structure of the antibiotic Bacilysin charted on the side.
  • Edit 9.6.10 - The newest pattern published at ChemKnits by guest designer Joy S. Grape. Star Trek Uniform Beer Cozy - This bottomless cozy is knit in the round and has a little Star Trek logo on the upper edge.
  • Edit 12.28.13 - ChemKnits is proud to share her newest Beer Cozy Knitting Pattern - The Zig-Zag Beer Cozy.  Now you have a nice and elegant Beer Cozy option with this simple eyelet design of vertical zig-zags.  

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Spring has Sprung!

So as I live in an apartment, I am unable to garden. Winter has been long and cold this year, and the daffodils and tulips have been underground too long. I found a bulb garden at Costco that would allow me to bring the spring flowers to me without the wait. I am so excited about this that it HAD to make an appearance in my blog!

When they came home with me, all of the leaves were below the tops of the vases. Within days, one of the tulips and the daffodils had sprung up!

The red tulips should bloom soon.

Seeing these beauties every morning has made me so happy. It is refreshing to look at them while I eat breakfast (or knit)!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

All 20 (Natural) Amino Acid Knitting Charts

I used my cabin fever to whip up knitting charts for all 20 natural amino acids. Enjoy!

Feel free to use these charts for your personal use, but they are not to be sold or reproduced on another web page. If you modify these charts, please still credit this page.

This this pattern was created by ChemKnits for your personal or charity use. This pattern is not to be replicated, sold or redistributed without permission from ChemKnits. © 2009 ChemKnits

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Alpaca Glittens!

As mentioned on my pattern search for glittens, my morning commute often involves 10-20 minutes waiting for the bus in Boston cold. I like to read my morning paper, but I hate repeatidly taking off my mittens to turn a page or get out my bus pass. Therefore, I decided to create a pair of glittens (or convertible mittens) following the Broad Street Mittens pattern.

I made these with 2 balls Artesano inca cloud (100% alpaca) color ZK 50 g/131 yards. (That I purchased in the UK.)

I have small hands, and I attempted this pattern even though it indicated that it would fit a women's large. Switching to smaller than 2.75 mm needles (used in the pattern) did not affect the gauge enough that I was willing to start over. The cuffs and the fingers fit well, so they feel good on my hand.

I wanted to make the mitten shell smaller, since I have small hands, as written it seemed as though it would be quite large, so I made the following adjustments:

My decrease for mitten shell:
  • ... (same as written pattern)
  • K even around all four needles for 17 rounds.
  • Then, on each needle -- k to the last 2 stitches, k2tog. K one round even.
  • (my changes start here)
  • K4, K2tog *repeat (K last 2 sts)
  • K 3 rounds even
  • K3 K2 tog - repeat to end (K last 2 sts)
  • K 3 rounds even
  • K2 K2 tog - repeat to end (K last 2 sts)
  • K 2 rounds even
  • K1 K2 tog - repeat to end (K last 2 sts)
  • K 1 round even
  • K1 K2 tog - repeat to end
  • K 1 round even
  • K2 tog - repeat to end
  • K2tog enough to get 4 sts final
  • Make Icord as directed
Working with alpaca was wonderful. I cannot wait to use it in another project!