Friday, April 21, 2017

Classes May 2017



May is for Makeovers and New Beginnings
SWEATER CLINIC
No matter if you call it a sweater, jumper or pullover, sometimes it is time to change the style or fit. 
I recently changed the neckline on a favorite sweater.  It seems that ever so often I look at my sweaters and decide to change something (the neckline, the length, the overall fit).

Do YOU have a sweater or any garment which needs a make-over and some tender loving care?  Let me help you figure out if it can be salvaged and how.
Special offer:  1 1/2 hour one-on-one help $40 by appointment only. 
Sweater Clinic:  
2 hour class with up to three participants $25. 
Please note that I will hold this class only if I have two or more sign-ups.  
Two Dates to choose from:
Thursday, May 11th from 1pm-3pm at The Knitting Garage at Stickles in Rhinebeck.
Thursday, May 25th from 1pm-3pm at The Knitting Garage at Stickles in Rhinebeck.
...to this.

From this...
From this...
...to this.
To sign up 

  • email me at formbyd8@gmail.com   
  • or call at (845) 430-7619 and leave a message.                    

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Spring is for Make-overs (#132)

My latest knitterly Makeover of a Summer Sweater

No matter if you call it a sweater, jumper or pullover, sometimes it is time to change the style or fit. 

Read to the end of this post for my offer to help you with your sweater.


This Spring I tackled my Lalo Simple Sweater which I had knitted five years ago in a beautiful linen yarn.  I like the sweater EXCEPT for the neckline.  I always thought it was a tad too big and even added strings to tie the neckband tighter....

Original neckline 2012

With ties
 I finally re-visited the issue.  Luckily this sweater was knit up in pieces, so I was able to undo the shoulder seams and the seams between the arms and front. Then I unraveled the front down to where the left front and right front split.
Original neckline

Unraveled
 That done, I simply re-knit the front in a classic crew neck style, re-seaming the shoulders and then picking up stitches around the neck.  For the neckband I did a few rows of ribbing and then garter stitch to mimic the ribbing on the sleeve cuffs and the hem.  Finally I worked the bind-off on a purl row. Last I re-seamed not only the shoulder caps but also the sleeves and body to give it a more even, pulled together look.
The new look
For now you can see the join of the old and new knitting, but that is only due to the fact that although I used leftover yarn from the same skein, that yarn had never before been knitted or washed, whereas the sweater has gone through numerous washes.  I am quite sure that once the sweater is washed at least once the difference will no longer be noticeable.
I think I like it!


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Here are some other tops and sweaters I had given a make over in the past:

Too wide and too short


...redone from the armholes down


Armholes are way too big

...I added some ribbing around the armholes

And last, but not least:

VERY wide neck

...I re-knitted the neckband on smaller needles.



TOO short


...I added 2 1/2 inches of ribbing to the hem.


Do YOU have a sweater or any garment which needs a make-over and some tender loving care?  Let me help you to figure out what to do.

Special offer:  1 1/2 hour one-on-one help $40 by appointment only. 

 

Sweater Clinic:  

2 hour class with up to three participants $25.  I will hold this class only if I have two or more sign-ups.  

Two Dates to choose from:

Thursday, May 11th from 1pm-3pm at The Knitting Garage at Stickles in Rhinebeck.

Thursday, May 25th from 1pm-3pm at The Knitting Garage at Stickles in Rhinebeck.

 

Thursday, April 6, 2017

WooHoo, I am ready for Summer (#131)

 

My Caesura Tuck by Asa Tricosa/  MY FIRST ZIGGURAT

When I choose this pattern, I was ready to try something different AND I wanted to make some headway using up stash yarn.
By doubling two lace weight yarns, I got just the right weight and a whole new look.
I had purchased the Artesano Alpaca Silk Lace in Ice Blue two years ago at the Good Wool Shop in Formby, UK (my husband's home town).  Originally I was going to knit up an airy, lacy layering piece (Athena by Rita Taylor), but after buying the Juniper Moon Farm Findley in Green (color 29) during a close-out sale at Living Eden in Red Hook, NY, I liked the look of the two yarns together. 


The pattern for Athena


What attracted me to the Caesurea Tuck was mainly the tuck in the back and the designer; I have one of her shawl designs in my queue since a while ("Semele").  Here is a link to the pattern:  Caesura Tuck.  
I named my project "Winter's Dreams" (click on the link to read my notes on ravelry).

Semele


I didn't know what I was getting myself into.  The beginning took me on quite a ride:
You start with a provisional cast-on (a new version of this for me)  at the front right, then work your way up with decreases around the neckline to the shoulder at which point you add stitches to get to the left shoulder (I like her method of adding stitches as it eliminates gaps).  That done you work your way down from here across all stitches to underarm level (at the same time you are working the tuck here).  Then you pick up stitches at the left front and work yourself down mirroring the neck line on the right, but this time by increases.  When left and right fronts are the same length, you join them and work down to the same level as the back to the underarm.  Once you join the front and back and start knitting in the round it is a "piece of cake".  The pocket is an "afterthought" pocket, picking up stitches later, knitting in the round and 3-needle bind off; much like an afterthought heel on a sock.

joining in the round

adding the pocket

Here are some pictures before blocking :


.


When I blocked the top I decided to block the tuck as a fold for the entire length.


on the blocking mats
I had been thinking to add short rows across the shoulders, but for now I decided to wear it "as is", I can always add later.

A winding way, a zig-zaggy sweep with a great result :)!!

Click here for my project notes on ravelry :  Winter's Dreams

I am thinking to try Asa Tricosa's Ziggurat method again some time; perhaps next time a sweater.  
She has a lot of patterns out.  
You can look them up on ravelry or on her website www.asatricosa.com
For Asa's ravelry site click on this link


 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

What's on my needles (#130)

  I am not knitting only socks 

But let's start with socks.

I finished the pair for myself in the beautiful Hedgehog Fibers Sock yarn Color "Tremble". I love the color and think the stitch I used is perfect for this. For the toes, heel and cuff ribbing I used the same yarn in a different color ("Aroma"). This was left-over yarn from Stepehen West's Building Blocks Shawl which is in it's final stages and may be done by the time I write my next post (in two weeks).

If you want to knit up your heel in a different color using the FLK method by the Sox Therapist (click for the $1 instructions), there are several ways to get that color change done. I have more extensive notes on ravelry, but let me quote myself here:


" TIP. When using a cc yarn for the FLK heel, make sure to work the first row in the main color so you have your working yarn sitting in the right position once you are done with the heel and ready to knit once again in the round.
If you forgot, you can carry your working yarn by doing a triple stitch in the first two sts of the last row.
A third way would be to knit the first two stitches of the first heel row in the main color and then switch to the cc at the third stitch thus positioning your main color yarn to use for the final heel row."


To  read all my notes on ravelry, click on the caption below the picture.
 
MORE


My husband's birthday surprise socks are also almost finished and at that will be ready way ahead of time (mid-April).  

My next two pairs of socks :)

 

When I saw the free pattern by Skacel for Tom & Ethel Socks in CaBaSi, I knew I wanted to knit these up for Tony and me.  The main difficulty was to choose colors we both like.  I ended up getting brown and light blue.  These will be my Anniversary present (35 years on July 1st !).  Tony's socks will be blue with brown stripes and mine will be brown with blue stripes. <3
The heel construction in this sock is similar to the FLK heel in as much that it, too, is worked entirely with short rows.  But the Sox Therapist's FLK heel pattern has additional information on how to custom fit your sock and where to place the heel for the best possible fit (well worth the $1 for the 16 page instructions).  Also her short rows are using a unique stitch and I will most likely use the FLK heel for these socks.

You can download the free pattern on ravelry by clicking here:  Tom & Ethel Socks
 



Caesura Tuck by Asa Tricosa

And last not least the Caesura Top is coming along in leaps and bounds as this is my TV knitting now after finishing my socks since I don't want to knit Tony's socks in front of him.

The red scrap yarn indicates where I will add a small pocket. I have to do another 3-4 inches to finish and then I will think about whether or not I want to change the sleeves from straps to slightly capped sleeves by adding a few short rows around the arm-opening.


Winter's Dreams

 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Some thoughts about variegated yarns (Post# 129)

Perhaps you are tired of hearing about my sock knitting,  but it is due to many socks I have knitted so far (and will be knitting in the future), that I thought to share with you about the look a variegated yarn gives your knitting and how to avoid pooling of colors which may be more of a problem when knitting garments.
First, a definition of variegated yarn (from Wikipedia):
"Variegated yarn is yarn dyed with more than one colour. It can produce effects that vary depending on the technique of the crafter, the pattern used, and the frequency of colour change. These effects include "flashing" (lightning-bolt effects) and "pooling" (patchy or marbleized effects)."

Here are a few pairs of socks I knitted without considering how to break up the colors:

The yarns used (from left to right) are Crazy Zauberball by Schoppel,  Frolicking Feet by Done Roving, CoBaSi byHiKoo, and again CoBaSi by Hikoo,  Innovation Sockenwolle by Strauss, and last but not least CoBaSi by HiKoo.


If you want to break up the colors, the simplest way is to alternate between two different skeins making sure you don't start at the same point of the color sequence.

Another way is to choose a stitch which breaks up the sequence.  A slipped stitch is ideal for this.
I am presently working on two pairs of socks and I am using slipped stitches in both.

  • For a very dramatic effect you may want to choose this Quilted Lattice Stitch from Barbara Walters.
    Using Sock Yarn by Hedgehog Fibres color "Tremble"
The slipped stitch stretches over two rows and I think it looks really pretty.
The sock pattern by Linda Jo Park is free on ravelry:  Mexican Waters Lattice Socks

Here is the 8 row repeat for the stitch:
Rnd 1: *K1, sl5 wyif. Repeat from * to end of rnd.
Rnd 2 and all even numbered rnds: Knit.
Rnd 3: K3, *insert needle under loose strand and knit
next stitch, bring stitch out under strand, k5. Repeat
from * ending with K2.
Rnd 5: K4, *sl 5 wyif, k1. Repeat from * ending by
slipping 3 sts at beginning of rnd 6.
Rnd 7: *K first st under loose strand, k5. Repeat from
* ending with k first st under loose strand.
Rnd 8: See Rnd 2.

The only problem I ran into since I am not using the sock pattern, but my favorite FLK heel, is that due to the slipped stitches the top of the foot does not grow in length at the same speed as the sole.  I simply decided the heel turn on the length of the sole and it is giving me a perfect fit.



  • The other stitch I am using is the Waffle Stitch from Project Peace which is also a free pattern, this one by Christina Campbell on ravelry:  Project Peace
The stitch is a 4 row repeat:
ROUNDS 1–2: P1, slwyb, *P2,
slwyb, repeat from * until 1 st
before marker, P1, sm.
ROUNDS 3–4: Knit around.

Using Frolicking Feet Sock Yarn by Done Roving Yarns color "Mercury"

On other news:

My Caesura Tuck by Asa Tricosa is fitting beautifully (I tried it on).  The only concern I have now is the width of the shoulder straps, but if I cannot fix that with vigourus blocking, I will pick up stitches around the arm hole and work a few short rows to get something between a strap and a cupped sleeve.
This picture is not showing off the piece  well, but I didn't want to take pictures when I tried it on; so, keep posted :)

 

Friday, February 24, 2017

Socks and Summer Tops (128)

This is going to be a little brief as I am working from a different device but just have to share with you about my latest knitting adventures.

Socks

I just finished these socks for my husband, playing around a little with color.  These are knitted up again in CoBaSi, a yarn which wears really well; the cotton/Bamboo/Linen blend feels lovely on his feet.  Tony had picked out the gray and I added red which I had left over from a previous pair of socks for the toes and the heel.  In the end I decided to add a little in the final cuff ribbing.  Here is a link to my notes on ravelry:http://ravel.me/Strickliese/flkh7

Summer top

I am also working on a Summer top.  In my desire to use up stash yarn, I am combining two lace weight yarns to have a heavier fingering weight to use for the Ceasura Tuck by Asa Tricosa. The yarns are Artesano Silk Lace which I had bought in the little wool shop in Formby (UK) two years ago and the Juniper Moon Farm Findley.
I started on this last week during one of the snow storms and it turned out to be the perfect project to sink my teeth in and learn a few new tricks while thinking of Summer and the warmer weather.
One problem I ran into is that you have to decide pretty much in the beginning whether or not you want a deeper neckline.  I added two inches in depth and have second thoughts about it now.  I put lifelines in the rows I definitely want to keep and am deciding if I want to cut , unravel and then Kitchener stitch.
It is a really nice pattern but I thought the neckline was a little too high and you are given choices in the pattern.
One thing I am certain of is that I will not unravel everything and re-start...
Again, here are more extensive notes and you can follow my progress on ravelry.
http://ravel.me/Strickliese/ct

Until next time; hopefully by then my computer is running properly again and I don't have to borrow my husband's laptop.

2.28. UPDATE:  I worked the left front and joined the left and right fronts, then tried it on and I am very pleased to say that the neckline comes to just below my collar bones which is a perfect fit :)  So, no more fretting, but I am just happily continuing (of course there is still the issue of whether or not I need bigger armholes...).   And on another issue: yes, my PC works fine again ! :)
 

 

Friday, February 10, 2017

Rolling, rolling, rolling... (127)

I seem to be on a roll

Remember my "Candle Flame Scarf" pattern was translated into French.  Soon after that I received an inquiry for permission to translate it into Danish!!  I will keep you posted about that.  
In the meantime, if you speak the language, check out Marianne's website here: http://marianneholmen.dk/
And a link directly to other patterns she translated into Danish:  http://strikkeglad.dk/

In other news

I had come to like the yarn shop "The Good Wool Shop" in my husband's hometown when we last visited there a little under two years ago.  I connected with the owner, Isabel, especially because we had a German connection as she lived there for several years with her husband teaching at one of the universities.  When he transferred to Liverpool, she opened the shop, but has to close this month after just two years as it was just not profitable.  She has some great sales going on, but is closing on the 18th of this month.  Stop by if you can!  She has some great British yarns in stock!!! Here is her website:  http://www.thegoodwoolshop.co.uk/

Conclusion

This is what I love about the knitting community:  You can connect regardless of Nationality, Language etc, etc

<3This brings me to wish you all a very happy Valentine's Day <3