Friday, October 19, 2007

Another silly internet quiz

What Kind of Reader Are You?
Your Result: Dedicated Reader

You are always trying to find the time to get back to your book. You are convinced that the world would be a much better place if only everyone read more.

Literate Good Citizen
Obsessive-Compulsive Bookworm
Book Snob
Fad Reader
What Kind of Reader Are You?
Create Your Own Quiz

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


I tried to sew the zipper in. I used a sewing machine. It's JUST AWFUL!!! :(

The top of the zipper is sticking up above the knit fabric at the collar. At the hem, one side of the cardigan is at least an inch lower than the other. None of the colorwork is lining up.

Now I have to take all these blasted machine stitches out with a seam ripper and it's taking FOREVER!! I may throw myself bonelessly to the floor like a two-year-old and scream.

I've moved Samus to the VERY BOTTOM of my queue now, because it has a ZIPPER!!


Okay. Okay. It really is not the end of the world. I finished the pair of mittens, and they look great. I've cast on for a mindless little scarf for Rose, and I'm still considering recreating the J.C. Penney sweater, though I may do the Tilted Duster instead. I'll eventually get the zipper out of the little cardigan, and it will go back in better.

Sorry about that tantrum. I feel better now.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Sweater ideas

So I was at J.C. Penney the other evening, picking up a packet of Rose's photos from their portait studio, and I saw this sweater:

And I loved it right away.

So did I buy it?

No. I picked it up, laid it out, noticed the set-in sleeves and the ribbing across the bust area, the angle of the a-line as it increased from the empire waist, and said those famous words: "I could totally knit this."

Now, Knitty's Rosebud is very much like this (although a pullover instead of a cardigan), but I'm not as crazy about it. I'm not sure why. Perhaps I'll use Rosebud as a jumping-off point for re-creating this sweater.

P.S. The first mitten is done, and it fits!

Monday, October 8, 2007

This yarn hates me

I don't know why. I like it an awful lot.The background:

  • I cast on, using the same needles I used for the hat I made with the same yarn. Knowing the troubles I had had with the hat, I very carefully checked gauge in several places. I cast on for a women's size medium, the same size I knitted my first mittens. Which fit.

  • I started noticing almost immediately that the cuff seemed "a little loose," yet I kept knitting until I was past the thumb gusset, when I realized that I could probably manage to get both my hands in the mitten.

  • Frogged and cast on again, this time in the women's size small. Decided to do a twisted rib for the cuff. Hated how it looked in this yarn and frogged it.

  • Cast on again, and had a fantastic gap in the join which I could not fix. Frogged.

  • Cast on again, and managed to twist the cast on round when I joined, which of course I didn't notice for 2 1/2 rounds. Threw the mitten in the knitting bag for a long time out.

Anyhow, now I've calmed down and started over again. Fifth time's the charm, I guess, or maybe it learned it's lesson from the time-out because now it's going swimmingly and I think I'm going to end up liking these mittens very much. Good thing I'm stubborn.

Also, I got the zipper pinned to the little Norwegian sweater. I'm not much of a seamstress, but with the help of this post and this post, I feel that I may be able to fumble my way through this one. Next I will baste the zipper and take the pins out and turn it right side out to see how it looks from that side, then sew it in for good. I might even use a sewing machine (no!).

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Amazed at myself

Dear Rachel,

When you taught me how to knit and purl 4(5?) years ago, I don't think either of us ever expected I'd try colorwork, let alone steeking it.

Here is the little sweater as a pullover. The steek is a bridge of 5 extra stitches, marked by stripes where there is colorwork.
The crocheted reinforcement "ties" one leg of the center steek stitch to the leg of the stitch next to it, from the hem all the way up to the neckline.
One side done.

Then the other leg of the center stitch is crocheted to the stitch on the other side, from the neck back down to the hem.
Both sides done.
Between the legs of the crocheted center stitch is a ladder of horizontal purl stitches.

Those are the stitches that are very carefully, one at a time, snipped.

After a lot of breath-holding...

Viola! (Again, I must thank Eunny Jang for her exhaustive steeking tutorials, especially part 5.)

Now I just have to sew the edges under neatly and find a zipper that separates at the bottom! Then I will have a pretty little FO to show you!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

A preview

Dear friends,

I have become a very bad blogger for the last couple of weeks. I left the last post with a teaser about steeking, and then cheerfully went about my life, not steeking at all. Shameful. In my defense, there have been issues, namely:

  • I didn't have a zipper yet, and I wanted to buy the zipper before I steeked.

  • It has been raining, and the light has not been good for photos.

  • Ravelry is the biggest time-sucker ever invented.

  • When I finally bought the zipper, I got it home to find out it's not the kind that separates at the bottom.

  • Job, family, housework...

So I steeked my swatch, which is what I was going to do first all along.


I used a crocheted reinforcement, described by Eunny Jang in this amazing tutorial. And that link is just one article of seven on steeking. The crochet added a good bit of structure, and it was just a matter of carefully snipping, one at a time, the strands between the two lines of crochet. The fabric has held together nicely, despite being turned into a headscarf for the cat, who did not want to wear it (sorry, didn't get any pictures of that). What I haven't done for this swatch was to turn the edges under and tack them to the inside. I'll do that for the sweater itself.

So, really, really, next time there will be pictures to document each step of the sweater steeking itself. As long as it's sunny.