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Archive for the ‘WIPs’ Category

Highlights: Lots of hats, lots of socks, and several projects for work.
Lowlights: Only one sweater done. 😦 And I would have liked to do more spinning and weaving.

Here are some of my favorites:

Click any of the pictures above to enter the gallery and see captions.

Further details available (including links to patterns, where I used one) on my Ravelry projects 2015 tab. (You must be logged into Ravelry to view.)

I already have a good head start on 2016 with a bulky-gauge sweater on the needles. At 3.5 stitches per inch, it’s working up very quickly.

IMG_2880

I’m using the Seamless Yoke – Adult sweater pattern from Ann Budd’s Knitter’s Handy Book of Top-Down Sweaters. The majority is knit in Cascade Yarns Eco Wool (Bovska undyed cream colorway), and the contrast color in the yoke is Targhee from Spunky Eclectic that I handspun (purchased at the NH Sheep & Wool Festival in May 2015 and spun the week after). At this point, most was done with one 200-gram skein of Eco Wool and 57 grams of the handspun. I just started the second skein of Eco Wool a few rows back, and I’m planning on using the rest of the handspun for a rolled reverse-stockinette edging on the cuffs, bottom hem, and neckline. Buttonbands will be done in Eco Wool in garter stitch. The whole sweater is garter stitch as well. Easy-peasy.

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Wow, how did it get to be August already?!

Catching up from my last post… the kitty blanket was finished just a week later:

kittyblanket

And I picked up some Cascade Eco Wool to be used with the handspun targhee in a striped-yoke sweater:

ecotarghee

I also finished a Mohair Bias Loop (Churchmouse pattern) for a photo shoot for work.
Kits are available in six different colors from Patternworks.

Photo by Evelyn S. Lamprey

Photo by Evelyn S. Lamprey

I finished a pair of socks using Miss Babs Yummy superwash yarn – made up the pattern as I went.

sliptwist

I retooled my TV Tray Socks to have a double-thick bottom – so hopefully they last longer and I won’t have to knit new ones as frequently:

dttvtraysocks

I went on a bit of a Footie Socks kick (this was the fourth pair in about a month’s time):

footies

Most recently, I finished a Ribbed Beanie and Handwarmers (another Churchmouse pattern) for yet another photo shoot for work:

beanie handwarmers

I’ve also been working on a Random-Stripe Boxy sweater. I used the Random Stripe Generator to determine the striping sequence, and I’m using four different colorways of String Theory Caper Sock. (I originally purchased them to knit shawls… but realized I just don’t wear shawls. But I wear sweaters.) At first, I tried to knit jogless stripes, but it just wasn’t working. I was also trying to carry the unused colors up the side, and that wasn’t working either. So with each color change I’m cutting the yarn, and weaving in ends after every few color changes.

randomboxy

(left – jogless stripes, which didn’t turn out jogless; right – cutting yarn with each color change and weaving in ends, not jogless either, but much neater!)

boxyback

(inside of the sweater, weaving in ends as I go)

And just this past weekend, I found myself in need of a sock project to work on while riding in the car. So I frogged half a sock I started way back in January 2014 and never got back to – and I didn’t feel like trying to figure out where I was (since I was in the process of designing it at the time and not following an existing pattern). Instead, I cast on my Trellis and Cable Socks pattern from the opposite end of the skein. (Pattern is available on Ravelry.)

trelliscable

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The Targhee has dried, and I. LOVE. IT.

TargheeFinished

  • Fiber: Spunky Eclectic Targhee in the Dark Matters colorway
  • Main Skein: 147 yards (105 grams), bulky weight, very thick-n-thin, 2-plied
  • Leftovers Skein: 11.5 yards (11 grams), bulky weight, Navajo-plied
  • Further details on Ravelry.

I’ve also made a little progress with the weaving:

KittyBlanketWeavingJust a little progress! That’s somewhere between 4″-5″.

It’s threaded at a sett of 5 ends per inch, which is really too wide. I would have been happier with something close to a balanced weave, but this is extremely weft-faced. You really don’t see the warp at all. I tried sampling some different treadlings – plain weave, basket weave, twill – but you really can’t see them, so I’m sticking with plain weave for the rest. I have a lot of handspun for the weft, but I have no more of the yarn I used for the warp, so I’ll just weave until I run out of yarn (or warp length) and see what I end up with!

When I first learned to weave, I always just wrapped the yarn the long way around the center of the stick shuttle – and of course, usually ended up with a shuttle that was hard to get through the shed until enough of the yarn had been taken off the shuttle and woven in. Now, more than 25 years later, I learned the method that you can sort of see in the photo above, which I learned while previewing Liz Gipson’s Life After Warping DVD at work. You wrap in figure-8’s on one side, then wrap the center for a while, then wrap in figure-8’s on the other side. It makes for a much flatter shuttle while still holding a lot of yarn!

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The recent addition of weaving to our product lineup at work, along with last weekend’s trip to the New Hampshire Sheep and Wool Festival have renewed my enthusiasm for other fiber crafts besides knitting. Of course, there’s spinning, which is one of my more recently adopted fibery pursuits.

Last night, I plied the Spunky Eclectic Targhee I spun last weekend. Here’s a quick shot I snapped while it was still damp and hanging in the laundry room to dry:

TargheePliedIt’s highly variable in thickness throughout the hank, but I do love it. While spinning the singles, and when I first started plying it, I was having some trouble with the yarn twisting onto itself as I was feeding it into the orifice to wind onto the bobbin. I usually try to have as little tension as possible when spinning, but when I finally upped the tension while plying I realized that right there was my problem – not enough tension. So there are some extra-twisty bits in here, but I’m okay with that. Final details to come once it’s completely dry – which it probably is by now, but I was distracted by something else today:

Weaving.

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this before, but weaving was my first serious foray into fiber arts, well before I ever learned to knit. While in college majoring in graphic design, I needed to take some art/craft electives. My classmate Kristine, who was a fine arts major specializing in crafts, took a weaving class and encouraged me to register for it as well. And it stuck. I took weaving classes from my sophomore through senior years, and even during a summer session between junior and senior year.

When I decided last weekend that the unknown sample fiber that came with my spinning wheel would probably become a blanket for the kitty, it just made the most sense to weave it based on the yardage available – and it doesn’t hurt that weaving a sport-weight handspun yarn into a kitty blanket would be faster than knitting it. Plus, the added exposure to weaving products at work has made me want to weave again!

MysteryWoolThe handspun that will become a kitty blanket (just the top two skeins).

Today, I did a quick dig through my fingering-weight yarn stash, and found a blue-and-cream partial ball of sock yarn that was a left-over sample from work. After doing a little math to determine how far my handspun weft would go, I decided on a sett of 5 ends per inch and 150 warp ends for a 30″ warp width. I ran a little short with the left-over sock yarn and ended up with 131 warp ends. I discovered my more-than-20-year-old homemade raddle (a 40″-long 2×3 with finishing nails partially tapped in, spaced 1/2″ apart) had gone missing. After looking for it, I vaguely remembered that it may have broken either during our move to NH or sometime after while being stored in various places in the house during remodeling.

Raddle-less, I watched a quick video on YouTube to learn how to warp my loom front to back – I had only ever learned back to front. So the loom is now warped, and I have a header of waste yarn woven in, ready for me to begin weaving with my handspun.

LoomReadyToThreadView from the back of the loom with the reed threaded and ready to begin threading the heddles.

LoomBackWarpedLoom threaded and warp wound onto the back beam (yeah, I got some of the warp twisted when tying onto the back beam – oops).

LoomWarpedAt the front of the loom with a header of waste yarn woven in.

Loom details: It’s a Leclerc Artisat jack loom with 36″ weaving width and 4 harnesses. I bought it way back in 1991, my first big purchase that wasn’t a car. I saved up graduation/birthday/Christmas money and bought it within a year after graduating from college. I bought it used at a weaving/yarn shop in western New Jersey and I’m still amazed that Mom and I were able to fit it in a Jeep Cherokee to drive it home to my apartment. Even though I don’t weave much anymore (this will be my first weaving project in about SEVEN years!), I wouldn’t dare sell this loom – it would be too expensive to replace if I were to change my mind later. It’s been with me through three moves, from one apartment to another apartment to our first house and finally to our house in New Hampshire.

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So, since October 2014, I finished:

A pair of hiking socks I’ve worn several times but haven’t yet taken a finished photo. Here’s an earlier one, when the first sock was finished and the second was barely started:

hikingsocks

  • Started 11/1/14, finished 11/5/14
  • S.R. Kertzer On Your Toes DK yarn on U.S. size 2.5 (3mm) needles

I also finished a Koigu Linen-Stitch Scarf, which I made for myself with yarn and pattern purchased at the Patternworks booth at the 2014 Interweave Knitting Lab in Manchester last spring. But it ended up that we needed it for a new catalog photo, so I had a real deadline! I love how it looks, but linen stitch makes me want to poke my eyes out with a dpn.

200858_KoiguLinenStch_medium2

  • This is the photo we used in the spring 2015 catalog.
  • Started 10/10/14, finished 11/21/14.
  • KPPPM colors P323L, P155 and P711D (used in that order), on U.S. size 4 (3.5mm) needles
  • I used a smaller needle than recommended in the pattern since I tend to knit loosely, especially in linen stitch.

I knit a quickie kid’s hat for our holiday “mitten tree” at work, using leftover DungarEase from my Pathways pullover.

mittentreehat

  • Started 11/22/14, finished 11/23/14
  • Pattern is my own Seeded Rib Hat pattern.

I also finished designing and knitting a pair of socks for the Patternworks Toe-Up Sock Club. This is the 8th installment that began shipping in January 2015.

900394_ToeUpSOM8_medium2

(I love knitting stuff for work, since I get a professional photo out of it!)

  • Started 11/24/14, finished… sometime in December, I think – I forgot to mark it when they were finished and then couldn’t remember later!
  • Patons Stretch Socks (sadly, discontinued now) on U.S. size 1 (2.25mm) needles

Back in December, I finally started on my Heart Sweater. Here are the hearts (upside-down, since it’s a top-down cardigan).

HeartSweaterHearts

HeartSweaterBottomRibbingAnd here I was most of the way through the bottom ribbing on the body. I’ve since finished the body and have started a sleeve, but haven’t taken a photo yet. It’s actually going pretty fast considering it’s a L/XL in sport-weight yarn on U.S. size 4 (3.5mm) needles! The yarn is Classic Elite’s Liberty Wool Light. Pattern is from Ann Budd’s The Knitter’s Handy Book of Top-Down Sweaters, with the addition of the hearts. I’m combining multiple sizes as usual so it fits me better.

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There’s been quite a bit of casting on this year, but not a lot of finishing (and some finishing I can’t share just yet).

First up, a pair of socks I finished back in March. These are Confetti Rib Socks, my own design for the Patternworks Toe-Up Sock of the Month Club, knit using Frolicking Feet DK yarn by Done Roving Yarns. The pattern is currently available only to members of the club. See all the details about this project on my Ravelry project page.

Pattern is now available on Ravelry!
buy-now

900394_ToeUpSOM_squarePhoto by Evelyn S. Lamprey

Next, also finished in March, the Effortless Cardigan (design by Hannah Fettig), knit using Miss Babs Yowza Whatta Skein. Get the deets on my project page.

EffortlessOn(pardon the bathroom mirror selfie at Mom & Dad’s house)

Not all that impressive, but still an FO, a teatowel. Lily Sugar ‘n Cream (hey, it’s on sale on the Patternworks Yarn Bargain Bin while supplies last!). I may eventually write up the pattern (well, I have it written up, I may eventually publish it on Ravelry). Should be able to get two of these out of one cone of Sugar ‘n Cream. Details here.

teatowel

I also made one for my Mom, in red. (Still listed as a WIP on Ravelry because I originally planned to make two.)

mom teatowel

I also made some footies for Mom, using Miriam Felton’s Footie Socks pattern and Patons Stretch Socks yarn (I am very sad this yarn is discontinued – you can still find it, but they’re not making it anymore). These socks are the first low-cut footies that don’t slip off my Mom’s heels. Miriam is a designer genius! (The construction is very similar to the footies I improvised for myself last summer, but Miriam really made it work so much better.)

mom footiesUnfortunately I didn’t get a real FO shot. Just the first finished sock, propped on the cat and me in my pajamas.

I needed a simple project to knit on while working at the Patternworks booth at Interweave Knitting Lab back in May, so I cast on a pair of fingerless gloves with some Koigu KPPPM I had hanging around. Pattern is available free with purchase of KPPPM from Patternworks.

koigugloves2

I also did some spinning – this is Mad Color Fiber Arts merino/bamb0o/nylon roving that I spun into ridiculously fine singles and Navajo-plied. This is the after-dinner mint colorway.

mad color afterdinnermint

And then I knit it into a baby hat!

babyhat

And then I was on a roll with spinning, so I spun another braid of Mad Color, same fiber content, in the passion flower colorway. Large skein is 2-ply, mini-skein is the leftovers of the second bobbin Navajo plied (it was completely green except for one teeny, weeny pop of purple, which is now knitted into my sock yarn blankie in progress).

madcolor purplegreen

My active WIPs currently include a Pathways Pullover in DungarEase, a Garter Trap shawl-ish thingie, a pair of socks for the toe-up club that I can’t show you yet, and a pair of Seeded Rib Socks for car-knitting.

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I love this yarn!

I’m knitting the Niche sweater from Norah Gaughan Vol. 12 using Berroco’s Maya yarn, and I absolutely love it! (Both the yarn and the pattern.) We’re having a Maya KAL at Patternworks right now (or at least I hope I’m not just knitting along with myself – ha!) I posted an update on the Patternworks Blog yesterday. Hop on over there and check it out! Here’s a progress photo from Saturday (as of today, I’m about 6 rows further along):

WIP_Niche041513

The yarn is heavenly. It’s 85% Pima cotton and 15% baby alpaca, so it’s unbelievably soft. And it’s just the perfect weight for springtime. It has just a little bit of crinkly texture, but still has excellent stitch definition. The cables really pop! I’m pretty sure as soon as I finish this one, I’ll be living in it all spring.

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