Wednesday, January 30, 2013

On the Road

I'm in Florida right now. I have two daughters here and I flew down yesterday. My blue sweater is almost finished. After spending three days on sleeve #1, sleeve #2 will be done in less than 24 hours. I'm almost at the cuff and I haven't finished my first cup of coffee for the day. I'll be wearing it this afternoon if it isn't too warm.

The sweater was finished before lunch. We stopped for lunch at a Lebanese restaurant and a few doors down was a yarn store called "Wooly Bully". I bought a skein of mink yarn that will make a lace scarf. I took a photo of the shop sample with its tag, but I may very well make something else.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Third Time's the Charm

I have talked about this sweater before. It began life as a Sally Melville vest from her Purl book. I liked the vest, loved the yarn.

Last year, the vest became too large for my smaller body. I envisioned a cardigan about hip length, with 3/4 sleeves. One Sunday at church, I saw the perfect sweater. I complimented the lady on her sweater and asked if she had knit it. She had, but didn't remember the name of the pattern. It had something to do with a baby sweater. As I had guessed, it was an off take on an Elizabeth Zimmermann pattern from her Knitter's Almanac, called the February Lady Sweater.

I downloaded the pattern from Ravelry and checked my yarn quantity. I could do this! Since the sleeves are knit after the body is finished, they could be a little shorter or a little longer, depending on how much yarn I had at that time. I measured the length of a jacket with a similar style, and started in. I knit the whole body and most of one sleeve before I tried it on. There were problems!

The sweater was a little small. I think my yarn is thinner than recommended. It also was quite a bit longer than I wanted. What to do? I slept on the problem and mulled it over in my mind. I also marked the desired length while I had it on. That took care of the distinct possibility that the sweater would stretch.

Final decision resulted in two large balls of yarn. I started over, using stitch counts two sizes larger. I also bought myself an iPad, which made it easy to take a clean pattern and highlight the numbers I wanted. I also transferred any relevant notes. Now I have the body of a sweater that fits! On to the sleeves! There is light at the end of the tunnel.

By the way, I made the buttons for the original vest. The pattern calls for only 3 buttons.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Sock Woes and other things

The Zinnias socks are finished, photographed, and have been mailed to Illinois. the pattern is written and up in my Ravelry store. Just need to do Pattrnfish.

The main color is Regia Jacquard and the flowers are Schaeffer Anne yarns. The iPad shown in the last blog post has been returned to my daughter. She loaned it to me, because she wanted to be sure that I would use it before I spent the money.

I got some money int he mail that paid for more than half the cost, so I went out and bought my own. I had heard about used iPads, but none were available. Mine is verison 2 with no phone card. It doesn't make sense to pay for another data plan that I wouldn't use much. The wifi connection is fine.

So far I have put knitting patterns, books and recipes on my Pad. I'm leaving for Florida in a week, so portable books will be handy.

Sock woes
Periodically, some socks that I have knit come home for repair. DSIL sent these with his wife on her last trip to Cleveland,

I had used a small patch on a previous pair and they then wore out at the edges of the patch. Size 14 socks which are otherwise in good shape get new toes, and the first pair did. I'm trying a big patch this time. I still can replace the toes.

Another sorry pair of socks has been in my house for a few years. I misplaced one sock, didn't find it until the house renovation last year. It's time to get these fixed.

When I made them, I ran out of yarn before the toes. I guess the stitch pattern was yarn hungry. The light colored spots are worn very thin. DD wore through the ball of the foot and the toe. I cut off the damage, picked up stitches and knit new toes. They look much the same as the old ones, but this time they are Patons Kroy, I think the rest of the sock is Regia Jacquard. They both wear forever.

I've been working on this sweater. I got the body finished and most of one sleeve before trying it on. I went back and forth,but finally decided that it really was too small. My yarn is a thinner version of worsted. It's Berroco Cotton Twist.

I now am nearing the end of the lace on the body. I'm also using all 5 buttons left from the original garment. I'm hoping to wear the sweater to Florida. It's going with me finished or not!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Socks and mitts

A new pair of socks is growing.The SKA group on Ravelry has a flora and fauna challenge this month. I designed these to fit the challenge. I'm calling them Zinnias. The self striping yarn does not appear to be in my yarn inventory. Either I missed entering it, or I'm blind. The red yarn is from a recent pair of socks

I put the pattern on the iPad I borrowed from my daughter. I'm thinking of getting one, especially if I can get a good used one. She loaned me this one to be sure I'll use it before I spend the money. I'm still on the uphill part of the learning curve, but I'm having fun.

I also expect to use it in cooking recipes from the internet. I put another recipe in Pepperplate today. It's the soup I had for dinner.Poblano Chicken Chowder. I've been tracking my food in MyFitnessPal and had to enter it there. I needed all the ingredients for the entry and took it out of my cooking notebook, When I saw the website at the top of the page, it went into the iPad. My oldest daughter trolls the internet for interesting recipes and shares them with me.

Today was fix the mitt day. Over last winter, a mouse or squirrel chewed the inside of my barbecue mitt. I used it over the summer, but was not happy with the damage. I bought fabric and insulation to make a replacement. When I turned it inside out to get a good pattern, I decided to sew in a new lining, enclosing the damage, and still make the new mitt as a gift.

Forget to take a photo of the damage, but here's the new lining.

I quilted it and then trimmed it. What a pain to turn right side out!!! The top edge has bias tape on it. Yes, I used a power machine and a heavy needle. Here's the finished mitt.The lining on both mittsis gingham. The gift mit is denim on the outside and red gingham inside. If I show it here, it won't be a surprise.