Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Yay for Christmas!

I had a pretty magnificent Christmas, even if it did mean running all over creation. See this?

This is the gorgeous sock yarn that Ben picked out for me for Christmas, in addition to Lantern Moon Ebony Sox Stixx. It's the Alpaca Yarn Co.'s Paca Peds Heels and Toes in Harvest. Now, add to that the fact that my winder tried to eat the yarn, and he spent 3 hours helping me untangle it! How could I not love this man? As a reward, I'm knitting him Masonic Lodge socks in Knit Picks Essential in Pine. He picked the color. Someone was hoping the words "masonic lodge" led to some secret site, weren't they?

As my reward for not killing anyone over Christmas, I'm knitting myself these Zombies in Ironstone Yarns Sock, a line that has been discontinued and I luckily managed to adopt at the local yarn store. That may tell you what kind of patronage they get...Anyway, I love the colors!

On a Christmas related note, that hat I designed for my brother? He didn't take it off all day Christmas Day. What do you know about a 14 year old boy who appreciates things like that? Who is this guy and where did he put my apathetic brother? More importantly, can I keep him?

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas knitting finished!

Read the title. It says all I have to say.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

A new project, a new pattern - Barbed Wire

So I just knit this hat for my brother for Christmas from a stitch pattern in Barbara Walker's Charted Knitting Design. The cable is called Toggle Knot, but I think it looks like the knots on strands of barbed wire, hence the name. Someone on Ravelry asked for a pattern, so here it is!

This hat is made up of four 3 stitch ribs and four repeats of the Toggle Knot pattern. It is very stretchy, and should fit most adult heads.

  • app. 170 yards worsted weight yarn (it might be significantly less than this, but I used a 7 oz. skein of Vanna's choice that contains 340 yards, and I didn't use half)
  • size 7 or 8 16" circular needle AND/OR five dpns of the same size (dpns will be necessary for decreases
  • a cable needle if desired
  • a tapestry needle for finishing
Basic abbreviations required:
  • di: Double increase, represented by the flower-stem image in rows 2 and 6 of the cable chart - created by knitting into the back loop, then front loop, passing the stitches onto the right needle, then using the left needle to pick up the vertical strand created by the 2 stitches and knitting it
  • dd: Double decrease, represented by the ^ symbol in rows 23 and 27 of the cable chart and referred to in decrease instructions - created by slipping 2 stitches as if to knit, knit 1 stitch, pass 2 slipped stitches over the knit stitch and off the needle
  • p2tog: Purl 2 together
  • p3tog: Purl 3 together
  • k2tog: Knit 2 together

Cast on 96 stitches (divide evenly if working on dpns - 24 to a needle) and join to work in the round.

K3, P3 to end for 10 rows.

Next 2 rows: K3, P9 to end

Next 28 rows: K3, work corresponding row of cable chart to end.

Toggle Knot chart:

The dots refer to purls, the x's refer to stitches that are not there for that line of the pattern. (My apologies for the poor chart and explanation, I will try to get up my own chart when I can, for now we'll have to use a picture of the page from Charted Knitting Design.

After completing the chart, revert to K3, P9 to end for 5 rows.

Decrease Rows (These are intuitive decreases, but here are row by row instructions for those who would like them):

Decrease Row 1: K3, P1, P2tog, P3, P2tog, P1 to end
Knit one row in pattern.

Decrease Row 2: K3, P1, P2tog, P1, P2tog, P1 to end
Knit one row in pattern.

Decrease Row 3: K3, P1, P3tog, P1 to end
Knit one row in pattern.

Decrease Row 4: K3, P3tog to end
Knit one row in pattern.

Decrease Row 5: DD, P1 to end
Knit one row in pattern

Decrease Row 6: K2tog to end

Cut yarn, leaving at least a 6" tail. Using a tapestry needle, thread yarn through live stitches twice, then secure. Weave in your cast-on tail, and ta-da, you have a hat!

Any comments on how to improve this pattern would be greatly appreciated, especially since I'm still new at this pattern stuff! You can leave them here or send them to me on Ravelry: I'm swordsandneedles.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Christmas Diversion Complete

Well, I've finished my fun knitting, and now I have to seriously get down to the Christmas stuff. I'm not pleased, but hopefully everyone else will be. I'm still waiting on my swap package, so I hope it arrives soon. For now, all I've got is a pictures of my finished scarf that I love to pieces.

Mmm....warm and fuzzy...