Thursday, March 4, 2010


Yesterday browsing I also found a nice menswear sweater.I got an idea for a scarf using a similar-ish idea and have been thinking about how to make it a reality. I've got a glimpse of a plan, but I would have to learn how to knit scarves from the center out - most likely definitely doable. I'll let the idea incubate for a while.

The sweater can be found at OAK, a name I wasn't familiar with before but now that I've been browsing their site I'm seriously in love with many designs on display. Many knitwear pieces are constructed interestingly and have some excess in interesting places, which is something that always catches my eye...

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Random ideas that cross my mind today

I've been lamenting the fact that I never used a blog when my knitting frenzy was at its highest for a while now, so from now on I'll use this blog as a record of what thoughts and ideas cross my mind related to knitting.

Today I went to two Oulu yarn shops with a friend and got a glimpse of an interesting technique. Both the knits that had a variation of the technique were on display at the shop Villiina. I don't know the name of it in either Finnish or English, so it's very difficult to find new patterns with variations... The technique is a way of wrapping yarn so that stockinette is curved outside of the plane, creating a 3d effect - there was a baby jacket with a bobble-like surface, and a sweater with horizontal stripes that stood up from the rest of the garment. The baby jacket was created by dropping stitches and knitting the last not dropped stitch so that the rows in between were squished and hence curved out. It drives me crazy that I have no idea about how to research this technique...

The knitting spark somewhat reignited, I've been wandering around Ravelry. I'm toying with the idea of making a Star Crossed Slouchy Beret. I'll go through the yarn I have and see if I'll find anything suitable. I'm thinking that 7 veljestä would be too scratchy for my sensitive head.

* some garment or different kind of mittens using the principle in Fanning the flame mittens (Ravelry link) - or maybe I just want to buy the pattern and make these? Something to think about.

* I'm also thinking about a nice flowy cardigan with some excess near the thighs, as is the fashion nowadays.

* I found an interesting site, The Walker Treasury project. They post good quality photographs of the patterns Walker describes in her Treasury series books in order to help knitters see the potential of each. They don't post the directions though, but I think that I will use this site as an inspiration from now on, since I don't own any of the Treasury books. I tried to find them a while back but they're insanely expensive, and in dire need of reprint. Mostly of interest to me right now: textured patterns and slip stitch patterns.

* Again I'm thinking about buying a knitting machine. I should know more about them... Any readers who want to help me with choosing one?

* I added "favourite knitting blogs" to the left. First ones on the list are Techknitting and Fuzzy logic (knitting experiments).

*Random finds, interesting patterns and ideas:

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Felted mittens

After a long knitting hiatus I got the idea to knit mittens to be felted. I took the idea and the pattern from the newest Novita syksy 2009 magazine. I was inspired mostly by the new yarn Novita Huopanen Mix, which is supposed to look soft and velvety after felting. And of course with the winter looming just around the corner I can really use a pair of mittens.

It took me 3 days to knit these:

The size is humongous - they actually reach my elbows - but the felting at 40 degrees is supposed to shrink the knit by 40%.


This is what came out of the washing machine:

The mittens are really different now! I suspect that they shrinked by at least 40%. Before felting the mittens looked long, but now they are more roomy around the hand than lenghtwise. The result is a bit baggy, especially the thumb has too much room, and the lenght is better for my boyfriend than for me. The part for fingers is a tad short for me (bf has shorter fingers than I do). It may be that he will be the one to wear these...

Now that I've gotten my knitting groove back - and this really was an ideal (re)starting project as it was only knit stitches all the way through (It also helps that the stitch structure is in no way visible in the finished object.) - I think that I will move on to Kainuun kukkalapaset. It will be interesting to plan an exciting colourway for those. But the pattern is so beautiful that I suspect that almost all combinations look gorgeous.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Coriolis & new stitch markers

I used to have stitch markers that I got from the Finnish ebay equivalent But no more, I've actually run out of places to look for them. So a bit over a week ago I went to etsy and finally ordered myself some more. After only 3 days in the post (amazing, all the way from Canada) I've got these beauties: 

It's good to know that when I get to the heel portion of the Coriolis sock  I'll have the markers I need. Here you can notice what I'm using at the moment. Yes, it's a loop of horrible yellow yarn. 

That's a detail of the 'swirl' in the construction. The next image shows how far I've gotten overall (this is the 1st sock). I tried on the toe after 15 or so rows and decided that the sock felt tight. I increased 8 stitches out of the pattern, and now I'm hoping that it doesn't mess up the sock or end up too loose after all. 

It feels somewhat weird to knit these as the yarn is a lot thinner than I'm used to knitting with 4mm needles. The socks will not be very warm or thick. Otherwise the yarn feels good and I like the colours a lot. The pattern hasn't been too complex up until now, but the really challenging parts are yet to come. More on those later! 

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Looking for New Pathways for Sock Knitters

I've been inspired to knit socks by the book Socks, socks, socks. But not from that book, at least not yet.  After some wandering around the sock universe at ravelry and knitting blogs I've got my mind set on Cat Bordhi's new sock knitting architectures. Needless to say I've been tracking down her book New Pathways for Sock Knitters (book 1). My place to go for quickly delivered cheap books, the Book Depository, is of no help this time. The cheapest new one I've found so far would cost me around 30 euros with shipping, so I'm still thinking it through. 

However, I found out that one of Bordhi's new master sock patterns is available for free. And it's the one that initially interested me the most, as well, the Coriolis sock pattern! I found the pattern late last night and cast on a while ago. I've misplaced the needles I need for the project, as well as my knitting markers (the 4 or so I own) so frustration is not far away now; I've only been able to knit the beginning garter stitch square. I read through the directions and they seem somewhat complicated but I'm sure that I'll be able to figure them out. And the inch measurements, it annoys me to no end that measurements are only given in inches. But I was lucky that I found the yarn called for, Austermann Step, from my stash. (That is a first!) I'm excited since not only will I a) knit socks for the first time in 10 years, and second time overall b) try the magic loop technique and c) try something pretty much revolutionary in the knitting world. 

I'm sure that I'll end up buying the book at some point. I believe that the book is just the kind of knitting book I prefer. Revolutionary ideas and a good variation of ideas for applying them in different projects. 

Monday, November 24, 2008

A break from knitting related things... and all other things

The reason for my long pause in blogging is that I had to go to the hospital and spend over a week there, recovering from first a simple gall bladder surgery and after that from pneumonia. The only knitting related thought I had was that someone could knit gloves that would allow one to warm the hand attached to an intravenous drip. I.e. my left hand was cold after being given both antibiotics and 'liquid nutrition' through a drip. 
Here are my hands before the operation: 

The drip was really not that pleasant all the time. I have very bony hands so they had to put it closer to my wrist. 

Here are the fantastic anti-embolism socks they put on me before the operation and that I had to wear for 2 days: 

Truly functional knitting! 

I'm slowly coming back to knitting, mostly by reading the books Socks, socks, socks (edited by Elaine Rowley) and Folk knitting in Estonia by Nancy Bush. The former has sock ideas collected in a competition. I'm thrilled that there are some really original patterns such as "Freeform socks" and "Maple Swirl Socks", both by Debbie New (I have her book Unexpected knitting, a true masterpiece). The 70 patterns cover many  knitting techniques (double knitting, entrelac, intarsia in the round etc.). I'm actually considering buying this book, something I really rarely do if the most a book has to offer are patterns. But there is definitely more than meets the eye in these socks. Folk knitting in Estonia has some new techniques for me, and I'm mostly reading it for them. Not to say that the patterns aren't beautiful, they are, and actually the librarian who gave me the book told me so as well! I feel rather stupid to notice that joining after casting on for knitting in the round is a special technique. I'll definitely start to 'join' my cast ons from now on. The wick decreases and braids are also new for me. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A finished cowl! - or "neckwarmer with holsters"

After a few days' knitting the "3d cowl" (what a stupid name, I'm thinking...) is "finished". I'll rename this project, perhaps I'll call it "neckwarmer with holsters" for now. I really made the finishing rather badly because I'm mainly interested in presenting the final object at ravelry. And maybe, if people want, I will make this project into a pattern. I'm satisfied with the look of my double knit (not real double knitting, mind you, just 2 layers of stockinette - the middle was knit in the round and the beginning and ending areas were a stockinette strip that I folded onto itself by using a 3-needle bind off) areas but they were difficult to make. I can't imagine anyone wanting to do the same so if I make this into a pattern I'll rethink those areas. As it was, I yo'd after every stitch on the row I wanted to start the double knitting and put those loops on another circular needle on the next row. But having the circs in the knitting meant that it was difficult to knit, and the stitches on the double start row were looser than on the other rows. Really it would be best to use scrap yarn to hold the additional stitches... I'll think about it.

My explanations are probably rather difficult to understand, but here is a picture of the finished cowl. I'll post it to ravelry in a while - can't wait for comments, if anyone finds it... 

And an artsyfartsy photo for those who can appreciate a dirty mirror ;)