Thursday, December 21, 2006

Sock yarn scarf

This scarf is my mom's Christmas present, knit on the diagonal. You start by increasing one stitch at the start of every row until it's as wide as you want. Then, you alternate rows of regular knitting, and rows with an increase at the start and a decrease at the end. When it's as long as you want, you end by decreasing by one stitch at the end of every row. It was knit with yarn meant for socks. Thin and slippery yarn, but available in cool colors, and I like the end result. I don't think this will be the last sock yarn scarf I make. Yarn: Regia Bamboo, 45% bamboo, 40% wool, %15 polyamide.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Cactus #1

Christmas cactuses are such good plants. Easy to take care of and spectacular flowers. I have four - most started from cuttings, one inherited from a friend. Last year, two of the four bloomed. This is the first to bloom this year, and the first time this particular plant has ever bloomed.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Drop stitch scarf

Sometimes when you are knitting, a stitch will accidentally fall off the knitting needle, and start unravelling. This is a bad thing, especially if you don't catch it right away. But dropped stitches can also be used to advantage, as I found with this scarf.

For a drop stitch scarf, you first knit a scarf with the most basic garter stitch (first photo). Then right before the end, you purposely drop stitches off the needle, and bind off the ones remaining. You can drop every other stitch, or once every two stitches, etc - various combinations produce various results. Finally, you pull those dropped stitches down to the bottom. This rapidly and dramatically and changes the texture of the scarf (bottom photo), from tight and dense to lacy and pliable.

Though I love the final product, I think I may end up unravelling this one, and use the yarn for something else. Yarn: Plymouth Encore Chunky, 75% acrylic, 25% wool. The first photo is a better representation of the true color of this yarn.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Blackberry case

This is a knitted and felted case for my little brother's blackberry - a christmas present. The purple and green mosaic is based on one from a Barbara Walker book. Mosaic knitting has so many cool patterns. Yarn: Cascade 220, 100% wool. In the background is the vest knitted from my aunt and uncle's Pit River wool. It is almost finished. I made it oversize so I could felt it slightly - the last step.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Pit River Wool

My aunt and uncle have a sheep ranch in California and kindly gave me some of their wool, which I am going to use to knit a vest for my dad (my uncle's brother). They raise sheep that is naturally colored, so this gray wool is the natural color of the sheep - it has not been dyed. Most wool yarn is dyed white wool, but there are a small group of ranchers and farmers who raise naturally colored (black, gray, brown) sheep. I am adding a link for Pit River Wool to the links section on the right.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Basic sweater

This is the back view of the finished sweater, modified a little from the basic sweater in Fee's book. It was fun to make, and I like the color combination. The hardest part was getting the body size right, I had to restart three times.

To knit this type of sweater, you basically knit three tubes, the body and two arms, then connect them all together on a circular needle and decrease up to the neckline. Fee gives liberal credit in her book to the ideas of Elizabeth Zimmerman.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Pumpkin Day

Photo credits: pumpkin pictures taken by my brother.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Raw materials

Yarn for my first sweater: Lamb's Pride 85% wool, 15% mohair. Colors: blue flannel, amethyst, periwinkle (left to right).

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Sweater sampler

This is the sweater sampler from the "Sweater Workshop" book by Jacqueline Fee. The sampler is designed to teach you all the skills of knitting a sweater, condensed into this project that looks like a long, strange neck-warmer. Some of the techniques (from the right) are: garter and stockinette stitch, ribbing, stripe, sweatshirt pocket, regular pocket, button/placket, increases, purl stripes, decreases, two-color knitting, knitted belt, bindoffs.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Multicolor felted bag

A felted bag based on a free pattern found at You can see how the fabric changes after felting in the bottom two pictures. The middle picture is before felting, the last after. The fabric gets thick and dense, and the individual stitches disappear. I felted the bag by hand, washing and rubbing with alternately cold and warm water. Yarn: Brown Sheep, 100% wool.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Trying out some mosaic knitting, based on some patterns from a book by Barbara Walker. Yarn: Sugar and Cream, 100% cotton.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Mistake rib scarf

This stitch pattern produces a thick knitted fabric. The stitch is for any multiple of 4 stitches plus an extra three. Every row is k2, p2 until the last stitches which are k2, p1. Yarn: Jo-Ann Fabric's Tesoro, 100% wool.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Bath puppet

Pattern is from the book "Kids Knitting" by Melanie Falick. All the regular knitting books seemed so complicated when I first wanted to learn to knit. This kids book was just right. Yarn: Sugar and Cream, 100% cotton.