Sunday, July 31, 2005

New Felted finished things

Here are the results of the great felting experiment. I knitted the laptop case from IK Fall 05; it was a fast 5 day knit. The stripes are knit as usual, then the bag is made by folding the fabric in half top to bottom, sewing up one side and along the bottom. The triangles formed when the bottom is flattened are sewn also, giving the bag some depth.
Here it is complete with the resident laptop:

I like the overall effect of the felting and the feltings effect on the stripes; the single row stripes almost disappear into the colour next to them. I have not cut the handles yet - I have a fabric cutting phobia - but I am a bit concerned about the strength! I can feel the weight of the laptop pulling the fabric southwards! Once there are handles will the stretch get worse?? I am not sure about carrying the bag and laptop around by the handles too much. My plan for its use is more as a cushioning bag so that it won't get scratched inside my backpack.

Having done the laptop case I knitted a cell-phone cozy - in one evening!! I based it on the pattern in Stitch n Bitch, but made it bigger for felting. I estimated about 20% on top of the regular size and things have come out OK (a little too cozy, but the phone fits!). It came out of the felting experience like this
As usual I was so eager to get the things felted that I forgot to take before photos.
The flap on the cozy gave me a few problems, because I did not want it square. I tried casting off to make a round flap, and ssk & k2tog, but somehow they did not work; so I used short row shaping instead, and it seemed to work out fine.
I then added an I-cord loop and button made from leftover yarn from Boo's stripy Christmas present which makes it look like a kid's play phone!! I love it!
On Tuesday the kids and I are off to Blighty for our annual month of British-ness absorption! I have no idea if I will be able to download photos with the grandparents dial-up connections. So I have a slow and tortuous few weeks ahead!
I have my knitting projects to take and others to purchase for while in the UK. So there will be lots to keep me busy even if I don't write about it here.

If there are any of you out there who can recommend yarn shops in Edinburgh, Derby, Reading/Newbury, that would be great.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

More felting on its way

As I mentioned I am in love with the process of felting. The FMB turned out so well (despite me not reading the pattern properly and the handles being a bit off)
and I still had a lot of Peruvian Highland wool left, that on Saturday I started the laptop case from IK Fall 05. Its knitted dimensions are 44" by 20" which means that I have to knit Boo's height in varying thickness stripes, which means I am about up to her hip at the moment:
That would have been perfect with a picture of a girl and a hip too wouldn't it? Too late - she's fast asleep!

Of course the problem with stripes is all the colour changes invariably lead to twenty thousand ends to weave in!

I must admit it is a lot of straight knitting, and although very fast, its extremely boring. I can't wait for it to be finished!!

Isis is my challenging long-term project, which I have finally got to the point where I can start casting on for the sleeves.

The Sockpal sock is coming along steadily, because it is my take-along project so it has "been" to swimming and gymnastics this week. Next week it will venture much further afield on a European vacation. I hope that it will find is partner over there, and they will have a great trip before coming back here to be posted off elsewhere in September! I might even be able to update the blog with its/their travels!

Sunday, July 24, 2005

I am a Wharf to Wharf Survivor!

Today I ran the local 6 mile race from the Wharf in Santa Cruz to the Wharf in Capitola. It is a great event with 15,000 runners and walkers, dogs, kids, strollers, bands, beer kegs etc etc. The start is interesting because it takes at least 5 minutes to get to the start line, and probably another few minutes until you can actually start running. I have not been running as much as I should have in the last few months, and so I was a bit nervous about today. Also the fact that yesterday was at least 95F, which for here is unusually hot. Luckily, at about 4pm yesterday the fog started to cool things off, and it was thick and cooling this morning. Add to that, excitement and adrenalin will always help! Overall I think that I did better than in previous years and ran my (just under) 11 minute miles to get to Capitola in 65 minutes. Mr KN brought Boo and Moose to watch at two points along the way which was a great boost. A little bit tired but very satisfied tonight!

No photos, as I didn't want to run with my camera, and I seemed to have no time. I was concentrating on something else for some reason! I may display the official photo of me crossing the finish line later in the week, but last year they didn't seem to get me, which was sad.

In knitting news, the FMB has turned out really well although the fluffy bits look more like a lilac drowned cat after the felting. (Pictures tomorrow??)

I enjoyed the process of felting so much that I am almost half way through knitting a stripy laptop case from the IK Fall 2005 edition (20" of very speedy stocking stitch!). I hope to finish by Friday so that I can felt it and use it to transport my laptop in luxury to the UK next week...

Friday, July 22, 2005

FMB, Isis & a cool trick!

FMB has gone a little fluffy, a little "bobbly" at the top. See if you can find the close-up.....

Nona has details of this trick on her blog!
The fluffy blobby bits were gained from the frogging of this not to be scarf which I somehow could not deal with last year
I don't really like knitting with fluffy yarn like this; it is a nightmare to unravel too, and a lot of tugging was going on last night while I ripped it to pieces. But I like the effect on the FMB. It's amazing how over half a scarf went into about 6 rows of the bag!

The Isis wrap is green and made of Knitpicks Shine etc. The gauge in the pattern is 17st & 24 rows to 10cm on large #9 needles (I think). Because its so holey I am knitting on #3 instead at 20st & 32 rows to 10cm. The problem for me is counting lace stitches for the swatch. Do I count the holes too? I have also had to do some very hard maths to work out how to increase the sleeves which are cast on and knit horizontally with the back... Here's what I have so far (with a hidden close-up!)

Can you see how the 1x1 rib leads so well into the pattern? I love it!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

What kind of knitter are you?

I love these, and its almost true! I am currently trying to work out what to take with me in my suitcase to the UK in two weeks!!
Knitting Guru
You appear to be a Knitting Guru. You love knitting and do it all the time. While finishing a piece is the plan, you still love the process, and can't imagine a day going by without giving some time to your yarn. Packing for vacation involves leaving ample space for the stash and supplies. It can be hard to tell where the yarn ends and you begin.
What Kind of Knitter Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

I am getting slightly concerned that I am actually a total obsessive. Boo complained today that all I do is knit, and nothing else... Poor girl.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Sockapal-2-za finally underway!

After finishing my first ever pair of socks last week, I was anxious to get started on the next and here they are with the heel turned (already!) & this LL yarn is fantastic.
Being modelled. (I was a bit concerned about the ethics of this, but it gives a better idea to see in 3-D)

I love knitting socks on the Addi Turbos, it is definitely much easier for me than wrestling with a hedgehog. I was knitting my FMB on an bamboo circular and got so fed up with the stitches sticking, that I went off and bought a 5mm Addi on Saturday, and things have gone much faster since.
Then, I discovered something interesting (to me at least!) regarding Addi needles; in Britain they cost less than half the price I paid here in the States. I couldn't believe the difference. So I am writing my list and will be stocking up on them while back home in August!!

Friday, July 15, 2005

What shall I do next?

In an earlier post I listed all my prospective "Want to Knit" projects. Now that I have finished Jasmine and the Go with the Flow socks, I can (finally) start my Sockapal-2-za socks which are going to be Broadripple in the lovely Lorna's Lace that I bought ages ago. Also on my list is the Premier Pullover from Summer 05 IK but I am now having second thoughts about it, because it will be a LARGE cabling project that will take lots of time and probably take me until winter! So instead of that I think that I will make the Isis Wrap from the same issue, adapting things so that I can use Knitpicks Shine instead. Any thoughts?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Hi, I'm back!

Hi, back......

Ooops, sorry, I thought I was still in Cub Scout Camp; the land of SHOUTING, songs, skits, swimming in 58F water and about 100,000,000,000,000 mosquitoes. A lot of fun was had by all, but not much sleep!!

We were at Camp Pico Blanco which is in the bottom of the valley below, right beside the Little Sur River. It is south of Carmel, and turn left.

I did manage to get a bit of knitting done on my Go with the Flow socks, and last night, once we were back, I finished them!

The great acheivement is that the first was my first ever sock, and the second was my first sock on two circulars. With the first I had a problem with the Kitchener stitch and seemed to end up purling instead of knitting (although I am not sure if it comes out well in the photo)

But last night I seemed to work out what went wrong, or maybe its because I found this article with photos on Knitty. I always work better with photos.

So sitting there with my laptop perched on my lap, this is what I got:

and I must say that I am pretty chuffed! What a great sense of achievement to have a pair of socks that fit me, that I actually made!

Project details
Pattern: Interweave Knits Summer 2005
Yarn: Patons Kroy Socks in Paint Box
Needles: US #2 bamboo DPNs for first, then #2 Addis Turbos 24" circulars for second
Notes: Learned sock knitting, joining to knit circular-ly, Kitchener Stitch, that the lace pattern would look better with a plainer yarn.

Oh, and some of the links to photos in previous posts are going to be broken. I am trying to tidy up my folders (or actually have more than just one for storing photos). I will have to go through everything though, so I apologise that I might affect your reading pleasure!

Saturday, July 09, 2005

This week I 'ave mostly been

going around and around and around....

After the distraction of the last two days' blogs here is a knitting one!

My French Market Bag is going well, but my original hope that it would be a quick project that would be completed last weekend was very off! There is a lot of knitting to 8 circular inches of 200 stitches each!

This is the latest picture:

It has changed colour, but that won't last long as I have only one ball of that yarn, which is a shame as I prefer that colour to the stronger lilac waiting in the wings.

The Go with the Flow Socks are soaring now! Circular needle sock knitting is good. I am a convert (although I did lose 10 stitches off my Addis just now through over exuberant switching of needles!)

I have done my 20 repeats of the lace-y leg and am just about to get on to the heel. That's tomorrow (or actually, looking at the time, today). Although what I really have to do is organise our stuff for Moose's cub scout camp, 15 miles inland from Big Sur. The whole family gets to go! Dib Dib Dib.

Its interesting how the red is going zig-zag in a similar way on both socks.

Thursday, July 07, 2005


I feel in shock, and so far away. My brother-in-law emailed us saying he was OK, but we had not heard anything about it before that (being 8 hours behind). He lives in Stoke Newington. After yesterday's celebrations over the Olympics, it's just unreal to have this happen. My thoughts are with all those affected.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

London gets the Olympics!!

Being a Brit I am totally blown away by the news that London is going to host the Olympics in 2012. Absolutely fantastic! Now I just have to work out a way to be there and bring my kids who will be 14 & 12 by then - WOW!!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

(Not too sure if my) socks soar on 2 circular needles

Finally my Addis arrived so that I can knit my second Go with the Flow sock. The first one has been feeling very lonely, and I have think that I must look a bit (more) odd wandering around with only one on.

So out comes my Cat Bordhi book and I started knitting this sock with two circular needles for learning really. I hadn't realised that I should join the top of the sock by transferring the first and last cast-on stitches before, and that made starting much easier. Once I get used to a flapping needle on the "resting" stitches everything seems to be going quite well. But I'm not sure that I am going much faster because the transition between the two needles seems to take (me) quite a while, unraveling the yarn from the needle, and moving the stitches up. However, whether it is faster or not, it is a lot less awkward for me to handle, and I am not poking myself in the hand all the time.

So here is current progress on Sock #2:

And here is Boo yesterday taking it easy after two late nights

Not sure why but bloglines hasn't found that this entry has been added yet; not sure why or what I can do about that.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Quick One.

A quick post while the kids and Mr KN are out of the house for 20 minutes. Here is the Boo trying on Jasmine for the first time over her pyjamas. She loves it and yesterday picked it out to wear to a fantastic BBQ at our friends' house.

After finishing Jasmine, I needed to get a new project going, but I am still waiting for my Addis Turbo #2 circular needles to arrive so I couldn't start my sock project.
Having read knitting blogs far too much recently I found a picture of a French Market Bag here and always being very late to the party I decided that it would be a great thing to knit. My first felting project too.

Then, on Friday afternoon I looked at the Ribby I had abandoned in the spring and decided that if I finished it I would probably never wear it because the gauge was all off and would never fit. Also the Peruvian Highland wool just seems too scratchy to me for a cardigan. I ripped out what I had started of the sleeves and decided that they were just the right colour for the French Market Bag instead.

So off I go and here is the result so far:

and the very tricky (at least for me) 8 stitches on 4 cable needles start:

The colours are going to change soon as I am knitting my 9 rows with no decrease and might even get a bit stripy; we shall just have to see.