Category Archives: knitting

Finished: Adult Surprise Jacket

It takes a lot longer to knit the adult-sized sweater. Then the finish takes longer than expected after the false-finish feeling once the “blob” is finished. Especially the I-cord bind off.

But I like the look of the finish and would do it again. The buttons are pottery, which my daughter got me from Japan quite a while ago. Since they require hand washing, I’d always thought their best use was on a wool knitted sweater. However, I don’t make sweaters very often. These buttons are decorative only because I didn’t make buttonholes.

I got the I-cord instructions from this handy book.

But it didn’t give any hints for a smooth join. I wish I hadn’t made the join in the front.

I suppose it’s one of those flaws that will be visible mostly to me and other experienced knitters.

And here is the end product.

Jacket history.

Begun https://knitnkwilt.wordpress.com/2020/12/31/take-two-already/

In process 1 https://knitnkwilt.wordpress.com/2021/01/24/adult-surprise-2-3-finished/

In process 2 https://knitnkwilt.wordpress.com/2021/02/10/major-piece-finished/

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Major Piece Finished

Two weeks to the day. My time estimates aren’t usually so accurate. The main, irregular piece is finished.

The yardstick is there for perspective. I do not recommend this as a summer project. It is quite a lap warmer.

As with the Baby Surprise, the lower right corner gets turned up to the center top.

The armhole is 2-4 inches deeper than it needs to be. Remembering batwing sleeves of an earlier fashion, I had decided to err on too big.

I have ends to weave in, shoulder seams to sew, and sleeves to lengthen. Then finish with an I-cord binding. Maybe I’ll get to wear it yet this winter.

There is an alternative finish where I would lengthen sleeves while the piece is flat then attach the shoulders with three-needle I-cord attachment as I bind off. Sewing the shoulder/sleeve seam seems easier.

In case I have nothing new to show in the next 5 days, I’ll mention Scrap Happy and Kate’s blog for links to more scrappy goodies after the 15. https://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com/ Of course it’s fun to see any time. And, yes, all the yarn is scrap, and there is more for yet another project.

Here’s the source of instructions for anyone ready to make one.

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Adult Surprise 2/3 Finished

I was not prepared for how much more unwieldy the Adult Surprise would be than the Baby Surprise. It didn’t take long to shift from a 24-inch loop to 60. But I have made progress from the bit in my earlier post: https://knitnkwilt.wordpress.com/2020/12/31/take-two-already/

I’d not noticed when planning the pattern that the increase “half” is 9 rows fewer than the decrease portion. While I hadn’t planned an exact mirror image on the second part, I’d intended the blues to be the same size and the “other” stripes to be about the same size. The plan was in my head, not drawn. Luckily I started to make reverse color notes and saw what was happening. So I didn’t just run out of space, but began several truncated stripes. I don’t think it will be noticeable in the finished product.

I’m a bit concerned that the finished product will be gaudy. I’d wanted stripes for two reasons: to use up leftover yarns and to accent the right angles. It will do that.

At the rate I’m knitting, and if there are no squirrels, it should be finished in a week or two.

The Stretching Art and Tradition project that I sketched here ( https://knitnkwilt.wordpress.com/2020/11/19/another-beginning/ ) has been postponed a year. So that won’t intrude.

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Take Two, Already

So I started two swatches. One yarn looked smaller but the stitch count was the same. So I did measurements and math and cast on.

The main color will be blue. I have 10 balls left from this afghan.

That’s a lot of leftover, but I remember having no clue how much I’d need and not wanting to chance running out. The other leftovers are from a sampler afghan I made in a class that presented a different technique each month.

My favorite blocks:

Fair Isle
Counterpane

I also have some left from a sweater I made and a sweater a friend made and contributed. No photos of those sweaters.

So swatch finished, measurements taken, directions read, math done and rechecked, I’m ready to cast on 322 stitches. And I get this far.

Something made me stop and count stitches. Uh oh. The sleeve section was fine but the back was already 10 stitches fewer than I should have after about 10 more double decreases. I considered doing single decreases on the sleeve side till it was down to where it needed to be. The area was underarm, so the lack of right angle might not matter. But if it turned out that it mattered, I could rip out later.

But I wimped out and decided not to take a chance. I reread the directions and redid the math. This time I figured I needed to cast on 366 stitches. (Yes I had checked my math before. Apparently I’d made the same error when checking. This time I couldn’t get the old number, so I’ll never know what I did wrong. At any rate, I now am this far.

Is knitting and reknitting a way to get double money’s worth out of yarn?

ETA I don’t have enough to add for another post—knitting process isn’t as interesting to post about as quilting process. So for Scrap Happy visitors, here is the link to Kate’s post with links to other scrap posts.

https://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com/2021/01/15/scraphappy-january-5/

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The Return of BSJ

Plan A had been to do some quilting, but books got in the way. Then I finished Christmas knitting and had some leftovers. So it was time to return to the Baby Surprise Jacket. Here it is a little under halfway.

You can’t see much—24-inch circular bunches it up. The side showing is supposed to be the right side. I changed yarn on the wrong side so got the extra line. Then decided to do all changes that way to make it look on purpose. Don’t think anyone will be fooled.

Moving the marker to the center worked wonders. Now the double decreases do what seems intuitive: one stitch off each sleeve and one off the body each time. I’m at the more stitch-counting part now, and the count keeps coming out correct. Soon we’ll know if the more complete instructions work better. I think they will.

Scrap Happy day will be here on the 15th, so I’ll mention that the brown and dark blue are scraps. The light blue is new; I wanted to be sure to have enough of the unifying color. Cheating again. I know I have left overs of more colors, but of course I can’t find them now. I’d wanted a more multicolored look. Maybe another time.

Starting December you can see more Scrappy projects linked at https://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com/

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A Use for Yarn Scraps and a Small Quilt Finish

Yarn, like fabric, produces left overs after projects are finished. One of my friends has a great way to use them, making hats for the homeless.  The pattern makes a two layered, reversible hat. The first one is hers, then comes mine. The hat starts with a tube with closed ends.

1 stripe tube

You can see how it uses up bits of yarn.  Punch one end into the other to make a lining and fold up the brim; or change colors by punching the other end inside.

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Fun as well as warm.  Here’s mine minus the final decreases.

1 red rock tube

Mine isn’t so dramatic as my friend’s–I had quite a bit of left over red-rock yarn, but not enough for a big project. The yarn for the multi-colored stripe is really nice, so here is a close up of it–also more true to the actual colors.

1 red rock detail

I’d made a fancy shawl for my daughter of the multi-colored yarn a long time ago. It was spun from recycled silk. My hat isn’t finished because I want to buy double pointed (DP) needles to close the tube. Her instructions actually call only for 16-inch circular needles and knitting back and forth when starting stitches and ending decreases make it too small to fit the circular needles, then seaming the opening. I see no reason not to use DP needles and avoid seaming.

So this is my non-traditional entry for Scrap Happy.  Click here to get links to see what other folks are doing with scraps (probably fabric).

Meanwhile, on the quilting front. Back in spring I was participating in several of Elizabeth Barton’s classes on the Academy of Quilting. The first one was Modern Art for Quilters.  One assignment was to draw a grid. The sketch is here.

I made some value sketches too, then stitched it up in two color combinations. They were about 11 X 15 inches. At the time  was thinking ahead to the guild quilt show and the small quilt raffle. However, only one got finished in time.

1 colot study finished

Color Study #1

The delay was in deciding how to quilt it. I had always thought of the blue as background, so went with outlining blue pieces with blue thread. Then I faced it. I wish I still had the mallet I used to use when tailoring to flatten the corners and keep the top and bottom straight, but oh well . . .

Here is the  unfinished one.

1 color study 2

Color Study #2

I’m thinking about making a larger version of this second palette.

I’ll be linking with the Tuesday Colour Linky Party (link in sdebar).

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Sock Time

Once upon a time, a long time ago, I was active in knitting for Mittens for Akkol.  During that time someone was destashing (with the understanding that yarn would be used for Akkol) and I bought some, cheap. But before I started knitting it up, my attention shifted more and more to quilting.

I’d think about it now and again, but the time wouldn’t be right. And then the time was right–knitting being a sedentary project. So out came the yarn.

1 sock yan

And alas, the left over yarn is the only photo you will see.  When I finished the first pair I decided not to take a photo till they were all finished; then when they were all finished the deadline to mail was too close to stop and photograph! So you will have to use your imagination.

Those in the mail, six weeks till Christmas, and the knitting bug still active, I set out to make two pair of socks for Christmas presents. These did get their picture taken.

1 socks

I suppose I should block them, but it seems to me that feet do a good job of that.

The local shops that have a large collection of sock yarn have closed, so to get a color I liked I decided to experiment with dk weight. It makes a thicker, stiffer sock; we’ll see what laundering does for it. I’ll get to test-wear it too as there was a lot left over.

1 mixed sock

Almost, but not quite, enough for a brown (portobello) pair. But the toe will be in the shoe, so blue (coveralls) will work. (Love the names and colors by Hazel Knits!)

By the time I finish the second sock, I will have overdosed on knitting and be ready for a return to quilting. I remember a T-shirt with the slogan, “If I quilt real fast is it aerobic exercise?”–inquiring minds want to know.

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Border Solution

I left off on this top after being disappointed that my choice for a border did not work.

NW Rail Fence Border Audition

Plan A had been to make the border from stash.  However, nothing that I already owned really worked. I finally gave in and went shopping (oh darn!). And I am happy with my choice.

Rail Fence with border

64 X 80 inches

Guild has been in need of twin sized quilts the last couple of months, so it was time to get this one on its way.  Someone else will be quilting/knotting and binding it, so I’ll not see the finish nor be able to show it here.

To visitors from Scrap Happy:  This is at least partly a scrap quilt. The middle color is from my scraps and the kit was made up from guild members’ left overs. Other readers might like to view Scrap Happy to see what folks are doing with all scraps.

Quilt history

Blocks made at 2016 Fall Retreat (no photo)

Blocks trimmed and arranged in preparation for 2017 retreat

Blocks assembled at 2017 retreat and border audition

And during the quilting silence, I’ve been knitting squares for blankets for orphans.

blocks

A friend of mine had volunteered more than he could get finished, and I had time, so  helped a bit. It would certainly be fun to be on the receiving end and be arranging squares from 400+ selection! The square was a perfect size for using up bits of left over yarn that had been seeking a project. You can see I have a few ends to weave in. Every craft has its dull moments.

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Sending Quilts to Texas?

Quilting and knitting friends, this is important information–know when, where, and how to donate!

Catbird Quilt Studio

The hurricane disaster in Texas may displace people from more than 100,000 homes for at least several weeks. They need housing, food, water, and some way to replace all the goods lost to water damage, or simply washed or blown away. Should you send replacement items? Should you send quilts?

It’s tempting, isn’t it? A quilt is a tangible item to show your concern, to offer both comfort and warmth. I’ve already seen a number of requests for quilts for Texans. I’ve also seen one of those requests in a Facebook group called a fraud, and deleted after the group moderator couldn’t affirm its legitimacy.

In the past I’ve made quilts to give post-disaster. But unless a disaster is local, I won’t do it again. Why not? Very simply, if a community is facing the scale of tragedy that Houston and other Texas cities are facing, figuring out how…

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Socks, well A Sock

Seems the first half of the blog name is almost misleading because I’ve been  ‘kwilting’ so much more than knitting. But I do still knit. Most of my knitting is done when I gather with others to knit, twice most weeks.

Coffee bean sockOne finished. Now to cast on the second before the next knit group.

The pattern is Pick-a-Pattern Worsted Weight Socks (that I adapted for fingering yarn) from the book Dear All The Mamas, available through Ravelry. It is a basic sock pattern with four variations for the decorative stitch. I chose the coffee bean stitch.

I missed gifting them in time for this winter–but they will be finished by next winter.

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