Monday, March 30, 2015

FO: A hat and a pillow

I finished up the selbu modern hat, just in time for the last dip in the temperatures this spring in Wisconsin.  We are slowly starting the climb into warm temperatures and it has now been a few days since I've worn a hat.  I'm excited for summer to arrive!

I modified the pattern slightly in that I used a different cast-on.  This second photo is a close-up of that work.  The tubular cast-on is fantastic - a nice stretchy rib to keep the look uniform and fit snug.

I also wanted to more close fitting hat (less tam and more toque) so I dropped one pattern repeat around.  Thus I only did seven repeats around instead of the recommended eight.  I have not yet blocked the hat, instead opting to let it stretch on it's own.  I think the fit is just perfect right now and I don't see any puckering in the stranded knitting that I am concerned about.

The other object I recently finished was a quick pillow.  This is a practice pillow - to learn how to make piping and put together a folded pillow cover that was relatively snug fitting.  I just sort of winged the construction but used this incredibly detailed and informative tutorial to make the piping.  All the material is left over from a project my Mom recently completed for our girls that I will post about next.  DH is not thrilled with the bird, or bright turquoise color and says it looks like something that could belong in our non-existent vacation home in Florida (haha).  It is bright, I admit, but it is growing on me.  I think I'll keep it around for awhile.

Friday, March 20, 2015

WIP's: Hat, socks, 2 sweaters

I have a pretty hefty backlog of knitting projects on the needles at the moment.  The oldest is probably my Hitofude cardigan which I am slowly making progress on.  I got stuck at the waist increases - and deciding whether I should modify the pattern at all or knit it as written.  I think that I have settled on a plan forward.

The hat you see above, Selbu Modern, is almost finished by now!  I only have the crown decreases to go and I'll post about my modifications and the final hat when I am done.

Also in the basket is an Icelandic-inspired sweater made with yarn brought back from Iceland from a family friend.  The color work and pattern are from Grettir (Jared Flood), but the shaping and final measurements are from CustomFit.

I also have completed one of these awesome green striped socks.  Just need to find the time for the second (and unfortunately I missed completing them in time for this St. Patrick's Day celebration). 

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Zippers: Open Wide Pouch

For more practice with zippers I moved on next to the Open Wide Zipper Pouch tutorial.  This one has a liner and a different design from the boxy tote - this one stands upright and when open is fully open so you can see the entire inside.

This first one is made mostly from fabric I picked up on a recent trip I took to Japan to visit with friends.  Fabric shopping in Japan is similar enough to the US that I was able to request fabric off the bolt by the meter without a problem.  I brought home quite a bit, but it's never enough, right?  At least the prices were comparable to what I find here in the US so I don't have any regrets there - but the selection in the stores, oh my!  It was a treat.  

This first bag is already at home with my Sister-in-Law.

This design offers a full lining which was the next thing I was looking for in my search for zippered pouches.  I love this design so much - and was getting such great practice with my zipper foot - that I ultimately made six of these bags. 

Four are the large size and two are mini ones that I made with my nieces during a recent overnight stay with us.  I also cut up a pair of old jeans for the bottom of the exterior.  I think it lends a nice contrast and some durability to the final pouch.

I still need lots of practice with zippers but I feel more confident now about how to work with them.  My next attempt will be for a boxy tote with a full lining.