Saturday, May 26, 2007

"Two-Tone Ribbed Shrug" from FITTED KNITS - Finished Pics

UPDATE 5/2008: I revised this project--the new project is posted on this blog here.

Here are pics of the finished product, the "Two-Tone Ribbed Shrug" from Fitted Knits by Stefanie Japel, page 45. I used merino wool in two different shades of blue, following the pattern mostly, except the sleeves are longer and a little more full than the pattern allows. I want to be able to wear it over short-sleeve shirts.

The front view:

The side view:

and the back view:

I'm okay with the sleeves being a little full because the bodice area is slim-fitting. I wear it all the time. So it passes the "I want to wear it test," which is the only one that matters, really.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Question for the Public

Given my propensity to start and start projects and leave them unfinished, and given that my dearest MAP is a furniture-builder when he's not doing his real job, and given that I hope (expect) him to build us some lovely furniture for the house we just bought, am I being hypocritical if I get on his case about starting and starting and starting carpentry projects and not finishing them?

Am I?

heh heh.

I did happen to finish my blue Japel shrug from Fitted Knits, but at the very same moment, started the diamond scarf out of Wenlan Chia's Twinkle's Big City Knits. I seem to maintain this stasis of 4-6 projects going at any one time. And yet this seems okay with me. Given that I'm knitting. And knitting is (1) small, (2) relatively inexpensive (ha!), and (3) not something I expect to be eating dinner on.

No. Not hypocritical. But I'm open to others' opinions on the matter.

Monday, May 14, 2007


This post is for me, mostly.

(Ha! Like all of these posts aren't "for me". Blogging is self-serving, self-aggrandizing, self-centeredness at its best. Anyone who says differently is kidding themselves.)

This post is for me because, like all fiberartists, at least the ones I know, even Dr. Fibersmarts starts and starts and starts projects and does not finish them.

There are a variety of reasons for this. Boredom. Season change. New and exciting books. (Can anyone say WENLAN CHIA?)

So, here are some projects in process that I will finish, and will post when they are finished, because now that I've put them here, the world will hold me accountable.

ONE: Soy-silk Skinny Scarf

(Slip one, k1, p2, k2 p2 rib, repeat to end; sz 9 needles, Patons soy/wool blend, variegated, in "natural blue." This would be one of those "boring" projects. Actually, I love it. But now it's summer and I don't need a scarf. I'll do this one during Grey's Anatomy.)

TWO: Black Crochet-Rib Mittens

(I'm using the Lion's brand microspun doubled-up for thickness, sz 9 hook. Front- and back-post double crochets. I have one arm done. Must finish other arm, add thumb and finger pockets. Total time remaining: one-two hours. What is wrong with me?)

THREE: Japel's "Boob Tube"

(I'm using this dreadful shiny blue yarn I bought at a cheap-o craft store on a whim one day thinking it was "just lovely" -- but I doubled it up and I'm using my brand-new Denise interchangable circular needles in size 17 to warm up for my first Wenlan Chia chunky knit project and this is actually turning out okay. The pattern is on Japel's web site here.)

These are my "other" projects -- not counting my "real" project, the shrug that is almost almost finished.

Oh, and the recycled-yarn afghan that is currently packed in a box because my house was on the market. Jeez. I certainly hope none of you were following that project.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Tapestry Crochet - Who Knew?

Since I'm a dilettante and largely self-taught, I had no idea that these bags that I've been crocheting for years are a technique called "tapestry crochet." I always called them like-the-bag-my-friend-Rinku-brought-back-from-India bags.

I've made many of these puppies, usually out of Takhi or Provence's mercerized cotton, and given them away as gifts. They last forever and can be washed in the machine. Here's a picture of one:

I just like to point out my ignorance whenever possible. Tapestry crochet. Huh.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Knit Shrug #2 - from Fitted Knits

Who doesn't love Stefanie Japel's new book Fitted Knits? I certainly do. Top-down construction (raglan-style), circular knitting, slim fits. What's not to like. Seriously.

I started with another shrug, using worsted-weight blue yarns. Here are some pictures of the work as it has progressed.

First, look at how the kfbs make the beautiful raglan structure -- growing and shaping without seaming. So cool. I love knitting.

This is the shape of the shoulder piece, as I continue to work on a sleeve. Yes, it looks bat-man-esque.

Here's the sleeve laid together, with the arm opening aligned with the raglan "seam" and the edges just waiting to be seamed (after I've put the ribbing on)...

And here is the seamed sleeve -- my first seaming! It looks just like those seams I used to rip out so gleefully when I would salvage yarn. Note the rib edging.

Here's that sleeve from the outside, with that lovely ribbing. (oh, I do love this project. and knitting. did i mention i love knitting? i've slipped into lower case letters.)

Just a side note: My friend and I are working on our dissertations, and our other friend is here studying for his comprehensive exam. We have just reached a consensus that novels about knitting are dumb. And I'm a knitter. I have a knitting blog. I still think this literary trend is dumb.

Go knit. Then read a romance novel.

Here is where I am at the moment -- the ribbing and increases around the bodice. Same 24 rows as the sleeves, but with increases at the four angles -- I'm very excited about those.

Also, I wonder if those people who write novels about knitting actually knit. I can't help but think that if they did knit, they would knit, instead of writing novels about knitting. And if they DON'T knit, but instead write novels about knitting, they would be ridiculous poseurs.

Actually, I must confess. I know a novelist who wrote a novel about knitting. We don't get along. And I've never seen a set of knitting needles in her hands. So, to temper my strangely strong opinions on this topic, I should have provided this information up front. This novelist is not a nice person. She was mean to my very-nice-person friend. Don't be mean. It isn't nice. I digress. ("Dramatic Irony.")

Back on topic: here's how the shrug looks now (on my faux leather desk chair). It will be finished soon -- like, this weekend, since I have nothing better to do. I'll model it for you then. Then, on to the next project -- the shrug from Wenlan Chia's new book -- Twinkle's Big City Knits.

May Showers

Here's what must happen this week:

1. Save The Date cards must be sent Thursday because my dear MAP asked me to marry him 2 weeks ago, and apparently people send TWO invitations to weddings these days, not just one.

2. Dissertation must be defended on Friday morning so that I can take my new job at the fancy state university this fall without a hitch.

3. House must be packed because I close at the end of the month. (I. Have. Not. Started.)

So now, a question for my readers: How much knitting has happened this week?

a. A lot.

b. A humongous amount.

c. Like, so much it could cover Mount Everest.

d. Where is Dr. Fibersmarts? All I see is a huge pile of yarn. Wait. Is that pile of yarn breathing?