Finished Shetland Rectangle

Monday, August 25th, 2008
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Wow. This was my quickest knit, and my slowest blog. I knitted it in 8 days and blogged it 398 days later. I don’t think I will break that record any time soon. Sorry I dropped the ball! I was waiting to get pictures back from the picnic where I wore it and then never did until now. I promise I will not take 398 days ever again. If I get pictures back next time 398 days after finishing the knit, I will wait an extra day so it will not be 398 days. That I assure you.

Shetland Rectangle

(My hair was a little ratty in that picture, but I was pretty tired by the time we got to taking pictures for the blog.)

Shetland Rectangle, started July 16th, 2007, finished July 24th, 2007
Pattern: Shetland Triangle
Yarn: The rest of my pretty red merino yarn ripped from a Value Village sweater ($4 for this and the Backyard Leaves Scarf and Santa Cruz!)
Needles: Holy cow, I don’t remember.
Modifications: Now this, I do remember. Obviously, I knit it as a rectangle. I also added a border to keep everything flat and to make it extra pretty. I love this edge! It was the same edge I used on the Backyard Leaves Scarf. Definitely a hit. I put up a tutorial on the cast-on here. I may also put up the cast-off tutorial that I photographed last year, for which I also just got the pictures.
Would I knit it again? Yes yes yes! I want a triangle scarf for this winter so I’m considering this as a double knit. We’ll see. One thing I wouldn’t do is use another heavy merino, though; holy jumpin’, is this boy heavy! It was also really hard to block, as you can see from the photos.

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Swatch potato

Friday, July 27th, 2007
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Here’s the swatch for my non-navy navy sweater.

Alpaca Swatch

(I apologize for the bad photos; my camera has a lousy flash and I was taking pictures in the basement with no light!)

The bottom section is double-stranded with size 7 needles. The middle stripe is single-stranded on size 7 needles; I abandoned it pretty quickly when I realized that it wouldn’t look as Habu-y as I thought. The top section is double-stranded again, with size 9 needles.

I think I like the bottom better. The top is about 11.5 stitches over 4 inches, and the bottom is 14 stitches. The Phildar pattern calls for 25 stitches, so I ripped back and continued the swatch with a single strand and size 5 needles. I’m not sure if I want to knit as tight a gauge as the pattern calls for, but I think I should consider single-stranded a little bit more. It’s alpaca, so I don’t want it to be too thick lest it kill me with warmth.

Here’s the update to the swatch:

Swatch

My blocking pins are still in my apartment so I had to do with some sewing pins (I don’t know what they’re called) and I ran out of those. I had to find some substitutes; I am going to call this the most unnecessary “un-vention” ever.

Swatch

Heehee, it looks like an alligator hand puppet is eating my towel. Man, I miss my blocking pins.

Bonus blocking photo: Here’s my shawl being blocked!

Swatch

I planned to finish this shawl by Monday so I’d have a few days for it to block and dry. What did I actually do? I finished it by Monday and then forgot to block it until last night.

Memory: 1
Eve: 0

Fishing for compliments

Monday, July 23rd, 2007
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Look what I caught! It’s a big’un!

Fishing for compliments

I was going to stop at a metre or so, but I’ve decided to keep going. I’m also surprised at how light it is; I thought it would be a monster, but it feels like nothing! If nothing were about a kilo or so, but that’s about the weight of an apple and I don’t mind that weight distributed over my shoulders.

I was going to take some cast-off photos for a lake-side cast-off tutorial, but then we had to leave a little early and I decided to read my Potter on the way back instead of knittin’ on the shawl. It’s got a few inches and then it should be finished, I think.

BTW, I wanted to have a nice picture of me and the shawl and the lake, but unfortunately the sun was plotting against me at the time. Here is a photo of me as a pseudo-silhouette, and a slightly retro-looking attempt by me to play with the curves in the photo.

Fishing for Compliments Fishing for Compliments

Swatchmina

Tuesday, July 17th, 2007
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Swatchmina

I’m swatching for my Stashmina shawl (heretofore referred to as the Shetland Rectangle) and I’ve decided to knit it with a slip-stitch double knit border like on my backyard leaves scarf. It’s a no-curl edging, and it’s straight and simple and looks much prettier than garter stitch. I love the simplicity of garter stitch, but I think something as pretty as lace deserves something a bit nicer. Besides, when I’m knitting a garter edge I always screw it up because I end up purling all the way to the end on one WS row or something else happens and it just doesn’t work out. I like the double-knit as an alternative, and it’s complicated enough that I’ll do it every time.

I wanted my cast-on and cast-off edges to mirror the sides, so I learned how to do an i-cord cast-on. It’s pretty! And ingenious. I used the instructions here but they were somewhat unclear at times. Here’s how I thought about it, in case you need some extra clarification:

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