msmcknittington: An icon with a quote from Hamlet: "Words, words, words." (Hamlet words)
2010-10-23 11:19 pm

Stranded Waistcoat Analysis

I want to get this done before I forget about it, because the thank you gift that my sister got me for watching Ian was yarn for the 16th-century stranded knitting waistcoat I've been talking about making for like two years now. We ordered it from Colourmart, and I selected a silk/merino blend laceweight yarn, with a high silk content. It's in "light bottle" (a medium green) and "maize" (gold/yellow). Unfortunately, I will not be able to afford enough gold or silver-wrapped yarn to knit a waistcoat until I win the lottery. Let's just say that a thousand yards of that would probably be around a thousand dollars. Ha ha -- no.

Anyway, I want to get this written down in detail before I forget, so that I'm not scrambling later to remember why I made the decision to choose these colors. I did a preliminary list at Rachel's house when I was yarn shopping, but not in detail.

Analysis of stranded knitted waistcoats available from online museum collections )

Yes, that was totally worth staying up until 2 AM to accomplish. My notes are now on the internet, and everyone knows the internet is forever. Comments welcome! Please argue with me over this if you have evidence to back your thoughts up. Also, if you know of any waistcoats or partial waistcoats which I've missed, please let me know so I can add them to my analysis here.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2009-09-05 08:31 pm

The Garment, Deeply Rational Thing that It Is

I know there are a few people on my friends list who have read Patrick O'Brian's novels about Stephen Maturin and Jack Aubrey. They are, quite frankly, absolutely delightful, as well as being dramatic and thoughtful and never ever lazily written. They are a superb series.

Stephen Maturin is a doctor, and so a deeply scientific man. He's also a spy and Irish and speaks Gaelic (among a dozen other languages) and has a strangely developed sense of compassion mixed with worldliness -- Stephen Maturin may, in fact, exist in four dimensions, rather than the usual three. Thus he is, on the whole, rather strange. I don't even think you could say that he marches to the beat of a different drum, because I don't think he marches to the beat of a drum at all. Stephen marches to the beat of . . . good lord, a barometer, maybe. The clink of dissection pins as they fall into a metal basin. A drum? That would be pedestrian.

So, what does this have to do with knitting? In Post Captain, Stephen appears in this rather perplexing garment, of which he is intensely proud, but of which everybody else is . . . well, certainly not proud. Confused, maybe. Amused. Horrified. Jack Aubrey refers to it as "subhuman" and "that vile thing". The Garment is brown, knitted, and covers Stephen from neck to ankle. It's like a union suit, but singularly ugly. It allows him to retract his head into the collar like a turtle, and was knit according to Stephen's design by another character in the series. Stephen describes it as:

"My wool garment? You have noticed it, have you? I had forgot, or I should have pointed it out. Have you ever seen anything so deeply rational?"

Deeply rational. No wonder Stephen is so enthused!

He also assures Jack that he is having one made for him. Fortunately for Jack, it never comes to be.

A Raveler, Knit1805, has been working on a recreation of the garment for a (one assumes) willing volunteer. She's discussing the process thoroughly on her blog, as well with many other very lovely historic knitting projects. She talks about it from her very first post, but the next post has more detail, and really shows The Garment in its full horror. She's also been talking about it Lesser of Two Needles, the Aubrey-Maturin series group on Ravelry. Unfortunately, you have to be a Ravelry member to read those posts. Here is one of the threads.

I cannot wait to see the final product. I expect it to be absolutely breathtaking, if only because it is, in fact, the most deeply rational garment I have ever seen.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2009-01-26 09:03 pm
Entry tags:

Baby blanket!

So, what have I been up to? Not working on the not-Effigy bodies, that's for sure. Or a red kirtle. And definitely not crocheting a baby blanket.

I give my thanks to all of you who voted in that last poll about what crochet stitch pattern to use for the baby blanket. I ended up going with none of the choices, though. I swatched for the two crochet stitches, and discovered that the Lace Ripple had hyooge holes in it, for baby's fingers to get caught. I also discovered that I really hated working the other stitch pattern. Go figure!

So I'm knitting a log cabin baby blanket. In garter stitch.

Didn't I say that I hated knitting big squares? I did. Somehow the fact that I'm actually knitting long rectangles picked up from the previous rectangles is totally acceptable to me. Modular knitting changes everything, apparently. To further prove my inability to commit to a concept and/or dislike, I'm thinking about how much fun a garterlac (entrelac done in garter stitch) baby blanket would be. In BRIGHT colors, since these are so dull. I really like this baby blanket, which is again log cabin, but done as squares and then crocheted together.

A picture )

I like it a lot! I think it looks nice. And Mom keeps getting this speculative look in her eye when she sees it, like, "Oh, wouldn't it be nice if Sarah could knit a big afghan for the living room!" Yes, it would be nice. Perhaps you can find another Sarah to do it, as there are so many of them in this world. This Sarah was not meant to knit afghans for people who weigh more than ten pounds.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2009-01-04 09:29 pm
Entry tags:

Eek! Victorian bed shoes!

OK, so they're really more pre-WWI, but stripey warmness is something I'm a fan of regardless of the era. [ profile] bexi posted links to sweaters on that website, and I found these by poking around.

How much yarn do you think is required for those? The sample is made with Karabella Aurora 8, but the page doesn't give amounts, natch. The directions say one skein of black and two skeins of CC, but how much is in a skein? Blah!

Do you think 100 yards of black and 200 yards of CC would be enough? I'm thinking yes, especially since Ravelry tells me that these knit up as fitting a US size 10 or 11 ladies foot. I'm a 7.5/8, so I'll have to do some resizing.

Also, the note "Use worsted weight yarn knit tightly on a #6 needle" gives me pause, as I usually knit worsted weight on a US 6. Am I just a weirdo? Possibly. That's not all that tightly knit.

I believe I told myself I'd do NaCoFiMo this month, too. And finish some writing. *laughs*
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-12-13 09:52 pm
Entry tags:

The doily that will not end

The State of the Doily )

This doily will not end! It only takes me about five minutes to work from one wheat ear motif to the next, but there are 12 of them, so it takes me at least an hour to do a round. So. Excruciatingly. Slow. I'm on round 19 of 24, so I'm very close to being finished.

It's so big, too. The pattern called for size 30 thread, and I think I grabbed size 20 instead. Meep! Mom and I are trying to figure out what the hell I can block this one, because I think it's going to be close to 20 inches in diameter once it's starched and stretched.

Isn't it pretty, though? I wish I liked decorating with doilies, because I'd make myself one. I'm thinking about adapting the wheat and grape motif for straight crochet to put on a petticoat hem. Because wouldn't that be amazing and lovely and ostentatious?

Also, my order from Elann arrived today. I feel dumb for taking pictures of yarn from freakin' Elann -- it's not like it's super special or droolworthy or anything -- but I'm so excited about my new yarn.

New yarn! )

The pink and the black sport weight is for reknitting those bicolor mitts I made in worsted weight. They are just too chunky for me to be satisfied with. They should be more delicate, and the sports weight should be light enough to do that, without taking forever to knit.

The burgundy is for my Butterfly dress. Oh, yay for laceweight! It's so soft and lovely that I want to cast on for a shawl or something right now. But no. I will wait until I can visit it the library and get the pattern (because buying the book that dress is in would result in me buying more yarn), and then I will make the pretty, pretty dress (once I figure out how to modify it to make it look best on me).
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-12-06 02:30 am
Entry tags:

Christmas knitting, Rd. 1

1) I never actually got to my yarn therapy last night, because I couldn't make up my mind. I have some sportweight yarn in my cart to re-knit those black mitts with the double ruffle at the wrist, but that's a "business purchase". *snort* I've decided that I'd like to knit the Butterfly Dress by Jennie Atkinson*, only not in kid mohair, because mohair makes me want to rip my skin off when I wear it. It's that itchy. So, I'm thinking Peruvian Baby Lace Merino from Elann, because it's merino and baby alpaca and therefore soft. It also won't shed as badly as mohair.

The only issue is that I can't pick a color. I'm leaning toward 1418 Merlot, 1297 Admiral Blue, or 0419 Dark Chocolate. I really like the teal used on the Knitpicks site, but my wardrobe has a serious teal overload right now. Does anyone want to weigh in on this and guide my hand? The only colors I'm really opposed to are the Banana Cream and Cafe Au Lait, because they're really close to the same color as my skin.

2) I started the doily for my grandma's Christmas present tonight. (Yes, I gave her a doily last year, but the woman loves doilies! She used to crochet them, but her eyes aren't good enough anymore to do it.) It's the one at the bottom of this page, the Wheat and Grape Doily.

Here's its current state )

3) Agh! Celt's Vintage Crochet closed! From the Rav thread:

Due to personel problems and my whole site being sold on ebay by a bunch of money grubbers, I have decided to close Celt’s Vintage Crochet. I spent hundreds a year in fees and thousands buying vintage books in an attempt to preserve all the wonderful vintage patterns out there. Too bad some people are more interested in making a buck off someone else’s site then in saving these precious patterns. Thank you to all those who supported me in this are most appreciated. Celty

That's really sad. There were literally hundreds of vintage crochet patterns there, in the public domain, and now they're gone because jerks had to go and sell them and piss her off. Fortunately, the site is still available on Web Archive for a bit, so take a look and download anything you'd like to crochet from there in case it disappears again.

*Didn't I start off looking for DK yarn to knit some fair isle? I seriously love fair isle knitting, but I guess I love lace more? Or maybe I'm feeling really body positive right now and I'm longing for spring. I think that last one's most likely.
**I'm semi-embarrassed to admit I loved it, though I really think that Layla should have ended up with Warren Peace. Really. Vastly more appealing than what's-his-face.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-11-06 10:24 pm

Oh, shit.

So, given how happy looking at my dressmaker's dummy is making me, with it all decked out in silk faille taffeta, I went looking for the 3/4 yard of fabric I had left. AND I COULD NOT FIND IT. Minor panic ensued. And then I remembered -- during the flood this summer, I threw out most of what was in my scrap box, because it was in the basement and it got moldy. All the fabric I had saved to make false sleeves and a plastron is gone.


What I'm wondering is if anyone on my friends list happened to purchase that same magenta silk faille when it was on Fashion Fabrics Club, and if they have any substantial scraps I can buy from them. Alternatively, does anyone know of any examples of a similar dress with contrasting sleeves and plastron? And what the hell color matches magenta?

In the course of this investigation, I also discovered that a wool shawl I knit (garter stitch triangle, picot bind-off) is full of moth egg cases. UGH. This makes me more sad than the silk faille, because as simple as it was, that shawl represented at least 12 hours of work, and the silk faille was maybe $8 worth. So, tomorrow, the shawl gets sent through the wash on hot. It's superwash. If it gets felted, then the cat has something new to sleep on.

NaNo advances apace. I'm a little bit behind, which really means I am not advancing apace. I do have that stuff I wrote previously that I was planning on using to give myself Thanksgiving off, but I guess that won't happen!

ETA: Ugh, you guys, you know what? I told myself I was saving money for Christmas presents, and if I don't have the budget to buy yarn, then I don't have the budget to buy fabric either. I will just have to look through my stash and keep my eyes open for something that will coordinate.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-10-11 12:37 am
Entry tags:

What the shit, Knitpicks?

It is apparently my mission today to spam everyone's friends lists. So, happy Spam-mas, everybody!

I was just on the Knitpicks website, intending to buy a US 7 fixed circular needle, because I love the finish on the metal tips. So smooth. Such a pleasure to knit with.

And then I discovered that Knitpicks only offers fixed circular needles in sizes below US 4. Everything above that is an interchangeable -- the cords screw into the needle tips. The US 7 tips are $5.99 and the cords are $3.99, so that's $10 for the needles right there, and then shipping is another three bucks. Nearly fifteen bucks for a single knitting needle? Fuck that noise, Knitpicks! I've knit with interchangeables before, and I've heard so many bad things about Knitpicks interchangeables that I am not inclined to spend that much on a single knitting needle. Give me my fixed circulars or give me death.

So, I went to, where I can buy Inox Express for $6. Free shipping. Eat that, Knitpicks.

On an unrelated note, my new obsession is Twilight snark. Like, I've laughed myself silly over it. Growing Up Cullen made me hurt myself a little from the snorting laughter that came out of me. The crowning achievement of that series (?) is definitely the scrapbooking post.


[ profile] cigarettes214, please reassure me that I have not gone insane. I didn't even make it through the first book. But I am addicted to the lolfans.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-10-05 02:09 am
Entry tags:

OMG! Knitting!

You guys, I knit a hat! It's the first thing I've knitted since . . . oh, lord, July, I think. And it felt damned good.

I made up the pattern as I went along, utilizing Alica Starmore's book on Fair Isle knitting and my worsted weight wool yarn scraps. There's all sorts in there, and even a little alpaca.

Yarns: Cascade 220 (flamingo), Elann Peruvian Highland Wool (burgundy/claret and light blue), Plymouth Galway Worsted (navy blue, white, rose pink, pale pink, dark green), KnitPicks Palette (palest pink, 3 strands), Atacama Auracania (turquoise and it's alpaca, 2 strands).
Needles: Size 8

It's a splendid miscellany!

There's a knitted lining there that started out as a knitted in hem, but I realized that the worsted weight made the knitting too bulky for a knitted in hem, so it turned into a full lining. It's very incredibly warm.

Couple pics )

It's blocking right now. It is unblocked in the pictures. The stitches evened out some, but I definitely stranded the white too tight and probably the turquoise. The issue with the turquoise not showing up might be that there's also black on the strand, so it sort of disappears into the navy blue. I can't tell. It's dark in here and no amount of interior lighting equals daylight.

But hooray! Hat!

Sadly, my goal when I started this was to knit myself a new barn hat because the one I used last winter got felted and now is child-sized. I don't think this hat will be coming anywhere near any cows.

Totally random note: I think it might be possible to replace Sarah Palin with Tina Fey and have nobody notice. It would be almost exactly like The Prince and the Pauper but I can't imagine what lesson Sarah Palin would learn. I mean, other than boggling at Tina's ability to be a much better vice-presidential candidate.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-09-14 06:26 pm

Planning ahead

Today I gave myself a day off. And so did everybody else. Hooray! I think I earned it, since the last couple weeks haven't been anything but cursing. (And moving cattle. Which was really just more cursing, now that I stop and think about it.) So today I slept in and took a nap. Good combination, since my family now seems to be made up of human beings rather than demons.

The weather continues cold and rainy, which is great. No, really! It is. This means that my rutabagas will be storing up lots of energy for winter and getting hyooge. They are already heading toward baseball size, so by the first frost, they should be softball size. I thinned the row out a couple weeks ago, and they're delicious. After the first frost, they should be really sweet and at the height of their rutabaga perfection.

Unfortunately, all this rain also means that my tomatoes are splitting on the vine. So sad. They have to be thrown out, because the cracks invite bacterial and fungal growth. Bleh.

And now, some lists.

Wedding Stuff Left To Do

1. Put the zipper in my dress and hem it.
2. Wash and frame Rachel and Bubba's wedding gift, and knit potholders to match.*
3. Make ringbearer's pillow. Very simple. I could do this tonight and do the finishing while watching Mad Men and True Blood.
4. Make two or three little bags for the bridesmaids to put lipstick, ID, etc. into. I might not make one for myself, because I'm a rebel like that.
5. Wax my upper lip! Cannot forget to do this! I'd hate for Rachel and Bubba's kids to be looking through her wedding album and say, "Mommy, I didn't you had three brothers. Why is one of them wearing a dress?"

Crafting/Sewing/Blahdiblah To Do After Wedding

1. Start Mom's Christmas present. Must find a different verse to plop in the middle, since we are not at all religious and she doesn't like it.
2. Take measurements for [ profile] chargirlgenius's FGD flat pattern-making exercise.
3. Make super-awesome black and white striped shirt that I do not have a pattern for, because apparently there are no patterns for what I'm planning. Three-quarter length sleeves, boat neck raglan fitted through the body. The fabric I have is knit, and I haven't decided if I want to do a contrasting collar band yet or not. I'm aiming for apache dancer or casual Jackie O. Neckline like this but fitted through the body and sleeves.

I have a couple knitting designs and some plans for a steampunk costume and a George Sand costume floating around, but nothing concrete. I wanted to wear the steampunk outfit to GeekCon in Madison, for my first con evar. I thought it was in October though, and discovered last week that it is the week after Rachel's wedding. So out of the question! I'm going to spend that weekend . . . sleeping. Not driving anywhere or doing anything more strenuous than cleaning or writing or knitting.

*At the beginning of the summer, I was all, "I'm going to knit them an afghan!" except I forgot what knitting afghans in 90-degree temps was like. No way! I don't love anybody to the point of heat exhaustion. The butterfly thingy matches their kitchen and Rach has five separate entries for potholders/dish towels on her registry, so I feel safe about these choices. I'm subbing three days this week, so I know I have time to knit some domino and/or entrelac potholders. Double knitting, maybe?
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-08-26 01:42 pm
Entry tags:

Errata on Bombshell Betty, Version 2

The first pattern goof has been found! I take full responsibility.

Here's what the pattern says:

Right Side Panel

Row 1 (RS): Sl 1, work 8 sts in pattern, pm, ssk, work 10 sts in pattern, double decrease, pm, work 10 sts in pattern, k2tog, pm, work 8 sts in pattern, k last st.

Here's what it should say:

Row 1 (RS): Sl 1, work 8 sts in pattern, pm, ssk, work 8 sts in pattern, double decrease, pm, work 8 sts in pattern, k2tog, pm, work 8 sts in pattern, k last st.

I'll be updating this entry if anyone finds any other errors.

ETA: Two more have been found. Both from the Center Panel instructions.

Here's what it says:

Row 3 (RS): Sl 1, m1, knit last st, m1, k last st.

Here's what it should say:

Row 3 (RS): Sl 1, m1, knit to last st, m1, k last st.

Here's what it says:

Repeat the four previous rows until 24 sts are on needles.

Here's what it should say:

Repeat the four previous rows until 25 sts are on needles.

Also, Row 6 was misnumbered as Row 7. There's no row missing, just a typo.

If anyone else finds any errata on this pattern or any other, please contact me at:

Livejournal: msmcknittington
Ravelry: msmcknittington
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-08-23 11:26 pm
Entry tags:

Bombshell Betty, Mark II

*plays fanfare*

It is done. After a ridiculous amount of time (it feels like), I have the pattern written and the pictures edited. And now I will show you the pictures and provide a link for you to download the pattern. And then I will do the same in [ profile] knitting and [ profile] steamfashion. (Sorry, friends, who read both.)

Yes, I'm wearing a white silk scarf and a leather coat. Why? Because sometimes I can't help myself.

Vital Stats

Yarn: Recycled from a wool/acrylic sweater. It has 10 wpis. A good substitute would be 1 skein of Cascade 220 or 2 skeins of Elann Peruvian Highland Wool.
Needles: US 8 / 5 mm
Size: One size, which should fit anywhere from a 21-inch to a 23-inch head (Version 1 will fit up to a 24-inch head comfortably. I was saying 25-inch for Version 1 before, but I tried it on my brother, who has a 23-inch head, and there wasn't enough room to go that big.)
Knitting Time: 6 hours or so

Pictures and info under the cut )

Download Bombshell Betty, Version 2

I think my next goal is to either find a styrofoam head to photograph hats on or to find a willing model. I'm so tired of taking pictures of hats on my own head. I just keep finding flaws in my face. Like when did I get such dark circles under my eyes? They never go away. Always there. Blah.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-08-19 08:55 pm
Entry tags:

The goggles! They do nothing!

I posted this on [ profile] steam_knits last night, and didn't get quite the feedback I was expecting. I don't really want to change the post enough to get feedback on [ profile] knitting (what with the no-crossposting rule), so I'm posting it here in hopes that you guys can offer more insight.

Yarn: Salvaged from a sweater. It's 80% wool/20% acrylic, I think. It's felted a bit, and has a really nice texture when knitted up. It's on the heavier side of worsted.
Needles: Size 8 US/5 mm
Size: For my head (22"), but it stretches a lot, so I would say it fits up to a 25" skull
Pattern: Made up by me in a very scientific manner
Linkage: Ye Olde Ravelry Page

Let's just pretend these were taken in an airship somewhere and not in my bathroom )

OK, so it's pretty cute right now, but what I'm fussed over is the decreases on the side panels. I feel that it might look better if the center triangle was wider, and the two columns of garter rib on the sides were narrower, so that the point where all the decreases come together was lower down -- closer to my jaw. The double decrease column has to stay where it is -- radiating from the crown -- because that's the one that makes the side panels curve right. The apex of the curve has to be on the crown. I'm concerned, though, that if I make the bottom panel of garter rib narrower, that it won't cup the bottom of the head right.

Plans to improve it:

-- try a stitch with a smoother texture -- that pretty much leaves stockinette or stockinette-based lace or King Charles brocade, maybe?
-- shift the decrease columns so that the center decrease section is wider and therefor longer
-- try moving the edge of the cap forward so it comes over my forehead
-- taper the center panel in the back so it cups the back of the head more

Anybody have an insight or opinions they want to offer?
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-08-10 08:12 am
Entry tags:

Oh, no. Not indecision.

I'm having a wibbly moment. I have the pattern for the cog cuffs all ready to go. It looks pretty, everything's clearly explained, but I'm wibbling. I can't decide whether to go with the very straight-forward "Cog Cuffs" for a title or the slightly more punny "My Sweet Cogette". Cogette = coquette, you see. French, flirty, and fun! Possibly also freaking stupid, hence the wibbling.

So, which should I go with? Cog Cuffs or My Sweet Cogette?
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-07-27 03:04 pm
Entry tags:

Huh. Look at that.

Guess what I just found when I went to look for the yarn leftover from my Thermal sweater? Purple yarn! Alpaca/silk from Elann, leftover from the stole I knit my sister for Christmas. It's fingering weight, unfortunately, so I can't use it with the frilly mitts, but I can make something purple.

Yes, I using up my stash. Because the odds and ends from other projects are taking over my bedroom. It's kind of scary.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-07-27 02:17 am
Entry tags:

Behold! This really is a knitting journal!

I completely spaced on time while knitting tonight, and somehow ended up knitting for two and a half hours without taking more than a five minute break. Stupid "League of Their Own"! Being such a good movie that I lost complete and total track of time.

In that time, though, I got the bulk of the knitting done on the second frilly cogwheel cuff. I would say it took me about two and half hours to knit to the picot bind-off, and that time includes eating dinner. Unfortunately, it took like half an hour to do a third of the picot bind-off, which means that binding off is going to take nearly as long as knitting it. Why, O cruel world? Why?

All this knitting means that either tomorrow is going to be a no knitting day or a pattern writing day. I wrote out the charts for the cogwheel frill cuffs* after dinner, and I realized that their construction is a lot more complicated than I thought. The skills involved include: knitting in the round, knitting on DPNs, lace, reading from charts, two different decreases, picot bind off, and ribbing. Some of those are really basic ones (knitting in the round, DPNs, ribbing), but I know that reading from charts and lace really scare some people. I just sort of whizzed through the first one, despite ripping the whole thing out two or three times for gauge reasons. It was kismet? I dunno. Like most things I do, I feel like I could probably have worked harder on them, but I can't find anything to change, even given my directional decrease goof-up that I ended up liking.

Anyway, I have knit another (very simple) fingerless mitt, and I need some input on it.

bicolorcuff 001

Yarn: Cascade 220
Needles: Size 4 US

That above is the prototype, but it's the first picture I wanted to show you, so there. Click on it for a bigger picture.

Mitts with two color frill )

Cogwheel cuffs in action )

Er, yes. Look at all this knitting that has suddenly appeared.

*These so need a better name.
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-07-24 07:46 pm
Entry tags:

Frilly cuffs version 1.0

Here's my preliminary frilly neo-Victorian cuff, all pinned out and blocking.

frillycuff 001

It's pretty big -- a little smaller than a dinner plate. The frill on it is a full circle with a picot bind off. It's knit from the cuff down in an eyelet rib on small needles, and then for the frill, I switched to larger needles so the fabric would be drapier.

These are intended to be worn under a jacket or bodice with long fitted sleeves. They keep your hands and wrists warm, and give some frilliness to what can be a severe silhouette. They're good for early autumn or when spring is still cold.

Details under here )

So, what does everyone think?
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-06-25 09:48 pm
Entry tags:

The amazing shrinking swatch

I just measured my swatch for Bella Pacquita again, and it's shrunk. Maybe it wasn't completely dry yet when I measured it before? Whatever. It's now at the stated gauge for the sweater: 18 sts/4 inches.

That's really annoying because I already cast-on for the bodice of the sweater. I did, however, make extra chains in my COWYAK provisional cast-on, so I can pick up extra stitches.

What will this swatch do next?
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-06-24 08:41 pm
Entry tags:

Bust darts? Oh, lord, no.

I just measured myself to see what sort of adjustments I'll need to make to the front bodice of Bella Pacquita. The length of the front bodice from the shoulder to the bottom is 12 inches. The distance of that measure on me is 14 inches, which translates into 13 rows that currently aren't in the pattern.

Here are my options:

1) Work two inches on the bodice before starting the shaping at the neck and side seams.

2) Just work it as is; hope for the best.

3) Knit a larger swatch, wash it and let it hang with weights on it to see if the cotton will stretch monstrously once on. (I don't think it will. The yarn started out as a sweater from The Gap, and it was very resilient.)

4) Figure out how to work short rows for the front. *screams* Math . . . Unless two inches is too many short rows for such a little empire bodice.

So, knitting friends, what do you think is the best option? Anybody have experience with short-row bust adjustments in cotton?

While I wrote this, I ate a salad composed entirely of vegetables from the garden. Leaf lettuce, spring onions, and icicle radishes sliced into coins. Yum! I'm thinking about grabbing another spring onion and just chowing down on it, because they are that delicious straight out of the garden. Or more radishes. (Yes, [ profile] aesiron, radishes.)
msmcknittington: Queenie from Blackadder (Default)
2008-06-24 02:34 am
Entry tags:

Knitting accomplished!

Good news, folks. I swatched for Bella Pacquita tonight and I hit gauge exactly . . . with my unwashed swatch. Damn it!

Unwashed, I'm getting 18 sts/4 inches and 26 rows/4 inches. Washed, I'm getting 15 sts/4 inches and 26 rows/4 inches. I need to do the math to figure out if I can just knit a size down and get it to work out. Unfortunately, instead of being written out, the pattern is written entirely in charts. I really like written instructions for stuff in stockinette, because I can just scrawl down the directions I need on a Post-It and I don't have to lug around a print out. I'm saving the rainforest, one knitting pattern at a time!

Also, I don't have access to a computer lab with free!free!free! printing (that I'm paying probably several thousand dollars for each year in tuition), and my printer is out of ink.

Stupid gauge! I don't want to go down a needle size because I think that will make the fabric too dense, and since this is intended as a summer sweater (cotton with lycra), it needs to breath a little. Maybe I'll trawl through Ravelry and see what I can turn up for the gauge I'm getting.

ETA: It looks like I'll be able to knit the next size down and still get something that will fit. The bust on the XL is 37.78 inches (170 stitches) at its widest point at the recommended gauge, while the bust on the L is 32.45 inches and 146 stitches. At my gauge, that becomes 45.3 inches on the XL and 38.94 inches on the L. That's a little big on top for the L, but if I use the M size for the back, then it should work out, since my girth is all up front.