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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Knitted Little Red Riding Hood

Two days ago, I went to my LYS and picked up yarn for my next two projects, both of which will be small.  Last year, when I was getting into knitting after retiring, I made a Little Red Riding Hood piece for a 2 1/2 year old great-granddaughter's Christmas gift.  I was generally pleased with the effort, but did not photograph the cape/hood.  Now that I am blogging and taking photos of all my projects, you will get a chance this time to see this so very cute little girl's cape with hood.  Here is a hint of things to come:
I am knitting it again because I thought it would make a neat contribution to our church's bazaar in November.  I am knitting the cape/hood in Cascade 220 worsted wool using the Portuguese knitting technique.  The consistency of the stitches is very good using this technique.  My knitting pin arrived from Andrea Wong Knits the day before I began this project and the pin certainly does add to the technique.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Portuguese Knitting

I suppose that everyone who knits experiences pain in their hands at some point.  Well, mine were getting to be chronic and would last for hours and sometimes days.  I would have to put the knitting aside for a couple of days (not something I liked doing!)  I began to experiment with other techniques, beginning with Continental (or German) knitting technique.  While that helped, it did not eliminate the pain and my output did not look as good.

Then I stumbled across Portuguese Knitting and gave it a try.  Not only was it faster, better tension and better output, but the hands healed and do not bother me at all.  I knitted most of yesterday without pain!  If you want to learn more about this, there are two sources:  Youtube (search for Portuguese Knitting), or Andreawongknits.  I purchased a used copy of Andrea Wong's DVD through Amazon, but cannot get it to play on my PC.  However, I learned enough from Youtube to get right into this technique.

I love the speed and ease of knitting this way!  I was finishing up a girl's pullover that featured stockinette stitch for the torso and was able to zip through the tedious stockinette.  I was working in the round, and the knitting flew.  I wish I had found this technique before I began.

That brings me up to the latest finished project:  the girls' pullover based on Sarah Johnson's Rusted Root.  This should fit most girls of about 10 years of age (my estimate).  The puffed sleeves are the best feature.  Peggy of A Bit of String conceived the idea of making this version of Rusted Root, leaving off the "root" and using one size smaller needles.  However, I quickly realized that her version was too small for my intended recipient, so I started again and made the XS version of the original pattern.  It worked up very nicely in Cotton Ease.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Lilas and Whirligig

The Lilas cardigan (The Yarniad) has been completed -- and worn a couple of times.  First it went to church and then out to lunch with girlfriends, then went to Omaha this past weekend for Husker's family reunion.  (And you were wondering why I called him that ...  :)  Back to the Lilas later. 

Ahead of the reunion, family members Joyce and Donna, advised that we would have a silent auction.  Husker swung into action and contacted the Eli Young Band and arranged for 3 autographed CDs for the auction.  Thank you, boys.

I planted myself in my chair and whipped out Whirligig, designed by Stephanie Japel for last fall's Interweave Knits Weekend.  I could not get it done in a weekend, but how about 4 days?  I was very happy with how it came out, and someone at the BFR reunion made off with it for a small family member.  It enjoyed several bids.  I am convinced that Stephanie Japel will be remembered for this little shrug more than anything else she has designed.  It is just too cute for words.  Back view ... it has a back and sleeves, but no front for a toddler to spill something on. 

Now for the Lilas.  I am so happy with this summer cardigan and with the cool Cotton Ease yarn.  Perfect for those over air-conditioned rooms.  I attempted to take a picture of it in the bathroom, but forgot to turn off the flash and nearly blinded myself.  I then could not ascertain how to bypass the flash on my ancient Canon A10.  I gave up and let Husker take the pix with his fancy and cool Canon Rebel.  

The other family knitter asked for the pattern.  She is a more experienced knitter, so I am anxious to see how hers turns out.  Cindy -- don't forget to send pix.  

By the way, I am leaving further mention of the BFR reunion to Husker.  See Allen's Thinking.  If he has not updated his blog, let him know you are waiting for a report and pictures.