Monday, August 21, 2006

New Yarn!

Wow, you guys are great! Thank you for all the lovely comments on Madli. I really am very pleased with her! I also wanted to answer a couple of the questions.

Sue asked: How did you like the Shadow yarn? I've actually used the Shadow yarn for several things now and I really do like it. It blocks well and it is soft and the colors are very nice and slightly heathered. I've used the Grape Jelly, green (can't remember its name), Oregon Trail, Vineyard, and now the Jewels and I just love all the colors.

Margene asked: Was it hard to do the grafting? (Basically for Madli, you knit one border, do the body of the stole, then leave live stitches and knit the other border separately to be grafted onto the body.) No, it was not as hard as I had thought it would be. I am sort of glad that I put Madli aside for a while so I could do more socks and practice that darned kitchener a bit more. If you can close the toe of a sock, you can do this. If you don't like socks, you can practice the kitchener with a couple of swatches where you leave live stitches.

It is a beautiful stole so don't let the grafting or nupps scare you off. It is totally worth the effort. You can do it!

New yarn:

This is for the Snowmen & Skates Vest (actually two kid-sized vests) from Knit Picks. I chose this pattern because I thought it was incredibly cute and would be an introduction to (cringe) steeking. I've done Fair Isle, but not steeking. The pattern seems pretty straight-forward but for one thing. Can anyone explain to me why, although the pattern calls for size 3 needles and does not use a size 1 anywhere in the pattern, the gauge swatch calls for size 1 (and it's not a misprint because it actually says 2.25mm). Does this make sense to ANYONE?! To use a completely different needle size for the swatch than for the product? I thought the whole point was to get a swatch using the actual needle. I have an email in to customer service, but I just thought it incredibly odd and annoying.

More new yarn:

This yarn is destined for the Hex Coat from Norah Gaughan's Knitting Nature book. Hopefully, I'll have a picture for you on WIP Wednesday. I got perfect gauge when I did my swatch (I actually have been good about doing swatches for garments), but for some reason, it's not working out to gauge now. *Sigh*


Blogger vanessa said...

that's because swatches lie ;-)

10:24 PM  
Blogger Opal said...

I can't wait to see you start the Snowman vest and the Hex Coat. I adore the book Knitting Nature!

2:22 AM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

You're knitting Icarus out of the Alpaca/silk from Webs, right? Any ideas on blocking it? Should I just block like I normally would (soak and pin) or will that be too much? I've heard alpaca is weaker than wool when it's wet.

8:15 AM  
Blogger Dorothy said...

I agree with Vanessa that swatches lie!! No idea other than that about the needle size - perhaps a misprint? I've used the Shadow several times and can also highly recommend it. And steeks - girl, if you can do lace, you can do steeks. What's the worst that can happen? You mess up some knitting and start over - no one dies!

9:38 AM  
Anonymous anne said...

hi alison, the reason for the smaller needles for the swatch is probably this:
when you knit the vest, you will kit in the round, using only knit rows, and most people knit tighter in the round than they do in back and forth rows (because purl stitches are looser than knit sts, and there are no purl sts in the round in fair isle). also, when you do fair isle in the round, the stranding tends to be tighter because it is going around the IINNER circle of the knitting.

SOO they probably had you do your swatch knitting back and forth, and wanted you to get the same gauge, so they have you use a smaller needle.

anyway, i love you lace stole, and i LOVE the colors for your fair isle project! very snowy!!

9:42 AM  
Blogger Ariadne's Thread said...

Lovely stole (as usual).

I was just thinking the other night that the Snowmen and Skates vest would be a fun thing to start. I've also been wanting to try steeks. I'd have to order yarn, though...I have the Palette set, but I used some blue/green/natural for a Fair Isle tams class at Stitches last year, plus it takes more than one ball of some colors. And ordering yarn would make me want to order KP's needles, and the nifty new knitting bags, and, and, and...and payday isn't until 9/1. Le sigh.

Melissa from PWP, who finally has a blog but hasn't posted yet!

9:46 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

Ok, I giggled during your comments about steeking. My first ever fair isle also included steeking. So I wouldn't chicken out when it came to cutting, I knit a largish swatch with 2 of the motifs, bound it off and then cut the swatch. Numerous times to prove to myself thatit really wouldn't unravel. Even if I messed with it. (Yes, I tugged a little and let it sit for a while just to make sure. Worked like a dream and I had no worried when I spnipped open the real steeks.

11:27 AM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I'm not sure how big of a swatch your doing for gauge, but I found that if you do a larger swatch - about 6x6, your gauge doesn't tend to change on you when doing the real thing.

1:44 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Hmm, I wonder if it was meant for the ribbing?? WEIRD.

I didn't realize that there was a massive amount of grafting in Madli. Whoa. And now steeks - you definitely believe in challenging yourself!

2:18 PM  
Anonymous Dipsy D. said...

Awww, such gorgeous yarn, I so love these colors! The vest you've chosen to do next is totally awesome! I'm sorry I'm of no help with the needle size-issue, it's a strange thing indeed! I'd vote for a misprint, can't imagine any sense in giving a different size for the swatch...

3:39 AM  

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