Saturday, February 24, 2007

Two more FOs and a new UFO

I think posting about my projects tends to give me a kick in the heinie. I finished the long, skinny scarf and also Odessa. Not my best work, but it is pretty. The beads keep wanting to disappear to the inside. Clearly, I never figured out the trick to that.

I also started a felted hat for my mom; she had bought the yarn for it 2 trips ago, and I located the pattern at my then-LYS. Of course, since its destiny is to be felted, it is on huge needles (10.5US) and is already going fast. The main yarn is black Cascade 220, and the contrast is Brown Sheep Handpaint Originals in Sara's Dress (color 20; curiously left off the list), a lovely conglomerate of black and jewel tones. This can be my mindless project for now, as I knit 31 rows even.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Update on projects: One FO

Here's the FO: finished my sister's tam! Photograph by my son, 6.5 yrs.

Then, she asked for a long, skinny scarf, that would go around her neck a few times. I tried Mistake Rib, K1P1 rib, stockinette with garter-stitch edges, and each time, it looked like I'd end up with a short scarf. Then someone on the glbt-knit list suggested a diagonal scarf on oversized needles. That was the ticket!

Here's an update on Odessa, too. I am loving this wool; so springy, and the color is so intense. Don't know if my recent ex will still want it, but I'll offer it to her when I'm done, and if not, maybe my sister will want it.

Finally, here's the latest on the Lang Yarns Viva sweater. I tried it on (at about 8"), and it did fit! Lucky, since it would have killed me to rip all that out. I've decided that the little V in front is going to look like crap on me (just accentuate my belly), so I'm going to sew it up when I'm done. The cabling looks nice, though, no?

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Destash! Something for everyone.

Lots of choices! Read all the way to the end--all sorts of yarns and tools etc.!


No-label pale lavendar laceweight, 51g, feels very soft. Acrylic or great quality wool? You decide. $2 postpaid with anything else on this list.

No-label Prussian blue wool laceweight, 2 balls totaling 108g. $3 postpaid. PENDING

1 skein Merino Oro (Ornaghi Filati) in a rich brown (color 944, lot 69723). So soft, I want to stroke it and stroke it. Approx. 1250m/1375yd, 100g skein. Size 2-2.5mm needles, 36sts/54 rows per 10cm/4". $11 postpaid. SOLD

2 skeins KnitPicks Alpaca Cloud (100% baby alpaca and unbelievably soft) in Autumn (Color C810, brownish red heather, lot 9360). Redder than their photo and browner than mine. 50g and 440 yds each. $5 postpaid. SOLD


No-label black eyelash yarn with nice 2" lashes. 42g but that includes the cardboard cone inside. Not quite supersoft, but would be a totally cool accent yarn, especially on a felted item! $2 postpaid with anything else on this list.'s Peruvian Collection Baby Silk, 3 balls (one Moroccan Olive, color 1018, lot 94; one Aubergine, color 1805, lot 18; one Raspberry, color 2010, lot 98). I swear, I want to hang onto this stuff just to stroke it daily. 80% baby alpaca, 20% silk, 25g each (100m/109 yds). US 3/3.25mm needles 28 sts/36 rows per 4"/10cm. $5 postpaid. SOLD

No-label supersoft pale lemon yellow, 117 g, possibly acrylic. Most in soft skein; some will need to be rewound. A little darker than shown. $1 postpaid with purchase of anything else listed. PENDING

1 ball Southwest Trading Company "Beyond" in a purple/grape color (a little lighter than shown, and it has a nice bit of sheen to it). 100% cotton. 50g/228 yds, 5 sts/8rows to 1" on US 6. $2 with purchase of anything else on this page. SOLD

2 balls Anny Blatt Fine Kid (LIE DE VIN - color name?) 51% pure wool, 49% kid mohair. 50g 255m/280 yds. In a gorgeous deep purple color. On US4/3.5mm, 23 sts/33 rows per 10cm/4". $10 for both postpaid.

493g of soft, easy-care acrylic in a terrific grape color. I bought this in France and started a cardigan for myself... 2 sizes ago. 2-3 balls have been frogged and wound into center-pull balls, and 1-2 more never knit but just wound. Yarn is Pingouin brand, "Shako," color RN55239, lot CA01395; each 50g ball is 135m/150 yds. On 3.5mm, 22 stitches and 33 rows per 10cm/4". Really nice and soft, and a whole sweater's worth--about 10 balls! Just $10, postpaid. SOLD

Worsted/heavy worsted:

8 balls Samband Lopi in a medium-to-light heathery grey (Color 003, lot 239). 100g each, 110m. 4 sts/4" or 10 cm on size 5.5-6. 100% Icelandic wool. Great for a cardigan or pullover. This stuff'll keep you warm! $23 postpaid. Update! I found 2 more balls. One will have a few yards frogged. Price is unchanged. SOLD

3 balls Samband Lopi in a color that is somewhere between purple and brown (Color 065, lot 670). $10 postpaid. SOLD

Cascade 220 Peruvian Highland wool. 1 skein medium purple (color 8885, lot 6594), 1 skein chocolate brown (color 8686, lot 4315). On US7, 5 sts/inch. $4.50 each postpaid. SOLD (both)

Bulky/fast knit:

1 ball beautiful, shiny ribbon yarn from Crystal Palace Yarns--"PARTY" in Fall Herbs (color 403). 87 yds/50gr. 3-4 sts/inch on US 10.5-15. $7 postpaid. SOLD

1 huge ball Southwest Trading Company "Pagoda" in an explosion of white, blue, green, and other colors (color Peacock, Item #309). 100% polyester and so incredibly soft. 100g/100m. 13 sts, 14 rows = 4"/10cm on US 10.5. $2 with anything else on this list. PENDING

2 balls dark chocolate Firenze (Plymouth Yarns) made in Italy. Color 419, lot 67. 30% wool, 30% acrylic, 40% nylon, so soft and warm, too. 3 sts/in on US 11. 50g, 50m/55yds. I bought these to make a "magic scarf." I made one out of a milk-chocolate pair and I love it, but found that I haveother yarn this same color already. So these are available. $8 for both, postpaid.

1 ball "Trellis" by Lion Brands. This is a ladder yarn and the colors are incredible--this colorway is Copper Penny (308,lot 58175). 50g 115yds/105m, 100% nylon. If you want, I can dig up the rest of the previous ball and add it in. $3 postpaid. PENDING


Lovely Brittany size 6/4.25mm straight needles with beautiful turned ends. Tips are not completely smooth. $3 postpaid. SOLD

2 Skacel Addi Turbo circular needles, US 1/2.5mm, 20"/50cm. One was used once; other has never left its packaging. $8 each or $15 for both, postpaid. 1 set is SOLD, one is PENDING

1 set Susan Bates Quicksilver circular needles, size 5/3.75mm 24"/61cm long. Never used (bought 2 by mistake!). $4 each, postpaid.

Two sets Plymouth bamboo circular needles, size US15, 32". Never used. Would you believe I bought 3 of these before I realized it? Oy. $5 each, postpaid. 1 set is SOLD, one is PENDING


Hand-Painted Self-Striping Yarn hat kit with the self-striping part in earthy shades of yellow, grey, and brown, and the accent yarn in 2 skeins (enough for two hats!) in a lovely variegated blue-jeans shade (lot 121505). Super-soft merino yarn (50 g, 176 yds ea). $25 for all, postpaid. Further explanation: The hideous bright orange stripes are just scrap yarn. The strip in between was machine-knit and then dye painted on. You unravel it and knit with the-now-self-striping yarn. When you intersperse it with the other yarns, it makes a beautifully patterned hat (well, two). Here are her kits with two swaths of machine-knitted yarn that you dye yourself and then unravel and knit together. Note that my kid makes 2 hats... and is already dyed! PENDING

Payment: Money order (email me at wearpurple at mac dot com for address) or PayPal to the same address. I'll mark your desired yarns "PENDING" until shipped. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

I have clearly lost my mind

Just got my order in of more Skacel Contrasto for a birthday gift for a friend. And because I can't simply order ONE yarn, like ever, I added in some yarn for a sweater for the little dude. This yarn. In black and orange. As I said, I have completely lost my mind.

Yes, I keep knitting absolutely garish things for my son. Because that is what he asks for and I'm a softie for the little guy. The latest thing he asked for was a head-to-foot T!gger costume, knit or otherwise made by moi. I figure a pullover with kangaroo pocket in this yarn is the closest I'm willing to come, and that's a lot farther than most.

In other news, I finished the tam for my sister, and it is mostly OK. The top is a little, eh, peaky, so I'm going to rip back just a few rows and do k2togs all the way around and see if that makes it flatter. It is really very nice, I think. I still think the cast-on edge is a bit tight. The wool is so soft and warm. And now I have one full ball and part of another left over. Enough for another ribbed hat for me? For someone else? I adore this yarn. Why doesn't everyone stock it?

Oh, and I finished the 3.5" part of the Viva top. Came across a challenge: the pattern has you knit the back & front separately. Now that I'm done with the two "separate" parts of the front, the yarn is at the middle. But in "real life," the yarn would be at the edge. So I think I have to cut it and rejoin it at the right side (not the left, right? Doesn't knitting go from right to left?). Weird, huh? I do still like it, even though the yarn does sometimes catch on the tip of the needles (which are plenty dull, being Clovers).

I've put aside Odessa for the time being. I kept making mistakes.

Monday, February 12, 2007

OK, so I didn't ADD any new projects...

I finished my sister's tam on the second day (thank God for fast projects!). Just before cutting the yarn to draw it through the last loops, I tried it on. It slipped easily past my forehead and ears and became, well, a hangman's hood, practically. Lovely.

I had wondered if the gauge was right. (The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns only uses gauges of 4 or 5 on up; my gauge was 4.5... ish.)

I ripped it all out (huzzah for ballwinders!) and started over on the 4-gauge pattern. So far so good, although my knitted cast-on edge is a bit tight for my preferences. I hate the thought of ripping it all back just to redo the cast-on. Think I'll soldier forward instead. The swirly top (one of 3 given top patterns) is just fantastic IMO.

I am loving the Mission Falls 1824 wool (color: Raven a.k.a. black). It is squishy, not too splitty, soft, and God bless them, superwash! Oh, and affordable.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

In which our hero hangs her head a bit

In celebration of having finished Branching Out, I enthusiastically cast on the Viva top. Well, I was enthusiastic at the beginning. OK, just before beginning. Because this blasted thing has swaths of stockinette intermixed with reverse stockinette, edge stitches, side stitches, you name it. I have used every stitch marker in the house and was even getting out washers from my junk drawer before I realized that some new stitch markers I just recently picked up were actually two bonded together (one large inside one small; they split apart with a little pressure). I feel like I'm knitting Birch after all!

The knitting itself wasn't too bad; the needles are long enough (I think they're 29") and the yarn very rarely catches on the point (it's not exactly splitty, but its weird tapeyness has an edge that sometimes catches), but it isn't quite fascinating yet. 3.5" to go before some excitement.

Given that, and that I wanted a smaller, quick project, and that the beads and springy Cool Wool 2000 (color merlot) were calling to me... I cast on for Odessa. Screwed the pooch right out of the gate by miscounting my knitted cast-on; when I started pattern rows, after 1" of k3p2 ribbing, the last pattern didn't have enough stitches. I'd counted 110 twice and 105 once. Turns out 105 was the actual number of cast-on stitches. Riiip. Redid the ribbing, and did 5 rows of pattern before I realized I'd neglected to change needle sizes. Riip. I've now done maybe 1.5" of pattern. The only current challenge (it's a very easy pattern) is keeping the beads on the outside. There must be a trick to this. Some stay; others hide. I poke them through and try to twist the bead slightly. It is lovely. Although, not being a process knitter, I wanted to be done Sunday. (shrug)

Friday, February 02, 2007

Branching Out pruned

To my utter surprise, I finished another UFO tonight. Got into a rhythm with Branching Out; that, and the unexpectedly smaller size of the ball (combined with a fairly loose gauge on my part?) meant I only managed to do 19 repeats, as opposed to the 27 or 36 with the two suggested yarns in the pattern.

I'm blocking the hell out of it, mostly lengthwise, so that it can be at least a decent neckwarmer.

I did a few rows on the Tahki blue cotton sweater. It's not nearly as bad as I'd remembered, but is fairly technical. I'm having to use a clipboard and paper to map out each row so that I don't miss out on the various decreases and to start the V-neck (which I hope to God isn't too low). I'm knitting it on one big circular needle, now with three balls of yarn (1 for back, 2 for the 2 sides of the v-neck). It sure would be good to finish this one.

But after this, I'm giving myself permission to start the "Viva" sweater!

Mistake-Rib scarf in Contrasto

I finished the Skacel Contrasto scarf last night, while waiting for delicous burgers. My son put it on immediately and I haven't been able to get it back from him so I can weave in the ends. (I told him I'd be cutting the remaining ends off and he's terrified it'll unravel. I shall reassure him. Those ends are mine.)

It turned out just great. The pattern is really charming and easy to remember. A friend admired it while I was doing it. She may get something nice for her birthday....

I bought this yarn because of its price and high silk content and, when I got it, was unenthused. Couldn't decide on a pattern for it--there aren't a lot of raw-silk knitted tube yarns out there. I found some patterns for full sweaters, but no ideas for just 3 balls.

It is not the softest, but it does have lovely depth of color and a pretty neat scrunchy feel. It doesn't get stabbed by the needles easily (its version of splittiness). The mistake-rib stitch suited it well; I did it over 23 stitches (multiple of 4 plus 3).

This is a UFO that was ripped out (a very stuff reversible cable scarf) and now done. That feels great!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Another UFO update

Child's First Socks are still plugging along. I do like this pattern.

A closeup of the yarn and pattern. The colors are fairly true.

I finished, measured, and washed the swatch for the Lang Yarns 'Viva' top. It is the same as prewash: 18 sts/4 in. The pattern calls for 19 (but interestingly, the ball label says 18). I did lots of math and found that this will actually give some needed ease. The pattern is for XS through M. No L? Maybe they don't get any bigger in Switzerland. All that hiking!

I'm hoping to finish another UFO before starting the sweater itself. And as Dharma suggested, I think I may do the front & back on the same needles. That will give a tiny bit of ease, too. There will be a question of how to do the pattern in the round. And once again, I make things more complex rather than less.

The swatch is soft and springy. I am very pleased.

Ugly Fair Isle

My first attempt at Fair Isle doesn't look to bad, technically--but the color choice? Uh, lamentable. :)

From a free pattern I found on the web.

In my defense, the colors in Knit Picks' Palette yarns are sometimes... inscrutable. I mean, do these oranges go together in the first place? I may do the second mitt with the pale apricot as the "natural" color and shades of grey/black for the other 3 colors. Or it may be a singleton (perhaps a warning to others?).

Final photo: Anniversary socks

I did finally finish these. The reinforcing thread in the toes is a different color than that in the heels. That's because I neglected to bring the navy thread along at Christmas, and ended up getting beige needlepoint wool from the yarn shop and un-plying it for thread. Worked pretty well, in the end, I think.

Here they are and she really loves them already.