Thursday 31 January 2013

Twined mitten: glimpse of wrong side

Here's a daylight photo of the twined mitten I'm knitting: it does far better justice to the beautiful grey of the wool than the lightbulb photo a couple of days ago.

There is also a glimpse of the wrong side, where you can see the effect of twining the strands between each stitch. It looks almost like cords and makes the fabric thick and not very elastic.

A funny thing about twined knitting with two colours is that all rows here are one grey, one white. (Look at the stitches on the needles!) Where there seem to be, for example, three white stitches they are actually one white, one grey with the white strand in front covering the grey stitch, one white.

Questions/comments on my previous post
Ron asked about combining twined and ordinary knitting. It is true twined knitting doesn't curl the same way that ordinary knitting does, especially not if you start with a purl row or something similar. I have combined the two techniques once, in a pair of mittens with twined cuffs (see photo below). I didn't change needles or increase the number of stitches, and it worked well, but I'm not sure I'd try it in a sweater: the gauge and thickness gets very different, possibly too different in a project that big.

twined cuffs/tvåändsstickade muddar

Ron also asked about the needles. They are my brand-new Knit-Pro Karbonz. Love them! Light but strong and perfect for twined knitting - I broke a wooden needle (again) recently, but I think these will cope a lot better.

Thanks for your kind words Ann - and for telling me about the Strikkefestival in Denmark. Perhaps I will see you there in September?

En rolig sak när man tvåändsstickar med två färger är att alla varv här är "en grå, en vit", till och med dem med horisontella linjer. Där det till exempel ser ut att vara tre grå maskor i bredd är det egentligen "en grå, en vit med den grå tråden på framsidan så att den täcker den vita (s.k. djupmaska), en grå".  Undantaget är ökningarna på tumkilen, där det ibland är två av samma färg i bredd.

thumb gusset/tumkil

Tuesday 29 January 2013

Twined mitten in progress

Twined mitten in progress by Asplund
Twined mitten in progress, a photo by Asplund on Flickr.
Suddenly I had an urge to do some twined knitting with two colours - clearly, there is no such thing as too many works in progress. Or too much stash, for that matter. My favourite shawl yarn is on sale at my LYS. (I'm sure you can figure out the connection between those last two sentences...)

Twined knitting is so much fun, and I had almost forgotten how well it lends itself to geometric patterns. This is a pattern of my own, based on the number of stitches required for the width.

I added the year 2013 for fun and a row of blue instead of white to add some colour. Not very dramatic, I admit, but a lot better than my first choice of dark yellow turned out to be. The line of yellow dots made it look as if I had taken a dog for a walk! :-D

There's no photo of the "dog walk" version, unfortunately - didn't have my camera and was too eager to undo and redo.

Yarn: Kampes 2-ply wool; needles 2.25 and 2.5 mm (US 1 and 1½).

Om jag inte hade kommit på bättre tankar och hade jag fått kalla det här projektet "hundpromenadsvantar" eller något liknande. En rad med mörkgula prickar var en riktigt dålig idé, vilket jag väl borde ha kunnat räkna ut i förväg. En bild på den första versionen hade varit kul, förstås; jag funderade på att vänta med att repa upp och byta mot blått tills jag hade tillgång till min kamera, men var för otålig. Ni får använda er fantasi!

Det är verkligen roligt att tvåändssticka - och tacksamt för att sticka geometriska mönster. Mönstret är mitt eget, garnet är Kampes tvåtrådiga och stickorna 2,25 och 2,5.

Egentligen (ett av mina favoritord, vilket jag kan ha nämnt tidigare) skulle jag inte skaffa mer garn förrän jag har stickat av det jag redan har, men vad gör man när det är rea på ens favoritgarn till sjalar? Just det: man kommer hem och är med garn

Har nyligen blivit intervjuad om min stickning på Stickamera. Det var roliga frågor att fundera på!

Sunday 20 January 2013

And the winner of the calendar is...

Tålamodspåsen (aka EvaL8), an equally prolific and talented knitter, crocheter etc etc, I'd like to add. Congratulations!

I have started several new projects since my last post; above you can see one of them. The pattern shapes and colour ideas are from "Maskor och Medeltid" but I use a thinner yarn (BC Shetlandsuld) and more colours. Here's a photo of the original design. Nothing wrong with it, on the contrary I think it's gorgeous - I just like to experiment a bit. My main change is the picot edge.

Questions/comments on my previous post 
I've been answering questions in different, not particularly organized ways: in new posts/as another comment/in a private message/perhaps not at all having forgotten about it. Doing it this way all the time will hopefully work better!

Carolina asked about the slanting effect: I'm not sure, but possibly it's because the stitches get pulled in the same direction every row - knitting back and forth would have a levelling effect in that case.

Ron asked about the button band on the cardigan.  I did not knit it separately but as part of the front. Well, when I got to the shoulders I kept knitting the bands only until they were long enough to meet in at the centre of the back and then sewed that part in place.

Sara: vilken trevlig överraskning - salve! Vi får se i vilket sammanhang vi träffas nästa gång.

Mingu, Annika, Zulka, Ing-Marie, maria e, Sel and Poivre, Kerry and Lynda: thanks for your comments and kind words!

Sunday 6 January 2013

Two finished objects and a calendar lottery

1940s cardigan: buttons by Asplund
1940s cardigan: buttons, a photo by Asplund on Flickr.
Axel Rydströms is a charming shop in Stockholm I recommend if you're looking for buttons. Someone had told me it was the right place to go to find suitable buttons for the 1940s style cardigan, which proved to be correct. Not only are these buttons from the right period, but I also think they look very nice against the shade of green.

It took some time for me to decide what kind of construction I wanted for the neckband. What I did after a couple of false starts was to continue knitting the two ribbed edges after I had reached the shoulder until they were long enough to meet at the centre of the back. Then I cast them off together before sewing (ugh) them in place.

Cardigan: back of neck

 The Estonian-Austrialian poncho is also finished, but unfortunately I have misplaced my pins, and therefore haven't been able to block it properly. Once they've turned up I'm going to block it again to make the scalloped borders pointier, but this will do for the time being.

As I mentioned in a previous post, there are both advantages and disadvantages knitting lace patterns and nupps in the round. Because of two major disadvantages I don't think I will knit lace in the round again: always facing the right side I mixed up rows now and then in a way I don't when every second row is on the wrong side; the lace patterns slant in ways they don't when I knit back and forth (looser in one direction and tighter in the other).


I've noticed that my sweaters that are knitted in the round tend to slant as well, but not anywhere near as much with cables or fairisle patterns as it with lace. Still, I'm happy with how the poncho turned out - and I do prefer testing ideas to playing it safe.

That's one of main attractions of knitting to me: there are always new things to try. (Which surely goes for anything you're interested in, whether it's singing, cooking, gardening or whatever.) It used to stress me a bit, the fact that I will never knit all the things I want to test, but it has gradually become somthing to take comfort in it instead. Wouldn't it be far worse finding one day that there was nothing new to learn, no new idea to test?

I think I'll celebrate finishing two projects with a lottery! I won't give away yarn, but a copy of the calendar I mentioned in my previous post. You already have yarn, don't you? ;-) Selfish truth is that I want to keep everything in my stash! If you're interested in participating in the lottery, leave a comment that you do on this post before Sunday, 20 January. I should have had a lottery in December, of course, but at least it will be possible to use it for the remaining eleven months.

Två färdiga plagg bör firas med ett lotteri: lämna en kommentar att du är intresserad av att delta innan söndagen den 20 januari om du vill ha chans att vinna en ekivok 1700-talsdoftande kalender. Ni har väl redan garn, så det är ingen idé att lotta ut. (Vilket i ärlighetens namn egentligen betyder att jag vill behålla allt mitt garn själv.)

Knapparna till koftan hittade jag hos Axel Rydströms på Regeringsgatan i Stockholm. Jag tror inte att jag kunde ha gjort ett bättre fynd: de är från rätt tid, gjorda av horn och gör sig riktigt bra mot det gröna. Det tog ett par försök innan jag bestämde mig för hur jag skulle göra med koftkanten. Jag stickade kanterna separat efter att ha kommit till axlarna, tillräckligt långt för att de skulle mötas mitt bak, och sedan fogade jag ihop dem innan jag sydde fast kanten längs halslinningen.

Ponchon blev lite knasig men jag är nöjd ändå - det är också roligare att pröva infall och se hur det blir än att alltid ta det säkra före det osäkra. Jag kommer troligen inte att sticka spetsmönster runt igen. Det drar åt olika håll på ett sätt som det inte gör när jag stickar fram och tillbaka (har märkt en liknande tendens i tröjor jag gjort på rundsticka, men där är det försumbart) och så tyckte jag att det blev svårare att hålla reda på varven när jag har rätsidan mot mig hela tiden. För mig fungerar det bättre att alla hoptagningar och omslag är på rätsidan och så aviga maskor hela vägen tillbaka. 


Wednesday 2 January 2013

Happy New Year

Poncho: casting off by Asplund
Poncho: casting off, a photo by Asplund on Flickr.
The poncho I started in November is nearly finished: I'm casting off, quite excited about what it will look like washed and blocked! Once again, thanks Kerry for the lovely wool!

The cardigan inspired by a design from a 1940s magazine is finished. It took five skeins (500 gr) of Kampes 2-ply wool. (I've even sewn the buttons in place - the main reason I seldom make cardigans.) It's a difficult colour to capture, so I'm posting two "in progress" photos to show both the colour and the shape:

1940s cardigan: colour

1940s cardigan: shape

How about summing up some favourites of 2012, not in terms of knitting since that is what all my posts are about :)

1. Three new favourite movies: Take shelter, Tomboy and Amour. Superb acting and deeply moving stories. I recently saw Life of Pi, which wasn't my cup of tea, although I must say it was a feast for the eyes. Not that it's bad, it's simply a matter of personal taste. Even if it makes for an exciting movie, a young man fighting for survival trapped in a lifeboat simply doesn't move me the way an old woman trapped in her increasingly frail body (Amour) does - or a young girl trapped in other people's expectations of her (Tomboy) or a man trapped in his fears and delusions (Take Shelter).

2. Two new favourite writers: Jenny Diski (have read What I Don't Know about Animals and Stranger on a Train) and Richard Dawkins (The Ancestor's Tale, The Greatest Show on Earth etc.) Why hadn't I read their books before? On the other hand, it's nice to have this kind of catching up to do - and I had no idea I would find evolution this fascinating!

3. A new favourite skill - well, I wouldn't call it a skill, but learning some dances from the 1700s has been one of the true highlights of last year. On Friday I'm attending a Twelfth Night ball! I attended the one last year, and that was when I decided I must learn how to dance. (Have never been into dancing before, so I've really surprised myself.)

A new member of an 1700s society I was delighted to be asked if I wanted to pose for their 2013 calendar with photos echoing risqué pictures from the period.

It would have been rude not to!

Calendar boy