Contrast colour angst

Are you a good colourist? I find choosing a contrast colour difficult. I’m learning, I hope, but not without lots of confusion, doubt and in the end, much ripping back and starting over.

I chose this Scheepjes Our Tribe sock wool (Cypress Textiles colour) to knit a pair of socks. It’s a blue/green in a light shade and I though a stitch pattern would show well. After getting my socks started I decided that, although it says it’s superwash, it was not spun tight enough to stand up to my rigorous wearing and washing.cypress textiles wool

When I knit socks I have fun with the colours. I knit orange socks, yellow socks, purple socks, green socks and many muli-coloured socks. But this colour, although fine for socks, would not have been my usual colour choice for any other garment.

This then was a learning challenge. My new scarf starts with triangles which, this time, I’m working in different Eyelet patterns. The first two triangles are made with this wool. You can see the slow colour change happening.(It’s greener than this photo shows.)20200628_203305

Now I need to choose a contrast colour. How do I bring the green out? It’s rather pale so any strong colour didn’t look right. Any of the blue yarn I tried didn’t look right either. I tried a taupe colour since there is some in the shading of this yarn.20200627_114135

The overall result is very dark and on this gloomy day I just couldn’t take it. 20200627_110255 - Copy (2)

It didn’t last long. Rip, rip, rip. Back to my stash and more head scratching. When stumped, go the other extreme. I chose the creamiest winter white I had. It lightens the scarf and at this point it seems like the best I can do since my needles are itching to continue.20200627_133338

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Better? It’s not gloomy anyway. This may or may not turn out as I expected, probably not, but …  I won’t know unless I carry on.

Deb

Any Gauge and Gauge-Free patterns by Deb

Cabin Fever No-Sew patterns by Deb & Lyn

 

New to me Socks

Socks are made so many different ways now that it’s hard to keep up. I’ve decided to give some of my summer knitting over to non-traditional sock making.

To get started I looked through my stack of knitting books to find a book I bought but never got around to using: Cat Bordhi’s New Pathways for Sock Knitters, Book One. Whoa, I’m really late to this party. This was published in 2007!!

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I can attest to it being weird and wonderful. I have completed a pair of Coriolis socks (top left on the cover). Toe-Up with a heel flap. I have always found it difficult to get the length from toe to heel flap correct in this style of sock. The instructions were excellent and these are the correct length. YAY.

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I love the swirling line which breaks up the stripes of the Heritage Paints wool. I worked these from the Master Pattern for any gauge of yarn because my yarn didn’t fit any of the line-by-line patterns. I think there is an option for more swirl lines and I would like to try that next time. Because there will be a next time.

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Next I thought I would try out a cuff down sock. I chose the Bartholomew’s Tantalizing Socks and followed the pattern, as closely as I ever get to following exactly. I love the slip stitches and what they do to the variegated yarn. (Same Heritage Paints yarn because I love it and at one time bought a whole bag.)

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Don’t you love the stitch pattern? Here’s a close up. K1, with yarn in front Slip 1. A little bit of manipulating, bringing the wool back and forth but totally worth it.

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Of course it was a little more confusing when it got to the heel with the standard Heel Stitch: K1, with yarn in Back Slip 1. There was a bit of “ooops, rip back and start again with yarn in Back this time”. I expect to experience the same fun now that the heel is finished and I start working the original pattern on the foot. Yarn in front, yarn in front, yarn in front.

I have never tried working the reinforced Heel Stitch on the bottom of the heel. Have you? Some of my knitting guild friends highly recommend it. I guess I will see if I like it when these are worn. Something to look forward to when it’s not 28 degrees (celsius) outside.

Hope knitting is keeping you happy and sane,

Cheers, Deb

Any Gauge and Gauge-Free patterns by Deb

Cabin Fever No-Sew patterns by Deb & Lyn

Someone New

We have a brand new, bright light in our life. Max is 8 days old today and after isolating for the last 3 weeks we are so happy to be part of his household. I’m in Nana heaven.20200617_103813 - Copy

I don’t think he knows yet but this little guy has a big job ahead of him. He’s going to keep his parents and his grandparents going over the months to come.20200616_155853 - Copy

If you’ve guessed by seeing the headscarf, you’re right, my daughter Morgan has breast cancer. She found out in early April (yeah, just 2 weeks after the lockdown started) in her 7th month. She started chemo treatments while pregnant, had this little guy and then started treatments again yesterday and will continue into the fall and beyond.

This has been our pandemic, too far away to visit but hey, we’re here now and loving every minute of it.

Have I been knitting like a crazy person? I finished the first prototype of this new scarf and a matching shawl, 3 baby sweaters and a baby wrap with letters, a pair of socks and a sweater for my daughter which she can’t wear until the fall but I just really needed to knit her something. I started a summer sweater, ripped it out and started again. I cut large chunks off 2 more sweaters (a destructive phase, short but felt good) and … I’m sure I’ve missed something because there was more.20200616_122301 - Copy

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Knitting has helped me through these last months and I hope your knitting is helping you too. Cheers and hope you are all doing well and enjoying the sunshine,

Deb

Any Gauge and Gauge-free patterns by Deb

Cabin Fever No-Sew patterns by Deb and Lyn

A Letter Wrap

My mantra at the moment is Modifications R Us. Although I have been reading and paying attention to world events, I have also been busy knitting. I don’t know what I would do without yarn and needles in my hands.

My project is a wrap, a modification of this All You Need scarf pattern by Heidi Kirrmaier which, by the way, I would highly recommend.

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I began with a provisional cast on for the letter L because I never intended to knit a scarf. The letters are the really fun part after all. The letters are modular, join-as-you-go. Ms. Kirrmaier suggests that when working the O, in garter stitch in-the-round, to join up the L and V that you might want to go down a needle size. Excellent advice for loose purlers but I’m an excellent purler so of course paid no attention. OK you guessed it, I had to rip back because, hello, she was totally right.Love wrap

My idea was to make a wrap with a decorative edging. I usually don’t do much in the way of fancy stitches, a deep rut that I need to crawl out of, but this was a project that needed a little something. The stitch pattern I chose is from a pair of socks I designed called Pine Cone Sock. It seemed best to start with a pattern I am a little familiar with. 

I changed it from a 9 row pattern to a 10 row pattern and I think it looks pretty good as a border. The pattern is based on Twist Right and Twist Left stitches which are favourites of mine.Love wrap (3)

The wrap is 17″/43cm deep and 48″/127cm long. I might block it one more time for a tiny bit more length. Now back to sock knitting while I think about what’s next on my modifications list.

Cheers, hope you are well and happily knitting,

Deb

Any Gauge and Gauge-Free patterns by Deb

Cabin Fever No-Sew patterns by Deb & Lyn

Re-working Knits Works

All that knitting and there it sits, a sweater I never wear. After looking at it and putting it on it seemed obvious that with some changes it just might become a sweater I would enjoy wearing. Why not try it? I’m not wearing it anyway so …

This is the one of my Gauge-Free Raglan Pullover samples. I wanted to show it in a heavy wool with a big cable down the centre front and back. It also has a smaller cable down the centre sleeves. So all in all it’s a good design which I never wore.

I made a plan: shorten this pullover and add some more height to the neckband.

gauge-free raglan (3) Mods

Getting started required a bit of cursing. This is mandatory before going into the kitchen to get the scissors. I sewed the tail end in at the bottom of this sweater too well!! Ha, that will teach me. One little snip and a big rip back, around 4 1/2″, with my fingers crossed. It worked. It feels much lighter. I hope it looks cute and jaunty now instead of a big heavy pullover.

gauge-free raglan (4)

Next the neckband. Because it was picked up around the neck opening and worked up, I think this will be a fairly easy fix. I undid the cast off, put the stitches on a smaller needle and worked 3 sets of short rows to raise the back of neck. Because I was only doing a few short rows with big chunky wool, I worked the short row Turns on the Front itself starting just past the Front raglan line. Usually I might start the short row turns at the centre sleeve and work them towards the Front and down into it a little way. But, hey, I’m taking risks anyway so why not up the ante. (That big cable you can see on the right is the centre front.) Thick wool really makes the short rows do their work quickly.

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Ta, da, here it is. I’m so happy with it now. I had it on yesterday and it feels light and fun.

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Now I’m rummaging around my pile of knits to see what other magic I can work. How about you?

Cheers, Deb

Gauge-Free and Any Gauge Patterns by Deb

Cabin Fever No-Sew patterns by Deb & Lyn