Some Stones Unturned

Knitting, Biking and Some Sober Second Thoughts

Archive for the month “July, 2012”

FO Friday: Orion’s Belt Shawl

Orion's belt shawl

Maybe a shawl or maybe another scarf for winter. Anyway, I’m pleased with it.

shawl pre-blocking

So I finished the knitting…

shawl being blocked

…then tried to pin it out into a crescent shape as best I could, even though I didn’t have enough boards and tried to just keep part of it in place with reference books. And it was all sticking out where it was pinned and I thought “Don’t those blocking wires curve?”

shawl during blocking

Yes. Yes they do. So I unpinned it, inserted the blocking wires and repinned it all back out. Bit easier to get a crescent shape, although I still don’t think it’s quite even.

Pattern: Orion’s Belt by Paulina Popiolek

Yarn: Tanis Fiber Arts Blue Label Fingering in Cobalt and Shadow

Needles: 3.5 mm

Size: 11.5″ x 62″ (or maybe not that wide. I measured that stretched straight, but if you let it droop in a crescent it would be smaller) before blocking; 13″ x 59″ after. Probably didn’t really need to be blocked as it came out nice and even, near the right size. Also note that I skipped some stitches/rows (see Modifications below) so the full shawl would come out slightly larger for me on these needles.

I really liked this pattern. It’s reasonably quick in terms of number of rows (though the rows are long) and has some short rows, some slipping of stitches in the colourwork (I think I mentioned I found this surprising and a cool way to do this, but then I looked at the pattern description and it says right in there. Good memory, just short apparently). And since it’s a space-inspired pattern, I took some time to contemplate the big mysteries of the universe. Things like “Where the heck did I put those blocking pins?” The answer was, of course, “At the bottom of the bag with all the half-skeins and bits of yarn so that I would have to make a huge mess on the floor emptying it out to find them.” The answer would obviously never be “Right in the top of the craft bin with all the other pins and needles and small things you often need easy access to, where they would be easy to grab when you’ve got a damp shawl sitting in the middle of your living room.”

Modifications: As expected, I ran out of Cobalt yarn, so I stopped doing the edge increases on row 39 and on the last garter section, I only did eight rows (and even one of those I had to finish the last bit with a different blue yarn, though I don’t think you can really tell the difference). Then I switched to the Shadow and did those seven rows garter plus cast off.

See more FOs at Tami’s.

FO Friday: Skew Socks

Ugly Skew Socks

Completed Skew socks. Funky Christmas yarn was one thing, but apparently it’s possible to go too far.

Skew socks

For the person who found my blog by Googling “ugly socks Toronto,” I’m sorry you had to wait so long, but I hope these are satisfactory.

Pattern: Skew by Lana Holden

Yarn: Patons Kroy Socks Jacquards, Rouge

Size: 8 shoe size

I had to finish these and just get them off the needles so I could start a new sock pattern. I said when I started that I was addicted to this pattern, but I think I kind of cured myself of that. Or maybe I just got distracted by other projects (shawl is almost done). When I did sit down to knit them, I got huge chunks of them done. Somehow these ended up being knit on the subway, at an ultimate game and on the train to my parents. I am not a big knitter-in-public, so I’m not sure why this ended up being the project I subjected everyone to.

Modifications: The ankle size on past knits has come out a bit too big and this yarn is even thicker than usual, so I modified the gusset decrease to try to compensate. Round 1 is supposed to start with k1, k3tog and round 3 with k1, k2tog. And you repeat 4.25 more times. Instead I did k3tog on rounds 1 and 3, k2tog round 5, k3tog round 7 and 9, k2tog round 11, then went back to alternating k3tog and k2tog until I had the specified number of stitches (36), finishing with a k2tog row before starting the short rows. The ankles still feel a bit big, but I haven’t worn them around much since it’s sandal weather. With the right combination of yarn, the more frequent decreases would probably be a good fit for me.

For the ribbing, I don’t have a smaller size needles so I compensate by skipping every fourth LLinc or RLinc on the first set-up row, leaving me with 68 stitches, down to 66 after the second setup row. This seems to work pretty well.

See more FOs at Tami’s.

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