Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Yarn Bombing

Finally, we got everything together and had a yarn bombing.  What is a yarn bombing?  Well, it looks a lot like this:

When we first started tdhis little endeavour, we expected to display everything locally before delivery.  Unfortunately, fates and the weather did not cooperate with us. 

We selected a local woman's shelter for our charity of choice.  Because of the nature of its clientele, we are not divulging the location or name, but it is a great choice. 

Many thanks to the Anonymous Knitters from Never Enough Wool.  We couldn't have done it without your help.

Friday, November 23, 2012

It's a cowl-iday!

What's this?   Early last month, Carrie came home for the weekend.  We celebrated the Canadian Thanksgiving holiday, but not with traditional foods.  We had a lovely pork loin, with parsnips, and rutabaga, and squash.  Doug and I have been experimenting with different vegetables and we decided to include Carrie in the festivities.  She actually quite liked the rutabaga and squash.  We still need to find a nicer way to prepare parsnips.  If anyone has any ideas, I'm all ears. 

Since the weather was so nice, we decided to go for a walk in the woods, which is one of Carrie's favourite things to do when home for the weekend.  The weather may have been nice, but I still needed these:

 Double-knit mittens!  Of course, some of you may recognize the yarn from March of 2011; that particular project has been frogged.  I still love the design, still love the double knit vest idea.  The multi-colour yarn just wasn't working.  I had hoped it would give a nice fair-isle look, but it was too busy.  I have a selection of single skeins of super-wash wool, so ultimately the vest will be knit.  Just not right now. 

So if I've given up on the vest, what HAVE I been knitting?

We had a class on mobius cowls at the store for November.  Complete with the Lucy Neatby mobious cast-on.  Let me tell you, THAT cast on is a brain-twister.  My first mobius ended up being twisted twice, which just didn't work.  So I had to frog that.  Undeterred, I started again. 
 Success!  The cowl is actually long enough that it can wrap around my neck twice, which means that I'll have a lovely warm neck when the winter winds blow.  The yarn is our own -- Never Enough Wool sock yarn, dyed by Barb, Sue and myself.  I called the colour "Chocolate-covered Orange."   The design is from Knitscene Accessories, and is called "Roam Cowl."  I quite like both the design and the wool. 

Since I had managed to mess up my first mobious attempt, I HAD to try again.  This is a Lucy Neatby design that I found on Ravelry.  I used two skeins of Patons Shetland Chunky and a 6.0mm needle.  Of course, I looked at the instructions and thought that the cowl would be too small and added 10 extra stitches.  Once finished, I find that the smaller number of stitches would have been better.  The cowl isn't long enough to wrap twice, and too long to wrap once.
 Also, the peculiar construction of a mobious means that the right side is also the wrong side, and this specific design has a definite right and wrong side.  And again, due to the peculiarity of the mobious, both sides can and do show.  I won't be doing this one again, that's for certain.

And then, much to my horror and disgrace, I discovered that I had assisted one of our students to create a double twist in HER mobious.  In penance, I decided that I should knot yet another mobious just to be sure that I could visually assure the cast on and first row were done correctly.
 This cowl was also found on Ravelry.  It's very simple, actually.  A section of knit-side facing, an eyelet row, more knit-side facing.  Then some purl-side facing, an eyelet row, more purl side facing.  And a cast off.  The picture doesn't really show how wide this cowl is.  One could wear this as a shawl, or shoulder-warmer if desired, or even wrap around the neck one more time.  Plenty of room.

Interestingly, I cast on 160 stitches for my first mobious, and 170 for this green one.   If you tip your head, you can see that there is a huge difference in length between the two scarves.  Far more than 20 stitches.  Why is that, I wondered. 
And then I remembered.  The orange cowl has a regular cast off, done as loosely as I could.  I didn't have enough yarn to actually finish the seventh row of the pattern, so had to go back to row 6 and then cast off.  Didn't have enough to work the stretchy cast-off.  The green cowl had plenty of yarn.  So I was able to work the requisite stretch cast-off -- knit two stitches, then knit through the front of them, leaving one stitch on the right-hand needle; lather, rinse, repeat.   Big difference between the regular and the stretchy cast-off.  Lesson learned!