Thursday, 19 February 2009

Baby in Red

Well, this is the completed back of my red baby jumper. Knitted from a Debbie Bliss book I found in a charity shop for £1. Since taking the photos I have completed the front but don't want to show you in case it's wrong and I only find out when I sew the jumper together! :)

It's such a cute colour - it's been really nice to knit, apart from needing another row counter and not being able to find one last sunday. Instead, I wrote what I was doing on a piece of paper and this ended up helping me more than a row counter would have as I knew how many rows to knit after shaping the neckline on the front piece.

If you look carefully at this photo of the front you can see I have gone wrong and had to unpick and gather up the stitches again. I still haven't worked out how to tell if I'm on a knit or purl row just by looking at the stitches. I always knit or purl the wrong row when I'm knitting after 9pm and I forget to make a mark on my piece of paper.

Still, as with the hat, it's my first one, and I'm sure I will improve...

Monday, 16 February 2009

How to read a knitting chart

The 'Simply Knitting' blog has a great piece explaining how to use knitting charts. Last November I had printed out a pattern and was frustrated that I couldn't work out how to convert the chart into knitting. I had never heard of knitting charts before and felt like a dummy for not being able to work it out. The only words of advice were at the bottom of the chart - 'Always read charts from right to left'. OK...why? Why not left to right? It didn't mention the fact that you also had to read them from the bottom up. So what, I'm supposed to mind read now?!!

It's like the people at Simply Knitting were just put on our planet to calm, soothe and reassure us that we're not dummies...the people who write bad patterns are.

If you go over there now you'll be able to see how easy it is to read a chart and never be put off knitting anything because of obscure symbols again!

Monday, 9 February 2009

Poison Purple Hat

Well, I did say that I was finding cabling a little difficult didn't I? This is procrastination project number one...a purple hat knitted from a free pattern from the member's section of the Rowan website. I was so nervous about knitting my first hat - it's the first time I have increased and decreased. It was fab but I dropped 4 stitches at the start and only realised a few rows from the end!

To make life easier as a beginner I increased by making a stitch instead of knitting into the front and back of each stitch. The yarn, Rowan cashsoft DK felt wonderfully soft as the hat grew and grew satisfyingly! The pattern was great as you were meant to slip a sequin on each fourth row but it's easily adaptable if you just want a plain hat! I'm going to have all kinds of fun knitting this pattern with a huge array of colour, bead, sequin and even ribbon combinations!

Happy knitting!

Monday, 2 February 2009

Summer denim bag update

This is my second attempt at cabling the strap for my summer denim bag...the first attempt was unpicked and looked even worse. It's a lot like learning to knit from scratch again - which was frustrating to me as I am still finding my way - to have to introduce a third needle when I'm not yet 100% confident with two was scary and hard work. I had calmed my tension down into neat rows prior to beginning to cable and now it's all higgeldy piggeldy again!

However, I am managing it..it's just not that enjoyable and I'm finding other projects are distracting me as they are easier. If you have any tips on how to make life easier with three needles please get in touch - I have started off with a straight cable needle which I've since learnt isn't the easiest method so have again jumped ahead of myself!

I have a strap though...I was beginning to worry that I may have to carry the bag in my hand :)
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