Friday, August 31, 2012

FO Friday -- Before Summer Ends...

Pattern: Annis by Susanna IC,
Knitty, Spring + Summer 2010
Yarn: Louet Euroflax Paris, steel grey
approx 1/2 cone, 290 yd.

Have a good holiday weekend if you live in the US!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Midweek Meditation

“Success is getting what you want; happiness is wanting what you get.”

“I can do everything with ease on the stage, whereas in real life I feel too big and clumsy. So I didn't choose acting. It chose me.”
                                       ~  Ingrid Bergman, born August 29, 1915

“Time is shortening. But every day that I challenge this cancer and survive is a victory for me.”

I was saddened to learn that Ingrid Bergman also died on August 29, in 1982, on her 67th birthday, following a long battle with breast cancer.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Anchors Away!

I can now share a finished photo of my intarsia project.  I named this project "Anchors Away" on Ravelry.

 Pattern:  Anchor Floor Cushion by Debbie Bliss Design Team
Yarn:  Universal Yarns Cotton Supreme, 100% cotton, 100g, 180 yd
          3 skeins white, 1/4 skein navy 

It was not the best lighting for a photo on Sunday, but I gifted the floor cushion over the weekend, and I had to get a picture before it was gone away to its new home.  (It literally is "Anchors Away"!)

I was quite satisfied with the intarsia.  I can accept that intarsia in knitting can rarely be executed perfectly.  This is as close to perfect as I could get, and that will have to be OK.  I made up for my imperfect knitting with a nearly perfect sewing job.  There is a zipper horizontally centered in the blue and white stripped ticking on back.  The knitting was hand-stitched to the fabric on all four sides with a single thread and a stitch in each knitted stitch.  The 27" square pillow form slipped through the zipper easily and I think that it wears the knitting very well!  All done!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Midweek Meditation

The Spirit of Enterprise, 1960 bronze sculpture by Jacques Lipchitz
Fairmount Park, Philadelphia

“Cubism is like standing at a certain point on a mountain and looking around. If you go higher, things will look different; if you go lower, again they will look different. It is a point of view.”

“I am the most curious of all to see what will be the next thing that I will do.”
                   ~  Jacques Lipchitz, Cubist Sculptor, born August 22, 1891

Photo credit:

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Midweek Meditation

“Find something you're passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.”

“I was 32 when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate.”

                                                         ~ Julia Child, born August 15, 1912

Monday, August 13, 2012

Knots not Nupps

It’s a linen thing.

Gosh Yarn It!
had a sale last month which included discontinued Louet Euroflax Paris at 60% off.  It is a lace weight 100% linen yarn at 580 yards per cone.  I bought two cones in natural and one in steel grey (which I would definitely call steel blue).

After some searching on Ravelry and some swatching, I decided to make “Annis” by Susanna IC from Knitty Spring+Summer 2010 with the “steel blue”.  There was one made on Ravelry from the same yarn that I very much liked.

When I reached the return row after the first nupp row – I got totally stuck.  Typical of other nupps that I have made, the pattern said to work seven stitches in one stitch on the right side; and then on the returning wrong side row, purl the seven stitches together.  While I know that this is indeed possible when working with wool yarn, as I have made this kind of nupp before...

Nupps Detail, my "Swallowtail Shawl", pattern by Evelyn A Clark

It really was impossible to purl seven stitches together with the linen.  In fact, I could not even get my right needle into all seven stitches on my left needle.  While wool yarn will give a little, the linen had no give at all.

I tried a couple of things:

I tried using a small crochet hook to pull a loop through the seven stitches, simulating a purl seven together.  It was awkward to work and it looked kind of messy.

I tried knitting the seven stitches with a larger size double-pointed-needle and passing them back on my regular knitting needle.  I could purl these larger stitches together, but it looked kind of loose.  I was afraid that they would start shifting.

I thought of other solutions:

I could replace the nupps with beads using the crochet hook method.  But I did not actually want beads on this shawl.  I wanted just the pure natural linen.

I could send a message to the Raveler on Ravelry who made this shawl from this yarn and ask for advice.  But I did not want to wait for a reply.  (It also crossed my mind that she might say, “What is wrong with you?  I had no problem.”)

Then I remembered "THE BOOK".  I did buy the book, THE PRINCIPLES OF KNITTING by June Hemmonds Hiatt (New York, Touchstone, 2012) which I described in a recent post.

I found the best workable solution possible in “Chapter 12: Increase and Decrease Stitch Patterns”.  It is on page 228 and is called a “Slip Stitch Knot.”

Here, in my own words, is how to make a Slip Stitch Knot:
When you reach the nupp location (RS row), in the same stitch [k1, yo] 2 times, k1.  Five stitches made in one stitch.
Turn the work and purl all 5 stitches on WS.
Turn work to RS.  Slip 3 stitches knitwise (as if you were working k3tog) from left needle to right needle.
Bring yarn in front and then wrap it over the left needle.  Using the right needle tip, bring the two stitches to the left of the wrap over the wrap and over the needle tip releasing them.
Move the wrap from the left needle to the right needle.  Using the tip of the left needle, bring the three stitches to the right of the wrap over the wrap and over the needle tip releasing them.
One stitch remains.

The book helped me.

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Book

Last fall I pre-ordered a copy of the very much anticipated: THE PRINCIPLES OF KNITTING by June Hemmonds Hiatt (New York: Touchstone, 2012).

I had first heard of this book a few years ago, reading (online) that it was out of print and that existing copies of it were selling for $300 on eBay.  I made a mental note, those few years ago, to search for it at any used book sales that I attended.  I memorized "principles of knitting" but of course I never found one.

At some point in the year 2011, I read that a new and revised version  of "principles" was being released later in the year.  In September 2011, I saw (I think it was on a blog) a link to Amazon where the book could actually be pre-ordered.  I went there and read this...

The definitive book of knitting techniques  A word-of-mouth phenomenon since its original publication, with a passionate and loyal following, The Principles of Knitting has served as a treasured resource for an entire generation of knitters. Now completely revised and updated, this long-awaited new edition contains indispensable information for every knitter, from the beginner to the most experienced, on all aspects of the craft."

...of course, I ordered one.

When the book came in February, it was mostly as I expected.  (It weighs in at 4.6 pounds and has 712 pages.)  I always felt that this would be a reference book.  (It is encyclopedic.  I think it could be called a "tome".)  I read the introductions which convinced me that June Hemmonds Hiatt did a very thorough job.  But then I got on with my knitting and put it away.

I put it away, because, as an experienced knitter, I did not need any help on that day.  In my next post, I will refer to "THE BOOK" and tell you how it aided me on a recent day when I did need some help.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Midweek Meditation

“One important admonition—carry yarn very loosely across the back of your work, otherwise your knitting will pucker, and be wasted and unloved.”

       ~ Elizabeth Zimmerman, known and loved by all knitters, born August 9, 1910

Friday, August 3, 2012


Snowball Bush (Viburnum)

I did not work on finishing my intarsia project for an entire week after I posted about it.  But I am now slowly at it.  Can you see in this photo that the bottom half is done but not the top?  Look at the areas of white enclosed by navy.  The top two still look loose.  The bottom ones are OK.  (If you click on the photo to enlarge it, I think you will see what I mean.)

Secret Secret Floor Cushion

Trumpet Vine

I am loving knitting with linen this summer.

"Helene" by Veronik Avery in Quince & Co Sparrow, natural
"Annis" by Susanna IC in Louet Euroflax Paris, steel grey

Oakleaf Hydrangea

I named my Summer Olympics 2012 Ravellenic project "Cowl to Keep".  I should have no problem finishing it before the closing ceremony which I just learned has the name "A Symphony of British Music".
"Jonna Cowl" in Louet Gems Sport Weight, eggplant

Summertime is a good time for knitting and a good time for flowers.  Enjoy.


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Midweek Meditation

"It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation." 
 ~ Herman Melville, American novelist, short story writer, essayist and poet, born August 1, 1819.