Thursday, May 29, 2014

Block Frenzy

I have been knitting blocks each evening to have a break from knitting larger projects.

This is block 55 Polpero nice and easy to do but it curls a bit not that this matters as it will be sewn to other blocks eventually.

Christmas Stripes Block 57 would lend itself nicely to all sorts of colour combinations. I love the Double Decrease now that I have mastered it and like the way it creates a line down the middle.

This is Block 84 Beaded Leaf. As my beads are rather large I altered the amount of beads so they sit neatly on the leaf.

This is Block 40 Deepdale it looks quite effective in the pale Lilac yarn I chose.

Block 197 Harris. I started this on 4mm needles and soon found it was smaller than the other squares so started again using 5mm needles and adjusted the amount the of rows to suit. In the picture it looks rather oblong but it is the same size as the other squares. I went with red and pink and the pattern shows up well with this combination.

This is block 189 Oblique Stripe. I enjoy knitting this type of square as it sits flat and is real TV knitting just a simple increase and decrease.

So 6 more blocks to put away until I am ready to start sewing or crocheting them together, not sure yet which method I will use but will sort that out later. I will need a lot more blocks before I start sorting them out to make a blanket. My Brother may get this one for Christmas so not sure about how big to make it yet, it may end up as a large afghan or to go across the bottom of the bed. I will add a border as well to finish it off there are some lovely patterns in the book for borders so I may use one of them.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Squares again

Now that I have completed my shawl I want to get back to knitting some more squares, they are small and quick to complete. So here are two I made using the book 200 Knitted Blocks for blankets, throws and afghans by Jan Eaton.

51 Arrowheads

Lovely pattern and texture I chose purple as it is nice and bright and shows up the pattern nicely.

Now this is 50 Crystal Sparkles the only problem is I do not have any sparkling beads that are large enough to thread onto the yarn. So I used what I had these are red wooden beads so I have named this square Berries.
I want to make more squares from the book with beads but will use the ones that I already have and add these squares to the middle of the blanket. That way I can use the wooden beads in red and black as these thread onto the  yarn easily and will create added interest to the finished item. It will create a themed pattern using red and black beads with bright yarn so they stand out.

This was the first time I had added beads to my knitting and was surprised how easy it is so I have learned something new by making these lovely squares.

The blanket will be sampler blanket that way I won't get fed up knitting the same squares.  I will have to repeat some of them but can make them in different colours that way they will look a little different. One of my favourites are the ones with leaves in the corner so I may make more of them, time will tell as I work the blanket.It will take some time to complete it but will be worth the effort and make a bright blanket for the bed.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Firseside Shawl

I cannot believe that I have finished my shawl already it was so easy to knit up and grew really fast.
The pattern uses garter stitch throughout and as long as you can yarn over and knit through the back loops a great pattern for  beginners.
Fireside Shawl

As this is a Vintage pattern I was worried about the yarn I would need to use but after asking the knitting experts in a yarn shop I went with the yarn to suit the needle size.
Needle size worked out to be 6mm
Yarn suitable for size of needle was Aran

I wanted the shawl to be a little wider than in the pattern so used 7.5mm needles so I could still use the recommended amount of stitches.
This is the result

Shawl shown lengthwise
The bands are 20 rows garter stitch and 12 rows lace pattern
As I will be using the shawl in the garden a lot I took a picture of it in the garden hanging it over the Rosemary to show the pattern as it will be worn.

I like tassels on my shawls and went with 9 on each end.

I bought myself a shawl pin that I thought would look nice with this shawl.

This is the brand of yarn I used and is really nice to work with.
The colour is a sort of Oatmeal nice and light and will go with anything.
The yarn is a blend of 75% Acrylic and 25% New wool and is soft and works up well.

The length in the pattern states 72 inches, my shawl is 66inches and is long enough for me. I used up all the yarn and had just enough for the tassels. I could not go out and buy more yarn as this was given to me and was put away until I could find a pattern I thought would look nice using it.

Now I will try the next Vintage pattern I want to make
This one will be a deep red in DK yarn again I have 400g to work with so will see how it knits up and how long I can get it with this amount of yarn. As it is a more complex but still fairly easy pattern if that is not a contradiction, I will be knitting some square's as well to give myself a break every so often.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Fish Blanket

Well I have managed to get the blanket finished and I am quite pleased with it.
Here is the link for the pattern. A Recipe for Fish

The fish are nice and easy to make and I have mastered SSK as well Know I now most of you will know how to do Slip Slip Knit (ssk). I have seen it in lots of patterns but was put off as I was not sure how to do it. As the Fish are small I found it less daunting to try something new, so I hunted around on YouTube and found a method I found easiest for me. The link below is the way I do SSK.
How To SSK

Now the only problem was I forgot to slip the stitches knit wise and slipped them purl wise as I am used to slipping stitched as if to purl. I realised my mistake after doing several fish but as it looks okay I carried, I don't suppose it matters with such a small item but I must remember that ssk means slip stitches as it to knit.

Joining the fish was a puzzle at first so I experimented and decided to use 4ply yarn as it is less bulky. Then I experimented with various methods of crocheting them together until I was happy with the result.
I did the basic crochet slip stitch.
How to crochet slip stitch
The only difference with mine is I chained one after doing the slip stitch and joined the fish so the join is on the right side holding the fish wrong sides together.
Each strip is created joining the fish top to tail so they fit together. When that is done you join the long strips together. You do need to plan each strip as you need to join the row below head to head and tail to tail. I added the colours at random creating a patchwork effect.

The end result is a colourful blanket that was both easy and fun to make. I also learnt two new things, how to ssk and how to join items using crochet.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Yarn for Vintage Patterns sorted

I have sorted out the yarns I need for the Vintage Shawls I want to make I went to John Lewis store as their staff in Haberdashery are great with Knitting and Sewing advice. I saw the lady who really knows her stuff on knitting and showed her the patterns.
Her advice was to go with the needle size and the stitch count. Not being great at sorting this out she put me right.

Lacy Shawl  
The nearest we have in the UK for this yarn is DK this one will be Red not a scarlet but a deep red this one
Cardinal red yarn

Elegance Shawl
This also came up with DK yarn and this one will be black

Fireside Shawl
This one could be bulky or aran weight I went with aran weight and altering the needle size to get the width needed. So Aran yarn on 7.5mm needles would give me the width I want. This one is going to be this colour
Aran yarn

I am getting the yarns from the market as his stuff is good quality and at a price I can afford.
So I am all sorted out and when I have done the Fish Blanket will be getting on with shawls. I love that patterns as they are not too fiddly and look pretty also they look more complicated than they are. So three shawls will eventually be made.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Shawls and Fish Blanket

I cannot believe it has been a month since I posted anything here but then I have been really busy.

Two shawls cranked out and ready to be given  as gifts  and trust me my needles have been flying.

This is  the Old Shale pattern I called it My Shell stole. Now the thing is I was given the pattern by an elderly lady years ago and it was written down so I hunted the Internet and found the pattern  if you wanted to you could try it for yourself. It seems to be called Feather and Fan today but this is the pattern I have that was written down.
Feather and Fan pattern

I had some aran weight yarn that just begged to be knitted up into this stole the colours do not show up well but it has a lovely lilac, pink and fawn colouring.

My other shawl was rather different and to be honest I am not entirely sure I like it.
Less is More Shawl

The think is it has one long side and two shorter ones anyway I knitted it up as I was asked to make it and it came out okay.
Back of shawl

Front of the shawl I was asked to add red and black beads around the edging and chose to go with a crotchet edge and crotcheted  in the beads. I have never done this before so was really pleased with the end result. A long Picot edging chaining 6 bringing the bead to the top of the hook and going into the fist fist chain and working the picot as usual. It is in three shades of yellow and white.

Now for the Fish Blanket.
A Recipe for Fish

This is fun to make and I have made one strip so far and it will be heading off to someone who loves fish so I am making it bright and colourful.

 12 Fish in total in a row topped and tailed

They are so easy and quick to knit I pick a colour at random and knit it up into a fish.

I have joined then together using a crotchet slip stitch with a chain one between each slip stitch. I used 4ply yarn so it is less chunky looking in white to keep it looking bright and cheerful.
I have never joined anything using crotch before so  I have learned something new.

At the moment the squares are on hold as I have a lot of stuff to make.

After this I have 3 shawls to make but thankfully they are not needed until later in the year but if I can get them made I can put them away until they are needed.
Problem is I have to find the yarn weights as they are Vintage patterns.
Lacy Shawl
This I think is DK but I could be wrong

Elegance Shawl  
I think this is a 4ply knitted on larger needles but not sure

Fireside shawl
This one could be aran weight yarn.

So I am asking around to see if anyone has an idea as the yarn weights needed they will be Prayer shawls and I love the patterns but want to get the yarn weights as close as possible.