Monday, October 28, 2013

October Update

It's feeling like fall here in Southern Ontario. It's sweater weather again, and there has been frost on the ground a few mornings lately, which meant it was time to go through all our warm outdoor clothing. Hats have been found, mittens have been matched up, and boots have been labeled with everyone's names.

My daughter has grown out of her favourite knitted hat (a Ron Hearts Hermione lace-and-cable hat in pale pink lambswool), but the matching mitts still fit, so I'm working on making her a replacement hat one size larger from the same yarn.

I've also been working on a few submissions for magazines. One proposed project had me pulling out my smallest needles - 1.5 mm (that's three zeroes in US sizing). I've been wanting to try them out since I bought the needles months ago, but didn't quite know what to do with them. Inspiration struck, and I pulled out my embroidery thread to knit up a teeny-tiny project. It was incredibly slow going at first, but I enjoyed the challenge and, with the help of some good, strong lighting, got into the groove after the first few rows.

As well, I have two cabled sweaters, one women's and one girl's, that I plan to self-publish shortly.  They are both achingly close to ready for test-knitting. Both sweaters are knit, photographed, and written up in one size. All that is left to do is the grading!

I was delighted to notice that one of my sweaters recently made an appearance in the Interweave Knits blog. Last week, Lisa Schroyer wrote about adjusting sleeve caps when customizing the fit of a sweater, and used her most recent project - my Fabrication pullover from the Fall 2013 issue of Knitscene - as her example!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

My Mountain - Three Free Hat Patterns

Spiral Path Beret
Finished Size: 18.5 (21.5)" band circumference

Yarn: Schachenmayr Original Boston (70% acrylic, 30% wool; 60 yd [55 m]/50 g), #00047 "Lavendel", 2 balls
Needles: US Size 11 / 8.0 mm dpns and US Size 10 / 6.0 mm dpns or circular needle
Gauge 12 stitches and 14 rows = 4" in stockinette stitch 
Cast on 8 stitches.
Round 1: k.
Round 2: [k1, yo] 8 times - 16 sts.
Round 3 and all odd-numbered rounds: k.
Round 4: [k2, yo] 8 times - 24 sts.
Round 6: [k3, yo] 8 times - 32 sts.
Round 8: [k4, yo] 8 times - 40 sts.
Round 10: [k5, yo] 8 times - 48 sts.
Round 12: [k6, yo] 8 times - 56 sts.
Round 14: [k7, yo] 8 times - 64 sts.
Round 16: [k8, yo] 8 times - 72 sts.
Round 18: [k9, yo] 8 times - 80 sts.
21.5" size only: Round 20: [k10, yo] 8 times - 88 sts.

Knit 3 rounds even.

Dec round 1: [k 8 (9), k2tog] 8 times - 80 (72) sts.
Dec round 2: k.
Dec round 3: [k 7 (8), k2tog] 8 times - 72 (64) sts.
Dec round 4 and all even-numbered rounds: k.
Dec round 5: [k 6 (7), k2tog] 8 times - 64 (56) sts.
21.5" size only: Dec round 7: [k 7 (8), k2tog] 8 times - 64) sts.
Work 1 round even. Using smaller needles, work in k1, p1 ribbing for 6 rows. Bind off. Weave in all ends.

Embarrassingly Easy Hat 

Size: Child (Woman, Man), shown in Child's size.
Finished Size: 18 (20, 22)" head circumference

Yarn: Schachenmayr Original Lumio (91% acrylic, 9% polyester; 82 yd [75 m]/150 g), #00022 "Lime", 1 ball
Needles: US 15 / 10 mm
Darning Needle

Gauge 8 stitches and 12 rows = 4" in garter stitch
Note: the same gauge may be reached by knitting with three strands of worsted-weight yarn held together

Cast on 18 (20, 22). Knit every row until piece measures 14 (15, 16)" from cast-on edge. Bind off.

Tassel (make 2): cut 3 24" strands of yarn. Fold in half. Separate into three two-strand sections and braid yarn. Tie end tightly.

Fold in half so that cast-on edge and bind-off edge are touching and sew side seams. Sew tassels to upper corners. Weave in all ends.

Shine On Beanie

Sizes: 20 (22)" hat circumference; shown in size 20”

-Main Colour: Bravo Big (100% acrylic; 127 yd [120 m]/200 g): #00150 Indigo, 1 skein
-Contrast Colour: Schachenmayr Original Lumio (91% acrylic, 9% polyester; 82 yd [75 m]/150 g), #00022 "Lime", 1 ball

Needles: US Size 15 / 10.0 mm needles and US Size 11 / 8.0 mm needles
Darning needle

Gauge 8 sts and 12 rows = 4" in garter stitch on larger needles

Note: This hat is worked flat from the bottom up.


With smaller needles, cast on 40 (46) stitches. Row 1 (right side): *k1, p1, repeat from * to end of row. Row 2 (wrong side) *k1, p1, repeat from * to end of row. Repeat previous two rows once more.
Next row (right side): 20" size only: using larger needles, knit across. 22" size only: using larger needles, k1, k2tog, knit across.  There are now 40 (45) sts. Work 3 more rows in stockinette stitch.
Begin chart (right side): k 15 (18), work row 1 of chart across next 9 sts, k to end of row. Work through all rows of chart. Work even until piece measures 7 (7.5)" from cast-on edge, ending with a wrong side row.

Shape crown:
Row 1: (k3, k2tog) across - 32 (36) sts.
Row 2: (p2tog, p2) across - 24 (27) sts.
Row 3: (k1, k2tog) across - 16 (18) sts.
Row 4: p2tog across - 8 (9) sts.

Break yarn and pull through all remaining stitches.

Cut 1.5 yd of contrast colour. Find the gray reflective thread and gently unwind it from the main strand of yarn. If the reflective thread curls when separated, pass it through boiling water or steam to relax the thread. Using the photos as a guide, thread darning needle with reflective thread and embroider lines radiating out from the star. Sew seam up back of hat. Weave in all ends.