Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The On-Hold Sock by Wendy Knits

I don´t normally post things half way through, but I´m pretty happy with my first sock after many years of not knitting. It is the On-Hold Sock from the Wendy Knits book ¨Socks from the Toe Up¨. This is a wonderful book. Its next on my queue to buy, although I´ve just bought the Alabama Stitch Book and Alabama Studio Style books (they are coming on their way over from England now!!!), so it´ll be a wait until Christmas for this book, I think. This was a real achievement knitting this - I knitted it about one and a half times, because I misjudged the length of the foot and had to unravel the entire heel and do it again. But it was worth it, of course. My sore wrists are a bit borderline sometimes, but seem to be holding up OK. Also, so many interruptions from small kids, cats, chickens, etc. I´m amazed I was able to keep any pattern at all in my head. I´m very happy with it. Now starting on sock 2.

Fear of Commitment Cowl

I don´t know why this pattern is called the Fear of Commitment Cowl, but it was very fun and easy to knit. I did it in a different weight of yarn to that in the pattern. When I started, I made it as wide as the pattern stated but the ribbing bunched up a bit as I knitted further, so I should have added another rib line or two. I can wear this as a scarf/cowl, but its not wide enough to wear as a shawl. If I did it again, I´d like to make one like the lapis lazuli version by carowiens on ravelry, which I think looks absolutely wonderful.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Short sleeved funked out peasant blouse

I had some very nice material left over from my horrible Burda wrap blouse attempt, so I made a short sleeved funked out peasant blouse from it (Lila Tueller pattern).
I left out the empire band as the fabric seemed better as simple and unembellished as possible, I thought. Imho, for those less blessed up top, like me, the bodice looks better with just the center neckline lowered by about an inch and a half (just adjusting the curve gradually back up to the unchanged shoulder line), and with the bodice made slightly wider (by an inch or two) to increase the gathering slightly. You can see the difference the change in neckline makes in the white version I did. Also, I turned over the sleeve hem and put elastic in the sleeves, rather than doing a fixed bias band. As I left out the empire band, I didn´t put any elastic around the join between the upper and lower front pieces, but I find that because I increased the gathering, and made the lower bodice quite fitted (ie, not loose like a tunic etc), it doesn´t slide up at all. In the white and pink versions I made, I found that putting elastic in the front sort of detracted from the clean lines of the top, because it gathers the lower bodice a bit, so I tend not to put elastic in the front anyway, and just put in the back empire band (if I include an empire band).
It made a real difference making this fopb from proper, light weight, shirt material, rather than the heavier weight, almost quilting-weight material that seems to be in alot of fabric shops these days. I wouldn´t make one of these from quilting weight fabrics again (like I unwittingly did for the pink version). make it wear it

Monday, June 14, 2010

Ruffle neckline l/s T I drew up the pattern for

Here is another top I drew up the pattern for after reading Cal Patch´s Design it Yourself: Patternmaking Simplified book. It is based on a maternity top I used to wear, although I´ve altered the upper and lower bodice and sleeves. The neckline has a ruffle along it. Its hard to see from the pic, but the cuffs are a slight bell shape. The fabric is a knit fabric from Global Fabrics in Wellington. I´ve put the instructions on drawing up the pattern up too. Instructions:

make it wear it

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Egg warmers from sock wool

I made these a few years ago and just found them in my cupboard, so I thought I´d post them on my blog. They are made from 4 ply wool, and are little hats to keep eggs warm at the breakfast table. Basically you just knit ribbing big enough to fit around an egg, and then knit what ever hat and pattern takes your fancy to use up wool remnants.

Knitted cowl

I´ve just found out what a cowl is, and thought I´d try one. At first I knitted this merino-possum wool as a pair of fingerless gloves, but I didn´t like them and undid it and made it into this cowl. I did it from a crochet pattern, called the Blueberry dreams neckwarmer by Kirsty Maurits which I saw on ravelry, and just adjusted it as a knitting pattern instead.

Shirt I designed

I think this worked out OK. Here I am walking like an egyptian in a shirt I drew up the pattern for, after reading Cal Patch´s Design It Yourself book. Its a shirt made from some end-of-line designer knit fabric that I got on sale for $1-2/m.
Its basically a shirt pattern, with no ease (because of the fabric). I´ve seen collars like these on the internet, where the placket doesn´t go vertically straight up to the collar, but veers off at each side like a v, and thought I´d try it.
I´ve entered it in TheTrainToCrazy.com make it wear it sew along, which is lots of fun.
make it wear it
Here are the instructions for making the shirt, if anyone would like to adapt something similar

Burda WOF Magazine Wrap Blouse 122B-3-2010

As I was sewing this, I could hear that caretaker from Hogwarts saying in my head ¨Oh dear, oh dear, we are in trouble, aren´t we?¨

Most of the things I loved about this pattern in the mag, didn´t work out in reality on my version. The front wraps met the sides on the hip rather than the waist, meaning that they gaped alot at the neckline/bust. I had to undo it all, and move the front wraps up an inch entirely all the way to where it met the yoke, recutting the neckline and armholes. The way the ties joined the whole side seam right to the hem made the neck gape too, and looked strangely assymetrical at the back, because one tie does through a hole in the side-seam and the other doesn´t) so I changed them to conventional ties, just joining for a couple of inches at the side-waistline. The idea of having extra length on the sleeves which is just ¨casually pushed up¨, looked great in the mag, but on my version just looked like I´d accidentally made the sleeves 6 inches too long. Even normally cut long sleeves made it look heavy, so I´d do 3/4 length sleeves if I made it again. All in all, this just turned out wierd. I cut a 44, so maybe the pattern would work out quite fine on a 34. I haven´t even finished this (its not hemmed and the collar is just pinned on), and it needed an ironing for the picture, but I can´t be bothered wasting any more time on it. I knew this shirt was just a test muslin, but secretly I´d hoped it would turn out super and I´d be able to wear it anyway. I think this shirt will be truned into a dinosaur for my son very, very soon.

For fabric, this was made from an extremely drapey, end-of-line designer fabric which I got on sale of $2 a m. It probably needed an even drapier, really gossamer thin fabric to work properly. The pattern has alot of darts, which show up too clearly on plain fabric. If I made it again, I´d like to try using a patterned (or white) cotton-weight shirt fabric, foregoing any drape, drawing the pattern from a shirt in my cupboard, adjusting the front for the wrap, and see how that turns out.