Thursday, June 29, 2017

Rainbow Rib Mitts

Rainbow Rib Mitts
Rainbow Rib Mitts
as seen near an *extremely* green pond thing

I keep looking at the hands in these photos and thinking, "dang how did my nails get so long?!?!" (since I'm always the hands in my photos). Then I keep remembering that today, for the first time ever (that's not exactly true - my husband has posed a few times), I AM NOT THE HANDS IN MY PHOTOS. Not that my lovely hand model will probably ever agree to lend her digits to my knitting again, since I spent the whole shoot giving her instructions like, "Now happy fingers! No, happier!" and, "Angle your hands like you're standing up, but instead squat so your head doesn't cast a shadow on the mitts." Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah, I got this yarn ON SALE BABY, and it's a beautiful choice for this basic-but-not-boring pattern. Oh, and word to the wise - if you use the same fiber, be forewarned that the pattern doesn't repeat in a linear fashion, but like a palindrome (so the colors don't go A B C D A B C D but more like A B C D D D C B A). So, although I made my mitts match fairly well, I had to be fussy to get there, and it's possible that if you're equally fussy about matching you may need more than one skein to complete the pattern.

Sizes: small (medium; large) (the small will fit a hand roughly 7 1/2" - 8" in circumference at the base of the thumb, the medium up to 8 3/4", and the large goes up to about 9.5")

Yarn: Lang Yarns Novena Color (50% Wool, 30% Alpaca, 20% Nylon; 240 yards [220 meters]/50 grams); #0009 Rosa/Violet/Blue - one skein (all sizes)

Rainbow Rib Mitts
A closer view of the gusset
Or the "thumb crotch," as I yelled several
times at my hardworking hand model.
Needles: One set of double pointed needles (dpns) in size US 6; one set of dpns in size US 7

Notions: Tapestry needle, scrap yarn

Gauge: 22 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette on size US 7 needles

And that brings us to the pattern! Using your size US 6 needles, then, cast on 40 (44; 48) stitches loosely and distribute evenly between three dpns. Join in round, being careful not to twist your cast on when you complete the join. Then we'll work ribbing as follows:

Ribbing Row: * k1, p1; rep from *

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Reflecting Pool Cowl

Reflecting Pool Cowl
Reflecting Pool Cowl

There's no denying it: this is one of those yarns that I bought because my raccoon brain demanded it (okay fine, maybe raccoon isn't accurate - it's not shiny although it's colorful. You get what I mean). And, as always with these yarns, as soon as I got it home I wondered what to do with it - with a variegated I prefer a pattern that's not too plain but that also doesn't get eaten by the colors of the fiber, after all. Luckily it didn't take long before I came up with this cable and openwork design, which shows off both the texture of the fabric and the beauty of the yarn. And, as a side note, I think it would also work well on larger needles (US 8 or even larger!) if you want a more drapey look. :)

Yarn: Lang Yarns Riva (52% Cotton, 48% Acrylic; 115 yards [105 meters]/50 grams); #0079 - 2 skeins
Reflecting Pool Cowl
A look at the cable and the
openwork design.

Needles: one 16" circular needle in size US 6 (4.0 mm), cable needle (cn) or dpn for cabling

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 19 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette, 22 stitches = 4 inches in pattern

Okay, let's make a cowl! First, then, cast on 110 stitches loosely (or 121, 132, or any multiple of 11 if you'd like a looser-fitting cowl - this one clocks in at only 20" around unstretched), place marker, and join in round. Then we'll work a combination of Vandyke Faggoting from page 187 of Barbara G. Walker's A Treasury of Knitting Patterns and a basic chain cable, as follows. You'll need the following notation to continue. Remember you can always cable without a cable needle, if you'd like.

back cross (bc): transfer next 2 stitches to your cn and hold in back; k2, k2 from cn

front cross (fc): transfer next 2 stitches to your cn and hold in front; k2, k2 from cn