Monday, April 29, 2013

Lady Lawyer Arm Warmers

Lady Lawyer Arm Warmers
Okay!  So much like the last hat I posted, these arm warmers are for a friend, by request.  And as you've probably guessed by now, she's a lady lawyer in Alaska, where the courtrooms are cold but the justice is hot (or so they say).  Either way, she wanted something delicate and eggplant-y, and I loved this stitch pattern too much to use any other (none of the pictures show it really well, but the basic pattern is a big hole in the center of a four-stitch rib, and then two little holes on the side two rows up, repeated over and over).  Or in other words, it's perfect for all your Alaskan justice-related needs.

Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine (50% Peruvian wool, 20% Super Fine Alpaca, 30% Nylon; 433 yards [400 meters]/100 grams); #12171 Berry Pie Mix - one skein

Needles: One set of double-pointed needles (dpns) in size 1

Notions: Tapestry needle
A little bit better view of the pattern, with a twist

Gauge: 30 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette on size 2 needles

Now, before we get started, let's talk about sizing for a moment.  To make these arm warmers, I cast on 72 stitches, and they're intended for a person whose forearms and base-of-thumb hand-parts measure roughly 9.5" around.  Each iteration of the pattern is 6 stitches and little under 1"; for that reason, you can change the size of these arm warmers by simply casting on more or less stitches.  If your forearms are smaller than 9.5" you can comfortably wear larger arm warmers, but they won't stretch and show the pattern off as well.  So if your forearms/base-of-thumb-hand-parts measure about 8.5", consider casting on 66 stitches, cast on 60 stitches if they measure 7.5", and even less if you're making these for a child (and conversely, cast on 78, 84, etc. stitches if your forearms and hands are larger).  Luckily, this is only something you have to think about once, when you do your initial cast-on!  So let's get started.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Mesh Flower Hat

Mesh Flower Hat

Alrighty!  First of all, I have to admit that I am super excited about this hat, pretty much exclusively because I knit it to specification for a friend.  Or in other words, she wanted something black, slouchy, and light-weight that would serve for multiple seasons.  And this hat is all of those things, and is even knit in a mesh (although I wasn't able to get a good close-up, so you're just going to have to trust that there are little holes between all of those nubblies).  Plus, a flower!  Awww....

Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca Light (50% Super Fine Alpaca, 50% Peruvian Wool; 144 yards [133 meters]/50 grams); #4245 Pitch Black - I used one skein but I only had 15 feet or so left by the end - so you may need two skeins, ESPECIALLY if you decide to make this hat a bit slouchier

Needles: One 16" circular needle in size 5, one 16" circular needle in size 4, one set of double pointed needles (dpns) in size 4

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker or yarn scrap to mark end of round (the scrap might work better, given the gauge)

Gauge: 23 stitches = 4 inches on size 5 needles

So let's get started!  Using the size 5 circular needle, cast on 120 stitches loosely, place marker, and join in round.

Knit in k1, p1 ribbing for 1 inch, then switch to your size 4 circular needle and the mesh pattern, which is as follows:

Row 1: * yo, ssk; rep from *

Row 2: * yo, p2tog *

Repeat rows 1 & 2 until piece measures about 6 inches in length (if you want to make sure you can knit it with one skein, maybe only knit until it measures 5 1/2" here) and you've just completed row 2.  You can add another inch or so if you have another skein and want it extra-slouchy.  Then, to continue, you'll need the following notation:

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Zig Zag Legwarmers

Zig Zag Legwarmers

So, in case you can't tell from the socks I'm wearing in this picture, I love me some bright colors.  That's probably why I fell in love with this yarn as soon as I saw it.  And besides that - well, I wanted a zig zag pattern and I thought it would be cool to change the texture of the stripes (hence the seed stitch).  The use of the twisted stitches also adds another interesting dimension to the legwarmers, especially when scrunched up.  And finally, each iteration of this pattern (the two zig zag stripes) is 12 stitches in total, which adds 2 inches to the circumference, so these legwarmers are easy to size up and down.  As they're knitted, they have a 12 inch circumference and are about 11 inches top to bottom - add 12 more stitches and they'll be 14 inches around, subtract 12 and they'll be 10 and good for a child.

Yarn: Cascade Yarns Quatro (100% Peruvian highland wool; 220 yards [200 meters]/100 grams); #5019 Green Tea - two skeins (I knit almost exactly 1.5 legwarmers with one skein, so you should still have plenty of yarn if you size them up)

Needles: One set of double-pointed needles (dpns) in size 8, one set double-pointed needles in size 7 
A close-up of the pattern.  So cheery!

Notions: Tapestry needle

Gauge: 18 stitches = 4 inches on size 8 needles

Using the size 7 dpns, cast on 72 (60, 84) stitches, divide between three dpns in groups of 12 stitches, and join in round

Knit in p1, k1 ribbing for 1 inch (please note that's purl one, knit one, NOT k1, p1), and then you're going to switch patterns AND needles - it's time to head to the #8's.  You'll need the following notation to proceed:

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Feather Lace Cowl

Feather Lace Cowl
Okay.  So I had more orange yarn after making the Gathered Mesh Cowl, but my fingers weren't up to the task of knitting another cowl on size 4 needles (I don't know about you, but smaller gauges really tax my hands).  Anyway, since I wanted to use bigger needles, I definitely had to work another mesh/lace design, so I came up with this.  It's very simple, with the only shaping coming in the form of the bind-off, and it's reversible and great for spring!  So let's get to it.

Yarn: Cascade Yarns Sateen (100% Acrylic; 300.7 yards [275 meters]/100 grams); #24 Orange Poppy - once again, just one skein
A close-up of the pattern.  Once again, it's reversible!

Needles: One 24" circular needle in size 8

Notions: Stitch marker, tapestry needle

Gauge: 24 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette on size 4 needles (but since we're using 8's, who cares, eh?)

Cast on 180 stitches, place marker, join in round