Tuesday, January 31, 2006

MaryElla Bracelet

I finished the MaryElla bracelet from Knitty. I used the same yarn and everything from the pattern. The only thing that was difficult about this pattern was that I couldn't find 0000 needles that were longer than 4", so they kept stabbing my palms when I knitted. I might make this again and use bigger needles, or just get rid of the center part where the thread goes, because that was the hardest part of the pattern. I think I would also use only one color of beads.
Now I'm redoing the Under the Hoodie sweater, because some parts didn't turn out right. It was the first sweater I knit, over a year ago, and the pocket part was all twisted and the sleeves were too big and weren't attached right. I didn't like wearing it, because I always noticed those problems. Now that my knitting skills are better, it seemed better to change it, than to let the sweater just sit in a drawer forever. Also, I can't buy any yarn for a while, so I have to fix projects I already have, and use up my random yarn.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Attempting Felting

I started the Letter Have It bag from Stitch and Bitch Nation, and this is the front part. I tried making the intarsia pattern myself, and graphed it on knitting graph paper. It turned out too far up, so I might make this the back and try again. I'm not all that excited about the bag, but I wanted to try intarsia and felting, and this seemed like a good beginning project. I eventually want to make the Floral Felted Bag from Interweave, if I can find the pattern. My intarsia skills have to be improved a lot until I can do that pattern, but I really like it. It looks like a professionally made bag.
I also got the Scarf Style book, so I am excited to try some of the patterns in there. Backyard Leaves, the Dragon Scarf, the Flower intarsia scarf, and maybe the crocheted striped scarf, to start with.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Next Project Ramblings

I'm trying to decide what my next knitting project should be. I'm thinking Zigzag, from Knitty, something from the Scarf style book, or a lace pattern, since I never did a complex lace pattern before. I was thinking about how long some of the cheaper yarns last, and wondering if it was worth it to use them. I don't want to spend all this time working on a project, to have the yarn wear out after I wear it a couple of times. For really complex patterns, that will take me months, it probably would be better to use a good yarn. Then for simple stockinette patterns, that I can crank out, I would use cheaper yarns. I wish I could afford to use luxury yarns on everything, but if I pace myself and save my money for certain projects, I could get good yarn every once in a while. Also, if I did get really good yarn, and even knitted something simple, I could unravel it in a couple of years and knit something else. I read somewhere that women in the past would knit sweaters for their kids, then unravel them every few years when the kids grew. You definately couldn't do that with cheap acrylic yarn. So, I guess I will do a more simple pattern, with moderately priced yarn, for now.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Copies of Artwork

I decided to do a couple copies of paintings I liked, to see how they do their style, and to help me see how I can push things further. A lot of artists do this, I realized. Picasso, Dali, and even the Renaissance painters did this. They would redo the painting in their own style, like the jazz standards being redone by different people. It helps so much more to try someone's style and see how they did it, then to just look at the painting, and guess how they did it. Here are some examples. One is a copy of a Leonardo painting, and the other is from a book on watercolor textures. It's interesting, because I can really see how far some people pushed their paintings, and how it can make my technique better.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

I Hate Weaving Ends

I want to find out some different techniques for weaving in ends and finishing knitted stuff in general. The part that I knit always looks okay, but then especially on a striped thing, it always looks horrible after all the ends are woven in. I don't know if I'm doing it wrong or if there are decided just to tie the strands together and not weave them in, and it looks a little better. I think overall, I need to work more on my finishing other ways to do it, but that's what I want to find out. It almost ruins the fabric. On the lower case, you can see how the fabric got all warped from the ends woven in. The top one turned out a lot better, since I just tied the ends, and didn't weave them. They both are done with Brown Sheep Cotton, which also has some wool in it, so it's easy to knit with.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

My Finished Mariah

I finally finished Mariah. It actually only took about five weeks, which is pretty good. I used Patons merino yarn and made the small one. It is a lot softer than Brown Sheep, which is the only other yarn I've knit sweaters with. The cabling turned out good, even though I made a few mistakes. The only thing I see now, is that I should have kept decreasing on the neckline, so it fits a little closer. It was hard to tell how it was going to fit, and I've never really changed the patterns much, to know how things will turn out. But this the first sweater I would wear and not see a lot of problems with, or feel like it fits strangely. I especially liked the cables. I think I'm never going to use Brown Sheep again, and I'm going to put some a lot more details into my sweaters, because it turns out so much better, than plain stockinette stitch.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Finally Jumped on Harry Potter Bandwagon

I just finished reading the first Harry Potter book. I didn't want to read it for a long time, just because everyone was reading it, and it was a bestseller and all. But a friend gave me the first one, so I ended up reading it. It was entertaining, so I can see why it's so popular. But I don't think I want to read the next ones. There so many other books, that I'd rather read. One of my resolutions this year is to start reading more. I used to read books all the time, but I realized I barely read anything the last couple of years. After leaving school, I quit reading so much. So I want to try to read more often. I started Crime and Punishment, since I wanted to read a Russian book. I'll see how it goes, because I've started a lot of the classic type books, and not finished them.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Neckline Problems

I'm almost done with Mariah, which is good. I thought I wouldn't get done for a while, and it would be spring time before I finished. I really like this pattern, but I noticed something about the cables. My guage is right for the stockinette part, but it's way off for the cables. I had to cut part of the cables off, or the arms would have been too long, and the cabling would have gone on forever. I'm having trouble with the neckline though. I can't figure out how to make it more tapered, so it's more like an ellipse, instead of a circle. I guess I need to look at patterns for other sweaters, to figure out what to do.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Sunset Hills