Simmer Dim

Simmer Dim

Just a small one-skein shawl, but it is cosy and I love it. I love the colours in this yarn. The colour changes quite frequently, but the changes are not strong enough to create colour barf when knit up. You know, those gorgeous skeins of yarn that have a bunch of contrasting colours that look amazing in the skein; once you wind that skein into a ball you start to have doubts but forge ahead and start knitting until you have to give up, frog and put that yarn aside in the to-be-socks pile. Or is that just me?

Details: I used tulip long carry C interchangeable needles in 4 mm and 6.5 mm, Sugarplum Circus Smooth Sock May 2019 Club colourway, and the pattern is Simmer Dim by The Shetland Trader.

FO Report: Celestarium

Project: Celestarium
Pattern: Celestarium by Audry Nicklin
Yarn: BMFA Seduction in Star Sapphire
Needles: 3.75 mm
Yardage: 309 g / 1097.2 yards

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This was actually a simple knit, despite the fact of not having a memorizable pattern until the cast-off edging. It only took me about 5 points or so to memorise the cast-off edging, so that helped, but the edging took seemingly forever. I was knitting 2 rows (8 to 20 or sts each) for every 1 stitch cast off. Beautiful, elegant result though. I was also casting off in the same way at the same time for my Aestlight shawl (completed) and my full Hansel (almost!). The Seduction yarn is very, very slick, smooth and shiny. I loved it. It’s also resistant to pilling; I tend to knit on the go, and I often don’t have the time to be princess-y with my projects. That is, sometimes I just shove everything into my purse as I’m running out the door. No project bag or even a plastic grocery bag to protect my work from the chaos of crap that can be found in my bag. For example, I have a metal seashell and small stuffed giraffe in my bag. No particular reason, they just ended up in my bag and decided to move in. So I’ve dealt with pilling before, and if a project doesn’t pill on me, that yarn is extremely resistant to pilling. This is also the first project using beads that I have completed. My first beaded project is In Dreams, which is still on the needles. I wasn’t daunted by the beads themselves, but it is difficult to work with so many beads with a 4 year-old running around. The 4 year-old in question is now almost 5 and about to begin kindergarten so I’m really hoping to pick it up this fall.

Carbuncles pt. 2

Project: Linga
Pattern: Linga by Gudrun Johnston
Yarn: Rowan Felted Tweed DK, colour 157 Camel
Needles: 3.5 & 4.5 mm
Yardage: 41 g / 156 yards

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It’s fitting that I finished this hat right after my Shalder cardigan. I put this pattern in my queue at the same time that I put Shalder in my queue; I was fascinated by the carbuncle/diamond motifs used for dwarven objects in The Hobbit movie. I love how it turned out; I think it will be my main hat this winter even if there is an openwork / lace motif. I originally meant to make the hat and the cardigan as a matching set because of the carbuncle design feature, but they are knit at different tensions and knitting them in the same yarn would be boring. The carbuncle lacework shows up more clearly in lighter coloured yarn, too. Now if I could just finish an idea in less than a year, instead of the nearly three years this one took me to complete.

My Blue Carbuncle

Project: Shalder
Pattern: Shalder by Gudrun Johnston
Yarn: Cascade 220 Navy Blue
Needles: 4.5 mm

Completed 29 March 2015
Completed 29 March 2015

I love this sweater, the fit and especially the lace yoke. I originally chose this pattern way back when the first Hobbit movie was released. I loved all the dwarves’ costumes, and I noticed that there were a lot of geometric shapes. Shalder’s yoke pattern reminded me of that. It was in my queue since then, I only started working seriously on it this year. I think I had done about 7 cm of the body in 2013, I picked it up a little bit last summer but really got down to business this year. There’s a bit of a dye lot issue – one sleeve appears to be made from a different lot, so there is a bit of a colour line at the yoke, but it’s not too bad. I have no idea how it happened. I’ll put it down as some sort of punishment for letting projects linger for no good reason.

Toe-Up Sock Mittens

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Project: Toe-Up Sock Hobbit Mittens

Pattern: My own, with gusset help from Frankenfingers and English Fern Lace

Yarn: Socks that Rock Lightweight Hobbit Garden

I felt like making mittens, but I wondered why are patterns always written from wrist to fingertip? What if you knit from fingertips to wrist, and if so, how would you do that? So I used a magic toe-up sock cast on, two at a time on 2.5 mm needles, increased 4 sts per mitten every row just like I would for a toe. When I got to 64 sts per mitten, I continued knitting straight until I got to the thumb. For each mitten, I cast off 4 sts on the palm, 2 on the back of the hand. On the next round when I got to the thumb (where I just cast off 6 sts) I cast on 20 sts. As I continued, I decreased at the thumb, sort of a reverse thumb gusset. I used Frankenfingers as a gusset guide.

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I kept decreasing every few rounds until each mitten was 60 sts. I got kinda bored at the end, I added some lace as a border. I still don’t like lace in variegated yarn, I can barely see the pattern, but then again I only did one repeat. Then I picked up stitches for the thumb, decreasing drastically when I was almost at my thumb tip.

I’ve been wearing them regularly the past couple of weeks, and I like them but next time I’d knit them smaller, both in length (of the hand, from finger tips to thumb) and circumference (again, my hand from the fingertips to the thumb), and in a thicker wool. We’ve had a very harsh, bitterly cold winter this year and my hands get cold easily, the lightweight just doesn’t stand up to -20 C. But I love the colours so much, the way they play off each other, it’s delicious. And the pooling matches. Love it.

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Simmer Dim

I made this pattern a few years ago with Socks that Rock Lightweight in Thraven. It is the only knitwear that I’ve made that I lost. I’m not even sure how I lost it, to be honest. But it really ate at me. So I decided to replace it, this one is made with Socks that Rock Mediumweight in Monroe Blutbad.  Super comfy, I love to wear it around the house and as a scarf when I go out. I don’t normally go in for variegated yarn, but since it is a Grimm colourway I had to try it. I really love the result, though I find it hard to photograph. I’ve since joined the Rockin’ Sock Club for this year and I’m going to make myself some mittens out of variegated yarn soon.
P1030194After Blocking

P1030192 Blocking with phone for size.

P1030187Right after cast off, no blocking.

Autumn is here!

It is very chilly here this morning. So very refreshing and invigorating. I have been knitting; I put my Evenstar to the side this month, but I did finish a hat, and I started another shawl for a KAL that started last weekend. I used Blue Moon Single Silk for the hat, it is so soft, I just love it.

Completed 13 September 2014
Elven Cloche Hat

I joined a KAL for the In Dreams Shawl, another Tolkien inspired shawl by the same designer as Evenstar. It is my first time using beads, and there are just so many of them! I got a beadle needle, super easy to use and an awesome time saver for beaded projects.
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I am only going to do 8 rows per day, to avoid mistakes. I love charts so much, I forget to check the written instructions, which contain the chart notes. So I have already made my first mistake, and I’ve had to frog back 4 rows. Not as bad as my Evenstar gaffe, but aargh.

Lastly, I am still plugging away on my Shalder. I started the sleeves, it is great to work on at the end of the day.
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Back to Canada

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Chart three of my Evenstar is taking forever. I looked at my chart, realised that I had a 4 row repeat for 24 rows of 560 stitches each, and died a little bit. I like it when the pattern changes every other row, it keeps me engaged in my knitting. But I’m nearly done, and hopefully I will be done soon. I signed up for an In Dreams KAL (a shawl by the same designer as Evenstar) that starts mid-September and my goal for Evenstar is to have at least finished chart three by then. The In Dreams shawl is so beautiful knitted with beads, I have decided to do my first ever knitting project with beads.

We are settling in well, still a little bit of jet lag, but definitely having fun around the house.

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10 August 2014

Sunday 10 August

Guangzhou day twenty-five

Quiet day, so it’s just a knitting update. I finished chart two, after wasting many about 5 days correcting a very stupid mistake on my part. I’ve begun chart three, though these pictures are taken at the completion of chart two. I don’t think I will do the beading on this project, I don’t have enough shawl experience to tackle beads.

2 August 2014

Saturday 2 August

Guangzhou day seventeen

Dominic was feeling a little under the weather today, so I stayed home with him and Fei and Daphne went fishing and dragon eye picking. Dragon eyes are a fruit similar to lychee, only smaller and brown skin instead of red. They caught a lot of fish, picked a lot of fruit and ate at a countryside restaurant (where they will cook fish that you’ve caught). There was also a little dog to keep Daphne company.

Huge set back on the Evenstar knitting today, I began at row 43, didn’t pick up on the fact that it is a wonky marker row until row 50, when things just looked all wrong. Turns out row 43 and 49 are wonky marker rows, so I have to frog all the work I did yesterday.