Friday, May 27, 2011

Temple Fat Cat

A friend of mine has asked me to make a Fat Cat in red and white for her daughter, who will be attending Temple University in the fall. Since I am not a fan of sewing seams, I altered the pattern to knit it in the round. Here's what I did.

Main Color (MC): Red Heart Super Saver, Cherry Red
Contrast Color (CC): Red Heart Super Saver, White
Scraps of black and pink yarn

Size 9 needles (circulars and double points both useful for this project)
Size F crochet hook

I didn't bother.

Stripe Pattern
Knit 9 rows in MC, knit 9 rows in CC

Cast on 102 sts. Join, being careful not to twist.
Rd 1 - 9: K102 MC
Rd 10 - 18: K102 CC
Rd 19 - 27: K102 MC
Rd 28 - 36: K102 CC
Rd 37 - 45: K102 MC
Rd 46: (SSK K30 K2tog) around CC (96 sts)
Rd 47 -49: K96 CC
Rd 50: (SSK K28 K2tog) around CC (90 sts)
Rd 51 - 53: K90 CC
Rd 54: (SSK K26 K2tog) around CC (84 sts)
Rd 55 - 57: K84 MC
Rd 58: (SSK K24 K2tog) around MC (78 sts)
Rd 59 - 61: K78 MC
Rd 62: (SSK K22 K2tog) around MC (72 sts)
Rd 63: K72 around MC
Rd 64 - 65: K72 around CC
Rd 66: (SSK K20 K2tog) around CC (66 sts)
Rd 67: K66 CC
Rd 68: (SSK K18 K2tog) around CC (60 sts)
Rd 69: K60 CC
Rd 70: (SSK K16 K2tog) around CC (54 sts)
Rd 71: K54 CC
Rd 72: (SSK K14 K2tog) around CC (48 sts)
Rd 73: K48 MC
Rd 74: (SSK K12 K2tog) around MC (42 sts)
Rd 75: K42 MC
Rd 76: (SSK K10 K2tog) around MC (36 sts)
Rd 77: (SSK K8 K2tog) around MC (30 sts)
Rd 78: (SSK K6 K2tog) around MC (24 sts)
Rd 79: (SSK K4 K2tog) around MC (18 sts)
Rd 80: (SSK K2 K2tog) around MC (6 sts)
Rd 81: (SSK K2tog) around MC (6 sts)
Rd 82: (K2tog) around MC (3 sts)

Ears (make 2 of each color)
Cast on 10 sts.
Work stockinette stitch (knit 1 row, purl 1 row) for 8 rows.
Dec 1 st each end of next and every following alt row to 2 sts.
Last row: P2tog. Fasten off.
With WS facing each other, sew Ear made with MC to Ear made with CC.

With pair of double-pointed needles and MC, cast on 4 sts.
1st rnd: Inc 1 st in each st to end of row. Divide these 8 sts onto 3 needles.
Join in rnd, placing marker on first st.
2nd and alt rnds: Knit.
3rd rnd: *Inc 1 st in next st. Rep from * around. 16 sts.
5th rnd: *Inc 1 st in next st. K1. Rep from * around. 24 sts.
7th rnd: *Inc 1 st in next st. K2. Rep from * around. 32 sts.
9th rnd: *Inc 1 st in next st. K3. Rep from * around. 40 sts.
Cont in this manner to 104 sts, transferring sts onto circular needle when necessary. Cast off.

I crocheted the eyes and nose and backstitched the mouth and whiskers. I think he's rather adorable!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Lookit Me... I iz a designer!

I uploaded the two little pet blanket patterns that I posted earlier (here and here) to Ravelry (here and here). As a result (after I requested them to), they linked my Rav account to my designs. Therefore, I am now officially in Rav's designer database.

Check me out!

Who knows? Maybe I will be daring and design a hat next!

Although, honestly, I feel overglorifying to call it designing. I'm just adapting stitches and techniques that have been developed long before I came along.

But I'll "struggle" with being called a knitwear designer. :) Could be worse.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Using up stash

I finished another little blanket animal blanky yesterday. Yay! I'm intending to donate to LV Pints 'n Purls for the charity knitting we've been doing for local animal shelters. Problem is, I only have until next Tuesday to hand it in, and I don't know that I'll get it handed in on time. If I don't, I'll either keep it and let one of my own awesome kitties use it or I'll donate to a shelter myself.

Here's the pattern; I found this stitch browsing through my copy of The Harmony Guide to Knitting Stitches. And I got to use up more of the Babysoft Solid that I've had in stash for years. Good stuff!

Little Checked Blanket

650 yds Lion Brand Babysoft Solid, in Bluebell, held double throughout
Size 13 circular needle

Gauge: I didn't even bother with gauge on this one... it's a little blanky!

Finished size: 25 in x 26 in

K = knit
P = purl
rep = repeat

NOTE: Yarn is held double for this project.

Cast on 76 sts.
Row 1 - 4: *K4, P4, rep from * to end.
Row 5 - 8: *P4, K3, rep from & to end.

Repeat these 8 rows 12 times. Bind off. End yarn. Weave in ends.

Needless to say, this finished size of this can be easily adjusted by adding additional pattern repeats per row (multiples of 8).

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Bohemian Rhapsody!

No, I haven't started cleaning yet, thanks for asking. Instead, I've been browsing some forums (fora?) on Ravelry and found one or two things I wanna post here.

First, a funny:

Second, one of coolest things I've ever seen. I wanna learn how to sing like this!

No Snow, But Rain

Well, my historic two-day-in-a-row posting earlier this week didn't result in snow. We are, though, now facing a number of days of rain. I can live with that.

I finished my Wicket vest... yay! So now I'm full force on my Spring socks. To be honest, I'm not crazy over the pattern. It's a 6-st, 4-row repeat, so it's not complicated, but it involves a lot of YOs, and some are YO clockwise and some are YO counter-clockwise, and there are SSKs and K2togs that have to be kept straight. I'm glad I'm using a variegated yarn because I'm sure I'm not being consistent... with a solid yarn it would show!

I also signed up for a KAL for the Barton sweater. The designer is going to lead classes on various techniques, so it seemed like a no-brainer to me. I order some relatively inexpensive wool (the cost is just under $40) in Forest Heather. The suggested yarn for the pattern costs something like $25 for 2 oz!

Today's goal is to clean my room. It's a mess, and I've let it go way too long. So I'm off to get started. Woo hoo!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Two Days in a Row... Hope It Doesn't Snow!

Who knows what karmic havoc my posting on two consecutive days might cause! Come to think of it, if there is any karmic havoc going on over this, we are in a lot of trouble. Sheesh!

I worked on the Encore Baby Cardi last night. Ugh, do I hate the finishing work that projects need to look really complete. (Yeah, it's called finishing work for a reason, right?)
  • I wish I'd done the buttonholes differently. The pattern called for simple YO, K2tog. That definitely creates a hole, but it's not stable and not at all pretty. I should have thought to do something more elegant. So now I'm working blanket stitch around the holes, but OMG it's boring and causes even more ends to be woven in. Gah! I got 2 of 4 buttonholes finished.

  • I decided on the buttons I'll use. Pattern calls for 1" buttons... how the heck big are the holes they wound up with? The buttons I'll be using are only 5/8". Granted, the hole comes together a bit with the blanket stitching, but even without, there's no way a 1" button was going through. Doesn't matter; I have more than enough buttons to choose from. But you know what? When you sew on a button, you get another end to be woven in. UGH!! I got one button sewn on.

  • For some crazy reason, the two fronts don't line up. That is, if I match the bottom edges, one of the top edges is a bit short. Argh! I guess I must have lost track of row counting somewhere and have a couple more rows on one side than the other. I'm hoping I can fudge that with the button placement.

Why isn't this sweater done yet? ::whine::

On the plus side, I picked up the Wicket vest this morning. This is a test knit that I'm working, and I had some problems understanding the pattern. I'd posted my question on Sunday and so had put it aside for a bit. Today, I looked at the pattern again and had no problem understanding it. I guess I overthought the instructions and got myself all confused; by just going with the directions and trusting that I'd done things correctly so far, it was easy-peasy to move ahead. I finished the left side of the front; all that remains is the front right side, the neckline ribbing, the armhole ribbing, and sewing the side seams. My goal is to complete it this evening. Yay!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Whaddya Mean, It's May?

So where did the past 3 weeks go? I have no idea... zipped by like, um, a really fast thing passing by me. Easter's over, Mother's Day has passed, and we're well on our way to Memorial Day. I was going to put in some words about my weight issues making me not look forward to summer, but this is my knitting blog, so belay that, and let's talk yarn!

Today has been an excellent yarn day. My bestest yarn buddy, Mad Science Yarns herself, gave me some yarn today. Yes... gave me some yarn. And not just any yarn. Super scrumptious gorgeous yarn. Two skeins, no less! One is some Munchkin Knitworks Fingerpaints sock in Purpleberry; the other is Mad Science Beryllium in a colorway I'm calling "Spring Fantasy" (sorry no photo yet on that one!). They're both lovely, but seriously, I want to cuddle and hug the Beryllium and sleep with it at night. I'm going to use it for a pair of socks called Spring that I'm doing as a test knit. They are going to be gorgeous, and you are going to be jealous of them! And all she wants in return is for me to buy her dinner a couple times at our Monday night Pints 'n Purls gatherings. That is a done deal!

I have a few projects on the needles right now.

  • A baby sweater vest called Wicket (a test knit)

  • A baby sweater that I started cause I've been dying to see how the yarn knits up and I couldn't think of anything else I wanted to knit

  • The aforementioned Spring socks

  • A blanket out of some old acrylic to be donated to a local animal shelter

I've also committed to doing a few projects for friends, including a Fat Cat in Temple colors (cherry red and white) and one or two Steampunk petal chokers.

Happy knitting!