Egg-stravaganza: March Roundup

It has been ages since my last post, but I have finished up a bunch of things since then. I am warning you now that this is a long post!

ZigZag Sock

First, I started my first pair of socks. Check out that ‘in progress’ shot! I can’t say that I am terribly keen on the way the colours of the yarn lined up. Since it is such a short colour change on the yarn, you obviously don’t get a stripe, but a strange 3…which must be the zigzag (as the yarn is named thus).

I finished one sock, which was sort of my ‘test’ sock to make sure I was up on the technique. I will go back and do the next one, but I wanted something that knitted up a bit quicker…so I thought  I would use a bigger yarn.

Paisley

Next, I  frogged the Himalayan Slippers. The slippers were probably too big for my feet, which might have been okay if there was a bit more heel shaping. As it was, they kept sliding down under my feet.

I  reused the Folksong yarn to make some house socks (Ravelry info here). They are nice and warm, and I will probably be making more pairs as I wear through these. Next time I will make the ribbing a bit longer to keep more of my leg warm.

Housemate and I made 2 versions of Vogue 8789!

We made a muslin of the bodice, and thought everything would be fine, so cut the fashion fabric (navy and red stripe). Housemate has a long torso and is a c-cup, so the bodice ended up hitting her about 3 inches above her waist. The darts were also crazy, so had to be adjusted. We finished up the machine sewing on that dress (there is some tacking of the facings to be done). It is just chillin’ for the moment.

Then we adjusted the pattern . Everything was laying nicely, so didn’t do an FBA, just added the length that was needed.

Vera Bradley Lemon Parfait

The next dress was a Vera Bradley Stripe from the Lemon Parfait colourway. The paisley is the smallest version, with plain grey alternating stripes. It ended up looking quite a bit like the pattern envelope, but in grey and yellow. Housemate wore it as an Easter dress and received many compliments.

I started work on my TNT dress (a rub-off of a Monsoon dress) in a blue, red and beige plaid. With all of the stripe matching on the Vogue pattern, the plaid was starting to drive me a bit mad, so it has been put aside for a little bit.

Housemate and I also started work on her Simplicity 1692 (view B). We made a muslin with some leftover fabric, which I had already made into a TNT dress and a simple gathered skirt for Housemate.

We adjusted the pattern for size, including the long torso adjustment. I thought we had added enough at the hips to make it a bit looser than is shown, but it ended up being a bit snug in a few places..including the bust. It looks like we might really need to do a FBA. We are going to try to save this first version, especially so we can test out the rest of the pattern steps. The side seams can be taken out a bit, and the tucks can be made a bit smaller, if necessary. Once we get the muslin finished, this shirt will be made in a lovely coral cotton lawn, very similar to the example shown on the envelope.

I haven’t gotten very far on my McCall’s 5094 muslin. It was cut out ages ago, and I have started sewing the straps and the skirt. Since the weather has been so cold, something this summery just isn’t getting me excited.  I do want to get it going, but it won’t be until after the TNT plaid dress and the 1940s blouse have been completed.

I think the next bit of knitting will be a cardigan. Probably the Miette. While I figuring out what yarn to use, I will finish up the second zigzag sock. Roll on Spring!

What a Hoot!

I love these mittens! There is a freakin’ owl on it!

I am quite proud of myself for these. First, they were made for someone else (who is actually enjoying them and doesn’t care about the beginner mistake issues). Second, they are my first ‘real’ project on double-pointed needles, which I think turned out pretty well. Third, they are my first cabled pattern. Fourth, at the danger of repeating myself, they have a freakin’ owl on them!

I still have a few things to work out when using dpns, like stopping it from laddering at the join (especially where purls are involved).  I should have made a few sizing adjustments, but my friend insists that she likes the way they fit. She sewed on some black seed beads for the eyes.

Check out this pattern on Ravelry. Note that there seem to be 2 versions of the pattern out there. I used the 2×2 rib for the cuff from the ‘old’ pattern, but I cast on the number of stitches in the new version of the pattern and basically stuck to that.  There also seemed to be a decrease round left out of the new version. It was pretty easy to figure out what to do since it follows a set pattern for several rounds.

I think a sock is next on the list.

I feel like I live in Darjeeling…

I think everyone’s sewing mojo dries up at this time of year. You are in the ‘come down from Christmas, but not to spring’ time of year. It’s still cold out, so knitting still seems like a more sensible activity.

I have stuck to my me-made goals of working on a new pattern each month…well, I technically worked on it. I started grading the pattern to fit me, but stopped before I graded the circle skirt. That is partly because grading up a circle skirt isn’t nearly as easy as adding a centimetre or two to the waist. You have to move the whole waist and hem, so it takes way more time. I also have to do this on the floor, so that isn’t a huge motivation. Plus, we are super busy at work during February because we are doing things like this:

 

No, I’m not a Viking, but I did run around for a week tweeting/facebooking/instgramming about them.

I did drag my knitting around with me and created a pair of Himalayan Slippers (Find it on Ravelry)! These knitted up really quickly. They are slightly different sizes because I tried a different increase. The first ones are made with a yarn over. Drops have a video note with the pattern which talk about knitting the next row through the back leg (or front for purl rows) to make the holes a bit smaller. For reasons I couldn’t explain, I could never really get that to work. So instead I did a knit front and back to increase. This created a much tighter look and a tighter slipper. I still need to block them because they need some heel shaping, but they are great. I’m not sure that the slippers will be warm enough to wear during the winter (it’s cold in my house), but I am rather proud of them. I even used a Kitchener stitch to sew up the seam along the sole! Go me!

Learn to Knit, Love to Knit

In order to improve my knitting skills, I am devouring all of the resources I can find. I have a million free patterns in my Ravelry queue (because why would I pay for pattern now while I still am getting used to knitting), I have checked out every knitting book from the library and signed up for Craftsy courses (more on that in another post). Here is my Goodreads review of one:

Learn to Knit, Love to Knit. Anna WilkinsonLearn to Knit, Love to Knit by Anna Wilkinson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book has some really lovely patterns, like a knitted plaid! The colours are also great inspiration.
I wouldn’t suggest this book to a real beginner, so the learn to knit part of the title is a bit of a misnomer. Although, like most knitting books, there is an obligatory section on how to knit and how to purl, there isn’t a great deal of instruction on increases and decreases. If I am only learning how to knit, how am I supposed to know how to ssk or skp. I would suggest searching out another resources to learn how to knit, but once you get going, this will be a great place to turn.

View all my reviews

Playing with Textures

I finished the rather boring black knit hat from  Knitty Gritty: Knitting for the Absolute Beginner. It it isn’t much and has a few mistakes. My biggest problem is letting stitches slip off my needles when I am pushing them up to start working on them.

I have started working on a new blanket for my room. My crocheted granny square blanket didn’t turn out exactly the way I would have liked. It is really too small to cover me unless I am really curled up.

I figured I would improve my skills by working many different squares. It isn’t quite as boring as making dishcloths, because I know I will use my blanket in the end. I am using 3 colours to work 10 different patterns, 5 of which are coming from this pattern (Bernat’s Sampler Blanket – Ravelry).

So this is the next item on the needles. I suspect it will be a gradual process, but I look forward to trying different stitch patterns.

I am also going to dive into working with double-pointed needles. I am going to make a pair of socks and a pair of mittens. I haven’t quite worked up the courage for this yet, so there may be loads of YouTube videos coming my way!

Lovely Birdie Dress

A new pattern for the new year! I had my parents snap this pattern up during a JoAnn’s 99¢ sale.


Pattern: Butterick 5748, View A

View A detilView A detail

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? The bodice did turn out like the envelope.

Were the instructions easy to follow? This pattern is so easy to follow because there aren’t that many steps to begin with!

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I really like the scoop neck and back, which makes this a great shape for a summer dress.

Fabric Used: Lovely Birdie from JoAnn’s

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: 

  • The fabric was a gift and unfortunately, there wasn’t quite enough to make the full circle skirt. I made a simple gathered skirt instead.
  • I graded up the waist to fit. In my muslin,
  • I pinched out 1/4 inch in the front and back neckline. I have had to do this for several patterns now, so I suspect I have narrow shoulders.
  • I also didn’t add the back v or the bows for view A

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I will be making this one again for sure. Hopefully I will be able to find lovely light vintage-style fashion fabric that will make a great floaty sun dress.

Conclusion: I really do like this dress. I don’t have a cardigan that really ‘matches’ but I think I will be able  to cope.
SANY2474SANY2473

I’m sorry that I don’t have better pictures. I finished the dress on Monday, but didn’t wear it until Thursday. Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t terribly cooperative and by the time I got home from work, it was so dark. I’ll try to remember to take some next time I wear it.