Thursday, January 13, 2011

Up next - socks!

My next knitting project will be socks:

Picture courtesy of Sonja's Sockenland

I'm going to use Wollmeise 100% Merino in the "am kalten Polar" colourway. I'm really looking forward to these, socks made from this yarn turend out really amazing: have a look!  (link only works if you're a ravelry member - I highly recommend that to anyone who is interested in knitting!)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Delicous cakes! Yarn cakes!

So many of those gorgeous hand-dyed yarns come in hanks. They are wonderful to watch at - but you can't knit them without winding them into a ball. Even better: a centre-pull ball! There are ball winders to help you do that (something like this for example), but I've never been willing to spend money for this. An alternative would be a nostepinne. I don't own one of these, therefore I'm using my standard egg whisker.
And that's how I do it:

First, let me introduce the protagonists:
A hank of Wollmeise 100% Merino in the "Blaue Tinte" colourway:

And a standard household egg whisker:

First, I untwist the hank:

When I'm alone I just sit on the couch, put my feet on the table and the big loop of yarn over me knees. Then I open my knees until the yarn sits tightly and doesn't go anywhere, but is not stretched too much.

One end of the yarn I tie to the wire part of the egg whisker:

Then I wrap the yarn around the handle of the whisker for a few centimeters:

And wrap a second layer on top of this one:

When you have two layers, you start wrapping the thread diagonally around the handle  (white arrow). After each wrap, you turn the whisker a little bit towards you (red arrow):

This way, you get a nice criss-cross pattern:

Keep doing this until you have reached the desired height of the skein:

Then, you go for width: Don't put the thread all the way to the top/bottom of the ball, but stay little bit closer to the center (indicated by the white lines), so that the ball grows to be more cylindrical:

Soon, an edge starts to form:

And it grows ...

And finally, you're done:

Congratulations to your wonderful, easy-to-knit center-pull ball!

Monday, January 10, 2011

How to ...

turn this

into one of these:

Coming soon!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Christmas dress

It's a little bit late for Christmas, but I still haven't posted pictures of the finished Christmas dress:

Pattern: BurdaStyle 10/2009 115
Fabric: 100% wool tartan bought at a local fabric store
Alterations: I had to take in the princess seams at the waist quite a bit, and I cut a larger size at the hips, omitted the belt.

I wore the dress for the Christmas Celebration at my parents' place. Paired with a long, black cardigan this dress is quite wearable also at lower temparature - for going outdoors I would add tights and boots! And the festive look would require some make-up, of course ...


This project definitely was not a wreck - it is probably the most gorgeous thing I have ever knit!

The pattern is Shipwreck Shawl, it was published in Knitty's Spring 2009 issue. It definitely is a huge project, but a quite simple knit once you're done with the center.
I used a lovely 100% silk yarn (Phildar Phil Soie). This yarn consists of 3 strands twisted together, I used only two of these for the project. Also, I bought it in purple and only later died it black. About 5000 seed beads were added to the (yo, k2tog) section of the shawl (yes, stringing them was a lot of work). On my Ravelry project page you can find extensive notes on that one!

Currently I'm working on a Sylvi coat/jacket which will be finished quite soon - stay tuned!