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WIP Wednesday: Outside-In Baby Blanket

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Remember how I said I was obsessed with baby knits these days?

I knew I wanted to design some kind of baby blanket for my kiddo, so I delved into my inspiration folder and came up with these two blanket-like ideas.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 11.55.16 AM Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 11.58.17 AM

After a bunch of swatching, I found a stitch pattern I liked that was reminiscent of the swirls from the first pattern. I figured a “start at the middle and increase on four lines to the edges” construction would work well for the pattern, but there was just one problem.

I hate projects that start with very few stitches and increase out to a zillion at the edges.

I would so much rather slog through the loooong part at the beginning and then be rewarded with ever-increasing speed and progress as I go on. That way the initial burst of enthusiasm sustains me through the beginning, and the visible progress sustains me through the rest of the project. So I decided to design this blanket to be worked outside-in instead of the more traditional inside-out.

I swatched a corner, took a picture, put it in Photoshop, and played around a little:

Screen Shot 2014-04-09 at 10.08.57 AMThat’s the general idea, anyway.

I’ve been working on the blanket steadily for about a week now, and here’s what I have to show for it:

Outside In WIPNot very impressive, is it? But when you consider that the CO had 664 sts…

Outside IN WIP fullI could possibly use a longer circular needle.

WIP Wednesday: It’s a Big One! (Well, so to speak…)

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Well geez, posts have been thin on the ground around here, haven’t they?

But I have a very good reason, I promise. Ready?

I’m pregnant! My current WIP that’s taking up an awful lot of my time and attention is a baby boy or girl, due to be completed around the first week of July 2014. This is the first baby for me and my husband. We’re really excited (and I’ll be even more excited when the all-day “morning” sickness subsides, yuck).

You know what this means, right? Baby knits! (And possibly baby designs… but that’s a little further down the road.)

I whipped up these booties for our announcement post on Facebook:

Saartje's Booties

 

They’re Saartje’s Booties (Ravelry link), which I’ve made for several other little ones… but it was a thrill to make them for my very own baby! I used some Madelinetosh Sport left over from my Put Together vest to make them nicely unisex.

We’re probably not going to find out the baby’s gender ahead of time, so I’ll be on the hunt for yarns and patterns that work for boys or girls. Any suggestions?

WIP Wednesday: A Sleeve and a Group

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The yellow fall pullover now has the body and one sleeve finished:

 Melany sleeve

I’m about 1/3 of the way through the other sleeve, and then it’s on to the yoke! I was planning on a raglan sleeve, but I’m starting to wonder if I wouldn’t like a saddle shoulder better. I’m going to contemplate this as I knit tonight.

In other news, I’ve finally started a Ravelry group for my designs! I’ll be posting test knits (like the cozy gray sweater, which went up for test knitting yesterday and is almost full already, yay!), promotions, new designs, and lots of other stuff there. Come check it out here if you’re interested: Triona Designs Ravelry Group.

WIP Wednesday: New Fall Sweater

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I started a new sweater this week!

Imperial WIPadore it so far (to the point where I’m having to restrain myself from dropping everything else and just working on it 24/7). The yarn, Imperial Columbia, is so luscious that I’m already contemplating buying another sweater’s worth. It’s rustic-looking, but incredibly light and soft. And at a gauge of 4 sts/in, this is working up really quickly.

Here’s what I’m thinking the sweater’s going to look like. 3/4 sleeves with a fat cable, slight waist shaping, and a scoop-neck with garter edging:

Melany sketch

As you might have noticed, I’ve been on a garter stitch edging kick recently. It’s just so squishy and awesome!

Imperial edging

 

WIP Wednesday: Two Steps Back

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Just a quick little WIP Wednesday post today, mainly because my Creme de Menthe vest looked like this a few days ago:

unraveled DK twistSigh. I had a feeling while I was working on the vest last week that it was coming out too big, but I pushed the feeling aside and soldiered on, not wanting to contemplate ripping out and starting over (we all do this, right? Tell me it’s not just me). But when I had about 8-9 inches of fabric, I finally measured, and sure enough–it was almost 2″ too wide. My gauge changed from 5.5 sts/inch in the swatch to 5.25 sts/inch in the vest. Not a big deal if it’s a small piece, but it makes a lot of different over a whole garment.

But oh well. I’ve started again with fewer stitches and have about 3″ done. And I’m still madly in love with the yarn, so it could be a lot worse. :-)

WIP Wednesday: Creme de Menthe

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I finished the large design and shipped it off, woohoo! Although I still have a few commissioned accessories I’m working on, with the sweater load off my shoulders, I allowed myself to start a new design.

creme sketchHere’s the sketch (which I did in about 10 minutes using Adobe Illustrator–I’m getting pretty good with that program, if I do say so myself). I really like the idea of a vest with skinny stripes running perpendicular to each other, so that’s what I’ll be attempting. It’ll either be cute or a mess… but that’s part of the fun of designing, right?

I’m using the Tosh DK Twist I showed off in last week’s post, and man is this stuff lovely. It’s as springy as Tosh Vintage, but lighter weight and softer. I’m an addict after only a few inches:Creme progressThe tank is bottom up, in the round to the armholes and then back and forth. The 2-1 stripe pattern I’m using will necessitate pushing the work back and forth on the circular needles to keep the stripe pattern correct when it’s worked flat, but I tried it on a swatch and it’s actually kind of fun. You have to think about the fabric you’re making on each row, but that helps alleviate the boredom of endless stockinette. :-)

Also: I thought of a name for this design right away, which almost never happens. It shall be Creme de Menthe. Perfect, isn’t it?

Thanks to lightning-fast shipping from Knit Picks, I got my extra skein of Gloss DK this week and finished Concord, too!

Concord KP blockingHopefully I’ll have some modeled pics by Friday, and then the vest gets popped in the mail.

WIP Wednesday: Stuff I Can’t Show You Edition

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I’ve been hard at work on a secret, very large, commissioned project. Since I can’t actually show you what it is, here’s a teaser pic:

GW teaserAs you can see, it’s got lovely squishy garter stitch and a texture pattern, and it’s in one of the nicest yarns I’ve had the pleasure to work with. I’m sad I have to wait to share it until the pattern is released!

To distract from the lack of actual WIP pictures, I’ll show you the other stuff I’ve been working on: re-blocking samples for TNNA this weekend. Our cross-country move last summer was not kind to my poor sweaters and accessories.

hats blocking

Hats blocking using my preferred balloon-in-a-mug method

Two sweaters blocking

My Hipster Stripe and Put Together samples drying on the blocking boards

pile of blocked sweaters

Pile of blocked sweaters awaiting transport

I’m still nervous about the show, but as you can see, things are coming along nicely. My next post will probably be a TNNA wrap-up, so wish me luck!

WIP Wednesday: Blue and Green Edition

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I’m still trucking along on my Bevin re-knit. The back and front are done and sewn together:

Bevin front and back

 

Actually, the sleeves are done too since that picture was taken. Now it’s sewing up time (urgh), which means there’s a lot of this action happening:

Bevin sewingSigh. So anyway, I’m taking breaks between sewing up sessions to knit other things. I decided to re-knit the sample for my Europos Scarf as well, using the gorgeous Malabrigo Rios in Vaa I showed off in my last post. It’s coming along nicely!

Europos WIP

Seeing a color theme yet? If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you might have noticed I gravitate toward blues and greens (preferably both at once!) above all other colors. I kept trying to make myself branch out, but the truth is that the colors are flattering on me, photograph beautifully, and are fun to knit. I think maybe I should just embrace it.

And just as I was thinking this, the yarn arrived for a secret design for a yarn company.

secret yarnThe pic is intentionally hard to make out (secret, remember?), but it’s dark shades of–you guessed it–green and blue.

I’m in love. :-)

WIP Wednesday: Still Bevin, and Dandelion Clock

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I’m still plugging away on my Bevin sweater. I’ve made real progress this week, though. Here’s last week’s shot:

Bevin2WIPAnd here’s this week’s!

BevinWIP3As you can see, I’ve finished the front and just completed the twisted-stitch motif on the back. I’ve been feeling like it’s going really slowly, but hey–nothing like pictures to show you the objective view of things.

I’ve also been working on the pattern writing for the white hat I showed you on Friday.

ToshWhiteHatBack

I went back and forth on a name several times. Molly of deepbluerenegade suggested Dandelion, which I really liked, but a quick Ravelry search turned up pages and pages of patterns with this name. So in the interest of making the pattern easier to find, I decided to go with… drumroll please…

Dandelion Clock!

If you’re wondering what timekeeping has to do with anything, Dandelion Clock is actually a common name for these things, from a kids’ game where the number of puffs it takes to blow off the seeds is supposed to tell the time:

Dandelion_clockI think it works rather well. :-)

WIP Wednesday: Bevin Mark 2

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Well, I guess Knitting & Crochet Blog Week must have taken a bit more out of me than I thought, because it’s been over a week since I last posted. Oops.

Anyway, during that time I’ve finished a prototype for a new hat design (more on that Friday!) and started this:

Bevin2WIP

I’m knitting another sample for my own Bevin Pullover pattern, in the called-for Knit Picks CotLin yarn. The first sample was shipped back to me just as I moved across the country, and between a wonky forwarding order and the not-very-conscientious tenants who moved into our apartment after us, the sweater went missing.

I was never totally thrilled with the original pattern pictures anyway, so I’m not too upset. They were taken on a beach in the middle of summer, so I was trying my very best not to sweat profusely the whole time. This is my chance to knit a new version and do a new photoshoot. I’m just lucky Knit Picks got some nice ones, which they graciously allow me to use as I see fit:

BevinKP1 BevinKP2

Their model looks gorgeous in the white color, but I think the teal is better for me!

It’s pretty bizarre to be knitting from my own pattern. It’s been long enough since I wrote it that I don’t really remember much of the process, so it’s like reading something someone else put together! So far, so good. We’ll see if I manage to get through it without getting frustrated with myself…
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