Fruitcake Knits

A sporadically updated blog that encompasses many creative activities

another hat

Rather than face the shawl’s edging, a couple evenings ago I cast on for another hat using a ball of Rowan CashCotton I filched liberated from Laura after she finished Elspeth. Unfortunately, my head is not big enough; the hat only distracted me for a day. If I had a really big head (shush!) then a quick distraction of the hat persuasion would not be so quick. Anyway.

Why yes, I am sitting on the roof taking pictures again. Some fun pictures happen that way. I really like this hat and might just clone it… if I remember to knit another before I forget how I did this one.

In postal mayhem news, some strange things have been arriving from Helen. Thursday a card marked “#2” arrived; today #1 showed up in the mailbox. #1 was postmarked a full three days earlier than #2 was. Here are both of the cards… and the innards , kindly held flat by some random balls of yarn which happened to be in the room.
(Sufficently blogged, Helen?)

But the postal system also brought some awesomeness yesterday, most of which has already been scattered throughout the house. Elisabeth sent a cute card, a MASSIVE ball of crochet cotton, a ball of Rowan Kid Mohair, some of her handspun (!!), and enough processed sugar to have me bouncing off the walls for a week. Where’s the pictures go… this is the sugar and mohair, and her blue handspun sitting next to the yarn Mtwelovett sent. Together they will become wristwarmers. For a while I thought fair isle, but gauge and I are not getting along. Perhaps they will just be striped.

Sparky seems to like the new camera. The birdseed left out, though, does not quite meet her standards.

The squirrel refused to come down from the tree, too! Wonder what’s wrong with the squirrelseed.

Oh well. After doing another couple of rows and increasing to 550 sts, I’ve started on the shawl edging. I hope it comes out a bit ruffle-ey with blocking. It’ll be a while before I find out.

Comments (3) September 30, 2005 @ 6:19 pm |

A very handpainted weekend

Many moons ago, Malabrigo was mentioned in Knitty Chat. A quick check of the website showed that the yarn isn’t sold anywhere in Texas. Odd, that. They should know how well wool sells around here! Roxy, dear heart she is, sent me a hank – the moment I felt it, I knew it had to be worn on my head. Balancing the hank on my noggin did not work well, though. I decided to save it until I had my hair lopped off, as a head-warming treat. And a treat it was! Cast on Saturday morning, bound off Sunday afternoon… graciously modeled by a styrofoam head, since none with me in it came out decently. (That is, attempts to edit out a massive zit did not go well.) The colours on this picture are way off because I’m just talented that way.

Yes, that is a starfish on the top. I had heap big fun working out how to do the top without cutting the yarn… and yes, I did write what I was doing for the whole thing. Will post it once I either get better pictures or admit this is as good as it’s getting. But Ack! I wasn’t paying attention and where I bound off the live stitches on the band to the cast on didn’t match perfectly! Poor me. All the knitters will laugh at me now. And boy does my arm look weird holding up a hat like this.

So, anyway. Went out to town today to do useful things and check out a few more camera stores. On the way out… wha? Police cars and fire trucks loitering around in the middle of the street? In dear sweet little Alvin? Why??? Well…
(Pardon the mirror.)

Yes, a BIG HONKING PILE OF TRASH in the road. It was big. It honked. It was trashy. And for some reason I felt compelled not only to take a picture but also to post it for 2/3rds of the world to see.
(I’m going to show this picture to Dad as PROOF I need a new camera. You can barely see the trash!)

And what should appear in my mailbox today but the first of the birthday cards? Karen sent a gnomealicious card and PolarG sent a SQUIRREL card and two hanks of laceweight. Way to make a monkee purr!

I want to lick that laceweight… but no, already started one big honkin’ project this week. (What’s with the honking?) Started the “Knitted Lace Doily from 1940’s Coats Patons Crochet Doily Leaflet” (what a mouthful!) – but no, not as a tablecloth as shown… a shawl. I’m using Knitpicks Colour Your Own dyed in Arctic Green Apple on #6 needles… and already it’s too large across to lay flat on the circ. I have absolutely no idea how many rounds this will need… or how much yarn… or how large across I want the finished shawl to be… but we’ll see, won’t we?

Comments (15) September 19, 2005 @ 10:09 pm |

Pattern – Mock-cable starfish hat

The hat starts with a garter band at the bottom, knit flat until it reaches around the head. The band is joined together; then stitches are picked up along the edge and the main part of the hat is knit in a mock-cable pattern. No stitches are decreased before the hat is bound off. The binding off is a bit tricky but makes a beautiful starfish!

Gauge – 20 sts x 36 rows = 4″ x 4″ in garter stitch
Yarn – one hank of Malabrigo in “Curry” or any worsted weight wool
Needles – #6 circs (I used 27″ long, which made it simple to try on as I knit but was a bit awkward to use)

With provisional cast on, cast on 16 sts

Work in garter stitch for 132 rows (66 ridges), slipping the first stitch of each row

Pull out provisional cast on, putting these 16 sts onto a spare needle

Match up ends of knitting to form a loop and using a spare needle, bind off together

Put the stitch leftover from the bind off onto a circular needle and pick up stitches along the slip-stitch loop as follows – *Pick up and knit two stitches, M1* – 100 sts should be on the needle at the end.
(If not, slip in a few increases or decreases in the next round. I ended up with 98 somehow… anyone’s guess how.)

Rounds 1 and 2: *K3, P2*
Round 3: *Slip 1 knitwise, K2, pass slipped stitch over, P2*
Round 4: *K1, yarnover, K1, P2*

Repeat these four rounds until hat is 8″ from start. Repeat Round 1 once more. Now for the fun part…

Turn the hat inside-out and hold the tips of the circular needle together.
Using the three-needle bind off, bind off 10 sts together. (80 sts left on circ, 1 on third needle.)

Bind off one more stitch in the normal manner, then transfer the stitch on the third needle to the other end of the circ. Work 9 more stitches in pattern stitch (should be k1, p3, k2, p3) – 10 sts on right, 70 sts on left
Turn the knitting around again, setting up for a 3-needle bind off, and with a third needle bind off those 10 sts. Continue in this manner until all stitches are bound off – makes five nice and tidy points, with a big hole in the center.

Cut yarn, leaving enough of a tail to creatively stitch up the hole in the center. Sew up at hole, weave in ends, and wear with flair!

Notes – even though the gauge suggests the garter band is only 14.5″ around, it very easily stretches to fit my 22″ noggin. Rather than *gasp* trusting the pattern, it’d be best to measure the strip around your head and see at what point it feels most comfortable. Pick up stitches along the band at the same ratio, then fudge to make it a multiple of 5. If the ribbing turns out oddly, it’s very easy to frog back to the band and try again with more or fewer stitches.

(timestamp messed with to make it fall back in the archives a bit. will be set to actual date (9/21) someday.)

Comments (0) September 1, 2005 @ 4:16 pm |
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