Auntie Ann Knits

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Visit with My First Knitting Guru

A little while back I had the chance to spend the afternoon with one of my dearest friends, Lisa, who now happens to live a couple thousand miles away or so -- but we grew up next door to each other in a suburb of Milwaukee, and she taught me to knit, for which I am forever grateful. Here is one of her most recent projects:
hedgie the hedgehog
I think it's very cute, and that is on my "want to knit" list of projects.

Here is Lisa, with my DD, at the SF Ferry Building, and in this photo you can sorta see Lisa's very nice felted bag:
At the ferry bldg

And here they are at the gate to Chinatown:
Chinatown Gate
where we also saw this protestor standing on a stool and loudly proclaiming something or other:
Street Protester

We also ate a ton of dim sum, bought some bangles and beads, ice cream and tea, and generally had a swell time.

Love you, Lisa! It was a great day.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Berliner Bears

My brother was in Berlin recently, and sent these pix of the wonderful bears they have all over the city:
And my favorite:
Aren't they wonderful? Here in SF, we have huge hearts, similarly decorated by various artists, all over the downtown area. (cuz, you know, you left your heart . . . )

Monday, June 12, 2006

I-cord edge tutorial

Since Ang asked me to, I've put together this tutorial on i-cord edging, which you can see on my swatch here, and in my progess pix elsewhere on this blog:

Sonnet Swatch2

Here's how I made this swatch -- first I'll name the i-cord steps, then give more detail on each one.

1. I-cord cast-on, bottom edge.
2. Built-in i-cord, left edge.
3. Slip stitch double-knit edge, right edge.
4. I-cord bind-off, top edge.

1. I-cord cast-on, bottom edge. Provisionally cast on 3 stitches (I use the method involving a bit of waste yarn, but not the crochet one -- just personal preference). Knit 2 rows of i-cord (knit 3 stitches, slip stitches back to left needle purl-wise, repeat). *Knit in front and back of 1st stitch, knit 2, slip 3 stitches to left needle purl-wise*, repeat from * to * for each cast-on stitch, then when you have cast on enough stitches, do 2 more rows of plain i-cord (no increase), to give enough ease for the corner of the edging.

2. Built-in i-cord, left edge. Knit to last 3 stitches, yarn to front, slip 3 purl-wise, turn, knit. This seems to give an edge with the right row gauge for garter stitch.

3. Slip stitch double-knit edge, an Annie Modesitt signature touch. See the link on her website for her "Alison" scarf for more detailed instructions. I think of it like this -- normally the 3-stitch edge would consist of 6 stitches, 3 on each side of your work. Knit those 6 stitches as follows: *K1, slip 1 with yarn in front*, repeat 2 more times. Using my swatch as an example, when completing the first row after the cast-on row, knit back to the right-hand edge of the work, pick up those three provisionally cast-on stitches, then work the edge stitches as above. This results in a nice curved edging for the lower right-hand corner. However, I found that this slip-stitch edging seemed sloppy on my garter-stitch swatch. Perhaps it was my workmanship, but my theory is that for some reason the row gauge of that edging is longer than that of the built-in i-cord. I don't know why this should be, and I had the same number of edging rows on each edge, so YMMV. For my actual sweater, I chose to do the built-in i-cord edge.

4. I-cord bind-off, top edge. Work 2 extra rows of whichever edging you are doing (I chose the left-hand i-cord edge to start from), then bind off as follows: *K2, knit 3rd i-cord stitch and 1 regular stitch together through back loops, slip the 3 stitches on your right needle to your left needle*, repeat until all stitches are bound off except 3 right-hand edge stitches. Then, for the final corner, knit 2 rows of plain i-cord, and graft the i-cord stitches to the 3 right-hand edge stitches. This last corner of mine looks kinda crappy, but it was only a swatch. [ETA -- make only 1 row for this corner before grafting, since the graft stitches are the second row, and hopefully yours will look better than this swatch.)

Note: I had originally intended to stop the edging on my Sonnet right front at the point where I had cast on the additional neckline stitches, since that edge would be seamed to the back and so should be plain, but . . . I forgot. I was planning to leave the 3 edging stitches on a holder, and then graft them to the edging stitches from the back neckline, but now I will have a little i-cord ornamental shoulder seam thing, instead.

I hope that is clear -- let me know of any questions!

Friday, June 09, 2006

Sonnet progress

So it took me forever to even start casting on, and now I've knit up one skein of yarn and knotted in another, and here is my progress (oops, was chatting on phone while doing casting-on of additional stitches and forgot to immediately start box stitch, I figure it'll be OK if I can remember to match it on the other side). But I'm pretty happy with how my i-cord edging is turning out.

Sonnet right front

I still haven't figured out the exact details of doing the short-row waist shaping, but I have gotten some good tips from y'all (trying to up my "Dixie" rating).

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Sonnet -- finally casting on

I don't know why it took me so long, but I am finally casting on for Sonnet. Here is the i-cord cast-on in process on my Denise needles:

Sonnet cast-on

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Who knew?

I took the Linguistic Profile test, and here's what popped up:

Your Linguistic Profile::
50% General American English
20% Upper Midwestern
20% Yankee
5% Dixie
0% Midwestern

You can take this here:

It's a curious result -- as I said below, I was born in Raleigh, but my family promptly moved away, I grew up mostly in Wisconsin, and I went to college in St. Louis, but hung out with all the other upper midwestern/Yankee types there. No idea where that "Dixie" comes from, unless it's to do with the question about drinking fountains (I grew up in the Milwaukee area, where those are universally called "bubblers" -- parents, teachers, everybody). Hmm, and what's the difference between "midwestern" and "upper midwestern", I'd like to know?

Knitting? Oh, yes, here's the travesty ending to my Shedir, cuz everyone wants THIS on the top of their head:

Shedir travesty

It is very true to the name Shedir, though (Google it and see). Fortunately, it was not too hard to re-knit and fix.

And to try to reduce the insect life in our house, we got this screen door for the dog, Ginger:
Ginger going outside

At first she was actually terrified of it, but now as you see she is quite accustomed to it. Seems to work great!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Must see --

Y'all (I can say that, I was born in Raleigh), go look at this: (this is supposed to be a link to her June 1 post, but I can't quite figure out how to do that).

But don't have any food or beverages in your mouth when you do. I'm just saying.