Wednesday, April 11, 2012

a couple of works in progress...

I haven't finished anything this week, but I am excitedly knitting around the clock on two projects, one that travels well and one for home!

I told you about the tees and tanks knit along that I'm taking part in the other day. I decided to go with the Arlene, but I'm holding the huge sequins...It will just be more "me" without the bling. I wanted to get the yarn and get swatching for the project so Monday night I went on a yarn hunt with Honey with some success. I got a nice blueish bamboo silk yarn that will have the drape I want for this summertime top.

I decided that I would swatch for this project. Its not something that I actually enjoy doing (find me one person who likes to knit something, just to rip is out again)...but I've made a couple of things in the past that I didn't swatch for and now I don't wear those fact, I've given them away to smaller people who will be able to wear them. So, I guess you could say, I've learned my lesson. I made two swatches for Arlene and seem to have my gauge correct. So, I started the knitting already.  This project is pretty easy, just a couple of rectangles with straps, so its a very portable project, meaning I can take it with me to work while the babies sleep. It will also be great for car knitting! The pattern is simple enough that I won't have to check for pattern changes after each row.

I'm also working on a toy project. I'm taking an online course at Craftsy. I've made crochet toys before, but I was intimidated to try knitting them too. Its those pesky double pointed needles (dpn's). I find that the first stitch when changing needles creates a little ladder, or gap in the knit fabric that looks like a ladder up the fabric. But, I decided that I won't eliminate ladders unless I practice a bit (LOT) more.

I've seen that Craftsy has a couple of toy classes taught by Susan B. Anderson. She's written a couple of books about knitting and I've had my eye on them for a while, but didn't want to shell out the money for an expensive online course (I think 60 bucks is a bit much, when you also have to run out and drop 30 on yarn and materials...). Then, Craftsy put the Not So Itty Bitty Giraffe class on sale for only 15 bucks! The sale is over now, but the class has since been reduced to $25.  I signed up right away and went out and purchased my project yarn. If you aren't into online instruction, you can buy Susan's book, with the Giraffe pattern as well as many other ones.

I'm liking the class a lot. Susan does a great job talking through the project. Sometimes I think she is covering some things that knitters probably already know...but in reading the class discussion board, I see that many students in the class are beginners and need all the help and description they can get. Here's my giraffe so far:
This is not an On The Go project. The pattern has different directions for each and every row. Plus those pesky dpn's tend to slide out if moved around too much. I'm working on this project at home, safely tucked into the couch. But, its coming along fairly quickly and I'm liking the results so far. Tonight I start the ears!

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